Have you been following The Fiber Factor? It’s Skacel’s new show…kind of like Project Runway except for hand knitters. Catch up HERE if you haven’t.  See the First Challenge HERE.

I was one of the judges for Challenge Two: Color Inside the Box.

I thought it was a tough challenge, take a simple absolutely plain box shape with no shaping at all and add sleeves, the proportions of box and sleeve create the drape required for an attractive garment. Ok, that is hard to begin with, but add COLOR at least two colors and up to eight. The assigned yarns HiKoo Simplicity or HiKoo Simpliworsted come in lots of color, but are perhapsnot the most forgiving yarns, requiring very careful and fastidious execution whatever technique is used.

I started a Pinterest Board, because I couldn’t even think of a garment that fell within these boundries that was attractive…granted it was my to-die-for sweater shape in the 80’s but could it still be fresh? As it turns out, YES!

The final selection was made during TNNA in Columbus Ohio. My fellow judges were:

Stephen West Designer, Author West Knits

Michelle Hunter Teacher, Designer Knit Purl Hunter

Kara Gott Warner Editor, Creative Knitting Creative Knitting

Penny Sitler Editor, Cast On TKGA

As well as Cirilia Rose, Karin Skacel and Chuck Wilmesher all of Skacel.

As judges were lucky to see the garments in real life, and even try them on! I so wish we had a video of Stephen  wearing Terri Rosenthal’s entry…I tell you he worked it! What is especially interesting to me, is that although we came at the judging from very different perspectives, we judges all arrived at the same final conclusion.



Meghan NavoyLaurenRikerJodiGordonLucas



Remember, the contestants have a very limited amount of time in which to design and knit their garments. I am impressed by their work as well as their willingness to have their work critiqued on the world stage.  And also remember, they don’t just knit, design and write patterns, they have to make videos of their work and describe all the reasoning that went into their designs! As far as I’m concerned, they are all winners.

If you missed it, here are Cirilia Rose and Karin Skacel describing the rules for Challenge Two:

Oh and guess what? !! Skacel won the TNNA Business Innovations Award for 2013!   Hooray and congratulations!

Stay tuned for Challenge Number Three over HERE at Skacel.