Swatching with Caron x Pantone

I’ve been swatching with the new colour of the year, can you tell?

These are all the same stitch, one of the carts from Alice Starmore’s Charts for Color Knitting, since whenever I’m playing around with colourwork, I like to try out one of the charts from there.

Pantone is the definitive authority on all things colour (what a job!), and each year they declare an official colour of the year that then pops up in clothing stores and accent pillows everywhere you look for the rest of the year. This year, they have declared 2019 Colour of the Year to be Living Coral:

Coral is a colour that I don’t mind as an accent, but not sure if it’s for me as a full colour, but I decided to experiment and try out somediffenret combinations and see what came of it. I’m not always great with colourwork – sometimes I can get a great combo right out of the gate, and other times I’m swatching and swatching and swatching… just trying to make it work. These three were all knit up with the Caron X Pantone in Blushing Coral, one of the new colour combinations they have *just* released:

(Blushing Coral is the combo in the upper left corner)

Some yarn specs: The yarn is a bulky weight 20% Merino Wool, 20% Nylon, 60% Acrylic, and each of those little buns has 127 yards/116 meters. They are available in Michaels craft stores or on Yarnspirations. It’s perfect for accessories, or for colourwork or stripes on larger projects.  About the yarn weight- I thought it was more of anAran weight, and my swatches are knit up on 5m/US 8 and are wonderfully soft and pliable, no fabric stiffness at all. Is there such a thing as a ‘light’ bulky?

Trying a stranded design in a heavy yarn weight makes things looks so bold and graphic, I think. I like that pixelated quality it gets in larger yarns. I played around with varying amounts of the coral, from a tiny bit to lots of it:

It was an interesting challenge for me to play around with combining colours like this that I don’t normally choose. I want to stretch a little out of my comfort zone, and choosing colours that aren’t my typical choices had me looking at the combinations in a new way, and thinking about the way light and dark colourways can pair off, which should be a tiny accent colour and which should be more present, etc. Even just looking at the photo above with the four new combos for 2019 makes me wonder if  the two on the left would be amazing together in a striped wrap.

Over on Yarnspirations they actually have a colourplay tool where you can select one of their patterns and then see what it would look like to swap out different colour combinations, different main colours, all kinds of stuff.  It’s pretty addictive, and takes so much of the guesswork out of putting together combinations that you know you will love. It doesn’t work for charts of your own design or from other books, only for the free patterns on their site, but I think you’ll find what you are looking for. Or you can spend a lot of time swatching, if swatching is your jam.

And if you are looking for pattern ideas for these gorgeous little gems, there are pages and pages of them to be found over here – not a bad way to look for patterns that would be good for destashing some yarn, too.


** this post is sponsored by Spinrite yarns. All opinions and swatches are my own.**

Modification Monday: New Years Cowichan

Original Pattern: West Coast Cardigan and Selja 

Knitter Extraordinaire: Karen (Ravelry ID)

Mods: Using the charted design from Selja, Karen knit her West Coast Cardigan with a different stranded design.  She also used a yarn that was smaller than originally called for, and held it double to get gauge. Details can be found on her project page, here.

What Makes This Awesome: When making a super bulky project, we don’t often think about substituting charts, but it’s a great idea- even if the chart isn’t written for a a super bulky yarn! Karen used a chart from an aran weight pattern and it look so bold and graphic done in the super bulky yarn for this cardigan. Also, if you having trouble finding a heavier weight yarn, take a page out of Karen’s notebook and see about holding a yarn you love double – if you can get stitch and row gauge, you are in business!

Doesn’t this cardigan look so cozy and comfy, and just perfect for january? I love it.


Link Love: My Favourite Things This Week

My Favourite Articles and Links This Week

Hey Toronto crafters- I’m teaching two classes at The Purple Purl soon! Sunday January 27th I’m leading a workshop on Photographing your Knits (read the description and sign up here) and on Wednesday night on February 6th I’m leading a workshop on How to Modify Your Knits (read the description and sign up here).  They are coming up fast, and only a few spots left for each!

“I went to bed 20 minutes earlier for a week and it changed my life.” Hmm. That does sound very compelling, and 20 minutes sounds so doable.

This prismatic string and fabric art is soooooo beautiful.

Thrifting season is upon us! Do you go treasure hunting this time of year? I haven’t, but this article makes me think that I should!

My Favourite Pins This Week

A high protein , veggie-based dish smothered in cheese is a pretty spectacular comfort food dish! Extremely delicious, you will want to  make and eat this all winter long – probably on a weekend, since it does take a while to make in the oven. Pinterest link is here, and the full recipe can be found here.

S’mores rice krispy treats – do I really need to say anything more? It’s a super easy riff on the traditional rice krispy square, and infinitely more delicious, in my opinion! Pinterest link is here, and the very easy recipe is right over here.

If you are looking for a healthier and less-indulgent treat, this healthy hot chocolate recipe is just the ticket. Easily made in 5 minutes with only 4 ingredients – none of which are sugar  or sweeteners – make this a great pick for evenings when you are craving a treat but trying to eat healthy. Pinterest link is here, and the full recipe is here.

Looking for a quick and easy stashing busting knit? This fair isle hat pattern could be done in all kinds of different colours and combos-  I bet this is a really fun pattern to play around with! Pinterest link is here, and the free pattern is right over here.

As a pretty big Hemingway fangirl, these quotes really struck me – on creative life, living, and cultivating a sense of adventure. This is my favourite. Pinterest link is here, and the full post full of quotes can be found here.

Also, I wanted to let you know there won’t be a Friday post next week- I’ll be in Cuba and I’m not bringing a laptop! Come to think of it, the following Monday I won’t be posting, either. I’m really excited, but I’m not bringing a laptop. I’ll be posting on Instagram, if you want to see what I’m up to over there! And of course, visiting the Hemingway haunts… since now you know how much I love Hemingway.

Have a great weekend, everyone….

Underneath it All- DK Version

(Yes, I am standing outside in the freezing cold, leaning against an icy brick wall and pretending that this is completely normal.)

I would have happily blogged about this amazing top earlier, if I hadn’t been so sick at the end of November (through the beginning of December!). Then the holiday rush, and suddenly it was 2019. But! I am SO happy  with how this turned out, and made a couple of mods.

I originally wrote this pattern for a sportweight yarn, which is often a slightly heavier fingering weight (a lot of single ply fingering yarns can fall into this category because they are often so ‘fluffy’). But I wanted to try the pattern with a DK yarn and see how it would work out. Sometimes changing the weight of the yarn and not  the needle size can have disastrous effects on the way the fabric works up, as it can create an overly dense and heavy fabric. But! The original top is light and airy, and I was curious to see if the pattern could be done in a DK weight and still turn out really well…. this is hardly a story of suspense, because I think it turned out just the way I had hoped.

Oh, and if you need a refresher on the original pattern and camisole, you can find it here.

The yarn is from Cosy Posy Yarn Co, an indie yarn dyer in Ontario Canada that I have been swooning over for a while. The colourway is called Imaginary Friend, which is such a pretty array of flecks and speckles of confetti colours on a warm vanilla base, and it was a dream to work with. There were so any colours that I loved, I was lucky that this colourway was available on the DK base, as she has so many different ones to choose from.

As it is a DK weight and not a sportweight, the camisole is heavier than the original version, but I like that cozy factor. I didn’t have any trouble using the same needle size for the original pattern as the original is light an airy, so the fabric of the DK sits well and has lots of drape. I had to shorten the straps a little bit, as the additional weight of the fabric made them stretch almost an extra inch, but that was the sort of learning curve I was expecting with changing the gauge.

The biggest challenge in the adjustment was that even when using the same needle size, using a bigger yarn means that your gauge is going to be different, which I noticed when working the top edging. It was a bit loose when I did the first bind off, so I ripped it back (fortunately it’s only 2 rows!) and then worked some evenly paced k2 tog throughout, to bring it in closer to my actual measurements at the upper bust. Otherwise, I’d be counting on the drawstring ties to do a lot of the cinching in that they were not designed to do, and it would mess up the appearance of the neck placket.

Some of you may remember the cardigan I’m wearing it with- the upcycled Anthropologie inspired cardigan from (whoa) 2012. I have a 3 part tutorial on making this, if you are interested – over on the tutorials page. I need to make another one….

Modification Monday: Snowflake

Original Pattern: Snowflake

Knitter Extraordinaire: Mikayla (Ravelry ID)

Mods: Knitted the yoke in the round and eliminated the buttons, lengthened the yoke colour portion, and blended in the second colour by adding stripes. Details can be found on her project page, here.

What Makes This Awesome: What I loved about this mod, other than the fact it looks fantastic, is that a big feature of it was borne out of a knitter problem that happens to all of us at some point- while knitting away from home, she finished the yoke faster than she thought she would, but hadn’t brought the second colour. So, she decided to keep going, and work in the second colour later. Blending it in with the stripes looks SO good – I love that she gradually increased the rounds of the blue and decreased the rounds of grey until the switch was complete. It sort of reminds me of water lapping at a beach on a dark, cloudy day.