Winter is here.

Winter has officially arrived in the Southern Hemisphere. For those of you who are seasonal knitters it is time to bring out the needles and begin getting into your winter past time. Those of us who knit all year round often wonder what seasonal knitters do in Spring and Summer. Do we really wonder? Not really. It’s so exciting to see every one get cosy with their needles, some snuggly yarn and a hot chocolate. So many young girls have been coming in for their supplies and YouTube under their arm. Remember, we’re here to help if YouTube can’t!

We have two snippets for you this fortnight. a free book and Yarnman Miranda has his first say.

We have knitted a few items from this Cleckheaton pattern book.

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The yarn used in the book is all California, made in Turkey, 100g balls (185m). An 8 ply yarn. We did use our own Norway to knit up the cream jumper, so fabulously modeled by our very own Emily. Norway is available in 6 natural shades.

Emily reckons this is a very wearable and comfy jumper indeed!

Come into our Sydney or Melbourne store and purchase the yarn to knit one of the jumpers in the book and we will include the pattern book for free. This offer lasts while stocks last.

And just to conclude your winter ensemble. One of the hats and a voluptuous infinity scarf.

We think you should be pretty much set for the upcoming winter.

And, last, but not least.

 

Yarnman Miranda

Yarnman Miranda speaks……….

Actually, she is totally at a loss for words and that right on her first Yarnman Miranda speaks segment, but she is truly speechless.

This is all we could get out of her:

“Ladies, really……….?!

Until the next time. Try to make something beautiful often.

Manos is in the house!

Manos del Uruguay has arrived in our stores. It’s all here and we are selling it out of the boxes. These kettle dyed fibres will break down all your resistance to building yet more stash. Remember that resolution you made to use what you have, well forget that, that resolution is gone! We found a customer wandering around the pillar, mumbling ‘delicious, delicious’.

In our delicious woolly arsenal we have the following:

Manos Maxima – 100% extrafine merino, Manos Fino – 30%silk and 70% extrafine merino, Manos Silk Blend – 30% silk and 70% extrafine merino, Wool Clasica – handspun pure wool, Manos Serena – 60% baby alpaca and 40% pima cotton, Manos Lace – 70% baby alpaca, 25% silk and 5% cashmere, Manos Alegria (sock yarn) 75% superwash merino and 25% polyamide.

100% Fair Trade and Handmade in Uruguay. You can read all about the history and the way the co-ops function here.

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Marelle’s sock is coming along nicely and the colours are awesome. Knit in colour 9275 and loving how the heel colour has worked out.

Give Manos Maxima a go and crochet a little kerchief with two hanks of Manos Maxima, It’s soft, squishy and warm. Also, a heads up to those of you who find wool a little uncomfortable against the skin. Not this one.

You will need:

4.50mm crochet hook

2 hanks of Manos Maxima in your chosen colours. Our sample uses M2552 Foil and M2175 Shocking.

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Work 8ch and close to a circle.

Row 1: ch3, 1tr into base of three chain, 2ch, 2tr, 2ch, 1tr, 5ch, 1tr, 2ch, 2tr, 2ch, 2tr into the circle. Turn.

Row 2: ch3, 1tr into base of three chain, 1tr in next stitch, 2ch, 2tr, 2ch, 1tr in next stitch, 7tr in 5ch space, 1tr in next stitch, 2ch, 2tr, 2ch, 1tr in next stitch, 2 tr in top of turning chain. Turn.

Row 3: ch3, 1tr into base of three chain, 1tr in next 2 stitches, 2ch, 2tr, 2ch, 1tr in next 4 stitches, 3tr in next stitch, 1tr in next 4 stitches, 2ch, 2tr, 2ch, 1tr in next 2 stitches, 2 tr in top of turning chain. Turn.

Row 4: ch3, 1tr into base of three chain, 1tr in next 3 stitches, 2ch, 2tr, 2ch, 1tr in next 5 stitches, 3tr in next stitch, 1tr in next 5 stitches, 2ch, 2tr, 2ch, 1tr in next 3 stitches, 2 tr in top of turning chain. Turn.

Row 5: ch3, 1tr into base of three chain, 1tr in next 4 stitches, 2ch, 2tr, 2ch, 1tr in next 6 stitches, 3tr in next stitch, 1tr in next 6 stitches, 2ch, 2tr, 2ch, 1tr in next 4 stitches, 2 tr in top of turning chain. Turn.

Row 6: ch3, 1tr into base of three chain, 1tr in next 5 stitches, 2ch, 2tr, 2ch, 1tr in next 7 stitches, 3tr in next stitch, 1tr in next 7 stitches, 2ch, 2tr, 2ch, 1tr in next 5 stitches, 2 tr in top of turning chain. Turn.

Row 7: ch3, 1tr into base of three chain, 1tr in next 6 stitches, 2ch, 2tr, 2ch, 1tr in next 8 stitches, 3tr in next stitch, 1tr in next 8 stitches, 2ch, 2tr, 2ch, 1tr in next 6 stitches, 2 tr in top of turning chain. Turn.

Row 8: ch3, 1tr into base of three chain, 1tr in next 7 stitches, 2ch, 2tr, 2ch, 1tr in next 9 stitches, 3tr in next stitch, 1tr in next 9 stitches, 2ch, 2tr, 2ch, 1tr in next 7 stitches, 2 tr in top of turning chain. Turn.

Row 9: ch3, 1tr into base of three chain, 1tr in next 8 stitches, 2ch, 2tr, 2ch, 1tr in next 10 stitches, 3tr in next stitch, 1tr in next 10 stitches, 2ch, 2tr, 2ch, 1tr in next 8 stitches, 2 tr in top of turning chain. Turn.

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If you don’t want to put beads in, just ignore the little black dots.

At this point the increases will make sense. Continue until the yarn has been used up. The colour sequence runs as follows. (Of course, you know you can buy more yarn and keep going and make a big wrap around for winter).

19 rows in colour A, 1 row in colour B, 3 rows in Colour A, 2 rows in colour B, 4 rows in colour A and 11 rows in colour B. Last row in Colour A, scalloped edge as follows:

Ch3, 4tr into base of chain, skip 2sts, dc in next stitch, skip 2sts, *5tr in next stitch, skip 2sts, dc in next stitch, repeat from * all around.

Sew away any ends and block if you so desire.

Yarnman Miranda

Yarnman Miranda discovers Manos! It really is that good!

Until we meet again. Happy crafting.

 

 

 

 

Platypus on Collins Street

Cleckheaton have re-issued a delightful pattern book from their archives. Aussie animals. We had a visit from the Platypus who, understandably had a bit of a freak out in Collins Street.

He is knit up in our Morris and Sons Estate 8 ply. The book has 15 gorgeous Australian critters to knit up. Among our favourites are, of course, the platypus, the frilled neck lizard and the emu.

Cleckheaton Aussie Animals Pattern Book

Cleckheaton Aussie Animals Pattern Book

Cleckheaton Aussie Animals Pattern Book

Cleckheaton Aussie Animals Pattern Book

Last Minute Knits

It’s happened to all of us. A friend’s birthday is upon us. It’s the end of the year and Johnny’s teacher needs a Christmas present. Your five year old wakes you up at 6 a.m and tells you that he has to bring a gift for the Principal as she is leaving. Other human beings (you’re not other human beings, you’re a knitter) would hop into their car, find the nearest gift store and within 10 minutes, beautifully wrapped, have the problem solved. You, on the other hand, have a whole different approach to this kind of dilemma. Us, who can make anything by hand, labor under the misconception that we can whip something up in no time at all. We really do believe it. While everybody around us thinks we’ve gone mad, we soldier on firmly believing that there is such a thing as a quick knit.

Today, we’re here to help. First of all, to clear up a couple of problems related to semantics.

A quick look in the dictionary. The word ‘quick’ does not relate to knitting at all. Never ever. Remember this. Have it tattooed on your arm. Quick: moving fast or doing something in a short time. No, not knitting. On the other hand: ‘last minute’. Now, there’s a statement that could work for knitting: the period just before a significant or concluding moment such as a deadline due date (that baby better not come before I finish this blanket) or scheduled event. Now, that sounds more like something that is doable!

Last minute gifts. One for when you have an evening and the other for when you have 15mins. Yes, 15mins.

Image100% Gentle Exfoliation Face and Body Washer

Make sure you have the following: 4.00mm knitting needles and 2 x 50g Morris and Sons Maya 8 ply 100% Cotton. Tension is really not important and your wash cloth will measure about 23cm square. Cast on 46sts.

Rows 1-4: knit.

Rows: 5-8: k3, *k4, p4, rep from * to last 3sts, k3. Rows 9-12: K3, *p4, k4 rep from * to last 3sts, k3. Rep rows 5 to 12 six more times.

Rows 57-60: knit. Cast off leaving last stitch on the needle.

For the loop, using last stitch, cast on 20sts. Cast off. Sew loop to base and sew away all ends.

Done and dusted. If there’s time, pick up a good soap.

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Now to the 15 minute one. All the way from The Granny Square in Katoomba from the lovely Jenny.

Hakuna Matata

(the No Worries Necklace)

Image1 x Rosarios 4 Web and 1 x 12mm Tulip Bamboo Crochet Hook.

Make a row of chains until you run out of wool. Fold rope of chains into a three ring circle. Use yarn end and wrap around all three. If you have time, sew on any embellishment in form of a button or bloom. Seriously, you can do this while the family is having breakfast!

ImageI hope we have helped solve some of those last minute moments. If you have any last minute anecdotes, share in the comments box. Send us pictures if you do make use of our last minute problem solvers. We love to see your work and we love hearing from you.

Manos del Uruguay – Dragón Cooperative

Last month our managers Adelaide and Albert went to visit Manos del Uruguays’s Dragón Cooperative in Placido Rosas, Uruguay. They were enthralled with the beautiful yarns Manos had to offer and are looking forward to bringing it directly to you!

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Manos del Uruguay is an not-for-profit organization which provides craftswomen with paid work in rural areas of Uruguay and some other parts of South America. It is a member of the World Trade Organization and is 100% committed to Fair Trade. The organization allows sustainable economic growth communities and promotes handicrafts of the region, which are culturally significant to the Uruguayan people.

The exquisite Manos yarns are handspun, kettle dyed, and come in a range of plies, colours and textures.

Morris and Sons look forward to these unique yarns arriving in to stores at the beginning of the new year and supporting such a great organization. Watch out for these beautiful creations.

If you’d like more information on Manos del Uruguay you can check out their website here or their blog: http://manosdeluruguay.wordpress.com/.

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(All images are from: http://www.manos.com.uy/dragon_cooperative/)

Knitspiration! Beautiful lace shawl in Morris Empire 2ply

Christmas is coming up and in Morris and Sons we are all preparing our knitted gifts!imogen'sshawl

The very talented Imogen is knitting something very special for her mother in law. The EZ 100th anniversary shawl: Gull Wings! It’s a one ball pattern worked up in 2 ply lace yarn. Imogen chose Morris Empire 2ply, which is a beautiful merino wool. Perfect for seeing all the detail in the lace. The picture above shows her work after only one week! It’s starting to take shape and all the hard work will soon be worth it.

The pattern can be downloaded for free on Ravelry, and the yarn can be bought online.

Get inspired, get creative, and more than anything else, get knitting!

Amazing advanced sock workshop!

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Have you ever wanted to knit socks but just didn’t know how? Socks can be a little bit tricky when starting your first pair. There are a few ins an outs that would be easiest to do if you had a little help, or a lot of help if need be. Emily has an amazing sock workshop running for the next three Sundays in our Sydney store. She will teach you the beginning, middle and the finishing of socks in these three workshops. Morris and Sons also have an amazing range of sock yarns to choose from.

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The yarns pictured above are all Schoppel Wolle, made in Germany. These yarns are of the highest quality and are beautiful to knit with. Take a look at all our sock yarns on our website.

Book in to the class online by clicking here, or over the phone by calling 02 9299 8588.

Continental knitting. Tried it yet?

Continental knitting, sometimes referred to as German knitting or European knitting, knits with the yarn in the left hand. It’s a very interesting technique which can make knitting up to 25% faster. It is also a popular and more natural style for left handed people. There is less movement in the wrists and less muscle strain, so this can be a great option for people who have arthritis, or carpel tunnel syndrome. The Continental style also allows for a looser tension, so keep that in mind when trying this technique with your garments.

Interestingly it was less popular in England after the Second World War. So the English turned to the English style knitting, with the yarn in the right hand. In this style the right needle is held like a pen. This technique was initially adopted by upper-class ladies in the Victorian era in order to look more ladylike. However, it is now one of the most common techniques used in Australia.

Drivers of the French Ambulance Corps near the fighting zone, waiting to be called (Italy, 1944). ~Robert Capa photo
Drivers of the French Ambulance Corps near the fighting zone, waiting to be called (Italy, 1944). ~Robert Capa photo

The above depicts some French Ambulance drivers, knitting some socks for the front using the Continental technique.

For those who Fair Isle: Continental knitting can make working with colours a whole lot easier. The Continental style allows you to work with at least three colours at once, and colour changes become quicker and less effort.fairisle continental

Above image is of Fair Isle colour work using both the left and right hand techniques. (Image from: http://www.visitscotland.com/destinations-maps/shetland/).

Morris and Sons is holding a continental knitting class on the 17th of November. In this class you will learn the difference between the “English” or “Throw” style of knitting, and the Continental style. You will learn how to knit and purl comfortably in the Continental style, the easy transitions between the two for ribbing, and how to do the main decreases and increases. So if you’re interested in taking part in the class, hop on to our website, or call us in store to make a reservation on (02) 9299 8588.

The Morris and Sons Team

 

Fair Isle knit: Ainsley Beret

This week Emily, our very talented staff member, brought in her newest knit; the Ainsley Beret.

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The Ainsley Beret pattern has been in store for a while, and as soon as Emily started working she was interested in giving it a go. Within a couple of weeks, Emily had knitted up the Morris and Sons Ainsley Beret in the new Morris Estate 4ply yarn.
The Morris Estate is great for fair isle. As it is a merino wool it is great for regulating body temperature. So good for chilly outdoor days. Fair Isle originated in the Shetland Islands on the island of Fair Isle and became very popular during the 1920’s. Traditionally the Fair Isle technique uses Shetland wool which is very sticky. This means that the colours stick together like glue. After blocking the yarn becomes very soft, lovely for garments worn close to bare skin such as berets. The stickiness of the Morris Estate 4ply Merino creates the Fair Isle effect perfectly.

A great achievement for a first fair isle knit. The pattern and yarn can be bought online and also in store.

Skills and techniques used for the Ainsley Beret:

  • stranded colour work
  • knitting in the round
  • knit and purl stitches
  • blocking

The Ainsley Beret is a great short project for someone interested in learning the Fair Isle technique.

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Knitspiration: Gingko Shoulderette Shawl!

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This week one of our team members, Imogen, impressed us all with her beautiful Gingko Shoulderette Shawl by Maggie Magali. It took Imogen about a week to finish the shawl. The pattern is a free download from Ravelry.

The Gingko Shoulderette Shawl uses a mixture of lace techniques and stocking stitch in a top down pattern. Interestingly the lace portion is worked on both knit and purl sides.

It took her just under two balls of the Morris and Sons 4 Ply Avalon Pima Cotton in colour Turquoise #4418.

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Why did Imogen choose the Morris and Sons Avalon Pima Cotton?

While Pima Cotton was cultivated in Peru, and is primarily grown there, it has also been introduced to farming in Australia and the United States. Pima Cotton is known for its durability and absorbency. This makes it excellent for knitting quality garments that don’t fray or wear over time. The Morris and Sons Avalon is made in 4, 8 and 10 ply and it comes in a huge range of colours. These are available for you to purchase online here.

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The Morris and Sons Team