Posted on | December 1, 2015 | No Comments
Alexis Winslow is a woman of many talents. Not only is she a fantastic knitter and designer, but she is an amazing artist and potter as well. For her newest collection Speckle and Stone, Alexis was inspired by her recent time spent in her pottery studio. Clay and yarn, what is the connection you ask? Let’s let Alexis explain her thought process in her own words:
“Alongside knitwear design, one of my great artistic
loves is pottery. There’s an elemental satisfaction in
using your bare hands to form clay into vessel that
mirrors the feeling of forming fiber into stitches, into
I’m often surprised by the parallels in my aesthetic
vocabulary between these two mediums. In both
there is a balance of utility and decoration, science
and bit of chance.
When I designed this collection, I was also spending
serious time in my pottery studio. Not surprisingly, my
pots from this period began to coordinate with my
knitwear collection, or maybe it was the other way
around. Like my pots, my Speckle & Stone knitwear
collection balances earthy textures with graphic
motifs and all the colors between earth and sky.”
Once again, Alexis’ command of graphic pattern and color shines bright in this collection of 5 pieces: 3 garments and 2 accessories. One of my favorite things about Alexis’ patterns is her interesting construction and knitting techniques used in each design. The Dolo Mitts, for example, use short-rows to form triangular motifs throughout the mitts which mimic the look of intarsia. So clever and so much easier to work for most knitters!
One of my favorite projects in the collection is the Arno Pullover. At first glance, it looks like a fairly simple design, but once again, Alexis’ interesting construction methods shine. The body is knit from the top down, but is started in sections. The body is then joined in the round for the body and sleeves just below the contrast yoke. I love a good seamless construction method that allows for a more flattering set-in sleeve. With Arno’s interesting construction and extremely wearable design, this one is definitely going in my queue.
I also want to make note of Alexis’ clearly written instructions which include self-produced technique video links embedded into the PDF for the trickier parts. Some technique video highlights include Short-Rows: Incorporating Wraps, How to Knit Stranded Colorwork, and a Steeking Video Tutorial. These well done videos not only give courage to the adventurous beginner, but are also a nice little refresher for the more advanced knitter as well.
In addition to the above mentioned patterns, the collection is rounded out with a colorwork hat (designed to use up leftovers!), a cocoon cardigan (great layering piece!), and a steeked graphic patterned cardigan (steeks really are the best, trust me!). These five colorful projects will carry you through the chilly months ahead all while teaching you a few new tricks for your knitting toolbox.
Speckle and Stone is available as both a PDF ebook and a printed softcover book. Patterns can also be purchased individually. The PDF, printed book, and individual patterns may be purchased at Knit Darling or find the PDF book and individual patterns on Ravelry. Enjoy!