What was I thinking?

lime chartreuse turquoise squares hand knit wire dangle necklace at JiSTknits on etsy.comI’ve learned a lot about myself over the past year.

I’ve learned that 3 shops on Etsy – in addition to a full time day job, family and life – are just too much for me to handle right now… And that it’s ok to let go…

For this reason, I’ve decided to place my third shop, JiSTwireKnits, on semi-permanent vacation.

Antique Brass cuff bracelet hand knit wire with cherry jasper beads and a bar clasp available at JiSTknits on etsy.comOver the course of the next few weeks, most of the wire knit jewelry that is currently available in that shop, will be moved to one of my two original shops – JiSTknits and JiSTglass. Items that are knit of wire and may feature beads, will land in JiSTknits and those with a bit of a stained glass element will be available in JiSTglass.

gold glass nugget knit wire necklace from JiSTknitsJewelry on Etsy – and in the retail world for that matter – is a very competitive segment. The online shop never really gained traction, although I’ve had modest success with my work at area craft shows. Maybe jewelry is too personal an item to sell simply through photographs and description. Who knows.

So, that being said, please do visit JiSTknits and JiSTglass… and let me know what you think!

Simple Knit Triangle Shawl – Border #1

This periwinkle blue shawl has a wide ruffle knitted at the bottom. It is 100% cotton and available in my etsy shop.

One of the easiest borders to add to your Simple Knit Triangle Shawl base is a ruffle.  Hot right now, the ruffle adds a feminine touch to any knit garment.  It does take a little patience as you will end up with more stitches on your needle that you ever thought possible!

Step 1:  Complete your Simple Knit Triangle Shawl to your desired length…. 12″to 18″ from center for a scarf/capelet, 24″ to 30″ for a shawl/poncho.  This measurement is from the back neck center stitch to your needle.  The actual width of your shawl is twice that measurement. The blue shawl measures approx. 26″ and used approx. 200 yards of yarn.

measuring the top edge of the triangle shawlAs we continue, always maintain the two stitch garter plus yarn over edge on both sides.  Discontinue center increases.

Step 2 (decorative optional row): On the next right side row, k 2, slip marker (sl m), yo, *(knit two together, yo) across to marker, ending with a yo at marker, sl m, k2. Next row (WS): k2, sl m, purl to marker, sl m, k2.

Add an optional row of eyelets for interest and to maintain design element

This row of eyelets carries through as a design element.

Step 3: This is where things get interesting! Change to a 36″ – 40″ circular needle of the same needle size. Next row (RS): k2, sl m, yo, knit in front and back of each stitch across to marker, yo, sl m, k2.  You have now virtually doubled the stitches on your needle!  If necessary, change to longer double pointed needle of the same size and stockinette stitch the next 4 rows being sure to maintain your garter stitch/yarn over border.

Step 4:  Get ready to double your stitches again!  Seriously! Next row (RS): k2, sl m, yo, knit in front and back of each stitch across to marker, yo, sl m, k2. Continue in stockinette stitch for an inch to 5 inches depending upon the width of the ruffle you prefer.  The blue ruffle measures 4 inches from the bottom of the decorative eyelet row to this point.

Eyelets at the lower edge help to discourage curling

Step 5: In order to discourage the stockinette stitch ruffle from curling as stockinette stitch is inclined to do,  I added another eyelet row (rs) and three rows of garter stitch. Bind off all stitches loosely knitwise. The ruffle of this shawl used an additional 500 yards of yarn.

Step 6: Sew in all loose ends.

Voila!  A triangle shawl with knitted on ruffle!  Enjoy!

Click here for a printable pdf on Ravelry!

 

Simple Knit Triangle Shawl free Pattern

Many of the shawls found in my shop, JiSTknits on Etsy start with a simple triangle from which individual garments evolve with decorative edges, borders and beads.  A triangle shaped shawl can be knitted from the bottom up… side to side or in this case, from the top down.  Starting at the back of the neck with very few stitches, the triangle shape is achieved through rythmic increases.

triangle shawl knit with lace border

Triangle shawl knit of a light rayon hand dyed yarn with an open lace and bead edging.

Materials/Tools:
• Approximately 200-500 yards of yarn of your choice. (Purchase an additional 100-500 more yards for bottom edge lace or ruffle)
• Round knitting needle 1-4 sizes larger than yarn packaging suggests in order to achieve either a firm (the size the yarn manufacturer suggests)  or an open and airy knit fabric (a larger needle than suggested).
• 36-50 beads with a large enough hole to fit 2 strands of yarn – optional
• 1 yard of waste yarn
• 4 stitch markers

Sizing: One size fits all. Finished shawl size (as pictured at right) approximately 58 wide x 29” tall.

Gauge:  Gauge will vary and is not important with this garment.

green triangle shawl with buttons and leaf border

This triangle was knit of a nubby green cotton with a traveling leaf design along the bottom edge. Optional buttons turn the simple triangle into a poncho.

Stitches:
Slip Stitch Pearlwise
– slide right hand needle into stitch with yarn in front as if to purl. Shift stitch from left needle to right needle without making a new stitch.
Yarn Over Increase – bring the knitting yarn around the needle between two existing stitches on one row, and then work that strand as a stitch when you work your way back to it in the next row.
Stockinette Stitch – Knit right side rows. Purl wrong side rows
Garter Stitch – Knit every row

Select yarn: Choose yarn and needle size to knit a loose fabric that will drape, have some body but little or no stiffness. This easy shawl can be knit with any weight yarn from lace to bulky. I especially like working this pattern with a yarn with thin and thick textures.

Instructions:
Set up:Using waste yarn of a similar weight as your project yarn but contrasting color, cast on 3 stitches. Change to your shawl yarn and garter stitch for 5 ridges.  Next row: knit across the three stitches, pick up 5 stitches along the garter ridge. Remove the waste yarn and knit the three stitches from your cast on edge. (11 sts)

This periwinkle blue shawl has a wide ruffle knitted at the bottom. It is 100% cotton and available in my etsy shop.

Row 1 (RS): sl 1, knit 1 sts, place marker (pm), yo, k3, yo, pm, k1, pm, yo, k3,yo, pm, k2. (15 sts)

Row 2 (WS): sl 1, k1, purl 5, slip marker, p1, slip marker, purl 5, slip marker, k2.

Repeat Rows 1 & 2, slipping the first stitch of each row and maintaining the 2 stitch garter stitch edge and 1 stitch between yo’s on center back, you will be increasing 4 stitches on each right side row (2 stitches between each yarn over, except the center.) Continue to desired length minus the width of whatever decorative border you choose. Your border design will dictate the number of stitches needed at the bottom edge.

Part two will discuss border edge designs including lace, cable and fringe.

Happy Knitting!

A “Make it work” moment or perhaps… Just Do It!

The concepts materialize.. the words flow brilliantly…

And then I step out of the shower… crap!

What was I thinking? What did I want to say? What was that phrase that sounded so eloquent a moment ago?
Turn the water back on! Help!

I spend my weekdays creating blog posts, newsletter articles, advertisements, coupons… all for my day job.
When I get home in the evening, in front of the computer is the last place I want to be.
Give me a set of knitting needles, some yarn and maybe some beads and I’m happy. Relaxed.

On the weekends, cleaning, errands, baking, creating stained glass items for my other etsy shop… more knitting… again… staying away from the computer.

Well – that is about to change! New day, new leaf…

Split Personality

Glass and fiber couldn’t be more different.  Sharp, clear, rigid… soft, lofty, pliable.

But something draws me to both of them equally.  Design ideas flow from one medium to the other as a new knitted cable design might inspire a stained glass picture frame or the texture in a sheet of glass triggers a knitted poncho design.

I’ve been known to literally walk through a yarn store scribbling ideas for a glass vase or picture frame, talking to myself or anyone around who will listen about the idea and its possibilities.  They think I’m nuts!

The colors of autumn (she writes on an 80 degree May day!) inspire a wonderful frame and fingerless gloves simultaneously.  The gloves were fun to create with glass beads knitted into the lace design.  The picture frame contains a photo from my daughter’s wedding… Flame Frame in Amber and Red - Dayna and Matta not so traditional frame for a wedding photo.

I must admit, it is easier to knit most days.  Working on stained glass takes time and energy.  It takes planning.  Knitting is a relaxing-in-the-evening activity. It travels well.

Stained glass… not so much…

But I’m drawn to both and will some day figure out a way to combine the two… stay tuned!

Welcome to JiSTdesigns!

Welcome to JiSTdesigns!

Today is the first sunny spring day we’ve had in forever… and here I sit in front of the computer watching dark clouds roll in.

I’ve been planning to start a blog for a very long time but now that it’s in front of me, my mind is blank.  Guess that’s not unusual.  I’m more of a craftsperson than a writer so this blog will be filled with photos of my ideas and creations and some thoughts on my creative process (aka creative confusion!)

I work in fiber and glass… some day I’ll figure out a wonderful way to combine the two.  For now, I knit scarves, hats, wraps, fingerless or texting gloves, bags that are then felted and whatever else strikes my fancy.  My glass work is centered around functional items such as boxes and picture frames – things that have a purpose – although I have been know to create a “what the heck is that?” type object once in a while!

Here you’ll see it all!

Hope you enjoy!  ~jill