Sunday, December 31, 2006


You may have noticed I have had a few minutes (or rather hours) on my hands and have upgraded this blog look. Do you get the feeling I like Green. Thankfully the ready made templates didn't come in pink. So if there is anyone out there what do you think?

Christmas has been very quiet in the Yorkie household, mainly due to the fact that a certain person started his night shift on 27th, always a gloomy time without it interferring with the festive season. Next year, of course it will start on Boxing Day! Think plans are afoot to de-camp to York for some part of that.

We were very lucky with presents only 1 that we didn't feel the need to keep and that is already in the recycling bin......does that sound too ungrateful. My sister very generously spends her year sourcing quality bargains for our presents and the rest of the time brewing for a huge hamper for us. Contents this year included Damson Gin, Damson Gin jam, Sloe Gin, are you sensing a trend here. Also included were Haribo, curry sauces, pasta and beers (not for me) one problem with not being in York is we miss out on the homemade digestives and truffles.

My knitting goodies included a Denise needle set, Hip Knits dye your own kit, knitting answers book and these lovely needles cases. Well on their way to being filled.

To give you some clues to my personality here are 2 items that may have you worried. The very impractical Kipling Bag, that I adore, is from my husband who thought it just me when he saw it! The slippers are from my parents and I think the pom poms say it all. I love bags and can always do with another one, colour is also a passion of mine. Quite awkward to dress conservatively for work. My favourite colour is purple although I do hide that fact behind, pink, green and chocolate brown. Sharp eyed readers may notice a box of Green and Blacks mini bars in the background, I don't eat alot of chocolate but if I do I like the good stuff. Books are another hobby especially cookery ones. Alan Titchmarsh is a hero as apart from being a Yorkshire man he helped save the garden where we live now from the 4 foot grass and Brambles we inherited. Gordon Ramsay, I just thought it would be interesting to see what drives someone to swear so much.......

The 22nd December surprise veg from our Riverford box, Celeriac! I am currently thinking of mash but I'm sure there are nicer things.

Sunday, December 24, 2006

Almost there

A Very Merry Christmas.

Now for some Luscious Drinking Chocolate, presided over by a seasonal friend. Enjoy!

Saturday, December 23, 2006

Feet up and Chilled

A very fresh view of York Knavesmire with the old Terrys Factory and the Racecourse stands in the background.

Last weekend we were in York wrapping and distributing the gifts we had stored up there. We managed to fit in a visit to the Theatre Royal Panto which is an institution despite not having any nationally known names in it. The name of the panto is almost immaterial as it is good slapstick with alot of local references. Well done Berwick Kaler 28 years the mainstay of this production aswell as the writer and guilty party for distracting all the other actors. He has often been seen alongside Jimmy Nail in the likes of Spender. Martin Barrass, 21 years. David Leonard and Suzy Cooper. Burtons Biscuits and nowadays Newcastle Brown Ale feature heavily and although the latter has never been thrown into the audience Wagon Wheels have made it into the Gods before now. Over the years health and Safety has intervened and therefore the Stalls were the only beneficiarys of the goodies this year.

Castle Howard (Brideshead) opened its doors for the first time this Christmas and it was nice to see the place decorated for Christmas. Both my sister and I were cornered by an ex-teacher who is now a guide there. Didn't think we were that memorable and we certainly weren't trouble makers.

Sunday lunch at the newly opened Loch Fyne Restaurant, housed in what was a York institution Stubbs Ironmongers shop, completed an enjoyable weekend.

I managed to finish off my first pair of trainer socks whilst there and have since knit myself some Fetching. Pictures show finished and WIP's.

What I think will be a long term project, socks in Posh Yarns Sock club wool that involve Cabling. And a delicious parcel of yarn from Posh Yarns OOW, just in time for Christmas. All sock yarn all scrummy vibrant colours and 2 lots of Cashmere, what more can you ask!
Off to finish dusting, at least the bits you can see then Strictly Come Dancing Final, how sad am I? A certain person is glad that hes late shift!

Saturday, December 09, 2006

That was the week that was

Finally I have got round to putting this weeks events on here.

This bag is not just any bag its the current disguise for my wool stash but things are to change after Christmas, we are going up market!
Still a 50p reusable bag from Sainsburys but a designer one, how posh is that?

On Wednesday we went up to London, just for a change, but this time to see The Sound of Music. I can honestly say I only saw about 3 of the How do you solve a problem like Maria programmes, think anymore would have cured me for life. The show is fabulous although we seemed to hit on pensioner day, we did have one with us too. We had perfect seats on the row which was backed by the sound desk in the stalls.
As Liberty is at the bottom of the street where the London Palladium is we had a good look round there which is a treat in itself, I was suprised to see how the wool has been shoe horned into a corner and I'm sure they used to do a bigger selection. A Gingerbread Latte finished off the day, delicious.

Friday was my final visit to the Physio for my back trouble and he has now discharged me with details of Pilates classes which just so happen to be moving to a Church Hall 2 minutes from home so I think that will be on the list for January.
Also Friday was the postponed Posh Yarns "One off Wednesday" sale, very convenient for me as I wouldn't have been able to make Wednesday. Dee put up details before the 17:00 kick-off and out of the 4 items I had on my list I managed to get 3. Think I now have enough yarn to keep me going through the siege, which one you ask. Theres bound to be one!

Also this week I have been quite busy, for me anyway, trying desperately to finish my Christmas knitting which needs transporting to York next Thursday. This is a project that I can only knit in certain places as it sheds everywhere although now its drying I think it may have been worth it. Its in Angel Yarns Silk which does take a bit of getting used to for tight knitters because it has a habit of breaking. Can't show too much but you get the general idea.

Sunday, December 03, 2006

Birthday Stash and London - Picture heavy

Yesterday we ventured to London, not for Christmas shopping I hasten to add. How anyone can do that is beyond me, and I used to come down from York for that purpose but with the increase in internet shopping and stores realising that they can have branches in other towns theres absolutely no reason in my mind to out yourself through that. We did venture into Oxford Street late afternoon thinking that the fact that it was pedestrianised for the day it would be better but we couldn't get out fast enough. The pedestrianisation just seemed to have increased the volume, no doubt the intention of the businesses.
We "did" Borough Market in the morning where, if you like cheese and olives, you can have a huge lunch on the samples. Plenty of other choices but not in the same volume or as free with samples. The Lactose intolerant among us managed to find a few unusual things so it was a success. Unlike our lunch at Pizza Express where the menu suggested you asked your waiter if you had any dietry requirements. The reply to our query was theres no one here on a Saturday who knows so all you can have is salad, without dough balls!
Our next stop was Tate Modern to see their latest installation in the Turbine Hall slides by Carsten Holler . My DH was brave enough to queue and travel down one of the small slides, the larger ones required a timed ticket and the queue was huge for those.

Finally the weather has provided enough light for taking pictures, above is a Vase of Orchids donated to the Birthday stash by my SIL. I'm told they should last until the Christmas Tree goes up. The next photos are of the wool related presents I was lucky enough to receive.
Guess what next years project is going to be. A friend has volunteered lessons but after the first one she may rethink, I'm not the most patient of people.

Some very nice sock yarn from Piece of Beauty and a book to tell me what to do with it.

Not wool but an essential for winter my Fab boots from Duo that actually fit round my 41cm calf!

Not Birthday but arrived this week. The right hand wool is the Posh Yarn Sock club offering for December, very rich and perfect for this time of year. The green is some lace which I bought off Ebay to have a go with!

Friday, December 01, 2006

Happy Birthday

From childhood I have always felt that 1st December was a special birthday date, possibly because of Christmas and Advent calendars. The advent calendars I had were of the non chocolate variety where Christmas days window held a nativity scene, how times have changed.

The weather has been so dull I haven't been able to take any pictures of my Birthday stash, will try on Sunday. They include a Crochet book, chosen by hubby who appears to have been listening aswell as hoovering up the wool I leave everywhere I knit. Some fabulous boots from Duo for people with, in my case, huge calfs! Sock Yarn from Piece of Beauty and some other knitting related goodies. I was hoping to get my Sock club yarns today aswell but the post is never predictable. Have just managed to rejoin the Posh Yarn Sock Club so its not all bad!

Tomorrow we are off up to London hopefully to see a show if there's a good one at the right price.

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Knitting on the move and James Bond

Tools of the trade, essential for stress free and productive train travel.

An MP3 player, preferably with a remote volume control. A Useful plastic bag in which to keep my current knitting project, usually socks because I don't want a handbag the size of a suitcase! All this was invaluable on my return journey from York on Saturday, after leaving there on time we were sat in the platform at Doncaster for 40 minutes. Almost finished the sock I had with me, now that would have been disaster as I didn't have a book with me. The DPNS that I now knit socks on are Brittany Birches 5" length. when I first saw these I had my doubts but they are much easier to handle than longer needles. I do get some very funny looks, sometimes worrying ones when a cocktail size needle shoots into the air!

Opal Petticoat in some very vibrant colour, even too much for me but it was chosen by my non knitting sister for a friends birthday. Sunglasses required me thinks.

Sunday was spent depositing a very grubby white van, not made so by us, and walking down to the odeon in brighton on the sea front, via Carluccios. I like to try all these places and this one didn't let us down. The Hot Chocolate looks interesting as the glasses its served in appear to have chocolate painted inside them in a very decorative fashion, what a job that must be. We had breakfast which having walked a reasonable distance I didn't feel too guilty about.

Managed at last to get in to see Casino Royal, can recommend it although as we were leaving one young girl was asked by her mother if she'd enjoyed it the reply was "I thought it was never going to end".

Sunday, November 26, 2006

Harrogate Knitting and Stitching show

There I was on the 05:39 train from Brighton, waking up the world with texts to advise of my arrival time. When will people learn not to sleep with their mobile phones! After the usual delays the train I was on reached York 2 minutes in front of the next train from London, which left 30 minutes later. The green project was almost completed en route and final rows done at 07:00 Saturday morning, anyone would think I suffered from insomnia.

Back to Harrogate, which was rather wet when we arrived. The usual crowds of coach trippers blocked the show entrance, do they not realise once off the coach they can disperse? The last time I went to this show was possibly 20 years ago so with this in mind and the rise in knittings popularity I stupidly thought, like alot of others, that the show would now be on a par with the one run by the same company at Alexandra Palace. No, knitting despite being in the shows title, is still badly represented, possibly because some firms don't think it worth the journey North. I would have thought Bettys was enough reason, rumour has it knitting needles were in full swing there. Despite this huge difference to the Alexandra Palace show it is nice to see some yarn retailers think it worth the trip North and South. HipKnits, UK Alpaca and Pavi Yarns to name a few of the ones to get my business. I think yet again it will be another few years before I go back but I am lucky enough to live somewhere where getting to Alexandra Palace is easy.
After that North South divide rant heres what you've been waiting for......Stash Needless to say my rucksack was bulging nicely for the return journey.

Hipknits Cashmere club sock yarn for November and the goodies for joining HipKnits Club, including Camel. At least thats what someones father told me! It is a lovely soft wool so worth watching for it going on sale.

HipKnits Laceweight Cotton/Silk.

UK Alpaca bargain buys 100g for £4.50 and the Black is 100% Alpaca.

Again from HipKnits Schaefer Elaine in 2 colourways.

Finally some Twilleys Freedom Spirit Fire.

Thursday, November 23, 2006

Socks, Cinema and Thai!

As is true of many people at this time of year pictures of my current projects will be few and far because they are Christmas presents. Although one of the people who have read this doesn't have a computer she usually reads it via anothers!

Anyway I have finished the first of my Green secret project, will I be able to part with it? Have bought a pair of very expensive Sock Blockers to hopefully show them at their best. Haven't ever bothered about this before but I think some patterns will benefit.

Do you find that you collect patterns for yourself and conscience/deadlines force you to knit it for someone else first. This is the case here but it has encouraged me to be more adventurous with my sock knitting. Which I know a few friends find amusing when you can buy 7 pairs for £7 in Next/M&S etc. Although the one person who has got a pair of my hand knit socks has asked me to knit a pair for someone else.

On normal life front. We tried to get in to see Casino Royale last night. After speeding down from Brighton station we reached the Odeon to find the queue out of the door with 5 minutes to the start. Trying again on Sunday in the hope that everyone else has something better to do. Still went for our usual Thai meal at the highly recommended Thai Spice which is a very unassuming place but the food is excellent. This restaurant is second only, in our minds, to Paulina Thai Cafe in Kings Cross Road, London. Very local for my office and our payday takeaway. It is the Thai equivalent of a greasy spoon to look at but the food is very good and cheap!

A picture just to add to the interest, I aspire to making my sock knitting easier so bought Socks that Soar on Two Circular Needles which will get read after the rush of Christmas knits has passed. On the same day my yarn from the Yarn Yard arrived, Novembers charity yarn Bushcraft and Goth with pink which has since been knit and frogged! So if you wish to see it knit up see previous post.

Early train to get to Harrogate tomorrow, have a huge list of purchase possibilities especially for the Shoalwater Shawl pattern bought from Angel Yarns.

Saturday, November 18, 2006

Cake Day - Yes I was there

Although only briefly. SIL had a child to retrieve.
The Angel building is very unassuming but like an alladins cave once you enter. Thankfully the yarns are stored in Cardboard boxes, most of which are above my head height! However my usefully tall SIL reached the Jojoland Cashmere sock wool for me and then reminded me of her January birthday and the fact that she liked the same colour as the one I was buyuing. This is a most unusual happening as she likes Blue and I go for Green and she most definitely does not like pink. See the very nice pinky/lilac mix I bought in the picture! Having a fellow knitter in the family is dangerous because you use their presents as an excuse to increase your own stash....oops secrets out. I also bought 2 skeins of Angel Silk again in lilacy/blue shades to be knitted into a scarf for a present, if time permits. Had a huge list which I didn't manage to dig out of my bag, leaves some possibilities for Harrogate.

The Eyelash scarf brigade have resurfaced and require yet another Black scarf, so I had to make a detour via C and H fabrics for that "yarn".

Thursday, November 16, 2006


Following on from yesterdays post. Here are the pictures to back up my claims.
Multi Directional scarf in Noro Silk Garden. Thanks to my Mum and Sheepish for finding the extra ball.
Feather and Fan scarf in Rowan Kidsilk Haze. Who would believe 1 ball would do so much!

And finally my secret project which I would love to keep but have decided to give to a very deserving person for Christmas.

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Finished and WIP's

Feather and Fan scarf in Rowan Kidsilk Haze
Noro Silk Garden Multidirectional Scarf (apart from Fringe-tonights job)

Beaded Wrap in Rowan Cashcotton finished a while back but I think it is worth a mention.

Fleece Artist Moss Feather and Fan Socks - looking good.
Moss stitch cushion cover, will it ever get finished?
Twilleys Freedom Spirit Earth wrap cardigan (Sirdar Pattern)
Louisa Harding Impression Glove (one complete)

Stash - Ever expanding and Angel Yarns Cake Day this Saturday aswell as Harrogate Knitting and Stitching Show next Friday.

Postal situation - Unchanged. 1 item outstanding from 25/09. Two from October.

Sunday, November 12, 2006

Going Postal......Curious rants

The title may have given you a clue, or maybe not.

I am still awaiting my order from Curious Yarns which was made 25th September, I think I'm being very patient but as no phone number is advertised i am restricted in communication options. Have sent numerous E-Mails to various addresses and also written but so far I have received 1 E-Mail which was early October, saying my order may have been lost, to which I responded. I am looking at the fact that I may have lost £50, despite reading so many peoples good reports about this yarn.

They may well be innocent in all this as I had part of an order from Laughing Hens outstanding so long I'd forgotten about it and was only reminded by them when it was returned to them 2 months after the order date as undeliverable. It appears now that the Royal Mail don't always feel the need to tell you a parcel is sitting in the sorting office. This appears not to be the case of the Curious Yarns order as my husband has investigated.

Any clues would be much appreciated. Hard to knit up £50 worth of thin air.


Just a quick up date of my so far eventful weekend.

Friday boarded 12:00 at Kings Cross bound for York and was lucky enough to have 2 seats to myself all journey, possibly the knitting put them off. This was after starting work at 07:30 so left Brighton on the 05:49. Fairly relaxing day.

Saturday 07:40 bus to go to hairdressers, I look much younger thanks to Baco Foil and lots of gunk. (Lowlights I believe the technical term is).
11:30 back on bus to centre of York where someone proceeded to throw up whilst sitting next to me.......pure alcohol....Nice....NOT. Cafe didn't serve lunch til 12 and 11:54 was not near enough. Delays on trains so sped to station, retrieved bags and chased train down platform, managed to get 2 seats to myself yet again. Almost managed to complete sleeve of my cardigan.
Heres a close up of Twilleys Freedom Spirit Earth that I'm knitting it in. Having almost commuted to and from York I have seen many problems mainly with Toilet doors not being locked so I shall say no more but at least I had moved after pressing the open button so the display was not for me but the whole of coach G.
I boarded train at 12:33 which was already running an hour late and arrived back in brighton 16:15 so I think that is almost top of the leader board for journey times on this route.

Iced yet more cakes last night for affore mentioned exhibition and am now preparing to leave and serve the general public. Something for your delectation.
Tiffin always good for 50p a slice!

Thursday, November 09, 2006

I've been found out

Took my usual look at the Angel Yarns Forum this morning only to find that my blog has been read by other than my sister. I am not one for blowing my own trumpet so was quite shocked but I quite enjoy reading other peoples knitting blogs aswell as keeping a record of my own efforts. Very nice comments so I must be doing something right. NB: Will introduce myself shortly as I have a hectic few days coming up.

Back to more mundane things, I am finally catching up with finishing projects, except the tweed cushion cover which has lain at the bottom of my knitting bag for at least 5 years!!! I know, but it isn't very inspiring AND it is moss stitch which I hate after doing a lovely long jacket in it. So, finished are my lovely Picot socks, not perfect but as they are for me I won't be looking at the slight fault in the picot join. Would fall over if I had to. The yarn is from Piece of beauty and features in a previous post with better colour representation.
Also finished is the Barton Bag, won't be using Noro Silk Garden for felting again. Took ages and results weren't as good as the Kureyon I used for a Booga Bag.

Also finished is the Feather and Fan Kidsilk Haze scarf, this yarn takes alot of concentration for me but I have 6 other balls to knit up into Winter Companions, which may become Spring Companions...or even Autumn Companions. Have also started a narrow scarf in some Yarn Yard Goth, pink colourway which is again Feather and Fan. I'm not sure it is too narrow for me but it does show off the colours well. How indecisive do I sound.

The Black Eyelash scarf girlies have now changed to Burnt Orange so we have had 3 orders for them so far.

Tonight we will mostly be making and icing cakes for my husbands little event, Brighton Model Railway Club Exhibition. Keeps him off the streets and he IS NOT to be found standing on the end of station platforms with his Twix, addidas bag and Thermos! Part of our train interest relates to the fact that we both work for companies that used to be part of British Rail, so its an occupational hazard.

Tomorrow I am venturing North to York, for a haircut I know it sounds a bit far but they understand me......and that takes some doing. Will be speeding, hopefully, back home again in time for Strictly Come Dancing, Pizza and gallons of Red Wine. Now you understand why I need a hairdresser who understands. Sunday will be spent icing more cakes and helping serve the general public with refreshments at the above event.

Sussex Sunset from 5th November before war broke out. Where do people get the money from to pay for such loud bangs!

Sunday, November 05, 2006

Noro Scarf and Bag

Have been busy with various knits for Christmas most of which I can't show because some are for one of the 3 people who read this. But in its pre felted state is a Noro Silk Garden Barton Bag. The pattern was free on the 2007 Simply Knitting Calendar aswell as being in Noro Unlimited shade I used is 84, very vibrant but I'll see what felting does.

This is just a section, so you can see colours, of the multi directional scarf I have started. May run out of wool as I thought, possibly naively, that 2 balls would be enough. So will be dispatching the York connection to Sheepish tomorrow to see if they have any left, as I bought the original in their Knaresborough shop. I think Noro must have discontinued this shade because of the yellowy Green, which is the reason I bought it. No accounting for tatse! I love Noro wools although I do think the price is a little prohibitive to make all the large Jackets and Cardigans I would like.

My stash currently resides in a Sainsburys reuseable shopping bag, very orange, although I see they have designer ones now so will have to upgrade to make the bedroom ornament fit in! Been selling some on yarn on EBay because my tastes have changed as have the availability of decent yarns and colours. During stash clearance I came across carrier bags from Kangaroo, when they had a shop in Lewes and also Bobbins, when they had a shop in York. Bobbins closed their shop before I moved South so thats over 11 years ago....obviously thats a project that was doomed from day 1.

Am looking forward to visiting Angel Yarns Open Day, I have ordered from them and regularly and read their forum I am not brave enough to announce myself.
Have managed to persuade my Mum that she would like a trip to the Knitting and Stitching Show in Harrogate so that will mean a 05:49 train from Brighton, my regular work one. I had arranged to meet a friend from Mallorca while in York so it seemed a good excuse to combine the two. I will of course not be buying, well maybe some more Twilleys Freedom Spirit, for a much longer multi directional scarf or three.

This post does read a bit like a grand tour but my life now is in Brighton, I work in London and my previous existence was in York, so you can see the connection.

Finally for all those campaigners concerned about cruelty to Jelly Babies, they have all gone. Haribo Star Mix, leftover from Halloween, are going to be the next to get it!

Sussex by the Sea.

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Meryl Streep and Jelly Babies!

Last night I went to see The Devil Wears Prada, film with lots of glam for those who wish it. I would think it was the easiest buck (or Million) Meryl Streep has made but I like her all the same. I like either in depth dramas or easy viewing movies like this.
How do cinemas get the temperatures so low, I had vest, t-shirt and my Noro Silk Garden Lizzy cardigan on aswell as an anorak (and jeans!) and was still cold. This cardigan is the first piece of knitting I have sewn up for myself, having a seamstress Mother comes in handy despite living in York! The picture makes it look much larger than it is but you get the drift.

Scarf sale apparantly went well and I am awaiting yet another scarf order, hope not Black but you know what these women are like.

How do you manage to eat Jelly Babies whilst knitting? Answer with a cocktail stick, how cruel but necessary.