All posts by knitonedolgellau

New yarns for the UK – part one…

After a really busy summer, It’s wonderful to be able to just concentrate on a couple of new finds. Juniper Moon are a small American company (you can find some information about them here) whose yarns are just becoming available in the UK. They are gorgeous. See what you think!

The first one is a beautiful variegated laceweight called Findley Dappled. It’s in fat 100g balls, with an amazing 750 metres on each ball – meaning that one ball has easily enough for a whole lace shawl. It’s 50% merino, 50% silk, it’s sooooo soft and it’s £16.95.

Findley Dappled

and these are the five colourways in Knit one… They are Aurora, Roast Turkey (!), and here you can see what Roast Turkey looks like as crochet:

crochet FD

(who comes up with these names?), Macaw, Sea and the rather more descriptive ‘yellow/green/pink’. Well, it’s a better name than Roast Turkey.

Here’s what Findley Dappled looks like when it’s knitted:

knitted FD

Beautiful!

The other yarn from their Findley range in stock with Knit one… is Findley DK. This is a 50:50 mix of extra fine merino and a mulberry silk blend; there’s a generous 199 metres to each ball and it retails at £6.95. It’s lovely to knit with, by the way – and one ball will make a pair of fingerless mitts like the ones below (pattern from Knit one…).

It’s available in Green (an olive shade), Garnet, Graphite and – wait for it – Rappahannock (otherwise known as a beautiful petrol blue). The light in the photograph doesn’t really do the colours justice – they are beautiful.

Findley DK

We do have some Juniper Moon patterns for this yarn:

patterns

but it’s a fine double knitting, and can easily be used in any appropriate pattern.

More soon!

Newly in!

Just a quickie post to introduce two new – well, things.

The first one isn’t just a thing, it’s clearly going to be a ‘Thing‘ with a capital letter, inverted commas and italics, given the number of people who seem to be producing – er – things along similar lines. It’s a kit – well, let’s have a picture, and then everything will become clearer:

Katia kit

These kits – cat kits – are from Katia (appropriately!), who generally have their finger right on the pulse of what’s about to happen. What you get is a ball of wool and some pre-made parts: the cat head, legs and tail. You then use the ball of wool to either knit a cute hat or scarf, or crochet a sweet backpack, and attach the parts in the right place according to what you’ve knitted (or crocheted). They are rather cute, and come in different colourways. They’re £13.50 and are perfect for any small girls in your life!

(And – incidentally – no sooner had some gone in the window, than one sold – to a doting grandma, to knit up into the scarf for Christmas. )

Also from Katia is this cowl kit:

Katia cowl kit knittingIt will be a really quick knit, and a very satisfying one. Katia do these self-striping yarns so very well (we – everyone who visits Knit One as well as those who work there, including Bramble – all love their sadly discontinued Tobego, which we sometimes manage to get, cough, cough), and this should be another winner.

Katia cowl knitting kitsAnd a satisfyingly swift one to complete, too – and again, bang on trend, as they say. Apparently BIG cowls – and big knits all round – are going to be in this winter. You heard it here – if not quite first, then early enough to get those needles out!

 

At last, Gib gets nearer to the love of his life … yes you’ve guessed it … Bramble!

It was a wet and dreary Friday yesterday. The shop was heaving with holiday makers happily leafing through patterns and wools. In the middle of the crowd in walked Bev with the ever hopeful Gib. Gib is in love. Despite not being the same species he suffers from a long held unrequited love for Bramble.

Bramble of course is indifferent to his sad plight (though I have a sneaking suspicion she enjoys the attention). Whenever Gib pays a visit to the wool shop he watches the doorway to the stockroom ears aquiver, every part of him anticipating a glimpse of his ‘one true love’. Invariably Bramble, sensing an alien presence, saunters down from whichever nest in the house she is sleeping in to pose in front of him, look superior, hiss in his general direction and stalk off. Poor poor Gib.

Gib

To get back to yesterday morning … Gib was in luck. Bramble sauntered into the middle of the shop and sat on the basket above his head. Dear little fellow thought his luck was in until he realised she might just pounce. She didn’t but he retreated, remaining content to peep out from behind Bev’s legs and dream that perhaps if she did swoop down it would be for a kiss. Dream on Gib!

Gib and Bramble

 

Knit one … is taking part in Yarn Shop Day!

On Saturday 2 May 2015 yarn shops up and down the country will be opening their doors to celebrate the continued existence of Independent Yarn Shops … I’ve always called them Wool Shops though. Mind you I’m told wool shop rules out the possibility of selling silk, bamboo, cotton, aloe vera and acrylic and others. Therefore ‘yarn shop’ it is I guess (in my heart it is still ‘wool shop’).

Back to Yarn Shop Day …

yarn-shop-day

We, Kate and I and not Bramble (recent star of Twitter @WoolShopCat) will be providing a Knitting Hospital A & E Service between 1.00 and 3.00 pm on this special Saturday – 2 May 2015.

If you have a knitting query that is baffling you, or you have forgotten a technique, or want to learn a new one, bring your knitting in to us. We will do what we can in the time we have.

We might have to operate on first come first served basis if we are buried under a mountain of WIPs (works in progress).

Watch this space – more to come!

If you are not in Dolgellau and want to support your local Yarn Store there’s a map of other shops participating in the day here.

Oh to knit like Kerenza Peacock plays the violin!

Last night 6 of us went to see Sid Griffin and the Coal Porters who were playing a gig in Fairbourne, Gwynedd. And what a gig! I am no expert in the bluegrass style of music they play but I know enough to appreciate they are very, very good. I saw them last year when they played in Dolgellau just before their excellent fiddle player left the group to pursue her career in another direction. I looked forward to hearing her replacement.

Bluegrass fiddle playing is something else, you have to be in real charge of the violin to get them tunes across. Kerenza Peacock (classically trained) is now playing fiddle with Coal Porters. Wow, are they a lucky group. She was beautiful to behold in a stunning cinch waisted cerise silk taffeta dress and heavenly to hear as she whizzed bluegrass style across the stings, creating rich textures of sound to die for.

fiddle

What an evening we had – and I got some knitting done  the needles were whizzing along to the amusement of members of the band who saw my antics during the interval. Afterwards I managed a few brief words with Kerenza, who admitted, much to my joy, to having her own passion for the knitting needles. My evening was complete, a fellow knitter too!

If you have the opportunity to hear Kerenza play you will understand my sincere wish to be able to knit as creatively as Kerenza Peacock can play the violin. Thank you Kerenza (and the other members of the band who were super too).

Easter Wool

Easter is almost upon us … how about a break from the chocolate and transfer those wishes for yummy egg-shaped goodies for yummy egg-shaped wool confections like this one:

Wool

I shall be making more yummifirous egg-shaped wonders for my Easter window this next week. I love this time of year.

A note about my Easter opening times: In addition to the usual hours (Wednesday to Saturday 10am – 4pm) I shall be open on Easter Monday, 6 April 10am – 4pm. Hope to see you then.

Still life with cat

Cats are always perfectly dressed for any occasion – have you not noticed this? On this ‘occasion’ there was just enough room for this cat to look her best on the window sill.

Bramble the wool shop cat

I have been known to spend the evening clearing up and re-sorting my needle pots because Bramble needed considerably more room to arrange herself elegantly. As you can see I will knit with anything that has a point at the end, however, since opening Knit one … I have been seduced by Addi circular needles (mine are packed away carefully in their folder where Bramble cannot kick them out of the way because she needs more space – or my immediate attention!).

Rowan linen yarns

Linen and cotton and silk

Rowan 57 is at last in the shop. I have been tempted by one of the designs and seduced into learning how to crochet properly. There, you now know my secret. I cannot follow a grown-up crochet pattern yet. But am I going to let this stop me? NO! And why is this? Because I have been taken over by the luscious colours of the Pure Linen range Rowan offers.

Rowan linen yarns

This is the pattern that has tempted me away from my usual knitting activity, as you see I am working on my crochet using scrap yarn ‘cos I don’t want to muck up the delicious linen while I learn.

rowan 57 crochet

Now, where is my friend Eileen – mistress of the hooked needle? I am hoping she will correct my tendency to misread instructions. Surely she will, she adores lovely yarn. I will keep you posted on my progress.

It’s still very cold!

I know it’s supposed to be cold at this time of year, but – brrrrr anyway! Very late on a Saturday afternoon a couple of weeks ago snow was in the air, a regular customer blew in asking for a quick garter stitch hat pattern to keep her ears warm while walking her dogs. None of the patterns we had available suited her needs … she said she had a big head and wanted a huge turn up. It also had to be a sideways knit, simple for her to make.

So we made a pattern up just for her! We had very little time and worrying about the accuracy of our pattern I quickly knitted an identical one myself using Debbie Bliss Riva. Good job I was quick because the following week in she came proudly wearing our design.

Knit one pattern
I do not know who either of these women are – I am told the little one is me, but I don’t believe it.

If you are interested in this pattern just pop into the shop or contact us, and we can quickly describe how to knit it in any type of yarn you like.

New arrivals!

It’s been popular in the US for years, but Red Heart Yarn is coming to the UK, and specifically – surprise, surprise, to Knit One.

The orders were placed early in the New Year:

ordering red heart

and the stock is just now in, unpacked and out in the shop (and some are displayed in the window). It’s already proving very popular – the bright colours of their Anne Geddes line of baby double-knitting wool have been an instant hit – and other yarns have now arrived, too.

Red Heart have a lot of free patterns available on their website, and their yarns are particularly effective for crochet. They’re economical without looking it or feeling it, which is a difficult trick to pull off… but they’ve managed it!