Tuesday, 13 December 2016


The Ashburn shawl, designed by prolific knitwear designer Melanie Berg who describes it as

'… an eye-catching triangle shawl with asymmetrical flair.  Garter and slipped stitch patterns create a subtle medley of textures, and an endless combination of color choices lets you be as demure or as bold as you like'

I used a bright blue from Easy Knits (he calls it Tardis blue) and a skein of Madeline Tosh Spectrum (a blue/purple/green lightly variegated lace weight that I held double).  It’s mostly garter stitch, with some slipped stitches thrown in for texture, and is quite easy to knit in front of the TV or while chatting.  A side note, the blue was absolutely colour fast – I was very impressed given the intensity of the colour.

The combination of decreases and increases at each end gives it the shape of an extended, asymmetrical triangle.  Ultimately though, I thought the triangle was too shallow, so I cut some paper in the same shape and played around with folding it into a cowl. 

Voila, I wrapped the cast on corner around and stitched it down and I ended up with a cowl at a good length to double-wrap without risk of strangulation.  I particularly like that more of the slipped stitches are visible, as it sits quite flat across my chest, like a bandana. 

If I were to knit it, or a shawl of a similar shape, again, I would slow down the decreases – perhaps I would only decrease half as often as required. 

Sunday, 4 December 2016


The Yarnporium came to town at the start of November, and what a small but glorious show it was!  Over 2 rooms of the beautiful Kings College (the Strand campus), as well as classrooms, a lovely array of yarn, notions and related accoutrement was laid out to tempt yarn lovers.  Organised by Yarn in the City (who also organise the Great London Yarn Crawl), the event ran over the course of the weekend, and included multiple classes as well as the marketplace – and I enjoyed the whole weekend!  From my Saturday morning shopping with my friend Alison, helping on a booth, taking a class and then helping with the pack up, I had a full on yarn weekend.

I took Renee Callahan’s ‘Brioche Next Steps’ class – I already knew how to do brioche stitches, but really struggled with the increases and decreases (don’t look too closely at the crown of the brioche hat I recently made for Geoff).  Renee’s class was enjoyable and well-paced – we covered a good amount of material, and the 3 hour session was the perfect length. 

Saturday afternoon I helped my friend Woollenflower (Jules) on her booth – it was such a nice experience to talk to people interested in her yarns and pouches (I just love my tartan pouch). 

Shopping wise, I bought some Smoke at Easy Knits (a custom blend for them from John Arbon), and some Frisky Sock from Debonnaire (in the loveliest midnight blue/black).  I picked up a Pom Pom Quarterly, some lovely Jul closures and a Christmassy project bag.

It was a great opportunity to meet some fun knitters – it’s always lovely to see London dyers like The Wool Kitchen and Travel Knitter, as well as designers like Helen Stewart and Stephen West!  And also a lovely opportunity to admire the knitwear – the building blocks shawl looked amazing in almost every colour combination, and there were some really amazing cardigans as well.  All in all, it was a great weekend, full of yarn and friends!