Thursday, 3 November 2016

Stylecraft Special Blog Tour 2016

I'm now able to tell you about a project I completed during the summer and have been keeping under wraps for several months. 

Hand Knitted Things blog is taking part in the Stylecraft Blog Tour 2016 with other knitting and crochet bloggers. We have all been designing and making items with the new colour additions to Stylecraft Special Aran and Chunky yarn. 

The tour started on 28th October with Angie from Le Monde de Sucrette. Thank you Catherine at Crafternoon Treats for linking through to this blog yesterday. Tomorrow, Heather from The Patchwork Heart will be writing about her design. Check out their blogs for links to other participants in the tour.

This year Stylecraft have added new colours to the Special Aran and Chunky ranges with limited edition packs of 10 x 100g balls of yarn in two colour themes - Parchment and Silver.  

Having been sent a sample pack in July and experimenting with a number of design options, I decided on a stripy blanket using seven of the colours. Knit and purl stitches are used throughout to create blocks of squares in bands of colourful stripes.

Contrast colour: 

Pale Rose
Storm Blue

The pattern is available for free. Scroll down for a link to the PDF printable pattern and a chance to enter a giveaway to win a pack of Special Chunky yarn.

If you'd like the chance to win a pack of 10 x 100g balls of Special Chunky in the Parchment colour way click on the Giveaway link here.
Update: The giveaway is now closed and the winner has been notified. Thank you to everyone who entered.

Special Stripy Blanket
(Free pattern - click here for a printable PDF version)

Friday, 14 October 2016

Arrived from The Net Loft

This adorable collection of items arrived all the way from Cordova, Alaska, sent by the lovely Dotty Widmann from The Net Loft. Earlier this year in June/July 2016 The Net Loft hosted a fibre festival called "Fisher Folk".

I designed a fair isle style fish pattern for use with yarn made from the one Shetland sheep they have in the town. Dotty produced a knitting kit to go with the pattern and these were given to each of the 100 participants at the festival. As there was a very limited supply of the yarn I was delighted to receive a sample kit (and lots of other goodies) in the post recently.

Inspiration for the fish motif came from patterns used on fishermen sweaters. In particular those from the Moray Firth Gansey Project in Scotland. There was to be exhibition of these sweaters on loan to the festival in Cordova and I thought it would be appropriate to include a net style motif from the Scottish Ganseys. The fish knitting pattern is called Catch of the Day and is available now on Ravelry.

I  was not able to attend the event, but if you'd like to read more about it, there are two very interesting blog posts by The Net Loft and the Fringe Association which include images from the festival and interviews with participants.

Wednesday, 28 September 2016

Scots Pine

The Scots Pine glove pattern I originally designed for "Make Your Own Gifts" magazine published in October 2014, has been updated. It's been modified to include instructions for two colours rather than the original one colour.

This new version uses Stylecraft Batik DK in Olive / Old Gold and has an autumnal look to the combination, with the contrast gold colour used for the rib sections. But you could use any DK weight yarn, approximately 140m (150yds).

The glove is knitted flat on two needles. If you haven't quite mastered knitting in the round with double pointed needles, this is an alternative. There's a lace pine cone pattern which repeats three times down the front of the glove (which is much easier to knit than it looks), a  thumb gusset, with a sewn side seam.

Skills required to make these include:

Cast on/off
Knit/purl stitch
Make one stitch by lifting the bar/strand between the next stitch and knitting through the back of the loop (M1)
Bring yarn to the front of the work (Yf)
Pass a slipped stitch over the next stitch (Psso)
Knit two stitches together (K2tog)

Tuesday, 27 September 2016

Giveaway Winner

Thank you to everyone who entered the giveaway and your lovely comments.

I'd like to announce that the winner is...


...if you could contact me via my email with your details and I'll have your prize in the post asap.

Monday, 19 September 2016

Batik Yarn and Giveaway

In my last blog post I spoke about my visit to Stylecraft Mill in West Yorkshire where I met with a lovely group of knitting/crochet designers and bloggers, collectively known as the Stylecraft Blogstars.

A new yarn range had just been launched called Batik and I received this as a gift sample pack in all the 16 colours.  It is a double knitting weight yarn, 20% wool, 80% premium acrylic, 50g ball, recommended needle size 4mm, UK8, US6.

While at Stylecraft Mill I met the designer Sue Pinner who has created some amazing crochet patterns for this yarn. Sue arrived carrying two lovely crochet bags (unfortunately I didn't manage to photograph them). I generally knit but occasionally crochet. Inspired by Sue's shoulder bag creations and the look of the Batik yarn, I decided on a crochet rather than a knit project.

After sampling a few of the colours in basic granny square motifs, I settled on four colours: pistachio, coral, cream and sage for a crochet bag.

Then I made 9 granny squares mixing the colours making 3 of each combination.

For the back of the bag I made one large granny square.

The strap was made with a foundation of a single chain measuring 30 inches. Followed by single crochet stitches into each chain stitch. Repeating the single crochet rows until the strap width measured about an inch.

This yarn has been a pleasure to work with and I'm very pleased with the finished result. I still have several colours left in my basket and plan to knit with this on another project...

If you would like to try this yarn for yourself I'm hosting a Stylecraft giveaway of £25.00 worth of vouchers (redeemable at UK bricks and mortar yarn stores) and some other goodies.

To enter the giveaway please leave a comment in the comments section below.

The giveaway will end at noon GMT on Monday 26th September 2016 and a winner will be chosen. 


Update 26th Sept 2016: Thank you all for the lovely comments. Comments are now closed and a winner will be announced on the blog.