Giant Wool & Needles in UK Now!

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

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Biggest blanket yet!

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

Biggest Ever Blanket

I’ve just completed an order for my biggest ever extreme knitting Cable Knit blanket.

Queen size blanket in progress

Queen size blanket in progress

This is for a queen sized bed, so it measures 200 x 150 cm.

I’ve never made one this big so had to work out the pattern repeat to achieve that size.  I used my 24mm circular needles, which were handmade by my Uncle David.  I don’t have a 24mm cable needle, but for stitches this big, I don’t really need one.  I can just use my thumb or forefinger.

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This kind of knitting is not exactly portable. I knitted it into a big box and the finished blanket weighs 4kgs!

I’ve knitted quite a few of these blankets now in various colours.  Mustard yellow, grey, and pink. But the most popular colour is this cream.

That’s it for Christmas orders now. Time to relax and enjoy the season!

Till next time,

L x

Check out this lovely blog

My Giant Cable Knit blanket has been included in Anthea Willis’s blog, Forest Flower Designs.

It’s part of her feature on cable knits. Her blog is absolutely beautiful, so definitely worth a visit, even if it is on ‘the other side’!

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Right now I am trying to type with Larry on my lap. He is really too big to fit there comfortably. I ought to contain him with an arm to stop him sliding off. But he manages to hang on, until he drifts off to sleep. Then I have to catch him before he falls.

Til next time,

L x

Giant Blanket in 14 colours

It’s always good if you can offer choice to your customers. My cat baskets come in three different sizes, but the wool only comes in one colour. Dyeing it is a possibility but on the other hand I really like the wool ‘au naturel’.

However, the yarn I use for the Giant Cable Blanket is a soft courtelle which comes in 14 different colours. So why on earth not offer all those colours to my customers? I put together a colour guide for my listings:

Colour medley jpeg

 

I can also make the blanket to fit any bed: double, queen or kingsize. Then the smallest size, 4ft by 5ft, makes a lovely throw for the sofa.

Giant Cable blanket under construction

Giant Cable blanket under construction

It would be great to work with some of those bright and beautiful colours.

I notice that not all webshops are equipped for multi-choice listings. Etsy and Notonthehighstreet both offer the facility to list one item with variations. Other e-shops are not set up for this, which means you have to make a separate listing for each colour or size. This is a little inefficient, but I know this facility is under development.

Right, I am now going to attempt a giant cable knit cushion. Herbie has established himself on my lap but I think he’ll move when the giant knitting needles come out!

Till next time,

L x

FO: First Blanket Finished

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Cable knit blanket or throw worked on 25mm wooden circular needles, using a double strand of super-chunky yarn.

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The needles are very special because they were hand made by my Uncle David.  Before he retired he used to make spinning and weaving equipment in his spare time, including looms and spinning wheels.  Most notably he is the designer and maker of the Barnett Drum Carder, which became very popular in the UK spinning community.  Second-hand models are still sought-after now.  So when I was looking for large circulars and could not find any, not even on ebay, I knew who to call.

Uncle David rustled me up a pair of 25mm circulars out of scraps of beech wood: glued, turned, smoothed with 3 coats of matt varnish, and finished with brass fittings to hold the plastic piping in place.  They are absolutely beautiful. It feels very much like I am continuing a family handcrafting tradition. Using the tools that my Uncle has made connects me with the past and with ancestors I never knew. At the same time, I am making things which will hopefully last a long way into the future.

 

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