Archives For Patterns

Afternoon Tea in Anzula Squishy: Candy Apple

Back in 2012, I released a little shawlette on Knitty. Afternoon Tea, which was inspired by vintage frocks and pastel-frosted cupcakes, played on the concept of Elizabeth Zimmermann’s beloved Pi shawl. Since then the pattern has had quite a life. It has racked up almost 1000 projects on Ravelry, has been made in every colour under the rainbow, and made an appearance at countless special events (including starring roles in at least a dozen weddings!)

I designed Afternoon Tea as a fun little fancy. It had only one job, to be ornamental. That’s a role it has played perfectly, but recently I wanted to revisit the pattern to see what more it had to offer. When I re-released Pebble Beach in larger sizes, the response was wonderful, and I knew that Afternoon Tea also deserved its own “growing up” moment. Over the last few months I have carefully redesigned and rewritten the pattern as a full-sized shawl. The new, larger Afternoon Tea retains all the delicacy, refinement, and playfulness of the original shawlette, but now it’s ready to do double duty as both a decorative and a more functional piece.

The yarn I chose for the new samples has quickly become one of my favourites. If there was such a thing as a yarn soulmate, Anzula Yarn’s Squishy might just be mine. It’s a fingering weight MCN blend: 80% merino, 10% cashmere, 10% nylon. It’s so, so soft and the colours are completely lush. I knit the small sample in Teal (possibly my perfect colour) and used up one skein, pretty much exactly.

Afternoon Tea Shawlette in Teal

Small Afternoon Tea in Anzula Luxury Fibers Squishy [80% superwash merino, 10% cashmere, 10% nylon, 352m /385yd per skein], 1 x 100g skein, Colour: Teal

My wonderful mother knit the medium sample for me in Candied Apple: I was so grateful to her but it was hard to hand those two skeins over. I wanted to keep knitting with that yarn! The lovely drape is especially evident in this larger size.

Afternoon Tea Shawl in Anzula Candied Apple

The new, larger size of Afternoon Tea in Anzula Luxury Fibers Squishy [80% superwash merino, 10% cashmere, 10% nylon; 352m/385yd per skein], 2 x 100g skeins, Colour: Candied Apple

The original samples were knit in three other yarns which are still very close to my heart. The sheen and stich definition in Quince & Co’s Tern wool and silk blend is to die for.

Afternoon Tea in Columbine

The original small Afternoon Tea in Quince & Co Tern [75% wool, 25% silk, 202m /221yd per skein], 2 x 50g skeins, Colour: Columbine

Madelinetosh’s Tosh Sock really needs no introduction. This yarn is a perennial favourite, and the Baltic colourway is deep, moody, and elegant. Best of all, the small version of the shawl uses up exactly one skein.

Afternoon Tea in Madelinetosh Tosh Sock Baltic

Original small Afternoon Tea in Madelinetosh Tosh Sock [100% superwash merino wool, 361m /395yd per skein], 1 x 100g skein, Colour: Baltic

I’m still such a fan of Viola’s Merino fingering, in this rich violet colour.

Original small Afternoon Tea in Viola Merino Fingering [100% superwash merino wool; 365m/400yd per skein], 1 x 100g skein, Colour: Violet

Original small Afternoon Tea in Viola Merino Fingering [100% superwash merino wool; 365m/400yd per skein], 1 x 100g skein, Colour: Violet

As of today, the revamped pattern is available to buy now on Ravelry: as part of this rebirth, along with the new size, I have also converted both sizes into my easy-to-follow percentage checklist format that is so popular with Curious Handmade knitters! And of course, the original pattern will still be available for free on Knitty. I hope you enjoy it.

Whispering Island Shawl

I’ve been hinting all week about my newest pattern, and I’m so excited to share it with you all that I’ve decided to release it a day earlier than planned.

The pattern is available on Ravelry to buy now.

“My readers will want to know if Whispering Island is real, set in the great blue harbour in the story – and if the little cottage on the hills is there still…Yes, the island is real, and lies in the great harbour, still full of whispering trees. The little cottage on the hills is still there, with its magnificent view and its old well… I have taken them all and put them into this book for you.”

Enid Blyton “Five Have a Mystery to Solve”

Cliffs and caves, coastlines and caravans: Whispering Island is inspired by the landscapes of beautiful Dorset and the fun to be had there by the young at heart. This generously-sized shawl wants to be slung across your shoulders as you wander through fields, explore forgotten ruins, scramble up hillsides, and toast marshmallows over a campfire.

An elongated triangle shawl with a rounded border, Whispering Island is all about texture. Knit in a rustic, rugged DK weight yarn, it features rippling ridges and just a hint of feminine lace in the eyelets along the edge. Although packed with lovely details, this pattern is amazingly easy and fast to knit: the perfect project for a knitter setting off on their first shawl adventure, or for the experienced knitter who wants something simple to finish by the fireside in the long summer evenings of a camping holiday.

This particular project has been such a joy. It was one of those patterns that seems to know exactly what it wants to be from the beginning, and I had a wonderful time bringing it to life. I also had the immense pleasure of working with three marvellous yarns, which each brought their own magic to the design. As any knitter knows, it all begins with the feeling of fibre in your hands.

Whispering Island in Hole & Sons Yarn

The first inspiration for Whispering Island came from my precious stash of Hole & Sons wool. I was lucky to get my hands on some (the last release sold out online in a matter of minutes.) I knew I needed a very special project to make the most of its wonderful qualities, and I felt it was worthy of its own new pattern. I enthuse at length about what makes this yarn so miraculous in tomorrow’s podcast, where I interview Benjamin Hole about his farm, process, and philosophy.

For the original Whispering Island, I used Hole & Sons Pure Wool in the “Fog” colour. [100% Dorset Poll Pure Wool, 110m/119yds per ball], 6 x 50g balls.

Because there will be a bit of a wait before more Hole & Sons yarn is available for purchase, I also wanted to knit this shawl in some other lovely yarns which allow for more instant gratification.

Whispering Island in Blacker Shetland Yarn

Blacker Yarns Shetland DK shares a lot of qualities with the Hole & Sons wool. Soft, springy, and heathered, it is actually spun in the same mill in Cornwall. It manages to be both rugged and incredibly cuddly, all at the same time, and it’s very smooth on the needles. The colour of the wool, Fawn, is completely natural. It’s an undyed light brown in a creamy caramel shade: it reminds me of Werther’s Originals! [100% Wool, 110m/119yds per ball], 6 x 50g balls]

Whispering Island in Acadia

You’ve probably heard me mention the Fibre Company’s gorgeous Acadia yarn. I was planning to knit a two-colour version of Whispering Island, and I wanted a yarn that would still capture the outdoorsy feeling of my original vision. When I looked at some other shawls knit in Acadia I suddenly knew that this was the perfect yarn for the job. I can’t say enough about what a pleasure this yarn is to work with. The blend of merino, alpaca and silk is wonderfully soft and luxurious with loads of rustic character. [60% Merino wool, 20% Baby alpaca, 20% Silk, 133m/145yds per skein], 4 x 50g skeins, Colour: 2 x Driftwood, 2 x Summersweet]

The result, in all three yarns, is a big, welcoming shawl with lots of heart, an all-season shawl that will be equally at home sheltering you from the soft breezes of a summer evening as it will be cuddling around your neck once the winter winds begin to blow. It’s a surprisingly quick knit, and lots of fun: I’ve made it three times now, and it has never lost its charm.

I really love Whispering Island, and I hope you will too.

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!

Today I have been pondering what to do with my skein of Terra given to us by The Fibre Company at the Muse Connection Volume 1.

It is an Aran weight yarn – 90metres/98yds so its a bit tricky amount to do a single skein project with but never fear! I found lots of ideas which may also help with a few other small and perfect skeins of yarn in my stash.

With such lovely yarn I’m thinking that it would make a lovely gift….or something nice for me!

Terra Woad Light

So of course I turned to Ravelry and my first search was on the “Yarn” tab and I searched “Terra Fibre Company”. I then selected the “Projects” tab to see what others had made with the yarn. After a bit of looking I realised that I could do an advanced search and select the exact amount I had to narrow down the results.

I found a few good options with this search:

Alfalfa Baby Hat by Kate Gagnon Osborn

(free pattern)

Alfalfa Baby Hat

© Kate Gagnon Osborn + Kelbourne Woolens

Barley Hat by Tin Can Knits

(free pattern)

Barley

© Tin Can Knits

Leia Bonnet and Pixie Booties by Mel Clark

From book – Knitting gifts for Baby

Terra Projects

© Helen Bankers

So then I decided to widen my search to any Aran weight project that used one skein.

This time I went to the Pattern tab and clicked straight on the “pattern browser and advanced search” link under the search box.

Then on the left hand side I selected filters Weight = Aran and Meterage. At first I selected 0-150 metres but then realised I could get even more specific and selected “cusomize: enter a range…” down the bottom of the box and put in 0-90 – that would give me just projects that used the exact amount I have.

Rav Search image

Using this search I found a lot of cute ideas. General ideas include baby hats (as above!), headbands, small fingerless gloves, boot toppers, cozies for mugs and phones and little toys.

A few that caught my eye in particular are:

When Left Foot Met Right Foot by Justyna Lorkowska

When Left Foot Met Right Foot

© Lete

Toasty Talus by Clare Devine

Toasty Talus

© Clare Devine

Tiffany Neckwarmer by Hilary Smith Callis

Tiffany Neckwarmer

© Hiliary Smith Calis

Smart Driver Mitts by Lizzie Laine

Smart Driver Mitts

© Lizzie Laine

What do you like to knit (or crochet) with small amounts of Aran weight yarn? Leave your suggestions in the comments!

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!

Georgie Baby Blanket

The Georgie Baby Blanket is the June design for the Dream Big Collection.

I’m having a launch sale of 75% off for TODAY ONLY!

You can buy the pattern on Ravelry here (and the discount will be automatically applied during the sale period)

Georgie is an easy, baby blanket or throw in a fresh modern style.

The blanket is constructed by working the body section in one piece, then the border is picked up and knit in the round.

Georgie Baby Blanket by Helen Stewart

Is it just me, or does it seem like it is “baby season” at the moment? I seem to have a lot of friends expecting just now. Now, I am certainly not complaining about this joyful state of affairs!

When I was expecting my first baby I spent a lot of time daydreaming about the perfect nursery. I poured over magazines and pinned lots of pictures of cots and other cute baby things.

Of course the question of what I was going to knit for the new baby was central to my perfectly kitted out baby fantasies.

I was obsessed with the Skandi look, with its clean lines and bright modern colours. But I really struggled to find knitting patterns in this style. What baby blanket would perfectly match my dream Stokke cot?

Since then, I have decided that a baby blanket is the perfect new baby gift. You don’t have to worry about fit and are therefore safe in the knowledge that (with a bit of care on the part of the recipient) it will last for many years. It may even become a much loved “blankie” essential for bedtime comfort.

Georgie Baby Blanket by Curious Handmade

5 great things about the Georgie pattern:

  • You can have fun choosing colour combinations to suit the new arrival (or their parents!).
  • It’s a fun, bright, unisex design that will suit little princes or princesses alike.
  • The design is graphic and eye-catching, but really easy and relaxing to knit.
  • The striped pattern is created by using slipped stitches so you are only ever knitting with one colour at a time.
  • The sample is knit in sport weight yarn but it would also be well suited to DK or worsted weight yarn.

Georgie Baby Blanket by Curious Handmade

Global Nomad Cowl

Introducing the Global Nomad Cowl, the April design in the Dream Big Collection. It’s a great little accessory for wearing everywhere from music festivals to the weekend farmers’ market. It’s a light and airy cowl for those slightly cooler trans-seasonal days.

You can create some eye catching colour-block combinations to jazz up any outfit. The small size is perfect for using up small amounts of sock yarn and the large size isn’t too bad at that either.

The cowl is knit in the round and uses one very simple lace stitch to create a stylish accessory that is simple to knit.

I’ve been wearing this one everywhere lately. The yellow and grey (loving the “grello”) seems to go with a lot of my outfits!

And its 50% off for three days only! You can buy it on Ravelry here.

Global Nomad Cowl

Speaking of Tosh Sock, did you know that its Mad May?  The MadelineTosh Lovers group on Ravelry are having their annual celebration of the beautiful yarns and colours of Madeline Tosh.

Because the Global Nomad cowl is very much inspired by Tosh Sock yarn and its glorious colourways, I am joining in the celebrations with an offer of 20% off all my patterns until the 31st of May (midnight GMT). Just use the coupon code MadMay14 at the checkout.

Global Nomad Cowl

Introducing the second knitting pattern in the  Dream Big Collection.

Here is the Fireflies Rising Shawlette.

FirefliesRising shawlette knitting pattern

Fireflies Rising is a small crescent shaped shawl, created by increases at the edges on both sides. The lace pattern is really simple and gives a pretty, blossomy detail.

This spring shawlette is a quick, easy one skein accessory. It could be worn over the shoulders with a floral dress or around the neck as a scarf to ward off those sometimes chilly spring breezes.

Now, from the thick grass, the fireflies
begin to rise:
up, then down, then up again:
lit on the ascending flight,
drifting simultaneously to the same height,
–exactly like the bubbles in champagne.

– A Cold Spring by Elizabeth Bishop

The pattern is half price for today only.

*** Sign up to my email newsletter Curious Yarns for an extra special discount on the pattern and the Dream Big collection. ***

£1.75 (after midnight 31 March GMT it will return to usual price of £3.50)

I knit this one with luxurious Juno Fibre Arts Alice yarn (baby alpaca/silk/cashmere) in the Boudior colour way.

You can buy this yarn at the Juno Etsy shop and there is also some gorgeous Belle yarn (British Alpaca / Organically Farmed Falklands Merino) available in the Boudoir colourway.

Fireflies Rising Shawlette Knitting Pattern

Easy Bobble Hat Pattern

by Helen Stewart

free beginners hat knitting pattern

This free knitting pattern for beginners (or experienced knitters who want a fast satisfying knit) gives you easy to follow instructions for how to make a fun bobble hat for the whole family.

Once you have mastered the basic knit and purl stitches you will be able to knit up this easy hat in about 2-5 hours. Not bad for an evening of knitting.

It is knit flat on straight knitting needles and then seamed up the back.

IMG_7642

If you have a tape measure, and the recipient’s head close by, measure the circumference of their head and choose the size closest to their size. If in doubt or in between sizes, I would suggest selecting the smaller size for a snugger fit but it depends on personal preference as slouchy hats are very on trend at the moment.

Size

Baby 14”, (Toddler 16”, Child 18”, Woman 20”, Man 22”) head circumference.

Yarn

1 x 100g ball of Rowan Big Wool (100% Merino wool; 80m/87yds) or

2 x 100g skeins of Blue Sky Alpaca Bulky (50% Alpaca, 50% wool; 41m/45yds)

Or similar yardage of other bulky weight yarn.

Needles

10mm (US 15) straight knitting needles

Notions

Yarn needle

Tape measure

Gauge

8 sts/12 rows = 10cm (4″)

Abbreviations

k          knit

k2tog   knit 2 together

p          purl

st(s)    stitch(es)

*           repeat instructions between asterisks

Directions

Cast on 30, (34, 38, 42, 46) sts.

Row 1: Knit all stitches

Row 2-6: *k1, p1* to end of row. (5 rows of ribbing)

If you are making a two colour hat, start colour B here.

Row 7: Knit all sts.

Row 8: Purl all sts

Repeat rows 7 and 8,  4, (5, 6, 7, 8) more times. (10, (12, 14, 16, 18) rounds of stockinette)

Decrease for crown as follows:

K1, then *K2tog* to 1 st before the end of the row, k1. 16, (18, 20, 22, 24) sts

Purl all sts.

K1, then *K2tog* to 1 st before the end of the row, k1.  9, (10, 11, 12, 13) sts

Purl all sts

K1, then *K2tog* to 2, (1, 2, 1, 2) st/s before the end of the row, k2 (k1, k2, k1, k2). 6, (6, 7, 7, 8) sts

Cut thread leaving approx. 18” tail. Using yarn needle, thread the tail through the remaining sts and pull firm.

Using tail, sew the sides of the hat together. Mattress stitch is the best stitch to use.

Weave in ends.

Make PomPom

Use a large pompom maker or make your own template out of card.

I used a circle approximately 3” in diameter.

free beginners hat knitting pattern

free beginners hat knitting pattern

Photo Credit: Photos of me are by Kirsty Barton Creations

The Frangipani Shawl is my first new design of 2014 and also the first of the Dream Big Collection.

It is knitted up in the super soft, sublime Juno Alice 4ply yarn which is an alpaca, silk, cashmere blend.

And until Friday you have the chance to win TWO skeins of lovely Juno Alice yarn in the Corn Dolly and Oyster colourways pictured below, to make your own Frangipani Shawl. I’m also offering some of my patterns to win as well.

All you have to do is pop over to Asti’s Juno Fibre Arts blog or the Juno Ravelry board (Ravelry link) and leave a comment to go in the draw!

Curious Handmade Frangipani Shawl Curious Handmade Frangipani Shawl Curious Handmade Frangipani Shawl

It was absolutely freezing the day we did the photo shoot but we couldn’t resist staying outside and getting some photos with the brilliant street art around the area I live in London. As usual the talented Kirsty Barton was my photographer.

Street Art East Dulwich