On A Roll With Raglans

I don’t know if it’s the cool weather kicking in or what, but I’ve been on a serious sweater kick recently. And so far they’re all raglans. Bottom up (because I hate flipping the whole sweater around to work the sleeves of a top down raglan). I’m on my third sweater in about a month. All are my own design. The goal is that they will all be free patterns.

comfy cotton blend yarn from Lion BrandThe first sweater is Piedmont. It’s worked in Comfy Cotton Blend from Lion Brand Yarn. The body features reverse stockinette and the sleeves are traditional stockinette. The ribbed decrease line of the raglan sleeves joins the two textures.

I made the sleeves ΒΎ length because I’m constantly pushing my long sleeves up out of the way anyway. I like having my wrists exposed. Unless I’m snuggling in for some knitting and kitty cuddles. In which case I’m wearing an oversized sweatshirt and not a hand knit sweater anyway.

raglan sweater in the petite wool from we are knitters

The second sweater is Down Port. This short sleeve cropped sweater works up in no time using We Are Knitters Petite Wool and size 10.5 needles. Even though I designed it cropped you can easily add length prior to the waist shaping. My version used 3 skeins of Black and 1 black/white twist and 1 yellow.

The third sweater is currently on my needles. This one is a striped raglan in Lion Brand’s Wool-Ease Worsted. I used this yarn waaaaaaayyy back in the day when I was first discovering knitting. At this point it’s about 14 years ago. Frightening thought.

I haven’t quite figured out how I’m working the stripe sequence on this one. Currently I’m thinking of alternating between the main color and coordinating color 1 until after the waist shaping. Then switching to Coordinating color 1 and 2. Then just a little bit at the end with colors 2 and 3. Sleeves will be 3/4 length like I did for the Piedmont sweater.

My [current] Top 3 Places to Spend Money on Yarn

I have 3 favorite mass market online yarn suppliers that I stalk and shop from on a regular basis. This list changes, but it’s accurate for the past couple months at least. Until I find a new supplier to feed my addiction. 😬 You might be surprised at the combination of shops. Or maybe not. They’re different, and between all 3 I can pretty much cover any project I’m dreaming up.

1. We Are Knitters
This one is a new obsession and currently highly stalked. (I just completed a design using some of their Pima Cotton in Terra-cotta.) I love the simplicity and high quality of their yarns. The patterns are inspirational, but nothing I need as they are mostly basic shapes I can complete without a pattern. However, I do often buy yarn as a kit from them because of the deals they run. And why not? An extra pattern laying around never hurt. Plus the packaging is so cute. Yarn, printed pattern, a garment label, yarn needles, and [optional] crochet hook or knitting needles all come packaged in a heavy duty brown paper bag with a color photo on the front displaying what design the kit is. A+ on the marketing to We Are Knitters.

Favorite Yarn: The MeriPaca

We are knitters the meri paca yarn

We Are Knitters, The Meri Paca Yarn


2. Knit Picks
KP and I go pretty far back. When I was just starting out as a novice knitwear designer they were one of the first companies to back me up and give me a chance to prove myself. For that they will always have a spot in my heart no matter what. Plus they’re really just super awesome people. I met some of the staff this Winter at Vogue Knitting Live and I was not let down. Over the 9+ years since I published my first design with them I’ve had the opportunity to correspond with lots of the staff at KP and they’ve all been a pleasure to work with.

If you need a good yarn that’s not going to break the bank you’ll be able to find something on KnitPicks.com. They used to be strictly plainer yarns. The basic wool and acrylic and cotton. However, as the years go by they’re branching out into all sorts of exciting new fiber combinations. (WonderFluff is like holding kittens on clouds.)

Favorite Yarn: Color Mist, Swish Worsted

Knit picks Color Mist yarn

Knit Picks Color Mist yarn


3. Lion Brand Yarn
If you follow my Instagram (@FiddleKnitsDesigns) you’ll see I use Lion Brand pretty frequently. This is relatively new for me. We Are Knitters is on the higher end, Knit Picks falls comfortably in the middle, and Lion Brand brings in a good affordable option. It’s solid yarn. Most of the offerings are all, or nearly all, manmade fiber. They do have the LB Collection which brings in more natural and higher end fibers. It is, however, online available at their NYC retail store or directly through LionBrand.com. While some yarnies turn up their nose at manmade box-store yarns, I think there is a time and place for them in my project lineup. Good acrylics are what I want for blankets and every day type garments that will endure a lot of wear. Sometimes I want to make things that I don’t want to feel like I have to treat like an heirloom. Give me a sweater I can pull on quickly, get a little sweaty in, and toss into the washing machine.

Favorite Yarn: Flikka/Comfy Cotton Blend, ZZ Twist, and Feels Like Butta

Ikon brand Flikka yarn

Lion Brand, Flikka yarn


So there you have it. My current 3 favorite go-to brands. What are your top 3? Do you usually stay in a niche? Or do you have favorites for different needs? I want to know! Maybe you can introduce me to my next yarn obsession. 😬

Settling In

I moved! In the last week Rick and I have been settling in to our new apartment. It’s good to be back out on Eastern LI. We’re mostly unpacked. Mostly. All my yarn and needles are still in bins in the craft closest. But I have a set of circulars and a few projects unpacked that I can work on! Of course, the yarn I have out and available I didn’t want to work on. So I got some new yarn. Woe is me.

Lion Brand Comfy Cotton Yarn

Lion Brand Comfy Cotton Blend in “Whipped Cream”. I cast it on as soon as I brought it home. It’s becoming a bottom-up raglan. Yet another design in progress that I’ll need to photograph and write up so I can release it.

I’m hoping that now, being back out east, I can get back into the swing of semi-regular photoshoots with my sister. With me being in more photos as well. Because I want to make some sweaters in my size!

This current design in progress (DIP?) began with inspiration from a Japanese knitting stitch dictionary my dad gave me for my birthday. I’m using the stitch on the hem and probably will incorporate it into the sleeve somehow. However, the majority of the sweater is worked in plain reverse stockinette stitch in the round. Yes, I know. There are lots of you knitters out there that hate lurking over and over and over again. I’m not one of those knitters. Purling has never bothered me. In fact, sometimes I even like it better than knitting. There. I said it.

If you’re not a purl fan like me then you can flip your work (after the hem detail) to knit the sweater inside out until you get to the sleeves. This lets you knit ever round instead of lurking endless inches. Work as your mood strikes you. Or heck, change the pattern entirely and make the right side in regular stockinette. I’m a big proponent of changing up patterns to make them work for you. So what if it was written on way? You do you!

Lion Brand yarn Comfy Cotton blend

Home Dec

I’ve never been much for home decor knit/crochet projects. But then I was never truly in control of all aspects of the decorating. Now I am! And I’m interested. So I’ve got the basket thing going. Making belly baskets and probably just a large bucket kind of bag using Lion Brand Fast-Track yarn. But I’m wondering what else can I do? Blankets, obviously. Table runners? Seat covers? Does anyone have some ideas to pass along? Concepts or great patterns you’ve followed. I’m curious about anything whether it be functional or ornamental. If it’s for the home then it’s for me! πŸ’›

free crochet shawl pattern

Bay Shore – A Free Crochet Shawl Pattern

If you’re looking for a free, fast, fun crochet project then you’re in the right spot! I whipped up this shawl using Lion Brand Yarn Jeans (acrylic) and Flikka (cotton/acrylic). Jeans yarn is so soft! And Flikka has this awesome retro vibe that I’ve taken to. Check out all the colors. There’s some great ones! And they pair wonderfully with Jeans. Technically the yarns are classified as different weights (Jeans is CYC #4 and Flikka is CYC #3.)

Worked at a loose gauge and only having 42 rows, this shawl works up fast! And its substantial size gives a dramatic effect when worn.

I’ve added tassels to the 3 points of the shawl using Jeans for the main color and Flikka to wrap around the tops of the tassels. This is optional, but it does serve to give extra weight helping to keep the shawl wrapped and hanging down instead of billowing out.

free crochet shawl pattern

Suggested Yarn
2 skeins Lion Brand, Jeans
246 yards, 100 grams, CYC #4
100% Acrylic
Color: β€œVintage”

1 skein Lion Brand, Flikka
196 yards, 100 gransm CYC #3
50% Cotton / 50% Polyester
Color: Keepsake

Hook
US P-15, 10mm

Gauge
10 hdc = 4”

Notions
Yarn needle for weaving ends
Cardboard for wrapping tassels (optional)

Finished Size
One Size, approximately 70” wingspan x 32” depth


free crochet shawl pattern

The Pattern

With Jeans yarn, chain 4, join to form ring.

Ch 2, work 17 hdc into ring, turn – 17 sts

Row 1: Ch 2, 2 hdc in first st, 7 hdc, 3 hdc in next st,
7 hdc, 2 hdc in last st – 21 sts

Row 2: Ch 2, 2 hdc in first st, [ch 1, skip next st, hdc in next st] 4 times, ch 1, skip next st, 3 hdc in next st,
[ch 1, skip next st, hdc in next st] 4 times, ch 1, skip next st, 2 hdc in last st, turn – 25 sts

Row 3: Ch 2, 2 hdc in first st, [ch 1, skip next st, hdc4tog in ch-1 space] 5 times, ch 1, skip next st, hdc4tog in next st, [ch 1, skip next st, hdc4tog in next ch-1 space] 5 times, ch 1, skip next st, 2hdc in last st, turn – 27 sts

Row 4: Ch 2, 2 hdc in first st, hdc in next st, [ch 1, skip next ch-space, hdc in next st] 5 times, ch 1, 3 hdc in next st, [ch 1, skip next ch space, hdc in next st]
6 times, 2 hdc in last st

Row 5: Ch 2, 2 hdc in first st, [ch 1, skip next st, hdc4tog in ch-1 space] 6 times, ch 1, skip next st, hdc4tog in next st, [ch 1, skip next st, hdc4tog in next ch-1 space] 6 times, ch 1, skip next st, 2hdc in last st, turn

Row 6: Ch 2, 2 hdc in first st, hdc in next st, [ch 1, skip next ch-space, hdc in next st] 6 times, ch 1, 3 hdc in next st, [ch 1, skip next ch space, hdc in next st]
7 times, 2 hdc in last st

Row 7: Ch 2, 2 hdc in first st, [ch 1, skip next st, hdc4tog in ch-1 space] 7 times, ch 1, skip next st, hdc4tog in next st, [ch 1, skip next st, hdc4tog in next ch-1 space] 7 times, ch 1, skip next st, 2 hdc in last st, turn

Row 8: Ch 2, 2 hdc in first st, hdc in next 15 sts (counting ch-space as 1 st), 3 hdc in next st, hdc in next 15 sts, 2 hdc in last st – 37 sts

Row 9: Ch 2, 2 hdc in first st, 17 hdc, 3 hdc in next st, 17 hdc, 2 hdc in last st – 41 sts

Row 10: Ch 2, 2 hdc in first st, 19 hdc, 3 hdc in next st, 19 hdc, 2 hdc in last st – 45 sts

Row 11: Ch 2, 2 hdc in first st, 21 hdc, 3 hdc in next st, 21 hdc, 2 hdc in last st – 49 sts

Row 12: Ch 2, 2 hdc in first st, 23 hdc, 3 hdc in next st, 23 hdc, 2 hdc in last st – 53 sts

With Flikka (Color 2)

Row 13: Ch 2, 2 hdc in first st, 25 hdc, 3 hdc in next st, 25 hdc, 2 hdc in last st – 57 sts

Row 14: Ch 1, slip stitch in every stitch to end (no stitches increased)

With Jeans (Color 1)

Row 15: Ch 2, 2 hdc in first st, 27 hdc, 3 hdc in next st, 27 hdc, 2 hdc in last st – 61 sts

Row 16: Ch 2, 2 hdc in first st, 29 hdc, 3 hdc in next st, 29 hdc, 2 hdc in last st – 65 sts

With Flikka (Color 2)

Row 17: Ch 3 (counts as first dc), dc in same st,Β [ch 1, skip next st, dc in next st] 15 times, ch 1, skip next st, 3 dc in next st, ch 1, skip next st, [dc in next st, ch 1, skip next st]Β 15 times, 2 dc in last st

Row 18: Ch 3 (counts as first dc), dc in same space, [ch 1, skip next st, dc in ch-1 space] 16 times, ch 1, skip next st, 3 dc in next st, [ch 1, skip next st, dc in ch-1 space, 16 times, ch 1, 2 dc in last st

Row 19: Ch 3 (counts as first dc), dc in same st,Β [ch 1, skip next st, dc in ch-1 space] 17 times, ch 1, skip next st, 3 dc in next st, [ch 1, skip next st, dc in ch-1 space, 17 times, ch 1, 2 dc in last st

Row 20: Ch 3 (counts as first dc), dc in same st,Β [ch 1, skip next st, dc in ch-1 space] 18 times, ch 1, skip next st, 3 dc in next st, [ch 1, skip next st, dc in ch-1 space, 18 times, ch 1, 2 dc in last st

Row 21: Ch 3 (counts as first dc), dc in same st,Β [ch 1, skip next st, dc in ch-1 space] 19 times, ch 1, skip next st, 3 dc in next st, [ch 1, skip next st, dc in ch-1 space, 19 times, ch 1, 2 dc in last st

Row 22: Ch 3 (counts as first dc), dc in same st,Β [ch 1, skip next st, dc in ch-1 space] 20 times, ch 1, skip next st, 3 dc in next st, [ch 1, skip next st, dc in ch-1 space, 20 times, ch 1, 2 dc in last st

With Jeans (Color 1)

Row 23: Ch 2, 2 hdc in first st, 44 hdc (counting ch-1 space as 1 st), 3 hdc in next st, 44 hdc, 2 hdc in last st – 95 sts

Row 24: Ch 2, 2 hdc in first st, 46 hdc, 3 hdc in next st, 46 hdc, 2 hdc in last st – 99 sts

Row 25: Ch 2, 2 hdc in first st, 48 hdc, 3 hdc in next st, 48 hdc, 2 hdc in last st – 103 sts

Row 26: Ch 2, 2 hdc in first st, 50 hdc, 3 hdc in next st, 50 hdc, 2 hdc in last st – 107 sts

Row 27: Ch 2, 2 hdc in first st, 52 hdc, 3 hdc in next st, 52 hdc, 2 hdc in last st – 111 sts

Row 28: Ch 2, 2 hdc in first st, 54 hdc, 3 hdc in next st, 54 hdc, 2 hdc in last st – 115 sts

Row 29: Ch 2, 2 hdc in first st, [ch 1, skip next st,
hdc in next st] 28 times, ch 1, skip next st, 3 hdc in next st, [ch 1, skip next st, hdc in next st] 28 times,Β ch 1, skip next st, 2 hdc in last st

Row 30: Ch 2, 2 hdc in first st, [ch 1, skip next st, hdc4tog in ch-space] 29 times, ch 1, skip next st, hdc4tog in next st, [ch 1, skip next st, hdc4tog inΒ ch-space] 29 times, ch 1, skip next st, 2 hdc in last st

Row 31: Ch 2, 2 hdc in first st, hdc in next st, [ch 1, skip next st, hdc in top of next cluster] 29 times, ch 1, 3 hdc in next st, [ch 1, skip next st, hdc in top of next cluster] 29 times, ch 1, skip next st, 1 hdc, 2 hdc in last st

Row 32: Ch 2, 2 hdc in first st, [ch 1, skip next st, hdc4tog in ch-space] 30 times, ch 1, skip next st, hdc4tog in next st, [ch 1, skip next st, hdc4tog in ch-space] 30 times, ch 1, skip next st, 2 hdc in last st

Row 33: Ch 2, 2 hdc in first st, [ch 1, skip next st,
hdc in top of next cluster] 30 times, ch 1, skip next st, 3 hdc in next cluster, [ch 1, skip next st, hdc in top of next cluster] 30 times, ch 1, skip next st, 2 hdc in last st

Row 34: Ch 2, 2 hdc in first st, [ch 1, skip next st, hdc4tog in ch-space] 31 times, ch 1, skip next st, hdc4tog in next st, [ch 1, skip next st, hdc4tog in
ch-space] 31 times, ch 1, skip next st, 2hdc in last st

Row 35: Ch 2, 2 hdc in first st, 63 hdc (counting ch-1 space as 1 st), 3 hdc in next st, 63 hdc, 2 hdc in last st – 133 sts

Row 36: Ch 2, 2 hdc in first st, 65 hdc, 3 hdc in next st, 65 hdc, 2 hdc in last st – 137 sts

With Flikka (Color 2)

Row 37: Ch 3 (counts as first dc), dc in same st,
[ch 1, skip next st, dc in next st] 32 times, ch 1, skip next st, 3 dc in next st, [ch 1, skip next st, dc in next st] 32 times, ch 1, skip next st, 2 dc in last st

Row 38: Ch 3 (counts as first dc), dc in same space, [ch 1, skip next st, dc in ch-1 space] 34 times, ch 1, skip next st, 3 dc in next st, [ch 1, skip next st, dc in ch-1 space, 34 times, ch 1, 2 dc in last st

Row 39: Ch 3 (counts as first dc), dc in same space, [ch 1, skip next st, dc in ch-1 space] 35 times, ch 1, skip next st, 3 dc in next st, [ch 1, skip next st, dc in ch-1 space, 35 times, ch 1, 2 dc in last st

Row 40: Ch 3 (counts as first dc), dc in same space, [ch 1, skip next st, dc in ch-1 space] 36 times, ch 1, skip next st, 3 dc in next st, [ch 1, skip next st, dc in ch-1 space, 36 times, ch 1, 2 dc in last st

With Jeans (Color 1)

Row 41: Ch 2, 2 hdc in first st, 75 hdc (counting ch-1 space as 1 st), 3 hdc in next st, 75 hdc, 2 hdc in last st

Row 42 (Last Row): Ch 2, 2 hdc in first st, 77 hdc,
3 hdc in next st, 77 hdc, 2 hdc in last st

Cut yarn and finish by weaving in ends.
Shawl shown features tassels on each pointof the shawl. They are created with 40 wraps around a 4” piece of cardboard.

free crochet shawl pattern


Abbreviations
Ch Chain
Dc Double crochet
Hdc Half double crochet
St(s) Stitch(es)
Tog Together

Bay Shore Shawl

Design Copyright Erica Jackofsky β€’ Fiddle Knits Designs
All Rights Reserved β€’ April 2018
For more information contact: FiddleKnitsDesigns@gmail.com
Photos: Erica Jackofsky β€’ Modeled by Annalee Jackofsky

SaveSave

SaveSave

SaveSave

SaveSave

I Have A Problem

As I stood looking through one of my project bags this morning I realized something. I have a problem. I have so many projects in the works that I’ve officially lost track of how many exactly there are. It’s Spring, so that’s official cleaning time. Right? Time to hit the yarn piles. Hard. With cold stony non-attachment. Rip or toss. That will be the question.

Now I need to know, how many projects are too many? Two? One knit and one crochet? Four? Two travel (one knit and one crochet) and two for at home (one knit and one crochet)??

I also have to consider, I’m moving in July! Eek! My boyfriend knows, but doesn’t know, just what he’s getting into with all this yarn. There’s just. So. Much! He’ll learn fast. And he’ll be ok with it. 😬

In the Name

Naming patterns is sometimes the most difficult part. I find myself having designed and worked through an entire pattern and then I sit staring at my computer completely baffled for what to call it. Like right now, I’m working on this cabled stole in Rewind. And what have I been referring to it as?? The Rewind Stole. Not a name that screams “make me!” Plus you can’t use descriptives like stole, shawl, hat, etc. in names on Ravelry, so there’s that to consider.

I used to use a lot of musical inspiration for my pattern and yarn names. These days, though, I find myself drawn to places. Eventually I’ll run out of local spots, but for now I’m finding inspiration in my surroundings. I think it’s because of my daily long train rides to and from NYC. I pass the signs at the station and am reminded of local history and the beauty that surrounds me here on Long Island. (And also of course the really broken down and unloved places too. Life isn’t all puppy dogs and roses.)

I think I might go with the name “Forest Hills” on this particular design. Yet another stop along the LIRR. And when I run out of LI places I’ll just have to go on vacation for name inspiration from other locales. 😬

Knit it, Drop it

Rewind. It’s one of the new [gasp] acrylic yarns I cant stop playing with. Lightweight, yet speedy quick and bulky. Interesting and fun, but not expensive. This yarn has been keeping my imagination rolling in high gear.

I’m working on a very repetitive cable and drop stitch stole. I envision it being worn walking along a beach on a cool Summer night. Draped over bare shoulders to ward of that chill coming in off the water.

Ok. Two things — I might be slightly romantic. Also, I’m in desperate need of a vacation. I’m thinking somewhere I can put this vision into action.

I frogged this design a couple times over the weekend until I got the arrangement of stitches I was happy with. There is a leaf motif as the center focal point and I was having some trouble making up my mind how best to show it off. I ended up asking Rick’s opinion. (So if you guys hate it we can blame him. Hehe. Also, we’re moving in together in July! It’s good he gets used to being a sounding board for my designs now. Give him a taste of what he’s in for 24/7 πŸ˜‚)

I cannot wait for this design, along with the ZZ Top shell, Rewind raglan, and Flikka shawl to all be wrapped up. Beach photo shoot here I come! πŸ’›

ZZ TwistY!

I’m working on take II of a crocheted shell I designed in Lion Brand’s ZZ Twist yarn. This yarn was created with a “Z” twist meant for crocheters. (Z is opposite of the standard S twist. It’s spinning term stuff relating to spinning a single and then counter-spinning to balance the energy in the yarn.)

I like the definition and drape of the fabric that this yarn produces. This is another yarn that I wasn’t overly impressed with when I first touched it. I was like meh, I like natural fibers. Truly. However, the appeal of a washable garment is pretty strong because I hate hand washing and feeling like I have to treat garments like they’re about to break. I have some weird contradicting feelings and habits I guess. πŸ™‚

Anyway, I gave the yarn a shot because it was there. So really, why not? The top came out nice (Annalee already added it to her wardrobe) and I’ve begun to consider other patterns I can write for it (all garments). Something that I found does happen, though, is the yarn gets a little twisted up. I think it might be a little overspun. Just my opinion. As I worked I’d notice the strand of yarn feeding into the project would twist around and start to double back on itself. Like when you’re making a twisted cord. (Twist, twist, twist, fold and let double back on itself. That kind of thing.) It’s a very minor annoyance and so far my only semi-negative comment.

As soon as I finish and photograph take II of this top I’ll get to work sizing up the pattern. After that it’ll be some proof reading and the pattern will be listed!

Fast Crochet

I posted a teaser photo of Flikka yarn on my Instagram feed not too long ago sharing the fact that I hated this yarn when I originally saw it. Honestly it reminded me of some crappy 70s throwback. All the colors are multi rag-type looking options. Would I want an entire garment in it? Not so much. But as an accent color to another yarn I think it does pretty well.

flikka yarn

So I designed this crochet shawl (lots of crochet recently!) using Lion Brand yarns Jeans and Flikka. Jeans is a very soft acrylic yarn. (If you’re looking for an non-traditional baby yarn you might want to consider this as an option. It comes in traditional denim inspired colors.) Flikka is a blend of 50% cotton and 50% acrylic. It’s not to die for soft, but it’s softer than it is rough.

I made this shawl twice. The original (shown in photos) uses Jeans in Vintage and Flikka in Keepsake. Since it worked up stupid fast I decided to make another. I used Vintage again, but this time paired it with Jump rope. Photos of that combination will hopefully be shot this coming weekend. Weather permitting. No pattern release day yet. It will be available here on the blog and via Ravelry as soon as it is properly tested, photographed, and laid out as a PDF.

flikka yarn

Interested in test crocheting this design?! Send me an email:

fiddleknitsdesigns@gmail.com

The Details: Pattern test opened April 23, 2018. Deadline for finishing the pattern is May 31, 2018. Testers may use the yarn of their choice. This is not a secret test, so crocheters are free to post about their WIP.

DSC05582