I received a letter from America, well an email from America, from a lovely lady in search of a discontinued yarn which I imported from America and she needed to finish a very large project.
But that wouldn’t have been so catchy and it also didn’t link beautifully to the The Proclaimers hit song Letter From America. For those who know them, you’re welcome, feel free to hum along for the rest of the day. For those who don’t, I’ve embedded a YouTube video link below, enjoy the ear worm :).
Back to a letter from America
Kelly was desperate for just a few more balls of Lion Brand Wool-Ease Chunky, in the Willow colour. It’s a soft, muted green and so pretty. I was keen to know what Kelly was making and she replied to say it was needed for a blanket she was crocheting for her son. It’s been a long project which she has been worked on over several years. It’s an heirloom piece which I’m sure her son will love, use for years and pass down to his own children over the years.
It’s a real labour of love and will be a treasured memory of home when her son leaves to continue his education, to go to work etc. Like a warm hug from Mom, it’ll always be an anchor to his family.
Much like a letter from America, it’ll be treasured on good days, keep him warm when he’s unwell, be a play mat for his kids or a fabulous snuggle blanket when watching TV or playing games with friends. We all need a virtual warm hug from home and this really fits the bill.
The blanket fits nicely with an overhang on a King Size bed and used a few yarns which Kelly had picked up on sale over the years and in colours chosen by her son. I’m so pleased that Kelly has allowed me to chat to you about the blanket, but now I’ll let her tell you in her own words:
“I really, greatly appreciate your help in buying that yarn! I started digging through my old photos for when I began this project, and it was November 2017. I attached the photo of the stack of yarn from when I first bought it. I can only guesstimate that I spent about 85 hours on it, but that’s only just a guess.
For the body of the blanket, I used Lion Brand Wool-Ease Chunky in Willow (light, mossy green), and Wool-Ease Thick & Quick in Kale (dark green) and Mesquite (brown).
I didn’t use a pattern. I just chained until I was satisfied with how wide it was. I wanted it to be wide enough to cover a king sized bed with plenty of overhang on the sides. I used a double crochet/chain 1 repeat throughout.
For the border, I used Caron One Pound in Espresso (brown). For the first row on the border, I did 3 SC stitches in each chain space of the blanket body. In each corner, I put one extra SC. On each of the next three rows, I used double crochets. In each corner stitch, I did a DC, TC, DC in the same stitch. It helped keep the corners squared. I ended it with a row of SC.
I’m very happy with how it turned out and even happier that it’s finally DONE. Buying all that yarn on clearance was nice at first, until I couldn’t find more of it when I ran short. 🤣 Thanks again for having what I believe to be the last 7 skeins of Willow on Earth.
This blanket is so, so warm and soft. I really wanted to make my son something that he could use & enjoy for many years to come. With Ohio fall weather quickly approaching, I think it’s done just in time!”
I have only one ball of the yarn left, some Wool-Ease Chunky in Willow, if anyone needs it for a project? Lion Brand have a great range of free patterns on their website and great advice on yarn substitution.
Thank you so much to Kelly for her Letter From America, the beautiful photos and sharing her fabulous blanket story with us.
What will you make for your family?
Lion Brand Yarns
Lion Brand Yarns, including Vanna’s Choice, Wool-Ease, Wool-Ease Thick n Quick, Wool-Ease Chunky, Vanna’s Colors, Babysoft, Baby Wool
A quick round up of just a few of my favourite cardigan patterns in August 2020. Click on the designer’s name to go to their Ravelry.com store or on the image for that pattern to go to the pattern page on Ravelry.
Michele says this can be made to any size, so doesn’t quote a size range and is part of an ebook collection which is great value. It’s crocheted with DK weight yarn and very adaptable in terms of fit/size.
This is a great basic cardigan to wrap yourself in while you’re lounging around the house or running errands. It uses Lion Brand Vanna’s Choice or similar heavy worsted/Aran weight yarn, 6.5mm/7mm hooks for a quick and easy project.
Crocheted with Lion Brand Jeans, which sounds like it could be similar to Stylecraft’s Jeanie Aran yarn, this is an affordable yet stylish piece for every day. Sized XS to 3XL and it looks like it would be easy to upsize.
I liked the dolman sleeves and casual shape of this one, I can see my friend Helen loving it and it might even talk her into doing some crochet. Sizing is based on the high hip measurement (where the bone is either side of your tummy) and runs from 30-55″. It’s fingering weight yarn which gives it an amazing drape, I really like this one.
I almost included this in the knit collection when I look at patterns yesterday but when I looked again, I realised it was crochet and loved it even more. 4ply/fingering weight yarn, 3.5mm hook and with a wonderful drape, a great way to use up washable sock yarns.
This pattern is free, sized from 36-56″ bust/chest and I really like the stitch pattern, simple yet effective. Drop sleeves, worked flat and bottom up. I like this denim colour, very easy to wear with jeans or a pretty dress.
I hope you like this latest round up of some of my many, many favourites and find something that you love as much as I do.
Summer top patterns I love for 2020, this includes but summer top knitting and crochet patterns. Feel free to click the links below and skip to the craft that interests you, or if you’re like me and bicraftual, enjoy them all.
Summer Top Knitting Patterns I love for 2020
First up is Seven Senses by Anne B Hanssen a very pretty lace yoke top with short sleeves (you could add length if you wanted) and worked from the top down in the round. The hem and sleeves are finished with an icord bind off, but you could easily go for garter or ribbing if you preferred. It’s a design that’s easy to adapt and being top down you can try on as you go.
Last week I finished knitting my 3rd Edie by Isabell Kraemer, it’s my go-to Summer Top pattern and very easy to adapt to fit your body shape. My latest Edie is knitted with some Bamboo Cotton 4ply yarn in a coral colourway. I am super pleased with it. I’ll post a photo when I can get my son to take one of me wearing it, but for now, enjoy Isabell wearing hers. It’s top down in the round and features a simple slip stitch pattern which also helps with any spiral effect caused by working in the round. My previous two Edie’s were knitted with Drops Belle in the darker purple and Wendy Supreme Cotton/Silk in a colour called linen which is like warm wheat. I wear them both a lot in Summer and they both wash beautifully.
A new release from last week caught my eye, another Jutta Hinterm Stein triumph called Hot in the City, it’s knitting top down in 4ply/fingering weight yarn, linen or similar with good drape would work well. It has a V neck and a V pattern on the upper back and lower body. I’ve knitted some of her other designs and the patterns are very well written.
Another favourite is the Lesley Tee by Noma Ndlovu, with it’s fabulous swing shape and fabulous twisted stitch panels to create beautiful vertical lines on the lower body. It’s stunning. Worked from the top down, raglan sleeves and easy to fit to your body shape.
I love Jessie Maed’s summer tops but this one is my favourite. The Ripple Bralette has a simple ribbed pattern to add vertical lines and lots of stretch to skim your curves.
I love this top, it’s called Summer Sorrel and is another size inclusive pattern from Wool & Pine. This project by DrSabrina uses the most beautiful gradient set and the colours look amazing on her. It’s a style that suits many body shapes and great for busting some stash.
I’ve knitted Summerline by Hintern Stein using the teal colour of Drops Belle, it’s a fabulous design with super clever construction and knitted top down with options for shaping the body to suit you and also bust shaping. I wear mine a lot and everyone who sees it loves it.
The Radiance Tank pattern by Rebecca McKenzie is a very pretty summer top to knit, it’s worked bottom up with a charted design on the hem, with it’s flattering scoop neck you could knit this in one of your Wow colours or a great neutral to go with everything.
One of my good friends from the Gift Along is Nidhi Kansal, she’s a regular part of Team Bundle and has some fabulous designs. It’s hard to choose but the Summer of ’16 top is a winner with it’s dipped him, texture pattern down the front and beautiful edgings will be a wow knit to wear in any summer. Check out her designs, in particular the Smriti shawl which is utterly fabulous.
I knitted a Yume top for myself and finished it earlier this year. I have some terracotta coloured cotton set aside to knit another for Summer, it’s another Isabell Kraemer design and really easy to adapt to fit.
This spectacular sideways knit summer top from Jimenez Joseph will turns heads for all the right reasons. It’s called Pixham and features a beautiful pattern running over the shoulders and across the upper body on both back and front, it’s gorgeous.
Amira by Ranee Mueller is a pretty lace top, no body shaping, but with negative or no ease will skim those curves beautifully. The boatneck is flattering, it’s worked flat and seamed and is an easy to remember lace pattern, you’ll be wearing it in no time at all.
i think I told you in my last post about knitting Tidewater by Laura Aylor, another top down knit, nice details and other than a few ends to weave in, no finishing to do once the knitting is done. It’s a great way to use up sock yarns, cotton, bamboo or silk for summer wear. It would be a pretty three season piece worn over a long sleeve tee.
I’ll do another round up next month as there will no doubt be lots more to choose from but my last knit pattern for today is another Hinterm Stein, this time Simply Perfect Summer Top. I knitted mine in Debble Bliss Prima, a wool/silk blend and I love it. It’s very wearable and washes well. Aline and straight body options to suit most figures and in a good range of sizes.
I love Alicia Plummer’s designs and her latest summery top is Fable, it’d be lovely in a wool for cooler days or a soft cotton for summer.
Summer Top Crochet Patterns I love for 2020
First up is Manna by Ruth Brasch, click on the photo for the link to the pattern page on Ravelry. It’s crocheted with a 5.5mm hook and worsted weight yarn. I love this colour, so pretty and perfect for a summer day. It’s sized for 28″ through to 64″ chest/bust in a cropped or longer length.
This pretty mesh top will be quick to crochet, worked flat and seamed with worsted weight yarn it’ll be a fast make. It’s called Summertime Tee by Toni Lipsey.
Open Waves Top by Rose Obom is another beautiful top, I like the v neck and lacy pattern, using sport weight yarn this will be light and airy for hot days. It is sized up to 4XL and will suit a range of body shapes. I love this neutral used in the sample, it’ll go with so many items in my wardrobe.
The Dragonfly Tee by Elisabeth Desamour is a fun cami style top with a sporty look. The cute dragonfly motifs on the body are a fun way to use a pop of colour or you could go with a neutral and just one colour for a classic look.
I hope you enjoyed this little round up of my current favourites for this summer. What are yours? Do say hi on Facebook and let me know on our Woolly Madly Deeply page.
I didn’t post in January or February to let you know what I’ve been working on both knit and crochet so I’m doing a quick catch up post now so you can see all the pretties. Here is my latest line up of FOs for Feburary and March 2020
Gramps by Tincan Knits
Gramps by Tincan Knits is a lovely pattern from newborn to adult sizes and is very well written. This is the fourth I’ve made and it’s my go-to cardigan for babies.
Antler Toque by Tincan Knits
The Antler Toque pattern by Tincan Knits is a lovely design, very well written pattern and sizes from newborn to adults. It’s a unisex design and an enjoyable knit.
Find My Way Cowl
The Find My Way Cowl is a design in testing at the moment and will work with any weight of yarn, the length and width are fully adjustable so you can make it as wide and/or long as you like.
Aileas by Isobel Kraemer
I started Aileas in January 2019 and was ready to knit the sleeves by the end of the month. However, I prefer working my sleeves bottom up and it was put to one side. I finally knitted the sleeves this year and finished it recently. I love it.
Quinnipiac Cowl by Leila Rabe
I’m ashamed to say the Quinnipiac Cowl has been kicking around since about 2011 or so with just the final band to finish. I ran out of yarn but found another ball recently and was able to finish it a couple of weeks ago. It’s destined for a friend who looks great in cool colours and loves anything purple ish.
Find My Way Cowl super bulky version
Prototype of the superbulky version of the Find My Way Cowl which is released this month, very quick to knit, easy lace pattern and a great way to use up small amounts of yarn in different colours.
Painted Roses Blanket for Becci’s Baby
A gazillion ends to weave in, but so worth it. My niece chose the colours and I’m sure they’ll be perfect for her little girl Isabelle Grace.
Behind The Green Door Cowl – Aran version
Aran prototype test knit for my new design Behind The Green Door Cowl, out this month, another adjustable pattern to make to any length or width and in any weight of yarn.
Behind The Green Door Cowl – Chunky version
Cardigan and hat with pompoms for Becci’s Baby
Love this little set, the hat was super easy, the cardigan with a raglan/yoke combo and all seamed was a screaming nightmare. Never again.
Our Cowlabunga KAL starts mid March with the hashtags #knittingacrossthepennines and #cowlabunga There will be prizes for the best FO’s made during the KAL and spot prizes of pattern codes for FO and WIP photos shared on social media with the two hashtags.
Emma Sadler of Emma Sadler Designs and Loraine Birchall of Woolly Madly Deeply. We design knitwear and some crochet items. Emma is based in Yorkshire, East of the Pennines and Loraine is based in Cumbria, West of the Pennines.
Lionbrand Vanna’s Choice® Vanna White, America’s favorite crocheter and Lion Brand’s spokesperson for over 14 years, introduces Vanna’s Choice®, an easy-care, silky-soft premium basic available in a range of beautiful, expertly-coordinated shades.
Indie Design Gift Along 2018 Toys, Softies and Cuddly Gift Knit and Crochet ideas
I’m not really a maker of toys, but I have made them in the past, usually as a gift for a new family member or just for fun, but this year’s Gift A-long has really opened my eyes to some incredible designs and I thought I’d share them with you.
I couldn’t resist this cute Llama, look at that adorable little face. This one is crocheted and uses simple stitches, it looks like a quick make and you could customize the colours to suit the recipient.
I love this cute little fox and the designer has an amazing range of toy patterns to choose from, it was hard to single out Hartley the Fox, but as I’ve seen so many Fox cushions and mugs this Autumn/Winter season, it had to be him. All the stitches are explained in a very comprehensive pattern, with plenty of help.
As well as making a very sweet toy, I can see this one being a favourited Christmas Decoration in our house and being pride of place every year. I love the little antlers and the sweet expression on his/her face.
My niece, Meghan, loves giraffes and she would go ga-ga over this pattern. I love the outfits and the felted mane, really pretty details and a comprehensive pattern to take you through every stage of the process.
Cute, cuddly and quick to make, this is a nice easy knit and who wouldn’t want a house full of kitties? Claire is a member of Team Bundle in the Indie Design Gift Along 2018 and we’re so glad to have her help us.
There are 349 designers, 263 knit designers, 51 crochet designers and 33 who offer both knit and crochet.
Today I wanted to highlight some of my favourite Indie Design Gift Along Sock Patterns. I don’t usually knit socks but I do love to wear hand knit socks and love to play with colour. This selection has inspired me to try harder this year and make more socks for ME.
I only found one pair of super bulky weight socks with a nice short row heel, these would be a quick knit and toasty warm.
Another quick knit, this time bulky yarn rather than super bulky. I’ve made these, super quick and easy to adapt for size, think my second pair I used 4 less sts for a slimmer fit, but they really are my go-to cold day socks and are great for wearing with my wellies on a dog walk.
Bulky/chunky yarn, bit of garter, but of stocking st and enough interest to keep you going to the end, this has options for 4ply/fingering weight and bulky/chunky yarn. I’ll be making a pair with chunk yarn for lolling on the sofa over the holidays.
I made several pairs of these using some Sirdar Click Chunky yarn, they’re super warm and toasty. Carolyn is a Mod in the Gift Along 2018 event and we love having her on the team.
Chunky/bulky yarn, stripes and an edgy, pop of colour. What’s not to love? These are a great stash buster, you could use a self striping yarn and a plain yarn, or change colour every stripe, it’s all good. This pattern is part of a larger ebook collection entitled ‘It’s not me, it’s you’ and that really makes me laugh. Hand’s up anyone who ever had a break up and wanted to say that? Me, me, me, lol.
I’m planning a pair of these for myself and some for my son (who until his feet became as big as canoes) used to steal my hand knit socks and wear them. Chunky/bulky yarn, nice little bit of pattern for interest and so cozy.
I couldn’t miss this one off the list with it’s bright colourwork and the chance to use up leftover balls of yarn from other projects. Bulky/chunky yarn and colourwork, really quick to make, that’s a win-win for me.
Aran weight yarn and great textures, this design is part of an ebook called Hubby Needs Socks, the other five patterns are all using 4ply/fingering weight yarn and are all sized for men. This pair is a quick knit but if you fancy a slower knit with cables, texture and man friendly sizing, do check out the ebook.
I know a few people who have made these and really rave about how great the pattern is, easy to adapt and it make use of those difficult hand dyed skeins you have no clue how to use. Worsted weight yarn, Rios by Malabrigo would be my choice.
These cute and pretty cabled socks use dk weight yarn and are perfect for the fashionable speckled skeins you’ve acquired with no real idea of what you might make, the designer comments that her daughter has pinched them already, I’ll take that as a win.
Textured squares and a good neutral would make the perfect for the men in my family, who are often a little bit fussy about their socks. It has texture so I’d enjoy the knitting but not such an obvious pattern that they’ll notice.
Slipped stitches and only one colour per row, mean this is the easiest colourwork you’ll find and the chance to make an odd ‘pair’ really appeals to me. Awesome stash busting potential and even if they don’t match, my son would wear them.