Note: Technology got the better of us this week and we accidentally published this episode early! So I’ve also gone ahead and published the Hearten Mitts pattern early too. (Let’s count it as an extra surprise to finish off the season!) In this episode, you’ll hear about the release of the Knitvent 2020 designs as single patterns and my Small Business Saturday Sale: that will begin tomorrow, Thursday Nov. 26th. Thanks for your patience!
Today’s podcast episode is a cosy chat about the very last Knitvent pattern of 2020, the Hearten Mitts. And as this crazy year winds down, I’m pondering the beginnings of plans for 2021. We also have a little holiday surprise: I’m releasing the Knitvent 2020 collection as single patterns a bit early this year, and having a flash sale on ALL my single patterns on Ravelry.
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Find all your favourite luxury yarns and discover plenty more at A Yarn Story, Bath’s premier yarn store based in Walcot Street, Bath, UK. From gorgeous skeins by The Fibre Co and Walcot Yarns to a fine selection from Shibui Knits, La Bien Aimée, House of a la Mode, and Julie Asselin, there is plenty for the discerning knitter to enjoy. With friendly and knowledgeable staff to help you browse, there is plenty for the discerning knitter to enjoy. Visit the store at Walcot Street, Bath or shop online at www.ayarnstory.co.uk.
Post your completed Knitvent 2020 projects in the Knitvent Finished Object Thread on Ravelry
The Knitvent 2020 patterns are all available as single patterns now, and you can get 40% off any of my single patterns this weekend when you use the code SHOPSMALL at checkout on Ravelry:
Curious Handmade Patterns on Ravelry
Land of Sweets Cowl
Welcome to the Curious Handmade podcast. You’re listening to episode 318. This podcast is all about crafting a life of happiness and creativity. I’m your host Helen, and you can find me on Ravelry as HellsBells, and on social media as Curious Handmade. You can also find the full show notes and transcript on my website at curioushandmade.com.
Hello, how are you? I hope you’re having a good week. I am having a really good week this week. I feel like I’ve come out of a little bit of a crazy time. I’m not quite sure what happened there. November has definitely been the fastest month this year, and maybe it’s because the momentum of new Knitvent with a new pattern coming out each week kept galloping along. I’m not really sure. It could be all the kids end of year school things like Secret Santas and other events keeping me on my toes. Like, “Mum, my Secret Santa likes basketball.” What do you do with that? How about some chocolate? I don’t know. It’s hard for me, as a mum of girls, to think about boy gifts sometimes, I have to admit. Anyway, we’re navigating these mini little crisises on a day-to-day basis, and if that’s the worst I have to deal with, I am not complaining at all. So I hope you’re all having a good week as well.
Of course, the fact that it’s the end of November means that there’s just three more days for entries in the Knit20for2020 November, knit along KAL, entries. That sentence didn’t really make sense, but you know what I mean. The last day of November is Monday. So, as I said, three days time. And if you’re playing along with that knit along, it is on Instagram with the hashtag #knit20for2020, and in a special Ravelry thread that I’ve set up for that over on the Curious Handmade group. And the prize is a $50 voucher from the indie dyer or local entruep of your choice. And there are a series of 20 prompts in a handy printable that is available from my website, and it is on the menu bar of my website. The link is knit20for2020. You can read all about it there, if you are not aware of what that is all about.
And I am now thinking about whether to do this again next year or not. I’m not sure. So if you have any feedback about it, let me know whether you would want same prompts or different prompts, or, I don’t know, I haven’t quite decided what to do about it yet. It’s been quite fun. I haven’t been super successful with my own ticking off the prompts, but it has helped to me to think about personal knitting a bit more and just trying a few different things. And yeah, I’ve enjoyed it. I haven’t ticked everything off, by any means. And I need to do a proper review of what I have and haven’t achieved. I’m thinking about what I might achieve by the end of the year.
I watched a planning podcast on YouTube, or watched a couple actually, of like how to make a plan for the next five years. And the person I was watching also had a different video about sort of having a little sprint to the end of the year to get things done. And she called it her home stretch goals. And so I thought … Sometimes when someone says something in a slightly different way, it just clicks. And I thought, “Right, instead of trying to get everything left on my list done for the end of the year, I should just pick one or two things as my home stretch goal to get done before the end of the year.” So looking at my happiness project list, I think I’ll focus on working on my 40th birthday houses quilt as my project from that.
There are still quite a few things on the list I haven’t done, but I think if I just focus on one, maybe two, things, maybe I’d like to get the house a hundred percent KonMaried, I don’t know if that’s possible or not, but to my satisfaction, that might be another thing I try and tackle before the end of the year as well. So I’m just thinking, just make it really simple and it’s probably more likely to happen. So, that’s my current thinking on my happiness projects. Of course, then I start thinking, “Oh, but I really want to do my toy and all these other things,” but I think I’ve got to just be realistic. And if I start thinking about all the things, then I probably won’t get anywhere.
I have a couple of boring work things as well, but I won’t go into those too much. It includes things like tax and just tidying up my desk. Nothing too exciting there. Although one exciting thing I’m working on is the Handmade Sock Society designs for next year. I’ve decided to do that again. And it will be fairly early in the year, so I kind of realized that even though it’s, “Oh, it’s next year, next year,” but actually that’s really soon. So I am working away on that project as well. But that’s all secret so I can’t talk about that.
I’m still in bit of a funny mood, as you can probably hear, although not quite as the weird a mood as I was in last week. But it’s just so sunny here and the sky is blue and it’s just so different from most of you listening to the show who are posting about how dark the mornings are and how gloomy the weather is in a lot of places. And I just feel a bit out of sync with everybody at the moment because it’s so bright and warm and sunny. I think I can maybe relate a little bit to how Joji feels posting from sunny Argentina at this time of year. Anyway, it’s just a different. We’re in a completely different cycle down under. I guess I’ll get used to that.
Anyway. It’s not stopping me from knitting. I am knitting away quite happily so that’s good. I was wondering if it would put me off knitting, but it hasn’t seemed to. I just always feel like I’m happy to pick up a project and knit away on it. It probably means that I’m knitting more socks and small projects and fingering weight yarn, rather than any garments at this time of the year. But yes, still very much enjoying my knitting projects.
Also enjoying thinking about quilting projects as well. But again, been a bit busy to really get into that too much. But I’m thinking that, if all else fails, I will dedicate the week between Christmas and New Year to my house’s quilt project. So that’s what I’m kind of thinking, is trying to have that time off work and maybe just having some really long stretches of working on a particular project sounds really nice to me at the moment.
And being the end of the month it also means that it was the last Knitvent pattern to be published yesterday. The pattern is the Hearten Mitts. I debated about whether to call them mitts or arm warmers, and I eventually settled on mitts because they do have a thumb hole. But my idea was that they could be arm warmers. So if you thought that you maybe just wanted them as arm warmers and didn’t want to have them as mitts, you could just omit that the thumb haul section and just keep knitting a tube. So that would be one option. And I decided to bring back the advent idea that was in the Hearten Cowl from the first pattern in the collection and make a matching pair of mitts. And so they are kind of a set, it’s not exactly the same stitch pattern. I don’t have the thin stripes because I didn’t have as much fabric to play with in a mitt. But yes, I enjoyed bringing those colors back in. I thought the set that Anj from Meadow Yarn dyed up for this pattern was so beautiful, and I just wanted to play with it a bit more.
So I’ll just read the beautiful description for the pattern that my lovely writer, Amanda, wrote for it. It’s amazing how quickly things can change in a moment. A cold, dreary, lonesome day can be transformed by a 10 minute call with a friend. An exhausting evening can be redeemed in the opening notes of your favorite show’s theme song and a relaxing knitting project in your lap. Our frantic holiday preparations can become an exercise in mindfulness if we give ourselves the grace to be less than perfect and only focus on the traditions that bring us the most happiness. When so many things feel as if they’re out of our hands, the heartening truth is that sources of comfort and joy usually are within reach. Let’s allow ourselves to hold tight to the things that hearten us and let go of the things that don’t.
The hearten mitts were designed to match with their friend, the Hearten Cowl. If you made that one using 20 grand minis, you can use the leftovers on these mitts. And of course you can use alternatives like other scraps, or use a self striping yarn which would mean that you don’t have ends to lead in. Or a variegated yarn would look fabulous as well, or just even a semi-solid. It’s really a very flexible choice for the yarn here. And I’ve created them in two sizes, a child and an adult. And the child is just written to be a bit shorter and it’s eight less stitches in the cast on. So just slightly less circumference.
Of course, you can adapt all these things to suit your recipient, who you’re making it for, and yeah, just knit them as long or short as you wish. So, I hope you enjoy this last little pattern for Knitvent. I just feel like they’re a lovely, cheerful, little, potential gift.
So as I said, I used the Meadow Yarn mini Pightle, which is a hundred percent wool. And for the child size, I had 18 colors, 18 stripes, and for the adult, I used the full 24. So they’re reasonably long. And of course you can shorten them all or lengthen them, whatever you fancy. So when you’re using minis, it just requires a very tiny amount of yarn for each stripe. And as that’s the last pattern for the collection, we will be having the knit along running until the end of the year. And there is a finished object thread in the Curious Handmade Ravelry group. And I am also releasing the patterns as single patterns today, which is slightly earlier than I normally would but I just thought I just want to give people a little bit more time this year. It’s been a bit of a crazy year so I’m just trying to, I don’t know, just do things at a measured pace and so I just decided that, now the collection has all been released, I could release them as singles.
And to celebrate that and also, I believe it’s Small Business Saturday, I’m not sure exactly. Some countries do different weekends, but I’m calling it Small Business Saturday this weekend. And so I’m doing a promotion where all my single patterns are available at 40% off with the code SHOPSMALL. So if you have a yarn advent calendar and you haven’t decided what pattern you’re going to knit that into, you can choose one of several that I have. There’s the Hearten Cowl from this year’s Knitvent, which is now available as a single, obviously, as I just mentioned.
Or perhaps a previous year’s advent pattern. We have the Land of Sweets Cowl. The Dust of Snow Wrap. Habitation Throw from last year. And the Hearten Cowl. So choice of four different patterns to choose from which you might like to consider. Of course, the more organized people might’ve already decided on something by now, but if you haven’t, you can pick up one of those patterns at 40% off with the code shop small.
So I hope all your holiday knitting plans are going well. If you’re a gift knitter or if you’re a selfish knitter, I put that in inverted commas because I don’t think it’s selfish to knit for yourself at all. And yeah, I just hope you’re really enjoying during this time. It’s just such a crazy year. I don’t know. I just want to acknowledge that it’s difficult for a lot of people and I’m just wishing you all the best. I am going to have two more episodes out this year. The last episode for the year will be on the 11th of December and I’ll be back early January. I haven’t set an exact date for that yet, but early to mid January, I’ll be back with you again.
But yes, two more episodes after this one for the year. So I’m not saying goodbye quite yet, but that’s … I was sounding a bit final there for a minute. Thank you so much, Anj, for your beautiful inspirational set of 24 minis that you put together for the Knitvent 2020 pattern. Anj just does the most gorgeous colorways. And I just find that they’re really unique. She has a really just individual style and unique eye, and is a beautiful writer as well. So if you haven’t checked out Meadow Yarn, she’s based in the UK and I do really recommend her. Obviously she’s a sponsor and I’m completely biased, and she’s also a dear friend. But yeah, do swing by a Meadow Yarn and have a look if you’re in the market for some yarn for some holiday knitting projects. I also wanted to say a huge, huge thank you to my test knitters, Tracy R.R. and Tink Hickman, Deb. As well as my tech editors, Emma and Anna, who have done an amazing job on this collection. And of course, to Amanda, who’s written all the beautiful descriptions.
Thank you so much to my little team and I just couldn’t do it without you. And it makes it so fun to do it with a group of lovely knitters. So on that note, I hope you have a great week. Take care, and I’ll talk to you again soon.