Jökull

When I began thinking about putting together this collection, I felt it was important to include a design that might serve as an introduction to circular yoke knitting: something that was speedy and straightforward to knit, with some interesting details and a characteristic construction. That design is Jökull. Jökull is a yoked mantle. Though the…

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Bluebells

Good morning! Here is today’s yoke from my new book – Bluebells. In the 1950s and 60s, there was a particularly popular style of sweater featuring a rather narrow circular yoke. In such garments, the sleeve and body shaping tended to be a little more neatly tailored than other circular yokes, and the colourwork motifs…

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Foxglove

  Here is another yoke — this one’s name is self-explanatory — Foxglove. One of the things I’ve really enjoyed about my first year of rural living has been the wildflowers that grow around my home. Just a few yards from my front door are a wide variety of environments from heathland, bog and lochside…

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Yokes is available for pre-order! . . . and here is Buchanan

Good morning! I’m extremely happy to announce that Yokes is now available for pre-order . . . and while I’m at it, I thought I’d show you another design. This yoke is called Buchanan. One of the many aspects of wearing yokes that I thought about while researching this book was the widespread practice, in…

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Fintry

I wanted to include a smart, simple cardigan in my yoke collection. Something in a single colour; that might provide a showcase for a beautiful hand-dyed yarn; a garment that would be easy to wear and straightforward to knit. That cardigan is Fintry. Fintry is a pretty village a short drive away from my home.…

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Westering Home

Here is another new yoke – this one is named Westering Home I developed the idea for this design across on the ferry to Islay, one of my favourite Hebridean locations. On my frequent trips there, I often find that Westering Home – Hugh Roberton’s famous 1920s song – pops into in my head, and…

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Epistrophy

Well, it is time to introduce you to the first yoke from my new collection. Meet Epistrophy. Epistrophy is the title of a Be Bop “standard” composed and popularised by Thelonius Monk in 1942. The tune is characterised by its repetition and modification of a single, imitative phrase (or epistrophe). If you’d like to hear…

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out and about

I can’t believe quite how much my horizons seem to have expanded in the fortnight since I passed my driving test. Every day I’ve been able to take Bruce somewhere different for a walk. As you can imagine, Bruce is enjoying this immensely. Each time I open the front door he goes and stands expectantly…

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a heads up

This is just to let you know that I shall shortly be (temporarily) closing my online shop. Just a handful of kits remain, and the remaining stock of my totes and tea-towels are all on sale! The reason for the temporary closure is as follows: we need to plan ahead for the new book, and…

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Finishing touches

So my final yoke is DONE! I couldn’t resist showing you a peek while it is blocking on the dress form. This one has been so interesting both to design and to produce and I am really very pleased with the end result. Just the finishing touches to go now – some ribbon to cover…

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knitter-producers and knitter-consumers

(This is a body and sleeves, knitted up on her machine by Ella Gordon, onto which I’m about to hand-knit a colourwork yoke. Hundreds of thousands of such garments were – and indeed still are – made in like manner in Shetland and elsewhere.) Thanks so much for your comments on the previous post. As…

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yoke in a bag!

What’s this? Some “Shetland” yarn of very vintage hue, spun and branded here in Scotland? . . .and an accompanying pattern? But wait! There’s more . . . . Yes, this is a kit to knit your own yoked cardigan or jumper! Having heard of the existence of these kits (from your comments and elsewhere)…

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Brilliant women

Hello! I’m back again after a fantastic (and productive) couple of weeks research. I’ve had an amazing time in Sweden and Shetland, but what has really stood out to me about this past fortnight is the number of brilliant women whose company and conversation I’ve enjoyed. It has been a very long time since I’ve…

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. . .to meet a yoke hero

I have been excited about this for weeks – and can’t quite believe that tomorrow I am going to Göteborg to meet with Kerstin Olsson. For those of you who don’t know, Olsson was one of the group of talented and accomplished women who designed for Bohus Stickning, and the Wild Apple (above) is perhaps…

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fruition

This is the view from the top of our lane yesterday evening. The large hulking hill to the right is Ben Lomond, with the Arrochar “Alps”, including the Cobbler, to the left. The weather continues to be amazing. Everything is coming to fruition. My tomatoes are ripening. I am impressed with my peppers, also grown…

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Less is more

I think that one of the most fascinating aspects of designing is the fact that you are coming up with something which has no prior existence. Designing is essentially experimenting, and a large part of the process involves working without knowing quite how something will turn out. Though knitting has a certain amount of predictability…

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