Thursday, May 27, 2010

Ever feel like this?

Image by Natalie Dee

Well, it's either that, or I find that the cat has chewed up the cable of my circular needles again lately....


Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Crocheted Bike!

Zontee, over at the Lion Brand blog saw this crochet-covered bike while she was walking in New York, and blogged about it. It was just too good not to share!

Seen any interesting uses of yarn lately?


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Tuesday, May 25, 2010

How You made It: Evangeline

Evangeline is a gorgeous hat pattern from Issue 10 of knitonthenet. Designed by Just call me Ruby this quick knit is inspired by 1920s and 30s cloche hats. If you remember the wonderful BBC series, The House of Eliott you may have guessed that this pattern was named after Louise Lombard's character.

The construction of Evangeline is updated from the interwar originals in that short rows and seamless shaping are used. The hat is also knitted in contrast to many original patterns which were crocheted. Evangeline is the perfect hat on which to show off a lovely vintage button too.

There have been some great examples of the hat made already on Ravelry: here are a few which have caught my eye.

MandaR's Tempting Evangeline. Image copyright, MandaR

Amanda from Scotland knitted her Evangeline in Babylonglegs' Purple Tempest and shows off a really gorgeous button in an Art Noveau style.

Hazel from Kent has made two Evangeline hats as seen below, and has included some useful pattern notes on her Ravelry project page too

KnitYoga's Evangeline Hats. Images copyright KnitYoga.

We'd love to see your versions too: drop me a line.




Saturday, May 22, 2010

Vintage Gifts to Knit Book Launch and Tea Party

Please do join us all in Reading on Wednesday 9th June for a Summer Evening's Tea Party at the jelly artpad. Knitonthenet editor, Susan will be launching her latest pattern booklet, Vintage Gifts to Knit and she will also be giving a talk about vintage knitwear.
You can also buy Skein Queen's lovely yarn from her in person, as well as enjoying some tea, cake and of course, knitting.
The event is free, so come on over.

I do hope to meet some of you there!


Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Odd knitting needles?

Staking up the Squashes. copyright Ingrid Murnane.

Reuse them for staking up your seedlings and young plants like I did this morning!
I do like to reuse and recycle.



Sunday, May 16, 2010

Design your own Knitting Chart

Have you ever been looking for the perfect charted design, but not been able to find it? Well, knitonthenet has a great resource for you to use! We have a chart creator which you can access by clicking this link.

Copyright litlnemo and used under creative commons licence.

By specifying your tension/gauge and size of the paper that you need printed, a scaled pdf will be created. All you need to do is to print it out and start designing your own knitwear.

Don't be put off by the word 'design', it's great fun. The chart maker is a really useful resource to know about, so do have a go and tell your friends too.

Happy designing,


Thursday, May 13, 2010

How Times Change

You probably all know the quintessential Pringle sweater. You know, the argyle pattern in a range of colours to suit the in-colours of the season. Here are two great videos about the company.

The first is from the British Pathe archive and dates from 1950. I think that you have to view it actually on the site, so here is the link.


The second video is by the artist, David Shrigley and I must admit that he's a favourite of mine. He was recently commissioned to produce this humourous short animation for the fashion label Pringle of Scotland, to mark their return to Milan Fashion Week this year. It is all about how jumpers and cardigans have been made over their 195 year history, and is just brilliant. Do enjoy.


Saturday, May 08, 2010

Can you help Stitchlinks?

Have you heard of Stitchlinks?
It is an online organisation set up and run by Betsan Corkhill. They aim to combine the therapeutic benefits of knitting with practical health information and support this with a secure, global friendship network. Betsan wrote an article in Issue 4 of knitonthenet about her work which you can read by clicking this link.

One of their main aims is to carry out research into the therapeutic use of knitting and stitching and to use the knowledge gained from the research to help people lead a more fulfilled life. The benefits can help everyone to find balance in life, to take control, as well as better manage illness. A large number of people already use them to manage a range of medical conditions and you can read more about their work on the Stitchlinks website.

Betsan is looking for 90 knitting volunteers who would be willing to travel to Cardiff University to take part in a study which will look at the effect of knitting on memory. It will take one and a half hours of your time and there are various time slots available.

Three separate experiments are planned, each one will need 30 different people, so we need to find 90 knitting volunteers who would be willing to travel to the university.

The time slots are

9.30 – 11am

11 – 12.30pm

12.30 – 1.30pm – break for lunch


3.00 – 4.30pm

4.30 – 6.00pm

The dates are 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 7th, 8th, 9th, 10th, 11th, 14th, 15th, 16th, 17th, 18th June

You will need to bring along a simple knitting project which doesn’t need too much concentration.

The psychologists will be giving their time free so unfortunately will be unable to reimburse travel expenses. However, Cardiff is a great city to visit for a good day out and with its new shopping mall great for a bit of retail therapy, so a lot of knitters are combining the two! It will take about 90 minutes in the lab, followed by tea and cake if desired, then the rest of the day is free.

If you are interested in helping with the study, please contact Betsan by email at Betsan(at) to let her know which date and time you are interested in coming along to and she will book you in.

Happy knitting


Wednesday, May 05, 2010

Shetland: how will the skills be passed on?

Fair Isle Gloves by Susan Crawford: Copyright Susan Crawford

Shetland's fourteen school knitting teachers are having their funding cut and are being offered redundency, according to a recent Times newspaper article. There has been a great programme of teaching traditional knitting skills in primary schools on the Islands for the past 60 years and those in the craft community have warned that a decision by the council to save £130,000 would be a disaster for Shetland's culture and economy. There is a great worry about the passing on of these traditional skills of Shetland lace knitting and Fair Isle: that an entire generation of knitters will be lost.

The art of Shetland knitting is a very particular skill and the teaching, learning and passing on of these skills can be thought of as a form of intangible cultural heritage. I wonder if, in light of this that UNESCO (the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation) may see fit to step in and safeguard Shetland knitting.

In 2006, they created something called the Masterpieces of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity. This was recognition that intangible heritage (traditional songs, stories and the passing on of skills etc) is of an equal level of importance to the World Heritage Sites (such as Stonehenge). The living heritage of knitting skills, which fall in their category of ‘traditional craftsmanship’, has been addressed by UNESCO in relation to the loom knitting traditions of Taquile in Peru and plans put in place for its safeguarding, but nothing of this kind has yet been nominated in Britain.

You might be thinking '...well we all knit don't we? We didn't need to be taught it at school.' But once this latest boom in knitting has passed, what if the techniques die out with those who knit traditional Shetland lace and Fair Isle? If those particular skills are lost, they will be difficult to recover. It is never the same to learn from a book when you could be taught from a real life person. The physical nuances and knowhow just are not the same.

What do you think?
Should knitting be saved in Shetlands schools?
Important stuff, this.


PS You can buy the pattern for Susan's Fair Isle Gloves, pictured above in the knitonthenet shop


Sunday, May 02, 2010

Wind-powered Knitting Factory

Wind powered knitting factory (detail) Copyright Merel Karhof
Here at knitonthenet we are usually all about the hand knitting, but this was too good to miss.
London based product designer, Merel Karhof has designed a wind-powered knitting maching which makes lovely scarves. You can see a video of it in action on her website here.
Isn't it clever? It reminds me of Rachael Matthews and Louise Harries' Louder than Bombs installation in which they had a bicycle-powered yarn mill. You can read Rachael's article about it here.