Shawl that was on the needles at Unravel, finished, and flowers, not quite finished.
Shawl that was on the needles at Unravel, finished, and flowers, not quite finished.
I’ve made a batch of buttons, a big lot for an order. They will need to be decorated on Monday when they are dry, and then fired during the week.
Glazed, and fired in the electric kiln for a quick turn round.
And while that’s going on, I’ll start throwing, plenty of pots for Wonderwool Wales.
I finally finished the shawl I’ve been knitting recently, and you can see it on the needles in this photograph that was taken at Unravel a few weeks ago.
With me is Andrea, who was knitting a swatch for Redhound for a new design of woolly jacket for a dog, I loved the fact that her red needles were coordinating with her outfit. I did not knit all the time, I did some selling too.
Picture of shawl when it’s finished blocking.
There is a new text box appeared in the side tabs, underneath the Etsy button.
It’s a link to sign up for a newsletter. I’ll let you know when there will be updates in the shop, or where I’ll be when doing shows round the country.
Here are a few slightly blurred shots of my stand at Unravel. Which was great, lovely customers, and I spent most of the weekend talking to two ladies who were running the stall next to mine. I must give the company a shout out, they have gorgeous things, though I can’t see my cats being fond of any of it.
Their woolly coats for dogs were lovely, and you can get kits too for you to knit.
Blurry photographs with new items.
I’ll be getting the mugs up for sale in the shop this week. The yarn bowls have sold, and I’ll be making more, though they will be going with me to Wonderwool Wales at the end of April.
Oh and for the yarnies, the top sock yarn is called Mind the Gap, and I got it on the internet, though can’t remember where. It’s the London Underground map colours of the lines, socks for husband who is a rail enthusiast.
The turquoise and orange is a self striping yarn from Sparkleduck.
Unravel was fantastic, such lovely people, every where, stall holders, organisers and customers.
Over 24 hours later I’m still buzzing a bit.
So it will be a few days until I’m back in the swing of things and I’ll post some photographs and share some links when I’m rested, and have restored my living room back into a living room and shoe horned all this stuff back into my
And I need to update the shop, so it will be open later on in the week.
I’d thrown some yarn bowls, two with very nice cut outs that you could slot your yarn in, and both have cracked.
So only the ones with holes left, so two solitary bowls, and I’ve been drying them so carefully too.
Back on the drawing board, and try out new designs next time.
It’s been a while, well yes you know that.
I’ve been listening to Pink Floyd on the TV, so it sort of seemed apt. Also while out in the car this week with one of my sons he had Comfortably Numb on the radio.
Right, where were we?
York was a blast as usual, there were less of us than in some years, and so we all socialised together in one group more than we did when the group was larger. Nice comfy room and bed, and good food, and great knitting, spinning, and even more talking.
It was a wonderful weekend, and made even better when Andrew and I had a couple of days to wander round York and see things we’d not seen before, or revisit.
It did rain a great deal, and is still doing here in the UK and the River Ouse which runs under Lendal Bridge in the centre of York was well up and looked like it was flowing strongly with lots of wood debris floating in it. I should imagine two weeks later and it’s even more in spate than it was.
While we were at York we went to a gallery in Wakefield, the Hepworth Gallery. Stunning pieces of work by Barbara Hepworth on display, but what I’d really gone to see was a collection of pots collected over many years by Bill Ismay.
Bill (William) Ismay was a gentleman who lived in a two up two down terraced house in Yorkshire, and his house was filled with pots. And when I say filled, I really mean filled. The exhibition is 700 pots that were found in his kitchen/dining room area of his house. No that is not a typo, yes 700 pots.
His house contained 3,600 pots, and he bequeathed them to the York Museum. The York Museum is closed for a major overhaul, so the pots have been on a little outing.
I took lots and lots of photographs, unfortunately they are all on husbands new camera, I will
bore delight you with them at a later date when I’ve got them from the camera.
We finally went to Bettys at York, and had a lovely omelette and tea, and a jam and cream scone, well worth a trip though it is quieter out of season and during the week.
I came back from York with a gorgeous cold, that attached itself on my chest for the next week, and I took to my bed almost as soon as we got home. It really was a nasty little bug, and now Andrew has it, and it’s looking like it’s working its way round the house hold.
I was poorly enough and spend most of a week in bed, but Andrew has been really poorly and has had almost a full week off work, which is unheard of.
So plans for Unravel, which is in less than a fortnight now, went some what awry, and I won’t have as much big items with me as I’d planned. I will have plenty of buttons, and coasters, and small bowls, some drinking beakers (I am practising handles for mugs), and hopefully some yarn bowls.
I wasn’t happy with my throwing, so went to a potting friend and she just walked me though what I was doing and just made slight adjustments to my stance as I was throwing, and it was amazing, just two inches clock wise with my hands made lots of difference.
I’ve been a couple of times, and we’ve come up with the design of the yarn bowls that I have, she is a knitter as well as a potter.
Potters, as with lots of crafts people often spend much of their time alone in their sheds, or studios or where ever just working away. And then sometimes you get a negative thought in your head and it just sticks, and becomes a small mountain range.
This had happened with my throwing, it’s hardly surprising as I’ve not thrown properly since leaving university in 2006, so it was little wonder that I was lacking confidence. So getting together for a few hours with someone who speaks the same language, has similar problems, has over come ways of working, knows what the whole job feels like is like a huge breath of fresh air. Sylvia was at University the same time I was, though in a different year, and it’s been good to talk about the people we knew, and things that happened.
One thing I had never done was a technique called pulling handles. I knew in theory what to do and I think I’d had a go a few times, but the finer points of the technique I’d never been taught. So I’ve been pulling handles for mugs. And with every new technique it needs practice, so my handles are not quite as I would want them yet, and I think we’ll be using all the slightly skew wift ones at home.
So I’ve been on in forced rest, and I’ve been busy, and busy is how it’s staying for the next week or so as I have work to finish and fire, glaze, fire, and decal, and fire again before the event at Farnham.
Started packing for my trip to York on Saturday morning. I wanted to try out new case with my Bliss Spinning Wheel in it, and to try and see how it will fit in.
Sorted it now, and I think after a few goes we’ve found the right way for it to fit.
I just need to pack the clothes and yarn, and also we are having a mug swap, so will need to wrap and pack that.
Alan obviously needed to come with me, followed by Molly, who loved the inside of the case to have a wash, and then Edmund decided to give it a try.
See you on the other side of a trip I’ve been looking forward to for ages.
I’ll be shutting the shop for a few days while I’m away, and the sale will still be on until the last day of January, then it’s back to full prices, so if you want some bargains then come back after Wednesday.
That is so true, we never stop learning, a word, a song, reading a new book, learning a new technique.
When I was at University there were new things all around us, we learned from each other just as much as from the tutors. Being a very hands on, practical course it was easy to see what everyone was up to as they sat at their benches, or sat throwing pots at the wheel. The opening of a kiln was an event that had many of us crowding round to see what new glazes had done, or what your work was like. Often some one would come into either the work room, or throwing room and say ‘come and look at this glaze’ and we’d all go and see.
it was something that we all took for granted, watching, gleaning information, learning from each other.
But most potters work alone, unless they are fortunate enough to work with in a studio with a collection of potters. It is easy to get fixed on a problem, and what was a mole hill becomes a mountain.
I was having difficulty with throwing, and ended up loosing confidence, and the more I tried, the less I seemed to accomplish, and soon I’d built a sizeable hill. A potting friend wondered if she could help.
So today I went to see Sylvia, and we sat at the wheel and threw.
I learned lots, and the main thing was re setting my brain, and moving my hands anti clockwise by a few inches. My brain re set, and everything seemed so much easier, what a difference a little fine tuning made. Fresh eyes could see where I’d got bogged down.
It was great to talk and speak the same language, and as we’d been at university at the same time to chat about people that we both knew.
So batteries re charged it’s off we go again.
The time of year when a bunch of knitters and spinners take over a convent in York for the weekend is nearly upon us. And I shall pick the brains of some of the spinners as I want to learn a new technique.
So learning again. It’s what keeps what we do with our hands fresh and new, and exciting.
Well it took three times longer to do the flat pack stuff than we thought, and that was with two of us doing it, mind you only being able to find one screw driver did slow things down a little.
The kittens did a runner the other night, and I ended up waiting to see if they would come in until the wee small hours. I felt some what guilty as they slipped out late when I should have shut doors, and hoped they’d come back or daughter would be heart broken.
There was still no sign of them at breakfast the next day, even though we went out and called.
Then ten minutes after daughter left for work first Alan, then Charlie turned up. They had timed it to perfection that she’d have started work by the time I got to the phone to tell her that they had come back.
We did wonder if they’d be able to find their way back as they had only been here a few days.
All the cats have begun to settle down now we’ve finished unpacking daughters stuff and moving furniture around, and they are all getting used to each other.
Never believed we’d have six cats, for a cad mat woman, it’s bliss.
Got some good news this week too, I have another event booked.
Wonder Wool Wales at Builth Wells at the end of April, a big yarn and food show, so plenty for everyone. Getting something good to eat for lunch should not be a problem.
I am so excited I have two large yarn shows, one large ceramics show, and a ceramics festival nearer to home to look forward to this year.
All the dates and links for details are on the Events page along the header at the top of the page.
Have a lovely weekend.
I’ll leave you with Charlie, and Alan.