Tag Archives: Gradient

June Rolag Club: St. John’s Eve

Standard
June Rolag Club: St. John’s Eve

2016-06-22 00.15.18.jpg

Welcome to Forgotten Festivals Rolag Club!

This month we are celebrating St. John’s Eve on the 23rd of June.

St. John’s Eve is closely associated with midsummer celebrations and is celebrated in many countries around the world with the lighting of bonfires. Although named for a christian martyr, many of the traditions that survive to this day are pre-Christian in origin. The lighting of fires (and sometimes, the leaping of fires) relates to the belief in the cleansing properties of fire. It was also a time for the gathering of herbs to ward off spirits, especially witches, and chief amongst these herbs was St. John’s Wort, the pungent yellow bloom still in use today for its medicinal properties. St. John’s Day, or midsummer, was fixed as the 24th of June, despite the variation in date of the summer solstice. The saint in question was John the Baptist, born roughly 6 months before Jesus and so his feast day was set 6 months before Christmas Eve, making it one of the few saints days to celebrate the martyr’s birth, rather than death. St. John’s Day became one of the English Quarter Days, the others being Michaelmas, Christmas and Lady Day.

This month’s rolags are bonfire-inspired. You will also find a mini-skein in “charcoal” from Setting the Twist, a bit of heat from your three ginger tea and the gingins chew, soothing bedtime tea containing valerian, which was also collected at this time of year, stitch markers and a notions pouch from Forest Valley Designs to celebrate the solstice and the traditional herb-gathering, a tealight to have your own mini fire, a poem, and a recipe for the celebratory dish called “Goody” which was associated with this festival.

Happy midsummer!

2016-06-22 00.13.24

The “Bonfire” rolags were created as a reversible gradient set.

In this box you should find:

  • The story of St. John’s Eve
  • 10g of rolags in “No Smoke Without” – 50% Grey Suffolk, 20% Yak, 15% Rose, 15% Tussah Silk.
  • 20g of reversible-gradient rolags in “Bonfire” – 49% Merino, 21% Tussah Silk, 15% Baby Camel, 15% Faux Angora
  • A handspun mini skein in “Charcoal” by Setting The Twist
  • Tea in Three Ginger and Bedtime blends
  • Stitch markers in “Sun” and “St. John’s Wort” by Forest Valley Designs
  • “The Joyful Feast of St. John”
  • A recipe for “Goody”
  • A tealight
  • Gingins ginger chew
2016-06-22 00.11.03

A sun worthy of midsummer, from Forest Valley Designs

2016-06-22 00.11.58

St. John’s Wort by Forest Valley Designs

“The Joyful Feast of St. John”

Then doth the joyful feast of St. John the Baptist take his turne,

When bonfires great with loftie flame, in every towne doe burne;

And yong men round with maides, doe daunce in every streete,

With garlands wrought of Motherwort, or else with Vervain sweete,

And many other flowre faire, with Violets in their handes,

Whereas they all do fondly thinke, that whosoever standes,

And thorow the flowres beholds the flame, his eyes shall feele no paine.

When thus till night they daunced have, they through the fire amaine

With striving mindes doe runne, and all their hearbes they cast therein,

And then, with wordes devout and prayers, they solemnly begin,

Desiring God that all their illies may there consumed bee

Whereby they thinke through all that yeare from Augues to be free …

 

From a 16th Century poem by Thomas Kirchmeyer

Ref: Families, Festivals and Food, p.51

Recipe: “Goody”

Ingredients (all quantities approximate)

  • 350 ml milk
  • 8 slices of slightly stale bread
  • 35g sugar
  • 2 tsp ground cinnamon

 

  1. Heat the milk in a pan.
  2. Take the slightly stale bread and tear each slice into smaller pieces. Add the bread to the warm milk.
  3. Add 25g of the sugar and bring the mixture to the boil.
  4. Adjust the sugar to taste, and add more milk if needed during cooking.
  5. Pour the mixture into an oven-proof dish.
  6. Top with the remaining sugar, mixed with the cinnamon.
  7. Bake until browned and crispy on the top.
  8. Serve and enjoy.
Advertisements

Unlocked

Standard
Unlocked

Background:

I love spinning gradient yarns, and had another chance to indulge this hobby for a skill swap with a very talented knitter. As the yarn was created the colours spoke to me first of metal and then rust, merging into the colours of dusky rose petals. The gradient fibre set, from the very talented Hilltop Cloud, was called “Padlock”, so I named the yarn “Unlocked”.

2016-02-28 14.13.57.jpg

Story:

Leave the shelter of the homestead – hearth and warmth and family – and step over the threshold. Survey the garden wilderness, full of hidden nooks waiting to be found.

Follow the path as it slowly becomes more and more overgrown. As what was open and passable becomes a natural obstacle course of leaves, twigs and fallen branches.

A dead end? But, not quite hidden, a door, and hanging from it a rusty padlock hinting of past treasures once hidden from uninvited guests. Unused and ineffective now, you push the crumbling timbers of the door. Hinges squeak, grumbling at the call to action, and finally the sight, hidden for so long, comes into view: twisted, overgrown and thorny, but in bloom!

The rose garden is rediscovered. 🌹

2016-03-06 10.52.20.jpg

Information:

Title: Unlocked

Composition: 50% Merino, 37.5% BFL, 12.5% Silk

Weight: 140g / 18 WPI / Sockweight

Length: 600+m / 650+yd

Care: Hand wash only. Dry flat.

Details:

Date: March 2016

Skein code: 0090

Fibre: Merino, Bluefaced Leicester, Mulberry Silk.

Source: Hilltop Cloud gradient set: “Padlock”

Status: Swapped

2016-03-06 11.07.36.png

January Rolag Club: Plough Monday

Standard
January Rolag Club: Plough Monday

2016-01-08 11.01.44
Welcome to Forgotten Festivals Rolag Club!

I hope you’ve all had a good break over the festive season. Now it’s a new month, a new year and time to get back to work.

This month we are celebrating Plough Monday on January 11th.

Plough Monday falls on the first Monday after Twelfth Night. The traditional Christmas celebration was a full twelve days of feasting, culminating in a huge and rowdy party on twelfth night, the 5th of January. So what better way to mark the return to work, when ploughing would begin for the next crop … than with a feast?

In villages around the country there were a variety of traditions. Leaping dances were held, with the young and fit encouraged to leap as high as possible because it was though the height they achieved marked the height of the forthcoming corn crop. In some places, a “fool plough” was decorated and dragged around the streets to encourage villagers to donate money, sometimes under threat of having their garden ploughed if they were less than generous!

Inspired by the theme of ‘back to work’, this month’s rolags reflect  January skies, and the box contains a mixture of extras to help you get going at the start of the working day, and help you relax at the end of it. I’m particularly thrilled to introduce our guest maker, Leanne from Solocro who has made one of your treats. I hope you enjoy all of it.

x

In this box you will find:

  • 30g of gradient rolags in “Shifting Skies” – 42% Corriedale, 19% Falkland, 19% Gotland, 11% Rose fibre, 9% Milk protein fibre, and a hint of sparkle.
  • A mini skein in “Midnight Clear” – 70% Merino, 30% Trilobal.
  • The story of Plough Monday.
  • A set of stitch markers.
  • Tea in ‘Refresh’ and ‘Revitalise’ blends.
  • Bath, or foot bath, salts.
  • Handmade hand cream from Solocro.

2016-01-08 10.58.41

“Shifting skies” gradient rolags, inspired by the January weather.

2016-01-08 10.59.35

“Midnight Clear” mini skeins, inspired by the starry winter sky and spun as my favourite style of gently thick and thin singles.

2016-01-06 20.47.26

Bath salts from the old apothecary in Haworth.

2016-01-06 20.42.33

Handmade handcream from Solocro

Sunset over the flax field

Standard
Sunset over the flax field

Background:

I made this rolag set as a sunset-inspired gradient, and decided to spin it as a single gradient yarn. Here you can see the process of selecting each colour to spin in turn:

2015-12-14 12.48.57

I love the addition of the linen in this yarn. Its bright white seems to intensify the beautiful, rich colours, and it adds an interesting bit of texture to the yarn.

Story:

2015-12-14 12.53.35

You may not recognise the golden flax from the field of blue flowers.

It’s hidden inside the stems, needing work from the hands and sweat from the brow to free the fine fibres.

The colours change as the sun descends:

Bright white at first, so the sights of the field are vibrant and clear.

Honey yellow matures to deeper shades.

Tangerine sky becomes cherry red,

As darkness creeps up to put flax to bed.

2015-12-14 12.47.42

Information:

Title: Sunset over the flax field

Composition: Merino/linen/angelina

Weight: 100g / 13 WPI / DK

Length: 195m / 214yd approx.

Care: Hand wash only. Dry flat.

Details:

Date: July 2015

Skein code: 0059

Fibre: 21 micron merino, linen, angelina

Source: Rolags by Story Skeins

Status: Sold

Orchard

Standard
Orchard

Background:

This batt from Bits and Hobs was a joy to work with. It was called “Fruit and Flowers,” and inspired the idea of orchards. I spun it as a sports weight, gently thick and thin, singles yarn. As I wound the finished skein into a yarn cake, it transformed itself into a beautiful rose!

Story:

I grew up with orchards. They were, are, and always will be special, almost sacred, places. Like a secret garden, I could get away from everyday hustle and let nature envelop and balm. They took me through each season – from bare twigs to buds, from buds to flowers, from flowers to fruit, playing out the evolution of each year. Calm, peaceful and unforced productivity was a great model for life.

2015-12-01 23.31.03

2015-12-01 23.29.28

Information:

Title: Orchard

Composition: Super-fine merino, Silk, Angelina

Weight: 100g / 17 WPI / Sports weight

Length: 318m / 348yd approx.

Care: Hand wash only. Dry flat.

Details:

Date: November 2015

Skein code: 0079

Fibre: 18.5 micron merino, silk, angelina blended as a carded batt.

Source: Bits and Hobs

Status: Swapped

Eat Your Greens

Standard
Eat Your Greens

Background:

This was another swap with a lovely and talented lady. She wanted a complete surprise so I thought I’d spoil her with a Hilltop Cloud gradient set. The fibre was called “Cabbage Leaf” and inspired the concept behind “Eat Your Greens.”

Story:

I saw a cabbage flower once, in the place I’d least expect it. Nestling, hiding its face, but placed at the centre of everything, radiating nature’s elegance.

It was in a flower display in a church. And it wasn’t even harvest! It had been picked for its subtle beauty.

Was this the cabbage I knew? From school dinners and uneaten meals. The two ideas didn’t go together. Incongruous was the word.

But now I have a new idea of what ‘cabbage’ is.

2015-11-28 22.25.06

Information:

Title: Eat Your Greens

Composition: 55% Merino, 30% Corriedale, 15% Bamboo.

Weight: 140g / 16 WPI / Sports weight

Length: 539m / 590yd approx.

Care: Hand wash only. Dry flat.

Details:

Date: November 2015

Skein code: 0077

Fibre: Handblended Merino, Corriedale and Bamboo.

Source: Hilltop Cloud

Status: Swapped

Magma

Standard
Magma

Background:

I love spinning batts as singles yarn. This beautiful batt from Habetrot fibres was called “Darkness” and inspired this Magma yarn, which in turn inspired its owner to design and make this “Queen of Hearts” ponchette. You can see the gradient yarn worked up into the pattern on the ravelry link.

Story:

You think the earth is dark and cold under your feet? Not a bit of it.

We are clinging to the skin of a boiling sphere of rock.

Heavy elements swirl below, occasionally breaking the surface to remind us of their presence, and power.

Land, that we like to think of as so permanent. That we like to possess, that through history we have fought over again and again, is destroyed and created constantly.

We seek permanence. Yet the stuff of life is change.

2015-11-27 17.52.37

Information:

Title: Magma

Composition: Merino, bamboo, firestar, angelina, tussah silk.

Weight: 100g / 14 WPI / DK

Length: 223m / 244yd approx.

Care: Hand wash only. Dry flat.

Details:

Date: July 2015

Skein code: 0056

Fibre: Handblended batt of merino, bamboo, firestar, angelina, tussah silk.

Source: Habetrot Fibres

Status: Sold