Based on a True Sweater

Apr. 24, 2008

Colour-Block Sweater

Believe it or not, I've got knitting to blog about. Quite a lot of it, actually; this is just the first sweater. I'll be blogging other finished projects in the next few days.

Colour-Block Sweater

I actually finished this sweater last fall, and have worn the hell out of it (I'm sure you can see pilling in the photos). I'm not sure why it took me so long to photograph it. It's knit from Jo Sharp Classic DK Wool, one of my very favourite yarns; this is the third sweater I've knit from it so far.

Colour-Block Sweater

I could not have made this sweater with a straight face; it was a stash-busting project, something to knit for fun and wear around the house. It languished for a long time, at one point I put it aside with only one sleeve to go. I wasn’t sure if I would ever finish it. I thought it was laughably (if pleasingly) ugly.

Colour-Block Sweater

Then I showed it to my friend Tara, who looked at it with a straight face and thought it was gorgeous. After getting her fresh perspective on it I picked it up again and finished it, and now I love it and wear it frequently.

Colour-Block Sweater

I planned the shape of the sweater, but made up the colour pattern as I went along. The finishing was incredibly intense. After a false start or two, I came up with a labour-intensive seaming technique to give me the coloured seams I wanted. I tried several different collar solutions before deciding on the I-Cord-trimmed version I used. For weaving in ends, I split each strand into two plies and wove them in in separate directions using a sharp needle. There’s one point in the sweater where I had tried knitting the ends in as I went, but it wasn’t a very satisfactory result; it seems I’ve become very uptight about finishing details!

Colour-Block Sweater

Considering that I usually knit sweaters in the round using one colour of yarn, this was quite a departure. It was a lot of fun though, and I want to do it again. I'm thinking of writing a pattern to sell that's made in a similar way: worked in pieces with an intarsia pattern and coloured seams. It won't be random blocks like this because holy crap, what a nightmare that would be to chart and size. I'm still rolling ideas for it around in my head.

Apr. 10, 2008

Book Deal!!!


This is my friend Leanne and I, right after we signed the contract yesterday to write our first book! Have a gander at our call for submissions:

Are you a knitter or crochetier? Do you design (or want to design) unusual pieces of street art out of yarn?

If so, you should design a pattern for Yarn Bombing: The Art of Knit Graffiti, to be published by Arsenal Pulp Press in fall 2009.

A DIY guide to the art of yarn graffiti and a history of hand-crafted textile street art, Yarn-Bombing will feature patterns such as street-smart disguises, useful wearable tools like gloves and tool belts, street art such as knit car cozies, bike covers and headlight toques, and outdoor installations such as crochet shawls for leafy trees. The sky’s the limit as long as it’s knit or crocheted! Projects should be fun, colorful and a little bit wacky.

Designers are asked to submit a sketch and detailed description of their project, along with a brief bio, by the submission deadline of May 15, 2008.

There is no entry fee, and you are encouraged to submit multiple designs. Please include your complete contact information (email and mailing addresses) with your submission. Hard-copy submissions will not be returned unless an SASE or International Mailing Coupon is provided.

Digital sketches (under 2MB) can be emailed to mandy@yarnbombing.com, or hard copy sketches can be mailed to:
(address removed)

You will be notified via email if your design has been selected for publication. Selected designs will need to be knit or crocheted by their designers over the months of June-August, and mailed to the publisher for photography and editing by August 30, 2008. Patterns and any accompanying diagrams must be mailed to mandy@yarnbombing.com by the same date. Designers who are chosen to participate will receive the yarn necessary to complete their project, an honorarium, a free copy of the book, and credit for taking part in the book.

For more information, please visit Arsenal Pulp Press (arsenalpulp.com) or the Yarn Bombing Blog (yarnbombing.com).
If you have any questions or concerns regarding submissions, please contact Leanne (leanne@yarnbombing.com) or Mandy (mandy@yarnbombing.com)

I am so excited!!