Super Sized and Fairisle

Suddenly realised I haven’t visited for quite a while been busy …….

Recent time has been taken up start of the knitting season mind the warm Autumn hasn’t got you all inside knitting has it??? And with the Fairisle the classes on Saturday afternoon being well attended. (The hens are growing we should soon have a flock!!!!!) well…..I have been making….

The other day’s creations was another attack of the supersize. Well the new colours in Special Super chunky came in and someone asked me for slippers. My baby bootee pattern and the big needles came out and there you godscf5800 good for a mddling child I have perfected an adult sized version which is ready to print and go.



While I was playing with Fairisle and the New Lanark Chunky I came up with a bag/cushion cover. See writing isn’t my strong point you know!!!dscf5797

home from the holidays



The holiday photo album could be long, very long indeed. We have an arrangement where ‘himself’ takes photos on a snazzy all zoom and buttons camera and I take snaps on my digital thing. We compare notes back home. I take flowers and scenic shots …….. I never know what he has until later. Glimpses of myself in shots I’d rather not know about (I am not photogenic) and landscapes usually. This is my selfy….


Blue Beyond Cottage was marvelous – cosy and chic!! Do take a look  it is lovely and such welcoming people, Colin and Susan. Soooooo peaceful and just what we needed.

The Weather was….  I think it is in Shetland where sunshine is a ‘break in the weather’ so Tiree has many such breaks in the weather.

I seems so long since we returned from holiday I need another already. Thought I’d share a few more photos before it fades completely into the autumn mists…..




Old hen doorstop

We won’t get into the discussion on what is chicken, what is hen. I’m from farming stock and suffice to say hens are what run about ….

Maybe this isn’t hen …………anyway.

Version One was complete by Sunday night. in Aran wool, either all circular or some straight. It has changed the nature of the class/es but as a three day event (6hour) it is very do able.  It comes in stages and covers all the proposed knitting techniques – Fairisle, Circlular (knitting in the round), charts and sewing up!!!! (I know circular knitting don’t have side seams but this has beaks and bottoms),  even 3 needle bind off and it can be down sized to a phone cover for those with only a day to spare  …oh clever? It requires stuffing and a strategic rock!!

Perhaps a comb?

Version 2 tomorrow maybe I’ll get round to washing it too and a new pattern with chart

come and have a go ………

Chicken run

The plan- to find an idea for the Fairisle beginners class (October Events) something a bit different, big enough to show up in the window and easy!!. I had come across this pattern for a doorstop in Lucinda Guy’s book Northern Knits Gifts. Its similar to the Fancy Hen cushion pattern by Ella Austin and is very Scandi which I like…… Chickens in two colours strictly not Fairisle I agree but would you start with a Kate Davies (Colours of Shetland) complete jumper or one of her less complex mitts like Jazz Hands ?

Saturday afternoon I have 2 hours to show basic concepts (people can come back as often as they need) and all knitting takes time and practice. So it might not be true ‘fairisle’, but it has to be wool. At least covered some of the bases. Working colours like this has similar elements/pitfalls: reading the chart, two threads working at the same time, the floats at the back, potential puckering, the tangle and twisting together of the yarns. I know its still ambitious…….


I started a sample yesterday. The Lucinda Guy is done in 4ply on 3mm needles (I used a skinny dk as I knit a bit baggy) that was all I achieved –revisit idea.

This is simple on colours and has a few too many long floats but for a beginner relatively simple. It is done on circular needles and that is another 2 hour event. Completed item is appealing but it needed to be simpler.

Adaption – aran on straight needles (not completely traditional but …) and pencil, graph-paper (printable knitting graph-paper) and alot of rubbing out later — mark 11 has begun and is looking much more promising. Still won’t be “done” in 2 hours but …….

we might have a simple chicken by ….. Tuesday?



Coming back from a little holiday , yes lovely, yes peaceful, yes I want to go back now.dscf5760

Has been …… manic.

I have rearranged the shop a bit, taken in the New Lanark Mill Chunky, knit a few samples, finished the Cambrian Crochet sample (that is a later when it’s ready pattern), finished a this year’s mitten kit (in 2 colour ways), and started the Ecclefechan sample…


Sorted out some October Events

AND the various nights of frivolity have started again Join us for:


on a roll and pheew heavens I need another hoilday

Are we nearly there yet?

I intended not to write the blog for the next few week ……getting away from it all!!! But in the spirit of knitting envy ……..

The journey was of epic proportions, the 6 hour first stage took longer than 8. Averaging  34 miles an hour. Included were wind blown branches, scenic tours of Newtown, Kerry and Abermule; lunch at Howard’s cafe; detours for queues at Pant, Oswestry, and a huge wind turbine. That only got us to the M6 at 5pm on a summer Friday….. it was not pretty. The leisurely arrival at the B&B aand pub grub, turned into an M&S sandwich at Burton Services and arrival after dark. It have been could be worse.

The B&B however turned out to be a gem, only 3 miles from the M6 on the Annan river at converted mill site. Otters and red squirrels before breakfast, things were looking up. (So much so we are stopping off there on the way back!) Then another significant journey 3 hours in the car to Oban and another 3 plus, on a packed ferry …..we arrived late Saturday evening…… we were nearly there yet???

DSCF5620Well two days in and I have started the grey cardigan, with a few alterations in design…

Oh yes….. this is the view from the cottage bench where I have been knitting in the sunshine.DSCF5622

Knitting envy anyone???





Oplymic Knitting ?

On Chris ‘the’ Evans’ Radio 2 show this morning  the  tenuous link was to the 23rd March. Apparently half (exaggeration for effect) of all UK  Olympic Gold metal winners (Chris Hoy and Steve Redgrave etc) have the connection of having the same birthday. Sadly I am One Day out of this auspicious bunch which makes it even more unlikely that they will introduce knitting as an Olympic event. There go my medal hopes.

I like these random connections with people but have rarely come up against others with the same birthday as me.The only notable occasion was a training weekend I shared with 12 other people (and plus 3 trainers) of the 15 of us three had the same birthday and all shared the same Chinese birth year of Ox.  I got a lot from that course!!

I don’t have 365 friends that I know (or remember) the birthday’s of but my diary of card reminders doesn’t have many clashes. My Mum has just had a very big day and I seem to have a lot of relatives with August birthdays and as most are Leo they like to party!! My best day is the 14th April (which is now sadly one name down) and is celebrated three lovely men who’s only connection is to be unfortunate enough to know me!!

Enough…. the date on my mind is the 19th August –Red Apple is about to be left far behind as I sail off into the Atlantic for a week (re)treat on the secluded island of Tiree. Seals, sand and … significantly few people. I am leaving the shop in 4 pairs of very capable hands. Thank you, ladies very much and not too many parties!!


It is nothing personal, but I will only have himself for company. What to take has been a task –we have  the car (I have been allowed to take my sewing machine but not the wire pliers and hammer!), there is quite a deal of knitting time between Lampeter and Oban, even if I do my share of the driving so….

I have packed so far …. a half-finished lace weight shawl; the Wonderwool purchase of pink Whistlebare mohair for a scarf (also started); a hank of John Arbon’s wine coloured alpaca laceweight; some grey/green merino for a cardigan from Any Herzog’s Knit Wear Love (with the book) and some baby alpaca for a sample for the shop. Scotland has its own knitting traditions and I’m told you can get Hebridean wool on the island ……..Do they charge excess baggage on CalMac?