Back in November, I introduced Rowan Selects, seasonal limited edition yarns that offer something a bit special and different. Although it may not feel terribly spring like outside, the new Spring/Summer select, Denim Lace, has just arrived. This gives you plenty of time to knit it up in time for the warmer weather to arrive.
Denim Lace is a laceweight blend of 95% cotton and 5% other fibres. The cotton is sourced from recycled denim so it’s a yarn that has great environmentally friendly credentials. The 5% of other fibre is simply because when textiles are recycled, there is always a small amount of other fibre that is below the identifiable level. It is presented in an unusual cone format with 50g/400m per cone. Even if you never knit with it, this is a yarn that will look great just sitting on a shelf! All this and it still comes in at a very affordable £5.95 per cone. There are six muted shades avaiable; two greys, cream, black, teal and red. The knitted fabric has a slightly flecked appearance with plenty of visual appeal.
If that isn’t enough to tempt you, the yarn is supported by a pattern booklet with four designs by Martin Storey and Sharon Miller. Better still, this booklet is FREE if you buy the yarn for any of the patterns.
- Designer: Martin Storey
- Size: 81cm-127cm bust (32”-50”)
- Yarn: 8-11 balls (shown in Ocean Floor)
- Needles: 2.25mm, 3mm, cable needle
Hermia is a textured raglan seamed pullover knitted with the yarn held double throughout. The pattern for the bottom section of the body and sleeves features a combination of cables and double moss stitch. This section of the design is charted with the rest of the pattern written out.
- Designer: Martin Storey
- Size: 46cm x 209cm (18” x 82”)
- Yarn: 2 colours, 3 balls of each (shown in Harbor Fog and Ocean Floor)
- Needles: 3mm
Also worked with the yarn held double, Peaseblossom is a textured wrap. The sample uses one strand each of two different colours to produce a mottled appearance but it would also look great worked in just one colour. There are two different stitch patterns combined with a garter stitch edging to give plenty of knitting interest and a gorgeous tactile finished object.
- Designer: Sharon Miller
- Size: 187cm wide by 132cm deep (73.5” x 52”)
- Yarn: 2 balls (shown in Umbria Red)
- Needles: 5mm
This deep triangular shawl uses just two balls of yarn meaning it can be knitted for under £12. Unlike traditional triangular shawl contruction where your rows get ever longer, Mote is knitted from the bottom up with stitches being decreased as you work until just three stitches remain. Great if you hate casting off!
The pattern suggests using a “lace cast on”. This sort of cast on is also referred to as a knitted cast on. If you’re unsure how to work this, Rowan have provided a great video tutorial.
- Designer: Martin Storey
- Size: 24cm x 204cm (9.5” x 80.5”)
- Yarn: 3 balls in Colour A, 2 balls in Colour B (shown in Black and Sand)
- Needles: 3mm
Mustard Seed is a striped scarf worked with the yarn held double throughout. It is worked in a combination of rib and twisted stitches. I love knitting striped designs because I always want to knit just one more stripe!
Pick up your yarn and pattern book in store now. I can’t wait to see what you make!
We started working with Rowan earlier this year and I have to say I’m in love with both the quality of their yarns and the gorgeous patterns that accompany them. As well as the standard range of scrummy yarns, they also produce a series of Limited Edition special yarns called Rowan Selects and I thought I’d tell you about Camello.
As the name suggests, Camello is a yarn containing camel so it’s perfect if you love an unusual fibre. The exact blend is 68% wool, 18% camel and 14% nylon. It has a chainette construction which results in a wonderfully springy yarn with an incredibly generous 175m per 25g ball. There are 10 deep jewel like colours in the range. My favourite is Tapestry, a petrol blue that looks great as an accent against the pale grey of Stone. It costs £6.50 per ball.
Pattern support comes as a book featuring 8 designs by Lisa Richardson and Sarah Hatton. Better still, if you buy the yarn for any of the projects, the pattern book is FREE! There are six garments (three jumpers and three cardigans), a hat and a rather lovely fairisle scarf.
The star of the show is probably Karoo, a knee length cardigan with all over fairisle patterning. If you love the fairisle look but don’t fell like tackling an entire garment, Namib uses many of the same motifs over a scarf. This means it would be more forgiving of a slightly wonky gauge!
There are two Raglan pullovers. Arabian (top left) has a simple stocking stitch body with delicate cable highlights on the raglan seams. Guban (bottom right) has an intricate cable panel down the centre front and back. The cable panel is charted but I’ve written out the first 10 rows so if you want a copy of that to help you get started, just Contact Us.
My favourite garment is Ogaden (bottom left), a striped cardigan with contrast pockets, a great excuse to play with colour! I think I would use more colours for the striped sections to make it a bit more crazy and eye catching. There’s also Kalahari (top right), a relaxed turtle neck sweater perfect for chilling in, and Sahara (centre), a cardigan with embroidered details that’s definitely smart enough for work.
The final design is Chalbi, a slouchy beanie hat with turned back ribbing and pom pom. The original used Rich Red, Stone and Pavement but I knitted my sample version in Tapestry, Cream and Sapphire. This was a quick and enjoyable knit which would be perfect for a beginner as it is knitted flat using rib and stocking stitch with simple knit two together decreases.
The pattern calls for 1 ball in two of the colours and 2 balls in the colour used for the pom pom. I made a multi colour pom pom using 1 strand of each colour wrapped together which meant I only used 1 ball of each colour.
We have some kits available containg all the yarn you need to knit Chalbi plus the FREE pattern book. These are £19.50 if you want either a multi colour pom pom or no pom pom or £26 with an additional ball of yarn to make a one colour pom pom. These are beautifully presented in a gold organza bag and would make a great Christmas present. Or there’s still enough time to knit one to give as a gift too.
A Stitch Up is a celebration of knitting and crochet. We will have a pop-up mini marketplace featuring some super talented stall holders.
There will be a social area for those who want to work on a current project or start a new one as well as those who just want to chat and compare purchases.
There will be a plentiful supply of tea and coffee plus the all important cake.
Saturday October 21st 10:30-4:30.
In store at Stitch Solihull. If you’re not sure where we are, check out the Find Us page.
The venue is fully wheelchair accessible, the ramp is round to the right from the main door.
Admission is free.
Our fabulous stall holders for this event are:
- Emma from Yarnistry will be bringing a selection of her laser cut accessories including stitch markers, sock blockers and jewellery plus some brand new project bags.
- Gilly from Gilly Makes has been stitching away to create some gorgeous handmade project bags and notion pouches in a lovely selection of fabrics.
- Rachael from Sherwood Yarn is an indie dyer who specialises in stunning solid colour yarns on luxurious bases. Keep an eye out for the mustards which I adore.
- Sharon and Andrew from Dragonhill Studio are relative newcomers to the indie dyer market but have a great eye for colour and produce some stunning yarns including self striping sock yarns.
The shop will also be open selling our normal wide range of yarns, fabrics, needles and accessories. I recommed checking oun new arrivals from The Fibre Co. if you want to see something really special.
Well, why not? Knitting and crochet are wonderful and should be celebrated! Plus it’s my birthday this weekend and I thought I would throw my own perfect party with yarn, cake and friends. What more could you want from a Saturday in mid-October?
I’ve had a bit of a busy week in the shop, all our new yarns for Autumn/Winter have been arriving and it’s been fabulous! I know it’s still a little while away but it takes time to craft the perfect winter wardrobe and it’s never too soon to get started. One of the most exciting and eagerly awaited arrivals for me is Rowan Magazine 62 and the associated yarns.
Rowan produces these magazines twice a year and they contain a selection of patterns, articles and general inspiration. At £12.50, they might sound expensive but Magazine 62 contains 41 designs for women in both knitting and crochet fron a range of incredibly talented designers. Rather than tell you about all of them and leave you with an essay to read, I thought I’d share five of my favourites. In no particular order;
- Dusky Scarf by Martin Storey
This deliciously squooshy oversized scarf is knitted in a combination of Kidsilk Haze and Felted Tweed. I love the contrast between the simple garter stitch body and delicate lace edging. I’d be tempted to knit mine in some bolder colours but keeping the contrast between them.
- Oxton by Sarah Hatton
I love a good textural knit and this oversized sweater with a cable and double moss stitch front and back certainly fits the bill. It is knitted in Kid Classic, a snuggly blend of wool, mohair and polyamide and would be great for keeping toasty on a cold day.
- Eclipse by Martin Storey
A cowl knitted in one strand of Kidsilk Haze and one strand of Fine Lace held together. The lace border is knit sideways and embellished with beads. Stitches are then picked up and the body of the cowl is worked in the round which minimises sewing up (always a bonus in my book!). I think the beads add a real touch of luxury while the relatively simple patterning stops it being too fancy for every day wear.
- Afterglow by Martin Storey
Taking the beads and lace theme a bit further, Afterglow is a raglan sleeved pullover with simple back and embellished front. It is also knitted in Kidsilk Haze and Fine Lace held together. I think using two different colours would give an interesting marled colour and also look fabulous. I think I’d be tempted to add the beads with a crochet hook rather than threading them on first but that’s just me.
- Hutton by Lisa Richardson
This crochet shawl just speaks to me. The colour combination is eye catching and irresistible and the finished design is super wearable. It is worked in stripes with four shades each of Kidsilk Haze and Felted Tweed. The main body is only a two row repeat so it should be accessible to a beginner as well as being a great TV project for those with a bit more experience.
Plus there’s another 36 patterns to choose from too! You can see the full range of patterns included on Ravelry. Which designs would be in your top five?
One of our new yarns for the Spring/Summer season is Peter Pan Petite Fleur DK. Peter Pan have been around for almost 100 years and are well loved for their yarns and patterns for babies, toddlers and children. Petite Fleur DK is new for 2017 and is an interesting blend of 44% cotton, 28% tencel and 28% acrylic.
While I’m sure we’re very familiar with cotton and acrylic, tencel was a new fibre for me. It turns out that Tencel is produced from regenerated wood cellulose. The wood pulp used comes from sustainably farmed eucalyptus trees that are grown without the need for irrigation or pesticides. The chemicals used to process it are non-toxic and the majority of them are recycled and reused. As a result Tencel is very environmentally friendly and it’s inclusion means that Petite Fleur DK contains over 70% natural fibres.
Petite Fleur DK comes in 5 evocatively named colours; Snowdrop (white), Lily (cream), Peony (pink), Forget me Not (blue) and Lambs’ Ear (grey).
The inclusion of Tencel allows for an incredibly generous meterage of 175m/191yds per 50g ball and with an attractive price point of £3.50 makes it an affordable choice. It can also be machine washed at 30 making it practical too.
The yarn is incredibly soft and has a lightly brushed finish making it fluffy without it shedding while knitting or wearing.
There is a supporting range of 8 patterns that are available as individual leaflets at £3 each. There is also a pattern booklet containing all 8 plus an additional swaddle blanket and bolero set for just £7.50.
There are two blankets. One is made up of crocheted flower motifs and finishes at a generous 110cm square. The pattern also includes a pair of crocheted booties.
The knitted blanket finishes at 68cm square, perfect for in a car seat. It is knitted on the bias giving diagonal stripes with a 3D teddy bear peeking out from one corner. Better still, it only uses 5 balls of yarn so can be knitted for under £20.
There are 6. garment patterns, 5 knitted and 1 crocheted. They are, working clockwise from top left:
A crochet hooded cape whichis worked in a relatively simple pattern of double and treble crochet. It fits a 14-24” chest, a generous age range of approximately birth to 4 years.
A simple cardigan with a round or v-neck with optional bow details. It can be worked in 1 or 2 colours and is sized from preemie - 18 months (12-20” chest)
A scoop back sweater with a sideways knit body in age 6 months to 4 years (18-26” chest). There is the option to add stripes to the body or to keep it simple with contrast colour ribbing.
A hooded jacket for age 18 months to 4 years (20-26” chest). This lovely 2 colour design has bags of texture and interest but with only one colour being worked on each row, it is easier to knit than it looks.
A bolero with lace sleeves and a feature bow on the back for girls from 12 months to 4 years (20-26” chest). The pattern also contains instructions for a ruffled muff and lacy hat making it the perfect outfit for a special occasion.
Finally, there is a lace raglan cardigan that can be worked with a round or v-neck and with full length sleeves or no sleeves. It fits sizes from preemie - 2 years (12-22” chest).
You can pick up Peter Pan Petite Fleur DK in store now and get knitting or crocheting for the small people in your life.