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Giveaway + 3 Ways to Use our Fabric Bags (That Aren't for Knitting)

While we love knitting (and yarn and crocheting, too!) some of our products aren't just for knitters. Our fabric bags are colorful, durable, and washable - made from stunning hand-printed fabrics in a variety of styles, they are ideal for many different uses! Read below for 3 non-knitting ways to use these bags.

1. When you travel, it's important to keep all of your vitamins. supplements, and other small things contained and all in one place. The small zipper pouch from the Amber line is great for teas, Emergen-C and other small things you might need when traveling, and want to be able to reach quickly.



2. Another organizational/travel tip is to use one of the large zipper bags from the Joy line as a makeup bag or dopp kit. Keep small toiletry items inside along with make-up, travel-size shampoos or lotions, or a small hair brush. This will help clean up and dress up your bathroom counter with a cute fabric bag.


3. If you are into other fiber arts like embroidery or needlework, a medium zipper pouch from Amber line is good for containing other tools of the trade, here we have embroidery floss, some wooden cross stitch blanks, scissors, and other small notions.


Click here to see all of our fabric bag options on the Knitter's Pride website. If you already have one of our fabric bags, we'd love to see how you are using them - show us over on Instagram and use the hashtag #knitterspride!

Giveaway

One of our lucky blog readers will win a red Amber zipper pouch this month! To enter, leave a comment telling us how you would use one of these bags! Be sure to also include your Ravelry ID or email address so that we can contact you if you win.

We will randomly select a winning comment to announce on our next blog post on Friday, February 24. Good luck!

Winner + How to Dye Yarn at Home with Minimal Mess

Congratulations to imwalton, our winner for this month's blog giveaway! We will be in touch with you shortly to arrange for the delivery of your prize.

If cabin fever is starting to set in this winter, why not try dyeing your own yarn to add some color to your next project? It's easier than you think - in fact, you might have everything you need already in your kitchen! Here, we've used sugar-free Kool-Aid to dye a multi-colored skein of yarn and will show you how to do your own at-home dyeing with minimal mess.

Supplies:

  • 1 skein of undyed yarn. We've used Beth, a blend of 30% US Merino Wool, 20% Silk and 50% Alpaca from Kraemer Yarns, which already has several ties on the skein to keep skeins tidy throughout the dye process. Click here to see their many undyed yarn options!
  • Packets of sugar-free Kool-Aid in a variety of flavors. We've chosen Pink Lemonade, Strawberry & Grape to create a Valentine's Day-inspired colorway; click here to see the colors produced by each flavor on the Knitty blog archive.
  • 3 bowls (for mixing dye).
  • Microwave-safe dish. Make sure that your entire skein of yarn can fit comfortably without the colors touching.
  • Gloves.
  • Dish Soap.
  • Spoon for mixing.
  • Newsprint or brown craft paper (to cover your work area). 

Dyeing Your Yarn:

1. Mix each flavor of Kool-Aid in its own bowl with hot water. For our colorway, we mixed 1 c. hot water with 1 packet of Pink Lemonade, 2 c. hot water with 2 packets of Strawberry, and 2 c. hot water with 2 packets of Grape. Stir with spoon to ensure that powder is thoroughly dissolved, then add a dash of dish soap to each bowl and give it another quick stir (the soap will help to work the dye through your skein of yarn).



2. Take one end of the skein and dip it into your first bowl of dye. Gently work the dye through with your gloved hand in a "massaging" motion.


3. Take the middle of the skein and dip it into the next bowl of dye, again massaging the dye throughout the  skein with your gloved hand.


4. Take the other end of the skein and dip it into your final bowl of dye, working the dye through the skein with your gloved hand.


5. Now, begin massaging your yarn to incorporate more of the undyed skein into each color section like so:


6. Allow the skein to set in the bowls for a few more moments, then transfer to your microwave-safe dish carefully, gently squeezing to remove excess dye from each color section as you do so. Make sure to go from light to dark in order to protect the lighter color as much as possible.


7. Heat set the dye by microwaving for 1-2 minutes (find more info on how to heat set your yarn here; there are also guidelines for heat setting dye in a conventional oven found here).


8. Remove your yarn and allow to cool down before the next step - you want to avoid shocking the fibers from hot to cold, which could cause accidental felting.

9. Rinse  in cool water, either by hand or in a top-loading washing machine which allows you to skip to the spin part of the cycle. If rinsing by hand, gently remove excess water by squeezing skein gently, then wrapping in a fluffy towel to remove remaining moisture. Hang to dry, or lay flat on Knitter's Pride Blocking Mats, if you prefer.

Note: If this is your first time dyeing, or if you are just unsure whether or not you have correctly heat set the dye, we recommend testing a small section of the skein under running water first before immersing the entire thing. If your dye was heat set correctly, you will not see any dye in the water at this stage. It will be easier to return to step 7 to re-set the dye if you have only rinsed a tiny section!

Once your skein is dry, you can look for the the perfect pattern for your new creation!
Our Naturalz needles are a great choice for this colorful yarn!

Like this post? Pin it!

New Year's Resolution Mad Lib & Giveaway

At the start of every year, people make New Year’s Resolutions to improve their lives: weight loss, improved eating habits, saving money, or learning a new skill often top the list.

Have you ever thought to make resolutions for your crafting life? Do you want to learn how to knit brioche, or how about learning how to do broomstick lace? We've created a fun Mad Lib to help you make yarny resolutions for 2017!

Start by filling out the following spaces below (you can print your own copy here, or do the mad lib online) and then transfer your answers into corresponding blanks of the story below!

Feel free to print the PDF and bring it to your knit night to see what your friends are going to resolve for 2017 - we invite you to share photos of your completed Mad Lib on social media using the #knitterspride and #knitterspridemadlib hashtags, too!



To complete Mad Lib: Fill in the blanks below, then transfer your answers to the following story.

[your name]: ______________
[craft not ending -ing]: _____________
[plural noun]: _____________
[number]: __________
[skill not ending in -ing]: _____________
[verb not ending in -ing]: ___________
[number]: __________
[month]: ___________
[exclamation]: _________
[designer name]: _____________
[color]: ____________
[color]: ____________
[number]: __________
[fiber art tool]: __________




Now it’s time to fill in your answers to discover your Yarny Resolutions for 2017! 


I, [your name] _______________ have the following resolutions for 2017.
  1. This year I will [craft not ending -ing] __________ 10 [plural noun] __________ with size [number] ____ needles.
  2. One lucky person will win
    this Royale DPN Needle Set!
    I will learn how to [skill not ending in -ing] ________.
  3. I will not [verb not ending in -ing] _________ until I finish [number] _______ sweaters before [month] ______.
  4. I am going to make the [exclamation] ______ shawl by [designer name] ___________.
  5. I am going to create a sweater in [color] _____ and use [color] ______ as an accent.
  6. I will keep my yarn stash below [number] ______ skeins, and if I exceed that number, I will sell my [fiber art tool]  ________!


Giveaway
Paste your completed Mad Lib into the comments below to enter yourself into our January Blog Giveaway! One lucky blog reader will win this Royale DPN Needle Set.

Be sure to also include your Ravelry ID or email address so that we can contact you if you win. We'll announce the lucky winner on Friday, January 27. Good luck!

Winner + Designer Spotlight: Wooly Wormhead

Wooly Wormhead Interview
Congratulations to caffeine72, our winner for this month's blog giveaway. We will get in touch with you shortly to arrange delivery of your prize! 

For our final blog post of 2016, we are pleased to share this interview with Woolly Wormhead, whom we've been a fan of for quite some time. We have donated a few prizes to her Muratura KAL that is happening now through December 31 (click here for more info), and last week she shared a technique tutorial with us - click here if you missed it


When did you learn to knit/crochet? - or - How did you get started designing?

My mum taught me to knit when I was 3, and I started making clothes for my dolls. You could say I started designing when I was about 7 or 8 or maybe even younger, as I clearly remember making up patterns by myself for my toys, and finding inventive ways to achieve things. I made my first jumper for myself when I was 9, and from there continued making garments for myself every year.

What is your design process typically like? 

Varied, but always organic! I'm not very good at having everything planned out on paper beforehand, with several trusty swatches. I can do it, but I always need to refine on the needles. And often that means ripping out and adjusting. I will chart out stitch patterns and know how the design will be graded before I cast on, but it's never a done deal; the design is never finished until everything is polished, and that's usually done on the needles. It's not uncommon for me to reknit a Hat 3 times to get the fine details just right.

What is your absolute favorite Knitter's Pride product, the one you would HAVE to have if you were stranded on a desert island?

My Karbonz short tip interchangeables - they're my go-to needles, each and every time. I'm also developing quite a thing for the Zing short tip interchangeables, too!


What tips do you have for knitters who plan on gifting their KAL hat to that knit-worthy person on their list? 

Sizing is really important - one size does not fit all! That said, you can pretty much guarantee that if the Hat you knit doesn't quite fit or suit the person you originally had in mind, it will fit and suit someone ;)

I have a super handy guide on my website to measuring for Hats, and gives you an idea of average head sizes. They are just that though, average. Some Hats and stitch patterns are much more forgiving about size (lacey slouchy Hats for instance) but others are not - cables and other heavily structured patterns need more precision. It's always worth remembering that a knitted fabric will stretch widthways, but what it gains there it loses in length.

There's also a useful guide on my website for choosing the right Hat style to suit difference face shapes and hairstyles - some people might be surprised to hear that there is a Hat to suit everyone!

Muratura hat designed by Woolly Wormhead
What is your favorite cast-on method for hats? Other projects? 

That would depend on the brim with vertical Hats... the alternate cable cast-on where a rib is needed, a cable cast-on if the edge pattern really doesn't matter or needs something giving but strong, and a crochet provisional cast-on as a main cast on as a decorative finish, especially on garter stitch. I've recently been introduced to the Chinese waitress cast-on and am keen to experiment with it more, and see how it works in the round (i.e. can I join it invisibly?)

Other projects? What are 'other projects'?! ;-)


Woolly Wormhead is a Hat Architect. With an instinctive flair for unusual construction and a passion for innovation, Woolly Wormhead is a designer whose patterns are trusted and celebrated by knitters all over the world. As a designer, Woolly is driven by a need to create and develop her understanding of 3D form. Communicating her ideas and sharing her specialised knowledge with her audiences is key to Woolly’s success as a designer. Woolly's high quality pattern writing ensures perfect results, teaches new skills and encourages us all to become Hat architects. Visit www.woollywormhead.com for further details.


Tutorial: How to Knit Brioche Into The Row Below

Today we have a special bonus blog post from Woolly Wormhead, who shares a tutorial for knitting brioche into the row below. It's great for those of you participating in the Muratura KAL, which we are sponsoring. Be sure to check out the Woolly Wormhead blog for details on the KAL (plus a coupon code for your pattern purchase!), and also don't forget to enter our blog giveaway for December, found here.

Knitting into the row below is a variation of Brioche knitting, and creates a wonderfully textured
stitch pattern on what is a garter stitch ground. It is used in my Muratura and Rainbow Warrior
patterns, and it isn't as yarn thirsty as other brioche stitches (knitting into the row below doesn't use as much yarn as creating a yarnover).

The usual abbreviation for knitting into the row below is 'K1b'. This stitch is usually worked on
alternate stitches, and is offset on RS rows to create the pattern.

1. Knit up to the stitch that has the K1b instruction. On a piece of knitting worked flat, the 1st row is usually *K1, K1b; rpt; the 2nd & 4th rows are knit across. The 3rd row would then be *K1b, K1; rpt. When working in the round, the 2nd & 4th rounds would be purl across.
2. Insert your needle into the stitch below the one on the left hand needle, as shown.


3. Bring your yarn around and perform a knit stitch.


4. This is the completed knit stitch, with the worked stitch still on the left hand needle – here you can see clearly how you have knit through both loops together.


5. Then slip the worked stitch off the needle, and done! It's much simpler than it first seems.


Copyright Woolly Wormhead © 2016. Used With Permission; All rights reserved.

Website: http://woollywormhead.com
Ravelry: http://www.ravelry.com/groups/woolly-wormheads-hats

Five Quick Gift Knits, a KAL & a Giveaway!

With Christmas coming up and the hubbub of the holiday season, sometimes all you’re looking for is a short yet satisfying project either for yourself or for a quick gift.

Here are our top 5 free one-skein-or-less patterns to knit that will keep you warm from head to toe.

The Barley Hat by Tin Can Knits is a classic, and fits just about everyone! With infant and adult sizes, you could whip these up for the whole family.
The Handbrake Cowl and Scarf pattern by Dan and Kay Jones, is an easy textured knit that can be easily adjusted for whatever yarn you choose.

The Pedestrian Crossing Cowl by Keegan Lane Designs is a fun buttoned cowl that would look great in a solid color or variegated yarn.

Warmest Mitts by Knitting Pretty would look good on anyone, and they knit up in a flash - they’re also great for knitting through your stash!

Who doesn’t need a pair of house slippers or ankle socks? Footies by Quirky Bird Knits is the ideal pattern to use up some stash yarn while getting a little gift off the needles at the same time.


It's a Woolly Wormhead KAL!

We're pleased to sponsor a KAL for Woolly Wormhead's final hat design of 2016, Muratura! This hat is knit sideways and uses a variation of the brioche stitch. Moreover, it knits up quickly, making it a great last-minute gift project for the holidays.


Click here for details on how to join the Muratura KAL for your chance to win 2 great prizes from Knitter's Pride - there is also a coupon code towards your pattern purchase!

Giveaway
While you’re knitting up these last minute gifts, why not treat yourself to a little luxury with Knitter’s Pride Royale needles?

Our Royale needles have colored wooden shafts (unique to each size) and sharp metal tips, perfect for all types of knitting. Choose from single point, double point and fixed circular needle, as well as Interchangeable and DPN set. Each set comes in a Parisian-themed zipper case, so you can daydream about being on a cafe patio in Paris with a hot cappuccino and your favorite knitting
project.

Comment on this blog post to enter our giveaway for a Knitter’s Pride Royale Single Pointed Needle Set - be sure to also include your Ravelry ID or email address so that we can contact you if you are our lucky winner. Come back to the blog on Friday, December 23 to see who won!



Winner + Free Crochet Mitts Pattern

Congratulations to Raveler mmmgood304, who won this month's giveaway for a Chunky Mesh Wrist Warmers kit! We'll be in touch with you shortly to arrange for the delivery of your prize.

Our previous blog post featured a free pattern to knit a quick pair of mitts using our Jumbo Birch needles and two skeins of Briggs & Little Super Yarn, and we promised a freebie for our fans who crochet in this week's blog post. These simple mitts are very easy to customize for a variety of hand sizes and stitch up ultra-quickly using just 1 skein of Briggs & Little Super Yarn and a Jumbo Birch crochet hook.

Enjoy!

Quick Crochet Wrist Warmers

by Stefanie Goodwin-Ritter

Supplies:
Gauge: 5 sts and 4 rows = 4 inches in single crochet, blocked

Finished Dimensions: 7" circumference, 7" length (allow approx. 1" negative ease; see instructions below for how to customize your fit)

About this pattern: A bulky weight yarn is worked with a larger hook size to product a mesh-like single crochet fabric. What makes this yarn special is the story: Briggs & Little is Canada's oldest woolen mill and produces premium yarns spun from 100% domestic wool, and is milled, carded, dyed, and spun at their factory in York Mills, New Brunswick, Canada.

The finished mitts will be very stretchy, so be sure to knit the size that is approximately an inch smaller than your desired hand circumference. Don't be alarmed by the size and shape of your project while it is being knit - the magic is in the blocking!

Mitts (Make 2):
Ch 9 and work single crochet in 8 sts, beginning with second ch from hook.

Single crochet all rows until piece measures 6 inches from start. For your final row worked once you have achieved your intended length, slip stitch in final stitch, snip your yarn end leaving several inches for seaming, and pull through to secure yarn end.

How to get a custom fit: If you would like to create mitts with a larger or smaller circumference, you can add or subtract rows here - just be sure to take into account the notes above regarding negative ease and gauge when blocked.


With wool needle or tapestry needle, seam five inches of cast on and bound off edge together; leave the next 1.5 inches unseamed for thumb; tack the opposite edge together for top of mitt.


Wash your mitts in your favorite wool wash and lay flat to dry on Knitter's Pride Blocking Mats. To achieve stated dimensions and neat edges, use Knitter's Pride Knit Blockers as directed in our previous blog post, found here.


Wear & enjoy!