Monday, September 01, 2014

Off the needles & on the needles

First, thank you to all those who favourites and downloaded Lucille this weekend. Your enthusiasm kept Lucille at the top of Ravelry's Hot Right Now list for most of yesterday. Lucille is now £3 which I think is still good value for a well written pattern. I will be running more free pattern weekends. Sign up to my newsletter, follow me on Twitter or Instagram - I'm YarnAddictAnni on both, like my Facebook page or join my Ravelry group to make sure you don't miss the next free pattern weekend.

I finished my blue Cashmere DK design before we left Spain and its blocking now. I loved it while I was knitting but I love it more now I've blocked it.

Looking forward to get some proper pictures soon. Isn't it pretty?

I did a lot of knitting this weekend and finished the Forest Dew shawl I cast on in Spain. I blocked it last night and love it. Its so delicate!

I cast on for a new pair of socks in Sirdar's new sock yarn, Heart & Sole, before we left Spain. I wanted to keep the stripes intact so instead of my normal heel flap and gussett I went for an afterthought heel. I'll talk more about this sock and my heel/toe choice in a separate blog post. I cast on for the second sock on a drive to Bristol yesterday then after about 4 inches ripped it out because I forgot to do the 1x1 rib. 

As I finished a new design this weekend I allowed myself to cast on for a new design. I'm using my own Silky Yak (will be in the shop soon) and Milly Sleek (merino/silk singles) from Juno Fibre Arts. I'd left the Milly Sleek on my ball winder before we left for Spain. Last night I went into my office to wind the Silky Yak and seeing the two colours together made me realise I had to use them together. This will be my easy 'on the go' knitting for the next few weeks.

What's on your needles this week? Tell me in the comments.

Saturday, August 30, 2014


I designed Lucille for the June installment of the Lace Lovers Club and now its available to non-club members and even better, this weekend its free. From Monday it'll be £3.

Lucille takes one skein of sock yarn but make sure your skein has 400m as you will need the full skein. The club sample was knitted in Exotic Sock in an un-dyed grey colourway which is beautiful and elegant. Exotic Sock is in the shop now. Silky Camel 4ply/Sock would also be a good choice 

This shawl is worked from the top down with lots of stocking stitch while you get used to the shaping. Then work a diamond lace pattern and finish off with a delicate crochet chain cast off (demo video here). If you prefer you can do a stretchy cast off.

The Lace Lovers Club is currently on a break but the Little Luxuries Club is similar but runs over 4 months. There are still a few spaces left but I'm closing sign ups on Monday morning (or earlier if its full).

Friday, August 29, 2014

Dawn Chorus

This was a lovely surprise when I got back from Spain yesterday. My 'Dawn Chorus' sweater made the cover of the new Let's Knit

'Dawn Chorus' is knitted in West Yorkshire Spinners Bluefaced Leicester DK in natural colours. This yarn is beautiful to knit with. So soft. Perfect for sweaters that will be worn next to the skin.

'Dawn Chorus' is worked in the round. The body and sleeves are worked separately to the under arms then all the pieces are joined and the yoke is shaped. This type of sweater construction is perfect for a stranded colourwork (fair isle) band. 

I chose a band of birds for a fresh, modern look using traditional stranded colourwork techniques. If you are new to colourwork then this is the perfect sweater to start with as the bird band is small and easy.

The hems and neckline are worked in k1, p1 corrugated rib which is a look I love! I really enjoyed knitting this sweater. Stocking stitch in the round is very, very quick (remember no purling) especially when you're a continental knitter like me. Then when you get to the fair isle band, you can carry one colour in each hand.

Fancy learning continental knitting? I'm teaching my Continental Knitting with Norwegian Purl class at Spin A Yarn on Friday 5th Sept (contact the shop to book) and at Blacker Yarns on Friday 17 Oct (click on the link to book). 

Or if you can't make my local classes then consider taking my online class which starts on 12 Sept. Early booking discount if you book by Monday 1st Sept. 

Monday, August 25, 2014

Birthday Offer!

Its my birthday today. I'm 45! We're still in Spain and will be spending this morning on one of our favourite beaches and tonight we're planning to explore and have a meal out in a nearby town we've never been to before.

To celebrate and as a thank you for your support over the years, I've got a special offer for you. 45% off any pattern in my Ravelry Pattern Shop today and tomorrow (25/26 Aug). No code needed. Just choose your patterns and your discount will be applied automatically. 

I'm also reopening my online shop as our holiday is sadly coming to an end! No parcels will be posted until Fri 29 but from today until Fri 29 Aug there's 20% off any order through my online shop (discount not valid on club memberships). Use code: birthday to claim your 20% discount.

This is the last chance to sign up for the Little Luxuries Club. I'm closing sign ups on 29 Aug.

Happy shopping x 

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Knitting in the sun!

The great thing about social media, especially Facebook and Instagram (I'm YarnAddictAnni on there), is that you can bore people with your holiday snaps while you are still on holiday! I've been busy uploading daily beach pics and sock knitting progress pics to Instagram.

We're really enjoying our holiday and we're into the second half now. We've spent most days on the beach. This morning we headed to a local beach, Cala Capitan, 5 mins drive away. It was packed when we left at 1pm.

One of our favourite beaches are Callblanque which is in a nature reserve near La Manga. Its nearly an hours drive but worth it. When we first discovered it, it was a quiet beach but its becoming more popular and busier each time we visit. Park officials now charge 4E for entry (the beach we were on had life guards so the payment is worth it) and we discovered they only let a set number of cars in. When we left they weren't letting any cars on the road down to the beach. There are several beaches in this park. They have gorgeous soft, golden sand and crystal clear water. The pic below was taken when we arrived at 9.30am, it got busier but nowhere near as packed as the rest of the local beaches are in the middle of the day.

I'm getting a fair bit of knitting done. I'm working on 2 new shawl designs. One is in Lotus Cashmere and is half done.

The other one is Lotus Forest Dew and I'm probably about 1/4 into it. I'm currently working just stocking stitch but will start some lace patterning soon .

On the beach I'm adding a few rounds on my rainbow socks every day. This was Thursday's progress. Yesterday I got within 8 rounds of finishing the leg. I get some funny looks knitting on the beach and one day 2 Spanish ladies stopped to admire my knitting. I only know a few words of Spanish so had no idea what they really thought of my sock but they seemed friendly.

I'm making slow progress on Owen the monkey. Only 2.5 legs done.

Yesterday evening we visited my favourite city here, Murcia. I always buy a new handbag every time we visit and yesterday was no exception. Not had time to take a pic yet. We also always eat ice cream at Sirvent. Very delicious.

This morning we are up early to get to the local market before it gets too hot! Then we'll spend the rest of the morning at the pool and head to a beach late afternoon for the evening.

Don't forget! My 3 for 2 pattern offer is still on till end of August. Use code: Spain to claim your discount in my Pattern Shop. And there are still early booking discounts for September's online classes. Tomorrow is last day for the early booking discount for the Pro Finishing class.

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Making Me Happy!

You've no idea how happy I am to be on Spain right now! I always enjoy holidays! This year has been very busy but the last month has been crazy! The burglary, the attempted burglary, dealing with insurance company (which will continue when we get home unfortunately), all the extra diy stuff Simon had to do to make house more secure.

The journey here didn't go too smoothly either. We dropped Em off on the way to airport. She's on a scout trip in the Czech Rep. The meeting point was just plain stupid. The entrance to a huge, very busy industrial estate just off A30 in North Cornwall. There were lots of cars, parents trying to park in the road, scouts and parents organising luggage etc, a big coach and it was raining. Simon had to move the car and as he was reversing a lady pulled up alongside him to overtake and they crashed. No idea whose fault it was. So now we've got to deal with that when we get home!

Flight was delayed by nearly an hour because of passenger who'd allowed cabin crew to put her trolley case in the hold when she boarded. She needed to wear a compression stocking on her arm and it was in the trolley case. We had pulled back from gate when she told the cabin crew. So we had to wait for a new space to park up, get her suitcase out etc. Plane was full with lots of young kids and babies. It was a late flight and the heavens opened as we started boarding so everyone was wet and grumpy by this point!

We finally arrived at the flat after 1am on Friday morning. So far we've done very little. A few trips to the pool.

A couple of hours on the beach yesterday. The waves were huge. Much rougher than it looks.

Los of knitting on the balcony. I'm making excellent progress on my cashmere shawl.

And I've started making Owen the monkey for my newphew. This is 1/2 leg.

Off to the beach for the evening! 

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Influential Crafters

In September Kirsty Allsopp is hosting the Handmade Fair in London and there's this vote going on over in Twitter now to vote for Britain's 100 most influential crafters.

I've received a few nominations as this morning I was 33 on the list. I dont really like appealing for votes but it would be cool to climb a bit higher. I'm not sure how important these kind of votes are but its a bit of fun!

Just because we need a picture, here's me with Debbie Bliss, Claire Crompton and Joyce of Spin A Yarn.

If you fancy voting the details are here including how to formulate your tweet. My Twitter handle is @YarnAddictAnni

Thank you for your votes x