The Daily Skein

All the craft that’s fit to make.

Sir Elton July 27, 2011

Filed under: patterns — Cailyn @ 10:47 pm
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I designed a pair of socks for the Sock Summit edition of Tangled (I may have mentioned this before).  The issue went live today, so I can show you Sir Elton!



(picture shamelessly “borrowed” from Tangled)


These socks were originally named “Adara.”  Since the Tangled issue has an 80’s theme, like the Summit, the patterns got renamed with 80’s music names.  We submitted a few of our favorite musicians/bands for them to choose from.


These socks grew out of a Celtic knot-esque cable I designed.  I wanted it to grow organically from the ribbing and I wanted a stockinette foot.  I particularly love the way the side cables taper down to just one stitch on each side before the heel.


These socks are available for $6 at Tangled.  You can use the code SOCKSUMMIT11 to get $1 off the pattern until August 14.  And don’t forget to stop by and see these socks in person at the Tangled booth if you’re at the Sock Summit! (More on that tomorrow.  I have to get too sleep so I’ll be awake for my morning class!)


Danu July 7, 2010

Filed under: patterns — Cailyn @ 1:20 pm
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Last summer, I dug myself out of a dangerous twisted stitch sock addiction by designing a pair of socks.  (It may seem like an odd cure, but I’ve found it to be effective.)  Since Alpine socks take so much concentration, I wanted these new socks to be kind of mindless but not boring.  Interesting, but easy.  What I came up with was…


Danu, a classy cable-rib sock with easy cables and moss stitch accents.


Danu 1


These socks were inspired by stories of the Tuatha Dé Dannan (“people of the goddess Danu”) who ruled Ireland until they were driven to the Otherworld by the Gaelic Celts. Worked top-down, the socks feature bold cables, for the warriors, and subtle moss stitch columns, for the tricksters.  At the heel, two of the cables split and continue down the side of the foot, merging the patterned instep with the plain sole. The gusset decreases are placed at the bottom of the heel flap instead of the top so that the side cables can use the gusset stitches in their twists. With an easy-to-memorize pattern and slightly unusual construction, these socks may even have some of the magic of the Tuatha Dé Dannan still in them.

102_4474    Danu 3


At the time I designed these, I was reading a book by Juliet Marillier whose writing I adore.  She specializes in historical fiction with a healthy dose of ancient folklore/fantasy.  Reading a story set just after the Tuatha Dé Dannan’s withdrawal to the Otherworld might have influenced the name of the pattern.  Maybe.


Danu 2    Danu 4


Danu was picked up by Yarn Forward for publication last fall and I’m happy to announce that the socks have finally found their home in issue #26!  (On newsstands now!) 




I’m pretty excited that Danu is one of the pictured patterns in the table of contents.  The contract Yarn Forward has with their photographer doesn’t allow for third-parties to post their pictures, so you’ll have to look at the magazine to see it and the other great photos.    The ones above are pictures that I took at a stream near my house for the submission.  My camera doesn’t have a remote, so these were taken (like the Arthurian Anklets) by setting the self-timer and dashing into a pose while trying not to get any detritus on the socks.  Actually, these were taken just down the path from the pictures of the Anklets.  That park is wonderful for “wild” sock pictures.  When they send the socks back, I’ll take some more (read: better) photos with Lowell.




Sitka June 10, 2010

Filed under: patterns — Cailyn @ 11:24 pm
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Before I tell you all about the lovely yarns I got in Virginia and North Carolina, I have some good news to share!


I’d like to introduce you to Sitka.



These socks take their name and inspiration from the Sitka spruce, a beautiful northwestern evergreen tree. They are worked from the top-down with a slip-stitch heel flap. The interesting part of these socks is the two bands of color work, one around the leg and one around the ball of the foot.



Between these bands, the sock is mostly stockinette with a simple cable “clock” on each side. A clock is a stitch pattern that travels down the side of the leg and splits at the heel, like the hands of a clock.



Clocks were a popular design element in early socks and one of my favorite techniques. They add interest but don’t slow things down. Because the clock pattern in these socks is 9 stitches wide, the front of the sock has fewer stockinette stitches than the back. This allows the line of purls between the cables to continue down the foot uninterrupted.


Sitka is similar to Socks, circa 2008.  I love the look of a sock with a bit of color on top.  But Sitka has an extra band of color work at the toe, thrown in for free.  It also has simpler cables and a plain heel flap.  I saw the top band in a stitch dictionary (in very different colors) and knew that I had to design a sock using it.  The rest of the sock grew from that band.  The colors were the last thing to be figured out in this pattern- with a near frogging of the first sock when I had second thoughts!  However, the original colors I chose prevailed.



Sitka is for sale at Knit Picks as a PDF download.  You can buy the pattern by itself for $1.99 or as a kit.  I love their new Independent Designer Program and have had a great experience with the publication process.  I get all the proceeds from the pattern sales (they keep the yarn profits, obviously) and I keep the rights to the pattern.  I take care of all the errata and corrections, so if you have any questions about the pattern, please contact me at dailyskein (at) or on Ravelry as CailynDragon.  If you’ve read any of the other entries on this blog, you probably know that all my “go-to” yarns are from Knit Picks.  The open invitation to submit patterns to them is something I’m really enjoying.  I have another pattern in the works for them… and probably a whole bunch more, too!



These photos were taken in the forest behind my house early one spring morning.  Lowell took this great shot of the sun through the trees.




One of our neighbors had taken a No Parking sign from the street and put it behind their house; I guess as a protest for the high number of them in our cul de sac?  They’ve moved now, so we’ll never know.  Made us laugh, though!  They hated those No Parking signs.




This is the tree I’m standing on.  See, we found out that the roots were rotting away and it might fall onto our house.  The top half of the tree got cut off and the rest left as a snag.  The top half was left in the forest and is now a great place for photos!  And wildlife too, since I guess the world doesn’t revolve around my sock-photo needs.


p2190111   IMG_0518


Oh Crap January 14, 2010

Filed under: Musings — Cailyn @ 12:21 pm
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Oh crap.


I love my CPH.  I loved knitting it.  I love wearing it.  Do you know what this means?


It means that I can’t stop looking at sweaters and wanting to knit them.   Last week, I was running errands and saw a woman wearing an awesome sweater out the window.  I tried to kinnear the sweater as best I could.


IMG_0254 (2)    IMG_0257 (2)


I love the huge cables on that thing.  I wish I had gotten a better picture of the back, though.  According to my notes (yes, I kinneared and took notes!) the back had two of the arm cables side by side and they interlaced together.


We went to see a movie the other day and a preview for Greenberg was shown.  I leaned over to Lowell and whispered, “I like his sweater!”  I particularly like the lines of eyelets on the drop shoulder.




This can’t be good.   I mean, I already stare at people’s socks, hats, scarves and mittens.  Now I’m going to stare at their sweaters and cardigans too?!  I won’t be able to go anywhere without taking pictures of strangers and gazing intently at their shoulders to figure out what kind of sleeve they have. 


I’ve already started on a designed-from-scratch sweater for Lowell (almost 8 inches long now!)  I’d post a picture of it, but if it turns out well I might want to submit it somewhere.  I completely understand that magazines want their patterns to be a surprise, but it really puts a kink in the blogging, you know?  Suffice to say that it has cables and the design relied heavily on Lowell’s input.  It’s based on Elizabeth Zimmerman’s seamless bottom-up saddle shoulder pattern from Knitting Without Tears.  It’s also green.


Logi January 7, 2010

Filed under: patterns — Cailyn @ 10:14 pm
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"When Loki and Thor traveled to Utgard, the citadel of the giants, they were told by the giant king that no one could stay in the citadel without proving themselves superior at a skill or craft.

Loki was the first to demonstrate his skill, saying that he could eat faster than anyone in the hall. He started at one end of the table and his challenger, the giant Logi, started at the other, eating towards the center. Loki ate everything, leaving only the bones behind. But Logi ate the bones and even the wooden trencher!

In the morning, the giant king revealed that he had tricked them. Logi, he told them, was fire itself and no one could consume faster than fire. Utgard vanished, along with the giants, and Thor and Loki returned home."

That is an extremely abridged version of one of my favorite Norse myths, where Thor and Loki go to fight some giants and end up humiliated by a clever king and some magic. The cable on this scarf was inspired by the interlocking designs on Viking armor and jewelry which is surrounded by double moss stitch borders. The cable starts and ends in a pair of points, like the tips of a flame. To do this, fewer stitches are cast on and then increases are worked to make the points.




This scarf was designed for my brother-in-law, and if you’d ever seen him and my husband eat a pile of barbeque, you’ll know the other reason this scarf is named Logi.  This is a great pattern to knit for guys, especially when you tell them that the cable is Viking-related!


Using one skein (200 or so yards) of Malabrigo will produce a short but still respectable length scarf. In order to make the scarf wider and/or longer, add a second skein. To easily make this scarf wider, add pairs of stitches to each edge and work them in double moss stitch. For example, the first row for a wider scarf might read "Sl 1, *p1, k1* twice x3 , p12, *k1, p1* twice x3, k1, turn." This adds two stitches to each the right and left side.


The scarf will have a tendency to flip inwards around the cable as it’s worked. This is because of the two columns of purl stitches on either side of the cable. When the scarf is finished, steam block the scarf aggressively to relax the fibers and minimize the flipping. Wet blocking will work but steam blocking is more effective for combating the flip.  Learn more about steam blocking versus wet blocking at TechKnitting, Knitty, and KnitSimple.


Edit 2/23/10: Renamed the increases so that the names in the instructions and the names in the key match.


102_4863   102_4870


Download the PDF: Logi

  • Needles: One pair size 9 (5.5mm) straight needles or size needed to obtain gauge
  • Yarn: Malabrigo Worsted [100% merino wool] 216 yds/3.5oz Color: Loro Barranquero; 1 skein
  • Yardage: 200-250 yards (180-225m)
  • Gauge: 26 sts x 21 rows = 4”(10cm) in pattern
  • Finished Size: 4.5” x 52” (11.5cm x 132cm)
  • Notions: Cable needle, tapestry needle


Special Stitches

LRinc: Insert right needle into the right leg of the knit stitch or the top of the purl stitch below the next stitch. Knit this new stitch.

LLinc: Insert left needle into the left leg of the knit stitch or the top of the purl stitch two rows below the stitch just worked. Knit this new stitch.

K2tog: Knit 2 together

SSK: Slip next 2 sts purlwise. Insert left needle into the front loops of the slipped stitches and knit them together.

P2tog: Purl 2 together

SSP: Slip next 2 sts knitwise. Return sts to left needle and p2tog through the back loops.

C4F: Slip next 2 sts to cable needle and hold to the front. K2 from left needle, then k2 from cable needle.

C4B: Slip next 2 sts to cable needle and hold to the back. K2 from left needle, then k2 from cable needle.

T4F: Slip next 2 sts to cable needle and hold to the front. P2 from left needle, then k2 from cable needle.

T4B: Slip next 2 sts to cable needle and hold to the back. K2 from left needle, then p2 from cable needle.




CO 22 sts.

Row 1 (RS): Sl 1, *p1, k1* twice, p12, *k1, p1* twice, k1, turn.

Row 2 (WS): Sl 1, work stitches as presented (knit the knits and purl the purls,) turn.

Row 3 (RS): Sl 1, *k1, p1* twice, p12, *p1, k1* twice, p1, turn.

Row 4 (WS): Sl 1, work stitches as presented (knit the knits and purl the purls,) turn.


Work Chart A for 8 rows. On WS rows, work stitches as presented or read the chart from left to right. 8 sts increased. 30 sts


Work Chart B until scarf is 2.5 inches less than desired length, ending on Row 16. On WS rows, work stitches as presented or read the chart from left to right.


Work Chart C for 10 rows. On WS rows, work stitches as presented or read the chart from left to right. 8 sts decreased. 22 sts


Row 1 (RS): Sl 1, *k1, p1* twice, p12, *p1, k1* twice, p1, turn.

Row 2 (WS): Sl 1, work stitches as presented (knit the knits and purl the purls,) turn.

Row 3 (RS): Sl 1, *p1, k1* twice, p12, *k1, p1* twice, k1, turn.

Row 4 (WS): Bind off all sts knitwise.


Finishing: Weave in ends. Steam block to relax the fiber’s tendency to flip inwards at the edge of the cable. Steam blocking will lessen the flip more than wet blocking.


Click on charts for bigger image, or download the PDF above.


Chart B

 Chart C

Chart D




Please Note: I post my patterns as soon as I’ve completed them because I’m excited to share them with you. They have not been fully tested, but they are free. I’ve made every effort to make sure that the instructions are clear and error-free. There may be typos or pattern mistakes and if you find them or have any questions, please let me know by posting a comment or emailing me,


Creative Commons License
This work by Cailyn Meyer is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 United States License.