Thursday, 28 May 2009

Knitwits Yarns

Feeling a little jaded today, if I'm honest, as we celebrated a friend's 40th birthday last night - bad news mid-week but, hey ho, we had fun and a lovely walk home under a starlit sky - one of the joys of living where we do is that it's pitch black with no light pollution at night.

I've met several people in the shop this week who read this drivel. I have to say it's a strange feeling when you meet people who know you through your bizarre ramblings and ask kindly after the chickens - all babes doing well, thank you but the fluff is now going and we're growing feathers so we're losing some of the "aagh" factor - some (FB) would say they're actually looking pretty ugly but I know their Mum loves them and so do I.

We've had a run this week of incorrect credit card numbers/card info on orders. Can I please beg that you double (and triple) check all details before pressing that "Submit Order" button - thank you, thank you, thank you. The emails that have to fly back and forth defy belief - we always get there in the end but I worry that you may be without wool for longer than is strictly necessary - I worry for your nerves and, frankly, your partners/families as I know what I'm like when I'm without wool - I fret and pace and, sometimes, turn to wine - really not pretty.

Tomorrow my eldest baby - G - turns 16. What a milestone that is! 16 years ago today I was out having dinner with friends, G was over 2 weeks late and induction was being threatened. We came home from dinner and I took a tablespoon of castor oil (old wives' tale and truly, unbelievably revolting) - 5 hours later I was in labour. G & I battled on for 18 hours and, in the end, I had a Caesar. He slept through the whole of that first night and has continued to be an excellent sleeper and a charming, delightful, funny, warm and caring boy and young man. Sure, we have the occasional testosterone charged moments but he always comes back and apologises and he'll always give me a hug when I need one. I am, as you can tell, incredibly proud of the excellent young man he is turning into. Happy Birthday G - you're a star.

Tuesday, 26 May 2009

Knitwits Yarns

We had a lovely long weekend off so I've come back to work for a rest. The weather was glorious so we took our little Mirror dinghy out for a sail in Mount's Bay. Fortunately I didn't take the camera as it would have got very wet indeed. No, we didn't capsize but we're not the greatest of sailors so we had to tack quite a lot to get back to land and, by the time we did, it was high tide and there was no real beach so we grounded pretty hard and then a wave washed into the boat - I was the last in the boat sorting out sails - and I got very wet and everyone else found the whole thing hilarious apart from G (who is nearly 16 and therefore swore he'd never go back in the boat ever again!). Of such things are family memories made.

Given that this is a knitting blog, I thought I'd show you a brief view of my two WIP's. The first is The Slowest Tank Top In The History Of The World Ever which looks a bit like this:

It's actually red, navy and lime green but the camera didn't seem to like the lime green. Pattern is from the RYC book "am to pm" but Martin Storey did it in muted browns and cream and I've gone for a jazzier look. [The pattern isn't featured on our site as it's done in an RY yarn that we don't carry but if you'd like it, just give us a ring]

The second WIP is this piece of gorgeousness. It's our Cornish Organic Wool 4ply shawl but done in black and with beads. The plan is to have it done in time for the winter/Christmas market. It's pretty lush I have to say but I've now run out of my sample batch of beads so have to wait for the next 1,000 to be delivered. What's a girl to do? The only possible thing - go back to The Slowest Tank Top In The History Of The World Ever, of course. Or possibly - do accounts?

Saturday, 23 May 2009

Knitwits Yarns

I had a day off yesterday as it was the boys' School Speech Day and, as I'm a governor at the school, I put on my posh frock and high heels (I didn't cycle there) and we had a really lovely day. In the morning we have the infants and juniors so we have the tiny little 4 & 5 year olds who are so lovely and grin from ear to ear when they get a prize. In the afternoon we have the 11 year olds up to the Sixth Form so, in the middle years, it's not quite so "cool" to be getting a prize.

Eldest son, G, was up for a prize but he didn't know what it was for. As I had the programme in the morning, I would know what his prize was so we devised a code where I could let him know if it was "cool" or not. When I got onto the stage if it was a "cool" prize I was to push my glasses up my nose with one finger. If it was "uncool" I would use my whole hand. Fine - but then we had to define "cool" and "uncool" - anything sporty was "cool", "effort in maths" was most definitely "uncool".

As it happens, he got the Senior School Sports Endeavour Prize so all was fine and super-cool!

He also got his half colours in rugby and T got his half colours in hockey (unheard of in Year 9 but he is in the County Squad) - I'm not supposed to say all this as, apparently, it makes me a bragging Mum - my argument is that I'm a proud Mum.

How would I feel if he's got "effort in maths" though? - that's the question!

Tomorrow we go to the beach (if the weather holds) and I will take pics!

Wednesday, 20 May 2009

Knitwits Yarns

This is supposed to be a knitting blog about knitting and a wool shop but, due to circumstances beyond my control (illness, weekly accounts, year end accounts, distractions like children and chickens) not much knitting seems to be getting done so, yet again, I will digress with chicken pictures - yay!

Here is Mummy and her babes:

The FB wishes it to be known that he took 130 photos to get one with all 3 chicks and Mum in and all of them in focus so we can all send thanks to him. As you can see, Mummy was sitting on everyone's eggs and clearly at least one Mummy is white! They are very, very sweet and quite often sit on Mum's back for a ride but FB couldn't quite catch that particular act - maybe tomorrow FB?

We also have one of the late, much lamented Lewis - may he rest in peace:

I guess Mum knew he wasn't going to make it so kicked him out of the nest - chickens are not as dumb as you may think.

In shop news - I had my first rep round yesterday with this autumn/winter's collection - 19th May - I think that's a record. It's going to be like the first harbingers of spring - the first harbinger of autumn/winter has arrived! The yarns were gorgeous (Katia, in case you're wondering) and, yes, I have ordered some but not to be delivered until the end of summer. Their argument was that Spain closes for most of August so they wanted to get orders in early - I guess it makes sense ...............? [Just to whet your appetities, there are fab new colours (and patterns) in Azteca - one of our faves - yum.]

Summer visitors are now starting to arrive and it's lovely to see some of our annual shoppers and to put faces to names from on-line shoppers - the weather hasn't been particularly kind so far but, hey, more knitting time!

Monday, 18 May 2009

Knitwits Yarns

Six days since my last confession - sorry, blog - so sincere apologies for lack of communication. Not only was the computer hit by a virus but so was I - and very nasty indeed it was. I took to my bed on Tuesday night with much Paracetemol (I know - you have to be careful how much you take, don't worry, I was), got up on Wednesday feeling peculiar, had a shower, no better, went back to bed and re-emerged (bar occasional dashes to the bathroom which we'll gloss over) on Saturday late morning. If I'm honest (which you know I always am) I'm still not 100% tickety-boo so be gentle on me and I'll be brief.

In the meantime, I missed a couple of meetings (sorry chaps), Lewis the baby chicken died (very sad), other baby chickens grew (excellent), we found a home for one cockerel if any of them turn out to be cockerels (new problem, if all 3 turn out to be boys which one gets the nice home, which two go in the pot - oh, lord - brainache), Tracey and Marie were total stars and manned the shop womanfully in my absence, no paperwork or accounts were done (this is bad and is looming over me) and the FB's computer spat out its last emails and gently passed away. The seeming onslaught of nasties from heaven-knows-where were too much for the old thing (we've worked out it was actually nearly 9 years old so was, in fact, in computer terms an ancient dinasour). New computer is on its way and the geeks have promised us that it'll be a) faster b) quieter and c) more secure - I know, I nearly fell off my chair laughing as well - do they really think we were born yesterday? I am not as green as I am cabbage looking (as my Mum would say).

Cornish teddy is complete - sneak preview here:

Now all I have to do is write up the pattern! That and paperwork - post viral joy.

Tuesday, 12 May 2009

Knitwits Yarns

It is with deep regret that I have to announce there are no pictures of cute chickens today. As ever, it's all down to computers. The FB's caught a virus (hanging by their nether regions is too good for the morons who seem to think it's "cool" to pass these destructive things on - the same people, presumably, who winge when the cost of living goes up and refuse to recognise the cost of a) avoiding these things and then b) removing them when they do get through will, obviously, be passed on to them, the consumer). The virus has now been found and destroyed but the computer came back from the computer hospital with all sorts of bits either missing or not working. It's now back in out-patients being fiddled with and, hopefully, normal service will resume tomorrow. (For those of you who haven't realised it by now, I am not massively computer literate and all photos are re-formatted by FB at home before being passed on to me for publication - long winded I know and at some point I guess I'm going to have to learn but, in the meantime, it keeps FB out of mischief.)

It's a strange thing when you're without a computer - FB feels like he's had his right hand cut off - anyone who has, in fact, lost their right hand will, no doubt, disagree with that but you know what I mean.

So, computerless, he's been down in the dye house dyeing wool - yummy - which is good as it's sunny at the moment so we can dry it outside.

He's also been moving chicken Mum and her three babies into their new home and run. My Mother-in-law drew the short straw and picked Mum up and got considerably pecked for her effort - ungrateful chicken!

I've been uploading the latest batch of buttons - pretty mother-of-pearls here (scroll down for the new ones) - here's a sample:

pretty new toggles here and here's a sample:

and Peter Rabbit and Tom Kitten here (oh, yes!):

If you get a chance, do check out our buttons - we have loads - a small sample of which are on-line (and growing all the time) - thanks FB for the photos!

Hopefully, chicken pics tomorrow (keep everything crossed) and, also, Lewis isn't looking brilliant so send up some chicken prayers for him, if you can. There'll be tears if he doesn't make it.

Monday, 11 May 2009

Knitwits Yarns

I have to confess to feeling slighly out-of-sorts today - not sure why - possibly could be something to do with 5 hours sleep on Thursday (old friends for dinner, late night - you get the idea), slightly less sleep on Friday night (barking neighbour's dog - grrrr! - if it happens again, things will have to be said - any ideas?), up at 5.30 on Saturday to drive to Bristol - excellent cotton conference - and straight home again to discover that broody hen had hatched 4 of her 5 eggs - clever girl! Have had to temporarily re-home her until new broody box-with-run arrives (hopefully tomorrow) - pictures to follow, I promise. She rejected one baby who was found more dead than alive in the hen house on the floor and was revived by G&T and is now living in our kitchen under the distinct impression that T is his Mum - very, very, indescribably sweet and also remarkably noisy for such a small thing which has just emerged from an egg. New born chickens also have the most enormous feet - bizarre. Woke up to a migraine yesterday (wonder why), took wonder migraine tablet and returned to bed and felt OK but woozy all day - so, maybe, possibly, that's why I'm a little out of sorts today. Or, maybe, it's because I have to go home and tackle paperwork I didn't do over the weekend - hmmm.

I've entered a few more buttons today in the Big Feature Buttons section - more colours in old styles - if you want one, big feature button for a special jacket then take a look at them.

Entries for the "Name The Skein" competition in this month's Knitting magazine are coming in thick and fast - Tracey was most confused to see why we had so many more emails than usual this morning! Already two people have chosen the same name - what are the chances?! Keep them coming - the more imaginative the better!

Pictures of sweet little chicken tomorrow, I promise.

Thursday, 7 May 2009

Knitwits Yarns

Just one new entry today - a cardigan/jacket in Cornish Organic's Peruk - as seen in Let's Knit Magazine in March 2009 where, in fact, it was on the front cover and I got quite excited. It looks like this:
and can be found here.

And, yes, that is me modelling it and, no, I don't like being photographed and, no, I don't think I'm particularly photogenic and, no, there wasn't anyone else available and, anyway, you should be looking at Tina's lovely jacket - not at me. Look at the lovely stitch detail, not my mug. Thanks.

I have a load of new buttons to upload but we have friends coming for supper tonight so I need to be at home on time and tomorrow is paperwork day at home followed by rugby presentation evening and Saturday I have a "Cotton Conference" (yes, really) in Bristol (6.00am departure) and Sunday I'll be recovering in a darkened room so please forgive me if I leave the button inputting until Monday - it'll give you something to look forward to, won't it?

Happy weekend knitting.

Tuesday, 5 May 2009

Knitwits Yarns

I hope you all had a lovely weekend - we had a great time catching up with a load of friends. We walked across to The Gurnard's Head Pub (about an hour and a half's walk from us or two hours if you take my mother-in-law's "scenic" route) and sat outside in the sun and lots of friends, coincidentally, popped in too so we ended up staying until 7pm and then walked back and got home just as the sun was setting - lovely.

Yesterday was spent doing absolutely nothing and I'm exhaused today - isn't that always the way?

On the knitting front - well, teddy is finished bar his nose and mouth (which are to be embroidered so I need to psyche myself up for that). I've done a tension square for his waistcoat, printed out the knitting square paper from here and now all I have to do is plot it out, knit it and dye it - hmm - well, nearly there - at least he's looking at me while I do it (and he hasn't got any stuffing falling out any more) - slow progress indeed.

Saturday, 2 May 2009

nitwits Yarns

The weather is glorious today so I guess everyone's on the beach as it's very, very quiet in here.

Now, I could have sat and knitted a few more rows of the Slowest Tank-Top In The History Of The World, Ever (at least 5 months and I haven't finished the front yet) but, no, I though of you, my customers and friends, and inputted two more pattern books from Rowan Classic instead.

The first is Tweed:

lovely patterns for men and women in Rowan Classic Wool Tweed or, of course, you could use our Yarn Convertor to knit them in any other aran weight.

The second book is Family:

patterns for the whole family (lots for children and men) - again in aran weight - Cotton Jeans is used but, again, you could convert and use any aran weight you liked.

We're planning a quiet "family" weekend, nice walk tomorrow if the weather holds and, who knows, I might finish teddy - OK, I know, you can all stop laughing now. Have a great weekend, one and all. Back Tuesday.