On February 3rd, 2018, Baa unlocked its doors for the very first time. An opening day party brought a big crowd of happy faces, many of whom have since become loyal customers and friends. Do you remember that amazing cake?
One week later, with Valentines Day approaching we played host to Glasgow based designer/tutor, Carol Meldrum. I had invited Carol to teach a workshop based around her book, 'Knit Your Own Boyfriend', which had been published a few years previously... When the title was a little less politically incorrect :-).
We had a hilarious day, beginning with each participant deciding on all the qualities they would like to feature (Or, remove!) when knitting their perfect partner. Well, you can imagine? Hee Hee!
Who would have believed that 3 years later we would be in lock down? 2020 was been a tough year for everyone, including tutors like Carol, whose livelihood relies on teaching at knit retreats, cruises and yarn stores. So, when Carol got in touch about the publication of her latest design; it seemed like a good time to invite our first Guest Blogger of 2021 to tell us what she has been up to, and how she has coped with a difficult year.
words by CAROL MELDRUM
"Whether it's knit or crochet there's nothing I enjoy more than playing around with stitches, it's something I've done since I was a kid, and lockdown has certainly given me plenty time to try and get creative.
OK, maybe I couldn't physically travel, but I could use all the pictures and resource material I had from previous trips as inspiration. I would set myself little themes, whether it was a place, colour, technique or shape, a bit like being back at Art School. My way of trying to keep the mind and fingers distracted. Hoping something would spark the imagination and keep the itchy feet at bay.
So when the call for Autumn/Winter submissions for The Knitter arrived in the inbox - I already had lots of stitch possibilities running around my head. Now was a chance to tweak, adapt and put it all together to fit seasonal themes.
I must have done something right as I am pleased to say that one of my lockdown ideas featured in the 'Folklore' story of the January issue of The Knitter. In a dark month, seeing the shawl giving the model a gentle bosie, gave me a much needed spring in my step!
Maeve by Carol Merdum
Taking the shawl shape from the Faroe Islands, (An elongated triangle shawl with central spine panel, perfect for a spot of decoration) and keeping to the Folklore theme, I thought, let's go for tradition Shetland and Scandinavian motifs - any excuse for a spot of fair isle!
The additional surface decoration came from the wonderful Estonian and Latvian traditional pattern placement embroidery.
I'd had the idea bubbling about in my head for a while - not the actual finished design, but the combination of elements picked up from travels, it feels great to see the finished design in print and to share with folks.
It might have been lockdown, but this certainly ticked all the boxes for me and hopefully it will for you too."
Thank you Carol x
If you already have a copy, why not knit Maeve using one of Baa's most popular yarns, Jamieson's of Shetland Spindrift.
All ten patterns from issue 159 can also be found on Ravelry.