KNIT: Free knitted kitty patterns ... EVENT: Stitch London Christmas Shindig ... WIN: Cat books for Christmas ...
Snowball splattered shivery greetings to you
We hope this newsletter finds you well, feeling a little smug in your cosy creations, decking out snowmen in all kinds of handmade hosiery and feeling festively fine awaiting the Stitch London Christmas shindig or a Christmas stitch up closer to home.
Stitch London Christmas Shindig 8th December
Stitching Secret Santa • Fabulous Raffle
Stitch London learners: The last learner's lesson of the year is on 2 December. The first lesson of 2011 will be on 4 January. It's going to be a beast! Look out for the learner icon (left) to see dates for learner meetings. Places may be limited so please arrive early to sign up.
Questions? See our Learn to Knit and FAQ pages.
Raffle Prize Envy: We announce over 20 Really Rather Marvellous Raffle Prizes for the Stitch London Christmas Shindig.
Paws make prizes: Win a lovely pile of cats for Christmas with a craft-flavoured set of There Are Cats In This Book and There Are No Cats in This Book picture books by Viviane Schwarz.
Fabric felines: Knit yourself a cat and stitch up a sock monkey with free patterns.
Crafty Christmas: Crafty Crafty offers you free patterns for the whole of December
Gerty vs Cranberry Sauce: Our woolly agony aunt goes toe to toe with the Christmas turkey
Quick notice: Sadly we won't be able to make The Bothered Owl Christmas Yarn Party. Boo. It's still happening though. Go!
For more information on each venue click on 'More info' to go to our Venues page
It's less than a week till the Stitch London Christmas Shindig on 8 December.
Here at The Fleece Station we're being overrun with donations from some generous crafty folks. Wanna see what you can win?
Stitch London Really Rather Marvellous Raffle Prizes
How much are tickets? Tickets will be £1 each and all money raised from the Really Rather Marvellous Raffle will go to The Serendip Children's Home in Sri Lanka. Cool, eh?
Exclusive Stitch London offer: Knitshop are offering a 15% Christmas discount to all Stitch Londoners (offer ends 28.2.2011)
Can't make the party? If you miss it we'll have Stitching Secret Santa: The Return on Wednesday 15 December. We promise to make it Christmassy too.
Want to donate something? Email info@stitchLDN.com
Knitting and cats have a love/hate relationship. Cats stalk yarn ends, sleep in your stash and feel the need to chew through your yarn while you're knitting because it tastes a little like sheep.
On the other hand they're often content to purr it up quietly while you purl, and both of you appreciate a good ball of yarn (even if one of you is likely to want to chase it about the floor like it's alive).
So for Christmas we're proud to offer you some of the nicest cats in the world of kids' books from the talented writer/illustrator/crafter Viviane Schwarz.
There Are No Cats in This Book is Viviane's latest cat-filled picture book from Walker Books. It follows hot on the paws of There Are Cats in This Book (so good it was nominated for the Kate Greenaway Prize), and tells the tale of three fine felines and their adventures across the pages. Moonpie, André and Tiny love wool almost as much as you. They also love cardboard boxes, pillow fights and making new friends furry or otherwise.
Both books feature a little bit of knitting and we thought they'd be perfect for you to encourage any sticky-fingered urchins you meet this Christmas to settle down with some kooky cats and leave you to your knitting.
The book-loving folks at Walker Books have offered us five sets of There Are Cats in This Book and There Are No Cats in This Book to give away to you, you lucky cat lovers.
All you need to do to give yourself a chance to win is answer this Christmas-themed stitching question:
The stitch pattern of knit one row, purl one row is known by which name?
a. Stinking stitch
b. So-easy-I-can-watch-a-subtitled-film-while-I-knit stitch
c. Stocking stitch
Drop us an email at winstuff@stitchLDN.com with:
The deadline for the competition is Friday 10 December at 8pm.
Please note: Offering to dress your cat up like a person and attempt to get it on the Royal Wedding guest list by calling it an 'aristocat' may amuse us but it won't help you win. Just answer the question (correctly) and cross your fingers. Good luck!
Competition rules: 1. One entry per person. 2. Competition ends 10 December 2010 at 8pm. 3. No cash alternatives. 4. Winners will be drawn from all correct answers, and notified via email. 5. If winners don’t reply within two weeks of being notified then new winners will be chosen. 6. Prizes will be posted to the winners by publishers.
Now you've met the cats we're sure you'll want to invite them into your home. Lucky for you there are more than enough cats to go round as you can knit your own.
Find the free There Are Cats in This Book knitting pattern here.
Not into cats? There's a sock monkey tutorial on Viviane's blog too. Go bananas.
Over at Crafty Crafty there's a fair bit of free stitching going on. They've promised to track down a new free knitting pattern every week day till the santa arrives.
So far, they kicked things off in scarf style with Knitterbird's Murielle Scarf and we've seen a baby turned into a Christmas tree through the magic of hat knitting.
There's also plenty of other stitching going on so crochet and sewing types don't feel left out.
I have long been an admirer or your pristine pink fibres and I’d like to know the secret to your good looks.
Each Christmas I knit charming gifts for my family, but every year without fail there are scarves being dragged through the turkey, jumpers spattered with gravy and berets bestowed with brandy butter before the Queens’ Speech has begun. Let’s not mention what happened to great-aunt Lillian’s wrist-warmers last year, suffice to say there was an incident involving a flaming pudding and the Fire Brigade were not amused to have their lunch so rudely interrupted.
How can I fix these ruined knits? I’m at my wit’s end.
Drunken Christmas Gerty image by Clare Tovey
Well I’m flattered that you ask, my dear, but no amount of Woolite or Soak can give a girl the
natural lustre that comes from lovingly twined acrylic that has been burnished by the years.
My initial response would be that your family don’t appreciate your lovingly crafted knits, so don’t
waste your time – get them vouchers, or better yet gift cards which are less flammable and wipe-
But you clearly love your family, even though they are crazy – so why not knit them something out of
plarn (easily cleaned), cotton (easily washed), or fun-fur (which won’t upset you if it does catch fire)?
And I would suggest you knit aprons or collars for your family, as they sound like a mucky bunch with
the table manners of animals.
Save your good yarn as you would your Battenburg or Hendrick’s: to
share with the friends who truly appreciate it.
Or you could liquidise the Christmas dinner and serve it in spill-proof cups. That way none of your
knits will be ruined with fat-stains or set on fire, and you can slip an extra-large gin into your dinner
with no one noticing.
Go on, treat yourself – it’s nearly Christmas!
Yours in a gin-soaked haze
If you're missing the stitching you can catch up with fellow Stitch Londoners worldwide on our message board, and stalk us through the snow on and .
May your snowballs fly true, Stitch Londoners.
Stitch London x
JOIN US ON RAVELRY
Edited and sewn together with words by Deadly Knitshade
with help from Gertrude Woolsworthy, Gerty's Anger Management Coach London Bus Knitter, proofreading queen Clearstar, cat banner creating Viviane Schwarz and Gerty artiste Clare Tovey.
Stitch London promise not to share your email address with anyone, not even if they ask us nicely and offer us sweet, sweet cake or cashmere. Stitch London is run by one frazzled founder and a host of volunteers so please be patient if we make mistakes.