contact me at

my etsy shop


  • Would you like to award someone special a knitted rosette? See the pattern to knit one here!

  • Little Squares Scarf, (quick pattern).

  • Little Squares Scarf, (step-by-step pattern, with lots of step-by-step photos).

  • How to sew up crochet or knitting with an invisible stitch, step-by-step tutorial

  • Sisterhood Crochet Blanket pattern for square.

  • step-by-step pattern for Sisterhood Crochet Blanket square. Makes crocheting this pattern a doddle for beginners!

  • step-by-step tutorial for some basic crochet stitches

  • Tara's failsafe cup cake sponge recipe

  • knitted slipper pattern

blogs I read

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You are very brave to try to design something, I'm sure it will be beautiful once you have finished. I love the colour of the wool you are knitting with. I baulk at buying expensive wool, as nothing I have made to date actually fits. I probably should do a swatch, and properly calculate the number of stitches etc etc. All very complicated. Enjoy your weekend.

Planet Penny

Higgins here.. Reeeely sorry Douglas, been on my hols and missed your post. These keyboards are tricky aren't they? You look pretty good on the stairs, how d'you get up there? I can't do stairs...I have to grizzle 'till someone does picking up...My mum thinks your mum is reeeely good with that knitting stuff and wants that dress thing. Why don't they just grow fur? Funny things nooman beens aren't they? But they do love us...grrrmph for now, Higgyxxx


I absolutely adore those colours for your dress Vanessa - I can't wait to see the fair isle bit, it's going to look stunning. You are very clever going off into the unknown world of patternering. I know you will do a great job! Thanks for the new blog links - I peruse Crochet with Raymond regularly but the fair isle cushion one is new to me. Isn't that cushion of hers gorgeous? Fair isle will be my 'next big thing' but am currently trying to be more crochet savvy.All that counting of stitches and weaving in the colours may well be beyond me but I do want to have a go! Am strongly tempted - there is a colour knitting book in my basket at Amazon, am definitely inclined to whisk it off to the checkout. Your book looks wonderful, some really stunning designs. My mind is boggling at the mathematics of it all though - top down? Very intriguing. Rowan patterns are so gorgeously produced, I love your new one. So many things you have shared with us this evening; all of them lovely! Thanks Vanessa.

Raymond Meowski

Hello Douglas...
to tell you the truth, I'm not much of a dog-lover, but seeing as you are particularly attractive (in a purely platonic way of course) and on the other side of the world, you're not too bad, so hello then.....
And say hello to your sister from me too
Kind regards from Raymond Meowski I.

Alice and Raymond!!!

Hello Vanessa!
I admonished that rude Raymond, he has been terribly busy you see,chewing his toenails, turning his nose up at all of his food and pining after Karen who is away again...
I totally loved today's post Vanessa!!!
Now that I am navigating my way through the Harvey Kimono, I have an even deeper appreciation for you, o Goddess of Knit....
I love the jumper you are making in the Rowan, do you know, I go to Knitworld and I'm too scared to even stroke the Rowan wool, or pick it up and gently squeeze it, caress it's softness.... just in case I need it.... it may just have to become mine and at $15 for a teeny tiny ball I just cannot let that happen!!!!! The jumper is just gorgeous and it does look super comfy.... and wow, enjoy the experience of knitting with such amazing wool!
Yay, much love to you and yours this weekend! XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX


How exciting to be designing your own knitted dress. I must admit I would find knitting a dress very daunting.


Vanessa, it's so much fun reading your posts about the evolution of your dress designs! I think you encourage other knitters to try something new ... knowing that it will be an experiment.

The Rowan pattern and yarn looks very interesting.

I am delighted that you love Kristy's book as much I did, and that you've given it a wider audience. Glad also that Amazon is carrying it. We will have to compare notes when we finally get around to starting our own items from the top down.

Right now, I am still working on that cabled scarf and my multi-toned red socks. (And of course there are some crochet projects taking a short off stage break.)

Best wishes!


I'm looking forward to watching your progress on your dress.

That book wow. Another one on my ever growing wishlist.


I love that sweater you're knitting. The yarn is gorgeous too. It may be all one colour but you've got lots of texture to keep you interested.

Jenni at Baame Kniits

Wow Vanessa that Rowan pattern you are do

ing is beautiful and just screams! Cant wait to see if finished and such a lovely colour too!

Yay for doing us a dress pattern and yes I am sure knitting from the top down is the new way to go...makes sense doesn't it!

PS what is the difference between intarsia and fair aisle?? is it just the number of colours you use, or is intarsia a design/picture that does not take up the whole garment??

Veronika / Lalomino

That girl does not look happy in the Rowan catalogue!!

but Yay for you for doing a pattern!
and Boooo for me for not being able to knit....


Looks like a great book. Have to check it out! Thanks for showing the photos.

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I LOVE YOU,So send you hermes handbags.


Me encanta tu blog!
Te llevo a mis preferidos!
Saludos desde Uruguay.

I love your blog!
I take my favorite!
Greetings from Uruguay.


I would love to know how you get on with this book in practice - I looked at it, full of enthusiasm.. and then read the comments, which seemed to boil to the fact that it's full of mistakes and the patterns aren't all top-down or quite what they appear to be; I gather the dress on the title page is very simple with the "seams" being fake and crocheted on rather than the neat shaping it leads you to expect...??!! :O or is someone laying a fake trail??
I was put off buying, anyway, until I hear an opinion I can rely on!

Hang on, there's another message...

...Alina hiir, Diva tu sum, mi spllnggs not tuu gud n thow i'm inglsh cockr i spiik tgerman. stil, helo tu daxhunds faar awey... ;)) x

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Hello and welcome!

  • Hello, my name is Vanessa Cabban, and I'm so pleased you've dropped by! I'm an artist and illustrator, working from home. I have two Miniature wire-haired Dachshunds, Ellie and Douglas. I love being part of the blogosphere, reading your comments, and feeling like I'm part of a community. I hope you enjoy reading about my small world.

Books I have illustrated!

  • The Best Gift of All

  • Book and dvd,(narrated by Kevin Whateley), of Bringing Down the Moon

  • There's a House Inside My Mummy

  • The Magic Donkey Ride

  • Down in the Woods at Sleepytime

  • Dear Tooth Fairy

  • Dear Mermaid

  • No Place Like Home

  • Diamond in the Snow

  • Bringing Down the Moon