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Autumn Beech Tam

This tam pattern features the beautiful leaf colours of the European Beech tree in Autumn. While the lower branches are still green, the middle and upper tiers graduate through yellow, russets, and rich red shades. Instructions are given for four sizes, to fit small, medium narrow, medium wide, or large. The narrow and wide sizes refer to how full the tam part of the hat is. The hat, being a tam, is roomy and warm.

Suggested yarn: Jamieson’s Shetland Spindrift; 4ply; 100% wool; 105 m/ 115 yds per 25 g / 0.88 oz ball. Sample shown uses 8 colours, no more than 45 m / 50 yds of any one colour:

Dark green 147 Moss
Pale green 998 Autumn
Pale yellow 230 Yellow Ochre
Dark yellow 1190 Burnt Umber
Orange 1200 Nutmeg
Russet 261 Paprika
Red 187 Sunrise
Dark Brown 235 Grouse

Sizes: Small, medium narrow, medium wide, large, to fit head circumferences 54 cm (58 cm, 58 cm, 62 cm) / approx. 21 ¼” (23”, 23”, 24 ½”) at the brim. Finished sizes at the brim, unstretched, 45 cm (49 cm, 49 cm, 52 cm) / approx. 17 ¾” (19 ¼”, 19 ¼”, 20 ½”).

The Autumn Beech Tam pattern is available from the Granary Knits Payhip Store.

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Pheasant Tam

This tam features some of the myriad patterns seen in the feathers of the female pheasant. Often overlooked because of their shy nature and outshone by the more flamboyant colouring of the male, these beautiful pheasants inhabit my garden all year round and are a constant source of delight and inspiration. Instructions are given for four sizes, to fit small, medium narrow, medium wide, or large. The narrow and wide sizes refer to how full the tam part of the hat is. This tam is roomy and warm.

Suggested yarn: Jamieson’s Shetland Spindrift; 4ply; 100% wool; 105 m/ 115 yds per 25 g / 0.88 oz ball:
1 or 2 balls of each colour, sample shown in 106 Mooskit and 246 Wren, depending upon size.

Sizes: Small, medium narrow, medium wide, large, to fit head circumferences 54 cm (58 cm, 58 cm, 62 cm) / approx. 21 ¼” (23”, 23”, 24 ½”) at the brim. Finished sizes at the brim, unstretched, 45 cm (49 cm, 49 cm, 52 cm) / approx. 17 ¾” (19 ¼”, 19 ¼”, 20 ½”).

The Pheasant Tam pattern is available from the Granary Knits Payhip Store.

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Whitley Common Shawl

Whitley Common is the first in my Yorkshire Collection of patterns for shawls and other accessory. I am deeply inspired by the landscape around my home, and this collection of knitting patterns is my way of describing and celebrating the beautiful Yorkshire landscape that surrounds me. It consists of shawls, wraps, and even a cowl, inspired by the rich textures and colours of the area around my home. The patterns vary in difficulty from beginner to more experienced knitter, but none, I hope, is too complicated. They are designed with chart knitting in mind, one pattern at least consists of one very large chart, but I have provided computer-generated written instructions as well.

Sometimes the shape of an area has inspired the shawl design, sometimes the movement of the air over the landscape. Whitley Common was inspired by the high moors around my home, with their dry stone walls, streams, becks and dykes, and their distinctive heather and cottongrass landscape. This three-quarters pi shawl is knit in laceweight yarn; it looks especially good in hand dyed laceweight, such as the Ripplescraft Suilven shown in the brown variegated sample. The white sample is a luxurious undyed silk and linen mix, making it a beautiful wedding capelet.

For the two samples shown, I used: Solstice Yarns Persuasion Lace; 65% linen 35% silk; 800 m/ 875 yds per 100g / 3.53 oz skein; 1 skein in natural; or Ripplescraft Suilven Lace; 60% merino, 20% silk, 20% yak; 800 m/ 875 yds per 100g / 3.53 oz skein; 1 skein in Lochan in the Hills colourway.

This pattern has been tech edited, but not test knit except by me. Full pattern support is available by emailing me.

Whitley Common can be knit in any lace weight yarn. The Solstice Yarns Persuasion Lace is a robust yarn which keeps its shape beautifully once blocked; the Ripplescraft variegated yarn, being predominantly wool, will contract slightly once blocked and dry. Both yarns have exceptional drape and lustre. As always, when substituting yarn, be sure to knit a swatch to check that you are able to get the right gauge for the pattern. Suggested yarn substitutes can be found at https://yarnsub.com/

Whitley Common Shawl pattern can be purchased from the Granary Knits Payhip store.

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Sock Yarn Shawl: a new free pattern

My first design release of the year is the easiest of easy shawls. Knit from any sock yarn you have in your stash, this scrunchy garter shawl is a perfect go-anywhere knit. Use up leftover scraps of yarn for a unique stripey look; or colour block two or more yarns. It can be made from any amount of yarn; the sample shown was knit with 100g of self patterning sock yarn from West Yorkshire Spinners, but you could use any fingering/4ply yarn.

The shawl features an open top edge and a simple stretchy cast off. This is the perfect go-anywhere knit, requires no special techniques, and will look great in any yarn.

Available now in the Payhip Granary Knits store .

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Temperature Pi Blanket – November Update

At last the temperature has begun to fall a little! The maximum achieved was 15 degrees Celsius, which seems rather too warm for this time of year. We often have the first snowfall of the autumn in November, and this year we did indeed have 2 days of snow at the end of the month, but they were not particularly heavy falls of snow, and the melting started almost immediately.

Our new rescue hens enjoying the November warmth

The Temperature Pi Blanket continues to take up a lot of space on the sofa! Each daily round is 2,304 stitches, but I am just about managing to keep up with the timetable. At last there is a little blue to be seen, but still a lot of green.

November’s progress between the fancy stitch markers

I have now completed days 305 to 334 inclusive, working on 2,304 per day. I have worked 364,788 stitches, and the blanket is 83.63% complete (in terms of the number of stitches worked). I have spent over 300 hours over the past 11 months knitting this blanket.

It’s not too late to join in and knit your own Temperature Pi Blanket, or get the pattern now and start knitting it next year. You can download the pattern and accompanying spreadsheet from Payhip

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Temperature Pi Blanket – October Update

October is usually stormy in our part of the country; we’ve had a plum tree blown over in our garden in previous years, and had the roof of one of our chicken houses torn off. It is almost never warm and sunny. This year was different; yes, we had a good number of overcast or rainy days, but 15 days out of the 31 were sunny and warm enough to be outside in a tee-shirt. Temperatures hovered in the mid teens, and hit 22 degrees Celsius at one point. The weather gave us time to really ripen the enormous crop of apples on our cider trees, and we were able to pick and process them much later in the month. Cider making is hard work when you only have manual macerator and press, and the huge crop meant that it took us two weekends to complete, but the twelve demi-johns of lovely golden liquid are more than worth it!

The Temperature Pi Blanket has, I believe, achieved sentience, and refuses to stay very long on any surface. It is like sharing the space with a very large dog – a St Bernard for instance – and practically pushes my husband and I off the sofa while I am trying to knit! Each daily round is 2,304 stitches, but I am just about managing to keep up with the timetable. The blanket is still very green and yellow, with just a couple of days when the temperature dipped below 10 degrees.

October’s progress, between the fancy stitch markers

I have now completed days 274 to 304 inclusive, working on 2,304 per day. I have worked 295,668 stitches, and the blanket is 67.78% complete (in terms of the number of stitches worked). I have spent over 246 hours over the past 10 months knitting this blanket.

It’s not too late to join in and knit your own Temperature Pi Blanket, or get the pattern now and start knitting it next year. You can download the pattern and accompanying spreadsheet from Payhip

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Temperature Pi Blanket – September Update

September can be cold and dark, sometimes it can be warm and sunny, an Indian Summer we call it here in the UK. This year, we have been lucky enough to experience an Indian Summer, when you wake up and there is a freshness in the air, dew on the grass, and the promise of warmth to drive away any mist that is lingering. The days are growing shorter, but they make up for that by being warm and fruitful. All the soft fruit – strawberries, raspberries, blackcurrants – have been harvested and frozen, dried, or made into jam; soon it will be time to pick the apples and make cider. But just now, we are enjoying sitting outside in the sunshine.

September is a busy time for knitting and on the Temperature Pi Blanket front, it is time to work the last of the increase rounds, taking each daily round to 2,304 stitches. I’ll be honest, this is a lot to get through, but I find if I pace myself, do half during the day when I can fit in a little knitting, and half in front of the TV in the evening, it is doable. The blanket is still very green and yellow, with just a couple of days when I got out the orange yarn, but with the turn of the weather at the end of the month to rain and dropping temperatures, I expect it will be back to the blues very soon.

September’s rounds, between the fancy markers

I have now completed days 244 to 273 inclusive, continuing with 1,152 stitches per round until 20th September, when I doubled the stitches to 2,304. I have worked 224,244 stitches, and the blanket is 51.41% complete (in terms of the number of stitches worked). I have spent nearly 187 hours over the past 9 months knitting this blanket.

It’s not too late to join in and knit your own Temperature Pi Blanket, or get the pattern now and start knitting it next year. You can download the pattern and accompanying spreadsheet from Payhip

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Temperature Pi Blanket – August Update

If July 2021 was a reasonable approximation of Summer, then August has definitely felt like Autumn. On the very first day there was dew on the early morning grass, huge skeins of wild geese flew over the house several times, and the air felt slightly crisper, that little bit cooler. The shortening days became more overcast, there were even a couple of stormy days, high winds and hurrying clouds, almost unheard of at this time of year. The highest temperature achieved during the month was 25°C, the lowest 15°C, and the colours of the blanket reflect this, being largely mid green with a few days of yellow.

I have now completed days 213 to 243 inclusive, continuing with 1,152 stitches per round. I have worked 177,012 stitches, and the blanket is 40.58% complete (in terms of the number of stitches worked).

It’s not too late to join in and knit your own Temperature Pi Blanket, or get the pattern now and start knitting it next year. You can download the pattern and accompanying spreadsheet from Payhip.

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Temperature Pi Blanket – July Update

July weather has been mixed, to say the least. One week, we had temperatures in the low to mid 30 degrees Celsius, the following week, it struggled to reach 13 Celsius, and Storm Evert hit us hard for 24 hours. We experienced a full week of rainy days, and a full week of baking temperatures and relentless sunshine; on the whole, a bit of a roller-coaster. It is important to point out, that I speak only about Yorkshire in the UK. Canada, the USA, Siberia, Turkey have all suffered devastation from uncontrollable wildfires; and Wales, Belgium, Germany, and much of central Europe had to cope with torrential rainfall and flooding that overwhelmed towns and villages. In the face of such destruction, it seems rather trivial to be writing about a knitting project.

The Temperature Pi Blanket has been cosy to knit under for the last few days after the temperature dropped; during the heatwave week, it was a severe trial; but I managed to keep up with the project and completed the month more or less on time.

I have now completed days 182 to 212 inclusive, continuing with 1,152 stitches per round. I have worked 141,300 stitches, and the blanket is 32.39% complete (in terms of the number of stitches worked). I have now used all but one of the colours on my colour/temperature chart, the dark pink/red for 36 – 40 degrees; I suspect that this year we shall not reach such high temperatures, but August may yet surprise us.

It’s not too late to join in and knit your own Temperature Pi Blanket, or get the pattern now and start knitting it next year. You can download the pattern and accompanying spreadsheet from Payhip

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Temperature Pi Blanket – 2nd Quarter 2021

The second Quarter of 2021, shows a steady rise in temperature overall, although there were a few blips along the way, notably May which was cold and wet a lot of the time. The 90-day graph for outdoor temperature looks like this:

The quarter comprises days 91 to 181 inclusive. Of those 91 days, we had:

  • 43 days of predominantly sunny weather
  • 28 days of overcast skies
  • 15 days of rain
  • 2 days of snow
  • 2 days of storm
  • 1 day of high winds

[I define stormy days as a combination of high winds and lashing precipitation (either rain or snow).]

The 43 days of sun are no surprise, but only 15 days of rain in 91 days overall is not much. There was no rain in April, just 2 days of snow, but May more than made up for it with 12 days of rain (plus light showers on other days). April had one day of high winds, and May had 2 days of storm, but otherwise the period has been very calm. The rain in May caused everything – fruit, vegetables, grass, and weeds – to flourish, and we benefited in June with good crops of strawberries, currant bushes heavy with ripening fruit, and peas and beans setting lots of pods.

None of the data is particularly surprising; the move of the rainy season from April to May has been happening gradually for a number of years. And I would not expect us to be having storms or high winds at this time of year, they usually happen in late September and October. All in all, a calm period of mostly sunny skies.

Temperature Pi Blanket Right to left: April to June