One very busy summer

I honestly have no idea how it is August already. Five minutes ago it was May. Where has the summer gone? Actually a better question would be where the summer weather has gone. I’ve never needed so many woolly items during the summer months before.

But weather aside, it has been one of those ridiculously busy summers. I’m still reeling at the moment, but things are starting (I say starting, I’m wary of something popping up unexpectedly) to come back under control. I can breathe! Finally!

So, in terms of non-knitty stuff, I’m still at University and about 3.5 weeks away from submitting the dissertation. Things have gone well with it, and the research and data gathering elements are pretty much done and I’m now on the writing up stage. All is going smoothly at the moment, and fingers crossed that it stays that way! Unfortunately, this has taken a lot more time than I perhaps anticipated (you’d think having done this kind of stuff of before I’d have been prepared for this, but never mind) and when combined with other things means that I’ve neglected the social media side of things.

In knitty news, things have also been exceedingly busy. Between Uni work and knitty work I don’t really feel like I’ve had much time off. However, the last of the commissions (of four… I think? Or was it five? I lost count… I think it is five) was sent off on Friday and I can fall over (at least on the knitting side of things for a little bit).

I cannot say much on most of the commissions but I’ll post more about them when I can. I think the first preview is coming up on August 12th, and I’ll share the links when I get them. One of them is now out (Notus) and I’ll be posting on that later this week. There have been some re-releases to discuss too. The Luck of the Irish Socks from the Three Irish Girls Sock Club is now available for individual purchase, and I’ll be adding a post on those too.

That was a very brief round-up but I’ll be posting more during August on the aforementioned patterns, and some upcoming self-published patterns coming out soon.

Time will fly…

… and it is a little embarrassing. It has been so long since I last posted here, but life does have a way of creating havoc and general business which never helps! It is nearly the 1-year anniversary of this site, and it seems an appropriate time to take back control.

There are a number of changes coming soon. Starting with the re-development of the website itself. If you have visited over the past few days you may have noticed some of these changes. The entire site has been redesigned and pages completely rewritten. Pretty much all the pattern side of things is complete, but I am working on expanding the remaining sections – so keep an eye on the Teaching and Support sections. There will also be a new category appearing soon, but more on that when it is added.

Despite the blog being quiet, there have been a number of new patterns and these will be talked about in the near future.

To aid communications – I will be introducing a mailing list; again more information will be coming shortly.

So yeah, hello again!

Reality Calling

I can safely say that my attempt to blog daily has failed, life has just been a bit too busy and chaotic to be able to manage this recently. I’m hoping to have more success with this next month (blogging daily, not more success with life).

So with that cleared out of the way… there are exciting things on the horizon… more tomorrow!

Busy, Busy, Busy!

So, no Friday Round-Up today as I’ve been working away this week. If you follow me on Twitter or Instagram you’ll have seen a slightly strange assortment of bits of ferries, random bits of Belfast, knitting and beer. This is due to the fact that in the last few days I was over in Belfast uninstalling an exhibition, then taking it over to Cumbria and installing it there. Tiring work, but very nice when everything is in place.

It isn’t conducive, however, to writing blog posts, hence the absence of the usual Friday post. It was however, useful for knitting. You can get a lot of sock done on the ferry from Cairnryan to Belfast and back again.

The BF now has one sock, with the other one just started… Thankfully sock number one fits perfectly, despite the fact that one of our nightly phone calls included me asking if he could measure his foot, then me checking the dimensions of my wee box bag I use for sock knitting on the website of the store I bought it from since I had managed to forget a tape measure. Improvisation at its finest!

Drifting Around in Athens

At the start of May, the BF and I got packed and headed out to Athens for a couple of weeks. I used to spend a not-insignificant amount of time out there working and researching for my degrees. I hadn’t been out since 2009, and the BF since 2008. It was definitely time for a revisit.

And it was well worth it. As it turned out my memory was pretty good – as long as I didn’t think too hard about where I was heading (the one time I tried to think where we needed to go, I got confused) I could quite happily get us exactly where we needed to be. My Greek came back too. In the taxi on the way in I was chatting to the driver in Greek. The BF commented later that I was a bit hesistant at first and my accent was off, then a switch flipped and everything came back… Which surprised said taxi driver a bit.

We ate too much, wandered excessively everywhere, spent time in the libraries at the British and American Archaeological schools, played darts, caught up with old friends and colleagues, and a lot of time just relaxing watching the world go by, in the sun obviously.

And no, I didn’t have any knitting with me…


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Photographs: Acropolis Museum – Parthenon Galleries, Kerameikos Cemetery, Acropolis, Lion Tomb Monument, Unguentaria (Perfume Vessels), Temple of Hephaistos in the Agora, Lysikrates Monument, Tower of the Winds & Roman Agora, Brettos Bar in the Plaka, Temple of Olympian Zeus, Wooden Door Detail in the Islamic Museum, Tiles in the Islamic Museum, Grafitti in Thiseio (2), To Kafeneio Restaurant in the Plaka, View from the top of Lykavittos, Carving of Medusa in the Byzantine Museum, Tinakia, Herb Shop in the Plaka, Odeon of Herodes Atticus, Theatre of Dionysus



Shopping the Stash

If you’ve seen my stash entires on my Ravelry profile, it becomes very apparent that I have a not in-substantial quantity of yarn and fibre currently residing in my spare room.

So… 2014 is the year of the stash!

The aim is to knit  (and spin, crochet or weave… or just remove by donation or sale) as much as possible from said stash.* Occasional exceptions are permitted**(for instance there is no way I am giving up my HilltopCloud Best of British fibre club spot – sorry!)

I’m now a semi-active member of the Stash Knit Down group on Ravelry, and am starting to (albeit) slowly work my way through things.

So far, so good and as of April 30th, I’ve reduced my stash by 7.38 miles!


* Destashing will be fairly limited, I rather like what I have in my stash. No novelty yarn lurks in the deepest reaches of my storage boxes!

** Apparently occasional exceptions have resulted in copious amounts of yarn from Iceland, a pile of Jamieson & Smith’s Jumper Weight (both purchased and won as a prize) and a wee heap of cotton yarn since I didn’t have any… I may have to rethink the definition of ‘occasional’. 

2014 – Looking Forward

My word, the long-delayed 2014 planning post! So the plan for 2013 was published on January 1, 2013.

So for 2013:

  1. Plan ahead
  2. Knit from stash where possible – Although I’m allowing additional purchases if necessary to the project, or if something else specific shows up, i.e. where I see something I *have* to knit and just buy the yarn for that.
  3. Get the stash (yarn and fibre) down to a comfortable level – I have no idea what that level is, just that I’m not there at the moment.
  4. Try and knit from patterns already purchased (or free!) – My Ravelry library is extensive, and I’ve been lucky with the free pattern codes this holiday, I have no excuse.
  5. Spin more – Far easier now I have the wheel. 
  6. Knit with the handspun from resolution #5 – Should be made easier if I have an idea of what I’m knitting and what is needed – see #4.
  7. Try and design more patterns – I have many ideas, I just need to get on with it. 
  8. Try and actually publish my own patterns – see notes accompanying #7.
  9. Stay organised – in terms of stash, equipments, notes etc – Should be straightforward, my office is better organised and I like sorting things. 
  10. Try and take better photographs – More on this later.
  11. Keep blogging – Speaks for itself really…

I’m not entirely convinced I managed to follow many of these. #1 I planned, but didn’t really follow it. #2-3 I bought more stash. #4 I bought more patterns. #5 Barring the Tour de Fleece I didn’t spin as much as I wanted. #6 Did I knit anything with handspun? #7-8 Actually managed to publish 5 patterns so that is good. #9 I moved partway through 2013…this equals chaos. #10 Some are better than others. #11 No-one mention the months without posting… ok?

2014 has to be better, right?

So 2014 plans:

  1. Use stash – spin, knit, weave, crochet, whatever, but use the stash! Heaven knows it is big enough.
  2. Limit purchases to what I need to finish projects, if I cannot get anything to work from stash.
  3. Spin, spin, spin. (And card, card, card… guess who got a drum carder for my Birthday!)
  4. Keep things tidy. The BF likes it when the flat isn’t covered in fluff.
  5. Keep designing.
  6. Keep blogging.

See much simpler. Now lets see if I can stick with it.