Monday, 28 July 2014

FIBRE EAST 2014


Come feast your eyes on these little beauties. Aren't they just perfectly delicious? Well, read on as they are just a taster for the wonders of Fibre East that are to come. Josiekitten and I had a fabulous day there yesterday. We always have a fun day out when we get together and plenty of yarn, sunshine and catching up to be done made sure the day was just perfect. 

The five 50g skeins are from the Natural Dye Studio, one of my favourite UK dyers. Amanda's yarns are all dyed using historical natural dyes, with wonderful colours being produced. I bought the kit to crochet the very pretty Plankton Scarf that you can see illustrated in the two photos below. Sorry, the 'fab five'  are looking way too dark in the shady photo below!


The making of this little beauty will be a massive challenge, as my crocheting skills are not as 'brilliant' as my knitting ones! It's good to broaden your skills and the summer holidays seemed like the perfect time to get grips with a new, tricky project.


Here you can see the complete spoils for the day. I made very discerning purchases, I have to say, as the choice of vendors was vast. I have total love for everything I bought!


The skeins below caught my eye; gorgeous yarn, fabulous colours and expert dyeing. The top yarn is 'Dandy' from the boys at Easyknits; another of my favourites. It's 100% Blue Faced Leicester and the colour way is Grape Crush. It will become a lightweight scarf or socks!

Second down from the top is a skein of yummy 60% merino, 20% yak, 20% silk in 'deep violet' SOCK 4ply by Debonnaire; not a dyer I have used before, but the yarn looks and feels just gorgeous.

Next down is the very pretty skein of Twisted MN in colour way Lavender Fields. It's an 80%, merino, 20% nylon mix which is definitely destined to become socks, as the nylon does make them very hardwearing. Sometimes though, yarn love overrides sense, as in the case of the beautiful Easyknits skein that I just know will become socks 'from the heart'! The Twiste MN is from 'Whimzy', home of the fabulous Sokkusu yarns (another favourite).

Last, but definitely not least, is the wonderful skein of Natural Dye Studio (again) Dazzling 4 ply. It's the most dazzling yarn you could ever wish to meet; a mix of 55% Blue Faced Leicester and 45% silk, so incredibly soft. The Haddan River colour way is to 'dye' for! This was almost certainly become a small scarf.


GREAT YARN LOVE!!!!!! Then there's a little bit of doggy love thrown in too. See that cute little sausage dog kit. The kit is by Sue Stratford and contains everything you need to make the 'mini sausage dog in a box' keyring. Cute eh? I could see great potential for grandkid stocking fillers, minus the keychain.


I fell in love with pretty little buttons too, which will liven up a solid colour Evie jumper. I just couldn't resist the gorgeously crafted crochet hook in a perfect size 3, all ready to begin the Plankton Scarf project. The other plainer, but still pretty hook is a back-up! ;-)

So, not a bad haul. We did make two complete circuits in order to sniff out the most desirable and purchase-worthy goodies. I think I succeeded admirably!

Think I'll leave you with a photographic wander around Fibre East 2014 ........ ENJOY!


Sunday, 20 July 2014

FRIENDSHIP AND GOODIES!


Oh look at that beautiful pottery yarn bowl, made by Wendy Fowler. It's just perfect, with little holes to rest your needles when you leave your knitting in the bowl and even matching yarn! Well you see, I had a visitor on Saturday: my dear friend Helen (Josiekitten) came to visit bearing, cakes flowers and birthday gifts! As you can see, she knows me very well and has been very generous.

Those gorgeous skeins have already made their home in the roomy bowl. In the foreground is a beautiful skein of Fyberspates Nef Sock; unbelievably soft and such a pretty shade. It's 70% baby alpaca, 20% silk and 10% cashmere. I suspect it will make a snuggly neck warmer rather than toasty socks. Hiding behind is a skein of Eden Cottage Yarns BFL sock in a lovely soft grey. It's 100% Bluefaced Leicester wool.  


Heavenly hands come in the form a Lo-Lo Bar, all the way from America, but worth every travel mile! It's just the best hand moisturiser ever and ensures no snaggy yarn from rough or chapped hands. It also smells absolutely divine: Vanilla Moon is my favourite!


Next up is one of the loveliest project bags from Three Bags Full. Michele's bags are just the best ever! This one is a Valet, with plenty of space to hold a sweater project. Such a cute design!


As dear Josiekitten knows, the lining is also of the utmost importance and this one is just purrfect!


It's finished of with a beautiful glass bead on the zip pull and a sturdy carrying strap.


There were also some really lovely 'yarn' cards which will be very useful for swaps etc. and a cute little needle gauge; not forgetting those gorgeous flowers. I was well and truly spoiled and we had a lovely couple of hours sitting in the garden and catching up. 

Oscar is always pleased when his 'Aunty' Helen comes to visit and rushes to find his smelliest toy, usually a stinky pheasant, to present her with. Yesterday was no exception, except that we had Scott, Oscar's half brother, staying for a few days whilst his humans (our son, daughter-in-law, little Sophie and little Jess) were at the Latitude festival. Scott was NOT pleased to see her and did NOT bring a stinky offering. He DID bark and grumble for almost the entirety of her visit. Now I know she's not really a doggy fan and I know Scotty is definitely NOT a cat fan, so my reckoning is that Scott could smell dear Flo (Josiekitten's beautiful pussycat) and decided to get the point across that cat smells were not allowed!!!! ;-)


The postie came calling as well this week, with the first instalment of Anne Hanson'e Purple Passion club yarn. You can read all about the yarn on the label above. It really is a very rare cotton and although it can look brown or even deep red in some lights, it really is the most lovely, subtle, earthy purple. I loved the pattern too, but as I am not a triangular shawl wearer, this pretty cotton will become Wandering Thyme.


At long, long last the final three days of this academic year are almost upon us and on Wednesday we finish for six glorious weeks of rest, recuperation and fun..... lots of knitting and a bit of spinning too.

Next Saturday, Josiekitten and I will be heading off to Fibre East for the day, so come back next Sunday for a round up of all the latest news!

Sunday, 13 July 2014

CHEEKY CHAPPIE!


No knitting this week, as we've had family staying (baby Evie - smile, smile!) and I've had loads of end of year school stuff to get done. However, thought you might like to see this cheeky chappie, who is costing me a small fortune in sunflower hearts!!! He comes twice, sometimes three times, a day to feed and has got so brazen that he is no longer scared by my getting closer to snap a photo of him.


He seems to be able to eat an unusually large amount before quickly disappearing into the Magnolia tree; presumably to let his meal digest and take a nap!!!

Sunday, 6 July 2014

Socks for Old Snoops!


Well, what do you know, another pair of socks hot of those smoking needles! I'm well into my sock love at the moment. It's a good thing, because I really had lost my sock mojo for a while. These are not the fanciest of socks, not the most interesting of patterns and not the loveliest of yarn, but they are perfect TV and school-night knitting, when all I want to do is engage my needles but not my brain.

More importantly............ old Snoops loved them!!! :-)

Sunday, 29 June 2014

LOVE A GOOD SWAP!


A lovely swap parcel arrived this week, all the way from Virginia. It was from my swap partner, Heather, in the BareNakedKnitspot may swap. I was thoroughly spoilt with the most scrummy skein of 'Woolen Rabbit' Opulence. It's a 4-ply, in a 50% merino and 50% silk mix. It's gorgeous! 


Then there were some lovely purple stitch markers, including one cute little dog. Can you spot him? These will be just great for the Purple Passion Club, which starts this month. I've been pattern only for the last couple of Knitspot clubs, but have treated myself to a yarn and pattern membership this time around.

A swap parcel is always made beautifully complete if it also contains something yummy to eat, like chocolate and something yummy to smell, like soap. I was not disappointed!


Mr Snoops' socks are coming on a treat. One is already complete and I've just turned the heel on the second. He's tried the first sock on and was pleasantly surprised. He commented on the goos fit, 'nice' colour and the warm feel. Then he asked how much they cost! cough, cough, cough!

Sunday, 22 June 2014

THERE'S A FIRST TIME FOR EVERYTHING...


At long last ( yes, it's been quite....a......while!) Mr Snoops has requested a pair of socks to wear with his walking boots. Bearing in mind they'll do a lot of walking, I thought it best not to use my scrummy skeins. Instead, I'm using up some Regia Design Line from my stash. It's definitely not a favourite yarn to work with, but it is hardwearing. I'd like his first experience to be a good one, so that it can be happily repeated!

I'm used Violet Green's sock generator to produce the pattern and cast on 68 stitches for his size 9 foot. It's the most basic sock pattern you could possibly knit, but that suits me fine for some post report writing blot out knitting. Yes, they are done and dusted for another year!

Our son had an orchestral concert at Snape Maltings this weekend and so spent a couple of nights with us. He brought Sophie along too! I love having a little bit of 'just us', Sofie time. She is excellent company and we always have lots of fun.  Just before her bedtime yesterday  evening, Sophie helped Grandma to water the pots and we took some photos. Love colour in the garden!


Have a good week everyone!

Sunday, 15 June 2014

SAND, SEA AND SOCKS....


 So, here we have a pair of 'Movie Night' socks. I received the pattern and yarn two Christmases ago from my dear friend Josiekitten. I even cast them on on that very Christmas Day! Then, sadly, they quietly in a corner, unfinished, but definitely not unloved. The yarn is scrummy Hazelknits, which gives fabulous stitch definition and simply gorgeous squishy socks. I accidentally made them longer than stated, by miscounting the number or repeats in the first leg. By the time I'd noticed I had gone too far and certainly had no intention of frogging. My only concern began to be whether of not there would be enough yarn. In fact there was, with some to spare!


The pattern is by Anne Hanson, who produces just the best patterns ever. It's an addictive and easy to memorise pattern, with just enough detail to hold your interest. I love the heel stitching!


I'll certainly be making this pattern again!


We went up to the coast yesterday afternoon. It's Oscar's favourite place on earth!


 Of course, his tennis ball is his favourite thing on earth!


He had a great time! It delayed my report writing still further; no surprise there though.