Saturday, 27 October 2012

Something wicked this way comes!

I really like halloween, the one time of the year when you can go out dressed up as ANYTHING and nobody bothers you! Thinking about it the other day I realised I have always been interested in magic, witches and the fantasy. When I was 9/10 this was my favourite book. I read and re-read it so many times..

When it was book week I did my poster of this book cover, painstakingly copying each detail and colouring it in pencil crayon, I wish i had kept that drawing.

Around the same time, there was Grotbags on TV who I loved, and was super lucky to see at a theater near home, I bought a ruler that just said 'grotbags the ruler' on it, I still have half of the ruler! Here she is having a 'hot flop'...


In my teens, I finally stopped reading pongwiffy, and grotbags wasn't on the TV any more but there were new witches on the block, oones that weren't green and were teenagers!!! There was Sabrina the teenage witch on TV, but even better than that there was The Craft. Three misfit teens who, when joined by a new girl from out of town form a coven.....

...just in case you haven't seen it (have you been living under a rock) I won't give too much away. But this film which I had on video filled the witchcraft void in my life for a few years of my teens.

I had stopped reading books at this stage, I only read things for school and wasn't interested in books, until my Mum started reading the Harry Potter series of books to my (then 7 yr old) little brother. She said I would like them, and they were about magic which I obviously I started reading, and stopped when I got to the end of the Goblet of Fire (no more books released yet) wow, I was hooked! Witches and wizards living alongside humans in the modern day but with their own schools and ministry and shops and currency. I couldn't wait for the next installment, and although the story revolves around a wizard there are plenty of amazing witches in these stories. Luna Lovegood is one of my absolute favourites. 

A year or so later, having discovered John Waters films and unearthed a whole world of awesome counter culture that I had been oblivious of I found Elvira...mistress of the dark. I'm not sure if I have watched Elvira as many times as I read Pongwiffy, but it was pretty much the ten years later equivilent!

Every year when Halloween approaches I think about knitting stuff inspired by all things halloween but never quite get round to it...this might just this space  

Tuesday, 16 October 2012

I get around.... last post was about the in the loop conference and I didn't quite get to covering day 3. There was, of course lots of interesting and inspiring knitting talk but there was a highlight that over-rode all of that.
I saw a stylish lady wearing a pink bow shaped necklace that looked like one of my knitted ones. I instantly dismissed it thinking it would be the perspex tatty divine necklace of a similar design. Later, when we were having a tea n cake break i saw it closer up and realised it was one of my pieces, very exciting! I have been designing and making for 5 years and this is the first time I have bumped into a stranger wearing one of my designs. I don't approach her yet, it's busy and she's chatting to someone.
Later in the day, at the end of one set of talks, I approach her asking where she bought the necklace from because I made it. As she is telling me where it is from, I notice her name badge, it's Freddie Robins....only my top favourite knit artist, aahhhhh! The words get a bit muddled as my brain attempts to process the fact that this awesome artist liked one of my pieces enough to purchase and wear it. I do manage to ask if I can take a photograph of her wearing it, she is super-nice and asks me about my work and agrees to a photograph.
                                                                 What a great lady!
It just happened to be really nice weather for the duration of the in the loop conference, so I took every opportunity to get out into the sunshine and explore the tiny odd place that is Winchester.


That was Winchester, in a nutshell! The following week I went to another conference, this time in Cambridge, this time I was speaking at it. My presentation was about 'the language of knitting' it was the first time I had spoken at a conference, I was nervous, even more so with it being in Cambridge, in their centre for material texts, I don't DO big words! Anyway, I was well prepared and when I saw the room this put me at ease!

I'm sat down...can you spot my head?!

Also, Freddie was there, as was Linda Newington (the lady who organised In the loop) from the knitting reference library, I was getting to hang out with the celebs of the knitting world again! My talk was on the second day of the conference, so on the first day I listened to some presentations, and did some expolring.

There were bikes everywhere, I almost got run down by a bike on more than one occasion, it's like Amsterdam but with less space! The following day I gave my 20 minute presentation that I had spent months preparing for, and it went down well, even the cheap laughs I had slipped in were well received, phew.
Hanging out with the lady who spoke about 'knitting on the internet' before me. I enjoyed both conferences, learnt a lot and met a lot of talented and friendly people. Now back to actually knitting rather than just talking about it!