Fibre Fun Friday

The blog-post that I had planned for today was going to be all about the shawl I spent last week knitting for my Mum. It’s the Hervst Afond Scarf from Knitting Brioche by Nancy Marchant that I made with this yarn from The Constant Knitter:

Unfortunately, I can’t blog about the finished object on this F.O. Friday; because I’ve no photos to show you. I thought I took a photo of it as I cast it off. I realised an hour later that it was a video – most of which is black because I put the camera on the desk after I snapped (as I thought) the shawl. I gave the shawl to my Mum as she was leaving to go home and she opened it the next morning; so there were no photo ops of her trying it on.

I even brought my camera with me when I visited her today but I couldn’t pluck up the courage to ask her to bring it out just so that I can photograph it. I mean, how do I explain that I want to photograph the present I gave her without making her worry about any time she may have accidentally dropped me on my head as a child!

So I bailed and came home again, photographless and with this lame excuse to give you. Sorry!

I’m just glad I got it finished in time to give to her for her birthday last Sunday. It was not so much “down-to-the-wire” as “well-past-the-wire-and-several-furlongs-later”. Despite getting DH to drive slower than the speed-limit, so that I could maximise knitting-time on the way over to my sister’s house for the Birthday Celebration Lunch; I still had another hour of knitting after I arrived. Thankfully, we were the first to arrive and The Earl had fallen asleep in the car on the way over; so I used the excuse of staying in the car with him as my cover for continuing to knit. I’m sure other knitters have done this or similar.

I’m also happy to report that she loved it and was mightily impressed with the brioche-knitting technique. So I’ll be making more of these, I think.

I know you all like pics, so instead, let me tell you what I did with my Friday evening: I met up with other Fibre-istas at Fibre Fun Friday in the Tea Gardens, 7 Ormond Quay in Dublin City Centre.

Fun with Fibre and Funny Tea

It was my first time to visit The Tea Gardens. It’s a fantastic venue for Fibre Fun Friday – kudos to whoever found it and chose it. Despite being on the quays in Dublin City Centre, facing right out onto the Liffey, it’s location is a little obscure. If you’re walking down the Quays from O’Connell Street keep going until well after you’ve begun to doubt yourself that you’ve gone too far. As you walk closer and closer to The Four Courts, properties are becoming less likely to house Tea Gardens and more likely to be Solicitors Offices. Then, finally, a small and demure street-frontage beckons to you in acid green!

Look out for the sign

The street-frontage is as wide as the sign in the above picture. Then it’s down some steps to a welcoming mural at the bottom.

The little “OPEN” sign reasures you enough to push the door and peer past the curtain. Then, just follow the sound of chatter and giggling – that’ll be the other fun Fibre-freaks. People start gathering from 6:30 p.m. and the advice is to come early if you want to get a chair! Being a Japanese-styled Tea Garden, however, the floor is perfect for sitting on.


Crafty Miscellany

Inside the Crafty Market

For my birthday treat this year my knitting buddies suggested a trip to visit The Constant Knitter and to fondle her wares. When we realised Rosemary – the Constant Knitter – was setting up a stall with Diane at the Crafty Market the date was set and the plan hatched.

On the first Sunday of every month the Crafty Market convenes in the most unlikely looking venue. From the outside you’d be forgiven for thinking you were on the set of a gritty gang-land movie where a drug-deal was about to go down. Of course, you’re not far wrong about the drug-deal because that’s exactly what’s going on inside:

There are so many stands to oogle and crafty delights to fondle, every where you look is a treat. We had lunch planned at the Mermaid Restaurant, otherwise I could have happily spent all day there.

I’ve shown you before all the purchases I made from on the day, but they’re worth flaunting again:


Merino / Tencel blend pencil roving from Diane (left), 3 balls of Kid-silk by Drops from Rosemary, The Constant Knitter, (2 shown, centre) and felted mobile phone cover and shamrock badge from Hazel Donnelly (right).

However, despite all the visual delights and the delightful stash enhancement, I realise the thing that really makes me hanker to go back is the coffee and the cakes. The barista and bakers are artisans too.


On the last Sunday of February I finally got the chance to join up with other spinners at the monthly Sunday’s Spin-in at Powerscourt. I brought with me the only spinning accoutrements I possess, a beginner’s drop-spindle and some dyed roving that I’d started on the Irish Knitter’s Retreat back in October 2008! I started the afternoon not being able to remember a single thing from the lesson Chicwithstix had given me way back then. However, thanks to the generosity of time and knowledge on the part of Kneehigh, Chicwithstix, DubSpinner, Deimne, Flick and Claire42 it started to come back to me. 

I was determined to finish spinning the roving I had and I learned a few things in the process too; such as dyed roving is more prone to felting and leaving it stuffed in a plastic bag for 18 months is not conducive to easy-spinning. However I did  finish up with this. Art/Novelty-yarn-esque as it is, I’m proud to have got to the end and for learning all that I did. 

Very nice dear.... but what is it?

I had the “yarn” on separate toilet roll centres, all ready for meeting Chicwithstix at the Crafy Market last Sunday, so that she could give me pointers on how to ply them together. And then… I met her scribble lace scarf, knit using beautiful blue hand-spun of her own for the accent yarn. So now my “yarn” is not going to be plied but – with the able-bodied, enabling of Bootie and Clarabel – got partnered with some Drops Kid-silk in beige from The Constant Knitter

When I grow up.... I'll scribble!

I’ve received excellent advice from all the spinners I’ve met recently. The advice I like best of all is from BionicLaura: “spindling for 5 minutes a day will teach you more than an hour once a week” because it means I’m going to have to invest in a whole lot of roving. Roving is just perfect to tide me over while I’m on this strict yarn diet, isn’t it? With this in mind I got 100g of pencil roving from Chicwithstix at the Crafty Market. It’s a Merino Tencel blend that I’m going to spin, dye and then ply. Until then, I just content myself with burying my face in it an inhaling. Aaaah! 

How do you catch a cloud and pin it down...

Oh! my strict yarn diet… I completely forgot! (tee hee!). The main reason we went to the Crafty Market in the first place was to get a chance to see The Constant Knitters’ wares. She did not disappoint and these two balls of Kid-Silk by Drops were purloined with a lacy wrap from Knitting Brioche in mind. 

Planned for "Herfst avond scarf" by Nancy Marchant from "Knitting Brioche"