Monday, 20 September 2010

The Website's Up

Jan's put the website up over the weekend, Fibre-East so we've really gone public. A couple of workshops and traders already on board, so it's starting to feel as though it's really happening now, so hope all the hard work we've been doing will pay off.

On the knitting front I had a small disaster, the spaniel destroyed my second sock that I was knitting. I'd left it on the arm of the sofa one evening while we were having dinner & he must have got caught up with it while the 2 dogs were playing. I went in & it was strung out right through the room & into the dining room (we eat in the kitchen when it's just 2 of us). To get it off him he'd chewed through the circular needle - my lovely Knitpicks Pro wood needle - & through the knitting. I got a new one on Saturday, but while I was ordering it a set of blocking wires fell into my basket, well I had to console myself somehow didn't I. I've also started a pair of socks from some handspun yarn. The fibre was from a bag that I got from World of Wool, what they call their lap waste. This can be any colour or any fibre, ends of runs etc., some of it's a bit manky, but for £8 for a big bag fibre it's not bad really you just have to work a bit harder to get decent stuff to spin. I blended some of the fibres & came out with a sort of turquoise base with bright pink flecks. I'm knitting them on 2.25 needles to make a dense fabric to make it harder wearing as it's not got any nylon blended in. I might make the effort to get some nylon to blend if I'm happy with this pair. I spun the wool on my Bee spinning wheel at 18:1 ratio, then plied at 20:1. I thought that because I'd used a higher than normal twist that the yarn might be a bit unbalanced, but was pleased when I took it off the niddy-noddy to find that it was fine, well balanced & the overtwist was fine after plying. It's knitting up really well, but it's pretty hard on my hands to knit because of the small needles, so I'm only knitting a little bit at a time.

I've also picked up my Hoswick Jacket again now that it's cooler. I wimped out of it because I'd got to the armhole shaping & still have to keep the fairisle pattern correct. Normally I wouldn't decrease on the 1st & last stitch of the armhole but one stitch in. However I have on this, hopefully as it's steeked it will be OK, only time will tell. I'm thinking about changing the cuffs & neckline as well. They're sort of frilly & fluted, that's not really my taste. I think I may just do a simple neckline & plainish cuffs.

Friday, 10 September 2010

Autumn rolls in

Well that's how it's started to feel anyway, the days are shorter, the berries are all really appearing on the hedgerows, the apples & pears on the trees in the garden are needing to be picked & I'm knitting lots of socks, getting ready to keep the tootsies warm this winter. People think I'm mad, but I really love my hand knitted socks, in fact I did a few rows this morning in the hairdressers while I was waiting for my colour to brew. The boss wanted to know if I was knitting Xmas pressies, but no their mine, all mine . This pair are plain blue & when I started to knit them I thought 'how boring' so I've put a sort of broken spiral pattern in them. I know most of the time people can't see them, but I like them & that's all that matters really.

We're still plodding on with the preparations for Fibre-East, but one big frustration is that although we're really keen, other people take so long to get back to us, it's just not the priority for them like it is for us, don't know how they can be so calm about it all! I just keep hoping that we can really get this festival off the ground albeit in a small way to start with, there are just so many more people now who are getting into fibre crafts & it would be really great to be able to bring a new festival into the area. I suppose it may have been better starting this off a few years ago, when the economy was a bit better, but there are more & more small producers of indie dyed yarns & fibre & also equipment like spindles, so the hope is that some of these newer businesses will come on board.