News

Scots Pine Design

One of my favourite trees is the Scots pine, botanically known as Pinus sylvestris. This native conifer can be found across Scotland, and in particular throughout Glen Affric to the west of Loch Ness in the Highlands. The photos below were taken over Easter 2013, on our last family holiday to Glen Affric. Our first family visit was in 1999, and we've returned on more than seven occasions!        When I came to design a new pattern for my bag fabric, the Scots pine immediately came to mind. Once I had drawn up a design using my knitter's graph paper...

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The Brioche Cowl Bag!

So, confession time. I knit a brioche cowl this week using my friend Fu's beautiful alpaca/Jacob sheep yarn known as the Bearford Flock. Hours after posting a photo of the cowl on Instagram, I put on a load of washing at 40 degrees. Unbeknown to me, I'd also scooped up my cowl that was drying on the floor beside my laundry basket! It came out of the wash approximately half the size and heavily felted! I was horrified: firstly at wrecking the cowl; and secondly at mistreating my friend's gorgeous yarn from her equally gorgeous animals that she tends with...

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Swatching Shetland Wool

My vintage Knitmaster knitting machine is a wee bit temperamental! It isn't keen on yarns any thicker than the size of handknitter's laceweight. Subsequently, I have struggled to source local wools. However, whilst attending a wonderful spinning workshop with Ange of Weftblown, she suggested trying 1-ply Shetland weaving wool from Jamieson's of Shetland.  I sent off for two cones as a trial.  I was delighted to find that the yarn was strong enough to cope with my machine.  So, I then ordered a range of natural colours with a view to knitting up fabric in my Scottish Wildflowers design.  I was delighted...

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Scottish Wildflowers

I have always loved flowers.  When I was training to be a herbalist, I was delighted to be told to compile a herbarium for a Botany module; although it was tricky to find flowering plants in Scotland in October and November!        When walking in Scotland, I always take my camera along in case I spot any interesting flowering plants. One of my favourite places for wildflower spotting is the isle of Ulva off the west coast of Mull.  These photos were taken in the summer of 2009, and show devil's-bit scabious (Succisa pratensis) and ragged robin (Lychnis flow-cuculi).    ...

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My Knitting Journals

I learned to knit as a child. My mother taught me. I knitted through my teenage years and into university. Then, I put my needles down. I'm not sure why: maybe it was my job with its long hours, shift pattern and UK-wide travelling. When I next picked up my needles, much had changed: modern circulars; interchangeables; independent local yarn shops; YouTube tutorials; and Ravelry! Hats, scarfs and mitts flew off my new single-pointed needles but I lacked the skills or knowledge to progress further. So, on the day of returning from a family holiday touring round northern Portugal, I dropped...

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