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Friday, 22 May 2009

Creative Oasis

Yesterday the lovely G & G joined me for a spot of crafting at the Oasis store on Argyll Street of all places. They are currently running their 'fashionably late' events on Thursday nights until 4th June.
Yesterday was entitled 'Recessionista Chic' and involved us sipping cocktails, stashing Vitamin Waters and rummaging through piles of fabric scraps - all to some cool, if not slightly deafening, tunes.
Once ushered down a staircase which none of us had noticed in the store before, we were met by Jennifer of The Make Lounge who was responsible for bringing the craftiness in-store.

We were ushered to our seats and given instructions to make some pretty flower corsages using layers of fabric and colourful buttons. All being big fans of both fabric and buttons, we soon got stuck in.

I loved the fact that we all totally ignored the instructions and kind of free-styled it. Here are the fabulous results:

I was the one going for pink overload.. How these decorative pieces made us 'recessionistas' I am not entirely sure, but it was certainly a laugh and you all know I'm a sucker for freebies!

Wednesday, 20 May 2009


Once upon a time there was a group of young ladies who liked nothing more than to while away happy hours in the company of beautiful threads from which they would craft exquisite creations with their skillful needles.
One day word came of a new breed of threads, which was said to transfix the viewer and put them in hypnotic state due to it's vibrant colours. The soft texture, it was said, would make anyone who touched it unable to bear the thought of putting it down again.
The ladies were able to come by the new commodity only through much dedication, time and casting their social nets wide. Even then, the fruits of their labour was paltry. It was decided that a quest for the threads must be undertaken, to venture to foreign climes in the hope of catching a glimpse of the woolen gold. And thus the journey to Sindelfingen was begun...

So our intrepid team set off for the unknown wilds of Germany. Here is where it started in earnest, although some would say that the key scene was the evening before when we tracked down the Wollmeise team and asked if we could arrive a little early to peruse the wares. We were indeed allowed.


The stall itself was very pretty, helped along of course by the abundance tantalizing yarn colours. The washing line of socks was particularly impressive.

Things got a little hectic soon after our arrival. We were the only little group there, but the colours and choice were pretty overwhelming. It was hard not to WANT ALL OF IT.

After our locust-like invasion, the lace basket looked like this. A rather sad sight. It was, however, re-filled a couple of times so no need to feel (too) guilty.

After we had had our fill of WM (for that day in any case), we pressed on to the Opal yarn factory store. This odd wheel greeted us on the way in, slightly reminiscent of some kind of wool-clad torture device.

We were hoping to catch a glimpse of the inner workings of the factory itself, but unfortunately this was not to be. We simply had to console ourselves with the mass of stock which greeted us in-store. We were a little worried that we could be tired of yarn at this stage, but we soon discovered that our hunger for yarn could never be sated. Or at least not that easily.

So, what was the final haul for the day? First Vollmeise sock yarn in some wonderful colours:

Some mouth-watering lace (complete with a 'wollmeise' and a 'rohrspatz' to make them feel at home):

Some self-striping yarn from Opal, plus a baby skein for free!

As I am not so snobby when it comes to yarn, this wool/viscose mix got to come home with me too:

Ah, how could I forget! The Opa socks were also delivered to Opa Ernst in time for his Birthday and he was well pleased with the result.

So there you have it. Our adventure got the fairytale ending we were hoping for. When's the next trip girls?

Tuesday, 12 May 2009


While in Sweden a couple of weeks ago for a friend's wedding, I met L who was sporting a rather lovely hand-knit merino silk shawl, complete with gold beading. Commenting later on the wedding photos I took, I lamented that I did not get a good shot of it and jokingly asked whether she would make me one. I was expecting a 'yeah right' but got an enthused reply asking what colour I would like - whoo!
After the initial excitement, I thought it might be more fair if I actually made her something in exchange. She requested a 'spring scarf' of either cotton or bamboo, so I swiftly got to work on Knit Picks 'Victorian Spring Scarf' in Bamboo Soft.
Here is the progress so far:

I hope that after a couple more repeats, it may actually start looking like lace rather then seaweed. First time I've used bamboo so it's all rather exciting.
We have set ourselves a deadline of 1 month (exact date TBC) and as we both tend to neglect knitting for ourselves in favour of others, this deal should work out perfectly.

Saturday, 9 May 2009

We love SLFS

Oh my gosh, G introduced me to the 'Secret Liberty Fabric Shop' (aka Shaukat Fabrics) near Gloucester Road over the weekend and it was love at first sight.. after feeling slightly overwhelmed by the sheer density of fabrics per square metre.
My particular favourite is 'Lucy's Farm' which I hope to soon turn into a skirt for my wearing pleasure. Please don't let me bugger it up!

Also fell for this beautiful print which reminds me of summers in Sweden, picking mini strawberries in the sunshine. This may become a dress in it's next life.

I have to admit I have no idea what to do with this one, but just loved the kooky carriage print..

Oh, and because they are so nice at the SLFS they also let us scavenge some bits from the quilting section for free (or was that because we ended up spending so much??):

We both couldn't resist letting out a sigh of infatuated happiness over our beautiful purchases on leaving the shop - it must be love.

Opa and out

Finally finished the Opa socks last weekend, although am still toying with the idea of inserting some elastic into the top.. I made a pair of socks for the recipient last year also (ok, I acknowledge my lack of imagination, but what else can you give a soon-to-be 93 year old Priest for his Birthday??) and although he loved them, he did mention that they tended to sag a little at the tops.
Could be because those were the second pair of socks I made in my life and amittedly I think one was slightly bigger than the other. Oh well, now I've gotten through a whole two more pairs I have infinitely more experience!
Here they are below as modelled by M in this season's style of wearing one slightly less pulled up than the other:
Perhaps not the most attractive socks ever, and not the most exciting yarn (Regia '4-fach haltbar') but at least they are machine washable and Opa Ernst likes red.