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We are excited to welcome our longtime friend, Wendy Bernard, back to our blog! She's just released another fabulous stitch dictionary featuring our yarns, this time it's Japanese Stitches Unraveled. This comprehensive book (288 pages of stitches we can't wait to try) will provide you with endless stitches to play with and a handful of beautiful patterns to knit. We couldn't be more honored to have her knitting in our yarns. Learn more about her book and process with our interview - enjoy!
After writing Up, Down, All-Around Stitch Dictionary and The Knitting All Around Stitch Dictionary, I looked to my favorite Japanese stitch resources for inspiration and new direction. Looking through them, it struck me that they were not too easy to decipher despite being charted in reasonably familiar symbols. Not only that, but many of the stitches in the books were totally unique—even odd—to my eyes. I approached my publisher (Abrams) to see if they’d like another stitch dictionary, but one that contains mostly Japanese stitches, and they agreed that it would be a good next book.
Yes! It is called Gothic Seeded Arches and appears on page 208 in the Lace chapter. It is quite a big stitch pattern being 38 rows/rounds tall and a 12-stitch repeat, but it is such fun to work and it is so graphically pleasing.
Wendy is offering a special bonus stitch pattern just for our readers! See the pattern at the bottom of the blog to try it out for yourself!
I have been working with Blue Sky Fibers for many years, so I’m pretty familiar with how the yarns act and which ones will work for lace, cables, or ribs, etc. I knit all the swatches myself—that’s how I figure out how to convert them to in the round—so I can switch out the yarn choice if I need to.
First, I love the yarn! Ever since I started knitting in 2008, Blue Sky was my go-to yarn for almost all of my projects. As the years went by, I started working with Blue Sky more and more on single design projects. When I began writing books, it made sense to request support. The wonderful and broad selection of colors and yarn bases made it a no-brainer to use Blue Sky yarn in my stitch books.
Hands down, the Blue Sky Fibers Royal Fingering. My favorite color is Cameo even though I never wear pink. I also love working with the Organic Cotton and Woolstok.
Right now, I’m in talks with my publisher about another book. This time, it’ll be a little different from my last three. I’m also doing some other crafts to try to unleash new ideas. I’m a firm believer that creative people need to continually try new things to stay “fresh,” so I’ve been doing some painting and sewing in addition to my usual knitting.
FLAT (multiple of 10 sts + 5; 8-row repeat)
Row 1 (RS): [K1, p1] twice, *k7, p1, k1, p1; repeat from * to last st, k1.
Row 2: P1, [k1, p1] twice, *k5, p1, [k1, p1] twice; repeat from * to end.
Rows 3 and 4: Repeat Rows 1 and 2.
Row 5: K6, p1, k1, p1, *k7, p1, k1, p1; repeat from * to last 6 sts, k6.
Rows 6–8: Knit the knit sts and purl the purl sts as they face you.
Repeat Rows 1–8 for Small Basket Stitch Flat.
IN THE ROUND (multiple of 10 sts; 8-rnd repeat)
Rnd 1: *P1, k1, p1, k7; repeat from * to end.
Rnd 2: *[P1, k1] twice, p5, k1; repeat from * to end.
Rnds 3 and 4: Repeat Rnds 1 and 2.
Rnds 5–8: K5, p1, k1, p1, *k7, p1, k1, p1; repeat from * to last 2 sts, k2.
Repeat Rnds 1–8 for Small Basket Stitch in the Round.
Find the stitches & patterns in: Japanese Stitches Unraveled
By: Wendy Bernard
Published by: Abrams
Photos of swatches by: Theron Tan
Photos of knit patterns by: Lesley Unruh