London Calling

loop-london

It’s been a while since I’ve been to London. I used to visit quite frequently but recently I’ve decided I wanted to explore other ‘new’ places. (As I love travelling…)

But when my best friend – who now lives in Hamburg just about an eight hour train ride away from me* – asked me if I’d join her in London for the “Welcome to Night Vale” show I just couldn’t refuse. At first we wanted to go to the Brighton show – we love Brighton – but I wasn’t able to take Friday off and that show was on Friday evening.

So I worked on Friday, caught the evening flight and arrived – two hours delayed – at 2 in the morning at my hostel.

I was beat on Saturday but my inner clock is pretty nasty. Sleeping past 6:30? Psh, in your dreams! I’m seldom able to fall asleep again. I’ve trained myself to idle in bed longer but I’m awake and my brain is working itself silly…

So I got up, sat myself down in Starbucks and knit a bit. I was there for more than an hour, and I have to say it was a very peaceful Saturday morning considering I was in the heart of London. I met up with my friend at 10; we got breakfast together and then walked through Covent Garden which is cute and luckily not too busy if you are there early. After Covent Garden we went to Loop London.

I’ve heard so much about that shop and I’ve ordered online twice from them so I really wanted to go there and my friend agreed to come with me even though she’s not a knitter. Her comment on Loop was “you only choose that yarn shop because it’s got a bunny in the logo, right?” which is somewhat accurate. If I hadn’t heard so much about Loop that definitely would have been a reason for me to go there.

I have to admit, I was somewhat overwhelmed, there’s just so much to look at! And what I really wanted to get was yarn for a sweater (and I decided I’d actually use the yarn it was designed with) but then I didn’t really like that yarn which was very disappointing. The look and structure just wasn’t what I expected. So I knew I wanted to knit a sweater but had no pattern or yarn in mind. Which is quite a bad combination paired with a huge selection of all the different yarns!

I ended up buying Madeline Tosh yarn in a pretty grey with crazy colour speckles on it. I really wanted to get yarn I never used before but I just couldn’t decide and those speckles caught my eye. When I asked how much of it they had left and the answer was ‘those skeins and then the colourway is discontinued’ I was sold.

I also bought two patterns, the book “Journey: A Collaboration”, Sock Blockers, Plane Scissors, a Hare Broche and spent quite the amount of money there. After the night I’d had thought I deserve a ‘treat yo self’ moment.

The show was fantastic, so so so many people! And then Sunday was exhausting. I spent more than four hours in different coffee shops just because I was so tired. And I was so excited for my bed too! And then when I arrived at the airport the screen said the worst thing possible: delayed.

I spent some more time at Starbucks and in the end the one hour delay turned into three which I think is absolutely ridiculous! When I got home I just fed the bunnies and fell into bed.

 

(* I could fly there too, but the flights are always rather expensive if you book spontaneously, I only took the train once and it was alright, exhausting but alright. Flight time from where I am at to London or Hamburg is about the same, just something over an hour. Living in Central Europe does have its perks…)

 

 

 

 

Yarnisco Part II

 

atelier-yarns-san-franAfter not being able to visit “Greenwich Yarns” I realised how desperate I actually was for yarn, for a new knitting project, for something to do with my hands.

As it wasn’t possible to visit another Yarnshop on Thursday I googled myself silly that night and made a desperate decision. “Atelier Yarns” was fairily close (according to google maps a 30 min walk or a 10 minute busride) and it opens at 11. We had to check out by 12 but I was desperate to make it work. I purchased the pattern from etsy and I was good to go.

I memorized where I needed to go, what bus rout I’d have to take and after breakfast I left my travelling friend and walked there. (I had time to spare, we always got up rather early, I don’t think we ever really adjusted to the local time in San Francisco).

On the way I stopped at a very cute bakery and got myself a cupcake. It was very delicious! (I only bought it so I’d be able to use the loo there but shhh!)

Once at Atelier Yarns I knew I needed fingering weight yarn, about two skeins, a colour I liked and preferably something soft. And if possible a yarn brand I’d never knit with before. I browsed and browsed and as I was on a tight schedule I almost settled for Madeline Tosh but at the last minute I spottet this gorgeous Sweet Georgia Yarn. It’s a silver grey colour and super soft (and as I’ve come to realize it leaves fuzz everywhere!) with Cashmere and silk contents but sadly I’ve misplaced the tag and can’t remember the exact info or colourway name of it. I think I lost the tag on the plane.

I bought the right needles (Clover Circular Bamboo) for the yarn, stitch markers and they let me wind the yarn there. The lady behind the counter was super helpful and tried to help us three knitters at the same time – there were two other ladys in teh shop, one was travelling as well.

I’d have loved to chat more with them all but I almost ran out of the shop and to the bus only to make it to the hotel with time to spare. But I always get very stressed before flights and I’m very often quite unreasonably scared to miss it.

I was a very happy knitter on that plane.

 

The pattern was “Sugarplum Shawl” by Mina Philipp.

Hello again, there!

I’ve been pretty bad with posting but my Yarn and knitting game has been strong, I took a break in July & August but otherwise I’ve been very consistent. I’d love to post some finished projects on here but first I need to photograph those. Also, I’m hoping on tracking my yarn usage. How many skeins I use and how many I buy per month. Or something like that. I’ve started a Yarn Journal (I got a pretty one from Paperchase in London) to track it and I thought I’d update my progress on here at the end of the month. But we’ll see how that goes.

Right now I’m working on a very big scarf for a friend. She’s been telling me since spring that she’d love a really big hand knit scarf and I told her that she’d just have to tell me what pattern she’d  like and I’m game. We finally got organized and I cast on two weeks ago. I might be about a 1/4th done with it. Hopefully I’ll be able to continue at this speed or even faster so she’ll be warm with her hand knit very soon.

 

The pattern is “Alma’s Scarf” by Mareike Sattler. It’s on Ravelry but you have to buy it through Interweave. (I sent my friend to Ravelry to browse so she could give me a few examples of what she likes because ‘a big scarf’ is a pretty open description…)

The yarn I’m using is Madeline Tosh DK in the “Cardinal” colourway. She wanted something ‘brick’ coloured and that was the closest I could find.

 

Now I’m off for tea and more knitting.

Yarnisco

August was a difficult knitting month for me. There was so much to do in so little time that I gave up on trying to stay on top of the knitting podcasts I watch and the progress I wanted to make.

That light shawl I wanted to knit for my vacation in September? Still in the box because after making the same mistake three times and having to rip back the same amount of times takes a toll on a knitters patience. Until I figure out where I make that mistake that project will stay in it’s box.

The socks I so badly want to finish because I hate them? I don’t remember where I put them… If I run into them again I might frog them. (Toe up is not for me..)

That were my stats at the end of August.

September was my knitting fast month because I was travelling in Hawaii and I hate knitting in the heat. And there’s the luggage issue as well. That’s why I left all my knitting at home.

But by the end of these four weeks I was itching to knit again so there had to be a yarnshop stop in our one day San Francisco Stopover. I decided on Greenich yarns because it was on our route from Fishermans Wharf to the Golden Gate Bridge.

freenwich-yarnsjpg
It looked lovely from the outside and I’d have loved to go inside but they’re closed on Thursdays. Didn’t expect that. Oh well…

(there’s a second part to my yarn venture in San Francisco following soon..)