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!
Packing up and flying home is always the saddest part of leaving a TNNA trade show. Plymouth Yarn staff and reps love seeing all of their customers and showing the new and exciting things we have coming. Our design team sent this video to me so I could see how gorgeous our booth is this year and I wanted to share it with you, just in case you were like me….at home holding down the fort!
I’m sure you have seen the Cleo Carefree Cover Up from the Spring 2013 edition of Creative Knitting Magazine. How would you like to win everything you need to make it? We have one prize that includes 10 skeins of Cleo in color 102, Starfish, needles, copy of the pattern and one issue of Creative Knitting Spring 2013. **Please note that you will receive the color the pattern used. Any other photos of Cleo are for reference only.
Carefree Cover Up as seen in Creative Knitting Spring 2013
To Enter: Comment on this blog entry between 4/8/13 and 4/19/13. Tell us your first name with last initial, your favorite Plymouth Yarn retailer along with their city and state. Winner will be picked at random and notified by email or message.
“Crochet is alive and well in Minneapolis!” This is evident when you step foot into StevenBe, an elegant yarn workshop located at 3448 Chicago Ave in Minneapolis, MN. Many of you know Steven Berg as the “Glitter Knitter” and his beautiful shop lives up to his reputation with a sparkling chandelier and plush chairs to welcome you. Sit back, grab your hooks and needles and enjoy the lovely mix of animal prints and fine art that adorn the space. Imagine all this while creating your masterpiece with classical music or even a live harp playing in the background. There is lots of great Plymouth Yarn to be had. I think I’m in heaven.
I enjoy speaking to Steven every time he calls. So much so that when I saw this ad in a magazine a couple years back, I had to put it on the wall next to my desk. It reminds me of the rock band pictures I had on my walls as a teenager.
Our Design Director Cia stopped by the shop over the weekend and snapped a couple photos during her visit…..
Plymouth’s Alpaca Puffs, a great addition to any hat or scarf.
So the next time you are in Minneapolis be sure to visit SteveBe and if you happen to be in Rosemount, MN you can visit Steven’s other location, The Yarn Garage and say hi to his mother Christa while you are there!
I am so excited for our fall line-up of yarns this year. Many of you have seen them already and were kind enough to share some of your pictures and projects with us. When we introduce a new line, I normally pick a favorite and go with it. That is impossible this time around ! There are so many beautiful fibers and colors. It’s going to be a busy knitting season for sure! I figured I would share them all with you, in one shot. I will do my best to give the important information you need, even when I really just want to say “It’s just so pretty, I must have it.”
We have a fantastic crew who gets to pick these fabulous yarns. It takes a village you know. They travel to Italy, Turkey, and Peru, just to name a few, to find the highest quality fibers so Plymouth Yarn can offer these to your favorite yarn shops. We have a team of designers who get to play, I mean work, with all of the contenders. They are always hard at work visiting trade and fashion shows to see the latest styles. I consider myself a pretty good knitter but they never cease to amaze me when they demonstrate to us just what these yarns are capable of.
Most people will make a New Year’s Resolution for 2012. We want to lose a few pounds, save more money, drink less coffee and be more organized. But what are your New Year’s Knitting Resolutions? I’d like to share a few of ours with you, along with the resources to help you accomplish them!
1. Knit for yourself! Now that you have the feeling back in your fingers from the last-minute-holiday-crunch knits, sit down and find a pattern that you want for you. Even if it’s as simple as a new scarf. Think of the time you will have to fit in knitting for yourself. If you only have an hour or two a week, think of a spring or summer shawl so when you are done your project, it will be the right season to use it. Here are a few to consider….
2. Make a gauge swatch. I am notorious for not following my own advice on this one. I often go blindly into a project. I learned my lesson just a few weeks ago while making a Christmas gift for my niece. I switched a yarn in a pattern for a slouchy hat. There were very few differences between the two yarns, fiber content and put-up were the only things that jumped out at me. My slouchy hat ended not fitting my niece but fitting my husband and I can’t talk him into wearing a purple hat with a touch of glitz. Check out this article from knitty.com on the importance of and how to knit a gauge swatch.
3. Use your stash! I tried to use my stash this year for all of my holiday knitting and will try to continue to do so. I ran out of masculine colors and only had to purchase a few balls! I am left with mostly baby yarns so I am hoping for a very long, cold winter so I will get news in the spring that I have some babies to knit for. I am going to use some for charity but I will get to that later in this post. There are some wonderful things you can do with those one or two skeins you picked up. If you have 100% wool, felt, felt, felt! Small coin purses, small bags, small bowls and headbands. Have a baby or wedding shower to attend? If you have cotton, consider washcloths. I have one that a friend made me almost 10 years ago. It was in my wishing well at my bridal shower and it may be the only linen that hasn’t needed to be replaced! Hats are a great way to use up the stash too. Here are some pattern ideas you can try.
4. Finish the projects you start. I’ll admit it, I have 3 wips in my inventory for about a year now BUT I also started and finished at least 20 others this year. Will I ever finish those other 3? Hopefully, maybe, well, I can’t answer that question. There are some great reasons why this should be a resolution you keep. First is if you get to the end and realize you need just 20 more yards, it may be impossible to track down the dye lot. Second is while I always try to have a couple pairs of needles in each size, they do me no good if they are tied up in a project I’ve been procrastinating on, then I am off to buy another set or borrow from one of my many knitting buddies. Which isn’t so bad I guess as I get to see all the new arrivals at my LYS. Third is the most obvious, that baby will grow right out of that sweater you started. I am going to choose my projects more carefully and think ahead to make sure I have the time and supplies I need to complete them. Try looking up your patterns on Ravelry and get real world tips, advice, materials lists and pictures of finished products.
5. Knit for Charity. I know so many of you are already doing this and it’s such a wonderful opportunity to use your talents. I send scarves to a local homeless shelter. I can get them done in one or two nights while I’m watching t.v. and it’s a great way to use your stash. Check with your local yarn shop, they will likely have a program set up for donations of all sorts. Here is a list of just a few organizations we have had contact with….
6. Use your technology! Did you know there’s an app for that? Use your smartphone for more than Angry Birds! I use my iPhone for everything. There is a free app (called Needles) for cataloging your needles so you know what you’ve got on hand. It can also direct you to the nearest yarn shop when you are on the go! Vogue Knitting and Knitting Daily are available too. YouTube is a great resource for how to videos on just about everything. I’ve used it to learn a new stitch and how to knit with the new ruffle yarns. You can also find yarn reviews there. I can’t talk about technology without mentioning Ravelry. If you haven’t joined yet, get on it! It’s a fantastic resource for everything yarn, patterns and the people who love them.
I hope everyone has had a wonderful holiday and the gang here at Plymouth Yarn wish you a very Happy New Year.