Designs by Midori Hirose

Posted on October 11 2019

Designs by Midori Hirose

Happy October from us at Stone Wool. You could say it is our favorite season! We’re excited to announce cozy new patterns perfect for this weather. Today we are launching the Call Sign Cowl designed by Midori Hirose, a top-down pattern with elegant yoke detail now available now on Stone Wool, knit in Cormo colorways Osage 03 and Shale 01.

We are so fortunate to have worked with Midori Hirose, who we had a chance to interview and talk pattern design inspiration, working with Stone Wool Cormo yarn and more! 

Midori has also translated this interview, along with the pattern for our newest designs, in Japanese. You will now find Japanese and English versions of these designs in our Pattern shop, and you can read the full interview in Japanese at the end of this blog post. 

How long have you been designing hand-knitting patterns?
I have always knitted using my own ideas for me and for my family. I like knitting in some experimental way. But I have never had the idea to write knitting patterns for other knitters before I found Ravelry. My first pattern I wrote 2013.


In general, from where you do draw inspiration for your designs? 
Sometimes, from my swatches with experimental stitches. Ones from accessory of my friend. Ones, from an old dress in museum of fashion. I like to try new constructions with experiments. Dot Dot Dash pullover has also a new original construction, V neck + circle yoke.


Did you have specific inspiration when designing these patterns for Stone Wool, and, what did you love most about working with Stone Wool Cormo yarn?

My first idea was knitting dotted and dashed lines between feather and fan wave. They look like pearl necklaces. As I tried many experiments with dotted and dashed stitches, I found out that they look lovely not only as wave line but also as a straight line. So I decided to use both straight and curved lines, but I didn’t know what I will do with them. I tried to make shawl design at first. But one day after many experiments with shawl construction, I have got an idea to make V neck shape with straight and curved lines. This V neck is ”V“. The bottom of V has rounded shape. This V shape is very feminine. I decided to make construction of  V neck + round yoke. This construction was very new for me. I have knitted many times until I have found the perfect fitting from neckline to shoulder and bust. I really love this ”V“  line, so I have also used it for cowl design.

I love the texture of stockinette stitches with this lovely 2ply yarn. Because of 2 ply, every stitch looks asymmetric. Left side of each stitch is much more twisted than right side. It gives knitted fabric an interesting character. I also love its soft and springy texture. To keep this special feeling of yarn texture, I decide to use bigger sized needle. I have started with 6 mm needle to knit stockinette swatch and then I tried bigger and bigger size of needles. Fabric with 8 mm was my favorite.  












We love that you designed a short sleeve alternate pattern for the Dot Dot Dash pullover and sent us a sample in both! What was your motivation for designing an alternate pattern?

I have frogged and re-knitted my long sleeved pullover sample, because the sleeves were too wide. When I have frogged sleeves, I have tried the frogged sleeveless pullover on myself to think about new sleeve circumference. But sleeveless pullover also looked nice. Then I have got an idea, I would love to knit short sleeves too. But I had not enough MC yarn for the pullover. So I knitted my short sleeves sample using 2 main colors with the rest of MC and CC. I was forced to use 2 colors, but that was exactly what I liked after all.  


What has knitting brought to your life and why do you knit?
One of the nice things about knitting is that it’s portable. I just need yarn and needles. I can carry my project everywhere with me. I have also knitted in hospitals. Knitting gave me a peaceful moments.   

I studied fine art. Many of my friends from art schools don’t make „art works“ any more, but they can never stop their creation. I am one of those typical former art school students, who have always passion for creating something new in the world. Knitting to me is one of those expressions. Since I started writing knitting patterns, I enjoy seeing how my ideas grow through other knitters yarn and color choices or sometimes their modifications. It is such an exciting experience, like a conceptual art. I really love it. 


Do you have a current work in progress?
Yes, I have some new ideas and did experiment with swatches. I would like to start new designs with those swatches.

Thank you, Midori! Shop this recent pattern design by Midori here, and check back soon for more!







新しい構造の編み方を実験している時。Dot Dot Dashのセーターも「Vネックと丸ヨーク」を組み合わせた新しい構造を試す中で出来上がりました。


今回のStone Woolのデザインでは、何か具体的なインスピレーションがありましたか?Stone Wool のCormoの糸で、特に気に入っているところがあったら教えてください。
最初のアイデアは、feather and fanの波模様の間に点線を編むことでした。点々がパールのネックレスみたいに見えたら可愛いだろうなあと思ったのです。いろいろな大きさの試し編みを実験して行く過程で、この点線は、波模様の間だけでなく、直線の間にあるのも素敵だなと思うようになりました。それで、デザインの中に直線と曲線を両方使うことを決めたのですが、それから先にどう進もうか、まだ何も決まっていませんでした。そこで、とりあえずショールのデザインから始めることにしました。ショールのデザインも、波模様を使うか、直線を使うか、何も決めていなくて、いろいろな形を実験していたところで、その過程で、直線と曲線を使ってVネックを作るアイデアが生まれました。このVネックは「筆記体のV」で、Vネックの底が丸いカーブを描いています。筆記体のVを使うことで、普通のVネックよりも、女性的で優しい雰囲気になったかなあと思っています。Vネックの下は、丸ヨークのような構造にしようと決めました。私自身にとっても初めての、新しい構造です。手探りの状態で、Vネックから肩、バストにかけて、セーターが綺麗にフィットするように、増し目の数や、引き返し編みの位置を編み直し、何度も何度も調整して行きました。筆記体のVの形がとても気に入ったので、カウルにもこのVネックを使うことにしました(初めはカウルに波模様を使うつもりだったのです)。 

Cormo Yarnはぷくっと立体感のある状態で二つに縒ってあるのですが、この糸で編むメリヤス編みの表情が特に気に入っています。メリヤス編みのなった時に、糸のねじねじが右と左で異なる方向に並ぶので、一つ一つの編み目が左右非対称に見えるのです。編み目を近くで見ると、左側のねじねじが、右側よりも強くねじれたように見えます。それがメリヤス編みの編み地に、織物のようにも見える、個性的で可愛らしい表情を与えてくれるように思いました。また、カセの状態で握ってみるとよくわかるのですが、この糸は、柔らかで、ぷくっと弾力のある質感がとても素晴らしいのです。カセを握りしめた時のふわふわ、ぷくぷくの感触を活かしたかったので、編み地が硬くならないように、大きなサイズの針を使おうと決めました。メリヤス編みのスワッチを 6mmサイズでスタートして、段々と針の号数を上げて行きました。一番気に入った編み地の柔らかさが8mmだったので、これをセーターのメインの針サイズにしました。


Dot Dot Dashのセーターに、半袖バージョンを追加してサンプルを送ってくれたことをとても嬉しく思っています。半袖のパターンをデザインしようと思った動機は何ですか?


編み物はあなたの生活に何をもたらしましたか? また、なぜあなたは編み物をするのですか?






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