Polaris patterncard kit design by Alice Starmore in Hebridean 2 Ply yarn

Works in Progress

Whatever your skill level it is good to have a visual reference of the construction processes involved in hand knitted garments. We have a wide variety of free tutorials covering a range of knitting techniques which you can watch me demonstrate. This particular page is dedicated to showing some of our works in progress. Jade and I knit most of the sample garments that you see on this website and here you can find images and the occasional video of projects, past and present, during and after construction.

Polaris patterncard kit design by Alice Starmore in Hebridean 2 Ply yarn
Polaris patterncard kit design by Alice Starmore in Hebridean 2 Ply yarn
Polaris patterncard kit design by Alice Starmore in Hebridean 2 Ply yarn

Here you can see the Polaris Cardigan at different stages.

Below you can see the body before and after cutting the steeks. If you are making a stranded garment with steeks for the first time you will probably find that it looks a little odd while you are working the neck. The steek bridges the neck and draws everything together whilst the neckline shaping is worked at each side. You will not be able to see the shape of the garment until the steek has been cut. All of our stranded designs come with full and detailed instructions for working the garments with steeks so you can be sure that when you cut them open the garment will fall into perfect shape.

Polaris patterncard kit design by Alice Starmore in Hebridean 2 Ply yarn
Polaris patterncard kit design by Alice Starmore in Hebridean 2 Ply yarn

The technique that seems to cause the most anxiety in beginner knitters is using steeks. Cutting steeks is one of the easiest skills you can learn. Just take your time. If you watch the video below you can see Jade cutting the front, front neck and back neck steek of the Polaris.

Polaris patterncard kit design by Alice Starmore in Hebridean 2 Ply yarn
Polaris patterncard kit design by Alice Starmore in Hebridean 2 Ply yarn

Another Polaris in colour choices Machair, Spindrift and Golden Plover shows the body of the garment at different stages.

Polaris patterncard kit design by Alice Starmore in Hebridean 2 Ply yarn
Polaris patterncard kit design by Alice Starmore in Hebridean 2 Ply yarn
Polaris patterncard kit design by Alice Starmore in Hebridean 2 Ply yarn
Polaris patterncard kit design by Alice Starmore in Hebridean 2 Ply yarn
Polaris patterncard kit design by Alice Starmore in Hebridean 2 Ply yarn
Polaris patterncard kit design by Alice Starmore in Hebridean 2 Ply yarn
Peigi Vest patterncard kit design by Alice Starmore in Hebridean 2 Ply yarn

The Polaris Cardigan is made using only two main colours with a third as an accent, so the beginning of the round – at the centre of the front steek – only has ends when joining in a new ball of yarn. The Peigi Waistcoat, shown here, has a larger colour palette, so you will notice many more yarn ends where colours have been joined in and broken off at the centre of the front steek. Happily, these ends are completely removed when the steek is trimmed for finishing.

The Peigi Waistcoat is a V-neck, so when shaping the V at each side of the front steek, the body takes on a  cone shape. Below you can see a video of me cutting the front and back neck steeks. You can also see photos of the steeks being trimmed and cross stitched, and the finished garment.

Peigi Vest patterncard kit design by Alice Starmore in Hebridean 2 Ply yarn
Peigi Vest patterncard kit design by Alice Starmore in Hebridean 2 Ply yarn
Peigi Vest patterncard kit design by Alice Starmore in Hebridean 2 Ply yarn
Peigi Vest patterncard kit design by Alice Starmore in Hebridean 2 Ply yarn
Oregon Autumn Vest patterncard kit design by Alice Starmore in Hebridean 2 Ply yarn

Once you have made one stranded garment in the round with steeks you can employ the same skills to make a whole wardrobe of differently coloured and patterned pieces, all using exactly the same techniques. Above you can see an Oregon Autumn Vest in progress. Below you can see two different colourways and lengths of the same Jacobite Rose design, both in progress and as completed garments, each worn with a matching hat set.

Jacobite Rose Hat Set and Cardigan patterncard kit designs by Alice Starmore in Hebridean 2 Ply yarn
Virtual Yarns: Home of Alice Starmore Yarns And Designs
Jacobite Rose Hat Set and Cardigan patterncard kit designs by Alice Starmore in Hebridean 2 Ply yarn
White Jacobite Rose patterncard kit design by Alice Starmore in Hebridean 2 Ply yarn
Jacobite Rose patterncard kit design by Alice Starmore in Hebridean 2 Ply yarn
Lapwing design by Alice Starmore in Hebridean 2 Ply yarn

Fine textures and intricate shaping require a little more concentration, but are worth every minute of your time. Above you can see a Lapwing Pullover in Kelpie and Shearwater → I chose these colours in reference to the raven costume. Below you can see the finished version of the same pullover in the original colourway of Lapwing and Machair with touches of Clover. These two versions show what a difference your colour choices will make.

The Lapwing hand knitwear design by Alice Starmore from the book Glamourie
The Lapwing hand knitwear design by Alice Starmore from the book Glamourie
The Lapwing hand knitwear design by Alice Starmore from the book Glamourie
Lapwing Collar patterncard knitwear design by Alice Starmore in pure wool Hebridean 2 Ply hand knitting yarn

One of the most important parts of making a hand-knitted garment is careful finishing. The Lapwing Collar feathers are quite an extreme example. The feathers are designed to be stretched and flattened; the blocking process involves pinning them out to size (the longest feathers can be soaked before stretching and pinning) and then covering them with a thoroughly wet towel. You can see the transformation that occurs below, with feathers Jade has made for a raven-coloured Lapwing Collar.

Lapwing Collar in progress
Lapwing Collar patterncard kit design by Alice Starmore in Hebridean 2 Ply yarn
Mol Eire patterncard kit design by Jade Starmore in Hebridean 2 Ply yarn

Darning in ends can sometimes be treated like a chore to be rushed, but careful finishing is crucial for a perfect result. You can see the Mol Eire in progress and in a finished state, with all the ends neatly darned away.

Mol Eire Patterncard Kit by Jade Starmore in progress
Mol Eire Patterncard Kit by Jade Starmore in progress
Mol Eire patterncard kit design by Jade Starmore in Hebridean 2 Ply yarn
Jane Seymour design by Alice Starmore from the book Tudor Roses

The Jane Seymour requires further finishing with embroidery. Here you can see a Whin and Golden Plover version with embroidery of Driftwood, Spindrift, Sundew and Mountain Hare during and after construction.

Jane Seymour design from the book Tudor Roses by Alice Starmore
Jane Seymour design from the book Tudor Roses by Alice Starmore
Jane Seymour design from the book Tudor Roses by Alice Starmore
Jane Seymour design from the book Tudor Roses by Alice Starmore
Jane Seymour design from the book Tudor Roses by Alice Starmore
Jane Seymour design by Alice Starmore from the book Tudor Roses