Pages

Last-Minute Gift Inspiration


No matter how well you plan your holiday crafting, there is sure to always be some unexpected gifting emergency that pops up at the last minute! Today, we'll share some fun & fast projects which can be made in a jiffy, plus a few of our favorite Knitter's Pride products which are certain to be at the top of YOUR wish list this year! We also have one last giveaway this year for our fabulous blog readers & the winners of our Mother Bear Project Kit giveaway to announce - read on for more details!

Quick Knits
These projects can be whipped up in no time flat and are all available for free via the Ravelry links below!
L-R: Knitted Pocket Gnome by Jenni Propst, Rikke Hat by Sarah Young, and Non-Felted Slippers by Yuko Nakamura.

Speedy Crochet
These popular crochet projects are all quick to make and available for free on Ravelry, too!

L-R: Mug Hug and Rug by Marinke Slump (top left), 15 Min Coffee Sleeve by Jonna Venture (bottom left), GAP-tastic Cowl by Jen Geigley, and Polar Bear Hat by Sarah Zimmerman.

Knitter's Pride Wish List

Our Interchangeable Knitting Needle Sets and Crochet Hook Sets are always the perfect gift for discerning stitchers. This year, we are pleased to offer the  Limited-Edition MarblZ Gift set for the holiday season which includes 9 pairs of needle tips in sizes 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 10.5, 11; 4 cords; 8 end caps; and 4 cord keys. The set also includes a pen made from our special Symfonie Wood, a set of cord connectors, and a Knitter's Pride needle gauge!


Our new Knit Blockers are the "it" item of the season! This time-saving tool will make blocking your next project a breeze; they are especially suited for projects with long, straight edges, allowing you to apply consistent tension throughout.

Knit Blockers in action, courtesy of the Fibre Space Instagram feed
Our fashionable storage solutions will delight knitters and crocheters who are looking to get organized in the new year! Choose from several styles of needle and hook cases in three stylish color options, each with a coordinating tote bag.


Mother Bear Project Kit Winners



Congratulations to littlemomto2 and NanaMamah, you have each won a project kit generously donated by the folks at the Mother Bear Project! Click here to learn more about this wonderful charity on our last blog post. We will contact the winners to arrange for the delivery of their prizes; thanks to everyone who entered this giveaway!

Holiday Giveaway

This month, we're giving away a Deluxe Karbonz Interchangeable Set to one lucky blog reader! To enter, simply leave a comment on this post telling us which Knitter's Pride product is at the top of your wish list this year! Be sure to also include your Ravelry ID or email address so that we can contact you if you win. We'll randomly select a winner to announce on our next blog post on December 30, 2014. Good luck!


Charity Spotlight: Mother Bear Project

Many of our fans knit or crochet for charity year-round, but the holiday season is an especially great time to remember those less fortunate. There are so many wonderful charities which accept handmade items for donation, and we recently donated Bamboo needles & hooks to the Mother Bear Project, a non-profit dedicated to providing comfort and hope to children affected by HIV/AIDS in emerging nations.

Mother Bear Project believes that the simple act of providing comfort to a child in the form of a bear can have a very large outcome; they have been knitting together people of all generations, abilities and faiths for nearly 12 years to provide bears to children unconditionally across Africa whose lives have been affected by HIV/AIDS.  Founder Amy Berman of Minneapolis, MN recently returned from personally distributing over 2,500 bears in Botswana, Lesotho and South Africa - including the 100,000th bear! This very special bear was chosen to be the milestone bear because it was knit by an inspiring woman who just turned 100 years old.

This holiday season, they are selling handmade bear ornaments which make excellent gifts - no assembly required. The proceeds from just one bear ornament will help ship 6 regular Mother Bears to Africa! Click here to find out how you can win a bear ornament of your very own by posting your Mother Bear project photos on Instagram!


To get involved in this project, you can order a complete knitting or crochet kit (includes pattern, yarn for a bear, and crochet hook or needles) or you can simply order the knit or crochet pattern (flat or seamless) from their website, www.motherbearproject.org.

Make a bear.  Make a Difference.

GIVEAWAY
The folks at Mother Bear Project have generously donated two knitting kits to give away on our blog; to be eligible, simply leave a comment on this blog post telling us about your favorite yarn-related charity & why you'd like to knit a bear with one of these kits! Be sure to also include your Ravelry ID or email address so that we can contact you if you win. We'll randomly select two winning comments to announce on this blog on Friday, December 12. Good luck!




WINNER
Last but not least, it's time to announce the winner for our Nova Platina Interchangeable Starter Set Giveaway! Congratulations to Sleekymom; we will contact you via Ravelry to arrange for the delivery of your prize!

Featured Designer Talitha Kuomi & Free Pattern

Today we're excited to have a guest post from knitwear designer Talitha Kuomi. Learn more about Talitha on her website talithakuomi.com, on Facebook, or find her on Ravelry as Talithakuomi.

I was a painfully shy child who buried herself in bike rides and Nancy Drew books. Both were good ways to avoid the awkwardness of conversation and the pressure of direct eye contact. I found gazing from the sidelines so much less stressful than interacting. Eventually, it got lonely watching life rather than actually living. I began to choose to push myself into social situations and found that in exchange for enduring sweaty palms and knocking knees, I got the warmth of friendship and the rush of small daily adventures.

Leaping ahead, I find it ironic that I wound up as one of the final 12 in the first season of The Fiber Factor. Honestly, I filled out the application because it scared me. It asked me to consider things I had no answers to. That challenged me. To questions like ‘what is your design philosophy?’, my gut reaction was, ‘my what?’. Later, when Josh Bennett asked me who I was as a designer, I tripped and stumbled trying to compose a clear answer. The whole competition felt like that to me, hitting the wall of not knowing how to respond over and over again. Having never seen a reality show of any kind, I was completely unprepared. But, if you ask me now why I design what I do and how that relates to my life, I can tell you. That was the real ‘win’ of the experience for me.

I designed ‘Lind’ as a tribute to all the books that let me walk safely through their adventures before I was brave enough for adventures of my own. The extra wide cables require a little trick to make them work and the slight slouch at the crown keeps them dramatic. A little drama is a good thing.

Lind
by Taltitha Kuomi
Abbreviations
Approx: Approximately
Circ: Circumference
Cn: Cable needle
CO: Cast on
Dec(‘d): Decrease(d)
Dpn(s): Double pointed needle(s)
K: Knit
K2tog: Knit two together—1 sts dec’d
K3tog: Knit three together—2 sts dec’d
LH: Left hand
Meas: Measures
P: Purl
Pc: Piece
Pm: Place Marker
P2tog: Purl two sts together—1 sts dec’d
Rem: Remain
Rep(‘d): Repeat(ed)
RH: Right hand
Rm: Remove marker
Rnd(s): Round(s)
Sm: Slip marker
St(s): Stitch(es)
Yo: Yarn over
Yarn
1 skein Louet Gems Worsted (100% merino; 100 g = approx 175 yd) Color shown is ‘Champagne’.

Needles
16” circular needle size US 4/3.5 mm or size needed to get gauge.
16” circular needle size US 7/4.5 mm or size needed to get gauge.
One set double pointed needles size US 7/4.5 mm or size needed to get gauge.

Gauge
24 sts and 28 rows = 4” in Stockinette stitch worked in the round on larger needles

Size
XS/S (M, L/XL)
Meant to fit head circumference: 18-19.5 (20-21.5, 22-24)”
Actual hat circumference (measured unstretched): 14 (15.5, 17)”
Shown in size XL on my 23.5” head.

Notes
Hat is knit in the round from the brim up.  Extra wide cables are knit with dropped yarn overs to keep them from puckering too much. Cables decrease in size at the crown making for a bit of intentional slouch at the top.

Ribbing
Using smaller needles, CO 110 (120, 130) sts.  Pm and join to knit in the round.
Rib rnd: [P6, knit 3 (2, 3) sts, *p2, k2; rep from * two (three, three) more times, knit 1 (0, 1) st] rep between brackets to end (4 more times), sm.
Rep Rib rnd, until pc meas approx 3”.

Body of Hat
Change to larger circular needles.
Rnd 1: Rm, knit 11 (12, 13) sts, pm, *P6, knit 16 (18, 20) sts; rep from * to last 5 (6, 7) sts, knit to end, sm.
Rnds 2-12: *P6, knit 16 (18, 20) sts; rep from * to end, sm.
Rnd 13: *P6, slip 8 (9, 10) sts to cn, pull to front of work, yo, knit 8 (9, 10) sts, slip these 8 (9, 10) newly knit sts from RH to LH needle, drop the yo, slip these same 8 (9, 10) sts from LH needle to RH needle, yo, knit 8 (9, 10) from cn, slip these 8 (9, 10) newly knit sts from RH to LH needle, drop the yo, slip these same 8 (9, 10) sts from LH to RH needle; rep from * to end, sm. Rnds 14-20: *P6, knit 16 (18, 20) sts; rep from * to end, sm.
Rnd 21: *P6, knit 7 (8, 9), (k2tog) 2x, knit 5 (6, 7); rep from * to end, sm—100 (110, 120) sts rem
Rnds 22-30: *P6, knit 14 (16, 18) sts; rep from * to end, sm.
Rnd 31: *P6, slip 7 (8, 9) sts to cn, pull to front of work, yo, knit 7 (8, 9) sts, slip these 7 (8, 9) newly knit sts from RH to LH needle, drop the yo, slip these same 7 (8, 9) sts from LH needle to RH needle, yo, knit 7 (8, 9) from cn, slip these 7 (8, 9) newly knit sts from RH to LH needle, drop the yo, slip these same 7 (8, 9) sts from LH to RH needle; rep from * to end, sm.
Rnd 32:  *P6, knit 14 (16, 18); rep from * to end, sm.
Crown Decreases
Change to dpns.
Rnd 33: *P2tog, p2, p2tog, knit 5 (6, 7), (k2tog) 2x, knit 5 (6, 7); rep from * to end, sm—80 (90, 100) sts rem.
Rnd 34: *(P2tog) 2x, (k2tog) four (six, eight) times, knit 4 (2, 0) sts; rep from * to end, sm—50 sts rem.
Rnd 35: *P2, (k3tog) 2x, k2tog; rep from * to end, sm—25 sts rem.
Rnd 36: *P2tog, k3tog; rep from * to end, sm—10 sts rem.
Cut yarn leaving a 12” tail.  Thread tail through rem 10 sts.  Pull snug and tie off.

Finishing
Weave in ends.  Wet block the body of the hat to open up the cabling a bit, being careful not to over block the ribbed brim.
'Lind’ is Swedish for ‘winding’.
Pattern and images © talithakuomi 2014 All rights reserved, used with permission. Pattern for personal, non-profit use only.

Giveaway
This month we're giving away a Nova Platina Interchangeable Set! To enter for your chance to win leave a comment on this post telling us which of Talitha's patterns you love best. Don't forget to leave your Ravelry ID so we can contact you if you're the winner. You can see all of Talitha's patterns on her Ravelry page.


Introducing: MarblZ

We're excited to introduce our new line of knitting needles, Knitter's Pride MarblZ! These unique new needles are available in a range of eye catching colors which are hand-crafted and specially developed so that each needle has its own unique marbled design.


MarblZ provide just the right 'grab' which allows for easy handling of slippery yarns and makes picking up stitches faster and easier. They are lightweight, smooth, strong, and flexible, featuring sharp, gradually tapered points that are ideal for all styles of knitting. The rave reviews are already coming in for MarblZ! Faye F. recently shared this photo of her MarblZ needles in action and had this to say about them:
I am in love with your Marblz needles! Knitting with them is wonderful, and when I knit in the sun, the light goes through them - it's almost magical! 


MarblZ are available as double pointed, fixed circular, interchangeable circular, and single pointed needles. We also have a special Limited-Edition MarblZ Gift set for the holiday season that includes 9 pairs of needle tips in sizes 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 10.5, 11; 4 cords; 8 end caps; and 4 cord keys. The set also includes a pen made from our special Symfonie Wood, a set of cord connecters, and a Knitter's Pride needle gauge!


Winner
Congratulations to Ben Beauvais, you're our lucky winner! We'll be in touch to arrange delivery of your Knitter's Pride Nova Platina Starter Set. Thanks to everyone who participated! 

Swatching, Needles, and Yarn

We're sure you've heard, read, and been told many times and from many places the importance of swatching. It also matters which needles you swatch with! In our experiment we knit three swatches all using the soft and silky Fibre Company Canopy Worsted. We used three different needle materials, all size US 6 (4mm). from left to right they are Symfonie Cubics, Nova Platinas, and Trendz.




The center square in stockinette stitch on all three swatches are 20 stitches wide and 27 rows long. All the squares measure 3.75" long after blocking, but the width of the swatches varies slightly. The difference might seem insignificant, but if you're talking about a sweater with 200 stitches, at the first gauge on the Symfonie Cubics that would measure 38.75", with the Nova Platinas the garment would measure 40", and with Trendz it would measure 41.25". So depending on which needles you use, with the same exact number of stitches, you could get anywhere from 38.75" to 41.25", a difference of 2.5"!

When choosing which needle is best it's also important to consider your personal style of knitting, preferences, and the yarn. Canopy Worsted is a soft blend of of 50% baby alpaca, 30% merino wool, and 20% bamboo. Both baby alpaca and bamboo are very soft with lots of drape, making this wool a little bit slicker than a more rustic wool yarn. It's a 3-ply yarn, making it round and durable, and doesn't split, making it easier to knit with blunt needles. Symfonie Cubics, Nova Platinas, and Trendz are all appropriate for working with this yarn. You can learn more about finding your perfect needle with our new series of videos from Staci Perry. 

SocktoberKnit-A-Long
We continue the Conversation Socks Knit-A-Long as part of Socktober! Learn more in this blog post and join the KAL on Ravelry.

Giveaway

This month we're giving away a  Nova Platina Starter Set! To enter, leave a comment on this post telling us whether or not you swatch when starting a new project, and leave us your Ravelry ID or another way to contact you. We'll choose one lucky winner October 31st! 


Winner + Socktober KAL!

Next month, we'll be kicking off a special knit-along in honor of Socktober! Designer Stefanie Goodwin-Ritter of the Handmade by Stefanie blog recently released a collection of patterns called Conversation Socks which are perfect for knitting on-the-go, and she is offering a special discount on ebook purchases for Knitter's Pride fans now through October 31, 2014 - click here for your coupon!

We were able to interview Stefanie for today's blog post; read on to find out more about the inspiration behind Conversation Socks. You'll also get a sneak peek at the final pattern which will be released on Monday, September 29!

How did Conversation Socks come about? 

I dreamed up this project because I find myself with less and less time to devote to holiday gift knitting, but I know that my family members love and cherish the gifts I make them, especially socks! By choosing sport weight yarn and US #3 needles, each sock knits up quickly and produces a mid-weight fabric that is nice and toasty without being bulky.

Each pattern was created with the express purpose of being simple enough for knitting on-the-go, but interesting enough to keep you engaged. These patterns are perfect for your morning commute, knit night, or a trip out of town! They don't require huge, hard-to-follow charts or incredibly complicated techniques. Instead, they take the basic building blocks that the average knitter has at their disposal to create five designs the whole family will love.

What was your first sock design?

My first sock design was for Lorna's Laces Yarns, and they are called the Side Swipe Socks - they are now available as a free Ravelry download, in fact! As you can see, even then I was interested in knitting simple socks with interesting little details.

What do you love about knitting and designing socks? 

I love making something that is really useful; while I do love making other small projects such as shawls, hats, and mitts, I do find there are only so many I can realistically wear in a season. But knitted socks are always in heavy rotation for me - I live in Chicago, so as you can imagine, wool socks are essential for winter. Being able to whip up several pairs of sock patterns quickly is high on my list of priorities, and I found that there weren't as many unisex designs out there which fit the bill - which is how this project came to be!
Aqua Sock Blockers

What are your favorite tools for sock-knitting?

My go-to needles are Dreamz DPNs. The Sock Set was one of the first Knitter's Pride products I ever tried, and it is still my favorite! In fact, all 5 of the Conversation Socks patterns were knit on my trusty US #3 Dreamz DPNs. I am also a huge fan of the sock blockers - they make the finished project look so nice and polished!

The final design for Conversation Socks will be out next week. Tell us more! 

I decided to try something a little different when releasing these patterns: rather than putting them all out at once, I released the first two and offered a "preorder" for the entire ebook at a lower price than it is currently available for. With each pattern that I added, the price went up a little - and everyone who had already purchased the book received automatic updates, so it was really win-win! The final design will be released on Monday, and I was going to increase the price once more, but have since decided to keep it where it currently is ($14 for 5 patterns).


The patterns which are already released are (above, from L-R): Air Quotes, Chittery Chattery, Persuasive and Retort. On Monday, September 29, I'll be releasing the final design in the ebook - here is a sneak peek, just for Knitter's Pride fans!


To participate in the KAL, knit any of the Conversation Socks patterns between now and October 31, 2014. Be sure to tag your Ravelry project with KPConvoSocks to be eligible in our prize drawing for a Dreamz DPN Sock Set, Stefanie's favorite sock-knitting needles! You can also use #KPConvoSocks when you share photos on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram!



September Blog Winner
Congratulations to Mikaiyawa, the winner for our September prize drawing! We will contact Mikaiyawa via Ravelry PM to arrange for the delivery of your prize, a Deluxe Trendz Interchangeable set!


Find Your Perfect Needle with Staci Perry and Knitter's Pride!

We're pleased to introduce Find Your Needle, our new three-part video series featuring Staci Perry of VeryPink.com! These short YouTube videos will take you on a journey to find the perfect Knitter's Pride needles to suit your knitting style, project, and yarn.

In Episode 1, you'll get a closer look at the various materials we use to make our needles: Nova Platinas (chrome-plated brass), Karbonz (carbon fiber shaft with metal tips), Dreamz & Basix (densified laminated birchwood), Bamboo (Japanese bamboo), and Trendz (acrylic). We also take a look at the unique cuboid shape of the Cubics lines of needles offered by Knitter's Pride. You'll learn how to match these materials to suit your project, yarn or knitting style along the way, thanks to Staci's extensive knitting know-how.



In Episode 2, Staci gives you a closer look at the various types of knitting needles we make: Interchangeable Circular Needles, Fixed Circular Needles, Double Pointed Needles (DPNs), and Single-Pointed Needles (straight). Staci shows examples of each type and explains how to match your needle type to your project, yarn and knitting style for maximum effectiveness.



Finally, in Episode 3, Staci shares how to use the information from the first two videos in order to choose YOUR perfect needle! She explains the importance of gauge, and why it is a good idea to have a needle set on hand so that you have a full range of needle sizes at your disposal. You'll also get a look at the Comby I & Comby II Sampler sets, which include interchangeable needle tips to try from our most popular lines: Dreamz, Symfonie CubicsNova Platina, Nova Platina CubicsBamboo and Karbonz.


We hope these videos will help you find your perfect Knitter's Pride needle! Should you need help locating your nearest retailer, please visit our website.

Happy Knitting!

Giveaway

This month we'd like to give one of our lucky readers a chance to win a set of our new Trendz needles, so we're giving away a Trendz Deluxe Interchangeable Needle Set! To enter tell us which of the needles from Staci's videos you'd like to try most. Don't forget to leave your Ravelry ID so we can contact you if you're the winner. We'll announce the winner on September 26th. Good luck!