MAKER SPOTLIGHT: COSY THROWS BY HARRIET THOMAS

MAKER SPOTLIGHT: COSY THROWS BY HARRIET THOMAS
Lara Pollard-Jones

Harriet is the face behind Cosy Throws; an award-winning Welsh enterprise that has been growing in leaps and bounds!  No only does she work with our wool, but she also keeps her own Ryeland sheep for their wool.

 

When did you start your craft?

I started in 2020 during lockdown! I really wanted a chunky knit throw as I thought they looked really effective so went straight onto the internet to purchase one. I couldn’t believe how expensive they were! The size I wanted was coming in around £700 and with a young baby and pets I just didn’t want to spend that sort of money on a blanket. I decided to purchase some wool off the internet and YouTubed how to arm knit. It’s fair to say I made many mistakes at the beginning and looking back I wish I had gone on a workshop to learn how to do it face to face, but never the less 2 weeks later I had my finished blanket and I was so pleased with it. I showed family and friends and before I knew it I had several people wanting me to make them items. At the time I was a pianist and with lockdown all my work had stopped so I decided to set up a Facebook page (Cosy Throws) and started taking orders for throws I would make myself.

 

What do you like best about it?

I find arm knitting so relaxing which is hilarious as I can’t knit with needles to save my life! I love the fact that the wool is so chunky that you can make a huge blanket in under an hour. I also find it lovely that I don’t need any tools to do my knitting. It’s just me and the wool. Even for things I sculpt like bunny rabbits and baskets it’s all made with my fingers and nothing else and I just find that lovely. I run a lot of workshops and I just love how total beginners can come and comment on how relaxing they have also found it and can’t wait to make their next item, it really is so good for your mental health.

 

Do you have a favourite thing to make?

I absolutely love making pet beds and getting sent pictures of cats and dogs enjoying themselves in their new beds! It is probably one of the most technical things I make as you have to get a very tight circular structure for the base which is firm yet soft for them to lie on and contrast that with softer walls so that when they rest their head on it its not too ridged. The biggest I made was for a Great Dane and It was so comfy I did consider making an “adult version” pet bed! (WoW note: we would like to fill the office with adult pet beds, please)

 

Why is crafting important to you?

I think it’s so good for your mental health and when you’re knitting you can just relax and focus on the activity and not all the little stresses of life. I am extremely fortunate to be able to say that Cosy Throws has now become my full time job and the piano playing has become a hobby. The crafting world is so lovely as you get to meet so many amazing people and get inspired by their creations too. About 6 months into my knitting we decided to take the plunge and buy some sheep of our own and learn how to look after them having never had livestock before and learn how to card and felt the wool. Seeing all the time and effort that goes into prepping the wool massively highlighted to me what an amazing job World of Wool do on such a large scale!

 

What are your preferred products to use?

I’m extremely lucky that in my line of knitting I do not need to use any tools, just the wool. If prepping the wool myself from my sheep I have found the Drum Carder 72 from UncleKolya produces the best results and if you are shearing the sheep yourself and want to use it for wool I would highly recommend using the Outback Cordless Sheep Clippers as they make the fleece come off like butter and with no cord you don’t get wrapped up. I absolutely love seeing the amazing wool created by the WOW Team. It is such a talent and the brighter the better in my opinion!  My all time favourites have to be "Candy Floss" and "Bubblegum". The blends created by the team are always so vibrant and they do not stain or smell! 

 

Do you have any advice for anyone wanting to take up your craft?

Don’t delay any longer! There are literally no down sides and it’s a lovely community to be a part of! I would caution you not to fall for the trap I see so many people fall for by buying synthetic wool! You see the price tag and think “oh great that’s cheap” but I promise you within a few uses you’ll see why it was so cheap! Youtube videos are also really helpful for learning how to armknit. BeCozi is an amazing blogger, I learnt a lot from her helpful videos!

 

What's your favourite thing about World of Wool?
(The leading question strikes again!)

Not only do they produce amazing quality wool and dyes but the team themselves are also the best. They go above and beyond to keep their customers happy, they are constantly bringing the new styles and blends to the table and are extremely reasonably priced. I would love to go and visit them one day and  wish them all the success for the future!

 

You can find Harriet online through her website and also on Facebook and Instagram.  

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