Monday, November 24, 2008

Harrogate report and a finish

Well I did finally make it back home but nearly an hour later than I should have and a lot colder too. And this morning it was back off to work for a day at work that I would rather not think about as it was truly horrid. Not the worst ever but pretty high on the list.

Anyway on to nicer topics and my trip to York and the Harrogate stitching show. I've been going to the show for the past few years and I have to say that it was the busiest that I've seen it there for a number of years. Ironically I spent less than I have in the past inspite of lots of temptation. I didn't buy any yarn at all - there were a few things that tempted me but I just didn't see anything that I couldn't live without. Some yarns I liked but the colours that were on show, weren't something I liked.

That's not to say that I didn't buy other things though. First up, I discovered that a favourite beading company have written a book of gorgeous beaded jewellery so the book had to come home with me along with a kit for a beaded bracelet.

I also bought some dyed silk rods to try and make some corsage type brooches that I saw instructions to make in a recent stitching magazine. Hopefully I can get to work out. Oh and some overdyed green thread for an upcoming Christmas project.

I also found a rather fab stall selling brilliant unusal Japanese fabrics and buttons. The stall holder told me that she has lots more Japanese prints on the way as she's going be the importer for several firms. Plus she had wool felt which is tricky to get. The fabric is on the Eternal maker site and the buttons are from the button company.

I bought some other lovely buttons from another stall, The button lady, who doesn't seem to have a website.

I also spent a little money with the ladies of the Nimble thimble who always have lots of Shepherds bush and Lizzie Kate designs to tempt me and also Trudy Anne who had a great range of JBW and Little house charts.

I actually spent two days at the show, partly so I could see everything also I really can't manage to spend the whole day at the show anymore as being on my feet for more than a couple of hours at a time tends to cause a lot of back pain and problems so I tend to spend just a short spell at the show each day so I don't cause myself problems.

On Friday, I caught up with Karoline and her gorgeous little girl plus her lovely MIL and also other friends Pat and Scully. It was lovely to see them all.

On Saturday after the show, I made the time to go the local Oxfam shop in Harrogate. The Oxfam shop there has a little craft based sale timed to the same weekend as the Knitting and stitching show. Last year I got some embroidery threads. This year it was all about buttons. I think they save up the crafty stuff they get donated for this sale. I was pretty lucky with the buttons I found with the bonus that a charity gets the benefit too. I particularly like the grey buttons.

One of the good things about the Harrogate conference centre is the old part of it - the Royal Halls. For the past couple of years, its been out of use due to renovations and dangerous areas of the building. This year, the renovations are finished and the cafe that was always there was back. Its really lovely to look up from your cup of tea to see the pretty surroundings.

Window Royal hall

On Sunday morning, I got a little surprise when I looked out the window of where I was staying - snow had fallen overnight. It wasn't particularly deep but it was a little challenging to walk to the station.

Snow in York

Whilst I was away, I managed to finish the Country companions Christmas project that I shared the WIP of recently. Not sure if I'm going to frame it or finish it in some other way.

A gift for all

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Notes from a train journey

I'm currently making very slow progress back from the Harrogate knitting and stitching show. Update about that later. The exciting bit is that I'm actually posting this from the train as National express have introduced free wifi on their train. Its just a pity they can't run the services to time, have decent heating or introduce the concept of manners or reading seat reservations to some of their passengers.

When I got on as is typical, some woman was sitting in my seat. On my last train journey with Virgin trains, they caused mass confusion by turning off the power to the displays with the seat reservations and carridge letters, then turning them on again at the next station so all the passengers could have a mass game of non musical chairs. Anyway when I found my seat today, I politely asked the lady to let me have my seat and she started to whine about her laptop and how she needed the seat for the plug. Which was exactly the reason why I had booked that seat and after again politely explaining this, she grumped off to another seat, moaning all the way about how she had only just decided to bring her laptop. Okay that is really not my fault plus why do these people never read the blooming reserved seat tags. One of the national stereotypes of the British people is apparently politeness but it was obviously not decided by anyone who travels regularly on British trains.

Somewhere around Newcastle, the heating seems to have been turned off and mysteriously the train staff are nowhere to be seen to ask them to do anything so its coats, scarves and gloves for the passengers. The absence of the train staff is probably also due to the fact that we should have been in Glasgow 15 minutes ago but are still nowhere near it as there is line problem which means the train has to make a bit of a detour.

Still I've got free wifi and the internet to amuse me for how ever long it takes.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Break time

Thankfully I've finally reached my scheduled holiday week. Later this week, I'm off to York and Harrogate to visit the Knitting and stitching show but for now I'm just sleeping and doing lots of crafty stuff.

Of late, most of the crafty stuff thats been going on around here has been knitting related. This past week, the knitting time has been mostly hat related. I'm not really much of a hat wearer but my sister loves hats so I've knitted a few for her.

First up, I finished the Rose red hat that I was knitting for the Ravelympics earlier in the year. My mum has tried the hat on too and declared that she would really like one too so I need to go and buy some more orkney angora which will really not be a hardship. Its gorgeous to knit with.

Pastel rose red top

Then it was on to an Odessa hat knitted in RYC extra fine merino DK. Its the first time I've used this yarn and I'm a fan of it now. It knits up really neatly.

pink odessa hat

Having satisfied my knitting urges, I've spent some time stitching. I finished Poppy by Mirabilia/Nora Corbett. I love the style of this design range. The design is on 32ct SMF linen in Kronos.


I've also been getting into some Christmas stitching. Elsewhere on the internet, I help run a yahoogroup for fans of Country companions designs. Recently we started having a pre Christmas SAL for Christmas designs. I started this one a week or so ago. Hopefully I should finish it this week.

A gift for all WIP