New Lanark owls

Back in the spring, I knew my ten year owliversary was coming up, so I decided to knit myself a new owl sweater. These photographs were taken while we were in Berneray, back in May. It’s quite weird seeing myself with my ‘old’ hair – I suppose that must mean I’m now completely used to…

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owls (from “Handywoman”)

I recently wrote about how I designed the owl sweater in my book Handywoman. As part of the sweater’s ten year owliversary, I thought I’d extract that part of the book here. “In the autumn of 2008, I’d knitted a sweater that lots of people seemed to really like. As my skills and technical acumen…

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owliversary

In November it will be ten years since I knitted my owl sweater. A lot can happen in a decade, and that’s particularly so for me. In November 2008 I was an academic lecturer at Newcastle University, researching and teaching literary history. Knitting was one of several hobbies I enjoyed, and I’d begun documenting my…

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Wowligan (wee owligan)

Hooray! Hooray! Wowligan is here today! Apparently owl cardigans are much easier to dress a wee one in than owl jumpers and I’ve been asked about the possibility of such a pattern many times. . . one can never have too many owls, so I decided to make it. The Wowligan is basically a mini…

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orange owligan

Maybe it is the time of year or something – everything in the landscape seems so scoured out and colourless – but I find myself on a massive orange kick. And what better orange could there possibly be than this? The yarn is Bulky lopi in shade 1418 – “carrot tweed”. Such a rich, deep…

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Owligan

One of the most frequent requests I receive by email is to help knitters ‘translate’ my owls pullover design into a cardigan. This is not as straightforward as it sounds. The owls pullover was designed to be a tightly-fitting garment, with negative ease and back shaping (which would sit rather oddly as a cardigan). The…

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actual O W L S

Sometimes things just have to be done. Last year, the Scottish Owl Centre relocated to Polkemmet in West Lothian, a short drive away from Edinburgh. Boasting “one of the largest collections of owls in the world”, how could we not pay a visit? We met Hudson, the great horned owl. and this lovely wee feller,…

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purple o w l s

new, purple o w l s . . . This was my first design, and it was in need of a little freshening up. The pattern now looks more professional and includes a few changes, the main one being the addition of extra sizes (the range now runs from a 30″to a 50″bust). And there…

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b s t

Well, you know Spring is here when the clocks go forward. And last night, my subconscious decided to mark the occasion with a series of strange dreams. In the most disturbing one, peculiar birds pecked holes in my knitting. Pecking beaks! Ruined knitting! Horrors! Then one particularly evil birdie flew off with this: I’ve been…

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the grand owl prizegiving!

Yes, its time to announce the parliamentary victors, and give away some owlish prizes! There are 57 owls in the parliament. I excluded myself and my knitting comrades (Hannah, Kate B and Melanie) from the fun; put the remaining 53 names in a ‘hat’, and selected one at random. Congratulations, Elizabeth! You are officially the…

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U.S Owls

Hannah just sent me some great pictures of her o w l s enjoying themselves stateside. Here they are cavorting by the banks of the Mississippi . . . . . .and getting into the spirit of things in Memphis, Tennessee. o w l s have also been seen this week in New Zealand and…

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o w l s. the pattern.

Yes, the o w l s pattern is ready. You can now download it as a PDF under ‘designs’ (see tabs at top of page). Later today I hope to be able to contact all of you who requested the pattern by email. I’ve encountered several wrongly-typed or rejected addresses on the list, so if…

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owl release

It is curious what mist can do to one’s sense of place. A little cloud descends, and familiar hills one has climbed many times before are transformed into strange, alien moonscapes. The whole narrative of the landscape suddenly becomes lost in its details. Having missed our Highland walking with Felix because of seasonal colds (bah!…

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collared

“Collars have played a very important part in the drama of fashion, and today command the attention of dress designers of repute, as well as makers of simple dresses. Each realises and appreciates the value of the right collar. Each knows the scope given by their use to the expression of individuality.” Elizabeth McCaskill ‘New…

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owls redux

Clearly there are many of you who like owls just as much as I do! Owl tattoo, Kirsty? Cor! As a brief glimpse into the murky depths of my long-standing owl obsession, I thought I’d show you a birthday card Tom made for me eight years ago. At this time, we were in our mod…

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