Friday, 29 December 2006

New Years!!!!!

Hi Folks.

I am going away from tomorrow until the 5th of Jan, so no items in the shop will be shipped until the 6th of January.

Sock club sign ups for receiving yarn in January run until the 5th, and sign ups after this,will have their yarn sent from February to April.

There are some new bag kits in the kits section, with the new squishy, and some pink and plum sock yarn as featured in the January issue of Knit today magazine.

Happy New year people, I'm off to Grenada in Spain to see Sole and Carmen, I'm soooooo excited. I'll take lots of photo. Anyone know of any good yarn shops in Grenada?

Hmm maybe I should take some wholesale packs. hehhehehehhe

Have a great one.

OH here is me flying my kite:

Kite_004 xxxx

Tuesday, 26 December 2006

My Christmas present.

So, I had no idea about what boyf was gonna buy me for christmas. So I had no idea what my pressie was going to be, to be honest, all I wanted for christmas was just wanted to have fun and not feel sad or anything. Not only that as you get older presents kind of get boring. So what did I get? A vacumm cleaner!................................. No only kidding!!!!! Hohohohhohohohohohohoh!

I got a power kite! Yes a real huge, 2m square power kite! I was completely gobsmacked, I think this comes to the top of the list of best presents ever. I had a go on one of these in the summer at a beach party, and I was in the air most of the time, cause the wind was so strong, and what I love is the boards with wheels and buggy's you can use the kite to pull you along.

Here is a link so you can see some pics of the kites and stuff. They are fantastic!!!!!!! And how much wind do you think there has been?

NADA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I need wind!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

So tomorrow we are on a mission to fly the kite, boyf's gonna take pictures. I am absolutely trembling with excitment!!!!!!!!!!!

Saturday, 23 December 2006

Happy christmas

Happy holidays everyone.

You know why I love christmas?

Cause it means knitting time.

My favourite way to spend time, well nearly my fav.

Have a great one.


Wednesday, 13 December 2006

Bits and peices

Right so this weekend is the last weekend of dyeing before Christmas, so any custom orders need to be ordered by Sat, to be in time for posting for Christmas, I will update the shop on Monday for shopping over the Christmas holidays.

There are lots of things in the shop which would make brilliant presents for knitters and spinners, including the sock club, sock yarn, spinning kits and knitting kits. If you don't see a colour you like for any of these, I am happy to do colours to your specifications, just make sure you let me know B4 sat.

There will be a huge fyber update as well on Monday, for any Christmas spinning needs.

Okey dokey, off to my Social Psychology Christmas lunch with the gang, lots of yummy Italian food, wine, and our traditional ice skating session on the winter wonderland. Ahh.

Tuesday, 12 December 2006


Right so that was so weird hearing my voice on the radio. Anth and Betsan sounded great, I don't think I'm cut out for things like that though I get too excited and babble a bit, hehe. If you want to listen to it, its here I'll have to practice my interview techniques before I'm good enough to go on desert island disks. :-)

Oh and my name is not Jenny Green, any one interested in the knitting experiment that want to contact me are going to have a job finding me now!!!! Its jeni Brown, well actually its Jeni Hewlett now!

Monday, 11 December 2006

'How to knit a poem'

So the radio 4 series 'How to knit a poem' which I took part in starts today. We are not too sure which one we are in, I thought it was tomorrow but Marie thinks it might be today, so listen to them all (they run today to thursday), they are about knitting afterall. It starts at 3.45 pm GMT today, here is the link for radio 4 and the programme. V exciting!

I'm in today's (12th dec) 3.45!! Yay!!

Monday, 4 December 2006

Cardigans and yarn

I've updated the web shop with some mixed yarn shawl kits and some mohair shawl kits. The mixed shawl kits now contains the new yummy silk yarn:

Ebay_007  These contain three yarns; mohair loop for texture, silk and wool singles for shine and a lace weight mohair for a gentle haze.

Sock yarn, just something a little different to my usual stuff, will be doing some more of this:


Oh yes and seeing as my store room if full of yummy things, I've been organising and finding odds and ends of old ranges of yarn, and I've put them in the eBay shop.

Right, so I've been in the mood to finish things and I finished my Noro koreyon cardigan, which has been going for a year, I lost the pattern so had to make up the last sleeve, in addition I accidentally gave the last ball of yarn away and had to add one which is kind of similar on the right arm (on the left), a little different, but I like it! Love the buttons as well, can't remember where I got them now.


Sock club sign ups still going till just b4 Christmas

Wednesday, 29 November 2006

Morning campers!


Right, lots of things to tell today,

Sock club sign ups are going great, its a great deal and would make the most fabulous christmas present for a sock lover. click here for details. Not only that but because there is a free shipping option for the sock club, that also means that you can use the free shopping option for other purchases. Yep, that would be FREE SHIPPING on everything hey I've only just discovered this colour lark!

Next! I'm on radio 4 on the 12th at 3.45 in the afternoon. There is a series of knitting programmes on Radio 4 from Monday the 11th to Thursday the 14th at 3.45, they are for 15 minutes, and are really interesting, especially the one on Tuesday because I'm on it!!!! YAY!!!!! I'm probably only saying one word, but hey you never know, the focus is knitting and therapy. If its archived, i'll link to it for you guys who can't listen.

Hmm, what else? I had the most wonderful realisation on Monday that I actually have my own house, I couldn't believe it, I've been wallowing around in my misery from the past 8 months, I hadn't even noticed really. How bizarre is that? I think that means I'm coming out the other side quite successfully and a little bit more grown up.

New yarns for January have been ordered, its really quite alot, something like 420 kilo's. Ahhhhhhhhh!!!!!!

Been knitting like a demon, mainly because I need a new cardigan, so I though I would finish one which has been going for at least 10 months, its a noro one, only had one sleeve to do!! Odlly noro is the only yarn I will actually always buy for the rest of my life. Had a huge urge to get dyeing some fyber (a new silk silk and wool blend I had made which will be in the shop on monday) and taking my spinning wheel to Sp's over christmas to spin my self some self striping wool for a cardi or something, haven't felt that creative for months, man I have to try and stay calm :-)

Also knitting a sock in one of my new yarns, its striping up lovely:


I'm sure there was something else...........

Ahh! Thats it, dyeing wool on saturday for massive update for christmas gifts on monday. Keep an eye out. ;-)

J xx

Wednesday, 22 November 2006

Sock Club

Right so finally I thought I'd do a sock club seeing as a few people have been asking me to and after all socks is what I do the best.

So here are the details:

This sock club runs from January to March which makes it perfect for christmas presents!!

What do you get for your £25 (UK) or £30 (US and Europe)?

One 100gm hand dyed skein of sock yarn each month for three months from the new range of fyberspates sock yarn:

1 x Bluefaced sock yarn
1 x Alpaca sock yarn
1 x squishy merino sock yarn.

Each skein will be accompanied by a pattern, and you also get 1 keychain sock blocker with your first parcel, to use up all your odds and sods of sock yarn.

This will be delivered to your door by the 10th of each month. Postage is included in the price so make sure you choose the flat rate shipping option (£0.00).

Not bad huh?

Go on then what are you waiting for? Click here

** added later**** if you would like to buy this for a christmas present for someone, I can send you a pretty fyberspates voucher for the sock club you can give someone in a card.  You need to give me alternate address details though when you order.

Monday, 20 November 2006


Yeah, finally I managed some pics, I took the day off work sick today because I been really sick, I've just slept most of it, but did manage to take a couple of pics of new yarns and sophie. :-)

So here is one eyed soph:


Shes wonderful, but very fidgety! Its so hard to get her to sit still for a photo! I nearly had to bribe her with some sardines.

Right, not onto you know I've been getting some yarns dyed, they are in the colours I choose:


There is a bright green one as well. From the left is the army colours is an aran, the blue is a chunky aran, the next is squishy, this is amazing, the 4th is fiesta, in the superwash merino, the fitfh, oh this one is my fav in periwinkle is 55% wool and 45% silk, its amazing, here's a closeup:


I can't wait to dye some of this stuff its so luxurious!

They will be available in the webshop each yarn in its specific colour and then in Janaury they will be avaibaible in each colour in each type. I'm telling you that silk is amazing. I'm going to start with a clapotis.

Ok thats it, i'm off to cuddle up with soph on the sofa with a fruit tea that won't upset my stomach. :-/

J x

Thursday, 16 November 2006


Its hard to think of titles for posts you know!

Right so, guess what? I have a cat!!!! A beauftiful tabby one eyed female cat called Sophie. Sp Was given two cats, both with one eye! and they didn't get on too well in his flat, so Sophie being a very sociable cat, (I mean sociable, she's positviely a tart), fits perfectly into my noisy and busy household. She got out of her carrier, wandered around. Meowed for food, ate and then joined the party that was being held in my house last night, gettting cuddles and strokes where ever she could find it. I've never known a cat to do that before, when we moved house with sage, he wouldn't leave the top of the stairs for 3 days.

I promise some photo's soon!! Honest! No really!

Not too sure why I put my photo on the side, I like the silly face I'm pulling , Sole says I look like a cheeky child, which was the intention really. I keep having to send them to mags, so I'm trialing out the cheekiest photo's I can get away with. I think I'll do a doctor evil one with soph!!

J x

Wednesday, 15 November 2006

Shortened version.

1. Jody Long, a designer came to stay on monday, we knitted and chatted and he helped me with a million things, it was fabulous. He's designed some things for my yarns, especially baby things!! YAY! I'll be writing alot more about him in the future, I think we'll working together alot. *added later* Jody Long will not be working for fyberspates.

2. Have new space dyed yarns, loving them sooooooooo much. Pics later.

3. Making wholesale packs up to get out by end of week.

4. Sock club coming, have some nice new types of sock yarns!

5. Finished those socks for the mag, lets just say it was the quickest pair of socks I have ever knitted. Ever.

6. Need to get everything done by friday so I can acutally have a rest at the weekend. I need not to think any more about wool for a day. Just a day. Might have to be knitting my new silk/wool yarn though. OH yeah baby yeah! I guess I'm never gonna have another day in my life where wool doesn't appear somehow, I think I eat as much wool as I knit.

7. SP has adopted two cats!!! They are lovely, both have one eye only on the opposite side. I will def take  a squillion photo's soon.

8. I need some prawn and mayo sandwiches Now. Getting such a huge craving for them recently. No, not that kind of craving.

Thursday, 9 November 2006


Madness I tell you, complete madness!!!

Things have settled down emotionally at Hewlett HQ (I'm back to being Hewlett again, as you will tell as you read this post, I'm back to my manic self). Goodness knows how many names I will have in this lifetime with my relationship karma. J LO doesn't change her name, so nor will I ;-), suffice to say I'm sticking with my original from now on. No More 'Mrs Brown', I shall be the mysterious 'Ms Hewlett' again. Not that I'm that mysterious once I open my mouth.

People who won yarn have not all emailed me their addresses yet.

Is it possible to knit a pair of socks by Tuesday? It is for a magazine after all, so I think thats motivation enough don't you? Will have photo later of new designed top down jumper I'm working on, loving it very much.

What else? Oh just very very small and not particularly exciting NOT! thing, is arriving on Sunday................ONLY MY NEW YARNS FOR WHOLESALE some of which are my own, wools, mohair I tell you!!!!!!!!! AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH! (thats meant to sound like when your falling down a very deep and dark hole)

Yes I know I write like an eight year old, but believe it or not I talk exactly as I write. As for spelling and grammar, 'Does this look like a bothered face?'.


Monday, 6 November 2006

Thanks so much everyone!!! You are amazing! I really apprecaite all the feedback you have given me!

I picked names randomly: the following 5 people win yarn, please send me your address to fybersaptesATbtinternetDOTcom:,  Keri, Lisa, Erssie, Hazel.

Right so I need a major overhaul of the site, so I'll be updating it as the week goes on. I've already added a load of sock weight yarn........I think I just might have a little too much, there are actually two pages of it, and thats not all of it! I've got a new superwash merino yarn which is extremely soft, its the one Sole loves, I've dyed some extra large skeins because people can make garments out of it, its great next to your skin. I can always do larger dyelots of any of the wools as well. I also sorted the kits out, its a bit better now


Also I've been thinking from one suggestion that Hannah made, I'm going to start a sock club, I am always expanding my range of sock yarns so I think that might be a nice idea. I'll finalise the details and then introduce it when the shop is up and ready. How exciting!

Thanks guys!!!!!!!

I've had the weirdest week. Its been dreadful in terms of not feeling so good, but amazing in that I've just been doing such great stuff! Went to see Gogol Bordello (gypsy punk music, if thats any help) in Concert in Birmingham on thursday night which was a suprise from SP, it was the best concert I've ever been to alot heavier than the normal music I listen to, but I just loved it! Oddly I fitted in seamlessly, I didn't realise I dressed quite punky alot of the time, I think the real me is coming out! I need to knit some more punky jumpers I think. Desiging like mad at the moment, and have a cutie pie designer just joined the team, what with Elly, Andy, and now Jody, and my knitters, its starting to be fun and busy! Hence needing to overhaul everything and get things moving.

My lovely freind Philip came at the weekend to stay and we had the most wonderful time, just so much talking and more talking, and some dyeing of course! We also went to see his Nephew in Battle of the bands last night in Clwb Ifor Bach, it was so cool, although I hate heavy metal, which constitiuted a fairly large proportion of the entries, I just do not get it. Alex's band though was fantastic, I need to try and rememer the name.

J xx

Tuesday, 31 October 2006

Right people keep em coming.

Okey dokey.

4 people so far have commented on the shop. They all win some sock yarn. But I want you to keep the comments coming. So I'll select 2 more people  to win sock yarn from comments you leave on this post, about how I could improve my shop to make it more user freindly. I hate the layout, but its an oscommerce store and allows me to keep good stock control and stuff, I'm some what restircted with programming it mainly because I can't do PHP and it costs a fortune, but the comments below are really really helpful and I should be able to work on things based on those and make a huge difference. Please keep em coming, I really appreciate your effort. Also interesting comment from one person about the colour range, anyone else got comments on the colours etc? More colours you would like to see?

Ok so occasionally I google Fyberspates to see what comes up. I love to see all the things that people make with my yarn. I'd love to do a knitters gallery with all the things people make from my yarns. So if you have a pic of something you've made, please send me a pic and I'll create a gallery. Emial me at fyberspatesATbtinternetDOTcom

I also decided we'll have a monthly competition with yarn obviously as the prize, just need to decide what on earth, to get you all thinking. ;-)

Its my turn to cook a British culinary delight tonight. So on the sugestion of mum, we are having 'Toad in the Hole' which is basically yummy sausages with yorkshire pudding batter covering them, no idea where the toad bit somes from, unless people used to eat it with toads in. Hmm. Better leave that train of thought before I gross you all out. Having it with Garlic mash and peas and gravy. yum yum yum.

J xx

Monday, 30 October 2006

yay its monday.

So thanks for the suggestions for Sp's b'day present. I started the cabled mittens that Hannah suggested in knitty, mainly because they would suit SP perfectly and I had the yarn. Always good! Not too sure Debbie bliss cashmerino aran is particularly good to use for a pair of gloves for a builder though, he'll have to wear them for best instead! We had such a lovely day, we went to a rock and Gem show near Maesteg, to say hello to  some friends we made at Ally pally (Ichydo), its was in Margham Park, such a beautiful setting (I'm going to do a photo shoot for my new yarns there). I bought some lava beads to for another present and made him a necklace which looks lush, I think Sole took a pic! Then we carried on up to Hay on Wye for lunch with his family. It was such a lovely lovely day, we all get on really well, and they are just so easy to get along with. Food was wonderful! His mum is a fabulous cook, and Sp made us tapas! He has a wonderful habit or learning new dishes and then cooking them better than me, which I'm well happy about, and so he made a tapas we have regularly in our house, you absolutely have to try it, its so simple and tasty! Toast some bread, it's nice on rye bread, or something wholemeal, drizzle some olive oil on it and then using a clove of garlic cut in half, rub it over the bread really well and then top with slices tomatoes and sprinkle with  little salt, I'm telling you its the best in the world. I think its quite a common Spanish breakfast. Its extremely good for you, but it tastes so indulgent!

After a huge dinner, I drove his new van, (gulp!) back to Cardiff and we were greeted with more wonderful food and presents!! The girls call him Duncan donuts because Duncan sounds like Dunking to Spanish people apparently, so they made a beautiful donut cake, and crocketa's which are wonderful deep fried dumplings. We just chatted late into the night and laughed our socks off telling stories. It was lovely, I'm going to miss them so much, anyway such a treat of a day, I enjoyed it as much as he did I think, and it really distracted me from not feeling so good at the moment. I'm so glad he is around, I'll tell you the story of how we met soon, its really quite amazing, I think sometimes things are just sort of meant to be. :-)

OK, onto knitting or yarn anyway, I want some feedback on my web shop. Seeing as the business is growing, I really need to get the shop to a point where it is much more functional. Its not my main source of business, mostly that is wholesale, but I need to start brushing it all up. SO people, I want some feedback on how I could improve the shop, and I want to know what the disadvantages are of it. It's OK to be brutal, I don't mind if it makes my shop better in the long run, I am aware that the pics are crap! but I'm working on that. I'll randomly pick 3 peoples comments and send them a skein of sock yarn, I don't mind where in the world.

Adios Amigo's.

J xx

Friday, 27 October 2006


Well, thats what this blog is supposed to be about, isn't it?

Ok, it's the Sweetiepies (SP) Birthday on sunday (i'll try and take a photo), I know I always say that, but I will, its a nightmare with the short days, I get home when its dark and the pics come out crap.

So I need at least one knitted present to give him.  But I have about five hours of knitting time tonight. So people I need some suggestions. What great presents for a man can I make in no more than five hours. I mean great, nothing sad. Bear in mind I have every wieght of yarn possible going, might not nessasarily be in manly colours though.....:-/

So Projects people, come on I need some by tonight!!!!!!

J xx

Wednesday, 25 October 2006

Lovely lovely!

So its 11.40pm. Sole, Bea and I are eating baked apples very easy to make and very very yummy, all sat on my fluffy rug knitting, eating and laughing. How perfectly wonderful. It doesn't get better than this. :-)

Friday, 20 October 2006

Hey, why the hell not? and streams of random rubbish.

I used to censor my blog like mad, and make it very boring. 90% of the time my tongue is always strongly in my cheek, I just got bored of leaving my life out, I live quite a colouful one and thats just me. So seeing as I've completely changed everything in my life in the past 6 months thats starting to be reflected in my blog, however my dreadful spelling and grammar will remain, I'm learning slowly........

I like a challenge. No really, I don't see the point in living if its not exciting. Hmm, that does kind of get me into trouble sometimes, but you know what? I'm up for anything that will stretch me. So whats the next big challenge apart from building my business, learning french for Paris, doing a million designs and trying to keep my job going, and pay my huge mortgage which I don't earn enough for?

***** wants me to make her wedding dress. I'm an adequate knitter. Not a sewer. Have you ever seen any sewing on my blog? No, thats because I'm crap at sewing, I just don't get it.

So why the hell did I say yes? Its not a dress for a party, its the most important dress of her life. Not only that, she doesn't want something conventional, she wants something amazing. Did I mention I can't sew? What the hell is wrong with me?

I have been closely watching the catwalk collections recently and its making me itch to design some clothes, but for me, then it doesn't matter if it goes completely wrong.

AHHHHHHHHH! I do my head in, especially seeing as I feel tired today, thats unsusual for me, I'm normally v hyper, so I am so looking forward to Sunday, and finally having a day off, the first one for ages. I've been promised a lush lie in, roast dinner, baked apples, a hearty walk, massive amounts of fruit cake and tea and dvds. OH please, I can't wait, but I so know I will have some needles in my hand at some point, I just can't help it!

My sweetiepie has also built me a stand for my sock wool, to display it properly, I'll take some photo's of it tomorrow.

I just realised I never take photo's of the things I'm knitting, I think cause I think of it a bit like work, so I never think to post them. I'll add some photo's of things I made for kits for the stand later.

Oh and I'm really giving up alcohol totally. TOTALLY. I don't think that will go down very well at home but I swear I'm starting to look like a grape. Anyway it impinges on my knitting time, I know people don't like me knitting at the dinner table, which is probably why my glass is always being topped up, but love talking and knitting, its hard to pick up your food with knitting needles though. :-) Stopping now. I'm just being silly....

Ohh! finally if you haven't got a copy of Yarn forward yet, buy one, not only is it packed with really good stuff, I'm very very impressed, I have an interview in it at the back, with a photo of me looking mischevious, you'll probably never see a normal photo of me again, I can't resist it. Sweetiepie challenged me to do the next one with me looking over my purple glasses. Your on baby!!!

Thursday, 19 October 2006

Hola. Shamai. Bonjour. Alright!

Hmm, some people have kindly pointed out that my blog is meant to be Bilingual. So seeing as I need to learn some French because I am planning to do a wool show in Paris in March, and should be able to speak Welsh because I did an intensive Welsh course for six months, and live with two Spanish women, I think I should make it multi lingual instead.

So in order to improve my languages I shall add a sentance in each language, obvioulsy meaning the same thing at the end of every post. Good practice really. Feel free to correct me if you would like to, its much appreciated!!

I have a new type of sock yarn which is made from bluefaced leicester, its 100% wool, and very velvety to knit, although the colours are not so intense as my other sock yarns so if you like something a little gentler....they'll be on the site on monday, with all the other millions of Kilo's hanging around my house.

Sat I have a stand at Unravel, it sounds really interesting, lots of lectures and things. Anyone planning a trip there?

AdiĆ³s, au revoir, hwyl!

Tuesday, 17 October 2006

Yay, I'm back.

Blimey, what a fab few days, and you know what? I didn't buy any wool at all, absolutely none!!! I did however happen to purchase rather alot of needles!

Here is a pic of the stand (i'm very proud of it):


I learnt so much from the experience, it was priceless. I will update the shop next week, because I have another show on sat.  I knitted a million things whilst I was there, socks, scarf and a fab tank top, I'll take a pic tonight and post it tomorrow, I'm not sure whether to save it for my pattern book, or to submit it to a magazine.....any ideas?

I met so many fab people who were knitting my yarns, read the blog and listened to the podcast!! How cool is that hey? Oh yes and Flossie came to say hello, on her crutches!!

It was lovely to meet one of my favourite customers Hannah and her daughter, who brought me a little bottle of white wine, which I think was a reference to 'princi meona'!!! hehe.

Sat night was fun, I went to dinner with the rabble from Getknitted and Lucy Neatby, who is English by the way!!! We had lots of wine, great food and laughter, Lucy is a great character, and such a good teacher, I had a quick tuition on knitting backwards, which I'm practicing. I'll be stocking some of her patterns as kits V soon. Really, really want the DVD.

Oh I'm sure I'll think of lots more things to write and add them on as the day passes.

Check this out. Its awesome!

Monday, 9 October 2006

To stresssed to think of a title.

Worked my ass over the weekend to get stuff finished. There are about 40 kilo's of yarn hanging in my garden sopping wet in the rain. The rain won't do it any harm, but why the hell do I live in Wales? Universe I NEED some sunshine. Please please please........

Friday, 6 October 2006

One day I'll get organised, but then again I probably won't.

So  5 days to go b4 the most exciting event of my year -Allypally. In-between experiments, I'm currently knitting the odd row of a glove pattern with a fluffy cuff I dreamt about last night. You never know, it might be ready in time for allyaplly. Correction. It will be ready in time.

I have about another 60 kilo's of yarn to dye over the weekend, thats all, not that much really :-/ To add to that mom and pops are coming for the day tomorrow to 'help'. However there are many festivities planned for them from the Spanish contingent of my household, so I'm not sure exactly how long they will stay sober enough to actually do anything.

Hannah wins the competition in the last post, I'm glad she won because she is one of my favourite customers.

So remember I told you about leaving the pub the other night? Well, I had to hobble home ( it's at least a 30 minute walk at the best of times) in my stupid pointed shoes, which to be fair slowed me down, and I had had two pints, and didn't go to the toilet because I left in protest. So I get home, and my dungarees have approximately 6 pockets. I simply dug my hand in my pockets for the keys, and I couldn't find them. At this point I realise I should probably find them quite quick, because nature was calling very loudly. 'OH not to worry' I thought, 'everyone is home, the door won't be locked'. Um yes it was.......

I was trying to be calm whilst banging on the door, getting slightly more desperate each second. There are three people in there I thought, one of them is bound to have a key!

I bang a little louder.

Then Sole informs me no one can find a key. That kind of did it for me.

I sat on the pavement, jumped up and down, and screamed in the letter box many many swear words in a desperate attempt to curb the disaster to follow (I live in Splott in Cardiff, no one minds a few swear words there).

At least I had the foresight to take my shoes off.

Then it was to late, and I from then on I was crowned 'Princi Meona' They just all stood at the door and laughed at me.

That could cause someone a serious psychological trauma you know!!!

However I was laughing so much and I am completely shameless as I said before, so there we go. Sole's translation for 'Meona' is professional pisser'. need I say more?

Don't be reminding me of that at ally pally though.

Oh and the other colours will be on the website after allypally.

Wednesday, 4 October 2006

Princi Meona

OK, so in my multicultural house we have ALOT of fun with language, ranging from my freind asking Bea (my other lodger who is aslo Spanish, here learning english) if she wanted to see his new volkswagan van, and her being completely shocked and horrified because she thought he meant something else! (I love that one) ranging to giving each other funny names.

I normally get called 'princi' - princess, I have no idea why, but its now turned into 'princi meona' and that is never ever going to go away. I was crowned this after a very embarrassing and funny experience. Which because I am shameless I am happy to give an account of, however before I do, if anyone can work out the translation (its spanish) and give me what they think is roughly the story, you win some yarn. I think you might need to have a good command of spanish, or know someone that is, because I couldn't find the translation that Sole gave me, but I didn't look very hard.

hehe. Crappying myself about allypally now, I'm on stand F15, anyone coming to say hello? Leave a comment.

j xxx

Tuesday, 3 October 2006

Some pics of a lovely dyeing day two weekends ago

So this is Sole (one of my lodgers and best freinds), with her baby wool, she won't put it down!


And just a little taste of  wool for ally pally:


The two big skeins are beautifully soft superwash merino wool, perfect for shawls.

Just a little glimpse of things to come for ally pally. Oh my goodness I'm so excited.

And I like this one, it will remind me of the lovely saturday when the house was mad and everyone helped with the wool. Could my hair be any whiter?


Monday, 2 October 2006

I think I've just discovered the secret of how to deal with men......

So how did the allypally dyeing go at the weekend? Oh it didn't. Why? because it rained and rained and rained. However did get some life stuff sorted, oh and some knitting design, oh and some lush spinning. I do have loads of pics tonight, I promise.

So men. If you are one. Stop reading now.

Who knew handling men was so easy? Recently there are a few men kinda doing my head in, and for the first time in my life I have stopped appologising for being me, if they don't like it they can go. I have this stupid fear that if I don't do what men want, then they will just go away. How wrong I have been all my life! At the moment with Me and anth breaking up and the huge changes in my life I don't have the recources anymore to run around after men and let them behave how ever the hell they want, so basically if they are not in line with what I want. They go. I'm not being unreasonable, I just want to be treated with respect thats all.

So over the weekend a couple of people did my head in. One time I got up and walked out of a pub, because I wasn't going to take any more crap, the other, I gave a strict telling off. Then kinda left them to it, no txting, nothing.

Lets just say, it kinda drove them mental. God why didn't I learn this 10 years ago?

I love growing up. This has been the hardest and the most wonderful year of my life, I'm learning that by being me, my whole life just responds in such a wonderful way. Sorry to be soppy, but just be yourselves people.

Pics soon. I promise.

Tuesday, 26 September 2006


Hmm, lacking photo's. I think I'll take some of my dyeing results this evening from the weekend, some lush autumn colours.

J xx

Thursday, 21 September 2006


We are all packed in like sardines in a can.

Various boyfreinds arrive tomorrow for visiting......

I'm never want to smell another glass of red wine as long as I live.

Loving every minute of it.

J xx

Tuesday, 19 September 2006

Patterns and recipes

Ok so, I made a Jpeg of the frilly tank pattern and its in the pattern photo album, if you click on it it will get bigger but I need to think of a better was of displaying it because you can' see it too well. Any ideas? Perhaps I just need host the pther patterns on one of my other web domains.

So Sole and I blitzed the house, we got back from Ikea about 9.30, I had to pack Sole in the back of the car with the stuff, it was very funny, we were so tired though trying to carry the wardrobe in, that we were laughing so much we couldn't pick it up, goodness knows what the neighbours thought. Then I went to pick up Bea, and so now I am just awaiting the third lodger tomorrow. Its amazing having women in my house, I'm not used to that at all, I get organised all the time, and my kitchen has been changed around so much that I can't find anything, but I have to be honest, I absolutely love it. I really really need that in my life at the moment. Apparently we are even doing a rota for cooking and cleaning!!!!

I'll post the recipe for the black current crumble later, seeing as I need to check the quantites, I don't normally measure anything.

Anyway so today I have alot of work to do getting ready for the return of the students, There is still alot of talk of knitting Phd, not from my department though, but other places,  scares the crap out of me, but I'm learning just to take things on and just keep going. So I'm still keeping it in mond.

But the most exciting thing today is, and I'm not going to give too many details, but I'm choosing the colours for a new range of yarns for Fyberspates.

I hope you guys don't mind my life bits as well as knitting, its just that my life has just changed so much in the past couple of months, and its so good, I just want to share it with everyone. And  food is such a massive treat for me, especially social eating that I get really excited about it, I will, if people want, post the spanish and polish recipes of the things that are really really good.


Monday, 18 September 2006

I think I'm losing my mind and enjoying it!

So remember I told you about my lodgers? Well there were two, and then there was three. Oh yes, thats right in a two and a half bedroomed house, full of wool and me.

So I'm sleeping in the loft. But that means removing all the wool, gutting the office, and distributing it around the house, I'm a little stressed but excited.

We had our first 'family' dinner last night, which was fantastic, we had amazing tapas, paella and copious amounts of red wine and Blackcurrent crumble to finish, with lots of spanish music. I think this is a taste of things to come. I think we will probably all cook together, and Sole's boyfreind is Polish so we'll be getting a taste of that too. Oh its such a hard life!!!!! Although I need to keep on tops of all the wool for Ally pally, AHHHHH! At least they all love the wool though, thank goodness! They'll all be knitters b4 they leave. :-)

By the way, take a look at Flossies frilly Jumper, she made based on my frilly tank pattern, but added sleeves and knitted the frills, its fabulous! Its very sexy!! I'll post the pattern up here for the tank, and hopefully flossie will put the jumper version up too.

Friday, 15 September 2006

Spiders and parties.

So, this morning I attempted to put my washing out, and was confronted with layers of spider webs spread across my path, with to be honest, HUGE spiders in the middle. I love all creatures, but there is no way I was gonna attempt moving those, so I had to put my washing on the radiators instead. I'm such a chicken, I'm also worried about hurting them if I try and move them and panic, how am I going to get to my shed though? I only killed something once, and that was because in my moudly old house, there was a slug coming out of my tap, which made me feel very ill, so I put salt on it and ran away, then I cried for about 3 hours because I killed it. What am I like?

So what do I do? I've got to get things out of my shed for orders. Dang, I guess the husband was useful for something. HE HE. I'm sure that would make him laugh. Honest.

So onto warmer 2 legged things. The thing I love about my job is that we are all really good friends as well as colleagues, and socialize a fair bit, especially at this time of the year, lunchtime parties get you through the winter.

So Sole, one of my lodgers arrives on Sunday, we are very good friends, and so is another Spanish friend Bea. So that means Sunday afternoon parties, Prof's, children, wives  and all I hope. Whats good for a Sunday late afternoon lunch? What about tonnes of lasagne (I'm make a serious lasagne, the sauce takes 4 hours) and salad, and blackcurrant crumble another of my specials, I can prepare it in advance then. Oh and lots of vino. Is lasagne a bit old fashioned? Any other ideas people?

J xxxx

Wednesday, 13 September 2006

I like wednesdays.

Wednesdays are fabulous aren't they? Half way through the working week, it feels like a day to celebrate, like you only have two more days to get through so its not gonna hurt to have a bottle of wine. Ahem. (I do ham the whole alcohol thing up, honest)

So I'm especially excited today because I have a very important wool meeting after work, hatching some little plans might accurately describe it. And there are lots of other little exciting things going on, but I can't really blog about that yet, just in-case someone who shouldn't reads it.

Anyway moving swiftly on, the sloe much gin do you need? I had no idea how much a pound of sloes looked like, turns out I have about 2, that means I need about 3 litres of Gin, I do believe thats my monthly food budget gone, so I'm going to have to use these fab sainsbury's vouchers you gave me mum for emergencies, well this is an emergency! Anyway, I'm pretty sure mum will be consuming most of it anyway!! Only kidding. hehe.

Dyed about 20 kilo's of wool at the weekend for ally pally, with help from Elly, thanks, babe, couldn't have done it without you! I also have some more lace weight silk in stock again, I'll get that dyed this weekend. I've put some of the wool up on the website. This weekend though is dedicated to more autumn and richer colourways, its so hard to get the thick soft yarns to take deep colours, but I'm working on it.


Still loving the Scott Mathews Album, and he's on radio 1 with Joe Wiley next Thursday I think, that'll be fab to hear him live.

Can you hear me skipping, can you?  :-)

J xx

Friday, 8 September 2006

I'm so excited...and then the balance is restored.

Goodness knows why, my life is going mad, and there is gorgeous yarn at every turn, I guess thats why. Yay for yummy yarn, I'm telling you, you have to come and see me at ally pally, touch the stuff its wonderful.

Feeling like a winter determination:

   'I will not buy any knitwear this autumn/winter, only those knitted out of my own    yarns'.

Sounds good huh? Hmm.

**added later** and the balance is restored. Made a slight mistake in my statistics for one of my experiments. The interesting results aren't quite so interesting. I'm feeling very sheepish and embarrassed. Bleahh.

Tuesday, 5 September 2006

A post two days in a row!

Blimey, you can tell when I'm happy, cause I blog nearly every day! Got quite a bad cold, and had to go home early from work yesterday cause I felt so ill, but its mainly because it makes me so tired, and I think my office mate was a getting a bit fed up of my sniffing. Feel much better today, but I know I'll be nodding off again by three, despite sleeping about 13 hours last night. I hate being ill, I get so frustrated!!!!!

Despite that, I am feeling very bubbly, I'm getting so excited about Ally pally.

Have some amazing fairailse things in the pipelines, ready for ally pally, totally amazing stuff! I can't wait to put photo's up, but until the patterns are finished I won't.

Listening to a fabulous album: 'Passing stranger' by Scott Matthews, I heard the song 'elusive' song on radio 1 and was stunned by how beautiful it was,  and have had a nightmare getting hold of it, but I got a copy from here. Truly lush, he is doing a concert on Thursday night in cheltenham, but I can't get tickets.

Hmm, I would also like to give a big shout out to my fabulous wool supplier!!!! (hehehe) Thats a personal joke for Andy!

Monday, 4 September 2006

All sorts.

Thanks for the comments on the jumper. I will probably continue in the turquoise, I finished the hank, and its nearly long enough to start the sleeves, so while I'm still deciding, I cast on for the back. There is a pattern emerging again, despite the hank is a little different, but I'm desperate to get home knit it and see what happens.

On a scale of 1 - 10, for a bleach blonde 28 year old, I do do some very strange things. People always say to me 'you don't look like a knitter'. And people are always suprised when they come to my house to see the weird things I do. One of my obsessions is making things from scratch, and when it comes to food, I love using free ingredients. So having been reduced to poverty recently because of my mortgage, I decided to be a little bit more resourceful. I am a sucker for special things, especially if they contain alcohol or something yummy to eat like cheese which I will be making soon, (i'll let you know how I get on). So, I think I mentioned in a previous post that I commissioned a rum pot to be made to make very fruity rum from seasonal berries. Well, yesterday I went on a mission to get some berries for free. So me and a friend scoured the cotswold hedges for a couple of hours yesterday after lazing around,(the first day I've done that for about 5 months) and picked squillions of fat plump and juicy blackberries, also there was loads of rose hips, so I got some of those and also found  a massive fat sloe bush, so I got a couple of kilo's of sloes. We also found a brambley apple tree and some pears, completely legal!

If anyone knows the cotswolds, you'll know that they grow alot of fruit there, and there are the most wonderful specimens of apples and pears everywhere. My friend was rather consumed by a beautiful pear tree overhanging from a garden, so after plenty of attempts to dissuade her, I said, OK, go get some, if thats what you really want. She got out the car and stepped straight out into a massive muddy puddle and got completely soaked. Suffice to say I laughed alot and she didn't 'borrow' any pears. But we did find one in the hedgerow on the way home!

I made a really yummy apple, pear, and blackberry crumble for dinner, which follwed the yummiest roast dinner I have eaten for a long time, although we were quite tipsy by then, because we were playing cards and drinking wine while it cooked, it was such a lovely day.

Not too sure what to do with the rose hips yet, probably make some rose hip jelly.

The sloes, well, they are for sloe GIN. So I'll have to blow my weekly food budget on some bottles of gin. I'll probably be wobbling for a day or two, while I test out the gin to make sure its safe.


PS any one out there able to convert patterns into larger sizes? I need to convert some of my designs into larger sizes, email me at fyberspatesATbtinternetDOTcom, if you have exprience of doing this. You would be paid for it.

Friday, 1 September 2006

Its a miracle!!!!!!!!

OK, so I'm never the most structured of people as most of my friends testify, although when I am dyeing yarn I do have a general formula I stick to because its practical. I normally only knit up socks in my 4ply, but last night while at Liv's knitting/house warming party I swatched 'squishy' and decided it would make a really wonderful ribbed jumper, perfect for my ally pally stand. Suffice to say I cast on and started. I didn't take much notice of the pattern until Judy said, 'jen look at that!!!!!' I turned it around and there was the face of the virgin Mary in it, no no no only kidding!!!!, however it had amazingly turned out like a pringle pattern, any one who knits random dyed stuff knows that this is phenomenal!!!:





How mad is this? Any ideas on how should I continue, because when I get to the armholes the pattern will obviously be ruined, so I might continue in a solid colour, what does everyone think about it being cream?

Disclaimer, I can't guarentee ever that the yarn would ever do this again if knitted up with a different tension or a different skein of this yarn.

Thursday, 31 August 2006


I accidently purchased a pannini maker. I've only had it since friday. Suffice to say I am now on a fruit diet to counteract the effects of all the mozzarella, tomato and basill panini's I have consumed in the past week. Blimey they taste so good, and they make perfect wool dyeing food.

Friday, 25 August 2006


I have another helper today, Elly, its so much fun having people to help!

I dyed a load of yarn in these colours yesterday:


I wish so much that I had the patience to knit this lace weight up.

Wednesday, 23 August 2006

Rainy wales.

So much for my hopes of dyeing loads of yarn today, it pouring with rain and thundering like mad!!. There is only one thing for it on days like these, and thats lots of cups of tea and cake and working in my lounge. I've updated lots of things in the shop, lots of new yummy wools, some hand spun, and lots more colours to come very soon once the rain has passed! Ohh and other lovely news, so I took on my first employee, and hunky young man called Andy who just loves wool. He's a complete star, and works very hard. I might even pop a picture up of him skeining wool later. He-he.

In non knitting news, I've had a bit of a major break through with Anth. Obviously breaking up is a really tough thing to do and as you can imagine tensions have been running high, and unfortunately we work together in psychology and share a great deal of our social life, so its not an option not to see him, but every time I have over the past couple of months, its been torture, and I have felt unjustly persecuted. I went on a Buddhist course  last weekend, ( I'm a Buddhist) and I really really wanted to work out why the hell it kept happening. In the middle of a lecture, the lecturer was talking about how our environment is a reflection of whats going on inside, they are completely linked, there is no separating them. The lecturer made a joke about the fact that if the image in the mirror is not bowing, its probably because you are not bowing to the mirror. That sort of stuck in my throat a bit and I had a huge realization that despite the fact I was trying to be 'nice' to anth I was actually feeling very angry and blaming towards him inside. So I decided to just let it all go because it takes so much energy to be angry with someone than just to be their friend. So Next time I saw him I decided to see all his amazing qualities and let go of all the crap. I was absolutely stunned at the result I got, we had a fab time together, and we both left feeling great. Its continued as well, and I really feel like we are actually going to be able to be the bestest of friends. I am so amazed at how a change in my attitude, changed everything. Anyways, just thought I would share that little experience with you.

J xx

Thursday, 17 August 2006

A gorgeous wood turner!

A new line of yarn for fyberspates, its so yummy and soft, and knits like butter. I'm so desperate to knit something gorgeous in this stuff, its alpaca and wool, yum, yum, yum!


So I wanted to really work on the spinning supplies side of my business, and coming really really soon, I will be selling hand dyed British merino, yes thats right British merino! and some very soft british fibres. Why british you might ask? Protecting the environment is extremely important to me and I aim to reflect that in my business. All of my packaging is recycled, even my labels come from used envelops. I'm sure alot of you are pretty clued up on this, but shipping and flying things accross the world creates a great deal of polution. So by sourcing as much stuff from my England Scotland and Wales means that I support British business and help the environment. Yay!

Anyway so back to the spinning! I set my freind who is a builder a challenge to make me some hand turned spindles to sell in the shop and at ally pally. And look what the result is:


These will be for sale very soon, and many more. They spin beautifully.

Tuesday, 15 August 2006

The cutest things ever!

So I'm slowly updating the website, and obviously I have to try out all the things I sell, and I'm now completely addicted tho these:



So these wonderful things are mini sock key chains. They come complete with key chain and really good instructions, all you need is the odds and ends of your sock wool to make yourself the best presents in the world. This is my first, and now I just have to make one for everyone! They are £2.99, postage 50p. Heres the link. I just know your gonna love'em!

Friday, 11 August 2006

I'm back!

So I've been without a computer for a few weeks now, because I've had some holiday from work and Obviously I can't use A's anymore, so I had to take the plunge and buy a new laptop. So here I am back with lots of pics!

So I've just had a week of holiday, with my friend, we had a lush time, and because we are both skint, we had to thing of ingenious ways to entertain ourselves. Suffice to say we had a scream. I think my favourite day was spent 'borrowing' some plums from a beautiful plum tree and turning it into the most delicious chutney and ketchup. We spent the afternoon stoning them in a beautiful garden, I felt so Mediterranean, it was lovely. We also commissioned something called a rum pot to be made, this is something special also related to using 'free' fruit! Basically its a large pot, and you put say a pound of fruit, what ever is in season at the time.....plums for example! Add the equivalent sugar, and them cover it in rum, then as more fruits come into season the you just keep adding more, making sure it is always covered be rum. You need to have a plate like disk, to keep the fruit down under the rum. The at Christmas you have a rather delicious alcoholic concoction. Apparently fruit is very good on ice cream, is you can still scoop it out by then! So we commissioned a pot to be made especially by Winchcombe pottery I'm so excited for it to be finished!!

In addition, I have been ordering scrummy yarns like crazy for ally pally and the big autumn shop update. There is some seriously wonderful stuff coming, including keyring sock chains. Email me for details, they will be up in the shop soon.

And I have been knitting YAYYYYYY!!!!!

Here are my finished autumn socks:


Then I decided I really needed a one skein wonder that fitted, and see how it would work with some hand spun....


And of course I have to have a pair of socks on the go at all times!!!


I am so desperate to knit all the time, I'm so excited about designing things for ally pally.

Can't think of anything else for now.

j xxx

Thursday, 27 July 2006



So here is what I have been knitting recently, its about all I could cope with, but I'm hankering after somethings little more complicated. I'll finish off my cardi and post that. I'm on holiday for all of august now, so you should see a damned site more posting! Including ally pally stuff, so that will be good.

I am feeling so good at the moment, I'm so loving living on my own!! Its so cool just to do what ever the hell I want and to see who ever I want to. I haven't had so much fun for years. I even have 2 cool lodgers coming to live with me in September, I just knew it would all work out in the end. You just have to trust about these things, don't you!

So tonight I am going to see Katherine Jenkins in Concert in a park, with a picnic, wine,  and some delicious company! How exciting.

Next week I'll be dyeing catching up on all the stuff I have been neglecting with my personal interlude and then start designing some yummy things for ally pally. Lush.

Friday, 7 July 2006

Isn't it funny how things fall into place?

So, all the cuffufle over the past couple of months in my life means that I took on a mortgage which was meant to be shared by two of us, but it turns out its just me now.

So I'm now  a very skint 'ms'. Thats all I need to say really, however, there was me deciding to take the plunge to change my life dramatically, even though it was the scariest decision I ever made, I had to do it to be happy.

Not knowing how the hell I was going to do it on my own I just trusted, its just funny how things just seem to fall into place when you are true to your self.

Firstly I got a letter today to say that I get a payrise in august,

Secondly a very suitable potential lodger has appeared, and

the most weird thing? I have had a very bad wheat allergy, to the point where I couldn't stomach anything with even a trace of wheat in. I went to my mums on friday night, she told me I had to trust her and eat some wheat, I had bread and butter and cake. I was so scared I was going to be very sick, but there was no reaction at all. Nothing. How did she know I would be ok?

I ate cake yesterday again. Nothing. What the hell is that about?

Thursday, 29 June 2006

Wool fest what bloody wool fest?

I'm can't go to the woolfest because I am going to London with my mum. I am a little gutted. (obviously I am happy to go to london mum!) I'ts just the second time i've missed it. :-(

Will anyone volunteer to buy me some suprises if I give them some money?

Emial me on fyberspates AT btinternet DOT com

Wednesday, 28 June 2006


Yes, I know, i've been back a week, and I haven't written a word!

Madrid was awsome, I had so much fun, the food was amazing, I even tried snails, hmm. Still not too sure what I think of them, but I will try anything once. Tortilla has become a staple part of my diet now. I purchased rather alot of spanish cooking books, which are superb, apart from the deep fried calfs testicles, I won't be cooking those!

Carmen passed her Viva with flying colours, well done babe! You looked like a Tv star! So she is now 'Dr Carmen Valle'. Expert in Power and persuasion, how cool is that?

I got a bit of a tan, ate and drank to my hearts content, and was in the most wonderful company! Thanks Carmen, Fran, Greg, Geoff, Audra, Gabbi and Kestral!

Got back, realised why I left to go away. I can't talk about these things yet though, until all my family have been informed about my life changes, I don't want them to read it here first.

Desperately hankering after a good knitting project, something luxurious and expensive. Not that I can afford it though. ohh! I just thought: My hipknits silk, that might just do the trick! Now what can I knit? Suggestions please people.......

Tuesday, 13 June 2006

Hola chicas! (Don't know and spanish slang for any male readers)

Felt like making my blog a little simpler, it needed a bit of declutering like my life has been experiencing!

I think it looks cool!

So, tomorrow I am off to sunny Madrid for 4 days to watch Carmens Viva defense. My bosses are some of her examiners, and seeing as I've been missing her too much, they suggested I might like to accompany them and have a little holiday. So within the hour I had booked my ticket. Now its just the agony of deciding whether we go to a nice restaurant or have spanish tapas and beer when we arrive. Oooh my life is so tough!

I'll take same photo's. Not sure I can knit on the plane though :-(

No orders will be processed after wed until monday. But they will be shipped as soon as possible when I get back.

Monday, 5 June 2006


Sale here!

Shipping is a flat £2.50 no matter how much you buy.

**Adding more all the time as I find it!** so keep an eye out. It all has to go!

Thursday, 1 June 2006

Afternoon campers!

Today is the first day in a couple of months I've been feeling excited about everything again, due to moving house and some unbelievable family trauma, which is still going on but I am feeling much better about it now.

Nothing like a good trauma to clear out all the emotional crap is there? I feel like I've grown up about 10 years, (in a good way) over the last two months.

I've started enjoying blog reading again, so I must be feeling better!

I've started thinking about the shop and getting back on track, sat and sunday are dedicated to a massive overhaul on the shop because it really needs it, it is diabolical at the moment.  I will do a final clear out of stock, it has to go, so prices are coming right down, I need room for new stuff and adding new yummy things. So keep an eye out on monday.

It feels like spring again! Yay!!

Ohh and I'm gonna have a stand at Allypally this year!!! How exciting is that?

Thursday, 25 May 2006


So here is a picture of my hair as requested, sorry I look a bit crap in this, but at least its a photo.


And here is a picture of my attic artroom, a little messy I know but its a start. I love it up there, its so ligh and comforting.


Signing off now, I am still knitting a cute cardigan, just on the last sleeve, then I'll post a pic.

Friday, 19 May 2006

crap blogger

I know, I know. Madness and misery sum up my life at the moment. Thank god I knit.

I did however just discover these beautiful felted bag patterns, you have to take a look they are amazing!

Thursday, 4 May 2006

ohhh. summer is here.

Summer is here. yay.

We complete on the house tomorrow/ start moving in.

I have so much psychology work and wool orders to do.

My hair just went platinum. Its extreme, but lush.

I am knitting a shawl for my mum in the loopy fleece artist yarn.

There. Thats all I can magage. No fluffy crap today.


Wednesday, 26 April 2006

I got tagged for this by Abi. How fun!

Its a Book Meme!
1. Copy & paste.

2. Bold the ones you’ve read.

3. Add four recent reads to the end.

4. Tag!

The Da Vinci Code - Dan Brown
The Catcher in the Rye - J.D. Salinger
The Hitchhiker’s Guide To The Galaxy - Douglas Adams
The Great Gatsby - F.Scott Fitzgerald
To Kill a Mockingbird - Harper Lee
The Time Traveler’s Wife - Audrey Niffenegger
His Dark Materials - Philip Pullman
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince (Harry Potter 6) - J.K. Rowling
Life of Pi - Yann Martel
Animal Farm: A Fairy Story - George Orwell

Catch-22 - Joseph Heller
The Hobbit - J. R. R. Tolkien
The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time - Mark Haddon

Lord of the Flies - William Golding
Pride and Prejudice - Jane Austen

1984 - George Orwell
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (Book 3) - J.K. Rowling
One Hundred Years of Solitude - Gabriel Garcia Marquez
Memoirs of a Geisha - Arthur Golden
Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (Book 4) - J.K. Rowling
The Kite Runner - Khaled Hosseini
The Lovely Bones - Alice Sebold
Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (Harry Potter 5) - J.K. Rowling
Slaughterhouse 5 - Kurt Vonnegut
Angels and Demons - Dan Brown
Fight Club - Chuck Palahniuk
Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone (Book 1) - J.K. Rowling
Neuromancer - William Gibson
Cryptonomicon - Neal Stephenson
The Secret History - Donna Tartt
A Clockwork Orange - Anthony Burgess
Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (Book 2) - J.K. Rowling
Wuthering Heights - Emily Bronte
Brave New World - Aldous Huxley
American Gods - Neil Gaiman
Ender’s Game (The Ender Saga) - Orson Scott Card
Snow Crash - Neal Stephenson
A Prayer for Owen Meany - John Irving
The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe - C.S. Lewis
Middlesex - Jeffrey Eugenides
Cloud Atlas - David Mitchell
The Lord of the Rings - J. R. R. Tolkien
Jane Eyre - Charlotte Bronte

Good Omens - Terry Pratchett, Neil Gaiman
Atonement - Ian McEwan
The Shadow Of The Wind - Carlos Ruiz Zafon
The Old Man and the Sea - Ernest Hemingway
The Handmaid’s Tale - Margaret Atwood
The Bell Jar - Sylvia Plath
Dune - Frank Herbert
The Unbearable Lightness of Being - Milan Kundera
Hey Nostradamus! - Douglas Coupland
The Nature of Blood - Caryl Phillips Children Playing Before a Statue of Hercules -Ed. David Sedaris
Children Playing Before a Statue of Hercules -Ed. David Sedaris
The Music of the Primes - Marcus du Sautoy
Fermat's Last Theorem - Simon Singh
The Lost Art of Keeping Secrets - Eva Rice
The Last Hope of Girls - Susie Boyt
The Magicians nephew -C S Lewis
The Mayor of Aln - James Rouke
Scarlet Feather - Maeve Binchy
Evening Class - Maeve Binchy

Hmm, the books at the end are difficult. Being dyslexic if a book if full of long words and crap I don't bother. But I can listen to them no problem at all, so some of the ones I highlighted above are not ones I have read but had read to me instead, I think that still counts doesn't it? Not only that but you can knit at the same time!

Ok I tag Marie and Fran .

Monday, 24 April 2006


The title describes my little bubbly excitedness. I spent the weekend with Kerrie and we had lots of fun chatting and planning lots of exciting things. The shop is lush by the way, its  a bit like how heaven should be, lots of scrummy yarns everywhere, just makes you want to knit. I'm going to start my hipknits silk top asap.

It was the pefect end to my holiday, now I feel recharged and ready to take on the world of wool again! Brooke and Cam are really beautiful children, V V cute!

I guess i'd better stop slacking and get some photos of some description up.

Tuesday, 18 April 2006


I haven't posted for a while! Been having a riot. In a good way obviously.

If i see another chocolate I will be sick.

Lots of woolly things to post about soon.

Friday, 31 March 2006

Super days.

Firstly this song ('Crazy' by Gnarls Barkley) is killing me, Listen to it here for free I love it so much, it has the most special memories associated with it for me. Hopefully will be this weeks number one, first downloadable only song to ever make it to number one. Go on listen to it twice, its very addictive.

I went to see Marie last night, whilst I was there she just happened to give me my birthday present from Toronto, and even more exciting its fleece artist!!


I had to lighten the picture so the colours are a bit washed out. The boucle is stunnng as it the fiber. Thanks Marie!

Finally, I've been so excited about my results from my study, I just had to have a go at my analysis ASAP. I am a researcher and I have to run stats on data all the time, mainly its pretty prescribed, and although I understand the principles, I'm not an expert. Now doing my results for the first time I just want to understand everything, I now realised why people get so good at statistics when they do Phd's with their own data, you just are so motivated to want to know everything so you can get it right. I think this experience will probably make me a squillion times better at my job.

Now where are those stats books......

I do still knit by the way.....just on some socks in a new colour of mine, pics sunday.

Wednesday, 29 March 2006

Back to normal.

The weekend went so well, and we had a wonderful time. I got to run quite a large number of participants and I have a feeling there is going to be some interesting results. Not only that but I got to talk to so many people about their experiences that its really confirmed in my head that the research is worth doing. 

I also got to meet lots of really great people and accidently purchased some wool!


So on the left hand side is some orange/red and green yarn, I didnt actually purchased this from the show but I wanted to include it. It's beautiful, v soft sock yarn from Hello Yarn. It really is the nicest stuf I have ever touched. I think even though its sock weight I would love a jumpermade from this. Then that lucious green shiny silk is from Hipknits I am going to make the beautiful cardgan designed by Anna. I could have spent a fortune on that stand. We had lovely chats, it was fab!

The big dark red skein above is actually 4 skeins from silkwood angora's. The colours in this were irresistable. It's between 4 ply and dk weight and its going to take me ages, but I am determined to knit a cardigan from it.

Ok so next I have to show you this pic. Its Anth learning to fingerknit on the BHK stand, once he had learned how to do it, he made a fluffy scarf in about 20 minutes and decided to use some of my foxglove to make a chain and then knit it on larger needles later. Hilarious! Not too sure what I think about this, after all I'm the knitter in this family, there is only room for one of us:


Finally sat night I went out for dinner to the most wonderful vegetarian restaurant in west Kensington called 222 veggie Vegan Restaurant, they had Gluten free options for nearly all the dishes, I was very impressed, and the portions were big, which is always high on my list. What made it even more fun was the company! I got to eat dinner with Cath, Anna (who makes the most beautiful stitch markers, might be selling them on the website soon), Erssie (who is such a scream, and is an extremely talented designer), and the lovely Abbey and her husband Chris. Abbey sometimes designs things for me, and she is also very talented. It was so much fun! Oh yes here we are:


Right so now I need to finish my noro cardi, then I can get on witht he hip knits silk.....I can't wait!

Wednesday, 22 March 2006

My head is still on.

Lots to do, but sort of on target thank goodness, apart from the fact that I broke  the photocopiers half way through printing my questioniares and still haven't heard about ethics, but I have very good coping mechanisms when it comes to times like this, I just lose my ability to give a @#*k. So I'll just focus on something I do have control over. Impossible statistics for 4pm this afternoon, yeah. Thats a good plan.

*added later*

Went to see ethics woman.

Nearly cried.

Got an emial 10 minutes later to say it had been approved.

Tried to work on statistics, nothing worked, everything just went completely wrong.

Went to toilets. Cried alot.

Went to meeting a bit sniffly. Bosses just complete stars, and were not worried in the slightest.

Now 5pm need to go do the photocopies. Don't feel like crying at the moment, but I'm sure that could change at any moment.

If you are coming to Olympia for the show, come and do my experiment, or just say hello, I'll be on the stitchlinks stand.

Tuesday, 21 March 2006

My head is going to fall off.

So thursday is the stitching show at olympia. I still have not heard whether I have my ethical approval for the experiment yet. Without it I can't run the study, the whole point of my being there. Then I still need to print all my questionaires out which I can't do until my ethical approval is back, and the photocopiers are running out of ink and I don't have any photocopy credits left. Then of course I need to write a sock pattern for the kits for stitchlinks by tomorrow, print the labels and package the yarn. And I have an importnant meeting tomorrow for my normal research stuff, so I need to run and check all my analysis etc.

Why do I do this to myself?

My head will fall off soon.

No really it will.

Wednesday, 15 March 2006

Naughty blogger.

It seems like ages since I did a proper post. I think we have gone all relaxed in our house after the viva, so not much going on at all really, actually that's a complete lie, but I like to think that my life could be quiet if I wanted it to.

So what have I got for you today? well, a lovely blog reader, Laurie suggested panta for my sprouting hair, and I love it. So I dyed her some wool in a sort of coal colour, and look what she made from it.....

Panta Lovely or what.

In return she sent me this cutie little cat:


Sorry about the picture, It's not the best, but its adapted from this pattern, take a look, its so cute. So thanks Laurie!

Oh and here is mine, but not on because I'm having spikey hair today:

My_panta I am completely obsessed with red at the moment, all my shoes, jumpers and accessories are red.

What else....... um......., oh yes I purchased this lovely specimen from Getknitted the Saturday before last on their open day. It a lantern moon needle case,


and I accidentally bought 3 pairs of lantern moon needles to go in it, in fact only the best needles get to go in this one, so they are all going to have to be lantern moon.....


And finally, tomorrow is my birthday, being 28 is a bit weird because it feels like its nearly 30.

Because I've been so busy recently, I haven't been looking after myself very much, and had a complete panic about 4 weeks ago.

As a result I have been making a bit more effort with eating, exercise, and it has payed off big time, the main things are cutting down on alcohol and I have completely cut out tea and coffee, and have been eating fruit like its going out of fashion. The main thing I have noticed is that my skin is fantastic, it hasn't been this good ever. This is a major relief seeing as I have had skin problems since I was about 20, but now you'd never even know. Not only that but I'm glad to say that everything is still standing up in the right direction and I feel more confident and enjoying my life a million times more than when I was 21 or even 25. So I'm going to really enjoy my birthday tomorrow, and obviously I am celebrating it in knitting style! I am going to my favourite Japanese restaurant for dinner, with a fair amount of my stitchn'bitch group, and then we are off to Yarn 'n Yarns for Claire's hen party, how cool is that? it'll be a scream, now all I need is some cash so I can buy some yarn.....cause I need it!

And finlly here is a little pic of my fluffy munchkin being silly:


Friday, 10 March 2006


Finally I am actually having a rest this weekend, I am going to stay with my brother in Peterborough, debbie his wife works voluntarily at an rspca shelter, and so as a result they have quite alot of pets, including a chinchilla, I wonder if you could spin chinchiila hair.......

Anyway I'll have much more time to do my knitting on the journey and I'll try and post the naught things I purchased at get knitted last week......

J xx

Monday, 6 March 2006

He passed!

No knitting for me this evening,

Anth passed his Viva with flying colours, he is now officially Dr Anthony Brown! how cool is that?

Anyway I'm off to the pub just about now, and I don't think I will emerge for many hours, by which time I will be in no fit state for knitting.

Probably not tomorrow either.

Ps anyone see the article 'the feel good factor' in simple knitting this month? I had no idea I was capable of such sentances.

J xxx

Ahh i need my knitting...

Thanks for all the suggestions, I think I might make one of each to cover all options. Thanks for the blog reader who eamiled me and suggested panta, I've made it and I love it, (and thanks fran as well). I'll post a pic later when its all a bit calmer in my house.

So today Anth has his Phd Viva at 10am. Its slightly tense here, he's very nervous, can't keep still, and didn't sleep all night.

So As soon as I know he's passed, (cause i'm absolutley sure he will) I'll post.

Phew, where my kntting........

Thursday, 2 March 2006

Cable denial.

Hmm, so I think you guys are right about giving myself the extra days, even if it was my fault that I started late because I messed my wool dyeing up. I do like the look of the medals though.

Up until now I have been in cable denial, so much so that when I look at my rogue, the cables are invisible. They are starting to come back though, and tonight is stitchn'bitch the perfect place to become reacquainted with my sleeves.

In two weeks I am 28, being so dangerously close to 30 is prompting some anxiety and review of life, combined with my new house (fingers crossed) I decided that I need a bit of an overhaul/ new start. More fruit and veg, water, cut out caffeine, and definitely less alcohol. I started yesterday.

Unfortunately this morning I felt so droopy eyed, they were all red, and sore, and I felt really grumpy, I though I must be sickening for something, so made sure I ate a mountain of sardines on toast, (I swear by sardines) and swigged down my green tea.

Got completely mad with anth, I can't remember why now, and stormed to work, and struggled to keep my eyes open in my experiments all morning.

I've been waiting for the sore throat, but nothing.

Now I have the shivers and the starts of a small migraine. I actually thought to myself 'oooh a nice big coffee will make you feel better'. Ah. But I've given up tea and coffee. Then it struck me. I have caffeine withdrawal. Without my 3 mugs of tea and two mugs of fresh coffee in the morning and that's before work, no wonder I was grumpy and slightly shouting, no wonder my eyes keep drooping closed, and my head is thumping.

I'm sure that can't be the excuse for my muppet hair can it? which prompts the question, does anyone have any 'I'm growing my hair out so I need a fashionable, something I can get away with indoors, head covering solution? I look dreadful in scarfs.

Anyone who comes up with a solution which I like and will wear, gets some yarn.

Monday, 27 February 2006

I tried, I really did.

So, yesterday being the last day of the knitting Olympics, I woke up in the morning, ran to the sofa and knitted like a demon. I phoned my mum and dad about 11am, and the reaction I had was, 'what on earth are you phoning us for? You should be knitting', you haven't got time to chat!'

Crikey, when did it get so serious? Others phoned to check on my progress, Anth brought me tea, and food so I only had to move when I wanted the toilet. By about 11.30 am I still had half the hood to go, no problem I thought. I'll get this done my 1, then I can do a sleeve in 4 hours then start the second at 6. At 3pm the rugby started, now unable to move because I was glued to the sofa, I had to put up with screaming men watching Wales loose spectacularly. Its hard to cable when there are men screaming at the TV.

By 8pm YES! 8 pm! When desperate housewives was starting, I was sewing up the hood. That's how long the damned thing took me ( I forgot how slow my knitting was). By then I still was hoping I could knit the sleeves into the early hours. By 9pm, I was having trouble telling what stitches were meant too be knitted, and what were meant to be purled. I had to admit I had been defeated, but not for want or trying.

But its not bad considering I started my submission 6 days late. I'm going to struggle with the motivation to finish the sleeves though.

I do believe I have experienced what I now officially call 'cabled post-traumatic stress disorder'. The best way to avoid this is to have breaks at least every two hours.

You know you have this if you are experiencing the following symptoms:

1) You can't remember which chart you are meant to be following.

2) You become confused about whether a stitch is meant to be a knit or a purl stitch...what the hell is knit and purl anyway?

3) You are confused about whether you are meant to be knitting from the right or left side of the chart, despite the fact that there are arrows pointing each step of your way.

4) Every time you look at the cabled symbol on your chart and you then go to check it on your instructions, it automatically switches into the opposite in your head, you end up knitting the wrong one and spend 45 minutes trying to work out why the sequence isn't working.

5) You've got to the end of your cabled sequence thing,  and it says there is another cable to work on your chart, you go back, frog the damned thing and then..... then the cables stitches that precede it untwist. Now you have no idea where the hell you are. Not to mention that because you were being the good conscientious knitter you are, you scribbled out each line as you finished it, now not only do you not know what line you are on, you couldn't read it even if you wanted to.

6) The cables on the chart start to dance around the page and won't keep still.

7) The frustration of dropping/loosing your cable needle down the side of the sofa, means you use any needle you can get your hands on, once these are all lost, you start using your pen as a cable needle, you loose that too; you cry.

8) You family start to get worried because you appear stressed. In order to pacify you, they ask you if you would like a cup of tea. You reply completely out of character, by screaming at them: Don't they understand that Ice skaters in the Olympics don't get interrupted in the middle of a routine and get asked if they want a cup of tea? That would be ridiculous. Surely they can read your mind and know when you are in the middle of something difficult, don't ask me, just bring the bloody tea.

Suffice to say that I am now in cable denial.

I never want to see another cable as long as I live.

In favour of cables, I have no aches in my hands, I guess because knitting the cables interrupts the rows of knitting.

I do have to say that the rogue pattern is the best written pattern I have ever knitted. The instructions are superb and perfect, there was no ambiguity and no mistakes what so ever. Even for someone like me who has a tendency to pervert all patterns by accident. Not this one. If you want to knit something cabled, knit this one, its superb.

So here's the picture of it in its unfinished state. I just noticed there is a difference in colour at the bottom, its more red than the rest. Bothered? Does this look like a bothered face?


I hate the variegation of the yarn though, it doesn't allow you too see the cables very well. The yarn wasn't meant to be variegated it was the result of a dyeing accident, and very little time.

It looks good on, I'll post a pic on once the sleeves are done.