Affinity KAL with Purlescence

A while ago Sarah from Purlescence and I talked about the possibility of our linking up on a knit-a-long (KAL) using one of the patterns from the Knit Play Colour book. Purlescence have a great group of followers who have keenly participated in their KALs in the past. Since Purlescence have several of the yarns which I used in the book, it looked like it would be fun to do a KAL together.

Colour? Texture? How will you create an affinity for your yarns?

Colour? Texture? How will you create an affinity for your yarns?

Continue reading

Fyberspates Scrumptious: yarn review

Many thanks to Robynn for writing us another wonderful yarn review of a truly wonderful yarn!

Fyberspates Scrumptious collage

Fyberspates Scrumptious range – 55% merino/45% silk

Scrumptious Lace: 1,000m/1,095yds per 100g skein. Handwash only.
Scrumptious 4-ply: 365m/400yds per 100g. Gentle machine wash.
Scrumptious DK: 22om/240yds per 100g. Handwash only. Single ply.
Scrumptious Aran: 165m/180yds per 100g. Handwash only.
Scrumptious Chunky: 120m/130yds per 100g. Handwash only. Single ply.


Sometimes a yarn name is almost too descriptive. You imagine the producers sitting around looking at the yarn. “What can we call it?” they muse. “It’s very… well, it’s so… it’s just Scrumptious.”

“But we can’t call it Scrumptious. Is that even a real word? Doesn’t sound quite professional. How about, um… I think it’s… Look, it is pretty scrumptious…”

“Sod it. Now I need cake. Tea break, anyone?”

So Scrumptious does what it says on the tin. It’s gorgeous, it’s soft, it’s lustrous, it’s very, very more-ish. Luckily for us knitters, there is more of it – in fact, with a complete range of weights on offer, there’s five times more! All shown off to great effect with the beautifully produced Scrumptious pattern collections.

Fyberspates collage 2

One quirk of the line is that, while they all share the same delicious merino/silk blend, they are not all constructed alike. Three of them are two-ply yarns, the other two singles. I tend to be a bit leery of singly-ply yarns; they are that much more prone to pilling, which is especially a worry with super-soft fibres like merino and silk, so personally I restrict my Scrumptious splourges to the plied version, which hold up pretty well for luxury yarn. And the sock-weight blend – but only that one – uses superwash merino, making it a bit easier to care for.

They are however united in touchability, roundness, shine, and the spectacular, deeply saturated colour range. While Fyberspates’ Vivacious line is hand dyed in beautifully mottled hues, Scrumptious is all about solids. Really, really solid solids. Solids you can sink into. I’m constantly amazed at the depth of these colours – not just the amazing rich jewel tones; even softer tones such as Rose Pink and ice-blue Sugar Mouse seem noticeably more there than similar shares in other yarns. Then, too, I admire the variation in the colours available: the darker shades are complemented by a whole slew of neutrals, including no less than three greys and another three creamy or off-white tones (not including the undyed Natural). Like yellow? Choose Gold or Primrose! More a green person? Would that be plain Green, Jen’s Green, Moss, Olive, Lime, Ysolda Colours Flying Saucer – or maybe Teal?

Song of the Deep Sea - Fyberspates

The stitch definition on the Fyberspates Scrumptious DK is truly glorious!

Admittedly, not all colours are available on all bases. But the subtle distinction between these shades is a thing to treasure, and makes for some magnificent colour play opportunities. I’d love to see a three-colour Stay Awhile in Oyster, Charcoal and Dandelion & Burdock (all in the sock weight), or in Eau de Nil and Deep Chestnut DK. (For a wrap, I think I’d be willing to overcome my fear of single-ply yarn – that’s not going to see steady wear in specific spots the way a garment would, or mitts.)

I also have a hankering to play with the incredible Cherry Red, which would be spectacular as a Careen Capelet – thanks to the silk, Scrumptious is lustrous enough to show off textural stitches even in darker colours. And who couldn’t see themselves in a dramatic red cape!


Siren Song

Siren Song

Siren Song

This elegant shawl develops in beautiful Art Deco waves. Yes, Siren Song is the long-awaited shawl version of Song of the Sea cowl. Continue reading

Fyberspates Vivacious 4ply

Spiced Plum

Vivacious 4ply Spiced Plum (image copyright Fyberspates, used with permission)

Today is the first in what will be a regular feature on the Inspiration Knits blog: yarn reviews. I am delighted to welcome our APlayfulDay, our first guest reviewer:

I’m thrilled to be the first guest to share my thoughts on some of the yarns that Louise features in her designs. When Louise and I first discussed the idea of yarn reviews and looked at the many lush and varied yarns she’s worked with, she suggested I take the lead with Fyberspates as I’m lucky enough to have worked with my fair share. First up on this list is Vivacious 4ply and one of my favourites in the Fyberspates range. Continue reading


DSC_4436 - Version 3I’ve just been working on the Fyberspates stand at the Knitting and Stitching Show – the UK’s largest knitting show. Obviously there was time for a little personal stash-up too. Alexandra Palace is biiiiiiig, there was a lot of yaaaaaaarn, this post is loooooong. Continue reading

Knit Night

Knit Night

Knit Night in Whimzy Silkie & beaded

I’ve been too busy designing to blog. I will catch up soon, I hope, and share that design process.

Right now, I just need to cut to the chase and explain that I really wanted to design a project that I could make whilst chatting to my friends at knit night. After a couple of diversions into things that didn’t quite fit the bill, I hit on this idea.

Continue reading

Instant Cowl

DSC_0258Wish you could finish projects faster? Stash getting out of control? Solve your problems with the Instant Cowl.

Highly versatile, the Instant Cowl can be made in any weight of yarn you like – from summer cotton to winter wool. Wear it draped singly, or doubled up around your neck to keep chills at bay.

Suitable for any ability, knitters from beginners to advanced will enjoy making this pattern. Although this is a technically a knitting pattern, you will find that it is easily adapted for crochet. In fact, I’m so sure that you could make one in a day that I’m offering the chance to win prizes!

Continue reading

Foolproof: Mystery Knitalong

IK_rav foolproof badgeI know a cowl mystery knit-along is rare. This is rarer; it has no casting on and no binding off.

It’s made in rows but ends up all in one piece. There’s no knitting in the round, no sewing, no grafting, no provisional cast-on, no picking up stitches. Promise.

You can make it to your custom size without having to make a tension square. No kidding.

No purling, no knitting. Oh, wait, just joking about that last bit. There is knitting – it’s in garter stitch – with funky stripes and some easy intermediate increasing and decreasing required. It’s an intriguing construction; a real mystery.

Continue reading

Ironbridge: from Austria to England

I liked the skein. I loved the wound ball. I adored the little stocking stitch swatch where the yarn came to life. Both sides looked amazing, but how to show it all off?

Semi-solid and variegated yarns are a challenge because they can make stitch patterns vanish. After more swatching the Fyberspates Vivacious 4ply, twisted stitches became my solution. They just popped off the purl background because of the yarn’s beautiful stitch definition. Textures had reappeared, but now what was I going to do with that fact?

I happened to mention my thoughts to a lovely and equally knit-obsessed friend. She grabbed Maria Erlbacher’s “Twisted Stitch Knitting” book down from her shelf and insisted I took it home. It was late. I was tired. I said yes without barely opening the book: it was about knitting. I was bound to like it.Image Continue reading