Fantasy Queue: Winter 2011 Knitty

Every time a new book, magazine, or web-zine of knitting patterns comes out, I have this moment where I wish I had nothing at all on the needles or in my queue, and I could just cast on half a dozen new projects with no guilt and every hope of finishing them all.

The Winter 2011 Edition of Knitty is no exception — there are plenty of patterns that say, “Pick me, pick me! Start-itis be damned!”  This Wednesday at Remily Knits I will indulge this desire by creating my very own Fantasy Queue: all the patterns paired with yarn and who I’d make it for, if I were not constrained by time or money (or housework, or kids, or dogs, or …).

#1 – Palisander

This is the shot that did me in.  Reversible scarves are tricky.  All too often, the pattern isn’t truly reversible — one side is distinctly prettier than the other.  Other patterns are dull (too much knit and purl), or just not attractive in their attempt to be reversible.  This pattern on the other hand … is YUMMY. I love both sides. I know exactly what I’d use too — Knit Picks  City Tweed DK in Toad.  I’d probably use Morning Glory, except that I already have a cozy shawl in Morning Glory.

#2 – Cartouche

One of my complaints about many lace shawls is that they all too often seem more like samplers — two or three pretty motifs, in sequence, with a pretty edging, but lacking any flow from one element to the next.  With this pattern, you can see the thought that went into blending the different motifs, and the result is gorgeous.  I think I’d try Blue Moon Fiber Arts  Marine Silk Fingering in True Blood — not a fiber I’ve used before, but one that begs for a pattern just like this.

#3 – Constantine

This one will probably stay on my fantasy queue forever. Although I love the shape and can imagine wearing the finished cape every day from fall to spring, I know myself well — that much seed stitch would do me in.  In my dreams, I’d use a dark heathered yarn like Ella Rae Classes Superwash Chunky in Berry Heather.  (In real life, I’d get the back, front, and half of one sleeve done before I just couldn’t face it any more.)

#4 – Chrysanthemums

Oh my goodness, I am a sucker for colorwork mittens. Although I admire the subtlety of the sample pair … I think I would go bold with Knit Picks new Chroma Fingering in Smoothie for the main color (background), using Knit Picks Gloss Fingering in Black for the contrast color (flower).  The pinky-orange and yellow flowing colors of Smoothie scream Chrysanthemum to me!

#5 – Sweetheart Socks

I’ll admit, at first I didn’t see what was so special about this pattern … I’ve knit dozens of socks in the last ten years, and it takes a lot to make me excited about a sock pattern.  What drew me in for these sweetheart socks is the novelty of working in worsted-weight yarn (fast socks! my heart leaps!), and the prospect of trying out an afterthought heel. (I’ve done an afterthought thumb, but never an afterthought heel.) I think I’d try Valley Yarns Northampton in Lake Heather.

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Ravelry Monday: Goldfish in a Bag Hat, Open Heart Sweater, and Lady Jessica

Happy Monday! Time to look back at the previous week’s recently added knitting patterns on Ravelry and pick a few favorites.  As many an avid knitter is aware, the Winter 2011 edition of Knitty was released last week.  As usual, it is chock-a-block full of great patterns and articles.  Rather than have Knitty dominate Ravelry Monday, I will instead devote Wednesday’s post solely to Knitty, and talk about some other patterns today.

First pick: “Goldfish in a Bag Hat” by Carol White ($4.00)

This hat charmed me right away: bold design, cute, and clever too.  Looks to me like it is a simple rolled-brim bag-top hat with a color change and a bit of intarsia and embroidery.  I especially love the bag-tie on the top.

Second Pick: “Open Heart Sweater” by Alice Tang ($3.99)

Let me begin by admitting bias — I tech-edited this sweater for Alice, and it was in fact my very first for-pay tech editing job.  (Alice and I had swapped tech-editing services in the past.)  Although I haven’t actually test-knit the pattern, I am very familiar with the pattern. It is simple/elegant, with a neat twist (literally!) up the front on a reverse-stockinette background.

Third Pick: “Lady Jessica” by Veronica O’Neil (FREE!)

This feminine cowl makes me think of a steampunk heroine, corseted and bedecked in ruffles and lace, and wielding a big brass laser gun :).  It looks like a fun, easy knit and the final product is sure to win compliments.

Ravelry Monday: Toorie, Castle on a Cloud, and DROPS 130-12 Jacket

Happy Monday! Time to look back at the previous week’s recently added knitting patterns on Ravelry and pick a few favorites.

First pick: “Toorie” by Carina Spencer ($5.00)

I absolutely adore the unusual shape of this hat.  The gathers, the close-yet-casual shape, the nifty decreases opposite mimicking (but not repeating) the gathers — it all works.  For those averse to pompoms, perhaps a crocheted flower or big dramatic button could substitute. This pattern looks like it would work with hand-painted yarn quite prettily.

Second Pick: “Castle on a Cloud” by Katia Smits (€3.50 EUR)

I was lured in for a closer look by the allusion to “Les Miserables” — I mean, who doesn’t love Cosette? These fingerless mitts have something interesting going on every few rows — exactly my kind of pattern.

Third Pick: “130-12 Jacket” by DROPS Design (FREE!)

I had a hard time settling on a “free” pattern this week — but this little cardi is just fine.  Looks like it has some interesting construction, with right and left front panels curving to meet at the neck and lower back, with the upper back panel bridging the gap.  I’ve heard about DROPS patterns being terse — this one is no exception! Definitely no hand-holding here.

Ravelry Monday

This is my inaugural “Ravelry Monday” post, so let me explain a bit … every Monday, I’ll look back at the previous week’s recently added knitting patterns on Ravelry. Based solely on my own personal opinion, I’ll highlight a few of my favorites, including at least one free pattern and at least one for-pay pattern.  I love novelty, but classic beauty always gets me too.

First pick: “Big Breakfast” by Amanda Berry ($2.95)

I’m a sucker for a cute stuffed food, and this breakfast-gurumi has it all: bacon, eggs, beans, sausage, tomato, and waffle!

Second Pick: “Nine Dwindling Cables” by Yarn Owl (FREE!)

Lovely, three-dimensional cabled tam! Love the color and the design.

Third Pick: “Hearts in Estonia” by Susan Gutperl (€3.50 EUR)

Like so many, I’m addicted to gorgeous lace just like this.