May update

Dear Readers

There’s a good feeling in the air this month, as more clubs go back to meeting in person and one in particular is hosting an exhibition of their work. Elaine Cater told me about the flurry of activity at the West London Knitters: Machine, Hand & Other Textile Crafts. The dates are from 10th June until 8th July and members will be showing off the knitting, crochet and felting they’ve done over the past couple of years. If you live or travel in that part of London, do visit the Open Ealing Art Centre at Unit 14 Dickens Yard, Ealing, London W5 2TD. Elaine will happily pass on details if you email her at info@elainecater.com and all other club details are on Page 58.

Now we’re in British Summer Time, Leicestershire Machine Knitters have restarted their evening meetings and we’ve added Knitting Stitches in Stevenage to our Clubs Directory. The Bath branch of the KCG is holding a Regional Day in June and the KCG Convention will be held from 16th to 18th September. We’ve had news that a scaled-back Shetland Wool Week will be going ahead in person this year, with the intention of delivering it, in full, for 2023. One disappointment for many is that there will be no Woolfest 2022. For the past two years, there have been online events, but the organisers have decided there will not be a Woolfest 2022, either live or online. Much has changed at the Livestock Centre near Cockermouth, so the organisers think the time has come to re-invent, re-design and re-imagine the format. I guess that’s what we’ve all had to do these past two years.

It’s been good to catch up with Pam Wigglesworth, as she’s taken over the Metropolitan Correspondence Courses previously run by Carol Hocknell. The arrangements were made two years ago, but it’s only now we’re all starting to find some sort of ‘new normal’. The good news is that Pam has updated everything, as well as adding more pictures and content and she now offers six courses.

1) Single bed work on every gauge of all Japanese machines.

2) The ribber attachment for every gauge of all Japanese machines.

3) Passap and Pfaff Duo and E6000 machines.

4) All Silver Reed and Knitmaster electronic machines.

5) All Brother electronic machines.

6) DesignaKnit 8 and 9.

The courses have been widely acclaimed by new and experienced knitters alike. They’re available for knitters all over the world and there’s no pressure, with two years to complete a course. Pam will send you full details of all the courses if you email her at pamwigg1489@gmail.com

Let’s now look forward to Sally-Ann’s ‘flaming June’ and knit happy.

NEXT ISSUE July 2022

Subscription copies sent out Thursday 2nd June

On sale Thursday 9th June

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June 2022 (Issue 293) with Alison Dupernex and Bill King

The cover design on our full-colour June 2022 issue has a crisp summer look, in easy-to-knit stocking stitch with colours flowing from the yarn as we knit. We’ve our usual mix of patterns for standard, LK-150, mid-gauge and chunky machines including the first design in a series of three mix ‘n’ match designs from Alison Dupernex. We’ve pick ‘n’ mix ideas for different pattern options on a single punchcard and Joan Lafferty knits with DK yarn on a standard gauge machine. Bill King gives us some fresh, new ideas for simple transfers with great impact and the exceptional talent of Susan Guagliumi offers lots of free help and advice. We’ve the easiest summer top to knit on Duo or E6000 Passap machines, with a choice of crochet edgings and we share great techniques for lots of tuck stitch edgings on standard gauge machines. Sally-Ann Carroll introduces juicy citrus shades to our summer wardrobe and our mail order shop has been restocked. We always have help and advice in Dear Anne plus news, reviews and club details.

USA machines

Marguerite has two knitting machines to give away. The first is a KnitKing, including many pattern books, which she hasn’t used in over 15 years. The second is a Japanese model which she’s never used. She inherited them from her sister, who used both extensively. The Japanese model is newer than the KnitKing, with several beds still in their cases, but she knows very little about it. It has the label STUDIO SK-303. She’d like to find a happy home for them, preferably with someone who is able to use them and is willing to pick them up from her in Pennsylvania.

April update

Dear Readers

Lots of things seem to have happened this month, so let me start by passing on a new email address for Nina Miklin. She’s had to change it very quickly to nina.a.miklin@gmail.com If you’ve tried to get in touch with Nina in the past month or so, please make contact with her again especially if you wanted to take up her recent yarn offer. Full details are on Page 18 of the April magazine and the offer remains open until 30th April, or while stocks last. There are savings of almost £20, but you won’t get through to her unless you use her new email address or visit www.exclusiveyarns.co.uk

I need to let you know that almost all the Forsell yarn, on special reader offer at Silver Viscount, has now been sold. There may be an odd cone or two tucked away, so it’s worth calling Jackie on 01933-311888 just to double check. In its place, Silver Viscount will now stock three qualities of Yeoman Yarns. There are 16 shades of Sari 3-ply, 20 shades of DK Cotton and 29 shades of 4-ply Soft Cotton all on 400g cones. For more details about the yarn, call Jackie or ring Yeoman Yarns direct on 0116-240 4464. To see how to knit and use Yeoman Yarns on Silver Reed machines, @yeomanyarns is the place to go.

Do please read about the Machine Knit Community on Page 11. It’s an exceptional online space for machine knitters of all abilities, helping us to get the most from our machines. Nic Corrigan is a designer with a studio in West Yorkshire. She offers step-by-step classes, modern designer-level knitting patterns and an 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. I’m sure we’ll hear more from Nic in the coming months.

I’ve had a number of calls from readers singing the praises of Tools With A Mission. TWAM is a Christian charity that collects unwanted tools and equipment including knitting machines, sewing machines, accessories and yarn. Items are refurbished and sorted into kits for Sub-Saharan Africa, where TWAM works closely with local grassroots organisations. To get someone started, a knitting machine kit includes a machine, yarn, patterns, all useful items and accessories. Similarly, sewing machine kits include a machine plus cottons, needles, zips, buttons and haberdashery. There’s a constant need for tools from gardens, garages and workshops plus computers and IT equipment. Visit the website at www.twam.uk to see what’s needed, find a volunteer collector or refurbishment centre. The head office is at 2 Bailey Close, Hadleigh Road Industrial Estate, Ipswich, Suffolk IP2 0UD. They’re open Monday to Friday from 9.00 am to 4.30 pm, but you must ring first. Their number is 01473-210220 or email post@twam.uk Instead of a trip to the tip, make TWAM your first port of call and help others to help themselves. Until next month, knit happy!

NEXT ISSUE June 2022

Subscription copies sent out Thursday 5th May

On sale Thursday 12th May

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May 2022 (Issue 292) with Alison Dupernex and Bill King

Our full-colour May 2022 issue has gone out to subscribers and our cover design is an easy-to-knit stocking stitch top, with colours flowing from the yarn as we knit. We’ve a real mix of patterns for standard, LK-150, mid-gauge and chunky machines including a timeless design from Alison Dupernex. We’ve punchcard ideas for changing colours on a punchcard design and an article and pattern for knitting seamless socks on Japanese machines. Bill King shows us how to turn a simple needle layout into some fabulous fabrics and we’ve the exceptional talent of Susan Guagliumi offering lots of free help and advice. We help Passap owners to clean and care for their machine and Nic Corrigan introduces her Whitehall Studio and online space for machine knitters of all abilities. We’ve a great article on making your own chenille yarn for knitting and Sally-Ann Carroll introduces Spring’s favourite mood-busting hue with key trends. Our mail order shop has been restocked and we always have help and advice in Dear Anne plus news, reviews and club details.

May 2022 new subscriptions

This is May 2022 and our current issue

NEW SUBSCRIPTIONS The May 2022 magazine has been mailed to subscribers. If you’d like a monthly subscription to the magazine and order by or on 1st May, your subscription will start with the June magazine.

Orders received on or after 2nd May will start with the July 2022 magazine. No money is taken with your order and it will be mailed out to subscribers on 2nd June.

If you’d like to start with an earlier magazine, please buy it as a back issue.

March update

Dear Readers

One thing has gladdened my heart this month, so please read Clubline on Page 10. There’s a young boy in Prestonpans, not far from Edinburgh, Leith and Musselburgh who is passionate about learning to machine knit. One slight problem is that his learning curve has started on a somewhat elderly Passap Duo 80. Do you, or does anyone you know, live in the area and knit on one of these machines? I’d love to find an experienced knitter within reasonable travelling distance to help him. I’ve spoken to his father at length and we’ve tried all the usual lines of enquiry, but drawn a blank. I’m hopeful, therefore, that my letter will reach a wider audience.

I’ve also wondered if someone in the area might have a punchcard machine that’s no longer used, to get him a bit more up-to-date? We may grind to a halt with the Duo 80, but could we help to satisfy some of his passion for our craft by donating an unwanted Brother or Knitmaster punchcard machine and showing him how to use it? Obviously a weekly commute from Land’s End to Prestonpans is out of the question, but could one of you living not too far away offer any help, please? His family has a farming background, so pure wool is his yarn of choice. Have you any cones of wool you could give him to try? It’s rare to find such enthusiasm in one so young and I’d like to do all I can to help. One day he’ll perhaps become a famous knitwear designer and we’ll all be so proud of helping him onto the first rung of the ladder. If you think you can help or have any other ideas, do please get in touch with me.

I’d now like to mention the group of textile artists based in the East Midlands and known as The Living Threads Group. Their 20th exhibition is to take place just before Easter at Trent College in Derby Road, Long Eaton. For inspiration in fabric and thread, it would make a lovely day out. The dates are 30th March to 8th April and the venue is the Obolensky Building at Trent College, Derby Road, Long Eaton, NG10 4AD. Opening times are 10.00 am to 4.00 pm and admission is £5. There are daily demonstrations, free parking, a Textile Artists’ shop and refreshments. Find out more at www.livingthreadstextileartists.com

This month we’ve reached another milestone, as we celebrate our 36th birthday. Whilst I can take some of the credit, we’re still going strong because of your fantastic support. Despite two years of lockdowns and a worldwide pandemic, we’ve kept our craft going so please accept my very sincere thanks. It’s now time to turn to Page 30 and immerse yourself in this month’s wonderful selection of joyous colours and patterns brought to us by Alison Dupernex. With Spring on the way, it really is time to knit happy!

NEXT ISSUEMay 2022

Subscription copies sent out Thursday 7th April

On sale Thursday 14th April

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April 2022 (Issue 291) with Alison Dupernex, Bill King and Nina Miklin

Our full-colour April 2022 issue has gone out to subscribers and our cover design is a Nina Miklin classic and special yarn offer. We’ve our usual selection of patterns for standard, LK-150, mid-gauge and chunky machine and there’s a real mix including designs from Alison Dupernex, Nina Miklin and Anne Baker at Karabee. We’ve punchcard ideas for knitting lace and Part 2 of our Show & Tell series, sharing methods and techniques developed over a lifetime spent machine knitting. Bill King has a ‘light-bulb’ moment and explains how to loosen up fabric to cross some mind-blowing cables. We’ve the exceptional talent of Susan Guagliumi offering lots of free help and advice and Joan Lafferty lends a helping hand to all newbies starting out as machine knitters. Sally-Ann Carroll highlights the floral prints ‘in bloom’ for Spring and Summer’s key trends and latest looks. Our mail order shop has been restocked and we always have help and advice in Dear Anne plus news, reviews and club details for ideas and inspiration.

March 2022 (Issue 290) with Alison Dupernex and Bill King

Our full-colour March 2022 issue has gone out to subscribers and our cover design is a mini jumper dress with a cowl neck to keep us warm in effortless style. We’ve more patterns than usual and there’s a real mix including an Alison Dupernex design combining classic and contemporary styling for all age groups. Tiny dancers will love our wrapover cardigan, that’s perfect for ballet lessons or dressing up fun. We’ve a techniques feature and punchcard ideas for knitting tuck stitch on single and double bed machines, along with four classic tuck and stocking stitch designs in ten sizes from 87 to 132 cm, 34 to 52 in (finished 140 cm, 55½ in). Bill King tries a racking technique used and loved by our predecessors and we’ve the exceptional talent of Susan Guagliumi offering lots of free help and advice. Sally-Ann Carroll highlights the key trends and latest looks for the new season and Passap knitters have a step-by-step guide to knitting a pair of socks in just over an hour on Duomatic and E6000 machines. Ruth Horrocks shares some great ideas for knitting gorgeous novelty hats for the young and young at heart and we always have help and advice in Dear Anne plus news, reviews and club details for ideas and inspiration.

February 2022 update

Dear Readers

Wherever we live, keeping snug and warm is the order of the day at this time of the year and I’ve been glad of a few extra layers. My chunky knits have served me well, but they’ve seen better days and I need something new in my wardrobe. We’ve a couple of really nice designs this month and the man’s sweater on Page 22 is gorgeous. I’d have to hand tool some garter stitch for the woman’s sweater on Page 16, or perhaps cheat? In all my years, I’ve never known a machine knitter follow any pattern to the letter and I’m no different! I’m very tempted, but I know I need a quick and easy alternative, so I’ll see what it looks like with the needles arranged for a 3×1 mock rib. The colour variations in the yarn are lovely, so my even faster option might be to simply knit it in stocking stitch and use the purl side as the right side. There’s a very good size range but if you need a bit of extra ease anywhere, don’t forget you can take the tension up a bit and then gradually reduce it for the main part.

Some news has come in that’s too late for the main magazine, so let me tell you Liz Holness has been in touch to say Fleet Knitting Club is to start meeting again, but at a new venue. It’s a larger and more airy room, so there’s plenty of space for social distancing. It’s been two years since the group last met, so they’re looking forward to getting together again from 1st February. The new venue is Fleet Methodist Church at 72 Reading Road South, Fleet, Hampshire GU51 7TF. Meetings are on the first Tuesday evening of each month, from 8.00 to 10.00 pm and everyone is welcome. If you’d like more details, call Liz on 01252-676276, email liz.holness@ntlworld.com or visit www.fleetknittingclub.blogspot.com

One thing not to miss is The Wool Cabin’s update on Page 28. King Cole Opium, in plain colours and the stunning Palette multi shades, is on sale this month at just £3.50 a 100g ball. The RRP is £4.99, so it’s a huge saving and it slides through mid-gauge and chunky machines. The cover design on last December’s magazine only needs six balls for the largest finished size of 112.5 cm, 44½ in. With free local delivery and mail order, I guess the offer is while stocks last so call Jason on 07553-847483 for availability.

Next month will be our 36th birthday magazine and despite two years of lockdowns and a worldwide pandemic, we’ve kept our craft going. It’s a huge achievement, for which we should all be immensely proud so until then, knit happy, Anne

NEXT ISSUEApril 2022

Subscription copies sent out Thursday 3rd March

On sale Thursday 10th March

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