Not spun for a while, but I didn’t realise how much i’d done!
Shopping at The Knitting & Stitching Show.
Lace & embroidery on display at Alexandra Palace
Not spun for a while, but I didn’t realise how much i’d done!
My day @ Wonderwool, Wales Pt2
I got up @ 4am, not even the birds were awake, yet! I barely got in the shower, when my ride text to say she was on her way! No time for breakfast, just shower, dress & off we went to pick up another friend who lives in deepest Kent.
We’d packed Anne’s boot with a pair of wellies, as she didn’t have any, then off we drove, trying to decipher her road map, which fared better than the Google directions!
After a stop for breakfast at a motorway service station, we were off again, time and the non-stop rain, was not on our side, plus the car is not used to such a long journey but the train journey would have been out of the question!
It cost £6 to cross the Severn Bridge into Wales. The views were stunning, despite the weather. Fortunately, we were driving away from the crazy London weather, but I couldn’t see the hill tops, but what a view.
The Royal Welsh Showground, Llanelwedd, Builth Wells, Powys Builth, was our destination point, and when we got into the village, we thought we were there, but no, we had another hour of longer and longer winding country roads to navigate!
It was about 1pm when my long legs, stretched with relief! We parked the car, then there was an even longer walk to the showground, any further, we’d have crossed the border!
£8 entrance fee paid, (bargain), through the show doors & what greeted us 1st, was this fabulous vintage Morris van.
The Wonderwool organisers, decided to hold the show indoors, which was the best decision, as the wet weather would not have helped all those yarns, fibres & the public! It was good that I’d brought a spare pair of my hand made alpaca socks with me, as I could feel the cold of the concrete floor, coming up though my wellies!
I’d brought a packed lunch with me, but there was plenty of choice for foodies, with vegetarian options, cakes, savouries, crepes, burgers made with Welsh meats to Asian food. I think the food sellers were caught out, as the show was indoors, which meant more people came, and some food sellers ran out of stock!
Previously, I made some stitch markers. As I was hoping to see Emma from Atomic Knitting. I gave some to my 2 friends as belated birthday & thank you gifts & the lovely Emma, who makes stitch markers, chose a set. Although, Emma & I ‘know’ each other from Tumblr, yesterday was our first face-to-face meeting.
Anne, Sue & I had a plan. We would walk around the outer edge of the stands, and then weave up and down the middle stands, so we wouldn’t miss anything, and then, we saw there was another show room! Oh how we hyperventilated with glee!
Of course, the first stand I visited was KnitPro. They have a range of needles I want, but the set’s not available until summer, so I put in my order, with a great discount.
Although the show had sumptious yarns, it’s a great destination for all things fibre. There was an abundance of spinning wheels, even travelling versions, drum carders, drop spindles, (I bought a maple wood, one), and a TON of fleeces galore!
However, I wanted to take home the alpacas, who belong to the Toft Alpaca company, but I don’t think they’d fit in the car, but there was space for the 3 angora bunnies!
I can’t remember their company name, but the bunnies’ owner told me that she combs their fibre every three months, which gives her a yield of 50g of angora a year! No wonder alpaca, angora & cashmere is a considered purchase, but we agreed that blending their fibre with another, like mohair or sheep’s wool, brings the cost down.
I’m a HUGE fan of alpaca. It’s unique qualities are that it has a hollow fibre, which keeps the body cool in the heat & warm in the cold, and alpaca has little or no lanolin, which is good for those of us who can’t always wear wool next to our skin.
Wonderful Wonderwool, Wales
Saturday Spinning Pt 2
Here are some pics of the spinning workshop I went to, last Saturday, which was run by Julian in Yarnia’s yarn & craft store.
I wish I could take Julian home with me, but his family would spin me into yarn!
Julian’s yarns are very beautifully dyed, and couldn’t resist buying the fawn coloured hank, and a bag of fleece to spin.
When I got home, I was straight into my goddy bag, & was spinning for hours! The bottom whorl is better for me, than the top whorl, that i’ve been used to. Just holding the handmade beech wood drop spindle, is a joy to use.
Usually, I look at websites & video tutorials, but seeing it in the flesh, up close & personal, is just what I needed. I highly recommend signing up for a workshop.
Looking forward to the next workshop, and we had a fabulous day!
Off to do more spinning!
So until the next time. Keep crafting, keep creating.
I had the privelidge of attending a spinning workshop last Saturday. With my own drop sindle, sum merino wool yarn roving & a packed of chocolate covered Rich T biscuits, Anne, Sue & I, drove to Yarnia, as yarn & craft store, in Belvedere, Kent.
6 of us sat around the craft table at Yarnia, & eyeing up the lovely yarns, drinking green tea with jasmine, I was ready to listen to our ‘leader’ who rode in on the coolest motorbike eva!
Julian’s wife is the knitter in the family, and Julian is the spinner of the two.
I’d not met Julian in real life, but he’d made me a pegloom, which has a pine base & beech wood pegs - glorious! He’s also making me a double-ended, extreme crochet hook!
We were given a brief history of weaving, and then, we got on with it.
Firstly, he pulled from his ‘stash’ some fleece
It was slightly coarse to the tough, but digging my fingers in it, I could feel the natural lanolin. At least our hands would be lovely & soft - it’s a natural moisturiser!
Julian expertly showed us how to comb fleece. Boy, it’s time consuming, but very worth it! It felt like soft candy floss, when Julian rolled it from the the brushes.
The next thing was a nice part of the day. On the craft table were storage bags, made from beautfiful curtain fabric, which house sum fleece & a handmade drop sindle for a us, which was included in our workshop fee!
Although, I liked the bags we were given,
I swapped with my friend, who’s bag was brighter!
After spinning the handmade spindles, like spinning tops on the table, it was our turn to start spinning.
This is my friend, Anne, who got the hang of it. She’s the queen of crafting. she’s got a spinning wheel in the hallway of her house!
More comin soon, but need 2 get ready 2 meet the Funky Fibres Craft Group 2 nite!
On Friday 15, Saturday 16, and Sunday 17 July 2011 the Imperial College in South Kensington, London, will be taken over by knitters, knitwear designers, knitting experts, yarn sellers and other knitty crafty folk for Knit Nation 2011!
There will be a fabulous preview opening night on the Friday, and a whole weekend of knitting workshops – we particularly love the sound of the Cookie A’s Knitting Off the Grid workshop on adding curves and angles to your knitting, and Susan Crawford’s Vintage Fit & Finishing, but there are loads to choose from.
In addition, you can meander through the knitty shopping haven of the Marketplace and settle down at the Knit-Tea Salon, which will be serving tea, coffee, cake and cream teas, as well as providing a comfy place to sit and knit. In this spot you can also visit Ysolda’s ‘parlour’, where you can see her books Little Red in the City, and Whimsical Little Knits 1 & 2, examine the garments created for them, and even try them on - Ysolda’s photobooth will ensure you have photographic evidence!
Plus our sister mag The Knitter and Knitspot owner and designer Anne Hanson will be co-hosting a Charity Bingo Party on the Saturday night in aid of domestic abuse charity Refuge. Tickets are £20 and include a glass of wine or a bottle of beer, some nibbles, a bingo booklet and dabber pen, and the opportunity to win fabulous prizes donated by some wonderful knitting and spinning businesses, including a Bohus pullover kit for Forest Darkness black from Solveig Gustafsson and an Knitspot shawl, knitted by Anne Hanson herself.
Additional bingo booklets are available to purchase on the night for £5 a booklet, and all profits from the evening will be donated to Refuge .
So, a weekend of knitting, cream teas, yarn coveting and even a bit of feel-good saintly bingo! If you don’t yet have your tickets you can register for Knit Nation now.
Once you arrive, make sure you go to the Knit Nation registration desk (located on the ground floor of Sherfield Building) to check-in and pick up your tickets, class details, if you’ve booked one, and other handy bits of info. The registration desk is open from 8am on Friday, Saturday and Sunday – make sure that if you’re booked on any of the workshops you check-in early enough to arrive at your first class in good time.
p.s. Go & say hi to Anna from Onehandknits & The Bothered Owl ladies, the’re fab!