Archives For KAL

Pebble Beach Shawls

It’s here! The Pebble Beach Shawlette has grown up into a Shawl!

Remember this?

Pebble Beach Shawlette at Unwind Brighton

After winning the Unwind Brighton design competition last year, I released my Pebble Beach Shawlette Pattern on Ravelry. From there, it took on a life of its own. When a group of us cast on in the beautiful Pavilion Gardens under the shady trees, I had no idea that this little shawl would be such a hit.

I’ve really been looking forward to this re-release. It’s been wonderful to watch so many people enjoying this pattern, and with the one year anniversary of the original release approaching, I wanted to do something special. Many people wanted to knit larger sizes using lace weight yarn, or with two skeins of fingering weight, so the path was clear: I decided to design some more sizes for you.

The Pebble Beach pattern now has three sizes to choose from: the original Shawlette, a medium, and a large. The medium is designed for 600m/660yds of heavy lace weight yarn and the large is designed for 800m/880yds of lace weight yarn.

All three sizes have been set out in my much loved percentage checklist style so that you can keep on track from the first stitch right to the cast off.

Three sizes of the Curious Handmade Pebble Beach Shawl

Small – gold – Kettle Yarn Co – Westminster yarn – colour Gold Rush
Medium – green – The Uncommon Thread – Merino lace – colour Mermaid
Large – grey – The Uncommon Thread – Heavenly lace – colour Attic Room

If you already have the pattern in your Ravelry library, go look! You’ll automatically receive the updated version. It should be there now. If this will be your first time knitting Pebble Beach, your timing couldn’t be better!

You can join in the Pebble Beach Knit Along on the Knitting Pipeline Ravelry group, hosted by Paula Emons-Fuessle, which will run until July 5th. You can enter to win prizes with any of my designs even if you started or finished them before the start of the KAL!

As part of this KAL I am offering a Ravelry coupon code for a discount of 30% off one of my patterns or collections, valid until May 31. Just the code KPKAL30 at checkout on Ravelry.

You can purchase the pattern on Ravelry here:

I hope you’ll join us for the KAL. Don’t forget to use #pebblebeachKAL for your social media posts. I love to see photos of your WIPs on Instagram!


Curious Handmade Podcast Ep 50

Show Sponsor – 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 madelinetosh, Eden Cottage Yarn, Hazel Knits and many more.

What’s in the WIP?

Eden Fells Hat in madelinetosh Vintage Mineral colour from Meadow Yarn.

Pattern available for 25% off in Indie Gift-A-Long with coupon code giftalong2014

This is the small (women’s) size with extra slouch:

Eden Fells Hat


Gifting Zen

Knitvent 2014 launched on Tuesday with the Candlelit shawl

It can be knit in two sizes and with or without beads

My tutorial for adding beads with a crochet hook is here.

Ravelry Gift-A-Long

Is off and running.

See my earlier blog post for more details.

My ‘bundle’ of patterns available for 25% off is here.

This is the second year the Ravelry Indie Designer Gift-A-Long has helped kick off the holiday knitting season and provided camaraderie, moral support and an awful lot of enabling!

Ravelry Gift-A-Long

It is the knit along of all knit alongs – with nearly 300 designers participating, including me for the first time this year!

The first thing you need to know is that all the participating designers are offering between 4 to 20 of their patterns on sale for 25% off with coupon code GIFTALONG2014 in the big GAL sale! From Thursday November 13th (8pm EST) through Friday November 21 (11:59pm EST).

You can find out who the participating designers are here on the Ravelry board. (I’m on the very last page!)

The second thing you need to know is that there is a knit along with loads of prizes, games and fun on the Ravelry GAL board here.

I have included 20 of my patterns in the sale and you can get an overview of them on the GAL Pinterest Board I’ve created for the event.

The whole event is incredibly well organised and there are Pinterest boards created to give you an overview of everyone’s designs by category (can you imagine the work that went into that?!!)

And the third thing you need to know is that any of my paid patterns can be included as part of the GAL KAL (not just the ones on sale) and that will include all the new Knitvent 2014 designs (did I hear you say “double dippig”? Oh yes!).

I hope to see you there!


Curious Handmade Giftalong

Curious Collective Giveaway Prizes

Helen —  October 2, 2014 — 1 Comment

The Curious Collective DKAL is in full swing and there are so many gorgeous shawls appearing which is always so great to see as a designer. There has also been lots of eye candy on Instagram thanks to people using the #CCDKAL. As we start to enter the final stages of our Collective efforts, here are all the goodies you could win by taking part, with special thanks to our sponsor for the DKAL, Juno Fibre Arts.


Prize 1: Finished Object – Random selection

This will be a prize for a random draw from the FO thread in Ravelry for all finished shawls posted by 19th October 2014. The prize will be a skein of Milly Sleek Single (70% Merino, 30% Silk Singles Fingering Weight base) in the one of a kind exclusive colourway, ‘Flow’. This prize is sponsored by Juno Fibre Arts.


Prize 2: Finished Object – Best Styled FO 
This will be a prize for the best styled shawl in keeping with the theme of the Tribes we have been participating as. I will choose one of my favourite FO pictures which is always a really tough choice. This prize is a skein of Juno Fibre Arts Alice (70% Alpaca, 20% Silk, 10% Cashmere) in the ‘Gunmetal’ colourway and is sponsored by Curious Handmade.


Prize 3: Social Media Maven Prize
A Curious Handmade Project bag made by me containing a tin of stitch markers that I picked up on my recent trip to Tangled Yarns in Australia, vintage buttons from my recent trip to Paris, 3 heat transfer patches in a cute Matryoshka Doll design and two mini skeins of Juno Fibre Arts Alice in Cherry Blossom and Ethereal which are the design colourways.

If you like what you see, it’s not too late to join us over on Ravelry where you’ll also find plenty of tips and suggestions for how to make this shawl really work for you. You can find the Curious Collective Shawl Pattern on Ravelry here.

Don’t forget that shout outs for the Curious Collective DKAL posted on Twitter, Pinterest or Instagram with the hashtag #CCDKAL will go into the draw for a the Social Media Maven Prize. You can join me in with the with conversation as Curious Handmade  and you can find some inspirational pinning over on the Curious Collective Pinterest board. Use the following Tribe hashtags for some friendly competition between the tribes!








Pebble Beach Shawlette Curious Handmade

Pebble Beach is NOW AVAILABLE and is 25% OFF for TODAY ONLY 14 July 2014 as a launch special!


This design was the winner of the Unwind Brighton design competition and was published in the event programme on the weekend.

It is now available to everyone on Ravelry.

Pebble Beach at Kettle Yarn Co

Pebble Beach Shawlette is a light crescent shaped accessory, perfect for keeping off chilly sea breezes while at the beach. This accessory is knit with one skein of luxury sock yarn and is the perfect travel and holiday knitting project.

A simple yet effective lace pattern means this project can be packed alongside your craft magazines and chick-lit beach reading. It drapes beautifully across the shoulders and the picot bind off gives a polished finish like the stones on Brighton Beach.

Pebble Beach cast on

We had a lovely time casting on the shawl at Brighton in the gardens.

Lotta in Pebble Beach

Thank you so much to my lovely test knitters Tinkhickman, Lotusen and GingerLucy!!

You can join in the knit along on the Curious Handmade Ravelry board and there are some LOVELY prizes. More on that soon!


Curious Handmade Podcast 150Hello and welcome to episode 5 of the Curious Handmade Podcast.

At the end of the show I have a special announcement about the Knitvent mystery knit along that I’ve been working on for ages and a special little something for my podcast listeners so its worth making it to the end of the show for that.

This week I have a special guest on the show, a good friend from my Wednesday night knitting group. Her name is Tina Chiang, but you will hear me call her Ting throughout our conversation as that is how I know her. Ting came over to my house last Friday and we knitted, chatted and ate some amazing cakes from the Blackbird bakery around the corner.

We talk about knitting, careers and life. We get a bit deep and then we get really shallow! We giggle. A lot. I hope you enjoy knitting along with us as we have a good old natter.

Chatting with Ting

Ting is Knitterroony on Ravelry  is knitting a Cupido Cowl by Hiroko Fukatsu

I am knitting a secret item for my Curious Knitvent 2013 Collection

Yarn stores Ting mentioned that she visited on her play tour:

The Fibre Works in Chipping Norton

Purl City Yarns in Manchester

The Yarn Cake in Glasgow

and the …..famous Yarngina

The play Ting was in recently – Chimerica. The play is no longer running in London.


Lucy Kirkwood won the Evening Standard Award for Best Play! Woot Woot.

Curious Knitvent 2013

I finally announce the launch of my mystery Knitvent 2013 Collection. If you listen to the podcast in the next couple of days, I announce a coupon code for a great discount on the collection. This special podcast code is only valid until midnight on Sunday 24 November so join in quick for a bargain.

Do you love a mystery? Who doesn’t?

Over the next 4 weeks we’ll open the doors on the Knitvent calendar, revealing another gorgeous accessory.

Each pattern will be available to purchase individually for $6, and if you want to grab yourself an amazing bargain, you can buy the whole ebook of all 8 patterns.

The normal price of the ebook will be $12 but for the period of the Knitvent mystery knit along from now until mid December – it will be just $9.

The first Knitvent pattern window will open on Sunday 24 November!


We had five weeks of “designing along” and now we are in the fifth and final week of the Curious Collective Shawl knit along on the Curious Handmade Ravelry board.

The knit along is due to finish this Friday 31 August so I hope as many knitters as possible can get their shawls finished and posted on the Prize thread to win the wonderful prize of two skiens of Juno Alice yarn. Not just that, but Asti has very kindly agreed to dye the yarn to your choice of colourways!

I just wanted to share some of the beautiful work of just a few of the knitters taking part.

This is by Tammie who is capitalK on Ravelry and is from Ohio, USA. Her Curious Collective shawl is interesting because she has used a 75% cotton, 25% wool blend. Beautiful isn’t it?


Jabi (jjabie on Ravelry) lives in Nairobi, Kenya and I think she had the most interesting modification to her Curious Collective shawl – she added beads instead of bobbles for the flower buds. It is so sweet.


Michelle, (michelle166 on Rav) from Ipswich, UK was one of my wonderful test knitters. She knit her shawl in Juno Alice yarn.


Rita (RitaMiller on Rav) from Louisiana, USA knit her shawl in Knit Picks yarn and I love the bright colours she chose. By the way, take a peek at Rita’s projects – her lace shawls are just incredible.


Judiesgirl from USA used two complementary variagated skiens of Malbrigo sock yarn to great effect in her shawl.


Elisa who is stellacometa on Rav and lives in Italy was our fasted knitter I believe. She knit this beauty up in just four days!! Very impressive. I love the calming colours.


Sylvie (silviep63 on Rav) from Toulouse in France, knit her Curious Collective shawl in Juno Alice in one of the (popular) choices of colourways from the poll. I absolutely love this combination.


Claudia (Gringaquilmes on Rav) is a southern hemisphere knitter from Quilmes in Argentina and she was another kind tester for me. One of the few who was knitting in winter for this KAL!  Thanks Claudia and it is a beautiful shawl.


I hope that gives you some inspiration for colour combinations and yarn choices and also gives a peek into what an amazingly international bunch the Curious Handmade knitters are!

knitting pattern shawl

The big reveal is here! The final pattern for the Curious Collective Shawl has been released in full.

This shawl is the result of the decisions of over 2000 knitters from 55 countries around the world. Participants joined in this “create your own adventure” shawl design project through a series of votes on the Curious Handmade blog.

The crescent shape, chosen by voters, is created by several increase rows and designed to sit beautifully on your shoulders. It also shows off the textured stitch patterns which are inspired by a spring meadow. The shawl is knit using two colours of sock weight yarn, the winning purple hues in the original complement the wildflower theme beautifully.

To everyone who took part – honestly I can’t thank you enough!! This design was truly a collective effort as many of the choices that you all made weren’t always what I would have naturally gone to first and so this has really inspired and challenged me to come up with something really different from my usual designs. It has been an amazing creative boost and I’ve loved every minute of it. All the interesting and supportive comments have meant so much to me too!

knitting pattern shawl

The Official Knit Along starts tomorrow, 26 July 2013. Or today if you’re super keen and all prepared.

If not then you have today to have a scan of the pattern, print it out or download to your tablet device, and get your yarn and needles organised.

Like many of my shawl patterns this is written in my totally non-patented Percentage Checklist format and I have provided some charts too for the more detailed sections of the design.
The percentages make it a breeze to organise a KAL! I’m planning a five week KAL starting tomorrow which will bring us to 31 August as an end date.
Breaking it up in to five weeks gives us a goal of completing 20% of the shawl each week.
Anyone can join in the KAL – it isn’t just for people who participated in the voting process – just jump in at any time. Its going to be fun!!
I haven’t quite ironed out all the details of the KAL just yet so stay posted for that! I have set up a KAL board on the Curious Handmade group on Ravelry so feel free to pop over there and post about the yarn you are using and “register” your participation in the KAL. At this stage I will aim to keep a list of all the participants but if there are too many this might be too ambitious!
The Curious Collective Shawl pattern is available to buy on Ravelry for US $6.

knitting pattern shawl

What do you think of the final result? Leave a comment and let me know if its anything like what you expected or imagined!

knitting pattern shawl wrap

knitting pattern shawl wrap

These photos were taken in our garden and around our neighbourhood in South East London.

knitting pattern shawl wrap

Credits: A huge thank you to my tech editor Emma, photographer Kirsty Barton, graphic designer Noa Nesher and wonderful test knitters martiniiis, michelle166, gringaquilmes and arianwenmcb.

It is very exciting that after months of keeping a secret I can finally share Glitz at the Ritz just out in Knitty, First Fall issue.

It is a great issue with a fantastic pattern by Amy Hertzog called Jackaroo that I really want to make.

I also love the Solidago socks by Mary Jane Mucklestone and the Sugar Stick Scarf by Kristine Byrnes. And Sinnesfrid by Madeleine Nilsson. Lots more goodies, go check it out.


The location for the photos is the Horniman Museum in South East London. Its claim to fame is an absolutely enormous stuffed walrus. There is also a cool aquarium. As you can see from the pics the gardens are stunning too.





Its a little bit “Gatsby” don’t you think? I think it’s enough of a nod to wear to a Great Gatsby themed party this weekend anyway!

Glitz at the Ritz Knitty

Now, normally on a nice day this area would be packed full with families. The fact that not a single other person is there on a Saturday morning gives you a clue how cold it was. I tried not to include the shots where the goosebumps were too obvious.

As you can see from this last pic, it was actually snowing. I really love this shot, but it does look a bit grim doesn’t it?!


I’m knitting another one in variegated Posh Yarn to see how it looks and have started a knit along going on the Curious Handmade board on Rav if you’d like to join me.

This week is all about colour (or color to many)! This is the most exciting aspect of creating a design or planning a new project for me so I hope you have fun this week too.

I’m planning this to be a two colour shawl. You have two specific choices and an open ended option in the poll this week.

The two options I have been thinking about are narrow stripes – fairly even across the shawl or big blocks of colour (perhaps one colour for body and a different colour on the border).

To illustrate what I mean here are some non-shawl examples here so we’re not too influenced by other shawl designs – although there are many many beautiful shawls that use both these colour choices.

You can see what I mean by narrow even stripes in this super cute cardigan Outback by Amy Miller

When I say colour block I mean big blocks of colour like this pullover Tea with Jam and Bread by Heidi Kirrmaier and Asa Tricosa’s Simple Ziggurat.

I have added an option for “other” as you might want to get a little crazy and suggest intarsia or colour work, or other things I haven’t thought of. So rather than have to have an extra vote on something I hadn’t considered like last week, I thought I would experiment with an open option this week (yikes)!

[polldaddy poll=”7167368″]


ETA: I see the poll results don’t seem to show the “other” suggestions. If people would like to post in the comments what they suggest that would be fun for others to see – otherwise I will do a summary and try to do little updates as we go along too.

As in past weeks the poll will close at Midday, Friday 7 June (GMT).

Please enjoy, vote and leave comments and I can’t wait to see what you decide!