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This is big. We are chuffed. We are gobsmacked.

We are delighted to announce a new series that has us eager to cast on: A Year of Techniques.

We hope you’ll dive in with us on what promises to be an incredible journey—beginning March 1.

The Game Plan

Imagine this:

Each month, we’re going to learn a new technique. But rather than a bunch of swatches and test pieces, we’ll be making a cool, small project—a handknit we’ll be glad to have, glad to give. This is how to do your holiday gift knitting with no rush!

Each month, a new pattern arrives, a design by one of the knitting world’s brightest talents.

Each month, we’ll post a free tutorial video that shows you how to do the technique of the month.

Each month, you can order up the beautiful yarns for each project from MDK—a palate cleanser amid whatever other knitting you may be up to. A great bit of fun to receive in the mail—a skein of this, a batch of colors.

• Join in as you please, month by month. We hope you’ll see this as a way to sharpen your game, learn from experts and also from fellow knitters. And, as always here at MDK: there’s fun ahead.

Our Fearless Leaders

Jim and Jen Arnall-Culliford have created A Year of Techniques. They are flat-out brilliant. Jen is one of the knitting world’s superb technical editors and teachers, and she’ll be the star of the tutorial videos each month. Jim is the producer (and pattern designer) making it all happen.

The words that come to mind about Jen and Jim are: Cheerful. Cool headed. Supersmart. To take lessons from this pair is something we’d jump to do. Now, we don’t even have to head to England to learn with these very special teachers.

The Designers and Patterns

With this gang of knitting designers, you can be sure that the patterns are going to be very cool. Each month we’ll reveal the new pattern. We’ve had a peek, and we’re going to be making them all.

Bristol Ivy: Known for unusual construction, Bristol’s designs are always heaps of fun to knit.
Ella Austin: Ella has an incredible talent for colorwork, which she often uses in her irresistible knitted toy designs.
Ella Gordon: Shetland Wool Week Patron in 2016, Ella is known both for her wonderful colorwork designs, and for her extensive collection of vintage knitwear.
Martina Behm: Martina’s patterns are the magic combination of moreishly easy to knit and interesting in construction.
Mary Jane Mucklestone: Mary Jane has a deserved reputation as an inventive stranded colorwork specialist, and her Stopover yoked sweater was a runaway hit last February!
Rachel Coopey: Entertaining to knit and amusing to wear, Rachel’s sock and accessory patterns exude joy.
Romi Hill: Stunning the knitting community with the beauty of her lace designs, Romi has an instantly recognizable, gorgeous aesthetic.
Sarah Hatton: Working often with Rowan, Sarah has created many iconic designs, often featuring beautiful cables and texture.
Tin Can Knits: Famous for their baby-to-big sizing, extensive tutorials, and colorful designs, Tin Can Knits is the creative collaboration of Emily Wessel and Alexa Ludeman.
Woolly Wormhead: Hat architect extraordinaire, Woolly’s never-ending creativity and clever constructions make her patterns hard to put down.
Jen Arnall-Culliford: In demand as a meticulous editor of knitting patterns for others, Jen is sometimes tempted into creating her own designs.
Jim Arnall-Culliford (VeufTricot): Jim is somewhat bemused by the turn life has taken of late—editing and designing knitwear wasn’t where he thought his chemistry degree would lead him!

The Techniques

Jen writes: “Beyond the headline skills below, I hope that each pattern will demonstrate some of the different ways that those skills can be combined, and also the different situations in which each technique can be used.

“We have a selection of nifty cast ons, some colorwork techniques, and many ways to make your knitted fabric three-dimensional. We hope that having worked through A Year of Techniques with us, you’ll be inspired to continue to develop your skills in the areas that most interest you. Indeed, I’m certain that each month in the knitalong threads there will be great suggestions for further reading if you’ve found a new skill that you love and want to widen your knowledge.”

Here are the skills:

  • Afterthought heels and thumbs
  • Garter stitch grafting
  • Helical stripes
  • Intarsia
  • Judy’s magic cast on (both for starting closed tubes, and as a provisional cast on)
  • Knitting on a border
  • Mastering dominance in Fair Isle knitting
  • Pinhole cast on (also known as Emily Ocker’s circular cast on)
  • Reading cables from charts
  • Short rows
  • Steeks
  • Turning a heel

How to Join the Fun

Here’s how to be a part of A Year of Techniques:

• Order the book now, either ebook or ebook/print edition from Jim and Jen. Each month from March through August, you’ll receive a new pattern and tutorial as a Ravelry download. The print and ebook edition of the entire Year of Techniques will arrive in September.

• Order yarns. Jim and Jen are offering yarn kits, beginning with a Spring Kit with the yarns for the first three projects. Beginning March 1, we at MDK be offering the yarns as well, here in the US and Canada, month by month. Can’t wait to show them to you.

• Join the knitalong. We’ll have a monthly knitalong going in The Lounge for each project.

• Get ready to have a great time. We have long wanted to feature excellent video tutorials on MDK. With A Year of Techniques, Jen and Jim have created an extraordinary project for us all to enjoy. It all starts March 1: get ready!


  • Quick question, Ann … the book is from the UK, any chance it can will be shipped from the US (for the print edition)?

    Sounds intruguing and fun … here’s to learning new things!

    • Hi Gail! Until September 2017, A Year of Techniques in print/ebook, and ebook only editions is available exclusively from Arnall-Culliford Knitwear. We have tried really hard to keep our shipping as affordable as possible. You could consider the ebook only option if the shipping is making it unaffordable. Many thanks for your interest! We can’t wait to start knitting along with everyone.

  • Can Jen and Jim please take over for POTUS and VPOTUS?

    • P-L-E-A-S-E MAKE IT SO!!

    • If only

    • Ugh.

    • You’re too sweet! But I fear those jobs would leave us no time for family or knitting! 😀

      • It is reported that POTUS spends nine hours per day playing on his phone, watching tv, having ‘executive time’, that could easily be your knitting time

  • I’ve been fretting about not doing enough mental exercises for my middle aged brain, and now I realize that I can work my mind with new techniques! Also I can rationally invest in more yarn. Excellent news!

  • I am so excited about this!!! Can’t wait. It’s an excellent idea!!!

  • Can’t wait! What a great idea.

  • This is exactly what I’m looking for to further develop my knitting skills! Thank you for making this happen.

  • So exciting! So fun! Will the MDK kits be the same as the UK kits and do you know what the price will be? Any chance we can pre-order? And just like Gail I’m wondering about a US run of books instead of paying shipping from the UK.

    • Hi Mama Urchin! The MDK kits will just be the yarn for the monthly projects, whereas our kits are for 3 projects (the current kit is March, April and May), and include the kit bag too. I’m afraid that the book itself is only available from Arnall-Culliford Knitwear until September 2017. There is an ebook only option if the shipping from the UK is too much. We have tried really hard to keep our shipping prices as affordable as possible for international customers. I hope that helps! Happy knitting! Jen

      • So does the kit from Arnall-Culliford include the patterns?

        What happens with the book after Sept 2017?

        Sorry for the questions-maybe I should finish my coffee first and re-read.

        • Hi Gerry! The kit is just yarn + bag. As the print book is shipped separately in September it needed to be sold separately. If you buy the book from us now, then you get immediate access to the Welcome pdf, and then the remaining patterns and ebook delivered by email monthly. Come September the print books will ship if you’ve ordered a print option. I hope that makes sense. 🙂 Thanks for your interest!

  • I’m in!!!! This is awesome!!!!!

  • This is wonderful, and I’m in in in.

  • I’m in! Got my yarn kit and my book ordered, and looking forward to the fun. The shipping was actually very, very reasonable, especially compared to most rates to Canada 🙂 Or within Canada, for that matter.

    • Thank you Jane! 🙂

  • I’m in! E-book ordered & I can’t wait to begin.

  • I am a little confused. Will this start this March 2017. If so, does that mean the PDF patterns will be available immediately and print to follow? Thanks.

    • Hi Karen! You can purchase now, and you’ll receive a welcome pdf. Then each month, starting on 1st March, the new monthly pattern will be uploaded and you’ll get an email telling you it’s ready. That will happen until September, and at the start of September you’ll get the remaining patterns as a full ebook. And if you’ve ordered the print book, it will be shipped then too (September 2017). I hope that makes sense. It’s like a Mystery club at this point, but you can jump in and join at any stage. 🙂 Happy knitting!

      • Will we be charged again in September? It looks like the same price for both options. I want to be sure of the total price before ordering the book + ebook.

        • If you go for the print book + ebook option, you will receive the digital patterns as they are released and the print book will be shipped to you in September. The difference in cost between the options is simply the cost of shipping for the print book.

  • Great idea, and an amazing gang!

  • I’m so in. (Kit purchased, next to pre-order the book.)

    That said, I’m totally failing on my resolution to buy less yarn this year…

  • Another word that comes to mind is ADORABLE. Such a great idea.

    • Thank you Max! 🙂

  • Ah, if only knitting were my day job. You ladies are relentless.

    • If we order the kits now, will they be coming from MDK? I’m a little confused!

      • Hi Phyllis! MDK will be selling kits from 1st March. The only place to buy the book though is from us (Arnall-Culliford Knitwear). We will be the only outlet selling the book (print/ebook and ebook only options) until September 2017. We’ve done our best to keep the shipping on the book as affordable as possible too – the book is £7.50 to ship to the States. There is an ebook only option too. Hope that helps. Happy knitting!

      • The only kits on sale today are from us (Arnall-Culliford Knitwear). It’s a kit for the Spring projects (March, April and May), and includes 375g of yarns plus a kit bag. These kits will be shipping from the UK around 27th February 2017, and shipping to the US costs £7.50. Alternatively, MDK will be selling monthly kits from 1st March, with the yarn for the March project. I hope that helps.

        • I meant when will MDK be selling the kits? And should the book be ordered from MDk to save on postage?

        • Thanks! When will you be selling the kits? And should I order the book from you also?

  • Would this be good for a beginner?

    • We have aimed A Year of Techniques at knitters who have a few projects under their belts. I would say you would need to be happy with most of the following things (a gap or two would be fine as long as you’re feeling adventurous):
      General casting on and binding off.
      Knit & purl.
      You would probably have tried knitting in the round already.
      It would be good to be happy with increases, decreases and some basic other stitches like cables or slipping stitches.
      You need to be happy with the general form of written knitting patterns.
      I think that’s about it. So it really just depends on what sort of beginner you are. 🙂 There will definitely be plenty of experienced knitters on hand to cheer you on along the way. I hope that helps!

  • Is this suitable for beginning knitters?

    • We have aimed A Year of Techniques at knitters who have a few projects under their belts. I would say you would need to be happy with most of the following things (a gap or two would be fine as long as you’re feeling adventurous):
      General casting on and binding off.
      Knit & purl.
      You would probably have tried knitting in the round already.
      It would be good to be happy with increases, decreases and some basic other stitches like cables or slipping stitches.
      You need to be happy with the general form of written knitting patterns.
      I think that’s about it. So it really just depends on what sort of beginner you are. There will definitely be plenty of experienced knitters on hand to cheer you on along the way. I hope that helps!

  • I can’t wait!

  • Mwah ! Love you, love des projets rassembleurs, love the different accents and perspectives that you are bringing us. Brilliant, you all are !

  • Irresistible! Book ordered!

  • Sorry to be so late. I’m very excited about this project. If I order the book, will I be able to get the ebook through Ravelry? I really like paper, and I really don’t have a place to store efiles.

    • I’m wondering exactly the same thing- will the e-book/patterns be available in our Ravelry library

      • Hi MKG and Knitnorth!
        Yes absolutely! When you buy through our online shop, there is a button on the order confirmation page that allows you to automatically add your product to your Ravelry library. There’s a post in our Ravelry group here that gives some screen shots to help you.
        I hope that helps!

        • Awesome!! Thanks!

  • Oh, I’m in. I have no resistance. Woohoo!

  • How do I sign up for this and get the book? Instructions will be coming on March 1?

  • Oh. I’m in. Knit one thing a month is my New Year’s resolution every year. Perhaps this year I will succeed.
    Ann & Kay: in the interest of planning the next year of learning… how about projects to learn how different yarns make different fabrics. It started at Christmas when my family was willing to believe but wasn’t quite sure I knew what I was talking about when I said cashmere was goat. (Are you sure it’s not a process?) Then while shopping I ran across some BFL. I had to google it and ended up reading an interesting blog about BFL v. Merino. Then after reading your year of techniques, I skipped over to read about Kate Davies’ new purchases of corriadale and cheviot base. And who could forget your tales of rambouillet? So I thought, wouldn’t it be nice to understand how those choices make the final garment successful. I guess I could read the book or take the craftsy class but the year of forum sounds fun.
    Just a thought. Sorry for the long ramble.

  • When you say, “join in as you please, month by month,” does that mean we can order just that month’s pattern and yarn, or do we have to order the whole year’s worth of patterns? I’m a very slow knitter so I have to chose my projects wisely:)

    • You will need to purchase the entire ebook which contains all 12 patterns, but you can choose which projects you’d like to make. The videos are all free, and you can use your own yarns whenever you like.

  • I ordered my kit yesterday and the postman delivered it at 9:30 this morning – now that’s efficient! The yarns are gorgeous and I am so intrigued to see where this project takes me.

    • I should add that I’m in the UK otherwise it appears that some time travel has taken place – it’s efficient but not that efficient!

  • Will the casts of Victoria and Downton Abbey make appearances in the video tutorials? Doesn’t everyone in England knit together?!

  • Well this sounds like a big jolly year-long outing! How do you all come up with this stuff? Once again, I am reminded of a quote from Jerry Garcia: “My ideas are more like rats in cages than tigers in the street.”

  • From your website it seems that the e-book and the e- book plus print edition are the same price. Is there extra shipping to pay for the book, or don’t I see that until I check out?

    • Hi Valerie! Yes, the shipping is added once you’ve input your address. The print+ebook shipping is £3 to UK; £5 to Europe and £7.50 to the rest of the world (inc USA). I do hope that helps! Best wishes, Jen

  • JUst ordered the e-book and the spring kit. No help for the yarn-addicted.

  • Will we be able to buy the yarns in the UK?

    • All of the yarns we’ve selected for the 12 projects are available in the UK. The yarn brands are covered in our blog.

      You can buy kits from that provide the yarns for the Spring (March, April and May) projects, with more kits to come for Summer, Autumn and Winter. There are not that many left, so you’ll have to be quick if you’d like one.

  • I’ve signed up and I think it sounds great, but I am confused abt the fiber purchasing. Why is it available after the patterns? I would like to have the yarn when the pattern is available, so i can start. What if you run out of yarn? A 3 month purchase option like the English version would be great.

  • I bought the print and e-books and received first an email receipt and then one with a link to a “welcome package” download. I clicked on the link and then on the download button which was to bring me to the welcome PDF (I think). But nothing happened. In fact, nothing on this page led to anything but a “this shop has not been set up yet” message.

    Help, please.

    • Hi Ruth Ann, I think you are all sorted out now. If anyone else is having any difficulty with their download, please do contact us directly via our website so that we can investigate for you.
      Happy knitting! Jen

  • Now that the yarn kits are sold out is it possible to purchase the yarns directly from you?? If anyone isn’t able to complete their purchase could I please be on a waiting list??

  • Sounds very interesting. I’ll look for further details.

  • This is terrific and I’m looking forward to learning some things!! I’m packing for a trip this evening and will be away on 3/1 when the pattern is released… I have the yarn, but am wondering if you can tell me what type/size of needles I’ll need for the March pattern/technique. Thank you!

    • Hi Vicki! I hope I am catching you in time to let you know that 2.5mm needles should be about right for the March pattern. 🙂 I hope that helps!

  • I am excited about the year of projects, I do own a skein of Zauberball that I love,but from looking at the pattern information available, it looks as like it uses around half the ball. I would rather keep my Zauberball for a project that would use all of it. It there something unique about Zauberball that is essential to this pattern, or could I substitute a different yarn. I’m not able to afford another ball of Zauberball, so if that’s important I’ll sit this one out.

    • A Zauberball is indeed a precious thing, so I totally understand if you want to hold onto it for a larger project. If you have two colors of a sock weight yarn, you can totally work the pattern successfully. It will simply have a more uniform look to it, rather than the color-shifting thing that happens with Zauberball.

      • Another option: if you felt like using your Zauberball, you could make two versions of the pattern—get your gift knitting going ahead of time!

  • What is the gorgeous handmade sweater Jen is wearing above in the photo of her knitting on the dpns? Is it a Stopover?

    • Yes, that is my Stopover. 🙂 I wear it all the time!

  • Want to sign up but unable to see how???

  • I LOVE this idea! Still considering if I can do this…
    I do have one question, and that is, what pattern is Ann wearing? The body is gray and the colorwork includes aqua around the neckline and at the cuffs. I think it is very lovely and am wanting to try my hand at something like this.
    Thank you for all the great ideas!

    • I think that’s my Stopover sweater that you mean. 🙂 Here’s a link to my Ravelry project page so that you can find the pattern and yarn details: I knitted it in the MDK bangoutasweater craze of 2016.

      • Thank you SO much! I had scanned Ravelry every evening hoping to find it!

  • How do I join the knitalong

  • Hello, I tried to order the e-book for A Year of Techniques but my computer tells me that you are not a shop. Silly computer. How can I order the e-book?
    I look forward to hearing from you.
    Barb Ruane

  • After having purchased the e-book, I wonder if it would be possible to pay for the shipping and receive the hard copy when it’s available? I think this would be a good book to add to my library.

  • How can I start NOW? I missed the first and since this is March 25 probably the 2nd episode. Thx

    • If you buy the ebook or print+ebook combination here: then you’ll be all set to join in. There are people joining in all the time, and the second pattern was only released today, so you’re all set. 🙂 I hope that helps.

  • So, I’m a year late to the party! How did I miss this? Is the book and the kits still available?

  • Just getting back in to knitting and stumbled across this. Are the patterns and kits still available?

  • I just discovered your site and thus missed the A Year Technique journey. I also noticed that your printed book is no longer available on AmazonUSA. Although I like the ebook I prefer to have a hard copy. Please advise. Thank you.

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