Monday, 24 June 2013

What's in the box?

One of the precious things I brought back from my dad's house on our last visit is this battered old case. It may not look like much but it has been part of my life for as long as I can remember.

It dates back at least to the late 1940s when dad finished his National Service and became a representative of Prudential Assurance  or a 'Man from the Pru' in Eastbourne. You can just see an imprint of his official rubber stamp in the top left hand corner of the lid which he crossed out when he moved back to living with his parents prior to marrying mum.

By the time that I was four or five it had been given to me to play with (see early autograph below). I would often pack it up with teddies and books when planning to run away on some Enid Blyton type adventure. I never got further than the field behind our house, however and was always home in time for tea.

 Now the case and I are off on another adventure, in its way every bit as exciting as the ones I used to plan when I was young. We're off to Woolfest in Cockermouth, Cumbria for two days (Friday 28th and Saturday 29th June) surrounded by all things woolly in the heart of the beautiful Lake District.

If you would like to know what is in the case please come and visit Natalie of The Yarn Yard's stand and all will be revealed!

Tuesday, 11 June 2013


June is shaping up to be quite a busy and exciting month with lots to do and deadlines to meet. When things start to feel a bit overwhelming and I'm not sure what to pick up next I like to grab a pretty braid of fibre and sit down at the wheel and start spinning. The rhythm of the wheel and the need to co- ordinate hands, feet and eyes mean that for a brief time I can let my mind wander. Often I find that I'm able to sort out my priorities and next steps by taking myself aside in this way.
Having just aired the fibre stash I have just got to know some old friends I had hidden away. Here is some Polworth fibre in the colourway Jackaroo from Come in Spinner in Australia. It is quite hard to come by in the UK and I was lucky enough to receive this as part of the Socktopus Fibre Club way back in 2009.  

The roving is dyed in generous chunks of shades which remind me of the embers of a camp fire. I decided that I wanted to make the most of them so I divided the roving in half horizontally and spun it onto two bobbins which I plied against each other. Very little pre drafting was required and the fibre flowed beautifully through my hands. The whole skein took a matter of hours to finish. I was very lucky in the way that the colours fell, blending with each other without much solid colour but should knit up with distinct but muted stripes. It's probably some of the prettiest yarn I have spun for a long time.

I estimate I have about 200m of DK weight yarn that is soft enough to be worn against the skin. I think I'll make a cowl with it but need to decide what sort of pattern will complement the yarn.

Any suggestions?