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Out of the Dark Make-Along 2023

We're almost at the end of 2022! For me it's been a rather difficult but fundamentally good one, and I'm looking forward to a fresh year. I'm not really one for resolutions or focus words, but I do like to take the new year as a chance to look back on the last twelve months and consider some goals for the next. And I'm definitely looking forward to a lot of knitting!

Once the festive season is over we head into what can feel like the longest part of winter. Here in southern England, outside is all grey and brown, and the fresh hope of Spring feels a long way away. So to bring a bit of joy to the latter part of winter, I'm once again running my Out of the Dark Make-Along (or MAL). I'm hoping we can enjoy a bit of making together.

We'll be starting on 1st January, and I'll be going live on Instagram at 3pm GMT to kick things off and have a nice chat with you all and answer any questions. 

All projects that use Marina Skua patterns or yarn will qualify to enter – all crafts are welcome, including knitting, crochet, spinning, weaving and so on. If you're working from a pattern I've designed, you don't need to use my yarn, and if you're using my yarn you're welcome to knit someone else's pattern. I'll be glad to see any projects using up stash. Also, works in progress are more than welcome; it's great to see existing projects finished!

And here's the excellent news: there will be some great prizes. The more people participate, the more prizes there will be, so tell your crafty friends about it too! I'll be giving more details about prizes as we go on, but there will be some from makers and companies I love, along with some Skua goodies.

The make-along will run on both Instagram and my Patreon-exclusive Discord server. You can post on Instagram tagging @marinaskua in the photo and #OutOfTheDarkMAL2023 [edit to add: your Instagram profile needs to be public to enter, otherwise I won't necessarily be able to see and share your posts]. The Discord server has become a really lovely space to chat and share projects, so if you'd like to consider joining and take a look at the other benefits on offer, head over to my Patreon. If you post in both places, you get double entries for prizes! 

I really hope this will be a way I can get to know some of you better and see your lovely projects as you work on them. As for me, I'll be working on my husband's Christmas jumper (this isn't the first time he's received yarn and a sketch or swatch to unwrap!), which also happens to be a new design. I've swatched in four Mendip DK Sunny colours (Sheep, Teal, Yew and Night) and am really excited to cast on. 

The make-along starts on 1st January 2023, and runs until 20th March. At that point I'll draw winners for prizes. Then we'll have longer days, lighter evenings and spring flowers, and who knows, maybe I'll actually manage a good bit of gardening this year.

So to enter, begin posting about your plans on Instagram (remember to tag #OutOfTheDarkMAL2023 and @marinaskua so I can see all the posts at the end), or in the MAL-specific channel on Discord. I'm looking forward to seeing all the things you'll make.

Four balls of yarn in blues and greens, and a slightly messy knitted yoke swatch

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