About Knitcircus

When not knitting at Little League games, Jaala can be found knitting at beloved LYS The Sow's Ear, a Madison Knitters' Guild Board meeting or her own living room. She's taught both her kids to knit, and even to make tuna sandwiches for the rest of the family, so feels pretty good. If she could only figure out how to knit while typing, she'd be golden.

FO Gallery: Scarves, Socks and Shawls, Oh My!

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It literally takes my breath away when I see projects people have knitted with Knitcircus Yarns. I put so much care into handpainting each one, so when I see the finished objects, it’s like seeing ingredients from my garden transformed into a chef-made feast.

So here’s a collection of gorgeous projects made by talented knitters, using the yarns sometimes in unexpected ways.

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Somesylvie striped her Matching Socks Eat, Pray, Knit oppositely, for fun and dynamic socks! The pattern: everyone’s favorite, Monkey, by Cookie A.

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Mojaveknitter’s Beach Travels is her take on Traveling Woman, by Liz Abinante and beautifully makes use of her soft Ballerina in Wild Mushrooms.

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I was super excited to see this one, because it uses one of the newest colors, Jazz Piano, that I created just for the Gradient Yarn Club. You could use Mermaid Lagoon in Greatest of Ease for a good substitute. Lisa Kessler did an amazing job on her Simply Seashells pattern, by Susan Ashcroft.

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Kirsten Kapur wrote the Puschkinia pattern just for making the most of a Pigeon gradient, and, wow! Stella650 did a fantastic job with the colorwork to make a flawless finished object.  Made in Knitcircus Thrilling yarn.

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Jensquilts2 showcased one of my favorite saturated colors, Electric Ladyland, with her Electric. She chose beloved cuff-down socks recipe How I make my Socks, by Susan B Anderson.

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Everyone loves Shaelyn, by Sheila Raabe, and smartich made it look fantastic using Come What May, our most popular color.

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Man, there are some really talented knitters out there. Look at the technical expertise shown in Kieran’s Starry Starry Night socks. This pattern by Suzanne Bryan knocks my socks off for sure, and it looks great in the Khione gradient.

image_medium2 (6) image_medium2 (5) image_medium2 (4) image_medium2 (3) Yukihs did a lovely job on this eyelet lace Ashton’s Shawlette.  Dee O’Keefe’s pattern is so pretty, and Yukihs really worked it up and blocked it to perfection.

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This one really blew my mind, because she took a basic pattern, Alice Yu’s Totally Vanilla,  and she cleverly used the beginning of the gradient to provide the colorwork contrast. Lesheggie’s Winter Night Sky,in Khione, shows her mastery of knitting.

What are you knitting? Please let me know in the comments!

Have a great autumn weekend,

Jaala

Trapeze, Calliope, and a KAL

Hi, Knitters,

Wow, what a day, I have not one, but two new yarns to introduce!

But first, some fall apple-picking fun:

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We grabbed my mom, my brother’s family the kids and even Sasha for an afternoon in the orchard last weekend. Can you believe the twins are in kindergarten now?! A good time was had by all, and caramel apples were had by the youngsters. We’ll be making sauce, crisp and maybe some pie this weekend. Does anyone have a favorite apple recipe?

Trapeze Cashmere

Now for the yarn! The first new one is unbelievable; a new 100% cashmere handspun. Fair-trade, spun by a women’s collective in Afghanistan, and probably the softest yarn I’ve ever felt.

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At TNNA this summer, I saw a booth with fair-trade cashmere from Afghanistan. They had samples. Just one touch and I was hooked; I knew we had to get some for our wonderful Knitcircus knitters! We arranged with the wonderful women who run this business to get a special, limited-run of worsted-weight 100% cashmere Trapeze yarn, and now we have it just for you!

The yarn itself is so special I had to develop the deepest, richest, most saturated colors. Every single skein is dyed on its own in a batch of one, with several different dyebaths layered over each other to achieve a color with boundless depth. We named them after precious stones that mirrored the colors’ depth: London Blue Topaz and Pink Tourmaline.

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To highlight the yarn’s specialness, I developed the London Blue Topaz pattern specifically to make the most of the yarn’s yardage and of course, to arrange around your neck and shoulders so you can feel Trapeze’s fantastic softness and drape.

The shawl uses what I think is one of the most elegant stitch patterns, Dayflower Lace, with a diamond-shaped construction.

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Here’s the Pink Tourmaline colorway, a deep, rich red perfect for holiday knitting. (This is the color I kept for myself!)

Calliope: Merino-Cashmere-Nylon DK

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Speaking of cashmere, we’re thrilled to introduce another new yarn, but this one will be available all year round! Calliope is 80% Superwash Merino, 10% Nylon , 10% cashmere, in a touchable, delightfully soft and springy yarn. It’s shown here in our new cozy fall color, Mr. Tumnus, and you can custom order it in any of our repeatable coorways. It’s 230 yards in a 100g cake, or 345 yards in a 150g cake.

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As part of the Calliope excitement, we’re also now offering all of our sport, dk and worsted-weight yarns in 150-g options, which was only available for fingering weights before.

Silk Moon KAL

We started off the autumn in style with a Ravelry KAL for the Silk Moon Crescent Shawl, now with a new fingering-weight version included in the pattern! I know a couple of people in the KAL are going to work it in fingering and keep on going to make larger shawls, and I can’t wait to see how they turn out!

The KAL just started, and we have our first weekly winner; Taine on Ravelry got her choice of patterns from my Ravelry Store.

This shawl knits up quickly in either fingering, dk or fingering weight yarn. I made this rainbow one below as my new Silk Moon for the re-release of the pattern and finished it in under a week!

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The lovely model in the photos here is Cindy, who joins us in the Lair to help with Ravelry groups, website and finances. She works at beloved LYS the Sow’s Ear and has lots of knitting expertise as well as the talent for creating and maintaining order, which I dearly love and appreciate. Cindy will be participating in the KAL and checking in with everyone every day!

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My Silk Moon is in Knitcircus Lap of Luxury silk blend in the colorway Over the Rainbow, which you guys know I can’t stop knitting with.

There’s still plenty of time to join us in the Ravelry group, and the prizes will be getting bigger each week. ;)

WASHCLOTHS for a GOOD CAUSE

Stephanie from Space Cadet Yarns just shared this project by a motivated knitter to send handknitted washcloths to be distributed as part of hygiene packs in Haiti. Good cause, and the time commitment is actually charity knitting I can do!

I’ll be knitting up a washcloth this weekend and hope some of you will join in the good, clean, fun. ;) If you post a pic of your washcloth in the Ravelry group, or a link to your project, i’ll give away a pattern of your choice as a reward for your good efforts!

Industrial Revolution Scarf: New Pattern

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It was the first taste of a little bit of chilly weather, and it made me want to go all cozy with cables and textures. After tech editing, a photoshoot and some pattern layout, the Industrial Revolution Scarf is ready!

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Why Industrial Revolution? Well, mostly I was thinking about the name of the yarn, which is Brass and Steam, which got me thinking about people keeping nice and warm in steampunk-era London or the USA. This seems like the kind of handknitted cravat a gentleman inventor might wear, or a lady might tuck demurely under her overdress. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

It works up quickly with just one skein of worsted weight yarn (of course, you can make it longer simply by continuing to repeat the special stitch pattern.)OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

You may remember the work-in-progress from the cabling tutorial I sent out last month!

As a special treat for l all you lovely knitters, I’m debuting it for free for just this weekend! Head to Ravelry for your free Industrial Revolution download.

And, of course, if you’d like to make it up in the yarn shown, you can click on over to the Knitcircus Shop for the Industrial Revolution Scarf Kit.

Happy knitting,

Jaala

Silk Moon KAL

Hi, Knitters,

I don’t know about you, but now that September is here and the kids are back in school, I’m itching to start some satisfying fall projects!

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We’ll be running a series of knitalongs in the coming months, and we’re easing things in with the Silk Moon Crescent Shawlette. This is my most popular design, possibly because it is such a quick and rewarding project. This garter-stitch shawl with an easy-to-memorize increase pattern is true potato-chip knitting!

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Here’s the classic version made with Noro yarns; you can use any worsted-weight Noro you have in stash.

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New for this KAL, we’ve released a new fingering version of the shawl! Many of you asked for fingering-weight instructions for of this fun knit, and we listened. Silk Moon Crescent now includes instructions for both worsted and fingering weight projects.If you’ve already purchased the pattern, you should already have received a notification about the pattern update.

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Use any 400-yard fingering weight in your stash, or choose from Knitcircus Yarns’ 100g fingering gradients.

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The KAL will start on Friday, but you can cast on as soon as you like. We have special Silk Moon Crescent Kits available in the shop, and we will be rushing kit orders made by September 19th. The dyed-to-order kits include a copy of the pattern and two cakes of Ringmaster or our new dk-weight Merino Cashmere Nylon, Knitcircus Calliope, in some of our best-selling colors. There are also a few special kits made up out of bases or colors that are currently in limited supply. If you prefer fingering, orders of any 100g fingering weight yarn made in the same period will include a free Ravelry download code for the pattern.

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The KAL will include new prizes every week and will officially run from Friday, September 12th to October 15th. Please join us in the KAL thread in the Knitcircus Ravelry Group!

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Have a happy start to fall knitting season,

Jaala

 

 

Knitcircus Podcast #49

Amy’s back from Knitting Camp, Jaala’s been to Stitches, and both are revving up for fall knitting!

Listen on Libsyn or iTunes

Mentioned this podcast:

Wisconsin Sheep and Wool Festival

Asa Tricosa: Tric pattern

Amy’s upcoming Ireland Trip

Stitches Midwest

Vogue Knitting Live Chicago and New York

Montse Stanley, the Knitters Handbook

Knockout Knits, by Laura Nelkin

New American Knits, by Amy Christoffers

Sow’s Ear Yarn and Coffee Shop

Amy Herzog’s Fit to Flatter Software

The Magic of Shetland Lace Knitting, by Elizabeth Lovick

Knitcircus Yarns

Patterns and Stitch Markers

 

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Hi, Knitters!

Look at my desk; it’s pattern-writing time.I actually got the whole morning to write up a new pattern yesterday, and didn’t dye any yarn until after lunch. We’ve been very busy in the Lair, with a new shipment going out to Fiddlehead Yarns, (celebrating their 35th anniversary) and a big trunk show headed to Knitche, so this was very unusual!

It made me remember how much I love designing. Of course, I love dyeing, too, but I didn’t realize I had several ideas for patterns pent up that were just waiting for a chance to get on the computer. You Gradient Club members will have your last pacages, with one of my patterns, in the mail next week.

As we rev up for Fall Knitting Season, I’ll be rolling out a number of fun patterns for you, starting with this almost-finished Brass and Steam scarf.

With a combination of textures and cables, it works up quickly with either one or two skeins of Ringmaster Worsted. After working with a lot of lace lately, I really enjoyed knitting this one up, and there’s just one more color change left in my version of the scarf. We just need another round of testing, then this baby will be ready to go to warm up some people this fall!

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And now, since I’ve got this on the needles, I’d like to talk about one of my favorite little knitting helpers, Stitch Markers!august 29 2014 017

 

I’m a big fan of the locking stitch makers (“safety pin”) type; you can find Clover ones just about anywhere. I found this purple one above on Etsy, but honestly, this model only has a few good clips in it, then it breaks. Anyhow, I’m using the purple maker above to tell me which is the right side, in this case, the side where I’ll be making my cable crossings. This particular pattern is reversible, so it can be tricky to tell which side is which. 

You can also see the round, brass-colored markers pretty often along the needles. (These came from the Knitting Tree, but if you want to find something similar online, I love the ones with little beads from Velvet Hippo). I have them placed any time I’m switching from one texture or cable pattern to another, so sometimes there are only two stitches between them! I used to think it was cooler to just keep it all in my head, but then I found myself with textures spilling onto each other’s spaces, and then when I ripped it back, I didn’t feel cool at all.

When I’m doing lace knitting, I place them between every single lace repeat, even if it’s only five stitches wide, and always after the side borders, even if they’re three garter stitches and you do the same thing EVERY ROW. Somehow, I seem to be able to mess that up when interruptions come my way…. These little beauties have saved me tons of time re-knitting.

 

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 Thank you, my little marker friends!

Home

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My kids go to different schools , so Belle has already been back in class for a week, while Lil Buddy still has a few days of freedom left! Soccer has started back up, which he loves, and of course, that leaves plenty of time to cuddle Sasha.

Looks like it’ll be nice and cool here this weekend, so I’m looking froward to doing some yardwork, hanging with the kids (maybe a Devil’s Lake day trip?) and hopefully finishing my Brass and Steam scarf!

Have a great holiday weekend,

Jaala

 

 

Stitches Midwest

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Sasha says good morning! To get to this point, she has to try several times to jump onto the low couch, then run along all the way and climb over the arm of the chair. It’s pretty amusing to watch. She’s pretty much totally charming and amusing at all times. She really isn’t supposed to be on the furniture, though…

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The whole Knitcircus team worked heroically to prepare for Stitches, and we literally finished processing, caking and labeling every skein in the Lair! Here’s Chris and I on the way to our first exhibition at Stitches Midwest.

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I was really impressed with the organization of this big event. As soon as we pulled up, someone was ready to help us in with a big cart. We were right in the middle of the action in the 500 row.august 22 2014 274

 

It was so much fun to get to meet knitters in real life who have made such beautiful projects with our yarn!august 22 2014 278

Check out this beautiful cowl Mary made in the Pigeon colorway!  With my Cloudburst, we were color twins.

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Wendy is knitting the Sand Castle colorway from the Matching Socks Club in Hermione’s Everyday Socks pattern. It looks so beautiful in the textured pattern! I just loved creating this color and was thrilled to see how it’s working up.

 

We got to meet Emily from the Knitting Butterflies podcast in person!

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i’m sorry I don’t remember this fabulous knitter’s name, but check out her amazing Daybreak in an Eat, Pray, Knit gradient and matching kettle dye.

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Chris welcomed everyone into the booth and gave them all the lowdown on the yarn, while I talked to people and rang up orders. We were lucky to have Angela with Purl & Loop next to us; she’s possibly the sweetest person in the world! If you ever want to make adorable needlefelted projects, please think of her.

Fairy Yarn Mother was on our other side, and Susan from Susan’s Fiber Shop had a huge display right across form us, so we got to be in a little Wisconsin neighborhood. We discovered Fringe Association for the first time and were delighted to get to meet Liz from Appletree Knits. We both make gradients, but since she concentrates on silk and lace, and we focus on wool and fingering-to-worsted, we complement each other perfectly.

We had a very successful show and will definitely be back. Thank you to everyone who visited us and we hope to see you next year!

SALE

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We’re switching things up in the Lair and now are only creating handpaints and kettle dyes in colors coordinating with our gradients, so all of the sumptuous colors we have right now are on sale!

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Everything that we brought back form Stitches is up in the shop, and all of the kettle dyes and handpaints are up to 25% off! It’s the perfect time to kick-start your stash for the fall knitting season. :)

Have a great weekend,

Jaala