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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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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
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Temperature Pi Blanket – 1st Quarter 2021

The first 3 months of 2021, 90 days in all, have been very interesting weather-wise, here in West Yorkshire. The temperature graph for these 90 days looks like this:

Of those 90 days, we had:

  • 30 days of predominantly sunny weather
  • 21 days of overcast skies
  • 16 days of rain
  • 12 days of snow
  • 5 days of storm
  • 3 days of high winds
  • 3 days of fog

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

This data has come as a bit of a surprise, as I my impression of the same period in previous years is of cloudy skies and rain, lashing rain, or drizzle. We have even had prolonged and heavy snowfall in late March, notably in 2012, when were were cut off from the outside world for a week! So this year, with its 30 days of sunshine, has altered my perceptions of my environment.

January saw a few warm(ish) days, but on the whole it was cold, with only 7 days of sunshine. February, normally relentlessly wet and miserable, surprised us with warmer sunnier days towards the end of the month, reaching a high of 13.25° on the 24th. March started with three days of thick fog and ended with a mini-heatwave (23°!).

The Temperature Pi blanket began with pale icy blues and ended with greens and yellows.

The fancy clip-on markers in the image above mark the end of each month, the small calabash pins mark every 10 days as a reminder of my progress.

Every month, I blog about my progress with this project here on the Granary Knits website; I would love to see examples of other knitters’ temperature blankets, so please post photos on Twitter using hashtag #TempPi2021.

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New in store – Knitting Patterns

If you are a knitter or crocheter, you will no doubt have heard about the controversial new design of the Ravelry website. For many dedicated and enthusiastic users of Ravelry, the site has become unusable, and so in solidarity with the crafters who are unable to buy patterns from Ravelry any longer, I am making my patterns available as downloadable PDFs in the Payhip Granary Knits Shop.

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Raspberry Pi Shawl Pattern Published

I am delighted to announce that my very first pattern has been published today in the Granary Knits Pattern Store. The pattern is for a lovely circular shawl, designed using Elizabeth Zimmermann’s Pi Shawl principle, hence the name!


This is not a difficult pattern! I have written it to appeal to both beginners in knitted lace as well as experienced knitters. It has been tech-edited and tested by three test knitters, using both four-ply and lace yarns. My original shawl was knitted in Debbie Bliss Fine Donegal four-ply yarn, but any four-ply, sport or DK yarn could be used. It looks especially lovely in a long-colour-change yarn.


You can see the pattern page, and buy the pattern, in the Granary Knits Pattern store.