Sunday, 10 January 2016

Looking Backwards and Forwards

I am not big on making New Years Resolutions, to be honest, I find New Year a bit of a strange time. There is so much hype, it is almost portrayed as if after the bells we will be launched into a brand new time, when really its just another day.  However, I have been thinking quite a lot lately thought about my textile work, how I should manage my time and what I should concentrate on.  I would like to be more efficient with the time I have and learn not to be too hard on myself when I don't achieve much.  I still work part time in my "real job" as a Science Technician for the High Schools in Shetland and in the afternoons I have a very active four year old to keep entertained.  He will be at school next year, then I will have some more time to myself.  I don't want to spend this short time working.

I had a really busy but exciting time last year as Patron of Shetland Wool Week, in fact my last blog post was at the end of that week!  Somebody stated that they suffered from Jet lag after the event and I certainly think that was the case with me.  I had a bit of time off with health issues (which are now more or less under control thankfully) and then I spent November working on an exciting project which will be revealed through time.  Then it was December, which was....well.....December. 

In October I decided to leave Not On The High Street, I had been thinking about it for a while as I haven't been spending much time making the felt products many of your know me for and to be frank I have become fed up with churning out the same things.  I have become much more interested in knitting patterns and designing my own, it is something that has almost come about naturally, and Shetland Wool Week has certainly given me the boost and confidence to do this.  I can knit in the evenings when I am too tried to do anything else, I can knit while I am doing things like waiting for bath time to be over, it fits far better into my lifestyle and it is something I really love doing.

Early last year I designed the Baable hat as the official pattern for Shetland Wool Week 2016 which had an amazing response.  It was declared the most queued pattern on Ravelry in 2015 and at the time of writing this post it had 3201 projects on Ravelry!

I am totally overwhelmed at the response, as I didn't think it would appeal to many people! It gives me so much encouragement although it is also a bit bizarre when I see them, like this class I taught at wool week and almost everyone has their own version!

I also designed Maggie's gloves for the Shetland Wool Week annual, my version of the gloves I remember by Granny making.

I was very proud to have been part of the first Shetland Wool Weel annual, it was such a brilliant publication.

The Annual has now sold out but the pattern will be available to purchase through Ravelry very soon, I just have to finally check it over. 

I also would like to get outside more this year, but the weather hasn't been suitable for taking a young child out without blowing away!  If it has been good weather we have been to busy.   I know we can wrap up and drive to the town where it is more sheltered but once we get home where it is cosy, if we don't have anything else to do its a struggle to feel inspired to get out, and it gets dark around 3.30p.m. at the moment. This is something I am definitely going to have to work on.

I managed to get out one day between Christmas and New Year, I walked around the shore from our house to Hamnavoe watching the waves as I went.  And it reminded me how much I miss being able just to walk where I want when I want.

There are a few exciting things happening in the next few months, I will be travelling to Vogue Knitting Live in New York with the Shetland Wool Week team to help out on their stand.  I will also be taking part in a lecture on Friday 15th January from 2-3 p.m. on Shetland Knitting: Past and Present, with June Hiatt (author of the highly acclaimed book the Principles of Knitting) and Hazel Tindall (fastest knitter in the world, fantastic knitwear designer and fount of all knowledge when if come to Fair Isle knitting).  There are still spaces available for this event so if you are going to be in New York at the time, it would be great to see you! 

I am also teaching a night class in Fair Isle knitting for the first time this year in our local Primary School which I am really looking forward to, so its going to be fairly busy for a while and I need to figure out how to find time to work on the ideas in my head!

I will be back soon with tales from New York!