Namaste Scarf: back to my knitting

If you follow my blog, you most likely crochet. But do you also knit? I learned to knit at the age of five, I think… Or maybe six. But definitely before the school, as when I entered first grade of school I was already proudly wearing my own knitted hat. With cables. I learned crochet at nearly the same time, but knitting has been my biggest passion for a long time.
Namaste Scarf - FREE knitting pattern by www.lillabjorncrochet.com

I was mostly knitting sweaters. For myself. In crazy and unexpected color combinations. And my teachers were going mad sometimes. Once, I remember, I was asked to come back home and change clothes, because my bright-red-and-purple-shaped-by-myself sweater didn’t go well with strict school dress code.

And then suddenly I became a crochet designer, and put away my needles for 4 years.

I can’t say I missed knitting… I simply didn’t have time to think about it. With CAL’s coming one after another, and numerous crochet patterns. I enjoy learning new techniques. I tired overlay and mosaic crochet. Maybe I will become brave enough to try Tunisian crochet, too.
Namaste Scarf - FREE knitting pattern by www.lillabjorncrochet.com

Well, sometimes I do experience those rare moments when I feel like picking my needles again. Last time I was inspired by Rhythm Mohair and Alpaca yarn by Scheepjes. And my Blue Feather sweater was born.

And when I saw new Namaste yarn by Scheepjes, knit-sick came back again. And I decided to design something new.
Namaste Scarf - FREE knitting pattern by www.lillabjorncrochet.com

Well, at first it was supposed to be a blanket. Huge and hygge, and chunky, and cozy. But because I am not used to knitting with large needles (and Namaste yarn calls for 8mm) my hands were tired very soon. And I frogged everything and started over again, this time with smaller number of stitches.

A super-chunky-scarf it will be, I told to myself.

If you haven’t heard about Namaste yarn before, please, check my review HERE. It was a pleasure to knit with this yarn. In the beginning it was splitting a bit, but when I adjusted my knit style everything went smoothly and my knit speed was back.
Namaste Scarf - FREE knitting pattern by www.lillabjorncrochet.com


You’ll find Namaste yarn in local Scheepjes shops and via online retailers:

WoolWarehouse*, Deramores*, Black Sheep Wools* (all three in UK with international shipping)
Caro’sAtelier* (NL and Europe)
KnottyHouse* (Canada), Taemombo (US and Canada)
 

I tried to imitate chevron pattern both with “lacy” and textured parts, and I love how it looks and feels. Namaste scarf is pretty huge! It’s approx. 60 x 180cm (23.5 x 71”) and can be worn as a wrap or scarf. The draping is perfect and I used exactly 6 skeins of Namaste yarn.
Namaste Scarf - FREE knitting pattern by www.lillabjorncrochet.com


My friend Xenia helped me with taking pictures (I just love her small and romantic yard). And when we were done I suddenly realized I wore the scarf inside out. “Oh no! This is the back side…” – I said sadly. “Come on! It only shows how beautiful your scarf is from all the sides!” – she replied. :)
Namaste Scarf - FREE knitting pattern by www.lillabjorncrochet.com


The pattern consists of simply repeats and can be easily adjusted to any size.

FREE pattern will follow next week, if I manage to write it down, haha! I plan to include the chart, so let’s hope everything will work up nicely.

Do you know what I learned from my fellow knitting designers?! Oh my, it was the most unexpected discovery about myself. I learned that I do knit in a WRONG way! Well, my stitches still look correct, but I do them in the opposite manner :)

Not like right or left handed people do, but totally different! I have been knitting for 30+ years now, and this knowledge exploded my world!

At least now when I know this, I can write the patterns in a right way. Taking into consideration my own “weird” knitting style.

See you next week!

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Jingle Garland and FOLK issue of Yarn book-a-zine

A happy mail landed in my mailbox two days ago and what was inside? A brand new and fresh issue of YARN book-a-zine called FOLK! I can’t believe this is the sixth issue already (if you missed previous ones, please check them HERE). I was a proud contributor to each and every one! And FOLK is not an exception.
FOLK - YARN 6 book-a-zine by Scheepjes

New FOLK issue contains more pages than previous ones, and it means even more crochet and knitting joy – 17 (!) patterns altogether. The projects vary in difficulty level and the category. You’ll find gorgeous blankets, home accessories, socks, shawls and garments!!

As every other issue FOLK features work and insights into a creative process of fiber artists. This time you’ll get acquainted with the work of Tuija Heikkinen (textile designer) and Jimmy Nelson (photographer), and read article about punch needle embroidery technique.

I love every YARN issue, but this time, in my humble opinion, Scheepjes have overdone themselves. From the first page you are invited into a luxury crochet and knitting world with gorgeous and tastefully styled pictures. But at the same time all projects you see are affordable and actually doable.
Farah Scarf by Jellina Creations
Farah Scarf by Jellina Verhoeff

You can buy your own copy in local Scheepjes stores and via online retailers:

Woolwarehouse*, Deramores*, Black Sheep Wools* (all in UK with international shipping)
Caro’s Atelier* (NL and Europe), Habbedash* (NL with international shipping)
Knotty House* (Canada)
Fairy Homes by Maria McPherson
Fairy Homes by Maria McPherson

Jingle Garland


There is a blog hop running at the moment, and every contributing designer was asked to say something about her own design and the story behind it. Usually I do have a story behind my designs, but this time I am embarrassed to say I didn’t know what to suggest as a pattern publication. And when creative director of Scheepjes addressed me with an idea of colorful and festive garland, I happily jumped onto it. Because I have wanted to make something similar for long, but simply couldn’t find time.
Jingle Garland - crochet pattern by www.lillabjorncrochet.com
Add this pattern yo your Ravelry Queue

S

So here it is – my Jingle Garland. It’s super simple and relatively fast to make. You’ll not be bored with these small and cute circular motifs, as yarns and colors are changed on every round (and you don’t have to weave in tails, as each motif consists of two halves joined together and stuffed. And all ends will be hidden with stuffing). Small silver bells and pompons add cuteness. By the way my 7-years-old son helped me making pompons – great activity for the whole family!

I used Scheepjes Cahlista and Twinkle yarns (the second one is full of nice sparkles). Both yarns are available via your local Scheepjes shops or online retailers listed above.
Jingle Garland - crochet pattern by www.lillabjorncrochet.com

Frida Shawl


And now let me say a few words about my own favourites from FOLK issue of YARN book-a-zine. I am in love with all of them but Frida Shawl by Miss Neriss has stolen my heart. I am excited about everything in this design: simple knit and sophisticated embroidery. And the moment I saw it I knew I must make one for myself.

I haven’t picked up my needles in a very long time (a life of a crochet designer, hehe) and I have never used 10mm needles before. So I was a bit worried of how it goes. But the pattern is beginner friendly, and my knitting part was done in nearly 4 hours. Why haven’t I heard about Peru yarn before? It’s so soft, draping and warm!
Frida Shawl by Miss Neriss

Now the embroidery is waiting for me. I am lucky to have a full box of Cahlista cutie pies*, so picking the colors should not be a problem. I think I will go for a mute fall palette… I am still not sure how to use a stabilizer for embroidery, but hopefully it will work out well! I’ve done lots of cross stitch embroidery in the past, but never did anything like this on a knitted fabric.

Giveaway!


Scheepjes is running a YARN 6 giveaway alongside our blog hop! And you have a chance to win a copy of YARN 6, and materials to make your favourite YARN 6 project! All you have to do is read carefully. Each of participating designer has written her own blog post and hided a ‘secret symbol’ in the text. It might be a letter, a number or a symbol. It’s not invisible, so no worries – you’ll not miss it! If you put all these symbols in the same order as blog posts were published, you’ll get a secret sentence which is your entry to the giveaway!

Check previous blog post by Maria of Fifty Shades of 4 ply HERE. And tomorrow be sure to check the blog by Alia of The Little Bee (something - wow! - exciting is waiting for you there!)

To join in, comment on the Scheepjes Facebook giveaway post telling them what your favourite YARN 6 project is. Once the blog hop is finished, respond to your own comment with the full secret sentence and… let’s hope you will be the winner! The giveaway will run until November 11th, 2018 and the winner will be drawn November 12th on the Scheepjes Facebook page. It’s open to participants worldwide. Good luck!

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Esja Sweater and Crochet Brioche: new pattern release

Today when I sat down to write a blog post about my new design, I didn’t really know what to begin with. I’ve been working on it for one full year, and I still can’t believe it is ready to be released! I have so many feelings right now. Mostly excitement and happiness. As my first true garment pattern is out now. Ta-dah! Esja Sweater is here!
Esja Sweater crochet pattern by www.lillabjorncrochet.com
Add this pattern to your Ravelry Queue
or Pin it for later

About my Designing Journey…


It’s hard to believe now that my designing journey started with a small mandala coaster four years ago. Since then I’ve designed dozens of overlay mandalas, and blankets, and I have always thought that interior decorations would be my path. But then… Then I designed my first garment. And got hooked.

Now I can’t recall who was it, but nearly a year ago I read a comment to my picture somewhere with a suggestion to design and Icelandic crochet sweater. At that point an idea of designing a real sweater in several sizes sounded unreal. But as time passed, I was coming back to it again and again.

I bought a bunch of patterns from famous knitting designers to study the anatomy of top down sweaters. I bought a book on theory of garment construction. And I even signed up for a Craftsy class. My notebook looked like a mess of endless numbers and calculations. I was jumping from one gauge to another. I was swatching like crazy. Long months without a proper sleep. And finally it WORKED!
Esja Sweater crochet pattern by www.lillabjorncrochet.com

Today I am very proud to introduce my newest crochet design – Esja Sweater, named after a mountain in Iceland.

Esja Sweater pattern is now available for purchase on both Ravelry HERE and Etsy HERE and is offered with 30% discount to kick the beginning of a Make-a-long (read below) through Wednesday, November 7th, 2018. The price you see is final and no codes needed. After this date is will be listed at a regular price.


Details about Esja Sweater


Esja Sweater is the first one in my future collection of Icelandic top down garments. I wanted to make it look like knitted but affordable for crocheters. The pattern combines very simple linen stitch together with crochet brioche. No intricate or complicated stitches are used here. And I am safe to say the pattern is aimed to Intermediate crocheters, or even Adventurous beginners.
Esja Sweater crochet pattern by www.lillabjorncrochet.com

 This sweater is worked seamlessly from top down. First the yoke is worked in rounds, then some short-rows are worked back and forth to create a higher back and then the crocheted piece is separated for body and sleeves. The lower body is worked in rounds to hem. Sleeves are worked top down to the cuffs. The length of the body and sleeves is easily adjustable.
Esja Sweater crochet pattern by www.lillabjorncrochet.com


Esja Sweater comes in 7 sizes: XS (S, M, L, XL, XXL, XXXL) with finished bust 90 (95, 100, 105, 110, 116.5, 121.5) cm/ 35.4 (37.4, 39.4, 41.3, 43.3, 45.8, 47.8)”. It’s a fitted design with 5cm/2” positive ease.

Soft fingering yarn is recommended, and I used Our Tribe yarn by Scheepjes. I’ve made several samples. One of them is with two solid shades and another one uses variegated color with a solid one (980 Simy2 and 983 Motivate). And I love both.
Esja Sweater crochet pattern by www.lillabjorncrochet.com

If you would like to use the same yarn as me, please, check your local Scheepjes shops, or purchase yarn online via online retailers (affiliate links are marked with *):

Wool Warehouse*, Deramores*, Black Sheep Wools* (all in UK, international shipping),
Caro’s Atelier* (NL and Europe)
Taemombo (US & Canada)
Knotty House* (Canada)

Esja Sweater can be also made as a short sleeved version. I made one for myself with Rhythm Alpaca* yarn by Scheepjes.
Esja Sweater crochet pattern by www.lillabjorncrochet.com

The pattern has been thoroughly tested in all sizes and professionally tech edited! I am sending lots of thanks and hugs to my amazing testers who did a wonderful job and helped me to improve the pattern.

Esja Sweater pattern contains detailed row by row instructions. And you will also find a step-by-step photo tutorial in the end of the pattern. So you really don’t have anything to worry about. The pattern is available in English (US terms), Dutch and Norwegian.
Esja Sweater crochet pattern by www.lillabjorncrochet.com
Photo credit: Esther Schippers, Loele Van Den Bergh, Laura Jackson

Esja MAL (make-a-long)


If you are fairly new to crochet and never made any crochet garments, but would like to give Esja Sweater a try, please, feel free to join a make-a-long which will be hosted in my Facebook group HERE. We will make Esja sweater all together, the MAL will be broken into parts and each of them will be completed weekly. You will receive all necessary help and support. And also there will be weekly prizes waiting for you!!
Esja Sweater crochet pattern by www.lillabjorncrochet.com

To participate in Esja MAL you need to purchase your own copy of Esja Sweater pattern (HERE on Ravelry or HERE on Etsy), join my Facebook group and create a project page on Ravelry which will be linked to my pattern page. The pattern is offered with 30% discount through Wednesday, November 7th, 2018 to kick the beginning of the MAL. After that date the pattern will be listed at a regular price.

Every Wednesday there will be a new part announced in my Facebook group and after you complete this part you will add a new picture to your Ravelry page (or Instagram) and comment under my post on Facebook in order to participate in weekly giveaway. The winner will be announced next week on Tuesday.

Here is an approximate time frame for Esja MAL:

November 7th, 2018 – yarn choice and gauge swatches
November 14th, 2018 – beginning of the yoke
November 21st, 2018 – end of yoke
November 28th, 2018 – shaping back, dividing for body and sleeves and starting lower body
December 5th, 2018 – completing of one sleeve and working on the rest of the sweater

Hands up who is in! :) Join my Facebook group and I will approve you asap (please, read group rules before you start posting, thank you!).

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Spirits of Life Blanket (notes about how to adjust the pattern)

Turning Spirits of Life wrap into a blanket has been on my to-do list since first part of the CAL was published. Every month I was telling myself I should sit down to adjust the math and to complete a new sample. But because new ideas keep coming to my head, this blanket was never done. But several weeks ago in my Facebook group I saw a post by Micaya Vance Clymer. She shared pictures of her own blanket based on the Spirits of Life pattern. And (fantastic news!) she kindly allowed me to share her notes with you! By the way if you are still not with us on Facebook, please, don’t hesitate and join our group HERE – for fun and inspiration.
Spirits of Home blanket is based on Spirits of Life Wrap CAL. The pattern was adjusted by Micaya Vance Clymer. Find original free pattern on www.lillabjorncrochet.com
Photo credit: Micaya Vance Clymer

For her Spirit of Home blanket (this is how it is called) Micaya used same Scheepjes yarns as in original wrap version – Spirit and Catona, but in different colors. You can find exact colors, their placement and yardages on Micaya’s Ravelry page HERE.

Both yarns are available in your local Scheepjes shops or via online retailers:

Wool Warehouse*, Deramores* and Black Sheep Wools* (all in UK, international shipping)
Caro’s Atelier* (NL and Europe)
Knotty House* (Canada)

And if you like original colors, then two kits should be enough to finish this blanket. The kits are still available for purchase via Wool Warehouse HERE, Deramores HERE, Black Sheep Wools HERE, Caro's Atelier HERE.

Spirits of Life pattern comes with detailed written instructions, charts and video-tutorials for every part. Find General Information HERE and scroll down for links to every part. In order to be able to adjust it to the blanket size you’ll need to refer to original pattern and follow Micaya’s notes as-you-go. For two mosaic and two C2C parts written instructions will not be valid, because all charts were adjusted. So you will need to follow the charts only.
Spirits of Home blanket is based on Spirits of Life Wrap CAL. The pattern was adjusted by Micaya Vance Clymer. Find original free pattern on www.lillabjorncrochet.com
Photo credit: Micaya Vance Clymer

Here is what Micaya did to turn wrap into a blanket.


I made the blanket 226 stitches wide, rather than 113, and I removed two of the C2C panels, as indicated below, because I felt that otherwise the blanket would be too long and skinny. This gave me a blanket approx. 117 x 146cm/46 x 57.5" large.

Part 1

Begin by chaining 228.
Rows 23, 27, 31: As in pattern, except you will end with 4sc – 37 tr2tog.


Part 2

In the mosaic section, you'll need a border of only 3 stitches on the right and 2 on the left of the pattern repeats. You'll get 13 repeats of the pattern rather than 6. See the chart below.

On Row 28 (and all rows with SPsc in sections 4, 5, and 7): [3sc, 1Spsc] across, ending with 2sc.

Part 3

Make 8 squares rather than four, join squares together as in pattern. After joining your squares, you'll only have 225 stitches on your strip of squares, and 226 stitches on the last row of Part 2. I compensated by just slip stitching 2 stitches on the main part of the blanket together while I was joining the wrap.
Spirits of Home blanket is based on Spirits of Life Wrap CAL. The pattern was adjusted by Micaya Vance Clymer. Find original free pattern on www.lillabjorncrochet.com
Photo credit: Micaya Vance Clymer

Part 4


Work Divider 1. Row 1: Add an extra dc to get your stitch count back up to 226!

Now work C2C Panel 1 with the following adjustments:

You're making a wider border on either side of the zigzag repeats. There were two extra lines added to the bottom and top of the chart. Each “triangle” is repeated 6 times rather than 3 (see charts below).

Note: There are 17 rows marked in the original pattern where, when joining the C2C panel to the body of the wrap, you will skip only 1 stitch. In order to make the stitch count work out for the double-width blanket, you'll have to do this 29 times. TBH, I just fudged this by marking stitches 31, 64, 97, 131, 163, and 196 on the body of the blanket before beginning the C2C panel. Then, I just made sure that the points of my zigzags lined up with the marked stitches, skipping either 1 or 2 stitches on the body of the blanket to make things line up right. So, the ends of rows 12, 24, 36, 48, 60 and 72 are slip stitched to the marked stitches.

Work Divider 2 with 226 stitches.

Part 5

Work C2C Panel 2 then Divider 2.

C2C panel: When attaching the C2C panel to the body of the blanket, I just skipped either 1 or 2 stitches on the body of the blanket as needed to make it visually line up with Part 4, but you might put markers on stitches 19, 48, 81, 114, 147, 180 and 213 and make sure that the points of your zigzags attach there. So, the ends of rows 6, 18, 30, 42, 54, 66 and 78 are slip stitched to the marked stitches.

Part 6

As in part 3

Part 7

Divider, Row 1: Add an extra dc to get your stitch count back up to 226!
In the mosaic section, you'll need a border of only 9 stitches on either side of the pattern repeats. You'll get 8 repeats of the pattern. See the chart below.

Part 8

Rows 13, 21: Begin with 3sc, not 2sc
Row 17: Begin with 5sc

Border

As in pattern.

I LOVE how Micaya’s Spirit of Home blanket turn out. And I am still strong in my idea to make one for myself. :)

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New colors in Our Tribe, and Round-up of Patterns

Have you heard of Our Tribe yarn by Scheepjes? It’s a very special yarn, in many ways. I should admit it’s one of my favourite at the moment. And not because it’s very soft, and warm, and “squishy”. But also because each and every colorway was put together by a Scheepjes blogger. This week new colors arrived, and we have 32 (!) in Our Tribe family already.
Our Tribe yarn by Scheepjes_new colors

Disclosure: this post contains affiliate links (marked with *). If you make a purchase through these links I might be compensated with a tiny amount while you will not pay anything extra. Thank you for your support!

I blogged about Our Tribe yarn earlier this year (read review HERE), and since then several solid colors were added to the collection. And I was honored to develop one more colourway which is called Lilla 2. This time I chose purples with a tiny touch of teal and it turned out lovely, I think. Dusty, not too bright, and the changes of individual colors are very smooth.
Our Tribe yarn by Scheepjes_new colors

I’ve got a chance to see several new samples in person, and I put my hands on them immediately. You can see all knitting swatches on official Scheepjes website HERE. And I thought I would also try them in crochet with linen stitch. And here is what I’ve got.
Our Tribe yarn by Scheepjes_new colors and swatches

I fell in love with a mysterious “forest” color Simy2 at once, and something new is being cooked in my crochet kitchen at the moment. I can’t share much with you but here is a small sneak peek. As you can see fabric with linen stitch is very soft and draping.
Our Tribe yarn by Scheepjes_new colors and swatches

Marie2 is my next favourite. Though the skein looks very bright, the colors in the swatch are calming down and create a wonderful play of different shades.
Our Tribe yarn by Scheepjes_new colors and swatches

And two solid greys of course!! What can be better than neutral pastels! :)

Small swatches can give a nice idea of how yarn looks in crochet or knitted fabric. But finished projects are even better examples. I’ve put together a small round-up of patterns using Our Tribe by Scheepjes.


1. Lilla Björn Sweater by me
2. Spanish Dancer Shawl by Esther of It’s All In A Nutshell
3. Hundred Chain Scarf by Rachele of Cypress Textiles
4. Our Tribe My Tribe shawl by Nerissa of Miss Neriss
5. Timber Cowl and Wristies by Carmen of New Leaf Designs
6. My Diamond Tribe shawl by Jellina of Jellina-Creations
Round up of crochet patterns using Our Tribe by Scheepjes (www.lillabjorncrochet.com)

Our Tribe yarn is available for purchase via local Scheepjes shops and online retailers:

Wool Warehouse*, Deramores*, Black Sheep Wools* (all three in UK, international shipping)
Caro’s Atelier* (NL and Europe)
Taemombo (US and Canada)
Knotty House* (Canada)

Have you tried Our Tribe yarn? Which shade is your favourite?

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