October: Ruschia knitalong

Welcome, welcome! Another month is on us, and October is all about short-row shaping. We are working on Woolly Wormhead's brilliantly cosy Ruschia Hat, which uses a provisional cast on (the crochet method that we met in August on the Little Tern blanket) and garter stitch grafting (which we mastered last month!), as well as introducing us to either German Short Rows or the wrap and turn method.

Image © Jesse Wild

Image © Jesse Wild

There is a video tutorial to accompany this month's pattern over on Mason-Dixon Knitting, and it will walk you through both German and wrap and turn short rows, and how to work them in garter stitch (spoiler alert - they are both very straightforward!).

Ruschia is a genus of succulents with leaves that are shaped a little like the slipped stitch pattern against the garter stitch body of this great hat. Woolly is a great succulent grower in her tyre garden, so the name seemed perfect! You can see lots of great photos of Woolly's amazing garden over on instagram with the hashtag #tyregardenofmutonia.

I knitted my Ruschia in the Slate colourway of Fyberspates Scrumptious Aran, and used the wrap and turn method for my short rows.

I knitted my Ruschia in the Slate colourway of Fyberspates Scrumptious Aran, and used the wrap and turn method for my short rows.

I knitted a Ruschia hat earlier in the year in order to use it in the video tutorial, so I'm planning to make another Woolly Wormhead hat (or possibly even two!): Parallelo is a single pattern using very similar techniques to Ruschia, with the addition of some intarsia (go me!), and as an added bonus it uses DK yarn, and I happen to have some lovely Fyberspates Vivacious DK hanging around after my Little Tern Blanket. Any of the patterns in Woolly's Elemental collection would also be great, and if you have a stash of 4ply hanging around (who doesn't?!) then the Circled collection also includes some gorgeous designs using the same techniques.

First prize in the knitalong this month is a stack of goodies! Mary Kilvert badges and sheep notebook, along with a Tilly Flop Warning sticker, as well as a much sought-after Edinburgh Yarn Festival embroiderable tote bag, kindly donated by Jo and Mica of EYF.

First prize in the knitalong this month is a stack of goodies! Mary Kilvert badges and sheep notebook, along with a Tilly Flop Warning sticker, as well as a much sought-after Edinburgh Yarn Festival embroiderable tote bag, kindly donated by Jo and Mica of EYF.

As usual there is a knitalong over in our group on Ravelry. There's always lots of chatter, but it's a really friendly and supportive group. You don't need to keep up with all the posts! You can pop in and look at the photos alone by clicking this link: Photos for October KAL and just dip in and out, and post as you fancy. If you have any queries at all about the pattern, then the knitalong thread is the best place to ask. There are knitters all over the world active in the threads, so it's almost always the quickest way to get help. No question is too simple, and if you're wondering, then the chances are that someone else is too, so posting to the group helps everyone. :)

I'm really excited to see what you all come up with this month. There are already 22 projects for Ruschia over on Ravelry! Who knows how many there will be by the end of the month?

It's feeling very autumnal here, so hats at the ready! Image © Jesse Wild.

It's feeling very autumnal here, so hats at the ready! Image © Jesse Wild.

If you fancy whipping up a Ruschia hat this month (and it's a great gift knit!), then we've got some skeins of Fyberspates Scrumptious Aran in the online shop. It's a beautiful blend of silk and merino, plied to give a bouncy yarn with fantastic stitch definition. We have three colourways available (purple, teal green and slate), and at £14.00 per skein it's an affordable luxury.