Design Inspiration Revealed: Susanna IC’s Vernice Shawl

KnitCircus_July2015_ConnieWardPhotography-115 (1)Susanna IC has built her reputation on beautifully-designed shawls, and has had patterns published in many leading knitting magazines, including Twist Collective and Wool People. She designed the stunning Vernice Shawl for our Fall Collection: in the first of a series, she shares her inspiration and design process for us in a mini-interview.


  1. How did you choose the kind of project you designed?

I wanted to create a smaller, one skein shawl with some fun textures throughout; something that would be quick to knit but still interesting to work on, a perfect gift project. Of course, this being a Knitcircus project, the design also had to play well with beautiful gradient yarns.


  1. What was the biggest challenge of designing this project?

The inspiration for Vernice came from the brilliant colors of the skein, which reminded me of the changing seasons, and the design progressed easily from there. I wanted to work with interestingly textured lace stitches that would reflect the colors and textures of autumn foliage. The biggest challenge came while trying to decide which color to start with.


  1. What was your favorite part of the process?

While the more difficult decision had to do with which color to work with first, the red or the blue, the color progression was also my favorite part of the design process. In the end, I decided to start with the blues to reflect the color of clear sunny sky and to finish with the reds that look much like autumn leaves.


  1. Your favorite thing about the finished piece?

I am very happy with the way the textured stitches interact with each other, creating interesting shapes throughout the lace border. I also like how versatile the size of this crescent is: it can be worn around the shoulders as a traditional shawl, yet at the same time the elongated shape makes it possible to wear open like a long scarf.

Here’s where you’ll find the:

Vernice Pattern

Vernice Kit

Knitcircus Fall Collection

You can find all of Susanna’s designs on Ravelry, join her Ravelry Group and check out her website,!

Over the Rainbow for New Gradient Stripes!

Hi, Knitters,


I couldn’t wait to tell you that we’re ready to offer four more colors, and  now the Harry-Potter-Inspired House Socks collection is complete!


Introducing: Brave at Heart. I  Proud crimson stripes with magnificent gold. Whether you’re fighting evil or standing up for your friends, you’ll go roaring through these socks in no time at all! Along with Wit and Learning, Just and Loyal and Cunning Folk, Brave at Heart celebrates the different strengths of magic and muggle folk alike.


You can tell I’m a geek at heart! The next striping sock set is The Shire: Beautiful, springlike colors evoke the gardens of a peaceful land. Colors slowly change from pale to ripe peach to pale and ivy green.


The next: Autumn Forest. This was September’s popular color of the month, now translated into Gradient Stripes.  We could never match Mother Nature’s paintbrush, but this is our homage to it. Autumn Forest begins with a cheerful leaf green, before striping to warm chestnut brown, then passing through a brilliant orange to a golden yellow.


Finally: Over the Rainbow. Rainbow stripes! Yellow, orange, red, hot pink, purple, blue, and finally green stripe with each other. Whoo!!!!

I’m having so much fun creating these new colors and knitting up socks of my own! I can’t wait to see what you all do with them. 🙂

Happy weekend,


Knitcircus Podcast #43

Amy photographs every daffodil in Seattle and Jaala still hasn’t seen one! Plus, miles of Kitchener Stitch and why toe-up socks are so great.

Listen on Libsyn and itunes

Mentioned this Podcast:

Vogue Knitting Live Seattle

Knitcircus Yarn Shop

Lorilee Beltman

Amy Singer

Clara Yarn

Emily Ocker’s Circular Cast-On

Cat Bordhi’s Personal Footprints for Insouciant Sock Knitters

Lovely Knitted Lace, by Brooke Nico

Wild West Lace E-book Volume 1, by Stephannie Tallent

Wild Ginger Restaurant

Amy’s Craftsy Class

Mary Rowe Knitted Tams Schoolhouse Press Booklet (out of print but coming soon; scroll to bottom of page)

Schoolhouse Press Jamieson Spindrift sale

Laura Nelkin Beadle Needle Video

Kitchener Stitch

Yarn Con Chicago



Prefectly Cast Mitten




I recently knit a fun and challenging mitten for a sad reason; my little Belle broke her hand. She loves Judo, and was in the middle of learning a new technique when her partner rolled over her hand. When I arrived to pick her up, they had wrapped a cold cloth over it, but by the next morning that thumb pad had doubled in size, a good thing for a bread dough, but not for a child’s hand.

So it was off to the Children’s Hospital for us, where the same cast tech who had helped with Lil Buddy’s broken wrist got her all wrapped up. Poor Belle had broken her writing hand  but luckily, her teachers have been immensely helpful with writing for her and allowing her to use the classroom laptop.

But we live in Wisconsin, where fall mornings can get nippy, so it only took a couple of days before she said, “Mom, my fingers are freezing! Could you help me?”

Of course, a plea like that makes any knitter jump into action, so I got out my chunky yarn for fast knitting, and started to work while we watched our Friday Night Family Movie. Every inch or so, I asked her for a fitting, and we did manage to make it work!


It was pretty funny, because, as you can see, the wrist and thumb needed to be about as big around as a log cabin log, while the top covers her little 10-year-old fingers.

The Love of a Knitter

This project was truly a labor of love, and was more fun than lots of labors of love, since it provided a good knitterly challenge and knit up in just a couple of evenings.

But this story could have had a sad ending, when the mitten somehow lost its way and ended up on the lawn on the side of the school. It was our neighbor, Cindy  who spotted the lonely, funky mitten and returned it to us. Without the sharp eyes and generous spirit of a fellow knitter, the Cast Mitten could have been tragically lost, and never used unless by a chilly hedgehog a la The Mitten.

Thanks, Cindy!


Yarns Aplenty


It’s an exciting day in the Evil Lair; we’re labeling and photographing yarns for our big Knitcircus Yarns debut weekend! Tomorrow, it’s the One Day Preview Sale in the Knitcircus Etsy shop, then Saturday, the outdoor event at beloved yarn store The Sow’s Ear.

Skeins hanging up to dry.

Please visit the shop tomorrow to check out some of our new yarns and make our first time out a success!