Yarndale 2014

It hardly feels like a year since the first Yarndale event but sure enough it really has been a full twelve months since we last came to the Auction Mart in Skipton to celebrate all things yarny. The bunting guided us down to the Mart …

… and then greeted us in the Hub inside Yarndale. It’s so hard to photograph! I think my photo from last year is better if you wanted a better idea of how it looked.

Now I must confess that I can’t remember a lot of the names of the stalls to go with these photos. I thought I was keeping track in my mind but then when I looked at the programme earlier I couldn’t match anything I’d remembered up with the actual stalls. Sorry about that. Also if you are an exhibitor and I’ve photographed your stall and you would like me to add your name to the picture/remove the picture from here, please do let me know in the comments.

Ah now I DO remember this one! This is Tile Productions and I almost “squeeeed” when I saw the Christmas tree decorations. You know how I feel about those and now I can add a “special one I bought at Yarndale” to my collection. I’ve just had a quick squiz at their website and they do bespoke things and now I am wondering if they would to name ones for my tree! That would be nice.

I wanted to take this basket of yarn home with me. GORGEOUS colours.

This is the Laughing Hens stall. I have had a yearning to make a Rooster Almerino blanket for a few years now (Specifically since 2010, when we moved into this house and I bought a crochet book by Nicki Trench for £5 in Morrisons. It features the most divine, soft and cosy, scrumptious looking stripy blanket made from Almerino and I have lusted after it ever since.) AND NOW that I have squished the yarn and seen the colours in person I have decided that I am going to save up/stash it for a while and then do an Almerino blanket. Probably a Big Elmer (I know I lack imagination when it comes to trying new styles of blankets but I just really really REALLY love solid squares of colour!).

I think this was the Cascade yarn at the Laughing Hens stall and again I just wanted one of every skein.

Are you sensing a theme with my photos? RAINBOW YARN! This is the Texere Yarns stall, and it’s their Double Top cotton. I wish I found it easier to work with cotton, I find it really harsh on my hands and I can never get the stitches as close and dense as I would like them to be. The colours are super though – check out that true green! I long for that kind of colour green in Stylecraft!

I was so happy to see my crochet houses used again this year! I still can’t quite believe I completed them on time (I remember 11th hour window-stitching and boggling over just HOW to make a triangle for that dormer window!). I am so proud that I have been telling all of my friends that I MADE THOSE. :)

Lucy hard at work, the Stylecraft colour kits looked like they were flying off the shelves.

I THINK that this is Eden Cottage Yarns … correct me if I’m wrong. I thought the way the colours were grouped here was beautiful, and the yarns were so shiny and gorgeous.

I was too taken by the yarn rainbow here that I didn’t get the name of the stall. Again, I will have one of everything please!

Oliver Twists … last year they’d left before I got there. This year I was not disappointed! Just look at it … how is it possible to make so many colours?! I think I’d have two of each from here please! (Fantasy shopping list…)

These two photos are from the Skein Queen. I bought two mini skeins of yarn from her yarn tree but honestly I wanted the whole stall. I want to knit pretty things with all of these skeins! I’m making a Christmas list for Andy! Well it might work you never know eh.

I liked this felty stall but didn’t catch the name. It was very popular though!

This sheep was LOVING the fuss and attention, it’s tail was wagging non stop. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a happier sheep!

The mandalas looked simply stunning but again they were simply too difficult to get a proper photograph of. If you want to see all of the beautiful work that people around the world have created then you can see them on the Pinterest boards here.

Then it was time to go and we climbed back up the steps, across the carpark and then sat on the old bandstand in the park. My feet were aching by this point! Here are my purchases:

Three skeins from Laal Bear (who I believe is retiring now, this was her final show.) The pink and the red are 75% wool/25% Mulberry Silk and the blue is 100% bluefaced Leicester. I’d like to make the red into a hat for TTB, I want to stripe the pink with some grey Rowan Pure Wool Aran that I’ve had for 5 years and make a Baktus and I don’t know about the blue yet.

Here are my mini skeins from the Skein Queen. Gorgeous Autumn tones. I bought two mini skeins (even tinier than these) last year and I think it would be a nice collecting thing to do, collecting mini skeins when I see nice ones at events and then in a billion years I’ll knit them all up into little mitred squares and join them together. Until then I will just enjoy carrying them around and squooshing them.

Here’s my tree decoration from Tile Productions, the picture doesn’t do it justice.

And finally my hare card from the wonderful Marmalade Rose, who’s blog I’ve loved for years. I am so happy with this card!

Now then, link me up and show me what you bought!

xxx

Learning

These photos are from a couple of weeks ago, during that really good week of fresh, crunchy, Autumn park days before it rained and the Autumn treasures became wet and mushy. Going to the park is one of the best things to do right now. Tiny Tin Bird loves the freedom to run around and walk without being on his reins. I can let him go quite a distance without worrying because it’s so easy to see him and it doesn’t really take too long to catch up because there is invariably an interesting leaf or stick that he stops to investigate.

His favourite thing at the moment is to stand at the big tree stumps and play with all of the leaves, sticks, stones and seed pods that he can find. He likes to climb up on top of them and let me jump him down. That kind of thing. A couple of weeks ago he noticed that there were some really big sticks on the grass and he was confused as to why he couldn’t pick them up. I explained that they were the roots of the tree, and told him about the structure of the trees. The roots are like the tree’s feet, I said. He thought about this a bit and then satisfied as to why he couldn’t pick them up, he went on his way.

Now when he’s in the park he very carefully stands on the tree roots and tells me that they are “Roots! Tree feet!”. I’m so thrilled that he listened to what I said, and remembered it! I know he does learn most of his things from me, because I’m his primary caregiver, but it was still very exciting for me that he learned a fact, a fact about nature, rather than the “normal” things you’d expect him to learn during his early years like how to hold a fork or to say please.

On this particular day in the park, it was as close to perfection as I think you can get. We walked all the way up to the tall beech trees and the ground was littered with the crunchy seed cases and beech nuts. They were clicking and popping as they ripened and fell off the tree and I could see them falling to the ground like the first few flakes of snow. I lifted TTB up to the tree so that he could see them growing amongst the leaves, and then I found a few seeds and pods in various stages and lined them up on the tree stump for TTB to see. I showed him that they were spiky on the outside, and silky soft on the inside. That they were closed up on the tree but that they popped open when they were ripe and fell to the ground. Inside nestle two smooth, brown, triangular-based seeds. These are the seeds of the beech tree, and they look different from the seeds of the sycamore trees that you like to collect on our walks near home.

Later on we walked in the other direction, over the grass, where the sun was perfectly illuminating this oak leaf that was resting in the grass. I thought … well … he is a little sponge right now when it comes to learning … perhaps I could try teaching him that there are different types of leaf? It can’t hurt, can it? So I told him that this was an oak leaf, and it came from the tall oak tree behind us. Look, it has little bumps coming off it around the edge, like little fingers. It’s an oak leaf.

I didn’t really expect anything to come of it, but yesterday he picked up a chard leaf from our salad at lunch time and told me that it was an oak leaf. Wrong, but he has remembered the word and that there are different types of leaf! (That sounds like he is a really good eater, but ha, you can’t get him to eat leaves! I always give him a few and he just looks at me like I’m bonkers.)

The next tree we came to was the horse chestnut and happily we had arrived when there were plenty of conkers on the ground (get there before the children come out of school, that’s my tip!) and we spend a while collecting them all up. Oh so fun! I cracked a few open for him and left them on the ground where he could find them and he was so happy. He was trying in vain to keep hold of all the shells and all of the conkers and we talked a bit about how the conkers are the fun part to keep and the shells can be left on the ground. He calls them “connas” or “tommas” and can say shell too.

When he is happy in the park he is much more willing to stand still and let me take photos!

I’m really proud that he’s learning so much, and that I’m actually able to teach him interesting things now. He’s so good in the park and I’m so happy that he loves being outside (and trees!) as much as I do. He had his first morning at playgroup today (I need to leave and collect him soon) and it’s the start of him learning things from somewhere other than me. I thought I would feel a bit weird about that but I really don’t. Learning is brilliant. I’m lucky to have had him to myself for two full years! He’s growing up fast but I love every bit of it. Having a toddler is the most amazing thing and I’m so privileged to see him grow up.

Barden Fell in Early September

Things I Want to Remember 

How TTB remembered where we were, despite having only been here once before, and how he grabbed Andy’s hand and chattered at him urgently and excitedly, dragging him to the little track we walked on and wanting him to see.

Andy’s reaction upon reaching the brow of the hill and seeing the view.

How blown away by the view I felt even though I’ve seen it before.

The pink of the heather, the chuffling of the grouse and the squeals of the small birds looping the loop in the sky above.

The clouds and the way they lined up along the horizon, and how the closer ones cast big shadows over the landscape.

How TTB knew what the clouds were, and the shadows were, and that the clouds were causing the shadows. How he wanted us to know that he knew!

All the bees on the heather.

The utter quiet stillness that comes from an absence of people and traffic.

Seeing a small plane drone overhead and how excited this made TTB.

All of the stones he found. He had to stop and put them down every couple of minutes so that he could pick up new ones.

The muddier-than-expected patches and despite our efforts, TTB waded in (delighted) in his new shoes.

TTB spotting the reservoir and shouting “Lake! Over there! BOP!” and thinking that Bop was in there. I love his imagination. (Or maybe belief that all bodies of water contain Bop?)

TTB wanting to walk in the “hole” (a narrow trench along some of the pathway).

TTB finding a feather and sitting down to do a bit of drawing with it in the mud.

How happy we all felt to be up there.

The golden light.

Taking a photo of us all together.

Feeling so small in relation to the landscape.

The dog that rushed past TTB as he was doodling in the mud with a feather, taking him by surprise but I’m sure featured highly on his list of “best things” that day.

Seeing TTB running free, and how happy he was.

The pub lunch afterwards :-)