One of the projects I was working on over the fall was a small collection done in collaboration with Anushka of The Crimson Stitchery. I’ve mentioned Anushka and her YouTube channel on this blog a few times before, including when I shared a few favorite video podcasts earlier in 2020. So deciding to do a design collaboration together was a great deal of fun and an interesting creative challenge as well!
We took the winter solstice as our starting point, and created a shared mood board with imagery representing our own ideas about the winter solstice. Already it was interesting to see the differences – I associate it with moody blue light, short daylight, snow, and frost, while Anushka’s associations were more in the direction of the sparkling festivities of the season. We decided we would both create accessories rooted in our shared inspiration – using different techniques (colorwork for me, cables for Anushka), but both incorporating color and texture play and using the same yarns. I think both our designs evolved along the way, as we sketched and swatched, but I really love where we ended up.
We each designed a hat pattern and a pair of fingerless mitts, and I thought I’d share each of them here in brief. If you’d like to hear about them in a little more detail, I made a video about my designs (which can be found here), as did Anushka (and her video is here).
My hat is the Lebkuchen hat (on Ravelry here). Worked up in fingering weight, I used a metallic chainette yarn for the contrasting color for a pretty fun and glitzy effect. While the gold yarn was incorporated into all four of our pieces, this is the only one where it’s not simply used for a trim. I’ve been wanting to play with metallic colorwork for a long time, and I plan to keep exploring the creative possibilities it opens up!
My mitts, meanwhile, are the Pepperkaker mitts (Ravelry link). These are worsted weight and work up quite quickly, which is always very satisfying! If you watch the video I made about my designs, you’ll also see the full mitten version I was working on. I’ll admit I stalled on those once I got to the thumb of the full mitten, but I do still intend to release that version as an option with the pattern!
Anushka’s hat is the delightfully squishy Brandy Butter (Ravelry // Payhip). Another quick knit in worsted weight, it’s a mix of cables, stockinette, and ribbing. The diamond cable centered on the front echoes the diamond motif of the colorwork in my Lebkuchen hat – having the designs nod at each other that way was a deliberate choice, and it was fun to work out how we were going to do that as we worked on the collection.
And lastly, Anushka’s Ginger Snaps mitts (Ravelry // Payhip). I love these cabled mitts and I think I’d like to knit a pair for myself, probably with some modifications. These are worked in fingering weight, and I love the classic look of the cables she chose for the back of the hand.
We’re so pleased with the collection overall and I do love how the pieces work together as a set. Collaboration often pushes me to make slightly different creative decisions than I’d make working totally on my own, and that’s really refreshing sometimes.