April 29, 2015 by Ysolda Teague

This Saturday I'll be heading to West Kilbride to spend Yarn Shop day with the lovely Lilith of Old Maiden Aunt. Join us between 11am and 5pm for knitting and plenty of cake! I'm bringing some samples with me, as well as some books and printed patterns to sell. And of course we'll be surrounded by lots of beautiful yarn. Hope to see you there!

The Old Maiden Aunt Studio address

Studio 30, Ritchie Street
West Kilbride   KA23 9AL

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March 11, 2015 by Ysolda Teague

I can't quite believe it's already almost upon us but we're busy getting ready for the Edinburgh Yarn Festival this weekend. The first one was a resounding success, I think the only busier yarny events I've been to were Rhinebeck and Maryland, both long established much larger affairs. It was so busy that a few months later I ran into the lovely folks from Textile Garden and commented that I hadn't seen them since Knit Nation, "but you were right opposite us at the Edinburgh Yarn Festival," was the confused reply. Right opposite and yet for the entire day there were so many people between us that I didn't see their stand! 

Two years on the festival is back with a new, larger venue so I hopefully won't miss anyone. And although it promises to be both busy and exciting the organisers have done a great job of including space to knit, relax, catch your breathe and plan your next yarn purchases. 

If you need a little help deciding what to do with such an overwhelming array of yarns (seriously, go look at that vendor list) come and visit us at the Westknits & Ysolda booth. We'll have lots of our books and patterns and you can see some of our samples in the yarn (including a few peeks at what's coming up). Stephen and his business partner Malia are also bringing some limited edition goodies from their store in Amsterdam, Stephen and Penelope, including kits of exclusive Hedgehog Fibres yarns!

We also have an exciting special guest - Clara Parkes is dropping in to share her love of yarn and sign copies of her beautiful memoir The Yarn Whisperer. 

When we called the publisher to order copies of Clara's book a case of Cirilia Rose's new book Magpies, Homebodies, and Nomads might have also ended up on its way. If you haven't seen it yet you'll understand why I felt so compelled when you do! 

Stephen and I will be in the booth most of the time when we aren't teaching (me on Sunday morning and afternoon, him on Saturday afternoon) so come hang out anytime but to make sure you don't miss getting a book signed here are times when we will absolutely definitely be there pen in hand! 

Stephen - noon

Ysolda - 1pm

Clara - 2pm

On both Saturday and Sunday!

Will we see you there? You can buy your tickets in advance here if you haven't already done so :) And if don't already have tickets and would like more pennies to spend on yarn I have a couple of weekend passes to give away! Just leave a comment saying what you're hoping to find at the festival before Friday at noon and we'll draw 2 winners and be in touch with how you can pick them up on Saturday morning! 

Tomorrow morning Felicity is coming to visit the studio so we can do a final run through of Saturday evening's Ca-baa-ret  I never did find a top hat (or the time to knit one!) and I'm not entirely sure what pub quiz impressario actual means, but I do know what the quiz prizes, questions and challenges are though, and I know what a treat it is to hear Felix talk about her work and infectious enthusiasm for wool, so I'm sure it will be a fun evening! 

 

 

 

 

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January 16, 2015 by Ysolda Teague

https://www.rohrspatzundwollmeise.de/en/

https://www.rohrspatzundwollmeise.de/en/

http://oldmaidenaunt.com/

http://oldmaidenaunt.com/

http://www.northronaldsayyarn.co.uk/ This makes me so excited for the natural colours in the Shawl Club! 

http://www.northronaldsayyarn.co.uk/ This makes me so excited for the natural colours in the Shawl Club! 

You still have time to pick out some yarn and cast on with everyone else on Monday. Sign up for the kal by simply purchasing the pattern. Head on over to the thread on Ravelry for even more yarn porn (willpower super powers required if you are on any kind of yarn diet or stashdown!).

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December 22, 2014 by Ysolda Teague

This afternoon I bound off a new jumper for myself. And then I fussed with it. 

Sometimes the design process is fast and mostly done in the abstract, and sometimes it's slow and hands on. I bought this (delightful) yarn as a birthday present for myself and knit the body in July, but I couldn't decide what to do with the sleeves. Multiple cabled beginnings later I tucked it away. For months. And then I pulled it out and tried swatching one of my original ideas, with a simple change from reverse stockinette to garter stitch. Garter stitch is always the answer. 

I knew I wanted to continue those sleeve panels over the shoulders and into the collar and that the front slit opening (which will have a zipper) would transition to ribbing to mimic the sleeve arrows and hem triangles. But I was a little indecisive about where exactly the yoke shaping should fall on raglan to saddle shoulder spectrum and how that 'seam line' should be defined. 

Tried a few swatches of the latter but for the shaping I really just wanted to try it on. Knitting the whole thing also gave me the chance to see how the funnel neck worked in a single layer of 1x1 rib. The whole thing is ok. But I'm fussy. 

I love the back shaping, so my plan is to alter only the front so there's a little more of an inward slope instead of a straight vertical section. I do plan to work another decrease row or two at the back neck to raise it up and pull the saddles inward a little more. 

Those sleeve arrows and the extra long sleeve length aren't going anywhere though. 

Those sleeve arrows and the extra long sleeve length aren't going anywhere though. 

Back to the underarms we go. I think it will be worth it. Plus I've got a cold, I'm taking a few days off this week, and it's not cold enough to wear this anyway. Re-knitting the yoke sounds pretty good right now. Electric ballwinder means I don't get to dither too much. 

Feeling so grateful for this space, where it was possible to take naturally lit photos mid afternoon. Please ignore the mess, we've still got a few boxes to unpack. 

If you send us a message this week it might take a little longer than usual to get a response (I know how frustrating being stuck on a gift on xmas eve can be, but it's totally ok to wrap a wip with an iou!). 

Writing this while keeping an eye on the news from Glasgow, our thoughts are with everyone affected.

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December 09, 2014 by Ysolda Teague

With the old studio all packed up, the new one lacking any furniture, having worked over the weekend, stormy weather outside, and a critical clean underwear status I decided that the only practical option was to stay home today. 

Other than a lunchtime dash up the road for baked beans, bread and soup ingredients (so grateful for the nearby Dig In!) that's what I did. Tomorrow I'll have both lunch and clean underwear, but more importantly I realised that I am all set for hibernating until at least March. 

I've got knitting projects to finish. 

 

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And if knitting gets dull, there's always sewing. I started these flannel lined dungarees on Sunday evening and I'd like to finish them, plus once I do they'll be nice and cosy for hibernating in. 

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For extra cosiness I can wear them with this winterised Blank Canvas. Bex took over it when it looked like I might never do the yoke and now only the ends need woven in. I might publish this as some kind of expansion pack to the original. 

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If I need some colour to cheer me up I can dig into this exceedingly cheerful stack of wool felt (I'm thinking play food as gifts for a couple of small people).

 

Rain looks much prettier blurred out!

Rain looks much prettier blurred out!

There are snacks, hot drinks and knitting. I'll just sit here. 

I don't usually listen to knitting podcasts but I rather enjoyed this new one. 

I don't usually listen to knitting podcasts but I rather enjoyed this new one. 

Just a little longer, before the cabin fever sets in, and excitement about setting up the new studio and making plans for the new year take over again. I'm sure those if you who've signed up for the shawl club (yes I'm doing a club wuth some truly amazing yarns!) will be pleased to know that you won't have to show up on my doorstep to get your first package. You are more than welcome though - you can help me finish something! 

How long until the solstice?

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December 08, 2014 by Ysolda Teague

There should have been two exciting things happening today, but a lift that's being serviced means that we're not moving into our new studio quite yet. Instead we're working in the old studio, surrounded by boxes. Cross your fingers that the engineers sort everything out asap!

However, in the end this announcement might be enough excitement for one day! Over the last few months I've been making plans and having fun conversations with some of my favourite British yarny people and everything is now in place for my very first yarn + pattern club. 

Beginning in February club members will receive an exclusive custom made or coloured yarn in the mail plus a pdf pattern delivered via Ravelry for a shawl(ish) designed by me just for the yarn. 

Membership is £180 for 6 shipments of yarn, 6 patterns and shipping to anywhere (in the world!). 

Purchase membership and find out more. 

Did you enjoy this years Follow Your Arrow kal? Don't worry, the club will be in addition to a mystery kal at the beginning of the year — look out for an announcement about that soon! 

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