Antara – New pattern release

Antara is a crescent shaped wrap worked with short rows from the bottom up. It has a lacy edge and the twisted stitches are continued to be worked along with the short rows shaping the body.

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pic credit: sonam shah

I’ve used DROPS Cotton Merino, gifted by a very sweet friend halfway around the globe, and the blend along with the lace makes for quite a useful wrap for the weather here.

pic credit: sonam shah
pic credit: sonam shah

This was also the first time Mary and I attempted an outdoor shoot modeling our FOs. While December to February this time was perfect for the knitwear enthusiast, the thought of posing in wool or its blends in the hot months ahead seems to put a damper on the creating process itself.

pic credit: sonam shah
pic credit: sonam shah

But for now, I’m celebrating this release with a 50% off till March 11, 2016.

Also get 25% off on my other patterns using code mm16 till March 10, 2016.

pic credit: sonam shah
pic credit: sonam shah

Last day of GAL sale!

I have added some of my favorite bundle patterns on my pinterest board here, trying to pick out only new-to-me designs or designers (though some of the better known ones did slip through!)

Also featuring a couple of designers here that I recently found via the GAL:

Marcela Chang: You can find her designs here. Shown here is the very colorful Naepolitan Ice Cream scarf and Puerto Fuy hat.

©marcelachang
©marcelachang

Carolyn Macpherson: I’m so glad to have found her and its been a fun interaction. You can find her designs here. Shown here is the gorgeous Early Harvest Mitts and Campside beanie.

©CarolynMacpherson
©CarolynMacpherson

I also cast on for her Some Velvet Morning Slouch hat. I had some Tosh Merino DK leftover from the Breathe Easy pullover and used the grey for the brim and a few stripes before starting the body in MC.

My GAL2015 FO
My GAL2015 FO

Some of the other designs that caught my eye are:

Renilda Collar by Tracey Lee, Snidget by Susan Villas Lewis, Daphne Cowl by Tamara Moots and Ariel by Brandy Velten.

GAL FD4
©misteacrafts ©Susan Villas Lewis ©Sherri Pickett 2015 ©Brandy Velten

Though the sale ends today, the Gift-along will continue to run till the end of the year, so I’ll do another round up next week which would look at patterns outside of these bundles.

Hop over to the Indie GAL group for lots of games, prizes and fun and buy your favorite patterns before end of day today.

Breathe Easy Pullover

The Breathe Easy Pullover is now live on Ravelry and available at a 33% discount till Nov 27, 2015 – end of day.

Breathe Easy
Breathe Easy

Do you remember my trip to Loop while in London? Well, this is what the yarn wanted to be.

Knit up in Tosh Merino DK, Breathe Easy is a quick knit, drop shoulder pullover worked from the bottom up. The body is provisionally cast on at the high hip and worked in the round till the armholes. The provisional stitches are later picked up and the front and back are worked separately creating the side slit, and the back is worked longer than the front. While the body has about 10” of ease worked in, the sleeves are close fitting, striped and full length. Sleeves are worked in the round, down to the cuff.

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Breathe Easy

My testers were super quick and managed these beauties in under a month.

BE Tests

Now I just have to wait patiently and hope for a drop in temperature soon.

 

The Indie Design GAL 2015 is here!

What is this Gift-A-Long all about? “It’s a multi-designer promotion to help you kick your holiday gift-making into high gear!”

You can find The Indie Design Gift-A-Long group on Ravelry. This is the 3rd edition of the extremely popular Knit/Crochet A-Long. This year the KAL/CAL will run from November 19th to December 31, 2015. With about 5000 patterns up for a discount, over 300 participating designers will be offering a 25% off on 5 – 20 of their selected patterns. The discount window is now open and will run from Nov 19, 8pm US EST till Nov 27, 11.59pm US EST. You can find the coupon code in the group or the pattern links below. There are a bunch of KALs set up and the chatter’s already gone through the roof! Lots of games and prizes to be won too.

If you’re on Ravelry, you can browse through the available patterns here. Else, you can check out the patterns on Pinterest.

This is my first time participating as a designer and I have 5 patterns in my bundle.

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My bundle for GAL2015

To summarize, here’s an awesome graphic with fun facts by the very talented Kimberly aka 80skeins.

 

The Vintage Garden

The Vintage Garden has been on my must-do list for some time. They hold these really intriguing pop up shops and workshops in the courtyard of a beautiful colonial style home in Bandra.

“The Vintage Garden is about talented individuals showcasing their works via various forms such as art & crafts, fashion, architecture, product design, music, film & photography.

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At Patkar Bungalow

I was fortunate to meet Chola aka Sohaya of the gorgeous label Chola. Her designs are so soothing (that’s the adjective that popped up as I was typing and I’ll stay with it), right from the fabric to the colour to the cut.

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Chola

Slip into one of these relaxed-fit linens with beautiful pin-stripes and I think summer could be borne with ease. Needless to stay, her designs were flying off the racks and it was no surprise to see customers trying out their outfits and actually doing a happy jig in them.

One of my favorite shops is Radhika Nag‘s. I’d seen her work earlier this year and if you’re at The Lil Flea this weekend, you just have to visit her stall.

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Also present were,

VintageBrands

Mamakutti
Pickles and jams from Mamakutti
Rangin1
Little tins from Rangin
Restories
Upcycled furniture and home decor from Restories
TheGreenWindow
Garden accessories from The Green Window
Sole Sisters
The Sole Sisters

What I like about this concept and pop ups like The Lil Flea, apart from the obvious charm of handcrafted products, is that you come across all these different brands, artists and designs that you wouldn’t find in a mall.

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TheVG2TheVG3

TheVG4 TheVG5 TheVG6

And my pretties from Radhika Nag and Rangin.

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On to The Lil Flea this weekend!

Rithu – New Release

So the test is done and the shawl pattern I had blogged about earlier is now live on Ravelry.

Introducing Rithu,

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a light weight shawl with lacy diamond stitches forming a pattern throughout the body and a simple mesh edge.

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Yarn: 2 skeins of Malabrigo Sock or approx. 750yds in light fingering weight. Colorway: Impressionist Sky purchased at Suma’s The Happy Hands Store.

Size: Length between tips: 66” 168cm, depth: 19” 48cm
By working more repeats or less repeats of the stitch pattern, you can choose to make the shawl bigger or smaller than the given size.

Difficulty: Advanced beginner/ Intermediate.

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30% off till August 31, 2015 on Ravelry.

First Love – New Release

This one sure took its time.

First Love Cardigan
First Love Cardigan

Conceptualized sometime towards the end of 2014, it got onto the needles pretty quickly but then it kind of just stayed there. A bunch of weddings, some hospital trips, a relocation that never was, and this pretty just kept getting pushed further and deeper into the background.

It finally resurfaced a few months ago in this post, and since then, there’s been no looking back.

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Hem in Broken Rib

I’ve always been fond of knitwear. I’d wait for stores to stock up on woolens and a new sweater would accompany me home every year. A light cardigan or jacket is a very useful layer to carry along for the mild winters here as well as the sometimes needlessly chilly indoor areas (even in the heart of summer!) This was also the reason for keeping it plain in the front, without buttons or a zipper, because its never cold enough to want to zip up. It has just enough texture to break the monotony of stockinette and a pop of color courtesy the I-cord, well, just because.

After months of knitting, slacking, pattern writing, editing and testing, First Love is now live on Ravelry.

Available in 5 sizes, this cardigan has about 4 inches of positive ease worked in, a bit of waist shaping and sleeve caps shaped with short rows.

Yarn used: Plucky Feet seen here in colorway Skies of November

50% off on First Love, as well as the rest of my patterns till August 5, 2015.

Shawls can be fun too!

Shawls have never been my favorite project.

I have loved and queued patterns like Color Affection and Ashburn, I have made scarves and even shawlettes, anything that finishes up in one skein, but bigger than that and I feel like I just won’t be able to see it through. Sweaters? Now we’re talking.

Reasons for and against the two categories?

Shawls: They take way too much time to knit up, they’re boring, they’re so big, the stitch count is endless, where will I wear them, when will I wear them…

Sweaters: Well they do take up a bit of time, yes the stockinette parts can be a tad dull, um…yes they’re big plus sleeves, stitch count…hmm, where….(silence), when…(more silence)… Oh…

I ought to give it a try, maybe?

This one came about because of a chance purchase of Silk Indian yarn at London. I very rarely buy a single skein of yarn but since I was already exhausted financially, and I did so want to support an Indian store, this lone beauty just had to accompany me home.

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Aleena – Worsted weight

I charted the design out on Excel using the diamond lace stitch pattern and made a small triangular shawlette.

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The Aleena Shawlette

But while trying to write it into a pattern, I faced a bit of difficulty. I had my shawl increases worked on the 2 edges as well as the center. Though the diamond pattern was worked over a fixed number of stitches, the markers had to be kept moving as the pattern progressed because of the center increases. And while it might be easy to just state that one should move the markers as required, it might get a tad irritating for a knitter to keep having to check stitch count as opposed to a bit of mindless knitting when the markers are firmly in place.

So the revised version came about with the help of some lovely Malabrigo Sock yarn from Suma‘s The Happy Hands Store.

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Colorway: Impressionist Sky

It was my first time with Mal sock and I have to say it was a dream to work with. The stitch definition is beautiful and after a long time I finally had yarn that didn’t keep twisting while I was knitting it up.

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Plenty of markers used

We’ve been having heavy rains here in Mumbai and there’s barely enough light for photographs.

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Aleena v2

But the pattern’s almost ready and will be up for testing soon.

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Aleena v2

I’m just happy that I got out of my sweater comfort zone and tried something a little different. And honestly, it works up way quicker than a full sleeved sweater.

What have you been crafting lately? Have you been wanting to try something different? A new technique or even a whole other craft, maybe?

Help find Coco a home!

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Look at those ears!

She was abandoned on Sunday morning.

According to the vet, she’s about 4 months old, maybe a cross between a spitz and a stray. And this baby is now up for adoption.

We met her while on our regular walk last evening, this little pup with a red collar cowering in the bushes. Our usual experience of strays is that they come running to you with their tails wagging the moment you whistle at them. But this one would barely get close and though she kept wagging her tail, the uncertainty in her was clear. She wasn’t ready to trust just yet. We tried calling up a few people for help but being a Sunday, most places were shut and Monday morning was the earliest that we’d be able to get anything done for her. We asked a person nearby to keep an eye on her while we went home to get biscuits and water. I tried luring her out by holding out little biscuit pieces but she wasn’t tempted. I then tried with a bowl of water and that did the trick. The speed at which she lapped up half the bowl was a sight to behold!

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After that, the biscuits weren’t too difficult. She wolfed down a few and seemed to get much of her energy back.

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A few people had gathered around, and while I was trying to make a couple of calls, she settle down quite comfortably…

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until, a whiff maybe, or a familiar sound? Something triggered her senses and before I knew it, she had darted off down the road. The husband and I tried to keep up but she seemed to be following a bunch of boys who had just passed by. How she managed to cross the heavy traffic on the highway and get across, also managing a poop break right in the intersection of 4 roads, I do not know. We almost gave up chasing after her because the vehicles were moving again and we had almost lost sight of her. In any case we pushed on for just a little bit more and there we see the little thing across the road and retracing her steps. No amount of calling or whistling was catching her attention, she seemed to be on her own mission. And there she was back again at the intersection, dodging cars and buses, and all I was continuously praying was “Please let her not get hit!” Finally I got some response from her and she slowed down, right near the signal, and just close enough for me to grab her up. A whole lot of discussion followed as to where we could keep her, for how long, foster, adopt, etc. In the end, we found a neighbour who volunteers with IDA, and she very graciously offered to clean her up and keep her for the night. This morning the little dog made a trip to the vet,

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At the vet

got her anti rabies and 9 in 1 vaccines, a bath, Protektor tick treatment and a blood test done. The de-worming can be done in a week from now. We had to get her vaccines done early because of Elmo.

Since we don’t know her name and for functional purposes, I named her Coco at the vet today. She’s with me now but will be moving to a foster home soon. Please spread the word and help her find a family that will take her in as one of their own. Here’s to Coco!

The Kiva Beach Shawlette

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My Kiva Beach Shawlette

I was looking for something that I could knit up quickly while browsing through Ravelry and I came across this pretty pattern by yellowcosmo. It was one of those rare moments where I clicked ‘buy’ without stopping to consider why, when or how. Yellowcosmo is a designer I follow because of her interesting sweater patterns but this time I wanted to knit something smaller and Kiva Beach seemed perfect.

I used some yarn that I had in my stash after knitting up Make Space by Veera Valimaki

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Make Space

and Wilde by Melissa Schaschwary also known as dandiliongrl on ravelry.

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Wilde

Unfortunately I had a little color bleed problem so the grey lace now has a pink tinge to it. Surprising, because while working the stripes for Make Space and washing and blocking the sweater thereafter, I didn’t find any color run.

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My Kiva Beach Shawlette

Yarn used: Kidazzle from Colorsong in colorways Ruby Red and Charcoal

Needle size: 4mm throughout and 5mm for bind off

Gauge: 22 sts and 28 rows in 4″ of st st

Finished measurements: 13″ x 48″

My Kiva Beach Shawl

Notes for next time:

1. Go up a needle size or 2. I did not get gauge as I was working with sport weight yarn, so it has turned out smaller.

2. Do away with the organic lace sections. I’ve never been fond of asymmetry and I find my eyes constantly drawn towards the lace section near the stripe.

3. Watch that soak for colors that run!

What have you been working on lately, big sweater projects or just quick knits like this one, or maybe something totally unrelated to yarn?