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Líonta Iascaigh take two

IMG_4033Six months or so ago, I published líonta iascaigh, a retro style turban pattern. Actually, I cant believe that it’s been that long. Insert aghast smiley face here. Well, the hat has a trickily brim assembly, and I decided to knit another prototype, this time in Studio Donegal, Soft Donegal and have the hat test knit again. And while I was tackling the brim, I took a few bad quality photos and made a photo tutorial to assist with the construction of the knit. many of the  photos came out either really dark or out of focus, but I hope you can make out what I am doing. You can down load Líonta Iascaigh Brim Assembly photo tutorial here.

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You can buy the updated and reformatted Líonta iascaigh pattern on etsy! And now is available for purchase on ravelry too!

 

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Abhainn Airgid

 

DSCF1112A shawl

or

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a cowl!

So this is what STwist Wool became, Abhainn Airgid, the silver river. It can be worn as a cowl, cape ,small shawl or a bolero for a princess. The button is used to fasten the shawl in different ways. The lacy rib acts as a button hole and because of this, it can be worn tight or loose and even twisted and closed at the back!

Pattern for Abhainn Airgid will be available in the near future….

 

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STwist Wool

A few weeks back I got a very interesting message on Ravelry. Would I like some free wool? Who me? Could I possibly turn down such an offer? Ah, no! Not only was this wool free, it was also 100 per cent Irish sheep and spun. My favorite kind. A few days later this beauty arrived in the post!

The kind and generous person who was offering me free wool was Diarmuid, owner and proprietor of S Twist Wool, a yarn  company based in in Dublin. S Twist is a brand new Irish hand spinning company where the fleece is sourced in Tipperary and spun in Ranelagh: interesting just a street away from where I used to live. Currently, S Twist yarns are only available in heavier weights,in both single and two ply chunky and in natural undyed colours. Diarmuid hopes to provide wool in lighter weights and also naturally dyed yarns in the near future. Diarmuid and S Twist are also very environmentally minded and use a natural rainwater fermenting process to clean the Tipperary wool. While Diarmuid sources, skirts, scours and cleans the fleece, he currently is outsourcing the processing and carding. On reuniting with his carded fleece, he then spins it up on an electric wheel which he has modified with a faster motor and a larger bobbin.

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So, to the yarn: 100 grams or 180 metres of naturally grey undyed single ply, mixed Irish breeds and 100 percent wool. The label suggests medium weight, a heavy aran to my eyes.

The yarn is loosely spun, and because I repeatedly frogged it initially, it did become fragile. I wanted to try a cabled hat, but a hat did not want to be made. I made repeated mistakes. Firstly, I cast on too many stitches and only realized six rounds down. Started again, and managed to turn the ribbing into moss! Third times a charm, they say! Well, not this time, when failed to follow my own hat pattern. Who needs a cabled hat in summer, anyway? With the hat abandoned, it was back to the drawing board for a suitable pattern but the wool was becoming unspun with all the ripping out.

As its made from Irish wool, it is has lots of character and some may find it coarse when compared to softer yarns, but to me, it felt quite soft to knit with and not at all rough on the hands. The yarn has quite a few long loose hairs, so refrain from wearing black while knitting with it! I knitted it with a loose gauge on larger needles and blocked it aggressively after. I was afraid that it might break or snap, but it held up admirably and holds a lace pattern prettily.

If you want your own skein, you can buy from S Twist online shop and I believe,  This is Knit, in Dublin stocks it too.

What did I knit, do I hear you ask? To find out, tune in next time, same bat time, same bat channel!

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Duilleoga an Fhómhair revisited

headshotThis was one of the very first patterns I designed last year. I decided to revisit this cabled brimmed hat and create alternative sizes. The pattern now has four different sizes, child, adult small, adult medium and adult large. The original hat was designed for ” adult small”, though was quickly stolen by the bookworm princess aged 7 and worn as a more floppy, slouchy beanie than originally intended. The largest size is pictured here, and yes, I have stolen the look from my daughter, more slouchy, and loose. This version was knit in Studio Donegal Aran Tweed, but any aran or worsted yarn would be suitable.

You can buy the new updated pattern here!

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Deora Corcra

Deora Corcra is a mini shawl made for Emma, made from Droim an Uan Merino Silk Purple Marble. The pattern is now available to purchase here.

This Merino Silk Purple Marble wool from Droim an Uan, was spun by Catherine into a two ply sport weight yarn. Fingering or lace weight yarn could also be used, if you prefer. The colour of the wool and the teardrop shaped points gave this shawl its name. The lace edge is knit first and then, the shawl is shaped using short rows. I prefer the German method of short row shaping as it gives a very neat finish, but you can use what method you prefer. You can find a tutorial of this method by Mimi Kezer here. The depth of the shawl could be decreased or increased by varying the number of stitches omitted on each short row. The shawl is finished with an eyelet boarder. The short edges are picked up and knit in garter stitch. Wet blocking is required to see the true beautiful shape of the shawl.

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Fairy Lawn Alpaca

DSCF1061Fairy Lawn Alpaca is an Irish owned company, producing hand knitted toys and a range of natural, undyed hand knitting yarns made from Irish Alpaca  and Peruvian Baby Alpaca fleece. The raw alpaca fleece is sourced in Ireland while the spinning process takes place in a mill in Oxfordshire in the United Kingdom, as unfortunately,  the facilities are not available here in Ireland. Continue reading

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Lá ‘Le Pádraig

Lá le Pádraig is a simple cowl pattern incorporating basic stranded colour work. It is knit in the round and uses only knit and purl stitches. It is made from Donegal Aran Tweed, 100 per cent pure new wool from Studio Donegal,  bought from This is Knit in Dublin. I have included three sizes, to fit a child or an adult (pictured on the mad scientist here, cue ninja moves) and a long version which can be worn long or doubled up for a warmer, cosier knit. The pattern is currently being written and tested and will be available soooooooon.

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Droim an Uan

I bought this Merino Silk Purple Marble from Droim an Uan, spun by Catherine on her Ashford Traveler Spinning Wheel. The top came dyed from Wingham Wool Work in England and was spun into singles and then plied together to make a two ply sport weight yarn. The 100 grams or 190 yards of the marbled yarn was wound into a center pull ball. This soft yarn is very evenly and professionally spun an will make a lovely scarf or shawl.

I also purchased 312 yards of blue green hand spun. This three ply Aran weight yarn was also spun and plied by Catherine on her Ashford Traveler Spinning Wheel. The fleece came from Droim an Uan, off the backs of Catherine’s little flock of yearling sheep, and then hand processed and dyed by Catherine herself. Again, this bright, vivid colored yarn is very evenly and professionally spun and wound into three neat center pull balls.

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Na tonnta

An elegant clutch bag made with Lindsay Craft chunky Alpaca two ply wool. This bag is knit flat, starting with the lace wave panel for the flap. The remainder of the bag is knit in stocking stitch with has purl rows for turning and sewing up. Lining is added to give it stability and strength. A crochet button hole is attached and a cute button finishes the little purse. As this is knit in chunky wool, it is a very quick knit. Buy this pattern here