Free pattern Friday (+ new store sample): Boneyard

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The Boneyard Shawl by Stephen West is the simplest of triangle shawls featuring repeated sections of garter and stockinette stitch. A great project for beautiful hand-dyed yarns with subtle shading.  We knit our version with Manos del Ururguay’s Fino – a luscious blend of extra fine merino and silk in a lightweight yarn that’s ideal for accessories or luxurious garments. The combination of colour depth variations and stitch textures produces a minimalist shawl with a modern feel.

Click here for additional photos and project details on our Ravelry page!

Manos Fino can be purchased in our online store here.

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– Melissa

New store sample: Tier

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Tier is a gorgeous summer scarf from Shellie Anderson knit with one of Shibui’s newest yarns – Twig (46% linen, 42% recycled silk, 12% wool). The sections of elongated rows of dropped stitches on either end create interest in this simple, light accessory. Elegant and versatile, Tier can be worn many ways and will play well with almost any outfit. A very basic pattern that knits up quickly for seriously high-impact results!

Twig can be purchased in our online store here!

Pattern available for free with yarn purchase (in-store or online).

Click here for additional photos and project details on our Ravelry page.

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– Melissa

New store sample: Summer Tunic (Drops 87-2)

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This loose and comfortable summer tunic from Drops is a wonderfully quick and easy project. Wear it over a tank or t-shirt or take it along to the beach or pool as a breezy cover-up. The blend of cotton and linen make for a cool, dry fabric with great drape – ideal for hot summer days. Both rustic and elegant, this tunic will fit right in to your wardrobe!

(Mod: Omitted mohair cuffs – knit entire sleeve with Bomull-lin)

Click here for additional photos and project details on our Ravelry page.

Bomull-Lin can be purchased in our online store here!

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– Melissa

Free pattern Friday: Espace Tricot Summer Patterns

Many of you already know that we periodically design and offer our own patterns for free but, for those who may be new to our blog, I thought I would take today’s post to highlight several that make for great spring and summer knitting projects.

Enjoy!


 Villeneuve

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A racerback tee knit with Wrapped Silk (N-84) from Habu Textiles! Designed to layer over a tank top or t-shirt, Villeneuve is a chic addition to any summer wardrobe. This garment is meant to fit loosely at chest with minimum ease. Please select size accordingly. Body of garment is worked in the round from the bottom up then back and front are worked flat in Stockinette Stitch from the armhole bind-off.

Download PDF – [English] [French]
Click here to purchase yarn.


 Summer Fling

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Summer Fling is the perfect little summer bag for strolling around town, light shopping, or meeting friends for a cocktail on a terrace! The bottom is knit flat and then stitches are picked up for knitting the main body in the round. Handles are then knit flat one at a time and are joined using Kitchener stitch. Knit with Sparrow yarn from Quince & Co. this bag is both pretty and casual and the 100% linen content makes it strong and durable. Form and function!

Download PDF – [English] [Français]
Click here to purchase yarn.


 Aisé

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Both elegant and minimalist, our Aisé wrap is a lovely warm weather accessory.  It can be worn formally or casually depending on the occasion (think little black dress or jeans) and the laceweight blend of linen (42%) and cashmere (58%) make it ideal for use in air conditioned offices and on spring days and cool summer evenings. Knit with Sylph yarn from Jade Sapphire the fabric of this piece is soft and airy with a slight texture.

Download PDF – [English] [Français]
Click here to purchase yarn.


Firefly Tunic 

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Knit with Classic Elite Yarns Firefly (25% Linen / 75% Viscose), our Firefly Tunic combines a softly draping neckline, drop shoulders, and a longer a-line body in a relaxed summer pullover. The blend of linen and viscose produces a crisp fabric with beautiful drape and a slight sheen. A separate cowl adds flare and versatility! Like Léger (see below), this pattern includes directions for 11 sizes and can be easily adjusted in terms of body and sleeve length. Knit in the round from the bottom-up. Sleeves are knit flat and seamed.

Click here to download PDF
Click here to purchase yarn.


Léger

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Knit with Rowan Creative Linen (50% cotton / 50% linen), Léger combines a boat neck, drop shoulders, and nautical stripes in an easy-to-wear casual summer pullover. The pattern includes directions for 11 sizes and can be easily adjusted in terms of body and sleeve length. Knit in the round from the bottom-up.

Click here to download PDF
Click here to purchase yarn.


Double-Take Tee

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We love how this simple tee turned out with two colours of Habu Wrapped Merino. The back and front of the Double-Take Tee are identical so you can decide which colour to wear facing forward based on your mood or outfit! Simple, lightweight, and chic – perfect for spring and summer.

Click here to download PDF
Click here to purchase yarn


Simple Hemp Tote

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A great summer tote knit with Hemp for Knitting’s allHemp6LUX (100% Hemp) and finished with a pair of rolled leather handles from Greyson E. As the name implies, the Simple Hemp Tote is a super easy project that knits up in no time. It’s worked as a long rectangle with angled corners, folded in half and seamed to finish. Classic in style, the combination of brown, natural, and black makes this a great casual bag that will work with most outfits (and shoes!). Still, we can see this knit in a variety of colour combinations making the most of the beautiful shades available in allHemp6LUX and the various colours of Grayson E. handles (e.g. Brown, Amber, Buckskin, Olive, Red, Black).

Click here to download PDF
Click here to purchase yarn.


Ombre Tank

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Knit with Habu Textiles Tsumugi Silk (100% silk) our Ombre Tank is ideal for hot summer days. If you can’t wait, layer it with a tee and you’re set for spring. We used the same technique as the Ombre cowl to achieve the gradation of colours. The fabric is crisp yet soft and supple at the same time and the A-line shaping is very flattering on most body types. Lower body is knit in the round and front and back neckline are kept the same – an easy knit with minimal finishing work.

Click here to download PDF
Click here to purchase yarn


Chevron Baby Blanket

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We modified our popular Chevron Colour-Block Blanket to create this cheerful and modern baby blanket using Blue Sky Alpacas Worsted Cotton. One skein each of 5 colours. Easy-peasy and fun to knit!

Click here to download PDF
Click here to purchase yarn


Shadow & Light

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This lengthwise scarf/wrap which is knit in-the-round and then “steeked”, uses two luxury yarns we couldn’t resist pairing. One skein each of Tanis Fiber Arts Red Label Cash Silk Single and Handmaiden Fine Yarn Maiden Hair along with this simple pattern are all you need to create this soft and luminescent wrap.

Click here to download PDF
Click here to purchase TFA Red Label (Maiden Hair will be added to our web store shortly!)

Happy downloading!

– Melissa

New store sample: Summer Silk ‘n Scribbles

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Our third Silk ‘n Scribbles store sample just came off the needles – this time worked up in two beautiful summer yarns from Berroco. Espresso is a super bulky cotton blend with a vibrant hand-dyed look and Captiva is a lighter weight, smooth cotton blend with a satiny feel and subtle shine.  They work beautifully together in this easy shawl / wrap  from Stevenbe that lends itself well to yarn experimentation.  A quick and very satisfying knit that yields a beautiful summer accessory!

Click here for more photos and project details on our Ravelry page.

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– Melissa

Do You Give A Damn?

About the “Color of the Year”?

Well, this is it.

Just in case you feel like whipping up a summery design in that particular colorway, I checked on our inventory to see if we could oblige.

Shibui Linen, Bordeaux

Classic Elite Yarns - Firefly, 7727 Sangria

Classic Elite Firefly, Sangria

Quince Sparrow, Port

Rowan Creative Linen, Raspberry

As with every color, there are different interpretations. But these come as close as possible. Four out of, well, I don’t really know, but a lot of colors and summer yarns we have in stock.

It seems yarn companies do not bow to fashion trends much, I rather think they develop colors true to the owners/creative designers taste.

I, for one, wish the yarn industry cared a bit more for what is in fashion to be able to cater to our customers, however, having worked in the business, I do also know that the cycle of yarn is much different from the short lived trends in the fashion world. Then again, do we knitters really care that much? Knitting a sweater is like cooking ‘slow food’ – instead of going out buying whatever is available (i.e. ‘fast food’) we choose a design and put time and love into creating it. Meanwhile the fashion devotee is on to the third trend of the season and has to hurry to keep up. Which is really not what I personally am about.

So I have to ask myself: Do I give a damn, really?

Happy Knitting, as ever!

– Mona

Baby & Child Sophisticate class – starting tonight!

Do something spontaneous and join us for this brilliant baby garment class beginning at 6 pm today. The Baby & Child Sophisticate is a favourite pattern among our customers – for little girls and boys alike. Here’s your chance to learn the basics of sweater knitting with a small satisfying project and instructor support every step of the way.!

Call us at 514 486-5648 to reserve your spot!


BABY & CHILD SOPHISTICATE (Bilingual Class)
Samantha Perrault
$90 for three 2-hour sessions / 90 $ pour trois séances de 2 heures
6 pm – 8 pm, April 7, 14, 21 / 18h à 20h, les 7, 14, 21 avril

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In this class you will learn the basics of top-down sweater construction and traditional raglan shaping to knit the adorable Baby & Child Sophisticate by Linden Down. You will also learn how to pick up stitches for the collar and button band after the body is knitted and how to shape the collar using short rows. Required materials: Enough worsted weight yarn of your choice to knit desired size. Set of 24″, 5 mm circular needles and set of 5 mm double-pointed needles (or size required to obtain gauge). Level: Advanced beginner or experienced knitter.

Lors de ce cours, vous allez apprendre les caractéristiques d’un pull tricoté en « top down », sa construction, son façonnage traditionnel en raglan, ce qui vous permettra de tricoter l’adorable Baby & Child Sophisticate  de Linden Down. Vous apprendrez également à relever des mailles pour le col et la bordure après avoir tricoté le corps et comment utiliser les rangs raccourcis pour façonner le col. Matériel requis : Assez de fil moye (worsted weight) de votre choix pour tricoter la grandeur désirée. Aiguilles circulaires 5mm de 24” et aiguilles double pointes de 5mm (ou grandeur vous permettant d’obtenir l’échantillon). Niveau : Débutant avancé ou tricoteur expérimenté.

– Melissa

Easter Bonnets, of a sort

Four “Big Easy” hats came off the needles this week for my son and some of his friends. I’ve knit this pattern from Vivian Aubrey more than a dozen times now and the more I knit it, the more the circle widens and the requests roll in. Adults and kids alike love the combination of head-hugging rib and stockinette slouch. After seeing one or another of my son’s hats, all of these kids asked me for a version in their chosen colours and this weekend’s egg-hunt provided a motivating deadline. They loved them!

I began with the smaller hat size (casting on 84 sts) but, for added slouch factor, knit to the length of the larger version (8 inches) before beginning the decreases.  All are made with Madelinetosh Vintage in Tern, Betty Draper’s Blues, and Onyx.

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And because I was uber-Mom this week, I also crafted another little surprise for the day – hard-boiled eggheads. This was a super fun and simple project from A Subtle Revelry. Be sure to bookmark it for next year. :-)

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– Melissa

Madelinetosh Unicorn Tails!

Madelinetosh Unicorn Tails are magical mini versions of the ever-popular Tosh Merino Light. With just 47 m / 52 yd per skein, these are ideal for hexipuffs, granny squares, fairisle work, or any projects that require multiple colours but not a lot of yardage.

Unicorn Tails are now available in our online store but we don’t yet have individual photos for each skein so we’ve included the colour names below to help you choose.

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Colours (top to bottom): Antler, Edison bulb, Pop Rocks, Neon Peach, Torchere, Coquette, Tart, Purple Basil, Cathedral, Flashdance, Celadon, Big Sur, Button Jar Blue, Cousteau, Jade

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Colours (top to bottom): Amber Trinket, Firewood, Glazed Pecan, Bettine, Antique Lace, Dust Bowl, Ink, Mandala, Rain Water, Silver Fox, Onyx, Dirty Panther, Fathom, Worn Denim

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Beauty shot – Unicorn Tails are hand-dyed in 30 of Madelinetosh’s brilliantly glazed signature colorways!

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Perfect for combining with larger skeins of Tosh Merino Light for contrast or when you need just that last little bit to finish your project! Please note that there are no dye lots for Unicorn Tails so we cannot guarantee 100% consistency.

The possibilities are endless for using Unicorn Tails – here are just a few ideas:

Unicorn Stripes by Antonia Shankland

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(Photos: Madelinetosh)

Brighton Plaid by Eclectic Gipsyland

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(Photo: TheUncommonThread)

 Colorblock Handwarmers by Purl Soho (free pattern)

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(Photo: CatReading)

Madeline Shawl by Kate Jackson (free pattern until April 30, 2015)

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(Photo: Kate Jackson Knits)

Bee Keeper’s Quilt by Tiny Owl Knits

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(Photo: Tiny Owl Knits)

Essential Hats by Jenn Nevitt

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(Photo: Madelinetosh)

Bracelet001 by michiyo (free pattern)

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(Photo: Betseysen)

– Melissa

Free pattern Friday: Mia

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(Photos: Jennifer Wood)

Mia by Jennifer Wood is a flattering a-line top knit with Shibui’s newest yarn, Twig – a great choice for spring knitting. The blend of linen and recycled silk creates a soft, lightly textured fabric with beautiful swing and drape.  The seed stitch and crochet edging around the neck add feminine interest to the simple shape of this casual yet elegant tank. Constructed from the top down in one piece with short-row shoulder shaping and short rows in the back for added length. Body shaping is created by a gather in the back.

A must-have for your spring and summer wardrobe!

Twig is now available in our online store. :-)

– Melissa

Sheer Spring

‘Sheer’ as in ‘nearly.’

‘Sheer’ as in ‘diaphanous’ (no one tell me I do not make an effort with the English language) also.

Diaphanous is big this year – especially for Spring and Summer. It is not new, the sheer, see through fabrics usually turn up around this time of year, yet I find some or other new idea that I feel drawn to.

Pictures courtesy of eileenfisher.com

These two sweaters are just an example – there are so many possibilities for us knitters to get inspired.

I will admit that knitting a sweater like that is usually a bit of work, since you want to use a fairly thin yarn on slightly larger needles than you would use normally – but the effect is worth the effort.

Lets face it: There is rarely a summer knit I feel comfortable wearing without a tee or a cami underneath, this way I make at least the most of it.

You might be surprised how much pops up by just entering ‘sheer’ into the pattern search on ravelry. However, you can just look at all the designs and imagine them in a thinner yarn that would make them light, airy and summery.  Here are some of my front runners:

The Silken Straw Summer Sweater by Purl Soho. Picture form here. Think Habu Tsumugi Silk, for a special kick Silk Stainless held together with the Fine Merino or Handmaiden Lino (which is available in store, and we just got new stock!).

Yes, I know, this one (Sweet Jane) does not look diaphanous. It is knit up at a gauge of 25 sts with a fingering weight. Now imagine this knit up with Handmaiden Lino, a fantastic linen/silk mix in a lace weight and there you go! Picture from here.

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Yes, indeed. This is one of our newer store samples, the Taiyo Linier Top in Shibui Linen and Silk Cloud. I tried it on and quite like it! Imagine it also in Quince Sparrow, Shibui Twig or Classic Elite Firefly. At a gauge of 18 stitches this one knits up in almost a flash!

One designer who has this look down to a tee is one of our all time favourites: Cocoknits. Check it out and pick your shoo-ins!

Now, wasn’t this inspiring and ‘sheer entertainment’?

Happy knitting, as ever!

– Mona

New store sample: Sweet Pleat

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Aptly named, Sweet Pleat by Hannah Fettig is an adorable pullover tunic perfect for little girls busy at summer time play. It’s knit with Quince & Co’s Kestrel, a 100% organic linen yarn which is spun in a unique ribbon structure.  The slightly textured fabric and “raw” edges give this simple, no-fuss dress a relaxed feel that’s just right for days on the beach or in the sandbox.  And like all things linen, it will get softer with washing and wearing.

Click here for additional photos and project details on our Ravelry page.

Kestrel is available in our online store here.

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– Melissa

 

New store sample: Taiyo Linier

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The Taiyo Linier Top by Sian Price-White is an easy spring / summer top that is worked flat in two identical pieces and then put together with four short seams. The length of both the sleeves and the body are easily adjusted. We knit according to the pattern (casting on 150 stitches) but worked our two panels a little longer than the original for additional coverage. Great over a t-shirt, tank-top, or dress! Dress it up or down.

Our top pairs Shibui Linen and Silk Cloud (held together) for a soft and weightless version.

Click here for more photos and project details on our Ravelry page.

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– Melissa

New store sample: Granny’s Favourite

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Granny’s Favourite is a sweet, easy to follow, pattern from Georgie Hallam. This versatile little confection is knit from the top-down with several length options provided including bolero, dress, and cardigan. Three sleeve lengths are also included: short, middie and long. As such, this is actually several patterns in one! The easy lace pattern on the yoke is both written and charted and sizes are colour-coded (newborn to age 12). The Butterfly Super 10 Cotton was a perfect yarn choice and the finished cardigan is as beautiful as it is hard-wearing.

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This yarn is available in our online store here.

– Melissa

Kim Hargreaves books – just re-stocked

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Kim Hargreaves’ pattern books are perennial favourites and it’s clear why. Filled with stunning collections of modern yet classic designs, each one is more inspiring than the next. The patterns are clear and accessible and the layouts and photography makes these coffee-table worthy.  A key designer at Rowan for over twenty years, Kim now manages her own company from her home in Yorkshire England and delivers fresh ideas four times a year in book form.

Click here to browse these books on the Rowan website.

Note that several of these titles are now out of print so this may be your last chance to scoop them up!

– Melissa

The Granny Square is back!

Come and learn how to crochet this fun and addictive baby blanket.
Class begins Wednesday, April 8th!

CROCHET BABY BLANKET – GRANNY SMITH (Bilingual Class)
Giovanna Clementi
$90 for three 2-hour sessions
6 pm – 8 pm, April 8, 15, 22

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Many topics will be covered in this 3-week course including: achieving neat colour changes, carrying yarn from row to row, tips on dealing with ends, how to determine how much yarn is required for another row. Required materials: worsted weight yarn in several colours, 4.5 and 5 mm crochet hook, tapestry needle, scissors. Pre-requisites: participants must know how to crochet basic stitches such as: chain, slip stitch, single crochet and double crochet.

– Melissa

Free pattern Friday: Funny Bunny Hat

This pattern will be free until Easter Monday, after which it will cost $5, so hurry over to Ravelry and get your free download!

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(Photos: Angie Watson)

The Funny Bunny Hat by Angie Watson is a very sweet little pattern which is knit with a solid or variegated main color for the hat and outer ears and a contrast colour for the inner ears. The pull over the head design provides lots of coverage to keep your bunny’s ears and neck warm too and saves the trouble of wrestling with a scarf or separate neck warmer.  Pattern includes directions for seven sizes from 3 months to 3 years.

– Melissa

New in store: Sock Stop

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We have a new product in store we’ve been meaning to tell you about. Sock Stop is a non-slip latex based paint that lets you transform your ordinary slippery socks into safe socks!  An especially good idea for kid’s socks and felted slippers. To use, simply cut a piece of card to the right size and insert into your sock. Apply the Sock Stop liquid onto the outside of the sock creating unique designs or patterns and leave to dry. When completely dry (after 10-12 hours) the socks are washable at 40C.

We currently have 3 colours in stock but will be adding more soon.
Available in 100 ml bottles.

Order online here.

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– Melissa

WWMD*

It seems like Spring is slowly creeping upon us – finally! At the store we have new stock of summer yarns, including a few new ones I am itching to knit with like Quince Kestrel (a linen ribbon yarn) and Shibui Twig (a mix of recycled silk, linen and a bit of wool with a cool texture). I just have to find the right patterns.

What I am working on right now is a store sample worked in Drops Bomull Lin, a cotton linen mix in a worsted weight. This particular Drops pattern asks to knit the yarn quite loosely – as often with summer sweaters – and this in return opens up a whole box of questions about finishing.

I get them quite often at the store. Most of the times I am able to give you tips, other times I am not sure because it is quite tricky to advise something I haven’t done myself.

So here is another part of *What Would Mona Do.

First of all, when knitting summer yarns loosely, do not freak out about how uneven the knitting looks. Mine does too. Sometimes more so, sometimes less, usually not very pretty.

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Don’t fret – just steam! After a good steam blocking the sleeve looks like this:

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Much better, right?

Now, this particular sweater is knit in pieces that need to be seamed.

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Not so pretty either with all these ends hanging about. There is a good reason for it, though. In this case I have decided I am going to seam the sweater first and then ‘hide’ the ends in the seams, this way they won’t show. I could have woven the ends into the edge first, however that would make seaming a bit more difficult – so, seam first, weave after.

I might have mentioned it before, but here I go again: If you put a bit of thought into what comes after the knitting (finishing!) then you might be able to prepare that during knitting. It makes things usually easier and less daunting.

That is my morsel of WWMD for today.

Happy Knitting, as ever!

Mona