Three Pattern Picks to Bring Out the Best in Variegated Yarn

I get excited about variegated yarn (which is great, right? I mean, considering what I do for a living and all…) but variegated yarn can be tricky.  Pick the wrong pattern and it might pool or flash.  Pick the wrong yarn and it might turn into a multicolour mess.

But… but… when you combine the right variegated yarn with a pattern that compliments its colour changes, the result can be magical.  The latest SpaceMonster colourway, “As Winter Goes”, is dyed on SpaceCadet’s smooshy bulky-weight Elara in a wonderful mix of custard yellow, rich rust, and a washed out violet — that is just beautiful in the skein and will look amazing in a stitch pattern that moves the colours around in interesting ways.

As Winter Goes2

Wait, what do I mean by “interesting ways”?  My favourite stitches for colourways like this one use cables, slipped stitches, yarn overs, and the like to move the colours around — vertically as well as horizontally — within the fabric.  In fact, one of our SpaceMonster Club members did exactly that and her results are just gorgeous — click here to see!

But picking the right pattern to do that isn’t always easy, so want a little help choosing projects that will look amazing with this yarn?  We’ve got you covered!  Here are our Pattern Picks for the February SpaceMonster colourway, “As Winter Goes”…

Pattern Picks for “As Winter Goes”

Boot Candy Boot Cuffs/Boot Toppers Pattern by Sara Gresbach

Boot Candy Boot Cuffs

This past Christmas, I received a gorgeous pair of knee-high boots that I have worn pretty much every single day since the holidays.  And what does every great pair of boots deserve?  Some beautiful hand-knit boot toppers!

What I love about Sara Gresbach’s design is the way she uses cables (without purling) to subtly move the stitches around on a stockinette background.  The effect is lovely in a solid yarn as pictured here, but would work wonderfully to blend the colours in a variegated yarn like “As Winter Goes”.  Simple, quick, and just so cute — I might go cast on!


Cordiale by Heather Zoppetti


Here’s another amazing example of a using simple stitch technique to manipulate colour.  Look carefully at Heather Zoppetti’s stunning Cordiale and you can see the slip stitches working their magic against a stockinette background.  To me, it looks almost like the wings of birds flying across the fabric.

Worked in a variegated yarn like “As Winter Goes”, those slip stitches would lift the changing colour up out of the horizontal line of its original row to break up any pooling or flashing, and create a wonderful, randomised effect.  All while keeping you toasty warm — can’t beat that!


Mikkey by Lee Meredith


I love love love what Lee Meredith does with yarn — her approach to knitting is innovative and almost architectural.  And she never ever shies away from deliciously bold use of colour!

Lee designed Mikkey in three shades of SpaceCadet Elara —  Dark Skies (the gray), How Dare You! (the orange), and Tickled (the pink) — with a 2-color slip-stitch pattern which gives completely different looks on the two sides.  But I’d love to see it knit in the sublime colours of “As Winter Goes” paired with the soft gray of Dark Skies for a more natural effect.  Or  for something really eye-catching, contrast it against a beautiful purple like Plume.  Either way, it’s a stunning pattern that will bring out the best in any smooshy, variegated yarn.

 As Winter Goes

The SpaceMonster Mega Yarn Club will re-open for subscriptions in June.  If you want to be the first to know (and get early-bird registration), get on the SpaceMonster mailing list!

The Winner of the SpaceMonster Giveway is…

Wow. Wowwwwwwwww.  We have never (ever, ever) had such a wonderful response to a giveaway in the history of SpaceCadet giveaways!  It was mind-blowing!

By the time the entry period closed on Friday, almost one thousand of you had entered, and it was just so exciting to see that kind of enthusiasm.   And the best bit?  Reading all the fantastic, heartfelt messages you left for our generous SpaceCadet community member who made this giveaway happen.  We really do have a wonderful knitting and crochet community!

What Made You Enter?

So first, I’ve gotta ask you, what was it this giveaway that appealed to you so much? Was it the fantastic prize? (a year’s worth of smooshy SpaceMonster yarn is pretty hard to resist!)  Or was it the incredibly generosity of our SpaceCadet community member who sponsored it?  Or maybe both?

I would love to create more giveaways that speak to our community as much as this one did, so please, won’t you click here and take just a moment to let me know?  I’d be so grateful!


Win a Year's Membership to the SpaceMonster Mega Yarn Club from SpaceCadet


And the Winner Is…

Ok, let’s not wait any longer!  After putting all the entries into the Random Number Generator, the winner of the SpaceMonster Giveaway is…

#47: Debra Houser

Congratulations, Debra!

Please send an email to info(at)spacecadetcreations(dot)com with your postal address, and we’ll send your first SpaceMonster parcel right out to you!

Thank you so much to our lovely community member who sponsored this giveaway.  And thank you to everyone who participated — really, our sincere thanks because it was just so much fun — and keep your eyes on your inbox for more tips, updates, and exciting giveaways in the future!

Giveaway — Win a Year’s Subscription to the SpaceMonster Mega Yarn Club!

A while ago, I was interviewed in a local paper for an article about a yarn show we were attending.  The reporter asked me what I enjoyed about doing the festival and my answer came easily: more than anything, I love getting to meet our customers in person.  We spend a lot of time squirreled away in the studio, working on our own, and even though we hear from our customers by email and on social media…  sometimes it can feel a bit distant.  Going to shows is when we get to put faces to names, projects to makers, and really be part of the amazing community of knitters and crocheters that makes everything we do at SpaceCadet feel worthwhile.

Dyeing yarn at SpaceCadet

And when I say community, I mean it.  Go to our Ravelry group and ask a question — for knitting help, for a pattern idea, for anything at all — and people will post right back with help and suggestions.  I just love that!  I honestly believe that knitting and crocheting bring out what’s best in people but, sometimes, I am still taken completely by surprise.

The Most Amazing Email

The SpaceMonster Mega Yarn Club opens for subscriptions for two weeks only twice a year and if you miss it, you miss it.  But this past December when we opened the club, we got an email that just blew me away.  One of SpaceCadet’s long-time customers wrote to say that they wanted to share a little fiber-love with the rest of our community, and had purchased a one year subscription to the SpaceMonsters for us to give away!

Can you believe that?!?  A one year membership in the club that is filled with big, smooshy, colourful yarns and those fabulous SpaceMonster gifts.  Twelve months of quick-knit yarns delivered right to your doorstep!  Along with the opportunity to get more for a larger project.  And a super-fun gift every six months.  All paid for — all completely taken care of — by an incredibly wonderful, generous, yarn-loving member of our community.

Seriously, knock me down with a feather!

Win a Year's Membership to the SpaceMonster Mega Yarn Club from SpaceCadet 3

Get Entered!

So, shall we get this giveaway on the road?!?  Entering is super easy: just click here and give your name and email address, and that’s it — you’re in!

Plus, when you enter, you’ll join our mailing list where we give first notice of new colourways, fantastic project ideas chosen especially for SpaceCadet yarn, heads-up notice when our clubs are opening, exclusive special offers, and all kinds of fibery goodness!  We pop into your inbox once or twice a week, and every email is filled with good stuff.  So hop on board, this giveaway is about to take off!

Click here to Enter to win a subscription to the SpaceMonster Mega Yarn Club

But hurry — we’ll be sending out the next SpaceMonster parcel very soon, so the giveaway will be open only until Friday, Feb 13.  Click here to get entered quick!  (see official rules below)


Say Thanks by Sharing it!

And then, please take the chance to thank our wonderful community member by sharing their generosity with your knitting and crocheting friends on Twitter, Facebook, and Ravelry. And just like the last giveaway, for every share you make, you just know the Universe will send you a cosmic wave of good luck. Because, with a prize like this, you want all the good luck you can get, right?!?

For Twitter: Whoa! SpaceCadet is giving away a year in the SpaceMonster Yarn Club! Click here to enter: #SpaceMonsterGiveaway

For Facebook: Whoa! SpaceCadet is giving away a year in the SpaceMonster Mega Yarn Club! Click here to enter: #SpaceMonsterGiveaway

For Ravelry: SpaceCadet is giving away a year in the SpaceMonster Mega Yarn Club! Click here to enter:

Or, just leave a comment on the blog post to say thanks to our wonderful community member!

Win a Year's Membership to the SpaceMonster Mega Yarn Club from SpaceCadet 2

There’s always small print! Official rules: NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. Open to entrants worldwide, age 18 or older. Void where prohibited. Odds of winning depend on number of entries received. Sweepstakes ends 11:59 p.m. EST on February 13 2015. Official entry is made by entering name and email address here . By entering, contestants agree to join the SpaceCadet, Inc mailing list and be contacted via future emails. Limit one entry per person. One prize, consisting of one (1) year’s subscription to the SpaceMonster Mega Yarn Club (consisting of 6 parcels, one each in Feb, Aprl, June, Aug, Oct, and Dec 2015), valued at $194.00. Total prize value: $194.00. Winner will be selected by random drawing. Prize cannot be redeemed for cash. Prize cannot be substituted. Employees and family of employees of SpaceCadet Inc are ineligible. A list of winners will be available on the SpaceCadet blog on or after Feb 16 2015. Sponsored by SpaceCadet Inc, PO Box 113312, Pittsburgh PA 15241. For full official rules, go to

Pattern Picks for In These Dark Woods, the Latest SpaceMonster Colourway

The December SpaceMonster parcels went out last week and, before I show you Jade’s fantastic pattern picks, I just have to share with you the gorgeous colourway that inspired her and and the fabulous gift that accompanied it.

**Spoiler Alert!** If you’re a SpaceMonster Club member and you haven’t seen your parcel yet, look away now if you don’t want to spoiler the surprise! (And if you’re not a SpaceMonster, there’s only 3 days left to join — click here!)

This is In These Dark Woods, inspired by a darkening wood at nightfall, bathed in the rich and mysterious colours of the dying light, and changing constantly before your very eyes.  I dyed them using a freeform technique that allows the yarn to absorb the dye however it pleases, soaking up one colour here and other colour there, and gives a result that is as exciting as it is unpredictable. No two skeins are alike and, while they are all similar, the goal with a colourway like this is not for them to match exactly but to simply go together, each one’s differences enhancing the skeins around it.

But just as much as the yarn, we were super excited to send out the gift that went in this month’s parcel.  It was a gorgeous wooden SpaceMonster box, handmade for us by Craig at Turns2Art, and absolutely perfect for holding all those notions and tools that always end up everywhere.  And Doug, one of our SpaceMonster members, documented the process as he opened his box and revealed his skein of In These Dark Woods…

The SpaceMonster Mega Yarn Club Gift for Dec 2014


But when you’re holding an amazing skein like this in your hands, it can be hard to decide what to make with it.  So I asked my assistant Jade to choose a few patterns for this colourway, and she’s come up with some fantastic suggestions.  Over to Jade…

Pattern Picks for In These Dark Woods

As soon as I saw this yarn, I knew it was going to be special.  And the more I worked with it, the more I loved it – each skein was different but equally stunning.  As I twisted and tagged them, I kept thinking ‘oh, now, this one’s my favorite’ and ‘this would be perfect for …’.  So many patterns popped into my head that it was hard to pick just three!  (Check out our Pinterest boards to see the rest.)


Nola Cloche by Hilary Smith Callis

Nola Cloche by Hilary Smith Callis
If you’re like me and need to cast on *right now*, go ahead!  This little cloche is instant gratification, and can be made with just one skein of Capella.  The smooth stockinette will emphasize the rich variegation of In These Dark Woods and the simple, yet striking, cable twist adds interest and a bit of panache… Perfect for adding a pop of color to dull wintry days.


Yvonne – A Neck Warmer by Quadshotyarn

Yvonne - A Neck Warmer by Quadshotyarn
For those of you that prefer crochet, we’ve got you covered!  This month’s SpaceMonster yarn is perfect for you – Capella crochets up beautifully, and the textured stitch pattern of this neck warmer will make the colors ebb and flow into jewel-like pools and pops.  It will work with one skein, but to make it extra squashy and decadent, try using two and holding the yarn double!


Gale by Alicia Plummer

Gale by Alicia Plummer
And if you love In These Dark Woods as much as I do and just want to wrap yourself up in it, try this stunning winter poncho.  It’s pure comfort knitting – simple, with a straightforward construction, but enough texture to keep things interesting – and just the thing to keep you warm as Winter gets going.  Since it takes 5-6 skeins, it’s also the perfect way to showcase all the variation in this colourway.  Each skein will make the others pop, or you could alternate them for a blended, more nuanced look.


(I’ve got to tell you, it was really hard to pack the skeins into their little treasure boxes and send them off… I really wanted to keep them all for myself!  Maybe we could count that a fourth, unofficial pattern pick?  All The Skeins, made into a giant smooshy afghan!)  


The SpaceMonster Club Closes on Sunday

As you can see, the SpaceMonster Mega Yarn Club is an  awesome club.  Focusing on smooshy worsted and bulky yarns (and great gifts), it’s a fantastic adventure for these cold winter days — or the perfect holiday gift! The SpaceMonster Club closes on Sunday Dec 21, so click here now for all the details and get in before it’s gone!


SpaceMonster Club Dec 2014 Closes 525

Five Fabulous At-The-Very-Last-Minute Yarny Holiday Gifts

The holidays always sneak up on me. Always.  Are you the same?  And here we are, the shopping days slipping away alarmingly fast, and  suddenly realising that it’s really, really late to be starting that gift shopping.  What to do?!?  Well, as I’m in that same boat trying to think of last minute gifts, let me share what I’ve come up with…

Five At-The-Very-Last-Minute Yarny Holiday Gifts

(to save your bacon!)

craftsySpotLogo 200Choose a Craftsy Class

For any knitter or crocheter who enjoys learning new skills, Craftsy has a class to suit every skill level.  And it’s not just yarny pursuits: Craftsy has classes on sewing, photography, cooking, woodworking, and tons more.  With instantaneous delivery, this is a gift you can order on Christmas Eve and still be in the good books, but why would you wait?  There’s a sale running right now, so grab a gift quick and save a little extra for yourself!

Click here to give a Craftsy class

KnitEdge Magazine

Gift a Knit Edge Magazine Subscription

A subscription to Coop Press’s Knit Edge magazine is a delight for any knitter.  Not just for the beautiful patterns they’ll receive, but for the all trend-watching and fascinating articles that delve deeper into the fiber arts world we all love so much.  Published three times a year, you can give a gift subscription right at the very last minute and the recipient will never be any the wiser.  Even better, click here to order, enter the gift recipient’s name and email address at the top, and enter the code LASTMINUTE14 at the bottom of the screen to get a one-year, non-renewing subscription to KnitEdge for the price of one issue. Who can resist a deal like that?!?

Click here to give Knit Edge magazine



SpaceMonster Mega Yarn Club closes on Dec 21Give a SpaceMonster Mega Yarn Club Gift Subscription

Know a knitter or crocheter who just loves big, smooshy yarn in glorious hand-dyed colours?  We have the perfect, easy, last-minute gift!  The SpaceCadet’s SpaceMonster Mega Yarn Club is designed all around those lovely squishy bulky and worsted weight yarns, with 6 month or 12 month subscription options, the chance to buy more skeins for larger projects, and an awesome gift in every third parcel (we seriously love picking the gifts!).   The SpaceMonster Club is open for subscriptions only until Dec 21 so you’ll have to hurry, but we’ll make everything about this gift super easy.  Just click here to set up your gift subscription, be sure to note during check out that it’s a gift and who it’s for, and we’ll take care of the rest!

Click here to give a SpaceMonster gift subscription


CurlsSend Curls, the Book that Arrives Now and… Later

Hunter Hammersen’s designs are intricate, intriguing, and incredibly beautiful.  And her latest book of patterns, Curls, focuses on an innovative wrap design curls around the body with a flattering drape.  How does this make a great last minute gift?  Well, unlike a regular book purchase, if you buy Curls at the last minute (or, right now!), your recipient will get an electronic copy of the book that they can start reading immediately, plus a beautiful hard-copy in the post that they can enjoy all through the new year.  Perfect!

Click here to order Curls


SpaceCadet Sweater Kits 200Give a SpaceCadet Sweater Kit

Our Sweater Kits have been flying out the door this holiday season, but we have a few left and, if you order them quickly, we’ll get them in the post to your recipient straight away.  Choose a kit in either fingering or sport weight, in colours ranging from the elegant Dark Skies Ombre to the sublime South China Sea kit to the eye-catching When Life Gives You Lavender Gradient Kit.  What knitter or crocheter wouldn’t go mad to receive a whole sweater’s worth of gorgeous hand-dyed yarn this holiday season?!?

Click here to shop for SpaceCadet Sweater Kits.


So there you are — five great gift ideas that will make your last minute holiday shopping a little easier.  And hopefully allow you to relax a bit in these last crazy days and get back to the things that really matter on these snowy winter days…  curling up with your knitting and crochet!

Gorgeous Pattern Picks for Firebrand, the Yarn Alliance’s Latest Colourway

(*spoiler alert* Close your eyes if you don’t want to see the latest Yarn Alliance colourway!)

When I first started dyeing, I worried a little that I might run out of colours.  Seriously, I did.  I mean, Roy G Biv is only seven letters…  There can only be so many combinations, right?  And I kind of wondered what happened when you get to the end of the list.

I know.  I know!

Five years later and colour is still a fabulous cosmic adventure.  Take the latest Yarn Alliance colourway — I knew I wanted to use it to explore reds, but I didn’t want it to be flat or monochromatic.  I wanted to let red bloom from pink, from plum, from rust and from yellow.  I wanted to let the colour do its thing and just see where it led.  And I loved, loved, loved the result!  This is “Firebrand”…

Firebrand, the November 2014 colourway exclusive to the InterStellar Yarn Alliance (yarn club) from SpaceCadet

Isn’t it gorgeous?!?  Now, before we get to Jade’s fantastic pattern picks for Firebrand, let me quickly just share with you the gift we included in the parcel, but I’m over the moon about it.  How adorable are these little buttons custom-made for us by Remember Wynn?  I can’t wait to see what our club members make with them!

Custom SpaceCadet buttons by Remember Wynn and exclusive to the InterStellar Yarn Alliance from SpaceCadet


Jade’s Pattern Picks for Firebrand

Speaking of things to make, Jade has put together a fabulous collection of pattern ideas for this yarn.  Such beautiful designs! Which one is your favourite?*

Nineteen Twenty Shrug – Liisa Nieminen

Nineteen Twenty Shrug - Liisa Nieminen
With just a touch of lace and beautiful all-over drapey fabic, this pattern is perfect for showing off the Firebrand Colourway of this month’s Yarn Alliance parcel.  The glowing ember tones and floaty drape of the Celeste make the perfect fiery cocoon – two skeins will be enough to ward off the winter chill.


Magpie Cowl – Judy Marples

Magpie Cowl - Judy Marples
This month’s ISYA colourway was actually a bit of a challenge for me to pick a pattern.  The colors are gorgeous and glow-y and vivid, but they need just the right amount of showing off… The Magpie Cowl delivers, with an interesting, but easy, lace pattern to bring out Firebrand’s variegation and the perfect amount of yardage for one smooshy skein of Celeste. (And check out your shiny – it even calls for buttons to close!)


Dark Pearl – Carol Feller

Dark Pearl - Carol Feller
If cowls and shrugs aren’t quite what you’re looking to knit, or you’re more in the mood for a show-stopper, try Carol Feller’s amazing Dark Pearl cardigan.  It has it all – a fitted silhouette, smooth stockinette to show off the vibrant variegation of Firebrand, and a stunning lace front panel that can be draped open, or worn closed with your SpaceCadet buttons!  And because Celeste has such great yardage, you’ll only need 3-4 skeins for the whole sweater, depending on size.


(*I love all three but I think my favourite is Dark Pearl.  Such intriguing construction!)


Want to Get in on the Fun?

If you think being part of the InterStellar Yarn Alliance looks like fun, you are so right!  Now, the Yarn Alliance isn’t open again until March but its sister club, the SpaceMonster Mega Yarn Club, is open for subscriptions right now.

And it’s an awesome club!  Focusing on smooshy worsted and bulky yarns, it’s a fantastic adventure for these cold winter days — or the perfect holiday gift!  The SpaceMonster Club is open until Dec 21, so click here now for all the details and to grab your spot.

SpaceMonster Club Dec 2014 2 525x237 for MailChimp