Monthly Archives: May 2014

Moving In

I moved into my new flat just over three weeks ago. I really didn’t want to move as I liked the old flat a lot, but the landlord wanted to sell so I didn’t have a choice. Most things are now out of the boxes (except I still haven’t found my swift and ballwinder which is annoying) and I’m slowly getting used to the new place although it’s going to take a while before it feels right. There are some advantages to the new place but there’s also a lot of things I’m finding difficult.

Good Things Not So Good Things
Central heating means I don't have to wipe condensation off the windows every day in winterTwo of the window panes are blown and I'm struggling to find suitably sized curtains I like
Space outside to dry washingNo tumble drier, airing cupboard or convenient space in flat to put airer
With a gas cooker I can still cook in a power cutI'm used to cooking on electric and I can't control the temperature so well on gas.
There's a loft I can hide my junk in, especially useful for the tentThe flat is smaller overall and there's no second bedroom for easily accessible junk
I can pick my own furniture so I don't have to put up with a too short, faux leather sofa that makes odd noises every time you sit downI have to wait eight weeks for the sofa to be delivered and fold up wooden chairs are really not comfortable for any length of time
The wifi makes it as far as the bedroom (and a firmware upgrade to the router means the phone and the laptop no longer chuck each other off)Pure Connect's listen again seems to be a week behind iPlayer
There's a better view and a garden I don't have to maintainI'm no longer just over the road from Asda
I introduced my mum to the wonders of sugru to fix the intercom which kept falling apartThere is a lot of work that needs to be done and most of it I can't do
I don't have to get dressed and go outside the flat to get my postThe arrival of the post tends to make me jump out of my skin

Wonderwool Wales

One of my best friends happens to have a cottage really close to Builth Wells where Wonderwool Wales is held. I asked if I could come and visit for the weekend and he even agreed to give me a lift. I have tried to get the train to visit him before but the trains to the middle of nowhere only run every 4 hours (so middle of nowhere that his cottage has no internet, no tv signal and no mobile signal, I can only cope with it for a few days before the urge to check my email gets too strong). On that occasion I missed one of my connections and ended up getting a taxi from Hereford, which is not to be advised. When you go to the customer service desk to ask which the next available train is and they get out an atlas, it’s time to be worried.

It was really nice to catch up on the drive because I don’t get to see him much but I was glad of a leg stretch by the time we arrived. We spent most of the time talking about zombies and scuba diving but also about the influence of certain military figures on knitting terminology as we passed by Raglan. The Raglan sleeve was named after the 1st Baron of Raglan who apparently popularised the style after losing an arm at the battle of Waterloo. Mike is in the army and I’m obsessed with knitting, so it was a good crossover topic.

I spent two lovely afternoons browsing around Wonderwool, teaching Mike about the different kinds of yarn and had to find someone demonstrating needle felting before he would believe that all you have to do is poke bits of fluff with a needle to form lovely sculptures. This explanation may go some way towards my hopeless attempts at needle felting which resulted in a highland cow with incredibly spindly legs that wouldn’t stand up.

Wonderwool haul

Wonderwool Haul ©Rachel Gibbs

Wonderwool was full of lovely yarn from some of my favourite companies. I resisted the urge to buy everything on the Eden Cottage stand and ended up with some Bowland DK and Hayton 4ply. The Hayton is a lovely pale blue-green which I hope will show up cables well. I got some Sweet Georgia Superwash DK from the Purlesence stall in a lovely deep blue, I love the whole range of Sweet Georgia colours and the staff on the Purlescence stall are always really friendly.

I’ve been trying to resist learning to spin but apparently the fibre fumes got to me, and I ended up with a learn to spin kit from Hilltop Cloud. Mike and I both had great fun trying it out, although it worked much better the next morning without the influence of gin.

We were at the Baa Ram Ewe stand on Sunday as they were awarded the second prize for 3*3m stall, and they were practically jumping for joy which was nice to see. I ended up with two skeins of TItus which I have been wanting to try for a while. I think Bantam (deep red/purple) and Eire (pale blue) will work nicely together in some colourwork.

Just before we left I had a nice chat with Kate Heppell on the Knit Now stand and she directed my towards the Triskelion stall, which I must have missed before as I got distracted by all the pretty yarn and failed to travel around the show in a methodical manner. I’m glad she did because it’s not a brand I’ve tried before, but the yarns have a beautiful depth of colour and I’m looking forward to trying them out.

I really enjoyed my weekend of woollying. It had been a long week of moving house for me and I was glad of a break from the cycle of packing/unpacking and trying to work my new cooker. I’m still trying to figure out where to put everything and looking forward to my sofa arriving so I don’t have to chose between hard wooden chairs or the floor to sit on.