A podcast for people who love knitting, Dorset Buttons, creativity & Scotland, especially the Highlands & Islands.

Welcome to the 15th episode of my podcast – Catching Up

Thank you for listening again or welcome if you are a first time listener.

The Weather 

I talk about the Skye heatwave – maybe not quite as hot as some parts of the UK, although still very hot for us.  Since May we’ve had great weather with the haar visiting from time to time.  Storm Hector came & went overnight in June & fortunately didn’t cause any problems for us. The end of June was particularly good although July brought more mixed weather and as I recorded this episode it was very driech although the rain was very welcome.


There is progress on my WIPs – yay!!!

My Bousta Beanie is finished & just needs a Dorset Button on the crown so now I feel justified starting the Merrie Dancers Hat ready for Shetland Wool Week 2018.  All 14 pieces of the Eigg Slippers are ready to be sewn together and the Blanche top by Susan Crawford is  all finished & drying on the blocking mats!

From my original 8 WIPs on my second episode in March 2017, I have finished everything except lining the bag & the Moray Star Jumper by Di Gilpin.

I chat about what I’m going to do next now that I don’t have a big WIP pile.

I’ve had a few exciting trips on a personal level since the last episode at the end of April so I chat through these.

They include: at the end of May I went to Louise Hunt’s Caithness Craft Collective retreat at John O’Groats Natural Retreats where we had beautiful Caithness weather.

The view from our lodge at John O’Groats Natural Retreats

We did indigo dyeing, knitting, chatting, relaxing & had a pop up shop.

The indigo dye pot

I had a gin buddy – Suzanne!  And who noticed there was no gin reference in Episode 14?

I give you an overview of my trip to Tiree back in May to do the 10K, 35mph headwind, beautiful beaches, a ceihlidh and a lovely community event.

Walking to the start of the 10K race in Three

I talk about my attempt to knit Tegna with the Lithuainan Linen which I found very hard working with lace & metal needles.  Having tried more than a dozen times to get going with it Julia pointed out it wasn’t worth doing knitting that I wasn’t enjoying it – thank you Julia!  So that project is on the back burner for a while.

The end of May /beginning of June we went to Washington DC, with Geraint’s work, and we met up for a day with Nora who took us to Fibre Space at Alexandria.  Here I bought a beautiful skein of kettle dyed yarn from NeighbourHood Fibre & 3 skeins from Spin Cycles Yarns which are destined to become Dorset Buttons.  We also went to a tasty pie cafe & a farmers market where I bought Green Hat Gin to add to my collection!

Nora & I outside Fibre Space

On a separate day Geraint & I went to Looped Yarn Works at Dupont Circle where I bought some Quince & Co Willet Cleaner cotton.

One of the rooms at Looped Yarn Works

Dorset Buttons

A lot has happened in this area since I last spoke to you with a couple of exciting new things to look ahead to as well.

In May I entered a couple of Dorset Button Brooches to the Loch Torridon Community Gallery Night & Day Summer Season exhibition and we also exhibited at the first Aberdeen Yarn Festival.

I topped up on supplies for Dorset Button making at the show & I also taught a Dorset Button workshop & we had a lot of fun.

The team at Aberdeen Yarn Festival have made a lovely short video of the event which you can watch by clicking here.  You will find a short interview with me at 01:33

Time in Dorset continuing book research followed this & then it was Woolfest in late June.

Sandra in her lovely hand knitted cardigan finished with Dorset Buttons


I love to see returning visitors & I loved seeing Sandra & what she had been up to making Dorset Buttons since she saw the demo at Woolfest last year.

I found the Isle of Man stand very interesting a collaborative of textile artists.

An unexpected moment I got given an award for All Round Loveliness, thank you to all the lovely comments from The Woolclip Team.

Receiving my award – photo reproduced with kind permission of The Woolclip

I went straight from this to the Lamb to Loom exhibition at Minghinish where I did Dorset Button demonstrations on a couple of days.

I delivered a Dorset Button workshop with Rowan Tree Travel – and had a selfie with the owner Heather!

I’m very excited about a couple of announcements about new events:

Shetland Wool Week – I will be delivering 2 Dorset Button workshops, a half & a full day & I’ll also be at the Makers Market.  The full day workshop will cover more of the traditional techniques & we will use all weights of Shetland yarn from 1 ply cobweb to aran.  And I will be exhibiting at Yarnporium at Central Hall Westminster on 2 & 3 November.

Also keep a lookout for announcements as there are some other workshops in the pipeline.

Finally I look ahead to Wool Exploration by Louise of Knit British who is looking at Dorset Breeds, Dorset Horn, Dorset Down, Poll Dorset & Portland.

Local Lowdown

I talk about a new campsite at Broadford which is a community owned project & a great addition for visitors.  Currently it is only available to camper vans and will open to tents once the grass has grown!

Skye Showcase

For this interview I catch up with Yasmin of Island at the Edge, who I interviewed a couple of times last year.

We hear about what has happened on a personal and business level which now includes Yasmin & Trevor living in a house rather than their caravan.

View from upstairs in their house

Yasmin tells us about what they’ve achieved with the house, how the caravan has now been updated for visitors to the island to stay in & we hear about new stock in the shop as well as new animals on the croft & forthcoming projects.

Lambs at the Island At The Edge

One of the new additions to the animals on the croft

That’s it for now I will be back in the middle of August!

Music – the music is:

One Frog For a Prince, by Ron Patton & licensed from Melody Loops.

Bye for now.

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