Pi Shawl Knit Along – The second color change!

I’ve been knitting my heart out on the Pi Shawl, and I reached the second color change this past week! I’m still working on the third lace pattern, and it has been smooth sailing. I’m also still using my checkpoints to help me stay on track, and I haven’t felt the urge to use a lifeline yet.

LOK LOC summer0843 200px Pi Shawl Knit Along   The second color change!Because I didn’t check my gauge (oops!), I can already tell that my Pi Shawl will be a bit smaller than the original sample in the magazine. However, I can also tell that the gorgeous stitch patterns are going to show up nicely. Sometimes I’m too excited to start a new project to bother with checking my gauge. Usually, for me, this doesn’t matter when it comes to shawls, but if you want your shawl to be the same size as the sample, be sure to swatch first!

 

Pi 2nd color change 300x168 Pi Shawl Knit Along   The second color change!You can see that my shawl currently looks like some sort of bag or pouch, but once it’s off the needles and the stitches can spread out like they’re supposed to, I’ll really be able to see my handiwork. I can’t wait!

 

 

Pi 2nd color change 2 300x168 Pi Shawl Knit Along   The second color change!Here’s a closeup of the second and third color sections. I LOVE how the green from the second section is continued into the third, mixing with the pink to create a pretty, mottled look.

 

 

How is your Pi Shawl coming along? Have you reached the next color change yet? I’d love to see pictures of your work, so feel free to email them to us at mail@loveofknitting.com! If you haven’t started yet, it’s never to late to join in on the fun! The Pi Shawl kits were super popular, and they are now sold out, but you can still get the pattern in the Summer 2015 Issue of Love of Knitting and make this stunning shawl with us!

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Knit and crochet patterns for grads

School is almost out of session (or is already out, for some), and many new graduates are getting ready to start the next phase in their lives. This exciting transition is a cause for celebration! Send the new graduates in your life off on their new journey with a handmade gift that will keep them warm, but also remind them of your constant love and support. We’ve rounded up a few of our favorite knit and crochet patterns for new grads to help you narrow down your search for the perfect gift.

Collegiate Cables 198x300 Knit and crochet patterns for grads

 

Knit the Collegiate Cables Sweater to send a high school graduate off to college with a classic style and warm cardigan. The clever cabled button band gives it a unique look, placing the buttons in between each twist. Choose your grad’s new school colors for a personalized gift she’ll adore.

 

 

Classic letterman sweater 190x300 Knit and crochet patterns for grads

 

For your graduating guys, the Classic Letterman Sweater is just what he needs for a smart but youthful style. Contrasting color bands on one sleeve give this crocheted cardigan a cool vintage look, while the handsome fit can easily be dressed up or down.

 

 

Two Tone Twist 165x300 Knit and crochet patterns for grads

 

For a quick knit, the Two-Tone Twist Hat is another fun project that lends itself perfectly to classic college colors. The stripes are twisted into eye-catching cables, so the colors are entwined beautifully. I know that summer hasn’t even started yet, but fall (and the beginning of the next school year) will be here before you know it! It’s never to early to start knitting an intriguing new hat pattern, and this one is most certainly in my queue.

 

 

Carry all tote Knit and crochet patterns for grads

 

The Carry-All Tote is another fun accessory that will work up in a flash. Crochet this versatile bag for a college grad so she can keep all her essentials in place as she enters the job market. The simple button closure and sturdy cotton fabric make it a sensible design, but the playful stitch pattern will remind the recipient to find time to relax and have fun!

 

Baby Blue Sampler Knit and crochet patterns for grads

 

Blankets are always welcome gifts, and the Baby Blue Sampler Blanket would make a fantastic addition to any dorm room. The simple squares are knit in basic textured stitch patterns, making this afghan an easy way to show how much you care.

 

 

Mondrian Knit and crochet patterns for grads

 

Artistic graduates will love the color blocking and clean lines on the Mondrian Throw. This fun and easy crochet pattern has a simple style that will transition perfectly from dorm to apartment (and eventually the recipient’s first home!). The stitch pattern is subtle enough that it doesn’t compete with the bold colors, but it gives this piece just the right amount of texture.

 

 

Do you have a new graduate in your life? Show them how proud you are by giving them a handmade gift they’ll always treasure! We’d love to hear about your rad grads, so give them a shout out here or on our Facebook page!

 

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Pi Shawl Knit Along – Fixing a missing yarnover 2 rounds below

I’ve started chart C on my amazing Pi Shawl, and I have to say – all 3 lace patterns in this project are so much fun to knit! They’re easy to memorize, and they all have “checkpoints” that allow you to check your work to be sure you’re not getting off track. This is especially helpful since we’re now working with over 300 stitches, and it would be really frustrating to get to the end of the round and realize you have to tink back!

LOK LOC summer0843 200px Pi Shawl Knit Along   Fixing a missing yarnover 2 rounds belowCheckpoint cheat sheet:

For charts A and B, the [yo, k1, yo] should line up on every round. For chart C, the sl2-k1-p2sso (AKA centered double decrease) will line up on every round. If you remember these little tricks, you can catch any mistakes you make during the next repeat of the stitch pattern. That means minimal tinking, which is always a sigh of relief!

 

 

Forgetting a yarnover is the only error I’ve encountered that can’t necessarily be avoided using these “checkpoints.” The pattern will line up whether you make the yarnover or not, and I found myself making this mistake several times. Since the even-numbered rounds are simply knitting, I didn’t realize I forgot these yarnovers until the next odd-numbered round. There was no way I was going to tink 2 rounds of 336 stitches each, so I was determined to figure out a way to add these yarnovers from the round I was working.

I knew how to fix a missing yarnover in the round below (work to the place where you need to add a yarnover in the row below, and lift the horizontal strand of yarn between the needles onto your left needle to create it), so I used this knowledge to help me add a yarnover 2 rounds below. The technique is very similar, and I used my handy crochet hook to help me out.

To fix a missing yarnover 2 rounds below:

Pi yo 1 300x168 Pi Shawl Knit Along   Fixing a missing yarnover 2 rounds belowFirst, work to the place where you need to add a yarnover 2 rounds below. See the horizontal strands of yarn between the needles? That’s where the magic will happen!

 

 

PI yo 2 300x168 Pi Shawl Knit Along   Fixing a missing yarnover 2 rounds belowSince you’re adding a yarnover 2 rounds below, put your crochet hook under 2 horizontal strands of yarn between the needles. Notice how the top strand is lighter and the bottom one is darker? This might help you see what’s going on in the next steps.

 

PI yo 3 300x168 Pi Shawl Knit Along   Fixing a missing yarnover 2 rounds belowPull the top strand of yarn through the bottom strand. This is the same technique used to fix dropped stitches, and it creates the same effect as knitting the yarnover in the previous even-numbered round.

 

 

PI yo 4 300x168 Pi Shawl Knit Along   Fixing a missing yarnover 2 rounds belowFinally, place the loop on your hook onto the left needle with the right “leg” in front. You can see how these steps create a hole 2 rounds below – just where it should be!

 

 

That’s it! Between this easy fix and the checkpoints in each lace pattern, I feel super confident knitting this project. In fact, this is the first lace project I’ve knit without using a lifeline and it’s going great!

How is your Pi Shawl coming? If you haven’t started yet, I invite you to join in on the fun! The lace patterns are easier than they seem, but they look really impressive – that’s always a winning combination in my book!

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Beaded Box Stitch Shawl Crochet Along – Coming soon!

Our next crochet along is right around the corner, and it’s gonna be a good one! We’re making the Beaded Box Stitch Shawl from the Summer 2015 Issue of Love of Crochet, and I’m beyond excited about stitching up this gorgeous accessory. The unique box stitches and elegant beaded border really set this shawl apart, and it’s light enough to wear on a warm day.

LOC BeadedBoxStitch 200 Beaded Box Stitch Shawl Crochet Along   Coming soon!We’ll crochet our starting chain on June 12th, and we hope you’ll join us in making this summery wrap. It’s crocheted in CoBaSi by HiKoo, and the blend of fibers in the yarn give the shawl a really nice finish. To get the same effect, be sure to get your Beaded Box Stitch Shawl kit. The kit includes all the yarn and beads you’ll need, as well as a complete copy of the Summer 2015 Issue!

 

Don’t worry if you’ve never crocheted with beads before! The beading instructions are straightforward and easy to follow, so this shawl will be a great introduction to this simple technique. The eye-catching stitch pattern is new to me, but the pattern includes both written instructions and a chart, so I’m confident I can figure it out.

Will you be joining me in the crochet along? If so, I hope to see pictures and updates about your shawls as we go, but first – grab your kit so you’re ready to start with us on June 12th. I can’t wait to hear from you!

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Charity Spotlight – Knots of Love

Hats are such quick and satisfying knit and crochet projects, we often end up with more than we can use or gift. If your hands have the urge to make more hats than your wardrobe requires, donating hats to charity is a wonderful way to support and comfort someone going though a tough time. While the donation may seem small, recipients treasure their handmade hats, knowing that someone was thinking about them and took the time to make them a one-of-a-kind gift.

 

heart yarn 300x201 Charity Spotlight   Knots of Love Knots of Love is an amazing organization that donates handknit or crocheted hats to chemo patients and others facing life-threatening illnesses. They also donate blankets to NICU patients as another meaningful gift given to tiny newborn babies. If you want to donate a cap or blanket to Knots of Love, be sure to check out their donation criteria and approved list of yarns.

 

If you’re searching for the perfect hat pattern to send to this incredible charity, the free Imperial Yarn Snowflake Hat pattern is an easy knitting project that would definitely be treasured. The free Spiral Cloche crochet pattern is another great option to donate to this important cause.

Have you ever knit or crocheted a hat for charity? What about a blanket? Tell us your experiences here or on Facebook – we can’t wait to hear from you!

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Love of Knitting in Ireland – Spotlight on Belfast

Can you believe it’s already the middle of May? That means we’ll be leaving for Love of Knitting‘s craft tour in Ireland in less than six months! I’ve been daydreaming about all the fun sites we’ll see and the travel projects I’ll bring, and I keep finding more and more things on our trip itinerary that pique my interest.

ireland titanic Love of Knitting in Ireland   Spotlight on Belfast

The Titanic Museum in Belfast

Belfast is one of the amazing cities we’ll visit. We’ll take a panoramic tour together and have lots of time to explore on our own. I’m definitely going to check out the Titanic Museum. Ever since the movie came out (almost 20 years ago!), I’ve been captivated by the history surrounding it. The museum is a monument to Belfast’s relationship with the coast, and it’s located on a former shipyard in the Titanic Quarter. It tells the tragic story of the Titanic, which sank on her maiden voyage in 1912, as well as the stories of her sister ships, RMS Olympic and HMHS Britannic. The museum is HUGE, and it houses a series of fascinating galleries I can’t wait to delve into.

What would YOU like to see in Belfast? You still have time to book your ticket and join me and Jen on this amazing adventure, but get your tickets soon so you’ll have plenty of time to pick the perfect travel project!

Click here for more information on Love of Knitting‘s craft tour in Ireland, November 6-15!

 

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Sock Love – Starter Socks with Jen Lucas

Starter Socks 200x300 Sock Love   Starter Socks with Jen LucasI have never been a monogamous knitter, and I typically have at least two projects going at all times (not to mention all of the abandoned projects in the naughty project bin). I am never sure what I will want to knit on any given day, so I often have several projects in the works to suit my every mood. One of the projects that I always have going is a simple pair of socks. They are, in my opinion, the perfect travel project. Socks are small, making them easy to fit into any bag, perfect for on-the-go knitting.

 

 

I love all sock patterns, but I really prefer simple patterns for travel projects. All socks have the same construction and it is only the pattern on the leg and foot that requires memorization, unless you are knitting a simple ribbed leg, which is my preference for travel socks. It’s easy enough to pull out my socks (I always knit them two-at-a-time on the magic loop) wherever I happen to be stuck waiting and knit a few rounds. I don’t have to worry about remembering the pattern, just keep track of how many knits or purls are in the rib, and if I need to stop quickly in the middle of the round, I don’t have to worry about remembering where I was in the pattern when I pick them up again.

If you have not fallen in love with sock knitting (yet), the Starter Socks is the perfect pattern to start your courtship. Featuring a simple 1 x 1 rib and a standard heel gusset and flap, this easy pair of socks will have your turning your first heel in no time. Not to mention, these socks are knit using a worsted weight yarn and size 6 needles, making them an easy and quick knit.

I know how scary it can be to use double points for the first time, not to mention how complicated socks can seem with all of their different parts, which is why I am even more excited about the Starter Socks. Our friend, Jen Lucas, the designer of the Starter Socks has worked with us to create a fun video that will walk you through all of the steps of sock construction. Knit along with Jen in the inspiring Starter Socks video, and we will have you knitting your first pair of socks in no time. Just be careful – knitting socks is like eating potato chips, and once you start you will be like me and always have a pair of socks in your bag!

As added incentive, order a Starter Socks pattern or sign up for the Starter Socks video, send us a picture of your finished socks, and enter to win a ball of sock yarn to continue your sock-knitting journey! Send your picture to us at contests@loveofknitting.com, and we’ll randomly choose one lucky sock knitter as our winner on Friday, June 12th. We can’t wait to see your Starter Socks – good luck!

 

 

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5 Best Shawl Crochet Patterns

Spring and summer, with their combinations of sunny days and cool breezes, are the perfect seasons for shawls! Shawls are great for fickle weather because you can wrap them snuggly around your neck to ward off a chill, then drape them loosely over your shoulders when the sun comes out. If you’re hoping to crochet a brand new shawl, here are some of our favorite patterns for spring and summer.

Amythest 5 Best Shawl Crochet Patterns

The Amethyst Smoke Shawl is an elegant and airy design crocheted in Frolicking Feet. The body of the shawl is created with easy chains and single crochet stitches, and double crochet clusters form the wavy edging. That means two gorgeous stitch patterns in one springy shawl!

 

 

 

 

RaspberryIceTea DSC2993 200px 5 Best Shawl Crochet Patterns

Tunisian crocheters will love the Raspberry Iced Tea Shawl. The extended stitches make it light and wispy, while the bobble fringe gives it an extra dose of fun. Crocheted with Irish Jig by Interlacements, this piece even has a touch of sparkle so it’ll easily take you from day to night.

 

 

 

 

Olive Twist 5 Best Shawl Crochet Patterns

The Olive Twist Shawl comes in a handy kit, making your yarn selection easy. Using the right fiber is essential for this crisp summery shawl, and Creative Linen does just the trick. Get this unique filigreed look by crocheting large chain loops and twisting them during the next row. If this technique sounds new to you, our free picture tutorial will show you how it’s done!

 

 

 

Sonoma 5 Best Shawl Crochet Patterns

If you love texture, the Sonoma Shawl will be right up your alley. The puff stitches are arranged in a cool geometric design, and they really set this shawl apart. I wear my Sonoma Shawl wrapped around my neck like a cowl when it’s chilly, but drape it loosely over your shoulders and you’re ready for summer!

 

 

 

 

Mandala 5 Best Shawl Crochet Patterns

Finally, the Mandala Shawl is an irresistible accessory that I can’t get out of my mind. The circular motifs are created with broomstick lace worked in the round (intriguing!), and the alpaca and silk yarn feels heavenly to the touch. The motifs are joined as you go, so you won’t have to worry about stitching them all together at the end.

 

 

 

 

Are you ready for shawl season? Which one of these 5 patterns is your favorite? Tell us your thoughts here or on Facebook – we can’t wait to hear from you!

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Exclusive Wedding Knitting Pattern Collection – 50% off!

Wedding season is almost upon us, and a beautiful handknit garment or accessory is just the thing to make a celebration even more special. Whether you’re the bride-to-be or a thoughtful loved one, we have a collection of stunning knitting patterns that will make you swoon. The best part is that you can get the entire group of 5 gorgeous patterns for only $13.99 – that’s 50% off the original price if you purchased each one separately!

Check out the 5 incredible pattern included in the Wedding Knitting Pattern Collection -

Hidden Hearts 200x300 Exclusive Wedding Knitting Pattern Collection   50% off!

 

The Hidden Hearts Fingerless Gloves are classic accessories you can wear during the ceremony and reception. The pattern is sized for three different lengths, so you can pick the style that best matches your dress. A delicate picot edging complements the lacy hearts, making these mitts ultra romantic.

 

Hint of Sparkle 300x300 Exclusive Wedding Knitting Pattern Collection   50% off!

 

 

Knit the Hint of Sparkle Garter to make the traditional garter toss even more memorable. Then, after the wedding, the couple can save it in a shadowbox as a treasured reminder of their special day.

 

Lacy Shrug 200x300 Exclusive Wedding Knitting Pattern Collection   50% off!

 

 

Even though my wedding day is long past, the Lacy Shrug is in my queue! This stylish shrug is lacy and delicate enough to wear on the big day, but it can also be dressed down and worn any day. You’ll definitely get a lot of wear out of this piece, and it’ll bring back fond memories each time you put it on.

 

Lady Grantham 268x300 Exclusive Wedding Knitting Pattern Collection   50% off!

 

If you’re in the market for yet another pair of fingerless gloves, Lady Grantham’s Gloves are a super pretty option. The feminine eyelets along the edge and graceful buttons at the wrist set this pair apart and give them a sweet, vintage look.

 

 

Lilac Leaves 206x300 Exclusive Wedding Knitting Pattern Collection   50% off!

 

Finally, the Lilac Leaves Scarf features one of those lace patterns you simply can’t resist. In fact, I knit this beauty as a Mother’s Day gift a couple years back. The subtle, flowing leaf pattern is so gorgeous that I decided I’d eventually make another one for myself!

 

 

 

Are you going to a wedding this summer, or are you getting married? Whether you’re a guest, the mother of the bride, a bridesmaid, or the bride herself, you’re sure to fall in love with these exquisite patterns.

Instantly download the Wedding Knitting Pattern Collection today and save 50% off the original price! Then, spend your savings on something wonderful, like a dreamy honeymoon or another thoughtful gift for the happy couple.

 

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Pi Shawl Knit Along – The first color change!

Is it too early to say that I’m in love with my Pi Shawl? The delicious purple and green variegated section stole my heart right away, which is why I decided to start with it in the center.

Pi purple 300x168 Pi Shawl Knit Along   The first color change!

Look at that yummy mixture of colors!

I just got to the green and white section, and I love it just as much! It’s the perfect complement to the rich purple color, and it really brightens up my project.

Pi color change 300x168 Pi Shawl Knit Along   The first color change!

The first color change

The sample photographed in the magazine also has a wonderful combination of light and dark hues. The stunning blue in the center is beautifully bright and fantastic for summer, but it still offers a darker counterpoint to the lighter green tones…

Now that I think about it, I just might have to make another Pi Shawl using the original color combinations!

LOK LOC summer0843 200px Pi Shawl Knit Along   The first color change!

If you haven’t started this fun project yet, you still have time to order your Pi Shawl kit and join us in making this summer essential! The kits contain all the yarn you’ll need to knit this stunner, as well as a complete copy of the Summer Issue of Love of Knitting. That’s an irresistible added value!

 

 

 

How is your Pi Shawl coming along? Have you reached the first color change yet? Leave us a comment here or on Facebook and let us know how it’s going!

 

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