Familien Strikkebok Photoshoot: Shawl Sleeves

14-05-29_368Last but certainly not least in this series of patterns to be printed in the separate issue Strikkebok by Familien in the end of August is the Shawl Sleeves. I knew the color of melange corn yellow in Ask by Hifa, combined with Leyburn – a yellow ochre – in Rowan Fine Tweed would suit dancer Francesca Golfetto brilliantly, since I had seen her perform in an evening gown of the same color, and attract knitters. If you wonder how they work here is my introduction: A sleeve that ends in a shawl, worked in reversible cables with two very different sides and lined by checks, made to drape and pin together as you wish. The cables are worked half in rib, half in reverse stockinette stitch, and provides a soft contrast to the curvy checks. Knit in the round to the armhole, then flat on the shawl to the hem at the end. This is a conceptual accessory with a modern shape. Wear one around your neck and the other one on your arm, or both as sleeves and drape as you please. You can also easily adjust the length of the shawl. Stunningly photographed by Kim Müller and gorgeously styled by Line Sekkingstad. The English pattern will be published in my Ravelry Store.

14-05-29_381I have made the Shawl Sleeves pattern in sizes: S/M (L/XL, 2XL), with differences in sleeve width, length and shawl length. Check the length by draping and pinning towels – yes, a common approach for me – before you buy your yarn so that you are able to adjust the length of sleeve and shawl.

14-05-29_395Using 4 mm/US 6, the sleeves are worked in the round from the bottom with a hem to the armhole bind-off. Then you cast on for a shawl edge and increase a few stitches to reach full shawl width. The only sewing required is attaching the beginning of the shawl edge to the armhole.

14-05-29_406I am very grateful to Airin Hansen who knitted these shawl sleeves for me. I believe they would look magnificent in a much finer yarn with a much longer shawl part too, but I feel in love with the color and yarn combination I had discovered.

14-05-29_440And of course: a photo with the Benedetta boots by Monica Stålvang, who made this outfit so marvelous in my opinion.


Familiens Strikkebok Photoshoot: Zest Shawl and Cowls

BQ5Q6188I had Francesca’s dark colors in mind when I chose the yarn colors and I knew the dark lime color as well as the cable structure of the Rowan Softknit Cotton yarn would look fabulous on her. I was not mistaken. The shawl is rectangular so that it can easily be buttoned into a shrug with 8 two toned colored mother of pearl buttons from Perlehuset – spot on color – hence making it look like a bolero. As a decorative collar why not add a cowl or two. I decided to make a smaller one in addition for those extra cool evenings when layering is best. The shawl and large cowl are knitted, using 4.5 mm/US 7, by test knitter Airin Hansen, who I could not have done without, since I was busy knitting the coats. The Norwegian pattern will be published in the separate issue of Familien, called Familiens Strikkebok out in late August while the English pattern will be published in my Ravelry Store. Dancer Francesca Golfetto was brilliantly photographed by Kim Müller and had her make up and hair beautifully styled by Line Sekkingstad. The gorgeous boots, perfectly named Benedetta-Boots, are by Monica Stålvang.

BQ5Q6199The shawl and cowls are made in a two row lace pattern with garter stitch edges in the cotton which is soft to knit with, and rather quick with due to its cable structure. I chose to knit both cowls flat and sew them up instead of changing the stitch pattern.

BQ5Q6263The stitch pattern is one of those that looks great on the wrong side too, even though it is flatter in structure than on the right side. You can easily adjust the width and the length of the shawl and the cowls. I discovered that I needed to bind off with a few extra yarn overs on the small cowl to make the bind off as elastic as the cast on.

BQ5Q6226I have named the set “Zest” for its color and the vigor I believes it gives. There are two more designs in this series, one I have not shown you previously, and the Shawl sleeves.


Familiens Strikkebok Photoshoot: Scarftex

BQ5Q6383I have completed my Scarftex, a scarf knitted in Rowan Fine Tweed together with Rowan Lima using 5.5 mm/US 9 to make the reversible cables pop. I imagined this scarf worn as a statement jewelry on its own or as a collar for another garment. The cables pattern is by Lily Chin and I have used it to make a scarf with a lot of texture; a Scarftex. Brilliantly photographed by Kim Müller, beautifully worn by dancer Francesca Golfetto and styled by Line Sekkingstad. The Norwegian pattern will be published in Familiens Strikkebok out in late August, while the English pattern will be published in my Ravelry Store.

BQ5Q6417Rowan Lima is made of 8% merino, 84% baby alpaca, 8% nylon and comes in 50 g skeins with 110 m/120 yds. I was attracted to the sand shade, called Lima, which worked marvelous together with the lighter shade of Bedale in Rowan Fine Tweed a pure wool with 90 m/98 yds on a 25 g skein. After testing with different needle sizes I chose to stay with the recommended needle size 5.5 mm/US 9 recommended for the Lima yarn to add extra bounce to the cables. The cable crossings are not as difficult to work as they look since all the stitches are knitted as they appear: either in garter stitch or in 1 by 1 rib. That is what makes a stitch pattern brilliant in my mind; that it looks so uncomprehensible but it is not that difficult to knit!



Familiens Strikkebok Photoshoot: Carla Coat

BQ5Q6456I know some of you have been waiting to see this coat finished, and I am proud to present my Carla Coat: My Carla Shoes in wine by Monica Stålvang needed a coat to accompany them on an evening out. However, the shoes demanded quite a bit of drama to make the coat as stunning as the shoes. Norsk Pelsull/Pelt wool by Hifa in burgundy with its lustre was my first choice, but more volume and texture was necessary so combining it with Rowan Lima created the perfect texture and a rich color. Ideal for a voluptuous braid framed by reverse stocking stitch and double seed stitch. The coat is crowned by a large shawl collar in double seed stitch. Brilliantly captured by photographer Kim Müller, stunningly worn by dancer Francesca Golfetto, excellent hair & make up by Line Sekkingstad. The Norwegian pattern will be published in Familiens Strikkebok in late August, while the English pattern will be released in my Ravelry Store after test knitting in my group.

BQ5Q6481The coat is knitted using 5.5 mm/US 9 to a gauge similar to a chunky yarn (12 ply) with 14 stitches and 22 rows in stockinette stitch measuring 10 cm/4″ square. But it does feel denser and also lighter in weight since I have combined two thinner yarns; one Worsted/10 ply (Lima) and one DK/8 ply (Norsk Pelsull). The density makes the braid pop out and the coat to keep its shape. As well as giving a brilliant stitch definition, which I adore! The Carla Coat pattern will be available in sizes S to 2XL, with bust circumferences of 92 to 126 cm/36.25 to 49.5″ excluding collar width to v-neck of 7 cm/2.75″.

BQ5Q6492The body of the coat is knitted flat, while the sleeves are worked in the round. The a-line shaping is done in stockinette stitch. Each cable has been gathered to keep its texture to the end. The shawl collar is picked up and shaped by short rows. I had initially planned for it to end in an i-cord bind off, but it pulled the collar out of shape, so I abandoned that idea. I decided that a bind off in pattern would have to suffice. You are however welcome to chose a different solution. I was running out of time for the photo shoot…

14-05-29_349We obviously had to take a number of photos where the fabulous Carla shoes were included and here is my favorite among those.


Familiens Strikkebok Photoshoot: Conic Coat

14-05-29_489The triangles and blocks stitch pattern by Lynne Barr, creates shadows and a dense texture perfect for a long a-line coat with a soft and generous shawl collar, a seeded rib pattern, and a clever tuck. I have achieved my goal of designing a coat with architectonic elements you want to knit and wear. At least I do hope so. The Conic Coat first planned for Brooklyn Tweed has been knitted in Embla – Hifa 3, in a stunning purple beige color using 4 mm/US 6 and will be published in Norwegian in the separate magazine Familiens Strikkebok out in late August. Here is the coat finished, not that many hours before the photoshoot at Aker Brygge actually. My chosen photographer is Kim Müller, model is beautiful dancer Francesca Golfetto and make up & hair stylist is Line Sekkingstad, they all made my knitting projects look so gorgeous! This is how dreams come true.

14-05-29_520The coat is worked flat in pieces and then sewn together. Stitches are picked up for the collar and a tuck is worked before you begin with the Seeded Rib pattern. The shawl part of the collar is worked with short rows and ends with an I-cord bind off. The a-line decreases are worked in stocking stitch, while you discontinue the Folded Triangles pattern when you shape neck, armhole and sleevecap.

14-05-29_564Initially I imagined it in a blue tweed, but since my design did not make it into the Brooklyn Tweed selected few, and I spotted Monica Stålvang’s stunning brown shoes, I knew that the coat had to match those. Hence I wanted a photo of Francesca sitting showing off the shoes too!

14-05-29_567I have made the coat in sizes S to 2XL, with a finished bust measurement excluding collar of 92 cm to 126 cm/36.25 to 49.5″. Francesca is a size XS, Norwegian clothes size 34/UK 6/US 2 but wearing size S. I will show you photos of me wearing it too since I am a size S, Norwegian clothes size 36-38/UK 8-10/US 4-6 but they will not be as marvelous, obviously. I plan a test knit of the English pattern in my Ravelry group in August.


Behind the Scenes: Photo Shoot

DSCN1723I had a marvelous photo shoot on Thursday with photographer Kim Müller, dancer Francesca Golfetto, stylist Line Sekkingstad and my husband as photo assistant. The shoot was organized before I started knitting due to the tight deadline for delivery to the Norwegian magazine Familien and their special issue Strikkeboka/Knitting book due out in late August. I was fortunate to find one test knitter, Airin Hansen, and my neighbor Karin Placht to assist me in knitting samples in time for the photo shoot. There is no way I would have managed on my own otherwise. Knitting two coats (Carla and Conic) and a scarf (Scarftex) in addition to finishing another jacket (for a different magazine), as well as designing another 5 items, was more work than I ever could have imagined in a month and a half. So I had to start knitting long into the night as well, since I was working 7 days a week already. Seeing the garments stunningly worn by Francesca, with the magic touch on hair & make up by Line, fabulous shoes and boots by Monica Stålvang and beautifully captured by Kim, made it all worthwhile! Not to forget that my husband found a several remarkable spots at Tjuvholmen, the end tip of Aker Brygge/Wharf in Oslo. It was a beautiful day with strong sunshine so we had to look for backgrounds in the shadow and found numerous next to the Astrup Fearnly Museum. We broke up for a decent lunch at Olivia (read: Bølgen & Moi was closed sadly) before we continued dressing and directing Francesca around in a very different manner than she is used to as a dancer. I felt so fortunate and cannot wait to see Kim’s selection of photos! Next week I am taking part in another photo shoot, what a treat!