It’s that wonderful time of year again- a mixture of joy and panic for the holiday season. What do I mean by this? Specifically, the joy of seeing family, eating pies, cakes and delectables; all the while listening to the sounds of the season. In contrast, panic settles in because I may have under-budgeted my knitting and crafting time (ha! whats new?!) Thus, I begin to realize I may have to forgo one of my many gift-giving ideas.
With that being said, there is a truly special gift you can give that will be used every year, since it doubles as useful and ornamental!
I present…the obligatory Christmas Stocking.
Truly, a stocking can be made year-round, yet I always find myself in the mood to knit them this time of year. There is nothing quite like a handmade stocking, and they can be customized to suit your holiday theme in your home. Imagine hot pink and orange for a modern-colorful Christmas, or cream and brown for a rustic-lodge kind of Christmas. This is a large part of why we craft, isn’t it? Customization.
So, even if your knitting list seems daunting and never-ending… imagine the smile you can give to yourself year after year when you unearth the ornaments and baubles from your holiday decorating stash trove, to find a Christmas stocking that you took the time to make for your home and family.
Our Christmas Stocking Trio is knit in Homestead, a true aran 100% wool. It blocks wonderfully, so even if your intarsia colorwork skills aren’t quite where you’d like them to be, you can steam the stitches and they will all uniformly move into place. You can mix and match the colors of Homestead Tweed, too, for a rustic addition. One skein of each color is needed for any one of the stockings.
This pattern is a gift from Plymouth Yarn Company to you…wishing you happy and safe holidays.
I came into the office this morning and found this gem in my email from a cute little shop in Alabama. The Garter Cable Poncho, by Heidi Sunday, is free for you to download! The pattern was written for Encore Worsted but as you can see in this picture, it’s beautiful in Dynamo too! I asked Heidi, the yarn shop owner, if I could share it with you and she said “of course!”. Everyone needs a poncho…..this summer heat wave will be gone before you know it and the leaves will be turning…..perfect poncho weather.
Our beloved Happy Feet has an updated look! Happy Feet has been a consistently popular yarn for us at Plymouth Yarn. We have used it throughout the years as a sturdy sock yarn and for comfy lightweight sweaters. Not to mention it is ideal for the very popular fingering/sock weight shawls that everyone seems to be making.
Brand new for Fall 2016, Happy Feet is now available as 100 grams/384 yards a skein. What does this mean? Well, you can make a pair of socks with one skein. Or, that shawl pattern you have been dying to make that requires 100 (or 200) grams? You won’t need to weave in as many ends since you’ll only need 1 or 2 skeins! We added brand new colors (and kept some of the best selling colors) to present a collection of 18 colors; 4 solids and 12 multis.
To celebrate our revival of this classic yarn, here are some fresh patterns we’ve designed- click each photo for more details and photos…
Here’s a great little news story out of Idaho Falls, ID about a young man learning to knit and making chemo caps. Encore is the perfect yarn for these projects. The Yarn Connection has quite a variety of colors too!
Ask at your local yarn shop about charity knitting projects. There are so many organizations in need and many knitters and crocheters who want to help. You guys rock! It always warms my heart to see the amount of good and kind things the makers in this world are doing. Keep up the good work!
Plymouth Yarn would like to wish all the moms out there a very happy Mother’s Day! We are celebrating by giving one lucky person a copy of Vickie Howell’s new book Wee Garter Stitch! This is a collection of must have knits for modern babies and toddlers!.To sweeten the deal, we are also including the Worsted Merino Superwash for the Round Peg Blanket pattern in the book!
All you have to do to enter is to comment on this blog, let us know your favorite gift you have ever given or received for Mother’s Day. You can also enter by sharing this post but you must comment here that you shared it. Winner will be contacted from email associated with your blog comment. Winner will be picked at random on May 9th, 2016.
BONUS-we will also give 5 second place prizes! The winners will receive pattern 2913, Cottonation Mother/Daughter Poncho delivered to their Ravelry library. Winners will be picked at random and contacted for their Ravelry username or email address for delivery on or around May 9th, 2016
Brioche stitch (aka Fisherman’s Rib) is a fluffy, thick rib. The concept is simple- yarn over strands are worked together with stitches to create an extra luscious, reversible knit fabric. It is like normal ribbing with a bonus!
When I first tried brioche years ago, I was trying to help out a friend that had started what looked like a simple 1×1 rib scarf. She ended up having to be in the hospital for a couple days, so I wanted to surprise her/cheer her up since I knew she didn’t really like the project she was working on. I thought I knew what she was doing. A couple rows of working plain k1, p1 stitch found me befuddled and confused. Why was her ribbing so full and scarf wider? I hastily ripped out my rows. When I arrived at the last row she worked, a giant question mark might as well have been above my head! There were extra strands of yarn and yarn overs every other stitch. Well, fast forward to now and I am happy to tell you brioche is not only easy but addictive!
There are two steps that tend to get knitters hung up about brioche- how to start and how to end.
I’ve made a video featuring a simple cowl design with brioche stitch in the round. Because I am using two different yarns/colors in the cowl, it is a lot easier to see what you are doing. The yarns are very thick and create a project with a short turn around time. Encore Mega is the solid color, and Cannoli (NEW this year!) is the multi. The combination of the two yarns also creates a reversible project- one side shows Encore Mega more dominantly while the other side shows Cannoli as the lead.
Perhaps you will try your hand at this magnificent and misunderstood stitch? Here is the pdf. Enjoy the video!
Scarves don’t have to be heavy and cumbersome. A new trend that I’ve noticed in ready to wear is adorn your spring and summer wardrobes with fashion scarves. The scarves can be skinny, about 3″ wide, though I have seen some wider scarves that are about 7″ wide. They all have one thing in commong- they are lightweight and wispy. They are knit looser than you normally would knit the fabric, which creates a lot of drape, and keeps the scarves from being too overwhelming.
Here are some skinny scarf designs that we have designed at Plymouth. Click the photo to be taken to the pattern.
Traditionally, February 29th is the day that a woman can ask a man to marry her. Sure, times have changed but this tradition isn’t so bad. In some European countries, such as Denmark, tradition says any man who refuses a woman’s proposal on February 29 has to buy her 12 pairs of gloves. In Finland, it changes to fabric for a skirt. If it landed me some beautiful fingerless mitts, I might not mind having those instead of a husband some days! Here are some fun and free patterns to celebrate these traditions. Enjoy!