Monday, August 15, 2011

Fall mags, handspun and another rejection letter

Ah, finally I get to blog. I hope to fit two or three blogs in this week, if I manage my time well enough. One of them will be another self-published pattern, which I submitted to a magazine a few months ago and for which I just got the rejection letter today. Once again, it took a loooong time to hear back. The design was not just rejected out of hand, someone took some time and thought about it. So that alone gives me encouragement.

That said, I'm going to stick to self-publishing for a while. I have a lot of ideas, and unless one happens to fit someone's editorial timeline so perfectly that I can't NOT submit, I'm going to just self-publish for a while, and if someone notices and asks me to do a design (a girl can dream) or something, awesome. Otherwise, I'm taking a break from submitting to the mags. The 3-5 month time period that you have to wait to hear back is frustrating, especially when after like 7 attempts I haven't gotten one in yet, and I could be selling those patterns myself that whole time. A little break to do exactly what I want and not have to worry about whether it fits the theme or whether my kids will be in college before I hear back will be nice.

That said, let's talk about the designs that DID make it into the mags!

My hands-down favorite of the three fall mags that I have is Cast On. It blew my mind! The focus this issue is mosaic knitting, and I want to knit quite a few patterns from this issue. I learned a lot about mosaic knitting from reading it, and there are some really stunning patterns. For instance, the lovely socks and the very intriguing "Grolse Wanten," the blue, white and red mittens that come from a Dutch mitten knitting tradition:

I am 1/4 Dutch, so I pretty much have to make the mittens. I just love them.

Interweave Knits also blew my mind with a great article on double-knitting and this gorgeous double-knit throw:

That looks like loads of fun and would look great draped over a sleeping husband or kid. :-)

I also have to make this beautiful shawl, knitted in Imperial Yarn Bulky 2 Strand Pencil Roving. Whoa! I can knit the shawl and spin the leftovers! And they're a Northwest yarn company, from Oregon. They raise the sheep that grow the wool on their ranch. So awesome! I'm glad to have found this company through finding this pattern. It's by Andrea Rangel, a Seattle designer, so it's local all-around!

After those two arrived, Vogue Knitting's fall issue came along, too and wow. I love the Fair Isle gloves on the cover. To use the yarn the pattern calls for, Schulana Cashmere Fino, would cost $100, though. Hahahahahaha. No. I will be using something else, if I make them.

The other pattern from Vogue Knitting that I really, really like is the #4 Oversize Nordic Pull, by the awesome Kristin Nicholas. GORGEOUS!

I love her colorwork. This sweater is so stunning. I don't know if I could pull it off in a graphic black and white like shown above, but I think it would work well on me in more neutral colors, or maybe even in crazy, bold colors. Who knows what I'll do with it?

This year there's definitely a good batch of fall magazines. That said, I do find it tiresome when issue after issue, year after year, certain magazines stick with the same designers who design with the same yarns, over and over. That gets boring. I like the magazines who change it up, who bring in new designers, magazines where you can tell it's not just yarn companies having their in-house designers submit designs that pimp their yarn, where they try out new yarns and new yarn companies.

Speaking of new yarn, I finished spinning and Navajo plied some of the merino that I dyed a while back. It was my first time Navajo plying, so there were a few times that I lost my rhythm and screwed up, which resulted in some unintentional lumps and boings, but who cares? It's art yarn. People charge a lot for handspun art yarn that has lumps and boings intentionally inserted into it! Here it is. I am in LOVE with it.

I don't know yet what I'm going to do with it, but I think it wants to be mittens, or part of mittens. There's about 90 yards of worsted to heavy worsted weight yarn here. Maybe big, crazy cuffs on black or cream (or another neutral color) mittens? I have it next to me as I write, to look at, pet and admire.

That's it for now, but the next day or two, I'll post my most recently-rejected pattern, a fall/winter accessory that takes just one skein of wonderful, wonderful Blue Sky Alpacas Sport Weight. Mmmm, alpaca.


  1. Did I miss the shawl pattern name? It looks so lovely and cozy. Great color too.

  2. It's the Pembroke Wrap ( Isn't that gorgeous? I love lace in big, chunky yarn!