Ottar (hap)

I have been so inspired by Ottar (see yesterday’s post) that I decided to name my latest design for her – the Ottar hap. This is a hap I’ve had a notion to knit since I started working on The Book of Haps about eighteen months ago. As I researched Shetland hap construction, I became… Read More

Ottar

Working on a book can be full of surprises. I did not think, when I set out to write a chapter about tools and objects and the way my attitude to the material world changed after my stroke, that I would end up being inspired by an amazing feminist anarcho-syndicalist . . . but weirdly… Read More

excellent women

Apart from marrying Tom, the other highlight of 2015 for me was the Seven Skeins Club, and the feedback we’ve since had from many members suggest that they really enjoyed it too. Through the club, I was able to launch our newly-developed yarn (a completely new venture for me), create a new book, and have… Read More

Great Tapestry of Scotland 93-123

Panel 94: Hill and Adamson The silver herrings and striped petticoats of the Newhaven fisherwoman. In the comments on yesterday’s post, Heather linked to an interesting take on the “when is a tapestry not a tapestry” question from a tapestry weaver who strongly objects to the misappropriation of the term in reference to non-woven textiles.… Read More

The Shepherd, The Shearer, and me

When Susan Gibbs recently contacted me to ask me if I’d like to be involved in a new project, I already knew I would say yes. I love everything that Susan does at Juniper Moon Farm, and was thrilled to have an opportunity to work with her. But when she explained precisely what this project… Read More

Leningrad

On Friday evening, Tom and I went to see Neeme Järvi conducting the RSNO in Shostakovitch’s 7th. I don’t think I have ever seen the Usher Hall so full – there wasn’t a spare seat to be seen – with many emotional Russians among the audience. Personally, I think it is very hard not to… Read More

do you admire this costume?

I am becoming obsessed with the elaborately starched and stripey ‘costume’ of the Newhaven fishwives – and what it says about the ways in which the hard lives of working women might be reinvented as romance. These mass-produced ornaments were extremely popular in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. They come in several varieties, and… Read More

racy mending

I have been playing around with ideas about mending and darning for a forthcoming article, and have been turning up some interesting tangential things in various digital collections. Pictured above are “Chicago’s top models for 1922” who have been co-opted to advertise the novel innovation of the seam ripper. The caption reads “Ripping is a… Read More

walking dress

(Wool jacket, wool sweater, wool hat, wool skirt, goretex gloves, leather boots. Edinburgh, December 2009). You may (or may not) remember that, during 2009, I set myself a project to walk every day, and to think about walking. I initially attempted to photograph and calculate the distance of my daily walks, but this part of… Read More

cable

We interrupt our regular proceedings with this cable. This is just to let readers of The Knitter know that I’ve a piece in the most recent issue of the magazine (no.13) — about the history and future of cable knitting. In the feature, I talk about Gladys Thompson, an old favourite inspiration of mine, and… Read More