Wrapping up the Gift-A-Long

The fabulous Indie Gift-A-Long ended at the close of 2015, but I've delayed my wrap-up post as I was still knitting my final project! Now that it's finished, blocked, and photographed at last, here we go...

My two GAL projects were tubular cowls for a pair of special people who are wintering in Berlin this year (and could probably do with some cosy neck-warmers about now):

The silver-and-black cowl is a simple striped stockinette number which I hope will be extremely wearable. The pattern is Preserving Life by fellow NZ designer Kelly Brooker, and the yarn is Bohemia Sport in 'Fog' and 'Leadlight'. This was a great tv/travel project, with its long stretches of plain knitting.

The silver-and-turquoise cowl was a little more involved, but the short sequences of each colour were easy to memorise, and the changing patterns kept my interest up. The pattern is Elektrocute by Emma Welford, and the yarn is Bohemia Sport again in 'Fog' and 'Tarnished' - don't these colours look great together?

If you're a Ravelry member, you can see all the GAL projects that people made using my patterns: Eleven finished projects! I'm thrilled that my Beeswax designs were so popular. :)

Another cool highlight was being interviewed by another designer on her blog, RocketBoy Knits. Jennifer came up with some really cool questions: Indie Gift-A-Long Designer Interview - Amy van de Laar of Baroque Purls

Annnnnnd, I had a really lovely surprise after the GAL ended: I actually won one of the prizes for finishing a project before the deadline, and so a skein of Malabrigo yarn is on its way to me. :)

So that's that! I hope you'll join us for the next GAL - keep your eyes peeled in early November.

A rainbow of lace

Well, my Indie Gift-A-Long knitting is off to a slow start. I somehow sprained my right index finger (don't worry, it's nearly better now!), so I've had a frustrating week of trying not to knit or use my laptop too much.

One slight silver lining was that I finally found time to watch some Craftsy class videos. I'm now in the middle of Miriam Felton's 'Lace Shawl Design' class, and I'm getting some new insights into how lace works. I'm looking forward to the 'fixing mistakes' video, a subject dear to my heart! Here's a Craftsy affiliate link to the class if you're interested: Lace Shawl Design

I clearly have lace on the brain, because I soon found myself browsing through lace patterns on Ravelry. Here's a selection, all by fellow GAL designers - some are more complex, some more simple, most are knitted, one is crocheted, some have texture, some have beads. There were so many that caught my eye, I started narrowing them down by colour, and a rainbow happened...

Tiong Bahru by Åsa Tricosa, photo by Åsa Söderman

Hugs and Stitches by Yuliya Tkacheva

Afterglow by Diana Rozenshteyn

Laura's Leaves by Emily K Williams

Lichen Mists by Ruth Garcia-Alcantud

Midnight in Sydney by Meg Gadsbey

When The Leaves Fall by Lily Go

And for one final bit of lace, check out this amazing yarn-bombed tree! It's part of Yarn Corner's series of tree-cosies in Melbourne's City Square, all with a Christmas theme. The others were cool, but this one really wowed me, especially since I don't see much knitted lace yarnbombing around. The red and green striped under-layer sets off the lovely lace patterns beautifully. <3

The Gift-A-Long is here!

The annual Indie Design Gift-A-Long has begun! Come and join us in the Ravelry group for a knitting/crocheting party, and get some handmade gifts sorted. To kick things off, the participating designers (all 335 of us) are having a 25%-off sale on some of our designs. The sale lasts until Friday 27th of November, but the Gift-A-Long runs until the end of the year with games and prizes to be won.

My on-sale patterns are collected here!

For my first Gift-A-Long post, I'd like to highlight a few patterns by fellow Downunder designers. I can vouch for the Scott Base Socks as an excellent and practical sock pattern, as I made a pair for myself last year. :)

The following beauties are all by NZ or Australian designers, and all are in the 25%-off sale this week. Click the links to see more.

Nardoo by Ambah O'Brien

Awhitu by Kelly Brooker, photo © Briony Singleton

Koru by Libby Jonson

Spirit of Ahuriri by Brenda Green

Daybreak by Nim Teasdale