Thursday, November 21, 2013

Meet Kristen Rengren - and GIVEAWAY!

You know how we need more knitwear designers who create their patterns in larger sizes? Ones who are creative, talented, and understand that larger knitters need great sweaters, too? Well, I've found a great one. Meet Kristen Rengren.

Kristen is a long-time collector of vintage clothing and ephemera and a former vintage clothing dealer. Her work as a knitwear designer and author is inspired and informed by her vast collection of vintage knitting patterns, including thousands of patterns spanning from the 1920s to the 1950s. She has designed for Blue Sky Alpacas and Vermont Organic Fiber Company, among other yarn companies, and her designs have appeared in Twist Collective, too.

Kristen writes, "I have released a number of vintage-inspired knitting patterns in a wide range of sizes, both individually and with Twist Collective, and I thought that my newest patterns (or possibly many of them) would be of interest to the Knitting at Large group’s members."

Her most recent designs, the Minette Cardigan and Minette Pullover, comes in sizes up to 58 inches and can be worn together as a sweater set. "Both (are) top-down seamless garments that feature a hybrid raglan construction; the unusual construction uses a saddle type increases for the body only at the start of the sweater, before switching to more traditional raglan shaping, also incorporating some double increases as well. The result is a well-fitting, comfortable raglan shoulder and sleeve that also reaches the appropriate bust size without resulting in too many rows and excess fabric under the arm. Both patterns also include some other options for customization as well, and the pullover could easily incorporate short row bust darts," Kristen says. 

Some of Kristen's other plus-size designs include the Doverfell, a cute zippered hoodie that comes in sizes up to 59.25 inches. Note the attractive texture that adorns the zipper, hood, and pockets.


I don't know anyone who isn't fascinated by Celtic cables. Kristen's Barberry, which comes in sizes up to 60.25 inches, features twisted stitch panels on fronts and back and twisted rib bands at the fronts, hood, cuffs and hem. It's a real beauty.

You may also remember Zora, another of Kristen's patterns which appeared in Knitty. This classic cardigan comes in sizes up to 58 inches. I like the ribbing at the waist which would provide natural waist shaping without a lot of fuss.

To celebrate Kristen's great work, I'm giving away a copy of the Minette Cardigan and the Minette Pullover. Just leave a comment on this post to enter the contest.
I hope you'll check out Kristen's designs and buy them, too. Remember, if we want knitwear designers to create sweaters for us, we need to buy their patterns. 

36 comments:

  1. Thanks for the great pictorials! I've already got a couple of Kristen's patterns on my list, must add Minette as well!

    karen

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  2. Fantastic!! Three cheers for another plus size knit wear designer! I love her patterns, plus that green...swoon...

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  3. Oooooo - now how did I miss Zora??? And I love that Minette Cardigan!!! Thanks for the info on the 'New' designer. I will bookmark her page & keep an eye out for her patterns.

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  4. Oh, lovely! I've been plotting what to make from Kristen's Vintage Baby Knits, but this cardigan is really nice, too.

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  5. Oh, lovely! I've been plotting what to make from Kristen's Vintage Baby Knits, but this cardigan is really nice, too.

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  6. This is great! I just added three of the patterns to my queue. Thanks for letting us know about her.

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  7. Sounds like an interesting top-down construction, I'd love to try it out.

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  8. I have Zora in my queue already, lol, like I wouldn't go for those snazzy cables...

    dottie2

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  9. I can see myself in that cardigan but I love them both! Thanks for the great giveaway!
    greyowl60@yahoo.com

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  10. What great sweaters! Thanks for featuring a new to me designer.

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  11. Great designs, very wearable, easy to incorporate into a wardrobe. Thanks for the gieveaway!

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  12. Zora has always been on my must knit list..now I need to add a few others to the queue as well

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  13. The Minette set showed up in my Pattern Highlights on Ravelry and I immediately queued the cardigan. I love her other designs as well!

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  14. Gorgeous! Thanks for introducing me to this designer - I love that celtic cardigan!

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  15. I'm thrilled to see a designer that has patterns specifically written to overcome some of those challenges that many of us face. I cannot wait to take on knitting that cardigan.
    godandfam6@gmail.com

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  16. I don't know how I missed Zora, just the kind of cardigan I have recently discovered that I feel comfortable in. Love it!

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  17. Beautiful! I have a new designer to follow. Thanks for introducing her Julie

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  18. I want to knit all of these designs!

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  19. Hmmm, second try.

    What lovely designs! Great sweaters for us larger sizes.

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  20. Thanks for sharing her designs! I just queued up several projects. Lovely!

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  21. Kristen is a great designer! Love all of her patterns - thanks for sharing!

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  22. Beautiful designs - I'm excited to knit one!

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  23. Lovely patterns. I would love to knit any of them - stylish look but will fitted for us plus size gals!
    Thanks - Hester

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  24. Perfect for the holidays. I have this one queued in Ravelry. Love your designs

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  25. Definitely will be looking for these patterns

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  26. I love, love, love these sweaters!.. I have been looking for some top down sweaters as next year is the year of sweaters and stuff only for me... Thanks for introducing us... ;o) Lynn

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  27. Julie, as always you've brought us classic designs for our classic bodies. Many thanks for this introduction to Kristen and her fabulous designs.

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  28. I'm intrigued by the shoulder construction - thanks for pointing out these patterns!

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  29. I love Zora and now I want to make Minette too. Thanks for highlighting another designer of larger sizes.

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  30. Absolutely beautiful work! Thanks for the opportunity to win.

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  31. Zora has been in my queue for a long time but wow, look at these new ones!!!!!

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  32. I have not tried a sweater yet simply because of my size. Might be time to give it a try.

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  33. I love the Minette sweater, and the other designs are just as fabulous. It would be a thrill to win!

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  34. Ok, I'll have to favorite this designer on Ravelry! The Celtic cables are to die for!

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