Saturday, February 26, 2011

Happy New Year!
And long may we all continue knitting and spinning and creating!
Here is a pic of the first handspun (and hand-dyed too, incidentally - in logwood exhaust leftovers from Amanda Hannaford's dyeing workshop at the 2010 Samhain Fibre Retreat) of the year that has already been plyed and transformed into fingerless mitts: I gave the remainder (of which there was plenty) to my good friend and knitting protege, Kate (mummy to Josh and Elliott)

February - and I haven't yet posted. But lots of opportunities come my way! This is the time for blowing trumpets - paaaaaaaarp!

I have a regular slot on the back of Yarn Maker Magazine - my cartoon has an A4 pride of place. Just like a new mummy, I'm very proud :-) All credit to Dot Lumb for bringing a British Hand Spinning magazine to fruition - January edition out.

Last year, I had (the LIZARD) bag pattern published in Yarn Forward. THIS year I am about to have two patterns published in books - Shannon Okey is publishing the 'Fresh Designs' Series and asked for designers to submit a maximum of three - I did so, and got two accepted: a woezel toy and the Furzeleigh Shawl. I'll put up more details when the books are finally on the market - needless to say, I'm very excited.

Wrigglefingers and I are getting together to make "TUTLEYMUTLEY AND WRIGGLEFINGERS" - Don't we sound like a couple of Victorian pickpockets? We intend to run (more) affordable fibre retreats - the next one is in Bridgenorth June 3rd - 6th 2011 and will cost all of £95 fully catered (byo knitting, wine, chocolate). More details here
We're also looking to go round the festivals and teach colour blending and spinning. (vive la art yarn!) - next to be seen at Fibrefest! Ah, Batts, glorious, sparkly batts. Aren't they lush?

Speaking of which, I may be running a workshop! or three -
I've a friend in the village who has a just purchased a yurt and has a wonderful house and garden. She wants to run courses of various kinds and has dangled this carrot in front of my nose. I'm working on putting an introductory knitting course together.

The knitting groups have expanded - we now meet up 4 Sundays every month - two of which are in hired rooms with nuff room for spinning wheels to congregate.
I also met a wonderful new knitterly friend in Spin-a-Yarn last week - Hullo Emily (or purlysplendour on Ravelry!) (waves and jumps up and down in excitable fashion). WE were discussing our mutual obsessionspassions when she mentioned the powerful tool for community knitting has become! It's true!

Then today I popped in to the Chapel - something I've been meaning to do for a while: It's a wonderful place in Mortonhampstead aiming to bring local crafts and community into sharp focus - why not bring our spinning group to the Chapel, says Annie and Devina? Why not indeed?

And I'm getting so many ideas, so much inspiration.

I've nearly finished the first year of my shiatsu course - I'm sure this has helped push my creativity buttons and is helping me push towards taking better care of myself, leading a balanced life.
Al in all, I can't help feel that I won't be working much longer as a midwife, come what may. which is sad, the end of an era - but heralds exciting new beginnings. It's becoming harder and harder in this economic climate to be the sort of midwife who empowers women, who can build a relationship from the beginning of pregnancy and see a woman all the way through. The pendulum is swinging back to intervention and conveyer belt care. I can't bear it. Roll on retirement - sooner, rather than later.