Sunspun Fine Yarns

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Meet the Maker: Kirsten Johnstone, Assemblage


Kirsten and her new pup Zali. She is wearing Namiki, a design with a treetops motif, knit in Woolfolk Tynd.

It is no secret that all of us at Sunspun are huge fans of knitwear designer and architect Kirsten Johnstone from Assemblage. Kirsten’s knits often feature simple, classic shapes with subtle, effective embellishment, and the finished pieces are timeless, to be dressed up or down as the occasion demands.

We admire Kirsten’s work so much that when it came time to refurbish our interiors in 2014, she was the logical choice, the one we thought who could understand the needs and workings of a yarn store, and how best to store and showcase yarn and finished objects.

We are pleased to have Kirsten coming instore on 9 March as a special guest teacher; she will be showing knitters how to make her Seven Circle neckpiece. Call or email us to book your place. In the meantime, make yourself a cuppa and meet the woman behind the knits.

Tell us a little about Assemblage: when it began, your ambitions for it, and how it has evolved.

Assemblage began soon after I discovered online blogging. It’s hard to imagine today, but there was a time when I didn’t know there was an online craft community! I had read an interview in The Age and they listed a website address. I opened the link, not really understanding what a blog was, and noticed all these extra links in the sidebar. Well, I was off and cruising my way through many of those key blogs from that first wave of online crafting. It was such a pivotal moment for me in terms of crafting.

I had always loved ‘making’ from a very young age and had stopped during my higher schooling and university years. The discovery of the online world of crafting was not only an encouragement but a relief – here was my tribe.

The knitting side of things really began with my discovery of Habu Textiles; their Kusha Kusha Felted Scarf was my first knit project in more than fifteen years, which reignited the tactile delight that knitting imparts and opened up a whole new world of yarn possibilities.


Element, from Wool People 9 for Brooklyn Tweed. Pic by Jared Flood.

It’s been so gratifying watching your designs from Melbourne go out into the wider world, through your association with Brooklyn Tweed, Shibui, Amirisu, Quince and Co. and Blue Sky Alpacas. It must be satisfying seeing your design sensibility so warmly embraced, and so many iterations of Seven Circle, Rauin, Zumthor, Kozue and Hane out there. How did those associations start?

It is always exciting to have my designs published and seeing people’s finished projects.

My first association was with Brooklyn Tweed, who contacted me with an invitation to submit a design for the inaugural Wool People series. I cannot tell you how exciting that was! Then I was invited by Shibui to submit a design for their Geometry Collection – I submitted three for them to choose from, and to my surprise and delight, they used all three. I love seeing a little bit of Melbourne being included in collections around the world.


Fusuma is a cowl knit in Shibui Pebble.

When designing, are you led by the yarn you want to use or do you do your own thing? Or is it a combination of all that and other intangibles?

I suppose each designer has their own methodology and typically it depends on the scenario. If I am invited to submit a design, then the yarn is effectively already chosen so that becomes a given.

I try to maintain a sketchbook of ideas that I regularly refer back over. This is my primary design reference from which I draw ideas, perhaps annotate with a yarn and colourway, stitch pattern options, and thoughts on construction or design options for the piece.

The actual design is always something I want to wear. I decided at the very beginning that I didn’t want to design just for the sake of it; I wanted it to be enjoyable since it is my second job and therefore needed to be about joy in the process. They are always designs I love and wear, and hope others might too.


The treetops motif in Kozue are also echoed in Namiki.

Your work is always so beautifully realised, the finishing impeccable, with details that lift a familiar silhouette into something more. What makes you tinker away at a hemline or a stitch pattern or revisit a beloved pattern of yours to give it a new twist?

Thank you. I have learnt so much since my first forays into knitwear design. The perfectionist in me seeks to ensure a quality fit, excellent construction and knitting technique. This has continued to develop along with my own understanding of knitwear design.

This is the beautiful thing about design in all its guises: each and every new project provides an opportunity to stretch myself as a designer, to grow, to develop, to try new things, to refine my process and outcomes.


Rauin; pic by Tamara Erbacher.

And how do you know when you’ve got it with a piece of work? Is something ever finished for you, or do you keep working away at published patterns – or, at the very least, let the subconscious work on it for you?

Ah, yes! The eternal designer’s question: when is the design complete? There are definitely times when yes, I feel the design is exactly what it should be and I am supremely pleased with the end result.

Sankai|Woman is an example of this. This design was an extension of one of my very first designs, Paper Crane. I love Paper Crane for its simplicity and how it plays with the inherent properties of knitted fabric to roll, which I showcased by juxtaposing two grains of stocking stitch across the bust. I thought these two features could also be applied in a more fitted and somewhat traditional sweater with some serious short-row shaping for a more polished result with hidden cuff details and tailored back shaping.

Paper Crane (left) and Sankai (right) have a fraternal resemblance. Sankai pic by Tamara Erbacher.

On average, how long does a piece take from first swatch to publication/upload?

If I am submitting a design to a company, I spend at least a month sketching, swatching, washing, blocking, photographing, drafting and then writing up my design proposal. I submit a PDF with all the relevant design information, which might include a sketch of the piece drawn to scale with dimensions (yes, ever the architect!) and possibly front and back views of the design, the design concept, yarn, gauge, needles, stitch pattern, design details and techniques.

Once the design is accepted, we agree on a date for the final knitted sample; it might be eight to twelve weeks later for a single piece, with a sized, graded and tech-edited pattern accompanying.

It might then take between four to six months for the yarn company release the pattern to the public. So, all up, somewhere between seven and twelve months.

For my self-published designs, the process is more organic. I have a small self-published collection coming out in Woolfolk Tynd soon. After initial sketches and swatches, I received the yarn and started work on the first design. Unfortunately at times the collection has been set aside for my work commitments but I am pleased to report I am now on the home straight. It has been two years in the making! Thankfully, not all my designs take this long – usually more like three to six months from start to pushing the ‘publish’ button.



Do your patterns come to you resolved or does the success of the piece lie in the countless hours of finetuning and working with test knitters?

You can see from the above that my answer here is a definite no! For me, it is a process of countless hours of visualisation and contemplation, often in the early hours of the morning when I should be asleep.

I prefer to knit each design because I finetune the piece as I go. My sample knitter is fabulous, but I try to limit her potential frustration by providing designs that I have already worked through at least once. I trust her to point out any errors or ways I could phrase a particular technique or sequence to make it simpler or more readily understood by another knitter.


Hane; pic by Tamara Erbacher.

We know you have another life as an award-winning architect. How do you reconcile both jobs? Do they play well together? It may be projection on my part, but it does seem like architectural elements find their way into your knits.

While I love designing knitwear, I work hard to ensure it stays fun and is a positive, creative outlet. At the end of each day, I love sitting on the couch with my knitting for a little bit of ‘me-time’. Being an architect is definitely my main role and not something I am willing to give up just yet.

I agree with you, my design aesthetic plays across both my architecture and my knitwear design: clean and minimal, highly functional and efficient, considered and refined. I also love sewing and photography, and have dabbled in ceramics and printmaking. I see a consistent design aesthetic across all these disciplines.


The Fractal Cowl is a sliver of Melbourne for the world: the triangles in the body of the cowl are inspired by the architecture at Federation Square, designed by Lab Architecture Studio.

What are the challenges to running your own business? How do you get the business and the creative aspects to mesh?

There are many challenges. Architecturally speaking I always need to find new clients; the majority of my projects come via personal recommendation.

Also work–life balance and time management (24 hours are simply not enough!) are big challenges. While there are many benefits to running your own business there are most definitely times I wish I could simply clock off and leave it all behind at the office. For me, knitting is an excellent way to relax and switch off while still being creative.

What and who inspires you?

I am passionate about modern design in all its forms – architecture, art, ceramics, fashion, food, furniture, sculpture … the list is long. Japanese design and designers. I love the concept of simplicity – the process of paring back to the essentials to release an inherent beauty or key element.


Amime; pic by Tamara Erbacher.

What is on the horizon for Assemblage?

2016 is going to be a great year for Assemblage! I have two design commissions to be released in the first half of 2016 along with new self-published designs, including two small collections in Woolfolk, two pieces in Habu and a re-release of a design in Shibui. I’m excited about the next chapter and I so love being a part of this crafting community.

Pebble_2_small2And a big thank you to Sunspun, who are avid supporters of my designs and my local yarn store. I look forward to meeting some of you at the class in March!









It’s been such a pleasure having Kirsten with us. Come and say hello to her on 9 March for the Seven Circles class, and knit one of her designs – we promise you won’t be disappointed!

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We’re Having a Trunk Show with Kirsten Johnstone!

Have you heard of a Trunk Show before?
No? Then read on! Yes? Then read on!

A Trunk Show is a selection of knitted samples from yarn companies or designers that a shop can borrow for a short period of time to allow its customers to see what patterns or yarns will look like when they are knitted up. It is a special event that allows folk to come and see items that are not normally on display. As wonderful an asset to our knitting world as the internet has become, opening up the works of all designers to all knitters around the globe, nothing appeals like touching and feeling the garments and accessories that have so cleverly been created. And often a Trunk Show will include a visit by the designer to meet and chat to customers in the shop.

And so, without out any further ado, let me introduce you to Kirsten Johnstone and give you the details of the forthcoming trunk show.

Kirsten is a local Melbourne gal who has made a wonderful splash on the international knitting scene. She has designed for such influential companies as Brooklyn Tweed, Quince & Co, Woolfolk, Blue Sky Alpacas, amirisu and Shibui Knits. In her ‘other’ life (you know, when she is not knitting!) Kirsten is an architect and her love of clean lines and structure can be seen in her knitting designs. As she describes her garments “designs with a distinctive urban edge yet elegantly wearable”.


We are thrilled to be able to share Kirsten’s designs with you over the span of a week or so in March. We will have a selection of 16 garments and accessories in the shop for you to touch, feel and try on! Additionally, Kirsten’s patterns will be available for purchase with a 5% discount (15% for Sunspun Members) for the duration of the trunk show. Annnnd ……. Kirsten will be in the shop on Saturday morning to say hi, answer questions and sign patterns!

Kirsten has graciously agreed to teach a class for us as well! On Wednesday 9th March (6.15 – 9.15pm) we have scheduled her Sev[en]circles Neckpiece class. If you would like to book in now is the time as places are already filling. Just call us (9830 1609) and we can book you in and secure your spot.


A special treat for Sunspun Members is a Meet, Greet and Nibbles night with Kirsten on Friday night. Oh …… and did I mention the Fashion Parade!!! For those of us who are ‘models’ – a very scary proposition!! Please make sure you RSVP by the required date (see your Invitation email) so we make sure to order sufficient nibbles.


So, we hope that you will come along and touch and feel and try on and chat and enjoy the wonderful talent of Kirsten Johnstone – Aussie designer extraordinaire!

Happy ‘yarning’,
Amy, Karen and Nicole.                          Zenmon-2-650x650.jpg


Event details summarised below !

Trunk Show Details
Sat 5th March – Sat 12th March
Meet Kirsten Sat 5th March 11am-2pm
Discounted patterns during show

Sunspun Member Event
(by invitation only)

Friday 4th March
Times: 6.30 – 8.30pm
Food provided; free event
Fashion Parade

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The Finish Line

We’ve had a slew of finished items come our way recently, and thought we’d share them with you.


One of our lovely customers Claire brought in a finished Denali from Brooklyn Tweed’s Men, which she made for her son. The jumper by Norah Gaughan has come up so well in Debbie Bliss’ Donegal Luxury Tweed Aran: the syncopated cables on the front and back and the stocking-stitch sleeves give the sweater a neat, modern finish. One worth queuing for a loved one.

Another finished object we have to share is Faye’s utterly stunning Isager Spring sweater, made in Isager Spinni. Isn’t it so beautifully realised?


This is a sister knit to Winter, which we’ve featured before. Both are lightweight, drape like a dream, and look like fun to make.


Remember picture knits? We love this bold, beautiful cocky another of our customers made from Liz Gemmell’s Woolly Jumpers.


One of Karen’s recent finishes is Romi Hill’s Zephyr Cove Shawl, an asymmetrical shawl with short rows, garter stitch and a picot edging, which she made in Colinette Jitterbug. The garter stitch makes this a ‘springy, squishy shawl’, and she has this advice for yarn choices if you’re planning to make one: choose one that is not too tightly spun, since the lace edging wouldn’t block as well.


Nicole has been hugely prolific, and among one of her recent stunning finishes is a Featherweight cardigan in the luxurious Skein, in a silk/merino blend. The colour, the fit and the finish are perfect.


For a quick one, her colourwork hat uses small skeins of natural-dyed yarns from The Craft Sessions, worked back with Shilasdair Luxury 4 ply. Such a lovely palette.


I recently took Sibella away with me and came home five weeks later with a finished cardigan (though I’m still deciding on buttons). This is probably one of the most satisfying knits I’ve ever made, and the perfect road project. Perhaps it was being on the road and therefore the imposed project monogamy, but I didn’t get stuck in sleeve-land either – a miracle! I used the fingering-weight Ton of Wool Four Cormo for this, and the fabric is gorgeous, springy and light; the finished cardi weighs about 258 grams.


Whether you’re a process knitter or one who’s focused on the end product, there is an undeniable pleasure in finishing, even if it’s for the lessons learnt on what not to do. Do keep stopping by and showing us what you’ve done recently; we love hearing the stories behind the knits.

PS: Not that you’d need reminding of the benefits of crafting, but this is too good not to share:

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Two Cultures

As someone who both knits and crochets, it’s been a little surprising to learn recently of the so-called ‘divide’ between those who knit and those who crochet. Who knew?


When this grows up, it’ll be a rainbow blanket. Pattern based on the Ridge & Furrow Scarf

The two cultures question came up because my four-year-old niece asked me to make her a rainbow blanket. Easy, I thought, granny squares, here I come: it’s modular, I can tuck a square in here and there, and after a few hundred of them, we’ll be done.

Then I started planning, and realised that I may just have to … knit this blanket. Which led me to wonder, what considerations do people take into account when choosing to knit or crochet something?

If you are new to the needle arts, many people say crochet is easier to pick up, since it uses only a hook, and you have to manage one stitch/loop at any one time. Just know that crochet uses a bit more yarn than knitting in basic stocking or garter stitch. (Here’s a test that someone’s done, if these things interest you.)

Knitting can feel unwieldy until you get the hang of it, and therefore frustrating – who hasn’t encountered twisted and dropped stitches, wrong stitch counts, slippery yarn that won’t stay on, and so on. Plus, beyond knitting needles of the right size, you often need needles of the right length as well for the job at hand.

My decision to knit came about primarily because I wanted to use stash yarn, and there wasn’t enough of every rainbow-ish colour in 8 ply. I did have all the colours that made up the rainbow, but of different tones and hues.

The other consideration was weight: the granny-square blankets we have are quite heavy, compared to the knitted ones, and the fabric much sturdier. I wanted something softer that draped.

What I knit and crochet fall into very clear categories. I crochet in summer when it’s too hot to have a growing pile of something on my lap, and when I feel a need for instant gratification, so it’s mainly toys and homewares – not surprising, since sturdiness is a necessary and desired quality for all those items. And I always crochet for school-fete goods such as little bowls, brooches, jewellery, mandalas, small colourful items and Christmas snowflakes.


A simple cuff crocheted in four rows of star stitch in a Japanese cotton yarn,
finished with an oversized mother-of-pearl button.


The round mandalas are by Lucy at Attic24, and the scallop-edged ones are Barbara Smith’s Little Spring Mandala

But for garments and items like hats and mitts, knitting wins hands down – it’s all about the fabric for me, and knitted fabric has more give. (You can go up a crochet hook size for a looser fabric, but the drape is still not quite the same.)

At the end of the day, both are complementary skills that are portable, easy to execute and don’t require impossible machines. If you know one and want to learn the other, we run classes in both. Discover for yourself! And take inspiration from Japanese designer Setsuko Torii, whose work often combines both cultures to quite dramatic effect, as in this Patchwork Skirt.



In store news, we have 22 shades of the Debbie Bliss Blue Faced Leicester instore. This lovely DK-weight yarn from a heritage breed produces soft wool with lovely drape and lustre, and the stitch definition is excellent. Each 50 g ball yields 108 metres, and is $11 per ball.


Brooklyn Tweed’s Wool People 9 is just out too, and features some beautiful lacework and architectural pieces, perfect to chase away winter evenings with while you dream of spring.

koto_5_medium2 loden_2_medium2    gehry_2_medium2

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Yarn in Focus: Isager ÅLJ


 Vital statistics
100% pure wool
100 g/250 metres
Gauge: 20 stitches = 10 cm/4 inches on 4 mm needles

Every yarn has a story.

One of the new lines that we took on last year was Isager, which is a mainstay of Denmark’s knitting world. Designer, weaver and textile printer Marianne Isager, for whom yarn production and pattern design go hand in hand, took over the company in the late 1970s after the death of her friend and mentor, the knit designer Åase Lund Jensen. Their work draws from the Danish crafts tradition and is also influenced by the knitting styles of Iceland and the Faroe Islands.

Today, Marianne continues manufacturing Jensen’s yarns alongside her own. The Spinni, Tvinni and ÅLJ yarns are produced at Henrichsen’s Spinning Mill, a family-owned operation since 1885, with the fifth generation at the helm of what is possibly the last spinning mill in Denmark today. They source wool from other European countries, New Zealand and Australia, and their production methods take heed of environmental concerns and animal welfare.

We are proud to be the exclusive carriers of Isager yarns in Australia, and have been thrilled at how warmly they’ve been embraced by knitters.


Isager yarns are delicate but strong, and most lines come in a reasonably fine gauge, from lace to light sportweight. The one featured today is one of the few exceptions: the ÅLJ, sometimes known as Jensen.

ÅLJ is a heathered yarn that comes in 18 colours. This slightly rustic yarn is not the softest in the hank, but after a wash the swatch above softened beautifully and bloomed. Your garments will wear well for a long, long time. The inherent strength of the yarn makes it ideal for cables, and its crispness shows off stitches well. Each hank has generous meterage too.

What to make? A first port of call could be Marianne and her daughter Helga’s designs, published under the Amimono collection, which we stock.

Helga Isager’s Siberia Anorak with hidden pockets, a magnificent collar and her trademark geometric motif plies the ÅLJ with a mohair; while we don’t stock the Isager mohair, the Shibui Silk Cloud or Rowan Kidsilk Haze would work well.

Siberia-anorak     Source: Amimono

Here are some other ideas. For a simple cardigan, it’s hard to go past Eunny Jang’s Tangled Yoke Cardigan; the cables would pop and sit beautifully.

tanlged_yoke2     Source: Interweave Knits

Kirsten Johnstone’s Rauin is an elegant top-down cardigan with a ribbed neckband that flows down to wrap around the body.

rauinSource: Kirsten Johnstone; photographer Tamara Erbacher

For serious cable love, imagine being enveloped in Joji Locatelli’s aptly named Adventurous


Or how about this beret of Pressed Leaves by Alana Dakos? The pattern is from her beautiful book Botanical Knits, which is full of woodland-themed patterns.

pressed_leaves0Source: Never Not Knitting

Another clever pattern is Georgie Hallam’s Lavender Hat, a simple slouchy that is knit inside out so there’s no purling and has a little mock cable worked without a cable needle.


Source: Tikki Knits

The traditional Shetland Hap shawl is a thing of great beauty, makes a perfect gift or for snuggling under in the winter months. Gudrun Johnston from The Shetland Trader’s Hansel can be easily adapted to make a larger shawl depending on how much yarn you have; Brooklyn Tweed’s Kelpie uses a non-traditional construction and is triangular. Both are exquisite.

142-200x300Source: The Shetland Trader


Source: Brooklyn Tweed

If you want something super simple, try this endlessly adaptable reversible cowl. Make a long, light loop with a single strand of yarn, or knit two (or three or more!) strands together for a chunky finish.

This sample (not made in ÅLJ) is knit in the round over an even number of stitches, so first make a swatch (sorry). Work out how long and wide you’d like the loop. As a rough guide, for a cowl measuring about 120 cm/48 inches around and 15 cm/6 inches wide, you need to cast on 180 stitches.

Cast on an even number of stitches and join to work in the round.

Round 1: Knit.

Round 2: K1, P1, repeat to end.

Repeat rounds 1 and 2 until the desired width, and bind off.


In store news, we have some neon Zara in-store. Now’s your chance to work up Stephen West’s Syncopation Adoration hat or a Bundled in Brioche scarf to brighten up winter days.

2015-02-11 13.41.47

Make your own happy socks with these self-striping yarns from Yarn vs Zombies! The yarn is lofty and luxuriously soft, the wool coming from Tasmanian Midlands sheep raised on sustainable farms. Each ball is hand-dyed and hand-wound, and stripe thickness varies depending on your gauge. Its generous yardage (about 470 metres per 100 g) means you should get a pair of socks from each ball.

2015-02-11 13.35.17

Finally, to carry all your projects around, we have some specially made project bags for the store. These beauties will hold a jumper-sized project, and the close-weaved linen/cotton blend means your needles won’t poke through or go AWOL.

2015-02-11 13.47.232015-02-11 13.48.09

Until next time, happy knitting.

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Christmas gift guide 1

Each week until Christmas, we’ll be putting together a list of our most favourite things in the shop as a guide for you and those hunting for presents for you. We like to make it easy for you! So here is our first group…


Stocking fillers for $10 and under:

  • 20 coil-less stitch markers in a handy tin that is small enough to fit in your notions pouch but big enough to hold all your other little knitting bits and pieces: $8
Coil-less safety pins

Coil-less stitch markers


  • A sweet greeting card and envelope featuring a watercolour of Brooklyn Tweed’s designs: 5 designs, $5.
Brooklyn Tweed greeting cards

Brooklyn Tweed greeting cards


  • A ball of Waikiwi Sock, a lovely blend of New Zealand merino, alpaca, possum and nylon (ok, so you’ll need two balls to knit a pair of socks but 1 ball will get you a knitted toy, small accessory and the like!): $10/ 50gm


For $30 and under:

  • From the super-cool American label, Fringe Association, this canvas tote bag is plenty big and sturdy enough to carry a large garment project or two or three smaller WIP’s: 2 designs, $25
Fringe Association Tote

Fringe Association Tote


  • A shawl pin from Days of August (Adelaide) or Hornvarefabrikken (Denmark) to keep your hand knits snuggly around you: Days of August reclaimed US army pins in 16 colours, $25, Hornvarefabrikken horn pins in various sizes and designs, $24-$42.
Giant safety pin from Days of August

Giant safety pin from Days of August



  • A 150gm skein of Colinette Jitterbug, a hand-dyed 4ply merino yarn from rural Wales that knits into the most gorgeous, plump socks and garments: many colourways, $30/ 150gm.


For $50 and over:

  • The pattern and yarn to knit Onward, this large and very beautiful shawl from Journey by Shannon Cook and Jane Richmond. Knit in 10ply with just knit and purl stitches, Onward is a joy to knit and to wear. Book $36, price of yarn dependent on selection.

Onward Shawl


  • A deluxe set of Clover Amour crochet hooks, which contains 10 hooks with smooth, rounded rubber handles with a flattened section where the thumb can rest, allowing you to crochet for a longer period of time! Set of 10 hooks, $75.


  • And, for the extremely generous giver, an Addi Express knitting machine that will enable you to crank out last minute knitted gifts like scarves, blankets, cushions and more! Lightweight, portable and easy to use, the Addi Express knits in the round and flat and comes in two sizes: $190 for standard, $248 for kingsize.
Addi Express

Addi Express


See you next week with our next groups of faves!

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Pattern leaflets

As knitters who have all been shopping at Sunspun since we first started knitting, we’ve always coveted the beautiful publications put out by the yarn companies carried at the shop. After all, yes, there may sometimes only be one or two projects in a book that we know we want to knit but honestly, who can resist the incredibly beautiful Rowan magazines or Debbie Bliss with her gorgeous, moss-stitch-clad babies?! Those publications are part of a collection and we love having them on our bookshelves at home. We pore over them and find inspiration in the stitches, colours and styling in their pages, encouraging us to try things we really don’t imagine we could succeed at making.

But, having matured as knitters on the internet and Ravelry, we also like being able to buy individual pattern leaflets, often from independent designers whose approach can be quite different to the designers working for large yarn companies. This is why we’re broadening our pattern range at Sunspun and will be carrying the latest books and magazines from our yarn producers, as well as a wide range of individual pattern leaflets.

We now have a good selection of designs (around 50!) from Brooklyn Tweed. This New York-based yarn company and design house are known for their clean designs that blend traditional and modern techniques with wearability and that are always interesting to knit! Like a lot of small companies, these patterns are written with care and precision and include a lot of detail on techniques and sizing, so you always feel you’re on the right track.


Brooklyn Tweed Men

Brooklyn Tweed Men




Blueprint with loads of information on fit


We also have a wide range of patterns from even smaller independent designers, such as Olgajazzy, Rebecca Danger, Jane Richmond, Tincan Knits, Joji Locatelli, Tiny Owl Knits and Kirsten Johnstone. There is so much talent out there in the knitting world and we’ve so far only got a small percentage of their designs, from colourwork mittens and lace scarves and shawls to blankets, kids leg warmers and whimsical animals.


Aranami by Olgajazzy

Aranami by Olgajazzy


We’ll be adding more designers to our collection and are currently waiting on a series of patterns from small but widely-loved designers Kate Davies and Georgie Hallam of Tikki Knits– so do keep enquiring about new arrivals when you come into the shop.

We really hope that you enjoy having access to so many different designers and that the many ways in which they design and construct their patterns creates some really interesting knitting for you!

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5 things we love….

The knits, patterns, people and movements that are currently inspiring us…

1.  The fact that the Sheepshow is only a week away! Are you going? If you haven’t heard about this essential event on Australia’s woolly calender, you’re missing out on meeting fibre-producing animals and the people that turn that fibre into stuff we can work with and wear. Just be sure to take a big bag for all the treasures you’ll find and also to really rug up- it gets pretty chilly up there!

Gratuitous cute sheep shot in case you need motivation to come along!

In case you need coercing to attend, here’s a gratuitous cute sheep shot!


2.  The Neural Knitworks travelling exhibition for National Science Week, which celebrates the connection between knitting, crochet and other yarn crafts and maintaining brain health. Made up of a huge number of yarn neurons currently being made by communities of crafters at small Neural Knitworks gatherings around Australia, the exhibit will begin its journey at the Hazelhurst Regional Gallery in August. Get involved (or find out more) here.


3. The gorgeous new pattern from small American yarn producer Quince and Co., the Texo Shawl:

Texo Shawl

Texo Shawl

Texo Shawl

Texo Shawl

At this time of year, so many of the northern hemisphere patterns leave us cold but this one is perfect for casting on right now. Knit in 4ply, it would be a perfect pairing with our Shilasdair Luxury 4ply or our literally-just-arrived Skein Topdrawer Sock or Merino Silk Sport… More on our new Skein yarns next week!


4.  The latest installment of Our Tools, Ourselves from the Fringe Association, featuring our perennial knit crush, Jared Flood of Brooklyn Tweed. You really get a sense of the attention to detail and technique that makes his work so successful.


5.  The beautiful fibres coming out of Cheryl Crosbie’s Granite Haven property in Euroa, central Victoria. Cheryl raises llamas and Gotland Sheep for spinning and knitting fibre and her commitment to a beautiful-quality, locally-processed product is paying off- her fleece, rovings and yarn are very beautiful. She has an open day coming up later in the year and we are hoping to get up there to visit this great enterprise.