Monthly Archives: March 2014

Draw!!

I have a new Facebook page to announce, especially for my weaving and to promote celebrate this I am doing a prize draw.
‘What can I win?’ I hear you cry…well, I did a little weaving over the weekend and it looked a bit like this:

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and then it became a little like this:

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It’s twill with a cotton warp and wool weft in various shades of purple. I wet finished it and thought I’d try a little fulling (felting really) via the tumble dryer. Now I would never consider putting wool into the dryer for more than a few minutes without checking on it having lost several pairs of rather lovely handknitted socks this way (feeling guilty Mr Knittingkitten??); so an hour later I lept from the sofa all of a panic expecting a 2″ by 2″ square. Fortunately it hadn’t fulled very much at all but is just nice and soft.
It has since turned into this:

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And looks like this:

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And this

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It’s an ebook case, it fits my Ye Olde Kindle and measures roughly 8″ by 5″, is lined and will have some kind of fastening eventually. Now if you would like to give it a home all you need to do is go here and then ‘like’ and ‘share’ my page or for those if you not on Facebook (I know you do exist somewhere) just write a comment on this post and you will all be entered into a draw on 30th April 2014 and the winner will receive (as long as you give me your address once I’ve contacted you!) said ebook case. Good luck!

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Multi-tasking mayhem

Now I don’t know about you but there was a time when I didn’t knit, or dye, or spin, or weave…nor did I know the difference between lambswool and llama, or warp and weft. I hardly know that person now!
After the success of my first yarn stall, I have been busy this week doing a little of everything. One of the most enjoyable aspects of doing the stall was meeting other people in the same line of ‘work’ (it’s not really work in any sense of the word but couldn’t think how else to describe it). I met a lovely person called Catherine from Travelling Yarns who sells beautiful yarn and patterns. We had a lot in common as knitters of Kate Davies patterns; she had a fabulous sheep carousel tea cosy (here) and we swooned over The Colours of Shetland. Since the Fibrefest we have exchanged a couple of emails regarding some very exciting plans, I can’t really say more at present but will keep you updated as soon as I can.
I have been busy dyeing, I need to replenish stock and also I acquired a new dye pot that enables me to dye much larger quantities.

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And this is how it looks now

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It should look gorgeous once it dry and rewound; keep an eye on the Etsy shopfor updates.
Finally the baby wrap is all finished and ready to go travelling
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What a joy to be able to do so many different things.;

Swapping wool

I will never make a good business person. There, I’ve said it – denial isn’t just a river in Egypt and all that…
I’m quite talented at coming up with hair brained schemes, usually involving fibre of one sort or another; like the time I thought it would be a good idea to send my own wool off to be spun into yarn and then sell it, when I don’t even have my own sheep; or the time I thought I’d ‘acquire’ some angora bunnies and spend my hours gently combing them for the wool; or the other time I thought about running knitting workshops except I don’t have a workshop and we live miles from anywhere…you get the idea.
One of said schemes led to colouredinCaithness my very small dyeing business that has until this weekend been solely online.
The Dornoch Fibrefest led to my first stall and actually selling yarn face to face with real people. Now, bearing in mind, only five weeks ago I could hardly leave the house, due to M.E, this was a significant undertaking, and somewhat ambitious given that at the time of planning I had no idea that I would be healthy and well.
Fortunately, thanks to the lightning process and a wonderful husband who supports me on whatever loony yarn journey I lead him on, it was a great success.

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Above is my glamorous assistant, adding a certain je ne sais quoi to the proceedings.
We sold some fleece, spindle kits and, of course, lots and lots of lovely wool. I then, of course, bought lots and lots of lovely wool from everyone else at the Fibrefest. Oops.
Hence the title of today’s post; I’m too easily persuaded by all the goodies on sale at all the other stalls. My ‘finds’ include the pattern and yarns for the Ecclefechan mitts by Kate Davies and some gorgeous weaving yarn from the Weaver’s Bazaar.
I don’t think I’ll ever make any pennies from selling yarn as long as I keep buying it, but it makes me very happy.
The organisers of the Fibrefest, all volunteers, were fantastic and went out of their way to look after us all. For their energy and enthusiasm they were truly an inspiration and I’d like to say a huge thank you to them and everyone who took the time to visit my stall and make the weekend wonderful.

Dornoch Fibrefest

This is just a quick post in between setting up the stall and joining the other stallholders for our opening talk this evening but I thought you may like to see what Mr Knittingkitten and I will be up to to this weekend.

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If you’re around why don’t you come and join us at the Dornoch Social Club? As well as us, there is lots of lovely fabric, more woolly stuff, workshops and, of course, cake!

Spring has most definitely sprung

I’m well into my second project on David now. The first one ended up like this:

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I’m rather pleased with it, I love the vibrancy of the colours and I’ve worn it with pride on several occasions. Funnily enough, it’s the first time I’ve kept something I’ve woven for myself. It’s different from knitting like that, I’m the opposite, you have to prise that from my fingers and I’ll only let you if you’re very special (and a knitter too!).
I’m not really sure why, something to do with not really having a need for woven things I suppose. This scarf, however, was to be my treat right from the word go. The colours are glorious.
My second project started like this

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And then became this

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And currently looks a bit like this

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My pesky phone camera (sorry, too lazy to use my real camera) doesn’t pick up the true colours but they are supposed to reflect Caithness Spring – there is gold and dark green like the gorse that covers the roadsides at the moment; purple as we have some heather in our garden that’s in bloom; white and grey to represent the foam on the sea (when I was winding the warp it was very windy and the foam blew right up from the sea across the path where we walk the dogs) and a little charcoal as the nights are still dark (not so much the evenings but in a couple of months it will stay light through the small hours). I hated it to start with. My daft hat was firmly on when I beamed it by not winding it over the back beam, then I used too dense a sett at the selvedges and they looked a right state but then everything fell into place. I cut out the extra selvedge threads and have such neat edges that I might even take a proper photo with a proper camera and by adjusting the weft the colours have started to work together. All is good.

The abyss of unfinished projects

I am dwelling in the land of too many wips (knitting projects for the non-ravellers – it stands for works in progress). The problem is that before I finish one, another leaps (leaps I tell you!) onto my knitting pins and before I know it I feel overwhelmed in the no man’s (should that be woman’s?) land of never ending knitting. Currently I am half way through the first sock in the yarn I found at Loop, I haven’t even made it into second sock syndrome territory which is daunting; my handspun Jacob sweater is still awaiting sleeves (and the yarn to knit them with), I am in the middle (she says optimistically) of another stripe study shawl with some lovely yarn gifted by a friend that was part of a swap from a Raveller in Canada who grows her own wool; Mr Knittingkitten’s North Ronaldsay jumper is waiting patiently and I’m thinking of casting on Kate Davies’ Warriston. This is all in the context of a life now filled with work (yup, I’m back to work but more about that later on), a new loom and only the odd half hour of free knitting time each day. Things were different back in the time before spinning and weaving when knitting got the attention it deserves but now I’m lucky if my poor neglected pins get a look in.

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Meet my new best friend…David from Louet.

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We’ve had a few teething problems, like lots of skipped threads in my first weaving project but thanks to the kind people on The Warped Weavers forum on Ravelry I managed to sort it out. It’s a bit like a new partner, you just have to work out how to ‘manoeuvre’ them (cough cough).
I am winding a warp for a baby wrap that will go out to some testers once finished. Like anything designed for little people, it’s essential to ensure that my weaving is suitable for this kind of project and to make sure any wraps I make will be safe. I’m loving the colours so far.

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I’m planning the finished wrap will be about 30″ wide so am winding the warp in three sections, 660 ends in total. Phew!
Finally but not in any way shape or form least, I am back at work and I continue to feel well, full of energy and am living a lovely life.