Breaking knitting news


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Here’s a write-up on the CBC Newfoundland and Labrador website about Shirley “Shirl the Purl” Scott  and Christine LeGrow’s new set of traditional Newfoundland-inspired knitting patterns.

Full disclosure: I may have had something to do with this…….

Odds, ends and yarns

I just sorted out a big bag of leftover bits of yarn – which led me to the cat fashion experiment/disaster you see before you. But let’s back up first.

I’m catching my breath after completing two large gift projects. So I decided to tackle that big bag o’knitting supplies before starting something else. After pitching out a massive tangle of abandoned projects, perma-knotted yarn, and broken/missing knitted needles, I wound up with this:

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There are some very nice bits of wool here, left over from some toques and berets which turned out quite well, if I do say so myself. So I’m feeling warm and fuzzy towards this pile, which makes me inclined to keep on using those last little balls of yarn.

But what to make? I looked through Ravelry, then I broke out the needles.

A knitted flower is versatile.

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Sew a button in the middle and a safety pin on the back, and it’s a nice brooch. Or, you can sew it on to a toque, a headband, or just about anything as a decoration. I find this pattern works best with a bulky sized wool.

There’s also this sweet knitted bird pattern.

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This works best with a worsted weight. I made this one out of some Patons Canadiana acrylic yarn, but I have lots of Cascade 220 wool that would work well for this, too.

And yes, I eventually made it to this  –  the knitted cat hat.

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I know, it looks more like a knitted shower cap on Jess.  Cats neither need or enjoy knitted headwear; this sort of thing exists only for humans to take photos and post them on the internet.

Anyhow, using up bits of leftover wool appeals to my thrifty nature, and gives my wallet a short break from being emptied at the yarn shop.

If you have more nifty ideas for your odds and ends of yarn, I’d love to know about them.

Smiling Land pattern launch

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Yarn Cove had a night out on the knitting town on Monday.

Shirley “Shirl the Purl” Scott and Christine LeGrow threw a launch party at Cast On! Cast Off! in St. John’s for their new set of knitting patterns. That’s Shirl and Christine throwing down with their Smiling Land mittens, gloves and trigger mitts.

Here are some of Shirl and Christine’s knitted prototypes.

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The Smiling Land series has four designs created by Shirl and Christine, based on traditional Newfoundland and Labrador knitting designs. The gloves, mittens and trigger mitts are knit in the traditional Newfoundland double knitting style.

It was a wild(ish) and woolly evening. The regular Monday night Cast On! Cast Off! knitting crowd was there, and they were working on a range of impressively intricate projects.

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More on that crowd another time.

There was also a tin of homemade brownies and another tin of homemade shortbread for the occasion. All in all, a rockin’evening.

Smiling Land is available as a set of printed cards.


They’re stocked at Cast On! Cast Off!, and will likely appear in other shops in the St. John’s area. You will also be able to order them through Briggs and Little Woolen Mills, and directly from Christine LeGrow at and Spindrift Knits.

You can also get their first set of patterns, Some Warm Mittens, at the same locations. That’s the set of patterns I’ve been using for my trad-style mitts.

Note that the Smiling Land patterns are available in hard copy only, and can be snail-mailed to you old school, through the post.

Newfoundland mitten patterns stay trad in every way.