May 1, 2021

Currents W.I.P @ 30th April 2021

I'm a long way off my unofficial original plan of releasing 1 knitting pattern per month but not stressing too much about that; after all, I need to remember that knitting is a hobby, so no need to stress over deadlines as I already have a full time job that puts bread (and sometimes cake too 😉) on the table!

I started designing a pair of mittens with a lace hearts design (to change from the cable hearts 😅), but I got a bit sidetracked as the sun came out while I was at the boring stage (i.e. writing 2 more sizes and putting everything down on Word before testing the knitting pattern), so this will have to wait for a while.

As the sun came out I decided to knit myself a light summer top using some leftover bamboo/cotton yard from my stash (I'm hoping I will have enough of the turquoise yarn as I only have 2 balls of this colour, if I run out I will have to frog some and add a white band in the middle using the ball of yarn of the same type that I also have in my stash: I don't want to do the upper part in white as that may be a bit see through 😅).

The pattern for this top is called Strawberry Summer; it's a free knitting pattern from Drops and I am using 2 balls (maybe 3 depending on how this progresses) of King Cole Bamboo Cotton 4 Ply in Turquoise. This yarn is very soft and has good drape, I hope my top turns out as lovely as it feels knitting with this yarn 🤗

The bottom of my top 🤪.

Also, not really a Work In Progress as it's finished, but since it was made in less than a week I didn't get the chance to show it here yet. This is a hat I made for my son, as since I was guilty of botching his hair (his sister gave him a nearly bowl cut and I was trying to rectify it, I should have left it as it was: damn these YouTube videos that give you the confidence to try something you should never go near 😖).

So now my son is proudly wearing the 2 hats I made him, I needed to wash the one I made last winter so made him another one made of cotton for Spring, as he claims these are the only hats that will cover his hair and hide my awful haircut 😳.

The pattern for the hat is the Crochet Easy Ripple Hat, free crochet pattern from The Crochet Crowd, using 2 balls of Rico Cotton Aran in navy.

My son loves his new hat but wouldn't model for me 👀

My next project will be the Wild Bees Socks, the 3rd pattern from the Handmade Sock Society 4 by Helen Stewart, which I am planning to knit in the lovely looking Unicorn yarn I ordered especially for this and that came in the post earlier this week, but I will try and finish my mittens knitting pattern first, I am nearly hoping for bad weather so that I can get more time to focus on that rather than the sunny weather 😅

My yummy new sock yarn

Apr 16, 2021

May Day Pocket Shawl: Free Crochet Pattern

It has been at least a year since I started my pocket shawl, which was initially started as a poncho, and for all the work I had to put into it, I decided to call it the May Day Pocket Shawl:

The May Day Pocket Shawl

You can scroll down to see the full pattern, the good news is is it's free* :)

First I need to share the Sunset Poncho pattern (available free from, as this was how the idea of making it a pocket shawl came to me.

Even though the original Sunset Poncho pattern is for a worsted (Aran) weight yarn, the yarn I used for this was 3 cakes of Sirdar Colourwheel, shade 206 (well I used a bit less as I've had to cut some when I was undoing the poncho that was already assembled, so there was some waste), and 2 balls of Quality Yarn, shade 06, all in DK (you can use a thicker yarn, if you reduce the stitch number accordingly).
If you crochet the borders using the main yarn, you will need an extra cake.

I used a 4mm crochet hook for the main part and the pockets, and a 3.5mm for the borders, as the Quality Yarn must have been slightly thicker than the Sirdar Colourwheel and using the 4mm hook for the border made it bunch a little, but if you are using different yarns, you'll have to see what works best for you.

I recommend making the pockets first if you are using the main colour as I did, just to make sure you don't run out of yarn before you get to that stage.

Pocket Shawl Wrong Side Out

Final dimensions for the May Day Pocket Shawl:
One size fits most adults: 
Length 64 inches x width 23 inches;
Width not including borders: 19 inches;
Each border is 2 inches wide;
Each pockets is approx. 8.5 inches high x 8 inches wide.

Pocket Shawl before blocking
6 repeats of the main shawl pattern (6 ch3 loops) and 16 rows (8 pattern repeats as the main pattern repeat is made up of 2 rows) for a 4 inch sample square. 

The pattern is written in US/[UK] terms.
ch- chain
sc- single crochet/[double crochet]
dc- double crochet/[treble crochet]
sk- skip
fpsc- front post single crochet/[front post double crochet]
YO- yarn over
hdsl - half double slip stitch

Some of these stitches may be new for some, so I found some video tutorials that are easy to follow (I haven't quite got around to filming my own!):

Front post single crochet video tutorial;

Half double slip stitch video tutorial;

1- Pockets: make 2 (my 2 pockets are actually slightly different from each other as I wasn't writing down what I was doing, variations are very forgiving, especially if using variegated yarn):

Ch 36;

Row 1: dc in 2nd ch from the hook, sc in each following ch across, turn (35 dc);  

Rows 2 & 3: ch3 (counts as 1 dc), dc in each following ch across, turn (35 dc);

Rows 4 & 5: ch2 (counts as 1 dc), dc in each following ch across (back loops only), turn (35 dc);

Rows 6, 7, 8 & 9: ch3 (counts as 1 dc), dc in each following ch across (both loops), turn (35 dc);

Rows 10 & 11: ch2 (counts as 1 dc), dc in each following ch across (back loops only), turn (35 dc);

Rows 12,13,14 & 15: ch3 (counts as 1 dc), dc in each following ch across (both loops), turn (35 dc);

Rows 16, 17 & 18: ch2 (counts as 1 sdc), dc in each following ch across (back loops only), turn (35 dc);

Rows 19, 20 & 21: ch3 (counts as 1 dc), dc in each following ch across (both loops), turn (35 dc);

Row 22: ch1, sc in each dc across (35 sc), fasten off.

I recommend either leaving a long enough tail in order to have enough yarn to attach the pockets when finishing the pocket shawl, or make sure you keep some yarn once you finish using this colour for the rest of the shawl.

2- Main part: 
Ch 434 (yes I know, but it will be worth it in the end);

Row 1: 1 sc in 2nd chain from hook, *(ch3, sk next 3 chs, 1sc in next ch), repeat from * across to end of row, turn (108 ch3 loops);

Row 2: Ch 3 (counts as 1 dc), 1 dc in same st as beginning ch3, sk next ch3 loop, *(3 dc in next sc, sk next ch3 loop), repeat from * across, finish this row with 2 dc instead of 3 in the last sc, turn (107 3dc groups with 2 dc on each end);

Row 3: Ch 3 (counts as 1 dc), 1 dc in same st as beginning ch1, *(ch 3, 1 fpsc around the middle dc of the next 3dc group), repeat from * across until you work a fpsc in the last 3dc group, ch3, 1 sc in last dc, turn (108 ch3 loops);

Row 4: Ch 3, 1 dc in same st as beginning ch3, sk next ch3 loop, *(3 dc in next fpsc, sk next ch3 loop), repeat from * across, finish this row with 2 dc instead of 3 in the last sc, turn (107 3dc groups with 2 dc on each end);

Repeat Rows 3 and 4 until your work measures the desired width (mine measures 19 inches but you can do more, with a smaller border if you wish). Finish on a row 4, do not fasten off. 

3- Top Border:
Join your border yarn, if using a different yarn, or continue using the same yarn for the border; 

Ch1, 1 sc in each dc across;

Rows 2 to 11: (you can adjust the number of rows to your own preference): ch1(does not count as a stitch), hdsl in each st across (back loops only).

Fasten off.

4- Bottom Border:
For the second border, join the yarn at either end of the bottom of the shawl (for a more symetrical look, start on the WS.

Row 1: Ch1, work 1 sc in each sc from the first row of the shawl (including first and last stitch), and 2 sc in each ch3 loops

Rows 2 to 11: (you can adjust the number of rows to your own preference): ch1(does not count as a stitch), hdsl in each st across (back loops only).

Fasten off.

Assemble the pockets on each side of the shawl (you can sew or attach using slip stitches), don't forget to leave the top part of the pockets open (it would be typical of me to do something like sewing all 4 sides instead of 3 😅).

Et voilà: May Day Pocket Shawl finished!

*Free pattern means that you can use it for your own personal use and even sell your own finished items from it, but you are not authorised to sell the pattern, and if you use it for anything, please link back to this blog post.

Apr 7, 2021

My Finished Curling Mist Socks

I finished the Curling Mist Socks that I was knitting for my partner a few weeks ago. I think they look very pretty, too pretty to use on a working day (his work involves a lot of driving but also physical activity and wearing safety boots that are not really breathable), also too delicate to use on a hike (whenever we are all allowed to go back hiking more than 5 km away from home 😅, so he's only allowed to wear them on nights out (that, too, looks like a long time to wait for 😂).

         curling mist socks from THSS4.

I used the sock blockers I bought on Etsy from a seller based in Turkey since I couldn't find a pair I liked from Ireland unfortunately. It was the first time I used proper sock blockers and they looked huge at first (the blockers, not the socks) but they worked out great.

I wasn't too crazy about the second pattern from  The Handmade Sock Society 4 (I'm still hoping it will grow on me so I'm keeping it), so I was going to wait for the third one: the third sock pattern was released last week and looks beautiful but I think it would suit a plain colour yarn better than the stripy multicolour yarn I want to use for my next socks, so it may be May before I start knitting my own socks, or else I might just buy some new sock yarn (More yarn? 😉).

Mar 27, 2021

My Crochet Poncho Repurposed As Pocket Shawl.

Last year there was a big trend on some Facebook groups I follow for crochet pocket shawls: one particular design, The Perfect Pocket Shawl, became very popular, and soon after that, other designers shared their own modified versions of the pocket shawl.

While I was in the middle of crocheting the Sunset Poncho, I first made it too small (that happens when you use a thinner yarn and then you run out of yarn 😅), then decided that I wasn't a "poncho person", so I let my own poncho sit in a corner for a while, until I decided to unravel it and repurpose it as... a pocket shawl!

I really liked the stitch used for the Sunset Poncho and I thought it would be a shame to let such a pretty stitch got to waste so I reused it for my own pocket shawl.

Now my "Sunset Pocket Shawl" has also been taking a break as it used more yarn than I thought it would, so I've also run out, but I think I've found an alternative, which is a plain coloured yarn in a matching shade that I found in a local shop (I couldn't find the same yarn locally and I didn't have the energy to search online), so I've decided to just use the plain yarn for the 2 outside borders (this will make it wider and I'm hoping it will look good when finished 😅 ).

For main part and pockets I have used most of 2 cakes of Sirdar Colourwheel, and the borders will be made out of Quality Double Knitting (100% acrylic, it may not be the best quality yarn but it feels very soft, so I'm happy enough using it for myself).

I will try and share instructions for this very aggravating pocket shawl (maybe that should be its name 😂), and if you're not afraid of running out of yarn like I did, you'll be welcome to try and crochet your own. As for me, I have so many new projects I want to make that I'm not even sure this thing will be ready on time for next winter, but here's hoping 😁.

Mar 10, 2021

Socks On My Needles: Curling Mist Socks

For the last few years I've been looking at handknit socks as a luxury item: I dabbed into it a little with a pair or two of plain knitted socks (with my first ever pair miserably shrinking in the wash), but I lacked the patience for the beautiful patterns that fill some Instagram and Ravelry pages.

Last September, right before lockdown no. 2, I went on a short break to Northern Ireland and found some funky sock knitting yarn. I could have found the same locally, but as I was on holiday mode I found it obligatory to visit a wool shop and easier to spend money than if I had stayed home (sorry, local yarn stores, I'll make it up to you!).

The yarn in question is Funny Feetz by James C. Brett, it's not a luxury yarn as I had hoped I'd find, but I still find it decent enough, with a good mix of wool, polyamide and bamboo, very easy to knit with.

Then I happened to find a post on Facebook about The Handmade Sock Society a few weeks ago; I think this was the last day that I could join at a discounted price (and who can say no to a discount, right?).

So I purchased their bundle of 6 sock patterns, where there is 1 pattern release each month during 6 months: it's a little like a mystery knit along, but with 6 different sock knitting patterns, where you only discover one of the knitting patterns per month. I don't know about you, but I find this very exciting (I probably also need to get a life, but at least I have the excuse of our country being on lockdown and knitting is one of those little life's pleasures that are still allowed, as long as you have your stash/shops that sell online 😅).

Here's my progress on the Curling Mist Socks:
It's a simple enough sock pattern, not too intimidating unless you hate cables. I happen to like knitting cables, it's just a matter of knowing where to place the cable needle, these are easy cables as they all go in the one direction. Of course I've decided to make things a little harder by using the double pointed needles instead of a circular needle, but that's just because the smallest size circular Knit Pro needles I have are 3.5mm and I am using 3mm to match the pattern. It takes a little time to get used to, but with nice needles like those (I'm using my Knit Pro Zing metal double pointed knitting needles, yarn distributed between 3 needles and using a 4th needle to knit the stitches and a 5th as my cable needle), everything is easier.

Can't wait to finish these and start on the second pattern, which was released on March 4th, but I'm not known for keeping deadlines, at least not when knitting is concerned 😅.

Mar 4, 2021

I Heart Cables Cowl Knitting Pattern

My second knitting pattern of the year is this beautiful cowl, with heart shaped cables:
This nearly broke my own heart because of how many times I've had to restart, since I wasn't happy with the width at first, then the finishing... Did I mention my stubbornness here before? Actually the politically correct way to call it is perfectionism 😉.

This is called I Heart Cables Cowl and is available as a digital knitting pattern through Etsy and Ravelry.
It features 8 different cables, so it is not the easiest pattern to knit, but once you think logically about how a cable must look, it will come naturally, maybe one for the cable knitting nerds out there, but I'd encourage advanced beginners looking to improve their cable knitting skills to try it. 

I know, only 2 patterns so far in 2021 and we're already nearing the end of February but who said there was a race? When you have a full-time job and a family (granted my children are at the age when they can look after themselves), plus when you keep creating others ways to keep busy (my sewing machine is looking a bit guilty, even though very pretty in its brand new cover right now!), it's difficult to keep up with plans of taking over the world of knitting patterns 😂.

Head over to Sophie's Knit Stuff on Etsy if you'd like to grab the pattern. It would make a lovely gift for Mother's Day 😉.

Feb 24, 2021

I Love Cables Headband

After 2020 being a year of limbo, and I'm sure I'm not the only one saying this, I wanted 2021 to be different, so I decided that I should get back to creating and selling a bunch of knitting patterns.

It's been a few years since I've created new items for sale: these past few years I have kept knitting, but the items I've knitted were all gifts (to myself as well as to others). The I Love Cables Headband is my first finished product of 2021 and I published the knitting pattern on the usual suspects: Etsy and Ravelry

I am particularly proud of my I Love Cables Headband as I designed the cables myself (not without the usual bit of swearing, frogging and re-knitting), those cables are as close as I could manage to make them look like hearts, because you can never have too many heart shaped things coming up to Valentine's Day,  which was the time when I was working on it.

I re-used a little of the same pattern when designing my new cowl, (which I was hoping to have ready before Valentine's Day too but I think I may have overestimated my speed and the amount of time I had available to me 😅), this is still a work in progress but I can already say it's even better than the I Love Cables Headband, up up and away!