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Twist Collective Blog

Design Process: Azami


By Carol Feller, originally published on her blog, Stolen Stitches (and check out her Polyvore styling ideas for Azami in her April 22nd post).

I began thinking about this design several months ago and it started with the stitch pattern, an open ’star’ lace pattern.  In fact when I was working on the design I always called it ‘Starry Night ‘ when I referred to it!  This is one of the original swatches I put together with this lace pattern using Malabrigo Lace in ‘Glazed Carrot’.

You can already see in this swatch how I was working on a decreasing/increasing the width of the lace pattern.  In the final design I used this idea at the sleeve cuffs, along the sides of the hips and also around the neckline.  I love the effect of lace worked across an otherwise simple fabric that moves across the material.

With the hood I wanted to create an allover lace material that expanded to fit the head without having to increase the stitches, by increasing the needle size and creating a more open lace at the top of the hood it fits without interrupting the flow of the lace.

As you can see when I was originally envisioning this piece I was thinking about using a laceweight yarn at a loose gauge.  Although this would have produced a lovely fabric it does take an age to work and Kate from the Twist Collective got me thinking about using different weight yarns.  I loved working with the yarn we finally choose, Southwick from Valley yarns.  It is a dk weight yarn that is a mixture of both cotton and bamboo, so it creates a super drapey fabric.  Although you do need to make sure to block your swatch to make sure that you take account of any stretch you will get after it is blocked.

This is a sketch of the final design idea, you can see that the end product looks pretty similar (I’m always amazed when that happens!!) please forgive the poorly drawn face, I just can’t resist drawing faces on my sketches – must be the child in me…

As with most of my designs, this sweater is made seamlessly.  The body is knit in the round from the bottom up (with the shoulders joined using a 3-needle bind off).  The sleeves are picked up from the armhole and worked down using short rows to create a set-in sleeve.  In Barbara Walker's Knitting from the Top she suggests not picking up the wraps when you work sleeves like this as the wraps create a neat ’seam’ at the top of the sleeve.  I’ve been too much of a chicken to try this before but I gave it a shot and it really works beautifully.  It has the added benefit that you don’t have to mess around with picking up any wraps!

There is gentle waist shaping created using dart lines on the front and the back and all edging is kept nice and simple with garter stitch.  It was a pleasure as always to work with the Twist Collective (Carol also designed the child's Necco Wafer Hoodie in the Spring 2009 issue).

Giveaway winners!

First prize of the book, yarn and GoKnit bag goes to: Kate K.

Second and third prize of the book go to: Annie T. and Abby C.

We've emailed you! Congratulations!

(and for everyone else, the pattern is still available for free! Happy knitting!)

Free Pattern and Giveaway!


Veronik Avery (who has published several charming patterns with us including: Mittaines and Moufles, Papineau and Linden) has a new beret pattern to share (FREE!) with you all. It’s also available in her new STC book: Knitting 24/7.


Knitting 24/7 Cover

In celebration of this new book, Veronik and Stewart, Tabori & Chang have given Twist Collective gifts to give out to three people! Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it." ' + path + '\'' + prefix + ':' + addy59137 + '\'>'+addy_text59137+'<\/a>'; //--> by midnight Eastern Time on Sunday, May 16th to be entered into the contest. Winners will be chosen at random.

First prize winner will get: Knitting 24/7, enough St. Denis Nordique yarn to knit the beret as well as a GoKnit bag by KnowKnits to keep it all handy!

Second and third prize winners will get: a copy of the Knitting 24/7 book.

Beret Up Close

There’s also another giveaway happening right now on the Knitting 24/7 group on Ravelry.

Good luck!


Style Notebook: Timpani, Reader Edition

Julia here.

A few weeks back, I posted one of my Polyvore collages for Connie Chang Chinchio's Timpani cardigan. Because of the length of the skirts I used, a few readers were concerned that I had forgotten that not everyone wants to show so much leg. I do my best to be sensitive to the range of people's comfort zones when it comes to clothes. When I choose things to put together on Polyvore, I try to avoid spending over a million bucks for an outfit, and I am usually pretty successful in collecting things that friends of mine would allow themselves to be seen wearing.  Sometimes skirts that match the sweaters are shorter than I would like, or the heels on the shoes are too tall, but a Polyvore collage is purely fantasy, and not at all something I consider as "the rules." 

However, the post inspired a number of readers to suggest "friendlier" sartorial choices for Timpani, and I want to (gleefully) share them with you here. 

April submitted this board (I'm digging the beaded sandals and the beach-casual vibe):

Kathy sent me this idea for Timpani, suitable for fancy work or a dinner date:


Becky had a dressier occasion in mind for her Timpani fantasy:

There's a few more Polyvore things in store, thanks to the creativity of readers like you. Stay tuned, and go knit something. xo

A Knitter's Guide to Polyvore


by Marnie MacLean, from a series of original posts in the Ravelry Twist Collective forum.

If you read the Twist Collective Blog regularly, you've seen the Style Notebook posts where Julia uses a site called Polyvore to suggest styling options for the many beautiful patterns Twist offers. I've gotten sucked into the fun and will be offering posts on my blog ways you might work some of my designs into your own wardrobe (if you happen to share my weird sense of style). I absolutely love the way Julia and Kate style my pieces for the magazine, but I also think it's really fun to see pieces in another context. Here's how I play with Polyvore, and now you can too. I’ll say that I found Polyvore a little hard to use at first, a little unintuitive, but once you get it, it’s fun.

For the graphics I used (and you can yank anything I’ve used, from my sets and re-use them if you like), I used photoshop to clear out the backgrounds and then I saved them to the web using a program called Skitch. I don’t know what to suggest if you use a PC, but, as mentioned, Flickr is no good. You can just grab photos from Twist, but Polyvore does a subpar job of clearing out the background, IMHO.
Probably the easiest way to get started, once you’ve made your account, is to go into someone else’s set and look at the individual items listed down the side. Click on the one you want to use and click “Be The first…”

Step 1:


Step 2:


Step 3:


Step 4:


For people who want to know how to clip a new image to polyvore, here’s a very simple walk-through.

Step A:

Go to the bottom of any Polyvore page and choose “Clipper.” Drag the “Clip to Polyvore” text to your toolbar simply using your mouse to do so.


Step B:

Navigate to an image you want to clip. You cannot clip anything from Flickr. You can use items you’ve personally loaded into Ravelry or your blog. Click the Polyvore bookmark and a box will appear


Step C:

Click on an image you want to clip. Note that in Ravelry, the thumbnail will pop up into a larger image and you will have to click that so it’s 2 clicks in Ravelry, 1 click in most other places.


Step D:

Click as many images as you like and add names and tags.


Step E:

Go back to Polyvore and admire your handywork!


Proceed with abandon!

To see the outfits that Marnie has imagined for her own Twist designs, visit her blog.  To see reader-submitted polyvore ideas, stay tuned here to the blog.