24 Mar

kurkuma

Kurkuma by La Visch Designs

Kurkuma is a shallow, triangle scarf, knit sideways. This design features lace patterning in the tradition of the Shetland isles. The triangle edging is worked at the same time as the body of the shawlette. Worked at a loose gauge, Kurkuma is a lovely and airy layering piece.

The pattern contains both fully written out as well as charted instructions for the lace. The lace in the border of the shawl is true lace knitting, worked on both wrong and right side rows.


Price: € 6,50 add to basket

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Difficulty level

The lace in this pattern is worked on both RS and WS rows. Stitches used include knit, purl, yo, kfb, skp, k2tog, and the k3tog tbl decrease.

This pattern is suitable for the intermediate to advanced knitter.

Sizes and finished measurements

Finished dimensions of the sample shawl: Span width of 170 cm (67 inches) along the upper edge and a depth of 52 cm (20 ½ inches), measured after blocking.

The size of this shawl is, however, easily adjusted.

Pattern details

  • Kurkuma is written for a gauge of approx. 15.4 sts / 26 rows = 10 cm (4 inches) over garter stitch, after blocking. Gauge is not critical in this design.
  • Pattern languages included: English and Dutch (Dit patroon omvat zowel een Nederlandse als een Engelse versie)
  • Digital PDF has 4 pages for the English version and 5 for the Dutch version (letter size)

Materials

  • Yarn: 500 m (546 yds) / 100 g Ístex Einband (100% wool; 250 m (273 yds) / 50 g). Substitute any laceweight or light fingering weight wool yarn for a similar result. The yarn used in the sample has been dyed yellow using onion skins (click for the tutorial!). Ístex Einband yarn is however available in a wide range of colors.
  • Size 4 mm (US 6) / 80 cm (32 inches) circular needles.
  • Yarn needle.
  • 1 stitch marker to differentiate the body from the edging of the shawl.
11 Mar

tutorial – working Judy’s magic cast on

Working Judy's Magic Cast On - a tutorial by La Visch Designs

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. This means that at no extra cost to you, I may receive a commission if you purchase something through these links. I’ve indicated these links with an *.

Perhaps you’ve heard about Judy’s Magic Cast On: a truly magic and invisible cast on for toe-up socks. This cast on was first devised by Judy Becker and shared in her article on Knitty. It’s a very clever cast on, as it creates a truly seamless start of your work. As Judy shares in her article, this cast on can be used for a wide range of projects and not just for socks. It can be used for anything that requires knitting in the round and a neat, seamless start.

Since I’m such a fan of this technique, I’m giving you my take on this cast on in this tutorial.

Materials used

Yarn: * Paintbox Yarns Simply DK, a good value, good quality 100% acrylic yarn, in the color 128 Lime Green.

Needles: * Addi Lace Circular Needles, in this tutorial I used the 4 mm (US 6) size with a cable length of 100 cm (40 inches). I would like to advise using at least a cable length of 80 cm (32 inches) to facilitate magic loop knitting.

Working Judy’s Magic Cast On step by step

1. This cast on is worked with both the yarn tail and the working yarn. This means, that to start, we need to estimate a sufficient length of yarn tail. One method to do this is to wrap the yarn around your needle once for every stitch to cast on, and then give yourself approx. 15 cm / 6 inches extra so you’ll have enough to weave in later.

Working Judy's Magic Cast On - a tutorial by La Visch Designs

2. Make a slipknot leaving a yarn tail as determined in the previous step and place it around the top needle. Pull to tighten this first loop/cast on stitch. Arrange the yarn in such a way, that the yarn tail is above the top needle and the working yarn is below the bottom needle as pictured.

Working Judy's Magic Cast On - a tutorial by La Visch Designs

3. Now move the yarn tail downwards, under and then over the bottom needle and next underneath the top needle to bring it back to its starting position. You now have cast on a loop on the bottom needle.

Working Judy's Magic Cast On - a tutorial by La Visch Designs

4. Next, take the working yarn and move it under and then over the top needle and next underneath the bottom needle to bring it back to its starting position. You now have cast on a loop on the top needle.

Working Judy's Magic Cast On - a tutorial by La Visch Designs

5. Repeat steps 3 and 4 until you’ve cast on the required number of stitches. Take care not to tighten these stitches too much, since this will encourage a little bump to form on each side of the cast on stitches. In this picture, a total of 18 stitches, 9 stitches per needle, have been cast on. (And yes, I really should have used a slightly longer yarn tail….)

Working Judy's Magic Cast On - a tutorial by La Visch Designs

Working the first round after the cast on

There are some peculiarities with the first round after the stitches are cast on using Judy’s Magic Cast On. Read on to find out more!

1. Turn the needles so that the bottom needle is now on top and ready to serve as your main (left-hand) needle.

Working Judy's Magic Cast On - a tutorial by La Visch Designs

2. Pull out the other needle to place its stitches on the cable and to use the tip as your working (right-hand) needle to knit into all the stitches on the main needle, magic loop style. Make sure that the yarn tail lies between the working yarn and the main needle. This way you can lock the yarn tail in place once you start knitting.

Working Judy's Magic Cast On - a tutorial by La Visch Designs

3. Knit the stitches on the main (left-hand) needle. If the first stitch loosens up a bit, just tighten it back up by softly pulling the yarn tail.

Working Judy's Magic Cast On - a tutorial by La Visch Designs

4. Next, turn your work so that the working yarn is on the right again.

Working Judy's Magic Cast On - a tutorial by La Visch Designs

5. Pull gently on the left-hand cable loop to pull the needle into the stitches and the former bottom needle is now on top and ready to serve as your main (left-hand) needle.

Working Judy's Magic Cast On - a tutorial by La Visch Designs

6. Likewise, pull out the other needle to place the stitches just worked on the cable, and to use the tip as your working (right-hand) needle to knit into all the stitches on the main needle, magic loop style.

Working Judy's Magic Cast On - a tutorial by La Visch Designs

7. Work the second set of the cast on stitches. Only this time, knit them through the back loop to correct their stitch mount.

Working Judy's Magic Cast On - a tutorial by La Visch Designs

The result

Once all the above steps are followed, this is the result. You’re now ready to continue with your knitting in the round (using magic loop) as described in your pattern.

Working Judy's Magic Cast On - a tutorial by La Visch Designs

And this is how to work Judy’s Magic Cast On and the first round after casting on!

28 Feb

kitties all around hat

Kitties All Around - a pattern by La Visch Designs

Are you a cat lover? I know I am! I love to surround myself with those furry critters and enjoy their soothing purr. Kitties All Around is a cute hat with cables and texture to create a kitty cat motif. Twisted stitches are worked to make the motif “pop” from the reverse stockinnette background.

This pattern contains instructions for 4 sizes, ranging from child to adult. The Kitties All Around hat is seamless and knitted from the bottom up. The instructions for the cat motif are provided both charted and written out.


Price: € 4,90 add to basket

Create your own Ebook! Purchase any 4 patterns and receive the 5th one for free. No code necessary, just put 5 patterns in your cart and the price of the lowest priced pattern will be automatically deducted from the total.

Difficulty level

Kitties All Around is seamless and knit in the round from the bottom up. This pattern involves cable knitting. Stitches used include knit, purl, twisted versions of these stitches, twisted right-leaning decrease, twisted left-leaning decrease and a purlwise m1 increase.

This pattern is suitable for the intermediate knitter.

Sizes and finished measurements

To fit size: 42 (49, 56.5, 63.5) cm / 16 ½ (19 ¼, 22 ¼, 25) inches circumference.
Finished size: 37 (44, 51.5, 58.5) cm / 14 ½ (17 ¼, 20 ¼, 23) inches circumference.

When choosing your hat size, take 2.5 – 5 cm (1 – 2 inches) of negative ease into account for a fitted hat. For a more slouchy fit, take 0-5 cm (0-2 inches) of positive ease into account. The pictures show the 51.5 cm (20 ¼ inches) finished size, worn on a 53 cm (20 ¾ inches) size head.

Pattern details

  • Kitties All Around is written for a gauge of approx. 18 sts / 24 rounds = 10 cm (4 inches) over reverse stockinette on larger needles after washing and gentle blocking.
  • Pattern languages included: English and Dutch (Dit patroon omvat zowel een Nederlandse als een Engelse versie)
  • Digital PDF has 4 pages (letter size)

Materials

  • Yarn: 51 (70, 98, 127) m (57 (77, 108, 140) yds) / 32 (43, 60, 78 g GGH Maxima [100% merino wool; 111 m (121 yds) / 50 g] in color 32 – Orange. Substitute any DK weight yarn for a similar result.
  • Knitting needles in your preferred style for small circumference knitting in the round in the following sizes (or to match gauge): Size 3.5 mm (US 4) and Size 4 mm (US 6).
  • Yarn needle
  • 12 stitch markers
  • 1 differently colored end-of-round stitch marker
  • Cable needle
  • (Faux) fur pompom (optional)
20 Feb

tutorial – working a lifted-over knot stitch

Working a lifted-over knot stitch - a tutorial by La Visch Designs

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. This means that at no extra cost to you, I may receive a commission if you purchase something through these links. I’ve indicated these links with an *.

I find myself working more and more of the lovely intricate stitch patterns in the * Japanse Knitting Stitch Bible by Hitomi Shida. In these stitch patterns, there are a lot of types of stitches that I personally haven’t encountered before. A good reason to make some new tutorials! In this post, I’ll go into how to work a lifted-over knit stitch.

Japanese knitting stitch bible

There are, of course, many variations of this type of stitch. They can be worked over 3 to 5 stitches and in any combination of purl and knit stitches, either regularly or through the back loop. What they all have in common, however, is that one of the stitches is lifted over the others, after which the remaining stitches are worked, in combination with a yarn over to bring the number of stitches back to the original number. Characteristic of the lifted-over knot stitch is the horizontal bar that is created by the lifted-over stitch.

In this tutorial I’ll explain the version of the lifted-over knot stitch that is explained in the * Japanse Knitting Stitch Bible by the following text:

Insert tip of RN into the third st; lift it up and over the first two sts and let it drop; k, yo, k.

This particular version is worked over 3 stitches, the 3 that are near the tip of the left-hand needle in the picture below.

Working a lifted-over knot stitch - a tutorial by La Visch Designs

Working a lifted-over knot stitch step by step

1. To start, insert your right-hand needle purlwise into the third stitch from the tip of the left-hand needle.

Working a lifted-over knot stitch - a tutorial by La Visch Designs

2. Lift this stitch up and pull it over the two stitches nearer to the tip as well as over the needle tip itself. Be careful, this action may pull the other two stitches along and off the needle.

Working a lifted-over knot stitch - a tutorial by La Visch Designs

3. Now knit one stitch.

Working a lifted-over knot stitch - a tutorial by La Visch Designs

4. Yarn over…

Working a lifted-over knot stitch - a tutorial by La Visch Designs

5. … and work another knit stitch to complete the lifted-over knot stitch.

Working a lifted-over knot stitch - a tutorial by La Visch Designs

6. In the below picture another row is worked. This reveals the true appearance of this lifted-over knot stitch!

Working a lifted-over knot stitch - a tutorial by La Visch Designs

On a side note, in this piece of knitting is more going on than just the lifted-over knot stitch. Tutorials for these other types of stitches will follow!

The yarn used in this tutorial is * Debbie Bliss “Piper” in Magenta. It’s a yarn with a composition of 50% cotton and 50% viscose. As you can see, it has a great stitch definition! Perfect for trying out those intricate Japanese stitch patterns.

12 Feb

bast cowl

Bast Cowl - by La Visch Designs

Dear daughter requested a hat with kitty cats, and of course, there should be a matching cowl! The Bast Cowl is a cute cowl with cables and texture to create a kitty cat motif. Worked in a bulky weight yarn this cowl knits up super quick, perfect for a last minute gift!

This pattern contains instructions for 3 sizes. The Bast Cowl is seamless and knitted in the round. The instructions for the cat motif are provided both charted and written out.


Price: € 5,50 add to basket

Create your own Ebook! Purchase any 4 patterns and receive the 5th one for free. No code necessary, just put 5 patterns in your cart and the price of the lowest priced pattern will be automatically deducted from the total.

Interested in the complete set consisting of both the Bast Hat and Cowl? Click here to get the complete set of patterns for € 8.32 (20% off the regular combined price). Past purchases are also eligible!


Difficulty level

Bast is seamless and knit in the round from the bottom up. This pattern involves cable knitting. Stitches used include knit, purl, k2tog, skp and a purlwise m1 increase. This pattern is suitable for the intermediate knitter.

Sizes and finished measurements

Finished size S (M, L): 53 (71, 88) cm / 21 (28, 34 ⅔) inches circumference and 26.5 cm / 10 ½ inches high. The pictures show size S.

Pattern details

  • Bast is written for a gauge of approx. 14 sts / 17 rounds = 10 cm (4 inches) over reverse stockinette on larger needles after washing and gentle blocking.
  • Pattern languages included: English and Dutch (Dit patroon omvat zowel een Nederlandse als een Engelse versie).
  • Digital PDF has 3 pages (letter size).

Materials

  • Yarn: 108 (144, 180) m (119 (158, 198) yds) / 66 (88, 110) g Vams PT3 by Rauma [100% wool; 82 m (90 yds) / 50 g] in color 44 neon Pink. Substitute any bulky yarn of a similar or slightly heavier weight for a similar result.
  • Knitting needles in your preferred style for small circumference knitting in the round in the following sizes (or to match gauge): Size 4.5 mm (US 7) and Size 5 mm (US 8).
  • Yarn needle.
  • 2 (3, 4) stitch markers.
  • 1 differently colored end-of-round stitch marker.
  • Cable needle.
07 Feb

dutch knitting festival 2019 – special edition

Dutch knitting festival 2019 - special edition

The Dutch Knitting Festival is the most popular knitting and crocheting event in the Netherlands. There are many shops, over 30 classes, free yarn tasting, and lectures, demonstrations of all sorts of fiber techniques and, of course, lots of opportunities to knit and crochet together. Perfect for inspiration-filled days with and among like-minded people.

On the 25th and 26th of May 2019, there will be a special edition of the festival in a beautiful industrial location, in the middle of Amsterdam. The special theme is sustainability in yarns, fibers, and textiles.

And I’ve got some very exciting news: I’ll be teaching a workshop on Sunday the 26th on knitting a top-down crescent shawl!

Knit a top-down crescent shawl with La Visch

Crescent-shaped shawls are very popular and rightly so. Because of the special shape, they stay draped over the shoulders better than traditional triangular shawls. In this workshop, you will learn how to knit a special variant of the “garter tab cast-on” using the Art-Deco shawl pattern. This special cast-on seamlessly merges into the main part of your shawl. Attention will also be given to how to prevent the “hump” so often present with the crescent shawl shape.

At the end of the workshop, you have made a start with your shawl. And you know everything about the construction and knitting of top-down crescent-shaped shawls.

For more information on this workshop, visit the workshop page on the Dutch Knitting Festival website.

Early bird tickets for admission and this class are available through the workshop page from February 15th, 19.00 (GMT+1).

Will I see you at the Dutch Knitting Festival in Amsterdam? Do let me know if you plan on visiting. In case of questions or remarks regarding the workshop you’re, of course, also welcome to contact me. I’m very much looking forward to seeing there!

06 Feb

tutorial – crochet a braid in your knitting

Crochet a braid in your knitting - a tutorial by La Visch Designs

Perhaps you’ve seen some examples of this technique floating around the net. Knitted pieces with parallel stripes of stitches that are much bigger than the surrounding ones in either garter stitch, or reverse stockinette. In this tutorial, I show you how to crochet a braid in your knitting. This will include step by step instructions on what I did to achieve a similar result. And I will, of course, also share with you what I found out and would do differently next time I use this technique.

Crochet a braid in your knitting step-by-step

1. Cast-on any number of stitches using your preferred method. For this little swatch, I used the knitted-on cast-on, which is also known as the cable cast-on.

Crochet a braid in your knitting - a tutorial by La Visch Designs

2. Next, knit across the row and put a yarnover at every place in in the piece where you want to position the braid. I did mine where the needle is pointing. It can be handy to place a stitch marker on each side of the yarnover. This makes it easier to determine which stitch to drop down later on. I didn’t do that here, because it’s only 1 stitch in the exact middle of the swatch. No issues in keeping my place!

Crochet a braid in your knitting - a tutorial by La Visch Designs

3. Now knit until the piece has the desired height/length. Make sure to work the number of rows that is a multiple of the number of strands you want to make the braid with. A multiple of 2 for a 2-strand braid and 3 for a 3-strand braid. Next, locate the stitch that’s directly above the yarnover in your first row. This is where the stitch markers can come in useful.

Crochet a braid in your knitting - a tutorial by La Visch Designs

4. Drop the stitch down until you’ve reached the yarnover/cast-on edge. Use you fingers to tease the yarn strands loose if necessary.

Crochet a braid in your knitting - a tutorial by La Visch Designs

5. Now we’re going to take a crochet hook and work our way back up the piece using multiple strands of yarn. In this example I’m doing 2 strands together. To start, we have to pick up the 2 strands of yarn directly above the cast-on edge. I’m picking them up twisted, to ensure that the tension of this first bit of braid is not looser than the following ones. To do so, I inserted my crochet into the work as pictured, and then twisted the hook clockwise.

Crochet a braid in your knitting - a tutorial by La Visch Designs

6. Next, insert your hook below the next 2 strands and pull them through the loop on the hook to form a stitch.

Crochet a braid in your knitting - a tutorial by La Visch Designs

7. This is how it looks:

Crochet a braid in your knitting - a tutorial by La Visch Designs

8. Keep on inserting your hook below the next 2 strands and pulling them through the loop on the hook. Repeat until there are no more loose strands in the piece to work back up.

Crochet a braid in your knitting - a tutorial by La Visch Designs

9. Now you can place the last loop back on the needle. Knit accros the row to fix it into place. And that’s it!

Things I’d do differently next time

When I was working on this little swatch, I thought of a couple of things I would do differently next time. I didn’t feel the braid was fat enough against the background of garter stitch. Perhaps a 2-strand braid works better against a background of reverse stockinette.

I did try out a 3-strand braid, for the picture, see below. With this one, however, I noticed that the fabric started pulling around the braid. To counter this I would suggest not working 1 yarnover in the first row, but a double one instead. Work [k1, p1] into the double yarnover on the following row and regular stitches per your stitch pattern in the ones after that.

Crochet a braid in your knitting - a tutorial by La Visch Designs

When there are 2 columns of stitches dropped to free up strands for the braid, I expect the braid itself will also be more volumineus. Which is a good thing, because it will make it stand out better against the background.

13 Jan

tutorial – how to pick up a dropped stitch

How to pick up a dropped stitch - by La Visch Designs

It happens to all of us: dropping a stitch in the middle of your knitting… When using a somewhat sticky yarn it’s usually just a matter of placing the stitch back on the needle and continue as before. When using a smooth, slippery yarn, it can however be that the dropped stitch runs down in your work, leaving a wake loose threads behind. The same can happy with a less smooth yarn, if it isn’t detected at first that a certain stitch has escaped from the needles.

Don’t panic, though! Picking up a dropped stitch in plain knitting like stockinette or garter stitch really isn’t that hard. In this tutorial, I’ll show you how to pick up a dropped stitch. All you need is a crochet hook in size similar or a tad smaller than the size knitting needles used.

Pick up a dropped stitch step-by-step

1. First, get your crochet hook and catch that run-away stitch before it runs down even further! Pay attention to the stitch itself and the one directly below: see that it has a purl bump directly below the captured stitch? This means that in this swatch (in garter stitch) the next stitch to be worked is to be a knit stitch. For that reason, I insert my crochet hook from the front to the back through the stitch.

How to pick up a dropped stitch - by La Visch Designs

2. Next, grab the loose thread directly above and pull it through the first stitch on the hook.

How to pick up a dropped stitch - by La Visch Designs

3. In this picture you see how this looks once the crochet hook has been removed. Now, if we were picking up a dropped stitch in stockinette fabric we would just repeat steps 1 and 2. We are, however working in garter stitch, so a few more steps are needed.

How to pick up a dropped stitch - by La Visch Designs

4. For the next stitch to be laddered back up, we need to work a purl stitch. To start, I move the next loose thread directy above the stitch from the back to the front of the work.

How to pick up a dropped stitch - by La Visch Designs

5. Next, insert the crochet hook into the stitch from the back to the front, grab the loose thread and pull it through the stitch on the hook.

How to pick up a dropped stitch - by La Visch Designs

6. Now we have made a lovely purl stitch! You can recognize it by the purl bump (horizontal) directly below the loop on the hook.

How to pick up a dropped stitch - by La Visch Designs

7. Repeat steps 1-6 as often as needed to work your way back up and place the dropped stitch back on the needle. And that’s how to pick up a dropped stitch!

How to pick up a dropped stitch - by La Visch Designs

Some more thoughts

In this example in garter stitch, I started with a knit stitch. If the stitch had run down another row, though, I would have had to start with a purl stitch instead. In other words: steps 4-6 followed by steps 1-3 instead of the other way around. This is why it’s so important to learn how to read your knitting!

Also, laddering a stitch back up can cause some pulling and unevenness in the fabric. This usually evens out with blocking though. If you have a lot of difference in the tension, you can also tease the stitches back to approx. the same size using a spare knitting needle.

02 Jan

tip – blocking a cowl

Blocking a cowl - a tip by La Visch Designs

Knitting cowls is something I really love to do occasionally because it’s just so zen. You know, round and round and, well, round! But after binding off comes the blocking and that’s where it can become somewhat tricky….

I mean, shawls I stretch out to the max. and pin them down on my blocking mats. But if I do this with a cowl I get those sharp creases in the cowl where the fabric was folded. Just gently patting a cowl into shape gets the same result. So how to prevent crease lines when blocking a cowl?

How to block a cowl

First, I start with giving the cowl a gentle wash as described in steps 1 to 4 in the “blocking an asymmetrical shawl” tutorial.

Next comes the simple solution to preventing creases: the humble pool noodle!

Blocking a cowl - a tip by La Visch Designs

Just insert 2 pool noodles into the cowl, gently pat it all into shape and leave the cowl be until it’s completely dry. You can, of course, use any cylindrical shaped object as long as you’ve got two, they’re long enough and resistant to wetness. They are after all to be inserted into a wet garment.

And that’s it!

Oh, and for those wondering, the cowl featured in the first picture is the Flits! cowl. The one in the blocking picture is the Bast Cowl, which makes a set with the Bast hat.

22 Dec

for Deborah

For Deborah - by La Visch Designs

Deborah is one of the lovely ladies who often test knit my patterns. So when she expressed a fondness of a specific shawl construction combined with lots of lace I was happy to oblige with a design containing all those elements. This one is for you, Deborah!

This shawl is knitted from the top-down in one piece, starting at the neck edge with a garter tab. The For Deborah shawl is finished with an edging that is knitted on sideways and attached to the live stitches of the body as it is being worked. The instructions for the edging are provided charted and written out.


Price: € 6,50 add to basket

Create your own Ebook! Purchase any 4 patterns and receive the 5th one for free. No code necessary, just put 5 patterns in your cart and the price of the lowest priced pattern will be automatically deducted from the total.

Difficulty level

This shawl is started with a garter stitch tab. Stitches used include knit, purl, skp, k2tog, a centered double decrease and yo. This pattern is suitable for the intermediate knitter.

Sizes and finished measurements

Finished dimensions of the sample shawl: span width of 166 cm (65 ¼ inches) along the upper edge and a depth of 86 cm (33 ¾ inches), measured after blocking.

Pattern details

  • Gauge: approx. 12.8 sts / 24.6 rows = 10 cm (4 inches) over body pattern. Gauge is however not critical in the For Deborah shawl design.
  • Pattern languages included: English and Dutch (Dit patroon omvat zowel een Nederlandse als een Engelse versie).
  • Digital PDF has 7 pages in the English version and 8 in the Dutch version (letter size).

Materials

  • Garnstudio Drops Alpaca (100% alpaca; 167 m (183 yds) / 50 g) in the following colors and amounts: MC – 475 m (520 yds) / 132 g in Cobalt 5790 and CC – 315 m (344 yds) / 95 g in Pink 2922. Substitute any fingering to sport weight yarn for a similar result.
  • Size 4 mm (US 6) / 80 cm (32 inches) circular needles.
  • Yarn needle.
  • 2 stitch markers to indicate the center stitches.