Finally… Hadlow Cowl!

So, here it comes, the first of those exciting new things I’ve been telling you about…..

…. drumroll please…. may I present my new pattern, the Hadlow Cowl!

Hadlow Cowl

Photo copyright Charlotte Walford 2013

….. and my new Ravelry group:

Lottieknits Ravelry group

Oh yes, it’s all kicking off today!

To launch my new pattern (hopefully the first of many) and Ravelry group, I’ll be holding a KAL for this speedy cowl in the group.

To help you join in, you can get the pattern free until midnight BST (British Summer Time) Saturday 11th October 2014 by adding the pattern to your cart and entering the code HadlowKAL at the checkout. 

A very straightforward pattern, this cowl is designed as a stashbuster and the pattern includes instructions for a wide range of yarn weights, from light DK/sport weight right up to chunky (as shown in the cowl above, knitted in the very snuggly Debbie Bliss Paloma).  I made this cowl in an evening, so it’s perfect for quick festive gifts, for those of you who prefer to make them.

The cowl is worked in the round using a clever technique called helical stripes, which eliminates the annoying ‘jogs’ you get at the beginning of each round.  Not tried helical stripes before?  No problem!  The pattern walks you through it, and if you need more help, you can join the KAL and I’ll help you out.

Hadlow Cowl

Copyright Charlotte Walford 2013

There are two versions, a short version, shown above (designed to use two 50g skeins of the same or similar yarns in contrasting colours), and a long version (which you can wrap twice round your neck), shown below (designed to use two 100g skeins), so you can dig out those pretty skeins in your stash that called to you in the shop but you’ve not yet found a pattern for, as well as those odd leftover balls that you just had to keep.  If you’re anything like me, you probably tend to buy the same colours most of the time, so you might find that some of those leftovers go perfectly together!

It even works well in self striping yarns (this one is knitted in Noro Kogarashi):

Hadlow Cowl

Photo Copyright Charlotte Walford 2013

I’m so glad this pattern has finally been released, it’s been along time coming!  I made the cowls last year, when wondering what to do with some of the odd skeins of pretty yarn in my stash, managed to get it tested before Christmas, and was then completely overwhelmed by deadlines for magazine designs, so it went on the back burner.  Then the weather was warming up, so I thought I’d better wait until autumn!  Never mind, having found a lovely tech editor, the pattern is finally ready, so I got there in the end.

Enjoy!

Lottie x

 

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As rare as hen’s teeth…

Last Monday I achieved something I thought fairly impossible for me and finished two projects in one day!  When it’s not deadline knitting I’m not very disciplined – I think it’s a reaction to having three to four weeks or sometimes much less to make a sample and write the pattern and having to be very disciplined in order to get it done in between going to work, sleeping and eating.

(Stop laughing.)

The first was something secret-ish that I’d been working on for about a week:

Mystery project

Copyright Charlotte Walford 2013

I can’t tell you much about this at the moment, except that it’s made from Noro yarn, so the colours are gorgeous.  Hopefully soon I’ll be able to show you more (soon might be two weeks or two months, as I’m fitting this in between other projects).

Once I’d finished this, I was on a roll, so I dug these out of my project bag:

Half-finished mitts

Copyright Charlotte Walford 2013

Remember them?  They’re the Louisa Harding Charm Mittens that I started for a KAL back in June.  Yes, June.  Shush!  Other things got in the way of finishing these in time for the KAL (which finished at the end of June) and they’ve been hibernating ever since, with just the thumb on the left mitten to do and a the seams to sew on the same hand.  (They were a bit further on than in this picture, but I just wanted to get them finished, so I didn’t take another picture until they were done.)

A little while later I had these finished too!  Yay!  (Only 5 months late.  *blushes*)  You can see them on Ravelry here.

Finished Charm Mitts

Copyright Charlotte Walford 2013

I really pleased with both my projects, but it’s been unseasonably mild over the past week, so I’ve not worn either of them yet.  But old habits die hard, so rather than being good and finishing some socks, I’ve now cast on a pair of mittens and a jumper (The latter of which, it has to be said, while coming on very quickly, is not going all that well.  I may have to frog and start again.  More on that next time – keep your fingers crossed!).  There really is no cure for startitis.  *sigh*

Are you a good little project finisher, or a reprobate multiple project starter like me?

Lottie x

Too hot to knit mittens!

As I type it is just cooling off here, but it’s still far too hot.  Why?  Because we’re having what passes for a heat wave here in Britain.

(Prepare to laugh if you live somewhere consistently hotter)

Let me explain.

In Britain, summer tends to be a bit wet, cold and possibly windy – to me a nice warm day is 18-20°C but 16°C or lower and cloudy is not uncommon, so relatively, anything close to 30°C seems unpleasantly hot.  We’re just not built for it.  All my childhood summer holidays in this country were spent wearing cagoules at some point (even though some of them were beach holidays).  (Although there was that summer where it was so hot that there was a plague of ladybirds and you couldn’t go to the beach before 5pm or you’d be burnt to a crisp – but that was very unusual!)

Today it’s been 28°C and it’s not dropped below 26°C most of the week.  Urgh.

Consequently my enthusiasm for knitting anything vaguely wintry is at an all time low.

Observe the evidence:

Half-finished mitts

Copyright Charlotte Walford 2013

Yes, those are my Charm mittens.

Yes, they were being knitted as part of a KAL (knit-a-long).

Yes, the KAL did finish at the end of June.

Yes, you’re right, they are not finished.

No, that is not an out of date picture.

Yes, I am aware of the date.

Yes, circumstances did conspire against me, but this last week they haven’t, I’ve just not been in the mood.

Yes, it is too hot to knit mittens.  (I want to knit something light and lace weight and summery – not really sure what though – but I’m forcing myself to finish these first.)

Maybe I’ll get motivated over the weekend!  Wish me luck!

Lottie x