Tuesday, 31 May 2011

Knitting in public - just do it

There was a short discussion on ravelry recently after a member expressed her ‘immediate annoyance’ at a blog entry on just-humor-me.blogspot.com. I’ll save you the trouble of reading it by telling you it’s basically an ex-knitter saying that there are no situations in which knitting in public is appropriate. And furthermore, there’s no way to look cool when you’re knitting unless you’re Sarah Jessica Parker.

Hmmmn, what do you think? It doesn’t strike me as anything to get immediately annoyed about. Unless you’re a knitter and the blog writer’s your mother. But I don’t really get this thing of being annoyed – immediately or otherwise - by the opinions of some random person on the internet that you’re never going to meet and who has no influence over what you do. What a waste of energy. Like one poster said, there are people whose opinions you should care about but this lady isn’t one of them. Plus, she was obviously trying to be funny and she’s hardly in Frankie Boyle’s league for causing offence while in pursuit of humour, is she? I wonder if she’s at all worried about making random ravellers annoyed – probably not. I reckon it’s ratcheted up her blog visitor stats nicely.

Anyway, knitting in public...have to admit - and this is a biggie for a wool shop owner - I’m not a big fan of Worldwide Knit in Public Day. My plans for an event locally fell apart, but I was only ever planning something because I felt I should, and that’s never a good reason for doing anything. The way I see it tho’, I knit in public anyway, so I’m already living it. And I can’t be doing with the ‘look at me, I’m knitting’ aspect. The only way we’ll get knitting in public to be seen as normal is to just do it. Not to do it while proclaiming about it, which in itself makes it something special. Well, that’s how it seems to me anyway. Please don’t be immediately annoyed with me.

Monday, 23 May 2011

Well, it all went exceedingly well at the Rag Market, despite the in-two-minds-about-it-all look on my face in the picture above. Lots of great stalls to browse, lots of friendly people around and lots of tea and cake. Not a bad way to spend Sunday afternoon. When can we do it again?

In other news, I'd have liked to put in a link to the Woodland Trust's site encouraging knitters to knit native bluebells, but blogger's not up for that tonight. Anyway, woodlandtrust.org is where it's at. Try to ignore the slightly gynaecological look to the knitted bluebell. It's a cute idea and if I wasn't up to my eyes in knitting flowers for the yarn bombing, I'd give it a go. I might visit some woods tho', just to show willing.

Saturday, 21 May 2011

A benign kind of bombing

(photo credit: Mike Hodgson)

Is the use of the terms graffiti and bombing in relation to yarn aimed at making knitters sound edgy? Definitely sounds edgier than I generally am. But no matter the terminology, the effect is generally colourful and lovely. ('Lovely'- now there's a good knitters' word. I know, I know, stereotyping! I should just speak for myself...)

Anyway we're busy knitting graffiti and preparing our yarn bombs in Halifax at present. Woolshops and the Piece Hall will be transformed by all sorts of yarn creations as part of the Halifax Festival in July. Not limited to knitting - can you crochet? weave? plait? - and not limited to straight rectangles to fasten round old stone pillars. Knitted bunting's been mentioned for a start...

If you'd like to take part, contact Festival Organiser Lucy:
lucy@halifaxfestival.co.uk Or if you'd simply like to see the finished effect, we'll be decorating on the 8th July and I think the graffiti's being left in place for a week or two, weather and other variables permitting.

PS No, I know that tree above's not yarn bombed. Not sure what it was covered in - looked like plasticy foamy stuff, but it was a nice surprise down an otherwise pretty standard shopping street. Nice touch, Hull.

Friday, 13 May 2011

This n' that

Seems to be a lot of illness and general medical problems among the Three Bags Full knitters and their loved ones at the moment, so here's hoping everyone affected gets well very soon. Take care, all of you!

A couple of exciting bits of news...well, exciting for me anyway, and Mike, who's taken about six hundred pictures recently without complaining once. Even when I made him late for the cricket... Anyway, we're hoping that by the end of May the new Three Bags Full website and online shop will be operational - yay! Still inputting at present, but as soon as everything's on we can go live. Have returned to my setting-up-shop state of extreme worry, stress and sleeplessness coupled with I-can't-wait. Will post the address a bit nearer the date.

The other thing we're looking forward to is the Rag Market at Bradshaw Church in Halifax on 22nd May. This'll be the first time we've done anything like this so it'll be very interesting and a learning experience, I'm sure - which generally means a great chance to make loads of mistakes, but hey, it should be fun. Come along!

Thursday, 5 May 2011

So, what do you think of this young man? Pretty handsome, I reckon. He was a little present on Tuesday from a customer (thank you!) who makes lots of soft toys, so now he keeps me company by the desk.

Hmmm, I did try to post also about the Patons 'flower fairies' pattern, which is a recent runaway success, but blogger's not playing...so just to say, if you're a knitter of toys and you haven't seen this, check it out. Its official name is something like Four Dolls in Smoothie, which well and truly covers up its appeal. At Three Bags Full we're awaiting new supplies, but most shops will have it, I'm sure - it's too lovely not to stock. A word of caution, if you're inclined to go the ebay route, just watch that the price is right...

Sunday, 1 May 2011

Libraries and wool shops

On 5th April, politician John Redwood wrote a blog entry, the gist of which was reported as: libraries are too middle class and should be shut down. I don't often comment on blogs but I did on this occasion, because it was such a mad thing to suggest coming hot on the heels of the decimation of the sub Post Office network, the slashing of funding for adult ed courses, the closures of pubs, etc, etc. These all offered the chance for the kind of informal contact that can make a huge difference to people's lives - and they're all disappearing. And now he wants to shut libraries too! For goodness sake, libraries are important, not just for their official purposes - borrowing books and using the computer and self-education - they're important as a place where everyone can go. And even if they're mostly used by the middle classes - whoever they might be - are middle-class people never lonely? Never in need of a friendly word or a place to sit and feel like they belong? While the government bangs on about the Big Society, chances for neighbours to get to know each other are rapidly diminishing.

Anyway, I commented to this effect. For a few days my response appeared on my own computer as 'Your comment is being moderated'. Then it was moderated out of existence. Wow, I must've been REALLY controversial.

But fear not, knitters and crocheters! You, at least, can go sit and knit in your local wool shop, feel welcome and chat with like-minded people. Quiet or gregarious, skilled or beginner, come along sometime and put the world to rights while you practise your purls and improve your intarsia.