I'm back home, after the best - the absolute best - of yarny weekends. If you read this in a breathless, overexcited voice, then you're getting the tone just about right, OK? The weekend was a combination of our usual twice-yearly Stylecraft Blogstars meetup at the mill, and Stylecraft's 30th birthday - aka 'Purl Anniversary' event. And one thing that I can now confidently say is that those folks at Stylecraft certainly know how to throw a party. But let's rewind the tape a little. On Continue Reading
To The Mill, Again.
Twice a year, the Stylecraft Blogstars meet at Stylecraft's beautiful old mill in West Yorkshire for a weekend of yarn, chatter, food, wine, friendship, scenery, and news. Yeah, the experience really is exactly as gruelling as it sounds. Our scheduled meetup in February was postponed due to snow. (PLEASE STOP LAUGHING, Canadian/Scandinavian readers - our eccentric little country is ill-equipped to cope with frozen water.) Instead, we met in March. I took my camera so that you could come Continue Reading
Back To The Mill
Twice a year, the Stylecraft Blogstars gather at the mill in Yorkshire for a weekend of yarnery, laughter, samples of the yarns of the future, fine food, deepening friendship, yarn industry news, stunning scenery, a trip out somewhere interesting, a workshop, wine, and luxurious hotel rooms where absolutely nobody tiptoes in at 2am to ask, "Mummy, how long do kestrel eggs take to hatch?" Or at least if they do, you can say, "Sorry kid, that's an excellent question but I'm not your mummy; I think Continue Reading
Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to Saltaire. This West Yorkshire village is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and home to an awesome art gallery at the former textile factory, Salts Mill. Like colour? You're going to love this. I'd never been to Saltaire, but the folk at Stylecraft organised a visit as part of our recent Blogstars meetup. We arranged to meet at the mill, specifically at the 1853 gallery, which is home to a large collection of David Hockney's artworks. See? I told you this post Continue Reading
Weekending. With Yarn.
The other weekend, the 'Stylecraft Blogstars' headed to West Yorkshire for our twice-yearly gathering of woolly minds. Imagine an entire weekend spent with kindred creative souls, where people will look at you funny if you don't chatter on (and on) about knitting and crochet. Imagine a get-together where it's practically de rigueur to cast on at the breakfast table. Imagine a weekend where nobody would dream of interrupting you whilst you're counting. Imagine getting a glimpse into the Continue Reading
Stylecraft Blogstars Meetup, aka Not Too Shabby A Weekend
It's much easier to write blog posts when things are going wrong, or when nothing much has happened. Comic anecdotes come more readily when you've mistakenly put your husband out for collection with the recycling, or when you've spent an insomniac half-night pondering a mysterious chicken-shaped splodge on the bedroom ceiling. Unfortunately,* things have gone catastrophically well this weekend... which was immensely fun to experience, but isn't very funny to describe. I have lovely Continue Reading
Stylecraft Batik Yarn Review
It's about time I published a review of Batik, Stylecraft's brand new yarn. (Disclaimer: I didn't pay for the yarn, so clearly my fickle head has been turned by this freebie and not a single word of the following is to be trusted.) I wanted to thoroughly road-test the yarn before I wrote this, so I got the knitting needles out and started designing something that incorporated all sixteen shades:- You know what you need in the heat of August? A nice warm, fluffy cowl, that's what. So I Continue Reading
Last weekend I was in West Yorkshire at the invitation of Stylecraft. The occasion was the inaugural meeting of their 'Blogstars' programme, in which a dozen of us yarny bloggers/designers get the chance to work closely with Stylecraft and hear whispers about new yarns that are on their way. (Clue: there are some very interesting and unexpected developments afoot.) They kindly asked me to take part. 'Would you like to come up to the picturesque valleys of West Yorkshire, tour our old woollen Continue Reading
To The Mill!
Evenin’. We all here? Good, good. Do have a seat… NO, NOT THAT ONE! Sorry, didn’t mean to shout, but that’s the chair the twinnage have booby-trapped. What’s that you say? Oh, um, trust me, you don’t want to know, but... you’re not scared of worms, I hope? Help yourself to some wine. You’ve brought yarn? Ha, silly question: of course you’ve brought yarn. Speaking of yarn, would you like to see round an old woollen mill? It’s just that a few of us knit/crochet bloggers* were invited to Continue Reading
The Skirt Post
Ah, the skirt. (And thank you to the kind people in the comments threads who've been asking about it.) This post could probably be retitled 'How not to design a skirt, you fool!' but it will at least give you a laugh or two, I hope. Allow me to elaborate. I decided on a whim to design a knitted stranded skirt and a crocheted bag, ahead of judging the Stylecraft competition. It seemed like a good idea. And whilst the bag was done in plenty of time, I ended up restarting the skirt at the Continue Reading