Tuesday, 1 March 2016

Wool on the Brain!

My first make for February was Valentine Rabbit from Little Box of Crochet.
I altered the design by wiring his arms and balloon "string" and by adding a mouth and little cottontail.
There was some stash enhancement throughout the past month!  When I saw these tweed mini skeins, in The Wool Barn shop, I knew they had to come and live with me! :) Maya's yarn is always gorgeous.
 I also managed to buy these skeins of Beach Hut singles from Life In The Long Grass.  I think they will make a lovely wrap for the summer.  I have also joined their Spring Yarn Club, so more goodies will be popping through my letterbox.
February was always going to be "yarn heavy" with Unravel at Farnham Maltings.  I decided to go on the Friday as there were a couple of talks I wanted to attend.
The first stall I stopped at was Pompom Magazine.  I admired the display of garments and accessories from their issues and I loved this design by Veera Välimäki from vol 3 of Interpretations. In fact, I was so taken with all the designs that I bought all 3 books! Goodness knows when I will find the time to knit a jumper, but I can dream! :)
One day I will knit some socks, but until then I just admired the ones by Coop Knits.
Tall yarns had some inspirational knits on their stall.
I was spoilt for choice on the Bilum stall.  So many beautiful gradient cakes.
Every year at Unravel I admire the needle-felted creatures by Jenny Barnett, so this time I bought her book to try and make some at home.
I wasn't too sure about these spiders in the cafe :)

but I liked the pigeons in the stairway
and these little wooly jumpers!
In the afternoon I attended two talks.  The first one was a live Pomcast with Veera Välimäki.

The second one was by Rachel Brown of Porpoise Fur and she talked about the inspiration behind her colourways.

Of course there was more stash enhancement!
I later discovered that my friend Deb was attending Unravel at the weekend, so we arranged to meet up on the Sunday and had a lovely time enabling each other to buy more yarn! :)  The purple and green yarn from Tall Yarns caught our eye and I have teamed it with purple and Deb has chosen cream.  We plan to knit shawls with them.  I also bought a Russian spindle, which I need to learn how to use! :)
 We both bought this pattern, but have chosen different yarns, so it will be interesting to compare the end garments.
The pattern originally called for large snaps to join the wrap around sections, but I have found two buttons from my Nana's button tin to use instead.
Also on the Sunday Deb had arranged to meet up with the lovely Dani and her Mum and Aunt.  It was a pleasure to meet them and to sit and chat for a while.

 I finished by Salt Air Scarf, aided by a KAL on Ravelry.  This yarn by Handmaiden Fine Yarns was so lovely to work with.  The scarf ends are joined by buttons so that it can be worn looped twice around the neck like a cowl.
Just after Unravel I had an invite from Helen to attend the Curious Handmade Country Retreat.  I was super excited to hear from her as previously the retreat was fully booked.  So of course I had to cast on a new project, ready to take to Cumbria.  I have cast on Helen's Cabin Path Shawl using these skeins.

I also would like to do some spinning whilst on the retreat.  For Christmas my Husband gifted to me a blending board, so I have used that for the first time to make some rolags.
 I am experimenting with how to apply the colours to the board, as at this stage I have no idea of how the yarn will knit up.
 My very first rolag!  I have named this colourway Garden Snail!  Well I had too, didn't I?! :)
 I couldn't resist starting to spin it.
 I also need some rolags to use with my Russian spindle.  This forest green is just my Husband's colour,
 so I have blended it with a mustard/green and some grey to create Spruce Forest.
 Ideally I would like to knit a scarf for him, but I didn't have enough of the green.  So I have blended another colourway with the mustard/green with the grey to make Silver Fox.
 I plan to spin them separately and then ply them together.  I'd like a DK weight yarn and if there isn't enough I will knit a hat for him.  Or maybe my first attempt with the Russian spindle will be so awful that it won't be knitable! ;)
Getting distracted by all these other projects has meant that I neglected my hexipuffs.  I only managed to knit 19 in February!  Good job I was ahead in January! :)
We are soon going on holiday so we have been shopping for some new clothes (my old bikinis no longer fit!) and even when shopping for summer clothes I had wool on the brain as this little sheep came home with me!


sustainablemum said...

I really enjoyed this post. Thank you for introducing me to some fantastic yarns! I have never felt quite brave enough to attend a yarn event, there are a couple near me but I am not a fan of crowds and know they will be busy. I am sure they are a great way to find interesting yarns. I hope you enjoy your knitting retreat later this month, it sounds wonderful. It's being held very close to where I live and it is a beautiful part of the world, not that I am biased or anything!

Kimberley said...

what a fabulous post. One day I will get back to England to buy some gorgeous yarn. of course there is mail order, but it is nothing like seeing and touching in real life :). Love all your shopping!