Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Results: Subtly Subversive Campaign

Well, the Olympics are finally over and we can all go back to our normal routines. And thank goodness - I'm not sure my heart and my nerves could have handled much more. Especially when it came to Canada's hockey games.

Before the Olympics, Bristol Ivy placed a call out to designers to see if anyone was interested in joining her in a campaign to raise funds for LGBTQ organizations during the Sochi Olympics, in response to Russia's anti-gay policies. And the designers responded.

So did knitters. I received many kind emails of support from fellow knitters, which was very heart-warming. I donated 75% of pattern sales on the Opening and Closing Ceremony days and 25% of sales on the days in between.

I'm proud to say that this morning, I donated a total of $280 Cdn to Egale.ca. It's not much on my own, but there are several other Canadian designers donating to Egale, so I'm hoping that  together we can make a difference. Donating to Egale are: Kate Atherley , Kim McBrien Evans of Indigodragonfly yarns, Natalie Servant, Kylie McDonnell-Wade,  Katherine Matthews, Lynne Sosnowski, Kathleen Sperling, and Christina Harris.

Bristol Ivy will be sharing results from designers on her blog shortly and I can't wait to see the final tally.

As for me, I felt pretty proud when I submitted my our donation this morning. And really, it was made possible by you lovely folks who generously bought patterns, either for yourselves or gifted them to others.

Thank you!

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Accessory After the Fact

This winter has been almost criminal, with a string of chilly temps and snowstorms terrorizing the nation week after week. Fight back (and look good doing it!) with new accessories to keep you cozy as you brave the cold.

Accessory After the Fact is my newest e-book. It uses some of my most popular motifs to create a collection of 3 matching hat/mitt sets.

**First up:** Interrupted Swirl Hat and Interrupted Swirl Mitts (with 2 options: fingerless mitts and mittens)

Patterns are $4.00 each, or 25% off when you buy both.
Hat dimensions: 10" across, 8" deep
The e-book is $15 for all 6 patterns, which will be released between now and April.
Yarn/kits available from indigodragonfly.

Knit in the fabulously soft merino/silk fingering blend from Indigodragonfly, the hat features 2 repeats of the swirl motif separated by broken rib stitches.  While one size fits most, I wanted to make this hat easy to customize. To make the hat smaller or larger, simply add extra ribbing to both sides. To make the hat deeper, add another swirl repeat.

 The Interrupted Swirl mitts use the swirl motif across the back of the hand. The mitts start with a scalloped cuff, worked flat and uses increases to add in the broken ribbing across the palm. Once joined in the round, continue the swirl and broken ribbing.

The pattern includes instructions for both a fingerless mitt version and a mitten cap.

Just like the hat, the mitt is customizable: add or remove some of the broken ribbing to suit the hand of the recipient. (Modification instructions aren't included, but just keep in mind that the mitten cap decreases are similar to sock toe decreases. Divide the total number of stitches in half and decrease on both edges of the palm and back of hand.)

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Valentines BOGO

Hello knitters!

Valentines is approaching and I'd like to share some love with my fiber-y friends.

From February 12-14 I'll be running a **Valentines BOGO** promotion. Here's how it works:

1. Gift a pattern or e-book from my shop to someone (including yourself!) on Ravelry between February 12-14, 2014. You must use the Ravelry Send as Gift purchase option to qualify.
2. Within 24 hrs, I'll send you a coupon valued at the same amount of the pattern(s) you gifted.
3. Use the coupon to pick something out for yourself from my shop. Coupons must be used by February 28th, 2014.

**For example:**

- Gift a pattern worth $3.75, get a coupon for $3.75
- Gift an e-book worth $15, get a coupon for $15.
- Gift 2 (or more) patterns, get a coupon for that value.

You can use that coupon to pick out any patterns for yourself.

Perfect for Random Acts of Kindess (RAKs), showing a friend you care, or spoiling yourself.

Promotion will start Feb 12th 12:01am  **GMT** (now) and end Feb 14th 11:59pm **EST**.

Monday, February 10, 2014

I may be crazy

...but I've cast on a new cardigan before I've finished seaming the last one.

I just couldn't resist Jimenez Joseph's Gakusei cardigan. I went through my stash and hauled out some Sanguine Gryphon Bugga which I purchased at Rhinebeck in 2012. It's perfect for this project: a nice rich navy blue

I only have 4 skeins and will round out the yardage requirements with some Sweet Fibre in red I picked up at the Toronto Knitter's Frolic last year.

I had to play with gauge and needles a bit, as the pattern calls for DK weight yarn and the Bugga is a sport weight. But size 4.0mm needles seem to do the trick. Plus, after doing some calculating I've gone up one size to compensate for minor gauge differences.

I love the simplicity of this pattern. Plus, it gives me the chance of adding a pop of color into my wardrobe without going too crazy. I'm a basic black kinda gal, if left to my own devices. So I try to add color to my wardrobe whenever I can.

The construction is clever too. I like that the side panel of color is knit separately and then seamed up with the front and back panels. Unlike many, I don't mind seaming.

What I do need to decide is whether to wear it open, with a button band or a zipper. I've failed twice on adding zippers to knit wear, so I'm leaning towards the first two options.

What's your crazy project at the moment?

Friday, February 7, 2014

Subtly Subversive

That's the term Bristol Ivy used to describe her idea of donating pattern sale proceeds to LGBT rights organizations during the Sochi Olympics. I like it.

I'm not an 'in your face' kind of person. I'm the quiet one in the corner of the room, observing. A friend of mine once referred to me as "Switzerland" - because I'm neutral. I tend not to pick sides in most political (or other) discussions. I can usually see issues from many different perspectives, even ones I disagree with.

Subtly subversive. Just my style.

The list of designers participating in the Sochi Olympics LGBT donation efforts continues to grow. The full list is on Bristol Ivy's blog, so check there for updates.

I encourage you to check out each of the designer's offerings. If you see something you love, this is a great time to buy a pattern. Spread the love.

As of today, the list includes:

Bristol Ivy -- 75% of all proceeds of Ravelry store during the opening and closing days, and 50% of all proceeds during the remainder of the Olympics, will go to Lambda Legal and Equality Maine

Kate Heppell -- 100% of sales of Jane Socks, Hercule Socks, Fox Isle, Sunny Later, Ollaberry, and Tiny Shoots will go to the Albert Kennedy Trust

Emily Peters --100% of sales of Berkeley, CA shawl and 50% of all other pattern sales will go to the International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission

Lee Meredith -- during the first four days, 100% of sales of the Spiraling Stripes hats and Freak Out!, 50% of select rainbow-able patterns, and 35% of sales of Coloring Book will go to the International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission

Rena Varsakis -- 25% of all pattern sales throughout the Olympics will go to the International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission

Maureen Foulds -- 75% of sales during the opening and closing days, and 25% of sales during the remainder of the Olympics will go to Egale

Mary Annarella -- 100% of Lyrical Knits sales on February 7th will go to the International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission

Nell Ziroli -- 50% of pattern sales and 100% of sale of Isle of You during the first four days  will go to the Atlanta, GA chapter of the Human Rights Campaign

Brenda Castiel -- 80% of sales during the opening and closing days, and 50% of sales during the remainder of the Olympics will go to the International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission

Rebecca Zicarelli -- Pillow Scarf and Rainbow Collar are both 25% off with the coupon code "EqualityMaine".  50% of proceeds of these sales after fees will go to Equality Maine

Kate Atherley -- 50% of sales from her Ravelry store will go to Egale

Kim McBrien Evans -- 50% of sales from her Ravelry store will go to Egale

Natalie Servant -- 50% of sales from her Ravelry store will go to Egale

Kylie McDonnell-Wade -- 50% of proceeds from Feb 7-9th, then 25% for the remainder of the Olympics will go to Egale

Annika Barranti -- on opening day, 75% of all sales from her Ravelry store will go to Lambda Legal, and 50% thereafter

Miranda Jollie -- 50% of the sale prices of Talboys Wrap and Montserrat will go to the Albert Kennedy Trust

Vera Sanon -- 25% of all pattern sales on opening and closing days will go to the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force

Katherine Matthews --  50% of sales from her Ravelry store will go to Egale

Elanor King -- 100% of proceeds from Bow Ties Are Cool and Collared!!! will go to Stonewall UK

Alex Tinsley -- 50% of sales on patterns featuring stranded colorwork on February 7th will go to International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission

Lynne Sosnowski --50% of all sales from February 6th (the day before the opening ceremonies) to February 24th (the day after) will go to Egale

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

The List of Love

Just a quick update to my earlier post.

The full list of designers donating portions of their Ravelry sales during the Olympics to support LGBT organizations is available on Bristol Ivy's blog, Where the Red-Winged Blackbird Flies.

Take a look. Maybe you'll find something you've been longing for. Like love.

Love, Actually

I can't believe the Olympics start in only two days! I'm looking forward to cheering on our Canadian athletes.

I'm also interested in seeing how the actual event plays out, given all the discussions about Russia's attitude toward gay rights, concerns over security, and the recent media reports about Sochi's readiness (or lack thereof) to host the influx of visitors.

While I'm not the kind of person who usually uses public forums (fora?) to proselytize, I'm going to make an exception here.

Canada has been a leader in marriage equality - a fact of which I'm proud. I read media reports, blogs and personal stories in Ravelry forums from people who live in states or countries where there are laws against people marrying the person they love, and I'm dismayed. We are all human. We all want and need love. There's enough hate in this world.

There are people more eloquent on the issue of equal rights for LGBT folks. And I will leave the public words to them. They can do it so much better than I.

To that end, I'm joining with select other designers on Ravelry to support LGBT rights during the Sochi Olympics. For the full list of participating designers, see Bristol Ivy's blog, Where the Red-Winged Blackbird Flies.

I will be donating 75% of my pattern sales on the days of the Opening and Closing Olympic ceremonies (Feb 7 and 23) and 25% of sales during the rest of the Olympics (Feb 8-23).

Funds raised will be donated to Egale.ca, which is a Canadian national charity. Egale.ca promotes LGBT human rights through research, education and community engagement. They work with schools, fight against discrimination and hate crimes, and work on legislation and legal cases across Canada. I'll report back after the Olympics to let you know how much was donated.

Everyone deserves to love and be loved.