Kiwiyarns Knits

A blog about New Zealand yarns, knitting and life



Well, I started out this post about to write things like “nothing much on the radar” and “very little knitting”, and then I had a look at what I was going to show you, and I think that instead, a secret sock-a-palooza has been happening at my house.  Right under my nose! And without me noticing!

First off, I will show you the socks that were mostly knitted in one weekend.  I started them during a birthday party that my son was attending, almost finished the heel by the time it was over (stockinette stitch and talking go very well together) and then finished it off at home.  The next sock took a few more days to finish.  This is an Opal Smile colourway.

Opal Smile socks

Sometimes a plain vanilla sock is what you need.  Especially when everything else you are knitting ends up getting ripped and reknit several times over.

Now, take this inspiration:

And turn it into themed socks (the socks are called “In the Golden Hall”.  See the track above linked to by the designer, Claire Ellen.  I liked the look of the cover image and decided to use it as inspiration for the colour of my socks),

In the Golden Hallwhich I have reknit once already because I wasn’t paying attention to the chart and was doggedly trying to knit when I should have been a good girl and tucked up in bed…

And this sweater


which is now at the short row hem stage, and I have had to frog back to the hem starting point twice for the same reason as noted above.  I think I have finally managed to stop making stupid mistakes with the short rows. I can’t wait to wear this sweater!  Zealana Kiwi is one of my all-time favourite yarns.   It is comfortable to wear, durable, doesn’t pill, looks fabulous… the list goes on and on…

Then add this pretty

Habour by Doe Arnot

which I started this morning during a Skype call, and am already well on the way to the heel.  Note how it is stockinette stitch…(very little room for errors)…

And add another pretty


which has become my bedtime knitting, but again, has been ripped back to the base because sleepy heads and lace knitting do not go hand in hand (although it does help with getting back to sleep when you wake up in the middle of the night and can’t sleep).

And now I think you can see why I said nothing much has been happening, but at the same time, I find myself suddenly with a basket full of socks!

Let’s backtrack to this little number…

Doe Arnot Harbour Coluorway

This lovely self-striping yarn is the work of Doe Arnot, who has developed a colourway range inspired by a recent trip to Wellington.  This one is called “Harbour”.  I can definitely see the nautical theme!  I can’t wait to see what else she loads up on to her site!  I suspect it’s going to be first off the needles because my brain is clearly not able to focus on much else other than plain vanilla knitting at the moment.

And finally, I thought I’d share something I have been enjoying a lot lately.  The long drives to work have had a wonderful benefit – music has re-entered my life.  In particular, Maksim Mvrica.  If you have not heard this talented piano player before, you really should have a listen.  Here’s one of my favourites:

He’s wonderful to both drive and knit to (not at the same time of course).  It’s music that doesn’t let you fall asleep!






“About her feet in wide vessels of green and brown earthenware, white water lilies were floating, so she seemed to be enthroned in the midst of a pool.” (Lord of the Rings, Chapter VII)

So this pattern was introduced in homage to Goldberry, daughter of the River, and I decided to have some fun with the theme…

Withywindle socks

I slipped these babies on, and instantly my sock knitting mojo returned in full force!!


What is it about a finished sock that causes such a thrill!?

The pattern, Withywindle, is absolutely perfect for highly variegated yarn, just as Claire Ellen intended.  I really love what the stitch pattern has done to the colours.

Stitch detail Withywindle

The pattern is intended to be for yoga socks, but because I don’t do yoga, I converted them into normal socks.  My mods:

  • I put toes on the socks.
  • I may have added one more repeat of garter stitch after the single ribbing.  I just liked it, no particular reason.
  • I made the heel a “sturdy heel” (slip one, knit one).
  • I did not repeat the garter stitch section before the toe.

The yarn is in the colourway Plumberry Ambrosia, a merino/nylon base from Needlefood, which is sadly no longer in operation.   For comparative purposes, you can see it here in the skein, along with the other two colours I got with it.  I remember the day I received this yarn.  The package came in the mail just before I left for work, so I took the skeins to work with me rather than go back into the house and leave them there.  I photographed them bright and beautiful in the early morning sun while waiting for the bus to arrive.  I wonder what people thought!?  😉


I am pleased to say I have now knitted all of these skeins into socks.  The skein on the left became Monkey and the skein on the far right became the first socks I ever knitted – plain vanillas.

I am glad I have found the perfect pattern to do the final skein justice!


#3 Bagshot Row

I finished #3 Bagshot Row this week.  The sun came out today. It was lovely and warm and perfect for a bit of weeding and photography in the Hobbit’s garden in the afternoon after work…

#3 bagshot row sock

I adore the foot on these socks.  They are meant to symbolise rows of vegetation in the Gaffer’s garden, and indeed I think they do.

Claire Ellen design socks

The top of the sock has a pretty lace stitch that reminds me of flowers.

Lace top

There are twisted stitches galore, and not a cable needle in sight.

I did have to concentrate on these socks.  There was a fair amount of cursing and ripping when I failed to pay attention to the order of the decreases.  I knit the pattern as written, and although some people made mention that they would be worried the foot was too tight, mine fit me perfectly.  I like how Claire Ellen leaves it to you to decide on heel length – that is a wise move!  I knitted the heel to my usual length using 15 slips on this pattern.

Detail #3 Bagshot row

I love, love, love this design.  It is so intricate and beautiful.  And the yarn (Fibre Alive Merino Mania – 100% merino sock yarn)  is just perfect for this design.

In the garden

And now, I just have to wait a few more days, and hopefully there will be another pretty sock design from Claire Ellen to knit!