New Lanark owls

Back in the spring, I knew my ten year owliversary was coming up, so I decided to knit myself a new owl sweater. These photographs were taken while we were in Berneray, back in May. It’s quite weird seeing myself with my ‘old’ hair – I suppose that must mean I’m now completely used to… Read More

at Uist Wool

When you get involved in manufacturing yarn for hand knitters, one of the first things you learn about is just how bloody difficult it is just to get some elements of wool production done. I’m talking about the messy, dirty, non-glamorous things; the things like wool sorting, grading, and scouring (washing) or things that involve… Read More

croft, craft, creativity

One of the many things I really like about the communities and cultures of crofting is their distinctive effect on the way people work. What I mean is this: in towns and cities, jobs tend to become more and more specialised, people do what they do within smaller and smaller categories, individual work occurs in… Read More

Making Milarrochy Tweed

We are all busy here behind the scenes – putting the finishing touches to the pattern collection that will be released as part of our forthcoming club, and awaiting the arrival of our new and much-anticipated yarn – Milarrochy Tweed. Milarrochy Tweed is produced for us by our friends at Donegal Yarns – a company… Read More

Scottish Smallholder Festival

Last year I had the very great pleasure of meeting Rosemary Champion. As well as producing wonderful local yarn and meat from her own Rosedean Ryelands, Rosemary is a huge source of inspiration and advice to folk all over Scotland (and beyond) as The Accidental Smallholder. If you have any sort of interest in raising… Read More

Helen Robertson

If you’ve read my introduction to The Book of Haps then you’ll already have come across Helen Robertson – a Shetland artist and craftswoman whose work I deeply admire. Working with silver wire and other precious materials, Helen has developed a uniquely thoughtful aesthetic which celebrates, commemorates and reflects upon Shetland’s history and heritage –… Read More

Uradale

One of the really fascinating aspects about our Shetland Oo project has been finding out more about what motivates Shetlanders who work with wool, and what really makes them tick, both personally and politically (because yes, in so many ways wool is political). Ronnie Eunson and Sue White of Uradale farm, near Scalloway, are particularly… Read More

Shetland Tannery

As part of our work researching and documenting Shetland Oo, this past August, Tom and I met Natalie Cairns-Ratter of the Shetland Tannery. I’d acquired several of Natalie’s beautiful sheepskins on earlier Shetland visits, and was intrigued to learn more about the tanning process, and how her company came about. Small-scale tanning was previously a… Read More

Ninian

Next week (all being well at the printers) we are hoping to release our new Shetland Oo book! For those who don’t know, this is not a book of patterns, but a documentary project in words and photographs exploring the world of Shetland wool. Tom travelled all over Shetland meeting and photographing Shetlanders who work… Read More

Lives in oo

So this is the new project we are working on which has (until today) been very much under wraps! It has been on our minds for some time now for Tom to pursue a project exploring the documentary photography he particularly enjoys. . . and what better subject than a place we dearly love, and… Read More