Since it was first published in The Knitter issue 10 the Gladstone bag has become one of my iconic designs and a lot of that is due to the fantastic handles used which beautifully sets off all the colour, beading and texture. The Lucite handles, originally bought from Bloomsbury trading when I used to run HKhandknit, were one of the many things I stashed when I closed the shop thinking “these are SO gorgeous I’ll stash them until I dream up a design in which to use them “. Well Gladstone was THE dream design for this particular pair of handles but sadly they’re no longer available from either Bloomsbury / Pavi Yarns or Trendsetter Yarns themselves. ( Just as well then that I stashed another 2 pairs in different colours!).
Anyway, after a great deal of online research I’ve come up with an alternative handle which could be used. They don’t have quite the same look as the Lucite handles which were actually quite expensive but they’re easily available and very reasonably priced plus, having checked this morning I am reliably informed by www.fun2to.co.uk that the fabric top of the bag WILL fit into the opening in the handle once the fabric has been felted. You can see their range of wide bag handles here
Here in the UK it’s officially winter as the clocks went back this weekend. There’s been a lot of talk about whether we should still be changing the clocks for the end of British Summer Time but we didn’t get much of a summer here in Edinburgh so the change at least means that we can officially stop looking to the skies first thing in the morning in the vain hope that the sun will make an appearance impressive enough for us to only need one layer instead of three. As a January born baby I like this time of year for lots of knitting, wrapping up warm in long boots with skirts ( plus a top of course ) and storing edible goodies, hence Mrs Sloan’s Homemade pickles. ( By the way, just one of Mr Sloan’s pickled chillis nearly took our heads off on Saturday ). So to celebrate November and the official start of British Winter Time I’ve got 2 more patterns for you which are available for download from the website.
Firstly there’s Gladstone Bag which was first published in The Knitter issue 10 so if you missed that issue of the magazine this is your chance to get a copy of the pattern.
Knitted in Jamieson & Smiths 2ply Jumperweight the bag is beaded in 2 colours with intarsia motifs on the sides with a brightly contrasting base worked in slip stitch stripes. Felting helps to give the bag it’s structure and embroidery stitches such as backstitch, bullion knots & Pekinese stitch create a riot of texture reminiscent of the Marrakesh souk that inspired the design. If you haven’t tried felting or colourwork before I probably wouldn’t recommend this as your first project but if you have tackled basic intarsia & beading and fancy a bit of a challenge then this is a satisfying project to knit. The stunningly classy Lucite bag handle is the final finishing touch and available from Pavi Yarns here
The bright bullion knots and buttons are applied after felting
The chainstitch & Pekinese stitch edges are applied before felting and the tassels are attached afterwards at the centres
Next there’s Clem’s Lace which is a beautifully soft scarf named after my grandmother Clementine.
Worked in an undulating lace pattern the double decreases and yarn overs give the scarf soft bumping side edges. It’s knitted flat in two pieces which are grafted together at the centre using Kitchener stitch so that the pattern is mirrored towards the centre. I’ve used my Worsted spun 100% cashmere and the yarn takes on another level of softness when you block and pin out the scarf. Just give it a gentle blast of steam with an iron and it becomes much more full and rounded which makes the finished scarf even more dreamily soft. The pattern includes both charted and written instructions and is suitable for knitters of advanced beginner level and upwards.
Enjoy the new patterns and pinch and a punch for the first of the month. (No returns )
I’ve just realised that it’s been a while since I posted that’s because I joined the twittering classes and am now on Twitter and have been up to my neck in knitting for the new book. PLUS there are two new patterns that will soon be available for download from the website. The first pattern isn’t exactly new it’s the Gladstone Bag so if you missed getting your hands on a copy of The Knitter you’ll soon be able to buy the pdf. The second IS a brand new pattern, a very pretty scarf named after my Gran Clementine. ‘Clem’s Lace‘ is knitted in my 100% worsted spun cashmere which means it’s so so soft, incredibly warm and doesn’t pill. This is what she looks like;
Both Clem and Gladstone will be available from 1st November
Happy knitting until then