Sunday, June 29, 2014

Woolfest at last

I've always wanted to go to Woolfest, right from when it started 10 years ago, but living in the South East made it an unrealistic proposition even though we know and love The Lakes so well, however ........ This year our holiday (which has to fit around DH's work schedule) was due to start on Saturday  28th June, we were going to The Lakes so that DH can finish walking the Wainwrights (only 11 of the 214 left) and, bless him, he suggested we travel up a day early so that I could go to Woolfest at last. 

So on Saturday, after driving for an hour down the smallest, steepest country roads and across the Honister pass to drop him off so he could walk,  I carried on and finally arrived at Mitchell's Livestock Centre in Cockermouth....... Woolfest

The sights, sounds and smells were all that I had hoped, the sheep were baa-ing, and smelling of, well, sheep. The swallows swooped around the roof of the barn and everywhere people were oohing and ahing about the animals, the yarn, the equipment and the demonstrations.

I didn't buy a lot, but just being there was wonderful.  
Some reduced Araucania Ranco called to me - 

I didn't mind that at wasn't a neat skein, after all it wouldn't take long to become a ball ready to be Song of the Sea that seemed to made for the yarn

And then watching so many stall holders drop spindling it suddenly occurred to me, two weeks in an apartment without Hugo Pussycat to attack the fluff would be an ideal opportunity to practice spindling and hopefully master Ply on the Fly (which I have been intending to do for ages) so a quick visit to Wingham Wool Works stand provided the solution and though I wouldn't say I've mastered it, I do have some plied yarn already 

Not what you'd call consistent but it is plied, and practice can only make perfect, I hope.  The only thing is the wooden floor in the apartment does rather give the game away when I prove why the craft is called 'drop' spindling!

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Lucky me

I've been a very lucky girl lately and craft related too.

First I won some amazing sock yarn in the May challenge over in the SockswithSarah group on Ravelry.  We had to try something different in our sock making, so instead of toe up I decided to do top down and rather than plain vanilla, I added a little texture - ok so it's only a garter stitch panel, but that's alright, it's different for me, I will show pictures of them soon but in the meanwhile here is the gorgeous sock yarn that I won

It's so lovely that I am thinking of using it for a shawl rather than hiding it in shoes.

Then my lace friends and I went to the Oyster Lace Day at Faversham (boy was it warm in that hall) and even though I only bought one raffle ticket (I know, cheapskate, but they were £1 each) I was very lucky and won a prize. The way of finding out which prize was rather novel as you then draw another ticket and have the prize it matches - like a tombola. 
When I collected it I picked up the little package on the right which would have been great on it's own, but much to my surprise I found the rest was included too! 

There's a lace bobbin case at the bag, a multi pocketed bag front left and the package contains a lace pillow cover cloth, a mouse pin cushion and a matching pillow tidy bag (a little draw string bag about 6" square. )

Life seems to be getting in the way of knitting and crochet lately, but I did manage to finish the Tiramisu  blanket that I started on holiday.

It's such a nice easy pattern and came out beautifully in the Patons cotton pearl DK that I got via p/hop a while ago.  This yarn had definite ideas about what it wanted to be - Tiramisu was the third pattern I'd started with it, and even the it took three attempts to find the hook that gave the nicest texture, but it's finished now and will be off to a charity shortly when we do our next 'sort and send' for AXA Purls knitting group. 

Sunday, June 01, 2014

Put on a rucksack...

They're a funny lot round where I live, if you walk down the lanes dressed normally no one gives you the time of day, at best they ignore you, otherwise they throw suspicious glances but put a rucksack on your back and walking boots on your feet and everyone smiles and says hello! 

Although DH was busy today, with a walking holiday approaching,  I wanted to get some miles in and with a sunny Sunday morning to spare I popped on my boots and rucksack and set off on our usual route on my own.  We are so lucky that within just 2 minutes we are in the country, and at this time of year it truly is The garden of England.  Our route is around 6 miles and takes in
Leafy lanes

Country roads

Goes over streams in woods dappled with sunlight

And looks across rolling countryside
And of course it would be rude not to stop and take advantage of the bench in the lovely little village we pass through, now wouldn't it?