August update

Dear Readers

Last month’s heatwave in the south increased to a ‘fry-up’ this month, as our local temperatures hit 40C degrees. It’s been too hot to even potter in the garden, so spare a thought for me juggling press invitations to view Christmas goodies! It’s part of the joy of having to work so far ahead, but made me bring thoughts of autumn into the magazine.

I love the colours of our cover design and I’m blown away by Alison Dupernex’s Fair Isle cardigan on Page 32. One thing Alison chooses to do for us is cut down, from her original pattern, the amount of colours she uses. You’ll see this clearly comparing the photo of her cardigan on Page 32, then the modification on Page 35. Do head for your stash, pull out any suitable shades and enjoy making your own modifications to the colourway. You’ll have a huge amount of fun and create your own unique garment. When it’s finished, please take a photo to share with us all and that’s what reader Alex Raw has done. He started with a design from September 2009 and made it his own. He’ll be sharing it with us in the magazine soon and I hope it encourages more of you to ‘do your own thing’.

There are many lovely yarns around now and the new cake yarns are our best friend. The shape looks just as if we’ve pulled it from a wool winder. The cake sits behind the machine and the yarn pulls from the centre to thread straight through the tension mast. We also don’t need a pattern! Something plain will do, then add loads of colour and interest to stocking stitch. I promise you won’t be disappointed. I also hope you’ll enjoy this month’s Techniques feature on Page 52. Yes, we can all read a manual but how many of us gallop off at top speed, before falling flat on our faces. Of all the problems machine knitters face, using a cast-off linker comes top of the list, so I hope you’ll be persuaded to have another go.

Finally, I’ve a new book to mention from Crowood Press in their Knitting Techniques series. It’s again for hand knitters, this time breaking down the construction and process of knitting socks. I know many machine knitters want to knit them, but struggle to fully understand what to do. Socks by Rita Taylor (ISBN 978-0-71984-062-3) costs £9.99 and shows us how to knit comfortable, neat and perfectly fitting socks. If, on the other hand, you’d love someone to work it all out for you, head for Beverley Ward’s Etsy shop. Her sock pattern costs £4.80 and the instructions are suitable for all standard gauge knitting machines with a ribber including Silver Reed and Knitmaster, Brother and Toyota. It’s available as an instant download at www.etsy.com/uk/listing/852358165/machine-knitting-sock-pattern

Until next month, knit happy!

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