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This is it.

Now we learn intarsia.

HOLD ON! Don’t gimme that shake-your-head-no-thanks business. Here’s a pattern from everybody’s favorite brainiac designer, the tall and clever Bristol Ivy.

Why is her Brambling Shawl such a perfect way to learn intarsia?

It’s a beauty. Here’s the schematic, which shows the irregular geometry that is possible when you’re not locked into a pattern where colors must end at the end of a row.

Liberation! Freedom from rigidity! Artful curvy bits!

Only a few colors at work. We will ease into this idea of changing colors in the middle of a row. Seven minutes with the cool-headed Jen Arnall-Culliford is all it takes to set us on our way with this fascinating shawl. The tutorial up top shows the simple maneuver required to change from one color yarn to another in the middle of the row.

Pick one each of five colors from our palette of Fyberspates Cumulus here.


In the MDK Shop
Find this pattern and more in A Year of Techniques by Jen and Jim Arnall-Culliford.
By Arnall-Culliford Knitwear

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  • Rats. The exchequer being a bit bare, what with tax season and all, I had convinced myself that I was going to just watch this month’s AYOT project while finishing more helical mitts. But that scarf….that yarn….sigh. Off to shake the piggy bank.

  • I feel a bit dopey but I cannot seem to find the video. What should I be clicking on?

    • Hi Debbi! The video is at the top of this post. Click on the arrow icon in the center of the image, and the video should start right up.

  • My rule of life has always been no instarsia, no bobbles. But this is not a crazy snowman in the middle of a sweater. Hmmmm…

    • Exactly! I don’t even wear shawls, but now I’m thinking about it.

    • Your rules are the same as mine were before I knitted Bristol’s Harewood Hap last year. I had an intarsia conversion, and this design is even more straightforward to knit. Gwaaaaan! 😀

  • I am getting the downloads in my email. Shouldn’t they also be going to my ravelry library?

    • If you purchased through our online shop you might not have added your patterns to Ravelry yet… In which case you will only have had the email from us. If you would like your patterns in your Ravelry library, then follow the instructions on this page under “Accessing files”: I hope that helps! 🙂

    • Hi Diane! Your email should have a link at the bottom that takes you to your Ravelry library, where your Brambling Shawl pattern should be showing up. Please let us know if you’re not seeing it in your Ravelry library. Thanks!

  • Hi all, So…I have continued to say that I would never subject myself to intarsia. I am in awe of others who brave the color work and produce such gorgeous projects seemingly with such ease. Yep…here it comes….BUT this pattern might be a possibility. The pattern has been printed off and I do have enough of a selection of Kid Silk Haze…solids and stripes. Not my favorite yarn but did purchase a few of the stripes before they were all gone. Anyway, I am beginning a gauge sample but would love to hear what others think of this yarn substitution. Thanks!

    • Just chiming in to say I’d also welcome opinions on KSH as I may have five colors stashed. I haven’t tried intarsia in more than a decade, and certainly didnt succeed with it back in the aughts!

    • Kidsilk Haze will be lovely! I can’t wait to see how you get on. 🙂

  • How incredibly timely as I have all the yarns for the 2017 Kaffe Afghan KAL which is entirely intarsia. Which I learned once….long ago…but have never otherwise done. MDK, meeting all my knitting needs for this many years. Thanks! 🙂

  • I may have been mistaken about intarsia for the past hundred years or so…this technique looks quite nice and simple and useful!

    • You could absolutely have knocked me down with a feather when I discovered that Bristol Ivy could design intarsia that I didn’t just manage, but actively LOVED knitting. I had spent my entire knitting life saying terrible things about intarsia. Whoops! I actually wrote an apology on my blog. 😀 I hope you’ll enjoy Brambling!

  • Wanted to buy the yarn from MDK to support the effort! But unfortunately sterling is already out of stock. Will you be getting more in?

  • I learned intarsia during that 1985 Kaffe Fasset era. I fell in love with many of Kaffe’s designs and knitted several beautiful and stash busting vests. I didn’t know it was suppose to be hard – and it wasn’t! It was lots of fun!

  • I bought the book and the pattern is not in my email or my ravelry account – any suggestions

    • Hi Dipenna44, Sorry that your pattern hasn’t shown up as it should. We do sometimes get one or two emails that bounce for no apparent reason. If you drop me a line through our contact form here ( with your full name and Ravelry username I can investigate for you, and add your patterns manually to your Ravelry library if necessary. Sorry for the inconvenience in the meantime. Best wishes, Jen

  • I’m late to the game and Sterling is sold out… Any other suggestions? Maybe a linen (I’m addicted to linen) or linen blend?

    • I also am agrieved that you are out of the Sterling colorway. How can this happen so soon. I live in California and have just been able to see this on my computer. I have that linen that just came in the mail. I need to look at the yardage and see if it will work. Darn.

      • We are aggrieved that you are aggrieved! So sorry–we have more on the way. And we’ll be working on this project all month long, so I hope you’ll be able to jump in!

        • I am so sorry I didn’t wait to order from you all, but I was afraid you’d sell out before I could get home from work. Will you have kits each month for that month’s techniques?

        • Oops. Misspelled aggrieved. Is there any way that let us know when the yarn is in? I do have that Louet linen in 5 mini-skeins that might work.

  • ‘Fyberspates Cumulus.’ Poetic and 100% gorgeous, it’s up there on my screen begging to be touched. And I love the Revere colourway. Thank you for the delicious (practically calorie-free!) eye candy!

  • So pretty and springy-looking!

  • Wow this is mind boggling, loving the design and that yarn is gorgeous, not sure if I’m ready to face challenge , but so tempting

    • You can do it! And we’re all here in The Lounge and on Ravelry if you need any support at all. 🙂

  • I have 6 colors of Shi Bui Silk Cloud. I am going to swatch it and see what happens…after I finish the Hitchhiker Beyond I started on Friday.

  • Please please please will you be able to stock more cumulus sterling?

  • I’m allergic to alpaca! What do you recommend – I liked the word ‘fluffy’ in the yarn description and don’t know any fluffy lace weight yarns.

  • How do I get to my MD K library? I need to print my Christmas Stocking pattern again.

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