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Twist Collective Blog

Twist Style Friday Shawl Bonanza: Antares and Calyx

Every Friday we feature one of the garments from the magazine in a post about styling. We suggest different ways to wear the garment in question using mock-ups from Polyvore. We encourage readers to tell us what they think about these outfits via our Facebook page or Twitter, and if folks want to make their own outfits, please tweet them at us with the hashtag #twiststyle. You can find all of the Style Friday posts here.

What a happy Friday it is indeed. I have to tell you, sartorially inclined humans, I am having a hard time sitting still to write to you this morning. I'm too excited. Of course this means I'm going to ramble for a bit and eventually show you two stunning shawls I want you to knit this summer (one of them is in the midst of a knit-a-long RIGHT NOW- you can still join in the fun). Here are some pics just to give you a preview of the prettiness we are getting into today.






I'm restless because I leave this afternoon for 10 days in my favorite place, and not only am I thrilled to the gills about it; I haven't packed. I spend a week each summer as a volunteer camp counselor at a camp for kids from LGBTQ families and communities, and it is seriously the coolest, most inspiring, sparkliest week of the year. One of the camp mainstays is a pretty seriously stocked dress-up bin, and I was lucky enough to connect with a friend who wanted to donate some dresses she was holding on to but knew she wouldn't wear again; her wedding gown and two bridesmaid's dresses. She dropped them off at my place a few weeks ago, and this big bag has been sitting untouched in my office ever since. Until last night, when in a fit of procrastination, I decided to try on these three dresses.


The first two were pretty great. In fact, they fit me so well I had a fleeting moment of feeling sad about putting them in the dress-up bin. But I truly have no use for two very elegant, floor length gowns, even though the deep teal one sort of made me look like a mermaid pinup. But then, people, I made the rash decision to try on the wedding gown. You should know that not only do I have no plans for marriage in my own life, but most of the weddings I have attended have been non traditional to some degree. The bride (or brides) have worn green, dusty rose, purple, yellow, and seafoam at some of the nuptials I've witnessed. The closest I had been to an honest-to-goodness, big white frothy wedding gown was watching Say Yes To The Dress with my cousin Laurie while she recovered from a snowmobiling accident.


Here is what I learned; the only thing harder than getting into a wedding gown on your own is getting OUT of a wedding gown on your own. If you should ever find yourself alone, late at night, with a wedding gown in your size or thereabouts, I would like to humbly recommend that you do not try it on.  Let me have made this mistake on your behalf. I had a brief vision of that scene from Grey's Anatomy. After failing at lifting the dress vertically over my head (too heavy!) and getting a little bit panicky myself, I considered wandering sheepishly into the room of my very asleep housemate and asking for his help. I'm good in a crisis though, and my creative problem solving skills are pretty ace, so I made it out on my own, and am now sharing my triumph and light mortification with you all.


These two radiant beauties would certainly be right at home around the shoulders of a blushing bride. I, however, would wear them otherwise.



closeupthis one too, closer



Let's start with Antares. You met her earlier this week, and maybe you decided to join in the KAL that Laura, the designer, is hosting on our Ravelry group. This beaut comes in three sizes for maximum versatility, and until you get to the exciting lace-and-beads section, it's all garter based smooth sailing.



full wingspan



Laura was inspired to do some styling of this shawl too, here are her ideas for how to wear Antares!


five outfits by Laura


Here are a few of mine-


three outfits by Carly



Next up is Calyx. She is more of a semicircle/crescent shape, and my favorite detail is the lace along the top (neck) edge. Look how pretty this is!!



lace at neck



I also really like how the lace motifs on the border are BIG. This isn't a little repeated chart, this is kind of epic. The flowing lines make your knitting simple enough to read if you have a little experience knitting lace, so it's still a lovely and very accomplishable relaxing summer project.


big lace


Especially in a silk yarn that shines and drapes like this one does, Calyx drips elegance, so I styled it pretty fancy.



three fancy outfits



How will you wear Calyx? How about Antares?


Design Process: Antares... and BONUS KAL


headshot Laura Patterson

Today's post is brought to you by Laura Patterson, designer of the lovely Antares shawl from our most recent issue. You can find out more about Laura's work here. This thing is a breezy knit, starting with lots of plain garter, and then the end bit is lacy and beaded and tons of fun. We like it so much we are hosting a KAL through our group on Ravelry. Kate cast on for hers on Friday, and you can watch her progress on the KAL or our Instagram. Here is a taste of her rusty version in squishy DK.




Kate's Antares progress shot




The first time I saw examples of Estonian lace knitting I was smitten. Truly, it was love at first sight. I got a book about it, then another, then... I’ve used a number of their stitches for a variety of designs since that first book landed at my doorstep. I’d already seen the lovely waterlily stitch used by other designers, and now I had the basic instructions for making it myself. Hooray!


Time passed... I’d been looking for a good excuse to use the lovely waterlily stitch on something for quite some time. Last summer I had a bit of time between projects, and spent some of it swatching with the waterlily stitch, and came up with a idea for using it in a triangular shawl.






I try to keep at least half an eye on new lace designs as they hit Ravelry, and there have been quite a few triangles that are stockinette or garter stitch at the top, with the lace only at the bottom. Though I have designed crescent shawls that are like that, I hadn’t done a triangle with those specifications yet. I thought a simple garter stitch top would set off the waterlily lace to perfection, but the waterlilies absolutely had to flow out of the garter stitch, instead of starting abruptly. Done.



full view



Now all I needed was a pretty border. There’s little lacier and simpler than left- and right-leaning decreases, each separated with a yarn over. The yarn that I used for the swatch was so light and airy that I added beads to the border not only for bling, but also to add a tiny bit of weight to help the shawl drape nicely.



beading detail shot



I’ve found that whenever possible, it’s good to have an idea or two laying around, fully formed, waiting for just the right submission call. I took a couple of days and started a submission for my waterlily triangle, though I didn’t know who it was going to. I’ve found that it can be helpful to name the submission, even if that name isn’t used for the design release. After searching online for a bit I named this design Antares, because it’s the name of a night-blooming waterlily. Perfect!



modeledmodeled from the back



Everything was done, ready, and waiting when the design call from Twist Collective hit my inbox. A match made in heaven! I made a couple quick adjustments to my submission, and sent it to Kate the very first week. I was delighted when she accepted my proposal, and I got to work with the fine folks at Twist Collective.


Click here to join in the KAL! All you need (for the smallest size- there are three choices!!) is 550 yards of laceweight, and if you're into that sort of thing, some beads. Antares knits up quick and pretty!


Twist Style Friday Double Trouble: Galatea and Acanthus

Every Friday we feature one of the garments from the magazine in a post about styling. We suggest different ways to wear the garment in question using mock-ups from Polyvore. We encourage readers to tell us what they think about these outfits via our Facebook page or Twitter, and if folks want to make their own outfits, please tweet them at us with the hashtag #twiststyle. You can find all of the Style Friday posts here.

Happy Friday humans! This was a week with two - in fact two *consecutive* - days of literally perfect weather. It was warm in the sun and cool in the shade. This is the time of year I spend as much time outside as possible. I got to go on a teeny tiny road trip to a lake with some extremely wonderful humans, I sat on patios, I biked around town. It was pretty great. 



Before I was a knitter, I only wore scarves in the dead of winter. I understood their usefulness for defending against gusty winds but I also found them annoying. Now that I can make my own, and I can make them exactly the size and shape and weight and density that I want, a scarf or shawl is my go-to on days with variable weather. You can wrap it around your neck or shoulders in evening breezes or air conditioned offices. You can lay it out like a beach blanket on sandy or grassy surfaces. It folds up smaller than a jacket, and if you're like me and carry a borderline massive bag pretty much always, you can definitely fit it in your purse.



We're looking at two scarves today, Acanthus and Galatea. Everyone, meet Acanthus.



lacy green stole



There was a time in the late 90s (maybe the early 2000s?) when the coolest accessory scarves were these skinny little ribbony things. They looked cute on some of my friends, but for some reason, I always really hated them. I like to think of Acanthus as the (really really pretty) carnivorous plant that ate all those tiny weird scarves and absorbed their power; the Audrey 2 of stoles.



You can drop all those stitches as you go, or (I think this is the superior option if you have the patience to manage it) you can wait until the last possible moment, and drop all the ladders right before you bind off, and watch the fabric transform before your eyes!!!! This is one of those knitted things that can show you the magic of blocking.



lace detail



How should you wear Acanthus? Probably with anything and everything. I was a little bit inspired by old timey soda shoppes for this set.


three looks



 If you're looking for some other yarn ideas, check out this issue's Swatch It for some pretty neat yarn combinations.


Time to check out this week's other special lady, Galatea. Hello there.






She is a garter based rectangle, with pointy ends and a veritable explosion of ruffles. In this duo of brights, she is a pretty jazzy piece. If you want something a little more elegant, you could knit Galatea in tonal greys, or a buttery yellow and golden hay color. I'm pretty into the pizzazz of this combo though.



garter base scarf



A more sensible person than I might want to wear this with a really simple outfit to let the piece shine, but I think maybe zazz-on-zazz is the way to go here. I say go with prints, sequins, textured fabrics, and statement shoes. Make it so that someone looking at you says "wow" three times as they take in the whole outfit.



three outfits



How will you wear Acanthus and Galatea?





Twist Style Friday: Airglow

Every Friday we feature one of the garments from the magazine in a post about styling. We suggest different ways to wear the garment in question using mock-ups from Polyvore. We encourage readers to tell us what they think about these outfits via our Facebook page or Twitter, and if folks want to make their own outfits, please tweet them at us with the hashtag #twiststyle. You can find all of the Style Friday posts here.


 Happy Friday humans!!


This week we are looking at Airglow, an extremely pretty, almost-circle shawl. Voila.



shawl spread across model's back



The eyelet sections remind me of spokes on a wheel, and a big dramatic shawl gives you lots of options for how you wear it.





I LOVE a shawl knit from the bottom-up. I often choose patterns knit top-down so I can get the most out of my yarn (by extending charts or adding borders), but it's also true that I have the most patience at the beginning of a project, when I'm most excited about it. At the beginning, casting on several hundred stitches seems like a fun thing to do, and by the end of a top-down shawl, it is harrrrrrrd for me to motivate myself to deal with a truly epic bind-off. When you start with the widest point, the knitting gets faster and faster as you go; it's so motivating!

Just make sure you have enough yarn.


I don't have as much practice styling shawls as sweaters, but it was fun! You could toss this around your neck over any old thing, but the scalloped edge and dramatic size made me want to go for some glamour.  Take a look at a few of my ideas.



three looks



How will you wear Airglow?








Contest Winner: Splinters of Light

Well, we may be running late (So sorry! We were very busy making the fall issue happen!) but we certainly had a lot of fun picking winners in the Splinters of Light contest.

Our randomly chosen grand prize winner had this to say: 

The person I would like to knit with is Kay Gardiner of Mason Dixon Knitting fame. I think she has such a no-nonsense approach to knitting and life, and I have always enjoyed reading her books and blog. I look for the real in friends, and in folks that I respect, and she has a heavy dose of real. - Pam B.

Chosen at random for the 5 gift certificates are:

I would love to knit with my dear friend Marc. We keep each other company, talk about friendship, about life, and just be quiet, knowing that we are in good company. - Corinne V.
Last night as I was tucking one of my grandchildren having a sleepover into bed, I realized it was the same bed I slept in when I stayed at my grandma’s house. I was flooded with memories of waking up to a whole wonderful day to spend with my grandma. Knitting was only one of her many talents. I wish that I could knit at her side and that she would be the same age I am now as we knit together. I long to hear the stories of her life. - Joyce O.

So many knitterati, so little space for answers, so in no particular order, here is my list.  I would knit with my grandmother, because I never did and she was such a craft woman.  And Elizabeth Zimmermann, because she was the smartest knitter I know.  And Sally Melville, because she’s the other smartest knitter I know.  Of course, Rachael Herron, whose blog I have been following for years but have never met.  My special online knitting friends whom I have never met in person but have known for decades. We are going to need a big room! -Diane F.

I would love to knit with Alan Turing. Known best for breaking the Enigma machine and his pioneering theories on Artificial Intelligence, a little known fact about Turing is that he could knit. Although I would be tempted to ask him about his work in the information sciences or what he thinks about the social changes made towards the non-heterosexual community; I think I would also just like to hear him talk nonsense. And his guilty-reading, if he has any. - Brooke C.
If I could knit with anyone, it would be my paternal grandfather. He died before I became serious about knitting, and we'd unfortunately lost contact after my parents' divorce, but I have childhood memories of boxes of Christmas/New year's gifts arriving, with warm woolen socks for the whole family, knitted by him, and mint sugar cookies that my grandmother had baked... So, I'd very much like to sit down and knit with him. - Kairi K. 

Thank you all for you participation. We enjoyed reading your answers so much!