January 2023 update

Dear Readers

This issue always arrives when mounds of Easter eggs replace piles of sprouts in the supermarket. We always have to go to press very early, so let me remind you of one or two things which may slip through the net.

Pat Banyard Smith is Chairman of Long Buckby Machine Knitters and the club is preparing to welcome Bill King in April. If you’ve not visited the club before, you can look forward to a lovely afternoon in the company of fellow knitters. It’s a very friendly group, with the kettle on for free tea and coffee when you arrive. Bill is an absolute genius on a knitting machine and everyone can look forward to an afternoon of magic. Take your own lunch and spend time browsing around the tables, before Bill’s demonstration and talk. They welcome other clubs, so if you fancy a day out, you’ll receive a very warm welcome. There’s no need to pre-book tickets, but do let Pat know you’re coming so she can make you especially welcome. All the details are in Clubline on Page 11.

We’ve some splendid plans for next month’s magazine, including a fabulous feature from Ruth Horrocks. She’ll show us how to move a 24-stitch punchcard design or electronic pattern diagonally across a garment. If you can’t wait, she published her book last month, so it’s now available. You’ll find details on Page 45, or visit www.chartingheaven.co.uk

Are you a member of the Machine Knit Community? It’s a fabulous online space for machine knitters of all abilities. Nic Corrigan and her team will help you to become the machine knitter you want to be. Members have access to a treasure house of all previous live events, with guest speakers and classes from Bill King, Ria Burns, Marie Bruhat, Alison Dupernex, Kandy Diamond and many more. Nic offers modern designer-level knitting patterns, step-by-step classes and a superb online support network. You’ll find her at www.machineknit.community and it’s a place to meet and be inspired by other machine knitters from all over the world. If you’re a current member, you’ll have heard Nic’s splendid news… but, I’m not going to spill the beans just yet. Hopefully you’ll read all about it in next month’s magazine, so don’t miss our March issue.

NEXT ISSUE

March 2023

Subscription copies sent out Thursday 2nd February

On sale Thursday 9th February

Ask your newsagent to reserve a copy or order a subscription NOW!

February 2023 (Issue 301) with Alison Dupernex and Bill King

The cover design on our full-colour February 2023 issue is a cosy hat and matching hand warmers to keep you snug and warm. We’ve our usual mix of patterns for men, women and children on standard, LK-150 mid-gauge and chunky machines including lots of designs with locked-in warmth. Anne Baker’s Karabee Design knits up quickly with a garter carriage and optional ribber and we show you how to knit the perfect hat with a brim. Five great designs by Alison Dupernex will keep you toasty warm and, as usual, you’ll use up lots of odds and ends. Forget Swiss darning this month, when Bill King shares his simple technique for knitting three colours in a row and Fay Butcher’s new monthly techniques series for Passap knitters looks at stitch patterns and variations. The exceptional talent of Susan Guagliumi offers lots of free help and advice and trousers are the perfect partner to your knitted wardrobe, so Sally-Ann Carroll has rounded up all the latest shapes to help you and your knits stride out in style. Our mail order shop is open and we always have help and advice in Dear Anne plus news, reviews and club details.

February 2023 New subscriptions

NEW SUBSCRIPTIONS Our magazines are mailed to subscribers on the first Thursday of the preceding month, so our March issue will be mailed on Thursday 2nd February.

If you’d like a monthly subscription to the magazine and order by or on 1st February, your subscription will start with the March 2023 magazine.

Orders received on or after 2nd February will start with the April 2023 magazine. No money is taken with your order and April will be mailed out to subscribers on Thursday 2nd March. If you’d like to start with an earlier magazine, please buy it as a back issue.

January 2023 New Subscriptions

NEW SUBSCRIPTIONS Our magazines are mailed to subscribers on the first Thursday of the preceding month. However, the January 2023 magazine was sent to subscribers on Friday 2nd December, because Royal Mail workers were taking industrial action on the Thursday. The consequences of the strike means that some magazines have been delayed in the post and we hope they’ll arrive very soon, as the backlog of mail is cleared.

If you’d like a monthly subscription to the magazine and order by or on 1st January, your subscription will start with the February 2023 magazine.

Orders received on or after 2nd January will start with the March 2023 magazine. No money is taken with your order and March will be mailed out to subscribers on Thursday 2nd February. If you’d like to start with an earlier magazine, please buy it as a back issue.

December 2022 update

Dear Readers

Last time I promised you confessions of an Editor and Joan Lafferty’s words are ringing in my ears. In her article this month she can ‘guarantee that more haste means less speed’ and, of course, she’s absolutely right. Our grand-daughter needed a new hat and scarf, similar to the set we’d previously knitted on my LK-150. She looked through my stash and fell in love with the Raspberry shade in King Cole Bramble DK. She was raring to go, so who needs a tension swatch? I cast on and she merrily knitted. It all seemed a bit big, but foolishly we kept going. She went off, leaving me to gather in the stitches at the top and join the seam. I can’t believe I actually sat and made it all up, because it was far too big. I’d no option than to unpick the lot and start again. The scarf was to be as long as the remaining yarn would allow so I’d none to spare, as she now wanted a ‘really big’ bobble on her hat.

I searched every nook and cranny for my pompon set but it was no-where to be found. Back to the machine I went, to push a couple of needles forward and wind the yarn round and round them. With the needles pulled together to capacity, I tied yarn round the centre then slid the yarn off gingerly and cut round the edges. Making a bobble this way and mindful of my machine’s needles, I didn’t pull the central yarn as tightly as needed and the whole lot fell apart. I’d to line up ‘hundreds’ of cut strands of yarn of different lengths to turn into a pompon.

Eventually, with her hat pulled on and the scarf tied under her chin, she was warm and cosy. However, a job that would normally take me an hour at the most turned into a two-day marathon. So, how did I get it so wrong? The tension dial, of course! I’d been in too much of a hurry to check and we’d knitted everything far looser than we should. It was no wonder her hat was so big and it’s taught me the salutary lesson that the tortoise took his time, but he got there!

This year seems to have flown by and as it draws to a close, let’s hope the coming year will bring each of us the best of health and good fortune. Until next month, my compliments of the season to you all.

NEXT ISSUE February 2023

Subscription copies sent out Thursday 5th January

On sale Thursday 12th January

Ask your newsagent to reserve a copy – see page 61

January 2023 (Issue 300) with Alison Dupernex and Bill King

The cover design on our full-colour January 2023 issue is a cosy cable rib sweater and matching hat that locks in the heat. We’ve our usual mix of patterns for men, women and children on standard, LK-150 mid-gauge and chunky machines including lots of seasonal ideas. Three great designs by Alison Dupernex will keep your toes toasty warm this winter and you’ll use up lots of odds and ends knitting her slippers. Check out Alison’s outstanding new 250-page book Creative Machine Knitting filled with designs, ideas, tips and advice to help us get the most from our machines. It’s written for both experienced knitters and absolute beginners of all ages and abilities. Bill King firmly believes that having less technology makes us more creative with what’s available and he creates some exciting new stitch patterns, by embracing the limitations of a ribber. Fay Butcher starts a new monthly techniques series for Passap knitters and Joan Lafferty can guarantee that more haste means less speed. The exceptional talent of Susan Guagliumi offers lots of free help and advice and we share some tricks to give us near-perfect plating. If you and your knits feel the cold, Sally-Ann Carroll has some helpful hints to keep you cosy and warm. Our mail order shop is open and we always have help and advice in Dear Anne plus news, reviews and club details.

November update

Dear Readers

Last month I promised you some new and exclusive designs for Christmas from Alison Dupernex, so I hope you’ll fall in love with our centre seven pages. Only Alison could give us such a gorgeous array of colours and she doesn’t disappoint. If you don’t have sufficient time to make them this year, her baubles could be an on-going project, so let me pass on something personal. My mother died almost twenty years ago, having spent sixteen years as a widow. In those lonely years and in due course, she joined some groups and also went to craft classes. One year she made us nine Christmas baubles by carefully folding different colours of ribbon, in a specific pattern, around polystyrene balls. It can’t have been easy with painful fingers and limited sight, but each one is perfect and they’re still absolutely beautiful. Every year I carefully take them out of storage and hang them on our Christmas trees. They remind us of her and all the family Christmases we shared when she was alive. Think of the joy you’d give to young relatives or friends, if they received such a handmade gift from you. They really would become treasured heirloom knitting and perhaps could be your 2023 stash-busting project.

One of the designs I like especially this month is Snow Orchid, on Page 28. It’s not so much the shape or stitch pattern, but more the understated way the colours of the self-striping yarn merge. We can’t deny that we love the instant pattern these new yarns give us. However, let’s not necessarily dismiss the delicate changes produced by some colourways. The shade used for this sweater would look equally nice knitted in plain stocking stitch. Made up with the wrong side facing, it would become a timeless classic.

Last Minute Gifts – for you and for giving! There’s just time to tell you that if you’ve still got some last-minute gifts to make, check out the free patterns for mittens and Loopity Loo hats (and loads of other items!) at Guagliumi.com. You can access all the free downloads by clicking here. The Pedicure Socks (not a freebie) are a downloadable pattern on the web site. All purchased patterns are for download only so watch for instructions when you place your order. Until next time, knit happy.

NEXT ISSUE January 2023

Subscription copies sent out Thursday 1st December

On sale Thursday 8th December

Ask your newsagent to reserve a copy or order a subscription NOW!

December 2022 (Issue 299) with Alison Dupernex and Bill King

The cover design on our full-colour December 2022 issue is a comfy sweater with cosy trims in rich colours that knit straight from the ball. We’ve our usual mix of patterns for men, women and children on standard, LK-150 mid-gauge and chunky machines including lots of seasonal ideas. Alison Dupernex has designed some gorgeous Christmas baubles, lavender bags and pin cushions bursting with colour and stash-busting ideas. They’re also a lovely handmade gift at any time of the year and destined to become heirloom knitting.  Check out Alison’s outstanding new 250-page book Creative Machine Knitting filled with designs, ideas, tips and advice to help us get the most from our machines. It’s written for both experienced knitters and absolute beginners of all ages and abilities. Bill King has one or two tricks up his sleeve and Roni Knutson shares a design that even beginners can knit with confidence. The exceptional talent of Susan Guagliumi offers lots of free help and advice and Sally-Ann Carroll helps us sparkle and shine over the festive period. Our mail order shop is open and we always have help and advice in Dear Anne plus news, reviews and club details.

December 2022 New Subscriptions

NEW SUBSCRIPTIONS Our magazines are mailed to subscribers on the first Thursday of the preceding month, so the January 2023 magazine is sent to subscribers on Thursday 1st December.

If you’d like a monthly subscription to the magazine and order by or on 1st December, your subscription will start with the January 2023 magazine.

Orders received on or after 2nd December will start with the February 2023 magazine. No money is taken with your order and February will be mailed out to subscribers on Thursday 5th January. If you’d like to start with an earlier magazine, please buy it as a back issue.

October update

Dear Readers

It’s been a long time coming, but Alison Dupernex’s new book has at last been published. As you’ll read on Page 10, it’s the most comprehensive book to date for machine knitters. Whatever your age or ability, you’ll learn so much about our craft. I know of no other book, written by a professional machine knitwear designer, that generously shares so many original design ideas, tips and advice. When have we ever had over 100 designs in a book? Alison has included sweaters and cardigans, jackets and coats, waistcoats and sleeveless pullovers for all shapes and sizes. There’s also a lovely section of children’s knitwear designs. To dress us from head to toe, she includes lots of scarves and hats, gloves and wrist warmers, socks and slippers. Our homes are not forgotten, with patterns for new cushions and throws. It really is an amazing collection, not to mention 100 Fairisle colourways and stitches. There’s also a pattern directory of 70 inspiring examples, as well as 50 machine-knitted cable stitches.

The content Alison has given us is truly mind-blowing. I remember saying that her book Machine Knitting: Designing With Colour was nothing short of amazing. Having seen Creative Machine Knitting, I now need to adjust that comment, because I didn’t think it was possible to give machine knitters any more. If you have neither book, please add one or both to your Christmas wish list. If you’re a very new knitter and just starting out, Creative Machine Knitting will fill you to the brim with the joy, excitement and possibilities machine knitting has to offer. It’s impossible to recommend it too highly and I send my personal congratulations Alison. It’s a phenomenal amount of work, a splendid new book and you should be immensely proud of your achievement and major contribution to our craft.

The next thing I must do is thank our many overseas readers who sent me their condolences at the recent passing of Queen Elizabeth II. I’ve included a very small selection in Dear Anne this month, but a huge number poured in. I know our UK readers will join me in asking all those who wrote to accept our personal thanks, at our time of national sorrow.

Finally, when you turn to Page 37 you’ll see that next month we’ve a selection of new and exclusive designs for Christmas from Alison Dupernex. They’re gorgeous knitted baubles in two shapes and sizes, some beautiful lavender bags for handmade gifts at any time of the year and pin cushions as another lovely gift for sewing enthusiasts. You’ll need just ten grams of many assorted colours so it’s time to sort out your stash, ready to make a start when your December magazine arrives. Until next month, knit happy!

NEXT ISSUE December 2022

Subscription copies sent out Thursday 3rd November

On sale Thursday 10th November

Ask your newsagent to reserve a copy or order a subscription NOW!