Ok, let’s start with Ally Pally. Here’s what I scored:
10 x 50g balls of this beautiful, ecologically produced, pure wool. It’s lovely and soft. I can’t decide whether to dye it or leave it in its natural colour.
5 x 50g skeins of Araucania Acatama 100% alpaca. Purchased from Kerrie. Lovely autumn colours, and this is quite a heavy yarn, so I’m thinking a nice snuggly scarf and maybe some matching wristwarmers / gloves.
700g of this Classic Elite wool tweed from Texere Yarns. A mega mega bargain. Not the softest of yarn but the lady from Texere assured me it softens up a lot on washing. Plenty here for a big cozy sweater.
Apologies for the poor photo but this yarn is so divine I don’t want to take it out of its packaging for fear of getting it dirty. A sumptuous blend of merino, silk and cashmere. So, so soft. This was my most extravagant purchase (but only £3.99 a ball so hardly in Tilli Thomas territory), and I used money my mum and dad sent me for my birthday. I have a sweater pattern and have just been waiting to find the right yarn.
And last but not least, I picked up my first issue of Yarn Forward
I’m impressed. Ok, a couple of teething problems (some of the photos seem a bit “squished up”), but that’s only to be expected when bearing in mind this isn’t some glossy publication that’s had a shitload of money thrown at it. Having said that, it looks great - really professional and you'd never know it's been done on a tight budget. The most important things are there are patterns you would want to knit, articles that are interesting and informative, and no editorial pressure from big yarn manufacturers buying up advertising space. There is the most beautiful shawl pattern (unfortunately it’s crochet, but it’s almost beautiful enough to make me want to learn!), and a really cool feature of all the patterns is that there are 3 suggested yarns in different price ranges. What a really fab idea! It's such a breath of fresh air after the likes of Simply Knitting and Knit Today. Definitely worth the subscription.
I also got to meet Kira at AP. Unfortunately I didn’t get quite as much chance to chat with her, or the other Knittyboard girls, as I would have liked, but with so many people it’s impossible to stick together as a group. Nevertheless, nice to see them all and compare purchases.
Next, onto WIPs. Here’s where I am with the sweater.
A couple of weeks ago, just after I started on the sleeve, I got terminally bored with knitting it. You’ll note that I’ve also started the sleeve before finishing the body. That’s because I decided half way through the body that I think that I have enough of the one colour to knit the whole thing, but then I started having a mild panic and decided to do the sleeves so I could determine how much I have left for the body. If it’s not enough I haven’t quite decided what I’m going to do (apart from cry).
To give me a break from the sweater I started knitting this.
Oh look, Malabrigo again. And a cable pattern. Hmm, not really so different from the sweater, and boredom’s starting to set in here too. Mind you, the good news is that getting the sweater out to photograph it has made me want to start knitting it again. I think I might try knitting each one on alternate evenings and see how it goes.
Finally, a farm update. I thought I’d take some photos of what the guys are up to. First Geoffrey wanted to say hello
Recognise this chap?
Doesn’t look much like a Supreme Champion now does he? He’s very happy with his ladies, hence the pee stained face.
On to the baby bucks
Otherwise known as the “Pen of Raging Hormones”. Honestly, they are just like a bunch of spotty teenage boys. They are great fun (and filthy from jumping all over each other playing rough and tumble all the time).
Remember Little Man?
There was a time back in the summer when we thought we were going to lose him. He weaned himself off the bottle far too early and for a little while in the summer went very thin and, well, depressed. It was a sad sight. But look at him now (sorry, not the best photo, but he wouldn't keep still!) – full of beans and feisty as anything. And he has a lovely fleece, so fingers crossed he’ll make the grade.
Well, that’s us about caught up I think. Eddie had a good trip to France (it was 24C – not bad for mid October!). The builder pronounced the cracks to be not serious and “certainly not a deal breaker”. The other properties Eddie saw were interesting too. We have some serious thinking to do now.