Indie GAL Feature: Shawl Patterns

Last Monday, I told you about the Indie Design Gift-A-Long. The sale portion of the event might be over, but you still have until December 31st to knit and crochet your gifts to be eligible for prizes. I thought it would be fun for the next few Mondays to tempt you with some of my favorite designs that are part of the Gift-A-Long this year.

No surprise here, I'm starting with shawls.

  1. Rosaria by Michele Bernstein, photo copyright: PDXKnitterati/Michele Lee Bernstein
  2. Aloft Shawlette by Jennifer Chase-Rappaport, photo copyright: Jennifer Chase-Rappaport
    P.S. You can see my blog interview with Jennifer from last year's Gift-A-Long here.
  3. Crossfire by Jennifer Dassau, photo copyright: Jennifer Dassau
  4. Bodacious by Irishgirlieknits, photo copyright: Irish Girlie Knits
  5. Maragon by Corrina Ferguson, photo copyright: Corrina Ferguson
  6. Leona Dare by Elizabeth Green Musselman, photo copyright: Elizabeth Green Musselman
  7. Ice Cream Shawl by Lisa Hannes, photo copyright: maliha
  8. Picea Sitchensis by Raven Knits Design, photo copyright: Raven Knits Design
  9. Love & Madness by Simone Kereit, photo copyright: OwlCat Designs
You might say I'm a striped/multicolored shawl kick, huh? :)

There's still time to join in the Gift-A-Long fun. You can read all about how to get in on the fun and prizes here. Happy gifting!



Sometimes coming up with a design is as simple as making something I really want for myself. I've been wanting a double-thick cowl for a good long time and now I have one. Faro has arrived.

$11.50 (until next pattern release)
The pattern is a nice mix of simple and interesting. There's a bunch of plain knitting in the round combined with a striped section and a slipped stitch section.
The cowl works up quick too. I used Anzula Cole and had it done in a flash!

$11.50 (until next pattern release)

The final pattern of the Nifty Gifty Collection is coming next week. I'm really excited to show off the last pattern - I think you'll love it!


Super Duper Quick Crochet

With the Indie Design Gift-A-Long starting last week I've been spending a lot of time looking at all the beautiful patterns on Ravelry. When I saw the Choclo Cowl by Sara Delaney I knew I needed to crochet one. I had a Chicago Bears game to go to, so I found two skeins of Lion Brand Hometown USA in Bears colors in the stash and got to work.
I made this cowl in 52 minutes - I actually timed it! I really love the texture the bobbles create. They were were so fun to make too.
It was mega cold at the Bears game on Sunday. Glad I had my quick cowl to keep me warm.
By the way, the sale portion of the Indie Design Gift-A-Long is still going on! You can get 25% off the Choclo Cowl when you use the coupon code 'giftalong2015' at checkout. I have patterns for sale too!


Yarn Review: SilverSpun from Feel Good Yarn Company

Recently I received some SilverSpun Sport from Feel Good Yarn Company to try. It's a very interesting yarn, and I was excited to check it out and knit with it!
From the website: The silver content in SilverSpun makes it therapeutic and conductive. Silver inhibits the growth of odor causing bacteria, has excellent thermal properties, is nontoxic and is perfect for those suffering from diabetes, arthritis and sensitive skin. Silver is also an excellent conductive agent allowing Smartphone or tablet touch screen use while wearing gloves knit from the yarn. SilverSpun is compatible with Apple iPhones and Android phones. The silver is permanently adhered to the yarn and will not wash out.

When I think of yarns containing silver in them, I think of the popular sock yarns with a hint of 'sparkle' in them. SilverSpun isn't like that. The silver is contained within the cotton, making it super soft and gives a beautiful look to the yarn.
I knit up a little swatch to get a better feel for the yarn. Honestly, before knitting with it I wasn't sure I would like it - me and stretchy yarns haven't always gotten along.
The 3% Spandex combined with the cotton/silver and nylon made it the perfect amount of stretchy. I really enjoyed knitting with it. If I still worked in the wastewater lab and needed super warm socks for field work, I'd definitely be knitting a pair of socks with this yarn.

SilverSpun Sport contains 87% Combed Cotton, 5% Silver, 5% Nylon, 3% Spandex and it comes in some beautiful colors, which you can see on the Feel Good Yarn Company's website. You can also get this yarn in sock weight.

While I didn't wash my swatch, I did try something else the label/website claim. I completely tried using my iPhone with the swatch I knit - and it worked! Hmm, might need some of those Connectivity Gloves now.

Have you tried Feel Good Yarn Company's SilverSpun? If so, I'd love to hear what you thought about the yarn and what you made with it!

Disclaimer: I received this yarn for free in order to review it. My review is 100% my honest opinion. I did not receive any payment for this review nor did I agree to publish a positive review. You can read my full disclosure policy here.


Indie Design Gift-A-Long 2015

It's time for the third annual Indie Design Gift-A-Long and once again I'm thrilled to be a participating designer!

The first part of the Gift-A-Long (GAL) has begun - it's a sale! There's over 300 designers participating, and each of us has anywhere from 5 to 20 patterns on sale. You get 25% off when you use the coupon code giftalong2015 at checkout. I have 20 patterns available in the sale, which you can see in my Ravelry bundle. The sale is running now through Friday, November 27, 2015 at 11:59 US EST. 
With so many amazing designers participating this year, you're sure to find a pattern (or two...or three...) that you want to gift!

The second part of the GAL is even more fun. Through December 31st, there is a huge knit-along/crochet-along complete with prizes and games. You can read all about it in the Ravelry group.

I hope you can join use for a fun season of gifting!


A Cross Stitch Christmas

I'm so excited. I finally finished another cross stitch project! This is "A Very Merry Christmas Town" from The Frosted Pumpkin Stitchery.

This pattern worked just like a Mystery Shawl KAL, just with a way longer time frame. In July, August, September and October a little more of the pattern was released, giving you lots of time to finish it before Christmas.

I got a little behind, but over the last few weeks I was able to catch up and finish it. I just love it.
And while I didn't enjoy working with it, I love the texture and sparkle the gold thread provides. It was definitely worth the effort.

I look forward to more stitch-alongs from The Frosted Pumpkin in 2016!

Do you cross stitch? Let me know about some of your favorite designers/patterns. I'd love to hear about them!


A Review: Unexpected Cables

When Heather contacted me and asked if I would like a review copy of her book, I jumped at the chance to get one. I really like Heather and her designs, and if you've been reading the blog for awhile you know I loved her last book. Once again, she didn't disappoint.

Unexpected Cables contains 18 patterns - everything from socks to shawls to sweaters. The title of the book is just perfect to describe the book. The cables really are different and interesting and not what you typically think of when you think of cables in knitting. It's got a very modern feel to it!

Of course I liked everything in the book, but here are a few of my absolute favorites.

I love the Leola Scarf, which has small twisted stitches in the body of the shawl and has a cool ruffled edge.
The Stevens Vest is just plain cool. Seriously those reversible cables are so awesome.
Winter is coming quickly here in Chicagoland. Warwick would be the perfect hat to keep my head warm!
I'm obsessed with the Rapho Socks. Check out that scalloped cuff!
Really, I could keep going. :)

If you love cables or are looking for a challenge, I would highly recommend this book. You'll love it!

You can see all the patterns in the book on Ravelry and you can purchase the book (both print and eBook) from Interweave.

Photos courtesy of Interweave/F+W.



Last week, the fourth pattern of the Nifty Gifty Collection hit Ravelry. This is Miriam.

A top-down shawl with simple lace and garter stitch details makes for quick and easy gift-giving. Pattern begins with a garter tab cast on and moves right into the lace pattern. With simple, short charts this shawl is perfect for customizing for your recipient. Make it bigger or make it smaller - it’s up to you!
$10.50 (until next pattern release)

I knit my Miriam shawl with two skeins of Bijou Spun by Bijou Basin Ranch Lhasa Wilderness. It's sport weight and perfect for making a shawl to wear in winter.
It's no secret that I can't resist putting garter stitch together with lace patterns. I love the little bit of texture the garter stitch adds to the shawl.

$10.50 (until next pattern release)

The next pattern in the collection is coming next week. I'll give you a hint - it's another 'neck thing.' :)


Jen's Weekly Gems

Every week (or so) I post links to things I found around the Internet. Enjoy!

Find any online gems this week? 

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