Thursday, April 29, 2010

Knock Knock. Whooooo's There?

It's me!  I'm finally back.
This week we'll discuss the awesomeness that is the Owls sweater by Kate Davies.  Alas, this beauty is not free.  Although I try my best to feature free patterns on this blog, sometimes something is so nice that I have to give it its due.  And when you think about it, knitters know they're going to spend some money, right?  We don't expect needles and yarn to come free, so we shouldn't expect all the good patterns to be free too.   Anyhoo, this pattern is also available for purchase on Ravelry, so you can download it directly to your library there.

I love this photo!
The lovely model above is Melissa (melbelle)She knit her owls in a Medium on US 10-10.5s in Rowan Purelife Steele Grey Suffolk.  Just look at how those birdies frame her face.  It also doesn't hurt that she has a pretty face to start with, but the yoke detail keeps your eye upwards of the bust/ waist/ hips region. 

  Cutie Patootie.
I don't know this little angel's name, but the  master knitter behind the sweater is Soile (NeulovaNarttu).  The yarn here is Novita Fauna in Golden Yellow.  The kids Owls pattern is separate from the adult version, but I think you can probably reverse-engineer the kids size. Not that I'm advocating it or anything.  Support your designers, people!  Needles here are US 7 and 8.  Soile has some notes on her version on her Ravelry project page including how she cast on and some other details.  I realize this doesn't really give us information about varying body types, unless you are a Supermodel with the body of a three-year-old boy.  But, who can resist a cute kid in an adorable sweater?
Oh dear, another beautiful child.  I just can't resist. This one is by Amanda (Minder).  The yarn is called
Ístex Álafoss Lopi and Amanda used US 10-10.5 needles. This sweater would be soo cute for back-to-school (yes, I know we're in Spring) with the wise owls and the beautiful ochre color.  And please check out Amanda's projects page for some of the most beautiful project photos you'll ever see.
 For the WIN!
 The masterpiece above is by EricaG.  Erica wins at knitting for the adorable branch and leaves embroidery on this sweater.  It's the little detail that makes it special.  She also has a wonderful child's onesie version on her Rav projects page. The yarn in the version above is Sandnes Garn Alfa in Petrol.  US 7 needles knit up a size S/M.  I think I'm going to have to take a break from all the cute.
How cute is this?  (I am well aware that I've used more than my daily allocation of "cute" and "adorable" in this post.  Please feel free to suggest synonyms in the comments section.)  This gorgeous model is Caro or SplitYarn on Rav.  Caro has some great tips for upsizing the pattern to an XXL.  She suggests knitting the neckline up a little higher, but I think having it end right at the collarbone looks great on her.  The collarbone is usually a good place to draw attention on all body types because it tends to be a slimmer area on most.  The yarn here is Cascade Eco Wool in brown, and the needles are US 10.5.

In Conclusion:
The yoke detail keeps the focus on the face/ collarbone area which is usually flattering to most people.  As usual, smaller types have more leeway to play around with bulkier yarns, while women (or men) concerned with hiding perceived flaws might want to stick to a looser guage or drapier yarn.  On the other hand, a tighter guage might help to keep some things sucked in, so YYMV.  This sweater seems to be happiest in fall colors, but EricaG's jewel tone blue might be the exception that proves the rule.  Play around with interesting details like buttons and embroidery.

Speak Up:
What are your experiences with this pattern?  Do you prefer a tighter or looser guage?  What about yarn- thick or thin?  What are some ideas for embellishment beyond the ubiquitous button eyes?  If you've knit this sweater, don't forget to link to it in the comments.  And, as always, don't forget to suggest other patterns for future features.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Sorry to be an Absentee Blogger

I put my notes for this blog in a "safe place" which means they were safe from me finding them again.
I finally found them, so we should be up and rolling again soon.