A year of test knits – part 1

On my previous post, I talked about my most recent test knit, the Navigate pullover. A cabled men’s sweater designed by Annie Lupton for Rib Magazine’s second issue.

I completed several other test knits in 2016 and I’d love to share them with you. This is the first of a 4 part series where I will go through each one in detail. As with anything, practice makes perfect and though I’m far from it, I am thankful to these designers who entrusted me with their work, helping improve my skill as a knitter. 


There are 2 shawls, a cowl and a scarf.  

I’ll begin with the cowl, my very first test knit.

Part 1 // Because I Love You Cowl by Amy Meeks

I had just completed my second shawl, the Because I Love You Wrap by Amy Meeks and shared this photo of my daughter wearing it on Instagram. Her sister, Debby, saw it, tagged her, and before I knew it, began a wonderful friendship with the Periscoping Sisters, particularly, Amy, the designer for the wrap. She and I got to talking and as it turned out, she was working on a new pattern, a cowl version of the wrap, and asked if I would like to test knit.

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Test knit // Navigate pullover


I was asked to test knit a men’s sweater by my friend, Eric Lutz, host of the Sticks + Twine podcast and Publisher for Rib Magazine back in March. I said yes, flattered by the fact that I had only been knitting for 3 years and recently finished my first adult sweater, Boxy.

Then he showed me this photo:


Jaw drop.

I felt excited and intimidated at the same time. Look at those gorgeous cables! I thought to myself, “Can I do this? I’d hate to disappoint!”

I have worked on several cabled projects prior, like this hat, this other hat, and these beautiful socks. I also have this shawl that’s been on the needles for forever. I had frogged it countless times due to error after error on my part, and sadly it is now languishing in a corner waiting patiently for me to pick it up once again.  

Self-doubt consumed me as I waited to receive the pattern. As Jameson Frank quotes, “Our greatest battles are those with our own minds”.

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CozySquishyWool -V2


Summer is finally here!!! How is yours going so far? We only get 2 months of this glorious weather here in Canada and that means busy, busy, busy for me and the kiddos.

I meant to release this second edition of the cozy squishy wool gift tag in June but it’s ok, better late than never right?

Keep a look out for the third version to be released late October/early November of this year 🙂

Please note: This is a subscriber exclusive freebie! If you are an existing email subscriber as of July 3, 2017, check your inbox for the link to download!




<< Update >> May 15, 2017. Giveaway is now closed. Thank you to everyone who participated! There were a total of 82 entries. I used random.org to draw a winner. Congratulations to Amy @dropastitch for winning this kit!


I’ve been thinking about this for some time now.

In the past year, I’ve been fortunate to have won a few prizes and with Mother’s day comin’ up, I thought now is the perfect time to pay it forward 🙂

I also wanted to support a friend of mine, Christina aka The Cozy Knitter, so I picked something from her shop to add as well.

Head over to Instagram for your chance to win the MOTHER’S DAY GIVEAWAY!

Giveaway_blogTHE PRIZES:

  • The project bag is made by yours truly. It measures approx 11.5″x9.5″x3.5″ and includes an outer zipper pocket for notions. (4.25″x7″)
  • The yarn, ‘Bunny Fufu” from the Cozy Knitter, is a self-striping sock yarn with matching mini skein for heels, cuffs, and toes. 80% superwash merino, 20%nylon, 413yards/115g


Complete steps 1 and 2 on Instagram – @pearadise_island

For step 3, scroll down to subscribe to my newsletter! ↓

Don’t forget about the Bonus entry 😉

Giveaway ends Sunday, May 14, 2017, at midnight, EST. Open worldwide.



I’m a toe up, magic loop kinda girl.

I like to knit my socks concurrently on 2 separate needles whenever possible.

I use 2.25mm/ US size 1 – 32” circular needles. My favorites are Addi Sock Rockets and Hiya Hiya Sharps.

Here’s my recipe:

  1. Cast on 8 stitches per needle using Judy’s magic cast on
  2. Increase at the 2nd stitch and 2nd to last stitch of each needle every other round until I have 30 stitches per needle. (I use KFB (knit front and back) to work my increases.)
  3. After I complete the first toe, I take another needle and cast on for the second.
  4. Once both toes are complete, I knit the foot up to the heel. I do the same for the second sock.

*I convert cuff down patterns to toe up by reversing the order of the foot & leg pattern starting from the last row working my way backwards. For example, if it is a 4 row repeat, instead of starting with row 1, I’ll start with row 4, then 3, and so on.

  1. Knit the heel one at a time, using Fish Lips Kiss Heel
  2. When both heels are complete, I knit the leg. I prefer them to be as long as the foot (or at least 6″) because I find it cozy like that.
  3. Knit the cuff, working 20 rounds of my version of 2×2 twisted rib which is cheating knit through the back loop but purl as normal.
  4. For the bind off, I use the simple stretchy bind off
  5. Block the socks using this and this
  6. Weave in the ends only if it’s a gift, haha, and no, my husband doesn’t count. He doesn’t mind that string hanging out inside his foot 😉