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New (and free) Pattern: Winter Grove

You said free? Why, yes I did. Winter Grove is a cute and simple tree pattern. Perfect for this time of year, whether you want to make a table centre or a hanging ornament.  The biggest tree in the pattern is done using the helical knitting technique. Can you tell I'm all about the helical knitting at the minute? There's videos and a few tips within the pattern too, so hopefully enough info to give it a go if you've never tried it before. If you want a bit more info and want to try it on socks, then try out Scrapix - the Scrappy Helix sock pattern that I released last week. If helical knitting doesn't interest you then there are variations to try. Whether, they're striped, colour-blocked or just plain. The yarn used in the pattern is Baa Ram Ewe Pip Anyway, get yourself a free tree !
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New Pattern: Scrapix

Scrapix , the “portmanteau” of Scrappy Helix, are worked using scraps of yarn using helical knitting to prevent any seam or jog. The pattern includes videos and lots of tips; all the test knitters got on really well with the helical knitting.  Helical knitting is a quite a simple technique but can sometimes feels daunting. There are quite a few questions about what to do in certain circumstances that pop up as you are knitting. The pattern has these questions (and the answers to them) at the relevant points throughout the pattern. I've written it in this format, so you can quickly read the question and see if it's relevant or not  —  that way you don't need to read everything. The socks are worked toe-up, allowing complete versatility on the yarn you use and the pattern includes 3 choices of toes to suit every toe type and knitting skill. Scrapix is a pattern that was written awhile ago and I was always a little unsure about releasing it, since the helical knitting made the

Photo & Video Tutorial: Magic Loop Cast-On

There are many different techniques for working in the round. One of my favourite techniques is magic loop. Benefits Less joins than DPNs, so less ladders Ladders are less likely to happen The needles are attached to each other, so you can't lose one down the side of a train seat! You just need to ask my friend, Julie, about that one! If the stitch count changes, then nothing needs to change with the needles. Unlike using small circulars or DPNs As the stitches are split in half, this lends itself particularly well to socks, mitts etc. For example, the heel stays on one half and the instep stitches on the other, none of the stitches need to be put on holders or moved about For the same reason, you don't need to use as many stitch markers as the ends of the needles mark the natural halfway points Just move the knitting onto the cables and there's no chance of losing any stitches when it's in your bag You don't get DPNs stuck up your sleeve! Downsides Can take a bit o

Pattern Focus: Navelli

Navelli was a lovely top to knit. I love combining colours in a project and I'm particularly thrilled with this combination.  I'd originally bought all the colours from Lay Family Yarn . The original lighter skein that I wanted to use had a greener tone but I realised how perfect a match the Ephemera skein was from Mr B . It has touches of the burgundy in it and has a warmer tone too. The coffee-coloured is Macchiato and the burgundy is Forager. Both are from Lay Family Yarn.  The base for all of them is 75% merino / 25% nylon  and 425m/100g. These colours are a bit of a departure for me (in terms of what I normally wear) but I'm absolutely thrilled with it. Can't be serious all the time. Can we?  I worked the 5th size which gave me about 8" of positive ease. I didn't modify a huge amount in the pattern. My gauge was a little off 25 x 36 instead of 24 x 30; though it's a pattern where the sizing doesn't need to be hugely precise. I used a larger needle

Tutorial: Working out stitch count in shaped knitting [includes calculator]

Okay, so this is quite a mathy tutorial. I wanted to share this, in a knitting context, because I've found it to be quite useful. There is a calculator at the bottom, so (hopefully) it can do the working out for you. This is something that I’ve researched as I was very unsure that I would have enough yarn to finish a shawl I was working on.  I was able to work out relatively easily how many stitches I needed to complete the shawl and whether I had a enough yarn to work another repeat. I’ve used it quite a few times since then, when yarn quantity was a bit tight; plus, it's very helpful in designing too. Measuring Yarn in Grams/M/Yds Knowing how many stitches is only useful, if you know how much yarn you need to work X number of stitches. There are quite a few ways of working this out. I’ve mentioned one of them before when I working out yarn amounts for intarsia . It’s the same principle here.  In that tutorial, I e

New Pattern Release: Barque

I know it's been a while. I thought I'd use my blog again but in a different way to before. It definitely won't be a weekly blog [as it once was] but I thought I could share some tutorials and tell you about any pattern releases. Talking of pattern releases... I've been working on a collaboration with Giddy Aunt Yarns and since it's Yarndale this weekend, it's time for a pattern release. This is the beautiful yarn that the lovely gals at Giddy Aunt Yarns gave me. The darker skein is a Mohair Lace in "Pieces of Eight" and the Merino Singles is "Drift". There will be kits of various colours available from this weekend over at Giddy Aunt Yarns , plus they do pre-orders, so you could create your own colour combinations from their catalogue and they'll dye it up for you. Those two skeins turned into Barque; which is name for the old sailing ship of the same name. The two colourways I used had maritime-connected names - Drift and Pieces of Eig