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The World of Illusion Knitting


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Want a workshop?  What can we do for you?



We offer a variety of workshops and more formal talks. We are designers and mathematicians and can provide workshops in either, or both, of these fields, at skill levels to suit your needs.

 

Due to time constrictions you are unlikely to complete a project in any of the craft-based workshops but will have enough information to finish on your own. You can email us if you get really stuck.

WORKSHOPS

SKILL LEVEL

Screen prints

From Square to Eternity

 

Our most popular workshop. The title says it all. Beginning with a simple square we will open your eyes to endless possibilities without ever having to make tension squares or do any complicated calculations.  

 

This is a combined workshop and illustrated talk. You knit and we talk, in a relaxed atmosphere. You do not need to be skilled at multi-tasking to keep up. You will leave with enough knowledge to design and make things you never previously dreamed of.  

 

Duration: The workshop lasts a minimum of 3 hours. To allow time to develop the ideas a little further we recommend 6 hours and we can also extend to two days if you wish.

 

Number of participants: We have done this with as many as 60 and as few as 6.  Around 20 is ideal.

 

Materials: 3 small balls of yarn and needles of your choice, squared paper, coloured pencils. (See note below).

Knitting skill requirements:

* Garter stitch

* Increase by knitting into front and back of a stitch  

* Decrease by knitting two together

* Pick up and knit stitches from a previously knitted shape

 

Mathematical requirements:

* Count to 30

Knitting skill requirements:

* None

 

Mathematical requirements:

* None

Crochet Spirals

 

We will make basic spirals in one and two colours and as many of the following as time allows:

 

* 3 colour circular spiral

* 4 colour circular spiral

* 6 colour circular spiral (As shown)

* Square spirals with 2 and 4 colours

* Hexagon spirals

* Circular spirals with coils of varying widths

 

See more spirals  

 

Duration: Minimum 2 hours, Maximum 6 hours

 

Number of participants: Around 20

 

Materials: Yarn of the same thickness in six colours and an appropriate hook

Crochet skill requirements:

* Chain

* Slip-stitch  

* Double crochet

* Half-treble

* Treble

(UK definitions)

 

Mathematical requirements:

* None

Crochet Möbius

 

Learn how to make a very simple Möbius scarf and, once you have mastered the basic method, we will move on to changing stitches, direction, colours, etc. to see the different effects that can be created.  

 

A Möbius headband or scarf is very quick and easy to make. When you go home you will be able to use what you have learned to make larger items such as scarves and wraps.

 

Q: How many stripes are there in the Möbius in the photo? (Ignore the white centre and edging)

A: 2

 

See more Möbius

 

Duration: Minimum 2 hours, Maximum 6 hours

 

Number of participants: Around 20

 

Materials: Three yarns of approximately DK thickness (Avoid textured yarns), crochet hook of a suitable size for your yarn, crochet hook several sizes larger than main hook.

Crochet skill requirements:

* Chain

* Slip-stitch

* Double crochet

* Half-treble

* Treble

(UK definitions)


Mathematical requirements:

* None

Get a Head: Get a Puppet

 

The heads we use for our puppets, dolls and toilet roll covers are all very similar. Learn how to make your own characters based on our ideas.  

 

Heads for puppets are slightly more technical as you need the space for your fingers. In this session you will make a puppet head and have time to start his costume which you can customise later.  

 

See more puppets   

 

Duration: Minimum 3 hours. (Longer if possible)

 

Number of participants: Around 30

 

Materials: 'Face-coloured' yarn and oddments of other colours for the hair and clothes. All yarns should be approximately DK thickness.

Knitting skill requirements:

* Knit and purl

* Increase by knitting into front and back of a stitch  

* Decrease by knitting two together

* Pick up and knit stitches from a previously knitted shape


Mathematical requirements:

* None

Shadow Knitting

 

Shadow Knitting is also known as Illusion Knitting.

 

We begin with the basic techniques used in Shadow Knitting and will lead you on to create your own spectacular designs,

 

See some of ours here

 

Duration: Minimum 3 hours. (Longer if possible)

 

Number of participants: Around 30

 

Materials: Yarn of approximately DK thickness in two contrasting colours.

Knitting skill requirements:

* Cast on

* Knit

* Purl

 

Mathematical requirements:

* None

Octohats

 

One simple method allows you to make an infinite variety of hats using as many, or as few colours as you want. Learn the method then let your imagination run riot. No tape measures or tension squares needed! In the workshop you will use your own head but hats can be made to fit anyone.

 

See some examples here

 

Duration: The workshop lasts 2 - 3 hours

 

Number of participants: Around 20

 

Materials: Yarn and needles of your choice, squared paper, coloured pencils. (See note below).

Knitting skill requirements:

* Garter stitch

* Increase by knitting into front and back of a stitch

* Decrease by knitting two together

* Pick up and knit stitches from a previously knitted shape


Mathematical requirements:

* Count to 30

* Draw a square on squared paper

Making a Group Afghan


This workshop is ideally suited to a group wanting to share the work to make an afghan. Our methods are foolproof and the pieces are guaranteed to fit together. The workshop can be tailored to suit a range of needs.


See pictures of 60 afghans made by Cheshire Women's Institute. Several small groups from across the county sent a representative to learn the methods. Each member went back to their own group and passed on their knowledge. The groups then designed and produced afghans which were displayed in Chester Guildhall.


Some groups have gone on to raise money by selling their afghans in auctions or other fund-raising events. Others have given them to charity.


For those with a fear of Maths, this workshop can be presented so that there is no obvious Maths involved.


Duration: The workshop lasts 2 - 3 hours


Number of participants: As many as you can fit in the room.


Materials: Small ball of black yarn, small ball of white yarn, squared paper, coloured pencils. (See note below).

Knitting skill requirements:

* Garter stitch

* Increase by knitting into front and back of a stitch

* Decrease by knitting two together


Mathematical requirements:

* None

Colour and Illusion

 

Do you want to know how many colours you need for your design? How many ways you can arrange the colours you choose? How to create special shading effects in knit and crochet, leading to optical illusions? This is the class for you.  

 

We will show you some ways you might choose your colours, how many to use, where you might place them, what happens if you rearrange them. We will also look at what constitutes a pattern (in the mathematical sense, not a sheet of instructions for making a jacket) and what tricks the eye into seeing something that's not there.

 

This is not a practical knitting class and it is not the usual colour theory that you might learn from books or art sources.

 

Duration: The workshop lasts 2 - 3 hours

 

Number of participants: As many as you can fit in the room.

 

Materials: Squared paper, coloured pencils, ruler. (See note below).

Materials


Yarns: Unless otherwise stated you can use any yarns of your choice but they should be all of the same type (e.g. all 'worsted' or all 'DK'). You do not have to use the same yarn as other people in the class. If you are slow knitter it is best not to bring very thin yarn as you might find it difficult to keep up. We recommend smooth yarns as it is easier to see what you are doing.

 

Needles: Bring the needles you would normally use with your chosen yarn - or, if you really want to be convinced that our methods always work, you can bring totally unsuitable needles. Use straight or circular, as you prefer, unless otherwise stated.

 

Other materials: We rarely give handouts as we prefer you to make any notes in your own way so that you will be able to work from them later (You won't need many notes!) Bring a few sheets of squared paper. Quarter-inch or 1 cm squares are preferable but squares of any size will do.  You will also need a few coloured pencils.

Costs


Costs  for all talks and workshops are negotiable, depending on the type of group and the location. Please contact us if you are interested in arranging an event.

Mathemagical Mittens

 

Learn to make mittens the Woolly Thoughts way. They are guaranteed to fit, whatever yarn and needles you choose, without having to make a tension swatch.


Once you have learned the technique you can customise it in many different ways. See some mittens here.

 

Duration: Minimum 2 hours.

 

Number of participants: Around 30

 

Materials: Yarn and needles of your choice

Knitting skill requirements:

* Garter stitch

* Increase by knitting into front and back of a stitch

* Decrease by knitting two together


Mathematical requirements:

* None