Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Tutorial: Beaded Butterfly Stitch

Hi, guys! This week I wanted to give you a quick photo tutorial for the main stitch used in my new Soirée Slouch hat pattern. This is a cute little trick that gives projects a little bit of sparkle and a lot of color customizing options. Don't be afraid to experiment with different shapes and colors of beads when you are using this technique, either. The pink center bead on this example piece is actually square in shape and it brings an interesting texture to the completed stitch. I'd love to see the variations that you come up with so be sure to use #YumiYarns on any social media posts.

BBS (Beaded Butterfly Stitch):
1.) Insert the left needle downward between the yarn floats and the knitted fabric. 

2.) Take the next st to be worked off the left needle and loop an 8” piece of dental floss through it. 

3.) Thread 3 beads (1 of each color) onto the dental floss and slide them down onto the st. 

4.) Remove the dental floss and place the st onto the right needle. 

5.) Drop the floats off the left needle. 

6.) Slip the beaded st back to the left needle.

7.) K the beaded stitch normally so that the floats are trapped behind the st.

That's it! You've created an adorable little blinged-out butterfly on your knitted fabric. 

Have fun with this technique and get creative!
If you need extra help, you can always e-mail me or send me a message on Ravelry.

Happy knitting!

Shaina  ^_^

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Fresh New Pattern: Soiree Slouch

This weekend I'm super excited to be going to Yarnover in Minneapolis, MN again! Last year I wasn't able to take any classes, but this year I'm signed-up for Customizing Sweater Patterns with Patty Lyons in the morning and Slick Set-in Sleeves with JC Briar in the afternoon on Saturday. In addition to that, Katie and I are going to the Meet the Teachers Dinner Friday night where Meg Swanson is the keynote speaker!! I can't even tell you guys how much I'm looking forward to this fiber weekend.

Photo credit to StevenBe.com

When I realized that this year marks the 30th anniversary of Yarnover I decided that we needed to have party hats. And since we are knitters, they had to be hand-knit party hats with some bling! To decide on the base yarn for this design, I partnered with StevenBe, the yarn shop where there is always a fiber party going on. In honor of the event, they had a special "Pearl" colorway dyed-up by Baah! Yarns on the beautiful La Jolla base. This is the perfect backdrop colorway to show off bright pops of beaded color and it looks lovely knit up on it's own should you choose to knit a no-bling version.

Soiree Slouch
This hat pattern was designed to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the Minnesota Knitting Guild’s annual Yarnover event. It’s a wonderful day of classes and fiber that brings some of the nation’s best teachers and vendors together. If you’ve never attended, add it to your list for next year, it’s a blast!

This addictive hat pattern is modern knitter’s take on the traditional conical party hat. It begins with a simple garter-stitch brim and progresses through the crown in an easy-to-bead version of the Butterfly Stitch (no pre-stringing!). What looks like purl rounds are actually rounds knit from the inside out so once you complete the brim you don’t need to purl for the rest of the pattern. This creates a super comfortable, highly textured fabric that looks far more complicated than it actually is.

Needles & Notions:
  • US Size 3 (3.25 mm) 16” Circulars
  • US Size 3 (3.25 mm) DPNs
  • 6/0 Seed Beads (3 colors)
  • Stitch Markers
  • Dental Floss
  • Tapestry Needle
Yarn used in Sample:
1 Skein of La Jolla by Baah! in the exclusive StevenBe colorway “Pearl”
100% Merino Wool 400 yds / 115 g

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Self Care For Fiber Crafters

This week I wanted to do a focus on taking care of yourself while you enjoy your knitting and crochet. There have been multiple studies done to sing the praises of our crafting when it comes to our emotional well-being. As anyone who has done any deadline crafting (*cough* holidays *cough*) can attest to, these crafts that we love can take their toll on our physical well-being. I don't know about you guys, but I tend to want to sit and work on my projects as much as I can and as fast as I can before I loose interest and want to move onto the next thing. This usually results in a sore back/neck, arm and hand pains and sometimes even pains in my legs (depending on the chair that I'm sitting in).

One thing that I've been trying to do on my heavy knitting days is to set a Pomodoro Timer (you can find an app online). The concept behind using the Pomodoro system is that if you focus really hard and work on something for 25 minutes, then take a 5 minute break. When you go back to work after the break, you will be more focused and will, therefore, accomplish more during your work day. This seems to work extremely well for me for cleaning the house, but 25 minutes seems a bit too quick for knitting. I can make a small dent in my project during that time, but the timer always seems to go off just when I'm starting to get into a rhythm. So, I've started using 50 minutes as my knitting timer with a 10 min break in between and this seems to be going really well.

It is important to keep in mind that when you take your breaks, you actually need to take a break. This means that you need to get up, stretch, walk around, look at something out the window or across the room. This is very important for your eye health as well as your full body health. When we knit, our projects are fairly close to us so it's good to give your eyes a break and a stretch by looking at something far away. (If you're at your LYS for knit night, this is the perfect excuse to look around for that new yarn that needs to come home with you!)

One of my favorite sites for relieving any sorts of body pain is : www.drscottamills.com
One of the biggest fears that fiber crafters have in regards to body damage from crafting is Carpal Tunnel Syndrome so here is Dr. Scott's fix for this common ailment:

Have a great week with your crafting and don't forget to take some breaks!

Shaina  ^_^