MSF P/HOP Blog post

As I mentioned yesterday I helped out at the Glasgow School of Yarn on the MSF P/hop stand. It was a great day and I wrote about it for the P/hop blog. You can read my post and an update from Kate the coordinator on their blog. 

P/hop is a brilliant way to raise money for MSF who do amazing work all over the world.

Have a look at some of the gorgeous patterns on Ravelry for some knitting inspiration as the days get colder here in the northern hemisphere. 

For all my lovely southern hemisphere readers, I know your days are growing longer and the temperature is soaring, but there is always space for knitting 🙂

Glasgow School of Yarn

A few weeks ago I went along to the Glasgow School of Yarn. I was volunteering for MSF on the p/hop stand. I had a brillliant time and have written a blog post for the p/hop blog so I will link to that when it goes up.

I set off in the early morning, before the (amazing) bakery had even opened. I was a little gutted as I thought a croissant would be the perfect snack on the train, but alas it was not to be.

I arrived in Glasgow and then spotted this which made me think of South Africa.

I talk more about the day in my blog post for the P/hop blog so I thought I would share some yarny goodness here.

I am on a hat kick at the moment, I think it might be the chilly Scottish air and the fact I have very short hair. This combo means, naturally, that I need to knit more hats, which in turn means I need to buy more hat knitting yarn. Okay, technically that is not true – I could knit from stash but then that would not have been as fun as buying more yarn at GSOY.

I was very restrained though. I bought a present for a very special friend (it is secret so no pictures) and some yarn from Skein Queen.

IMG_4796

I had initially thought that I would use it to knit a Snawheid by Kate Davies but this morning I have spotted Fjordland by Dianna Walla from the new Pom Pom Magazine, so now I am torn. I shall have to think about it. 

I was also given a gorgeous skein of yarn by Natalie from The Yarn Yard as a thank you for volunteering on the P/Hop stand. It was her genius idea to start P/Hop and wow! what a brilliant idea it was.

This skein of squishy merino is perfect for me at the moment. I have developed an obsession with purple lately and I need a purple hat. The timing could not have been better. I am going to use this yarn for the Wooly Wormhead Mystery KAL that starts this week. 

IMG_4797

I have also treated myself to some new needles. Hiya Hiya sharps with a short cable perfect for knitting hats. I shall be reporting back on these needles soon, my love affair with Knit Pro has ended. I am tired of broken cables, needles and loose joins (sob) – the romance was good while it lasted but it is time to move on.

That’s it from me for now. More exciting news to come soon. Patterns and workshops as well as a review and some finished knitting.

What have you been up to?

Walking

Its all action round here … I am busy preparing notes and samples for my upcoming workshop on the glorious heel flap. I have also been gallivanting and had a trip to Glasgow on Saturday. More news to follow soon, and some lovely yarn pictures too.

In the mean time I thought I would share some pictures with you. Today the little one and I went for a nice walk. We are not far from Holyrood park and it is a magical place.

Here are some pictures ….

20131022-190143.jpg

20131022-190159.jpg

20131022-190208.jpg

20131022-190223.jpg

20131022-190230.jpg

Mona Socks – Cookie A KAL

I fell behind with this challenge a while back, all the moving and a small baby took its toll on my knitting time. I love Cookie A patterns though and once we are settled I will definitely be casting on another pair.

A long overdue post follows but I decided I wanted to share this project with you, even if I finished it months ago.

This was the fourth pair of socks I knitted for the KAL. It was a welcome break from the copious note taking and stitch marker style of knitting required for the Thelonious socks. The vibrant purple yarn also helped me to wizz through these, although they did take longer than I had hoped and I missed yet another deadline.

Mona is from the first section of the book, Columns, and features a repeating pattern that flows around the leg and across the top of the foot. It is fairly simple to knit and memorise, but definitely interesting enough to keep the mind chugging along as you go.

My finished Mona socks

As before I have selected some gorgeous examples of what other knitters created from the Mona pattern. The richness of the yarn chosen for these projects really works with the pattern.

This pair was created by Scoobagirl

5699774800_e9173cfafa_z_scoobagirl

Copyright: Scoobagirl

I love this shade of blue. This gorgeous pair was created by Lilybalm

5660736375_f4ffd0a6f5_z_lilybalm

Copyright: Lilybalm

A bright vibrant pair by Engelsgnom

Copyright: Engelsgnom

Copyright: Engelsgnom

The richness of this colour works perfectly with this pattern, I love this pair by Saz.

Copyright: Saz

Copyright: Saz

Finally a knitter who has made a pair of socks in the beautiful shade of blue and then cleverly used the stitch pattern from the Mona socks to create some fingerless mitts. I love the clever adaptation by Knitterlisa

Fingerless mitts …

Copyright: knitterlisa

Copyright: knitterlisa

Socks …

Copyright: knitterlisa

Copyright: knitterlisa

I think next I am going to tackle the BFF socks, with their squishy cables I think they will be perfect for winter.

Have you knitted any of the Cookie A patterns?

A very big day – my first pattern release!

Good morning!

Things have been quiet on the knitting front recently, or so it has seemed. The radio silence has not been entirely true though. While I may not have been knitting up a storm using other people’s designs I have been throwing myself head first into the world of knitwear design. Today …. I am releasing my first pattern. It is simple, but super cute and very functional.

Without an further ado I present to you …. Toasty Talus.

Copyright: Clare Devine. All rights reserved

Copyright: Clare Devine. All rights reserved

A fun and bold leg warmer for the little ones in your life. The pattern comes in two styles, slim and slouchy, and three sizes, newborn, 3-6m and 6-12m. It is knitted using less than 50g of aran weight yarn. The pattern has been tech edited and test knitted.

I am running a promotion until the 14th of November that gives you 50% discount meaning you get the pattern for both styles for just £1!

To buy this pattern pop along to my Ravelry store and use the code TOASTY to get your discount, or simply click the button below.

In the Knitting Basket

I haven’t been knitting as much as I would like recently. There is a combination of things that have delayed progress on the WIPs. This week I finished something and I am desperate to share it with you … but … I am learning that drying chunky weight wool inside a cold Edinburgh flat with no outside space is, lets say, challenging. The cardigan has been drying for three days and it is still far from dry. I will fill you in on the details once I can put it on and snap some pictures.

That said I have some other things on the needles that I can share with you. All aimed at keeping me warm in the coming winter.

Head

I am knitting the Castiel hat by Woolly Wormhead. This pattern is from the Hatopia book and it is just gorgeous. I am using Sutherland DK from Hartlam in a beautiful sparkly blue shade. I knitted a Rikke hat from this yarn a few months back and it is perfect hat yarn.

IMG_4642

Shoulders

A few days ago I swatched for a jumper I have had in my sights for a while now. Athens by Cecily Glowik MacDonald is a stunning jumper knitted from cuff to cuff. I am making this with Debbie Bliss Cashmerino Aran that was once a Abalone cardigan but is now destined for bigger and better things. I still need to decide on needle size etc. Watch this space for more details as the jumper unfolds.

IMG_4640

Knees (okay well its actually fingers)

Cranford Mitts by Jane Lithgow. This is a P/Hop pattern for MSF and I really need to get my knit on. I am helping out at the P/hop stand at the Glasgow School of Yarn next weekend and hope to have at least one mitt finished by then. If you are around pop along and say hi. I am knitting these beauties from Old Maiden Aunt Alpaca Merino, it soft and squishy and a beautiful shade of blue. 

IMG_2847_medium2

Toes

I have been feverishly working away at two (sort of) secret and super exciting projects. Watch this space for more details in the coming weeks. There will be patterns and classes, all aimed at keeping your tootsies warm.

What are you working on?

Edinburgh adventures

On Saturday I had a day exploring Edinburgh and I thought I would share some of my Instagram pictures here.

The morning started with a visit to the National Gallery. It was truly wonderful to slowly stroll around the gallery and look at such beautiful artwork. I found myself spending a fair amount of time captivated by this magical painting of Niagra Falls by Frederic Edwin Church.

676px-Frederic_Edwin_Church_-_Niagara_Falls,_from_the_American_Side_-_Google_Art_Project

Source: Wikipedia. No longer under copyright restrictions

. I was blown away by the talent displayed in this artwork. Some really fabulous pieces of artwork were on show, I would highly recommend a trip the the gallery to see this, the exhibition closes on the 21st of October.

Tesco Bank Art Competition for Schools

Tesco Bank Art Competition for Schools

After the gallery I had a stroll over to the Farmers Market on the way I spotted this brilliant piece of public artwork. It is a relief of Edinburgh specially designed so those with limited or no sight can experience the grandeur of the city. I thought it was pretty nifty.

IMG_4568

I also walked past the Camera Obscura. I must arrange to visit here soon.

IMG_4569

At the farmers market I discovered the most amazing chocolate by The Chocolate Tree. I bought the bramble and cardamon bar and dutifully devoured it on Saturday night. I will definitely be going back next week for my chocolate fix.

IMG_4560

After that I popped along to the library to do some work and browse the books. It really is brilliant to have a good local library again. I missed that when I lived in Johannesburg. I took out this book as it inspired me to dig out the yarn I bought for the Puffin Sweater by Kate Davies. I plan to swatch very soon, more details in the next knitting update.

IMG_4571

After working I set off in search of some lunch and stumbled across a brilliant event promoting sustainable food for all. The event was aimed at promoting local community initiatives as part of a national programme. There was lots of interesting information and some free (and incredibly tasty lunch). I got a few leaflets about some community events and programmes I could be part of. I am gradually finding my way in this city. I also filled my belly with the most amazing Beetroot Soup, Vegan Curry and Veggie Soup. I left with some soup veg which I turned into a beef and veg soup for dinner last night. A pretty decent and worthwhile find.

I also found out about this cafe that I hope to pop along to in the next week or so. Edinburgh is full of great social initiatives and community groups.

IMG_4567

After all that I headed home for some knitting and general relaxing.

IMG_4562

I really am falling in love with this city, it has so much to offer. I am very happy we moved here.

My LYS …

Good morning from a cloudy Edinburgh. Things are settling down here so I thought I would tell you a little bit more about my ‘hood!

I live fairly near the city, there is a general buzz of life all around us and there is also an award winning bakery (I can vouch for their bread, croissants and .. ahem … cakes) at the top of my street.

The most important thing though is the local yarn shop!

IMG_4497

Ginger Twisted Studio is owned by Jess who is a fab friendly lady who has made me feel very welcome in the local neighbourhood. I may have popped into the LYS a fair few times already (I usually have to stop on my way to or from the supermarket).

The shop is small but perfectly formed and has a gorgeous selection of yarns. Jess has her own hand dyed yarn that comes is a beautiful selection of colours and a wide range of bases. Of course I need to get some sock yarn but I also have my eye on the bulky alpaca, it is so soft and squishy and is just calling out to be made into a warm winter cowl or some cosy mitts. Here are just a few pictures I snapped the other day on one of my little visits. You can just see the squishy alpaca in the background.

IMG_4489

In additional to some muted tones there is a magical selection of bright and bold colours.

IMG_4490

Jess also stocks a fabulous selection of other yarns such as New Lanark, Cascade, West Yorkshire Spinners and she sells King Cole Merino wound from large cones into the exact amount you need. I see some fun stripes for the little one in my knitting future, this Merino is perfect for a cute cardigan.

Some more pictures in case you need a bit of yarn love this Monday.

A brilliant selection of yarn and a friendly warm and welcoming atmosphere, what more could you ask for from a LYS.

Jess runs a knit night at the local pub on a Monday night and I escaped baby duty last week and joined them. What a fab bunch!

She also runs workshops, and at the end of the month I will be teaching a special heel workshop. More details will be on her website soon.

I have been on some other yarn adventures recently and will be updating you with some more blog posts later in the week.

Happy Knitting!

x