Can you believe it is November already? This year is slipping by too quickly. But on the other hand, I certainly am happy for this year's hurricane season to be drawing to a close!
I am pleased to announce 3 new patterns - The Skinny on Lace, Reversible Lace Ladders, and Concertina Lace Socks. Also, Sock Therapy, the January design from The Sock Calendar book, is republished as an individual pattern.
Check for these HeartStrings patterns that will start appearing in your favorite knitting supply stores and online sources later this week.
Jackie E-S / HeartStrings FiberArts
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Newest of the New
Check for these patterns appearing in your favorite knitting supply stores soon!
#A37 Reversible Lace Ladders
A simple rectangular scarf to knit in a lacy reversible stitch. The pattern is easily adapted to make the style of scarf you want -- e.g. a chic shorter ascot style or longer fashion scarf; a narrow sash or you can even upsize it to a wider stole style. Lace weight or fingering yarn.
#S17 Concertina Lace Socks
I designed this lace to give the illusion of dimensionality, rather like the bellows on a concertina. This small accordion-like instrument mesmerizes everyone with its happy music and wavelike rhythm as the bellows are pushed in and pulled out.
5 sizes for adult extra small through extra large. Fingering weight yarn.
#T301 Sock Therapy
A perfect post-holiday project for de-stressing and much-needed self indulgence...make them for friends if you must, but first make a pair for yourself! Sport weight yarn.
Q & A : Weaving in Ends
Question: I've just finished a lovely scarf for a gift, and it needs a bit of blocking
to even out the rolling edges. Do I block it first then
weave in the ends, or should I weave in the ends then block it?
Answer: There are benefits and disadvantages in both methods of weaving in ends either before or after. Mostly I think this is a personal preference based on experience and confidence level, type of fiber/yarn, etc.
For an inexperienced knitter, or any knitter who is not sure of their blocked tension, I would advise to weave in ends afterwards.
Most of the time I weave the ends in beforehand -- of course that means that I have allowed for similar tension to my knitting so that I don't get distortion in the area that I wove in ends. If you have already done a blocked sample, then you will know the amount of give/stretch you need to allow for if you weave in ends beforehand.
The reasons I like to weave in ends beforehand:
When the piece comes off the blocking surface, it's done!
I like the crisp finish of a newly blocked article. If I need to go back and work in ends, the "crispness" can be lost in that area without a lot of fragile handling (or worse yet, I need to re-block). This is not a big deal for normal day-to-day stuff if I were only doing it for myself. But since I do models for pattern photography and shows, I want them to look as perfect as possible. And I'm sure you'll likewise want this to be as perfect as possible for your gift.
I also find that if the ends are woven in beforehand and trimmed a short distance from the surface (based the experience I gained in the sample blocking); the blocking process will ever-so-slightly hide the yarn end. Again, a minor detail, but something that could make a difference to the discerning eye.
On the other hand, for an ultra-slippery yarn like 100% rayon or smooth filament silk, I weigh risk vs. reward and usually weave the ends in afterwards. Then I double-insure an ultra-slippery yarn from slipping away by dabbing the merest touch of fray-check judiciously applied from the point of a toothpick or pin.
Happy knitting, Jackie E-S
Country Girl Fan Mail
Carol Breitner writes -- "Dear Jackie, I am making my second pair of Country Girl socks. I think that is the greatest pattern on earth!
There are just so many wonderful things about it ... the decrease/shaping working right into the lace pattern, the way you set the heel up with an odd # of stitches, and turn the heel starting with the purl row (that's how I do it, and teach it), the way the lace feeds into the foot ribbing NOT TO MENTION that they are the most elegant, feminine, jaw-dropping gorgeous, great fitting stay-up socks I have ever made.
The first pair was pale olive, these are black. The lace really shows up with the black."
Country Girl Socks
HeartStrings FiberArts / Jackie E-S Design Collections
From the classic to the uniquely appealing.
Skill-building, comprehensive instructions.
Yarn-generic patterns for your creative freedom.
Specializing in Knitted Lace and Beaded Knitting.