Preparing for EYF 2017

Greetings, Comrades!

I, like many other knitting comrades, am in the throes of preparing for the wonderful Edinburgh Yarn Festival. I am so excited to be teaching classes on Thursday and Friday and if you’re coming to one of those classes, hurrah and welcome: I’m really looking forward to it.

Colours of Edinburgh at the Edinburgh Yarn Festival in 2016

I always like to bring examples of the KNITSONIK System in action to my classes for comrades to see and this year, in addition to the swatches from my book and several mitts-a-long mitts, I will be bringing – in all its magnifient glory – the wondrous swatch-bunting made by comrades everywhere for our Wedding. Liz is an immensely kind and practical person and, true to form, the amazing bunting that she co-ordinated is colourful and joyous and a fantastically useful tool for demonstrating the KNITSONIK system in action. I love this photo of Liz putting the bunting up around the staircase at our Wedding!

Liz hanging the KNITSONIK bunting up the staircase at our Wedding, photo © Catherine Hadler and used with kind permission

Here are some of the flags in closeup:

Deborah Gray’s “Traces” in swatch form

I especially love this flag knitted by Deborah Gray, who was working on this idea for willow-pattern inspired stranded colourwork at the very first every Quotidian Colourwork Class. Deborah also knitted an amazing sweater for Monkl based on bananas, the creation of which clearly inspired this flag!


Of course, Monkl wore his 100% WOOL KNITSONIK sweater from Deborah to our wedding as you can see in these photos…

Monkl and his confetti cone! Ably assisted by Dorrie. Photo © Catherine Hadler and used with kind permission
Monkl on the top table, photo © Catherine Hadler and used with kind permission
Naughty Monkl in Lara’s pocket while she puts the finishing touches to the amazing giant woolly cross stitch MARK + FELIX sign! Photo © Catherine Hadler and used with kind permission

…other flags were also full of precious memories such as this one from Hazel, celebrating an amazing day we had together a couple of years ago in Shetland

Sunsets and whalebones – a beautiful bunting flag from my friend Hazel

…this one from the wondrous Mel (whom all of you will know from Kate’s blog) that I immediately recognised as an interpretation of our two Keith Moon sweaters together in Edinburgh when I was there for the EYF several years ago…

Sorry for the crappity quality, but look! KEITH MOONS spotted together in 2015!

…DUCKS from my lovely friend Mandy, who endures much talk of Honey & Pretzel at weekly knit nights…


…sewing notions including machine, pins and zippers, from Gabrielle who is also a regular Sticks’n’Strings-er…


…waves in beautiful blues and aquas from Hannah…

Hannah’s swatch for the bunting – beautiful waves

…a tribute to extreme the joyous and merry time we shared together in Shetland in 2013 from my dear friend Tom of Holland, complete with resplendent tassel…

Tom’s woolly contribution to the bunting, in handspun Shetland yarn no less!

…and many examples of BEAUTIFUL stranded colourwork from lovely Cecilia, whom I feel has an extra specially deep and rich connection with the Plants chapter of my book, having proof-read and discussed several aspects of it with me when I was working on it. I especially love that she made some bunting flags based on fruitcake, ensuring there were two kinds of KNITTED CAKE at our wedding!

Knitted fruitcake bunting flag by Cecilia
Knitted wedding cake icing by Vic and Lou, covering fruitcake from KNITSONIK book inside

…to go with the cake, my friend Mikal made this wondrous tea and biscuits flag, recalling the Huntley & Palmers biscuit tin gallery we admired together in Reading Museum one day when she visited here…


…like Liz, Mikal is one of the Oxford Bluestockings knitters. That’s the group I joined when I revisited knitting in my early twenties, while I was living in Oxford. It’s amazing to think how central knitting has become to my life thanks to the initial inspiration and important friendship I found in that group. I adore all the bunting flags but I confess to having a particular soft spot for Liz’s witty and elegant interpretation of hot pot in stranded colourwork:

Knitted hot-pot – check out the slices of onions and neat rounds of potato!!!

There are many, many flags on the amazing bunting – far more than I can show here, this is just a glimpse of the splendour – so I will be very happy to show this to comrades at my classes, and may bring it to the EYF Podcast Lounge on Saturday where I intend to spend at least some of the day with my EDIROL and podcast buddies!

Louise and her magnificent podcast lounge will be at EYF!

…keen-eyed spotters will also see some KNITSONIK Stranded Colourwork in action on Lilith’s stand as she very kindly invited me to contribute a design to her BEAUTIFUL book, Coming Home. Wild Mountain Time is my design celebrating good times had on the West Highland Way with Mark, and Lilith’s magnificent and distinctive palette.

Wild Mountain Time mitts and swatch

Working on the book was a fantastic experience and I felt really honoured to be asked, and to be able to develop my design in the company of amazing women – many of whom will be at EYF this year, hurrah! Lilith has come up with a very fun game of designer bingo, the idea for which as as follows:

‘if you’re coming to EYF, get ready to play Coming Home bingo!!!! everyone except for Kirsten Kapur, Clara Parkes, and our marvellous book designer Nic Vowles will be at EYF; working on stands, teaching, or just drifting about being fabulous. the aim of the game is to get EVERY contributor who’s at EYF to sign your copy of Coming Home (you can collect all the signatures on the “contributors” page at the back of the book, or anywhere else in the book you fancy – although it’s probably best to get them all on the same page or two). then, instagram or tweet a photo of your signature collection with the hashtag #OMAcominghome – and don’t forget to tag me in the photo (i’m @oldmaidenaunt)! if you get a full house, i’ll add you to the draw to win one of a few fab prizes – there’ll be yarn to knit one or more of the projects in the book, a notions pouch kit from lorna (aka stitchbirdie), and possibly more!’

– Lilith, AKA Old Maiden Aunt


KNITSONIK swatch in Lilith’s magnificent yarns

I am bringing no copies of my book to sell at EYF this year, but two of my favourite businesses will be carrying the KNITSONIK Stranded Colourwork Sourcebook on their stands: Purlescence and Ysolda. Do pop over to see them!

Jonathan and Sarah of Purlescence
Ysolda wearing my Missy Elliott sweater last year at EYF

A little bit of housekeeping

I will be closing the KNITSONIK shop tomorrow and doing what I can towards celebrating International Women’s Day to support this. The shop will reopen on 9th March and I’ll post orders out again following my return home from Edinburgh; thank you for your understanding.



2 thoughts on “Preparing for EYF 2017

  1. The bunting is wonderful (wish I’d contributed) and more lovely wedding photos! Hope to see you on Friday but I’m not there for long and you’re teaching. Have a fabulous EYF!

  2. So glad you shared the bunting….i have been dying to see it up close. What a lovely keepsake.
    Hope you have a great EYF, someday I hope to attend in person.
    Bee well!

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