Aside

YAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAY!Β  I have finally cast off my ishbel shawl!!! It still needs blocked. I had to unknit some of it as I dropped stitches and the new yarn wasn’t right at all. I used my fyberspates sock yarn that I had bought at Woolfest to finish it off and I think it fits right in. πŸ˜€ I finished this while watching the lovely Andy Murray win at Wimbledon…. although I did knit in the short breaks between serves as I was totally hooked since the game was so exciting! Im so pleased for him! He really did deserve that win. Well done Andy!!Image

Just a short blog post! Ishbel love β€

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Woolfest 2013 happiness!

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Ooooh I was filled with utter joy when I found about this lovely festival !! Two and a half hour journey to Cockermouth with a 21 month old toddler? Not a problem! Alex behaved perfectly throughout the journey deciding to sleep the entire way there. WIN WIN.

Arriving at the venue I can see the stairs decorated with knitted/crocheted banners… Already I can feel the excitement !

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When you step inside you’re immediately greeted by the vast array of stalls, instant colour overload and the smell of sheep! I felt like a little kid at the sweet shop haha. I think the first moments I sped around the whole venue just absolutely flabbergasted by the amount of wool, spinning and animals around. It took me a while to get over that initial grinning stage. I could see a lot of the other enthusiasts whizzing around with massive smiles on their faces. I loved this aisle with all the flags… it pretty much sums up the feel of the day. Everyone is smiling!!

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Alex, Alain and I headed off to see the animals and here they all are… I like the rastafarian dread sheep a lot. He/She did look very hot though… and I think he was glad of the shear later on in the day. The alpaca’s were so shy and generally quite edgy most of the time but that didn’t stop them chomping down on hay when offered and it did settle their nerves. They look so cute and kinda quirky when they have been sheared.

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Shearing is fascinating to watch – it’s like a elaborate dance the shearer has to do just to keep the sheep still and eventually get a beautiful coat from them.Β  You can see how much effort she has to put in even by just looking at her white knuckles in the pictures below.

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Art was at an incredible high standard and the theme was so whimsical! Alice and wonderland, red riding hood all part of the ‘Once upon a time’ theme. LOVE LOVE LOVE.Β  They were created by a group called The Materialistics, a group of knitters that are truly an inspiration and their creativity is just mindblowing. You can find them on facebook : http://www.facebook.com/Materialistics2009?fref=ts If you feel you want to make a donation please let me know! They are always looking for support. The other group that contributed to the stunning display was Bill Quay Wool Group and they created a masterpiece of ‘Where the wild ones are’

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There was also music ! Folksy sort of music. It really made the atmosphere magical. It added a whole more happy factor to the celebration. Little Alex did join in with clapping πŸ™‚

After all the shearing, skipping merrily around all the stalls and a short coffee/lunch break it was time to step into new territory of spinning. After looking at the lovely ashford wheels I wasn’t quite ready to spend a large amount of moneyΒ  on a spinning wheel although I did have a good perv over them…. and those looms were pretty inspirational too.

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Here is my collection of buys from the woolfest:

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I spent a fair bit on wool, I can’t deny that… but I also invested in a drop spindle and some shetland roving wool. This will either end in utter disaster… or it’ll be the start of something magical. Either way… you will all see the journey unfold at some point in the future of my blog.Β  I did go a step further in my madness by buying some koolaid dyes, because you cant have handspun yarn and NOT dye it right?!

The other two skeins ; one is a laceweight green skein, and the other a purple handyed sock weight skein.Β  I have never knitted with laceweight yarn… apart from the one time I used mohair garnstudio drops yarn and Rowan kidsilk for these projects of mine on ravelry. http://www.ravelry.com/projects/littlefairyknits/blushing-lace-cowl and http://www.ravelry.com/projects/littlefairyknits/white-rabbit-wrist-ees

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Speaking of handspun yarns, there were two stalls I loved. One where the wool ranged from 22 pound upwards for a skein and the other offered small skeins for a few pounds. I unfortunately couldn’t afford the full skeins (my heart did pang over them like a fairy would over mushrooms and all things mystical) but I did pick up one very small sample and another small skein. They make me skip a little bit inside when I look at them… even though I have no idea what I’ll make with them but I just had to get them.

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Another addiction also made me succumb to buy some mini skeins for my ‘currently in hibernation’ beekeepers blanket. EEEEE!Β  Aren’t they so cute?! Little squidgy pieces of JOY!

I was given this very vintage yarn by my gran and I had no idea how much was in it… so off I trotted to the vintage knitting stall where a lovely lady took the yarn skein apart and showed me it was made up of four sections! 25g each. So i have a 100g skein and now I have an idea of how much yarn I have to play with –Β  I just have to decide what to make. Suggestions are welcomed! Drop them in the comments! I was thinking along the lines of a shawlette maybe… but open to any ideas.Β  I will probably be visiting their site after I knit something from this wool to get their garment wash which revitalises vintage wool as it has slightly felted with age. Here is a link to the website: www.susancrawfordvintage.comIMG_3430

I very very much enjoyed my day at Woolfest and would highly recommend it to everyone, even non-wool enthusiasts! It’s such an amazing festival and the volunteers really did do a wonderful job at making it run all smoothly.

On the way back we stopped briefly to take some pictures of Cumbria because I have never been to Cumbria before and this is like a little keepsake of a happy day. Enjoy!

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PS: On another note of madness, I have had to clip my lionhead rabbit. His fur was becoming matted and was literally getting too thick for him now summer is here. I now have a small bag of angora…. will I be able to blend it with other wool and spin it? That is what you can see that appears in the picture of all my buys as a bag of black fur.

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Me and alex are shown on the left and my husband alain with alex on his back on the right πŸ™‚ such fun!

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Scottish summer bliss.

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So summer has hit Scotland finally!! We have sun and although its not very warm, its warm enough to sit in with shorts and a tshirt sipping on a cola with slices of lemon dropped in. Yum. That was exactly what I done today inbetween all the gardening…. Here’s a sneaky look at my lovely chives in full bloom. Dont they look so pretty πŸ˜€

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Although the weeds are a pain atm. But I do love the ones which are particularly pretty !

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Cheeky cat is strolling around my garden hoping to catch some birdies.

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So what have I been up to?! Well I havent posted in a little while (apoligies!) but I really really didnt have anything interesting to post as my current project felt like it took a small age to complete with a little toddler taking up most of my time and eating into my valuable crafting time 😦

But here is my lovely attic24 blooming flower !!

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Instead of crocheting it all the way round I made an adjustment and left a hole and crocheted a little flap with buttonholes and buttons. I done this because I know for a fact my sticky fingered little chocolate loving toddler does love to get everything mucky and this pillow cover will not be exempt from normal ‘get stuff mucky’ parades he goes on. πŸ˜› I am yet to sew on the buttons fully on but got far too excited to share my pillow yummyness.

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I will update again soon because I have more to share on other things I have been crocheting but enjoy any sun that comes your way ! x

All things quite un-spring-ly

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So the snow is still falling and we’ve had some lovely walks in the snow in the past month. At the moment the snow isn’t quite this thick (we dont seem to have any on the ground now) but we are still getting flurries of snow here and there, Where is spring!? as you can see we’ve had snow , then lovely spring weather and now back to snow again πŸ™‚ The horse is clearly amused at this. He lives in townhill just near Town Loch for the water sports centre, as does the little robin that will sit literally cms away from you not even bothered in the hope he gets some food. The locals love him πŸ™‚

IMG_2350IMG_2629 IMG_2603Β Β  IMG_2535Β Β Β Β Β Β Β Β  Spring is almost here though, you can just about see it teasing us with early flowers on the trees! I found some at Dunfermline glen…. so I have proof!

I have now got new wool to play with to try and finish my shawl.

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It’s quite different to the previous wool though so I’m not totally sure on how it will look when finished but I’ve decided to alternate rows for the moment until the new wool runs out to try and attempt to blend them. And I seem to have hit a dead end again as I seem to have dropped stitches somewhere again…so I will have to gather up the courage to un-knit and redo. Anyway, here is it in its sort of mishap way… :/

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My teapot cosy is finally finished and I totally love it!

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The colours remind me of fresh spring slowly blending into a hot summer. It makes me want to knit more of these cosies πŸ™‚

With all this snow I haven’t really felt the urge to go out much so I have indulged in baking chocolate cupcakes with my not so little sister (she’s 13).

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I’m a sucker for chocolate… next on my agenda is a rainbow cake to try encourage the spring to hurry up and invite some lovely rainbow love in my life!

I may have also bought all teh yarns!

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I love Attic24 and I decided I’d try make her lovely tin crochet covers for my mini daffodils that were just sitting lonely in their little yellow pots just like hers. Here is one I made πŸ™‚

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although I haven’t any buttons… must add them to very long growing list of ‘craft’ things I want. My husband won’t be pleased ! πŸ˜› Staying on the topic of Attic24 I decided I must have a ripple blanket just like hers. They are too gorgeous to not have.Β  And I can imagine snuggling up on the sofa with my little boy under a yummy soft flow of lovely rainbow sunshine.

Although… that initial plan of starting a ripple didn’t really happen as I lended up making some of these african flower hexagons.

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Gives me an excuse to buy even more yarn when I inevitably start my ripple and run out of it!! oopsy.Β  Yet to decide what these hexagons will become – perhaps a pillow or if I’m brave I might soldier on and make a small blanket. I can sense the pillow will be more likely though! I am too impatient.

Well that’s all I’ve been up to. Apart from reballing wool after my cheeky little boy has discovered the wool stash and pulls it all over the floor. It makes me want to die a little bit inside LOL! Oh and I treated myself to these lovely china earrings I found on ebay.

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I love vintage stuff. It makes my heart skip a little bit with joy. I am tempted to buy a brooch in the same sort of colours to use for my shawl when I finish it, IF I ever finish it!!

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Heres a picture of me with my new extreme retro glasses. They will either make you laugh your little bum off or you’ll like them… I think I go with the first choice myself though!!

More ishbel

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Hello hello!

I have now finished lace part A,B,A,B and am awaiting my new custom dyed wool from the lovely astashaddict πŸ™‚ Shes been snowed under and hasnt been able to do much wool dying due to her pipes being iced up! I haven’t posted here for a little bit due to my camera breaking 😦

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But I have a new one! so here is my ishbel ! You can really see the lovely pattern appearing!Β  I had a major hiccup with it at one point… and despite putting a lifeline in I just couldn’t bear to rip it … so I painfully knit it back a row and a half to find my error where I had forgotton to pass the slipped stitch over. It took me at least six hours to fix my mistake! yikes. That will teach me NOT to knit when I’m sleepy and only pick up an easier knit…

So apart from knitting this I haven’t been knitting anything else as I’m waiting on new wool from Jamiesons spindrift for my beekeepers blanket. I have however been keeping myself busy with my little one and taking pictures! So meet my mad little family. This is Alex πŸ™‚ He’s 15 months and toddling about like mad ! Keeps me super busy and just had his dreaded MMR. I love his cute little almond shaped eyes and it’s so true that when you have a little one you fall in love with them instantly. He’s my whole world.

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This is me! I forgot to mention my name is Julie πŸ™‚ I reckon my little one looks like me ? no ? haha.

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Dinner times can get very messy hehe!

Meet my dachshund Rufus. Hes a lovely dog but doesnt much like big doggies :/

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and of course my two cats;

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The top cat is 9 years old and Timmy and Bear is the other cat. He was a rescue cat and must be about 16 years old now !! He’s still pretty happy with life but has developed a ‘chase random non existant mice’ thing at night. I can hear him pitter pattering around the house chasing his imaginary mice. Quite odd lol!

Oh my 26th birthday came and went and I got this for my present !

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Well thats all folks! catch up when I have done more knitting and have more to show you all ! πŸ˜›

Teapot cosy adventures and other past knitting

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Im knitting up a teacosy! Its from this pattern here : http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/mistake-rib-tea-cosy The winter has been here for ages and Im sick of my tea getting cold!

So here is one side of my lovely cosy!

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I dont know if I should do two different sides for the teapot cosy ? I get bored easily ! so the change of sides might be nice! answers below please lol! πŸ™‚ basically I have this lovely wool and it has a purple speckled bit (you can see it in the owl below)Β  in it too that I’d have to cut away if I want the sides to be exactly the same… seems a waste of wool!

I made my lovely sisters these presents for their christmas and they loved them! I actually want to knit me one of each for myself ! so much I want to do!!! not enough time!!!

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The fox is a pattern by the lovely TinyOwlKnits πŸ˜€ her patterns really are amazing. You should definately have a look over at her ravelry and her website www.tinyowlknits.com She has many many other knits I want to try at a later stage.Β  The fox was quite a straightforward knit too and Im pleased how he turned out. He took about 2 weeks to complete but I done him over a month along with my beekeeper quilt hexagonals I am doing. I used jamieson’s spindrift as suggested in the pattern, its a little on the itchy side of wool but looks lovely! I contemplated using fun fur to line him … or perhaps a fleece liner would work. Anyway he lives on my sister Kate’s neck now and is very loved.

The owl pattern is Owl puffs which I also found in ravelry… http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/owl-puffs Β 

This one didnt take quite as long as the fox, its really really easy to follow for a beginner so if you’re looking for a good easy toy this is it! I filled mine with chickpeas to give it some weight at the bottom … and then stuffed the top with some old pillow stuffing. Worked a treat πŸ˜€ and I didnt even need to buy buttons ! They were hiding in a drawer unloved before being given the task of owl eyes…

And I made this mushroom this week. My lovely husband Alain is driven insane with my constant knitting and bought me Ysolda Teague’s Whimsical Little Knits book … this was in the book and the Ishbel shawl.

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Isn’t it sooooo cute! I want to make a fairy scene with more of these! Little gnomey feels right at home πŸ™‚ It is suitably fairy like for my taste! Now to buy the red yarn …. and some white… for an even more fairy like mushroom! *toodles off to find some*… talk to you all soon xxx

Ishbel update

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So I’ve just discovered … after knitting one and a half portions of the lace that I will definately not have enough for a complete shawl… its hand dyed wool 😦 so I cant really get another ball exactly the same 😦

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Now I face the agonising – rip back and go with the small version …. or continue on and do a small lace pattern…. or continue it and join a new slightly different dyed ball and hope it looks ok πŸ˜₯

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Lesson learnt! Look at the pattern and see how much yarn you need BEFORE starting. GAH !

Second lesson I’ve learnt is to ball up future skiens … otherwise you end up with a barf-tangle (See below my lovely barf-tangle)

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Other than that I have been eating countless numbers of chocolates. I should probably ban myself from the chocolate store… BUT they are soooo good ! πŸ˜€

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excuse the fuzzy picture. My decent camera has went a-wall 😦

Heres my shawl so far with the lace starting to show πŸ˜€

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