How to choose the perfect beads for your sock knitting project

choosing seed beads for knitting JANE BURNS

Whilst almost any bead can be applied to your knitted project using the crochet hook method, for the purpose of this tutorial we are discussing glass seed beads. Glass seed beads are a wonderful choice, they come in a variety … Continue reading

Sweet Chestnut Socks – Enabling Alert

Autumn has well and truly arrived in my corner of the UK.  I love the autumn, the colours, the smell, the lack of sun cream and need for knitwear…….

If you are taking part in Socktober and looking for a little bit of a sock challenge can I tempt you with my latest pattern in The Knitter Magazine (issue 89)?  These pretties are worked from the cuff down with some cable detail and a little beading.  The heel is an afterthought heel, which works beautifully, not interrupting the flow of the Zauberball yarn and it’s gently transitioning colours.


The pattern is written for two sizes, to fit foot circumference 23.5 (25) cm.


  • Beading with a crochet hook
  • Cabling
  • Twisted ribbing
  • k2tog
  • ssk
  • yo
  • s2kpo

Shopping list:

  • Zauberball 4ply sock yarn
  • 2.75mm needles (or size to obtain gauge)
  • 0.6mm crochet hook
  • size 6/0 seed beads
  • cable needle
  • stitch markers

Grand Day Out – Alexander Palace 2013

I had the most wonderful day at Ally Pally on Thursday, I had the opportunity to meet with old friends and new, to be inspired and amused.  I  will let the photos do the talking (with a few comments from me, naturally).

Stands that really stood out to me were….

The ak Traditions stands was utterly charming, the dolls and their wardrobes were beautiful. I loved the colours,  the simplicity and the unique styling.  You can find them online here.

ak traditions alexander palace

ak traditions alexander palace

Stepping away from the colourful and the cute to Toft Alpaca and their natural colour palette.  This is the first time I have seen their collection of cute and cuddly animals and wall mounted animal heads.  Before now when I heard the words Toft Alpaca, I thought Big Buttons!

toft alpaca alexander palace

toft alpaca alexander palace

Then I came across the work of Sally Hewett, Embroidery and Stitching Artist.  Her focus for this exhibition was body image.  To be honest I found her collection intriguing, or maybe it was the person behind the work?  Want to find out more about Sally check out her website

Sally Hewett Embroidery and Stitching

Sally Hewett Embroidery and Stitching

Sally Hewett Embroidery and Stitching

Want to see what I took home with me? 

Leilani crochet flower kit jane crowfoot

A little treat for me, Leilani Crochet Flower Kit, by Jane Crowfoot. I am a big fan of Jane’s work, she has the most amazing eye for colour.  When I was starting out on my knitting journey I took a class with Jane, the Finishing Technique’s Class.  Jane is a great teacher,  if you get the chance you really should take a class with her.

arabella collar kit alexander palace

Also purchase from Jane Crowfoot’s stand, is this pretty little crochet beaded collar kit.  The Arabella Collar was designed by Nicky Hale of alifelikevera.

Drops Delight Yarn

These beauties are earmarked for another Half Granny Square Shawl,  the first one is almost complete 🙂

fabric alexander palace

I am developing an interest in fabric, Fat Qs to precise…. I wonder what I might do with these?

I also purchases some tiny crochet hooks from Hiya Hiya, along with some 1.5mm DPN’s.  Some more Karbonz needles and another set of Knitpro cable needles (where do mine go?)  Amongst some other bits and pieces that are not so photogenic but a girl can not live without!

Finally, a present from Doug.

giant needle

Doug has bought me these so that we can make a wall hanging that resembles the Knitting Image logo for the Den wall.  Wish me luck!

What did you buy?

The dreaded 'R' word and New Adventures in the Knittyverse

Summer holidays have flown past,  it seems like we have only been away from school for two weeks,  but then I look back and think of all that we as a family have done this past six weeks and wow,  what a lot we have packed in.  Katie has grown,  I know that having that special 10th birthday and being ‘double digits’ as she tells me, is quite the milestone,  but she has shot up!  The birthday fairy seems to have given her an appetite for sewing.  I am sad that knitting is not her passion,  but she is young,  there is plenty of time for me to show her the error of her ways.

From a Knitting Image perspective the past six weeks have seen the blog and twitter up and running.  My first pattern independently launched,  thank you to all those of you who have downloaded Disco Dave, I am looking forward to seeing your little monsters appearing on Ravelry.  I have organised a new knitting and crochet group here in Southend on Sea, which I will tell you more about soon, but in the meantime you can check it out here.

A massive 18 patterns have been written and samples knitted.  A number of the designs have tutorial blog posts to accompany them on release.   I think I need a holiday 🙂

The new term means having to contemplate that dreaded word beginning with ‘R’, the word that offends me more than swearing, more than socks with flip flops…. Routine.  I am going to have to cut back on knitting until 3am and sleeping past midday.  I think perhaps I should have considered ‘Night Knitter’ as name of my blog.   My plan for the new term is to work on publishing more of my designs independently.   I have had a lot of emails asking for the ‘Bones’ pattern.  Good new this will soon be available on Ravelry and Craftsy to download.   update: now available to download


Rockin' them Skully Mittens… new pattern coming soon

Something to keep your hands warm during the grave yard shift?

Fancy trying your hand at beading with a crochet hook, or keeping it simple with intarsia? Whatever takes your fancy, now available to download

The pattern includes written instruction and video links for beading with a crochet hook, for those of you who prefer your skulls glamorous. Instructions for working the intarsia motif is included for those with an inner rock god!

folded arms 2

man mitten 4