What is your favourite yarn? – Part 2

Posted by Amy | Posted in Yarn Reviews | Posted on 15-06-2015

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Last week I shared our Facebook followers yarn favourites – part 1. This week I am back with the round up for part 2. Four more yarn categories have been put up to the vote. Along with carefully counting numbers it has been interesting reading the comments people have left to support their choices. I have included some of this feedback below. To read more take a look on our Facebook page.


fashion yarns

The favourite is………A – King Cole Opium Palette

Janine says – ‘I’ve just finished a wrap for my holidays and it looks stunning even though it’s only garter stitch!’

Lyndsay – ‘I’ve just started my first King Cole Opium project and I’m loving it!’


chunky yarns

The favourite is……….B – Rico Creative Melange Glitz Chunky, closely followed by Sirdar Faroe Chunky.

Double Knitting

double knitting yarn

The favourite is……….Rowan Wool Cotton


cotton yarns

The favourite is………King Cole Cottonsoft Dk

Lyn says – ‘Washes and tumble dries beautifully. Lovely and soft.’

Helen says – ‘King Cole Cottonsoft  I too am part of the wonderful Knitted Knockers UK group that make 100% cotton prosthesis for women who have had mastectomies …king Cole Cotton soft is the softest and comes in the prettiest colours.’

Spring cleaning

Posted by Amy | Posted in Staff Projects | Posted on 27-05-2015

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Is it too late for spring cleaning? We are still in May, and spring hasn’t really been in the air, too many chilly days and rain to suggest summer is here. So, let’s decide there is still time. I am not talking about the dusting and cleaning type of ‘spring cleaning’ though. More like a spring clean of the old project bag. What WIP’s do you have unfinished that could do with being moved off the needles to make way for a pretty summer knit? Here at Black Sheep Wools we have decided to have a little spring clean of our project bags to see what lies beneath. I have collected photos of a selection of projects finished by staff so far. Up to now there only seems to be one project that was started many moons ago, mine.

Janet was super organised for her holiday, she soon had two crisp white cardigans knitted. Her knitting is incredibly neat and it only took her a week to make one cardigan! Janet opted for white Wendy Supreme Luxury Cotton Dk, following Sirdar pattern 7084. She was attracted to the diagonal, rib like, stitch detail on the side and back of the design. Not only does this detail look pretty it is also really flattering.

janet wendy supreme cotton dk

Take a look at the back panel detail too. Notice how the rib section extends from the waistband.

janet wensy supreme cotton dk cardigan

Janet’s second cardigan is a gorgeously soft cardigan knitted in Sirdar Raffaella Dk. The pattern is a Sirdar Soukie Dk pattern – 7090.

janet soukie dk cardigan knitted in Raffaella

Janet couldn’t resist adding a bit of sparkle with a scattering of beads delicately sewn along the cardigan edging. She has used Debbie Abrahams beads clear size 6.

janet sirdar raffaella dk

Emma has finished her knitted monkey from Cute Little Knits by Jem Weston, knitted in Rowan Felted Tweed. The fair isle scarf took nearly as long as the whole monkey body to make!

cute little knits monkey

I have eventually finished my crochet, chevron cushion in Rico Creative Cotton Aran. It has been one of those projects that I have picked up and done a couple of rows and then tucked away for months on end. I was so pleased to finally be crocheting it together!

crochet cushion in rico creative cotton aran

Yvonne’s grand-daughter loves to wear a hat to match every outfit. She recently got a new coat, so with this in mind Yvonne instantly got out her crochet hook. The hat below is crocheted in King Cole Smooth Multi Dk with the flowers made from yarn oddments.

King Cole smoothie multi dk hat

Her second hat is crocheted in a cotton yarn, which Yvonne then adorned with pretty flowers.

crochet hat

The final project to be finished off in the ‘spring clean’ is Lesley’s giant granny square blanket, crocheted in Stylecraft Special Dk. The blanket pattern can be downloaded for free from our website.

giant granny square blanket

What have you been crocheting?

Posted by Amy | Posted in Customer Projects | Posted on 12-05-2015

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Over the past few weeks I have collected photos of many different crochet projects from Black Sheep Wools customers. It is particularly exciting to see a project evolve from the initial yarn purchase. Have you crocheted anything you would like to share? Please send in photos through to amy@blacksheepwools.com.

To start off I have a couple of crocheted items from a customer called John. Whilst yarn shopping, he brought along his latest make for a photo – ‘Speedy the wonder turtle’.

crocheted turtle

John came back a couple of weeks later wearing his latest make, this time a fab jumper crocheted in James C Brett Chunky with Merino. The pattern is a free download from the Red Heart website.

Red Heart sweater in James C Brett Chunky with Merino

A lady called Alex was shopping with her baby son. He was all snug in his pram with a cosy blanket crocheted in a vibrant, rainbow shade of Stylecraft Merry Go Round Dk. I got chatting to Alex about the blanket and she said it took just 2 balls with a 4.5mm hook.

ripple blanket in stylecraft merry go round

Adding a decorative dging is a good idea on a ripple blanket to help neaten up the wavy ends.

ripple blanket in stylecraft merry go round

Jacky has been trying out King Cole Opium Palette crocheted. It is looking lovely so far. The texture of the yarn, along with the varying colour creates a really interesting combination. Jacky is going to make a triangular scarf, gradually increasing the stitches as she goes.

king cole opium palette crochet

A second project Jacky has just completed this week is a baby blanket in Stylecraft Malabar. The blanket is a free download on Ravelry called Rainbow Dash Baby Blanket by Beatrice Ryan Designs.

jacky's rainbow dash blanket

The colours look great worked together.

rainbow dash blanket in stylecraft malabar

Joan has nearly finished a waistcoat in Wendy Supreme Cotton Dk. The pattern for this summery design can be found in Sirdar book 458 – Cotton Crochet. It is hard to believe only 18 months ago Joan couldn’t crochet at all!

crochet wasitcoat 458

crochet waistcoat 458

This photo was one sent in by an online customer called Julie. A pretty lace detail top crocheted in DMC Natura cotton.

dmc natura cotton top

What have the office staff been making?

Posted by Amy | Posted in Staff Projects | Posted on 22-10-2013

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It is not just the Craft Barn staff who have been busy making lots recently, so have the office staff. The projects may not all be complete, but nevertheless, there are projects hopping on the needles left, right and centre at the moment.

Lets start off with the WIP’s (works in progress) Emma is getting along nicely with her festive knit. She is making a reindeer sweater for herself, and is hoping to be finished for Save the Children Christmas Jumper day on 13th December. The speed Emma is going I am sure it will be done in time. The pattern is from Wendy Festive Knits and the glittery red yarn is King Cole Glitz Dk.


Maria has started knitting a poncho in Wendy Celtic Chunky. The yarn feels lovely knitted and is going well on Maria’s Lantern Moon needles.


This is what the finished poncho will look like. Heather who also works in customer services has this on her needles too. Can’t wait to see it finished.


Sara has knitted a pretty scarf for her mum (Black Sheep Carol) in Debbie Bliss Luxury Silk Dk. The other day I managed to take a photo of Carol modelling the scarf. She had popped it on with her uniform, whilst she was in preparing for the show.


Lesley has knitted a Christmas gift in Sirdar Denim Ultra. The shawl is for her mum, but when Lesley was twirling around the shop in it, we all thought it suited her perfectly. It could be one of those gifts that never gets to its intended recipient. Has this ever happened to you? Happily knitting something, with the full intentions of giving it away and then just not being able to when you finish? I admit I have done this before (ooops!). Anyway…. although Lesley did enjoy modelling the shawl, she is definitely going to be wrapping it up as a gorgeous gift for her mum.


I have finished my cushion – wooohooo!! A little tweaking here and there due to changing the back to a flat circle, it is finished. I really enjoyed crocheting this and would love to do it again. Maybe next time in a brighter colour palette! The pattern is from Crochet Living by Debbie Bliss.


Stacey’s latest UFO’s…….

Posted by Amy | Posted in Staff Projects | Posted on 01-02-2013

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Stacey has finished yet another UFO. I would say Stacey has probably finished the most in our UFO (Unfinished object) month of January. I have finished a couple of things and added more things too. I don’t think that was really the idea but at least I have managed to get some of my projects completed.

Before christmas Stacey knitted a men’s tank top in Sirdar Click chunky as a gift. Since making this one (as it seems to be the case with many hand knitted garments) she has been asked by other male members of the family to knit one for them. This time she has used a different shade – green 177, a shade that is now only £1.59 a ball. The pattern for this is a Sirdar Click Chunky pattern 9193.

Click chunky tank top

Stacey’s second UFO is a crocheted hat – this time she has made an owl (Wendy 5708w), using purple shades of double knitting yarn.

Stacey owl hat

Stacey’s 1st UFO!

Posted by Amy | Posted in Staff Projects | Posted on 14-01-2013



Stacey has completed her first UFO. This time something crocheted to share!Stacey is a keen crocheter and very speedy too. Sometimes you can catch her doing a bit in between eating her lunch in the kitchen. I really don’t know how she does it! At Christmas time she was busy making headbands and wrist warmers for family and friends. She loves to fit in a bit of crafting whenever she can!

Here is her cute monkey hat in double knitting yarn. He is featured on pattern leaflet Wendy pattern 5708.

 Stacey said he was really easy to do. She tweaked his smile a little to give him a slightly wider grin. She is already half way through the owl and plans to do the frog and another monkey! The great thing is that the pattern comes in sizes for adults and children.

Cocoon Cardigan

Posted by Amy | Posted in Customer Projects | Posted on 28-11-2012



A Craft Barn customer called Cath came shopping at the Barn wearing her latest knit. A gorgeous cocoon cardigan (pattern 5676w) knitted in the super chunky Wendy Thor yarn. Since seeing the pattern for this cardigan when it first arrived in stock I have always quite fancied making it, it was one of those patterns that really catches your eye. I imagine it to be really cosy to snuggle in, most certainly appropriate for layering on these blustery days.

Cath said it was really quick to knit up and the garment is lovely and warm. An easy cardigan to wear because there are no buttons or zips so you can just throw it on with jeans or leggings. The shade used below is the same as the one on the pattern; a blend of icy, blue / grey tones aptly named ‘Polar‘. Cath was actually in the Craft Barn on the hunt for a different shade to knit another cardigan for her mum, she said that her daughters have also been asking to have one knitted too. A popular choice!


Yarn Review – Wendy Thor

Posted by Amy | Posted in Staff Projects, Yarn Reviews | Posted on 17-10-2012



Many of you have probably seen the Wendy Thor ‘knitting’ slide popping up on our new website. There are some gorgeous shades to choose from including Viking the shade shown in the photograph.  For those of you who haven’t spotted it here it is! Amazing colours and texture don’t you think?

This week Catherine (Craft Barn manager) has been knitting with the super chunky yarn. When she brought in her completed cowl I just had to share it with you. The perfect opportunity for a yarn review. Here is what she had to say…………..

‘A lovely, soft yarn to work with. I was spoilt for choice with the variety of shades. Autumnal oranges and browns through to icy Winter grey. Decisions, decisions in the end I chose ‘Aurora’ – shade 1985 as I like the hint of turquoise & pink coming through. The cowl pattern I have followed is actually on the ball band, the best thing of all you only need the 1 ball (£6.50)! I found the yarn really easy to knit and with chunky 15mm needles I soon had it knitted. In fact it only took one evening. Looking through the other patterns I think I might just be tempted to knit a cushion or pouffe cover in maybe one of the grey shades. One more thing – although there are buttons on the cowl you do not need to know how to do button holes due to the nature of the holey design.’

The cowl would make an ideal Christmas gift!