Friday, 22 May 2015

Iknit Fandango 2015

50's dresses at the fandango!
I have just come back from my first London wool show- the Iknit Fandango! 
This show was organised and run by the guys from the Iknit London shop in Waterloo, a marvellous Aladdin's cave of knitty delights- and where I purchased my first set of chunky knitting needles to knit my handspun yarn on about 8 years ago! 
The fandango was held in the amazingly light and beautiful Lindley Hall, owned by the RHS, which is usually filled with plant exhibitions! 
Over 50 sellers came from across Europe and the UK, including my friend Bogga  from Knitting In France who jumped across the North Sea from France to sell her lovely stitch markers and hand dyed yarns. 
I packed up my dresser and wares and was in London in a jiffy. 
The show had an exciting atmosphere for me, everyone was in high spirits and the ladies of the WI kept us feed and watered with their delicious cakes and read from their pop up cafe.
I met a couple of returning customers and introduced others to the art of spinning! 
Spin City drop spindles displayed in my teapot collection

I brought along my friends Corrie from the Plutonium Muffins blog and Clare from Clarebearknitwear to help me out over the two days of the show, which was great fun!
I stayed at Clare's house in London, and after all our hard work teaching people to spin, talking about spinning, and hand spinning on spindles all day - what did we decide to do on our day off? SPIN of course! 
We plyed a few of the cops spun up during the show, listening to a replay of Radio Two's Folk Show in the boiling sunshine - very satisfying to get so much done, and to see the fruits of ours and other's labour over the weekend! Then we spent some time spinning some basic colour singles for some tapestry weaving we plan on doing as project in a few weeks. 

Plying in the sunshine in Clare's Garden
Thanks for coming to see me at my spring wool shows! I won't be doing another show now until July, as I'm getting married in June! Yay!


Wednesday, 20 May 2015

Wonderwool Wales 2015

Ive just come back from Wonderwool!

Wonderwool was amazing this year! It was my second time showing there and I was in hall 3, which was new last year.

I took a massive stall and filled it with all my usual furniture, fluff and spindles!

Spinning on my stall

Wonderwool had such a great atmosphere, the people who I met were just as enthusiastic as me when it comes to fibre and spinning! 
One of the best bits for me was meeting some of my customers from last year, who came back to share what they had done or learnt! 
Here a customer of mine came back to show me what she did with a single (yes a single!!) mermaid batt, which she spin and plied with a commercial silk thread and then knitted into a gorgeous waterfall shawl! 
Waterfall shawl made from a single batt!

Lace pattern
Detail - spun from my Mermaid Batt
I love the way the colours stripe! 
My second favourite thing about ring part of Wonderwool is actually being in Wales! 
It's such a beautiful country- full of hills and greenery and sheep! Heaven! 
Below is a picture of Builth Wells where the show is held, which I snapped just before leaving for Suffolk again. 
I hope to go again next year! 

Builth Wells

Friday, 27 March 2015

Blossom Batts, Pottery and knitting ties

This had been a very constructive week for me so far, not to mention very busy! 
I was featured on the Susan B Anderson blog recently which led to lots of orders in my Etsy shop from her readers- which was totally unexpected but very very exciting! So I have been working over in my Spin City studio creating batts and fibres for all of my lovely new customers. 
Yesterday afternoon I was creating a few blossom batts for an order, and they looked so gorgeous and sweet I posted a picture on Instagram. 
They really do look like blossoms! I've been overjoyed watching the dainty flowers unfurl along my road recently- I always plan to do a watercolour of the plum tree nearby but I never find the time. At least I get to think about the blossom trees while making this gorgeous batt! 
I have also been busy as a spring bee knitting ties for my friends wedding! 

They are a very creative couple and asked me to make 18 (!!) knitted ties for all of the groomsmen. Of course- I said HELL YES.
It gave me a chance to get back on my old 10 guage industrial knitting machine that I used during my knitwear degree. She is beautiful- made in the 40s, she is solid metal and has rows of shining needle teeth, 20 needles (or stitches in hand knitting terms) per inch. That's a lot of needles!
I wanted to make them look really professional- and seeing as I had so many to make, these machines are such a dream to use I sped my way along! 
Each tie was over 800 rows long? And I think it probably took me over a solid working week to make them all if I add up all the hours. 
I knitted it in a semi rib pattern for stability, and made a rainbow of pastels to fit in with their theme. I am so proud of them, and I can't wait to see them on the groomsmen! 
For the last update about my week, it was the final day of term of my pottery class! Noooooo! (Cries) 
I have enjoyed it so much, having two hours put aside on a Thursday to get my hands messy and concentrate on something other than daily life is blissfull, and addictive! 
I made these pots on the wheel last night, and I am very pleased with them. Conquering the wheel is something I want to master next term.
I hope your week has been busy!