Lily of the Valley

About five years ago I met my now dear friend Emma of The Little Grey Sheep. Bit by bit I got to know her and her beautiful yarns and during these past few years I have learned more and more about Well Manor Farm and Emma’s vision for it: Farming ethically and sustainably!

Well Manor Farm is a small family farm on the Surrey & Hampshire borders, nestled amongst the rolling countryside and dating back to Tudor times. Here the aim is to care for the landscape by farming in a nurturing and non intensive way, and by not over stocking enhancing biodiversity and  preserve the environment for generations to come.

Susie, the farms shepherdess, manages the flock and shears them at Christmas time. The fibre is then send off for washing and spinning with care before arriving back at the farm for hand dying by Emma. A British product through and through!

For the past few years Emma and I have worked on a number of design collaborations together. Using her beautiful yarns is a privilege and absolute pleasure as it stands for everything close to my heart: Farming and living ethically and sustainably, producing less waste and doing my bit to help save our beautiful planet. Hand-dyed by Emma on the farm the yarn is available in an array of stunning colours and the only difficulty is choosing which yarn and shades to use.

For Lily of the Valley I choose to work with Hampshire 4Ply, a 100% Pure Wool yarn. A little rustic, available in the most stunning shades and a joy to work with, this yarn becomes super soft after the first wash and envelopes you in a soft hug, keeping you snug and warm throughout all seasons.

The shawl is worked from the bottom up starting with the lace border, comprising of simple yarn over’s and small bobbles. The crescent shape is achieved by working short rows and the result is a long shallow shawl that is very easy to wear.

Three shades of green work in perfect harmony together and this shawl is set to become a firm favourite in no time.

Launching today, the pattern is available as part of a kit from Emma at The Little Grey Sheep (HERE) or from Monday 29 August 2019 as a single pattern via my Ravelry Store (link in menu on right).

Happy knitting! XO

where is summer

According to my calendar, summer should be around the corner and temperatures rising to the mid twenties (Celsius that is). So far there is no sign of it and right now the rain is lashing against my windows with a very strong wind howling outside and my heating on to keep warm.

Time for pots of tea, blanket over knees and knitting in my hands 🙂

Why not knit yourself a shawl while waiting for Summer in the Northern Hemisphere and Winter on the Southern Side of planet Earth.

Today sees the release of my A Perfect Day shawl single download version. Up to now the pattern was only available as part of a kit but as of now you can download just the pattern from my Ravelry Store HERE.

The shawl is worked from the bottom up starting with the lace border. The crescent shape is achieved by working short rows and the result is a long shallow shawl measuring 180cm x 40cm after blocking. It is a perfect size that is very easy to wear.

You can use yarn from your stash or any yarn you prefer. Singles, sock, fingering – whichever you prefer. Make it your own!

A 10% discount will automatically be applied when purchasing this pattern during the launch promotion from today until midnight Sunday 9th June 2019.

Happy weekend and hope you like it!

Heike xo.

waves – a summer design

Living in Wales one isn’t often inclined to knit short sleeved summer garments. Even at the height of summer the weather is pretty unpredictable and even on a sunny day a light, but long sleeved garment, is often the most sensible option.

Last year however we were all pleasantly surprised by prolonged hot sunny days and we are of course hoping for a repeat this year.

Meet Waves, a lightweight short sleeved T-Shirt style jumper, featuring a fun, yet simple and elegant large lace border. The perfect garment for spring and summer, it pairs beautifully with a summer dress, shorts or lightweight jeans. The length can easily be adjusted for a change in style and if long sleeves are more your thing, you can easily adjust the sleeves too. Just remember: Changing the length might require more yarn.

This is a speedy garment and a keen and motivated knitter , with enough knitting time at their disposal, can easily finish this in a weeks time.

I used a beautifully drapey Cotton/Viscose/Linen mix yarn by Sandnes for my sample, but any soft summer yarn in your favourite colour will work.

The pattern is available from my Ravelry store now and an automatic discount of 10% will be applied until midnight Friday, 31. May 2019.

I have taken the difficult decision to offer my patterns in one size only from now as I can no longer sustain the expense of having test knitters for all different sizes. As I cannot afford to pay a Technical Editor I have to carefully work out the Maths for 7-8 different sizes and that alone is very time consuming and then there is the worry that it might not be correct. As a one-woman show I have to think hard about every penny spent and rather than increasing the price for each of my garment patterns I have decided to offer all my new patterns to fit bust sizes 38/40 only, starting with this design.

Thank you for your understanding and your continued support for my little business.

Heike xo.

a perfect day

Hello friends, how have you been? Good I hope and maybe you have missed me just a tiny teeny bit?

It’s been a long while since you have heard from me, but a lot has happened since my last post way back at the beginning of March. More on that another time.

Today I want to introduce you to my brand new design – “A perfect day”.

This shawl is my second collaboration with Fibre Artist Chrissie Day. You may remember our collaboration of the “Walk the line” shawl last year. Chrissie lives in the bleak, but oh so beautiful, North Pennines, from where she writes, designs and enjoys the amazing landscape she lives in.

Chrissie creates her own range of yarns from the marvellous Blue faced Leicester sheep roaming the fields where she lives, achieving some some stunning earthy colours by adding beautiful chocolate and peat colour from the Zwartbles breed. All the yarn is from the same flock and same clip which adds immense beauty to the fibre.

It was with great pleasure I agreed to design a new shawl for her when she asked me and it is with great joy that I introduce this new design to you today.

The shawl uses two stunning colours of Chrissie’s 100% British Moorland Yarn, powder pink denoting Summer sky pink and dusty inky blue for a stormy Pennine sky. It is worked from the bottom up starting with the lace border and the crescent shape is achieved by working short rows, with the result being a long shallow shawl that is very easy to wear.

An accessory to make every day into a perfect day for you.

The shawl is available in kit form directly from Chrissie HERE  and will include the yarn you need to make it plus the pattern.

Wishing you a lovely bank holiday weekend. Until very soon.

Happy knitting, Heike x.

Hello March

Hello March! The month when we welcome spring and also celebrate St. David, the patron saint of Wales. The first of March sees celebrations of his life here in Wales, where I live, with flags, decorations and good wishes abound. Daffodils, the national flower of Wales, are bringing joy to our homes and soon there will be fields of yellow everywhere.

I had a colourful start to the month too. Firstly I got my colour report from the lovely peeps @yearofcolour over on Instagram

I get one every month and love this way of keeping track of which colours I have used throughout the year. The report is absolutely free, all you need to do is visit their profile page on Instagram and request one.

I also started my Memory Cushion a couple of days ago.

This is a crochet along hosted by my friend Carle of Nurturing Fibres in South Africa. The pattern is absolutely free and can be downloaded HERE 

The crochet along is called The secret Garden CAL and I have chosen colours that remind me of my childhood in Germany and flowers I picked with my dad when I was a little girl. This will become my memory cushion (my dad passed away just before Christmas last year) and will live in my studio.

Using Nurturing Fibres Eco Cotton Yarn I so enjoyed starting and working on this that I have finished Part one already and now eagerly await the next part to be published.

I am also making good progress on my Jumper that has still No Name! (Any ideas please let me know).

My aim is to finish the jumper in time and ready to wear to Edinburgh Yarn Festival in just over two weeks – fingers crossed.

One last thing I want to share is this painting which I absolutely love:

Many of you know my husband is a very talented artist in his spare time. He doesn’t get much time for his creative hobby, but from time to time he creates art works that make my heart sing and his latest watercolour painting of Snowdonia’s Mountain Range is one of those. This is a keeper!

Wishing you all a colourful creative week!

Heike xo

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