Contact Us

Questions?  Please check our FAQs to see if your question is answered before submitting a form.

Comments?  We love to hear your input.  Please let us know your thoughts!

Name *
Name
http://

Pink Brutus Knits
indianapolis, in
usa

www.pinkbrutus.com

Blog

Owinja and other gansey design tales

courtney spainhower

First off, let's just take a moment to appreciate a world in which gansey sweaters exist.  I love 'em.  Love 'em love 'em love 'em.  I honestly think I could pull off a gansey design to fit any request though, that would be wildly boring and so I reign it in.  Bailiwick, from Interweave Knits Spring 2014 was not only my first gansey (the one that started it all!), it was also my first design to ever be published by a print magazine (again, the one that started it all!). Bailiwick was  all about detail, modern aesthetic, and interesting construction. Worthington, from Interweave Knits Winter 2016 was really focused on paying homage to traditional fisherman's guernsey sweaters, knit in a solid, fine wool with a wide, ribbed hemline and underarm gussets.  The construction for Worthington is also very much as traditional as it gets.

Owinja is sort of a mix between the more modern aesthetic and the traditional jumper.  It has those modern drop shoulders that are really, truly, unequivocally the star, with traditional underarm gussets and stitches that aren't too fussy.  It's named for the stitch pattern that makes up the majority of the yoke which was inspired by Owinja Star Quilts.  It should probably also be noted that the knitting of this sweater was a zip; fast and engaging without being challenging (there's a big old gap of difference there).

Once again, I loved working with the team at Berroco - and their new yarn, Berroco Ultra Wool, is solid.  It has a great feel, banging stitch definition, and the colors range is exceptional.

Head on over to see the full collection of Berroco Portfolio Vol. 4 & download Owinja for yourself - just make sure to share your progress on social media #owinjapullover so I can follow along!

 

Easy no wrap short rows

courtney spainhower

So, I've used these short rows for years.  In fact, I'm pretty sure I stumbled upon them when I was researching techniques for Family-Friendly Knits and yet, the exact technique doesn't seem to exist on this here internet.  It is possible I borrowed techniques from other methods and poured them together to create this - I just honestly don't know.  What I do know is that I use this method every time I design short rows and since there doesn't seem to be a tutorial anywhere (a little tid-bit I found out when a sample knitter had some questions and asked if I had a link to a tutorial.  Oh yes, sure, I have a link... let me just google that and.... SIGH) ... so, ta-da!

First things first, I'm going to show how the stitches are executed over Stockinette st for both RS and WS rows.  When I write the instructions into a pattern, they read something like this example: 
"Short row 1: K6, turn, Sl1 P-wise, P11, turn. 
Short row 2: Sl1 P-wise, knit to one stitch before gap, close gap (See Special Instructions), K6, turn. 
Short row 3: Sl1 P-wise, purl to one stitch before gap, close gap, P6, turn. 
Rep Short rows 2 and 3 two more times.
Next row: Sl1 P-wise, knit to end of rnd.
Knit 1 rnd closing gaps as you come to them. "

And then of course, there are the "Special Instructions" that read something like this:

Closing Short Row Gaps

RS facing: Work to stitch before gap on left needle.  The slipped stitch is the next stitch on the left needle.  Pick up the stitch around the slipped stitch with right needle and transfer onto left needle, then knit the two stitches together.

WS facing: Work to stitch before gap on left needle.  The slipped stitch is the next stitch on the left needle.  Pick up the stitch around slipped stitch with the right needle and transfer onto left needle, then knit the two stitches together TBL.

And now to the good stuff.

I've knit to where I'm ready to turn the work.

I've knit to where I'm ready to turn the work.

After turning, I've slipped the first stitch p-wise with the yarn to the front.

After turning, I've slipped the first stitch p-wise with the yarn to the front.

I've purled to where my next turn is going to be placed

I've purled to where my next turn is going to be placed

After turning, I've slipped the first stitch p-wise with the yarn to the back.

After turning, I've slipped the first stitch p-wise with the yarn to the back.

I'm now ready to close the gap on a RS facing row.  I've knit to one stitch before the gap.

I'm now ready to close the gap on a RS facing row.  I've knit to one stitch before the gap.

Here is that slipped stitch - the arrow points to the stitch I'm picking up and placing on the needle.

Here is that slipped stitch - the arrow points to the stitch I'm picking up and placing on the needle.

Now I've transferred that stitch onto the left needle.

Now I've transferred that stitch onto the left needle.

Finally, I'm knitting the slipped stitch together with the picked up stitch on the left needle.

Finally, I'm knitting the slipped stitch together with the picked up stitch on the left needle.

Moving on to the WS rows, here I've purled to one stitch before the gap.

Moving on to the WS rows, here I've purled to one stitch before the gap.

Again, we see thatstitch from the previous WS row positioned around the slipped stitch on the needle.

Again, we see thatstitch from the previous WS row positioned around the slipped stitch on the needle.

I've transfered the picked up stitch onto the left needle.

I've transfered the picked up stitch onto the left needle.

And of course, I can now purl the slipped stitch together with the picked up stitch on the needle through the back.

And of course, I can now purl the slipped stitch together with the picked up stitch on the needle through the back.

The finished short rows with the RS of the fabric facing.  Look Ma, no gaps!

The finished short rows with the RS of the fabric facing.  Look Ma, no gaps!

As you can see, once you know what you're looking for, it's a breeze to work up - and as I mentioned previously, it's the only short row method I've used in my designs for years.  After blocking, the stitches lay out even more evenly creating a fabric with almost no sign of short row shaping at all. 

I hope this has been informative, and if you know if I made this up or if it actually exists elsewhere, please let me know!  Ever since I started looking for it this morning, it's been driving me crazy.

X

Breaking news

courtney spainhower

I have a lot of knitting needles.

Like, 3 sets of interchangeable points, sort of 2 sets of double points in a mismatched way, a set of mini double points, and just about any size circular and straight needle you could imagine.  And so, today when I broke my size US4 wooden interchangeable points while working on a new design, I figured I could just grab a set of my metal points and go about my day.  I grabbed the last thing I was certain I had used my US4 needles to fiddle with and ... those are US5.  What about this one?  US6.  And the great needle search commenced.

I would like to say that at no point during this search did I have any sort of melt down.  I would like to say that I didn't cry because that would be ridiculous.  I would like to say I didn't get pissed at my husband, pissed at my laundry, pissed at my *always* dirty floors... but I did.  I did all of those things.  I also cleaned, organized, sorted, wound, stacked, stashed, and cleared out every box, bag, basket, and bin I have any knitting related items in.  I found every single missing set of interchangeable points except my US4.