This year is the year of the sweater here at Tin Can Knits! In case you hadn’t heard, we are knitting 12 sweaters in 2015. The rules are loose (this is knitting after all, who needs rules?!), they can be big or little, you can finish sweaters you started years ago, and sleeve length is up to you!
There is a Ravelry group here and all the details of our KAL are spelled out here.
Are you ready for this: I have FINISHED 12 sweaters. *Alexa takes a bow and thanks you all for your applause*. It’s July. The only trouble is, a few of them are designs that I can’t show you…yet! Here are a few of the ones I can show you:
I know, I know, I’ve been a little obsessed with the Flax sweater. I have knit 5 already this year! It’s really just the most perfect baby present. Quick and simple but very effective. I’ve also finished one for me! It is blocking now so I will be doing some modelling in the near future. And in case you didn’t know, Flax is a free pattern!
I didn’t just start sweaters, and they aren’t all kiddie ones! I finished this Grace sweater, by Jane Richmond, in Sweet Fiber Sweet Merino Lite. I started this sweater with the intentions of finishing it for Knit City…2013! Well I finally put on the button band and the sleeves in time for Mothers Day this year.
Emily has also been clicking her knitting needles to get to her sweater goal in 2015. She is in the same boat as I am, not being able to show you ALL the sweaters she’s knit so far, but here are a few highlights.
Even though I have achieved my sweater goal I’m not nearly done! I still have 3 sweaters for me on the needles (Prairie Fire, Windswept, and Antler), yarn wound up for September sweaters for the kids (more Flax, I can’t get enough!), I was thinking some Christmas sweaters (knitters have to think ahead) and more designs of course. What can I say, I’ve caught the sweater bug!
So how are your 12 sweaters in 2015 coming?
More sweaters from TCK
Alexa and I love designing enjoyable knits. What do we love even more? Publishing free patterns that are accessible to everybody, making them perfect for sharing and teaching knitting. You’ve probably heard about The Simple Collection, 8 modern free patterns with in-depth tutorials, but you might not have seen some of our other free patterns.
So if you’re looking to save a little cash, or try out a new technique without too much commitment, you know where to find fabulous free patterns! Our free patterns go through the same rigorous process as our pay patterns, you can count on the same concise pattern writing, thorough testing and technical editing. Browse our website, and look for the patterns with the asterisk in the photo… that means FREE!
Conquer colourwork with three free patterns:
These adorable little hats and ornaments are great learner projects. Sized for the entire family, they make perfect gifts too! If you’re not quite sure where to start, look at our tutorials on how to knit fair-isle, choosing a colour palette, and how to read knitting charts.
Learn to love lace with two free patterns:
Here at Tin Can Knits we love lace. Yup, we really love it. And we want to share this love with you! We’ve got a great beginner’s lace tutorial, and an in-depth look at how to read knitting charts. So grab a free pattern and get started today!
Overcome your fear of cables with these free patterns:
Cables aren’t as hard as you think. As the game of thrones enthusiasts love to say: “Winter Is Coming” (of course it does every year), so cast on for a cushy cabled hat today! If it’s your first time, check out our tutorial on how to cable.
New knits all the time…
If you love free patterns, you should get our email updates! We’ll tell you about new designs, great sales, and excellent tutorials as they are launched. This post has featured just a few of our free patterns, browse through the others on Ravelry, or on our website. Please help us continue to provide these great resources by sharing this post with your friends, and joining the chat on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest and Ravelry!
Is there a specific technique you’d like to learn next? Let us know in the comments, and we will do our best to point you in the right direction.
Free Patterns from TCK:
You may be feeling the heat of summer (in places that have hot summers, sighs Emily in the cool of Edinburgh), but we’re always thinking ahead to quick knits for fall and winter. Formerly Emily’s Chunky Cable hat, Northward is a super quick chunky cable hat, now sized from baby to big, and fabulously free!
Northward: simple cushy cables
Northward Project Details :::
Pattern: Free Pattern – download now!
Sizing: baby (child, adult S/M, L); fits head 14 (17, 20, 23) inches around
Yarn: 70 (80, 100, 120) yds worsted / aran wt yarn. Shown in Madelinetosh Home in ‘charcoal’ and ‘tart’
Needles: US #9 / 5.5mm 16” circular and US #10.5 / 6.5mm 16” circular and DPNs, baby size worked entirely on DPNs
Gauge: 14 sts & 20 rounds / 4” in stockinette on larger needles
Notions: stitch marker, cable needle, darning needle
Is it time to tackle cables?
I always say that cables are the best kept secret in knitting! They look impressive, but to be honest, basic cables aren’t that much more difficult than your standard knit and purl. We’ve got a step-by-step tutorial here, so just download Northward and cast on now!
Do you teach knitting?
If you’re teaching a beginners cable class, the Northward pattern or the Antler Hat pattern are ideal free patterns to base your class upon. You are always welcome use Tin Can Knits free (or paid) patterns for teaching, that’s what they’re designed for! Would you like to learn more about our free patterns and tutorials? Get our email updates so you don’t miss out on the new designs and subscriber-only specials.
Other cozy cable projects by TCK:
It has been so much fun this spring and summer, releasing the little knits from Max & Bodhi’s Wardrobe one by one, and watching the knits appear in our KAL thread!
We loved seeing your happy (and frowny) faced babes, and were inspired by the beautiful colour combinations that you chose. Thanks so much for sharing!
Want to join the conversation and share your knits? If you don’t already, stay in touch by getting our excellent email updates, and chatting online on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest or Ravelry! We love to hear your stories, and are happy to help.
Who Knit it Best? Our Favourites So Far:
There are so many beautiful knits from Max & Bodhi’s already (browse them all on ravelry here), but I wanted to feature a few of my favourites! For more info, click the Ravelry project links / photo credits below the images.
Max & Bodhi’s KAL winners!
Along with all the fab projects we have also enjoyed the Max & Bodhi’s KAL. Knitters worked their way through as many projects from the book as it was released. Here are the lucky winners!
- meimei073, ElizabethsMommy, and ranaetire have each won a skein of Sweet Fiber Cashmerino 20 in the gorgeous ‘sea glass’.
- womaninashoe has won a skein of SweetGeorgia Cashluxe Fine in ‘bison’.
- knittyk has won a $36 gift certificate for Hazel Knits.
- viki has won 2 skeins of Rainbow Heirloom Sweater in a surprise color combo.
- designers’ choice goes to to Knit24seven who knit one of everything! From Playdate to Bumble she knit her way through the whole book. Knit24seven has won her choice of ebook from Tin Can Knits.
Thanks again to all the fabulous yarn dyers we worked with on this book. We know the winners will enjoy working with these yarns as much as we did!
Searching for the perfect unisex baby knit?
All of the patterns from Max & Bodhi’s Wardrobe are now available to purchase individually, if you’d like to knit just one. Or you can get the complete ebook for $16! This collection would make an excellent gift for an expectant mom or grandma (just click the ‘send as a gift‘ link).
We knew the photoshoots for Max & Bodhi’s Wardrobe were going to be epic. I’ve done a fair number of photoshoots with children, like these ones, and they really never go as planned. It’s not a bad thing…just a fact of life! So when we decided to photograph 2 babies in woolies in 2 shoots…well you can imagine right?!
Day One: Baby Scheduling Conflict
On the first day we couldn’t seem to get 2 babies to be happy at the same time. First Bodhi was a mama’s girl who couldn’t be put down, and by the time she warmed up to the situation it was just about time for Max to have a nap. With artful angles, a lot of coaxing, breast feeding and bottles, and a few toys we managed to get the gems we were looking for amongst the thousands of photographs we took!
Bodhi was just starting to crawl and pull herself up on things which made things a tad tricky. We have a lot of shots of Max looking adorable and only half of Bodhi as she rocketed away!
Day 2: Babies Brave the Elements
The second shoot was an outdoor one, my favorite! The only trouble was that is was a freezing (but sunny) January morning and all those babies wanted to do was snuggle in their slings and strollers all bundled and warm. Instead we had them pose covered in woolies from head to toe. No babies were harmed during this shoot….much.
At the end of the day we had thousands of photos and everything we needed to finish our book! I can’t decide if the outtakes are cuter or the polished shots!
More from Max & Bodhi’s Wardrobe
The shower went off without a hitch and I finally got to give Emily and Jordan their box of woolies. I wasn’t alone though! Both my mum and Emily’s mum had their needles clicking too, so, without further ado, I give you my nephew’s woolie wardrobe:
I love the Vivid blanket, I have made this one and this one and I will probably make more! I love that I can use whatever fun color strikes me on a given evening. I have been working from my wild stash of Tanis Fiber Arts and I had to get all of her new colourways for this one…that’s right. Had to. I can work on a square here or there, and I love the finished blanket. Emily was so smitten with Bodhi’s blanket that I cast on one for her future baby…months before she was pregnant and even more months before I knew!
Lately I have felt the need to welcome every new baby with a Flax sweater. It’s quick and simple, works for boys or girls, and it was my favorite thing to throw on Jones or Bodhi whenever they needed something warm. It is a gift that just can’t miss. I cast this one on Christmas day, the day I found out I was going to be an Aunty. I knit it in some Sweet Fiber Merino Twist Worsted in ‘smoke’. I love babies in grey and it seemed like the perfect thing for a boy or a girl, a great wardrobe staple (they are having a boy, but I didn’t know yet when I cast on).
While I probably would have considered the Prairie Fire to be more of a girlie knit, Max’s bright green, short sleeved, version taught me differently! It was the perfect piece, keeping his core warm while allowing his arms to move freely. I cast this one on ages ago but finished it the night before the shower…anyone else have this problem from time to time?
This little Playdate wasn’t knit with my nephew in mind, but Bodhi grew a little faster than I thought she would and this teeny Playdate was very quickly too small for her…as in it was too small before I was finished. No matter, it is the perfect ‘home from the hospital’ sweater now! I knit this one up in Sweet Fiber Cashmerino 20 in ‘bruin’.
Knits from Grammas
Em’s mum is an old school knitter. She knit up all of these adorable little baby gifts from vintage patterns that she took more inspiration from than pattern info. She worked in the round where she wanted, changed stitch patterns at will, and in the end this set is the perfect amount of classic and vintage. I love the palette she chose in the Spud and Chloe Fine too. I mean, how cute is that sleeper!?
She also knit this super cute sweater. It is a backwards cardigan, the buttons go on the back! I’m so smitten with this detail you may see it again in a TCK pattern!
My mum, after many years away from the needles decided, while visiting a yarn shop in Washington, that she had to knit this adorable little sweater she saw. The pattern is the Baltic Baby Sweater and mum used Sweet Fiber Merino Twist Worsted in ‘smoke’ and ‘purple night’ (the original is in a bulky yarn, but we wanted something a little lighter so we used worsted yarn and knit a smaller size). I love the little tab details!
There you have it, my nephew’s knit wardrobe…so far. Any minute now I will have a nephew to wear it!
More baby knits from TCK:
Bumble is the final (and my very favourite!) pattern from our latest collection, Max & Bodhi’s Wardrobe. Although Max & Bodhi’s is ‘all about the babes’, we would like to include grown-up babes in that definition!
Love it to Bits
Why do I love this hat so much? Well firstly, it’s a really addictive knit. You won’t be able to resist casting on a second, then a third… The second reason I love it is it’s a chameleon. Bumble has the potential to be an entirely clean and simple design which just lets a beautiful skein of semi-solid yarn shine, AND the potential to showcase bold and unexpected colour combinations!
This beanie is also a perfect project for using up leftover sweater yarn, because it’s knit in a heavy DK / light worsted weight yarn (think Cascade 220). Knit a bit slouchy with or without pompom, it would be SUPER COOL for a young dude, and it’s quite obviously adorable on ladies and bairns!
Bumble is knit using a simple technique called slipped-stitch knitting which creates a tweedy colourwork effect in two colours, or a subtle waffle effect in one colour. It is very simple to work. You only ever use one colour at a time, like when you’re knitting stripes, and you simply work some stitches, and slip others. Don’t know how to slip a stitch? We’ve got a tutorial for you!
One important thing to note is that when working slipped-stitch patterns, there is a tendency for your gauge to be quite compressed. So you will use much larger needles than you would for stockinette stitch. You could knit a swatch, or simply knit a hat (it’ll fit somebody), then measure gauge against that before you knit your next one!
Four Ways to knit the Bumble Beanie
Let’s take a closer look at how the design looks knit in a single colour, one-round stripes, and two-round stripes. The slip-stitch pattern is also quite pretty on the ‘wrong side’, so try it inside-out before you sew that pompom on!
Max & Bodhi’s Wardrobe: Modern Baby Knits
Max & Bodhi’s Wardrobe is finally complete, you can get the complete ebook here! Inspired by our two newest darlings, this collection is filled with modern and unisex wardrobe staples. Nothing says love like a baby covered in woolies, so grab your needles, and cast on for a little cutie today!
This little collection would make a great gift for an expectant knitter or grand-knitter. You can use the ‘gift’ function on Ravelry to send a copy instantaneously. It’s got a load of ridiculous cute baby photos too, I’m keeping a copy for me just as a coffee-table book!
More unisex beanies by TCK: