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We hardly know where to begin, there’s such news to tell you.

This is our favorite kind of day, when we get to share something we’ve been anticipating for a long while.

A brilliant new book. A delicious new yarn.

Our favorite knitting brainiacs, Jen and Jim Arnall-Culliford, bring us a new volume in their how-to series, Something New to Learn About Lace. And (amazingly) they have created a brand-new yarn, Something to Knit With—their first!—to go with this book. It’s cause for celebration, truly.

The Book


You know: intentionally making holes in your knitting. This most exquisite sort of knitting, traditional or modern, may seem daunting at first glance.

All we can say is that we wish we’d had this book when we first attempted to knit lace. We would have saved ourselves a whole lot of trauma. We would have felt more confident in our early days of lace knitting. We would have had Jen’s wise counsel on things to watch out for. We would have been happier, calmer, and probably better looking along the way.

Jen knows how to dissect a technique and explain it in the clearest possible way. She is a meticulous thinker, so she brings a truly beautiful precision to what she’s teaching us.

The fundamentals of knitting lace are all covered in Something New to Learn About Lace. By the end of these 72 pages, you will have a grip on so many things that will set you on a path to knitting lace. Step-by-step photo tutorials show exactly how to proceed. You’ll learn:

  • What is lace?
  • Working yarn overs
  • Reading lace charts
  • Using lace charts to read your knitting
  • Fixing mistakes
  • Using stitch markers
  • Adding a lifeline
  • Reading your knitting
  • Picking up a missed yarn over
  • Tinking (unknitting) stitches
  • Fixing an error further back
  • Blocking lace
  • Blocking curved edges
  • Garter tab cast-on method
  • Making larger holes in your knitting
  • Working into double yarn overs
  • Even larger holes

In addition, eight free video tutorials by Jen will be available online here at MDK.

As with A Year of Techniques and Something New to Learn About Cables, this new book includes fresh, original patterns that give you a great place to try out the techniques.

Something to Knit With 4ply Yarn

Martina Behm’s Nissolia Shawl:

Something to Knit With 4ply Yarn in Cheeks and Storm

Bithynica Shawl by Jen Arnall-Culliford:

Something to Knit With 4ply Yarn in Lawn

Donna Smith’s Aphaca Scarf:

Something to Knit With 4ply Yarn in Mist

And Aphaca Baby Blanket (baby not included, alas):

Something to Knit With 4ply Yarn in Beach

Brand New, for the First Time Ever: Jen and Jim’s Yarn

The photo at the top of our post captures exactly what we love about Jen and Jim. With joy and a smile (they make it look so easy!), they have just launched the very first yarn of their own design.

It’s called Something to Knit With 4ply.

What is this new yarn? It’s lovely, a blend of 70% Highland wool and 30% superfine alpaca. It is soft, tender, and beautifully spun. It comes in a range of ten shades that range from gentle to vivid. This is the yarn that will make these lace projects shine, given that the combination of fibers provides the loft of wool and the drape of alpaca.

The soft colors are so gentle.

The vibrant shades will make you smile.

We are honored and thrilled that they have let us offer it to you in the MDK Shop, here in the U.S. (If you are in the United Kingdom or otherwise not in the U.S., you can easily order yarn as well as the book directly from Jen and Jim at their website, Arnall-Culliford Knitwear. You’ll get a shipment faster than we can ship to you from the U.S., and you’ll be directly supporting these talented people.)

Jen is on call in the Arnall-Culliford Knitwear Ravelry group, a genial collection of knitters who are getting awfully good at knitting at this point.

We hope you’ll jump in on this latest knitting adventure. It feels so amazing to get the hang of lace.


  • Ok.. Just died and went to heaven.

  • You had me at the book cover. Oh swoon.

    I have never been one for lace shawls. I was raised by people from the South and every home had a lot of lace. To me, most lace shawls no matter how lovely, seemed like they were swept from the dining table or piano and thrown around one’s shoulders on the way out the door. Like Scarlett with the drapes, only I knew I would more likely look like Carol Burnett’s version of that. (Miriam Felton’s Icarus being the exception, but when it was published in 2006 I didn’t have the confidence or skills!)

    These are beautiful and just right for me! I know too that I will learn a lot. What more can I ask for? I’m off to order.

  • WOW!! Got to have it! Just gotta!

  • OMG!! I thought for sure if I kept scrolling, that there would also be a conversion book for CROCHET!! My personal passion. Being taught both by my perfect mother of 9 kids, yes she had the patience, to teach 4 girls, knitting, sewing, crochet and cooking.
    I loved crochet, and stuck with it, all the other are masters of there own passions.
    I have 100’s of finished items, I give a lot away, but now I’m a great Gramma. Nobody really wants anymore hats, blankets etc., So I’ve been working on embellishments, to soup up my creations.
    Please, teach me how to create lace with crochet, or maybe I’ll have to beat ya to it.
    Don’t stress about that, I have the ability to create my own patterns, but not the patience to recreate them!! So, get busy, I’ll wait for your book.

  • I should really be supporting my fellow Brit designers here but I am in two minds about this combo. I am a relatively novice lace knitter so I am sure the technique element of the book would be useful, although I am very much a chart knitter. My guess is that the Highland wool is Peruvian Highland wool (I note that no-one seems to state this). I thought that the Donna Smith baby pattern was beautiful and a novice knitter could probably do it; her large shawl was less successful because of the boring lace pattern that formed most of the design (there is much less of this on the baby pattern). I thought Martina Behm’s pattern was the pick of the bunch (normally I am not really a fan of garter stitch) and I thought it worked best with the yarn. Jen’s pattern was okay (I’ll admit I don’t like that shade of green). I think the pattern may work better with a woollen-spun yarn (Jen has her yarn spun at John Arbon’s, an excellent small mill but he spins wholly worsted as far as I am aware). I think the pattern would look well in a Shetland yarn or maybe Tukuwool fingering, which is a Finnish yarn. I appreciate the detailed description about what’s in the book though. Much appreciated. Though I am not sure about the combination of yarn and patterns, I think that this yarn would suit standard 4 ply/fingering weight patterns, say a cardigan.

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