Emotive Yarns' Knitting Blog

ACS on Landline and new yarns in store!

This spring we’ve launched 2 yummy new yarns online that you’ve all been demanding – Chenille and 8 Ply Acrylic! They come in delightful gelati colours and bright prints for kids, perfect for some relaxed summer crafting.

In other news, our parent company Australian Country Spinners were featured in a storey on ABC’s Landline this Sunday. It highlighted the manufacturing that still takes place in country Victoria and also features our truly breaking a world record for the World’s Longest Pom Pom Garland!
See it all on ABC’s iView here.


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World’s Longest Pom Pom Garland!

Our mates at Australian Country Spinners (producers of Patons and Cleckheaton yarns) celebrated their 90th birthday this year, and made this gorgeous video to showcase the party.

They succeeded in making the world’s longest pom pom garland – 6,799 pom poms strung together! An official from Guinness World Records was there to award them the new record.

Check it all out below.

90th Birthday

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Guinness World Record – Longest Pom Pom Garland!

Hi guys,

Our friends at Australian Country Spinners are celebrating their 90th birthday at the mill, originally known as Wangaratta Woollen Mills, at the end of the month.
To take their party to the next level, they’re going for a Guinness World Record for the longest pom pom garland!
They’re going for 90m long, and need more than 4,000 pom poms. The staff are going at it like crazy, but they need help to make the numbers.

Want to get involved? ACS are accepting pom poms of any fibre, size and colour. Make pom poms and send them in to go in the draw to win lovely yarn pack prizes.

Send your pom poms to:
Pom Pom Garland World Record
PO Box 7276
Melbourne VIC 3004

Get them in the post by 25th August so they can string them on to the garland and go for the record!

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Penguin Jumpers

I took myself to Phillip Island for a weekend recently with the Bloke, and took peoples’ recommendations to visit the Little Penguin sanctuary and watch the Penguin Parade. Too cute.

Every night after sunset, the penguins swim into the beach after a big day out swimming for fish, and wait until there are a group of them before quickly waddling up to land and back to their burrow for the night.

The visitor’s centre at the site on Phillip Island is huge and full of info and fun facts about the penguins. I came across some soft toy penguins in knitted jumpers followed by a story about knitting for the penguins.

In the event of an oil spill, penguins can get oil on their feathers. If they preen themselves they can ingest the toxic oil, and it can split their feathers, causing water to get into their skin and make them cold and unwell.
So a team of volunteer knitters have been knitting little penguin jumpers; the penguins wear them during recovery after an oil spill, stopping them from ingesting the oil and keeping them warm. And it works a treat!

Read more about the program and get the knitting pattern here!

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Winter Solstice

Baby, it’s cold outside!

Today in Melbourne we celebrate the winter solstice, and what a beautifully chilly week it’s been to ring in the shortest day of the year.

You’ll be so proud – I finished my first pair of proper socks this week! Photo is coming. What to make now?!

If you’ve been crossing town lately, you may have seen the kilometers of blanketed trees in Royal Parade.
A team of crafters spent loads of woman-hours crocheting granny square cosies for the trees that adorn the main street of Melbourne, and set it up a few weeks ago.


Check out this video at The Age about their process http://media.theage.com.au/national/selections/yarn-bombers-target-melbourne-street-4472455.html

And there’s a bunch of cute photos here! http://www.abc.net.au/news/2013-06-14/yarn-bombing-gallery/4751856

Have a magical solstice day and fabulous crafty weekend in! x

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Working out Ply

I get loads of emails asking about the ply of our yarns. We don’t publish the ply of any of our yarns, because most of them are fancy yarns – they aren’t made using the traditional method of PLYING the yarn together in twists.

By twisting and plying, a fibre can then be turned into a continuous yarn.

So, to answer everyone’s questions, I have a handy little method that can give you the relative ply of a yarn by looking at it’s needle size, and sometimes tension too.

Here’s our chart of what ply a yarn is:

8 ply – 4mm or 4.5mm needles – 21st x 29 rows

10 ply – 5mm or 5.5mm needles – 17st x 24 rows

12 ply – 6.5mm needles – 13st x 18 rows

It’s best to look at what needle size is required for a yarn and find patterns that use this size needle, that way your knitting will look right and fit properly.

Happy knitting!


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Knitting with Henty/Strelley Yarn

I’ve had a flood of people asking how on earth to knit with this yarn, so I’ve thrown together a quick tutorial for you that hopefully helps make a bit more sense of it!

It’s very similar to knitting with our mesh yarns – see this old blog tute for an understanding.

This yarn has a band of eyelets and fringy boucle hanging off it.
This diagram on the pattern represents the eyelets and the fringe.

When you knit into the eyelets, the eyelets BECOME your stitches. You just knit garter stitch and the fringe hangs down off the knitting, creating a boa effect.

Once you get the knack you’ll wonder how you ever didn’t get it.

Casting On:

Weave your needle through the eyelets like so.



Place right hand needle into first stitch on left needle, as you usually knit.
In your right hand, stretch out the yarn to find the next eyelet hole.
Put your right needle through the eyelet, and pull through your left needle stitch.
Notice how the eyelet has become the new stitch.
Continue this way along the row.

You have just successfully knitted with this yarn.

Continue this way to create a scarf, or use this technique with one of our patterns.

Cast off using the eyelets as your stitches, in the same way you normally cast off.

Hope this helps you! X

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Beanie Town

We’ve gone a bit silly for beanies at Emotive HQ. A hot item for the season, we’re seeing them on young things out and about. But they’re a classic shape, a cosy knitted creation that will never not be awesome to wear.
So we’ve dug up and published a bunch of our favourite beanie patterns for you to make and keep your noggin toasty this winter.

We’ve used Sidonia, our 8 Ply washable Aussie Wool for these patterns as it’s classic, simple, warm, fire retardant, hydrophilic… the list goes on. It’s Aussie Wool, you can machine wash it, there’s a bunch of delectable colours, and it’s amazing.

Hello Easy Beanie. A bit of mock rib, a bit of stocking stitch, some shaping for good measure and a pompom to top it off. Great for people who’ve just mastered knitting and want the next challenge up from Level Scarf.

The Stripy Garter Beanie is also a good one for newbies or hardcore knitters who just want something minimalist. You can make it with two-tone stripes, one block colour or go crazy with loads of different coloured stripes.

A nice one for the blokes, the Men’s Cabled Beanie is classic and elegant, and can really be worn by anyone. Adorn it with a pompom if that’s your thing, or keep it pared back and simple. Looks fabulous in colours like Inky Navy, Glass, Trinity Blue, Peach Glow or Cinnamon. Mmm mmmm.

And if you haven’t witnessed the glory that is my beanie effort yet, then here it is. I took the Easy Beanie and added some cute spots in different colours, to use up my stash (ppssh, ‘use up’, you and I both know it’s still huge).
I admit, the enormous pompom atop the beanie has come undone and I need to fix it. I was overambitious with its size.

Check out the Sidonia wool rainbow, grab yourself a few balls and a pattern and get knitting on your own beanie!
Emotive Knitter x

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Yarn Bombed Vespa

I spent a long weekend around Anzac day in my second favourite Australian city, sunny Perth.

I went to the beach and sipped coffee in Fremantle amongst other things, but I also happened upon some lovely yarny discoveries on my ventures.

We found this gorgeous pop-up shop in Northbridge, called Montage which had delightful locally hand made wares on offer. I saw some of Anna Hadwin’s awesome crocheted creations; she makes fabulous toys of all sorts. I am wearing some humours and pretty cat earrings from Eeva Margita.

The shop had recently run a yarn bombing challenge to cover a cute little Vespa scooter, which I took plenty of photos of. Pretty cute!

I also paid a visit to Yarns on Collie in Fremantle, a bustling traditional sort of yarn store featuring just about every yarn ever imaginable.


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Knitting and Stuff

It’s a sunny and fresh autumn morning in downtown Melbourne, a cardigan and big scarf kind of day.

Our Red Hot Deals online yarn sale is still on today, finishes tonight! We’ve taken 50% off Hot Deals yarns making them silly cheap. You and I both know your yarn stash needs topping up.  Check it out here.

In other news, on my Easter vacation to The Grampians in country Victoria, we stopped in for a visit at Blue Moon Alpacas. The Boyfriend was just as excited as I, because he loves the animals. We got to hang out with some and watch a man weaving on gorgeous big floor looms, as well as pat all their lovely alpaca products.
Alpacas are graded by their colour – they come in so many luscious natural shades, that by wearing them, you bypass the dyeing process cutting out use of chemicals, water and power, making alpaca a more eco-friendly fibre. Check them out here.

Yours truly just hanging out with some alpacas at Blue Moon.

So beanies are a popular item this season, and lo and behold, I’m knitting my own. We’re going to be popping some cute beanie patterns on Emotive Yarns soon, so you can make your own cable or stripey beanie! I’m using yarns from my stash, bits of 8ply wool and 10 ply acrylic from the Emotive vault, and decided to alter the pattern a little, adding cute spots and a pompom. You’ll see it when it’s finished.

However, as I knit on the train during my commutes to and from the city, I encountered the ghastly issue of tangling in my handbag.
You know what I did about it? I solved it.
Well sort of, I mean the yarn still tangles a little bit when doing intarsia but it’s SO much better than before!

Just grab a zip lock bag from the kitchen and cut some little holes in it. Shove your little wraps of fair isle yarn in the bag and poke the ends through. Seal the bag, start knitting, and say Ciao to your rampant handbag yarn tangles forever!

Have a craftastic weekend!


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