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Sometimes you do win things!

It'll Be Reet

Hello All

Are you like me, enter raffles and prize draws run for good causes in the CERTAIN knowledge that you’ve really made a donation as you never win anything? Well my mantra is going to have to change from”I never win…” to “I sometimes do!”. English reticence prevents me from running around shouting “I WON! I WON!” ……. “I WON!”.

What did I win? Oh boy. I came home on Monday evening after a L-O-N-G day at work. I thought I’d better check my emails and there was a Facebook message from the lovely Adrienne owner of Williams Wools saying:

“Your Big Pink Pig is ready for collection when you are! Congratulations! xxx”

Of course my response was suitably subdued:

OMG!!!! I can’t believe it, wow…. best cheer up after long day at work ever. Thank you the pig is AMAZING. I’ll be in on Saturday!!!! Mxxx”


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What wool and knitting mean to me. part 1

 I was asked “what does wool and knitting mean to you?” and of course I replied with a stream of memories, experiences, feelings and opinions. Now of course, three weeks later, how do I begin to put it all down in words?

Laura, Harvey Clare and me.

Laura, Harvey, Clare and me.

 I think that for me it all starts with family. I count myself very fortunate to have had my Grandma live with us for most of my childhood. I have two sisters and a brother and my Grandma played a very important part in our everyday lives. Long before I learnt to knit myself one of our favourite jobs was to hold the wool while she wound it into balls, we had to take it in turn of course, just as we had to take it in turn to sit on her knee or cut the sellotape when she was wrapping parcels.

 Even before that of course were all the knitted toys, baby clothes and dolls clothes that she knitted for us. I don’t remember her ever being without some knitting in her bag (or aniseed balls for that matter!) She passed her skills on to her daughters and so my Mum and Aunties are all amazing knitters. It was a part of our everyday life for there to be a knitting or sewing circle in our sitting room. 

 this is Auntie Anne teaching Poppy, my eldest, to knit in my Mum’s back garden.

Sadly my Grandma died when I was expecting my first baby so she didn’t get to see my Daughter or my passion for knitting grow. I am now passing that passion on to my three daughters and a larger “Williams’ Wools” family.

 My Mum lives in Yorkshire and I don’t get to see her as often as I’d like, but I know she is busy knitting baby clothes for a new addition to the family, her first  great grandchild, my first grandchild and my daughter’s first baby. My girls sit and knit with me and although we are not sat in the sitting room in Barnby Dun knitting with my Mum, we are in her heart and she knits each stitch with love.

 Wool and knitting is a part of my own personal history which begins and ends with family.

Great Grandma, new Mummy, Matilda and me, Brand New Grandma

Great Grandma, new Mummy, Matilda and me, Brand New Grandma

Wool Shops In Kendal | WIlliams Wools In Kendal Cumbria

Wool Shops In Kendal | WIlliams Wools In Kendal Cumbria. I’ve updated my website a bit, it’s just so slow… (and I’m a bit rubbish) would you like to have a look?

Textured Flower Cushion Tutorial

this is a very pretty but simple crochet pattern, I am definitely going to have to make one for the shop sofa,

Crafts & Coffee


I’m lucky enough to live near the beautiful gardens at RHS Wisley in Surrey – and at this time of year, even if the flowers in my own garden aren’t up to standard the beautiful blooms at Wisley always cheer me up. I created this cushion inspired by the big pom pom heads of peonies trying to bring a bit of their unstructured shaggy loveliness into my living room. Please do let us know what you think by leaving a comment here.

This Cushion Uses

200g Rowan Creative Focus Worsted in New Fern (SH01265) 200g Rowan Creative Focus Worsted in Deep Rose (SH02755) 5mm and 4mm Crochet Hook 16 inch Cushion Pad Stitch Markers 5 Buttons This pattern uses UK Crochet Terms

Cushion Front & Back

The cushion front is worked as a spiral, working in the back loops to leave the front loops free for you to create the…

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Back and still busy


A second pair commissioned for Gill A second pair commissioned for Gill

Still knitting but a period of silence was necessary if I was not to ruin the surprise.  A very thoughtful husband commissioned a pair of Yorkshire gloves in December for his wife.

Using vintage 3 ply and my interpretation of the Mary Allen gloves in the Wordsworth Museum I re-created these Yorkshire gloves for a Yorkshire lass.

Delivered and gifted it is safe to share.

These are currently a popular glove choice.  Their attraction is their similarity to a fabric glove in that they are tightly fitting.  One obvious advantage of being knitted though is that they more easily take on the shape of the wearer’s hand.

A third pair A third pair

I now have two further commissions and have managed to complete one pair between the Xmas and New Year festivities.  It has been necessary to substitute the green yarn used in Gill’s gloves and…

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Ecclefechan Mitts!

as always Kate’s blog is interesting, informative and full of lovely pictures

Joan Jones on Spinning Wheels

Another brilliant blog for Wovember


Earlier this year Wovember Team Member Tom bought a second-hand Timbertops spinning wheel made in the 80s by James and Anne Williamson. It’s a so-called chair wheel and this design is supposed to have been derived from a re-purposed chair. When Tom acquired the wheel, one maiden was missing, and the leather bearings which hold the flyer needed replacing. This is how he got in touch with Joan Jones, who, together with her husband Clive, runs Woodland Turnery, although the whole family helps out when needed. They still make Timbertops wheels, with great attention to detail. The replacement maiden had been turned and stained to look exactly the same as the others. Joan agreed to tell us a bit more about Woodland Turnery and more specifically the spinning wheel side of their business. They make new spinning wheels, but also repair and restore old wheels.

All pictures in this post are…

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Foula Wool Q&A

Here’s a wonderful story about Foula sheep and yarn for Wovember.


It seems that every member of Team Wovember has a soft spot for Magnus and Justyna Holburn’s Foula Wool. Kate has designed a hat/tea-cosy knitting pattern called Tea Jenny. Tom is working on a men’s Fair Isle cardigan knitting pattern, to be launched later in Wovember, and Felix is a general admirer and desperate to record Foula sounds.

Earlier in October Kate caught up with Magnus and Justyna to talk about their fine Foula wool with plenty of character. This Q&A was published on Kate’s own blog on 9 October 2013:


Where is Foula?

Foula (pronounced “foo-laa”) is the most isolated of the Shetland Islands which themselves are the most northerly outpost of the UK. Cut off from the main island group by a formidable sea crossing, Foula lies out to the west of Shetland, approximately 20 miles offshore. The striking silhouette is hard to miss but also…

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Time to stop balloon pollution and danger

Time to stop balloon pollution and danger.





As in previous years of WOVEMBER, the team are concocting a wooltastic month for you. There shall be content throughout the month celebrating WOOL and the journey it makes from sheep to shoulders, through a 5-part series of themed posts divided across ‘Growing Wool’, ‘Harvesting Wool’, ‘Processing Wool’, ‘Working with Wool’ and ‘Wearing Wool’.

Wovember 2013 Competition

There is also (as in previous years…) a photo competition, to which you are very warmly invited to send your photos celebrating WOOL. We have already received some superb sheepy entries for this.


‘Navajo-Churro sheep. Mineral County, Colorado’ – Jane Nearing


‘Here at Fabric of the Field……. we grow wool with comfort in mind!’ – Clare Gardiner

Wovember Brooches


This year WOVEMBER BROOCHES will be available from a number of selected comrades in the wool industry, with a very small quantity appearing on Etsy later in the month…

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