GUIDE TO THE GEN­TLE ART OF MAK­ING SCARVES

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Har­riot’s scarf

De­scrip­tion: The best thing is that it looks hand-made. The oh-so de­sir­able hand-dyed new wool varies in thick­ness from fluffy dread­lock to tight twisted string. It makes ran­dom fat­ter stitches that look like cool loops and hide my hic­cup­ping ten­sion. The scarf is 18cm wide (15 stitches, just be­cause that looked right) and 158cm long (enough for once round the neck with a Dr Who dan­gle), in a blur of

but­tery yel­lows and pinks. Three skeins of Co­linette Point 5 100 per cent wool (£6.10 each) Brit­tany 12mm birch knit­ting nee­dles (£6.10) Cro­chet hook (£1) To­tal cost: £25.40 I won’t have to pay for the tools again, of course. Time to make: 5hrs 45mins – spread over four evenings and Aneeta Pa­tel, pic­tured, holds reg­u­lar two-hour classes (£22, 07940 850458; www. knit­ting­sos.co.uk), and her book, Knitty Gritty (£14.99, A&C Black), is full of ab­so­lute begin­ner-proof in­struc­tions and pat­terns. Run by en­thu­si­asts, the UK Hand Knit­ting As­so­ci­a­tion (www. ukhand­knit­ting.com) is a mine of in­for­ma­tion on classes, knit­ting groups, shows and shops. A cou­ple of quirkier web­sites are also worth a visit: the Vic­to­ria & Al­bert Mu­seum’s (www.vam.ac.uk) – type “knit­ting” into the search box for his­tory, free pat­terns and blogs; to “whip your knit­ting into shape”, try www.domikni­trix.com. For a gos­sip and a knit try UK-wide Stitch n Bitch (www.stitchn­bitch.co.uk) about 14 day­time Bovril vis­its to the kitchen. With thick wool and nee­dles like tent pegs, the scarf grew grat­i­fy­ingly quickly – a real con­fi­dence booster.

Be­gin­ners’ knit­ting sur­vival guide

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