Tag Archives: Barbara Gregory

Colour my Work

I continue to be a little obsessed with color work accessories. I have a feeling more than a few friends and relations are going to receive multi-colored hats or mittens for Christmas. I was so happy with the Pixie Farts pattern that I recently finished that I looked at other patterns by Barbara Gregory for a second project.

I recently finished these Aldershot mittens knit in Madelinetosh DK.

Aldershot mittens

Aldershot mittens knit with Madelinetosh DK

These were a much quicker knit given the larger gauge. I finished them in just over a week.  The pattern called for a worsted weight yarn but  Knitty City had these three skeins of coordinating yarn in Tosh DK in stock that I thought were a perfect combination.

Madeleinetosh DK

Madeleinetosh DK in Denim, Betty Draper Blues, and Ink

The intended recipient has small hands so I decided to substitute the yarn and knit at a slightly tighter gauge in hopes of a better fit. They are cetainly smaller –perhaps too small— but they fit me almost perfectly :-)!

Mitten-cuff before and after crocheted edging

Mitten-cuff before and after crocheted edging

I did have a little trouble making a neat and tidy cuff. There are garter bumps where the cuff lining turns under and creates a facing for the patterned cuff. I just wasn’t happy with how messy mine looked and so I tidied it up with a little single crochet edging. I think it was a reasonably successful save.

The project used less than half of the skein of the darkest blue. I’d like to make the matching hat, perhaps knit with needles one  size larger to ensure it fits a normal sized head. Otherwise, my daughter may end up with the matching hat and mits that were intended for her grandmother and they don’t go with her winter coat at all.

With the Aldershot mittens complete, and worry about enough yardage for the matching hat looming, the release of the Fall 2015 issue  of Twist Collective early this week was a perfectly timed distraction. Sure enough there are two knit-worthy patterns by Barbara Gregory in the issue:  Filigrene and Sweetfern.

I especially love the way the variegated contrast color in Sweetfern works up with the light colored, solid background. This use of a highly variegated yarn was on my mind yesterday when while on a little artisanal ice cream tour on the lower east side I discovered Downtown Yarns.

This happened.

Malabrigo Mechita Yarn in Teal Feather and Arco Iris

Malabrigo Mechita Yarn

I can’t wait to see how these jewel tones work in Gregory’s inspiring pattern.

Our kitten Mochi looks a little skeptical.

Malabrigo and Mochi kitten

Mochi thinks maybe I might be a little ambitious.


Holiday Knits

It happens every year right around this time. School’s out, the weather is lovely, wool is on sale, and my imagination turns to how we might best enjoy the holidays. The Christmas holidays that is. I’ll explain.
Each summer my family spends a week or so on Martha’s Vineyard with my husband’s parents and as many of his siblings and in-laws as possible. We’re very fortunate to be able to reunite with family in such a beautiful place and with the superb and gracious hospitality that his parents extend.

Here’s a fun collage that captures some of the fun and sun we had this year.

Martha's Vineyard 2015

Vineyard Highlights 2015

Oh you noticed that lovely grey addition to my stash. Here’s a close up:


Summer Stash Enhancement: Linen/Cotton/Silk blend with enough yardage for a small shawl


I found it at a yarn store in Vineyard Haven called Vineyard Knit Works which only coincidentally shares a name similar to this blog. Alas, I was in and out with barely enough time to browse their stock but it certainly seemed worthy of another visit. Next year!

I do get distracted by yarn! You too? Tell me about it ! Seriously – leave me a story in the comments. It’s good to know I’m not alone.

Back to the point: Christmas knitting —  because after all, it’s July already!

Each year as we make the long drive back to New York, it’s always a little sad to reflect on how long it will be before we have a chance to see family again. Perhaps we’ll see them at Thanksgiving, but it may be Christmas before we have another chance. And thinking of Christmas, means thinking of gifts, which means thinking of knitting, and then — *BAM* —suddenly the sadness gives way to the obsessive hunt for the perfect projects and companion yarns for all the potential recipients. I can spend hours crafting elaborate spreadsheets refining my plans for thoughtfully planned and lovingly handmade giving. Well my intentions are in the right place.

Alas, my husband reminds me that not everyone appreciates the homemade (imagine that ) and time dictates that I edit my ambitions. Still, there will be some hand-knits to wrap come the holidays and after many years thinking about Christmas as we drive along the Merit Parkway in the middle of July that I’ve learned to pack an appropriate project to work on to be sure of that.

This year a pair of Pixie Farts designed by the brilliant Canadian designer Barbara Gregory saw some mileage:

Mittens in progress

Handy work

I finished them this morning:

Pixie Farts / Hand knit mittens

Pixie Farts: Pattern by Barbara Gregory knit with Tosh Merino Light / colours Flashdance and Poprocks

These were begun with optimism late last year and abandoned when it was clear they would be too small for the intended recipient. My eldest daughter has however, admired them and though I may have to send them for a tumble in the dryer to see if I can shrink them a bit, I think she’ll like them.

As much as I love the colours and the subtle variegations  I’m not convinced the Tosh Merino Light yarn I used was the right choice for this project. I think my next pair of stranded mittens will be in a plied yarn with a tighter twist.

Most importantly, they were a tremendous learning experience. I’ve never done such ambitious color work and though my technique clearly needs more practice, I think at least a couple people on my gift list will find Gregory designed mittens under the tree.

These are in my favorites all from Twist collective:





Horatio and Oren

Now, how can it possibly be that this designer doesn’t have a fan group established on Ravelry?