The Woolarium Blog


I hope you all had a great Christmas and New Year, refreshed and ready to get those creative juices going.

I am really looking forward to sharing and creating with you in the coming year with lots of things planned to inspire you.


So to start the ball rolling here are some classes are planned for this year...

Learn to Knit - Learn to Crochet - Helpful Hints and Techniques - Putting it all together - Fair Isle - Socks - Lace - Granny Squares… to name just a few.

Also there will Private Classes available and regular Clinics to troubleshoot all of your individual problems.

A full calendar will be up on the website soon but to get the needles clicking here are three classes scheduled for Jan and February.

Learn to Knit.    

This will be ideal for the beginner or for someone looking for a refresher.

There will be 3 x 2hr sessions, you can choose how many you wish to attend, but you must book in advance.     

$30 per 2hr session          

Tuesday 5.30pm - 7.30pm Jan 21st, 28th and Feb 4th
Saturday 2pm - 4pm Feb 1st, 8th and 15th
You will:
  • Learn how to cast on, knit stitch, purl stitch and cast off.
  • Learn how to choose yarn and needles 
  • Understand importance of tension.
  • Plan your next project

Tips and Techniques

Now that you know the basics of knitting lets add some skills to help you work on your project.

There will be 3 x 2hr sessions, you can choose how many you wish to attend, but you must book in advance.

$30 per 2hr session

Tuesday 5.30pm - 7.30pm Jan 21st, 28th and Feb 4th
Saturday 2pm - 4pm Feb 1st, 8th and 15th.

You will:

  • Learn how to increase and decrease stitches
  • Understand common abbreviations
  • Learn how to read patterns and charts
  • Learn how to start a new ball of yarn
  • Learn some common stitches - rib, moss and cable

Lace Knitting

This is a specialised class for those who are already comfortable with the basic knitting techniques and terminology. 

You will learn the basics of lace knitting and knit a beautiful scarf.

There will be 3 x 2hrs sessions, please book in advance.

$30 per 2hr session

Saturday 2pm - 4pm  Feb 15th, 22nd and 1st Mar

You will:

  • Learn provisional cast on
  • Directional decreases
  • Yarn overs
  • Reading lace chart
  • Knitting on a border

At the end of this class you will be able to select a lace pattern and appropriate yarn, knit a basic lace shawl or scarf and block your creation.

How to Book

Once you have chosen your class please contact us. We can then take your booking and send out information on the class.


Other Classes Starting Soon

Learn To Crochet - I am hoping to get the schedule for this class finalised very soon! So please stay tuned and thanks for your patience, I know a lot of people are waiting for this class to start.

Fair Isle - this will be a specialised class and cover the basics of fair isle with a project to complete.

In-Store Clinics - This will be perfect for when you are in the middle of your project and you come across something that you are not familiar with, a stitch or technique or a term in the pattern, you can come down to the store and get advice to solve your problem. These will run on Saturdays for a couple of hours. I will let you know when they will start

Private Classes - One on one class, focusing on what you want to learn. $30 per hour. 

Looking Ahead...

Its time to turn time my attention to new colours and yarns for next season. Here are a few highlights 



...have introduced a few new yarns for the northern hemisphere winter. The one that grabbed my attention is

Angora Haze

Super soft to touch and beautiful in the knitted garment, made with angora, wool and polymide for strength. 14 fabulous colours -137 metres -  28sts x 36 rows to 10cms - 3.25mm needles

Angora Haze yarn and Angora Haze Collection will be arriving in store before Christmas!  


Rowan Knitting and Crochet Magazine 54.

Also arriving before Christmas is Rowan Knitting and Crochet Magazine 54! offering 35 designs for men and women in both crochet and knitting


Rowan Tweed DK

Has just arrived in store!

This 100% wool 8 ply tweed is part of the Rowan Tweed Family.  Rowan Tweed is beautifully soft traditionally spun tweed yarn. 118 metres -  21sts x 30 rows to 10cms - 4mm needles.

We now have the full colour range in stock, 20 colours in total,  including 4 new brilliant colours - Tissington #600, Monsal Dale #598, Beresford # 601 and Dove Dale # 599




 New Shibui yarns Arriving Soon

Shibui Yarns are causing a bit of excitement and proving to be very popular. Already I am seeing some beautiful projects. I made this sample using Shibui Linen. I was keen to try this yarn. It proved to be a real pleasure to knit with and produced such a great result.

The pattern is Shibui Mix No 15, it uses 4 skeins and there are 18 colours to choose from.


I will be extending the Shibui range to include Shibui Merino Alpaca 50% baby alpaca and 50% merino wool 10ply and Shibui Staccato 70% super wash merino and 30% silk 4ply.




Blue Sky Alpacas and Spud and Chloe

Its official Blue Sky Alpacas and Spud and Chloe yarns and patterns are on the way.


Sit and Knit 

Sit and Knit is on every Sunday afternoon 2pm - 4pm, It is good fun and knitters and crocheters of all levels come along.

Just bring your project, chat, knit, crochet, share ideas, learn a few tips,


What you are knitting

I love to see what's on your needles and the patterns you are using.



Shredded Scarf pattern by Linda Permann              Whit's Knits Little Baby Sweater 

from Inside Crochet Issue 13                                   Free pattern on Purl Bee

Pictured in Millamia Extra Soft Merino                      Suggested yarns Rowan Wool Cotton 4ply or Sienna 4ply

Thanks Laura                                                           Thanks Margaret


Other projects on the Needles

Textured Shawl Recipe, worked in 8ply                           Textured Shawl Recipe

Pomme de Pin Cardigan worked in 5 ply                         Pomme de Pin

Treyi Vest worked in Jo Sharp Mulberry Silk Georgette   Treyi Vest



What's on My Needles


I am well on my way with my Christmas list ............

The String Bag is finished. I found the Rowan Creative Linen just brilliant for this project. 



I decided on the Candy Cane Christmas Stocking from Millamia and its knitting up a treat












Settling in to a Rhythm

Life at the Woolarium is starting to settle into a rhythm. All of the initial large yarn orders have arrived and are on the shelves. The last to arrive were Shibui and Jo Sharp. I was attracted to Shibui yarns because of their colours, varieties of yarn and their designs.  The designs are clever but simple and very stylish. The patterns are beautifully presented with good clear diagrams and descriptions. I had some fun this week working out colour and yarn combinations for one of Shibui's more popular designs -Trapezoid. This pattern calls for Shibui sock yarn which I have in store and the Shibui 10ply which hasn't arrived yet.  Rowan Kid Classic, Rowan Pure Wool Aran, and Jo Sharp Silk Road Aran Tweed were all candidates. So now all that's left is to choose the colour.


As part of the ebb and flow of a yarn store is the ordering and reordering. This week I reordered some more buttons. Some of you will have seen the fabulous hand made buttons from Incomparable Buttons that we sell. Each button has been hand painted and is unique. The main aim of Incomparable Buttons is to provide employment for women in South Africa. They have a very special team of women that between them speak 9 different languages and are often the sole provider for their large families. I think the back story to these buttons makes them even more wonderful. I hope the order arrives soon.



Lastly I wanted to mention the web site. I owe a huge thank you to Dave and Blythe for all their assistance and guidance in getting me this far. Their attention to detail and artistic design sense is very much appreciated. I think it looks fabulous. Unfortunately we are still having some problems with the photos. Apparently there is a glitch with the software and the photos are not attaching to their description. So if you select a vibrant Red and you see a pale yellow or you see no photo at all, I'm sorry. It will be fixed as soon as possible. The rest of the site is working fine. 

The shop is open and the Online Store is up and running

So much has happened over the last couple of weeks. It has been just so wonderful finally getting the shop open and now the website/online store up and running.


I've had nothing but encouraging comments and lots of good wishes. Thank you all so much. I am very excited to be in Northcote selling beautiful yarns to my fellow knitters.

If you haven't already been down and added to 'Endless Knitting' currently displayed in the front window, please come down and be part of it. This piece has been going for a decade and is 11or 12 metres long so far...........



The Yarns

So this week has been spent establishing relationships with the yarn distributors.

Debbie Bliss, Ella Rae, Noro, Zara, Sublime and Millamia are just are few of the brands I will be stocking.

Also I will be definitely be stocking Rowan, however it looks like I won’t have any stock until a few weeks after we open.

It was great to talk with Millamia. They have the most beautiful 5ply 100% merino yarn. This yarn is such a delight to knit with, great stitch definition, lovely and soft and always produces a brilliant garment. Their designs for both children and adults are very modern and make bold use of colour, such fun to knit.