Line and Shadow

Goodness, it’s been a while. This spring has been a full one, with no sign of slowing down for the summer. The drawback is that a lot of the busyness has been working on projects that I can’t talk about online yet, so my posts are starting to read like a catalogue of pattern releases. I hate when that happens—I recently set up a mailing list for pattern release announcements to try to move this space towards less sell-y content—which is probably why it’s taken me so long to post about Line and Shadow. However, the sample is going to TNNA with me to be displayed in the Shibui Knits booth (the sample, that is—I’m not nearly as good at staying still. It’ll be in booth 389.) I’m pretty chuffed about that, plus it’s well past time, so here goes. Continue reading

Born at Sea

You may remember that some time ago, I made a blanket for my then-newborn nephew, whom we shall call Galactus, Eater of Worlds. (Really, he’s a cherubic little thing with a mess of blond curls; he’ll always be Galactus to me.) For that blanket, Ridgely (the colour genius behind Astral Bath Yarns) took my rather stream-of-images-type description and came up yarn that was exactly the colour in my head, a colour that is now in her repeatable colourways under the name Grotto.

BAS prototype 1
Born at Sea, the prototype

Her dyeing technique and those stitch patterns worked so well together, and enough people liked that blanket, that we decided it should become a pattern, and the pattern should be called Born at SeaContinue reading

Meltwater Scarf

As a fan of woolly wool, I really like Brooklyn Tweed‘s yarns. I’ve noodled around with Shelter and Loft, and just love the light, spongy, cohesive fabric these woolen-spun yarns create, and the wide range of lovely, heathered colours are a colourwork fan’s dream. It pleases me that these beautiful yarns are made sheep to skein here in North America. (I love the house yarns by the mill they use, Harrisville Designs, for all the same reasons.) So when Brooklyn Tweed released Quarry late last year, just as I was finishing the next round of samples for photography, I had to try it. A bulky weight yarn at 200 yds/100g? I could get a hat out of that in no time at all, and have one more sample ready to go. When the skein arrived, I played around with stitch patterns to see what it could do, and it turned out that what Quarry does really well is texture. Ribs and cables turned out beautifully. I didn’t want to stop knitting with it: I wanted a big, generous scarf out of this stuff. Not the most practical thing for the South, but fie on that. Sometimes you just have to go where the inspiration takes you. I ordered more skeins, and knit. And knit. And very soon I had a scarf. And it was exactly what I’d pictured. It’s warm and cozy and the pattern reminded me of runnels of melting ice water, so I called it Meltwater.

Meltwater Scarf 1 | thecusserknits.com Continue reading

Achievement unlocked: Ready Steady Go in Twist Collective

Ready Steady Go hat | thecusserknits.com

I’ve been a fan of Twist Collective since they started out in 2008. An online-only knitting magazine, Twist Collective has always been about treating their designers and writers well while producing a magazine that people will enjoy reading from the first virtual page to the last. The result is a beautiful publication with a reputation for excellent writing and interesting, high quality knitting patterns.

When I started designing, one of my goals was to get a piece published in Twist Collective. ‘This one might be Twist-worthy’ became shorthand in our home for a design idea I found especially pleasing. Then, last spring, they put out a call for submissions that fit perfectly with an idea I’d been working on. I thought this design might be Twist-worthy, and it turns out that they agreed with me: my latest design, the Ready Steady Go set, is in the new edition of Twist Collective. You get all three patterns together for $6 USD, which is a pretty good deal, no? Continue reading

Gyre, revised (and on sale)

When Jill Zielinski (a.k.a. Knitterella) did my snazzy new pattern layout, I decided to redo some of my previously published patterns with the new look. I’d be selective about it—redoing layout takes more time than one would think (at least, if I’m doing it), and that time often would be better spent making shiny new patterns—but there some of my earlier patterns are still pretty popular, and I’d like the good people who buy them to have the best version I can give them.

On the top of the list was Gyre: my swirly, colourwork cowl with the optional striped lining. This pattern needed new photos, though, and it took a while to get that together. Now the new photos are here, and they’re fabulous (in my not-unbiased opinion, and thanks entirely to the talented Gale Zucker and model Ariana McLean), and it’s time. The new version of Gyre is now on Ravelry, and it’s 30% off until November 10. You don’t need a coupon code: the discount will be applied at checkout.

The revision turned out to be more work than I expected (surprise!); I think the results are worth it. For one thing, look at these photos:

Gyre cowl, lined | thecusserknits.com Continue reading

Backroad Hats updated, now with set discount!

Just over a year ago, Interweave Knits published my Backroad Hats pattern in their Gifts special issue. It’s a good gift pattern, if I do say so: the stitch pattern is very stretchy (so the hat fits a lot of sizes and has some wiggle room for gauge) and works well with variegated colourways and the tonal variations of hand dyes; the hat takes about 126 yds/115m of worsted to Aran weight yarn and is a quick project. (The grey sample is in Malabrigo Merino Worsted, and the variegated sample is in Widdershin Woolworks Targhee Worsted, now only available through Mooncat Fiber in Taos, NM.) I’d always intended this hat to be available as part of a set, and now it is.  Continue reading