Fair Isle in Whalsay

Are you going to Shetland Wool Week this year? If so, can I strongly suggest you set aside a day in your itinerary for a trip to the wonderful island of Whalsay?. The Whalsay Heritage Centre is currently hosting an exhibition of the island’s fair isle knitting that will, I assure you, really blow your… Read More

thankyou, KCG

A few weeks ago, I visited the home of the UK Knitting and Crochet Guild – a fantastic organisation that exists to support and promote the crafts of knitting and crochet. The KCG is supported entirely by charitable donation, and is staffed by a group of wonderful volunteers, who administer a growing international membership; organise… Read More

J Cathcart Wason, Shetland’s knitting M.P.

It’s election time here, and while we were in Shetland, our paths crossed with those of Scotland’s first minister on her campaign trail. The other day I was in the Shetland Archives and came across a fascinating campaign-trail image from over a hundred years ago. I thought you might be interested to see it. J… Read More

EYF snapshots

A fantastic time was most definitely had by all at Edinburgh Yarn Fest. Here are a few pictures. If I seem to be somewhat maniacal and frazzled in these photographs, well, that’s because I was. . . The stand in quieter moments. A customer tries on Mel’s Deco cardigan. Meeting lovely folk from my Ravelry… Read More

Miss Rachel’s yoke and gauntlets (a closer look!)

As discussed in the previous post, this design is inspired by an early nineteenth-century shawl, collected by Rachel Kay Shuttleworth, and now part of Gawthorpe Textile Collection. The colourful, ribbon-like bands of the shawl immediately reminded me of one of my favourite colourwork motifs, a small, simple pattern which resembles an interlocking vine. The pattern… Read More

generosity

What an amazing week I had in Shetland! It was a complete privilege to see and talk to so many amazing knitters, who generously shared their work and thoughts with me. Mary Kay, at the Shetland Guild of Spinners, Weavers and Dyers, shows us an incredibly fine lace shawl, knitted in Unst around 1930. Joan… Read More

Shetland days

It is Wool Week in Shetland, and I began it in this cottage out at Vementry. What a spot! It was lovely to take some time out to visit my friend Hazel Tindall. I just love the part of Shetland where Hazel lives, and it was a real privilege to potter about her garden, and… Read More

Promenade

A little under a decade ago, shortly after rediscovering knitting, I bought a kit to knit Hanne Falkenberg’s Promenade. Promenade is a beautiful garter-stitch wrap, which comes in several glorious shades of Shetland wool. The wrap’s colour combinations are intriguing (and inspiring). It is a simple but nifty design, and I greatly admired it (as… Read More

designing & publishing: part 2

Well, I sat down a couple of days ago and thought I’d write a quick post about the great new books I’d come across, all of which had been either produced completely independently, or had been commissioned from an independent designer. As I reflected on recent directions in hand-knit design, and digressed into my own… Read More