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Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Sunny London

Last week I was in London for six days. The main reason for my trip was to attend the DoTerra European Convention but I found time for some sightseeing too.

The first afternoon I arrived in London, I headed straight to the Victoria & Albert Museum and the Fashioned from Nature exhibition. It was a really fascinating exhibition about how materials from nature had been used for fashion over the last couple of 100 years including how the dyeing techniques and the fabrics were very damaging to our environment and how fashion designers are becoming more environmentally aware now.

The dress below really horrified me as I approached it until I got really close and saw that it wasn't made from animal skin but it's made entirely from beads. I appreciate the amount of work and skill that's gone into it but I still wouldn't feel comfortable wearing it.

After the museum, I hired a bike from one of the Santander docking stations scattered around  central London. I cycled through Hyde Park and past the Serpentine lake (below).

I left my bike near Oxford Street and did a bit of window shopping. I ended up in Carnaby Street which is such a fun, colourful area.

On Wednesday I visited Knit With Attitude. I loved the shop and the selection of yarn on display. Maya, the owner, is  Norwegian and has a few ranges of Scandinavian yarns.

I got these two skeins of linen. Each skein has approx 400m so I'm planning to combine them into a light summer shawl. I'd like to get this design on the needles asap but I need to finish something first.

I had a couple of short trips into London in the late afternoon/evening and on my final day in London, I spent the day with Vanessa and we did a lot of the touristy places. I'll share a few photos below.

Neal's Yard in Soho.

Cambridge Circus

Regent Street looking patriotic.

Buckingham Palace

My favourite was visiting Covent Garden as there were some really beautiful, colourful flower displays.

I had a great trip. It was warm and sunny the entire time. I enjoyed spending some time with Vanessa. I also met up with my sister and her family who were over from Norway and the DoTerra Convention was amazing! Such an inspiration to see the heart of this company. I'll talk more about that in another post though.

Of course I got a bit of knitting done. Not quite as much as I'd hoped though. But I did finish my Zauberball Crazy socks.

I brought my lace project mainly to knit on in the hotel in the evenings but most evenings I got back late and I was tired so I didn't make as much progress on this as I'd hoped.

On the train home I'd planned to knit on my lace project but I was really tired so I cast on for my new sock and got past the afterthought heel in just four hours. Yarn is Rico Suberba Geysir, which I got from Truro Wool, and it's lovely to knit with.

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Monday, May 14, 2018

Mount's Bay - new pattern & kits

 I'm thrilled to introduce Mount's Bay

Several lace patterns are combined in this elegant crescent shawl which is knitted in a cotton/wool blend light weight yarn for beautiful drape. Wrap yourself in elegance with the Mount’s Bay shawl, inspired by the sweeping Mount’s Bay in Cornwall.

Mount's Bay is a shallow crescent shape worked from the top down in two colours of Navia Bumull (I used Lavender and Dark Grey). I was asked if it was a similar shape to Murano and although they're both crescents, this uses a different crescent construction.

I haven't managed to get modelled photos yet so here are a couple of selfies of how I'm most likely to wear this shawl.


Get 25% off the Mount's Bay pattern (not valid on kits) until Monday 21 May 2018 (midnight UK time). Use coupon code: mountsbay25.

I've listed a selection of new kits in a choice of colour combinations. I'm not doing pre-orders due to the length of time it takes for the yarn to get to me. But if your preferred colourway is sold out, please get in touch and I'll put you on a waiting list for new kits. I'm hoping to have more yarn in June. See the Mount's Bay kits here. Kits include yarn and pdf download of the pattern (needles not included).



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Thursday, May 10, 2018

A beautiful weekend

Last weekend we had a long weekend here in the UK. Vanessa was home so we added Tuesday and made it an extra long weekend. The weather was glorious. It felt like summer had arrived (it's gone again!) and I spent a lot of time sitting in the garden with my knitting.

Which meant I got a lot of knitting done and finished the first half of my new design. I'm a quarter through the second half. I need to finish it by Sunday evening if I'm going to wear it on my London trip next week which was my plan. Not sure I'll make it as the next few days are rather busy.

Look at the difference between the blocked lace (in the top piece) and the unblocked lace (in the bottom piece).

We did venture out a few times as well. One evening we went down to our local sea-side town, Looe, where we had fish and chips looking out over the river and then walked down to the beach and the Banjo pier. The view below is the Looe Town beach taken from the Banjo Pier.

The sea was calm, it was warm and most of the visitors had left for the day.

Simon and Vanessa posing for the photo. I told them to sit up straight.

A fishing boat returning to port.

On Monday we headed in the opposite direction to Minions on the edge of Bodmin Moor. This is near where Simon grew up and where I lived when I first moved here to work with horses in 1990. I used to ride around this area.

The weather was warm and the view was fairly good and we could just about see Dartmoor in the distance (photo below).

I've been struggling with knee pain since last summer but this last week it's been a lot better and I managed an hour's walk on the moors including a hill like the one below.

Just below Sharp Tor (the Tor you can see in the distance) was where I worked at a riding stables when I first moved here. The first summer I was here in 1989 the weather was like this, but hotter, for the two months I was here. So this walk really reminded me of my first summer here.

The old railway line we walked along back to the village of Minions. I used to ride along here 28 years ago.

After our walk we went to the village pub for a drink. A perfect English bank holiday.

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Monday, May 07, 2018

Essential Oil Basics

This month it's a year since I joined DoTerra and started seriously using essential oils to improve my health and well-being. I was looking for ways to improve my sleep and energy. I suffer from chronic pain, autoimmune hypothyroidism and chronic Vitamin D deficiency, all of which drain my energy and leaves me feeling tired but the pain means I don't always sleep that well. My job as a knitting designer and teacher is always busy but the last three years have been busier than I'd ever imagined. 

A year ago, I was just finishing my book (due out soon) and I was burnt out. I had just had my annual thyroid blood test and was told the 'results were normal' but I was feeling rubbish. I know that there's a big issue among people with underactive thyroids who feel that regular blood tests don't always show the full story and that synthetic thyroxine doesn't replace what out bodies produce naturally. I was starting to think about whether I needed to look into diet and lifestyle choices to improve my well-being.

I followed Tara Swiger on Instagram and she was talking about how essential oils were helping her, especially with emotional issues, and I was tempted to try them. I've always been drawn to essential oils and I used to have regular aromatherapy massages.

I bought some essential oils in my local chemist and health food shops. I wasn't really noticing a huge change so I decided to go for it and sign up for DoTerra (I enrolled under Tara). I hadn't tried DoTerra so only got three oils to start with: Peppermint, Smart & Sassy metabolic blend and Motivate Touch roller.

I immediately started building my collection of other oils and with hindsight I wish I'd started with a kit as it would have saved me so much money. 

As the summer progressed I started using oils for other issues including pain relief. I did a post about pain relief here but I'll do an updated one later this month. DoTerra are expected to release their new Copaiba essential oil at the European Convention in London next week and I'm so looking forward to trying it as members in the US, Canada and Australia who've already had this oil for a while are reporting great success with pain and emotional issues. I want to see how Copaiba works for me before I write another pain relief post. Copaiba is a cannabinoid and works with the cannabinoid receptors in our body. It's not from the Cannabis plant so it doesn't give you a high and Copaiba is legal. I'll share more about Copaiba after convention.

In the year since I've started using essential oils in my home I've slept better, been ill less, cut down on painkillers (gone from taking 8-10 Tramadol and Cocodamol per day to 5 of each per day), lost a little bit of weight (not as much as I'd hoped but my diet still needs improving), started exercising regularly, have more energy and my mood is more stable.

This is a long introduction to my new Essential Oil Basics video. In this video I share what essential oils are, why I chose DoTerra and why they're the no 1 essential oil company in the world with over 6 million members worldwide, the Top 10 oils that support 80% of your family's health needs and how you can get started with essential oils.

Or you can watch the video here.

If you have any questions after watching the video, please contact me by e-mail on Comments here are easily missed and doesn't give me a way to contact you.

If you're interested in trying essential oils for the first time, or you want to see the difference between DoTerra essential oils and the ones you currently use, or you're an essential oils sceptic, I'd love to send you a sample to try.

Why does DoTerra work on a membership basis? What does it mean to join DoTerra? DoTerra products are not sold in shops. They're only sold through independent Wellness Advocates like me. You can buy retail but it's not a good idea as you're paying full price. 

If you join as a wholesale customer, you get 25% off all products plus an opportunity to earn free oils, discounts and education. 

Apart from the 25% discount and the free oils, the best reason for joining DoTerra is that you get education and support. You get a membership of our private Facebook group where we share tips, education and chat about oils. You also get a Wellness Consultation with me where we come up with a plan for you to start using your oils. You also get ongoing support from me. You don't get this if you purchase oils through a shop.

If you'd like to go ahead and join, you can use my link here (please check that my ID number is in the Enroller/Sponsor field - 4636826). Choose Wholesale Customer if you want a regular membership. If you have any questions, just e-mail me on

You can read more about why I chose DoTerra and find other blog posts here and like my new Facebook page for daily tips and education.

Join my e-mail newsletter for inspiration and education about 

essential oils and other natural products.

Friday, May 04, 2018

The Knitter 124 - Two Designs

Issue 124 of The Knitter is in the shops in the UK now and I've got two patterns in this issue. 

First up is a beautiful christening gown, Beloved,  I designed for West Yorkshire Spinners Exquisite Lace. 

The Knitter says: 'This timeless christening gown by Anniken Allis has an heirloom quality, thanks to the use of Exquisite Lace, a very special yarn from British brand West Yorkshire Spinners. This laceweight blend of soft Falkland Island wool and mulberry silk knits up into the most luxurious fabric - perfect for creating precious knits'.

The gown comes in four sizes and the smallest two sizes only takes one skein and the largest two takes two skeins. Beloved is knitted in one piece from the top down with a raglan yoke. buttons along one raglan makes it easy to get on and off the baby. The yoke is in stocking stitch and the skirt showcases two traditional lace patterns.

Up next is Ginevra, a loose, lightweight top which is fabulously comfortable and effortlessly chic! 

When I designed this top, I set out to create a cross between a poncho and a sweater. The result is an asymmetric garment that's loose-fitting and easy to wear. The stripe pattern emphasizes the shaping and the bias fabric is achieved by working off-centre decreases on each side. Please check pattern notes re sizing and blocking before starting, which will help you achieve a good fit and finish.


Ginevra requires quite aggressive blocking to pull it into shape but the result is a top with beautiful drape. 

The Knitter 124 is in the shops in the UK now. 

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