Wednesday, November 14, 2007

I Knit London, Ravelry Meet Up, a Technicolor Dreamcoat and a couple of WIPS!!

Now I've been and gone and loaded these photos in the wrong order! Bear with me, some of my photos are better than others, but I want to show you all the full flavour of the last few days! And what a last few days they have been!

Yesterday though, I went to Colinette. The lovely blogless No1Alicat suggested a Ravellers meet up at Colinette, and yesterday was the day! It was great for me as it meant I could also go to visit mum again as she has been a bit under the weather recently. As it turned out she had forgotten I was going bless her, but all in all yesterday was a lovely day. It was so nice to meet such lovely people, Chrispindle , Eluned , WyeSue, KraftyKath Alison and Lindsey.

Geographically WyeSue and I aren't that far away from each other - yet I keep meeting her at far away places, Colinette, Harrogate, London..... Sue, we must Knit and Natter together one evening.

I was very good yesterday. Eluned, I have discovered, is an enabler, and she enabled me to this lovely Jitterbug in the Sale Room. It is to make the lovely Swing from the Jitterbug book.

The lovely Sue gave me two skeins of this - it's the DK Colinette used to make before Cadenza, the colour is Sahara, isn't it lovely! Thank you Sue.

Now I hope that those of you who haven't been to Colinette will get a flavour of what it's like from these photos. It's impossible really to show the explosion of colour that hits you when you walk in, but it's a real inspiration.

And here we are, a Rogues Gallery! Mr A did remark that mine was the smallest bag, well spotted Mr A!

From left to right, me, Eluned, KraftyKath, No1Alicat and Chrispindle, and in the bottom photo Lyndsey. Sue had left by this time!
It was a pleasure to meet you all, I am sorry you couldn't make it Christina, hopefully next time!

I was almost home, and was overtaken by a police car, ambulance and two fire engines as I approached Fromes Hill, as I came down the other side I saw where thay had been heading to, they ( and others ) were at the scene of fatal accident. It was a sad end to a lovely day, and a test of my local geography as I found an alternative route home. And a salutory lesson to one who is sometimes not the most patient of drivers when stuck for miles behind a lorry! Sue, I will be more careful when I attempt to overtake in future, I promise!

Months ago I booked a ticket for myself to see Joseph, the plan was train down, lunch with my son, and maybe a couple of hours shopping. So I thought it was really thoughtful of IKnit London to organise the S'n'B day to give me something to while away my morning!!!
What a fab few hours - I managed to say hello to Woollywormhead who is looking just wonderful, Badger, who is looking equally wonderful, and spent a lovely couple of hours with Franney, Auntie Noo and the blogless Glynis and her lovely daughters! It was great to see you all, and I was sorry I had to leave when I did, but I had a wonderful time.
I was very good too! It seems I can resist everything with the exception of Socktopus and her wonderful yarns!

This is the Fyberspates Stall, featuring Sublime Spindles. I hadn't realised till I saw them that spindles come in different sizes for different yarns!!!!!! These spindles are works of art!

My camera took some absolutely rubbish photos on Saurday and I was so disappointed! But I would love to mention the lovely Knittiotherapy from whom I did some early Christmas shopping. Her shawl pins are fabulous! I took a photo but you wouldn't thank me for posting it!

Here are Auntie Noo and Franney.

A quick lunch with my son and it was in the theatre for 3:00 for Joseph! It was fab, and while Lee Mead was good, he wasn't great. The Narrator was exceptional though, as was "The King", all in all a good show to go and see.

A couple of WIPs - DD wants a black scarf - a PLAIN black scarf! Now I love my daughter, but this is doing my head in. I have 30" so far, 100g of Aran down, 100g to go! The Pattern is the One Row Handspun Scarf by Stephanie Pearl-McPhee and it's a great little pattern - just mind numbingly monotonous in black aran! But it's plain enough for DD, and beats garter stitch any day of the week!!!!!!

And a booga bag awaiting felting in Debbie Bliss SoHo - thank you terri! Started Friday evening, finished on the return train home, i-cord made Sunday.

And finally - yes, it's a FCS! In a Cadenza of unknown colour from Colinette's saleroom, this is currently being auctioned for Children in Need on the Crafty Threads'n'Yarns forum.

Thursday, November 8, 2007

Paying it Forward

All in all there is a great deal of goodness here in cyberspace. I've been very fortunate through forum life and blogland to meet both virtually and irl some lovely people. I think it must be a common interest in both knitting and craft making generally that sparks a friendship, and it's not that I don't have "real" friends or anything, but there is something very special about virtual friendship too.

So when I came across Paying it Forward on Becca'sblog I knew it was something I wanted to do. I was thrilled, if not a little nervous, about making something for such accomplished craftsters as Anni, Terri and Piglottie, and my initial plan was to sew something for them.

Then Anni, Anni of all people who designs and knits such wonderful shawls and lace, bid on, and narrowly missed, my FCS that I auctioned for Terri's Great North Run. Anni said several times that she always intended to make one, so I thought "why not make a FCS for Anni for PIF?" I had a yarn in mind, but when I went to Ally Pally and found Socktopus and her Smooshy yarn I thought "Anni" and so I bought a skein of Wisterious and here it is. The yarn knits like a dream and I love it! There are four extra pattern repeats in the shawl.

Forest Canopy Shoulder Shawl

Yarn: Smooshy 100% Superwash Merino

Shade: Wisterious

Needles: 5mm Pony Straights

I always find pink yarns so difficult to photograph accurately, but I hope you get the gist of the colours which are just lovely.

Now we move on to Terri. I had a different project in mind for Terri, but then thought perhaps I ought to spend the same time and effort on all my PIF gifts. So another FCS. Perfect, I thought, I have just the yarn, some Fyberspates Silk/Alpaca that I bought from Woolfest. I switched down to 4.5 mm needles, but after 2 pattern repeats I wasn't happy so switched down to 4mms, but still I wasn't happy with my efforts. So it was off to The Knitting Parlour for some inspiration, and I came home last Thursday with three skeins of Colinette Cadenza in Moss.

Forest Canopy Shoulder Shawl

Yarn: Colinette Cadenza

Shade: Moss

Needles: 5mm Pony straights

It took 4 days to make and two to block, and I have to say Cadenza is joy to work with and grows so fast. There are three extra pattern repeats, and I used every single scrap of yarn. I love the subtle shades of green.

And finally, Piglottie's shawl, the second of the three that I made. Piglottie was very complimentary of the last FCS I made in the Autumnal colours of Yarn Yard May Club Yarn - you can see it here at the end of this post and incidentally it went across the pond to Holly who won my prize draw recently.

I found I had some Autumnal shades stashed away in the shape of Fiddlesticks Country Silk in # Desert Sand and so here is Piglottie's shawl. I used about half of the yarn, and again knitted extra pattern repeats, but I can't remember if it was three or four, either way I have enough yarn left to knit another at some stage. I have to say this is my favourite FCS of all, but it feels very different to the others - must be the silk.

Forest Canopy Shoulder Shawl

Yarn: Fiddlesticks Country Silk Yarn

Shade: Desert Sand

Needles: Size 7 Aero straights.

So, there we are, my PIF knitting. I can't tell you how hard it was putting them all in the post yesterday. Mind you, it's even harder sitting here waiting to hear that they have arrived and I just hope that Anni, Terri and Piglottie like their knits as much as I have enjoyed making them for them. I think there is at least one "design feature" in each of them!

I have one more FCS blocking, for a special occasion. I'll post it on Monday, but it will be my last one for a while I think.

And now I need to concentrate on Christmas. I have two scarves, two swaps and several cards to make. There's just over six weeks to go now - and unusually for me I have done nothing. I do believe all this unseasonally mild weather leads one to believe it can't possibly be nearly Christmas!

And finally - one of my other passions in life is Liverpool Football Club. I try not to bore everyone in blogland with football, but I can't let an 8:0 victory go unmarked. In the words of Max Boyce "I was there" and what a night it was! Come on you Reds!