Going local is the inspiration for this week’s show, where we talk about extending choosing local beyond yarn choices. We’re back after a regrettable rain and laptop-based accident, which caused an unplanned break in the schedule. If you decide to do yoga outside, remember to bring your computer back in when you are finished. If you live in the North, it’s probably going to rain, even if it is cracking the flags currently. A two-week break from any sort of work has encouraged me to pick up the needles again. I’ll tell you about that a bit later.
Interiors and Decorating
I’ve made the most of the unscheduled break by having some decorating work done in the house. Farrow and Ball’s Stiffkey Blue is the colour of choice for my spare room/office/podcast ‘studio’. Stiffkey is a dark blue, which I had colour matched at Valspar as it’s more cost effective than buying Farrow and Ball paint. I’m a massive interiors fan. The current options for styling are an Edwardian Gentlemen’s Club vibe or something a little softer. Being a huge lover of Victoriana, Scots Baronial architecture and bank lamps, I’m sort of leaning towards the Gentleman’s Club approach.
Shopping Local – Interiors
I am looking to source more locally since lockdown. I’ve been a supporter of provenance and going local in knitting yarns for a long while. As long as we know the provenance of yarn, it allows us to make informed choices about what we purchase. Taking going local forward, I’m looking to expand this care and attention to supply chains and sustainability to everything I bring into my house. Yarn-wise, you should definitely listen to Ep118 with Joy McMillan, where we discuss yarn provenance in great detail. This is one of my all-time favourite interviews.
Labour Behind The Label
This campaign group has written a report about the state of some of the factories in Leicester that are supplying fast fashion online retailers such as BooHoo and ASOS. You can find the report here and they are @labourbehindthelabel on Instagram.
Unclear Labelling and Misleading Marketing
I bought a cupboard this week from an online store that gives a very ‘British’ appearance in its marketing. When the item arrived, it said ‘designed in the UK’ on its box, but said it was ‘made in PRC’. This annoys me, because many people don’t know that PRC is the full name for China, and it feels like it is deliberately trying to hid the fact that it is manufactured there. It’s more sustainable to have locally-manufactured things, so I’m actively trying to do that. I’ll be joined soon on the podcast by UK Manufacturing expert and champion Kate Hills, from Make It British to discuss the UK wool manufacturing industry.
What I’m Knitting
Still working on the Compass Sweater by Tin Can Knits. I’m now on the sleeves and am really loving the result so far. It’s going to be really cosy. It’s knit in Excelana DK, from Susan Crawford Vintage.
I’ll be casting on Orchidacea by Susan Crawford in Nurturing Fibres Supertwist DK. Eight Bit Geekalong by Lattes and Lamas has massively caught my imagination. It’s a free pattern for a mystery knitalong for a colourwork sweater. The swatch clue is already available and the first proper clue is dropped on August 2nd. This pattern is only available on Ravelry [WARNING: there have been some problems for users on the Ravelry website and the Epilepsy Foundation has issued a seizure warning for the website. Do not use it if you may be at risk]. The Queen Bee Pullover, also by Lattes and Llamas looks to be in my future. Surely the Shinybees needs a bee themed colourwork pattern!
Susan Crawford Vintage New Website
I’ve been revisiting a lot of Susan’s back catalogue recently as I’m planning to re-embrace the tank tops I was so fond of wearing in my earlier years. I used to be very fond of vintage clothing, so I have been looking at some vintage style patterns. There are some really nice patterns, such as the Jan Sweater and the Sun Ray Ribbing Sweater. You can find these and all her other patterns at susancrawfordvintage.com
Music for this episode is with very kind permission of Adam and The Walter Boys with ‘I Need a Drink’ available from iTunes.