Wednesday, 30 November 2011

Smiths Row

Smiths Row

I popped in here at lunchtime today, to see the exhibition and to browse in the shop. The gallery is lovely:  a huge, light and white space. It has a little comfy reading room (where we've been for Knitting In Public day in the past), but sadly no cafe. The shop has quirky, cute stuff - textile buttons with little dresses, cupcakes and cups on them, as well as lovely block-printed, unusual cards. I had been told that there were knitted things, too, though I couldn't see any.  I saw some fantastic oil paintings by Lucy Crick. She (apparently!) is heavily influenced by the Dutch still life painters so she chooses the same dark background and sombre array of objects - no people.  But the objects she chooses to paint are modern kitsch - fondant fancies, fairy cases with old-fashioned china tea cups and - best picture of all - a 70s ceramic tea caddy with one of those pale blue tea cups with ridges on, still beloved of WI tea parties and church functions. Somehow the painting was really beautiful: the poignancy of these dated objects in the quite familiar style of the still life. Sadly this painting was over £500; it was quite striking.

A satisfying picture to add:

This shows some of my knitted scarves on display in Cuckoo. It felt rather arrogant taking a picture of them, but I wanted to get one to publish on here! Am I the only person who does this?!

Thursday, 24 November 2011

Fawcett Society


A friend from Stitch 'n' Bitch ran a consciousness-raising stall for this pressure group on Saturday.  The statistics on their website make rather dismal reading about women's pay, pensions and other areas of (in)equality. Their research is particularly important in times of austerity,I think; I'm going to join up. Really, though, I just want their t-shirt - it reads, "This is what a Feminist looks like." Result.

Sunday, 13 November 2011

Real Ale, Yarn and Sunsets

Ah...I still haven't felt like eating anything after a scrumptious lunch at the Red Lion, Stiffkey. They managed to offer all my favourite things: spring rolls, fish & chips.... and I managed a bit of my Lady Friend's Sticky Toffee Pudding - as the waitress had brought us two spoons. I wished I'd had room for more of that - it had a lovely toffee sauce and was delicious. All washed down with their beer, the Stewkey Brew! Then we went for a walk as the sun was going down:

This is part of the Norfolk Coastal Path. The sun was going down and it was almost eerily quiet until crowds (is there a collective noun for this?) of geese squawked and flew overhead, on their way to somewhere warmer, no doubt.  In all of this, my knitting has taken rather a back seat - so I'm hoping to get lots done at Stitch n Bitch tomorrow. Actually, poor Alan Hollinghurst has taken a bit of a back seat, too, as The Guardian is my Saturday read. It's not the same now that Alexis Petridis no longer writes the men's fashion column - he always took such a wry view of the fashion world. Jess Cartner-Morley, in the women's fashion section, sometimes tries to take a wry view...but often fails! And - three cheers for Charlie Coundou: it _is_ possible to write, and live, normally as a gay parent. Still: one cannot live by knitting alone.

See Charlie Condou on Twitter:!/Charliecondou

Friday, 11 November 2011

Remembrance Day & Weekend Treats

I saw these fantastic knitted smoothie hats in Sainsbury's last night - if you buy one of these, I think 25p goes to Age Concern.  We knitted some at Stitch 'n' Bitch last year, but I haven't got on with any this year yet - but these inspired me! The pattern is on the Innocent Smoothie webpage.

Meanwhile, my lovely snood is coming along quite well. I'm using Rowan Big Wool in Mulberry - a lovely maroonish colour. One ball has knitted about 12 rows but I'm hoping to do the whole thing out of two balls, so I hope I have enough.

I had a moment of real pride in where I live, today: at 11 am, all the traffic had stopped as the two minutes' silence were observed. At the war memorial, a crowd had gathered to see the wreaths laid and there was a real atmosphere of calm.

I'm so glad it's Friday - I am really looking forward to spending the weekend making snoods and reading Alan Hollinghurst's "The Stranger's Child." I've read Part 1 so far and it hasn't disappointed. He's a fantastic writer: wry, precise, unbelievably observant and detailed. Part 1 was so evocative of the era - early 20th century. The child Daphne, confused and attracted to her brother's college friend, is particularly well-drawn.

Saturday, 5 November 2011

Fireworks and Shop Windows

So, knitting is now on sale. All this window needs are some little drifts of snow to look truly wintry. Although it's lovely to have things for sale in this fantastic shop, I am trying to resist the temptation to keep going in and asking if anyone has bought anything . . . . Somehow it's quite nerve-wracking!

Fireworks tonight -a great occasion for knitwear! Am hoping they're not a washout, though  -  the forecase showed Suffolk under a huge grey raincloud.