... as we dive head first into the busy season of the best ways to get in touch!

 
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If you need help with a pattern - any pattern, any kind of help - then please pop over to the Ravelry forum. There we have a dedicated thread for each and every pattern so you can read through and see if your question has been asked already, or ask away and contribute to the communal knowledge. You can either search the group for the pattern name, or find it's thread from the pattern's page on the database. There haven't been enough hours in the day yet to link every discussion thread from this website, but by clicking the no. of projects button below the pattern's details, you'll be whisked off to the pattern's page on the Ravelry database and you'll find the thread linked under 'Details' tab. In an ideal world I'd have a forum right here on this website but I haven't, and Ravelry is the very next best thing!

If you need help with any techniques or tutorials, I've a *huge* tutorials section that is being added to regularly. Most of the tutorials are in PDF format so you can download and save for later when you're offline, and there's also a growing number of technique videos - short snippets that are light on data and get straight to the point. The videos can be viewed in your browser right here, and are hosted on Instagram.

If you need help with downloading or working with PDFs, or perhaps any other area - Hat sizing, licensing - then please do flick through the Information drop-down menu - I've tried to cover as much as possible.

If there's anything I haven't covered, then please send me an email! Please don't send a message via Ravelry or Twitter or Instagram - I don't check those areas for messages and I'd hate for your message to go unanswered. They're not reliable message systems for lots of reasons (IG in particular), least because there's too many of them!

Why don't I reply to messages on other platforms? There's only one of me here, doing all of this (the cat isn't much help). I'm frequently poorly or offline, and so I've built up a store of information and got things into place that help me help you. Some days it's difficult enough to keep up with comments on social media, let alone answer queries - trying to be all things in all places is a fast track to burnout. This website is my little corner of the world and I aim to provide everything you need (and a little bit more!)

Thanks for your understanding. May your knitting be strong and your Hat wearing on point this season!

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AuthorWoolly Wormhead
CategoriesIndie Biz

Today I'm introducing a new design that I've worked on with Ripples Crafts yarns. Together we thought it'd be pretty cool to do something special for Loch Ness Knit Fest and here it is.

 
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Scourie is sideways knit, with short row colourwork. With this design I wanted try something different with this technique to show that short row colourwork isn't just intarsia - it can be stranded, too. Several of the Elemental Hats use stranded techniques but not obviously so and not to this extent, and so I started to explore shapes and details that could look effective as well as not be too tricksy to knit!

 
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This pattern will have you changing colours at short row points, but given a little practice with tension, it's not something that should trip anyone up. Don't tug the yarn too hard, but similarly don't let it slacken off too much - firm and gently is the right approach, and you'll find it easier than you think.

 
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The instructions are provided as a panel map - a method I first put to use with the Elemental Hats that has proved to be pretty popular. It's a directional map, so the symbols show you which direction you're knitting and how many stitches are worked in any given row, to make it easier to keep track of the short rows. I've a blog post about this method of charting in the works, so do keep an eye out for that.

 
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Scourie will be available in print only initially. As this is a special project for LNKF, we thought it best to offer it in print only for a limited time. Helen will have plenty of yarn on her stand to put together for kits, and I'll be ordering plenty of copies of the pattern.

 
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Fear not, though - Scourie *will* be available as a digital single pattern in due course! I've the MKAL coming up (our 10th!), and another special pattern for another KAL (busy is an understatement) and I don't want to release Scourie and have it lost in the crowd. I will let you know as soon as it's available, I promise (and if you haven't already, do sign up to the newsletter)

 
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Did I introduce you to Molly yet? We've only started working together in this last week and it's already clear that not only does the camera love her, but also that she's a natural at modelling. Molly grew up around these parts and I'm really pleased to able to work with her.

 
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Scourie uses Ripples Crafts merino sport weight, which is such a lovely yarn - such bounce and definition, and it takes the dye beautifully. Different sizes in the pattern are achieved via panel repeats, but gauge can also help play a part - with a finer gauge, a short Hat can be achieved, and vice versa. The panel width is pretty narrow so you can repeat it until it fits just so (that try-it-on-as-you-knit aspect of sideways Hats is pretty dandy)

 
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And there we have it! See you at LNKF?

ps/ there are still some places on my workshops, so do sign up now if you want to take a class with me - all events need a minimum number of bums on seats to run classes and it helps everyone to book in advance.

Posted
AuthorWoolly Wormhead
3 CommentsPost a comment

A few months ago Marcin of Martin's Lab Yarns got in touch to ask if I'd be willing to contribute a design to a new book he was curating. It was just at the point where I'd decided to say no to all commissions going forward, but fortunately I had a design already mapped out that suited the yarn, and with a bit of arm twisting I was in.

The collection is called Stillness, and is launching this weekend at Yarndale. Fret not if you can't get there - they ship worldwide and will be catching up on orders after the show.

 
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The Hat is designed for squishy Aran weight yarn, and is perfect for showcasing hand-dyed yarns. Throw in 2 buttons, a bit of sideways knitting and a classic texture and you have yourself a very gratifying Hat.

As I know you'll ask, the rights revert back to me later in December. Martin's Lab are only selling the book in print, so if you'd prefer digital you'll need to wait a little longer. If you like your print books though, especially ones with beautiful photography and layout, you may want to check out the other fab designs (and designers - there's quite the line up!) then place yourself an order.

 
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Posted
AuthorWoolly Wormhead

Towards the end of last week I started to notice that not only was the anxiety getting out of control, but that I was also getting physically ill with it. It's been many years since it's been this difficult; I'll have periods of consecutive panic attacks, but rarely does it snowball to the point where I get so ill.

Thankfully I'm starting to come out the other side, and realising at the same time how much it's all knocked me out.  

 
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I'm having to be very careful with what I eat; the stress really hit that system badly, so it's time to keep an eye on the nutrients and salts. It only occurred to me yesterday that some re-hydration salts might be needed, and a few sachets later I can already feel the difference. Slowly I'm managing to get some sleep, although my sleep patterns are so easily disrupted so this one is going to be the toughest to straighten out. But I know from the state of my head that I'm coming out the other side of it.

This is in part due to post-book stress and the onset of the woolly Hat seasonal madness. But if life-issues weren't hitting at the same time, I wouldn't be getting this ill, and it's those things that are eating at my brain. It's bad timing, and there are some things that are being parked for a while - work projects, life stuff - and some are being parked until next year to give myself a break. 

I'm at a point now in my work schedule where I can afford to take a day or two off during the busy season without a backlog building straight up again. Whenever I've managed to work ahead and earn myself some time off, stuff - life - steals it. I'm determined not to let that happen again, so it's selfish Woolly for the foreseeable future.

I've been really struggling to work on new designs since releasing Elemental and honestly, that's probably pretty normal. It hasn't helped with the stress levels though (especially as the MKAL is just around the corner!) and breaking through that fog with the knitting above has been such a help. 

The season is on! The MKAL will happen, I'll be travelling around teaching, and we'll get to have our winter holiday. 

And next season, I think I'll skip the teaching tours altogether. 

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AuthorWoolly Wormhead
6 CommentsPost a comment

This week hasn't been the easiest week.

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Its been a week of frequent anxiety attacks. Sometimes two or three in one day. For the most part I feel them coming and am able to stop them getting out of control. They're still exhausting and draining but no way near as debilitating as they could be. 

Then there's been days where I haven't been able to curtail them. I'll try, but a different trigger will come at you sideways and in no time, you're in full meltdown. The emotional hangover from these goes on for days, and the physical side sees me spacey and wired and unable to sleep for a good 24hrs afterwards.

Unsurprisingly more changes lay ahead, and the one thing I'm properly grateful for is Tom, and the team we make when we have to put our heads together.  Together we're both lateral and logical and with a similar spatial awareness, we can think around corners. We're known for our resourcefulness and practicality and this week has seen that in full force. We have plans. They might not come to fruition, but giving ourselves choices has been the most critical thing.

The tightness in my chest is finally starting to abate and sleep isn't as evasive as it was.

Somehow through all of this I've managed some work, and most of the to-do list is done. I'm mighty relieved that I'd done so much preparation for the coming season ahead... it'll still be daftly busy, but it shouldn't lose me too much sleep. We got this. 

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AuthorWoolly Wormhead
CategoriesHead Zone
5 CommentsPost a comment