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Tuesday April 04, 2017

Sanctuary Pillow KAL Week 3

posted by: Amy Small in home patterns, knitalong, pixie dust yarn, sister yarn

Greetings pillow friends! How are your projects going?! I can't believe we are already on the third week and getting ready to seam these babies up. This is where the pillow really comes to life. This week, I'll give you some tips on how to block and seam your pillow.  Like before, I've highlighted key points after each video. Hopefully you were able to cast off the Sister yarn portion of your pillow this week. As always, feel free to get in touch if you need help at amy@knitcollage.com. Let's dive in!

 

Video 6: Blocking your finished pieces

Things to keep in mind:

* Tools you'll need: blocking boards (I like these) or a towel folded over double, T pins (see pic below), measuring tape, a spray bottle or cup full of water.



* When we block in knitting, we set our finished knit pieces into the correct shape the pattern calls for, so in this case either a 14"x14" or 16"x16" square, depending on which size pillow you chose to make.

* Use your measuring tape to pin your finished pieces into the correct size square on your blocking board or towel.

* I prefer lightly blocking (as shown in the video) with our bulky yarns. If you get your finished piece too wet, it will take days to dry. 

* Wait to seam your pieces until they are completely dry.

Here's what both of my pieces look like in blocking.

Both of these pieces were blocked into 16"x16" squares.

 

Video 7: Seaming your pieces together

Things to keep in mind:

* Weave in all of your ends using you darning needle for the Sister yarn and your fingers for the Pixie Dust before you start seaming.

* Lay your pieces out with the right sides facing in towards each other and lined up on top of each other. Since the pattern is reversible for each piece, the sides you think look best should face in.

* Use the Sister yarn to seam, not the Pixie Dust.

* The number of stitches in the Sister and Pixie Dust panels will not match up. Recall that you cast on fewer stitches in the Pixie Dust than the Sister. So,  you will not be seaming stitch for stitch, just do your best to make sure the corners all line up as you go. It doesn't have to be perfect! Use pins as a guide to make sure all your sides and corners match up.

* We'll seam up 3 sides like this and in the next video we'll turn the pillow case inside out, add the pillow insert and seam the fourth and final side.

* Below is a detailed pic of what seaming your overcast stitch will look like.

 

Video 8: Adding your pillow insert and seaming the last side

Things to keep in mind:

* After you've finished seaming 3 sides of your pillow, turn the whole piece inside out and stuff your pillow insert inside.

* I like my pillows not that puffy, I like them a little less perky, more cuddle-y...SO I actually took a little puff out of my insert to achieve this. Do what you like here.

* Seam up your final pillow edge in the same overcast method you used for the other 3 sides. I love the way the stitching looks like a handmade whip stitch edge.

 

That's it for this week guys! Next week I'll show you how to make and add tassels or pom poms to your pillow. The customization part is a total blast! Lastly, if you missed the prize info, click on last week's post here to find out more. 

XOXO Amy

 

Wednesday March 29, 2017

Dash Shawl Knitalong Week 2

Hi friends! I hope you've had a wonderful week diving into your Dash Shawl. I cannot wait to see all the different colorways come to life. I managed to get through 3 total repeats of the pattern and have found this pattern to be so soothing to knit. It just flows for me, how about you? Here's what we'll go over today: we'll review stitch counts, how to tell if the yarn over holes you've knit look correct, customizing your shawl length and lastly casting off. Let's get started :)

Dash Shawl Video 3

Things to keep in mind:

* After row 11, you'll have 26 stitches on your needles

* After repeating rows 2-11 again (two times), you'll have 46 stitches on your needles

* After repeating rows 2-11 a third time, you'll have 66 stitches on your needles. This is where I am. My shawl measures about 13.5" now, so a little more than halfway done. 

* I plan to repeat rows 2-11 about two more times, for a total of 5 repeats or until the width of my shawl measures 25".

* If you want your shawl shorter and smaller than this, consider casting off sooner than me according to what you like best. If you want it larger, keep knitting in the stitch of the pattern!

* You can cast off after any row of the pattern - it doesn't have to be after row 11 - just whenever your shawl is your desired length.

* Remember to cast off purl-wise as the pattern says.

* It's important that the yarn over holes you created throughout the pattern line up in a subtle zig zag pattern. This is a little tricky to see before you've blocked your piece. The holes zig zag by 1 stitch horizontally - see video and below detail photos for reference. I encourage you to make sure these yarn over holes look correct. Next week, we'll lace our Pixie Dust yarn through them to finish our shawl. It really does affect the total look of the shawl if they're not lining up correctly.

If you can try to finish up knitting the shawl portion and cast off. If you need more time to get there, let me know and I can slow down a little! I appreciate all the feedback and just want your projects to be a success.

 

If you're unsure how to bind off, here's a great video to watch. Just keep in mind that we'll be binding off in purl stitches, not knit stitches as shown there.  

 

Last but not least, let's talk about prizes. I briefly touched on this last week. I think the prize should go to the person who looks to happiest/most triumphant/excited about their pillow. So the photo has to be a selfie, with either the finished shawl or the yarn/knitting in progress and tagged with #knitcollageKAL . It doesn't have to be silly but it totally could be. It could just be you all blissed out and cozy with it. I'll pick a winner at the end AND the prize will be any 2 skeins of yarn of your choice!

 

Good luck and thank you so much for joining me on this knitalong! Please continue to share your work on social media with #knitcollageKAL and #knitcollage I love seeing these so darn much :)

xoxo ~ Amy

My piece so far ~

 

 

Tuesday March 28, 2017

Sanctuary Pillow KAL Week 2

posted by: Amy Small in home patterns, knitalong, pixie dust yarn, sister yarn

Hey guys! I hope you've had a wonderful week and are having fun chugging away on your pillow. I find this project so relaxing because it's just knitting rectangles. The perfect project for unwinding post baby bedtime for me. Some of you only received the smaller set of needles from our warehouse - I'm so sorry about this. This was our mistake and the larger sets shipped out last week. Hopefully you have them already!

 

This week I'm going to go over casting off in the Pixie Dust yarn, checking gauge in your Sister yarn and finally I'll show you how to knit the first few rows of the Sister portion of your pillow. After each video, I've highlighted the key points. This week, try to get through the Sister portion of your pillow with me. Next week we'll move on to blocking and seaming. Keep tagging us on social media with #knitcollageKAL too! I have loved seeing your yarn and projects and can't wait to see more.

Video 3: Casting off in Pixie Dust yarn

If you're casting off for the first time, here's a great video on how to do that.

The last little thing to do is to draw your remaining Pixie Dust yarn through the last stitch as shown above to cast off your last stitch. That last snippet of my video got cut off!

Things to keep in mind:

* Even though the written pattern says you should bind off on either row 2 or 4 of pattern, this is not totally essential. I just knit mine to 16" and cast off in the follow row of the pattern (for me row 4). It's more important that your knitted piece measure 16".

* If you run out of one color of your Pixie Dust yarn (as I do in the video) while your casting off, don't worry. Just continue casting off in the color you still have. It won't make a difference and you won't notice it!

* Cast off loosely to make sure your top edge doesn't pull in.

* After you're all done you may notice that you have a wonky rectangle (as I do below). We will block this into a square with straight edges next week, so don't fret. That is normal!

Video 4: Check gauge in Sister yarn

 

Things to keep in mind:

* A good number of stitches to cast on for your gauge swatch is 8. I recommend knitting 10 rows in the stitch of the pattern.

* Leave your stitches live ON your needle. After you've checked your gauge, unravel the swatch so that you can use it for tassels or pom poms later.

* If you are having trouble matching the suggest gauge, consider going up or down a needle size - as always contact me (amy@knitcollage.com) if you need help!

Video 5: Knitting the first 4 rows in Sister yarn

This should be a cinch for you after the Pixie Dust! I love how the moss stitch pattern pops more in this yarn. 

 

Last but not least, let's talk about prizes. I briefly touched on this last week. I think the prize should go to the person who looks to happiest/most triumphant/excited about their pillow. So the photo has to be a selfie, with either the finished pillow or the yarn/knitting in progress and tagged with #knitcollageKAL . It doesn't have to be silly but it totally could be. It could just be you all blissed out and cozy with it. I'll pick a winner at the end. AND the prize will be any 2 skeins of yarn of your choice!

 

Good luck and thank you so much for joining me on this knitalong!

xoxo ~ Amy

 

 


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