Tuesday, September 29, 2009

just a quick one....

...to remind you that time is running out to sign up for the 2010 yarn preview club!!! i'm still taking names up until 1st october (which is alarmingly soon!) & have already started dyeing up the first batch of new colourways. so if you want the be part of the preview club, please send me an email in the next couple of days - or else you'll have to wait until next year!!

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

all that i'm capable of

so far, wednesday isn't going that great. right from its very first minute, things weren't good, and we were very rudely awakened at about 12.01am (after only having gone to sleep about half an hour before). i'll spare you the details, but let's just say that the dog is as sick as... well, as a dog. and that the way this sickness was -ahem- manifesting itself, none of us got any sleep at all, and that over the course of the next 8 or so hours, there were many, many throw-coat-on-hastily-over-pajamas-grab-dog-and-run-outside-at-full-speed moments. sigh. fingers crossed, there seems to be a lull in the -ahem- "activities", and the pup has been convinced to eat something, drink something, and nap on the couch, so hopefully the worst has -ahem- passed.
unfortunately, i'm not a person who does well on no sleep, so i'm more or less non-functional today - in fact, if any of this post makes even the least bit of sense, i'll be quite impressed. i've decided to close the studio, just in case things don't improve (i normally take the pup in to work with me, which just doesn't seem like a good plan today - but then, neither does leaving him on his own at home!) - maybe if we both just rest & reboot, things will be ok again tomorrow.
& since i'm ridiculously low on brain-power today, this is all that i'm capable of...

parisian fluff

it's the short-row cardigan from la droguerie in paris (or, as it's more properly known, the "gilet à rangs raccourcis") & it's a work of utterly simple genius - worked in garter stitch, side to side, using basic short rows to shape the yoke and the sleeves. i bought the yarn & the pattern together when we were in paris this summer, and it's knitted in their own 4ply 100% alpaca held together with a strand of their own laceweight mohair - essentially making a fine dk/sportweight yarn, but worked on 5mm needles for a lovely light fabric. i'm not normally a mohair fan, but the yarns worked together are so soft & luxurious, and the knitted fabric is so fluffy & squashable, that i may just have been converted. the pattern uses the same four-row repeat throughout, so it's perfect for a day like today - completely & utterly mindless, and just about all that i'm capable of.

p.s. so far, 25 people have signed up for the yarn club - is it bad that that's completely freaking me out??!?

Sunday, September 20, 2009

2010 colourways preview club!!

as you might already know, the Old Maiden Aunt 2009 “homecoming collection” colourways have been going down well. alas, in a few short months, it will no longer be 2009, which means it will no longer be the year of homecoming! so, i’m planning a new collection of colourways for 2010, and am having lots of fun dreaming up new ideas. (don't panic - some of the "homecoming" colourways will be sticking around - but not all of them).
then, something occurred to me. maybe some of you don’t want to wait until 2010 to see the new colourways... maybe (just maybe) some of you might like to get a look at them ahead of time, over the next few months, before they make their way into the Old Maiden Aunt shop? so, i've decided to set up my first ever yarn club - the 2010 preview club! here's how it will work:

  1. it will run for three months, with parcels being mailed out at the end of october, november, and december.
  2. each parcel will contain two skeins of sock yarn in two different colourways (i’ll be sticking to the superwash merino/blends for this club, so by the end of the three months you will have received two skeins each of 100% superwash merino, superwash merino/bamboo, and superwash merino/cashmere/nylon, with six different colourways in total) plus a few extra little treats (no patterns will be included in the club).
  3. each of the colourways will be brand-new, never-seen-before-in-the-web-shop, and will not be available for general purchase until january 2010, at which point they will form part of the new 2010 colourway collection. i would ask that you not sell on any of the yarns during the three months of the club (trading is ok).
  4. the club will cost £75 for UK/EU members and £85 for non-UK/EU members, and includes six skeins of sock yarn & all postage costs (plus a few wee treats!).
  5. the club will be limited to 50 members (although i’m not sure if that many will even be interested, but hey, who knows!).

if you’re interested in the yarn club, please send me an email with “2010 preview club” in the subject line, and your name, country, & contact details (email and/or ravelry name) in the body of the message. i’ll be taking emails up until 1st october 2009 - if i get more than 50, i’ll pull 50 names out of a hat; less than 50, & everyone who emailed me will get offered a place in the club. at that point, i’ll send out an email to let you know how to purchase your club membership, and i’ll start dyeing up a storm! (please note that sending me an email doesn’t mean you absolutely have to purchase a club membership - if circumstances change & you’re no longer interested that’s ok.)
if you have any questions or comments please let me know - i’d love to hear what you all think about my idea! if there’s anything i haven’t covered, please ask & i’ll do my best to answer. & if you know anyone else who might be interested, pass it on - the more the merrier :)

p.s. i can’t tell you yet what sorts of colourways you might be getting, but i can tell you that if you’re a fan of deep, dark, rich colours, this might be right up your alley ;)

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

in recovery

i'm safely back home after a crazy weekend, doing an old maiden aunt yarns trunk show at socktopus in london. & even though i was seriously delayed getting back (my 2pm flight home was delayed, then cancelled, then i was bumped on to the 5:30pm flight, which was then delayed for over an hour, & i finally made it home 5 hours later than planned!) it was totally worth it.
there were delicious brownies made by ali, and the best deli sandwich ever, and candy galore. (click on any pic to embiggen in flickr!)

socktopus 1

i shipped a big box of yarn down ahead of time, & we filled up the shop with colourful piles of sock yarn.

socktopus 3

the trunk show was set to open from 12-5pm, but at 11:45am, this happened (good thing the door was locked!).

socktopus 4

well, we couldn't keep them standing out there, could we? but someone who arrived bang on time (12:01pm) felt a little left out...

socktopus 5socktopus 6

...especially when she found out that someone else had already scooped up most of the purple colourways...

socktopus 7

(it's not my fault - i was bribed with wollmeise - & managed to hang onto it, despite the presence of a would-be wollmeise thief!!)

wollmeise theft!

... & that lots of other folk already had armfuls of (purple) yarn as well...

socktopus 9socktopus 10

i think everyone was happy with what they got in the end, though.

socktopus 8

thank you so much to alice for having me, and to all you mad london knitters for being so fab & welcoming - and for buying lots of my yarn (i'm shipping back less than half of what i shipped down - hurrah!). i'd come back anytime - but next time, i'm taking the train!! & for today, at least, i'm in recovery - some simple knitting, my alias dvd box set, and a big box of chocolates (from the RSA, waiting for me when i got home, yay!).

Monday, September 14, 2009


... in luton airport after the socktopus show weekend. more about that later - for now, i'm waiting for a 2pm flight home which has been delayed till 4:30pm!!! boo.

at least i have a few wee things here to keep me going...

(oh no - it's worse than i thought! my flight is now cancelled, & i've been bumped to the 5:30pm flight instead - bah.)

Tuesday, September 08, 2009

to sum up

1. i have somehow managed to pull a muscle in my - erm - posterior. this injury is at once utterly ludicrous (try telling someone - without laughing - that you have, in effect, sprained your ass. it's not possible.) and ludicrously debilitating. currently, i can't comfortably do any of the following things: stand; sit; lie down; get in or out of a chair or bed; walk; climb or descend stairs; bend at the waist or knees; step in or out of the bath; put clothing on my lower half; etc. don't worry - i'm still doing all of these things (especially that last one, for everyone's sake) even though it hurts. & thankfully, it seems to be starting to get a little better already. unless, that is, the washing up needs done.
2. i have also somehow developed a twitch in my cheek (the one on my face this time) which makes it look as though i'm winking lasciviously (in an exaggerated "carry on" sort of way) at random passersby. add to this the occasional absentminded massaging of my - erm - injured part, and the overall effect is one that may well see me getting arrested before the end of the week.
3. the above-mentioned twitch (as well as the absentmindedness) may possibly be related to the (approximately) 27 pints of coffee that i have managed to ingest today while waiting for the courier to pick up this yarn:

stocking up...

(packed into a big box, naturally). it's on its way down to london for a trunk show this sunday at socktopus, and the courier company gave a pickup window of 8am-6pm today (helpful, no?). i was at the studio at 7:45am "in case they were early", having pretty much rolled out of bed, put a bra on under my pajamas, dragged the still-sleeping pup out to the car, and whizzed out to the studio. the courier arrived at 4:30pm.
4. the above-mentioned twitch may also be due to the fact that up until last week, i was blissfully unaware that this coming weekend is also IKnit London, a massive annual knitting event/yarnorgy, which essentially results in almost every knitter in the UK (& lots from other places as well) turning up in london simultaneously. turns out that many of them are also staying on for the sunday as well, and planning a visit to my socktopus trunk show, which is more than a little intimidating. especially when one confirmed trunk-show-attendee is also one of my favourite sock designers, whose sock pattern "brainless" i had planned to knit as my travel project this weekend - although i may rethink that, as it seems a bit like going to a concert wearing the t-shirt of the band you're going to see.
5. to sum up - aching, twitchy, overly caffeinated, and a little freaked out - london, here i come! (think they'll let me in?)

Wednesday, September 02, 2009

where have i been??

le tour eiffel
ah, paris....

paris, je t'aime
je t'aime toujours.