New Yarn: G-uld – No. 4

We have been smitten with G-uld ever since our amazing adventure on their dyeing workshop. Read more about our experience in my earlier blog post. Their naturally dyed yarns, in colours that defy imagination just have to be seen to be believed. We have been enjoying G-uld Alpaca for a while now but now we have a new member of the family. Meet No. 4.

no4-webThis gorgeous blend of 75% Falkland Merino and 25% Gotland wool gives the base a lovely heathered halo which lends itself beautifully to the overdyed colours. As usual the dyes are all natural and we have everything from madder, mugwort, heather and indigo in 18 shades including one undyed. The yarn is a light 4ply with 650m per 100g skien. Its perfect for knitting on its own for a light and airy feel or held double for a more robust weight. Whats great about No. 4 is that like the Alpaca each label tells you what was used to create the colour. Next time you are in store check them out. Subtle variations are created by layering different dyes. Like heather creating a yellow, layered with indigo gives and amazing green.

Here are some projects to get you excited:

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The Westwind Cowl by Louise Schelde Jensen is a perfect way to test drive this yarn. If you are looking for a project to see what qualities this yarn can have then look no further. Hold the yarn double or single depending on how dense you would like the fabric. A simple mesh pattern is repeated with garter ridges in between. Give yourself over to the colourful joys of this yarn.

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Sif by Stine Hess Rahbek is a beautifully simple jumper with elegant cable details running along the side and up the raglan seam. This would work perfectly with No. 4 held double.

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Rambling Rose Jacket by Susie Haumann. Would also work holding two strands of No 4. Giving crisp details to the design and allowing you to indulge in your favourite colour.

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Watch this space as G-uld will be launching a series of patterns that are designed especially for No 4. Like this jacket by Anne-Sopie Velling. We can’t wait!

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I’m totally in love with the colours and texture of this yarn so I’m planning in using it for my version of this years Stephen West mystery KAL – Starflake. I’m going for KAW1016 Madder and KWA1002 Mugwort/Indigo. I shall be holding them both double and really looking forward to taking it for a spin and thinking of the memories from our workshop. If you still need some inspiration for for Starflake check out the blog post I put together, or if you are curious how No. 4 is knitting up, I’m sure I will be posting my progress on my instagram.

Yarn Pairings for Laine Issue 9

It’s that time of year where the lovely team at Laine tempt us with a new season of gorgeous knits from some of the most talented designers working today. We are never disappointed with what Laine produce, from their stunning photography to interviews, articles and seasonal recipes.

This issue has 13 designs by Fiona Alice, Rachel Brockman, Olga Buraya-Kefelian, Aleks Byrd, Renée Callahan, Verena Cohrs, Elly Fales, Whitney Hayward, Marianne Munier, Lavanya Patricella, Lucía Ruiz de Aguirre, Susanne Sommer and Becky Sørensen. An interview with Lavanya Patricella. A story about Petra Mikaelsson from Fru Valborg. Kristine Vejar’s story from A Verb For Keeping Warm. A column by Jeanette Sloan along with a travel guide to Munich, featuring the best spots to stay, eat and shop.

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PINACEAE, by Rachel Brockman. A bold graphic cabled sweater. I like what Rachel has done with the cables here. Creating a statement pattern repeat rather than the traditional twists we normally see. Knitted flat with drop shoulders and a-line shaping, a guaranteed winter accessory. Knitted in The Fibre Co. Lore which we stock here at Knit with attitude. Seen here in the colour Courage, but why not try one of the other 9 colours.

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MISS APPLE’S LITTLE CARDI, by Lucía Ruiz de Aguirre. We see again that classic combo of a mohair lace held with a sturdier yarn. The softness of the fuzz is still proving irresistible. This cute simple cardigan is knit seamlessly in the round with a bit of steeking to open the front. Try this in in a combo of Hey Mama Wolf Schafwolle #03 and Fyberspates Cumulus and don’t be scared of the steeking!

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JOY by Renée Callahan. Clever construction and quirky details are a highlight of this cardigan. Worked from the front to the back and stitches picked up for the sleeves. No picking up for the trim, which gives you a simple but satisfying shape around the neck of this loose fitting easy to layer design. I think John Arbon Devonia DK would look lovely here.

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RISTTEE, by Aleks Byrd. This is just simply one of the most stunning designs and has it all! Fading, colour work, twisted stitches, the lot. The yoke is just dreamy. Chevron stitches combine with pockets of colour work giving you a quilted effect. Worked seamlessly from the bottom up, giving you plenty of opportunities to play with colour. Try this in Hillesvåg Sølje a good toothy yarn perfect for colour work and comes in an amazing range of colours.

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FLOREA, by Becky Sørensen. These simple but stylish mittens would be easy to knit but give an effective outcome. A minimal flower design sits against a background of reverse stocking stitch and the petals are worked over two rows. Try this in Hey Mama Wolf’s Sockyarn #04 to give you good definition to the stitches.

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WOODBINE, by Fiona Alice. A striking combination of bold lace panels and horizontal stocking stitch make an interesting garment. The panels are knit first then stitches picked up along the edge and knit out. Using larger 6mm needles it will be speedy to knit but as it calls for yarns held double (a mohair lace and aran yarn) it will be light an airy.  Try a combination of Àrd-Thìr and Hedgehog Fibres Kidsilk Lace.

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MÖKKI, by Verena Cohrs. An easy to knit cosy jumper that is not without its interesting details. Rib panels on either side and a divided front and back make this a simple design without being boring. Try this in Àrd-Thìr for some cosy warmth.

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PIANTA DI GRANO, by Lavanya Patricella. This simple but elegant scarf/wrap is a joyous combination of brioche increases and decreases with garter stitch. These stitches go together to create a wheat sheaf motif over this large two colour design. The moody tones of Black Elephant Merino Singles would make this the perfect autumnal accessory.

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LUMI by Marianne Munier. Doesn’t this look cosy! Generous ribbing and a big rolled neck, make this a great design to keep you warm. The interesting part of this design is the textural fading. We’ve seen a lot of colour fading in the knitting world, but I love how this has been applied to texture. Like a mirage, it fades from stocking stitch to purling more and more every row, until you flip completely to reverse stocking stitch. Try this in Hillesvåg Tinde, the overdyed grey base will give you a beautiful heathered look.

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SUMMER LONGING, by Susanne Sommer. A elegant but simple cardigan for layering away the chill. Low sleeves and oversized fit make it the perfect piece to wear over the top of any outfit. The pleasing chevron stitches create a minimal but striking design detail. Knit in a plant fibre blend try The Fibre Co. Luma for coolness as well as warmth.

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RAMSAY, by Whitney Hayward. A classic wardrobe stable is the iconic cabled pullover. This design is no exception. Worked flat in pieces and seamed together and knit in 5.5mm needles would be speedy as well. Knit in a soft chainette yarn it has to be Hexa. Knit a jumper you want to melt into.

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UPPLEGA, by Elly Fales. A cute pair of socks with a design motif that reminds me of rain or snow falling from a cloudy sky. Knitted socks are always a welcome winter accessory. Try in Coopknits Socks Yeah! with a great range of colours you will easily find the perfect contrasting tones to make the colour work pop.

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WINTER SUNS, by Olga Buraya-Kefelia. A lovely triangular shawl with the most pleasing hazy sun pattern repeat. I can imagine some really fun colour combinations with this design and it really evokes that iconic image of a setting sun hanging low in the sky. Knit this combining John Arbon Knit by Numbers DK and for the suns I think the warm tones of the new Twisted Fintch Tweedy BFL Donegal really lend themselves to the burning sun.

Time for a new Project – Inspiration for the Starflake MKAL

Stephen West is teasing us again! It’s that time of year for a Mystery Knit Along or MKAL for short. Stephen West has been delighting and bewildering knitters for years with these ever so exciting MKAL’s. This one is the 10th Anniversary MKAL and called Starflake so I’m hoping for something exciting. This time we are just looking at two colours, four 100g skeins in total and Stephen specifies a plied yarn in contrasting colours and yarns that have crisp definition. So as usual I’ve had a fun afternoon picking out colour combos for fantasy projects I would love to knit. Oh, if only I had the time! He also recommends solids, semi-solids and slightly speckled yarns, so the design details don’t get lost. The fun starts on 4th October so you have plenty of time to pick your favourite colours. But to help you along take a look at these!

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A good tip if you are looking at colours and wondering if you will get a strong contrast or a subtle one. Use your camera phone and switch the settings to mono or black and white. That way you will be able to differentiate more easily between darker and lighter colours rather than be bombarded by the colour itself.

I have picked from a selection of plied yarns like Garnsurr Søkke Merino, Fyberspates Vivacious 4ply, Hey Mama Wolf Sockyarn #04, Hedgehog Fibres Twist Sock and Kettle Yarn Beyul. These sturdy yarns are wonderfully soft but crisp enough to hold great definition and I love mixing and matching them together.

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Cool Breeze – This combo conjures up a cool spring breeze blowing over the sea. Combining both Garnsurr Søkke Merino in Lekje and Fyberspates Vivacious 4ply in Sea Glass to create a nice contrast but also keeping the palette quite fresh.

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Lemon Curd – A really zesty combination in all Garnsurr Søkke Merino. We have here Seivin and Jønnstaur creating a real striking contrast. Bright, sunny and full of life.

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Blueberry Muffin – This combo looks so tasty, I love Hedgehog Fibres Silence colour as a base for other colours. The natural, subtly specked Hey Mama Wolf’s Sockyarn #04 looks perfect next to it. Colours here are Hedgehog Fibres Twist Sock in Silence and Hey Mama Wolf’s Sockyarn #04 in Carey

starflake-01 Raspberry Ripple – This combo gives a great contrast but also being quite complimentary. The solid rich pink playing against the pink speckles in the cream giving you a wonderful graphic palette. Garnsurr Søkke Merino in Ørtle and Jarbaer.

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Sea Shells – A subtle contrast is created with these two rich tones. I like the idea of using a silk blend yarn, as you will get a gentle shine from where it’s used. Using two rich colours that are completely different but equally as dark will cause the colours to vibrate against each other. Of course there are gentle nods between this combo, as the blue has slightly purply, pink notes. Hedgehog fibres Twist Sock in Method and Kettle Yarn Beyul in Electric Amaranth.
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Bonfire – This warming colour combination uses a rich dark grey as a base. I love a dark grey to play colours against. You end up with an almost neon light effect in the dark. Fyberspates Vivacious 4ply in Smokey Joe and Garnsurr Søkke Merino in Gryteflaks #21. The Smokey Joe has a slight warmth to it that unifies this combination.

I’m looking forward to seeing all the combinations people knit up and I can’t wait to start!

Yarn Pairings for Pom Pom 30

The Autumn issue of Pom Pom is nearly here and this issue titled ‘Sea Change’ takes in a watery theme. Inspired by the sea and its ever-changing shapes and textures.Taking its cues from the sea itself or its contact and influence on the land. With a palette drawn from the sea, as well as the colour of the beach, stones and shells. This issue has a whole array of designs to see you into the colder months. Four jumpers, two wraps, a cardi, a tee, and a hat, phew… that will keep you busy. Alongside these we have Pompoms usual array of interesting articles and recipe’s.

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Featuring designs by: Kiyomi Burgin, Sachiko Burgin, Meghan Fernandes, Annie Haas, Sylvia Watts-cherry, Ainur Berkimbayeva, Emma Ducher, Inyoung Kim, Katrin Schubert, Andrea Cull. As usual I have put together some yarn suggestions from Knit With Attitude, so let’s dive in.

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Seelig by Katrin Schubert a cosy wrap for those breezy days on the beach. Echoing the gentle waves of a calm sea this two colour project is knit in DK, you just know it’s going to be squishy, warm and a must have layer. Combining two-colour brioche with garter stitch in an easy to remember repeat. I would choose Fyberspates Vivacious DK for subtle variegation or Hedgehog Fibres Merino DK for a more speckled option, or why not combine the two!

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Eventide by Inyoung Kim is a super cute and cleverly designed tee with eye catching scaplloped detail running over the lower half of the body. If this doesn’t say seaside then I don’t now what does. The repeating shell motifs allow you to have a bit of fun with colour, although I think this would be equally as stunning knit completely monochrome. I think the subtle natural shades of Hey Mama Wolf Sockyarn #04 would lend themselves quite prettily to the nature inspired look of this top.

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Aphotic by Annie Haas. I love the echo of colour work with the neutral texture on this one. A complex collection of triangles creates a bold statement yoke that looks fun to knit. But if the colourwork is getting too much for you then on the lower part of the body ‘colour’ is created by adding some purl bump texture. A yarn with good definition will create a striking pattern so try Hey Mama Wolf Schafwolle #03.

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Astragal by Ainur Berkimbayeva is a gentle pattern with a delicate yoke. My favourite element of this design is the detail in the rib. Just extending the rib to create a wave gives you an unusual but pleasing feature. I would try The Fibre Co. – Lore which has the softness of a lambswool but also a good crispy definition to make the details pop.

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Trove by Emma Ducher is a beautiful all over textured jumper in a classic shape. Have fun with colour on this one. The base colour  highlights the little coloured stitches which remind me of sea glass caught amongst the pebbles. Maybe try The Fibre Co. Cumbria for a softness and great palette of colours.

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Fata Morgana by Sylvia Watts-Cherry is a jumper you just want to melt into. A classic combo of a wool and mohair held double but also paired with an incredibly striking graphic pattern. I think the simple colour range of John Arbon – Knit by Numbers paired with Fyberspates Cumulus would be so snuggly and create a dreamy garment.

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Timbre by Meghan Fernandes is a cosy, fluffy and warm looking hat. Definitely one to see you through to the winter or those cold evening walking along the sea front. A delicate criss-crossing pattern overlaid in the mohair traces over the entire hat, like the ripples left in the sand after the tide has gone out. A combination of Àrd-Thìr and Hedgehog Fibres KidSilk Lace would be dreamy.

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Columella by Andrea Cull. Everyone needs something to wrap themselves up when going for a late summer stroll along the beach. Those chilly sea winds can quickly make you cold. The welcome relief of a snuggly wrap especially one as beautiful as this is never turned down. This all over cabled creation will be interesting to knit as well as wear. Knit in a worsted weight mohair wool blend, try holding The Fibre Co. Cumbria double to get the right thickness with this cosy blend.

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Isobue by Kiyomi Burgin & Sachiko Burgin. A clever use of colour on this relaxed cardigan. A simple fit makes it perfect for casual wear and a welcome layer for bear shoulders. With a wide minimal neckline which stretches almost to the top of the shoulders makes this cardigan the perfect top to throw on when the weather changes. Whats more, it’s reversible due to the clever construction. Buttoned at the back and the front creating a novel way of creating a garment fun to knit and fun to wear! Try this in Garnsurr – Søkke Merino combined with Hedgehog Fibres KidSilk Lace, to find your perfect seaside combinations.

Throwback Thursday: Växbo Lin Lingarn

Linen is back! Not a moment too soon… One of our go to summer yarns is Växbo Lin’s Lingarn, so this little Throwback Thursday post is here to celebrate it again. We have recently restocked on 22 shades of this gorgeous and unusual fibre. So in case you missed it, here is why linen is so great.

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Lingarn is a 100% natural pure linen yarn traditionally grown and spun in Sweden. Växbo Lin’s Lingarn is certified with the Swedish Good Environmental Choice label (Bra Miljöval) because of its durability and environmentally friendly processing.

The earliest trace of flax culture in the Swedish county Hälsingland is dated to circa 200 AD. Evidence from the Viking age indicates that women wore linen chemises under their woolen skirts. Flax has been grown for domestic use throughout Sweden. In medieval times there was a surplus of flax in Hälsingland and linen became an item of trade. In fact, linen rather than money was used to pay taxes and fines.

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Heres a little bit about how linen fibre is made from one of our earlier Fibre Fridays posts. ‘Linen comes from a plant called flax. Unlike cotton, where the fibre comes from a pod that the plant produces, linen is made from the inner stalk. This type of fibre is called a bast fibre. Other bast fibres include nettle, hemp and rattan. The plant is grown to a height of about 4 feet. When it is ready, the plants are pulled up from the roots and left to decompose in a process called retting. This unbinds the unwanted outer bark from the inner bark that makes the fibre. The two types of bark are separated by big metal rollers in a process called scutching. The fibre lengths are combed to find the longest fibres which are then spun into thread or yarn.’

Linen is a tough fibre that may feel stiff an unyielding at first, but the more you work it the more it softens. It is recommended winding linen by hand, as this begins the softening process, which continues the more you work with it.

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What Throwback Thursday would be complete without a look at projects past. Do you remember Maya’s Selja she knit last year? Selja by Jonna Hietala is knit top down holding two strands together on 5.5mm needles. A super speedy knit for a quick summer project. Maya chose the Umbra colour. To read more about Selja read Maya’s – What Maya Knits Blog Post.

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And a couple of summers back Natalie launched her design The Mirabeau Top! The Mirabeau is an attractive striped summer top with a fetching lace panel. Idea for summer holidays and evenings dining al fresco. Light and cool, with fun Breton stripes, allowing you an opportunity to play with colour.

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I also knit with linen earlier this year when I finished my Parachutey by Stephen West. It came very handy in the hot halls of the Edinburgh Yarn Festival where I wore it over a shirt and kept perfectly cool. I knit this one in Moss Green, Olive Green, Graphite and Lime.

So go grab your needles while the sun is still shining.

Yarn Pairings for Laine Issue 8

It’s Laine! Issue 8 – Kelo. Featuring the work of 11 designers: Justyna Lorkowska, Denise Bayron, Libby Jonson, Julie Dubreux, Leeni Hoimela, Astrid Troland, Sus Gepard, Éveline Cantin-Bergeron, Jenny Sauselein and Marjorie Martin. As always we are in awe of the magic Laine manages to conjure up, and this issue is no exception. Featuring jumpers, socks, cardigans, shawls, there is something for everyone. Of course it is not just knitting patterns, but contains articles, recipes and interviews which all together make Laine one of those publications we just have to have.

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Let’s take a look between the covers and drool and dream over this collection. As always I have put together my recommended yarn pairings from Knit With Attitude.

laine-honeydewHoneydew by Justyna Lorkowska is a stunningly cosy looking jumper. Knit holding two strands together, something fuzzy and something smooth. You know this one is going to be a joy to wear. An over-sized rolled neckband and overall relaxed look make for a comfortable garment. The body is given texture by an all over stitch repeat, which will add interest to the design, but also interest to the process. Knit this in something luxury, The Fibre Co. Cumbria would give great definition to textured stitches and I think the colours of that yarn are spot on for this. For the fuzz try Fyberspates Cumulus with an array of pleasing complimentary colours that would work well with the Cumbria.

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Georgie by Libby Jonson is a textural masterpiece. A stunning all over open lace repeat gives drama, but the slouchy fit is unpretentious, making this a great go-to jumper for throwing on. Make it the comfiest thing ever and knit it in  Blue Sky Fibres Alpaca Sport

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Grace by Denise Bayron looks like the cosiest of classic sweaters. Elegant shaping with a simple cable motif running down the centre front. Worked seamlessly from the top down with raglan increases for the yoke and sleeves. Quick to knit, this will become a wardrobe staple. Knit this in an easy to knit cosy yarn like Hillesvåg Troll for that iconic cabled jumper vibe.

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Pasvik by Julie Dubreux is an amazingly multi functional piece. Unbuttoned, it’s a simple wrap or a little blanket – and buttoned up, it becomes a shrug, overcoat or a poncho! A sinewy collection of purl stitches trace around the design, giving life and energy to the whole garment. Try Àrd-Thìr, the twist in this yarn gives it great structure and will lend itself to great definition of the pattern.

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Heather by Ash Alberg – Look at the detail on this pair of socks! The perfect lacey treat to get stuck into. Worked from the toe up, so perfect for choosing a long or short style. A yarn that will give good definition and hold the pattern repeats like Hey Mama Wolf Sockyarn #04 would be perfect.

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Uoma by Leeni Hoimela is a dynamic jumper with a bold motif. A clever use of texture here creates a top that is fun to knit and fun to wear. Taking the graphic shape of a diagonal line and bringing a quirky design statement. ‘Uoma’ meaning a riverbed which is very apt for the strong crossed stitch lines, like the flow of water.  A simple seamless top down construction and knit in a merino silk blend. Try  Fyberspates Scrumptious 4ply or if you are looking for some speckled action the Hedgehog Fibres Skinny Singles with its single ply and slightly silky feel would also work.

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Flower Buds by Astrid Troland is a lovely relaxed short sleeved top. I like the rigid edge over the shoulders that leads to a simple boat neck. This is made elegant by an understated use of yarn overs. The most minimal of details are worked across the body, almost mirage-like with the mere hint of a cable. This gives an overall texture without being cluttered. Knit in two yarns held together, a lace weight alpaca and a 4ply lambswool. I couldn’t help but flip this and pair two of my favourites, the lace weight Garthenor No.1 and the 4ply G-uld Alpaca. How fun would that be to knit.

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Waterlily by Sus Gepard is an intriguing cardigan with charming Kid Silk details. Decorative stitches use the character of a Kidsilk Lace to full advantage. Try the silk blend of Kettle Yarn Islington DK (at a slightly lighter gauge, a good idea to swatch) but the fibre blend and colour range lend themselves perfectly. Mix this with the Hedgehog Fibres KidSilk Lace.

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Cimes by Éveline Cantin-Bergeron is a textural dream. An all over pattern repeat creates a great fabric for this garment. A classic fit, relaxed, light and airy.  Knitted from the bottom up in the round with drop shoulders. A slightly variegated yarn like Fyberspates Vivacious DK is ideal. I would love to see this in the Deep Forest colour.

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Rosebay by Jenny Sauselein is a work of art. This piece is definitely not boring. An array of textured stitches of miniature leaf and branched fern go together to create this sumptuous creation. A great one for challenging your cabling and lace skills. Something like Hillesvåg Sølje would give you great stitch definition.

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Lakka by Marjorie Martin is a classic cardigan but knit from side to side, in one piece. An added detail to all that stocking stitch is a cute bobble detail. This acts to soften the boxy shape and add a delicate detail. Try knitting this one in John Arbon Devonia DK for a heritage feel.

There are some great pieces in this issue. I love all the patterned textural repeats that can be found all over. Full wall to wall lace, cables and other interesting stitches, create a bunch of patterns that are engaging as well as look beautiful.

Time for a New Project – Inspiration for Navelli by Caitlin Hunter

When a project comes along and is, light and summery, involves colour work, knit in merino singles, stylish and looks like a fun project to knit. I’m totally there. The new Navelli by Caitlin Hunter has me hooked. What with the burst of fun new Skinny Singles here at Knit With Attitude, literally a whole wall of them! What better time to start this project.

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Navelli is named for an ancient town in Italy, known as the land of crocuses and saffron. A relaxed lightweight summer sweater, knit in the round from the bottom up. With the most amazing panel of colour work at the bottom. Boxy shaping with a wide boat neck, it is a great edition to the summer wardrobe.

We have a lot of merino singles in right now, so it’s the perfect time to start. Here I have put some colour suggestions together to get your creativity flowing.

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This combo has a touch of the seaside about it, the waves washing up against the shore. Good contrast is given for the colour work section to really make it stand out.

From left to right we have Hedgehog Fibres Skinny Singles in Silence, Black Elephant Merino Singles in Golden Coast and Hedgehog Fibres Skinny Singles in Cedar.

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A warmer version here with a touch of neon. I think you can be brave when it comes to colour work projects. Adding a little flash of something bright and daring as one of the colours, can really lift it and make it stand out.

From left to right we have Hedgehog Fibres Skinny Singles in Seed, Kid You Not and Cedar.

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This has to be my favourite combo. I’m loving the mustardy green colour against the pinks. Bits of green are picked out in the palest colour, giving a little connection but not being too similar.

From left to right we have Hedgehog Fibres Skinny Singles in Bloom, Rosewood and Kelp.

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I chose the palest of speckles for the main colour in this one, it will really make the colour work pattern pop out. Quite an elegant combo I think

From left to right we have Hedgehog Fibres Skinny Singles in Dune, Purr and Typewriter.

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Another fiery combination but this time with a pale speckle as the main colour. Orange is the overriding theme that unites all the colours. Though I think there is enough contrast so the pattern won’t get lost.

From left to right we have Hedgehog Fibres Skinny Singles in Monarch, Copper Penny and Black Elephant Merino Singles in Nostalgia.

So here are a few ideas to get you started, but I know that is just the tip of the iceberg. There are so many colours to choose from. I think the key with colour work projects is to get a good amount of tonal contrast between the colours you choose, even if they are the same or different. That way the pattern will be the most defined and interesting.

Happy Knitting!

What Maya and George Knits! – Summer Light

You may have seen our designer feature on Julie Knits in Paris on the blog earlier. Looking at some fun colourful projects to see you into the summer and beyond. Well the trouble with writing these inspiration posts, is the inspiration seeps out and gets us excited. Then this happens….. We knit the same project! The wall of Hedgehog Fibres Kidsilk Lace was calling us and who could resist a one skein project. So here we go!

Summer Light is a lightweight summer tee. Knit in lighter than air Kidsilk Lace. Quick to knit on 5mm needles with some added Merino Single 4ply for the ribbing.

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‘I always complain about the lack of knitting time in my life – and how I never seem to able to finish something – but seriously… I did the Summer Light in less than a week!!! Such a fun project it literarily flew off the needles, and using less than one hank of Hedgehog Fibres Kidsilk Lace, this top does not look cheap, I mean the fibres are luxurious indeed, but cost wise I’m absolutely over the moon! I wanted a bright look similar to the original design and chose the colour Monarch, I found the perfect match for the ribbing using Black Elephant Minis in Lazy Days. Unlike George, I went for the cropped look, and like George I chose the smallest size. I didn’t get around to wash and block the top before we took the pictures, so I’m hoping it will grow a little when I get around to it – still it is very comfortable and can be worn as is. My only problem now is that I don’t have anything in my wardrobe to go with a cropped top, an empire waist summer dress is currently on the top of the wish list.’ – Maya

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‘I decided to knit Summer Light as I’ve always wanted to have a go at knitting with a single strand of Hedgehog Fibres Kidsilk Lace. I’ve done some double stranded marled projects but never really tried it this way. Plus a project that uses less than 50g of yarn, but still makes a garment, well what else can give you that! I wanted it as a layer over a shirt or t-shirt, as something extra to put on when the weather cools slightly. I have to say I really enjoyed knitting it. Super quick, with blissfully easy raglan increases and no second sleeve syndrome! I knit the smallest size and only adjustment I made was to knit it longer in the body, I didn’t quite fancy a crop top and wanted more of a t-shirt vibe. I love the end result. I used some yarn pulled from my stash to match against the Hedgehog Fibres Kidsilk Lace, I chose the colour Parklife.’ – George

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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!

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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.

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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?

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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.

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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 .

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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!

Exploring Plant Dyes

It always amazes me what range of colours you can get from plants and plant material. Not only can they be subtle and delicate, they can be strong, punchy and vibrant. Plant dyes offer us a natural alternative to industrially used dyes. Often coming directly from the plant itself or from plant extracts. This can cut down on the harsher chemicals used in the process of industrial dying. Synthetic chemicals used in a majority of large scale commercial dyeing processes can pose hazards to the people working with them and the environment they may come into contact with. Plant dyes and the mordants used to treat the yarn in the smaller scale hand dying process, if handled properly, are often (depending on the material) less of a risk to the dyer and the environment. Plus plants offer us a renewable source of dyeing material and if farmed or gathered responsibly are much more sustainable and have less environmental impact.

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At Knit With Attitude we stock a range of plant dyed yarns and I will take a little look at them below. I shall be focusing on Hey Mama Wolf and G-uld. Both Small scale producers, dyeing yarns with plant and natural dye stuffs. Both Hey Mama Wolf and G-uld focus on the craft skills involved, with a respect for the environment and the process of creating beautiful yarns. Both learning form nature and how the change of seasons brings different qualities to dyeing. Respecting old traditions, while also bringing them into the present.

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G-uld labels showing the combination of materials used to generate different colours.

What I love about natural dyes is the combination of natural materials that go into creating a range of colours. This is shown most with G-uld and in some Hey Mama Wolf skeins. G-uld have labeled the combinations that go to creating each colour. Different amounts of each dyestuff creating different saturations of colour.

Let’s look at these yarns in more detail and check out some project inspiration.

Hey Mama Wolf

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Hey Mama Wolf is the creation of Jule. Based in Germany, she dyes her yarns naturally and also most of the yarns themselves are, sourced and processed locally to her. She works from her home which is an old watermill in Prignitz. To read our interview with Jule, check out our earlier Blog Post.

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First up we have Sockyarn #04. A sturdy 4ply sock yarn which is a blend of Merino, Corriedale and Ramie Fibre. Ramie is a plastic free alternative to nylon and is a member of the nettle family. Sockyarn #04 is soft but crisp, will give you good definition and great for textural stitches. Not just for socks, it would be great for any garment.

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Here’s a groovy sock pattern that highlights this yarns crisp definition. The Practice Theory Socks by Roos Vlaskamp. Great for a quick one skein project.

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Next up is Schafwolle #03. A 100 % Organic wool from small farms in North and East Germany. A blend of Merino and Black Face sheep processed and spun in Germany and the Czech Republic. A worsted weight yarn perfect for colour work or textured jumper projects. Will give great definition and hold pattern well.

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Who could forget Moonbow by Jule herself. A great relaxed jumper from Pom Pom 26 – The Moon Issue. Perfect for showing off your favourite colour. Plus you even get the opportunity to use some Sockyarn #04.

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Lastly but definitely not least from Hey Mama Wolf is the Ahimsa No.10. So much luxury in these 50g Skeins. Ahimsa is a 100% Organic Peace Silk. Ahimsa means non-violent in sanskrit and the production of this Indian yarn allows the silk moths to hatch from the cocoons. It’s lace weight with a slightly matte feel, but still the sheen you expect from silk. Perfect held double with another yarn or on its own for a wonderful heirloom piece.

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Create something of beauty with this yarn, knit lacey! The stunning Fylleryd by Mia Rinde would be ideal. Lace pattern repeats will give you an elegant shawl you will treasure and can be knit in one or two skeins.

G-uld

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G-uld are based in Bredsten, Denmark and dye and teach all things natural dyeing. G-uld is based on solid craftsmanship, with an understanding and respect for material, quality and nature. Their colouring and choice of products are rooted in old traditions, and with a great desire for where the past meets the present. To read more about them see out earlier Blog Post.

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We stock their dreamy Alpaca yarn which we have in 20 dyed colours and 2 natural shades. Dyed on the white and grey bases with various combinations of natural dyes to give a great range of colour. This yarn has lovely drape and ideal

for anything from accessories to jumpers and cardigans.

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What better way to explore these colours than with a dreamy fade project. The Dip Dye Kids Beanie by Camilla Vad uses three shades to create the most sumptuously soft and cosy little hat.

I hope this post has encouraged you to look at plant dyes and made you think. They are not just washed out and insipid, but fun, bright and inspiring!

Of course if you want to have a go at plant dying yourself we have the natural dying kits from Hey Mama Wolf. Including Yarn Dying kits and Eco Print Fabric kits.

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