KAL Season

Hello, it’s Nadia (Bunnyt) here, and I’ll be your guide through some of TIK’s favourite Knit-a-longs that are happening this season.

Sometimes it’s hard to keep up with the fast pace of Ravelry and you might miss the announcement of your perfect KAL. So how about taking a quick look at today’s round up of  Top 5 KAL’s running through this October / November season –  it might help you navigate your way to some fun new techniques and a gorgeous FO…

Our favourite KALS this season

Stephen West – Building Blocks KAL

We’re sure by now you have seen Jenny’s inspired Instagram pictures of Townhouse Yarn choices for the Building Blocks MKAL happening over on Ravelry.  It can be a little difficult to get your hands on the suggested yarn for the KAL so we think either Fade St. or  Clarendon Sock would be the perfect substitute.

Briocheveron Cowl by Stephen West. Photocredit: S. West
Briocheveron Cowl by Stephen West. Photocredit: S. West

This is a mystery KAL so you don’t see what your making until the last clue is released but (if you would like a sneak peek) there are a few spoilers floating around the Ravelry group and on Instagram! 

There is also a mini KAL for everything Brioche over in the WestKnits fan club group. This is a nice one if your not up for a full on KAL but would like the support of trying Brioche on a smaller project. The Briocheveron Cowl has been a favourite option for this knit-a-long so far.

2. WoollyWormhead MKAL

After the excitement of her recent workshops here in This is Knit, we are all still wanting a bit more of Woolly. Thankfully we can participate in her 9th mystery hat knit-a-long! This year there is a little bit of a twist: there are 3 hats, each featuring the same stitch pattern, but you can choose between a beret, beanie or slouchy style. You have plenty of time to get your needles and yarn ready for this one. We’re thinking of Dublin Dye DK or Ella Rae DK.

The boards for this are always fast, fun and full of support, so make sure you follow along here. We’re still in awe of Woolly’s approach to hat construction, and this KAL is guaranteed to incorporate her signature fun details and clever techniques.  Don’t you just love how Woolly’s mind works?

Luwan by Carol Feller (Photocredit J. Feller)
Luwan by Carol Feller (Photocredit J. Feller)

3. Carol Feller Luwan KAL / Wrap up Winter KAL

It wouldn’t be Autumn without a garment KAL from Carol. This year she has a beautiful textured stitch pattern with short row shaping called Luwan.  This KAL is happening on Carol’s dedicated KAL group on Ravelry, which is fantastic resource for support direct Carol and from a friendly bunch of fellow KAL-ers.

Luwan is knit from the top down and we think both Malabrigo Rios and Juniper Moon Herriot will work for this design.  The original yarn straddles between a DK and Aran weight though, so a tension swatch will be essential before committing.  Carol has written a little bit about swatching for this garment over on her blog and it’s definitely worth a read.

If the garment KAL is too big of a commitment, Carol is also running a Wrap up Winter Accessory KAL on the Stolen Stitches group. News is released in her News Reel thread and it’s perfect for the smaller “Knitmas” gift knitting season.

4. Ysolda Teague Knitworthy

Knitworthy 3 - Ysolda Teague (Photocredit: Ysolda)
Knitworthy 3 – Ysolda Teague (Photocredit: Ysolda)

Ysolda is back with Knitworthy 3, an annual gift knit-a-long for those that you deem worthy of a beautifully knitted gift. There are 8 patterns which are released every two weeks starting from the13th of September. There is still plenty of time to join in and it’s always fun in the Ravelry Group. We really like the look of Alleunmer in Ysolda’s Sport 5ply yarn but if you can’t get your hands on that you can look at Baby CashmerinoMalabrigo Finito, Mirasol Nuna or Grafton 4ply.

5. Boo Knits – Halloween mKAL

We couldn’t leave out one of favourite shawl designers – Boo Knits always runs a fun knit-a-long and this year is no exception. The Halloween KAL has a little nod to the 400 year anniversary of the death of William Shakespeare. The Taboo shawl is a top down crescent shape that has a bit of lace, beads and that Boo Magic. We’re in love with both Findley by Juniper Moon and Townhouse Yarns Trinity 2ply for this spooky KAL…

Do you have a favourite designer running a KAL at the moment? Drop a link in the comments so we can all have a look too! If you’re joining in a KAL and need help with choosing the right yarn for your project then you can drop into the shop – we would only be too happy to help – or you can find us on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram as @ThisisKnit. 

Simple and Swift

Are you looking for some quick, cosy and stylish accessories to whip up with some very squishable yarn? On today’s blog we’re highlighting two fabulous shop samples that we think will do the job quite nicely…

File 17-10-2016, 21 55 35  October_15__2016_at_1122AM

First up is this Cable Edged Cowl from the lovely people at Conway and Bliss.  Using just two balls of their Odin yarn and 10mm needles, you can cast on for this project on Friday evening and be snuggling in to its cosy depths come Monday morning… This project would be a wonderful introduction to cables for the newer knitter, or a super gift-knitting option for the more experienced of you out there.


It’s been all about hats at TIK recently, and the project choices just keep piling up! Sample number two is a sweet slouchy beanie, made using a nifty free pattern from TinCanKnits and one skein of cloud-like merino in the form of Debbie Bliss’s new Falkland Aran. The pattern is called Barley and it’s available in sizes from newborn right up to adult’s large. Why not make one for everyone?

Are you getting a head start on gift knitting right now? Or using any super chunky yarn? We’d love to hear all about the quick-knitting projects you have on the needles!

Airflow Cardigan

These days we’ve all been kept on our toes, with the weather bouncing around from warm, Summer-like days, to rainy, blustery ones. We are reminded that practical layers are essential, and the Airflow Cardigan by Justyna Lorkowska is definitely one of them! A simple, stockinette, open-front cardigan featuring three quarter sleeves is the perfect go-to for unpredictable weather.

Airflow Cardigan Fade St 4ply

Our sample was knit up in the beautiful Townhouse Yarns Fade St 4ply in the colourway Thea. Superwash Merino and Silk is the ideal match for this flowy cardigan, the luxuriously soft blend giving it the perfect drape. Not a fan lots of finicky finishing? This easy, seamless design features an open front and set-in sleeves, which makes it a pleasure to knit. A subtle eyelet detail runs the length of the front, and the sleeves and hem are finished off with simple ribbing. And the asymmetric hem, being short in the back and longer towards the front, gives it a flattering shape. It truly is a classic design that is sure to get plenty of wear all year long.

Airflow Cardigan Knitting Pattern

Stockinette cardigans like this one are a great way to show off the subtle variations in hand dyed yarns. Without a button band or separate sleeves, the flow of the color transitions aren’t interrupted, leaving the effect to be truly seamless. The sheen of a silk blend like Fade St. really give it an elegant feel, making it easy to dress up or down. Just 2 skeins were needed to knit up our sample, which is available to try on in the shop next time you pop by! The pattern for the Airflow cardigan is available for purchase via Ravelry, and likely one you’ll knit more than once; a couple of these cardis in your wardrobe would not go amiss!

What are your favourite garment patterns for unpredictable seasons?

Bonny Lace Top

Warm, sunny days may feel fleeting in Dublin, but their rarity makes them all the sweeter! We’ve had some lovely summery days recently, and it’s inspired us to share this beautiful lace top by Tin Can Knits. Knit up in the luxurious Findley by Juniper Moon, in the shade 22 Menemsha, Bonny is the perfect lightweight garment for the warmer months. It’s sleeveless design, lace neckline and loose gauge makes for an airy and elegant top, and perfectly matched to the silk and merino blend of Findley.

Bonny Lace Top Knitting

The only thing more impressive than this buttery soft yarn is the value; each ball contains 730 metres, which is plenty to knit up this top in one of the smaller sizes! Our shop sample took less than one ball to knit up the small size. This is also the perfect pattern for those keen to try knitting garments: no sleeves or seaming is involved, it’s simply knit bottom up, in the round with no complicated shaping. The lace at the neck is a simple stitch pattern, which is easy to memorize once a few rounds have been worked. The cowl-like drape at the neck is flattering, and the airy gauge makes this a pretty quick knit too.

Bonny Tin Can Knits Pattern

Findley gives this top a luxurious feel, while being very economical in both yardage and price. It’s available is several vibrant colours that are just perfect for summer. This deep blue is prime for an elegant evening, but knit up in white or a pastel would make it casual and fun. It really is a truly versatile and simple pattern, and an overall enjoyable knit! Stop by the shop to see our sample, or admire all the beautiful shades of Findley first hand.

What’s in your queue for the Summer? What are your favourite lace weight garment patterns?

Waiting For Rain

We recently wrapped up our Spring KAL for the Waiting For Rain shawl, and were blown away by all of your beautiful FOs! In case you missed all of the excitement, we’re talking a bit about this pattern today. Super simple garter stitch, short row lace inserts, beautiful drape… what’s not to love? I mean, have you seen our stunning shop sample in Townhouse Fade St 4ply?

Waiting For Rain Shawl

While the bulk of the shawl is easy garter stitch, what makes it unique is the lace “windows” throughout, created using a short row technique. This pattern is extremely user-friendly, with lots of notes and extra instructions to help you navigate your way through the pattern or any alterations you might want to make, including: changing the lace, using two colours, cast on and bind off methods among others. Details such as stitch counts, as well as both written and charted instructions make it easy to follow no matter what your preference. It truly is a fine example of thorough pattern writing, which made it an easy choice for this year’s Knit-a-long.

Waiting For Rain Knit Pattern

Ready to add it to your queue? You’ll need 2 skeins of Fade St 4ply to knit up this shawl, or just over 700 metres of a fingering weight yarn. We’d recommend Debbie Bliss Fine Donegal if you’re looking for some texture. We’re also loving the sister shawl to this pattern which was recently announced, it’s called The Rain Outside, and it’s equally beautiful. Both patterns are available for purchase via Ravelry. If you’ve decided to dive into this pattern and need some help along the way, pop by the shop for some tips and advice, we’re happy to help! Our sample shawls are also in the shop, if you feel like test driving this beauty before you cast on!

Did you join along in our Spring KAL? Have you knit up your own Waiting For Rain shawl?

Piewhacket Shawl

The sun has been taking a short hiatus here in Dublin, though the return of rain means it’s time to wrap up in a beautiful shawl! Recently we shared the lovely Rondelay Shawl, a fun short row pattern by Jennifer Dassau. Today, we have another shawl from the same ebook collection, the Piewhacket Shawl. While the Rondelay design is made of several overlapping rondel shapes, the Piewhacket is more triangular in shape, with subtle peaks along the bottom edge. Check out our shop sample, knit up in Townhouse’s Merino and silk blend Fade St 4 ply, in the stunning shade Dazzle!

Piewhacket Shawl

Townhouse Fade St 4 Ply

It’s unique asymmetrical shape is perfect for draping over your shoulders, and the clever use of short rows means you never have an unmanageable number of stitches on your needles. The Piewhacket shawl pattern can be purchased individually, or as apart of the complete ebook containing 5 short row shawls, via Ravelry. We love these shawl patterns, they’re a great way to ease your way into short rows, and they really showcase just how versatile short rows can be in the construction of a garment. Everything from cardigans to socks can use short rows in their construction, and there are many different ways to do them, in fact we just covered the double stitch method (or German Short Row) used in the popular Pfeilraupe shawl.

Piewhacket Shawl

Our second shop sample above was knit up using Cathay 4 ply by Lotus Yarns, in the natural, creamy shade 01, this yarn is a luxurious blend of Tibetan Yak and silk. The texture of the Yak fibre, along with the heavenly drape of the silk, make this yarn the perfect compliment to this pattern. Cathay 4 ply is available in a few complimentary jewel tones, and you’ll need 2 skeins to knit up this shawl.

What’s the most recent project you knit that included short rows? What’s your preferred short row method?

Violet Dress

We have the most darling dress to share with you today! The Violet Dress is a super sweet and simple pattern that is available to download for free via Ravelry. Our shop sample was knitted up in the colourful Cassia Prints by Louisa Harding in the beautiful shade 506, and what a perfect match they make! Knitted up with 3 balls(?) to get the toddler size(?)

Violet Dress Kids Knitting Pattern

It’s simple, top-down construction includes garter stitch straps, decorative eyelet increases down the center front and back, and is finished off with a garter hem. The skirt flares out steadily towards the bottom, giving it a lovely shape. This little dress is a great opportunity to showcase a variegated yarn; with a full stockinette skirt, it’s a great canvas for some fun colours. The simple design leaves room for plenty of creative freedom, perhaps using a contrast color for the straps and bodice? Adding a decorative stitch at the hem? This pattern is very straight forward and would be easy enough to alter, even for those knitters without much experience knitting garments. No button bands or sleeves means quick and easy knitting, a great little project for summer!

Louisa Harding Cassia Prints Violet Dress

We just love the Cassia Prints for kids knits, with it’s cheerful, variegated shades, and easy to care for wool/nylon blend. It’s a DK weight that stands up well to wear, which means it’s also great for a cosy pair of socks. The colourways range from warm pinks and yellows, to cool blues and greens, all blending together giving it a hand painted look. Pop by the shop any time and check out the colourways in person, photos just don’t do them justice!

What projects do you have in your queue for the summer? Have you knitted with Cassia Prints yet?

Pfeilraupe: Double Stitch Short Rows

If you’ve been joining us on our journey through the Pfeilraupe pattern, you’ve since learned how to master the crochet cast on, the short rows, and the slots. Today we finish off this series with the short row technique used on the finishing edge. While the cast on edge uses another short row technique, the opposite edge uses double stitches, which we’ll cover today.

As soon as you’ve reached the middle point, you will turn at the tip and immediately begin this new short row technique to begin growing the triangle in the opposite direction. Up until this point, you have been turning at each short row along the cast on edge, knitting back to the end, then turning to begin the next row. You then work up to and across your short row stitch, working a few more stitches before turning again at the next short row. The number of stitches worked in each row increases as you work into your crochet cast on.

On the finishing edge, you’ll still be turning to work your short rows, but you won’t be coming across them again until you’re casting off. The number of stitches worked in each row will decrease as you complete the second half of the triangle. Ready to get to it? Here we go!

Right side: Knit until you reach your stitch marker, which indicates turning for the short row.

Pfeilraupe Double Stitch Short Rows

Turn your work. Your stitch marker is now on the right needle, and the working yarn is towards you. Insert your right hand needle into the first stitch on your left hand needle purlwise, to form an X. Lift the working yarn up and in between the two needles, on top of the X, away from you and towards the back.

Knitting Double Stitch Short Rows Technique

Keeping the yarn towards the back, remove the left hand needle from the stitch, leaving the stitch on the right needle.

Pfeilraupe Double Stitch Short Rows

Keeping the yarn to the back, you are now ready to continue knitting the row.

This “double stitch” is really just turning one stitch backwards, so that the purl bump facing you, now shifts around away from you, appearing to create two stitches, with each “leg” of the stitch now resting on the needle. The double stitches are easy to see with the color changes in the yarn used (Pittura by Louisa Harding in shade 601) so you can see each pair or “double stitch” is really a single stitch, with both “legs” now on the needle.

Pfeilraupe Double Stitch Short Rows

Knitting Double Stitch Short Rows Technique

When you are ready to cast off, and you come across these double stitches, make sure you treat them as one stitch. You will be knitting those two stitches together.

This method is great because it is a fluid motion and there is no tedious wrapping. The only down side would be doing the double stitch in stockinette, where you are doubling a knit stitch, it is not as tidy as doubling a purl stitch. Because this pattern is garter stitch, this technique works very well, as when you turn for the short row, you always have the purl side facing.

We hope you found this series useful, and hope to see lots of beautiful Pfeilraupe FOs very soon! Our shop sample will be done and up on display very soon if you’d like to come by and check it out, or get some help with the pattern in person.

Have you knit your own Pfeilraupe? Did you learn any new techniques when knitting it?

Rondelay Shawl

Don’t you just love one skein projects? We do! And we have a great one to share with you today: the Rondelay shawl is a beautiful pattern with unique construction, and our shop sample used up just one skein of the lovely Tibetan Cloud by Lotus Yarns in shade 15! Using the wonders of short rows, this design features three half circles, making for a simple shawl with a clever design. Featuring garter stitch and yarn over eyelets, the rondel patterns overlap each other, creating a semi-circular overall shape that drapes beautifully. It’s design suits both variegated yarns as well as it does solids, as you can see with our sample in this deep purple colour!

Rondelay Shawl Knitting Pattern

The yarn used in this shawl is 100% Tibetan yak, which isn’t a fibre you come across very often. It is strong while being light and airy, really coming into it’s own with lace stitch patterns. A solid 450 meters per skein means you’ll have all you need to finish this shawl. The result is something dreamy: light as a feather and with wonderful drape. Tibetan Cloud comes in a stunning spectrum of deep jewel tones, as well as some natural shades. If you’ve never worked with a Yak fibre yarn before, Tibetan Cloud could definitely make you a fan!

Rondelay Shawl Knitting Pattern

The Rondelay shawl pattern is available for purchase on Ravelry individually, or within an ebook by Jennifer Dassau which includes 5 patterns featuring short rows and garter stitch, all which use just one skein! We’ll also be featuring the Piewhacket shawl in another post here on the blog very soon.

Have you ever knit with Yak fibre before? What’s your favourite one-skein project?

Pfeilraupe: Slots

We’re back to Pfeilraupe today, with another post to help you along with this popular pattern. Pfeilraupe has a peculiar construction, but we can all agree the beautiful design is innovative and versatile, and definitely worth a spot in your queue! In previous posts, we talked about the crochet cast on and the short rows used in this pattern, and today we’re covering the “slots” or holes that are along one side of this shawl. If you’ve worked a 2 row button hole, you’ll find that the instructions create a similar effect: stitches are cast off in between the stitch markers, the row is completed (in this case, turned according to the short rows) and worked back up to the point where the stitches have been cast off. Then, the same number of stitches are cast on, and the row is completed. The holes in this pattern are worked over 11 stitches, and repeat every few inches for a total of 6 slots. There are very detailed photo instructions linked to from this pattern, but the instructions are written up in German. Don’t panic! We’re here to help. It really is just casting off and casting on, and although you’re welcome to just keep it simple and do just that, there are a few extra steps you can do to make the slots nice and tidy. So, let’s dive in!


Part 1: Casting off for slot

Knit until you reach the stitch marker on row 34 (see “Start Corner” chart on page 5 in pattern), you’re ready to prepare to cast off the subsequent 11 stitches. Before doing that, we will do an extra step to keep the edge tidy. With stitch marker still on the left hand needle, insert left needle into first stitch on right hand needle purlwise. Your right needle should be in front of the left needle. Wrap yarn around left needle counter-clockwise (see photo).


Bring that wrap through the stitch, keeping the live stitch (purple) on your right needle, and the wrap (red) on your left needle.


Move the wrap stitch from your left needle to your right. 1 stitch has been increased. The “wrap” (red) should now be the first stitch on your right needle, with the live stitch (purple) next to it. Remove stitch marker.


Knit the next stitch. Pass the second stitch (red) on right needle over the first stitch (bring the red “wrap” stitch on right needle over the knit stitch you just worked, and off the needle). 1 stitch decreased. Note: at this point, no stitches have been cast off.

Give it a tug to tighten the wrap over the stitch. You can now begin casting off the stitches. Cast off until you reach the next stitch marker. Remove stitch marker, cast off one additional stitch (for a total of 11 stitches cast off). Finish row as in pattern, turning at the short row, and work back until you reach the cast off stitches.

Part 2: Casting on for slot

You’ve now reached the cast off stitches. Turn your work, so the front is facing you. Yarn should be at the back; you can now cast on.


(Switch to a crochet hook for this step) Insert crochet hook into stitch below the first stitch on left hand needle, from the front. Pick up right leg of stitch by twisting hook clockwise to create a loop on the crochet hook.


Bring yarn to front, across the top of the left needle (creating a yarn over), and draw yarn through loop on crochet hook. 1 stitch has been cast on.


At this point it is important to replace your stitch marker in between the two stitches, as in photo. This will help you accurately count the number of stitches you cast on.


Bring yarn behind left hand needle (make sure you don’t create a yarn over here, just bring the working yarn to the back of the work) and prepare to cast on using crochet method. Your needle will be on the left, and your crochet hook parallel to the right. Wrap yarn around front of needle and crochet hook, from left to right. Draw through loop on the crochet hook to complete cast on of one stitch. Repeat to cast on remaining stitches.

When counting cast on stitches, make sure you count from stitch marker. You will have 11 stitches on your left needle, with the remaining loop on your crochet hook. Place this loop onto your right needle. Turn your work. (The cast on stitches are now on your right needle, and the remaining loop is on your left needle)


Bring yarn to the back. Pass the second stitch on left hand needle over the first (you will be bringing the first stitch from your cast off, over the last stitch from your cast on, and off the needle.


Move this stitch from your left needle to the right. You are now ready to complete the row as in pattern: knit to end.

Yarn used in this sample is Pittura by Louisa Harding in colour 601, which is available in several watercolour shades!