April 7, 2015

Knit Wear Love with Amy Herzog

Knit Wear Love, Amy Herzog’s newest book, is an exciting new collection of tips, tricks, and fully-customizable patterns to help knitters make sweaters they’ll love wearing again and again. Blue Sky Alpacas is pleased to be a recommended yarn for these three designs: the Romantic Cowl, the Classic Cardigan, and the Modern Pullover.

The Romantic Cowl is a variation of the cowl “meta pattern” found in Knit Wear Love. It’s shown here in our Brushed Suri yarn, which is a blend of 67% baby suri alpaca, 22% merino and 11% bamboo. Simple stockinette lets the lusciousness of the yarn shine through: the naturally-occuring halo gives it a soft, romantic touch to create a snuggle-worthy sweater!

The Classic Cardigan is a variation of the cardigan “meta pattern” featured in Knit Wear Love. Shown here in color #1973 Rogue in our TECHNO yarn, a featherweight blend of 68% baby alpaca, 22% silk and 10% extra fine merino. This sweater will feel light and lofty despite being knit at a bulky gauge; the allover texture creates visual interest, while the v-neck adds a traditional touch.

The Modern Pullover is a variation of the pullover “meta pattern” from Knit Wear Love. Shown here in our Melange 100% baby alpaca yarn, a neutral base color is paired with bright geometric color motifs on the edges to create a contemporary look. The asymmetrical neckline gives it an unusual, unique twist for those truly wishing to make a fashion statement!

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March 18, 2015

Knitting Inspiration: Organic Cotton

It’s time to knit those Winter Blues away! If you’re anxious to spot the first signs of spring, look no further than these warm-weather projects which feature our Organic Skinny Cotton and Organic Worsted Cotton yarns. Today we’re featuring two brand-new designs and three classic favorites to build your springtime wardrobe. We’re also offering a limited-time pattern discount especially for our blog readers – read on for more details!


Appearing in the Spring/Summer 2015 issue of Vogue Knitting, the V-Neck Cabled Pullover by Cheryl Murray is knit with three colors of our Organic Skinny Cotton yarn (shown here in #301 Glacier, #319 Raven, and #311 Gardenia). This classic style looks great both on and off the tennis court!

The Avon Wrap by Tabetha Hedrick appears on the cover of Just-in-Time Knits, a special issue presented by Creative Knitting Magazine. Knit with our Organic Worsted Cotton, this two-color wrap knits up in a jiffy and is a great accessory for changing seasons and chilly Summer nights.

The Everyday Hoodie by Sylvia Häger features clean lines and minimal seaming, making it a satisfying and easy-to-knit choice for Spring. This classic cardigan is knit with our Organic Worsted Cotton yarn; for a limited time, save 50% off your Ravelry pattern purchase when you enter SPRING at checkout (offer ends Midnight CST on March 25, 2015).

Knitters of all stripes will love the modern styling of Sylvia Häger’s Skinny Cardigan, which combines skinny stripes and colorblock elements for a bold look. Choose your two favorite colors from our Organic Skinny Cotton palette to knit this fun, fitted cardigan; for a limited time, save 50% off your Ravelry pattern purchase when you enter KNITTING at checkout (offer ends Midnight CST on March 25, 2015).

Last but not least, the Cotton Sweet Cardi by Erika Flory is a delightful knit for little ones. Sweet details and our super-soft Organic Skinny Cotton yarn make it perfect for active girls with a sense of style. For a limited time, save 50% off your Ravelry pattern purchase when you enter COTTON at checkout (offer ends Midnight CST on March 25, 2015).

We hope you’ll share your latest projects in Blue Sky Alpacas yarn here in our Ravelry group. Welcome Spring!

 

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March 2, 2015

Knit Along With Us This Spring!

This week, we kicked off our Spring KAL over in the Friends of Blue Sky Alpacas Ravelry Group, and there is plenty of time for you to join in the fun! Now through April 30, 2015, we’ll be knitting the Celery Slouch Hat pattern in Blue Sky Alpacas Sport Weight, our wonderfully soft 100% baby alpaca yarn. We are offering a 50% discount on your Ravelry PDF purchase of this pattern for the entire duration of this KAL, simply enter “CELERY” at checkout to redeem the coupon!

This simple, slouchy hat is fun to knit and perfect for welcoming spring! Choose to knit your hat in the color shown here (Celery #543), or select your favorite shade of Sport Weight or Melange yarn (a few of our more adventurous group members will be substituting in other Blue Sky Alpacas yarns, too). Once you finish your hat, post a finished photo here in this thread to be entered in our grand prize drawing for a Cane Bay Wrap Project Kit featuring a printed copy of the pattern, two skeins of Extra yarn in color #3519 Fedora, a Pretty Cheep project bag, and a Nova Platina Special Interchangeable needle set from Knitter’s Pride.

Our KAL runs from March 1, 2015 through April 30, 2015, so knit as many hats as you would like in Blue Sky Alpacas yarns – the more finished projects you post, the more chances you have of winning our fabulous prize! Be sure to visit your local Blue Sky Alpacas Stockist to select your project yarn and to inquire about classes featuring this pattern; for more details about the KAL, click here to visit our Ravelry group.

Happy Knitting!

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February 17, 2015

Spotlight on Stitch Samplers

How do you know that you have the right yarn for the project you want to make? Swatching is a great way to test out a new-to-you technique or stitch pattern before tackling that larger project. Of course, it’s hard to know how a yarn will knit up before you make your purchase – and we doubt many knitters buy yarn just to knit a swatch! That’s where our website’s handy yarn swatch feature can save the day: we’ve already done the swatching for you!

By clicking the “stitch sampler” graphic underneath each yarn’s color palette, you’ll get to see a knitted swatch featuring stockinette, lace, cables, or other textured stitches using our yarns. In this example, our Bulky yarn is shown in trellis stitch, seed stitch and stockinette stitch on the recommended needle size, US 15 (10mm).

To give you an idea of how you can use this function to compare and contrast between yarns, here is the stitch sampler for one of our lighter-weight yarns, Metalico, which is a single-ply sport weight yarn. Shown here, it is knit in three different stitch patterns – a wide rib, a yarnover cable, and a delicate lace – at the recommended gauge on US #3 (3.25mm) needles:

Of course, you may choose to use a larger needle size to create an airy knit, or a smaller needle size to produce a close-knit fabric for added warmth; by being able to see how the yarn behaves when knit in the recommended conditions, this gives you a jumping-off point to start planning your next project, long before you head to the yarn store!

Click here to explore our world of yarn & view more stitch samplers at www.blueskyalpacas.com.

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February 3, 2015

Guest Blogger: Pam Powers

This week, we have a special treat for our readers: knitwear designer Pam Powers joins us to share two of her newest designs using Blue Sky Alpacas yarns. Pam has self-published many patterns over the years, and her recent work has focused mainly on accessories. Pam tells us that she especially enjoys the freedom of designing scarves because there are so many shapes and sizes to explore. We hope you enjoy Pam’s take on the modern handmade aesthetic in these exciting new designs!

When I initially started planning my book, Dress-to-Impress Knitted Scarves, I wanted some of the designs to have an ethereal or Bohemian look. My goal was to take traditional heavy knitted scarves and lighten them up with the use of design and color, so immediately I thought of Blue Sky Alpacas Worsted Hand Dyes color palette. Pastel colors can be a little tricky if you don’t want your garment to resemble baby knits. There needs to be a certain amount of saturation to the color, while still retaining lightness. Worsted Hand Dyes is also a yarn that has a good amount of heft to it, unlike baby yarns, but still retains a softness due to the royal alpaca and fine merino blend.

The two pieces from my book using Blue Sky Alpacas Worsted Hand Dyes are Chantilly Ascot and Bow Tie Ascot. Both of these pieces have the pull-through ascot shaping which I think is a nice, flattering silhouette for a short scarf. You can keep the piece snug around your neck without the bulk of tying.



Chantilly Ascot
is a rather complex twisted-stitch lace pattern that I found in a Japanese stitch dictionary. Having the patterning only on the ends makes it a more manageable project. And I think this shade of blue, Lagoon, is just a beautiful robins egg blue that you don’t see very often in yarn.



Bow Tie Ascot
is from my existing pattern collection. I originally did a kids version of this scarf with fun colorwork, but then altered the shape, made it one color and added cables to make it more adult-like.

Light Pink is the perfect “ballerina pink”, so I naturally thought of my daughter Claire, who happens to be a ballerina, to model it.



The shape is similar to a men’s bow tie, so you don’t have to worry about tying it just right to keep the perfect bow shape.

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