Category Archive: Knitting Inspirations

The Original Japanese Knitting Book Which Made Me Fall In Love with Knitting

What made you fall in love with knitting? I was only about 10 or 11 when I first encountered this book. I was already knitting various stuff but this book really made me fall in love with the craft as a child:

Honobono Country Sweaters

This is a very old copy which I found in 2nd hand bookshop in Japan. When I found it, I was ecstatic!

Japanese knitting book: Honobono Country Sweaters

Basically it’s a story book for children. I guess the point is for a mother to read to a child and then may be (just may be… because the projects are quite difficult!) knit the sweaters and other things in the book for the kid. A very nice idea.

Japanese knitting book: Honobono Country Sweaters

This was my VERY BEST favourite sweater and I wanted to make one but was a bit too difficult for me at the time. I think I can definitely make it, easy peezy (lol)!

Japanese knitting book: Honobono country sweaters

Can you see why I fell in love with knitting? It’s soooooo cute!!!!!

Japanese knitting book: Honobono Country Sweaters

So this is the first sweater I made ever in my life. This simple brown sweater. Oh didn’t I just love knitting it??? What a great memory!

Inspiration Story: Little More Than Yellow

Howdy! It’s been a while. I have been knitting and charting and calculating forever. I love every moment of it, but it means that I am not blogging so much.

I want to share some of the beautiful images I collected over some time for my design inspirations. I am at the very beginning stage of my Spring & Summer designs.

yellow and gray kitchen

Vintage Book Journal 'Yellow Book of Birds of America'

The Pietà

yellow

dark side

dark windows

hello yellow

Gomitoli – Beautiful New Yarns from Italy (Yarn Eye Candy)

I have some favourite yarns which I love so much that I can’t knit with them – I know it’s really silly but it’s true!

I was recently introduced to these gorgeous yarns from Italy called Gomitoli. They are seriously amazing stuff. There is a high likelihood that these yarns would be one of those favourite yarns. But I will force myself to knit with them because I think I can create really nice patterns with them!!!

If you visit their site, you will find free patterns. It’s called Gomitoli’s Christmas Ideas. Do please check them out!

Gomitoli Yarn

They are so nice so I put them on my favourite cake stand I bought from Italy.

Here is a quick background of the yarn – Gomitoli yarn is a new yarn brand from Filati Biagioli, an Italian spinner who has been producing luxury yarns including cashmere, camel and angola for 100 years!:

Taking all their technical expertise, handed down from generation to generation, their passion for craftsmanship and their commitment to sustainable innovation, Filati Biagioli decided in 2011 to launch their own brand of hand knit yarns – Gomitoli’s.

Here are the yarns I got from them :D

Camello 2ply

This one is a camel yarn 2ply. It has a certification for: 1) no added dyes, 2) absence of toxic and dangerious textile auxilliaries and 3) the yarn is produced in Italy.

This 2 ply camel yarn has a certification for: 1) no added dyes, 2) absence of toxic and dangerious textile auxilliaries and 3) the yarn is produced in Italy. Isn’t that so great? I think it would make a gorgeous shawl yarn.

Gomitoli tweed

Tweed yarn (70% lamb’s wool, 30% cashmere; 175m / 50g ball)

The tweed yarn is Sport weight yarn. The colour I got is 10046. It’s bright, rustic and SOFT!

Gomitoli Camello Bottonato

This one is called Camello Bottonato (100% camel hair; 175m / 50g ball).

Camello Bottonato is a rustic tweedy yarn (Sport – DK: suggested needles 3.5-4mm). It’s just gorgeous. I don’t know what to do with it. I think it would make a beautiful small knitted accessories. I must swatch!

Gomitoli Angora

Angora yarn.

May be it’s just me that I haven’t really come across many angora yarns in the UK. So it was so fresh to see and feel the angora yarn. It’s dreamy and magical and also is a cute 2-ply.

gomitoli big cashmere

Gomitoli Big Cashmere. This one is definitely cute. It’s 100% cashmere but is a nice good solid yarn. (80m / 50 g ball).

What surprised me with this Big Cashmere yarn is that the fibre is such high quality and spun so well that I know that it won’t fray so easily even it is a 100% cashmere. So lux, so bouncy. I am so in love!

Oh what to do, what to do!!! See?  I am pondering too much, I am not even knitting with them LOL! Happy knitty week ;)

Knitting Needle Storage Ideas – How Do You Store Yours?

Two weeks just passed like the speed of light. I can’t believe it. I have been busy knitting but about 50% of the time I was literally tidying up my office. Thanks to IKEA, my office is going to be tidy soon.

So today I would like to show you how I have tidied up my knitting needles. Hopefully in the coming weeks I will be able to show my office!! :D

IKEA GRUNDTAL range.

IKEA GRUNDTAL range. These plastic planters had holes at the bottom, so I have cut out the cardboard and put them inside so that needles won't fall through.

IKEA GLIS plastic container for my circular needles.

IKEA GLIS plastic container for my circular needles.

The following pics are what I found in Flickr. I love the way people store their knitting needles.

How cool are these? I might start collecting olive oil cans from now! LOL.

This is so cute. I am interested in the chunky neeles. They are very unusual looking! :D

This is very good. When you use circular needles often, the writing on the cord often fades away. This little organiser is so useful.

… and here are some of the unusual ideas for storing / displaying your knitting needles.

I LOVE THIS SO MUCH!

I LOVE THIS SO MUCH! from defdif.

For circular needles. from flabby rabbit.

For circular needles. from flabbyrabbit.

I just coincidentally found this. It probably is matching to the above! from julesbrzez

I just coincidentally found this. It probably is matching to the above! from julesbrzez

For dpn. from nowvintage

For dpn. from nowvintage

This is going to make the vintage needles look super cool.

This is going to make the vintage needles look super cool. from callmejasper.

How do you keep or display your needles? :D x

Italian Knitting Magazines

Hello! Hope you all have been having a good week. I have been wanting to blog about my cool Italian knitting magazines for such a long time. Wherever I travel I pop over to local wool shops. I got them in a random wool shop in Sardegna last summer. Check these out!
Speciale Maglia 9 Donna 1

Lovely jumbo leaf pattern at the back.

Lovely jumbo leaf pattern at the back.

Love the structure of the cardigan and the button detail.

Love the structure of the cardigan and the button detail.

This is a matching cape and the arm warmer. So elegant!

This is a matching cape and the arm warmer. So elegant!

Tricot Selezione

Tricot Selezione

How cool is this!?

How cool is this!?

Crochet short sleeve cardigan.

Crochet short sleeve cardigan.

I do love this top.

I do love this top.

Uomo...

Uomo...

Chunky cables. I think I should explore the use of a zipper for a garment more.

Chunky cables. I think I should explore the use of a zipper for a garment more.

This feels very Italian... You would usually see this kind of jumper in a neutral colour right? So cool!

This feels very Italian... You would usually see this kind of jumper in a neutral colour right? So cool!

Another very Italian design. Such nice ideas.

Another very Italian design. Such nice ideas.

Do you have any local knitting magazines that you randomly bought before? I should dig out more :D AAwww, I would love to go back to Italy again…! ;)

Vintage Knitting Finds

Apologies for the scarce posting recently. I really miss you all. I have been totally demoralised by the builders who were working on our flat. It’s a substandard and they demand money. Many things won’t be rectified properly but they won’t come back for the remedial work unless we agree to pay the amount they want, which I find unfair. We are due to move in this weekend and no remedial work are carried out so far (one person was going to meet me but he later called me and told me that he was told by the manager not to visit our flat anymore. The other asked the other builder to take away the ladder because he is not coming back). I am loosing sleep on this because I genuinely think that I have been reasonable to raise a complaint about their bad workmanship. “sigh”… :(

Anyway, let’s forget about them for now. I want to talk about my passion, which is knitting. I walked around the local high street recently and visited a couple of charity shops and I found these!

A pair of ruled knitting needles.

I have lots of vintage knitting needles but I have never seen a pair with ruler on it. Have you? I thought “wow! they are so cool!”. They were really dirty but I cleaned them and now they are looking like a cool vintage needles. :D

Vintage Tunisian crochet hook.

Also this cool vintage Tunisian crochet hook. They were all separate and I wasn’t sure what these metal bars were for at the beginning. I nearly bought the single one only. Then I finally figured out what they were (i.e. you can extend the length by attaching the bars)! I think it’s wonderful. Again, they were all very dirty but I cleaned them and they are looking so beautiful now.

Getting big now!

Right now, I am finishing off the new version of Fallen Leaf Shawl. Since it’s much larger than the original, I am going to add an option of non-frill finish (because otherwise there will be too many stitches for the frills). I think I decided what to do, so hopefully I will  finish it tomorrow. The aim is to complete the pattern by next week. Wish me luck! ;)

Latest Vintage Knitting Acquisition

A week has already passed? Wow! I can’t believe it. This week has been quite eventful. Testing my new site, training for the charity run, knitting various projects etc…
Today (and to prepare for a cool weekend!), I would like to share with you my latest vintage knitting acquisition. I got this pretty baby cardigan and bootie from Wesley’s parents’ house when they were going through their attic.

I just love the stitches. I think I can recreate it.This one is my favourite. Apparently this is a vintage ceramic cat yarn container. It is hollow inside where you put the yarn. Can you see a small hole on its mouth? This is where the yarn comes out.
Like this… LOL!

Great Knitting Links!

IT and knitting seem to go quite well. Starting from Ravelry, there are many many great knitting sites out there.
Here are 5 my very favourite knitting links. They are really useful and hope you like them!

1. Tatao – Both Japanese and English. Comprehensive information about knitting in general. There are lots of projects you can knit, tutorials, international needle conversions, software. A MUST CHECK.

2. The Brioche Stitch – There is no other site for brioche stitches as detailed as this one. I love this site. I have learnt so much about different brioche stitches and techniques. You will love it too.

3. TECHknitting – A blog about all the knitting techniques. I don’t know how she does the illustrations but they are really good. Very useful.

4. Purlbee – From Purlsoho. There are lots and lots of beautiful and fun projects (both knitting and sewing) you can do. I LOVE this tulip socks!!!! Gosh, I wish I were living in either the US or Canada. I could knit all day with Koigu yarns!

5. Knittinghelp.com – Many great knitting tips and help videos. They are also on twitter. I am following them now.