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Sad news about Colinette Yarns

I received a really sad email yesterday from Sam at Colinette yarns saying that they’d dyed their last hank and had closed their shop in Llanfair Caereinion. Colinette is the yarn company that hooked me into knitting back in 2001. I was on holiday in San Francisco and bought a copy of Interweave Knits magazine on impulse. I hadn’t knit since I was a child and couldn’t cast off or do the perl stitch but there was an amazing looking sweater on the cover of the mag that grabbed me. It was in Colinette’s famous Point 5.

At that point I didn’t even know that the company was based in Wales and dyed their yarn here. I loved reading how Colinette was an artist who had first turned her love of colour to yarn in the 1980s and had been coming up with new shades ever since. I loved her colours. I couldn’t find anything like them in Cardiff back in 2001, it sounds trite but those colours were life changing. You couldn’t buy anything knitted that was close to them back then.

When I got home from SF I ordered enough of Prism, I think…, in Fruit Coulis I think.., to make a sweater. At that time I was knitting really badly. I’ve since tried to unravel the sweater and I must have split the piles or something because it’s proven impossible to undo the work but I still loved the yarn. I’ve bought so much of it over the years back when it was impossible to find a lot of the American brands that I lusted over. While American friends were felting Lamb’s Pride Worsted I was horrifying them by felting Colinette’s Skye Aran. I made a fantastic pair of Theresa Vinson Stenersen’s Fuzzy Feet from Knitty in it that are worn out now.

I remember going to the Knitting and Stitching Show with Jeni from Fyberspates, the first year that she sold her own yarn on the Get Knitted Stall, and being blown over by the Colinette Stand. We went there at least twice over the weekend to buy bags of yarn. Of course I still have some of it unknit! When I was with Andy we made a few trips to the fantastic Colinette shop. It was a really amazing place. Although it closed its doors early this year you can go back in time and take a tour via the magic of YouTube.

There’s still plenty of yarn left in the online shop so if you’ve ever held off ordering from them this may be your final chance to do so.

Today I made what’s probably my last ever order from them – One skein of Jitterbug in one of my favourite shades – Alizarine. I don’t know if I’ll knit it up straight away – I have to tidy up my craft room first ha! – or if I’ll just gently place it with the other yarns of its brethren.

Colinette has held such affection in my heart as being the yarn company that swept me into the knitting world fifteen years ago and I will miss them so very much. I wish the best to Colinette and her team for the future.

Making Monday – First post of the Year

This blog, Space Craft, is ten years old this month and as part of celebrating and marking that, I’ve decided to set myself a little blogging challenge. From this week onwards I will blog every Monday for a year. It’s a challenge and a bit of a kick up the backside for me. I can always think of stuff to blog about but I rarely get around to writing it. I’m still making things but I don’t document them as often as I could. And well, I’ve had over two months off from blogging as it is 😉 It also means that I can join in with Natalie from The Yarn Yard‘s Making Monday. 🙂

I don’t know if it’s a seasonal thing but now that it’s colder I seem to be spending more of my time knitting than sewing. It could be related to a recent sewing disaster but more on that in another post. Current knitting WIPS are Rose Red by Ysolda and She’s Electric by Ann Weaver. I had intended for She’s Electric to be my Xmas project and I was going to knit as much of it as I could, possibly even finish it, over the Xmas holidays. It didn’t work out that way.

 

About 11 rows completed on She's Electric

 

Instead I finished off the Cosmic Pluto top-down cardigan which had been on the needles for about three years, and I didn’t get a great deal further than casting on SE. Incidentally I partly knit the TDRC in some Lamb’s Pride Worsted that I bought way back in Dharma Trading in 2004 when I met Rachael Herron and Mariko for the first time! I’ve just realised that I also bought the LPW in Magenta shade that I’m using for SE at the same time! You can see it in the pic on this archive entry. The Pink skein at the top is the pink I used on the TDRC and the LP just under it is what I’m using on the SE. OMG I’ve just realised that it’s over eight years since I bought that yarn! It’s been in my stash for all that time. Ah well, at least I’m using it now 😉

It’s not photographed that well this time in my 11 rows picture. It’s a lot more vibrant in real life and the old pic is more true to its colour. I could have knit a lot more on this than I have as asides from checking which way your increases are going, it’s mostly stocking stitch. But I bought a red coat in the sales and decided that it was time to pluck the two balls of Debbie Bliss Rialto DK in colour 23012 out of my stash and cast on for a much promised Rose Red beret by Ysolda.

 

Rose Red Beret in progress

 

 

It doesn’t quite match my coat – the coat is more of an orangey red and the yarn is more of a blue red – but they’ll go together fine.

My new coat with my Rose Red for comparison

I’m currently wearing the coat with a scarf from Rowan Biggy Print that I made I-can’t-remember-how-long-ago but I want to make a cowl to go with the coat. I have some yarn in my stash for that but am not sure how long it’ll be before I cast on for that since I have to finish RR first!

I’ve had so many problems with RR though. It’s no fault of the pattern which is very well written, alas it’s all down to me. I have to really focus when knitting it and count my stitches every row. So far I’ve had to rip out lots of rows and in one case rip it right back to the icord start, because I’d made a mistake. I love the way the design is building, it’s gorgeous. It’s just that this isn’t tv watching knitting, at least not for me. And it’s certainly not something I can work on while watching Borgen and keep up with the subtitles! SE is perfectly suited for that but I just haven’t been picking up the needles.

Something else that can take away from crafting time is reading. Since last year I’ve really got back into it with a passion. I love Good Reads and their book reading challenge is great. This year I’ve set myself the target of reading 30 books. That’s mainly because a lot of the books I’ve been reading have been quite long and whereas I can easily whiz my way through 300 pages, it’s a bit harder when it’s over 700. I’ve just finished This Perfect day by Ira Levin which had a really big impact on me, I’ll be thinking about it for a while.

Hip news

My MRI came back clear which means that I haven’t damaged any of the soft tissue in my left hip. I’ve been having physiotherapy since November as all of the slowing down recommended by the GP has meant that my muscles had become very weak. They’re building up more now and I’ve been able to go back to my pilates classes. The impingements haven’t gone away of course, and there will still be things that I can’t do like some movements in pilates. I don’t know when I’ll have to have surgery on them, probably not for a few years anyway, but I’m seeing the surgeon again next week for the MRI follow up.