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Looking for a special gift for the knitter in your life? Or maybe you are the knitter and want to add something special to your holiday wish list? Brooklyn Tweed offers electronic gift cards that can be used for anything in the Brooklyn Tweed webstore. From yarn to printed books to digital patterns, shade cards, knitting kits, and more, our electronic gift cards can be used as the recipient wishes and do not expire. Here’s a quick how-to on how to purchase an electronic gift card through the Brooklyn Tweed webstore. (Knitters who wish to receive such a gift might consider forwarding this post to their favorite people, hint hint.)

Please note: Electronic gift cards are sent immediately to the recipient after purchase, so consider the timing of your purchase if you wish the gift to be made at a particular time. Also, it is very important that the recipient’s email address be entered in the appropriate box on the checkout form, in order for the recipient to be able to use the gift card.

Ready to purchase an electronic gift card? Let’s go!

Gift cards are available in pre-set amounts ranging from $25 to $200. From the electronic gift card page, select your purchase amount and then click “Add to Cart.”

The following page will allow you to update your cart, continue shopping, or proceed to checkout. When you are ready to check out, select “Proceed to Checkout.”

If you yourself are already registered with an account through www.brooklyntweed.com, select “Returning customer? Click here to login” and enter your Brooklyn Tweed username/email address and password to log into your Brooklyn Tweed account.

Don’t have a Brooklyn Tweed account? No worries, just enter your billing details as requested and then enter an account password (passwords should be a minimum seven characters with a mix of upper and lower case letters, numbers, and symbols; an account is created so that we can look up your order details in the future if needed).

Once you have either logged in to your existing Brooklyn Tweed account or entered your billing information and new password, you will see the following box:

Assuming you are purchasing the electronic gift card for someone else, select “Gift Coupon to Someone Else,” enter the recipient’s email address, and include any message you wish to appear in the email that will be sent to the recipient announcing the gift card. (If you select “Send Coupon to Me,” the gift card will become associated with your email address, not that of the intended recipient, and the recipient will need to contact our Customer Service department to straighten out the email address associated with the coupon code. This can be avoided by entering the recipient’s email address from the start.)

Once you have entered your payment information and completed your purchase, you will receive a receipt by email and the recipient will receive an email announcing your gift along with a unique coupon code for store credit to the Brooklyn Tweed webstore. (Again, electronic gift cards are sent immediately to the recipient after purchase, so consider the timing of your purchase if you wish the gift to be made at a particular time.) This credit will never expire and can be split over multiple orders.

Ta-da — that’s it! Thank you for your electronic gift card purchase — we hope the process was easy and that your intended giftee will be delighted to receive a credit to the Brooklyn Tweed webstore.

Questions? See our electronic gift card FAQ page and/or email us at info@brooklyntweed.com.

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We are so gratified by your warm response to Olga Buraya-Kefelian’s Capsule Collection for Brooklyn Tweed. Last week Jared shared the story of developing the Capsule idea and inviting Olga to participate; now it’s Olga’s turn to tell you about her journey into knitting design and her work on this special project.

 

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Your body of work speaks for itself, but can you tell us a bit about your background? How did you come to knitting design?

Growing up in Belarus, I learned a set of crafting skills — knitting among them — from my mother and grandmother. Those skills were necessities of our daily life during that period. During my teens my grandmother taught me how to crochet, and it seemed much easier than knitting at the time. My mother taught me some fundamentals about knitwear design, but mostly how to calculate knitwear based on gauge, as we didn’t have access to many knitting patterns. She is a professional seamstress, so you could say an interest in fashion was passed with the milk. I remember earning my pocket money by tracing patterns for her in different sizes, and that also helped develop my knowledge and understanding of basic clothing construction. But it wasn’t until my early twenties that I turned to knitting as a hobby and a distraction to cope with the hardships of military life. Living overseas and not having an opportunity to work can be quite challenging; knitting has really been therapeutic. As my nomadic lifestyle provided me with inspirations, knitwear design became a way to channel those artistic urges. During the past decade, my passion outgrew hobby status and became a full-time job, my profession.

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We’d love to know more about your time in Japan. How did the environment and culture influence your development as a designer?

We had a choice for my husband’s last tour overseas prior to returning to civilian life, and Japan was in the cards. We decided upon it with excitement — at that time I was working on a self-published title with my friend and co-author Vanessa Yap-Einbund featuring all Japanese yarns. I’d been dreaming of having a chance to live there and experience the unique culture. Japan seemed so different to my European/Westernized mind and mentality, but I credit those differences with helping me absorb and appreciate even more. Being naturally very curious and observant, I found myself elated that every mundane thing there was full of thought and detail. I filled my notebooks with ideas and numerous designs, which I love perusing now when I am working on something new. Inspiration is everywhere and to me Japan provided a lot of it; it also taught me to notice even the tiniest details now that I am back in the States. Our four-year post allowed me to concentrate on establishing my pattern brand olgajazzy, sold via my website and Ravelry. And now I have moved on to wholesaling my printed patterns directly to yarn stores worldwide.

You’re known for your ability to create fabric with sculptural qualities and to make unexpected shapes wearable. When you design a piece like the Tatara armwarmers, what’s your thought process? 

My design process may sound a bit backwards to many people, since I prefer to begin with designing or customizing a stitch pattern rather than setting out to create a new hat or a new sweater. Oftentimes, it’s a matter of desiring a certain movement of stitches and fabric and then testing the idea in a swatch. The natural next step is picking the right yarn to highlight the features of the stitch pattern, and that does take much longer than one might think. Swatching and blocking numerous choices allows me to anticipate the effect in a finished garment. Once I’m satisfied with this stage, I try to imagine the best possible way to display the stitch pattern — as a collar on a sweater or a hat or an all-over fabric on a cardigan. It’s a very long and tedious vetting process, but I’ve found this is what works best for me. The Tatara armwarmers were a marriage of technique and a goal for a finished look — I wanted a scrunched-up style that wouldn’t produce an awkward volume of fabric. And I personally love the geometric shape the Tataras acquired as a result. When laid out flat, they almost become objets d’art.

 

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Do you have a favorite garment from the Capsule collection? 

That is such a hard question; I love all of them! I have devoted a significant amount of time to develop each one with a lot of precision and attention to detail. But if I have to name one that I am most proud of, it would be Tetrapods — my first original lace stitch pattern. And the Nobu pullover has quite an elaborate construction that I admire; it’s just full of architectural texture.

 

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What’s inspiring you nowadays?

I’m always looking back through my notebooks. Throughout the years I have disciplined myself to record ideas and stitch patterns and even color pairings. And I tend to go back to my earlier work as well, trying to catch a train of thought that moved me toward a certain design and looking for other ideas I can attach to make something new.

Thanks so much for sitting down with us today Olga! We feel so grateful to have gotten the chance to collaborate with you on this project, and wish you all the best in your next design adventure(s). 

Thank you!

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We’re tremendously excited to launch both a new design collection and a new yarn today! Quarry is a chunky brother to Shelter and Loft, made from the same Wyoming-grown Targhee-Columbia wool. Each plump 100-gram skein is 200 warm and lofty yards, and although it looks like a single ply, it’s actually three unspun strands nestled together and gently twisted. Our goal was to create a chunky-weight wool that marries the airy softness of a roving-style yarn with enough tensile strength and roundness to produce well-defined cables and textured knitwear.

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Quarry comes in ten fresh heathered hues. As we were developing the new yarn using wool that had been blended into the Shelter and Loft colors, we noticed that adding twist to the unspun plies creates tiny streaks of the contrast colors rather than tweedy flecks. The effect reminded Jared of the beautifully striated colors in the Grand Canyon, and a new color palette inspired by minerals and gemstones was born.

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Knitting with Quarry is a singular experience. It’s lively on the needles, and since the three plies are entirely unspun, there’s nothing to counter the energy of the twist that binds them. The yarn may twizzle slightly between the ball and the needles, but the finished fabric will be well balanced with no biasing. Ends of Quarry left to dangle tend to untwist and become vulnerable to breakage, so we recommend splicing each new ball and weaving in cast-on ends sooner rather than later. And if you’re sewing seams, just twirl the working yarn between your fingers in the direction of the twist to add a little more strength. We’re shipping a card with every order of Quarry to remind you of these tips while you get to know this new yarn. We hope you’ll enjoy the character Quarry will bring to your workbasket as well as the satisfyingly speedy knitting!

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To show you what Quarry can do, our designers put this yarn through its paces for our Fall 15 collection. Leaf through our new lookbook to see how Quarry performs with cables, textured stitches, open gauge fabric, and even mosaic knitting.

And it’s not only Quarry on display; there are plenty of garments and accessories in Shelter and Loft if your climate doesn’t merit chunky wool.

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For our first Oregon collection, it seemed only natural to turn to the beauty of the rocky shores, evergreen forests, and mountain peaks for inspiration. From Cowichan sweaters to woodsmen’s thermal shirts, we’re offering up Northwest classics with Brooklyn Tweed flavor. These designs are sure to keep you and your knitworthy loved ones cozy as the leaves turn and the mercury drops.

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Look for a series of blog posts in the coming weeks that will help you assess this new collection in terms of the techniques involved and the special challenges and pleasures of knitting each design. We’ll compare pieces that might serve a similar role in your wardrobe to help you decide which is for you.

As always, we welcome your questions and comments and we can’t wait to see what you’ll cast on!

 


Quick Links:

View all the patterns   |   View the Lookbook   |   View collection on Ravelry

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One of the most intriguing garments from BT Winter 15 is Norah Gaughan’s Chainlink tunic. Today we’re giving her the floor to talk about the inspiration and construction of this unusual sweater.

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I didn’t join the Brooklyn Tweed design team until May, so sadly I missed the field trip to the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Luckily for me—and for anyone who wants to spend an afternoon down a rabbit hole admiring some of the best art humans have ever made—the Met generously offers images of its holdings online.

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Chainlink is the union of a photograph in the Met collection—a very subtle, quiet photo of a chain link fence (shown above)—and an intriguing sweater shape I found on Pinterest. I embrace the idea that nothing creative comes out of thin air. We are all building on the work of artists and designers before us, so when I see a shape I like I let it spark my imagination to take it to the next level. I keep an extensive collection of shapes and structures I’m drawn to along with a collection of more esoteric influences, like photographs of nature or paintings that have nothing to do with clothing.

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Chainlink looks, at first glance, as though it’s made up of non-traditional shapes for a sweater, but in truth it’s a flat front and flat back with dropped sleeves. The front appears to be a diamond surrounded by rectangles, but these shapes are knit in one piece by increasing and decreasing. I did have to fill in some gaps to make the sides straight and to make it possible to knit multiple sizes. A mitered triangle fills in a space left near the waist and a small straight extension allowed us to vary the width of the garment.

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Whenever I’m planning a complicated garment like this one, my aim is to make the design as easy as possible for the knitter. I want the increases to be spaced as logically as possible, so they are easy to remember. You’ll notice that the front and the back are identical. Since there is so much going on with the patterning, I couldn’t bear for anyone (me, the tech editor, or the knitter) to have to deal with higher neck shaping in the back. Everything was so tightly fit together, I couldn’t think of an easy way to do it. And I think it’s sometimes important for the knitter’s experience to trump some conventions about how a garment should be shaped. If a pattern is so convoluted that it’s a circus act to keep all the different maneuvers correct, it’s no fun to knit.

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Getting the center pattern right was my favorite part. I love playing around with twisted stitches and I was sure I could get them to look a lot like chainlink. I’m also pleased with the sleeves. I love narrow 3/4-length sleeves on a roomy garment. They really help provide balance and keep the piece from becoming overwhelming, and in this case they’re a welcome break from all the action on the front and back. I secretly may have a special passion for shorter sleeves—I am only 5′ tall myself, and full-length sleeves have always hung down to my knuckles. This looks great if you are tall and lanky, but just like you are wearing your mom’s sweater if you are short.

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I’m excited to see my first work with Brooklyn Tweed out in the world and looking forward to watching knitters make this design their own. There are already several green and golden Chainlinks taking shape on Ravelry. Happy knitting to all!

–Norah

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Today we’d like to give you a closer look at some of the cabled designs in BT Kids: Jared’s Spore, Julie’s Bairn, Michele’s Arlo, and Véronik’s Vika. Our design team loves playing with the endless possibilities for cabled shapes and we hope you’ll have a lot of fun knitting these projects.

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If you just like to motor away on a satisfying knit with predictable pattern repetitions, try Spore. Jared set out to design a charming, coordinated hat and scarf suitable for an idyllic hike on the moors. He wanted a traditional cable motif with chunky dimensionality for maximum coziness. He worked the scarf first, then planned a matching hat with a quirky shape to add a note of whimsy and personality to the set. The crown shaping is integrated into the cable pattern and the hat is offered in four graded sizes, toddler to adult. The shape is roomy enough that even the larger children’s sizes can easily fit most grownups, too – so choose your size based on a silhouette you like to wear.

The Spore scarf is written in a single size, but can be knit to any length. The 49” sample took 2.6 skeins of Shelter, so procuring four skeins would ensure enough yarn to knit a long adult scarf.

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Julie Hoover drew her inspiration for Bairn from her own family. Her three boys all loved their special blankets and would leave them lying all over the house, so she imagined a blanket handsome enough to fit into the décor of a stylish home—a kids’ item you wouldn’t need to sweep out of sight before company arrives. She knew cables and twisted stitches in the Bavarian tradition would provide that elegance. Julie saw Bairn as an exercise in balance and restraint, finding just the right measure of twisted and regular cabled stitches and resisting the urge to fill up all the space with cables. The ample reverse stockinette ground effectively draws the eye to the center motif and gives the blanket a modern and visually soothing quality. Julie heightened Bairn’s contemporary feel by eliminating the traditional border in favor of clean I-cord selvedges.

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Michele wanted Arlo to be a truly unisex cardigan; the pattern gives instructions for gendered button placement if that matters to you, but the style suits boys and girls alike. She charted cables in X’s and O’s for a sweet touch, but by varying the number of stitches in the cables she achieved an organic and more sophisticated look. Arlo has stockinette panels along the sides to allow the knitter to adjust the width of the sweater as needed. This is also a great knit for fast-growing youngsters because the ribbed cuffs can easily be folded up for the first year and then down for the second.

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Vika lets a traditional Aran-style cable take center stage against a ground of textured stitches. On small garments, a single bold cable fills a lot of space—Vika looks intricate, but the knitting is simpler than it appears. And while many knitters prefer to work in the round to avoid seaming, there’s an advantage to flat pieces for cable work: you’re far less likely to cross your stitches a row too early or a row too late!

Check out some of the beautiful Vikas already finished on Ravelry:

And don’t miss kioto888’s handsome orange Arlo:

We can’t wait to see more of your interpretations of these garments!

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I’m very excited to announce a new job opportunity at Brooklyn Tweed for which we are now accepting applications.

We always look forward to adding new members to the BT family and are excited about this new position!

Comprehensive information about the position is available below – including the downloadable application form. We look forward to getting to know the applicants!

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Now Hiring: Studio & Administrative Assistant; Part-time

We are looking for a qualified Studio & Administrative Assistant in the NYC/NJ metro area. The Assistant’s primary duties
include daily customer relations tasks (e-mail & phone relations), social media maintenance, and comprehensive secretarial/administrative support in our office. This person will work closely with the company owner and operations manager to assist on a wide range of day-to-day tasks in both administrative and creative areas.

The position is currently part-time (approx. 20 hours per week; 9AM to 1PM weekdays) in our Jersey City, NJ office/studio – a short subway ride from downtown Manhattan and easily accessible from all boroughs as well as the NJ metro area. We are a growing business and it is likely that this will progress into a full-time position over the next 12 months. This is an ideal position for people just out of school who are looking for an entry-level position in the fashion, design, and/or handknitting industries.

If you are a self-motivated person interested in knitting, yarn manufacturing and design, and like working in a focused, creative and collaborative atmosphere, this job will be a good fit for you. 

Application Due Date: July 9, 2013

Click below to download the full job description and the application form now.

 

Download the application here

Please submit all necessary materials via e-mail to jobs@brooklyntweed.net by the listed deadline in order to be considered for the position. Thank you!

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