Wednesday, 3 July 2019

Review Of Sticka - The Tithe Pattern Collection

Image courtesy of The Little Grey Sheep
The Little Grey Sheep is a small wool business run from a family farm in Hampshire. After they bought the farm in 2004 Emma, Neil and their three daughters re-introduced sheep with the aim of producing their own yarns. Says Emma, "I believed that we could produce a world-class British yarn, that was soft enough to be work next to the skin but that had its own unique character."

Shepherdess Susie manages and shears the flock, the fleece is washed and spun in Yorkshire and then hand-dyed back on the farm by Emma who is inspired by the colour of the surrounding countryside.

To support the wool they produce and showcase the farm's beautiful landscape The Little Grey Sheep has released Sticka: The Tithe Collection, containing ten patterns, each named from fields on an 1840 map of the farm.

A tithe was the amount of produce, later money, that a tenant had to give to the lay owners of the land. Sticka explains such details along with the importance of the shearing process to the welfare of the sheep, the layout of the farm and lots of instagrammable photos of the landscape - and of course the patterns.

They are:

Bricklands Cardigan

Image courtesy of The Little Grey Sheep
Knitted in Hampshire 4-ply, this cardigan is knitted in the round and then steeked.

Bricklands Cowl
Image courtesy of The Little Grey Sheep
Using a similar pattern to the cardigan, the Bricklands cowl is knitted with Stein Fine Wool 4-ply.

Bricklands Sweater

Image courtesy of The Little Grey Sheep
This high-neck raglan sweater again uses Stein Fine Wool 4-ply.

Cherry Plum Cardigan

Image courtesy of The Little Grey Sheep
The Little Grey Sheep describes this as a 'relaxed-fit, boyfriend-style cardigan worn with positive ease' and knitted in Hampshire 4-ply.

Cranstone Hat

Image courtesy of The Little Grey Sheep
Again knitted in Hampshire 4-ply, this colour-contrast beanie will keep your head warm all winter long. Mini-skeins are available for the contrast colours.

Hangers Hyle Shawl

Image courtesy of The Little Grey Sheep
Knit this shawl in Hampshire 4-ply or Stein Fine Wool 4-ply. Says The Little Grey Sheep: 'This cosy and elegant shawl features garter stitch with panels of colour work, with slipped stitches in contrasting colours forming geometric patterns".

Minchin Croft Sweater

Image courtesy of The Little Grey Sheep

This cosy, v-necked sweater uses Hampshire 4-ply and is knitted from the bottom up.

Minchin Croft Tank Top

Image courtesy of The Little Grey Sheep
Also knitted with Hampshire 4-ply, this tank top's contrast colour cable neckband uses the Japanese short-row technique.

No Man's Land Sweater

Image courtesy of The Little Grey Sheep
Look at the lovely fringed hem and cuffs on this bi-colour sweater, which is knitted with Hampshire 4ply. It's knitted with the yarn held double.

The Chequers Sweater

Image courtesy of The Little Grey Sheep
Finally this sweater is knitted in mesh stitch worked flat in pieces from the bottom up.

***

At the back of Sticka there's a handy glossary of all the knitting abbreviations used in the patterns.

It's a gorgeous collection and, because they use 4-ply wool rather than a thicker DK or aran, the garments and accessories are suitable for wearing in-between seasons and not just for Winter. At the moment my favourite is the Bricklands Cowl to get me used to the colourwork pattern before I attempt the sweater. What I like too is that when buying wool from The Little Grey sheep you know the sheep are well looked after and that you're supporting a small family business.

See all the patterns on Ravelry here where you can download the e-book for £18.94.

Alternatively buy a paper copy directly from The Little Grey Sheep for £18.50 plus P&P.

Many thanks to The Little Grey Sheep for the review copy. All views are A Woolly Yarn's own.

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