Good morning! Here is today’s pattern release – oobits!

Of all the wonderful Scots words I have used to name my patterns, I think that OOBIT has to be my favourite. Its a word that was new to me, and to which I was introduced by my friend Ivor (whose many talents include an editorial role on the Dictionary of the Scots Language).

Oobit basically means “caterpillar”, and you can see from the dictionary entry that it often appears in combination with the adjective “hairy”. Ivor suggested the name when he saw me making these bracelets a couple of months ago because their stripey and hairy appearance recalls that of fuzzy caterpillars. What I particularly love about the word, though, is the way it combines caterpillar-ness with woolliness: in Shetland, Doric and other mainland dialects, “oo” means “wool” – these bracelets are literally bits of “oo” – or “oo-bits”. “Oobit” also recalls “orbit”, and suggests something circular or revolving. . . .all told, I don’t think there can be a better name for a woolly bracelet!


These oobits are a great way of using up scraps of yarn, and are knitted flat or in the round (there are instructions for both methods). They are then wet-felted, shaped by hand, and dried to create a sturdy bracelet.

Oobits are quick to whip up and make fantastic wee gifts!


I was interested to see how Buachaille felted, and was very pleased with the result. I made several, and found that the key factor was to knit the oobit on a needle 5.5mm or larger to create a lot of space between the stitches. The gaps really help with the felting and shaping process.


This is the sixth, out of seven weeks of club patterns. All being well, the book is due to arrive next week, and will be shipped out to club members shortly after. If we get our skates on we should be able to have the book on general release for everyone in early December.


This week’s other exciting news is that we have found a fantastic space a short drive away in which we will be able to store a whole lot of yarn. We were basically living with the first batch, which was difficult for humans and animals alike . . . our new workshop space will be a much more appropriate home for the tasty skeins which will be arriving in some quantity very shortly. I will keep you posted, but if things go as planned we may well be able to put some Buachaille on general release over the next few weeks! We will make sure everyone is updated via our newsletter, and keep your eye on the shop, which is where the yarn will be available for sale.

29 thoughts on “Oobits!

  1. These are great! And I love the name – reminds me that we used to call furry caterpillars “woolly boys” when I was growing up in Huddersfield – don’t know if you’re familiar with that.


  2. I tried to post earlier so hope this isn’t a duplicate! I love the name, it reminds me of the name my dad from Caithness used for leftover food on a plate after dinner; “moo-bits”. So many great words like “fou’some troske” and “shortago” as opposed to long ago. As you can imagine, these phrases as causing autocorrect apoplexy!
    Love these!


  3. The name reminds me of one of my dad’s words for food left on plate after eating-“moobits”. He was from Caithness and so we also had fousome troske and shortago in the daily vocab. Love these too.


  4. Hi Kate…looking forward to the yarn and pattern release for the rest of us…I live in Canada and would like an idea of the cost of shipping and duty…also is the order paid in American funds? Always so excited to receive mail from Kate Davies designs!


    1. Hi Carol,
      you should be able to pay with Canadian dollars, we have now set up reduced shipping rates for overseas customers (so this will probably be less than you’d think!), and we have to comply with customs regulations in marking the package (so contents are marked as yarn, or book, with the rough price).


  5. Sweet! Isn’t felting a great way to play with wool? For me it’s like botanical dyeing – which I love – but very quick and without the mess :)


  6. Hello Kate, simple but attractive design, this is exactly why I love your style so much! Can I ask if you plan another round of seven skeins club? I’d like to ask membership for xmas from my husband, but I need to know, if I can count on it. Have a nice weekend!


    1. Hi Szandra,
      we aren’t planning another round of the club (at least not just yet) but the book with all of this year’s patterns & the yarn will be available soon.
      Have a great weekend!
      Kate x


  7. I love these! My first thought at seeing Oobits was Ookpik http://www.thecanadianencyclopedia.ca/en/article/ookpik/ and this great poem by Dennis Lee that I learned as a kid:


    An Ookpik is nothing but hair.
    If you shave him, he isn’t there.

    He’s never locked in the zoo.
    He lives in a warm igloo.

    He can whistle and dance on the walls.
    He can dance on Niagra Falls.

    He has nothing at all on his mind.
    If you scratch him, he wags his behind.

    He dances from morning to night.
    Then he blinks. that turns out the light.


  8. Apologies if this comment appears several times but I have tried to post three times already without success – I know not why.

    These are beautiful – great little stocking fillers. Will we get the pattern through Ravelry as with previous patterns – I ask because the buachaille download hasn’t updated in the way it has in previous weeks? Your shadow picture, by the way, looks like a very benign version of the chicken farmers in chicken run …


  9. HI Kate, these are beautiful little stocking fillers – thanks for a big smile re the name too. Will we get them through ravelry as with the other patterns? The buchaille patterns don’t yet have an upload on my version but maybe I’m being too impatient. Your shadows, by the way, look like a way more benign version of the chicken farmers in chicken run …


  10. ‘Hairy oobits putting on their new boots’

    Great word. – it’s one I know from a Scots book we have for our children (or should I say weans?)

    When’s the bubblyjock pattern coming out? ;-)

    I love this too: hunners of bees blooin in the breeze…


  11. Hi Kate, lovely wee stocking fillers – will we get them through ravelry as with the other patterns? The buchaille patterns don’t seem to have updated but maybe I’m just too early! Your long shadows in the barn look like a way more benign version of the chicken farmers in chicken run …


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