Upcycled Mittens

Katie Holloway

Katie Holloway

29 October 2013

I love knitting. You've probably gathered that, from my previous blog posts and... well, from my job! But sometimes, just sometimes the pace of knitting frustrates me. As the air has become chillier I've been thinking how much I want some snuggly mittens. I know they won't be difficult to knit, I know I've got suitable yarn in my stash, and I know that I could create some beautiful ones. But I have several other projects on my needles that really definitely do need finishing first. And yet I can't bring myself to buy some when I could easily knit some... so of course the weeks go by and I still have cold hands. That is... until this weekend!

I saw an image somewhere of someone who had created mittens by upcycling an old jumper. So I decided to give it a go! And I thought I'd take some snaps along the way to show you how to do it so that you, too, can have toasty hands in no time at all!

Step 1

Take an old knitted jumper (I used 100% wool Aran one that sadly had a stain). Cut off both sleeves above the elbow and turn inside out.

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Step 2

Place your hand on the sleeve exactly where you want it, making sure to make good use of the cuffs, and mark with pins the outline to sew along. Place the pins about 1cm away from your hand the whole way round.

Step 2 (6)

Step 3

Set up your sewing machine and select a short stitch length. I used one number up from the shortest. The tension will need to be as high as it goes. Don't use a new needle as it will blunt it so that it's no good for further projects. Sew round the path marked by pins. This can be a little tricky if you're using a chunky knit. Just press the sleeve down and help to guide it through. Give your machine a good brush out afterwards as there will be lots of fluff floating around!

Step 3 (5)

Step 4

Trim the sleeve close to the stitches, being careful not to cut through the machined stitches. You may find it helpful to use a stitch unpicker to cut the knitted stitches close to the thumb gusset.

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Step 5

It should look something like this once it's trimmed. Then turn it the right way out.

Step 5 (7)

And here's the finished result!

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Behind the scenes of our January shoot

Katy Evans

Katy Evans

28 October 2013


Beat the winter blues!

That's the theme of our January issue. Instead of muted pastels to ease you into the post-party season new year, we've gone for fun brights. The middle of winter is when chunky knitwear comes into its own and we're celebraing it with eye-popping bursts of colour and interesting textures.

This gorgeous over sized slouchy jumper has an elegant and on-trend dip hem and is in a seriously snuggly angora mix yarn.


This jumper is the one.


Eye-popping, head-turning, oh yes. 


This is the kind of jumper you live in all winter. At least we plan to!


Mix and match cute accessories jazz up any outfit. A pom pom hat is the hat to be seen in this winter. 


Plus for entertainment, gorgeous model Ianthe briefly starred in Made in Chelsea so we gots lots of on-set gossip about how 'structured' the reality show really is!

So there you have it, no winter blues here.. Ok maybe some blues... some pink... a splash of green, ochre... you get the picture!


Sneak peek at our November issue!

Katy Evans

Katy Evans

22 October 2013


Today is the perfect day for our November issue to go on sale. It is is crisp, clear and sunny. Definitely cold, definitely autumnal, but you want to be outside to enjoy it. Our November knits are inspired by a 'city chic' theme. A weekend break away maybe, or you just want to look glam as you're out and about in town (dare we say, starting to shop for a certain upcoming festive event...?)

Autumn dressing is about layering, so you are aways prepared for a bitterly breezy or surprisingly sunny day. 

Sian Brown's Cape is not only super stylish but has large armholes for wearing chunky jumpers underneath if needs be!

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The Colour pop blazer has on-trend flashes of colour but is still chic for a working day.

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Scarves, wraps, shawls, these are all-important accessories for autumn dressing! Kaffe Fassett's incredible Kilim wrap will keep all eyes on you!

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This Chunky cable jacket adds an extra layer of warmth, it would be a shame to cover it up under anything else!  

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We just LOVE this Poncho by Sarah Hazell, and will be living in this until spring. 

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How cute are these matching hat and scarf? Great autumn colours too. 

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If you are on a weekend break you'll need a bag big enough to fit everything you need, there is no reason not to have a really cool looking one too.  

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And, of course, our stunning cover, the Textured swing top by Fiona Morris. This ticks both boxes for snuggly warmth and head turningly gorgeous. 

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Also, don't miss in this issue:

  • 20 knits for City Chic - women's, men's, children's, babies, home and accessories
  • EXCLUSIVE patterns - Lace raglan top, Shawl collar wrap, Textured swing top, Colour Pop blazer, Basket st top, Cable jacket, Fairisle cape, City chic poncho, Cable tote bag, Hat and scarf
  • Cute knits for kids - Bell rib sweater, Patchwork poncho, Souffle, Cuddle cocoon, Humpty Dumpty
  • One to watch – Knit jewellery designer Amy Lawrence
  • FEATURE - A woolly business
  • Spotlight on - Faux fur
  • TECHNIQUES - Decreasing in lace, alternative elbow pads

And, of course, all the usual news, reviews, competitions, products and events you expect from your favourite Knitting magazine.



Knitting & Stitching Show 2013 – in pictures!

Katy Evans

Katy Evans

14 October 2013


So here it is, our time at the Knitting and Stitching Show 2013 in pics!

Arriving at the show we were greeted by the 'Cab Cosy' knitted by The Materialistics for an upcoming book launch. I love the poor cat on the grill!


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The Knitted Textile Awards this year were great. We had a really hard time judging them but with lots of guest judging and expert opinions from Professor Sandy Black (did you see her on the BBC's Fabric of Britain: Knitting's Golden Age?), Debbie Bliss, the UKHKA et al. we got there in the end and the winners will be announced soon.

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There was quite a lot of schmoozing, and even celeb spotting going on!

Clockwise from the top: Editor Emma catching up with Debbie Bliss, who is always good for a laugh; Me, getting some excellent gossip from designer Sarah Hatton on the Rowan stand. Nope, I'm not sharing; Catching up with Belinda of Ruth and Belinda, who leapt up to have her photo taken despite her broken foot; Stuart, a previous contestant from the Great British Sewing Bee, who had his own pre-signed headshots. Yup.

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Oh yeah, and here's me and Emma just hanging out with Patrick Grant and May Martin from the Great British Sewing Bee. You know, as you do. And yes, he's that handsome in real life.


We had a pretty good time. Did you go? What did you get up to? Let us know!


My first baby booties!

Katy Evans

Katy Evans

9 October 2013


There's nothing quite like one of your best friends having their first baby to bring out the 'what can I knit?' in someone. And this is exactly what happened to me. 

I am not an amazingly proficient knitter but I thought, even I can knit a baby bootie (not that I have ever done it before). I manged to find a very easy 2 straight needle pattern with a seam and, in front of an episode of Downton on a sunday evening, set to it.


I was quite amazed to discover by the end of the episode I had this!


It might just be the most perfect thing I have ever knitted and I am ridiculously proud. Knowing how touched my friend will be that I have taken the time to make something for her baby boy makes it even more special. I just wanted to share it with you lot, because if anyone will appreciate achieving something you've never tried before and knowing the pleasure it will give someone else, it's fellow knitters!


Sneak peek behind the scenes of our Dec shoot

Katy Evans

Katy Evans

8 October 2013




It is indeed beginning to look a lot like Christmas... There was a tree! Mistletoe! Christmas lights! Now I'm ready for a nice mug of mulled wine. Too early? No such thing (the mulled wine that is).

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Our December issue was shot in the most amazing house in the wilds of Kent. Seriously, it was like Downton crossed with Austen! Check out that library balcony!


Perfect for our gorgeous knits!

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We have our first exclusive design by Norwegian designer Eline Oftedal in this issue too, very exciting!


The knits are a lovely collection of glamorous...


... and seriously snuggly.

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Model Jess looked like she was getting into the whole spirit of things too! A gift? For moi?


So there you have it, Christmas in October. Not too shabby, eh? Sorry folks, you'll have to wait until 21 November to get it!