ELEMENT

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ELEMENT
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I’m thrilled to share this new design release with you!
Part of the inspiring Wool People 9 Collection for Brooklyn Tweed,
this sweater is whisper light and airy.

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Given the Summer release in the Northern Hemisphere,
the lighter weight Loft yarn is knit large.
This contributes to extra drape and a bouncy knitted fabric.

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The body is worked from the bottom up,
with subtle hem shaping created via short rows in the lacework section.
Yep. Lace. A first for me!

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And that neckline?
I’m completely loving it.
I have an undeniable urge to apply it to every new knitted sweater I can think of.

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A very special thank you to my friend and sample knitter, Marian.
I was working my way through the short row lace hem section when this happened.
Truly, this design would not be in WP9 without her capable hands.

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Photo Credits: Jared Flood/Brooklyn Tweed

旅行 | Ryokō

A 1
Above: Model A

旅行 | Ryokō : Japanese (Romanji) for (n) travel.
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I knitted this design while travelling for 3 months with my family last year.
I carefully packed the pre-wound yarn in my suitcase
[self-talking down the self-harm on the 2 occasions our bags went missing in transit];
managing technology failures, resorting to the printed copy I fortuitously took along
[the backup plan for the backup plan].
Vivid recollections of car-knitting down the west coast of France
with “Aussie Ken” on the SatNav issuing instructions. Classic.

But hey, all’s well that ends well, right?!

A 2
Above: Model A rear view with back vent detail

My design process thoughts included:
I wanted a Mega Cowl Sweater.
Yep, that’s it.
And also the working name for this design. Very fancy, I know.

A 3
Above: Model A Mega Cowl

To develop it a little more,
I also thought it would be good if I could wear it under a jacket
(which suggested a longer body and some fine yarn),
a design that was effortlessly stylish without needing accessories,
and, of course, it should be tailored and fit really well.

A rear 2
Above: Model A worn with jacket. See – it works…

I particularly love the colour change at the narrowest point (the waist)
worked with the back vent overlap detail in Model A.
This adds to the visual effect of narrowing the waist more.
The longer length at the back covers your butt
(if that is something you want/need/desire/prefer)
without looking like you are wearing your dad’s ginormous musty old sweater.
And the yarn held double is knit on large needles for drape and knitspeed.
You like that? Knitspeed. Important knitting quantum.

B 1
Above: Model B

And of course, then I thought, hey, I need this top without the ‘mega cowl’.
Voila. Model B.
I think this then works as more of a trans-season top.
I’d like to wear this with some linen pants.
And slides.

I say “I’d like to” because our summer has disappeared before it barely arrived here in Melbourne…
As you can see from the photos. Hello dodging the passing rain showers between shots.

Rav Link: here.

FRACTURES ARE CONTAGIOUS

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Did you know that fractures are contagious?
Our family are proposing a new scientific theorem.

The night before school started for the year,
yes, the VERY NIGHT BEFORE,
my son was hit with a cricket ball on his right hand.
Not intentionally, just a deflected ball from an adjacent cricket net.

Unbelieveable. This injury is also known as a Boxer’s Fracture.
Or a Bar Room Fracture(!!!). [Ironic for the most gentle person I know.]
He has broken the 5th metacarpal in his right hand.
Yes, of course, he is right handed.

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But on the upside: MY CAST IS OFF!
Just in time for perhaps the hottest week this Summer.
I can finally S W I M. And shower without a plastic bag.
Oh, the sheer joy of it.

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I don’t remember this part from the last time I broke the same wrist
[when I flew over the handlebars head of a horse in Grade 3]
but I will definitely need some rehab to regain full wrist mobility + strength.

However, I managed to knit a swatch last night. So things are on the up!
Although, you probably won’t want to hang out with us much at the moment,
in case you catch a nasty fracture.

Signing off for now,
The House Of Fractures.

Or we can make it sound somewhat fancy:
La Chambre des Fractures

A KNITTER’S WORST NIGHTMARE

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It’s always a hectic end of year scenario for me
and this year proved no different.
Dreams of a handmade Christmas fall by the wayside
with work deadlines steamrolling all things!

On Boxing Day my family and I flew to Sydney
to spend 9 days beachside in Manly.
Ahhhhhhhhh. Sun, sand and surf.

And then BAM this happened…

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On Day 3.
A partial obtuse fracture through my left radius.
AKA a broken wrist.
From a slip on a rock in knee deep water.
(I feel ancient just saying that –
hello, elderly woman with osteoporosis.)

Not sure just how long I will be in plaster
but it is an epic disaster in my books:
no knitting,
no swimming,
no exercising (it hurts to walk let alone run!),
no work,
one handed typing of this blog post…
[this list goes on and on.]

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So. Roll on 2015.
It is surely only going to get better from here!!

I do hope you had a beautiful Christmas
and best wishes for a creative + rewarding 2015.

男滝 | ODAKI

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Above: Model B (Swans Island Organic Washable DK)

男滝 | ODAKI : Japanese (Romanji) for (n) greater waterfall (of the two)
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A super stylish top down seamless cardigan made with DK weight yarn.
The feature waterfall fronts cascade around the waist and hip
to provide beautiful drape and shape across the back.

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Above: Model A (Plucky Sweater DK)

This new cardigan design is the Big Girl’s Version of Medaki:
worked in DK/8ply yarns from two excellent yarn companies that I have long wanted to work with!
Model A uses The Plucky Knitter’s Plucky Sweater yarn that REALLY IS as good as the hype.
Model B uses Swans Island Organic Washable DK yarn – gorgeous handle + stitch definition.

Odaki Long 17 20sqOdaki Crop 6 20sq
Above: Model B (Swans Island) at top, Model A (The Plucky Knitter) below.

This is a completely seamless top down raglan cardigan with shaping to the back.
I-cord bind-off neckband is worked before picking up stitches around the body
to create the fronts and shaped back with feature Fluted Slipstitch.

The pattern provides full details with schematic for the two Models shown here:
Model A (shown in the grey yarn) has elbow-length sleeves with a moderate front;
whilst Model B (the aqua yarn) has long sleeves with a more dramatic draped front.

前門 | ZENMON

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前門| ZENMON : Japanese (Romanji) for (n) front gate.
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Japanese temple gates provide the design inspiration for this seamless wrap.
The isosceles trapezium of the shawl represents the perspective of tall gates,
whilst the mitred ribbed edging frames three sides of this stunning piece.

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After using the new MillaMia Aran yarn for my re-released Sev[en]circle pattern,
I was keen to design a new piece that could be worn next to the skin
and capitalise on the fabulous stitch definition this yarn offers.

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The asymmetric design is knit lengthwise (mmm, that’s a LOT of stitches on your needles);
with the generous length you can wear this as a shawl, a wrap or as a chunky scarf.
I simply adore the asymmetry: extra width and warmth over your shoulders
with a ‘feature’ end to artistically drape.
P E R F E C T.
(Ahem. In my book of styling, anyway.)

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SHINJU | SCARF + HAT

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真珠 SHINJU : Japanese (Romanji) for (n) pearl.

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As we all know, some projects have a ridiculously long gestation.
Firstly, I’ve always wanted to try Jade Sapphire’s silk cashmere yarn.
Seriously, how can you not be seduced by the mere whisper of silk + cashmere entwined?
And this colourway: Silver Pearl. Lustrous decadence. I know.

But of course, like any responsible knitter,
I sought the perfect stitch to allow the yarn’s properties to sing.
And, for me, Veil Pattern is it.
Structure and drape. Open and framed.

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And with a yarn this soft, it simply must be enjoyed next to the skin.
Obviously. A scarf.
So I can wear it every day. No matter the weather.
Sized extra long for gently looping. Or draping. Or both, if you like.

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The main delay with this design was the hat.
Could I truly wear a hat this slouchy?
Was it along the lines of what I had in my mind?
Well. Not exactly.

Every time I wear it, I get a surprising number of compliments.
So, I’m going to let it go even though I’m not completely sold on it.
Would you be seen in public wearing it?
Or would you stand next to me wearing it?!

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MONOCHROME COLLECTION | WINNERS

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Thank you for sharing you favourite square forms with me,
built and sculpted,
painted and formed.
LOVE them all.
[Square frms really are my favourite.]

And without further ado…
The winners from my Blog giveaway:
1. Commentor No. 2 – Di
2. Commentor No. 21 – Nanda

The winner from my Facebook giveaway is
1. Titti Siggilo

The winner from my InstaGram giveaway is
1. Aquaplatipus

Congratulations to all the winners and thank you for all the comments.
Please email me here with your mailing address.

THE MONOCHROME COLLECTION

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As you all know, I love my colours in the darker range:
Black, charcoal, mid grey, light grey, a sliver of white. And grey. Did I mention grey?
My recent Monochrome Collection for Shibui Knits allowed me to explore
my preferred palette with their gorgeous yarns.
A match made in my version of heaven!

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To provide an extra dimension to the collection,
I also based my designs around square geometry:
simple squares
combined squares (grids + mesh)
garments with square forms + elements.

Love, love, LOVE.
< insert ecstatic full-body shudder over squares + greys >
[I *may* have squealed in delight more than a few times over these pieces!]

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Monochrome | Aperture | Cardigan
Square fronts,
framed with applied I-cord and
an asymmetric modified fisherman’s rib collar;
may be worn draped or buttoned.
Tip: You could try substituting the yarns listed with Shibui Staccato for increased sheen + drape.

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Monochrome | Blur | Sweater
Square colorblocks
created with an added contrast thread.
Simple yet timeless.
And that high neckline: Perfect.

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Monochrome | Filter | Vest
On trend transformable design piece:
Vest / Hoodie / Wrap Top / You decide
This square mesh stitch is truly sublime.
Balanced with a hem + snaps.
Tip: This design is super economic on yarn for the win.

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Monochrome | Frame | Hat + Handwarmers
A spirit of play in these pieces
that take the grid design to another level:
the hat elongates the grid into the crown
the grid emerges over the hand in the handwarmers.
Tip: Ideal smaller projects to try the fabulous Shibui Pebble yarn + utterly on-trend for this Northern Winter.

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Monochrome | Grain | Sweater
A feature wardrobe statement:
unique squared boatneck,
angled fronts, expressed seams,
and short row shaping to the back.
Tip: You could try substituting the yarns listed with Shibui Heichi + Silk Cloud for increased structure + form.

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Monochrome | Lapse | Scarf
A spectacular graphic design piece.
Exploring negative + positive space
with an Escher-esque play on perspective
and square transitions with stranded colorwork.

And as I promised, a giveaway. MY BIGGEST GIVEAWAY EVER!
I have a total of 4 sets of these Monochrome Collection patterns to share with you.

1. Please leave a comment about your favourite Monochrome or Square Artwork or Building.
Yes – it could be a cubic sculpture or a cathedral with mesh form and eveything in between.
I will draw 2 random comments here for a chance to win one of the two available on my blog.
Entries close next Monday, 22 September 2014.

BUT WAIT. There’s more!

2. Share + Leave a comment on this Facebook post for a chance to win 1 set of the Monochrome Collection.
(You might want to like my page while you are there to keep up with any future giveaways, too.)

AND/OR

3. Hop over to my Instagram Account, regram this Instgram image with the hashtag #TheMonochromeCollection and tag me @assemblagekj for a chance to win the the last set of the Monochrome Collection I am giving away.
(And while you are there, you might want to follow me on IG to keep up with any future giveaways, too…)

Yep. It’s a bit like Christmas around here!
A total of 4 sets of these 6 patterns up for grabs.
Feel free to enter all options to up your chances.
Get on it and share the love. x

THE CRAFT SESSIONS 2014

Kestrel Room for Class
Above: Kestrel Room, my Knitting – Neckpiece class board.

The Craft Sessions 2014 really was bigger and better than last year,
and I thought that would be mighty hard to beat.
More people, more classes, more teachers.
Dare I say, it was “more” all round and on every level?

Neckpiece Class
Above: my Knitting – Neckpiece class enjoying an outdoor balcony session in the sunshine.

The new schedule + class format added in flexible chill out time to use as you like:
finish off things from the first two sessions,
enjoy the glorious Spring sunshine reading or knitting or stitching,
sampling the local vineyards,
attending the optional extra informal workshops,
or chatting with new + old friends.
Brilliant.

Seamless Hat Class
Above: my Knitting – Seamless Hat class ready to Go!

My classes were lots of fun.
It is a privilege to sharing my love of knitting with relatively new knitters,
or those simply keen to learn a new technique or two.
I could pass on a simple mantra to remember the knitting steps,
provide a guiding hand to wrangle those wretched sticks,
which ultimately turns into a shared passion for the process.
Gorgeous.

TCS 2014 Gift Bag
Above: The Craft Sessions 2014 Gift Bag contents + double sided nametag.

And the people?
Warm, open, enthusiastic, big hearted. Of course.
People keen to learn something new, or improve on what they know.
People eager to share the joy and the love of creating + making.
My kind of people!

Quill TC
[Pardon yet another photo of me with that ridiculously goofy smile…]

Felicia asked me to design a neckpiece for this year’s Gift Bag;
a wee TwinCircles design to suit some sock yarn
generously provided by Kristen from Skein.
At present this is a Craft Sessions exclusive
and you can add your project to Ravelry if you were there.

And a sneaky little headsup:
a Shibui Monochrome Blog Post + Giveaway is coming your way
very
very
soon!