Designing, Patterns Released, Techniques

Chinese Waitress Cast On (again)

I have a new set of videos taking a look (again) at the Chinese Waitress Cast On.

I realized that my favorite way to make this cast on, with a crochet hook (my prior video showing this technique) was actually producing a twisted first line of chain stitches, and I was determined to figure out a way to still use the crochet hook, but to make the cast on untwisted – as it should be.

Another issue with this cast on is that most tutorials out there, even when showing the knitting needle method, do not show the *full* untwisting that has to happen in the one step. This still produces a twisted line of chain stitches. If you examine the bind off, the cast on should exactly match that – with two untwisted lines of chain stitches. And the result, if the loop is not completely untwisted, is instead a twisted line of chain stitches at the front line.

Anyway – here is a video showing why that is happening and how to fix it:

And a video showing the full tutorial on the knitted version of this cast on – producing a completely untwisted line as it should be:

Look for my more in-depth article on the Chinese Waitress Cast On and Bind Off in the newest issue of Cast On magazine, out now. Join TKGA for access to Cast On, among many other benefits!

I also have a new pattern (in the same issue of Cast On) out to go along with the article – my Candy Stripe Scarf. It is a sideways knit scarf, worked on a bias, using the Chinese Waitress Cast On and Bind Off to have both long edges completely match each other. Three colors (two variegated and one solid) are used, and a lace edging is applied to the short edges at the end.

In other news, I’m doing the preliminary planning for offering some virtual classes in the near future, so stay tuned for more information on that! Let me know in the comments if you have any particular topics you’d like to see a class on! These will be small classes via Zoom.

I’ll also be doing my first livestream for patrons on Patreon soon, so join my Patreon family to be able to join me for that! (Patrons get sneak peeks, as well as early access to videos and classes and other benefits. I will be hosting a special Q&A for my patrons soon as well!)

Until next time, Happy Knitting!!

Designing, Patterns Released

New cowl pattern!

Hello all!

Today I released my Harmonious Echo cowl pattern. This cowl features all the same cables as my Harmonious Echo pullover pattern, but it a smaller cowl pattern – so if you loved those cables, but didn’t want to knit a whole sweater, this cowl is for you!

It is available on Ravelry right now, and will be available on LoveCrafts very shortly!

Happy Knitting!

Designing, Updates, WiP Posts

How are things?

Wow, things sure have changed since my last post in early March! How is everyone doing?

Pretty much all of my 2020 events have been cancelled, which is understandable, but still disappointing. A pretty big percentage of my yearly income is from teaching, so that’s hurt a bit. On the other hand, I’ve had more time to tech edit, and I’ve gained several new clients – which is exciting, and certainly helps to offset some of my lost income from teaching. (If you’re looking for a Tech Editor, I have openings!) 🙂

I’ve still been designing – here’s a sneak peek at a lace shawl that will be in the upcoming issue of Cast On magazine:

This is worked with Greenwood Fiberworks Yakity Yak yarn in the color Cherry Semisolid. I loved working with this yarn! Look for the new issue later in July.

I’m working on revamping my pattern layout and design, and I’m going to try to produce something that is much more accessible for knitters that use page readers and the like. I have a few designs ready or almost ready to release, but they will likely be delayed a short bit while I learn new software and work on revamping the design. But in the end I hope to have something much more useful to more people! I’m always open to suggestions if there is something you think I should be considering.

My patterns are currently for sale mostly on Ravelry, and I know lots of people are having trouble using the new site. Many of my patterns are also for sale on LoveKnitting, so that is an alternative for those of you that understandably want to avoid Ravelry. I’m also looking into alternatives for selling my patterns via other means, so changes may be afoot in my website as well. (I have lots of research going on right now!!)

I’ve also got some new tutorial videos in the works, so keep an eye out for those!

I’ve been doing a little “fun” knitting during Zoom knit groups and the like – here’s a pair of socks that are half done. My favorite method – top down with afterthought heels. I’m not sure what color I’ll do the heels in yet. I have plenty of sock yarn to pick from in my stash for those, though!

I’m available for private or small group knitting lessons via Zoom, so do get in touch if that’s something you’re interested in! You can also buy me a coffee at https://ko-fi.com/hstorta! I appreciate your support immensely.

Until next time, Happy Knitting!!

Designing, Teaching, Updates

Checking In!

Hello all!

So sorry it’s been so long – a lot has happened, and I’ve been super busy! But I’ve reached a bit of a breather in my schedule (albeit not a very long one) so I figured I should post to catch you up!

If you remember, I told you all about our house selling and buying in my last post. Well, we bought our new house at the beginning of August, and sold our old house a couple of days later, and basically it has been chaos ever since! It’s only just now settling down – although I still have boxes upon boxes in my bedroom, but the kitchen is unpacked, and the living room is being decorated, so at least we can “live” in the house a bit. (And we are loving it!)

And at the same time I had more deadline knitting for Cast On (look for the Stitch Anatomy article and two patterns from me, plus the ‘On Your Way to the Masters’ article in the upcoming issue) – and I have stacks of Master Knitting submissions to review as well (I apologize profusely for the delay in reviewing your work if I am your Co-Chair!) Basically, it’s been a whirlwind couple of months.

So, on to what’s happening now!

Rhinebeck is in just a couple short weeks!! All four of my classes are sold out – how crazy is that!!?? I’m beyond excited. If you are signed up for one of my classes, look for an email from me later today! I’m looking forward to meeting new folks, and experiencing my first Rhinebeck, too.

SAFF registration is still going strong! There is still space in all of my classes as of the last update I received, but a few of my classes are filling up fast, so don’t wait if there’s a particular class you had your eye on! I’m teaching 9 classes in all: the workshops are all listed here.

Also, registration for Kanuga is open now! I’ll be teaching cables — with my Harmonious Echo sweater as the project, or a cowl instead if you don’t want to knit the whole sweater. Come join us at this wonderful retreat!

Now that my deadline knitting has died down for the time being, I have picked back up my Rhinebeck sweater vest! I just bound off the back neck a day or two ago, and am almost done with the body. Next it will be time to cut the steeks (I’ll try to film a video when I do – watch Instagram and/or Youtube for that) and do the neckline and armholes. Fingers crossed I actually have it done in time to wear at Rhinebeck! (I have a swing skirt and a 40s style blouse to wear with it already!)

I’m writing the pattern up and have it almost complete as well, I just have to figure out the charts for the neckline/armhole – it’s a bit tricky with like 10+ sizes and all different decrease rates. I’ll be getting it tech edited and then put out a call for test knitters – but most likely not until after Rhinebeck and SAFF are over!

Oh! And I’ve filmed a few videos that have been posted on YouTube – they go along with my articles that will be published in the upcoming Cast On, but you can view them now. One each on the Chinese Waitress CO and BO, and a couple videos of my tips for entrelac knitting – one on picking up stitches and one on color peek. I hope they are helpful!

So, whew! That was a long update! I’ll post periodically from Rhinebeck on Instagram (be sure to follow me there!) and I will be sure to post a recap here when I’m back!

Until next time, Happy Knitting!!

 

Designing, FO Posts, Teaching, WiP Posts

FO Friday 7/19/19

Are you registered for Rhinebeck yet? Better hurry up, since lots of classes are already sold out! As of today there is one seat left in my Mosaic Knitting class, and three seats left in my Estonian Decorative Stitches class – my other two classes are sold out!

Registration for SAFF has started as well – I have 9 classes available! Go here to register. (Wow, I’m going to have a busy Fall!)

Will I see you at one or the other Festival?? I look forward to it!

I’ve finished up my current deadline design knitting – look for a new article and a fun pattern from me in the upcoming issue of Cast On magazine. It’s always a relief to have deadline work done (and in time too, lol.)

Guess what! I have a couple Finished Objects to show you today!

I finished my Wonder Woman shawl! Woo Hoo! It still needs to be blocked and the tails woven in, but I’m calling it done.

Pattern: Wonder Woman Wrap by Carissa Browning
Yarn: Malabrigo Yarn Sock in Ravelry Red, Matisse Blue, and Black. Yellow is Wooly Wonka Rhiannon in color Brocade.
Needles: (I don’t remember – I think the needle size called for in the pattern.)
Size: Unblocked, it is about 13 inches deep and 56 inches wide. I anticipate it growing a good bit when I block it.
Started: April 27, 2019
Finished: July 10(ish) 2019
Modifications: I worked the large size, and worked the first two rows of the first yellow block in black. I did the center stripes in black, and worked the last two rows of the final yellow block in black. I worked a few extra rows at the top, maintaining the increases (just because I had lots of yarn left, and I wanted the top block a bit deeper.)

I’m really happy with it, and can’t wait to wear it this Fall! 🙂

I finished up a pair of plain (aka “waiting room”) socks as well:

These are plain stockinette socks, with afterthought heels, using String Theory Colorworks sock yarn in colorway Hippocampus. (Get it? – hippocampus, the memory center of the brain – Finding Dory?) 🙂 I love these and can’t wait to wear them – they are so bright and happy!

I have another pair of plain socks in progress- these going top down 2 at a time:

The yarn is Must Stash yarn in their perfect match sock base – colorway Martian Rainbow. Talk about bright! I love them. I’ll be doing an afterthought heel (and the toes) in a contrasting color (not sure what color yet, maybe my leftover black from the Wonder Woman shawl.) I am almost ready to start the toes on these.

I have one other WiP that I just started – I’m designing a sweater vest for Rhinebeck! This is a Fair Isle vest in a vintage-inspired silhouette. I’ve only just started the colorwork section above the wide ribbing:


I’m hoping to have this done in time to wear it to Rhinebeck, and I’m writing the pattern as I go as well, so hopefully I can also release the pattern around then, too. I do have more deadline design work creeping up on me, but I should have a little bit of down time to work on this before that ramps up.

Anyway, that’s what has been going on with me lately knitting-wise! (Life-wise we’re selling our house and buying a new one, so that’s adding a whole other layer of crazy around here! Life is never boring, that’s for sure!)

Until next time, Happy Knitting!!