Knitwear Fashion Photo Shoot

Modeling the Cloud Cowl.

Modeling the Cloud Cowl.

Yesterday I had some fun with a long anticipated photo shoot with talented Vancouver photographer Sylvia McFadden, or Sylvia Bo Bilvia as she is known for her fabulous lacework shawls. Today I have been updating my pattern photos from my mannequin to pictures on a real live human (myself) on both Ravelry and Etsy. There will be a sequel photo shoot to update a couple more patterns sometime this fall once the samples are ready. I will also be updating the actual PDF patterns with Sylvia’s beautiful photos too. Now onto the photos!

cc7

cc4

cc6

cc8

swh3

swh4

sshp1

mh4

em6

em4

I hope you enjoy these pics as much as I do!

x Rena

AWOL

hat

You know that thing where you swear you know where something is, and then it isn’t where it’s supposed to be? That’s what I’m experiencing today with various objects around my place. Things are AWOL. No shore leave for you, knitting samples. I’m hoping some of them are in the box havoc that is my storage unit. Also missing? My hat. Not a knit hat, just a hat. Which should be hanging in its spot but it isn’t. Maybe I put it away in an even better spot. Hmm.

But what perturbs me is that all my knitting samples should be together. But obviously they aren’t. There’s a particular hat sample that I need for a rapidly approaching photoshoot that has long since been arranged, but it’s not with its kin in my wardrobe. Gone.

So in a fit of inspiration (read: madness) I’m going to attempt to speed knit a new sample of the English Rose Hat. WIth a pompom. I think it would look even better with a pompom. I may have a problem. Wish me luck! I better get knitting now.

x Rena

Though She Be But Little, She is Fierce Shawlette

Though She Be But Little, She Is Fierce Shawlette modeled by Caitlin ffrench.

I am so happy that I finally have a new release to share with you today. My Though She Be But Little, She Is Fierce Shawlette is now live on Ravelry, and soon to be released on my Etsy site too. Here are a couple more photos:

little6edited_v2

3 wider small

The Though She Be But Little, She is Fierce Shawlette is a splash of colour and eyelets fit for any season. Not too large, the shawlette fits comfortably around the neck worn as a kerchief. Your imagination is the limit when it comes to styling this versatile shawlette.

This pattern is suitable for advanced beginners using the following techniques: circular needles, long tail cast on, knit st, yo, placing st markers, eyelets, worked flat, garter st fabric, bind off, weaving in ends. Everything you need to know to make this shawlette is inside the pattern.

Technical Editor: Katherine Vaughan. This pattern has also been test knitted by my generous Ravelry test knitters.

Models: Caitlin ffrench and Rena Varsakis.

Photography: Rena Varsakis.

I have a special offer on right now for this pattern – if you purchase the pattern before 15 August 2013, you will automatically receive 25% off at checkout.

little5edited

2 small

What do you think?

x Rena

Project-itis Relapse

symphony fireworks

Project-itis resolutions go pop in the night like fireworks over the symphony in the park recently.

It’s easy to make resolutions. It’s even easier to break them. I may or may not have lasted 24 hours with my declaration to have a moratorium on all projects. It’s a project-itis relapse already.

It started with the textile illustration. This was justified in the following manner: it’ll only take an hour. And it did. But it was a gateway drug. This led to sewing a tote, including making the fake leather handles (!) from scratch. Oops.

Well, maybe sewing projects weren’t included in the moratorium on all new projects. Right?

Feeling virtuous, I took up one of my many WIPs that’s on my summer knitting project list. Yes, I have a list – it makes me feel organized. Or OCD. Whatever. That’s when I encountered a raft of issues with my project, and guess what? I needed to start over. Does that count as a new project? I’d like to think not. Just part of continuing work on an existing project. The project can take multiple forms, I tell myself. No problem.

So I’ve restarted the project and told myself no more sewing for now. I hope that this lapse is over!

x Rena

Project-itis

Project-itis: when there is a wall of projects higher than you can shake a stick at, and yet you want to start more projects.

Project-itis: when there is a wall of projects higher than you can shake a stick at, and yet you want to start more projects.

I have the -itis. Project-itis, that is. It’s a knitter’s affliction where you have way too many works-in-progress (WIPs). I’m not sure what a respectable number is – two, perhaps three. I bet you, though, it’s not 10. Or more. Which is probably what I have going on.

In self defense, or in an attempt to justify the quantity of existing projects, I will say it’s because they’re in various stages of design. Not because I’m a project addict, of course. They’re not all huge projects. After all, there is only so much budget for yarn. Although there is an awful lot of stash yarn available for smaller projects. There’s also enough yarn to make at least 3 sweaters. I should probably list left over project yarn, unused skeins, for sale on Ravelry or somewhere, but that’s probably a post for another time.

I’m not sure where the -itis comes from. A flurry of ideas, for sure, and an impatience to see them come to light. But there are only so many knitting hours in a day and they can linger in various stages of completion for a long, long time. Like knitting purgatory. I like to have different projects in different gauges to help mix it up for my wrists. That’s another justification.

And then another key symptom of the -itis is the nearly unstoppable desire to start more projects. No, I tell myself firmly. Again and again. It’s working, barely. For now. I tell myself that there’s at least two sweaters in the works that need finishing, and a myriad array of smaller projects.

I’m having a flare-up of the -itis because I just finished a sweater. Oh boy, I think gleefully, I can start something else! Damn you, -itis. You’ve got me again. No.

So I am trying to steel my resolve and focus on completing something. I admit I did have a bit of a slip up the other day and started a hat. I couldn’t help it. It was just little, after all, and it would only take a couple of days to complete, right? What’s the harm in that?

I might have a problem.

Do you suffer from project-itis? Or do you exercise more self-discipline than I do?

x Rena

Birthday Sale!

Birthday_candles

Happy birthday to me and happy birthday savings for you for the next 24 hours. I admit I’m a couple of days late, what with all of the festivities and all. The offer is 36% off all patterns on Ravelry from The Red Fox and Gown. Now go, quickly, because this won’t happen again till next year! Use birthday36 at checkout.

Now, for another slice of ice cream cake in this 33 C heat wave. And happy Canada Day to the Canadians out there too!

x Rena

The Red Fox and Gown At Wet Coast Wools

 

wcw2

This is too cool not to share with you. My designs are on display at Wet Coast Wools in Vancouver, BC, as part of the local designers’ display for June. Thank you to the lovely Glenda for including The Red Fox and Gown. Also, if you’ve noticed the bright yarn, my sister Krista has her Rain City Knits yarn on display too! I love the theme and I’m so glad to be part of this.

L to R: Rain City Knits yarn skeins, Morgan Hat, Red Fox Fingerless Gloves, Cloud Cowl and Foxy Business Hat.

If you’re in Vancouver, stop by Wet Coast Wools for a visit. I joined the weekly Thursday summer sweater KAL yesterday from 1-3pm. The ladies are a riot! Cheers for letting me crash the party.

x Rena

Stitch Markers: Kitties in Clay

Meow!

Meow!

I couldn’t resist the polymer clay again. At your suggestion, I made some kitty cat stitch markers! I love them. My actual cats, Ben and Kiki, are intrigued by the figures made from clay. I think they must smell delicious.

kitty2

Like the puppy stitch markers I showed you yesterday, I’m really happy with the result. I learned from my internet sleuthing that the key to a surface free of fingerprints is using rubbing alcohol to wipe them down. The rubbing alcohol dissolves the surface and leaves it smooth. Hooray! That solves my biggest pet peeve about clay.

A trio of felines.

A trio of felines. The stitch markers kind of look like halos.

Ha ha, I said pet peeve! Get it? Ok, I’ll stop with the bad jokes. Although I clearly have been exploring the domesticated animal kingdom so far. I think I’ll try bunnies next. And down the road, mini food. Because it’s also ridiculously cute.

Here’s the obligatory tail shot…

kitty4

Has this blog gone to the cats and the dogs?*

x Rena

* I did say I’d quit with the bad jokes…oops.

Stitch Markers: Fun With Polymer Clay

puppy3

What can they be?

Yesterday, I was unable to resist the siren call of polymer clay. I know, weird. What’s polymer clay? It’s that fun adult plasticine, or modeling clay, that sets once you bake it in the oven. I got myself some of the stuff the other day, along with some inexpensive modeling tools and jewelry findings. What was I up to?

No, not earrings to bejewel myself with. Or knick knacks. Lately, I’ve had a hankering for colourful, fun stitch markers! I found myself fascinated with them.

I have to say, I’m lucky to have some fun stitch markers already, but with designing, there’s multiple projects on the go simultaneously, and you guessed it… a lack of stitch markers!

So I made several experiments, since I am not familiar with working with polymer clay. I brought out my best pre-school memories of working with clay. And I baked stuff. Finally, I came up with something that worked… puppy stitch markers! I made four of them for now. Although six would be nice! I do have more colours to play with, after all.

puppy2

Puppy stitch markers!

But I focused, putting my attention deficit inclinations to the side for now. I was mighty pleased with myself. I admired their tails, too.

puppy1

The butt end of the stitch marker.

And then my next favourite part, their mouths as little ‘o’s of surprise.

puppy 4

So I now have a new set of stitch markers. I somehow doubt I will stop at one set… there’s a whole animal kingdom and more to explore.

What do you think?

x Rena