Friday, October 21, 2011

pimping ziggy

so I'm back on the pimping bandwagon today.

I think I'll preface this post by saying that this design might just be my most favourite thing I've knitted all year. That's a pretty big call, and particularly considering that this is a boy knit but ...I'm going to put it out there.

This is ziggy, a wee pattern that had me thinking outside the square I live in, quite literally.

I so love this hoodie, not just because Toby has worn it to death this winter, but because visually it just really appeals to me.  Ask any kids' knitwear designer and they will tell you the struggles of designing for boys, trying to find a new angle or something slightly different without it being too out there. Despite lots of knitters asking for more boys' patterns, we do tend to knit quite conservatively for our boys.

I love that while this is a hoodie, it's got something else going on with it. I love the zig-zag stitch pattern on the front and the way it works up onto the hood. I love the shape and fit of the hood. It was well worth the ripping and reknitting and ripping and reknitting! And I particularly loved the rolled hems. I had sort of envisaged sewn hemlines but I couldn't be bothered sewing them down  I decided I preferred them rolled.

One of the most exciting things about this pattern though is that while it looks super cute on my little two-year-old Toby, it looks absolutely awesome on the boys at the bigger end of the age scale.  You have no idea how pumped I was when my big knit testers started finishing these up. Have a peep at the projects on Rav.  You know, I even have the need to knit DK a man-sized version!

I am really proud of this design, simply because it is a good boys' pattern. Something a little bit out of the box. It will probably never be as successful as milo, but I don't care! I love it just the same!

I do have a little bit of a secret in relation to this pattern though.
The first version and the alternate version in the pattern looked like this;

What you actually can't tell is that the first garment was knit top-down and the second one, the hoodie was knit bottom-up.

My preference for kids' knit is top down because it's easier to custom knit length, try it on and even add length later, hence the prototype was knit that way. But when I came to write up the pattern, I realised it was just going to be so long and convoluted to write it up that way, particularly having to incorporate the changes in the zig-zag stitch pattern into every raglan increase across the size range. This is a pretty lengthy and detailed pattern as it is, without that.  The option was there to use instructions like, "Work into existing pattern" but.. that's not my style and those who knit my patterns are used to me detailing each step of the way thoroughly, so that wouldn't really be fair to them.

I was a wee bit stressing over it when my friend Shannon suggested I go bottom-up. Simple. Sensible. Pure Genius. That's Shannon. So that's what I went for.

It was fun thinking outside my normal design box and designing something bottom up. I'm so glad I did it. It's opened up a whole other avenue of thinking in terms of design for me, which has been great. Who knows where I'll head next with it?

So if you're in the market for a kids' jumper, ziggy could be just the one you need.

It's sized from 6months to size 12 (17 - 30" chest).

It is very much a modern take on the classic hoodie/henley. The pattern contains instructions for knitting either the henley style tab front and collar, or the hood. The hood borrows construction techniques from sock knitting to create a fun little hood that fits perfectly.

It is a seamless construction and knit bottom up. The only special techniques required are circular knitting, simple cable knitting (this can be done without a cable needle), a small amount of kitchener stitch and picking up stitches.

You can purchase ziggy either as an individual pattern for $AUD6, or as part of an ebook containing four other patterns.

 Both are available for purchase via my Ravelry store.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

blogtoberfest: er...umm. day.....20?

So we can establish that as predicted, I am pretty crap at posting every day in the blogtober thing. Not to worry!
Maybe I should try again for November?

Whence last I was home and blogging I did so promise a pattern pimp fest, as my sister Megsie reminded so nicely, "What happened to the pattern pimpest?"
Yes, well...good intentions and all that.

It's actually been so long since I blogged regularly that there are patterns that I released way back in June that I haven't blogged about. (I just looked that up, and to be honest I thought it was much longer ago than that!)

Today's pattern pimp is for a garment I finished and blogged about way back in March.


Well, after a rigorous testing process this pattern was released in June.

I must say it has served us well this year. I have another one on the needles that I had intended for my niece Tully, but she's changed school and blue is now not the colour for her. I think I'll save it for next year to make another for Lily with longer sleeves, because she won't grow widthwise!

My testers tested this in different colours, like maroon and red, and I have to say I so love it in those tones. I can almost see me knitting myself a red one. Oh for the time to do so!!!
I think this is a cardigan that definitely should not be just for school!

Lily's worn this all through the year and it looked equally cute with her summer dress and her winter kilt.

I bought an electric fabric de-piller and that has been awesome for tidying up any pills to keep it looking its best. Apart from that a quick wash in the machine has kept it going. And at almost the end of her first year of school, I have to say it's in much better nick and far brighter than the faded windcheaters many of her class mates wear.

So if you feel so inclined to knit your little scholar a school cardie, the pattern is available in my Ravelry pattern store for $AUD6.

It's seamless, topdown and fits chest sizes from 21" to 31".
The ribbed pattern is worked into the raglan shaping and the pattern contains very explicit details on how this is done. No second guessing required!

My challenge for next winter is to knit her a lovely blue school hoodie; something that will look pretty good with her kilt AND can be handed down to Toby!

Tuesday, October 04, 2011

blogtoberfest: day 4

King of the Playground

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad
Location:wye river

Monday, October 03, 2011

blogtoberfest: day 3

You know, it's been so long since I've been regularly blogging that there is so much crafty goodness I haven't blogged. This becomes apparent when I mention to my sister Megsie from over atpint something I've made and because I haven't blogged it, she doesn't know what I'm talking about.

We're away on hols at the moment. Today was the mad rush of packing last minute things into the car and the attempt to get away on time,we never manage to do this. We're always later than we intend. oh well.

One of the most important last minute things to pack is Lily's favourite dolly Evie. I love that this is Lily's favourite dolls and she HAS TO sleep with her every night.

I made Evie a month or so ago for Lily. She is made from the Sally the Eco Fairy pattern on knitty (you can easily find it on Ravelry or by googling - sorry about the lack of a link) with a few very minor mods.

Lily saw this dolly knitted up on Rav and wanted one for herself. I always meant to knit to knit this dolly for her, it's been in my queue on Ravelry forever. So when she asked one I figured I best do it, she is after all six now! And I just really needed a change, something different to knit. Something that wasn't an item of clothing. you know how it gets.

Gosh, toy knitting is fun though! Tiny thin little limbs and pieces of clothing, oh so very cute! I have to admit I didn't enjoy sewing her limbs and head on too much though! I'm hoping to make another of these dollies but next time, she'll be completely seamless.

Our little Evie is an Eco girl too.
Her body is made from a ball of Sublime Organic cotton.
Her dress from WOOLganic Organic Knitters Merino Yarn. (and it's a modified dolly rainbow dress too)
Her hair is The Sanguine Gryphon FreeRange 8ply. I attached it as per instructions for Waldorf style dolls.
Her eyes and knickers are Rowan PureLife Organic DK wool.

She is very much loved,and is right now cuddled up and snoozing away with this big girl who refused to change out of her Pippi costume, or wash her hair the whole weekend! she's a bit cute as redhead,hey?

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad
Location:Wye River

Sunday, October 02, 2011

blogtoberfest: day 2

A random photo for a lazy day.

A lazy day in our neighborhood, roaming through the nature reserve looking for Spring Wildflowers, making daisy chains and avoiding swooping plovers.

DK is pretending he's not nursing a hangover from yesterday's bloody football ho-hum event.

Tonight it's time to pack and prepare to escape our seaside town for a few days. We're off to another one nestled between the mountains and the with a jumping pillow.

the random photo is another recent mummy-made dress-up for Lily. This one was for her Arts Celebration Night. The theme was sea creatures, so Lily asked if I could make her a jellyfish costume.

so I did.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Saturday, October 01, 2011

perhaps rather stupidly....

Tinniegirl Blogtoberfest 2011

I've decided to be a participant in Blogtoberfest again this year.

Don't get me wrong, I don't think it's stupid to be involved in Blogtoberfest at all. It's super dooper fun good idea.

It might be a little stupid for me though, not just because my blog mojo has vanised, but we're going camping next week...possibly somewhere where there is no internet connection.

that's going to make blogging every day just a wee bit tricky, hey..