Don’t Miss Our 100th Episode Party?!?

Don’t Miss Our 100th Episode Party?!?

Tonight is the 100th episode of this thing that Loraine, from Woolly Madly Deeply and I do. We do it on a Thursday evening and a Sunday afternoon. And we do it live. That is a live stream podcast in our Knitting Across the Pennines Facebook group. Have you seen us do it yet? If you haven’t, then this is the perfect time to join us. Celebrate our 100th episode with us!

We started Knitting Across the Pennines way back in February. In the elapsed time from our 1st to our 100th episode the world has become a very different place. We have a very laid back format, just some general chit chat like you would hear at any knit night. Mainly about knitting with some crochet and sewing thrown in there. We show WIPs and FOs. We talk about yarns and patterns. Both those we love and those that have disappointed us. You can watch all those early episodes on You Tube.

Sometimes we have a real treat from Loraine. What she doesn’t know about knitting and yarns isn’t worth knowing. She has even been on the telly news! She has given us hints, tips and tutorials on all sorts of techniques. And she is spot on with her knowledge of colours.

Some of our 100th Episodes highlights….

As we have reached our 100th Episode I thought I would share with you some of the crazy things we talk about.

In Episode 36 Loraine share with us her story of explaining climbing techniques at a funeral (don’t watch whilst taking a drink!)

Whilst in Episode 88 I show off my cowl that I have been developing the pattern for. Loraine wasn’t impressed with the look when I wore it as a headband and compared me to Hilda Ogden! How rude!

And I can’t not share with you Episode 97 where I confused an Excel pivot table with a lazy Susan!

Future 100th Episodes

On a Thursday evening we tend to try and have a bit of a virtual knit night. We all grab a beverage, often a huge bucket of tea but sometimes something more of an adult version. We grab a WIP, usually something that isn’t too complicated or needs too much concentration. And we chat. Our regulars show us what they have been working on and their finished items. We also share what has been happening during the week. We do have a giggle! And we hope to continue to enjoy ourselves for the next 100th episode.

On Sundays we will share patterns that we have seen and liked. Yarns we have tried. Loraine might share a tutorial for a skill with us. And sometimes we have a guest. In the past we have had a couple of pattern designers, and a yarn dyer.

Going forward we would love your ideas. Is there something you would like some hints and tips about? Is there a designer you would love to see as a guest? Or someone who makes project bags or stitch markers? What kind of patterns do you like? Would you like us to share our favourite kids knits or relaxing crochet project ideas? We love to hear from you so please get in touch.

Where Can You Find Us?

If you would like to join us live we are in our Facebook group – Knitting Across the Pennines. If you join our group you will receive an invitation to join our live streams and you will be able to chat with us via the comments. If you can’t join us live you can watch us on catch up. Or if you would prefer you can watch any of our videos on You Tube. Leave us a comment to let us know what you thought. We have a Ravelry Group too! Come and join us and join the party!

Coming Soon…

Just a heads up that at the end of the month I will be releasing a new pattern called Knickers! If you haven’t done so yet now is the time to sign up for my newsletter. Subscribers will receive and exclusive discount coupon! You can sign up here – Newsletter.

If You Liked This Post…

If you enjoyed reading this post please check out the rest of my blog – Emma’s Blog. One of my recent posts was about Patterns You Might Have Missed or you might enjoy one of my earlier posts about Who Taught Me to Knit.

Follow me on social media! I love to see your WIPs and FOs. Please find me on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. Don’t forget to tag me!

Are You Addicted to Test Knitting?

Are You Addicted to Test Knitting?

This week I opened test knitting for a new cowl pattern called Meet Me Inside.  I will be talking more about the pattern itself in an upcoming blog post.  But it got me thinking about the whole process of getting a pattern ready and released.

How many of you have ever taken part in a test knit before?  Do you even know how to take part in test knitting?  And do you know how fun it can be?

It’s How I Got Started!

I have been designing my own knitting patterns since 2013 and I love doing it.  As far as I am concerned it is the best job in the world.  But before I was writing my own patterns I spent a lot of time test knitting and sample knitting for other designers.  One of them being Marie Wallin.

Sample Knitting Isn’t Test Knitting

There is a difference between sample and test knitting and you might not realise the distinction.  Sample knitting is where a designer sends you the yarn and pattern, you make the sample and then send it back.  When I did this for Marie Wallin I would be making the first sample, so there wouldn’t be a photo of the finished item for me to look at.  I loved doing this, it was almost like taking part in a MKAL.  

One of the advantages of taking on sample knitting is the fact that you are usually being paid to knit.  And who hasn’t wanted to be able to earn money from doing your favourite hobby.  You get to see patterns before anyone else, and it is fun to see a new sample taking shape.

But there are down sides too.  You don’t really have much choice about your knitting.  You are told which yarn to use with which patterns and, of course, you don’t get to keep the sample after all that hard work you have put in.

Some patterns that I made the samples for are Thyme Wrap  And Hazel as well as Alice   I have made quite a few more but I will let you have a nosy through My Projects if you are interested.

So What is Test Knitting?

When you take part in test knitting you don’t get paid.  But you do have a lot more control.  You can pick which yarn you want to use.  Some designers may ask you to use a particular fibre or company, but most are very flexible.  I like test knitters to choose the yarn they would have if they had bought my pattern. 

You will usually get a choice in the size you make.  As many patterns come in more than one size designers like to try and get as many of those sizes tested as possible.  So if you want to make something for your 4 year old granddaughter it is likely you can find a test that will allow you to do that.

You choose which patterns you want to make.  If you are interested there are groups on Ravelry and Facebook where you can see tests that are open.  You can also get in touch with designers that you like and ask if they have a list of knitters that they contact when they open a test.  I know that I keep a list and I have a thread in my Ravelry group where anyone can ask to be added to that list of Test Knitters. I always earburn those people on it when I am looking to fill up spots so they get to learn about it first.  

Best of all, when you take part in test knitting you get to keep the finished item.  Many knitters who are on a budget find that test knitting helps their pattern budget go further.  In exchange for a bit of your time to read a pattern for sense and to see if the instructions accurately help you to make a thing, you will get the pattern in your Ravelry library on release.  And many designers offer codes for other patterns by way of a thank you for good project pages and feedback.

One of the reasons knitters get involved in test knitting is that not only do you get to have a sneak peek at new patterns coming out, but you will be involved in the design process.  Some knitters find it quite addictive!

If you would like to give it a try but have never been involved in a test before then have no fear!  Designers are a friendly bunch and will guide you through the process.  If you would like to be involved in the test knitting phase of my Meet Me Inside cowl pattern then please sign up!  I would love to have you join in.  The Test Thread is running on Ravelry or you can send me an email.

 

If you enjoyed this post then please take a look at my others – Emma’s Blog

And if you are making one of my designs please don’t forget to share photos with me on!  I am @allneedles on all social media places.

Recent Knitting Patterns I Have Loved

Recent Knitting Patterns I Have Loved

A Peek at my Project Pages

Apart from writing and developing my own knitting patterns I also love to knit other people’s designs. This week I thought I would give you a sneak peek at my latest Ravelry projects of Knits I have loved over the summer.

Edythe

The first pattern I would like to share with you is Edythe by Jenny Weibe. I got this pattern way back in January when I found out that my step-daughter was having a second baby. But it was early days and we didn’t know what she would be having, so I didn’t cast on until June when I had been given permission to buy an abundance of pink baby yarn.

The pattern has options to make a top, tunic or dress. I made the 3 month size in the dress option. Obviously the ruffles are super cute, and they inspired me to write the pattern Knickers! There is a sneak peak at this pattern in my blog post What New Patterns You Might Have Missed. But I also really loved the feature in this knitting pattern that was the off centre button band on the back. You can check out my project page for Edythe on Ravelry.

Fable Tee

The next knitting pattern that I loved was Fable by Alicia Plummer. I made this using Rowan Pure Life, a cotton yarn that I bought at Woolly Madly Deeply. The pattern and yarn were just the perfect pairing. I made the 36″ but I will admit I did add an extra inch or so length to the body. I love the detail on this tee before you do the ribbing.

It is a top-down pattern and anyone who knows me will know just how much I love to knit stocking stitch in the round! You can check out my project page on Ravelry.

The Baby Ballet Wrap Cardigan

Next comes another cute little baby knitting pattern for my future granddaughter. The Baby Ballet Wrap Cardigan is by Loraine Birchall.

As soon as I saw this I knew I had to knit one! My step-daughter had specifically asked for knits in pink and grey and so this pattern was perfect for showing off the two colours together. I went for the pink as the main colour and the grey as the contrast. It is worked from the bottom up in one piece to the armholes. The sleeves are picked up and knitted rather than being worked flat and seamed.

I added two cute buttons to the front and I also put a little popper on the inside wrap to keep it looking nice when the baby is moving around in it. You can check out my project page on Ravelry.

Wyeth Kids Test Knit

The last pattern I want to share with you isn’t available just yet as it is a test knit. I saw a post on Instagram by Alicia Plummer asking for test knitters for her upcoming kids version of her Wyeth pattern.

I thought it was fantastic timing as I was thinking about making something for my grandson. I had, at this point, knitted plenty of pink things. I wanted something in blue for a special little boy so that he didn’t feel left out when the baby came and was given lots of presents.

I knitted it in Malabrigo Rios in the colourway Azules. It was a little more on the purple side in real life than I would have liked and it doesn’t really show the pattern as well as a solid would, but Rios is one of my favourite yarns and always a pleasure to knit with. Look out for when Alicia releases this knitting pattern. My Ravelry project has some info so far!

If You Liked this Post….

Please check out my other blog posts here – Emma’s Blog.

I love to see your WIPs and FOs. I am @allneedles on all social media. Don’t forget to tag me!

Don’t Miss Our 100th Episode Party?!?

Knitting Across the Pennines – Are You Missing the Party?!?

There is this thing that Loraine, from Woolly Madly Deeply and I do. Its usually on a Thursday evening and a Sunday afternoon. And we do it live. That is a live stream podcast in our Knitting Across the Pennines Facebook group. Have you seen us do it yet?

We started Knitting Across the Pennines way back in February when the world was a very different place. Just some general chit chat. Mainly about knitting with some crochet and sewing thrown in there. We show WIPs and FOs. We talk about yarns and patterns. Both those we love and those that have disappointed us. You can watch all those early episodes on You Tube.

Sometimes we have a real treat from Loraine. What she doesn’t know about knitting and yarns isn’t worth knowing. She has even been on the telly news! She has given us hints, tips and tutorials on all sorts of techniques. And she is spot on with her knowledge of colours.

This Week We Did This….

In Episode 89 of Knitting Across the Pennines, which we recorded on Sunday 6th September, we discussed autumn and winter trends for 2020. Loraine did a brilliant presentation on combining the colours.

I made a Pinterest board with ideas of how to wear (and not wear) the colours. Although my contribution was no where near as good as Loraine’s!

And even better, Loraine wrote a blog post on her website. You can find it here – Loraine’s Blog.

Future Episodes

On a Thursday evening we tend to try and have a bit of a virtual knit night. We all grab a beverage, often a huge bucket of tea but sometimes something more of an adult version. We grab a WIP, usually something that isn’t too complicated or needs too much concentration. And we chat. Our regulars show us what they have been working on and their finished items. We also share what has been happening during the week. We do have a giggle!

On Sundays we will share patterns that we have seen and liked. Yarns we have tried. Loraine might share a tutorial for a skill with us. And sometimes we have a guest. In the past we have had a couple of pattern designers, and a yarn dyer.

Going forward we would love your ideas. Is there something you would like some hints and tips about? Is there a designer you would love to see as a guest? Or someone who makes project bags or stitch markers? What kind of patterns do you like? Would you like us to share our favourite kids knits or relaxing crochet project ideas? We love to hear from you.

Where Can You Find Us?

If you would like to join us live we are in our Facebook group – Knitting Across the Pennines. If you join our group you will receive an invitation to join our live streams and you will be able to chat with us via the comments. If you can’t join us live you can watch us on catch up. Or if you would prefer you can watch any of our videos on You Tube. Leave us a comment to let us know what you thought. We have a Ravelry Group too! Come and join us and join the party!

Coming Soon…

Just a heads up that at the end of the month I will be releasing a new pattern called Vera. If you haven’t done so yet now is the time to sign up for my newsletter. Subscribers will receive and exclusive discount coupon! You can sign up here – Newsletter.

If You Liked This Post…

If you enjoyed reading this post please check out the rest of my blog – Emma’s Blog. My last post was about Patterns You Might Have Missed or you might enjoy one of my earlier posts about Who Taught Me to Knit.

Follow me on social media! I love to see your WIPs and FOs. Please find me on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. Don’t forget to tag me!

What New Patterns You Might Have Missed

What New Patterns You Might Have Missed

As promised in my last post I thought I should give you a bit of a round up of all the patterns I released over the summer. If you are anything like me you will have been distracted by the nice weather. Maybe you were working in the garden, or just enjoying some time relaxing.

My Loyal Royal Subject

This pattern was released way back in April. Its a cowl knitted in the round with a provisional cast on and the stitches grafted together at the end. It was knitted in Cascade Eco+ and designed to go with my headband You’re My Favourite Subject.

Both of these patterns are named for one of my favourite songs from the musical Hamilton. I was listening to the soundtrack a lot whilst working on these designs and so it seemed right to name them for the King George song. This pattern can be found on Ravelry and Payhip.

Muzies

This next pattern was one that was designed with my granddaughter in mind. I was well underway with making cardigans and other bits and bobs for the upcoming new baby. One thing I thought would come in useful was some cotton cloths. When my grandson was little he used to have a muslin with him all the time and he called it his Muzie. So that was the name I gave these.

The pattern is for a set of three cloths, each one with a slightly different stitch pattern. They are knitted in 100% cotton which means they can be washed safely at 60 degrees. They can be so versatile. You could use them as a comforter. Such as for little preemie babies to keep the parents’ scent near them at all times. They can be used as comforters, as cloths to clean up little ones or even as wash cloths.

You can find this pattern on Ravelry and Payhip.

Mabel

Mabel was a dress that I released in July. Again, it was designed for my granddaughter. The skirt is knitted first, in the round and then the body is knitted flat. I love the way that the skirt flares much bigger than the waist.

Knitted in Baby DK yarn you will find the perfect colour for the little one in your family. The pattern comes in sizes from Preemie up to 12 months. Every little girl deserves a cute dress!

The pattern can be found on Ravelry and Payhip.

Balla

This pattern was designed as a special request from my step-daughter for her daughter. I had previously made a sleep sack, Cadalach, for her son when he was born and she wanted another one. This time I designed the sleeping bag to go around the baby from side to side rather than head to toe.

Knitted in baby chunky yarn it is a quick knit despite its relatively large size. It will keep babies nice and cosy in their pushchair or pram. However, it is not recommended for unsupervised sleeping.

Balla is available on Ravelry and Payhip.

In the Pipeline

I have a few patterns that I am currently working on, in various stages of production. I have a few more baby items to come but also so other projects. Vera, a jumper, will be coming at the end of the month. I am also starting to work on a couple of cowls and hats.

Currently my patterns are available on Ravelry, Payhip and LoveCrafts. But the exciting news is that over the next few weeks I will be working to add them here on my website too. Soon you will be able to check out directly from here! Balla is the first of my patterns to be available.

Have You Signed Up for My Newsletter?

If you haven’t done so yet, now is the perfect time to sign up for my newsletter. Not only will you be the first to know when I have released a new patter but you will also receive exclusive codes. There is a 50% off code when you first sign up and all my new patterns have a 25% off code which is only available to subscribers. You can sign up here!

If you enjoyed this post why not check out the rest of my blog? Such as this one where I talk about what I have been up to over the summer – So Long My Summer Love

And if you have made it to the end I have some news for you! My granddaughter was born at the end of August. She is called Hope Samantha and is absolutely gorgeous!!

So Long my Summer Love…

So Long my Summer Love…

Hello My Lovelies!

Long time no read!  I know, you have been there all along and it has me that has been AWOL.  I have had a super busy summer, but on this late Bank Holiday Monday I thought it was about time I got back in touch with you and told you what I have been up to!

Gardening, Gardening, Gardening…..

I haven’t been sitting on my bottom and binge watching TV all this time. OK, so I have done a bit of that. But I have been working hard too. My garden fence was falling down and it really needed sorting out. After three separate conversations with my neighbour who point blank refused to discuss the matter I decided to do what I could with the budget I had in the most environmentally friendly way I could.

The Work Begins

I got a few quotes for new fencing which were in the thousands. In the end one guy said it wasn’t worth getting a new fence because my neighbour’s garden is subsiding into ours. Unless we spent a lot of money on a retaining wall then the issue would only happen again. And still the answer when I tried to speak to her was “Its not my problem.”

So after speaking with my brother-in-law we decided we would take down the fence, but up a chain link to keep Arthur in and plant a hedge instead. This would be better because it would look nice, it would stabilise the ground and it wouldn’t cost the thousands for a wall that I simply didn’t have.

Not an Overnight Fix

Now we had a plan, but it wasn’t going to be an overnight fix. My husband is still stuck at work in Saudi. I still haven’t seen him since 2nd January. So any work that needed to get done would be down to me, my teenagers, my brother in law and any workmen we could get. Post-lockdown it has been difficult to get tradesmen as they are so in demand.

The kids and I painted the fences that were going to stay. We built raised beds and we planted all sorts of flowers, fruit, veg and herbs. It was starting to look good, but the hedge was so over grown and it was just too much for us to cut. We were able to get someone in to cut it and a couple of trees, but we had to remove the cuttings. It took weeks!

Eventually between working and helping his mum and daughters my brother in law was able to help me take down the wonky fence. And behind it we discovered the reason why it was falling down between myself and the neighbour but nowhere else. She had been growing ivy up it and shoving bricks in the gap that was getting bigger as the ground continued to subside. This meant I was even happier that I wasn’t spending thousands on a new fence.

We were able to get a couple of guys who do fences to concrete in some posts for us, and then my brother in law and his mate came round and put up the chain fence.

The kids and I then built raised bed and moved two Mud Mountains that were delivered to the front of the house in to the back garden. During this time I pulled my back quite badly and ended up having to go to hospital for treatment. I felt more guilty that I had to leave the teenagers to plant all the hedges that had arrived but they couldn’t wait. If they stayed in pots until I recovered they would be likely to die off.

The grass has become extremely patchy and the original hedge needs another trim, but overall I am really pleased with the new structure and interest to my garden. I will be planting wild flowers and grasses towards the back of the garden and only cutting the front bit of lawn from now on. The hedge and flowers all being part of the plan to encourage more wildlife into my garden.

There Has Been Some Knitting Too…

During this time I have also been knitting and releasing new patterns. But I think I will save all that yarny loveliness for my next post. I promise not to leave it so long before we talk again…

If You Enjoyed This Post…

If you enjoyed reading this post then why not check out my others – Emma’s Blog

Check out my Ravelry Store and my new Payhip Store!

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