Friday, January 02, 2009


Six minutes into the 2nd of January and I have technically failed in my new year's resolution to blog every day. Whoever guesses Zero days gets the prize!


What of 2008? A knitterly round up:


It started in January with the extreme knitterliness got off to a great start with a trip to ‘Get Knitted’ in Bristol – about 36 of us knitters converged on this converted supermarket in Brislington (on the Bath road) for tea and cake and much knitting and spinning and general chat…
And that set the tone for the rest of the year.
At the beginning of March I set out for Yorkshire by way of Hereford and WyeSue's to ‘Skip North’, joining 18 other knitters and crocheters at Haworth Youth Hostel (once a Mill Owner’s beautiful mansion) to spin and knit and chat and eat cake and drink wine. Lixie and Nikerjac (erstwhile organisers) hired a coach so we could visit Winghams and the yarn mountain at Lee Mills amongst other such fabulous places of no interest to anyone but another fibre enthusiast, and a wonderful time was had. I donned white gloves to examine the collection of 18th century reticules and even older lace shawls…


May heralded Wonderwool: a trip up to Builth Wells to attend the fibre show at the Wales National Centre And the Welsh food festival on at the same time. Yum.


In June I ran the Knitting and Crochet Guild Stand at the Contemporary Craft Show in Bovey Tracey: Imogen brought along her Victorian sock knitting machine and proceeded to knit the longest sock ever: it stretched from the entrance to the main marquee… Sue had her knickers on display. That’s a handknitted silk thong, a fancy lace 1940’s set of briefs and a 1950s style pair of sensible school knickers – not the one’s she was wearing.


IN July came the Knitting and Crochet Guild AGM in Winchester where I was duly elected a member of the board of Directors. Hmm, what HAVE I let myself in for?
The AGM involved MORE knitting, eating of cake, drinking of wine, and invariably much tinking (knitting backwards) as wine and complicated patterns do not go. There was a fascinating slide show of Montse Stanley’s collection, now housed at Winchester University library, and another talk by a woman who knits articles for war re-enactments from the original patterns. Who’d have thought that soldiers from the First World War were so SMALL?

IN August I participated in the Ravelry knitting Olympics. I opted out of watching the Real ones because of 1) our lack of a telly and 2) in protest of the continuing presence of the Chinese in Tibet.
I was sidetracked somewhat from finishing my ravelry project (I reduced my ambitions from knitting a steeked waistcoat to knitting a moebius cowl from my handspun instead) by applying for a new job – which I didn’t get. There was a strange mix of relief and disappointment at this, though I acquitted myself well at the interview apparently (my first in 18years!) I did manage to finish the cowl in good time. My sister nicked it a couple of days ago.


August also saw me participating in a natural dyeing workshop on a wonderfully sunny day at Joyce (humble proprieter of SpinAyarn)'s beautiful, traditional thatched farm near Manaton. The kitchen window looks out on Bowerman's nose, and several pet sheep, goats and a pig.

The workshop wasn't as hands on as I would have wished but the results produced by the various dyepots were truly stunning.


September brought Iknit London, and the yarnharlot as well as Jane Sowerby. Couldn't hear either of them (being deaf is a major pia) but I enjoyed the atmosphere and the visuals, and meeting up with so many of the online knitting world.


October was Knitting Week and started with Ally Pally (my first time ever at this amazing show). I was working for Touch Yarns - helping Marnie sell her colourful merino yarns - I learned more about possums than I ever thought possible over the three days I was there. We were so busy I hardly got any time to spend any money.

I also had the quote of the year from Kim Thittichai:

"Where have you BEEN that you don't know you can't paint on Wundawebb???!" - needless to say, I was gobsmacked and bought the book.
I was knackered when I returned from the festival, but no rest for the wicked coz our East Dartmoor Tea Shop Knitters Group had a KTOG (the second) the very next weekend. Over 120 fibre enthusiasts managed to find the Scout Hall, (including Sandra all the way down from the smoke and Jen up from Cornwall). We raised enough to pay our workshop organisers some petrol money and send £66 to Bliss, and £20 to the UK knitting and crochet Guild And put back £50 for next year.
(If we do it again).

In and between all these knitting events I have attended regular East Dartmoor Tea Shop meetings, which have now grown to become weekly events: WE meet the first Sunday in Bovey Terrace Café, the 2nd in Café Green Ginger, the 3rd in the Walled Garden. Dunsford and the 4th in Exeter Boston Tea Party. The 5th (if there is one) we have OFF. Then on alternate Tuesdays there is the Packhorse Knitters in South Brent (though I’m slowly sneaking back to hashing) and monthly there are two groups in Spin-a-yarn.
I haven’t even mentioned the Spinning group in Tedburn and the Devon Guild of weavers, dyers, spinners in Exeter on the first Saturday of every month.


Lots of FOs: Bettna, Rogue, moebius Prickle, baby hats and bootees galore...

I finally put one design for a hat out there, for free, and have been gratified that someone, somewhere has downloaded it from Ravelry just about every day since it was uploaded.
Speaking of which - Ravelry! Ah, Ravelry. What can I say about Ravelry?


I am obsessed. Just a little.


And THIS year I’m booked up for a knitting cruise round the Baltic Ocean – From Rotterdam to Norway, Sweden, Finland, Estonia, St Petersburg, Germany and back to Copenhagen (via the knitting centres of Northern Europe!). Roll on August I say.
*
Many Happy New Years to all of you!

2 comments:

Pixie said...

Happy New Year to you :)

Wow you did have a busy last year! how do you beat that one lol.. enjoy your cruise and here is to many a happy hour knitting or spinning..

All the best to you xxx

sarala said...

Lovely collage. Such great colors.
Have a great New Year!