I wasn't meaning to blog today but two major things happened.  So... let's get the priorities right here. Firstly we have a new grandbaby, and I've been itching to tell you all about him, but wanted to wait until I had photos. Well today they arrived, so I'm over the moon to be able to introduce you to Louis, born at home in Sheffield on the 7th August, weighing in at 8lb 2oz.  His parents haven't decided definitely on a name yet and are waiting to see what suits as his personality develops, but meanwhile it's Louis.  Tristan and Jane have got another month before they have to register him so it'll be interesting to see whether or not he grows into his name. 

We met him for the first time last Sunday and he's a lovely boy, allbeit exhausting for his mum, as he seems to have a particularly voracious appetite. But when he's not enjoying his food, he's snoozing happily in his moses basket, sometimes watched by Lyra, his bemused little sister.  I really love the first couple of months when babies are at that dreamy stage. After three sons, then three grand-daughters, feels good to have a little boy in the family again. Maybe he's started a new run of boys?

The second thing I wanted to share is my contribution to Vogue Knitting's 30th anniversary Fall issue.  I was thrilled when asked to design a sweater for their Ode to the Aran story.
Some of you may remember back in April I posted a photo of a box of gorgeous Classic Elite yarn that had just arrived, with me saying I couldn't disclose what it was for, but it was an important project?  
Well now I can show you the aran peplum jacket I was about to start work on. The yarn is a merino/silk mix to die for, soooooo soft and luxurious.  
Photo © Rose Callahan
It uses 11(12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 18) balls of Classic Elite Magnolia in their spring Green #5481 and comes in six sizes, photographed in the second size, a 34in bust. Although it doesn't get a name in the magazine, I call it Inisheer after the smallest Aran Isle, where we'll be taking our guests next month to do a workshop on our knitters' tour.
Photos © Rose Callahan
Every designer was asked to say a few words about their project, but as we were restricted to a certain number of words I was trying to be concise and said:
Form follows function, and for me cables provide both. The aran stitch patterns are inspired by the rich and diverse range of plants supported by the limestone pavements of Inisheer, the most easterly Aran island.
However, I also might have added had there been space:
The temperate climate supports a rich and diverse range of plants, similar to those found on the mainland in the Burren. The cracks and crevices of its fabulous limestone pavements are covered in arctic, alpine and Mediterranean plants such as gentians, avens and orchids for much of the year, encouraging a variety of butterflies, moths and other insects. The peplums on this jacket remind me of the beautiful butterfliy wings, the little lace pattern is reminiscent of an orchid  bloom and the irregular cables bring to mind the gnarled old trees buffeted by the wind on the island.

So... cause for much celebration and rejoicing right now, we're also off to a family Golden Wedding tomorrow - everything seems to be happening at once.


  1. Congratualations on your adorable Little G.Son.
    And, the Vogue Knitting sweater design that you submitted has got to be *the loveliest* I've seen of it's kind ! I think I shall have to run off to the nearest magazine stand, and then next peruse the color options .

  2. What a beautiful little boy! And congratulations with the gorgeous jacket too! Hilde

  3. I love the smell of new babies. I had my last 2 at home, and that is a very special experience. What an incredible sweater! Beautiful work.

  4. Congratulations are in order, indeed!!!! gorgeous additions to the human and pattern families :) :)

  5. Both the baby and the sweater are gorgeous. Congratulations!

  6. Many Congratulations, to Tristan and Jane too! Louis is really beautiful. I was wondering if he had arrived yet! The jacket is fabulous, the way the fullness of the peplum hangs is just lovely Jean.


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