If you’re a fan of our Facebook page, you may have seen our post about the fabulous Tionne Pullover by Lee Meredith a few weeks back. It’s so unique and versatile that it seems like there should be another word besides pullover to describe it. We’re delighted that Lee agreed to give us some great insights into how she came up with the design, and how Kenzie turned out to be the perfect yarn choice. Of course, we couldn’t agree more!
Be sure to read to the bottom of the blog post. We’ve got a fantastic giveaway of the yarn to make the design!
I’ve been professionally designing accessory patterns for over 7 years, so I was pretty excited when, near the beginning of this year, I had a brainstorm for a sweater pattern concept that I thought I could handle, with zero previous garment design experience. I had very little experience even knitting sweaters (I’d only knit one!), but this idea was boxy and without shaping, and relied on design elements that I did have lots of experience with, from my accessory designs: modular construction, any-gauge adaptability, stripes going in different directions, and flexible wearability. I got kind of obsessed with turning the idea in my head into a pattern, and after writing out a draft and making a prototype in bulky yarn, I felt confident that this idea would indeed become my first garment design!
So, once I was sure I was going to complete and self-publish the pattern, I needed to choose a yarn for my sample sweater. I decided I wanted to use worsted weight, ideally a yarn on the lighter side of the worsted spectrum. Like I mentioned, the design is for any gauge, so you can actually use any weight yarn – I figured a light worsted is a good kind of middle-weight for a big pullover sweater. Knitters can make their own choices, but I wanted to present the sample in a yarn that was a really excellent fit for the pattern, of course! So I looked around at what I had in my studio already, and I spotted a couple skeins of Kenzie that I’d bought at my LYS because I loved it, but it hadn’t yet found a project…
I swatched with it, and yes! It was perfect for this sweater! Cozy, drapey, soft but durable, tweedy, excellent. Yarn was chosen, now I just needed to pick my colors. Oh colors, always a tough decision!
Skacel sent me a color card, so that helped – well, actually it kind of made the decision harder, since all the colors were so great in real life! I was tempted to make my sample with more colors, just so I could use more, since I loved them so much… but, I didn’t want the colors to overwhelm the design of the sweater, so I decided to stick with just two. I spent about a month (!) thinking it over, making this colored-in sketch in all the different combos I was considering:
I finally landed on Malbec for the main color and Boysenberry for the contrasting stripes.
I am so happy with my choice – I love how the finished sweater turned out!! After knitting my sample, finalizing the pattern, and having it test knit by several fabulous knitters, my first garment pattern, Tionne, was released to the world
at the beginning of November!
Skacel has generously offered up a sweater’s worth of Kenzie to one lucky winner! Seriously lucky, because trust me, Kenzie is an AWESOME yarn! I had a fantastic time knitting with it, and I’ve been wearing my soft, cozy sweater all the time since I finished it. Love it SO MUCH!!
Want to win the yarn to make Tionne? Check out the gorgeous colorways on the Skacel site
and leave a comment here with your choice of the two you would use! Deadline to enter is Friday, November 20th at 12 pm PST. Good luck!