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A Collection I Cannot Stop Knitting

November 9, 2012

Photo © Becca Brewer Photography

One of my favorite morning rituals is sitting down at the computer with my second cup of coffee and perusing the most recently added patterns to Ravelry. I think of this as my morning reconnaissance mission. What new patterns, yarns, and trends are happening? What’s new in my world, the world of yarn?

When I saw this first collection by Elizabeth Mautz-Redmann, I was blown away. There are five stunning, must-knit patterns in the Cultivated Collection–I cast-on right away!

My Colibri, totally in love.

I started with Colibri, my love of all things shawl-y is well documented and this shawl contained so many lovely nuances, both in terms of knitterly skill and appearance… well it was just designed to be mine. The Colibri piqued my knitty curiosity with mind-bending construction (I’m not joking when I say that shawl is made with only ONE complete row–it is a study in short rows!) and, quite literally, a brand new stitch and bind off… both invented by Elizabeth! The look of the shawl, decadent and drapey in Blue Sky Alpacas Royal, means it’s an absolute necessity for this piece to cascade off one’s shoulders. The crescent shape with spiraling ends and the arrow-inspired ribbed edge that ruffles without being too-too ruffly beg to be worn. I had the pleasure of debuting the Colibri I knit at VKLive Chicago and I’ve worn it once since then. Every where I go, I get stopped. I could hardly leave the coffee shop between the barista’s questions and fellow customers stopping me on the way out. I cannot even tell you the calamity I caused in the VKLive hotel coffee shop!

The Details

Pattern: Colibri
Designer: Elizabeth Mautz-Redmann
Size: Shawlette and Shawl
Needles: Size 6 (4mm) needles, or size needed to obtain gauge
Yarn: Blue Sky Alpacas Royal, modeled photo shown in Patina #707, flat photo shown in Vermilion #711
Pattern available on Ravelry here

Photo © Becca Brewer Photography

Like many of you, I acquired a stash beyond life expectancy long ago and have a list of things to knit miles and miles long. I usually like to spread my knitting love around, trying many different projects by many different designers. I had purchased the Cultivated Collection for my pattern library that overfloweth and figured I would return to these lovelies someday in the future, rather than starting on them right away. (Feel free to laugh at my foolish thoughts… right about now.)

My Stargazer in Caviar.

One does not simply walk away from the Cultivated Collection. It has me completely hooked and absolutely smitten. Living in Minnesota is lovely because handknit accessories become a must-knit since they must-be-worn on account of the weather. I rarely venture out of the house without at least one knitterly layer. The keep-me-warm factor and the keep-me-chic-and-put-together factor make me a consummate accessory knitter. My only problem with accessories is that, since they are somewhat small in nature, I tend to be more bold with them than I would otherwise. My accessory fashion choices quickly become about not just the multitude of skills I can learn, but also the number of unique colors I can combine! Statement colors that, while I would never wear as pants, per se, I cannot help but be completely enamored of as an accessory.

Stargazer Stitch

This has left me with a hole in my accessory collection. The sort of piece that is both of classic styling and of classic colors is something I simply don’t own. Enter the Stargazer Stole. The simple, oversized rectangle my accessory collection was missing. Paired with Blue Sky Alpacas Brushed Suri in Caviar… well, just guess how many times I’ve snapped this piece up as I’ve dashed out the door. (I’ll give you a hint… it’s never actually been put away!)

The Details

Pattern: Stargazer Stole
Designer: Elizabeth Mautz-Redmann
Size: Traditional and Extra Long
Needles: Size 10½ (6.5mm) needles, or size needed to obtain gauge
Yarn: Blue Sky Alpacas Brushed Suri, modeled photo shown in Agua #914, flat photo shown in Caviar, #916
Pattern available on Ravelry, here

Photo © Becca Brewer Photography

The three pieces (shown above) of the Cultivated Collection that I haven’t made… well, let’s just say the yarn is on the swift for at least one! The Cultivated Collection has me extraordinarily bewitched.

See the complete collection here.

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