Sunday, 30 September 2018

Drop Stitch Cowl

We were at a yarn market a couple of weeks ago and after speaking to some pretty fabulous yarn people all day long, I was struck with the realisation that left handedness and knitting can be a source of much frustration.  Two left handed customers both mentioned that they preferred to crochet, which is how it is for me too.

Louise and I then got talking about my frustration with knitting and that perhaps it stems from the slight twist I get in each stitch that I can't remove no matter how I knit.  That then led to a further conversation about reversing the twist in the yarn during the spinning process to see if that would produce a better result.  Perhaps us lefties are just used to struggling with yarn spun in a way that is perfect for right handers, but we're fighting the natural twist in the yarn?

Louise very kindly set to work spinning in the exact opposite way she was used to, just so I could try it out and see if it made a difference.  We then had a dyeing day for our Louley brand yarn and I got to stick my very own left handed yarn into the pot and throw some colour around to see what happened.

Green isn't usually my go to colour, but we had some dye made up and we didn't want to see it go to waste.  Obviously the old "Blue and Green should never be seen" was given no thought on the day!

There wasn't quite a full skein available so I made a very quick and easy slip stitch cowl which is just perfect for Spring in this part of the world.

The Pattern

You will need:

60g (approx) of handspun yarn (we use and recommend our own brand Louley yarn)
One pair 8mm/US 11 needles

Cast on 10 stitches

Row 1:  Knit
Row 2: Pearl
Row 3: Knit
Row 4:Pearl
Row 5: Knit each stitch, wrapping the yarn around the needle three times when completing the stitch.
Row 6: Pearl each stitch dropping the extra wrap off the needle as you complete each stitch

Row 1 to 6 form the pattern.  Repeat pattern 19 times or until work reaches desired length

Cast off, Sew ends together to form cowl, weave in ends.

I was very pleased with the results of my left handed yarn and now I have the perfect cowl as the weather starts to warm up.

Happy knitting


p.s.  You can follow our yarn adventures at:


Saturday, 18 August 2018

Introducing Louley Yarn

You might think that our long lull in blog posts has seen us switch into relaxation mode.. well not quite.  We've been busily working on our own yarn brand and it's been a wonderful time of experimentaton and collaborating on ideas until we were able to launch our exciting new project, Louley Yarn.

We've been busily dyeing for months and loving every minute.  What a joy it is to spend hour after hour creatively working on skeins with endless possibilities of what they may become.

You can follow our yarn adventures at:

Facebook: @louleyyarn
Instagram: @louley_yarn

Where you'll find information about our market stall locations, workshops and so much more.

If you'd like to contact us directly our yarn email address is

Yours in yarn heaven

Deb and Louise 

Sunday, 11 June 2017

Broken Rib Unisex Scarf

I hate it when my crafty adventures come with a time frame for completion.  I'd much prefer to carry on at my own gentle pace, rather than let the pressure of an approaching cold snap determine when a project needs completing.  And so it was that I found myself one weekend frantically knitting my daughter a scarf for school that had been started weeks earlier, but needed to be worn for the freezing temps that were fast approaching.

The school allows any scarf as long as it is black and my daughter wanted something quite long, a requirement that meant more knitting in what was becoming an increasingly limited time frame.  Aaaaargh  Thankfully the broken rib stitch is quick to knit up!

You will need:

6 x balls Cleckheaton Country 14ply
1 pair 7mm needles


Cast on 32 stitches

Row 1 (wrong side) Knit
Row 2 (right side) *K1, P1 repeat from * to end of row.

Rows 1 and 2 form broken rib pattern.  Continue until scarf is desired length. Block and sew in ends.

The stitch does tend to curl in a little at the edges, so blocking (Louise has done a great tutorial here) really gives a professional finish.  Broken Rib stitch has two different sides so the scarf is a lovely textural piece, but also thick and warm for the commute to school.

Happy Knitting 


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Saturday, 20 May 2017

Seed Stitch Scarf

If, like me, you prefer a scarf that doesn't have a right or wrong side, isn't gender specific and is snugly warm as the temperatures start to drop then this could be the perfect piece of knitting for you. This project began as a promise to one of my sons that I would make him a scarf before the university semester finished and here I sit joyful in the knowledge that with a mere week of studies left to go, I came through with the goods - a rare thing indeed when I make crafty promises.

My son had actually already chosen wool from my stash, but at the last minute I decided I needed that for something else I've been planning and so it was off to the city on a shopping mission to find a suitable yarn.  I'd like to make the point here that is is important to purchase enough for the project you are about to start, as about half way through I realised that I would need one more skein and so sent my husband on back to get more during his lunch break.  To say he was not thrilled is an understatement!  Armed with a photo of the label and a sample of yarn, hubby and the sales assistant spent a good while searching to make sure they had the right one before it was realised that the original purchase had been put under my name and they had a record of the yarn on their computer system. Yay for Morris and Sons

You will need:
4 skeins Morris 10ply Pure 50g hank (or equivalent) .  Colourway: Sooty
Size 5.5 knitting needles


Cast on 35 stitches

Row 1 to 4:  Knit
Row 5: Knit 4, *P1, K1* continue from *to* across row until four stitches remain.  Knit 4
Row 5 forms pattern  until work 60in/150cm
Knit 4 rows.
Cast Off.
Sew in ends.

Happy Knitting


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Sunday, 7 May 2017

Knitted Neckerchief

Every year we like to take a little break that sees us traipsing across the country  to experience a little part of Australia that we have yet to discover.  Last year we headed over to South Australia and explored the delightful Barossa Valley, the German settlement of Hahndorf and then drove into Radelaide Adelaide to see what it had to offer.

Now, while many tourists head to the souvenir shops, we can be found picking through the shelves of every op shop/charity shop we pass along the way.  We have thought that at some point we could challenge ourselves and just pack underwear for the journey and purchase our clothing needs from our secondhand finds as we tour around.  On paper it seems like a great idea, but we're yet to be brave enough to actually put it into practise...maybe we'll try it this year!!

It's not only op shops where you'll find us though and when we visited the beach side suburb of Glenelg, as always it was very difficult to just walk on past the yarn shop and I was lured into the  inner sanctum of Barb's Sew and Knits as everyone else headed off to enjoy a frozen yogurt.  My purchase?  A stunning hand painted Misti Alpaca skein that I would surely put to good use at some point.

Fast forward fifteen months and with Mother's Day approaching it struck me that the beautiful colours could be just right for a special something for my Mum.

I'm a big believer in letting artisan yarns do all the work in a project so when there's great texture I tend to stick with something simple to bring out the quality and essence of the yarn.

For this project you will need:

1 x pair 12mm knitting needles
1 x pair 20mm knitting needles
1 x skein Misti Alpaca yarn or equivalent
Needle to sew in ends


Using 12mm needles, cast on 34 stitches
Rows 1 to 3.  Knit
*Row 4.  Change to 20mm needles, knit
Row 5 Change to 12mm needles.  Knit
Row 6 to 7 knit.*

* to * forms pattern.

Continue pattern until a rectangle is formed and the skein is used with enough yarn left to cast off and sew.

To sew
Lay rectangle of knitted fabric on a flat surface.  Bring cast off edge across fabric and place on side seam of the start of the project (as shown) and sew together.

Embellish the sewn edge with matching buttons and sew in ends to finish.

Happy Knitting


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Tuesday, 25 April 2017

Cyclone Cook Cowl

I recently had the pleasure for visiting New Zealand for the first time and it unfortunately coincided with the path of a cyclone.  What was I to do, but Google the nearest wool shop (the delightful Holland Road Yarn Company) and pick up enough supplies to see us through the eventful weather.

The cyclone thankfully turned out to be a bit of a non event in Wellington although that wasn't the case in the North, where there was widespread flooding and evacuations.  For the less affected though, it did gives a chance to take it easy and start crocheting.

The cowl that I came up with while we were bunkered down consists of a simple trellis stitch using beautiful 100% wool from New Zealand.

You will need:

1 x  3.75mm crochet hook (an odd size I know, but the yarn shop was out of 4mm, so feel free to substitute a different hook size)
3 x balls 50g Vintage New Zealand 8ply 100% wool (approx 104mts/114yds per 50g) in Porcelain.


Foundation Chain:  Chain 51

Row 1 - 1 x  single crochet into 6th chain from hook, *5 x chain, skip 3 chains in the foundation chain, 1 x single crochet into next chain.  Repeat from * to end and turn work.

Row 2 - * 5 x chain, 1 single crochet into the five chain arch of the previous row.  Repeat from * to end.  Turn

Repeat row 2  until work measures approx 170cm/66 inches.

Final row to join work:  *5x chain, 1 single crochet into five arch chain of Row 1 (first row of project) ensuring work is not twisted.  Repeat from * to end.  Weave in ends.

I managed to all but finish the cowl during our short stay in the land of the long white cloud, so it's definitely something that could be made in a weekend...hopefully you'll have better weather then our recent experience!

Happy crocheting


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Sunday, 18 September 2016

Drop Stitch Scarf for Beginners

 A few months ago, the friendly folk at Lincraft asked if we'd like to come up with a project or two with their new season yarn, and to cut a long story short, we didn't say no!


You can find our pattern Drop Stitch Scarf for Beginners over on the Lincraft blog.  It's a very easy pattern that produces a fabulous result.  Even if you're not a beginner knitter, this quick and simple project is something simple to do in between more complex knits.

Happy knitting

Deb and Louise
Thanks so much for visiting.  We'd love to have you join us on Facebook , PinterestRavelry and instagram too.

Drop Stitch Cowl

We were at a yarn market a couple of weeks ago and after speaking to some pretty fabulous yarn people all day long, I was struck with the...