Friday, April 28, 2017

Knit Noro Accessories 2 + Interview + Giveaway

Knit Noro Accessories 2 has just been published and it has 30 beautiful accessory patterns. I was proud to be in the first Knit Noro Accessories with my Tulip Scarf and even prouder now to have 3 designs in this book. Noro Yarns' colorways are really great for accessories. Knit with it once and you can see the appeal of the long vibrant self-striping colors. There are 30 projects which include gloves, socks, hats, shawls, ponchos, and more. You can see all the patterns on Ravelry.

I designed a shawl, a scarf and a hat for this book. It was a pleasure to design and knit them for Noro Yarns and Sixth & Spring Books. I hope you will enjoy knitting the patterns from this book. Happy Knitting!
 © 2017 Sixth&Spring Books
© 2017 Sixth&Spring Books
The Garter & Lace Diamond Shawl is knit with alternating strips of garter and lace, knit on the bias to create a diamond with vibrant color and texture. It is knit with 4 balls of Noro Silk Garden Sock in #84 Orange/Red/Pink. You start at one corner and end at the other corner.
 © 2017 Sixth&Spring Books
© 2017 Sixth&Spring Books
The Garter Ridges Scarf is knit with 3 balls of Noro Taiyo in #67 Neutrals/Black/Carnations. It has a subtle knit and purl stitch pattern. It is easy to memorize and quick to knit up.
 © 2017 Sixth&Spring Books
© 2017 Sixth&Spring Books
The Lace Beanie is a slouchy beanie that incorporates simple lace and stockinette. It is knit with 2 skeins of Noro Silk Garden Solo in #12 Forest. After knitting with Silk Garden Solo, I want to knit this hat in every color they have. Even though it is one color and not like their usual self-striping colorways, the colors are deep and vibrant. You can have a new hat knit up in a weekend.

Jen Lucas Designs recently contacted me to interview me for the Knit Noro Acessories 2 book. Plus, she will be giving away one copy of the book to one lucky winner! Head on over to her blog to read my interview and enter to win the book. The deadline to comment on her blog post for a chance to win the book is 5/7/17. Good luck!

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Almost Wordless Wednesday

It's fun to look back on my activities and projects from the last several weeks. It's like a week in review with pictures. I always link to products I use whenever I can. Have a great week!
Cashmere Fun Size Bundles from Lux Adorna Knits.
 Planning my weaving project with graph paper and colored pencils.
 Embroidery Alphabet Sampler from KHG Arts.
 Weaving on my Zoom Loom from Schacht Spindle Co.
 Magic Custard Cake is a crowd pleaser whenever I make it for friends.
 Quilkfolk Magazine is a wonderful new magazine for the quilting community.
Knitting with Noro Yarns is always a pleasure.

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Review: Kraemer Yarns Tatamy Tweed DK

Spring is upon us and it's time to play with some cotton yarns during these warmer months heading into the hot summer. I recently got some Tatamy Tweed DK from Kraemer Yarns to try out. Normally, I am not a fan of cotton yarns because it has no elasticity and can be hard on my hands. Tatamy Tweed DK is a blend of 45% cotton and 55% acrylic. I had a feeling that I would like working with this yarn because of the blend.

My first impressions when I took it out of the packaging? The yarn was cool to the touch and soft. The colors are vibrant and very pleasing to my eyes. I liked the little flecks that were spun into the yarn.
Instead of knitting with it, I decided to try weaving with it. I used my Zoom Loom to weave some squares. It was easy to weave with Tatamy Tweed DK. The yarn wove smoothly and did not snag or fray. If you have any experience with pin loom weaving, you would know that not every yarn is suitable for pin looms. This yarn held up to the 3 layer warp and then weaving with it.
The woven fabric is light and very smooth. I am delighted by the tweed flecks in it. They add little pops of color to the finished fabric. My photo doesn't do it justice, but the woven fabric is bright and fun. I haven't decided what I am going to make with the squares, but I think it will be something for one of my daughters. I am going to keep weaving and see what it becomes. Tatamy Tweed DK is machine washable which I think it's great for kids because it's easy to care for. It comes in many bright colors and neutrals, too. Whether you knit, crochet or weave, I would highly recommend trying this yarn. The cotton and acrylic blend is perfect for anyone with wool allergies. Thank you to Kraemer Yarns for letting me review your yarn.

Monday, April 10, 2017

Book Review & Giveaway: Mosaic & Lace Knits

Today, I am reviewing Barbara Benson's book, Mosaic & Lace Knits. It's hot off the presses and I am thrilled to have a copy in my hands. Lace is a very popular technique in knitting. Basic lace knitting is as simple as creating yarn overs. Have you ever tried mosaic knitting? Mosaic knitting is also known as slip stitch knitting. It's a fun and easy way to add some colorwork to your knitting. The easy part is that you are only knitting with one color at a time. There is no need to carry multiple yarns. Barbara took lace knitting and mosaic knitting and combined it together. GENIUS!
© Tom Moore
Isn't this gorgeous? I think Ves really shows off the combined techniques of mosaic stripes and lace very well.
© Tom Moore
If I had to pick a favorite piece from the book, it would have to be Isochronal Arc. The color combinations and the stitch pattern creates a dramatic and stunning look. The arc design is carried all the way up the yoke which really completes the design of this piece.
 © Tom Moore
I think the Lozengy Scarf is a perfect project to get you started with mosaic and lace knitting. It uses a super bulky yarn, simple motif and lace and it is knit flat. You can work up this scarf pretty quickly while learning this new technique.

These techniques may look intimidating, but fear not. Barbara has added a instructional section in the book that covers the basics of knitting slip stitches, how to read lace and mosaic charts, how to work mosaic in the round, and tips and tricks to help you avoid potential troubles. She includes clear photos to help you learn the techniques that will lead you to success in knitting mosaic and lace. I really like the part where she goes into detail about carrying the colors up the sides and what kind of selvage it would create. Barbara took the time to knit a swatch to show the different examples and how it would like like if you chose one technique over the other. I am a real stickler about details and finishing techniques and that kind of information is so important, in my opinion.
 © Tom Moore & Barbara Benson
As a knitter, I just love trying trying new techniques. What would I cast on from Barbara's book? Right now, I am trying to choose between Sailing Diamonds or Lacy Pinstripe Cowlette.

If you like what you see, you can check out Barbara Benson's Ravelry designer page and her YouTube channel, Watch Barbara Knit. You can purchase Mosaic & Lace Knits from Amazon, your local book store or your local yarn shop.

Are you intrigued by mosaic and lace knitting? Would you like to win a copy of this book? Luckily, Stackpole Books is offering to give one of my blog readers a free copy of the book. To be entered to win, leave a comment below letting me know which pattern is your favorite. You can see all the patterns from the book HERE. Enter before April 17, midnight EST time. Don't forget to leave me your Ravelry ID or email so I can have a way of contacting you if you win. Good luck!

Friday, April 07, 2017

Ocean Grove with SweetGeorgia Yarns

Spring has finally arrived and I am excited to announce that SweetGeorgia Yarns just published my Ocean Grove Shawl. This light and lovely shawl is inspired by the Victorian architecture abundant in Ocean Grove, NJ. The highly textural stitches are reminiscent of the details you will find in a Victorian home. The gradient colors add another depth of beauty to further highlight the stitch patterns. It is knit up in Botanic Party of Five set. This gradient set definitely shouts SPRING, don't you agree?
As always, I block with wires and Knit Blockers by Knitter's Pride. It's much faster than using pins. 
You can can purchase my Ocean Grove pattern on Ravelry or from SweetGeorgia Yarns. Read more about the shawl and my Q & A on SweetGeorgia's blog. Also, you might want to check out SweetGeorgia Yarns Spring Party offer:

We are so excited about spring that we've put together three of our favourite gradient shawls into a Spring Party set for the first 100 customers! The set includes Ocean Grove (our newest pattern), Cumberland, and Starburst and each use SweetGeorgia's Party of Five; five mini skeins of fingering-weight yarn with rich hues and lush texture. It's a promise of bright, joyful colour in every stitch. Click HERE to get all three patterns at the bundle price of USD$12.36 (C$16). This sale is limited to the first 100 purchases before it expires, so act fast!

Friday, March 24, 2017

Miss Babs Spring 2017 Knit-Along

Have you heard about the Miss Babs Spring KAL? Miss Babs is hosting the knit-along in her Ravelry Group. Has one of the patterns in the Spring Collection caught your eye? This is great time to pick a pattern and knit with your Miss Babs Yarns that you have stashed away.

Basic rules:
  • Knit up any one of the ten Spring 2017 collection patterns.
  • In Miss Babs yarn.
  • WIPs are OK.
  • Make a Ravelry project page with photo(s) of your project.
  • Finish by May 1 to be eligible for prizes: one $100 gift card and one $50 gift card to

I am joining in the fun by knitting my own shawl pattern, Furinji, for my sister. She chose the color Blarney Stone in Keira. Miss Babs has such great colors to choose from.
It's working up pretty quickly. I find the garter stitch portion of the shawl very soothing. It's great for watching Netflix at night because I don't have to pay too much attention.
I am really enjoying seeing knitters knitting my Furinji Shawl. It's always fun to see other peoples yarn and color choices. Veronica (GoldenIris on Ravelry) has modified my pattern by adding beads at the edge of her shawl. Take a look at her finished shawl and her instructions for adding beads. It's beautiful!

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Almost Wordless Wednesday

Everyday Fingering in Northern Lights from OnTheRound Yarn
Coffee Mugs I recently saw at Home Goods.
Cute cat stitch markers from a Instagram friend.

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Review: Love + Leche Lotion Bars

Recently, I had the opportunity to try Love + Leche's new Sheep Sweet Lotion Bar. Every day my hands take a beating from washing dishes, cooking and taking care of my kids. I don't often use lotion on my hands because I don't want my hands to have a greasy residue. As a knitwear designer, I don't want any lotion to get on my yarn or my knitting needles. This lotion bar was such a nice surprise. It does not feel greasy and keeps my hands nicely moisturized. The warmth of my hands gently melts the lotion bar onto my hands. I find that it quickly absorbs into my skin so that there is no residue. I keep the tin on my desk so it is easily accessible.

Love+Leche Lotion Bars are an all-natural, concentrated, solid form of lotion. I love that their lotion bars are all hand poured. The bars are designed by a local sculptor and inspired by their Santa Fe life. The golden beeswax, and organic calendula flowers are harvested by their beekeeper and farmer friends in Northern New Mexico. They scent their products using only natural essential oils. I chose the unscented bar and they also sent me a sample of the Lavender Mint. It smells amazing! My 9 yr old daughter can't keep her hands off the Lavender Mint one. She keeps telling me how good it smells.

© Love + Leche
It took over a year of dreaming, designing, and working with a local Santa Fe sculptor to create the Sheep Sweet Lotion Bar. The design of the two sheep was created just for knitters and fiber artists which I think will make perfect gifts for any knitter, crocheter, weaver, or spinner in your life. I think the sculptor did an amazing job with carving the mold, so I like to preserve the cute sheep on the lotion bar. I rub the bottom and sides of the bar and avoid the top.

For my blog readers, Love + Leche is offering a special gift, "Buy one lotion bar in a tin (min $14) get a free mini balm sample ($4 value). Exp 5/1/17".  Use coupon code angelatong at the checkout cart. Time to shop for some lotion bars.

Friday, March 10, 2017

Malabrigo March 2017 Sale

March means Malabrigo Madness. Every March, the Malabrigo Junkies on Ravelry host a big Knit-along and Crochet-along. The Malabrigo Yarn company sends prize yarns which goes to the contest winners. Malabrigo March starts March 1 at 12:01 am your time. You can cast on as many projects as you would like between this time and March 31 at 11:59pm. Projects must be made with Malabrigo Yarn to be eligible to win a prize. Head on over to their info page to get all the details.

For those of you that are still looking for patterns, I am offering 25% off my patterns that features Malabrigo Yarns. Use coupon code MM2017 to get 25% off, starting March 1 until March 31.
Yin Yang Shawl
Balance Shawl
Yin Yang Collection

Thursday, March 09, 2017

The SweetGeorgia Show, Episode 048: Angela Tong on Being a Multi-Passionate Crafter

Recently, I had the opportunity to be a guest on The SweetGeorgia Show. The podcast episode aired this week. I had a great time chatting with Felicia Lo of SweetGeorgia Yarns on being a multi-passionate crafter. I talk about how I got started designing knitwear, how I started weaving, getting my first loom, how I keep organized and other crafts that I like to do.

Craftsy Class Giveaway
On the podcast, I am giving away one free Craftsy Class to a lucky listener. The giveaway is open until the end of March. Head on over to listen to the podcast and enter the giveaway, The SweetGeorgia Show Episode 048: Angela Tong.

Thursday, March 02, 2017

Seyon Lodge Fiber Professionals Retreat 2017

In February, I attended the 3rd Annual Seyon Lodge Fiber Professionals Retreat in Vermont. Becky Herrick is the creator and organizer of this event. It is a low key retreat. You bring your knitting/crochet projects and sit around the fireplace to talk shop, play games, catch up with each other or talk about something else. You can sleep in, go snowshoeing, or get up early for a walk in the woods. In the past we have hired a yoga instructor and the last 2 years we have hired a masseuse. 
The retreat is held at the Seyon Lodge in Vermont. The lodge is a comfortable and quaint bed & breakfast operated by the Vermont State Parks. It is 1.5 hours from Burlington, VT, 3 hours from Boston, MA, and 5.5 hours from NYC. It's nestled in the 27,000 acre Groton State Forest (which is rural even by Vermont standards). There are 8 rooms, 14 beds, and plenty of shared baths. Along with the dining room there is a library, a common room with a fireplace, and a conference room.

The innkeepers always feed us well. Everything is locally sourced and cooked or baked at the lodge. You can tell them your dietary needs ahead of time and they can accommodate the menu to your needs. I always feel so spoiled by having all my meals cooked for me during the whole weekend. This year they baked this amazing chocolate cake for Friday night's dessert. They were so nice to share the recipe with me because I liked it so much.
This is the main room where we hang out. We can stay in our pj's and just relax in front of the fireplace. Since all of us come from different states, a lot of people bring adult beverages, snacks and treats to share. A lot of eating goes on during this weekend. 
The last 2 years, we have hired a certified massage therapist to come to the lodge for those that want a massage. Jessica of Luna Lotus Bodywork is amazing! She really takes all of my pain away. If she was closer, I would make regular appointments with her. Since it takes me 5 hours to get to Vermont, this will remain my yearly treat to myself.

This year the weather was perfect for snowshoeing. Some people brought their own or you can rent them from the lodge. The location is also perfect for knitwear photo shoots. All of us designers pitch in to model, style and shoot photos for our new designs if we happen to have them done and ready to go. It's a wonderful collaborate effort.
On the drive back, Heather and I stopped by The Green Mountain Spinnery. We also ran into our fiber retreat friends who had the same idea as us. If you are passing through Putney, Vermont, definitely make a stop there. Gorgeous yarns in so many beautiful colors.

Monday, February 27, 2017

Miss Babs Spring 2017: Furinji

© Miss Babs
I haven't designed a shawl in a while, so I am really excited about my latest shawl design, Furinji. It was designed in collaboration with Miss Babs for their Spring 2017 Collection. Furinji is an asymmetrical triangular shawl worked from one point increasing outwards. The shawl has a garter stitch body and features a lace edging with a decorative fringe created by picots.
 © Angela Tong

The lace picot edging is my favorite detail in the shawl. The garter stitch body keeps the shawl easy to knit and the edging keeps the knitting from being boring. Furinji is knit with one skein of Keira in a babette colorway, Blue Dasher. It has crisp stitch definition with very little halo. Each skein has 560 yards so it yields a very nice sized shawl.
© Miss Babs

There was one slight change from my original design concept when I was finishing up the sample. In my sketch, you can see that there is no fringe on the other side. I felt it needed something on the bind off side of the shawl to balance the lace picot edging, so I used a picot bind off. I am very happy with how it turned out.

To block the shawl, I wet blocked it. I ran wires through the picots and the garter edge at the top of the shawl. Then I pulled aggressively and used the Knitter's Pride Knit Blockers to pin it down. I let it dry overnight and it came out perfectly. You can find my Furinji shawl pattern on Ravelry.