cold brings out the worst(ed) in us

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at just about this same time last year, our lucky BNK clubbies were discovering a delicious new yarn offering, exclusive to the club; kent worsted, which is everything we love about kent—soft, airy, beautiful sheen—and pouffier, squishier, chunkier.


with the cold hitting all-time lows for the season, this makes all kinds of sense now—we need cover. so it is with great pleasure that i’m finally able to release the exclusive designs that went with that wonderfully wooly stuff.


because we need style too, i designed a deliciously cozy trio of pieces to make the most of this incredible yarn. first, carlsbad—a BIG cowl with BIG cabled texture to knit in two sizes, short and long.


but it doesn’t end there; carslbad has a little secret that adds up to more than meets the eye. see that dishy slouchy shape?


short-row sections are worked into the circumference to add luscious folds, the better to keep warmth where it belongs, near you.


the shaping also works with the length to make the cowl a little more versatile; in a windy dash to the parking lot a block away, pull it up to keep your ears warm and save your hair.


OR if you’re a hat person, knit yourself a topper for that purpose—hills in jamul. this tam has all the same features in a littler package.


the same great texture, highlighted by the sheen of the kent worsted, and a nice slump at the back, encouraged by its soft hand.


BTW, if the mention of short row shaping scares you off and you prefer a less slouchy look, simply eliminate those sections from the pattern—they are worked only as inserts (like a stripe) and are easily skipped. many of our club members took liberties with their own accessory projects and you can check those out on ravelry here, here, and here.


well now, a cowl and a hat are  a great start to battling the kind of ferocious cold we’ve been having this month, but what we really need, is to keep hands warm when running, snowblowing, or shoveling. and we all know that gloves are a bust when it comes to keeping fingers warm.


what we need are good mittens, like these torrey pines. the fabric here is knit more densely (the better to to repel water), but using the same light, airy kent worsted—the better to trap air near the skin for insulation. that same fabulous texture along the back of the hand is handsome, yes, but also tightens the fabric up to create a windproof panel just where it’s needed most.


you might be tempted to keep these on the front seat of the car so you can pull them in a hurry to brush away snow, but leave them lying about at your own risk—just saying’.

sarah is wearing the hills in jamul hat in size medium, the carlsbad cowl in size tall (above) and size small (below), and the torrey pines mittens in adult size large, all knit in bare naked wools kent worsted, color driftwood.

we are excited to announce that due to the popularity of kent worsted with our club crowd, we have brought it in as a permanent part of our lineup AND we are making it available in three additional shades:

left to right: whitecaps, tide pool, and mussel shell


erica has put together a kit for this new trio of kent worsted favorites, which includes the compilation of all three patterns with your choice of two or more yarn skeins in any available shade.

patterns are also available in my ravelry pattern shop; where you will also find the BNK 2014 eBook, a compilation of nineteen total patterns for undyed, natural fiber yarns.


i think it’s fair to say that this trio of warm, fun-to-knit pieces was one of the most popular projects we did in the 2014 bare naked knitspot club and in no small part due to the delicious yarn with which it was paired. i was actually a bit surprised by how much everyone enjoyed the new worsted weight kent and how swiftly they got these projects on the needles.


kent worsted has all of the same terrific properties of kent DK, which many of our blanket club members are discovering for the first time as they open their boxes of blanket yarn and begin to knit.


the pearly shades have a luminous glow as if viewed through water or glass; i just love that about them. it makes for fabrics that are cool and sophisticated.


to make both of our kent yarns, top-quality romney wool is hand selected for softness, luster, color, and springiness.


farm producers like karin and her son devlin set aside the best of their yearly clip for our yarn. now that wool is right off the sheep—can you believe how beautiful it looks already?


at the mill, the romney blended with combed merino to make an array of gorgeous shades, then spun in a 2-ply construction to make the most out of its natural its bounce and loft.


the final yarn is light, springy, and offers incredibly crisp stitch definition, not just in heavily cabled fabrics, but in airy knit/purl combinations as well.


above, quentin is wearing the creel cowl, knit in kent worsted, color driftwood.


i can also picture the tide pool shade as a new woodcutter’s toque for david—his go-to snow shoveling hat, with it’s bulletproof barrier of heavily cabled fabric.


the gobi hat is simplicity itself—it knits up in an evening and is such a perfect gift for the kid who hates everything.


with matching gobi mittens, you might even get one of those rare smiles you deserve. after all, even cranky kids get cold.


or these sweet, fat-tire mittens


did the mention of a cozy blanket start your wheels turning? something to cover your lap on these frigid winter evenings? this wheaten blanket is for you, you, you—maybe in that mussel shell shade, eh?

maybe something bite sized right now? left to right: comfort me, dutch tiles, and caravan (shown here in kent worsted, color driftwood), are just the thing

lots of participants in our ravelry blanket KAL found these lap-sized wonders not only the perfect size for lounging, but so useful around the family room that everyone fought over them. fortunately they are incredibly quick to knit in a few skeins of our worsted weight yarn.


the new, bigger kent has proved to be easily interchangeable with our confection worsted, so any pattern listing confection as an option will work beautifully in kent as well.

the product page for each shade includes a list of pattern options; erica has also added the kent worsted option to some existing kits, such as comfort medutch tiles, wheaten, or caravan blankets; fat tire mittens, caravan scarf/wrap, and creel cap, cowl, and mitts set.


enjoy and stay warm—more cold weather is on the way. brrr.


3 thoughts on “cold brings out the worst(ed) in us

  1. I love the Carlsbad cowl, it’s my favourite knit from the last BNK club. I am amazed by the number of shades of the Kent yarn, they look so beautiful together.

  2. It had to happen–winter finally caught up with Colorado. It makes me wish I had knitted all these beautiful and warm accessories before now!

  3. My Kent DK sweater is finished; I will try to send you a picture on e of these days soon, it turned out exactly as I had hoped it would…isn’t it nice to have a yarn you can count on?! (Once blocked it was an exactly 18st/4″, on size 7 needles, with lovely drape…perfect for indoor wear)

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