Woolly flower baskets

My local yarn store, Bangles and Tat, have been decorating the front of their shop. I particularly like these baskets of crocheted flowers.

Woolly Wednesday - More projects in progress than ever!

It's good to have Woolly Wednesday back, thank you Dawn, and for the first time in a while I've remembered on the Wednesday itself.

Despite my efforts I now seem to have more projects in progress and on the starting lines than ever. I'm having to clear a new shelf for my stash. How did this happen??

First of all I'd like you to meet Twinkle Twinkle. She's finished and is the spin/dye/knit project I'm most proud of ever. 
I worked very hard to finish her in the week leading up to Wonderwool so that I could wear it there. That was without knowing that Ruth of Rock n Purl, the designer of the pattern, would be there, so it was the highlight of my day to meet her. I love her work and bought the pattern for this warmer cardi, ironically called Glacial.
 I spent far more money than I should have done. Among the purchases you can see here are some Masham wool in various natural colours for the sheep carousel tea cosy, some soft and fluffy angora, some hemp. (Bear with me on this one. Spun fine and woven it makes surprisingly soft fabric. I have cushion covers in mind.)

 Also in the picture above (looking more blue than it really does) is this 'Seriously Gorgeous' Mohair/Silk. Despite looking like fluff for spinning, it's very fine yarn with a real halo, dyed in a sophisticated deep green. It's very difficult to resist casting on right away using one of the patterns from the Victorian Lace book I've bought this week.

As if all that isn't enough to be getting on with, I bought some stainless steel a while ago. It's very fine, almost soft and fluffy like wool tops. 

 I've carded it with wool; white with a little green to achieve this metallic grey / green colour. After passing it through the carder a few times, the colour (and hopefully the metal fibres) are well-distributed and it's started to take on that 'stays where you put it' quality, although not to the extent I expected.
 And finally, a project I'd already started before I finished Twinkle, this is a wool / silk / yak mix which was from Picperfic's Fibre Club. Perfect for socks and the colours are lovely. Ranging from orange through to violet and mauve, they blend into an almost-solid Valentine pink. I spun it a little thin, so picked a pattern using smaller needles. The free pattern is Piccole Onde toe-up socks that I featured in February's Purl Two Together

Postcard from Wonderwool Wales

Wish you were here! And that's not just a polite customary greeting - I know you'd be loving every minute, as I am.

Demonstrations include spinning, felting, carding, weaving, dyeing and of course knitting and crochet. This steampunk-looking vintage hands-free pedal loom brought along by the National Wool Museum attracts a crowd every time it clacks into life. 

Various associations and guilds are displaying some masterful work.

The selection of food is wide - hot, cold and green (that's solar-cooked) and includes some very special stuff - artisan ice-cream, award-winning cider and yes, the famous scotch egg man.

It's fun to take the weight off for a bit, spend some time on the current WIP and people-watch. I met this lady improvising a crocheted fish hat...

Petting opportunities are provided by several angora rabbits (his one is from Bigwigs Angoras) and plenty of fleece still on the hoof.

The highight of my day so far has been meeting Ruth of Rock n Purl. I worked so hard in the week before the show to finish my Twinkle Twinkle without knowing that its designer would be exhibiting! She seemed pleased to see my finished cardi, and I've bought the pattern for this warm cardi, 'Glacial'.

Also a lovely surprise to spot the decorated Ashford Kiwi, Freya and her current owner, Helen of Nelly & Eve. The wheel has a history and passed through my own hands at one point.

Showcasing designs from the exhibitors is the Sheep Walk - garments beautifully modelled on the catwalk by volunteers. There is much sashaying and twirling - especially from the gentlemen models.  

All this under the cover of two huge halls and a temperature more comfortable than last year!

The time has slipped away unnoticed, the sign of a most enjoyable day.