Tag Archives: Buttons

September Rolag Club: Michaelmas

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September Rolag Club: Michaelmas

Welcome to Forgotten Festivals Rolag Club!

This month we are celebrating Michaelmas on the 29th of September.

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Michaelmas is named for St. Michael, the biblical archangel, and the feast of Michaelmas was important as one of the old quarter days which neatly divided the year into four. (The other quarter days were Christmas, on the 25th of December, Lady Day on the 25th of March, and Midsummer, taken as the 24th of June.) Michaelmas was the traditional day to settle debts and to change one’s employment. Hiring Fairs allowed employers and workers to make new arrangements. Workers for hire would advertise their skills by wearing an emblem of their trade: a crook for a shepherd, or a mop for a maid, etc. If a new employer was found, this token would be swapped for a ribbon and a shilling to spend at the fair.

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Emblems of the spinner’s trade.

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A shilling to spend!

The themes of this rolag box are the angel, the michaelmas daisy, and the tools of the trade. I hope you enjoy it.

In this box you should find:

  • The story of Michaelmas.
  • 10g of rolags in “Michaelmas Daisies” – 63% Merino, 30% Hemp, 7% Tussah Silk.
  • 20g of rolags in “Archangel” – 50% Merino, 25% Bamboo, 25% Faux Cashmere and a hint of Angelina.
  • A handspun mini skein in “Halo”.
  • Tea in Turmeric Gold and Three Chamomile blends.
  • Stitch markers: Spinners’ emblems of a spinning wheel & a skein of yarn.
  • A shilling – don’t spend it all at once!
  • A hand-woven Wrist Distaff.
  • 3 Michaelmas Daisy buttons from Forest Valley Designs.

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A mini skein of ‘Halo’.

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Michaelmas Daisy buttons by Forest Valley Designs.

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A notions pouch from Forest Valley Designs.

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A wrist distaff for handspinners (especially spindle spinners).

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Wrist distaff in detail: Tablet-woven band by Story Skeins.

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Tea in Turmeric Gold for the angel’s halo, and Three Chamomile for the daisy family.

 

 

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Life on the Outside

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Life on the Outside

Background:

These skeins were commissioned as a gift. They are what I call a Companion Set: two different, but harmonious, skeins with one deliberately simple in design, and one towards the art yarn end of the spectrum.

Here the plainer skein is inspired by dew drops on grass. It is spun from a mixture of mallard-green merino fibre blended with rainbow-dyed trilobal nylon. It was spun as a slim single and plied with a green glitter-thread. The companion skein is an art yarn. The blended fibre was spun as a gently-textured thick-and-thin single. I spun the butterfly charms straight into the fibre for stability, and the colourful flower buttons were threaded onto the same green glitter-thread before plying.

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Story:

A cosmos in every sphere. Whole worlds, as far as the eye can see. Dew drops cling to every blade, flexing in the breeze, splitting the light that crosses its path, capturing its colour. Looking further afield, there the colours come into view. Less ephemeral there, though hardly permanent. The borders are home to delicate hues, flashes of bold colours. Life in many forms. Garden creatures flash by: circling, darting, diving through air. The fauna visits the flora, life cycles uniting to allow each to continue. Today’s dance promises the future.

Information:

1. Title: Dew Drops

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Composition: Fibre: 70% merino 30% rainbow trilobal with a synthetic glitter-thread ply.

Weight: 104g / 20 WPI / sockweight

Length: 463m / 506yd

Care: Hand wash only. Dry flat.

Details:

Date:  November 2016

Skein code: 0094a

Fibre: Merino, trilobal nylon

Source: World of Wool

 

2. Title: Flora and Fauna

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Composition: Carded blend of cashmere, tussah silk, merino and trilobal nylon with a synthetic glitter-thread ply, metal charms and plastic buttons.

Weight: 133g /11 WPI / Irregular, worsted weight to DK average.

Length: 320m / 350yd

Care: Hand wash only. Dry flat. Hand wind only.

Details:

Date: November 2016

Skein code: 0094b

Fibre: Cashmere, Tussah silk, Merino and Trilobal nylon

Source: The Rainbow Fibre Fairy

Status: Sold

February Rolag Club: Collop Monday

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February Rolag Club: Collop Monday

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Welcome to Forgotten Festivals Rolag Club!

This month we are celebrating Collop Monday on the 8th of February.

Many of us may be looking forward to pancake day on Tuesday. Some of us may still use its traditional name of Shrove Tuesday, and remember the reason we like to cook and eat pancakes on the last day before Lent starts.

Lent is the traditional Christian fasting period for the six or so weeks before Easter. The word is of Old English derivation, traced back to the word for spring and possibly referencing the lengthening days at this time of year. Prior to Lent comes Shrovetide, and the old verb ‘to shrive’ means ‘to seek absolution via confession and penance.’

Part of preparing for the Lenten fast involved using up the rich food during Shrovetide. Shrove Tuesday’s pancakes use up the eggs, milk and sugar, but Collop Monday was the last day to eat meat before lent, and cooking the collops (traditionally made of bacon) provided the fat for the coming pancake feast. The traditional breakfast on Collop Monday consisted of the bacon-collops and eggs. It turns out this is a great excuse to create a whimsical “Full English Breakfast” themed rolag box!

With thanks to our guest makers, Sarah from Setting the Twist who has made this month’s mini skeins, and Kirsty from Buttons Be Good who has made us some beautiful mushroom-themed buttons.

I hope you enjoy it!

In this box you should find:

  • 20g of rolags in “Flesh” – 70% Corriedale, 15% Faux Cashmere, 15% Soya Bean Fibre
  • 10g of rolags in “Fowl” – 67% Romney, 33% Corriedale
  • The story of Collop Monday
  • A handspun mini skein from Setting the Twist in “Tomato”
  • Mushroom buttons from Buttons Be Good
  • Mini chocolate eggs
  • Beans by Jelly Belly
  • Tea in English Breakfast and After Dinner blends
  • Knife and Fork stitch markers

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“Flesh & Fowl” rolags – inspired by a traditional Collop Monday Breakfast.

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Mushroom buttons by Buttons Be Good

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Knife and Fork stitch markers, made by Imogen.

Tomato mini skeins by Setting The Twist

Buttons Be Good!

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Buttons Be Good!

Background:

Spun for a friend, Kirsty of Buttons Be Good, this was another experimental art yarn. I had thought for a while that tiny, colourful buttons scattered through a yarn would be fun. I wanted to make the base a slightly thick’n’thin singles yarn and I had some beautiful falkland fibre to work with. This yarn became an experiment in how little I could do to the fibre in the creation of the finished yarn. It is very lightly spun in order to retain its softness, and lightly wrapped in a highlight thread which carries the buttons.

Story:

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When I was little, my granny’s button box was a treasure trove of adventure. I could dive my hand right into the well of shiny trinkets and feel the smoothness of them slipping past my fingers, making space for me. I could count them, sort them, arrange them according to colours and textures and sizes. I could build landscapes of imagination, and lose all time, lost in play.

I grew older. I bought my own button box! Excavated from a jumble sale, filled with another family’s memories.

Now it helps to create new stories, so maybe one day someone will look back and remember my button box, and all the places that it took them to.

Buttons Be Good!

Information:

Title: Buttons Be Good

Composition: Superwash Falkland, Polyamide Thread, Buttons

Weight: 138g / 9-10 WPI / Worsted thick’n’thin

Length: 133m / 146yd approx.

Care: Hand wash only. Dry flat.

Details:

Date: July 2015

Skein code: 0058

Fibre: superwash falkland

Source: Wingham Wool Work

Status: Gifted