So after Blogger *ate* my last few posts, I’m tentatively starting again; this time with a nice picture of the kitchen tile I glazed, featuring Monkl.

It was a good Easter weekend, starting with a creative Friday night spent making a tea-cosy out of felt. The tea-cosy ended up fitting with a general kitchen decor theme based on calling regular builder’s tea ‘Grim real-i-tea.’

The first installment of culture in our kitchen based on this idea was a tile I glazed to go on the wall near the kettle. The second has been the tea cosy, which will effectively be known from now on as ‘the Grim.’

I think he’s had rather too much caffeine based on his facial expression, don’t you?

Behind him you can see the arum lily tile, which I also glazed, and ‘the tile of joy.’

After Friday night’s felting extravaganaza, there was the fabulous knitwarming at Liz’ house, where much cake was enjoyed and much knitting commenced. I started a summery cotton version of Calorimetry as I adore the woolen version I made a few months ago and know I want to have a lighter version for the coming warmth of summer. It’s nearly finished now. As with the woollen version, I didn’t bother to swatch it first… I hope it isn’t stupidly big again.

I love this cotton yarn, too; I got it from knitshop which has some great yarns if you can cope with the mystifying layout of the website and the appalling clipart graphics.

At first I found a couple of knots in the yarn, but it has since knitted up beautifully and there have been no more knots.

The knitwarming involved many great knitting stories, much ball-winding and some impressive home-dyeing results from Liz. The table was awash with fine, homebaked goodies, and yarns of all different sizes and colours were strewn everywhere. It was great. I always learn loads of stuff from the knitters I know, and now I have a strategy for tackling the socks I started in Lorna’s laces, and have unpicked 4 times already: I need to drop the number of stitches specified in the pattern to 60 sts, as there is just no point in continuing with the giant yeti sock that is currently hanging off my needles. Also, I need to embrace the fact that there will be a slightly nobbly corner if I insist on replacing the toe-up technique in the pattern with the magic cast-on for toe up socks that I found in knitty.

After the knitwarming, me and Abby headed over to a party in Oxford… ’twas very hippyish with fire and drunken guitarists. I bought the accordion along; it was a throwback to the olden days in Ireland of cabaret and suchlike and I enjoyed it very much, although I need to learn a few more songs and maybe some more of the songs that other people know. I keep thinking how great it would be to create a knitted cabaret, featuring songs like ‘the joy of socks’ etc. and building on that whole tongue in cheek sexy-knitting thing that artists like Kelly Jenkins have explored. Any takers for stitch’n’bitch ‘The Musical?’

Sunday was spent working on calorimetry and organising stuff for the forthcoming exhibition in the jam factory, where I shall be displaying my knitted speakers for a second time. I was delighted to see that OCM are using one of my knitted speaker images to advertise the event on their website, and am putting together a short piece about the project to submit to Brenda Dayne’s cast-on podcast, since she was enthused when I first told her about the idea.

I recorded Andy (Landlord) making jam last night, also, as I want to make a piece that uses the sounds of jam being made – from allotment to toast – for the speakers in the jam factory. Was at the allotment also yesterday, clearing up some stuff, getting it ready for all my dye plants. I so far have alkanet and madder just sticking up their very first leaves; there are also signs of life amongst the wallflowers I’ve planted, so fingers crossed for an abundance of dye plants this year.

So the very green photo is the before photo, featuring much chard, bindweed and other assorted bits and pieces… and the naked-mud photo is the same bed with a lot more room for new dye plants on it. That was yesterday; today I planted fenugreek and strawberry plants, and tomorrow I shall go back to record the wind in the damson trees for use in the damson-jam composition.

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