Variegated Yarns: Fabulous Resources for Pattern Ideas

This weekend, I’ll be doing a trunk show at KNOTS in Chardon Ohio and, along with a huge pile of yarn, Mini-Skeins, and Ombre Kits, I’ll also be taking a stash of some really amazing one-of-a-kind colourways.  They are the result of several weeks of pure colour-play, experimenting with the dyes and seeing what happens when I just follow where the colour takes me.  Some are moody, some are intense, some are wild — all  of them are stunning.

One of a Kind yarn from SpaceCadet

But when I take yarns like this to shows — yarns that resulted organically rather than by careful design — I always find a few customers who pick them up and are completely stumped.  They turn the yarn over in their hands and, especially if it’s highly variegated, look at it in frustration and say, “But what would I make with it?”

The key to using a wildly multicoloured skein is to find a pattern that manipulates the yarn to use those colour shifts to their best advantage.  Sometimes a colourway is so beautiful that straight stockinette can do that, but more often, a pattern that uses slipped stitches, dropped stitches, or other techniques that move the colour vertically as well as horizontally will create amazing results.  And multicolour yarns also really shine paired with a semi-solid yarn in a pattern that alternates between the two.

Fabulous Pattern Idea Resources for Wildly Variegated Yarns, from SpaceCadet

We are such a fans of variegated yarns here at SpaceCadet, and of all the possibilities they hold (so many awesome possibilities!), that we decided to create two wonderful resources for our customers who need inspiration for those amazing multicoloured yarns they’ve just fallen in love with.

The SpaceCadet Variegated Yarn Project Ideas Board on Pinterest

We’ve curated a wonderful collection of variegate pattern ideas to wander through.  The idea here is not so much to choose a pattern (although you might find the perfect one — just click on the pattern’s image to find it on Ravelry) as to immerse yourself in possibilities.  Scroll through interesting stitch patterns, new techniques, and innovative ideas that you can try with that beautiful new colourway you’ve bought.  Here, why not grab a nice cup of tea and click here to wander through it yourself?

The Variegated Yarn Pattern Suggestions Thread on Ravelry

What’s better than a Pinterest board full of stunning project images?  A collection of pattern ideas that YOU can help create!  Our Variegated Yarn Pattern Suggestions thread on Ravelry is put together by our fans and customers — people who love SpaceCadet yarn and know what works beautifully with it.

The ideas our group shares are fantastic and the rules are simple: (1) every pattern suggestion has to include an image and (2) chatting is encouraged but when you post a reply to the thread, you have to include a new pattern and image as well.  The result?  A fun, interactive lookbook of variegated project ideas.  Click here and come join in!

The SpaceCadet's Variegated Yarn Pattern Suggestion Thread on Ravelry

Last Few Days to Order a Mauna Kea Kit!

Don’t forget this weekend is your last chance to order a Mauna Kea Kit and get in on the KnitTogether fun!  Worked in either stripes or a gradient fade, Mauna Kea features raglan shaping, 3/4 sleeves, and incredibly flattering rib detailing down each side.

The KnitTogether starts Oct 31st, and orders close on Monday Sept 15.  Click here to grab your kit!

Mauna Kea Kits from SpaceCadet

The SpaceCadet's InterStellar Yarn Alliance yarn club, open Sept 9-22 only

Perfect… Even After All This Time

Apropos of absolutely nothing (except that I am kinda dying to show it to you), is this…

I have been wanting to try my hand at throwing pottery for absolutely ages, ever since we had a little taster in art class when I was nine years old.  I knew instantly, all the way back then, that it was something I’d love (and it was my first realisation that, while I’m really quite terrible at two-dimensional art, making in three dimensions comes fairly easily).



Somehow, life got busy and, even though I thought of it from time to time, I never did manage to try it again.  But then a friend told me that a new pottery studio had recently opened nearby…  And so I finally took that nine year old up on her wish, and booked myself a lesson.



I loved it.  Loved it!  It was everything I remembered and everything I hoped it would be — tactile and messy, and with a wonderful, earthy smell.  It made my arms ache with the sheer effort of cajoling the clay into shape, but it was so deeply satisfying in that way only making something with your own two hands can be.  Making things — nothing else feels so grounding to me.

My teacher was soft-spoken and patient.  When I stopped focusing and started to talk to him instead, the clay rebelled   …and collapsed into a sullen heap.   But so long as I concentrated, it flowed between my hands and did everything I wanted it to do.  I can’t even describe the feeling — it was just amazing to watch it slowly form from a shapeless lump to something so beautiful, right there in my hands.



So this is my pot.  It’s not big, the size of a small rice bowl, but it is perfect to me.  I love it so much and yet… I’m almost afraid to use it.  For now, it sits on a shelf, looking wonderful, and I sit in a chair, knitting or reading a book, and sneak little glances at it.



…And feel rather proud of myself.

SpaceCadet returns to KNOTS on Aug 24

I was absolutely delighted when Kate and Laura at KNOTS (Knitting On The Square) in Chardon Ohio invited me back for a trunk show.  I did one there last year and had such a blast, I can’t wait to go back!  I’ve been dyeing like mad for it and doing lots of experimenting so, as well as my regular colours, there will be fabulous new and one-of-a-kind colourways.  If you’re in the Cleveland/Erie area, please do come and see us!

The SpaceCadet is returning to KNOTS (Knitting on the Square) in Chardon Ohio



Saturday, Aug 24, 11-5
153 Main St
Chardon Ohio 44024
(440) 285 KNIT (5648)
Click here to map it!




The InterStellar Yarn Alliance opens soon!

I cannot believe that our premiere yarn club, InterStellar Yarn Alliance, will reopen for subscriptions in just a few weeks! Click here to learn more and to get on the mailing list, so you are the first to hear when it opens!

Fantastic New Colourways and Upcoming Events (*cough* …Yarn Alliance!)

I have been working like a mad woman — there have been trunk shows, and more coming up (see below for details), I’ve been dyeing for the next Yarn Alliance parcel and for some great new shops, and getting ready for Rhinebeck…  Oh, and building a new online shop.  Let it never be underestimated how much work goes into a new shop!

Y’know, I could say that again.  Neverrrrrr underestimate.  Never never never never…

But there’s good stuff in all that work too.  One of the most fun: I’ve gotten to explore some fun new photography techniques to take some luscious new colourway pictures.  What do you think to these?!?

The New SpaceCadet Colourway Images


A-a-a-and, if you know my colourways, and you’ve looked closely at that photo, you’ll have spotted that there’s a new one in there.  It’s called Five Rings, and I created it for the latest bundle of yarns for the SpaceCadet’s Mini-Skein Club.  The seed of inspiration was planted when Mindy at Clotheshorse magazine sent me one of their mood boards and asked me to dye a colour to go with it.  And I just couldn’t stop!  From that colour, I just kept mixing dyes until I’d created a whole new collection of gorgeous sun-baked spice colours, tempered with the cool of a silver-grey.  And Five Rings is the one that ties all the colourways together.

This is one of the mini-skein bundles that went out to the Club members (clockwise from top left, they are: Five Rings, Burnt Clay, Mars, Drizzle, and Sun-Baked).  Would you be understanding if I told you that I very very nearly didn’t send out the parcels this month?  That I very nearly kept all the skeins for meeeeeeee?

The New SpaceCadet Colourway Collection


Well, after all the bundles went out, I went into the studio and quickly dyed a whole bunch more, in at least five different yarn types.  Look for them  as soon as they are dry!

Mark Your Calendars!

If you live in the Baltimore/DC area, you do not want to miss the PLY party (Peace, Love, and Yarn) at Lovelyarns on Sept 9.  It’s a hand-dyed extravaganza with fresh yarns from a ton of indie dyers.  Make sure you’re there!

Just one week later, on Sept 15, we’ll be doing a trunk show at the fabulous KNOTS (Knitting On The Square) in Chardon Ohio.  I was up there earlier in the summer for a fabulous class with Brenda Dayne, and I can’t wait to go back!  Will you be coming?

And…  Oh oh oh!  Mark your calendars and set an alarm, because the InterStellar Yarn Alliance will open for subscriptions from Sept 1 to Sept 16!  The Yarn Alliance is the SpaceCadet’s fabulous yarn club, full of gorgeous yarn, exclusive colourways, and fantastic goodies.  Spaces are limited, so click here to check it out!