Tuesday, 29 October 2013

Yes it was soo good...

...but, I didn't think it would have been so tiring!  And that is my only excuse for delaying in telling you all about The Small Wool Gathering weekend.  Gosh, it's hard to believe that it was nearly three weeks ago that I arrived at Peddington manor, put the sign up

and unpacked a heavily laden car.  Jenny was our head chef (three course dinners, full English breakfast, lunches and snacks!) and my role was baker and housekeeper  So after stowing all the cakes I had baked in the pantry I set about setting up the rooms.  Of course the letting agent had done all the hard work making up beds etc but I spent some time setting out the twiddly bits, hand knitted face cloths by Jenny, names on our doors  and wool chains and bunting in the main rooms

Photo montage by Valerie

Guests arrived and settled in

getting reacquainted in the sitting room... 
 Then we sat down to Dinner in the huge dining room

Dinner (photograph by Rachel)
The dining room was also our class room

Thanks to Alli for this photograph

But first there were goodie bags.

I can't show mine as I opened it because  I forgot to take the picture and now I have already knitted up the Kettle Yarn sock in Amy's auto-pilot sock pattern (the subject of our first class) and spun and plyed  the silk (the little skein of turquoise, our second class).   But you can also see some beautiful alpaca fluff ready to spin and dyed by Porpoise and some of Elisabeth Beverly's plant dyed Merino DK

The bag also contained little treats like a crochet pattern from Agrarian Artisan, a sachet of Soak, a spindle (for the silk) and a pack of Tussah Silk from Sweet Georgia Yarns

We began our silk spindling class using silk hankies.  In their totally un-dyed state they are like this

A pile of cobwebs, each made from a single silk work cocoon.  These are not the ones we worked with at the weekend, those were shades of turquoise and specially dyed for us by Amy - I can't share these with you in their virgin state as I have used them all up, but here they are, halfway to a skein of knitable silk!

When talking to us about photographing our knitting Amy told us she didn't like knitting posed on walls or fences!  Despite this she gave this photograph of mine (of my colour affection shawl) the OK because the fence doesn't feature much and the way it's draped does show off the knitting.

Saturday night was glam night - that is we all wore something we had knitted that had a bit of glitz.  I just managed to complete my Tilly Thomas Citron in time.  To see what some others wore, and Alli herself have a look at her blog.  Meanwhile I felt her shoes needed a mention!

It was all a lot of fun, but don't just take my word for it have a look at blogs by Alli, Valerie and Rachel to see what they thought.



PS - we are planning to do it all again next year.  If you are  interested please leave your e mail in the comments or e mail me (chopkins2011 [at] gmail [dot] com ) and I will add you to the mailing list

Tilly Thomas Citron as worn by Aphrodite In The Garden

Tuesday, 1 October 2013

Last Minute (not coming)

Quite unexpectedly we have a last minute vacancy.  All of us at The Small Crafters HQ (somewhere in the ether!) were very sad to hear from one of our friends, who was the life and soul of our retreat last year, that she is, at the last minute, unable to come.

So there is a double room at the manor going spare - this one in fact

Although the room is made up here with a double bed it can also be made as two singles so there is accommodation for either one person at £570 or two sharing at £410 each.

Remember the cost covers all accommodation, food and wine for three nights and tutoring from the amazing Amy Singer.

All the details for this fabulous weekend are in previous blog posts so please scroll back for more photographs of Peddington Manor and details of the classes in sock knitting, silk spinning and knitting photography that Amy will be giving.

If you are interested in taking up this very last place please e mail Catherine at
chopkins2011  [at] gmail [dot] com
as soon as possible.  Since there is only one residential place (or 2 at most) booking will be on the basis of first come first serve.

However, there are still 3 non-residential places available and details of these are also in previous blog posts

So hurry (you know you want to join in the fun)


Catherine (& Co)