All the learning


I love teaching people new knitting techniques. It is one of the most rewarding things I do.

I also love learning new things and I’ve had some wonderful learning opportunties recently.

First of all, I was lucky enough to grab the last place at Karie Westermann’s Nordic Traditions workshop at Wild and Woolly. It was great, even though Karie totally skewered my ardent desire to learn all about ‘traditional’ knitting by explaining the way that tradition is often the recent invention of savvy knitwear marketers….

Nordic Traditions with Karie Westermann

And shortly after that, I got to attend the Squam Spring retreat, where I took a wonderful hap workshop with Gudrun Johnston and a photography/styling workshop with Helene Dujardin, which resulted in some excellent photographs of my new shawl design, Lakelet.

Lakelet by Renée Callahan

I was assisted by my beautiful classmate Michelle (modelling above), and Helene herself, who was kind enough to take the following 2 photos.

Lakelet knitting pattern by Renée Callahan

We practiced our styling (and posing!) with a design I have been wearing quite regularly now, Beetlebum:

Beetlebum by Renée Callahan


Classes and Events coming up

On the other side of the coin, I have been enjoying teaching in several new venues, particularly The Yarn Dispensary, where I will be teaching Next Steps Brioche July 9th.

I am really looking forward to teaching a workshop on Zen and Art of Sweater Construction at the Village Haberdashery 3rd July. There are still a couple of places left, so please do join me to learn the ins and outs of top-down seamless sweater construction.

Are you going to Fibre East 30-31 July? I will be there with Kettle Yarn Co. (as is my habit) and I would love to see you. If you are going, please do come by and say hello!

The last event of the summer for me is a trunk show at Purlescence 20 August. From Purlescence:

This time, we’ll be welcoming not one but two guests. Linda of KettleYarnCo will be bringing along a stunning selection of her hand-dyed yarns, and providing inspiration for the yarn will be Renee of EastLondonKnit.

As well of plenty of yarn and other knitterly goodies to browse, they’ll also be plenty of tea and cake  to enjoy while you catch up with some friends and settle down on the sofa with some knitting.

We’ll be open between 10 and 4 at our premises in Leckhampstead, just off the 4 near Newbury, and have plenty of free parking available.

Which takes us right up to knitting season!

Happy knitting,

Renée x


Dreams of linen summers


I am suffering from weekend withdrawals at the start of this fine week. The weekend was so sunny and lovely, getting back to work seems extra painful. I am soothing/attempting to motivate myself with a strong coffee at a cafe and I have to say, everyone is looking a little worse-for-wear this morning. I’m putting my faith in the caffeine and, of course, knitting!

What are you knitting these days? Are you getting ready for summer with lace-weight or perhaps linen? I’m going to indulge in a bit of linen obsessing now. After a sunny weekend, I want to cast on half a dozen new designs in linen.

This is because I haven’t managed to try much of the several gorgeous yarns that have been tempting me lately, including Lithuanian Linen available from Midwinter Yarns, a heavy lace weight yarn that comes in an amazing eye-popping pink among other beautiful shades

Lithuanian Linen from Midwinter Yarns

and Kalinka Linen, which is a heavy 4 ply weight available at Wild and Woolly. I have seen Kalinka knit up, and it is really so gorgeous, and also has some fabulous colours including a acid-bright lime green, and a black and white marled colour way called ‘stereo’.

Kalinka Linen Yarn from Wild and Woolly Kalinda Linen Yarn in acid green from wild and woolly shop






And then there is Quince and Co., who have 2 lovely linens to choose from: Sparrow, a 4 ply and Kestral.

Linen cardigan by Renée Callahan

I used Kestral for this cardigan (which will be published soon!). I loved the yarn and am keen to use it again. Worsted-weight and chain plied, I admit that it was inclined to snag on the needles. I wonder if using a needle with a more rounded tip would have helped. Even so, I really love the weightiness of the fabric and the wonderful drape. I love wool, but there is something very seductive about the drape of linen.

Happy knitting,


Classes and catching up


I think I am almost over the Edinburgh Yarn Festival hangover. If you managed to go, you know it was an awesome event and I don’t need to tell you. If you didn’t manage to go, you probably don’t want to hear about what an awesome event you missed. If you didn’t make it this year, definitely come next year!

I will say that I met some wonderful fibre folk and I came home with some gorgeous yarn.

EastLondonKnit yarn purchases

I tried to be strategic and only bring yarn home with a project in mind. I introduced my current project previously, and it is very much in the works now. It may seem odd that I have mentioned a project revolving around the use of scraps and leftovers, and then come home with lots of beautiful new yarn, but my thinking was this: I want to create a collection that allows people to use up little odd bits of yarn and stash, but it’s also important to me that every design also works with available yarns in only one or 2 colours in larger quantities. I am still in the early stages of swatching and designing, but I am feeling optimistic about it!

Come learn with me!


I am pleased to announce some awesome upcoming classes in the next couple of months:

28 April I will teach stranded colour work knitting at Wild and Woolly in East London: Colourwork Magic part 1.

5 May following on from the stranded knitting, we will learn about the mysterious ways of the steek at Wild and Woolly in Colourwork Magic Part 2.

7 May I will be back in Bath teaching Brioche Stitch Basics and Brioche Stitch Next Steps at A Yarn Story, but if you can’t make that date, I will be back in October to teach the same classes.


And finally, I now have patterns available on, including Angelus Novus and several shawl and garment patterns. Please do pop over to have look:)


Happy knitting,


Teaching and a Garden of Twilight Flowers


In teaching news, there are just one or two places on the Brioche Stitch Basics class I am teaching at Loop on 15th & 22nd November. If you are in London and would like to take the class, please do contact Loop to register.

I am also teaching a class on knitting your first cardigan at Wild and Woolly in January. If you know of any beginner knitters who would like to be lead through the process of a top-down seamless sweater, this may be the perfect Christmas present!

As  I just wanted to take a moment here to thank my wonderful test knitters for their work.

Nanerlzeknittingbirdkayemgeemskgb, and saltheknitter; you were all really great and I can’t thank you enough!

Twilight Flowers Knit by saltheknitter

kayemgee's twilight flowers knit mskgb's twilight flowers nanerl's Twilight Flowers zeknittingbird's twilight flowersYou can join in the Twilight Flowers Instagram give away until Monday–join in the fun if you would like to win the pattern & be sure to use the hashtag #twilightflowersknit or I won’t be able to find your entry:)

Happy knitting,


Cardigans for ALL! But especially beginners…


I hope you all enjoyed a wonderful Saturday at your local yarn store for Yarn Shop Day. I was at Wild and Woolly in East London, stuffing myself with cake and drinking all the prosecco.

yarn shop day

I love all the London yarn shops, but Wild and Woolly has a special place in my heart as I happened to meet Anna before she opened the shop and I’ve had the pleasure to watch the shop take shape over the past year. I really enjoy the feeling of community that is growing up around the shop and am so pleased to be able to participate in it.

One of the ways I am taking part is by teaching some classes, and the next one is for beginners and those who would like step by step help with making their first cardigan. I designed the Cyclamen Cardigan for this purpose–a simple, top down cardigan with garter stitch trims and optional extras.

Cyclamen Cardi pattern by EastLondonKnit

From the description:

Knitting your first adult-sized garment can be intimidating. Over 11 weeks we will go through the knitting of a cardigan together step by step, helping each other along the way and in the end you will have a new cardigan and the confidence and knowledge to knit your next garment successfully.

  • Week 1: How to Choose the Right Size: Preparation
  • Week 2: How to Begin the Cyclamen Cardigan: Yokes
  • Week 3: How to Work the Body: Shaping
  • Week 4: How to Work the Sleeves: Decreases and Length
  • Week 5: How to Knit and Attach Patch Pockets
  • Week 6: How to Finish Your Cardigan

You can sign up here.

I would be really grateful if you would pass this on. For the class to run, we need it to be full, so I would be forever in your debt if you would tell the beginner knitters in your life (or any knitters you think would be interested) about the class.

Cost: £120 (does not include yarn)
Dates: Wednesdays 20th, 27th May, 10th, 24th June, 8th, 22nd July 6.30 – 8.30 pm
Cyclamen Cardigan Pattern pocket (Small)To book: Email or call 020 8985 5231

Happy knitting,


Pass it on


I want to brag a little because I have been hanging out with awesome knitters lately.

I had the pleasure of teaching a class last month at local yarn shop Wild and Woolly, based on the Saguaro pattern I designed to celebrate the fact that W&W is now carrying gorgeous Malabrigo Rio yarn.

knit class with Renee Callahan

I had a lovely class of learners. My job was pretty easy, as the students were already good knitters and I was just introducing them to a few new techniques.

ELK teaches knit techniques

Plied with tea and homemade sweet treats, it was an excellent evening of learning 2-colour cabling and cabling without a cable needle.

Plutoniummuffins knitsI am so pleased that the class went well and everyone came away with something new, which has lead to some great finished objects.

plutoniummuffins saguaro cowl

Allidecks saguaro hat

Stitchyalli’s Saguaro hat in a lovely combo of Fibre Company Terra yarns.

alittlebitoflucy Saguaro cowl

AlittlebitofLucy’s cowl is a triumph of moody Malabrigo purples.

I am pleased as punch to announce I’ll be teaching a ‘knit your first cardi’ class at Wild and Woolly. More details to come, but I would just like to say now that it’s gonna be a whole lot of awesomeness going on from 20 May-22 July. Boom.

Happy knitting,




My closest local yarn store is Wild and Woolly, run by the lovely Anna. I met Anna some time before she opened the shop and it is probably because I have seen some of the hard work (angst, even?) that goes into opening a shop that I am really rooting for her to succeed.  So I was pretty excited when we started to chat about me designing a pattern in her latest addition to the shop–several gorgeous shades of Malabrigo Rios.

Knitting Yarn: Malabrigo Rios

What I wanted to design was a cowl that worked with two colours, one of which was an especially beautiful variegated yarn.  I always find these yarns very appealing in the skein, but when it comes time to knitting it up, I was never quite sure what to do with it. So I designed something to show off the colourwork, giving each yarn it’s own space to shine, but remains simple and enjoyable to knit.

I have worked 2-colour cables before with the Duelling Cables headband, and the technique is ohh so satisfying. There is just something flashy about 2-colour cables, a tiny bit of showing off, but in a nice, knitty way. The result was Saguaro–named for the distinctive cactus the cables resemble.

Cosy Saguaro Hat and Cowl

The hat and cowl combination together use exactly 2 skeins of Malabrigo Rios.  Each begins and ends with striped ribbing and then goes on to the Saguaro cable pattern.

Saguaro Hat by Renée Callahan

The Rios is a lovely, bouncy Merino with intense colour and a joy to work with. The variegated Candombe colourway was really interesting-it continually evolves, changing to incorporate more yellow, then more purple, then browny-green hues.

Saguaro Hat and Cowl by Renée Callahan 1

To celebrate this lovely yarn and my new pattern, we are having knit-along at Wild and Woolly Ravelry group starting 16th March and ending 6th April. For anyone in the London area, I will be teaching a class on the 2-colour cabling technique Wednesday 18 March at Wild and Woolly, from 6:30-8:30 pm.  It would be great if you could join us! Please contact the shop to reserve a space.

The Saguaro pattern is available for download here!

Happy knitting,