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Welcome to 2018. Another year and a new beginning.

Posted on January 08 2018

 

I cannot believe that it was New Year's Eve this time last week - Christmas and the holidays already seems a distant memory. We had a very quiet family Christmas which was good for recharging the batteries ready for the arrival of 2018 and all it may bring.

I have never been one for New Year resolutions - it often seems like a perverse way of setting oneself up to fail at the beginning of the year. Instead, I see January as a 'new beginning' offering a fresh start. Even though it is cold and still dark, the evenings will start to get longer and within the next couple of weeks the garden will be full of snowdrops and so into spring......

I completed the 'Beloved Berlin' cowl designed by Isabel Kramer but cutting the number of stitches by half was probably too drastic. I managed to resolve the problem by judicious blocking and so it now fits as I like my cowls - basically as a neck warmer which also brings a touch of colour around my face. I made it in our own No. 2 (4ply) lambswool but, if I made it again, I would probably cast on 256-276 stitches (the pattern states 356). Anyway, below is a photo taken today to give you an idea of the result. I really like the way that the 2 patterns interplay to add interest.

II am sure that most of you are familiar with the work of Kate Davies. It is worth following her just to admire the fantastic photography - having a photographer as a husband definitely has its upside! I was looking at her site over the holidays and came across these stunning shots of her boxing day jumper which she has now made into a pattern. I started to knit one the other evening in Rowan's brushed fleece which is a beautiful yarn to knit with and absolutely perfect for beginners as it hides a multitude of sins. I am making my jumper longer than Kate's version and finished the body last night, which is all knitted in the round. I should have this completed by the next newsletter so I will take a shot and post. So far, so good. I think it will prove to be one of those timeless sweaters that you can just slip on. As it is loose fitting it should make an easy project for beginners and I am loving the effect in the brushed fleece.

Some projects do need to more concerned with fit and there is nothing more disheartening than getting near the end to find out your garment looks nothing like the pattern you were attempting to follow! The great thing about knitting is that it really doesn't matter. Those of us who have been knitting for
years have probably spent many, many hours ripping out projects for a variety of reasons. Unlike dressmaking, where cutting it out wrong can be a major disaster, knitters can simply rewind the yarn and start again. I have to admit that if I know something is not right I always undo the work before I go to bed and start afresh the next day as if nothing went wrong. Having said all that, if a correct fit is important than I came across this article 'Knit a sweater that fits you perfectly' that might be of interest.

There are various times in your life when you find out who your friends really are......setting up a new business is one of those times. I would just like to take this opportunity to thank everyone who has helped me over the past months - it really has been appreciated. It can be a lonely place starting something new with no guarantee of success. However, your kind words and support, along with Alice's natural positive and enthusiastic approach, have made this journey into the unknown a lot more fun than it might otherwise have been and so thank you for that.

If you are looking for a new project then take a look at our kits or perhaps you fancy knitting another classic style designed by Debbie Bliss and knitted in one strand of her Fine Donegal Tweed and another strand of fine mohair and silk combined. We have put together the following colours and the mohair/silk combination is either Rowan Kidsilk Haze or Fluff from Mrs Moon depending on the choice of Tweed.

 

As those of you who have read my newsletter over the past couple of months will have come to realise that I am very interested in the positive health benefits of knitting, for both the young and the old. As a result, I have signed up for the online course being run by the Institute of Therapeutic Craft and Creativity to find out more about the scientific research that has been done into this area. I will keep you posted.

If anyone is thinking about holidays, in this rather cold and frosty weather we are currently experiencing, and fancies something 'crafty', then I would thoroughly recommend checking out Les Soeurs Anglaises but be warned, due to the fabulous location, food and tutors, these courses book very quickly!

On a totally different scale, The Knitter's Yarn will be offering some one day courses so if you, or anyone you know, wishes to learn to knit or crochet or would perhaps like advice on professional finishing then take a look at our site for dates and booking. Tuition is provided by Melanie Boocock, one of Rowan's accomplished tutors. The tuition will take place in our studio just outside Harrogate and will run from 10.00am - 4.00pm and all refreshments and materials will be provided.

To end my first newsletter of this year, I would like to wish you all, a very Happy and Healthy 2018.

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