On the Brighton Pier

My number one spot for holiday is the seaside. I love to listen to the sound of the sea, feel the sand softly running between my toes, watch kids making sand castles with their dad and knit a little. Bliss…

Shortly after I finished my collaboration with Tanis Lavallee I had a small shopping spree during an update in her etsy store and I bought a skein of TFA Blue Label Fibgering Weight in a wonderful colorway called Lotus. I put it in my stash to wait patiently for inspiration that came a couple of months later. It came with a fabulous gig organized by Danielle Sunshine (the creative force standing behind “Lioness Arts”) and that is a Knitting, Yarn and Fiber Fastival called “Unwind Brighton”.

This festival will be a treat for any knittter! There will be lots of yarnies as well as many classes held by various talented designers like Ysolda Teague, Woolly Wormhead, Bristol Ivy, Ragga Eiriksdottir and many more! Just check out the site for details.

But why did I make a shawl? Well, Dani is organizing a couple of KALs in her Unwind Brighton group on Ravelry with designs created especially to celebrate the festival and “On the Pier” shawlette is one of them. There will be a category for each pattern, and prizes of course! You don’t have to be attending to join the fun!

Additionally, I’m offering this design  at a discount until the end of Unwind Brighton festival (14th July), then it will go back to its regular price ($5).

Pic credits belong to Marcin Duda

The touch of fresh breeze caressing your skin… the hardness of pebbles under your feet… the blue Garter sea and white lacy foam… the old wooden pier and you know you’re there… welcome to Brighton.
This lightweight shawlette has everything a perfect shawl should have: easy stitches creating a beautiful fabric, a little bit of lace that makes it girly and a very wearable shape.
Make it, wear it, not only when you’re in Brighton!

Happy knitting! xoxo

Forever More

I have a soft spot for blues. Light, dark, with slight hints of gray or white, I love them all. Yet I’ve never imagined I could touch a real dazzling blue!

When Sundara and I decided to work together I was really excited – her yarn looked so wonderful, the colorways so rich and beautiful, “that will be something great”, I thought. And then she proposed the colorway I’d be working with – Cobalt Over Meditarranean.  That was dazzling blue! Genuine dazzling blue! The moment I took out the skeins from the parcel  I was blown away. That color was unreal. So deep, saturated, inspirational. Then I started thinking what could match with this beauty. I wanted the yarn needed to shine. No fancy stitches, no complicated lace or cables, nothing of that sort. So I CO and did what the yarn wanted me to do – I knit a simple shawl.

The shawl is worked sideways, beginning at the left wing picot edge, continuing throughout the shawl body and finishing at right wing picot edge. There are 4 pattern stitches throughout the whole shawl body: easily memorized lace edging, a simple braid cable, good old friend Garter stitch and, like a cherry on top, I-cord edge. The crescent shape of the shawl is achieved by the use of simple increases and decreases located in Garter section, as well as a few short rows nicely hidden in the pattern stitches.

I made mine using three skeins of Sundara Yarn Silky Merino with about 40g left, which means you shouldn’t get a headache over playing yardage chicken. Three skeins allowed me to make a really big shawl, perfect to wrap around my shoulders and the fairly loose gauge resulted in a wonderful drape.

Why “Forever More” you might ask? This is the title of a song by Moloko, my great music love. Music has always been there with me in many important moments of my life. Sometimes it was connected with a person. A friend, a lover or a relative. Sometimes it was connected with a place. It was there, in the background, a beautiful witness to all those precious moments that you want to keep within yourself for a long time. And then when you hear the first notes of a familiar melody all comes rushing back to you…

Such is this shawl – a vast ocean of knits with distinct themes floating by that witness the magic of your life, your emotions, your joys. And when you think that one day all may fade away from your memory, just wrap yourself snugly in the shawl, feel the gorgeous drape and texture, close your eyes and get carried away…
To keep every memory forever…
And more…

Photo credits belong to talented Marcin Duda

Happy knitting everyone!
xoxo Justyna

Awesome FOs: Criollo by Addiesma

There’s nothing nicer than seeing how one of your ideas is molded in the hands of another knitter. It is truly inspirational and makes you realize that “a design” is just a starting point for everyone’s imagination.

Sara Gresbach, aka Addiesma, has used one of my absolutely favorite colorways, bloomsbury, and knit a wonderful version of “Criollo”. Her cardigan is so delicate, feminine and beautiful, just like Sara :-)

Sara did make some modifications to the design and I must say they are wonderful. She says: “I really love the original design, I just didn’t have it in me at the end of the day when I finally sat down to work on it. It just needed to be a little more simple and go a little faster. The mock cable was the perfect mod for me and my knitting “personality.” And this is exactly what I can see in the photos. A “Criollo” with a pinch of Sara’s soul.

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Pattern: Criollo
Knitter: Addiesma, here’s Sara’s project page
Yarn: Madelinetosh TOSH Sock

(P.S. Not sure if you know, but Sara is a talented designer as well! Check out her site)