Show and tell: CoopKnits.

Happy to be back with more show and tell, this time featuring projects made with yarn from CoopKnits!

Hazel knit her second “Smilla’s Dress” with CoopKnits Socks Yeah!, a superwash fingering weight blend of merino wool and nylon. This yarn was designed to wear well and wash easily, attributes that make it as applicable to baby things as to socks, and its tight twist provides excellent stitch definition.

Glen knit these striking “Tetrahedron Socks” with two shades of CoopKnits Socks Yeah! The pattern is from Rib Magazine No. 3, which we still have a couple of copies of.

Below is Emily’s “Lush,” designed by Tin Can Knits, knit with CoopKnits Socks Yeah! DK, a heavier weight version of the same great yarn shown in the projects above. I love her perfectly matching buttons!

Many thanks to the talented knitters who shared the projects above, and to everyone who starts their projects with a trip to the Hillsborough Yarn Shop. We love seeing what you make!

Show and tell: Isager.

Time for another round of show and tell! Today I’m here to share some finished projects that started life as yarn on our shelves, and they all have one thing in common: they’re all knit with yarn from the Danish company Isager.

Above is Loretta’s “Girasole,” an intricate circular shawl designed by Jared Flood. She used two Isager yarns held together for this piece, both lace weight – Alpaca 1 and Spinni. The combination is perfectly balanced, with drape from the Peruvian alpaca yarn and structure from the Danish wool.

Hazel picked up Susie Haumann’s All You Knit is Love here at the shop and has been busy knitting from it, making dresses for her granddaughter.

She knit this “Smilla’s Dress” with Isager Highland, a light fingering weight wool sourced in Peru. The heathered color gives depth to the fabric of this piece, with its eyelets, cables, and panels of reverse stockinette.

Hazel went on to knit a second “Smilla’s Dress” in a different yarn – more on that in the next show-and-tell post!

Carribeth knit this Churchmouse “Alexandra’s Airplane Scarf” with Isager Japanesk Bomuld, a lace weight cotton tape. Knit up loosely like this, it’s somehow crisp and soft at once, a contradictory but delightful fabric for summer.

We love seeing what folks make with our yarns – thank you so much for sharing your projects with us. Look for more show and tell here soon!

Show and tell: Malabrigo.

It’s high time for another round of show and tell! Today I’m here to share some finished projects that started life as yarn on our shelves, and they all have one thing in common: they’re all knit with yarn from the beloved Uruguayan company Malabrigo.

Above is Janet’s first-ever knitting project, a ribbed scarf made with the worsted weight, hand-dyed Malabrigo Rios. Rios is one of the most popular yarns in our shop because of its versatility, smooth, soft texture, and vibrant colors. Well done, Janet!

Here’s another scarf in Rios, showing a more subtle, tonally variegated colorway. The pattern is “Rockcliffe” and the knitter is Donita, who comes back to Rios again and again, as so many of us do.

I knit this little “Dog Star” with Malabrigo Arroyo for a friend who’s having a baby next month, having made the same sweater for another pregnant friend earlier in the year. Malabrigo’s superwash yarns are perfect for baby things, as they’re easy to care for and soft to the touch.

Malabrigo yarns also play well with others. Glen used Malabrigo Sock in natural white as the background color in his “Broken Seed Stitch Socks,” letting another variegated yarn shine.

Winnie took a similar approach with her “ZickZack Scarf,” pairing a semisolid Malabrigo Sock with the self-striping Schoppel-Wolle Crazy Zauberball for a lovely effect.

Emily used a variety of leftover yarns, including bits and pieces of Malabrigo Rios, in this “Randolph Raccoon,” a gift for her son. Toys like these are an excellent use of odds and ends, which is why I never get rid of even the smallest length of leftover yarn – Emily did a great job putting some of hers to use!

Many thanks to the talented knitters who shared the projects above, and to everyone who starts their projects with a trip to the Hillsborough Yarn Shop. We love seeing what you make!

Lucerne.

Our shop is abuzz with excitement over Brooklyn Tweed’s new yarn, Peerie. The folks at BT were kind enough to send a couple of sample skeins our way in advance of the release, giving Anne just enough time to knit “Lucerne.”

Jared Flood’s “Lucerne” is a colorwork hat in two, three, or four shades of Brooklyn Tweed Peerie. It’s a perfect starting place for those new to stranded colorwork, and Peerie’s 45 shades are an absolute playground for knitters of all experience levels.

Anne’s “Lucerne” is in two shades, the dark green Nori and pale gray/green Gale. In this sample, the darker shade is the main color, but their positions could easily be swapped for an equally attractive, but very different look. Here are a few more two-color combinations to consider.

I couldn’t stop here, of course – in fact, I spent the better part of Wednesday afternoon creating and photographing color combinations for this project! Next up are three-color combinations. I began with one that Flood suggests in his pattern.

The formula here is straightforward: three colors, all from the same family – one light, one medium, and one dark. I had fun creating a few more in this vein.

The possibilities for four-color combinations are even more varied, of course. There are no rules, but it’s wise to have a range of values, so the individual colors can be distinguished from one another in the context of the pattern. Here’s one from Jared Flood.

Here are a few I came up with, just the beginning of what’s possible.

Until June 30th, the pattern is free when you buy Peerie here at our shop. Look for the yarn in the fingering weight section. We can’t wait to see what color combinations you come up with for “Lucerne” hats of your own!

Show and tell: Hitofude.

Amy has now taught her “Hitofude” cardigan class three times at our shop, and has just begun a fourth. With an unusual construction and a repetitive lace motif, Hiroko Fukatsu’s “Hitofude” is a gracefully draped garment that many knitters have been drawn to. So far, we’ve seen five finished garments come out of these classes, and I can’t wait to share them with you!

Above is Amy’s own “Hitofude,” knit with Shibui Staccato. The combination of silk and superwash merino means drape and shine, both of which bring elegance to this piece.

Many of Amy’s students chose Staccato for their “Hitofude” cardigans; here’s Jane in hers.

Jane lengthened the sleeves and the body of the sweater for exactly the fit she wanted, and it came out just right.

Margie made similar modifications, but used Fibre Company Cumbria Fingering, a wool/mohair blend with more structure and less drape than Staccato. It makes a more substantial garment appropriate for fall and winter, and Margie is happy with the results.

Pam used Madeline Tosh Merino Light for her sweater, which looks springy and playful in a tonally variegated chartreuse. It’s not a yarn we carry at the shop, but Malabrigo Mechita is similar – a hand-dyed, single ply, superwash merino.

This group photo shows Linda, second from the left, in her “Hitofude,” knit with Shibui Staccato. She kept the original sleeve and body length of the pattern for a slightly cropped silhouette. It’s amazing what an impact these slight differences can have from one garment to the next, even with the same pattern – we love seeing knitters in self-made sweaters that reflect their preferences and show off their skills!

Thanks to these knitters for sharing their work with us, and especially for participating in classes here at the shop. We feel so lucky to have such talented teachers on our team, and students who are excited to learn more about their craft. I’m so looking forward to seeing more “Hitofude” cardigans as they’re completed!

Back in stock: Vivacious 4ply.

Last week brought an enormous shipment from Fyberspates, bursting with bags and bags of Vivacious 4ply.

Vivacious 4ply is a high twist, superwash merino wool in fingering weight. Each 100 gram skein has 399 yards, enough for a pair of socks or mitts, a hat, scarf, or shawlette.

We restocked all the colors we’ve ever had and added a few new ones, too.

Tom recently knit this “Wuthering Heights MKAL” shawl with two skeins of Vivacious 4ply in a beautiful high-contrast color combination.

Lately we’re seeing many knitters reach for this yarn to knit larger shawls and wraps. The robust and ever-growing palette of colors lends itself particularly to gradient-making, or fades – think Andrea Mowry’s “Find Your Fade,” or Joji Locatelli’s recent “Fading Point.” Here are a few color combinations with the latter pattern in mind.

Colors shown, left to right: 602, 617, 615, 626, 625.

Colors shown, left to right: 609, 607, 608, 606, 626.

Colors shown, left to right: 624, 610, 628, 609, 607.

Colors shown, left to right: 611, 618, 600, 620, 628.

Check our “Fingering weight” board on Pinterest for more pattern ideas, and look for Vivacious 4ply here at the shop!

Show and tell: colorwork sweaters.

Two blog posts full of colorwork knitting just aren’t enough – here’s a third, with a focus on sweaters.

Here Margie models her “Townes” pullover, knit with a clever combination of speckled Malabrigo Mechita and a few solid and heathered shades of Jamieson’s Shetland Spindrift.

Emily’s first adult-sized colorwork sweater is a perfect fit and features a beautiful, distinctive color combination – the pattern is tincanknits’ “Dog Star,” and the yarn is the unbeatable Brooklyn Tweed Arbor.

Kate has just finished a “Dog Star,” too, on a smaller scale for her daughter. For this one, she’s used Fibre Co. Arranmore Light, but she has another in the works in Arbor – can’t wait to see that one, too!

From left to right, here are Claire, Tom, Jayne, Barbara, Barbara, and Amy, all in their “St. Brendan” pullovers knit during Amy’s class on the subject. It’s so fun to see all these different color combinations together, not to mention all these happy knitters sporting their own handiwork!

Thanks so much to the knitters pictured above, and to everyone who’s ever taught or taken a class here, or started a project with a trip to our shop – we’re so grateful for all of you! It’s our community that makes our shop special. See you there!

Show and tell: colorwork accessories.

Time for another round of show and tell! Colorful knitting projects are popular around here – I had enough colorwork hats to fill a recent blog post, and now I’m back with other colorwork accessories.

Is a stuffed chicken an accessory? Whatever category it belongs in, Amy’s “Fancy Hen” is adorable, and beautifully knit. In preparation for a class on the subject earlier this year, she knit this charming chicken with Baa Ram Ewe Dovestone DK, a yarn well-suited to stranded colorwork.

Ellen knit these intricate colorwork mittens with Jamieson’s Shetland Spindrift. The pattern is from Jorid Linvik’s Big Book of Knitted Mittens, a great resource if colorwork mittens are your cup of tea. A cute pair of mittens is a great starting place for learning and practicing stranded knitting, just like a hat or any small accessory.

Here’s Margie in her “Fresco Crescent” shawl, by Kieran Foley. This shawl is an impressive combination of knitting techniques from lace and stranded knitting to intarsia, stripes, and beading.

She used Jamieson’s Shetland Spindrift in a big palette of neutrals, reds, pinks, oranges, and yellows, working these colors intuitively into the piece as she went, rather than planning it all out ahead of the knitting.

Gwen’s “Hudson” shawl, by Shannon Cook, is a simpler design of stripes and lace, but no less striking. Gwen’s color choice in Ewe Ewe Baa Baa Bulky is particularly eye-catching; she knit it to wear to a spring wedding and finished just in the nick of time.

Karin knit not one, but two pairs of Rachel Coopey’s “Alfrick” socks, using Coopey’s own CoopKnits Socks Yeah! yarn for both projects.

Thanks as always to the talented knitters who shared their work here today, and to everyone who starts their projects with a trip to the Hillsborough Yarn Shop. I’ve got even more colorwork show-and-tell in store for the coming weeks – stay tuned!

Show and tell: colorwork hats.

We love to see finished projects that started life as yarn on our shelves, and when I’m able, I love to photograph them and share them here on the blog. It’s been a busy spring so far, full of exciting new yarns, books, and magazines, all of which keep this blogger busy. Meanwhile, jaw-dropping projects keep coming through our doors, and it’s time to make time for show and tell. I have enough photos stockpiled for at least four blog posts – let’s begin with colorwork hats, on the heels of our HYS Colorwork Trunk Show.

Here’s Joanne’s “Seeds Hat,” designed by Jared Flood and knit with Brooklyn Tweed Loft. The soft sage green with the bright teal is a surprising combination that works well, especially with a jaunty pom-pom on top.

Sandy made a “Seeds Hat,” too, also using Brooklyn Tweed Loft; I snapped a photo just as she was weaving in the ends on this, her first colorwork project.

I made a family of “Banff” hats for my sister, brother-in-law, niece, and nephew for the holidays. I love Malabrigo Rios for its easy care, fun colors, and soft, squishy hand, and I love tincanknits’ straightforward pattern for its charming motif and huge range of sizes.

Marilyn knit this “Bousta Beanie” to practice her fair isle knitting technique before embarking on a larger colorwork garment; her even tension and excellent color choice show how ready she is for that exciting project. The yarn is Jamieson’s Shetland Spindrift, a classic choice for colorwork and a personal favorite of mine.

Kate has been knitting with Shetland Spindrift, too; this “Snawheid” was designed by Kate Davies, for whom Kate and I share a great admiration. This playful combination of bright blue and natural white suits the snowflake motif and shows the pattern so well!

Margaretta’s “Tincture” hat is colorwork of a different kind – mosaic knitting, where some stitches are slipped and others are knit, for a color pattern with a bit of texture, too. She used Brooklyn Tweed Arbor in a high contrast combination for a striking effect.

Thanks to the knitters, crocheters, and weavers who bring in their work to show us what they’ve made! You inspire and amaze us, and we can’t wait to see what you get into next. Keep an eye on this blog for more show-and-tell soon!

Show and tell: Barrington Vests.

Last year, Amy taught two classes here at the shop on Jared Flood’s “Barrington Vest,” a colorwork garment that appeared in our first-ever Brooklyn Tweed trunk show. With an all-over honeycomb pattern, tailored fit, and steeked neck and arm openings, “Barrington” is a complex knit that presents plenty of opportunities for learning. So far, we’ve seen four finished garments come out of these classes, and I can’t wait to share them with you!

No surprise, Amy finished her “Barrington Vest” first – instructors always get a head start on the projects they teach. She used Brooklyn Tweed Loft in Almanac and Snowbound, a rich blue and pale gray, a high contrast combination.

Ruth also opted for a high contrast combination of Loft in Old World and Woodsmoke, a deep purpley blue and a light oatmeal. I was delighted to see her wearing her “Barrington Vest” at the shop a couple of weeks ago; there is something so satisfying about wearing one’s own handiwork!

Iva chose a somewhat more subtle pair of colors, Loft in Sweatshirt and Fossil.

These two shades, a medium heathered gray and a warm ivory, have just as much contrast as Amy and Ruth’s color combinations, but the effect is somehow a little softer to my eye – one of those little knitting mysteries I haven’t the color theory background to solve.

Linda knit her “Barrington Vest” in Artifact and Woodsmoke, the same colors shown in the pattern photo. She brought it in to show us on a busy Saturday at the shop, and when I cleared a surface to photograph it, other knitters gathered around it in admiration. Yarn shoppers are perhaps the best audience for show and tell!

Thanks to these knitters for sharing their work with us, and especially for participating in classes here at the shop. We feel so lucky to have such talented teachers on our team, and students who are excited to learn more about their craft. I’m so looking forward to seeing more “Barrington Vests” as they’re completed!