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A Cable Knit Blanket in kingsize, made in time for Christmas, in Fawn.

I am loving the drape over the sides of the bed!

The Cable Knit blanket is my bestselling knitting pattern by far, available on Etsy or Ravelry via PDF download.  I also sell it on Ebay, but due to Ebay rules cannot offer downloads, so for ebayers I print the pattern as an A5 size booklet and send in the post.

The blanket is great fun and fast to knit!  I have been using custom-made giant needles, both in pairs and circulars, and a double strand of Cygnet Seriously Chunky yarn.

But now there’s a great place in the UK to find giant yarn and giant needles.  It’s called woollymahoosive.com.  They have a range of giant yarns, from luxury merino wool to amazingly good lower-priced alternatives, all in beautiful colours.

You can also buy the giant needles there too, which are all hand-turned by the lady herself!

Kits and offers are available.  So if you’re thinking of having a go at extreme knitting but could not get hold of the yarn and needles, wait no longer!

Till next time,

L x

Knitting with super chunky oversized yarn in the UK just got a whole lot easier!

At the Knitting and Stitching show in Harrogate (on till Sunday) I met Andrea of the superbly-named Woolly Mahoosive.  Giant merino wool and 2 acrylic alternatives are her speciality.  All the yarns are super-soft and come in a range of gorgeous colours.   They are for knitting on massive 25mm – 40mm needles.  They are also perfect for arm knitting!

Check out the display:

Woolly Mahoosive pic

See the ginormous chunky wooden needles with signature cubed stoppers?  They are beautifully made from tulipwood and rosewood, and come in different lengths.  These needles are just what I was looking for when I started extreme knitting.  There were none available commercially at that time, so after I got lucky on ebay with a pair of wooden 25mm, I had my uncle make me a set of double pins and circulars in 2 big sizes.

So how did Andrea get hold of this array of giant knitting needles?  Does she have a helpful relative beavering away in a workshop? No, she made them herself.  Yes indeed.  Having no experience of woodwork, she informed herself, got hold of the equipment and set to work.

This kind of initiative and dedication is truly impressive.  Their prices are utterly reasonable too.  Bloggers, I would urge you to pop over to Twitter and give them a follow. They deserve it!

My head is now popping with ideas about what to make with these fabulous yarns.  Inspiration – that’s what the Knitting show is for!

Till next time

L x

I’ve just finished this Cable Knit blanket for an Etsy customer. It’s the biggest one I’ve ever made.  It fits a 5 ft wide double bed, with a 10 inch drape over either side.  There are 5 cable columns requiring almost 100 stitches.

Blanket in progress

Blanket in progress

I used my 25mm circular needles which my Uncle made for me on his lathe.

In terms of hours spent knitting, the blanket doesn’t take that long to make.  But in this case it took me 4 weeks to complete, because I was away for a week on a business trip, and then I was on holiday for another week. During the time away, I had quite a lot of ‘downtime’ which would have been perfect for knitting, but unfortunately an extreme knitting blanket isn’t exactly  portable!  I ordered 5 kgs of supersoft chunky yarn and I used every last metre. I was joining in new balls of yarn every 5 or 6 rows.

I knitted it into a large cardboard box, occasionally spreading it out onto a bed to measure progress and check for mistakes (luckily for me there weren’t any – undoing this beast would be a bit of a nightmare!)

After casting off, there were seemingly hundreds of yarn ends to weave in, which was quite an undertaking in itself.

I love the result though, and I think my customer has chosen a great colour. The blanket is winging its way to her now, and I really hope she likes it.

Till next time,

L x

Whew! It’s taken me long enough to finalise this design, but here it is.  Listed and live on Etsy and Not On The High Street.

I’ve even updated my profile to show them off.

Mad Cat Baskets in 5 funky colours

Mad Cat Baskets in 5 funky colours

After getting to grips with the quirks of t-shirt yarn, I’m really enjoying working with it. Many, many hours of working and reworking and unpicking and re-calculating have gone into these five cat beds. Because the yarn is totally unreliable – could be super-chunky, or just a bit chunky – each basket comes out a different size.

Yellow with pink n purple 2

But they will all comfortably accommodate a small or medium-sized cat.

And Herbie, at a push.

All tucked in!

All tucked in!

Till next time,

L x

Some fab new colours have arrived from Hoooked Zpagetti.

New arrivals

New arrivals

So far I’ve made a purple basket

Herbie purple basket 1and a yellow one. But Herbie has chosen purple.

Herbie purple & yellow basketI love the bright colours and how the light makes the giant stitches pop out.

Herbie purple basket closeupMore colours coming soon – and a cat cave!

Till next time

L x

How about a shocking pink knitted cat basket?  I think so!

Herbie pink basket

The basket is normal-cat-sized.  It’s just that Herbie is BIG.  Still, he’s happy to model for me.

DSC00460

The pink basket is going to be part of my new range of cat beds in all the colours of the rainbow.  I’m using upcycled t-shirt yarn, and it has many little quirks.  One of them is that each cone of yarn is a slightly different thickness. Which means that every time I start a new basket, I have to assess the thickness of the yarn and decide whether to use a double strand or not.

On the plus side, the range of colours is glorious and never-ending, so inspiration is never far away!

IMG_4025

Oh, and Monty likes the pink basket too. But he kind of flattens it.

Monty pink basket

More yarn, bigger baskets!

Till next time,

L x

I knitted my cat basket in t-shirt yarn. It turned out much better than I expected.

photo 3

I have had this cone of t-shirt yarn on the shelf for more than 6 months.  I never thought it would work. T-shirt yarn is quite floppy, not stiff like the semi-felted wool I was using before. That’s why I thought it would never work as a basket – the sides have to stand up unsupported. But I was wrong. The sides stand up beautifully.

Until Larry came along and curled up on top of it.

Larry flattens the new basket

Larry flattens the new basket

It was good to get Larry’s seal of approval.  But I have to make an adjustment. The new yarn is thinner than the semi-felted wool, so the basket knits up smaller. Larry is using the entire basket as a pillow.

Time to make a bigger basket.  Here goes with the next size up. I’ve got just enough t-shirt yarn left to make the medium size. This works out a lot better for Larry.

Larry in the medium basket

Larry in the medium basket

The t-shirt yarn is delightfully easy to work with, maybe because of the generous stretch it has. Fortunately I can use the same set of doublepins I already have. Most exciting of all, t-shirt yarn is easily available in every colour under the sun. Wow, how exciting is that?

I went online and ordered a load of fabulous colours.

Knitting – me and you are back on!

Till next time,

L x

 

 

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