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Merino Wool – Sheep Breed

Source: Art News
Feature Photo Source: Unsplash, Anders Jacobsen

The fleece of Merino sheep is soft and fine, resulting in a wool that’s more pleasant on the skin than regular wool. It’s easy to see why these natural fibers are favored by knitters and crocheters, being an ideal material to turn into cozy, plush, and warm creations. Merino has been a long time favorite of ours too, so we understand. Below are a few of our favorite yarn picks for the knitter, crocheter and yarnie in you:

Pick out a pattern to work your merino yarn up in. Will it be for you or someone else? Will you win the free pattern comment and survey contest? We hope the lucky winner is you. View our previous weeks article to learn more.

Share your answers with the community by posting them below. Share the wealth of information with your friends or family by sharing this article with 3 people today. As always you are the best part of what we do. Keep sharing.

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Why we love Cowls

knitted mask / cowl shidonna raven patterns and publications

We love cowls for several reasons:

  • easy to keep up with / hard to lose
  • maximum warmth
  • maximum comfort

Having experienced the cold winter months of the Northeast, we know a little about cold and how to stay warm. In addition to staying warm, a cowl can be worn around the neck (almost like a turtle neck) making it easy to keep up with and offering some scaled down warmth once indoors. Because cowls can be tucked under coats and pulled up under and over chins, they provide maximum warmth by keeping cool and cold air out while clinging to the body, if made the right size. They also offer a lot of comfort during winter months and can be made out of soft wools like merino wool (below) to reduce itching and increase warmth. Shop our cowl patterns today! These make the perfect holiday gift as they can be quicker to work up than a traditional scarf. If you need help making your holiday gifts, sign up for one of our knit or corchet alongs or classes.

Who is on your Christmas list? What other DIY Holiday gifts are you making? Send us a picture of what you have made so far. Which types of arts and crafts are you using to make your DIY Holiday gifts?

Share your answers with the community by posting them below. Share the wealth of information with your friends or family by sharing this article with 3 people today. As always you are the best part of what we do. Keep sharing.

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Torn Stitch Knitting

torn knit sock shidonna raven patterns and publications

It is almost inevitable that at some point in time one will snag their knits and it will culminate into an actual tear. There are indeed fairly effective ways to repair a tear in your knitting. Some repairs can be, such as torn stitch knitting, made but typically tears can not be repaired successfully. It really depends on the tear. Snags can typically be repaired but not tears. A tear typically involves more yarn, independent of the item you are repairing, and in this as they say lies the rub. People who have been knitting, crocheting or generally working with yearn some time know that each skein is unique. In fact, it is recommended that one use the same dye lot of the same yarn for one project as dye colors can vary from one dye lot to another. This tends to be more profound with natural fibers as synthetic fibers are more of an over all formula that can be reproduced while natural fibers are unique in their characteristics (such as how much oil is in the wool, what type of animal did the wool come from, what conditions was the animal in). Many factors can effect the characteristics of a natural fiber and consequently the dye lot.

That all being said. It is very difficult to match yarns especially since most people do not keep a stock of the yarn around and companies change their yarn offerings from season to season. So trying to do torn stitch knitting is rarely recommended. If it is a project one completed fairly recently, we say yes give it a try. Otherwise it is as the old bible saying goes do not put a patch on old clothing. Matthew 9:16 “Besides, who would patch old clothing with new cloth? For the new patch would shrink and rip away from the old cloth, leaving an even bigger tear than before.” So unfortunate if you have a torn knit or crochet, we recommend getting creative on ways to re-purpose the project. We would love to hear your creative ideas. Share them with the community by posting them below (email us photos). Share the wealth of information with your friends and family by sharing this article with 3 people today. Find your next project by shopping our patterns and publications today.

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8 Ways to Wear Your Scrunchies

8 cute SCRUNCHIE hairstyles! | Twist Me Pretty

Shidonna Raven Patterns & Publications
8 Ways to Wear Srunchies
Shidonna Raven Patterns and Publications

Once you make your scrunchie, the next question is how will you wear it. Thankfully, here are 8 ways you can wear your scrunchies. When you gift your scrunchies be sure to share the many ways one can wear them. To learn more about executing a successful crochet or knitted scrunchie project view our article “so many succulent scunchies”

We have both a knit and crochet scrunchie pattern. We have taught this project / pattern in our classes and workshops. They are always a huge hit. As with most things crocheters and knitters make, one’s friends and family are always asking if one can be made for them. So, these patterns will be used over and over again. Shop our scrunchie patterns (knit & crochet) at shidonna raven patterns and publications. Now is the perfect time to turn your at home time into creative time!

Work one of these patterns up or work up both of them and email us photos of your completed project. We will post them here and share them with the community. Share the wealth of information with your friends and family by sharing this article with 3 people today.

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So many Succulent Scrunchies

knit scrunchie shidonna raven patterns and publications

Scrunchies are one of my favorite items to crochet or knit. If you are a beginner, it is a great way to learn and practice. One also gets the experience of completing a project. Like most projects the finished product is as varied as available yarns. So, one can make several scrunchies as they are a must have and keep them unique and different by changing up the yarn. If you are an experienced crochet or knitter, this type of project may not be all that challenging to you. Yet one is sure to have a lot of fun. Give a crocheter or knitter a beautiful ball of yarn and magic happens. 

Choose your elastic for your scrunchie carefully as one will not want to take the scrunchie apart to repair a snapped elastic. One can be several quality elastics for a fairly good price. As with many if not all of the projects crocheters and knitters created, they are to be treasured for a long time to make sure your elastics are high quality and durable. We have both a knit and crochet scrunchie pattern. We have taught this project / pattern in our classes and workshops. They are always a huge hit. As with most things crocheters and knitters make, one’s friends and family are always asking if one can be made for them. So, these patterns will be used over and over again. Shop our scrunchie patterns (knit & crochet) at shidonna raven patterns and publications. Now is the perfect time to turn your at home time into creative time!

Work one of these patterns up or work up both of them and email us photos of your completed project. We will post them here and share them with the community. Share the wealth of information with your friends and family by sharing this article with 3 people today.

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Yarn Selection

yarn

Selecting Yarn

There are a couple of factors to consider when choosing yarn. As knitters and crocheters who do not just follow patterns but who also write patterns we have a unique prospective on selecting yarn. This prospective will help you to take a fresh look at how you choose your yarn for your projects to make them uniquely yours.

  • Weight
  • Fiber
  • Color
  • Texture

Weight

Most novice knitters or crocheters can identify the weight of a yarn. You can identify the weight of the yarn by the label. If there is no label compare it to other similar sized yarns to make a determination. Eventually, you will be able to identify the weight of the yarn by just looking at it. Sometimes your projects will dictate the weight of your yarn. For instance most people will use a sport or fingering weight for socks, gloves and other small accessories. However, if you are knitting or crocheting a sweater the weight of your yarn can be pretty much whatever you prefer. Of course you may have to alter your pattern to fit your yarn size. You do this by first establishing the gauge. The smaller the weight the longer your project will take. If you have questions, just leave a comment and we will get back to you.

Fiber

Fiber is a huge consideration. You must consider the season(s) you will wear your project and if the season is appropriate for your project. Season will often dictate the type of fiber you use. You can knit a beautiful summer scarf in bamboo but I would not knit a summer scarf in 100% wool. Allergies and feel will also dictate your fiber choice. If the wool is not Merino Wool, it maybe very itchy. So, think very carefully how you will wear the garment and how it will feel where you wear it. Also consider how you will care for your project. Read the care instructions on the label.

Color

Believe it or not color can be a huge factor when selecting yarn. Intricate and detailed work is best done in lighter colors so people can see your needle or hook work. With dark colors your surface work maybe difficult to see. You spend a lot of time getting stitch work right. You deserve to show it off. Select a color(s) that will make your work shine! Also consider your season(s), how, when and where your garments will be worn. Like buying clothes some colors are better than others based on these factors. So, select appropriately.

Texture

Yes, even texture can be important. Simpler textures are better for intricate needle and hook work. While simple needle and hook work is great for highly texture yarns such as novelty yarns. Work up a gauge and consider how it will look on your over all garment.

Also, Yards

Also Remember to get enough yardage and the correct dye lot for your project. It is never nice to do a lot of work on a project only to run out of yarn and no longer be able to get the yarn you used at your local yarn shop.

Write it Down

Consider your project completed and how it will be used or worn. Write down what is most important for you to obtain in your finished project. Must it be light and airy? Or should it be super warm and snugly? Is it for a baby? How old will the baby be when you give it to the baby? Will they be able to grow into it and use it for a few years or will they grow out of it in a few months? Are you giving it as a gift? How will they likely use it?

  • Consider your pattern. Try to follow the pattern yarn recommendation as closely as possible.
  • Consider the season
  • Consider the size
  • Consider how long it will take to complete the pattern
  • Consider comfort-ability and ease of wear
  • Consider the finished over all look
  • Consider any pattern alterations based on gauge. Try to adhere to the pattern as much as possible.
  • Consider longevity. How long can it be worn?

With each pattern you select form Shidonna Raven Patterns & Publications you receive pattern support. Select your patterns with confidence and enjoy them for years to come. We could not just make one. Thank you.