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

Welcome to the 10th episode of my podcast – Looking Back – Planning Ahead

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

February 2017 saw the launch of the TJFrog podcast just a week and a half before Edinburgh Yarn Festival which was a bit mad with all the learning of software and re-editing I had to do.  I’m so glad I persevered and got that first episode out and I was astounded by the response I got and the continued support you have given me – thank you!

The Weather 

Our prolonged spell of cold weather continued with an unusually warm spell for a couple of days in between.  We’ve had two bouts of continued ice & snow throughout December although fortunately have escaped any bad wind storms.

My little weather rants about how the media report the weather here in the UK have amused some of you and others have been totally able to associate with my sentiments and understand what I’m on about – I’m sure 2018 will provide more weather rants!



In Episode 2 I went through all my WIPs I had and the podcast has been a great accountability factor in me working on these projects throughout the year.

I finally wore my scarf this week that I first started making back in 2012 at a Debbie Abrahams and Jane Crowfoot workshop.  It is so cozy and snug and I find it hard that I left it so long to finish.

My Eigg slippers have yet to be finished although 10 out of the 14 pieces are on the blocking mat.  I haven’t touched the Blanche top but my aim is to get these two finished by the end of January.  Once I’ve got the interface and fabric for my knitted bag I will then only have the Moray Star jumper left to do.

Identifying and addressing my WIPs has turned into a good learning experience which has taught me not to leave projects unfinished for so long:

  1.  It weighed me down having so many outstanding.
  2.  It has felt great to see these projects being finished and I started them in the first place because I wanted to have the finished item although I do wonder sometimes if it’s more about the process.
  3. My tension has changed over time so I have to do more frogging and re-knitting than anticipated.

I finished another jumper and 3 shawls this year and have just my Bousta Beanie left to finish.

To kick off 2018 I’m going to be doing the Lang Ayre Hap by Gudrun Johnston in Kate Davies Book of Haps as well as a cowl with Koigu mini skeins I got given at Vogue Live Knitting.

Plus I have the sweater quantity of yarn for a Pom Pom jumper!

And I’ve also signed up for Kate Davies latest book the West Highland Way Club so no doubt that will tempt me.

I did some amazing trips in 2017 which included New York Vogue Live Knitting where I focused on developing my knitting skills for a couple of things I want to do in my business.

I went to France, did a workshop with Debbie Abrahams and went to the Oslo Knitting Festival.

I’m just getting ready to go to India with Knit For Peace.  This is very exciting and my first time to India and on such a trip.

Dorset Buttons

The first show I vended at in 2017 was Edinburgh Yarn Festival where I taught a couple of Dorset Button workshops for The Teapot Trust and launched my first limited edition TJFrog Wool under the Shorelines & Strata label.

And now I’m getting ready for EYF again and it’s only a few weeks away.  I have been busy swatching with my new wool which only arrived a few days ago and there is much to sort out before the show.  There will also be new kits as well as some more Dorset Button fabric bags.


During 2017 I also vended at Woolfest, Perth, Yarndale & Loch Ness Knit Fest and did demonstrations and workshops at a variety of places.

Check out my “Out & About” page for up to date details of festivals and craft fairs where I will be throughout 2018.

And do get in touch via the “Workshops” page if you’d like to chat about arranging a Dorset Button workshop at your Local Yarn Store or your knitting group or with a group of friends.

The online shop was new in 2017 and thank to you everyone who helped me kick it off and to all of you who have bought products throughout the year.

New Year’s Day sees the start of the Criss Cross Crochet Along hosted by Olann and check out their Ravelry group for all the details.  The pattern designed by Fay Daspher-Hughes was originally made with 2 skeins of TJFrog Shorelines & Strata wool.

Local Lowdown

This section is designed to give a snippet of information about a place or event or piece or news from Skye and the first episode saw me talk about the new Misty Isle Gin  Little did I know that gin would creep into the podcast from time to time.

Skye Showcase

The interviews from textile artists on Skye and Across The Bridge on the mainland have been a lot of fun and I will continue with these throughout 2018 with one or two surprises as well.  I do a round up of those interviews along with a couple of updates.

Emma who bought people together in the local community to make a wall hanging for the new community centre, An Crubh, also held a craft morning for people to make Christmas Tree decorations for the centre.  The centre is proving to be very popular and recently hosted the BBC Alba New Year’s Eve Party.

The enthusiasm and love that Louise of Lou Lou Designs has for her Harris Tweed Bags & the makers behind the tweed was infectious.  Louise has moved within Carbost and you will now find her just up from The Oyster Shed.

There was much laughter during the interviews with Yasmin at Island At The Edge who along with her partner Trevor have rebuilt their home and livelihood here on Skye after a devastating fire which destroyed their home on Colonsay.  I hope to be back interviewing Yasmin again this year to catch up with developments on the croft.

It was lovely to have Sue who hosts Knitting Holidays In France on the podcast in the summer especially since my journey back into knitting started with a course that Sue had organised back in 2008.

Sally at On The Croft is extremely talented and her range of products in her shop is of a very high quality and are all made either by herself or people on her peninsular.  Sally recently gave me my first spinning lesson!

I got to go back to Torridon to visit Sheila Bates of Florrie Felts whose portrayed her connection to the land and animals which form her working life.

Finally I went to Glenview to chat with textile artist & business owner Kirsty who is now the owner of Shilasdair and I know many of you were fascinated by her innovative creative work.

There is much work happening at the moment with those preps in the run up to Edinburgh Yarn Festival and I hope to see many of you there.  If not I hope our paths cross at some point during 2018.

Wishing you every success, happiness, good health and a peaceful 2018 and lots of woolly making!


Music – the music is:

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

Scottish Dance by Muhammed Affan & licensed from Melody Loops

Bye for now.

TJ Signature





Facebook:   @TJFrogSkye

Instagram:   TJFrogSkye

Twitter:    TJFrogMakes

Ravelry:  LittleFrog



4 Responses

  1. Happy New Year! And thank you for sharing your life with us I truly love these moments. Knitting and listening to you.
    Have a wonderful trip to India and I’m looking forward to hearing about everything you will explore there.
    I will not at all say anything about my wip’s or UFO as we call them (UnFinnished Objects). Maybe I’m ready to reveal how many at the end of 2018, when I have finished up some more….. ?
    Say hello to Geraint and take care.

    1. Thank you Toril for your lovely comment it means so much 🙂 You’re right we also say UFOs too & I think mine were probably that as I hadn’t touched them in a long time, whereas I think a WIP probably better describes a project in progress (from time to time!!!) Didn’t think you would have a pile of them, thought you only had one or two on the go! Tania x

  2. Lovely to hear your podcast again as it transports me back to Skye from the East End of Glasgow. Best wishes for 2018 in all your Tjfrog endeavours sounds like it’s going to be an exciting year.

    Rhona x

    1. Thanks Rhona, lovely to hear it brings you back to Skye. Yes 2018 is turning out to be a very exciting year! x

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