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My knitting needles came out this weekend as I started work on all the Christmas presents my poor incredibly lucky loved ones will be getting come December. Knitting has come a long way in the last few years. Celebrity fans, the stitch 'n' bitch movement and a new wave of young, creative knitters have helped to bring the craft back into the public eye, and as a result knitting publications have got better and better. As we go into a season stacked full of amazing knitwear, here are some of my pattern picks. It's easier than it looks to create really professional looking pieces, and you know you'll never have the same shoddy machine-made creation as anyone else. Master the knit and the purl stitches, learn to cast on and off and from there it's really all about keeping count!

Free patterns: 'Cherie Amour' by Ashley Adams Moncrief for Knitty.com and Horseshoes Cardigan by Lien Ngo for Magknits.com. Keep reading for my pick of the patterns from the knitting mags.

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Knit1 is a handbag sized knitting & crochet mag aimed squarely at the stylish 18 - 34 market. From the people behind the ever-popular Vogue Knitting, it's packed with trends and uses affordable yarns that are easily substituted.

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Interweave Knits is a little more mature and country boho, with lots of lace, argyle and aran knits and a passion for muted palettes, soft yarns and really luxurious FO's (that's 'finished objects' in knitspeak).

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Rowan's bi-annual magazine is more like a pattern book, and is eagerly awaited by knitting devotees. The brand also makes yarn, so it's no surprise that everything in the mag is knit using the range. As one of the most highly-regarded knitting publications, they always get the biggest names designing patterns for them.

For loads more on knitting, including pattern picks and shop links, visit Crafty Crafty.