Play

Curious Handmade Knitting Podcast Episode 161

Beautiful books of all kinds have always been a big part of my creative growth, so in this episode I’m delighted to bring you another book review. This time I’m talking about the gorgeous new volume of the Interpretations series, the latest instalment of an ongoing collaboration between two intensely talented designers.

Show Sponsors:

Meadow Yarn

Meadow Yarn is an inviting online retailer selling yarn, needles and notions. It’s a small, family business based in rural Suffolk in the UK. Meadow Yarn was born out of a passion for beautiful yarn and knitting accessories and aims to bring you a range of great products. Yarns stocked include Northbound Knitting, Eden Cottage Yarn, the Fibre Co and many more.

Contest Winner:

Victoria has won a copy of Hannah Fettig’s new book Texture! Here’s Victoria’s comment:

“This book looks truly beautiful – there’s not a pattern in it that I don’t want to knit but if I had to choose I’d love to try the WestEnd cardigan – it would be the perfect wardrobe staple … I also particularly love the knitted kerchief too!”

What’s in the WIP:

I finished my Vintage Fairy Light Socks in Circus Tonic Yarn!

I’ve been designing a brand new sock design which I’ll be able to release very soon!

Show Links:

Snowmelt Shawl MKAL

New York Collection by Mina Phillip

Knitting Expat Podcast

Curious Handmade Ravelry Group

Interpretations Volume 4 by Joji Locatelli and Veera Välimäki

Curious Handmade Episode 61: Interview with Joji Locatelli

Pom Pom Quarterly

Winterfolk

Woolfolk yarn

Fast Forward

La Bien Aimee yarn

Radiate

Tourmaline

Colourspell Shawl

Double Trouble

Léttlopi yarn

Little Bird

madelinetosh Prairie yarn

Wishes

Malabrigo Mora

East or West

Uncommon Thread Uncommon Everyday yarn

Flyaway Twist shawl

Kettle Yarn Co Twist

Monochrome

The Pucky Knitter yarn

Side by Side

madelinetosh Tosh Mo Light yarn

Giveaways

Leave a comment in this Ravelry thread for a chance to win Mina Phillip’s The New York Sock Collection.

Leave a comment on this post on the blog for a chance to win Interpretations Vol. 4 by Joji Locatelli & Veera Välimäki

Events:

I’ll be at the Edinburgh Yarn Festival which is coming up very soon!

We’re having meetups there on Friday the 10th of March and Friday the 11th of March at 1pm in the Podcaster’s Lounge, so come and say hi! Don’t forget to wear your Blacker Yarns knits if you’re participating in the BlackerPodKAL!

Those are all the notes for this episode! I’ll chat to you soon, and until then, happy knitting!

Play

ch160

Today I’m talking about some (restrained!) yarn buying, my WIP triumph, and how I learned to love going to events like the Edinburgh Yarn Festival, even as an introvert.

Show Sponsors:

Meadow Yarn

Meadow Yarn is an inviting online retailer selling yarn, needles and notions. It’s a small, family business based in rural Suffolk in the UK. Meadow Yarn was born out of a passion for beautiful yarn and knitting accessories and aims to bring you a range of great products. Yarns stocked include Northbound Knitting, Eden Cottage Yarn, the Fibre Co and many more.

Contest Winner:

I’m delighted to announce that Alex has won the free Machine Knitting Class by Renée Callahan! Here’s her comment:

“I would love the craftsy class. I just got a knitting machine last year and I am flying by the seat of my pants with my projects, not really knowing what I am doing but having a go. A class would really help.”

Curious Handmade KAL News:

The Snowmelt Shawl MKAL is going beautifully. Clue #3 was just released yesterday and the spectrum of colour combinations is making my heart sing. We still have new people joining every day, and the clues are manageable: you can catch up with us in no time! We’ve split chat on the Curious Handmade Ravelry group into spoiler and non-spoiler threads so that you can peek ahead or preserve the mystery for yourself as you knit, even if you’re joining a little late!

PURCHASE THE SNOWMELT SHAWL MKAL HERE

There are two more clues to come!

Clue #4: Thursday 23 February

Clue #5: Thursday 2 March

and the KAL will run until the end of March so that you’ll have plenty of time to finish!

Show Links:

The Wool Kitchen sock yarn in Blue Pop and Niji colourways

A Homespun House Harry Potter and Charm Yarn Club

A Homespun House Podcast

Find Your Fade Shawl by Andrea Mowry

KnitBritish Podcast

What’s in the WIP:

I have finally finished my Times Square by Norah Gaughan in Knightsbridge by the Fibre Company!

My other deep WIP is the Reyka Pullover by Cirilia Rose which I’ll be tackling when I get back from my trip.

The socks continue bit by bit!

I’m going to knit a new Pebble Beach Shawl in the Blacker Yarn St. Kilda Mini Skein Set

Events:

I’m getting really excited for the Edinburgh Yarn Festival next month, where I’ll be taking part in the Podcaster’s Lounge sponsored by Blacker Yarns.

BlackerPod KAL!

Here are the details direct from Blacker Yarns:

To celebrate the Blacker Yarns Podcast Lounge at Edinburgh Yarn Festival 2017 we are delighted to announce a C/KAL. If you are making the trip to Edinburgh in March – or even if you can’t, but wish you could – let’s knit together and ramp up that festival excitement.

Details

  • The BlackerPod KAL casts on on the 19th January and casts off on 4th March.
  • You can knit or crochet any design you like, but you must use yarn from Blacker *
  • This C/KAL is open to everyone (whether you can make Edinburgh Yarn Festival or not)
  • Use this thread to chatter about your pattern choices and yarn choices and post pictures of your WIPs
  • There will be a meet up at Edinburgh Yarn Festival. (date and time tba) If you are going to EYF and you wear your FO in 100% Blacker Yarns you will get a discount on the stall as a prize.
  • For those who cannot make it to EYF we will have a FOMO FO thread (fear of missing out finished objects) and there will be a random prize draw after EYF

Also use hashtag #blackerpodkal when you chat online and use blackerpodkal to tag your rav projects

If you are going to the Edinburgh Yarn Festival and wear something you’ve made in Blacker Yarns Blacker will be offering a discount!

Check out the Blacker Yarns Ravelry group for more details and information on prizes and teams.
That is all the notes for this week. I’ll talk to you again soon, and until then, happy knitting!

Play

ch159

Exploring this month’s theme in a new way: sometimes growth can mean looking forwards as well as backwards! I confront a long-neglected WIP (with exciting results) and also have the chance to review Hannah Fettig’s gorgeous new book.

Show Sponsors:

Meadow Yarn

Meadow Yarn is an inviting online retailer selling yarn, needles and notions. It’s a small, family business based in rural Suffolk in the UK. Meadow Yarn was born out of a passion for beautiful yarn and knitting accessories and aims to bring you a range of great products. Yarns stocked include Northbound Knitting, Eden Cottage Yarn, the Fibre Co and many more.

Curious Handmade KAL News:

The Snowmelt MKAL is going strong!

We are in week two of Snowmelt, and it’s very exciting. The spoiler thread is full of inspiring photos of shawls in progress, and new knitters are joining us every day. It’s honestly not too late to jump on board.

Just buy the pattern here and come meet us in the Curious Handmade Ravelry Group! You’re in plenty of time to catch up, as the KAL is running until March.

The Not Seen Before MKAL

Quite a few of the Curious Crew are doing both MKALs, which is very exciting. I can’t wait to see everyone’s WIPs as they develop.

What’s in the WIP:

Hermione’s Everyday Socks in hand dyed yarn by Cast on Cast Off

Vintage Fairy Light Socks in Circus Tonic Handmade

Vanilla socks in hand dyed yarn by Suffolk Socks in the Ted base

Times Square in Knightsbridge by the Fibre Company

This is one of the “unmentionable WIPs” that has haunted me for a year, but after facing my fears I’m making amazing progress.

Show Links:

Texture: Exploring Stitch Patterns in Knitwear by Hannah Fettig

Hannah’s lovely introduction video for the book.

Wharf Street in Owl by Quince and Co

Eventide Cardigan in Finch by Quince and Co

West End Cardigan in Owl by Quince and Co

Giveaway:

I’m so delighted that Hanna has generously offered us a copy of Texture to give away! If you’d like to learn how to be in with a chance to win, be sure to listen to the episode! You’ll have two weeks to enter this one.

That’s all for this week. Thank you for listening, and happy knitting!

Play

ch-158

Today I’m chatting about the WIPs, KALs, and challenges I’m tackling in February, and introducing my theme for this new month!

Show Sponsors:

Meadow Yarn

Meadow Yarn is an inviting online retailer selling yarn, needles and notions. It’s a small, family business based in rural Suffolk in the UK. Meadow Yarn was born out of a passion for beautiful yarn and knitting accessories and aims to bring you a range of great products. Yarns stocked include Northbound Knitting, Eden Cottage Yarn, the Fibre Co and many more.

Show Links:

Stitching the High Notes

Instagram Yarn Love Challenge from the Ravelry team #yarnlovechallenge

Curious Handmade KAL News:

I drew winners for our two recently finished Curious Handmade KALs. Here are their Ravelry names:

For the Vintage Fairy Lights KAL:

meghan2 has won a precious skein of the much-coveted limited edition Hedgerow Yarns colourway created for the Christmas Eve Cast-On Kits!

For the Knitvent 2016 FO KAL:

nextdoorknitter and muddancer have each won a special surprise skein from my stash!

The Snowmelt MKAL has begun!

The first clue was released yesterday, and speedy knitters are already zooming through. There are spoiler threads set up in our Curious Handmade Ravelry Group, so if you’re still on the fence and want to take a peek, you’re very welcome!

I also put together some helpful videos for anyone getting started. You can watch them here.

If you aren’t a part of the MKAL but have FOMO, it’s not too late! You can buy the pattern here and join in! There will be lots of time to catch up, since we’re running until March.

The Not Seen Before MKAL is running now:

This MKAL is to benefit the Sight is Life project, which raises money for sight-saving operations in Congo. I spoke to Kristina Vilimaite about the project on the podcast not long ago. The MKAL features clues from 7 designers, including me!

You can buy the pattern on its own but you can also get it by purchasing the Sight is Life eBook. Learn more in the Sight is Life Ravelry Group

What’s in the WIP:

I’m still obsessed with socks and sock KALs.

Vanilla socks in hand dyed yarn by Suffolk Socks in the Ted base

I’ve just finished my January socks for the Box O’ Sox KAL, hosted by the Yarngasm Podcast and the Sock Bash KAL hosted by the Grocery Girls Podcast.

Hermione’s Everyday Socks in hand dyed yarn by Cast on Cast Off

These will be my February socks! You can see the gorgeous skein on my instagram post, here.

I was inspired to maybe double dip in the Harry Potter KAL hosted by Inside Number 23

Vintage Fairy Light Socks in Circus Tonic Handmade

These are from the Christmas Eve Cast On! I’ve just finished the first sock but I had to put them down to make my January KAL deadline.

Through The Loop Mystery Sock MKAL

Just beginning this and it’s very interesting to be on the other side of an MKAL!

Super Secret New Design

I’ve been working on a new design for the next Curious Handmade. I can’t give much away, but thanks to The Fibre Company, who is sponsoring the retreat again this year I can mention that it’s being made from the amazing new yarn they just launched this week. Have a look at the gorgeous Luma DK yarn.

Giveaway:

Renée Callahan of East London Knit (you’ll remember her from the wonderful patterns she contributed to Knitvent 2016) has offered us a special giveaway! She’s teaching a new class on Machine Knitting Sweater Basics and one lucky listener will win a free copy of the class!

In Machine Knitting; Sweater Basics, you will learn everything you need to know to knit a sweater on the machine: from basic machine maintenance, how to cast on, making fabric you love, to seaming, blocking and everything in between. The class includes my Sweater Blank
— a worksheet that will lead you through making your sweater in any gauge or fabric you want and making it easy to customize.

If you don’t win but would like to take the class for half price (or any other Craftsy class for 25% off) you can find Renée’s special link here. (You can also see an introductory clip there!)

That’s the notes for this week. Thank you for listening and happy knitting!

Snowmelt MKAL tutorials and FAQs!

Helen —  February 1, 2017 — 3 Comments

The first clue for the Snowmelt MKAL arrives tomorrow! Are you ready yet? If not, don’t worry. As I mentioned yesterday, we still have flocks of new knitters signing on, and you have time to get sorted.

Today is the last day of the 20% off early bird special, so snag your copy now!

I’m still getting lots of questions about the MKAL: how it works, what to expect, and how to prepare. To help everyone get ready, I’ve put together a few resources for you.

First, I’ve created a few video tutorials for Snowmelt, including a guide to choosing yarn, and a special video showing you how to do the beautiful icord cast-on for this shawl. I know this is a new technique for some of you, but it’s so simple! I think my little walk through will help you master it easily.

Check out the Snowmelt MKAL videos here!

Next, for anyone who didn’t get onto the email list in time, I’m going to post the FAQs I sent out last week:


Q. This is my first MKAL – what can I expect?

A. Firstly – thank you for your bravery and trust – taking a leap and a chance on a pattern you haven’t seen before. I am honoured!!

A mystery knit along is all about surprises: you buy the pattern without knowing what the finished design will look like and get one clue a week until the whole pattern is released. The community aspect is huge, too: people share their progress each week and speculate on what might be coming next. Knitting a project with a group is lots of fun and supportive  – you will find lots of company in the MKAL chat thread and people to ask questions or if you have any problems.

Q. This is my first Curious Handmade shawl – what can I expect?

A. Enjoyment, on the whole! Relaxing, satisfying knitting. And of course, a beautiful accessory at the end…

On the more technical side of things, you can expect clarity. My patterns are clearly written in the unique Curious Handmade Percentage Checklist™  style with stitch count for every row and percentages of stitches knit to help you pace yourself and estimate yarn needed. Directions are written in full and also charted instructions for any lace sections.

Q. I’ve knit loads of Curious Handmade shawls before – what can I expect?

A. Well, you’ll recognise the checklist format, and if you’re a fan of my patterns (thank you!) I think you’ll find that this project is quite “typical” of my designs: lacy, feminine, easy-to-wear, and just a little romantic. I also think it will keep you guessing until the last clue is finally revealed!

Q. What is the level of difficulty?

A. It is beginner to adventurous beginner throughout.
It is a slight step up from beginner in places due to some easy lace and the amount of knitting involved but it definitely isn’t difficult in any sense. There might be a handful of rows you really have to concentrate on where you are setting up a new pattern – but it is very achievable for an adventurous lace beginner. And lifelines are always helpful if you are worried!

Q. Do I need a special code for the Early Bird price?

A. No, the Early Bird price is already applied in Ravelry, no code required. The 20% Early Bird discount will apply until Wednesday February 1st.

Q. I think the amount of the price is wrong, maybe I didn’t get the discount?

A. The price of the pattern does not include VAT. Ravelry automatically adds VAT to all purchases of patterns in the EU when you check out. The amount varies by country. I’m sorry about any inconvenience, but it is out of my control.

Q. I bought the pattern but I don’t see any knitting instructions!

A. This is a presale period for the MKAL. When you buy the pattern you’ll get an info sheet with yarn specifics and some general hints to help you prepare. The pattern will be released piece by piece, with a new clue to knit each week.

Q. When will the clues be released?

A. The clue reslease schedule is:

Thursday Feb 2nd: First clue is released!
Thursday Feb 9th: Second clue released
Thursday Feb 16th: Third clue released
Thursday Feb 23rd: Fourth clue released
Thursday March 2nd: Fifth clue released

The KAL will run until the end of March.

At the end of the MKAL I’ll compile all the clues into one pattern document so that you have everything in once place if you’d like to knit it again!

Q. I don’t have time for an MKAL right now, can I still participate somehow?

A. Life sometimes gets in the way of knitting, and not everyone can keep up with the weekly clue releases. That is perfectly okay! You can jump in and out at any point, or even wait until all the clues are out before you begin. The KAL will run for about a month after the last clue is released, so you can still join in and post your finished shawls on your own schedule. Pop into the chat thread now and then, and don’t forget to check in on Instagram with the hashtag #SnowmeltMKAL


There you go! I’m so excited for the kickoff tomorrow. I can’t wait to see all your gorgeous creations.

It’s almost time for the Snowmelt MKAL! I’ve been watching the amazing yarn-choosing process of hundreds of excited knitters over in our Curious Handmade Ravelry Group and on Instagram (check out the growing #snowmeltmkal hashtag for some mouthwatering yarn photos!) and the energy is just electric. We’re just two days away from the release of the first clue, but we still have new knitters joining us every day. The MKAL will be running until the end of March, so even if you don’t have yarn yet, you’ll have plenty of time to grab something gorgeous and play along.

For the last Curious Handmade MKAL, Summertide, the wonderful Kristen from Skein Yarn wrote a brilliant guest post on colour combinations that I wanted to share again with you. You can find it here. There’s a lot of inspiration and wisdom in that post! Kristen also put together a few lovely combos just for Snowmelt:

Skein yarn for snowmelt mkal

You can read all about these delicious colourways over on the Skein Blog.

I designed this shawl in part to encourage stashdiving. This is the last official day of Stash Appreciation month here at Curious Handmade, after all, and while I know many of us are enjoying the excuse to buy new yarn for this project, I also know that many more have some wonderful single skeins lying around, waiting for the perfect project. Chances are there are a few hiding in your stash that could surprise you when you put them together. This MKAL is a chance to explore your stash and experiment with combinations you might not have considered. If you’re on the mailing list, you will have gotten an email with all the yarn info and tips you need to start choosing, but I’ve seen people asking for advice since then, so in case you missed it, I thought I’d repost it here.


The yarn I used for the sample is the breathtaking Magellan Speckle Fade Kit from La Bien Aimée. This is a gorgeous hand-dyed single ply superwash merino.
Sample Yarn:
La Bien Aimée; Magellan Speckle Fade Kit [100% superwash merino; 366m/400yds per 100g skein], 3 x 100g skeins,
Colourways:
Le Petit Nuage
Le Grand Nuage
The Magellanic Cloud

OR

Actual yarn used for sample in a fingering weight single ply yarn:
Light – Le Petit Nuage 80g / 293m / 320 yards
Medium – Le Grand Nuage  80g/ 293m / 320 yards
Dark – The Magellanic Cloud 75g/ 275m / 300 yards

To give you a few ideas of other ideal yarns you could use:

Curious Handmade favourite Skein does a luxurious base called “Classy” – 70% Superwash Merino, 30% Silk * 430 yards / 393 metres in 100g

The wonderful Tosh Merino Light from madelinetosh would be another excellent choice – 420 yards / 384 metres in 100g

Over at The Wool Barn, Maya’s Silky Singles base would make a perfect Snowmelt – 70% Superwash Merino 30% Silk * 400m / 436 yards / 400 metres in 100g

Lots of you want to use stash yarn, and you’re in luck! I specifically designed Snowmelt to work with three different skeins of fingering weight yarn, since I know most of us have at least a few gorgeous “orphan” skeins kicking around. Here are the hints you’ll need to choose your own yarn:

  • I used a gradient set – but that is not necessary. Aim for some contrast in colour or tone between the three yarns. The contrast in some sections is quite subtle with the yarns I used.
  • In general the shawl is simple enough that you can be more adventurous with using speckles and variegated colourways – depending on your taste of course.
  • The most significant lace section mainly uses Colour A so if you don’t like your lace in wild yarn this is the colour to have as a tonal or solid or semisolid.
  • I used a single ply but any sock yarn/fingering yarn would work just as well. You can even combine single ply and sock yarn, as long as you like the interplay of slighly different textures. If you have doubt, try knitting a little test swatch.
  •   I used 4mm circular needles.

I hope those tips give you some confidence to choose your own yarn for this project. If you haven’t jumped on board yet, let me enable you: if you grab the pattern by the end of Feb, 1st, you’ll get a special early bird price of 20% off! Happy knitting!

Snowmelt Mystery Knit Along

Helen —  January 30, 2017 — 1 Comment

snowmelt-short-banner

Melt into spring with 8 weeks of knitting, camaraderie and mystery!

It’s that moment between the last slow weeks of winter and the first sweet days of spring. There’s a gentle tension in the air as the thaw begins: the cosy joys of hibernation give way to a pleasant restlessness. Your heart stirs and the sap starts to run. This is a season of growth and change, but it begins quietly, deep in the frozen ground, before the last of the ice has even disappeared.

This time of year feels nearly miraculous. It offers a chance to renew the dreams that have slept for so long beneath a blanket of snow. The earth is preparing to surprise itself again with a wild swell of springtime creativity. It’s a call to adventure and an invitation to stretch our own creative powers. It’s time to uncover what this fresh new season has in store.

The Snowmelt Shawl Mystery Knit-Along is all about setting aside some time to nourish our creativity together. The design unfolds at a gentle pace, week by week, as each clue is released, ending with a stunning new accessory to treasure through many seasons. This shawl is a tribute to the slow process and deep satisfaction of creating something beautiful.

Snowmelt captures the romantic style with a contemporary edge that knitters have come to expect from Curious Handmade designs. Stretches of satisfying texture and simple, effective lace make this a deeply engaging pattern that will surprise you and keep you guessing as you move through the clues. It’s approachable for adventurous beginners but interesting enough to delight veteran shawl knitters. No matter where you’re starting from, this MKAL is the perfect way to celebrate the unfolding of a new season and the fresh energy of growth and discovery.

The pattern
When you purchase this pattern you will receive a download that is an introduction to the pattern until the first clue is released.

PURCHASE THE SNOWMELT SHAWL MKAL HERE

The Snowmelt Shawl is written in the Curious Handmade Percentage Checklist Pattern™ style so you can keep track of stitch counts, yardage requirements and pace yourself throughout the KAL. The lace sections are charted.

MKAL Schedule
Mark 2 February in your diary for the first clue.
Until then, sign up to my Curious Handmade newsletter for lots of tips for getting prepared and selecting the perfect yarn.

Clue #1: Thursday 2 February
Clue #2: Thursday 9 February
Clue #3: Thursday 16 February
Clue #4: Thursday 23 February
Clue #5: Thursday 2 March

and the KAL will run until the end of March so that you’ll have plenty of time to finish!

Yarn choice and needles
Choose 3 skeins of 100g skeins of fingering/ sock yarn, approximately 366m/400yds each.

Sample used:
La Bien Aimee; Magellan Speckle Fade Kit 100% superwash merino; 366m/400yds per 100g skein, 3 x 100g skeins,
Colourways:
Le Petit Nuage
Le Grand Nuage
The Magellanic Cloud

OR
Actual yarn amounts used for sample in a fingering weight single ply yarn:
Colour A: Light – Le Petit Nuage 80g / 293m/320 yards
Colour B: Medium – Le Grand Nuage 80g/ 293m/320 yards
Colour C: Dark – The Magellanic Cloud Dark 75g/ 275m/300 yards

4mm (US 6), 100 cm long circular needles or needles to get gauge

Gauge
20 sts/32 rows = 10cm (4”) in stockinette stitch after blocking

While exact gauge is not critical, be aware you may use more yarn if you knit at a looser gauge than the pattern and allow for extra yarn.

Join the Adventure
Join in here if you want to join in the chatter in Curious Handmade community to share progress, chat and ask questions.

The joy of a mystery KAL is the surprise!
Please post only the Snowmelt MKAL picture as the first one on your project page, or if you prefer – a picture of your yarn. This helps keep the pattern a mystery until others have knit it.
There will be spoiler threads set up in the group and clearly marked for each clue. Please only post progress pictures there and keep the chatter thread image free for those who love a good surprise.

Play

Curious Handmade Knitting Podcast Episode 157

Today I’m looking back on the way my stash has grown and changed as my skills and tastes as a knitter have evolved, as well as keeping you up to date on all my KAL news.

Show Sponsors:

Meadow Yarn

Meadow Yarn is an inviting online retailer selling yarn, needles and notions. It’s a small, family business based in rural Suffolk in the UK. Meadow Yarn was born out of a passion for beautiful yarn and knitting accessories and aims to bring you a range of great products. Yarns stocked include Northbound Knitting, Eden Cottage Yarn, the Fibre Co and many more.

Curious Handmade KAL News:

We have two active Curious Handmade KALs going at the moment. The deadline for both is the 31st of January, so get those posts in!

Vintage Fairy Light KAL

WIPs, FOs and even chat will qualify you for this draw! Modifications to the pattern are welcome. The prize is very special: a skein of the limited edition Hedgerow Yarns colourway created for the Christmas Eve Cast-On Kits!

Knitvent KAL

A photo of an FO from any pattern from any year’s Knitvent collection will qualify you for the draw, as long as you began knitting it in November or later. There are two prizes, TBD!

The Snowmelt MKAL is now on sale at an Early Bird Price!

Melt into spring with 8 weeks of knitting, camaraderie and mystery!

It’s that moment between the last slow weeks of winter and the first sweet days of spring. There’s a gentle tension in the air as the thaw begins: the cosy joys of hibernation give way to a pleasant restlessness. Your heart stirs and the sap starts to run. This is a season of growth and change, but it begins quietly, deep in the frozen ground, before the last of the ice has even disappeared.

This time of year feels nearly miraculous. It offers a chance to renew the dreams that have slept for so long beneath a blanket of snow. The earth is preparing to surprise itself again with a wild swell of springtime creativity. It’s a call to adventure and an invitation to stretch our own creative powers. It’s time to uncover what this fresh new season has in store.

You can get all my Snowmelt MKAL news and tips in the lead up when you sign up for my newsletter through the Spindrift Shawl workshop (link in sidebar) or at the bottom of this post, if you don’t want the workshop.

The first clue will be released Thursday Feb. 2nd!

The Not Seen Before MKAL is now on sale.

This MKAL is to benefit the Sight is Life project, which raises money for sight-saving operations in Congo. I spoke to Kristina Vilimaite about the project on the podcast not long ago. The MKAL will feature clues from 7 designers, including me!

The pattern has been released for presale, and the first clue will come out on January 31s. You can also get it by purchasing the Sight is Life eBook. Learn more in the Sight is Life Ravelry Group

Show Links:

Loop

Misti Alpaca

Radiance Shawl

Brooklyn Tweed

Knit British

FiberTrek video podcast

Zero Waste book

Handmade and Woolen video podcast

Clara Parkes The Yarn Whisperer book

My interview with Clara Parkes

Hole and Sons Instagram

My interview with Ben Hole from Hole and Sons

Angelus Novus Cardigan

Blacker Yarn St. Kilda Mini Skein Set

Pebble Beach Shawl

Magic Knot (double knot) how-to video

Blacker Yarn is hosting the BlackerPod KAL!

Here are the details direct from Blacker Yarn:

To celebrate the Blacker Yarns Podcast Lounge at Edinburgh Yarn Festival 2017 we are delighted to announce a C/KAL. If you are making the trip to Edinburgh in March – or even if you can’t, but wish you could – let’s knit together and ramp up that festival excitement.
Details

  • The BlackerPod KAL casts on on the 19th January and casts off on 4th March.
  • You can knit or crochet any design you like, but you must use yarn from Blacker *
  • This C/KAL is open to everyone (whether you can make Edinburgh Yarn Festival or not)
  • Use this thread to chatter about your pattern choices and yarn choices and post pictures of your WIPs
  • There will be a meet up at Edinburgh Yarn Festival. (date and time tba) If you are going to EYF and you wear your FO in 100% Blacker Yarns you will get a discount on the stall as a prize.
  • For those who cannot make it to EYF we will have a FOMO FO thread (fear of missing out finished objects) and there will be a random prize draw after EYF

Also use hashtag #blackerpodkal when you chat online and use blackerpodkal to tag your rav projects

Here are some designs I’ve created in Blacker yarns that you might like to use for the KAL:

Quill Shawl (knit in Blacker Tamar DK weight)

Whispering Island Shawl (knit in Blacker Shetland DK)

Juniper Socks (knit in Blacker Tamar DK weight)

Kindling Hat (knit in Blacker Blue Faced Leister or Blacker West Country Tweed)

Kindling Mitts (knit in Blacker Blue Faced Leister or Blacker West Country Tweed)

You can also get your hands on some Blacker yarn from these stockists:

Meadow Yarn stocks Blacker Tamar in the fingering weight

Suffolk Socks stocks Blacker Tamar in the fingering weight

And in the US The Woolly Thistle stocks Blacker.
The Yarn in The City Podcast is fielding a team for the KAL. I have too much on at the moment to head up a team myself, but I’ll be playing along with my rainbow Pebble Beach!

That’s all for this week! Thanks so much for listening. Happy knitting until next time.

Subscribe to the Curious Handmade mailing list

If you don’t wish to sign up for the Spindrift Shawl pattern and workshop (link in the sidebar) and just want my regular updates sign up here:



Play

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This week I’m talking about appreciating my stash by using it!

Show Sponsors:

Meadow Yarn

Meadow Yarn is an inviting online retailer selling yarn, needles and notions. It’s a small, family business based in rural Suffolk in the UK. Meadow Yarn was born out of a passion for beautiful yarn and knitting accessories and aims to bring you a range of great products. Yarns stocked include Northbound Knitting, Eden Cottage Yarn, the Fibre Co and many more.

Show Links:

Suffolk Socks Sassy Sock

KAL news:

We have a bunch of KALs going on or about to begin in the Curious Handmade world

We have two active KALs going on just now. The deadline for both is the 31st of January!

Vintage Fairy Light KAL

WIPs, FOs and even chat will qualify you for this draw! Modifications to the pattern are welcome! The prize is very special: a skein of the limited edition Hedgerow Yarns colourway created for the Christmas Eve Cast-On Kits!

Knitvent KAL

A photo of an FO from any pattern from any year’s Knitvent collection will qualify you for the draw, as long as you began knitting it in November or later. There are two prizes, TBD!

Snowmelt MKAL

There is a Mystery Knitalong on the way from Curious Handmade.

Snowmelt MKAL goes on sale Monday January 23rd!

Melt into spring with 8 weeks of knitting, camaraderie and mystery!

It’s that moment between the last slow weeks of winter and the first sweet days of spring. There’s a gentle tension in the air as the thaw begins: the cosy joys of hibernation give way to a pleasant restlessness. Your heart stirs and the sap starts to run. This is a season of growth and change, but it begins quietly, deep in the frozen ground, before the last of the ice has even disappeared.

This time of year feels nearly miraculous. It offers a chance to renew the dreams that have slept for so long beneath a blanket of snow. The earth is preparing to surprise itself again with a wild swell of springtime creativity. It’s a call to adventure and an invitation to stretch our own creative powers. It’s time to uncover what this fresh new season has in store.

Sign up for my newsletter here to get all my Snowmelt MKAL news and tips in the lead up!

The Not Seen Before MKAL has just gone on sale.

This MKAL is to benefit the Sight is Life project, which raises money for sight-saving operations in Congo. I spoke to Kristina Vilimaite about the project on the podcast not long ago. The MKAL will feature clues from 7 designers, including me!

The pattern has just been released for presale, and the first clue will come out on January 31s. You can also get it by purchasing the Sight is Life eBook. Learn more in the Sight is Life Ravelry Group

This time of year brings so many tempting KALs, and right now sock KALs are stealing my attention. There are two I want to take part in:

Box O’ Sox KAL, hosted by the Yarngasm Podcast This is a year-long KAL. Check out the lively hashtag #boxosoxkal2017 on Instagram!

Sock Bash KAL hosted by The Grocery Girls Podcast. This is also a year-long KAL but goes month by month as well, so you can dip in and out as you like. #sockbash2017

That will do us for this week! Thanks so much, and I’ll see you soon. Happy knitting!

Play

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On this episode I talk about the importance of keeping your stash safe from Evil Moth Invaders, with some helpful tips and advice for dealing with this dreaded pest. I also round up some KALs going on right now and some that are just around the corner!

Show Sponsors:

Meadow Yarn

Meadow Yarn is an inviting online retailer selling yarn, needles and notions. It’s a small, family business based in rural Suffolk in the UK. Meadow Yarn was born out of a passion for beautiful yarn and knitting accessories and aims to bring you a range of great products. Yarns stocked include Northbound Knitting, Eden Cottage Yarn, the Fibre Co and many more.

Show Links:

Michelle Wang’s Video Podcast

Holmes Wrap

mYak Yarn

UC IPM Clothes Moth Management Guide

Zen of Making Clothes Moths: How To Save Your Yarn Stash, Fabric, Wardrobe and Sanity During and Infestation

KAL News:

I’m excited to start the Box O’ Sox KAL, hosted by the Yarngasm Podcast

We have two active Curious Handmade KALs going at the moment. The deadline for both is the 31st of January!

Vintage Fairy Light KAL

WIPs, FOs and even chat will qualify you for this draw! Modifications to the pattern are welcome! The prize is very special: a skein of the limited edition Hedgerow Yarns colourway created for the Christmas Eve Cast-On Kits!

Knitvent KAL

A photo of an FO from any pattern from any year’s Knitvent collection will qualify you for the draw, as long as you began knitting it in November or later. There are two prizes, TBD!

Mystery KAL coming soon!

There is a Mystery Knitalong on the way from Curious Handmade…for more details make sure that you’re signed up to our mailing list.(You’ll even get a free shawl pattern as a bonus when you sign up!) In the meantime, have a peek at the Summertide Shawl MKAL we did together in 2015. It will give you a good idea of what to expect

The Not Seen Before MKAL is starting soon.

This MKAL is to benefit the Sight is Life project, which raises money for sight-saving operations in Congo. I spoke to Kristina Vilimaite about the project on the podcast not long ago. The MKAL will feature clues from 7 designers, including me! The pattern hasn’t been released yet, but you can get it by purchasing the Sight is Life eBook. The pattern will also be released individually. Learn more in the Sight is Life Ravelry Group

That’s all for this week! Thanks so much for listening, and happy knitting!

Subscribe to the Curious Handmade mailing list

If you don’t wish to sign up for the Spindrift Shawl pattern and workshop (link in the sidebar) and just want my regular updates sign up here: