Friday, 11 September 2015

PomPom Quarterly & Photography

Well I finally bit the bullet and subscribed to PomPom Quarterly. Have you heard of it before? Its a gorgeous magazine that has some lovely patterns in, covering mostly knitting but some crochet patterns too. Beyond that Pom Pom also includes recipes, various other crafts and interviews.
My best friend has been subscribing it for a little over a year now and I always love having a little peak at her copy. 

I kept seeing people posting up images on Instagram of them with their new pompom magazine, I looked on enviously. So this month I subscribed! I was so impressed when it arrived literally only two days after my purchase. I subscribed on the Thursday evening and by Saturday it was here!!! that's blooming good service right?!

So this quarters publication has some totally divine autumnal knits in and a lovely recipe. There are a couple of articles relating to wool type ventures but what really caught my attention was the article on polaroid cameras and films by Impossible Film. When my mum moved house earlier this year she found a polaroid camera and gave it to me so I have immediately searched it out and I really now want to order some film so that I can get snapping!

Isn't it strange that all the old technology is now making a resurgence. Record players being another. it's just retro.

I now need to source to film for the camera and check that it is in working order. Polaroid a side this article and recent camera related events (my point and shoot camera just not performing as I would like it to) meant that this week I purchased a lovely bridge camera. MR.M has a digital SLR and he is going to teach me how to use my new camera. 

I will now (when I learn) be able to take lovely pictures of my projects, days out with the family and generally capturing memories. I am super excited about this purchase & thank Pom Pom quarterly for inspiring me.

Friday, 4 September 2015

Tehquamenon Shawl - Rohn Strong

You may recall that last month I tested a crochet pattern for Rohn Strong. I have been meaning to  tell you all about it but life has just taken over! I also took a couple of weeks out from this little space. 

I felt very privileged to take part in the testing process, and thoroughly enjoyed liberating yarn from my stash to complete the project. I used two different yarns of the same weight:

Coldharbour mill Aran yarn in Jade
North Ronaldsay Aran yarn in a natural grey.
I used the full yardage on each skein and a 5.5mm crochet hook

The Tehquamenon Shawl is a very simple and quick project, its suitable for all ability levels. I finished the shawl in just two (maybe three) sessions so easily a weekend project and the pattern is so easily adaptable to be a small shawl to a much larger cosy shawl. I opted to follow the pattern to the later as I was happy with the sizing but I will make it larger next time. Yes I will be making this one again.

It really benefits from a good tough blocking as well once completed I gave it a good soak and then stretched it out over my blocking mats. This certainly increased the size of my shawl and flattened it a little too. 

Most of the shawls I make tend to be worn as scarf, just the way I am, I very rarely use them as shawls so I like them nice and cosy. I can see this shawl becoming a nice winter scarf this year and being a well used garment over the coming month.

Wednesday, 2 September 2015

The Night Circus & September's reading

It has been a little while since I have joined in with The Year inBooks over at Circle of Pine Trees. I kinda lost my reading (and if I'm honest creative) Mojo for a little while. I took a break and now I feel motivated to read again. Do you get like that?

This book took me far too long to read. Nothing to do with the book but more to do with me not finding the time to read and the aforementioned loss of motivation. I did get a bit of a sprint on during my 2 weeks off work and, as I always find, the closer I get to the end of a book the more time I seem to spend reading it.

I truly enjoyed this book, I would say that there was occasional pacing issues, sometimes the plot moved on so slowly and was very descriptive and then other times I couldn't seem to keep up with all of the developments. The book definitely improved as the story moved on.

You know those books when the characters seem to stay with you when you are not reading, when you think about the story during your daily activity and wonder about the character’s? this is how I felt about The Night Circus. The Author developed the characters so well, I had an understanding of the individuals that they were and I looked forward to reading the next chapter.

Beyond the story of the circus and I found a deeper meaning in the telling of the lives of two of the main characters and how individuals impact the world around them and the lives of others, how others use them to fulfil their own sad little end games, without any thought of the impact on others. I felt quite angry about this development but it occurred to me that it is a reality that occurs in everyday life! Even now that (after my usual couple of days off reading)  I have started my next book, the story has stayed with me. The last time I felt like this about a book was when I read The Snow Child! (I don't recall writing about this book but it was amazing) 

So my next book. I’m going a little retro now and I am reading ‘The Day of the Triffids’ by John Wyndham.  I have read this book before it was actually about 10 years ago now. Mr. M recommended that I read this book initially and I loved it, I remember being away in London for the weekend so it was my train read. The details of the book are hazy but I recall the story. Considering the book was first published in 1951, I think it is very forward thinking. I am also back to listening to books on my daily commute and I have started to listen to the ‘Shadow of Night’ by Deborah Harkness. I found the first instalment of the series gripping so I fully expect the second book to be just as good. 

I confess that I have missed the monthly book chat and feel so happy to be back and involved.