What to Knit with 4 Weeks Till Christmas

Four weeks till Christmas! I can’t believe it! If you have not yet begun your holiday knitting or crocheting then seize the day, perhaps with one of these projects.

Garter Gaiter by Purl Soho
garter garter

This is a nice and easy pattern, just knit and purl, with one colour and then the Madelinetosh ASAPnext. It’s free too!

You will need:  87 yards (79 meters) of a bulky weight yarn. This cowl would be stunning in Madelinetosh ASAP. 10mm circular needle 40cm.

Karusellen Hat by Erica Knits

This toque with the traditional Swedish folk art design of a horse is pretty great. brooklyn tweedIt is shown here – knit with Brooklyn Tweed Shelter. The hat is from Pom Pom Quarterly Magazine Autumn 2015 which has a lot of really nice patterns. The next suggestion (a crochet hat called North Toque) is from the same issue. You can download the whole magazine for only $12.36 CAD.

You will need: 350 – 384 yards (320 – 351 m) of a worsted weight yarn like the Brooklyn Tweed Shelter in two colours. The pattern calls for 3.25mm, 3.5mm, and 4.5mm needles. The 3.25mm needles are for a tubular cast on.

North Toque by Maria Valles
north toque

I found this pattern in the Pom Pom Quarterly Autumn 2015 in amongst some other pretty great patterns. This one is for the crocheters! It involves chunky yarn so you could start a production line of these and make one for every one on the list.

You will need: 273 – 328 yards (250 – 300 m) of bulky yarn like Cascade 128, or Peruvia Quick, and a 6.5 and 7mm hook.

Noro Striped Scarf by Jared Flood
noro striped scarf

Jared Flood admits he didn’t make up this pattern but he sure spread the joy norowhen he published this pattern for FREE on his blog. Two colours of delightful Noro yarn (a colour-blending, self-patterning yarn from Japan) is knit in stripes to make an incredibly beautiful scarf. Also, a really fun knit! We made a version at The Knit Café using Noro Kureopatora which is a merino blend and more comfortable to wear then many Noro yarns.

You will need: 436 yards (399 m) of Noro in a worsted weight. We used two balls of the Kureopatora and still had lots left over. 4.5mm needles

Campside by Alicia Plummer

This popular shawl project with the simple eyelet texture was originally knit withindigo dragonfly Julie Asselin’s Leizu DK. Julie was just in the store this past weekend for a visit! I am so excited to say that we are expecting some of her beautiful, hand dyed yarns to arrive soon.  Untill then you can always make this shawl in one of our other lovely DK weight yarns. Note: this pattern has some errata which is on the patterns ravelry page. It is also Free!

You will need: 700 – 780 yards (640 – 713 m) of DK/sport weight yarn. For a really divine shawl I recommend the Indigodragonfly Mergoat Sport. There is a colour that looks quite a lot like the one in the picture that is called “Ooooo Shiney!”  4.5mm needles.

Infant Mittens by Purl Soho
infant mittens

Do you need to knit for any new humans this year? If you do, you could knit a pair of these in a hurry. It is a free pattern from the Purl Bee. They are sized 3-9 months. No thumbs – makes a quick knit mitt!

You will need: 200 yards of fingering weight yarn held double or 100 yards DK/sport weight single stranded.  A yarn like Cascade 220 Superwash should do the trick. The contrast colours have Koigu Mini Skein’s name written all over them. 3.25mm double pointed needles too.

Irish Hiking Mittens by Karen Michelle
irish hiking mittens

This arm warmer pattern is free to try. Decorated with a very straightforward cable design this would be a good first cable project for those who know how to knit on double pointed needles.

You will need: 150 – 220 yards (137 – 201 m) worsted or DK weight yarn like Rowan Pure Wool Superwash and 4mm needles

Azul Pullover by Heidi May

This cozy cover up looks so great on this small person but the pattern is sized tomalabrigo rasta fit a two year old all the way to large adult sizes. Better yet – it is made with Super Bulky yarn so it will be extra warm and extra fast to knit.

You will need: 300 – 860 yards (274 – 786 m) of super bulky yarn like Malabrigo Rasta or Brown Sheep Burly Spun and 9mm needles.

Fishin Cowl by The Knit Café

This cowl by The Knit Café can be knit in two sizes. Shown here, is a cozy single wrap, but you could also make a decadent double wrap cowl. Both are knit in a fisherman’s rib stitch for extra stretch and coziness. We made ours with Madelinetosh Vintage, which is a soft hand dyed merino. You can pick up a knit-kit in these colours or pick  your own colours at The Knit Café. You can find the pattern HERE.

You will need: 400 – 800 yards (366 – 732 m)of worsted weight like Madelinetosh Vintage in two colours and a 5mm circular needle

 Craftily yours

What to Knit with 5 weeks till Christmas

We continue the count down! It is now 5 weeks of knitting time before Christmas. Still plenty of time to make a few gifts. Here are some suggestions.

Boyfriend by Lucinda Campbell
boyfriend scarf













A really chunky scarf with a waffle texture suitable for a boyfriend or anyone really. Even a long version will be a quicker knit with such big yarn and will keep the recipient cozy-warm.
You will need: 198m of super bulky yarn like Brown Sheep Burly Spun and a 10mm needle.

Lowbrow Cowl by Thao Nguyen
This cowl looks so classy! It is a double wrap, so it will be decadently snug around the neck.
You will need: 366 m of a soft worsted weight yarn like Madelinetosh Vintage and a 4.5mm needle

Jones by Tin Can Knits
jonesYou may still have time to make a sweater especially if it for a pintsized person. This terrific sweater pattern by Tin Can Knits comes in sizes that range from 0-6months to 4XL. Even if you don’t make it as a present now it is a good one to have saved away for another day!
You will need: 366 – 2377 m of DK or Sport yarn like Berroco Ultra Alpaca Fine, and 3.25mm and 4mm needles

Winter Fantasy Socks by DROPS Design
pic  is from knitter mustaavillaa

winter fantasy sock

These socks look incredible in this photo! I wish they were waiting in my sock drawer right now and I bet someone you know wishes the same. You can make them sized US 5/6.5 – 7.5/9 – 9.5/10.5. The pattern is free!
You will need: 819 m of fingering weight yarn like Indigodragonfly merino sock, and 2.25mm needles.

Babar by Sara Elizabeth Kellnerbabar
This is another free pattern, which is hard to believe since it is such a great one! It even comes with the pattern for Babar’s Cape and the Crown and for an alternative wardrobe his green suit and bowler hat.
You will need: 155 – 174 m of worsted weight yarn like Rowan Pure Wool (it’s superwash!) and 3.5mm needles.

Top Down Poncho by Pickles
top down poncho
Another sweet pattern from Pickles and like many of Pickle’s patterns this one is free. This looks more like an oversized shrug then a poncho to me, but whatever you call it, it seems like a wonderful accessory that might suit many people on your knit-list. The pattern has 4 sizes.
You will need: 175- 225 g of silk mohair like Shibui Silk Cloud held together with 400-500 g of DK weight like Berroco Ultra Alpaca Fine, or any yarn on it’s own that gives you a gauge of 16 sts/10cm on a 5.5mm needle such as Cascade 128. Needle size is 5.5mm and 3.5mm

Amigurumi Pears by Salihan Laugesen
These stuffies speak for themselves I think. Grab your crochet hook and get going. They are made with Super Bulky yarn and could be done in no time.
You will need: 70 – 134 m of Super Bulky yarn like Malabrigo Rasta and a 6.5mm and 4mm hook

This pretty crocheted cowl can be made in four different sizes that the designer describes as short, long, extra long and oversized. A really glamorous yarn would make this design shine!.

You will need: 160 – 448 m of fingering weigt yarn like Madelinetosh Merino Light, and 3.5mm and 3.25mm hooks.

I’m Biased by The Knit Café
I'm biased
This is a free pattern by us, at the Knit Café. We love how this design really allows the knitter to play with colour. Two different colours of yarn are held together to get this two-tone effect. We are also impressed that the pointy ends of the scarf which are created with the bias knitting technique are perfect for tying and make the scarf sit and stay put in a very chic way.
You will need: Two different colours of fingering weight yarn held together. We used Madelinetosh Merino Light and Madelinetosh Unicorn Tails. The Unicorn Tails come in 50m amounts making them perfect to mix and match as accent colours. 732 – 914 m were used in total. 5mm needles.

 New Born Vertebrae Kelly Brooker
pic from knitter Ellen McRae
baby vertibrae
This is a very popular pattern, and not just because it is a free one. Knitters like that it is quick to make and takes very little yarn. New Mom’s like the open-front design of the sweater as it encourages skin-to-skin time. This pic of the sweater, knit by Ellen was made with hand dyed, self striping Turtlepurl yarn. The stripes come out just perfectly in this sweater and you never have to change yarns to make it happen. the pattern is sized to fit a newborn aprox 7-9lbs.

You will need: 183 – 201 m of fingering weight yarn. The awesome striping comes courtesy of Turtlepurl Turtletoes (it’s not just for socks) yarn. 3.25mm and 2.75mm needles.

Vintage Prim by Andrea Mowry
vintage prim
This is a really lovely and very unique hat. It is knit in two colours with a technique called brioche knitting. It is reversible too!
You will need: Two colours of fingering weight yarn, 229 m total. Try Koigu Kppm!  Needle size is 3.5mm
Happy knitting everyone
craftily yours

Madelinetosh and Malabrigo

We got M&M!
That’s Madelinetosh, and Malabrigo yarns! Both are hand dyed goodies, that really make you itch for some knitting time.

Check out these colours of Madelinetosh Vintage (worsted weight)

madelinetosh vintagemadelinetosh vintagemadelinetosh vintagemadelinetosh vintage

And for quick knits we got Madelinetosh ASAP!

madelinetosh ASAPmadelinetosh vintage
Even bigger, and faster to knit is lovely Malabrigo Rasta!

malabrigo rastamalabrigo rastamalabrigo rasta
These are some of my favourites from this batch ↓
madelinetosh vintage

Madelinetosh Vintage in new colour called Court and Spark

Madelinetosh ASAP

Madelinetosh ASAP in Spectrum

malabrigo rasta

Malabrigo Rasta in Archangel

Madelinetosh ASAP and the Rasta will be put to good use in our upcoming

Learn to Knit Headband Class
Thursday December 10, 17, 7-9pm
Register HERE

If you already know how to knit you can find the free pattern for the Headband. HERE and HERE. They are both free!

Craftily yours



What to knit with 6 weeks till Christmas

Yes, if you begin today you will have 6 weeks of knit (or crochet) time before Christmas. I always like to have one or two hand made gifts under the tree. They are the most fun to give and pretty great to receive too.
This year, as always, I have prepared some suggestions for knit and crochet gifts. Unlike other years I’ve decided to be more laisez faire with how I meter them out. Often I organize my offerings by yarn weight or yardage, this year it’s more loosey-goosey. You will still see more large scale projects to begin with and quick knits as we get closer to the big day, but expect a few quick knits to be thrown in throughout so that you can get your projects done well before Christmas if you so wish. Here we go!

Farmhouse by cabinfour


I chose to feature this pretty shawl pattern first as it  showcases the latest brooklyn tweedaddition to the Knit Café yarn menu, it’s Brooklyn Tweed Shelter. This worsted weight yarn  is a rustic tweedy yarn that is used to perfect effect in this simple shawl.
You will need: Worsted weight yarn like Brooklyn Tweed Shelter, about 840yds, 5.5mm needle.

Tunisian Crochet Mitten with Cross Stitch Pattern by  Jolanta Gustafsson

tunisian crochet mit

You will really show off your craftiness if you make these mittens. Two diciplines koigu mini skeinscombine in this mitten pattern. You will need to know how to crochet Tunisian style and also how to cross stitch. If you do you will have some kick-ass mits. The pattern is a free one and comes with a chart for the cross stitch pattern.
You will need: a 6mm hook and yarn to get gauge 17 sts/4″ in Tunisian crochet, I believe that will be a worsted weight. You will also need embroidery floss or tapestry wool like Koigu kppm mini skeins for the roses.

Miri by Anna Sudo

brioche triangle


This is quite the fancy neck warmer. Suspect some oohs and ahs if this gets madelinetosh merino lightrevealed on Christmas morning. It is knit in a brioche stitch which makes for cushy stitches and the pretty colour pattern. The pattern is charted and written both.
You will need: 800m fingering weight yarn in two colours. Madelinetosh Merino Light would be nice for this project. 4.5 and 3.5mm circular needles

Gale and Mini Gale by Alicia Plummer

galemini gale

When I was small I had a  poncho that matched my Mom’s. I loved it! If you have peruviathe chops for a mother daughter poncho set, this one would be such a fun gift. Gale is a much more refined poncho then my 70’s version, so much the better! You will need to purchase each pattern separately.
You will need: 8mm needles and 900-1000yds of bulky wool like Peruvia Quick for Gale and for Mini Gale you will need 350-600yds of thick aran weight like Cascade128 and 6mm needles.

Check Meowt – cat, owl, panda knee socks by Lauren Riker

kitty socks

Adorable socks that you can knit to fit a 5 year old all the way to large adult sizes.indigo dragonfly The hard part will be picking which version – panda, cat or owl.
You will need: 330-540yds of fingering weight yarn like Indigodragonfly sock yarn which has a smidge of nylon in the merino for hard wearing socks, and 2.25, 2.75mm needles.

Spicy Diamond Blanket by HaakmaarRaak

spicy blanket

A hand made blanket is a really stellar gift. Start now – if you have this ambition.cascade 220 superwash I like the geometric motif in this crochet blanket. The pattern has lots of pictures that will help you along the way and it is free too.
You will need: a DK weight yarn like Cascade 220 Superwash and a 3.5mm hook.

Colour Block Shawl by A la Sascha

colour block shawl

This looks like a great project for folks who like to mix and match their colours. rowanThe designer says the pattern is easy to memorize and that it is fast to complete.
You will need: 612 – 766 yards of worsted weight yarn like Rowan Pure Wool, and a 6mm hook.

Hungry Caterpillar Baby Cocoon and Hat by Angie Hartley


How sweet it this one? The pattern comes with the sleep sack and the hat.cascade 128
It is knit with two strands of worsted held together or a chunky yarn so it should be a fast knit too.
You will need: worsted (held double) or chunky weight yarn for a gauge of 14 sts/10cm. Soft and washable Cascade 128 would be a great choice. 9mm needles.

Deep Woods Toque by Kiyomi Burgin

deep woods

I couldn’t resist recommending this hat because I just love the simple tree scapekoigu patterning. It is however one of those patterns you need to purchase the whole magazine to knit this one pattern. It is in the Winter 2015 Knitscene. Good news is that you can get a digital copy of this magazine through ravelry for only $7.99USD.
You will need: 567 yards total of fingering weight yarn in three colours like Koigu KPPM, and 3.35, and 2.75mm needles.

Trip to the Island by The Knit Café

trip to islandtrip to island

This is The Knit Cafe’s most recent pattern. Both versions in the pic are includedtrip to the island in the pattern (two scarves for the price of one). Choose to make the open and easy lace pattern or the delicate and more challenging floral lace pattern. Either way this crescent shape shawlette hangs so nicely.
You will need: 700 yds total, 3 colours of fingering weight yarn. We used Koigu KPPM. 2 full 50 gram skeins of each of the main colours and 2 mini skeinettes for the accent colour. 4mm needles.

Craftily yours

Sock time!

I think one of the best knitting classes to take is a sock knitting class. There is just so much to learn in a sock. It’s that heel! It’s a feat in knitting engineering!
Once you’ve gone through all the techniques in a sock – short rows, left and right slanting decreases, picking up stitches and kitchener stitch too, you will be ready to tackle them when they show up in your next shawl project or sweater project. They come up time and again, they do!
We would love to show you all of these indispensable techniques and more. Sock class is coming!

sock class

First Pair of Socks Class
Friday November 13, 20, 27, 7-9pm
$84, materials not included
register HERE

Craftily yours


Hand Made Halloween Hooray!

Happy Halloween!raccoon

Checkout the awesome costume Iwona has made for little Charlie. He’s gonna look so cute!.
She improvised the sweater pattern with some Burly Spun by Brown Sheep. This is our chunkiest yarn and great for speed knitting. Good for warmth too, which is perfect for what is shaping up to be a chilly night tonight. The Raccoon Hat is crocheted. It’s a pattern by Sarah Zimmerman which you can find HERE . The tail is also an improvisation. Both the hat and tail were made with Cascade 220 Superwash.

We are thinking next year a class in Halloween costume-making might be in order. What do you think?






Brooklyn Tweed at The Knit Café Toronto

I have perhaps never been more excited to announce a yarns arrival to The Knit café. It’s here! Brooklyn Tweed!

brooklyn tweedbrooklyn tweed
brooklyn tweedbrooklyn tweed

I may be especially happy as this event has been a long time coming. I have coveted this yarn from afar. Every year for many years I have contacted the good folks at Brooklyn Tweed and expressed my desire to order some for the Knit Café, and every year they told me (in the nicest of ways) they were not quite ready to expand up our way. Then, one day, it happened. They contacted me with the news that they were ready to share their lovely yarn with us, and now it is finally here in the store. Whoopeee – I say!

Brooklyn Tweed is a 100% American Wool endeavor, from sheep farm to mill it is all made sustainably in small scale production. The wool is tweedy in character and is available in a heavenly pallet. Today we have the Shelter line in the shop, which is a squeezable and lofty worsted weight, but expect the Loft line, a finger weight to make an appearance here too.

Shelter is the yarn you will make your favourite sweater from. It will delight you in how it shows off your stitching and how the wool keeps its shape. Brooklyn Tweed has a bountiful selection of gorgeous sweater patterns to choose from. If you have not yet discovered them, I encourage you to go right now and have a look at all the beauties on brooklyntweed.com. We have sweater quantity of all the lovely shades in the shop but come in quick to get your first pick.

brooklyn tweed

Here it is ↑ getting chummy with another yarn that just came in today. We have new recruits from Noro. It’s Kureopatora in 8 different colours. It looks pretty good with the Brooklyn Tweed Shelter, hmm, gives a knitter ideas.

Craftily yours