Saturday, August 27, 2011

Fall Project Classes

In addition to beginning knitting, intermediate classes, techniques classes, and Thursday night clinics, which I announced in my last blog entry, I'll be teaching several project classes this fall at Needlework Unlimited.  You can sign up directly online, in person, or by calling the shop.

Cookie A Sock Club
BFF - a Sept/Oct Sock Club Selection
I love Cookie A's sock patterns and I'm not alone.  Thousands of knitters have bought her two sock books, Sock Innovation and  If you're one of those knitters who have her books (or want them), but haven't gotten up the nerve to actually knit any of the patterns, the Cookie A sock club might be just the thing you need to get started on Cookie's fantastic, well-written patterns.

For each class, I've chosen two sock patterns that are similar in their construction or their nature, with one sock pattern being easier and the other being more of a challenge. Each student selects the sock that suits his or her level of adventure.

For all the socks, we'll talk about re-sizing options and other fit considerations, plus tips and tricks for getting the best finished results.

For the Sept/Oct sock club I've chosen socks where the pattern is set up in columns of cable patterns.  The easier sock (and probably the easiest Cookie A pattern of all) is BFF, which has columns of 4-st rope cables.
Marilinda, the more challenging
Sept/Oct Sock Club Selection

BFF is easy to size up or down, and isn't too much of a step beyond a plain sock.  If you've never tried cables, or reading a chart, or just haven't tried knitting with finer sock yarn, this might be the sock for you.

The more challenging sock is Marilinda.  This sock also has columns of the repeating stitch pattern, but the number of stitches and rows in the repeat is greater, and includes several different techniques.  Amongst those techniques is the exact same cable crossing the BFF sock has, but also a faux traveling cable as well as a Japanese faux cable.  This sock also continues the stitch pattern down the back of the heel.

Both patterns for the Sept/Oct sock club are in Cookie's newest book,

Foot detail of Kai-Mei
November's sock club features one sock from and the other from her first book, Sock Innovation.  These socks are both asymmetrical (there's a right sock and a left sock), with the pattern traveling across the leg and/or foot.

Pointelle, the November Sock Club
challenging sock

The easier sock is Kai-Mei, from Sock Innovation.  This sock has a plain, ribbed leg, and then the magic occurs when a simple, but unusual and beautiful pattern travels from the outer ankle across the instep.

Pointelle, from is the more challenging sock for the November sock club.  The pattern travels down and across the leg and the foot, using a more intricate lace pattern than Kai-Mei.

But wait, there's more!

In addition to the sock club classes, I'll be teaching three project classes from another favorite designer of mine: Ysolda Teague.

There's a hat, a scarf and fingerless mitts, all from Ysolda's Whimsical Little Knits Two.  These projects all include techniques that are not typical in hats, scarves and mitts, making them much more interesting to knit for those who have knit these types of projects in the traditional manner.  It's great to learn new techniques on small projects.  Plus, any of these would make great holiday gifts!

Kicking off the Ysolda love-fest is a two-week class for the  Scroll Lace Scarf, which I'll teach Saturdays, Sept 17 and 24, 10 am-noon.  This is the least boring scarf I've ever knit--it's no 6-foot long rectangle!  There's a provisional cast on, and a  lace pattern that is simple enough for first-time lace knitters, but not boring for those who are more experienced.

Stitches are picked up for the body of the scarf, with short rows worked to create the depth at the center.  The short row technique I'll teach is a German method (no wraps!) that gives the same result as Japanese short rows without all the pins hanging off the back of the work.  Finally, there's a picot bind off that complements the larger picot look of the lace edge.  Lots of great techniques packed into one great little scarf!

We'll also discuss how to block the scarf to open up the lace and get the best finished result.

Shorter version of Ripley
with the lace band.
Mondays in October (the 3rd and 10th, 6-8pm), I'll be teaching the Ripley, hat.  This hat also has some great techniques, but with several options to suit your preference.  First, the band can either be simple garter or simple lace, but whichever you choose, the band is knit sideways, then grafted to form a tube.  Stitches are picked up around one edge of the tube and the hat is then knit in the round.  The gathers are done using a tuck stitch technique, and can either accent the side of the hat (for the short version) or provide support for at the back of the hat (for the longer, slouchy version) .

Saturday, Nov 5 and 12, 10 am-noon, I'll be teaching Veyla fingerless mitts.

Like Ripley and the Scroll Lace Scarf, Veyla starts with a lace strip but ends with buttonholes.  Stitches are picked up and the hand is worked in the round.  The thumb gusset increases are unusually placed YOs, and there's a final lace inset at the knuckles.  These mitts are not identical, and we will discuss the differences in the charts.  We'll also cover how to block the lace for the best finished result.

All three of the Ysolda patterns include charts for the lace.  If you are new to chart reading, this is a great way to learn how to read them!


inkgrrl said...

Ook! Would you ever consider doing this sort of thing with a small group online? I wish I lived in your area to get the knitty goodness in person, but la the sad. And I serially forget how to knit. It would be so great to do it under supervision ;-)

Rox said...

I'm getting ready to do CraftEdu classes again, but those have to be projects of my own design. I can also do techniques classes that way. But those aren't interactive, if that's what you're looking for.

I've heard of people doing classes via Skype, but I'm not sure how I would go about that. Perhaps an experiment is in order...

Debbie said...

Hi Rox! I have your Easy Fingerless Mitts and have already started the pattern. I am repeating the two rows as you state but what is confusing me is the part that says to rep those 2 rows until the piece measure about 1" less than the circumference of your hand. I have measured my hand from wrist to joint of index finger which is 6" so less rows to knit. Then my circumference around my hand just above the thumb is 8". Since the pattern is knitted horizontally to get the length I am not understanding what to do for the 1" less above my thumb. How do I knit to get it 1" smaller?
Thank you,

Rox said...

Debbie, the mitts are knit sideways. The cast on edge and bind off edge are seamed, leaving a hole for the thumb. The circumference of your hand is 8". Therefore, you knit the mitt until it is 7" long from the cast on edge.

Debbie said...

Oh Rox, thank you so much. Now I think I understand.So if my hand circumference was 9", I would knit 8" long. I was going nuts. You work is just beautiful too.

Debbie said...

Hi Rox! I finished one of your Easy Fingerless Mitts and it came out really nice. I am wondering why your picture of the mitt has a different beginning and ending than what the pattern shows.It looks like it is ribbed which I like. Could you tell me how you did that? Thank you. Happy New Year too!

Rox said...

Debbie, it's probably easier if you ask your questions on Ravelry, where the pattern is located. You can either ask your questions in the Rox Rocks group, you in the pattern comments. Either way, I'll see the questions as will others who may have questions about his pattern.

As mentioned before, the mitts are knit sideways, so the garter stitch edges function as ribbing does when knit from the cuff up. I'm wondering if you are not orienting your pieces in the correct direction? The instructions are written to create the mitt shown in the photos. You can see many project photos for these mitts on Ravelry as well.