Yarn Pairings for Pom Pom 29

A summer issue of Pom Pom is always a joy. Reminding us that just because the weather is warming up, doesn’t mean we shouldn’t be reaching for our needles and hooks. Nine designs fill this issue, inspired by ceramic tiles, terracotta, and sand. Think warmth; earthy and organic, also splashes of colour and pattern repeats. Some light and airy summer tops and essential wardrobe staples for the warmer months. There is even a gorgeous crochet bag! Perfect for trips to the beach.

pom-pom-issue-29-cover-kwaThis is a bumper issue, with more pages, more photographs and larger typeface. Featuring designs by Amy Christoffers, Sari Nordlund, Soraya Garciá, Isa Cateoillán, Clare Lakewood, Josée Paquine, Marjorie Martin, Rachael Reese and Stephanie Earp. An interview with Emi Ito, as well as other craft projects, project bag tutorial by artist Arrounna Khounnoraj of Bookhou. As well as a recipe from Rebecca Lawrence’s for Maple Bourbon Fudge. Phew!

pom-pom-issue-29-01-kwa

Argil by Clare Lakewood – Argil screams summer! Light airy and quite simply stunning. A perfect layer over a summer top, or worn just on its own for a trip the the seaside. A clever use of stripes add a dynamic edge and the tied off front an informal touch.  Worked flat beginning at the back, divided at the neck and rejoined at the front. These stop half way down the body. You then work the front in halves working towards the middle, seamed with a 3 needled cast off. Knit in a 4ply, in a wool silk blend, combined with a linen. I love the idea of these two textures. For the linen I would go for Växbo Lingarn and for the silk blend what about Kettle Yarn Beyul. Of course if you wanted to stick completely with plant fibres you could substitute the Beyul for Nuturing Fibres Eco-Lush. The blend of cotton and bamboo would echo the matte and glossy texture of the wool and silk.

pom-pom-issue-29-02-kwa

Earthen by Amy Christoffers – I’m getting Art Deco vibes from this cardigan. A simple but very effective all over fan pattern repeat, giving texture and structure. Lets face it the summer is not always sunny and a welcome cardigan is definitely one to have. I particularly like the way the fan pattern falls into the rib. The body is worked in one piece and the sleeves worked separately and later seamed. Worked in a cosy DK merino I would try Fyberspates Vivacious DK, is anyone else thinking the Blush colour-way for this?

pom-pom-issue-29-03-kwa

Faience by Soraya García – I really like the construction of this piece. It’s so simple but so effective. It’s worked completely flat. Starting at the back, you then divide for the neck and work the two fronts separately. You pick up for a rib around the neck and down the front, then seamlessly join the fronts with a 3 needle bind off. You pick up stitches either side and echo the ribbing, you then join the back and front with a crochet slip stitch up to the arm holes. Genius! A simple all over pattern repeat adds symmetry and style. Why not push the boat out with this one and knit it in From the Mountain Cashmere, you will never want to take it off.

pom-pom-issue-29-04-kwa

Minton by Isa Catepillán – You may remember Isa for being the crochet superstar from the last issue of Pompom, well she is back and worked her crochet magic once again. A stunner of a bag made up of 12 identical square motifs. A classy way of toting around your swimwear or for the elegant grocery shop. A good sturdy fibre is needed for this project so choose Växbo Lingarn .

pom-pom-issue-29-05-kwa

Ogee by Sari Nordlund – This sleeveless top is a texture lovers dream. Worked in one piece with an allover pattern. Travelling twisted stitches and scallop lace go together to make this simple shaped garment, a work of art. Cleverly reversible, with either a higher neckline worn at the back or front. Perfect for throwing on in a hurry. Knit in a cotton blend I would be tempted to knit this in Nuturing Fibres Eco-Lush or Eco-Fusion.

pom-pom-issue-29-06-kwa

Rievaulx by Josée Paquin – A lovely checkerboard of intarsia in a simply shaped tee. Worked completely flat, allowing you to get absorbed by the pattern. Sleeves are picked up around the arm hole and also worked flat with short row shaping. Finally the side seams are joined and ta-da! I would definitely go for Socks Yeah 4ply for this, with such a range of colours that work wonderfully together, you will be spoilt for choice.

pom-pom-issue-29-07-kwa

Rookwood by Rachael Reese – You may be knitting for summer but you still need shawls right?! A welcome layer to drape around the shoulders to shield from the sun, or give a little warmth if it gets cool. Simple panels of garter stitch are broken up with seafoam lace. A delightful lace stitch that plays with light in such a charming way. A nice sized triangular shape will carry you through to autumn as well. Knit in a no nylon sock yarn, well I would have to recommend Hey Mamma Wolf Sockyarn #04.

pom-pom-issue-29-08-kwa

Sanctuary by Stephanie Earp – The pattern repeat on this top is gorgeous and really runs with the theme. Little tile repeats radiate from the yoke of this top down worked in the round tee. The simple wide neck will make it a cool edition to your wardrobe but also stylish. Knit in a 4ply cotton blend, tey again either Nuturing Fibres Eco-Lush or Eco-Fusion.

pom-pom-issue-29-09-kwa

Tesserae by Marjorie Martin – A one piece circular yoked top, knitted in the from the top down. Using a mosaic pattern to great effect. Alternating 2 colours every other row, with a combination of slipped stitches. An attractive creature that finishes it off are the Latvian braids. I love the vibrant pattern of this one, a great opportunity to go wild with colour. Choose some nice contrasting colours and make the pattern vibrate. Knit in a wool silk blend Kettle Yarn Beyul might work well here, giving you a truly luxurious feel.

I really like this issue, I think it is a very strong theme to work with and there are some great summer wardrobe staples. Dream of the sun and get knitting!

New Yarn: G-uld Naturally Dyed Alpaca

We are beyond excited to be the first stockist of G-uld! G-uld is an independent yarn dyer in Denmark who dye exclusively with natural dyes. These stunning range of colours are concocted with pure artistry. Their ethos is based on good craftsmanship, with understanding and respect for the material, quality and nature. Their production and materials are rooted in old traditions and with a great desire for the past to meet the present.

0e17fee6547f496c762330555afabed74cfee078

G-uld was founded in 2013 by Anne Støvlbæk Kjær and Louise Schelde Jensen and the team now consists of Anne Støvlbæk Kjær, Louise Schelde Jensen and Daniel Ejler Christensen.

“First and foremost, we want to deliver delicious plant-colored yarn, beautifully designed and inspirational. Knitting joy, presence and good experiences that come from working with good craftsmanship and good materials. And an insight into historical dyeing of textiles and yarn.”

Their interest lies in bringing us back to hand skills. Where mass production and technology has made us lose touch. In the past the hand skills of the individual was often a necessity and way of life. These crafts often involved nature and the craftspeople and nature were at one. There was a knowledge in the year’s course, materials, and accessibility. But these crafts still live on and in a busy world it is important to remember them.

“For us, the good qualities of the materials and exciting history ensure that with the work of the hand they can create unique things, and perhaps through the process, achieve mental health. We believe that in the 21st century we need unique elements – and good craftsmanship that has taken time to make, is definitely worth waiting for”

53759602_403052907144859_1371816156406274843_n

Now for the yarn itself! A super soft, 100% Alpaca in a collection of 20 amazing naturally dyed shades and 2 undyed. G-uld Alpaca is a 4Ply weight yarn with a lovely twist, making sure you get a superb stitch definition. A luxurious yarn perfect for your new favourite jumper, cardigan, hat or shawl, the possibilities are endless. Each colour is labelled with the natural dye material used to develop that specific colour. Anything from Madder Root to Walnut and many in between.

guld-alpaca-kwa01

A new yarn needs new inspiration so here is a selection of great projects to get you started. In store we have, the Rambling Rose Jacket, Westwind Cowl and Sunflower Beanie.

709ee4f7fc8f29ecf9c79aa3c788b9a9037fbccd

Here is the Rambling Rose Jacket by Susie Haumann. A simple open jacket edged with a pretty cable detail. Seen here in strong deep purpley-red from the cochineal dyed KWA01. The alpaca would make this a wonderfully soft top with great drape, the perfect warming layer.

Cowl.1

The Westwind Cowl by Louise Schelde Jensen will highlight the texture of this yarn and give you great definition. A simple mesh pattern is repeated with garter ridges in between. Give yourself over to the colourful joys of this yarn and knit this pleasing warm cowl.

42ad48243f08654c3a602086dacfdb597cae4183

The Sunflower Beanie by Marie Mønster lets you play with two colours. A perfect two skein project and a great way to experiment with this yarn. It’s clever design creates a spiral of stitches reminiscent of the seeds lined up in the centre of a sunflower. Seen here in the Madder Root dyed KWA08 and the Undyed Grey.

You have to see this yarn to believe it, the amazing skill of the dyers and the ability to produce such an amazing range of colours with just natural materials is mind blowing. Whats more it’s on the most gorgeous base you could imagine.

Yarn Pairings for Interpretations Vol. 6

The popular design duo of Veera Välimäki and Joji Locatelli have come together again for another super edition of Interpretations, now in it’s 6th volume! The Interpretations series is the work of two friends, one from Finland and the other from Argentina. Each volume is based around 6 words, these 6 words give the inspiration for 12 designs. The words inspiring this issue are: Courage, Glee, Silence, Rapture, Connection and Scale. Each designer producing a design inspired by each word. This issue has a textural monochrome feel, with large shawls that have extensive pattern repeats and cosy tops with a relaxed and comfy fit. Working with the same starting point, the identity of each designer can really shine through, bringing a unique twist and personality to each piece.

Interpretations-Vol-6-coverThere is something available from head to toe in this issue, so below I have taken a look at the designs and put together some yarn pairings.

Courage:

Interpretations-Vol-6-05The Moonquake Cowl by Veera Välimäki is a graphic brioche cowl. Who doesn’t love brioche? Giving you dynamic vertical stripes and making such a wonderful squishy fabric, perfect for accessories like this. Mixing it up, the brioche rib flips and in doing so the dominant colour flips. Perfect for playing with those high contrast yarns. This pattern calls for a Hedgehog Fibres, try in contrasting tones of Hedgehog Fibres Skinny Singles for a looser gauge knit.

Interpretations-Vol-6-07The Resolute Wrap by Joji Locatelli is a massive all over lace, arrow shaped shawl. Chevrons of a bold graphic lace repeat are broken repeatedly by a few rows of garter stitch. This gives structure and direction to the shape, while also anchoring the eye and avoiding an over saturation of pattern. This would look beautiful in the slightly variegated tones of Fyberspates Vivacious 4ply.

Glee:

Interpretations-Vol-6-11

The Wintergate Beanie by Veera Välimäki is a compelling all over cabled design. Featuring large and small cables that intertwine. It is like a pocket sized cabled sweater with interesting shaping and intriguing pattern. Giving you the fun of a cabled project but without the marathon of a large garment. Knit in a sport weight, try Blue Sky Fibres Alpaca Sport, for a hug your head deserves.

Interpretations-Vol-6-04The Moonlight Socks by Joji Locatelli makes use of a strong graphic pattern repeat along the front. Complex without being too fussy, while also being interesting to knit. Knit in five different shades to create a faded design, with a great colour palette to choose from try picking a gradient from the selection of Coopknits Socks Yeah!

Silence:

Interpretations-Vol-6-03

The Hidden Sweater by Veera Välimäki is a delight in monochrome textural work. The yoke doesn’t employ two colours for effect, but is drained of colour. Leaving the essence of a yoke behind. That doesn’t mean it’s boring, but instead is striking. The texture of the stitches are allowed to bring their own colour. Toped off by it’s relaxed fit and rolled neck, it is also comfy. Try the luscious softness of The Fibre Co. Cumbria.

Interpretations-Vol-6-10

The Understated Sweater by Joji Locatelli is a classic example of Joji’s ability to make effortless and wearable pieces. The simple boxy low-cut top is the perfect layer over a shirt. It’s smart shape is highlighted by a modest rib detail along the shoulders. Try this in Fyberspates Vivacious DK.

Rapture:

Interpretations-Vol-6-09

The Smoke and Amber Wrap by Veera Välimäki has the perfect name. Ribbons of cable fill this shawl, but they also change direction along their length. This creates a texture that beguiles the eye, taking it on a journey and losing it, like being lost in fog or not quite making out something through a haze of smoke. I would be tempted to knit this in Kettle Yarn Islington DK, it’s sheen would catch the light and highlight the cables beautifully.

Interpretations-Vol-6-06

The Ravishing Vest by Joji Locatelli is a graceful long cardigan. It’s elegant shaping would make the perfect layer over summer dresses, when the temperature cools in the evening. The sophisticated shaping is given form by textural stitches that change style at the waist, playing with the silhouette of the body. Knit in a sport weight merino/silk blend try it in Scrumptious 4ply/Sport.

Connection:

Interpretations-Vol-6-12

The Frozen Fields Shawl by Veera Välimäki, like is namesake, has an air of the crisp frost that settles on the ground in the morning. Garter stitch ridges have a great effect here, becoming almost structural against the lace panel repeat. The lace itself separates, giving character and interest to the overall design. Knit in a subtle gradients of Ninapetrina Tynn Rosy Merino, a slightly heavier gauge but the colours are oh so perfect.

Interpretations-Vol-6-01

The Community Tunic by Joji Locatelli features a bold yoke with strong graphic shapes, moving away from the traditions of a complicated pattern repeat. Simple yet bold the yoke gives this top a strong modern feel, without being austere. Long in the body it would make the perfect layer over leggings, what’s even better is it has pockets. Stylish yet practical. Try Hey Mama Wolf’s Schafwolle #03 for a sturdy practical top.

Scale:

Interpretations-Vol-6-08

The Saltwater Coat by Veera Välimäki is a practical cardigan, making the perfect layer. Short oversized sleeves make this garment roomy while also stopping it being cumbersome. Knit in reversed stocking stitch, it makes use of the textural purl side and it also has a pair of good sized pockets. Knit the in this in the cosy Hillesvåg Blåne.

Interpretations-Vol-6-02The Evolve Shawl by Joji Locatelli is a texture lovers dream, while also having the joy of fading yarns in a harmonious way. A bold elongated triangle is made graphic by the triangle shaped stitch repeat, bringing subtle angles along its length. Between colours is an even bolder garter ridge striping which breaks the pattern repeats in a striking way. Knit like this in three distinct speckled monochrome colours, the end result is vivid and elegant. This design calls for the moody shades of Black Elephant Merino Singles.

This issue has a gentle feel, strong designs, but with a sensitivity. Colours are muted and understated and the pieces are wearable and practical. A lovely issue that I hope will inspire many creations.

Yarn Pairings for Pom Pom Quarterly Issue 28 – Spring 2019

It’s really starting to feel like spring might not be that far away, here in London. The sun is shining and it feels unusually mild. What better way to celebrate this feeling, than delving into the latest spring issue of Pom Pom. Aptly themed for this time of year, this issue is ‘The Botanical Issue’. Designers were given the theme of flora, looking to nature and plant forms for their inspiration.

pompom28-cover

So we have nine knitting and crochet patterns, plus articles and recipes. All exploring the botanical theme. I’ve put together some yarn pairings from the shelves of Knit With Attitude, so lets take a look at these natural wonders!

Sweetfern-by-Liza-Laird-and-Kate-Madden-Pom-Pom-Quarterly-Issue-28

Sweetfern by Liza Laird and Kate Madden is a cute slouchy brioche hat. Taking the characteristic use of two colours that brioche offers, while also bringing in stitch shaping for that natural leafy vibe. A trailing vine motif runs from the rib to the crown creating a bold and graphic design. Choose two contrasting colours of Hedgehog Fibres Skinny Singles for maximum effect.

Davallia-by-Isa-Catepillan-Pom-Pom-Quarterly-Issue-28Davallia by Isa Catepillán is an interesting cover up shawl-cum-jacket. This crocheted piece is full of drama. A large tasseled fringe hangs from an elegant lacey body. It reminds me of the dappled light through the trees. It would make a great layer for spring days and cool summer nights. Choose a light yarn with a plant fibre content like the linen blend of Stolen Stitches Nua.

Adiantum-by-Kelly-Ordemann-Pom-Pom-Quarterly-28Vines trace the shape of the yoke in Adiantum by Kelly Ordemann. A playful use of pattern, the plant motif radiates from the neck giving the appearance of a necklace of ferns. With clever shaping, it is also flattering to wear. A plant themed top like this calls to be knit in a plant dyed fibre. Choose Hey Mama Wolf’s Sockyarn #04 in its dreamy natural shades.

Water-Clover-by-Isa-Catepillan-Pom-Pom-Quarterly-Issue-28

Another crochet offering is Water Clover by Isa Catepillán. A stunningly elegant crochet top with lacey star details. A simple shape made all the better by the pattern repeat. Crocheted in a cotton, linen blend try The Fibre Co Luma which has a soft light papery feel which is perfect for wearing next to your skin. This top will definitely see you into the summer and beyond.

Aurea-by-Stella-Egidi-Pom-Pom-Quarterly-Issue-28This dramatic shawl is the Aurea by Stella Egidi. You cannot get a design that is more close to nature. Leaf and reed motifs sit side by side to create a pattern repeat that is reminiscent of a forest canopy or leafy woodland floor. Knit in a merino single try Hedgehog Fibres Skinny Singles or a bunch of Black Elephant Minis.

Vivarium-by-Amber-Platzer-Corcoran-Pom-Pom-Quarterly-Issue-28Vivarium by Amber Platzer Corcoran is a fun colour work jumper, with a selection of bold graphic plant motifs. Vivarium takes its name from terrarium structures used for holding plants and means ‘place of life’. This design allows a fun juxtaposition of colour through the botanical elements and with a relaxed drop shoulder fit, it will be the perfect cosy spring evening layer. Colour work projects scream out for Hillesvåg Tinde in a great range of colours you will find the perfect greens!

Ginkgophyte-by-Emily-Greene-Pom-Pom-Quarterly-Issue-28

Ginkgophyte by Emily Greene is worked flat and seamed, with sleeves worked in the round. With a bold central detail that is repeated on the back and accentuates the simple form. Short sleeves make this the perfect spring garment, for when the days get longer and the promise of summer is just around the corner. Choose the cool and super soft Kettle Yarn Beyul for this, a lovely light yarn perfect for wearing next to your skin.

Woodwardia-by-Lydia-Gluck-Pom-Pom-Quarterly-Issue-28Woodwardia by Lydia Gluck is a top down raglan jumper with a cosy rolled neck and with a lovely vine detail running along the raglan seams. We all know spring weather can be a little unpredictable so this cosy jumper will become a wardrobe staple. Try this in the soft Vivacious DK.

Filix-by-Judith-Brand-Pom-Pom-Quarterly-Issue-28Filix by Judith Brand are stylish crocheted fingerless gloves. A graphic abstracted fern chevron motif runs along the back of the hand. These fingerless gloves are the perfect size for keeping out the evening chill by extending over the wrist. This pattern calls for a silk, merino blend so try Scrumptious 4ply.

I hope these suggestions get you excited and ready to spring into spring. This is a very calm and gentle edition of Pom Pom with subtle details carrying the theme. A collection of interesting but also wearable pieces.

 

Yarn Pairings for Laine Magazine Issue 7

One of our favourites here at Knit With Attitude is Laine. With its sumptuous photography and simply gorgeous designs, it’s not only a book of patterns, but something you can pick up for inspiration again and again. With a host of great designers work between its covers, it will have you itching to start that new project. So what’s a new project without the yarn! In this yarn pairings post I have but together some yarn suggestions from the shelves here at Knit With Attitude. So read on and admire the patterns and start dreaming!

laine-issue-7-cover

Also for all of you placing your pre-orders before Laine 7‘s release on the 15th February you will get it for the old price of £20 on the 15th it will go up to £22.

laine01

First up we have Apricite by Kiyomi Burgin. A gorgeously warm looking jumper, which is taking on the massive trend of holding a single strand of mohair lace with another yarn. Giving you the tender halo of a mohair with the strength and body of a base yarn. This jumper is worked flat in pieces from the bottom up. A relaxed drop shoulder shape, with a simple lace detail that runs along the front and back and is carried along the sleeves. Understated, but with a few details to keep the knitter interested. A fairly simple knitting project that would please anyone who is daunted by seamless construction. This pattern would look great in a combination of the heathered tones of the Fibre Co. Lore and the lovely floaty Hedgehog Fibres Kid Silk Lace. Plus you get the fun of combining two interesting fibres.

laine02

Next up is Bohus by Carol Feller. This jumper is inspired by Bohus Knitting, a Swedish knitting cooperative active between 1939 and 1969. Designed to be one of those comfy slouchy jumpers you have to be forced out of on cold days. The coloured yoke features an interesting purl detail between colour transitions to create a mirage effect. This pattern calls for John Arbon’s Devonia DK, a rich Devon breed blend, which we have in every colour.

laine03

When you think brioche there are two names that spring to mind, thats why Brioche Buddies by Nancy Marchant and Stephen West is so special. A collaboration by brioche royalty, this pattern features an entertaining mix of zig zagging brioche and garter stitch panels. With two size options, it will make the perfect wintery or spring layer. I would choose two contrasting tones of Vivacious 4ply and Hedgehog Fibre Twist Sock, the slight variegation in this yarn mixed with a contrast speckle would make this pattern come alive.

laine04

Calla by Natasja Hornby is a stunning large triangle shawl. Sequences of broken rib alternate with charted lace and cable sections, this is a project for those who like to get their teeth sunk into heavily structured stitches. For a softness you’re neck deserves choose John Arbon’s Knit by Numbers. One of the softest merinos I have felt, although you may take you some time in choosing from all those colours!

laine05Davvi by Aleks Byrd takes its name from Northern Sámi language and means ‘north’. Inspired by the shapes seen in traditional Sámi clothing and woven belts. The chevron shapes echoing the shapes of trees in the forest and the peaks of mountains. Knit in three contrasting colours and featuring an intriguing combination of twisted stitches and colourwork to create a quilted effect. A perfect go to colour work yarn with great grip and definition is Hillesvåg Sølje with a great selection of colours to choose the right combo.

laine06

I can see Eryza by Meiju K-P becoming that go to cardigan you can throw over anything. A warm hug perfect for layering up in a chilly office, or for going on a frosty country walk. This one also takes on the great joys of double stranding, to create a soft fuzzy cloud like texture. Try a solid Socks Yeah DK paired with the fluffy Fyberspates Cumulus in a complimentary or even contrasting colour.

laine07

Kouhei by Whitney Hayward is a wide embracing cardigan. Simple but classic. An easy shape to knit and wear. Its worked from the bottom up, flat, until the underarm, where the fronts and back are separated and worked flat until the shoulder. Knit this one in a warm Hillesvåg Blåne.

laine08

Laemmin by Renate Kamm, a simple waistcoat/vest that has an overall pleasing checkerboard texture and nice small cable details on the back. A generous neckline and clean shape, go together to make for understated elegance. Worked flat and trimmed with a neat i-cord edge, it would make a great layer under a jacket or over a shirt. Knit this one in the new Kate Davies Àrd-Thìr which would give great stitch definition.

laine09

What a stunning colour work garment this is. Marit by Kristin Drysdale features an all over fair isle pattern in three colours. This cardigan lets you have a go at one of knittings scariest techniques, steeking! The centre opening and armholes all use steeking, which I might add is great fun and less scary than you imagine. I good toothy yarn that grips well is good for this project, get stuck into the wide colour palette of Hillesvåg Sølje.

laine10

I love the simple boxy shape of Nerea by Lærke (Fiber Tales). It also has an interesting construction. Knit sideways, in two halves, beginning from the sleeve cuff moving on to the body and seamed down the front using Russian grafting. A technique that uses a crochet hook, which I think makes for a pleasing detail down the front. Effortlessly minimal and topped off with a feathery calliper cable along the sleeves. I would knit this in John Arbon’s Devonia DK.

laine11Who would say no to a luscious over sized scarf. Especially one so simple but so effective. Rambla by Alejandra Pont, knit in bands of alternating knits and purls makes it reversible and a great beginner project. When I think luscious, I always think of Fyberspates Scrumptious 4ply, its silk and merino blend the perfect thing for wearing next to our skin.

laine12

Talla by Dami Hunter is a two colour cowl project, making use of the mosaic technique. A fun way of building up a colour work project while only knitting one colour per row. This way minimising a twisty mess that can sometime result from some two colour projects. Try the soft Vivacious 4ply for its undulating colours and pick two with a nice contrast.

I hope you enjoy this issue and have fun choosing your yarns for this issue. It certainly feels like a wintery instalment, with an overriding colour theme of blues and greys set against the snowy landscape. I think that’s why there seems to be a lot of oversized projects here, one that you want to wrap up in and keep the cold out.

 

New Yarn: Àrd-Thìr by Kate Davies Designs

It’s a pleasure to introduce Àrd-Thìr a new Aran weight yarn by Kate Davies in collaboration with one of our favourite yarn producers Fyberspates. It will not disappoint, such an amazing colour range and feels wonderful.

ard

Àrd-Thìr means Highlands in Scottish Gaelic and you couldn’t get a better name than that. A combination of 60% Peruvian Highland Wool and 40% Superfine Alpaca, it is produced in the Peruvian Highlands. But it’s colour inspiration comes from the Scottish Highlands. To be more specific the Scottish winter landscape. In 10 shades, Kate Davies says of her colour choice:

‘Our winter landscape is often thought to be drained of colour, but if you look carefully, you’ll discover a mix of many interesting shades: from the deepening russet tones of bracken-covered hillsides to the luminous hues of lichen hanging from bare branches; from the glancing orange glow of sunlight across high rocky peaks to the extraordinarily rich colour of a sealoch under a leaden Februrary sky. Each of the ten shades I’ve designed is a subtle, muted marl; each possesses its own depth and tonal variety; some can be combined into intriguing gradients, and all work together harmoniously as a range.’

This approach to the colours adds a richness and complexity, which would not only be fun to knit, but also produce beautiful knitwear.

Àrd-Thìr is worsted spun aran weight yarn. The combination of fibres make it well rounded, soft and squishy. It feels amazing next to the skin and would be perfect for many garments and accessories. I’m thinking oversized snuggly cabled jumpers or warm textured scarves. It would knit up to make something warm and cosy and would be perfect for textures, cables and colourwork. In 50g (65m/75yd) skeins it is the perfect yarn for when a little bit of a contrast colour or a colour work motif is needed. The possibilities are endless. There is something comforting about having a nice aran weight project on your needles in winter. Quick to knit and satisfying, it makes a change from all those 4ply projects!

Kate Davies has released two patterns for this yarn, so you can drool over them and take some inspiration. One hat and one pullover. This gives you a chance to see how the yarn knits up and maybe start planning that next project.

ard-03ard-02

The Weel Riggit Pullover is an all over colour work jumper, featuring a simple repeating pattern making the full use of the complimentary tones in Àrd-Thìr. Riggit in Scots and Shetland dialect means “rigged out” or “dressed”. To be “weel riggit” is to be well dressed. What better name can there be for this handsome jumper.

ard-05 ard-04

The Weel Riggit Hat lets you sample the colour combinations of the jumper but in this smaller project. Using 4 skeins in 4 different shades to produce the perfect winter accessory. A fun project for having a play with your favourite colours.

I hope the rich tones in this yarn will help you chase away the winter blues and get knitting something cosy and warm.

Interview with Petra Schwarczova from Black Elephant

We are really excited to bring a new range of hand dyed yarn to Knit With Attitude and these mini skeins from Black Elephant are no exception. Find the perfect little pops of colour to add to your projects, or looking for that one colour to bridge a gap in a fade. Then mini skeins are for you! Plus it allows you to sample a few different colours, like being in a sweet shop, you won’t be able to resit just one!

blackelephant01These little minis are 4ply weight, Superwash Merino Singles and dyed by Petra Schwarczova the brains behind Black Elephant. Hand Dyed in Sheffield, South Yorkshire
on 20g skeins we have introduced 20 colours. To get to know this great yarn and the dyer read our interview below.

1459164005142

Petra Schwarczova – Photograph by Mariola Zoladz

What inspired you to start dyeing?

I came across hand dyed yarn when I went for the first time to a yarn show – Yarndale in Skipton. I fell in love instantly, so I bought a starter pack there and started experimenting at home just for fun.

How did the name Black Elephant come about?
Black Elephant is a combination of my surname Schwarcz – which means Black in German and elephant on the front page of the notebook I got from my mum for writing knitting patterns in. She also used to tell me off in my teenage years for walking like an elephant (loud) 🙂

How does your dyeing process start, do you choose a colour or go for more abstract ideas?

Sometimes I choose a colour to start with, but mostly I am experimenting and combining whatever colour combination catches my attention.

black-elephant-mini-hummingbird-kwa

Merino Singles Mini in Hummingbird

Where does your colour inspiration come from?

All sorts of things. Rock music, architecture, paintings, fashion, nature. I can watch a random film and find inspiration in a single shot. I didn’t use to pay much attention to colour combinations before I started dyeing yarn, but now I see it everywhere, all the time. I can’t turn myself off.

Do you have a favourite colour way?

My favourite colourway is always the latest one I have dyed. When I dye something too many times, it’s just becomes too ordinary. It’s like if I was having my favourite meal every single day. It would not be my favourite meal after a month for sure. 🙂

What appeals to you most fades or contrasts in knitting or yarn?

I like all sorts of colour combinations. It depends what kind of project it is. I love as much strong colour contrasts as subtle fading of more earthy, neutral colours.

How long have you been knitting?

Phew, hard to say, I think I was about 11 years old when my grandma taught me. It took me a long time to get better as I was and still am quite an impatient person, so there were needles flying around and lots of yarn cut off needles as I knitted so tight I couldn’t pull it off. 😀 I used to come back to knitting over years, usually just simple scarves as Christmas presents. But I got fully addicted in 2010 when I started making knitting videos for beginners in my native language as there was nothing to learn from in Slovak language on Youtube then so I thought it might be helpful for some Slovakians back home who do not speak any English. I hope I can get back to it once I have a little bit more time.

What are you currently knitting?

Currently nothing, as I have been in the studio non-stop dyeing lots of yarn. But, I have two WIP – Andrea Mowry’s Nurtured sweater and my own design of a hat from leftover yarns (I will be releasing free pattern on Ravelry for it), which I hope to finish over Christmas.

43315608_343741396384842_3079854825541517543_n

photograph – instagram.com/blackelephant.uk

We hope you’ve enjoyed this little read as much as we enjoy finally having Black Elephant here at the shop! We are widening our selection to include 100g hanks in several fibre blends and weights come the new year – so keep your eyes peeled on our site!

New Yarn: John Arbon Textiles – Devonia DK and 4ply

We all know and love what John Arbon produce, so we are really excited to now be stocking Devonia. In DK and in 4ply! If you haven’t seen Devonia before then you are in for a treat and if you are in to your breed specific yarns this one is for you. Plus we have all 14 dreamy shades over both weights.

devonia01

John Arbon Textiles are a Devon based traditional woollen mill. Using machinery, some of which, is over 100 years old. They develop and make their yarns and tops at their specialist processing and spinning Mill called Fibre Harvest. For a little look into their mill, here is a short day in the life of John Arbon Textiles:

One of their latest offerings is Devonia. A 3-ply, Worsted Spun yarn in a DK and 4ply Weight, with 100% Devon grown fibre. Rightfully named, Devonia is Devon through and through. A blend of three local breeds – 50% Exmoor Blueface, 30% Devon Bluefaced Leicester and 20% Devon Wensleydale. These three breeds of sheep bring their own characteristics to the yarn.

The Exmoor Blueface is the local sheep to John Arbon, it gives a springing nature to the fibre. Softness and lustre is given by the Bluefaced Leicester and the wonderful fineness of fibre and sheen is provided by the Wensleydale. John Arbon have worked some magic here and brought all these fibres together in such harmony, giving a yarn that is soft, with sheen but also with body and interesting in the hand.

Not only is the yarn itself stunning but so is the colour. Each colour is made up of up to five blended pre-dyed fibre tops, creating a rich and beautifully deep mottled collection. The colour range was inspired by the work of French tapestry artist Jean Lurcat and his trademark use of jewel like tones offers up a sumptuous and decadent palette.

As always there has to be some exciting pattern inspirations, so here are some to get you started:

DevoniaCream003Devonia Cream by Francesca Hughes – With cabled details and a simple slouchy fit, it’s the perfect cosy jumper for autumn. Knit in John Arbon Textiles DK – Devonia Cream.

Homeward_Bound_Mitts_by_Alice_Sleight._Free_Pattern__Pom_Pom_Quarterly_2017__13_

Homeward Bound by Alice Sleight – These fingerless gloves show the yarns ability to hold a good cable. This pattern is knit in John Arbon Textiles DK – Dark Skies.

image

Devon Mariner by Helena Timms – A perfect hat for walking along the Devonshire coast. Nice and warm knit up in John Arbon Textiles DK – Amber Blaze.

IMG_4470

Doppio Colosseum by Fay Dashper-Hughes. This is one for the crocheters out there. An elegant shawl crocheted in two skeins of John Arbon Devonia 4ply – Pollen Gold.

 

 

Book Review – Strange Brew by Alexa Ludeman and Emily Wessel of Tin Can Knits.

Alexa Ludeman and Emily Wessel, the Canadian duo behind Tin Can Knits, have been working together since 2011. One living in Canada and one living in Scotland, they work together producing knitting patterns, from the very simple, to the challenging. All with their trademark clarity, making them easily accessible for anyone from novice to expert. With a great database of knitting techniques and tutorials they help demystify that tricky knitting jargon, giving you the skills to tackle any project.

strangebrew01

They have done it again with this great book: Strange Brew. Inspired by a family trip to Iceland they have gone all out colour work yokes. But this is more than a collection of patterns, it’ is a tool for you to create yoke sweaters in any combinations. Yarn weight, colour, pattern, they have calculated it all. Also, what Tin Can Knits does well is there are 25 sizes! Thats right, 25 sizes over 3 different gauges, there is something here for the whole family, from newborn to 4XL.

strangebrew02

The idea for Strange Brew was to give you the tools to produce any yoked sweater. The instructions are simple: Choose a Size, Choose a Yarn, Choose Top Down or Bottom Up, Choose a Motif and get knitting! You are taken through every stage of construction from yoke shaping, pattern placement, increases and decreases, swatching, steeking with all the numbers worked out. I can’t tell you how clever it is.

There are also patterns worked out for you, with projects that are good to go, exploring various patterns over different yarn weights. From hats, cowls and plenty of jumpers. Here is a selection of what you can find inside.

strangebrew03

Marshland is a fun jumper with an exaggerated yoke pattern. A jumper like this gives you endless possibilities to play with colour and pattern.

strangebrew04Fleet is a great project for the first timer in colour work. It also acts as the perfect swatch or a test run for colour ideas.
strangebrew05

This is the Compass Cowl. Another great one for a colour work novice who is intimidated by a larger project. Use this one to test Ideas or swatch for the Compass Sweater which is also in the book.

With such a great selection of patterns you need some great yarn ideas. We have a great range of yarns that have a wide range of colours, making them perfect for colour work. Here are a few examples to get you started:

Hillesvåg Ullvarefabrikk in Sølje, Tinde and Blåne for an earthy 4ply, Dk and Aran weight.

John Arbon Knit by Numbers for a soft Dk weight Merino in lots of dreamy shades.

Lopi Lettlopi for the classic Icelandic feel. With a great range of colours that love colour work.

I hope that has given you the colour work bug. I can’t recommend this book enough, it’s an exciting combination of all the colour work possibilities you have ever imagined.

 

Yarn Pairings for Pom Pom Quarterly Issue 27 – Winter 2018

This is a sumptuous and rich issue of Pom Pom. Think warmth, heavy cables and some opulent victorian styling. This issue is a collaboration with Norah Gaughan who is involved as guest editor. She worked with the idea of tough Victoriana. Not the traditional notion of the delicate lady surrounded by flowers, but a woman of strength and resilience, a warrior.

I’ve gone through the patterns in this issue and put together some yarn pairing suggestions, to get you inspired.

pom27

First up we have Arbor Vitae by Joji Locatelli is a top down seamless sweater with a striking cabled yoke. Knit in an merino single this is calling for Hedgehog Fibres Skinny Singles. Choose one of the deep moody semi solid shades like Plump, Spell, Raven or Copper Penny. A fun touch you can add at the end are these little tassels.   PPQ27_WINTER18_ArborVitae_JojiLocatelli_0644_WEB_medium2

Next is Ataraxia by Linda Marveng is a dramatic cardigan, knit in pieces, then seamed. Richly textured and with a lot of detail. Knit in a silk blend it would look stunning in Kettle Yarn – Islington DK with its rich colour palette to choose from.

PPQ27_WINTER18_Ataraxia_LindaMarveng_0880_WEB_medium2

Next is a jacket, the Christabel by Andrea Rangel. Knitted in a tight gauge this jacket will be structural and warm. Knitted tightly to give a dense fabric that holds it’s shape. A tough wooly yarn I think is required here, like Hey Mama Wolf – Schafwolle #03.

PPQ27_WINTER18_Christabel_AndreaRangel_1088_WEB_medium2

Next the Galewood by Honor Adams. An intriguing pair of mittens worked in the round with an interesting braided detail running along the length. A fun yarn full of colour will make these really stand out. The range of brights and neutrals in Garnsurr – Søkke Merino will give you plenty to choose from.

PPQ27_WINTER18_Galewood_HonorAdams_1428_WEB_medium2

Nightingale by Norah Gaughan, is incredibly opulent sweater featuring dramatic cables, gathered sleeves and a picot neckline. Incredibly rich and inviting, it needs a yarn with good definition. Try Spud & Chloé Sweater.

Nightingale-by-Norah-Gaughan_-Pom-Pom-Quarterly_-Issue-27_-Winter-2018_-2_medium2

Nimue by Cirilia Rose is an oversized but flattering slouchy top, which is perfect for adding layers in the cold weather. A cable motif in the centre, which is framed by the interesting angle of the sleeves. Try this in the Fibre Co – Luma.

PPQ27_WINTER18_Nimue_CiriliaRose_0736_WEB_medium2

Cables seem to characterise this issue and Nonesuch by Veronik Avery uses them in a a clever way. Running along the front and on the back they create a pleasing shape. Flattering and cosy.  Hillesvåg – Tinde with its array of rich colours and great definition would be perfect for this

PPQ27_WINTER18_Nonesuch_VeronikAvery_0350_WEB_medium2

Osmunda by Boadicea Binnerts is a bold design, with an impactful bobble pattern on the lower arms. This jumper is all about the texture, contrasting stitches in the body create a playful shape. Knit in a chainette yarn Du Store Alpakka’s – Hexa is a flexible choice which will give you great drape and is oh so soft!

PPQ27_WINTER18_Osmnda_BoadiceaBinnerts_1310_WEB_medium2

Sojourner by Xandy Peters is a classic triangular shawl. Simple, but with a stylish use of stitch structure, it’s guaranteed to be a go to layer this winter. Choose two complimentary colours for a subtle look. Knit in a Yak / Silk blend, it has to be Ketle Yarn – Beyul with its rich array of colours it will lend itself perfectly to a sophisticated wrap.

PPQ27_WINTER18_Sojourner_XandyPeters_0077-2_WEB_medium2

Willowwood by Caitlin Hunter reminds me of leaded glass windows. With drop shoulders and generous sleeves that also feature another trademark of this issue, bobbles! Again this is knit in a chainette so go Du Store Alpakka’s – Hexa, with a wide range of colours that will suit the pattern.

This issue is definitely worth a look, in it’s photography alone. Its stunning and opulent and the over the top designs will become pieces that last forever. I hope you are inspired to knit some.