Tubular Cast On: my current favourite method

I do adore the tubular cast on. It’s tidy, and stretchy, and in fine gauge yarns before some ribbing it looks positively professional. It’s particularly helpful when you want to get a stretchy rib from a yarn without much memory of its own, which is why it’s the key to a good brim in Slouch 1, 2, and 3.

Slouch 1 three quarters web
Slouch 1: The first half of the brim is worked in Shibui Knits Pebble held double. Pebble is not a bouncy yarn at all, yet see how nicely the tubular cast on stretches?

I’ve tried several different tubular cast on methods; this is the one I currently prefer. I won’t say it’s the Best Method Ever—that’s subjective, and I’m fickle. It’s the one I used for these samples, and it worked well for me. Here’s how you do it: Continue reading

Help with Harvey relief while making something beautiful

I’ve been watching and reading about the unimaginable devastation to Houston and coastal Texas, and wondering what I could do to help. I could make stuff, but the logistics of dealing with stuff in a disaster make that more of a curse than a blessing. What they really need is cash in the hands of people who know where the help is most needed, and are able to do the most good. So here’s what I’m doing:

From now until midnight on Saturday, CDT, 100% of my income from pattern sales on Ravelry will go to the United Way of Houston’s Relief Fund and to the SPCA of Texas, two local organizations who do good work and will make good use of the money. To be clear: that’s everything that hits my account from Ravelry for the next four days (and tonight). It’s a small thing in the face of such need, but it’s a thing I can do. Help me do it right.

EElliottKnits Pattern Collage 2

Photos by Gale Zucker.

Saltmeadow + Shibui Knits: a giveaway

Yeah, I know, this is a promotional post, which I’ve said I’ll keep to a minimum here on the blog. BUT! This giveaway is pretty sweet, and I didn’t want you to miss out. So:

Last week, I released Saltmeadow, a new shawl pattern in Shibui Knits Reed and Lunar. I’m pretty pleased with how this one turned out: lovely, drapey, lineny goodness, perfect for summer knitting, with a shot of glowing merino/silk at the edges.

Saltmeadow back draped web

The people at Shibui liked Saltmeadow so much, they asked if I’d like to do a giveaway for the design on Instagram, and here we are: the #mySaltmeadow yarn + pattern giveaway. One lucky knitter will win the yarn to make their own Saltmeadow—that’s 7 skeins of Reed and 1 skein of Lunar, in your choice of colours—and a PDF copy of the pattern. Plus, Shibui Knits has kindly said they’ll ship the yarn to you even if you don’t live in the US, so international entries are welcome! Here’s how you enter: Continue reading

Well, that was a long gap.

I think I’ve discovered the problem with keeping new release announcements and promotions to my newsletter, and only posting personal projects and the like here on the blog: 99.999% of my projects are work-related, I don’t often get time to spin, and so there’s not much to say a lot of the time. (Also, to be frank, the current political climate has knocked some of the stuffing out of me, and I don’t want to add to the noise, and it feels like there’s a lot of noise to go around right now.) And lo, seven months have gone by, tumbleweeds are blowing through here, and still loquacity eludes me. But!

I do have a new project I’m excited about, and it’s not a pattern sample (though it may evolve into a pattern eventually), and this right here is just the place to share it.

Remember this?


It’s some 60/40 Bond/Silk that I spun a while ago as part of the Discworld spinalong over on Ravelry. I’ve finally come up with an idea for it: Continue reading

Handspun inspiration

The next round of samples is almost done, and I’m ready for a break. Between indie releases and commissions, I’ve been going pretty much non-stop since July, so I’ve promised myself at least two weeks away from sample knitting when these are out the door.

samples
Today’s project: redo the crown shaping on that hat.

Once these are off, I’ll need to spend a day or so digging the apartment out from under the mess that accumulates during a big work bender. After that, though, ohhhhh, yes. I’ve got more plans than could reasonably be accomplished: set up my workspace, finally; finish himself’s sweater, which has been a sleeve and a button band/collar away from done since April; get started on at least one of the sweaters I’ve been sketching and swatching for myself; finish my Circular Reasoning cowl before another winter’s come and gone; play Fallout 4 until my eyes bleed…it’s a very long list, and I won’t get to all of it, and I’m okay with that. The thing I’m most looking forward to, though (apart from exploring the post-nuclear wasteland), is getting re-acquainted with my spinning wheel. Continue reading

Home again, home again

 

Here we are, back in Birmingham. After a day of sleep and a day of running errands (including replacing my phone, lost, presumed stolen, in the wilds of Toronto), I’m ready to tackle Mount Laundry, put the luggage away, and get back to work. Though I moved away so long ago, Toronto still feels like home to me: my big city face and fast-walking feet snapped into place like they were just waiting to come out and play. Still, it’s nice to be back where things move more slowly, in the place where I keep my tea things and my knitting chair and my cats and my deck full of plants and my own bathroom with a shower that doesn’t require a pilot’s license to operate. (Seriously, y’all should’ve seen the shower at the last place we stayed.)

In between family time and wedding chuppah-holding and birthdaying (the day after one sister’s wedding was the other sister’s birthday) and such, I managed to visit a few yarn shops, exhibiting admirable restraint (in my humble opinion), at least until the end. Unfortunately, that restraint extended to taking photos, for which I’m kicking myself now. However, here’s the rundown, in the order visited: Continue reading

No sooner am I home…

…than I’m off again. It feels like I just got back from DC (wait, I did just get back—I’ve only been home a week), and I’m packing to head up to Toronto. This trip is for fun: my sister, who lives up in the T dot, is getting married to a lovely man, and the clan is gathering for the event. My other sister has rented a cottage, so there will be city time and lake time and family time and time with old friends from the punk rock stompin’ around town years. Many of my internet friends are gathering while we’re there (for another wedding—apparently it’s the thing to do right now), so there will also be time with old friends I’ve never met in real life. And there will be knitting. I got shockingly little knitting done during TNNA, and hooboy, am I going to make up for that in the next couple of weeks. (See above re: lake time: there’s a whole nine glorious days of it.) Of course, most of it will be work knitting, but that’s my favourite kind of work, so I don’t mind one bit.  Continue reading