Exit Made by Me, Enter Familien Trend

20141023 MbM LM 0696No more Made by Me magazines will be made, but as one magazine exits another one enters. Welcome, Familien Trend! Hence my series due to be published in Made by Me out on the 2nd. of February will instead be published in Familien Trend out on the 23rd. of February. Despite this change all my 10 designs will be published in Familien Trend, I am relieved to tell you even though it means a longer wait. So today I will share a few more sneak peaks from the unbelievable photo shoot we had at Hvalstrand Bad before I begin to present each design separately. One of the sights that totally blew me away was seeing the gorgeous Alexandria Eissinger at Pholk; beautiful hair and make-up by Sissel Fylling; wearing Judith Bech’s wonderful felted wool dress in aqua with my matching Atika design; Kaja Gjedebo’s stunning Paper & Scissors silver earrings and Monica Stålvang’s amazing Elena shoes in blue; all brilliantly captured by photographer Eivind Røhne. The shoes did not fit in the picture and were photographed separately, see below. Atika consists of a loop with matching loose sleeves, all knitted in the round with Du Store Alpakka, Dreamline Soul, a lace weight alpaca mix, held together with Pickles Merino Tweed, a fingering/4 ply using a 4 mm/US 6.

20141023 MbM LM 0743 croppedHere is the continuation of the photo and a close up of the Elena Blue shoes by Monica Stålvang. The aqua colors were initially hard to match without choosing baby yarns hence I begin to choose deeper colors, due to the natural distance between garment and shoes. By mixing a melange alpaca color and a tweed yarn in a similar shade, the tone turned towards grey and the yarn created had a marvelous stitch definition.

20141023 MbM LM 0899 croppedHennika, a delicate cropped lace jacket with a scarf collar, knitted in Ask by Hifa, a sport weight/5 ply, worn over Judith Bech’s stunning light blue halterneck dress with a high waist with layers of tulle on top of silk (see Facebook)  together with Elisabetta blue flat shoes. To create more volume around the neck, I folded the scarf collar in half before I pinned it together with a shawl pin. It is knitted separately and sewn on afterwards. The sleeves are knitted in the round, while the fronts and back is knitted flat, all using a 3.5 mm/US 4 needle. The solid but worn parquet flooring tiles created a stunning contrast to the blue tulle of the dress, we all agreed before testing with a chair for Alexandria to sit on. The chair worked well for showing the sleeve and the back. More photos will come, project by project while we are waiting for the new Familien Trend magazine to hit the shelves.


Sneak Peak of Made by Me Designs

20141023 MbM LM 1029I am thrilled to share some of the wonderful photos Eivind Røhne took of gorgeous model Alexandria Eissinger at Pholk, brilliant hair and make-up by Sissel Fylling for the Spring/Summer issue of Made by Me. The colors chosen for the series are based on Monica Stålvang’s Spring/Summer 2015 collection in blue, turquoise, grey, taupe and black. The divine handprinted grey long halterneck silk dress was made especially by dress designer Judith Bech for this series (see Facebook). I just had to name my design Bech after it and created a shawl with a collar that can be worn with it down as above, or up around the shoulders or around the neck, together with loose sleeves – held up by elastic encased in a hem and a belt made of tucks. Yes, more photos will come. Bech is knitted in Huldra Kamgarn by Hifa, a pure light fingering/3 ply wool held together with Dreamline Soul by Du Store Alpakka, an lace weight alpaca mixture, using 4 mm/US 6.

20141023 MbM LM 0896

Above are some of Monica’s marvelous shoes, in front: Emanuela print made of printed pony skin; actually calf skin (a misnomer that comes from 1960’s fashion trends). Yes, Monica did used to live in Milan and produces her shoes there. You will find her shoes in selected stores in Norway, see Stockists and in her onlineshop here but you need to wait a bit longer for the Spring/Summer collection to be available but there are so many other shoes and boots to add to your wish list: shop.monica-stalvang.com.

20141023 MbM LM 0444 cropThis fitted cable jacket is named Gyda from Norse mythology, meaning God is Gorgeous, and is knitted in Ask by Hifa, a sport weight/5-ply pure wool using 3.5 mm/US 4. It has a deep v-neck with 3 bespoke buttons (size small) made by jewelry designer Siri Berrefjord in layers of color matching the melange yarn color. The beautiful ring Alexandria is wearing is made of silver and designed by Kaja Gjedebo. The faux suede dress was chosen after Judith wore it to our planning meeting in July with editor Mary-Ann Astrup at Made by Me, just as my Jakke i kryss/Jacket in Cross was. I brought a large selection of swatches made based on Monica’s color charts, and from seeing photos of Judith’s dresses (and the few I remembered from the time she was a member of the Designerkollektivet), Judith brought a huge bag filled with dresses, and Monica came with her drawings. 10 dresses were selected together with 11 swatches and the four of us  discussed garment options (read: Not only jackets, Linda) and photo shoot locations (read: Preferably Mediterranean, and why do we not join Monica for her one of her meetings in Milan?). In other words a lot of laughter, and a fabulous day! To be continued.


Behind the Scenes: Made by Me Photoshoot

DSCN1931The time has finally come to begin to reveal more of the fantastic photoshoot we had at Hvalstrand Bad last October, since the Norwegian Made by Me magazine is out on Monday the 2nd of February. The idea of collaborating further with shoe designer Monica Stålvang, whose shoes are like eye candy to me, and dress designer Judith Bech, whose beautiful dresses I love, came to me last June. Monica needed no persuasion, and Judith (whom I had only meet once) said a resounding yes to my utter delight, just as editor Mary-Ann Astrup did. Judith insisted we pick hair and make-up stylist Sissel Fylling, just as Mary-Ann suggested photographer Eivind Røhne, and we eagerly obliged. We needed a model with a European shoe size 37/UK 4/US 6, so that the sample collection would fit, and I was thrilled to find Alexandria Eissinger at Pholk, never mind that she was in Copenhagen, and not Oslo! Two days beforehand, Monica and I had a quick review of knitted garments, shoes and dresses in her shop but gave up choosing shoes until we saw it on Alexandria. Monica, on the mobile in the photo above, also suggested borrowing silver jewelry from Kaja Gjedebo as an option to the pieces we had from Siri Berrefjord, whom as usual has made brilliant bespoke buttons.

DSCN1900Here is the table with the magnificent shoes, jewelry as well as essential tools like iron, broom and sponge, all kept handy. In the back ground the rail with dresses and knitted garments. Monica thankfully brought the whole collection and assisted in choosing both shoes and jewelry for each of the 10 outfits. Sissel and Mary-Ann were also asked for opinions on the selection. Only 1 of the dresses was rejected since the color clashed with the color of the knitted jacket, and the black dress was used twice. We believed even Judith would have agreed, but unfortunately she could not be there since the birth of her first grandchild was imminent.


While Eivind, Mary-Ann and my husband – the photo assistant – looked at possible photo angles, Sissel prepared Alexandria’s hair styling and make up, Monica taped shoe soles and I ironed dresses. Above, Sissel in a well know posture, checking the make up and hair. I actually have Sissel popping in and out of nearly all my photos, taken in between when I was not assisting Alexandria in picking dresses, or standing behind Eivind checking his view or straightening out folds. It was me that insisted on covering all angles: front, back and side as well as different ways of wearing the garments until our time starting running out on the last garment since we had to leave no later than 4 pm in order for the manager to close up. So as much as I would like to have more photos of each garment, reality kicked in, and I knew there was a limit. The photo shoot was exhausting, but also so much fun and utter brilliant!


Familien issue 2 – 2015: 2 Designs

10403154_978488715511741_447775389936625072_nThe latest issue, number 2, of the Norwegian magazine Familien has 40 pages of delightful small knits, and 2 of the designs are mine, both photographed by in-house photographer Petter Berg: Flett på skjerf/Cable On Scarf and Bølget ribb løs hals/Wavy Rib Cowl and Wrist warmers. The scarf is reversible, knitted in the lush Norsk Pelsull from Hifa, in the natural grey shade 1115, in ribbed stag horn cables with double seed stitch for all edges. I love the idea of using the scarf as a shawl collar and if you read my blog (see new-design-cable-on-scarf) and is a member of Ravelry, you will have noticed that the scarf was knitted at the end of 2012 – so a predecessor to Scarftex – and the cowl set at the beginning of 2013, see design-in-progress. The Norwegian magazine is available in selected newsagents and supermarkets, and can also be ordered from familienslillebutikk.no or if you are abroad by e-mail to kari.bachke@egmont.com.

Petbe_20131108 2212 114Here is the Cable On Scarf styled and photographed for Familien. It is knitted using a 3.5 mm/US 4 needles and available in one size only. Norsk Pelsull from Hifa has a lovely faded stitch definition and a halo. To start off with, it feels firm but softens a lot with washing it for the first time.

0215-HH-Linda-640x960Wavy Rib Cowl and Wrist warmers are both knitted in Luxor, a mercerized cotton, from Hifa with a crisp stitch definition and a lovely shine to it. First I intended it as accessories to the wine red sweater Sommerblader/Summer Leaves (only published in English on Ravelry) and chose the navy blue shade 331, hence in photos Michael took I am wearing the sweater. Then I discovered that the lace pattern on the sleeves and the wavy rib fight each other for focus and gave up on that idea. I like the summery styling above, and so does Handicraft Editor Åse Myhrvold Egeland who selected it for a brief presentation of the magazine on the magazine publisher’s blog called a thousand ideas, see tusenideer.no. Both patterns will be published in English on Ravelry soon. Watch this space!


To raske pinner by Kristin Wiola Ødegård

DSCN0044Wednesday evening, I went together with talented designers: Nina Granlund Sæther (see blog hjertebank.no), Denise Samson (see andreboller.no), May Britt Bjella Zamori (see one of her hats here: tusenideer.no) and Vanja Blix Langerud (see one of her “kofter” here: klikk.no) as well as Makeløs/Remarkable re-design stylist Kristin Elise Halkjelsvik (see pictures from one of her exhibitions here: bakketunet.com), to the launch of Kristin Wiola Ødegård’s second book: To raske pinner/Two Speedy Needles at Gyldendal. An amazing feat to finish her second book in a year, and it is as stylish as her first: Strikk med raske pinner. We were joined by designer Sidsel Janne Høivik, Ellen Andresen (see sisodesigns.blogspot.no) and jewelry designer: Siri Berrefjord (see Siris Skattkammer) whose beautiful brooches Kristin has used on her garments. Even Editor-in-Chief Jan Swensson was suitably dressed in a cool garment from the 40 in the book, see above. Below you can see the end of the fashion show, that finished way too quickly since we all craved more, with Kristin at the back. Earthly tones, yoked jackets, chunky sweaters, funky accessories and all styled in Kristin’s vintage style with a trendy undertone.

10917790_819947854733069_4931690997410709564_oYou can see inside the book here: To raske pinner. Just as her last book, it is photographed by her daughter Sofie Ødegård while her other daughter is on the cover. The sweater worn by the man is based on the successful “Retro Kofta” (read: kofta = traditional jacket in colorwork) she designed for women in her previous book. You can find the book in selected book stores and online at e.g. Haugen Bok in Norway. Follow the updates to see if the book rights have been sold abroad on the Gyldendal Agency here: eng.gyldendal.no/Illustrated-Non-Fiction.

KristinWiola2Even Jan Swensson could not resist making the joke that her next book will be published next year, and given the title; “Tre raske pinner/Three Speedy Needles”. It would not surprise me if Kristin did manage to deliver her third book within the year, but I am convinced that she would insist on a different title than the one suggested.


Newly Released Norwegian Patterns

Nora Genser COVERI have just released 4 of my patterns in Norwegian: Nora Sweater/Nora Genser, Tyrol Jacket/Tyrol Jakke, Regal Purple Jacket/Kongelig Lilla Jakke and Lace Ridge Top/Hullkant Topp on Ravelry and on Loveknitting (shortly). All were first published in Norwegian in Familien Håndarbeid, a special edition in March 2014. Beautifully modeled on dancer Francesca Golfetto and brilliantly photographed by Kim Müller. The patterns have been tech edited and test knitted prior to their release on Ravelry, and they all include detailed schematics, video links and charts. The Nora Sweater, available in sizes S to XL, is knitted in BC Garn, Semilla Fino an ecological 4-ply/fingering yarn using 3 mm/US 2.5, can be knitted with puffed sleeves or with set-in sleeves. It is knitted in the round to the armhole, then flat to the end.

A mélange taupe in a delicate fingering weight yarn was chosen for this slightly fitted stylish cable sweater with a shawl collar. I chose a Missoni shaped puffed sleeve for a modern twist but you can chose a set in sleeve option if you prefer. A voluptuous small cable encased by side cables, reverse stocking stitch and double seed stitch was the beginning of this design.

Tyrol Jakke COVERThe Tyrol Jacket, available in sizes S to XXL, is knitted flat in two different dyelots of the stunning hand dyed Tosh DK – a pure merino – using a 4 mm/US 6 needles: Inspired by the mélange soft pink color – not unlike the evening sky – and adorable Tyrol cables with their flower-bud shapes, I have designed an elegantly fitted jacket with a V-neck. The saddle sleeves allow the cables to flow all along the shoulder. A loose scarf with cables sewn into a tube works as a second shawl collar and adds textured volume.

Kongelig Lilla Jakke COVERThe Regal Purple Jacket, available in sizes S to 3XL, is knitted flat in the lovely Hifa Perle using a 3 mm/US 2.5 needles: This vibrant rich purple is regal to me. I choose a lace pattern called Flower Wave, which is half lace and half garter stitch, hence easy to memorize. The Regal Purple Jacket has an A-line shape with added garter stitches in the side for decreasing, short sleeves and a V-neck with a garter stitch then stocking stitch band. It is knitted flat, in a divine 4 ply/fingering cotton called Perle from Hifa, and then sewn together to give stability to the garment. Optional 3/4 length or long sleeves patterns are included in addition to a stripy stocking stitch cowl, knitted in the round and grafted together, to accentuate the lace pattern.

Hullkant Topp COVERThe Lace Ridge Top, available in sizes S to XXL, is knitted in the same Hifa Perle held double using a 4 mm/US 6: A casual, stretchy long sleeveless top in an open lace ridge pattern, with a boat neck and a high twisted rib over the hips. The top is easy to knit in the round. It is worked in a divine mercerized cotton from Hifa, called Perle which is held double to emphasize the structure of the lace pattern. The cable cowl accentuates the design and gives the top a more dressy look.


Tyrol Jackets Knitted by Grete Jenssen

image_medium2I am far behind when it comes to showing off all the marvelous garments knitters have made from my patterns. Grete Jenssen, an avid knitter who designs for her own use, took part in the test knit of the Tyrol Jacket last winter, and made not one but three (yes: 3 – it is called Turbo Testing) during the testing period! All because the first one was tight around the waist (hence given to a friend) and the other two were adjusted to fit her waist and in different lengths, all equally beautiful in size medium! Here, I am proud to show the latter two, modeled by Grete (aka ma9 on Ravelry) with one of her cats, who take part in cat shows, with a lot of snow in the background and 10 degrees celsius below zero/= 14 degrees Fahrenheit at her home in Storsteinnes, Northern Norway. Brilliantly photographed by her husband: Jan Sverre Jenssen. The stunning lime green version is knitted in 7 Veljestä from Novita bought at her mums yarnshop: Bestemors Hjørne and so is the blue version further below. First the back.


The sleeve width was adjusted to a slimmer fit, than I had first calculated showing how useful these test knits are. I also decided to include one of Grete’s photos of how to gather or nip in the cables at the hems in the pdf pattern. Below is her final version of the Tyrol Jacket in a bright blue, in my Ravelry group we have call the color Grete Blue since it is a trademark of hers and so close to the color of her eyes as well as those of her cat. Thank you, Grete!


The Tyrol Jacket sample was knitted in the American hand dyed Tosh dk using 4 mm/US 6 in two different dye lots, the darker pink version chosen for the sleeves, ordered from Eat.Sleep.Knit, since it was first but unsuccessfully submitted to the American digital magazine Twist Collective. The pattern was first published in Norwegian in the special issue called Håndarbeid/Handicraft published by Familien in March last year, it is available in English from my Ravelry Store and will shortly be available in Norwegian. I will keep you posted.


Lattice Back Jacket Pattern Released

Lattice Back Jacket COVERIt has been awhile since the test knit of the Lattice Back Jacket was finished, but I have finally released the English pattern in my Ravelry Store with video links and a detailed schematic. You can see all the different versions and the different yarn the test knitters selected on the pattern page (see the first link). The pattern was first published in Norwegian in the magazine Made by Me 2/2014. Above it is gorgeously worn by Pia Cecilie/Team Models, beautifully hair and make up styled by Janne Skarpeid Hermansen, stunningly styled by Makeløs/Remarkable Kristin Elise Halkjelsvik and brilliantly photographed by Eivind Røhne/Beyond the Ice. Here follows my introduction to it: An intricate panel of rocking cables adorns the back of this elegantly fitted jacket, hence each front and sleeve has a series of accompanying small cables. The body of the jacket is knitted flat with hems, while the sleeves are worked in the round. The sample is worked in a beautiful heathered color in the bouncy Ask – Hifa 2.

Sizes: XS (S, M, L, XL, 2XL)

Finished Measurements: Bust: 84 (91, 98, 106, 116, 126) cm/33 (35.75, 38.5, 41.75, 45.75, 49.5)”                                                                                                                                       Waist: 65 (72, 79, 87, 93, 113) cm/25.5 (28.25, 31, 34.25, 36.5, 44.5)”                                       Hip: 84 (91, 98, 106, 116, 126) cm/33 (35.75, 38.5, 41.75, 45.75, 49.5)”                             Length: 54 (55, 56, 57, 58, 59) cm/21.25 (21.75, 22, 22,5, 22.75, 23,25)”                             Sleeve length: 49 (50, 50, 51, 51, 52) cm/19.25 (19.75, 19.75, 20, 20, 20.50)”

Yarn: Hifa, Ask – Hifa 2 in melange purple 6657 (100% wool, 100 g, 315 m/345 yds). http://www.ull.no/garn/ullgarn/ask-melert 3 (3.5, 4, 4.5, 5, 5.5) skeins: 882 (1008, 1134, 1292, 1481, 1670) m/964 (1102, 1240, 1413, 1620, 1826) yds.

Yarn alternatives: Cascade 220 Sport (100% wool, 50 g, 150 m/164 yds). http://www.cascadeyarns.com/cascade-220Sport.asp                                                      Madeline Tosh, Pashmina (75% superwash merino, 15% silk, 10% cashmere, 100 g, 329 m/360 yds). http://madelinetosh.com/store/index.php/yarns/pashmina.html          Shalimar Yarns, Breathless DK (75% merino, 15% cashmere, 10% silk, 100 g, 384 m/420 yds). http://www.shalimaryarn.com/item/Breathless/237/c21                                        Rowan, Wool Cotton (50% merino, 50% wool, 50 g, 113 m/123 yds) http://www.knitrowan.com/yarns/wool-cotton Or another sport weight/5 ply yarn.

Needles: 3.5 mm/US 4 circular needle. 3 mm/US 2.5 circular needle (80 cm/32″) for hem and button band. Adjust needle size as needed to match gauge.

Notions: 11 buttons (13 mm/0.5″), stitch markers, stitch holders and yarn needle.

Gauge: 20 sts x 28 rows in st st using 3.5 mm/US 4 measures 10 cm/4″ square.         Rocking Cable Panel across 66 sts measures 22 cm/8.75″.                                                 Rocking Cable Panel over 36 rows measures 12 cm/4.75″.                                                       Small Back Cable Panel across 30 sts measures 10 cm/4″. 

Notes: Each front is 1 cm wider than 1/2 the back circumference, to achieve symmetry, usual in typical vintage garments. This jacket is like vintage jackets very fitted, please compare your waist measurements to the size you need and adjust if necessary, to make sure it will fit.

The pattern will also shortly be available at Loveknitting.


New EU Law about VAT on Sale of Digital Property

The new EU law about VAT on the sale of digital property went into effect January 1st, and I am so pleased that Ravelry (where I sell my digital patterns) has decided to co-operate with the British website Loveknitting, blog.loveknitting.com/loveknitting-ravelry-team-up-for-hassle-free-eu-digital-pattern-sales, who will deal with paying VAT to all the different EU countries, dependent on the buyer’s country, on my behalf. The announcement of this VAT led to an outrage because it affects not only the intended large internet companies such as Amazon but all of us micro businesses (I think nano businesses, fits even better for some of us) too. This article explains it well: How-the-EU-is-throttling-online-business-with-idiotic-VAT-reform. Here is a blogpost about the co-operation between Loveknitting and Ravelry: blog.loveknitting.com/update-loveknitting-ravelry-team-up-for-hassle-free-eu-digital-pattern-sales.

I have chosen to continue to sell my patterns to EU citizens – Norway is not part of the EU, only the EEA (European Economic Agreement; working with the EU) – through Loveknitting, while other designers have decided to block sales of patterns to customers in the EU (temporarily or permantly), or stop selling patterns completely, or pay the VAT themselves. I checked my Ravelry sales by country, and discovered that I sell 3 times as many patterns to the US as I do to Norway and Denmark, followed by Germany.

So any EU customer can either buy any of my patterns from Ravelry and be re-directed to Loveknitting where they will need to pay the added VAT according to their country’s VAT percentage, or log on and buy it directly from Loveknitting.

I was in the second selected batch of testers on Ravelry, and have used a considerable amount of time during Christmas editing my pattern descriptions to fit with Loveknitting’s formatting. There are still a few glitches that needs to be fixed before it is up, and running perfectly. If you are a member of Ravelry you can follow the discussions, the options and the testing in the Ravelry Shopkeepers Group. The Loveknitting option is giving me an additional 6 months (free trial period) to look into other solutions such as picking an EU country (unless you are a resident in one, that is), e.g. UK and Ireland, and register with the VATMOSS (Mini One Stop Shop) – nicknamed VATMESS – or hoping that Ravelry’s programmer Casey (code monkey is his preferred title) will figure out a smart technical solution to this mess. In the meantime I will try to focus on designing instead. Here is more recommended reading: