Sunday, 6 August 2017

First carding

A couple of months ago, I bought a beautiful new Classic Carder. I did not want to use it until I had received a tutorial on correct usage. Whilst at Fibre East, I had a lovely lesson with the Classic Carder team, and now feel confident to use mine.
The photo above is of my very first rolled batts. The fleece is the grey Coloured Ryeland bought at Fibre East last time, stored washed in an old cotton pillowcase.

Thursday, 3 August 2017


 The 'Fialka' for Sharon is finished. The knitting was done about ten days ago, then the blocking and taking of photos took a few more days. I hope Sharon likes it- I am really pleased with it.

The 'Summer is Coming' Mystery knit-a-long is growing. There are eight clues in all. The seventh clue was released yesterday. I have to admit that I have not caught up yet. It did not help that we were away for the week-end - The joyful catching up with our hosts severely curtailed knitting time!

Tuesday, 25 July 2017


Very excited, I went into the Garage earlier, and was strafed by Swallows leaving as I opened the door to enter. There were at least two, possibly three, fledged youngsters, along with the parents.
They are all now spinning and wheeling overhead, calling to each other.

(Excited little happy dance)

Edited to add - Definitely three!

Monday, 24 July 2017

First Solar attempt

A few years ago, I received a copy of India Flint's book 'Eco Colour'. It is a beautiful thing to look at, and is full of interesting information. I was looking through my dye books for a particular piece of information last week, and put 'Eco Colour' to one side, to have another look through the projects.
While leafing through the book later, I remembered the colour running onto my fingers when I was deadheading some flowers in the garden. Hmm. Worth a try.

A Kilner jar, some flower heads, fleece or yarn, water. Layer together, then leave in a sunny spot until done. This could be weeks.
It sounds like something children would play at, like making 'perfume', but this morning there was already some colour moving into the fleece ( see above). I am using washed, natural white Dorset Down cross fleece which I bought at Somerset Guild Fleece & Fibre fair last year. The flowers are red Pelargonium.
We shall see what happens.

Friday, 14 July 2017

Celebration Walk

It was Best Beloved's birthday, on Wednesday. Traditionally, we take the day off, and head for Exmoor. This year we made for Tarr Steps. It was a beautiful day, sunny and clear, but not quite as warm as of late. A perfect day for walking, in  fact.
We crossed the 'steps', which are large slabs of slate laid across huge rocks set in the river. Then we walked upstream for about a mile, crossed the bridge back across the river, and continued upstream for a while. Then we turned and followed the flow back downstream to the 'steps'. The main River, the Barle, is fed by lots of little streams and trickles. This sweet little bridge was one of many different designs and ages of bridge that we came across.

There were many types of insect about. B.B. picked up this beetle, a Dor Beetle, which was on it's back on the path. It's legs and underside were the most amazing iridescent blue.
Despite having a good identification book specifically on Fungi, we have been unable to identify this oddity. It was growing in grass, in full sun, is very fleshy, and the colours were really bright. The photo does not do the colours justice.

 Lunch was taken at the local Pub, sitting at a table under a huge Oak tree with an enormous girth, listening to the river and the endless birdsong. Bliss!
Onward to Horner Woods, for another walk, this one rather shorter. There were nothing like as many people walking here, so our spaniels were able to run about rather more, hurtling in and out of the river, thoroughly enjoying themselves.
Both of these walks are alongside the river, which flows along the bottom of steep wooded coombes, very typical of Exmoor. Cool, quiet and full of wildlife. In my opinion, and that of BB, the most beautiful place on earth.
The last photo is one I am very proud of. It is of a Silver Washed Fritillary, a butterfly which is not common at all. The specific habitat it needs is fulfilled by the two places we had just walked. We were lucky enough to see many, over twenty, during the course of the day. The Fritillaries are quite flighty, and tend to stay up in the canopy ( of mainly mature Oaks). I was thrilled when one settled on an Oak stump for just long enough for me to take a photo.
So, to the last call of the day - A cream tea, partaken of in the sunny, flowery garden just across the road from the Public Footpath at Horner. A lovely end to a peaceful day's walking.
( and home to watch the Tour de France on TV, naturally! )


Monday, 3 July 2017


I could not help myself........
The yarn is so lovely, I sneaked in a quick cast on, and completed the first two clues. That is all I will show until the end of the KAL, though. It is supposed to be a Mystery!

Saturday, 1 July 2017


The cherry tree in the orchard regularly has a reasonable crop of fruit. This year has been particularly good despite the lack of rain. We rarely manage to pick any of the cherries though, as the Blackbirds and Pigeons usually get there first. The birds have largely left the fruit alone this summer. There are peas being grown in many of the fields that surround us, this year. A good chance that the two things are linked. We don't mind sharing the fruit with the birds and the animals, but get a bit bored of growing lots of lovely things and not getting to eat any of them!
 The 'Fialka' is growing.....

 I am a bit over halfway through the pattern, including the extended lace part. It is not growing quite as fast as I would like - grooming cleavers berries and grass seeds out of spaniel ears takes up quite a lot of each evening. A good excuse for a cuddle!