Sunday, October 17, 2010

the wool that wasn't

This window display caught my eye a couple of days ago.  Well it would, wouldn't it?  But closer inspection revealed that the shocking pink "wool," artfully wrapped around suction pads, was a rather plastic looking twine.  I didn't go inside to check the labels in the knits mind you.

Monday, October 11, 2010


Spotted this on the way to work this morning, artwork by Lisa Wilkens (who works for Plurabelle Books when not doing her art) in the former Galloway & Porter premises.  It looks so beautiful, yet is made entirely from old, unwanted books.  If you want to read more about it, I've snapped the written text and included the pictures over on Swatch this Space, my City & Guilds blog.

Saturday, October 09, 2010

Off to Mr CK's ancestral haunts...(via Wibbling Wools)

It is one of Mr CK's proudest boasts that an ancestor of his came to England from Normandy (1066 and all that) and was granted a manor in the hamlet of Gestingthorpe.  Back in the days of said ancestor (whose name translates as "William the Sinner") Gestingthorpe was in Suffolk, but somewhere in the intervening centuries, it has ended up in Essex. (I hasten to point out that this is due to administrative boundary reorganisation rather than geological activity.)

Now, Gestingthorpe isn't really all that far from Cambridge, but it takes quite a bit of ingenuity to get there by public transport. We first made it there in April this year, when we had a brief holiday in Lavenham. To celebrate Mr CK's birthday I spent hours plotting bus routes and timings and we made it (see picture above for proof).  Gestingthorpe remains a small hamlet, but it has a beautiful late medieval/early Tudor church and a wonderful gastropub: The Pheasant, where we had the yummiest of lunches.

That was 6 months ago, and we hadn't expected to get back there so soon.  But a friend of ours, who lives on the Suffolk coast, suggested that we meet in Bury St Edmunds and that she would then drive us to Gestingthorpe.  We'd planned to eat at the Pheasant again, but soon realised that it would make more sense to eat in Bury St Edmunds.  Se we lunched at the Fox, which just happens to be very close to Wibbling Wools.  And I just happened to drop into Wibbling Wools, where I accidentally purchased some Rico Tasai and 5mm Lantern Moon rosewood circulars.  So I spent a happy afternoon clicking my way through the Suffolk, Essex and Cambridgeshire countryside, whilst Mr CK dreamed of his knightly forebear.

Thursday, October 07, 2010

Knitted cupcakes are SOOO over...

If you want to be truly on-trend, you should start knitting dogs, NOW! (Or, for £200 you can commission a knitted portrait of your very own faithful friend).

Meantime, here's a picture of one of my FOs from earlier this year:

Log cabin cushion worked entirely from stash yarns.

Tuesday, October 05, 2010

An afternoon in Essex

Today was going to be deicated entirely to mounting swatches for my Gity & Guilds studies, whilst waiting for a kitchen door to be delivered (long story).  But the door arrived at 9.30am, the sun was shining (well, it wasn't wet, anyway) and after a couple of hours of cutting and gluing and weaving ends in wanderlust set in.
A trip to Saffron Walden beckoned, so that I could get to the Fry Gallery;before its winter closure.

I'm so glad that I went!  The Gallery, which houses art from C20th artists who live(d) in that part of Essex has had a revamp since last year.  Large plan chests in the centre of the main room, and touch screen catalogues in a newly-opened sideroom mean that far more of the collection is now accessible.  Much of the collection is work by Eric Ravilious and Edward Bawden, but there is also currently an exhibition of work by Richard Bawden, Edward's son.  He shares his father's somewhat quirky humour but sometimes favours bolder colours.  I wish I could have bought the dodo bench (a glorious metal bench with a design of a pair of dodos for its back) and the linocut print of a dodo in rainbow colours.  One of the drawers in the aforementioned plan chest opens to reveal a matching rainbow dodo napkin.

Monday, October 04, 2010

Look what I've found

Whilst bloghopping this morning I came across a link for a new online magazine for knitters and crocheters:

Looks interesting, but I won't be making the skirt.

Sunday, October 03, 2010

new look

I've decided it was high time to improve the look of things round here so, after much experimenting with colours and layouts, I hope that you'll like the new look.  Maybe not as drastic as the transformation of my desk over the last few weeks...


Friday, October 01, 2010

still alive!

Yes, this blog has been sorely neglected of late, but with good reason; I'm working fulltime giving me rather less time to roam around rural East Anglia. Even the crochet and knitting have been cut back, I'm trying to focus on a City & Guilds qualification in handknitting. (If you'd like to follow my progress with that, I've set up another blog: Work has got very exciting; we've opened up another floor full of books and whilst I'm still on the second floor, I've now got a floorful of art, travel and (yes!) craft books, rather than academic books. Yippee.

In other news, the dreaded 50th birthday looms and I still haven't decided how to celebrate. any suggestions?