Knitter's Apothecary Collection

It's been a year in the making, including thousands of stitches, a fair amount of ripping, and lot's of dreaming about the outcome.  Alas, the day has arrived, and I can finally share my collection for the Malabrigo Freelance Pattern Project with you all!

 

What started out as this amazing pile of fiber arriving on my doorstep last October.....

the stash of Malabrigo

the stash of Malabrigo

...turned into this:

Here's a little bit of background story about the collection.

My love affair with Malabrigo is no secret, so when I was given the opportunity to design a collection in partnership with them, my mind went a little crazy trying to decide which yarns to work with, and what direction to go with the collection. 

The resulting collection was inspired by the more "earthy" tones in Malabrigo's lineup and grew into an eclectic little collection named for a variety of herbs, spices and natural remedies.  

If you are at all like me, then knitting itself is a remedy.  

Using the same lace pattern in all of these pieces was comforting, and at the same time, a challenge for me as a designer.  Each time I sat down to design a piece, it was a little like the comfort of home, mixed with the excitement of the unknown.  

Each piece uses the geometric, yet feminine, lace pattern in a unique way to create a fresh piece with a classic feel. 

Without any more rambling, let me introduce you to the Knitter's Apothecary Collection:

Comfrey

Comfrey, in Mecha, Arapey colorway

Comfrey is a quick-to-knit cowl in bulky yarn.  Worked in the luxurious Mecha, the fun is in the details, with large-scale geometric lace and optional drawstrings adding a kick.  Tie on some pom poms for even more drama!

Zested

Zested, in Sock, Terracotta colorway

Zested is a softened triangular-shaped shawl, worked in garter stitch with subtle eyelets placed through out the body, finished with a geometric lace edging.  

Simple, yet interesting, its a great piece to showcase kettle or hand dyed yarns.

Valerian

Valerian, in Silky Merino, Lettuce colorway

Valerian is a feminine, open-work hat whose lace design mimics the sprawling roots of the valerian plant. Named from the Latin word "valere," which means "to be well,"  the valerian root produces a calming effect and is often used to treat anxiety.  

So grab yourself some lofty yarn, something to sip on, then sit, knit, and "be well." 

Rocoto

Rocoto, in Sock, Botticelli Red colorway

 Rocoto is a casual, yet feminine pullover featuring lace details at the hem and along the sleeves, soft waist shaping, a unique notched neckline, and drop shoulders.  

Ceylon

Ceylon, in Silky Merino, Tatami colorway

Ceylon is a pair of timelessly elegant fingerless gloves, with just the right amount of detail to keep them feminine, yet also functional.  Using a combination of working flat and in the round, they work up simple and quick with minimal finishing.  

Ginger Root

Ginger Root, in Silky Merino, Tatami colorway

Ginger Root is a pair of classically styled, feminine boot cuffs.  Light-weight and easy to tuck into your boots, they are perfect to finish off your look with a soft, girly skirt, yet also go stylishly with your favorite pair of jeans or leggings.  Pattern includes 2 children and 3 adult sizes. 

I have set up a page on the website featuring the collection here:  Apothecary Collection

You can purchase any of the patterns as individual downloads through my ravelry shop here: Addiesma Designs on ravelry.  

The whole collection is also available as an E-book at a significantly discounted rate of $18, saving $1.50/pattern.  E-book available here: Knitter's Apothecary E-book


Thanks so much to all of you sweet knitters who lend me support on a daily basis.  It means more than you know.

A lot of people helped lend a hand with this project, including some highly skilled test knitters, Eleanor (tech-editor extraordinaire), Alex Tinsley & Malabrigo, and of course my amazing family, including my talented photographer, my hubby.  He was so patient and put in so much time to make these knits come to life the way I imagined them.  

I'm so happy to finally have this one "out there," and I imagine my family is too.  I'm sure they are OVER hearing about it.....this picture of Addison most likely sums up their feelings on the whole ordeal!

I have a very busy middle of the month, but if there is interest, I'd love to host a Knit-along in my ravelry group, On the Porch [with Addiesma], perhaps in November.  Leave a comment here or stop by the group to let me know if you are interested.   

Thanks, and happy knitting!

Peek at a future design...

As promised in an earlier post this week, I would like to share a little peek at the design I will be contributing to the Midwestern Knits book, scheduled to be published in August 2015.  

Inspired by one of my favorite, picturesque sites on the shores of Lake Michigan, Cave Point, is a two color lace weight hat, featuring a sand-like texture along side a lace wave motif.  

I was also given the opportunity to use my own hand dyed yarn from Front Porch Fibers, and thought "Glacier" and "Business Casual"  captured the lakeshore feel perfectly.  

So, if you are excited about this design, and the prospect of this book, but haven't visited the Midwestern Knits Kickstarter page yet to choose one of the great incentive packages, I urge you to do so.......if we don't reach our goal, this book will only be a dream.  

_MG_7248.jpg

I contributed several more prizes this week too, including the Brew City Knits, Paper Lanterns, and Happy Trails ebooks, as well as a Tupelo Slouch Kit (a copy of the pattern and a skein of Malabrigo Merino Worsted in the gorgeous Chapel Stone colorway).  

Thanks for peeking at my design and for considering heading over and claiming one of the cool knitting prizes as your own!  There are some great kits left from both Carina Spencer and Allyson Dykhuizen, and lots of other goodies!

 

Oh....and Front Porch Knitting now has a Facebook page, if you'd like to follow us there.  Of course we will share any special deals, projects from fellow knitters and any other knitting news from our friends in the fiber world.

Facebook.com/frontporchknitting

Beurre Shawl & Midwestern Knits Campaign Update

My sister is getting married in Savannah next month, and as the day approaches, the anticipation in our house is growing!  I worked up the lovely Beurre, by Hilary Smith-Callis, and loved every minute of knitting this shawl.  I chose to knit mine in Malabrigo's Silky Merino, in one of my all-time favorite colorways, Tatami.  This yarn just sings in person.  Seriously, it's luminous, and just so elegant.  It will be perfect for the wedding, but is sure to be a staple in my wardrobe for years to come.  

Buerre, by Hilary Smith-Callis, in Malabrigo Silky Merino, Tatami colorway

The construction of this shawl was new to me, and a little intimidating at first sight when I saw I needed to cast on over 660 stitches!  It is worked from the bottom up, and all of those many cast on stitches help form the sweet little ruffle.  

This photo shows the wingspan and long bottom edge with all those stitches!

I would like to share a little trick I have picked up for a super long cast on edge, like this one.  I learned this tip from Alex Tinsley when I worked up her Speedline Shawl a while back, and have used it a TON since then.  

Here is a link to a video that Alex was kind enough to make.  In the video, she is explaining how to cast on with 2 colors....disregard that part if you are just using 2 strands to work a super long Long Tail Cast On in one color.  It's a very simple way to do it, and I have to say, I use it pretty much all the time if I am casting on with 2 skeins with the intention of alternating skeins to avoid pooling of colors.  There is no need to join your second skein later, it's already there, and you avoid the issue of having too long or too short of a tail for your long tail cast on.  Brilliant!  

Here's the link: http://www.dull-roar.com/2011/08/video-tutorial-two-color-long-tail-cast.html

I placed a stitch marker after every 100 stitches to ease in keeping track as I went, and it really went smoothly using these couple little tricks.  The eyelet section was fun to work, and the short rows in garter stitch were absolutely addicting!  

More pictures and details on my project page here:  Icing on the Wedding Cake


Midwestern Knits Update

Also, here's an update on the Midwestern Knits Kickstarter Campaign: The campaign has reached it's half-way point, with less than 15 days to go, and has also raised over 50% of the fundraising goal.  This is fantastic news, and means things are right on schedule, but we need to keep the momentum going if we want to see this project happen.  (Kickstarter campaigns are all-or-nothing, meaning the project won't be funded at all if the goal isn't reached!)

Click the picture to view the campaign and choose an incentive package!

Click the picture to view the campaign and choose an incentive package!

The incentive prizes are being updated regularly with lots of great packages. It's a great chance to get your hands on some good knitting loot, get a pre-order copy of the book, and support some great women pouring their hearts into a really fun project.  I have several prize packages that were just added, including several of my e-books, a copy of a future (mystery) 6 piece collection I will be publishing in October, a Tupelo Slouch Kit, and a skein of yarn from Front Porch Fibers.  There are tons of things from the other talented designers as well, so be sure to check it out!  

Stay tuned, I will post later this week with a peek at my design for the book!  

Midwestern Knits Kickstarter

I  just wanted to take a minute to share something that I am super excited about with you.

I am thrilled to have a design (and be using my own Front Porch Fibers hand dyed yarn) in this amazing and inspiring project that is a collaboration between Carina Spencer and Allyson Dykhuizen, two amazing designers. It is a collection of knits, entirely inspired by the Midwestern region of the US, featuring designers and yarns local to the region.  It will be available as both an e-book and print book.

There are lots of great prizes being offered in exchange for participation in the kickstarter campaign, so please, check out the site, watch the video, and feel free to share it anywhere you can. I can’t wait to see their vision come to life!

Kickstarter page: Midwestern Knits Campaign

Pinterest Mood Board: Midwestern Knits

Thanks for taking the time to check it out!  This is one of those projects that, as soon as I heard about it, I just knew I wanted to be part of it!  

How has Summer treated you all?  As evidenced by my quiet blog, I guess you could say I've been keeping busy in many other ways.  I will try to get back here and post some updates after the kiddos are back at school next week. 

a little shop update with something new

Just a quick drive-by post to let you all know I have a new base in the Front Porch Fibers Etsy shop.  The selection is slim at the moment, but I plan to add some other colorways as I can.  

The new base is a springy, sport weight superwash Merino that takes up dye beautifully. Because of it's lovely bounce and spring, and resulting drape when knit up, I am calling it Front Porch Swing.  

Here it is in "Old Red Barn"

Old Red Barn

I am also super excited to add hand dyed spinning fiber to the shop!  Again, I have JUST added these, so there is more on the way, but I just couldn't wait any longer, the colors are so fun!

Here is some BFL top, ready for spinning!

Sand and Sea Gradient

Berry Patch

Ocean

I also added some new sock, superwash worsted, and DK last week, so be sure to stop by when you have some time.

Have a great day, and happy knitting (and spinning!) everyone!

"Salted" for a gloomy day

I woke up this morning to a cool, gloomy, Late Spring day, so of course, I reached for something cozy to wear.  The perfect sweater for a day like today is my Salted, by Alicia Plummer.  

An extra layer to keep from getting chilly, but something roomy that breathes.  This sweater has been my go-to since it came off the needles this Spring.  

Salted, by Alicia Plummer, in Front Porch Fibers DK MCN, colorway Saphire Blue

My version can be found here on ravelry.com: Addiesma's Salted

This yarn is so incredibly soft and luxurious to wear, which is one of the reasons I can't get enough of this sweater.  It was wonderful on the needles and blocked just beautifully.  The yarn is my own hand dyed from my Etsy shop.  These 4 skeins sat in the shop for quite some time, and they finally called out to me loud enough, so I swiped them up to call my own, and I'm so very glad I did.  

I have enjoyed this one so much, I have already dyed and stashed 4 skeins of Front Porch Fibers DK MCN for another one.  Now, to find the time to knit it!  

Gradients

Thanks everyone for the sweet birthday wishes.....I had a lovely day!  I couldn't have asked for anything better.  I spent the day at Lake Michigan with my family taking a wonderful hike, and the weather was perfect.  And my kiddos were even more perfect!  I love that they are at ages where we can do things like that, they were real troopers!  

They were so funny, they both filled their pockets with rocks they collected along the shore and all of the adults tried to get them to lighten the load so they would make it up the super long flights of stairs through the woods on the way back.  To no avail.  They would not give any up. They proved all of us wrong, they were out in front of all of us trekking up the steps, rocks and all!

Anyways, lets get down to business.  The winner of the "parrot" gradient skein giveaway is "projectstashEL" (ravID).  Congrats!  It will be in the mail to you this week, I hope you enjoy it in all of it's lovely brightness!   Thanks to everyone who commented and played along. 

"parrot" gradient sock yarn-prize winner "projectstashEL"

I finally had the time this morning to add the other gradients and a couple other skeins to the Etsy shop.  I have another batch to get up there from last week too, but just took their photos this morning.  I seem to be having trouble completing this process with "life" going on all around me lately!  Hopefully I will have them all listed in the next day or two.....but alas, I have another batch to dye up, so, I'm still not caught up!  

Here's a little preview of what just went up in the shop at Front Porch Fibers on Etsy:

It appears I was in a "blue" sort of mood when I dyed these guys up!

 

Another update coming soon (hopefully!).  Have a great week!

Criollo, birthday sale, and a giveaway

I promised to be back again this week, so here I am!

First on the agenda, I wanted to share the sweater I finished last month, Criollo, by Justyna Lorkowska.   Everytime Justyna publishes a new pattern, my queue grows.  She is a fabulous designer with a sweet, kind heart.  I just love how this sweater turned out, even though I put my own twist on it.  I choose to work a mock cable with eyelet pattern at the bottom hem, as opposed to the stitch written in the pattern, purely for my love of the mock cable and eyelet stitch.  Here's the link to my Clearwater [mock Criollo].  

Criollo, by Justyna Lorkowska, in Madelinetosh, Tosh Sock, colorway, Bloomsbury

I just love the fit of this sweater....can't wait to wear it with a dress to the wedding both of my kiddos are standing up in next weekend!  

Next up on the agenda....a sale!!!  I'm turning 35 on Saturday, so I thought I would throw a little sale, just to make things a little more festive.  

Use the code birthday35 when checking out in my ravelry store, anytime between Midnight (CST) May 30-the end of day (CST) June 1st to receive 35% off all single patterns.  E-books and patterns that are discounted when purchased together are not included.  

 

Lastly....speaking of cake.....

I have been busy dyeing up some new yarn for the Etsy shop, although I haven't had time to get them listed yet.  I tried my hand at dyeing gradients for the first time, and would like to offer up this fun, bright skein as a giveaway.  Let's just say that dyeing gradients is quite time-consuming and labor intensive.  This skein got the best of me, so it is slightly lighter/less yardage than the other full sock skeins I dyed up, but would still make a lovely shawlette or accessory.  It weighs in at 84 grams and is approximately 370 yards and goes from a tropical red, to orange, to teal, to yellow....all summery and tropical!

To be eligible to win, please be located in the continental US or Canada and just leave a comment below, about anything :)  Just say hello and be sure to leave your ravelry ID or email in your comment so I can contact you about the prize.  

Portico Parade

It's been so much fun to watch all the projects from my Portico and Portico Mini patterns pop up on ravelry this month!  

I thought I would highlight a few of them here to showcase some great knitting and fabulous pairings of yarn!  

I just LOVE this stunning version of Portico from Amanda (ravID-davidsaa) worked up in the gorgeous Sugarplum colorway from Luna Grey Fiber Arts.  


Another version worked up in Luna Grey Aspen Sport, in Pewter, from Michelle (akmmom-ravID), sweetly made for and modeled by her best friend.

This Portico, from Christy (TwistedKnitwits-ravID), owner of Hiwassee Creek Dyeworks, is just stunning in her own Pioneer Sport yarn, in the Canopy colorway.  Seriously, just love how this colorway worked up in this pattern, subtle with just the perfect amount of variegation. 

Another test knit, worked up by my sweet Mama (grammyjoan-ravID)again in Luna Grey Aspen Sport, in a custom dyed "Mustard" colorway.  It's a great color on her, nice and sunny....and a great fit!

And now....for those cuties in their Portico Mini's!  I just love how the tiny version looks on their little frames, so sweet!  

This one was a test knit, from Deidre (deidre12345-ravID), in Malabrigo Arroyo, another favorite yarn, in the Borrajas colorway. So stunning on her girl with that HAIR!!  LOVE!

Love how this pattern looks in all the bold shades, but there's something just so sweet and innocent about this version from Sara (lundenknit-ravID).  She is making both the Mini and adult versions for a Mother-Daughter Knit Along in the Knitting for Girls group on ravelry, how fun!  She worked up her girl's version in Cephalopod Yarns Bugga!, in "other mother" and is currently working on one for herself in Aspen Sport.  Can't wait to see hers finished!

I hope you enjoyed perusing these lovely versions of warm weather tops!  They make me want to knit another for myself and my girl.....but I can't seem to settle on a color!  

I will be back later this week to share another recently finished object that I worked up this Spring, as well as fun little giveaway and sale!  Stay tuned!

Luna Grey/Pattern Giveaway Winners

Thanks so much to everyone who participated in the Luna Grey Fiber Arts yarn and Addiesma Designs pattern giveaway.  

 

Using a random number generator, post #4 was chosen as the grand prize winner so Michelle, akmmom on ravelry, you win a beautiful skein of Aspen in the Radiant Orchid colorway!  Congrats to you!  

The free pattern from Addiesma Designs goes to post #11 from Jessica, microjess on ravelry!  I will be in touch to find out which pattern you would like.  Thanks for playing along!

 

I hope you all enjoyed learning more about Luna Grey!  If you haven't given their beautiful fiber a try yet, you need to!  It's all amazing!