Knitting and crochet tips from The Organic Wool Shop, at Tamarisk Farm, Dorset

This section is still being written - lots more to come soon so keep coming back to check!

I have always enjoyed knitting and been reasonably good at it and I have always wanted to be able to crochet. My experience of having our own very beautiful and varied wool is that the most important tip is: just do it.

On that basis, I learned to crochet at a very basic level by using the pages at the start of a book on crochet edgings and I am thrilled with the hat I made for myself without a pattern as my second attempt ever in crochet - link to Ellen's hat. If I can, you can!

Following on from that my main tips are

    1. Choose a project that you really want to make - something you will use yourself or you know will be a welcome gift to someone you love.

    2. Make your first project quite small and quite simple

    3. Choose yarns you will enjoy using.

If you like to be sure what you will make, find a pattern you really like and follow it with care, including the information about tension. Slight differences in tension can make or break a project. This means that you need to be willing and able to do a little arithmetic or you need to do a little experimenting. Knitting several samples on different needle sizes until you match the tension on the pattern may suit you better that doing careful arithmetic.

You can get knitting needles and crochet hooks cheaply from charity shops or you can get lovely new ones. Either work well and you have very different satisfactions from the two systems!