Thursday, 27 February 2014

Bunches of Grapes

I have used the stitch pattern below and incorporated it in to one of my mohair lace scarves.

I have had some brilliant comments from people as to how beautiful the pattern is, so I thought I would share it with you. It did take me a little time to understand each row and there are still a couple of rows that I find a little confusing, so you may need to concentrate extra hard to get through those.

I used Rowan's KidSilk Haze yarn on 7mm knitting needles.


Cast on a multiple of 10 + 1 stitch. 

Suggest you add on a few stitches (say 3 ) to use for selvedge stitches and then knit these 3 stitches at each end of the row on ALL rows. 

The stitches in the square brackets [] are the pattern repeat. If you make the item wide enough you can get in to a routine with these. 

The stitches at the beginning of the row tend to mimic the end of the pattern repeat and replace the k3tog by a k2tog or a k3 by a k2. Same with the stitches at the end of the row, they mimic the start of the pattern repeat in the same way.

Row 1: k2tog, k3, [ yo, k1, yo, k3, k3tog, k3 ] , repeat [] to last 6 sts, then yo, k1, yo, k3, k2tog.

Row 2 and every even numbered row: purl all stitches.

Row 3: k2tog, k2, yo, [ k3, yo, k2, k3tog, k2, yo ] , repeat [] to last 7 sts, k3, yo, k2, k2tog.

Row 5: k2tog, k1, yo, k1, [ yo, k3tog, yo, k1, yo, k1, k3tog, k1, yo, k1 ] , repeat from [] to last 7 sts, then yo, k3tog, yo, k1, yo, k1, k2tog.

Row 7: k2tog, yo, k2, [ k5, yo, k3tog, yo, k2 ], repeat [] to last 7 sts, then k5, yo, k2tog.

Row 9: k2, yo, k3tog, [ yo, k1, yo, k3tog, yo, k3, yo, k3tog ], repeat [] to last 6 sts, then yo, k1, yo, k3tog, yo, k2.

Row 11: knit all stitches.

Row 13: k1, yo, k2, [ k1, k3tog, k3, yo, k1, yo, k2 ] , repeat from [] to last 8 sts, then k1, k3tog, k3, yo, k1.

Row 15: k2, yo, k1, [k1, k3tog, k2, yo, k3, yo, k1], repeat from [] to last 8 sts, then k1, k3tog, k2, yo, k2.

Row 17: k2tog, yo, k1, yo, [ k1, k3tog, k1, yo, k1, yo, k3tog, yo, k1, yo ], repeat [] to last 8 sts, then k1, k3tog, k1, yo, k1, yo, k2tog.

Row 19: k4, [ yo, k3tog, yo, k7 ], repeat from [] to last 7 sts, then yo, k3tog, yo, k4.

Row 21:k1, yo, k3tog, yo, [ k3, yo, k3tog, yo, k1, yo, k3tog, yo ], repeat [] to last 7 sts, then k3, yo, k3tog, yo, k1.

Row 23: knit all stitches.

Repeat rows 1-24 till necessary for completing your item.

Have fun x 

Thursdays ColourWays - Coral

Most people instantly think of an orangey-red colour when they get asked ‘what colour is coral?

Many people remember it from when red coral was popular in the 70's and 80's. However coral can be found in almost any colour you can imagine.

Natural coral comes in a large variety of colour's: red, orange, pink, blue, white and black. Discolouration further increases the number of colours naturally available.


Precious coral or red coral is the common name given to Corallium rubrum and several related species of marine coral. The distinguishing characteristic of precious corals is their durable and intensely coloured red or pink skeleton, which is used for making jewelry.

 The first recorded use of coral as a colour name in English was in 1513.

It can range from a shade of pink to a soft terracotta. It is also referred to as salmon, peach, apricot or melon. 

 A shade is achieved by adding black to any pure hue, 

while a tint is created by mixing white to any pure colour.

 I have tracked down the perfect clothes and accessories so you look right on trend wearing Coral and you help support the British handmade community too.

Mohair Scarf - TheFeminineTouch

Leather Shoes - FairySteps 
Silk Purse - RedRubyRose
Lace Cocktail Dress -
Denim Coat -
Long Earrings -

Did you know? - Coral is a female first name of Indo-European origins. It was the 943rd most popular name in the United States from 1900-1909, the 977th in 1991, and 988th in 1992.

Tuesday, 11 February 2014

Free Tutorial - Big Cable Cushion Cover

This cushion cover is knitted in 2 parts, with seams on 3 sides and then a zip fastening on the 4th side. It is assuming some knitting knowledge as the pattern for one of the sides will not explain the pattern row by row but will explain it in sections of knitting.

**** If you love the cushion but are unable to knit it , then why not purchase it from The Feminine Touch Designs here 

The pattern has been inspired by a cable pattern I learnt at a Rowan Workshop back in 2012 called “Big Cables” held by Martin Storey.

A few days ago, the same "Big Cable" popped up on my facebook notifications. I knew I just had to knit the pattern again and share it with you too.  I have used the same photo explaining the big cable in my pattern, as I found it so easy to follow.

 The Feminine Touch Knitting Kits

What you will need 

  • 3 100G balls of Rowan cocoon yarn (80% wool, 20% mohair)
  • 6.5mm (UK 3, US 10.5) needles
  • Darning needle and a sewing needle
  • Straight pins
  • 14” zip that coordinates with the cushion
  • Matching sewing cotton
Stage 1 - Side 1 (2 stitch basket weave)
Cast on 50 stitches

Row 1     Knit 2, Purl 2 ........
till last 2 stitches then Knit 2
Row 2     Purl 2, Knit 2 ....... till last 2 stitches then Purl 2
Row 3     Purl 2, Knit 2 ........till last 2 stitches then Purl 2
Row 4     Knit 2, Purl 2 ........till last 2 stitches then Knit 2

These 4 rows set the pattern. Repeat these 4 rows 20 times more

Cast off

Stage 2 - Side 2 (Big Cable side)
Cast on 55 stitches 

The pattern is broken down in to 5 sections (A – E)

PS - If you get stuck following the pattern from the photos , then please email me and I'll help you all I can.     Or full instructions for the cable knot are included in my hot water bottle cover pattern .

Knit a total of 84 rows

Cast off 

Stage 3 - Sew the zip in place 

With the zip closed and the right side of the knitting facing up, pin one side of the zip to the cast off edge of side 1, so that the knitting covers as much of the fabric part of the zip as possible.

Using matching thread, sew the zip to the project from the front, placing your stitches as close to the zip mechanism as you can, and taking care to make your stitches as invisible as possible.

Pin the second side of the zip to the cast off edge of side 2 in the same manner, unzipping the zip if necessary.

Sew this side from the front in the same way as before.

Turn the cushion to the wrong side and sew the zip flaps to each side, again trying to make your stitches invisible.

Stage 4 – Finishing off 

Make sure you have the right sides facing you

Use one of the tail ends at either the cast on or cast off row and thread the darning needle with it

Use mattress stitch to join the sides.

Please feel to make as many of these as you like for personal use, but I would ask that you don't sell the finished items. Please do not reproduce any or all of the tutorial, without linking back to here.

Did you know ! Cables for the home are TRENDING NOW!

Heh !  If you like this free pattern and want to know as soon as I write another , then why not like my Facebook Page!

Monday, 10 February 2014

A little Christmas gift

This was the first Christmas ever that I was asked by friends and family to knit their Christmas presents. I really felt that I had come to an impasse in my knitting and I knew I had to make a success of everything I was asked to make, otherwise my knitting wouldn't be taken seriously by my family.

Sam and Dave came for a visit this last weekend and I'm glad to say both of them came with their home made knitwear. I knit Dave a warm woolly hat , which he wears ALL the time ! , he does take it off for bed , lol


And Sam designed her own gloves , chose the colour , chose the fair isle designs she wanted incorporating and chose the style of glove. She says they are perfect !

 I worked them in the round , which I found rather fiddly for me, but the results are worth it , no side seams and the fair isle pattern just continues round , perfect.

She loves the part of the mitten that comes over the fingers to keep them nice and warm.

Wonder what Christmas gifts I will be making next year.

Sunday, 2 February 2014

My craft room (part 1)

Woop ! I’m getting a little giddy. 

My new pad is almost ready for me to move in :)

My new pad , is my new craft room in my partners house. He has asked me to move in after 16 years ! together , and after I redecorated some of the bedrooms and started work on the craft (my) room , I said “Yes” . 

My craft room is the little bedroom , that used be kitted out with young girls cartoon doggy wall paper and matching curtains and lampshade.   His daughter uses that room when she comes to visit and is now 26 , so very much time for a change! The only conditions I was given was that the single bed stays in the room (so she can still come and visit ~ of course) and that I would replace the wallpaper with something bright and feminine. 

The rooms not quite finished , there are still shelves to put up, books to be organised , curtains to be made (maybe) but I couldn’t resist showing you what’s already been done. 

The built in wardrobe has been turned in to my yarn store. I have used those flexible storage (for shoes and sweaters) shelves to organise my yarns. These hang down from the wardrobe rail and cost me around £12 for 3 sets, that’s all. 

There were already some shelves to the right which I used for more yarn. I have used one of those shoe tidies to hang over the wardrobe door for spaces to organise yet more stuff. Bags and boxes of yarn that I have yet to sort through have been stuffed up into the top cupboard.  You know something , I love this , it’s great to start a knitting project and go for a browse in your very own yarn store. 

I just had to get rid of the silly girly lampshade. I wanted something original and unique and something to show off my craftiness. The knitted lampshade was inspired by some photos I had seen on the Internet. Knitting a lampshade seemed the logical conclusion, all it took was a bit of maths brainpower to calculate how many stitches to use and how often I need to decrease to make the lampshade shape.  The only thing that concerned me was ensuring the shade was fire resistant , otherwise I would never dare turn the light on. I was helped out by one of UUK colleagues , who advised me of some fire resistant spray to use , Phew , all sorted. 

Please come back to see part 2 of my craft room

Quick View of Woolly Goodies available on my web site

Quick View of Woolly Goodies available on my web site
Click on photo above to see detail / to purchase