Wed, Aug 30, 2023
September's always a great time to get back into knitting with that feeling of the seasons changing. And a great time for light knit layers!
I can't take much credit for the knitted waiscoat (vest? sweater vest?) pictured here - it is my mother's knitting. Each knit of hers is unique; she has a sort of template stored in her mind, and then adds Aran cabling as she chooses. This particular waistcoast is two-tone (the back is the same colour as the button band on the front) because she wanted to make the most of smaller amounts of wool she had in stock. Having mentioned the back, I might as well show you!
Wed, Jul 12, 2023
Thank you for the great welcome for my latest pattern, the Little Seagull Shawl (pictured above). You may remember I wrote about it in my last post; it's a quick one-skein knit which is great for lightweight summer knitting. The pattern alternates sections where you have to pay some attention and sections where you don't. I put together a little collage of some of the shawls knit by my test knitters:
Mon, Jun 5, 2023
Summer has truly arrived in Ireland - certainly in the West, with a sunny spell lasting *two weeks*!
Even though I sometimes feel like knitting less in hot weather, I had a few new designs created in the cooler weather which will gradually make an appearance here : )
First up is the hat pictured above, the Doolin Beanie. I think of this as a sister pattern to the Aran Watchcap, as it features such a similar cable, but the cable is one stitch wide instead of two stitches. It creates a cable with less bulk, and allows for some more repeats - I like both of them, I must say, and love that both are unisex designs. I was running short on inspiration for the name, so I had a little competition on my Instagram & Facebook pages to name the pattern; I thought Doolin was a great choice, with Doolin being the ferry point closest to Inis Oírr. FYI - I try to have slightly different content on all my social media channels, so that you can follow more than one and not just see the same on each one.
Thu, Apr 6, 2023
Spring is definitely in the air, with the Easter long weekend very close. I hope you get the chance to recharge the batteries a little, whether you celebrate Easter or not.
It feels like I've been mentioning the Aran Watchcap for such a long time, but the test knit call was issued over a week ago, and some wonderful examples have already been shared with me. The pattern will be out soon, and I am so glad to be at that stage! Thankfully very little re-editing will be needed after the test, and then it will be on to new ideas : )
It's not the Aran Watchcap pictured above though, but a hat pattern of mine which was originally published last December in Knotions online magazine. It's actually quite a good knit for this time of year too, as it is nice and light.
Mon, Mar 13, 2023
I'm happy to say that I am again part of the Irish KAL (Knit along) this year, which is being organised by Sionnach Yarns. Sophie is a wonderful dyer who lives in the Burren, and for whom I have created two designs in the past, the Moher Beanie (pictured above) and the Burren Beanie. As Sophie says about the Irish KAL: The idea is to either use yarn from a dyer based in Ireland (ROI and NI) or a pattern, knitting or crochet from a designer based in Ireland. Or both! Casting on takes place on March 17th and ends on June 3rd.
Fri, Dec 16, 2022
The Craft Fair was a great experience - it was SO LONG since I had done a craft fair that I really didn't know how it would go, but I had such lovely visitors to my stall that the weekend flew by. It was also great to chat to other local crafters; and I got wonderful help from several of them in setting up my stall (I had put too much faith in command strips, which are supposed to support pictures etc. - maybe a flexible partition wall is not their ideal surface!)
One of the offers I had for the Craft Fair was a discount code for my knitting patterns, and of course, it applies to my dear subscribers as well. If you would like 20% off my knitting patterns, use the code LOCAL at the checkout (you should see a box with the option of entering a coupon code at the checkout). The code is valid until (checks notes) the end of Sunday Dec 13th GMT.
And now for news relating to the fancy photo (sneak preview) at the top of the newsletter - I will have the cream coloured hat (bottom left in the photo) in the upcoming issue of Knotions online magazine. The Aer Beanie is a 1 skein knit, using fingering weight wool, and is a fun, quick knit featuring cable 'bubbles' which gradually rise towards the crown. It will be out towards the end of this month; I will mention it a LOT more on my social media closer to the time, but I wanted to give you the sneak preview before it became old news.
As always, thank you for subscribing and reading this far - and if you have enjoyed it, please feel free to forward it to any friends you think would enjoy it. I will be back in a month's time, which will be in a whole new year, crazy as that sounds to me (is it just me, or did 2022 pass by at a faster speed than usual?!)
Tue, Nov 8, 2022
Two new patterns available (mittens and chunky beanie), and news of an upcoming Craft Fair : )
Mon, Oct 3, 2022
We are really into autumn now, and I don't know about you, but the knitting mojo returns for me after fading a little in the summer months! You saw my new beanie design in my last post - the Ballybrit Beanie. I'm happy to say it has since been released - with such helpful input from my test knitters. They really are such a valuable part of the knitting design process, and I have been blessed with the different people who have volunteered their time over the years.
Wed, Aug 31, 2022
I hope you've had a lovely summer, and are ready for one of the best things about autumn - the knitting! I've been working on a new beanie design - the Ballybrit Beanie. It has some similarities to my Salthill Beanie, but has another twist in each cable, and quite different crown shaping. It's knit in the round using Aran weight yarn - but the orange sample here was actually knit using two strands of fingering weight yarn (which results in Aran weight yarn). I used some of my favourite yarns in these samples - two yarns by Donegal Yarns (Soft Donegal & Donegal Wool Spinning Co.), Quince & Co. Lark, and Brooklyn Tweed Shelter. I will be issuing a test call very soon on my Instagram and Facebook pages, so please keep an eye out if you're interested in being a tester : ) The hat will be a one-skein knit using Aran or worsted weight yarn, knit in the round on two sizes of circular needle (4.5mm and 5mm, or US 7 & 8).
Fri, Aug 5, 2022
The Beirt Aran Beanie has officially been released - maybe in time to get a head start (pun intended!) on autumn and winter knitting! The Beanie pattern also includes instructions on creating a matching cowl. There were some beautiful versions created by my test knitters, which I included in a Reel on my Instagram page.
I've got a new hat pattern which I will be testing in the next week or so, a lovely cabled beanie (which is still nameless). I will be issuing the test call on my Instagram and Facebook pages, so please feel free to follow there if you are interested in taking part. It will be a one-skein knit using Aran or worsted weight yarn, knit in the round on two sizes of circular needle (4.5mm and 5mm, or US 7 & 8).
I also received some more Aran jumpers from my mother, which I am gradually adding to the shop. Not yet listed are a light grey cardigan and rich purple sweater - but they will be added soon. The funny thing is that photographing knits works much better using natural light on overcast days - so while I do enjoy the sunshine, I can get held up waiting for a cloudy day to take good photographs!