So, I don't really do awards. I never win things, though admittedly I never enter things, either. 

You may remember that I was nominated for designer of the year (knit) in the British Craft Awards? Well... I won. I didn't go to the event as it was a long way to travel and all non-urgent travel is cancelled for the time being and I honestly did not expect to win being the outsider indie and all that.

I really don't know how to process this at all, but I know the important thing is to say thank you for all your support and votes! A video is also good practice at taking myself out of my comfort zone, and it's all fine as long as I don't have to watch it.

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Yup, it's been quiet around here. The blog posts I wanted to share of our trip to India never happened as the blogging app went wonky. Coming back I was pretty poorly with jetlag and tracheitis (seems my sulphite allergy has changed and now it gives me trouble breathing. Joy). And then I needed to dive head-first into writing all the handouts for the brand new workshops I'll be teaching at Edinburgh Yarn festival and Woollinn.

I'm coming out of the other side of this now (although still coughing) and I'm not quite sure where I am... it feels like I've lost a few months in time but the snow today is telling me otherwise. I'm learning to sleep properly again and eat properly again (yey for adjusting to another new diet) and I really can't wait for winter to bugger off. My right shoulder is improving but my left shoulder is now deteriorating rapidly and I'm learning to manage all that all over again, too.

And there, I've broken the ice.

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AuthorWoolly Wormhead
CategoriesShowing off

Use code 'seeya2017' to get 30% off ALL digital products in my Ravelry and Etsy stores, and right here on my website too. The code is valid until midnight (GMT) 16th January.

Please do share and spread the word as the January Sale helps us in So Many Ways!  (last year it kept us clothed and fed until autumn - amazing, thank you!)

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I'm blogging from a hotel room in Ahmedabad in Gujarat where the sun is shining and we have great city views. Today is scheduled rest day and we're catching up with the world (WiFi permitting - everyone's online new years day!)

 I won't be back in the studio until 22nd January so if you need anything do pop over to my Ravelry group - I won't be checking any email between now and then.

Here's looking forward to 2018. I hope everyone has a healthy and safe new year.  

 I'll share more as WiFi/data/app permits!

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AuthorWoolly Wormhead

We'll be taking our first foot steps on Indian soil as this post goes live, and it feels rather poignant that I'm celebrating the 10th anniversary of my first book - a whole chunk of sideways knit Hats - as we take a well earned break paid for by another book of sideways knit Hats!

 
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I've always enjoyed designing sideways knit Hats, it's where I feel most at home and most challenged. For a while back there I didn't design so many and some books (such as Classic Woolly Toppers) didn't feature any at all, as they just didn't seem to be gathering much interest. I'm much, much more confident now in designing what I want and exploring different construction methods, and in them being well received, too.

I've said before that Going Straight is my worst selling book and also my most pirated; that's still true and it still feels like a shame.

I've learnt so much since publishing this book - about photography and colour/yarn choices for patterns. About layout and self publishing through POD. And also about short rows and grafting! For it's time, there was nothing else like it around and it kinda went under the radar. It's the book I've spent more time updating and tweaking than anything else, and I secretly hope that one day it might yet have it's moment.

For the next few of days I'm offering a promotion on Going Straight either here or on Ravelry. Use code 10yearsofsideways to get 50% off the price between now and midnight on Xmas day (GMT).

Enjoy!

And I'll be hopefully posting very soon with photos of our India adventure - expect lots of textiles, silver jewellery, architecture and family fun (I can't wait to see Aran's face as he rides an elephant. That's how we plan to spend xmas day!).

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AuthorWoolly Wormhead

I'm going to talk about this here, as it's come up a lot over the last few weeks, and I'd like to put a couple of things straight.

 
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The Elemental Hats are not swing knitting. They don't use the technique. They are short row colourwork but that's a broad umbrella!

I'm not fully versed in swing knitting, but as far as I understand it, it's a method for maintaining balance within a flat piece of fabric that uses short rows to manipulate the fabric and thus create colourwork patterns. The aim of swing knitting is to guide you and create a rthythm to your work that follows the dips and flow of the short rows, and that doesn't take into account the need to use short rows for shaping.

Those of you who have knit any of the Elemental Hats will know that the short row forms are not all the same, and in some cases, not even the dominate feature. The only one that comes close is Korra, but even then that uses instarsia and still has those additional short rows for the crown and brim which would otherwise break up a rthythmic flow.

Swing knitting has picked up pace recently and is being recognised as a technique, which is great. It is though one method for creating short row colourwork, or perhaps a discipline is a better way to describe it. But it isn't the only way, and I wanted to clear this up before too many more people start linking the Elemental Hats with the swing technique. Parallelo and Scourie use the same techniques as the Elemental Hats but I don't think they could be linked in the same way. Taking a technique and adding in a 3rd dimension changes it muchly, and perhaps that's more evident when it's knitted?

Swing knitting is a brilliant technique and the uses of that I've seen are amazing! And now I think I need to investigate it further, as I'm always curious to see how others approach a similar challenge :)

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AuthorWoolly Wormhead

My monthly newsletter turned 8 years old this year, and I figured it was time to change things up a bit. It hasn't always been monthly, and it wasn't until I moved things over to MailChimp that I felt like I was finding my feet with it. I've often fallen out with this method of communicating as it sometimes feels so dry and sterile but of late, realising how inclusive it can be, it's starting to feel more like home again. And I want the newsletter to reflect that more and not just be a newsletter.

 
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Current subscribers won't need to do anything - the list isn't changing in and of itself, only it's name is changing and some of the perks (i.e. there'll be more!)

The Woolly Hat Society feels like the perfect name. We're all Hatters, and that gives me scope to share more things with you. I want to start including a tips section - little things that can help with finishing or blocking or other woolly Hat related things. Future free patterns will be exclusive to TWHS for a few weeks before being made public, that kind of thing. The current perks - exclusive discounts, hot-off-the-press news, member milestone coupons etc are all staying, too. All in all, it'll feel even more like a club than it does now and that can only be a good thing, right?

Long term I'd like to build us a private forum or chat room or something but for now, the Ravelry forum is our online chat home and that's worked well for us for over 10 years now (did you catch that the Wormhead's Hats group was 10 years old last month? Blimey.)

The first official TWHS email will go out in the new year. There won't be a December email as we're heading off on our holiday and I'm saving up all the good stuff for January.

And I *love* the badge! Zabet - who's being doing the graphics for recent bits and the Circled and Elemental collections - designed it for me and it makes me smile.

Right, almost ready for our big trip! I'm hoping to blog as we go, internet access and SquareSpace app providng. I'm loaded up with data on my phone though, and I'll be InstaSpamming under the #wormheadsgotoindia tag. Feel free to follow along :) (IG let you follow hastags now - handy)

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AuthorWoolly Wormhead
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