No, I've not upped sticks and buggered off to Wales, I just thought I'd ramble on about Wonderwool a bit more :-)
Firstly, it's a sod of a drive from Staffordshire. However, I'm pretty used to making my way over the border as we spent a lot of holidays in Wales, though normally further north. It's always great seeing the first of the bilingual road signs and practising my shaky Welsh pronunciation on the passing village names. This was the first time I've been to Powys (I think) and I pretty much wanted to move there immediately :-) It helped that it was a gorgeous day as well. It's not replaced Scotland in my heart, though I do find Welsh easier to pronounce than Gaelic...
Anyway. What did I buy? I know you're just GASPING to know. I'll not re-post all the pics again - have a look at the mosaic on the last post or nip over to my Flickr for close-ups :-) Well, first off was a gorgeous Banksia drop spindle from the lovely Kevin at High-Low Whorl Drop Spindles. Ange and I both snapped one up as they tend to disappear rapidly. Kevin told us he may be forced to shut up shop - I really hope this isn't the case. His work is lovely, very reasonably priced and he's a very nice bloke too. There aren't many quality spindle makers here in the UK (IST is the only other one that springs to mind)so here's to Kevin being able to carry on!
I fell over in Freyalyn's fibre store, and FeltStudioUK as well - some batts, hand-dyed Teeswater curls and hand-dyed Shetland tops. I visited The Threshing Barn, based in Leek not far from my old home, where some startling Feza yarn and bags of sari silk ribbon trimmings made me buy them :-) I picked up some bargain yellow banana silk, a bunch of books, some Malabrigo (FINALLY!!!) and a dash of Colinette. John Arbon provided a VERY generous quantity of Suri alpaca (much more than I'd paid for, bless him, and he wouldn't take any extra money for it), I scored 500g of merino tops at a very good price (don't ask me who from, I can't remember!) and Wingham's provided crazy batt materials and sparkly angelina fibres. Artist's Palette Yarns had the nicest stand, and I snagged some of their 100% silk in all the colours of a starling's wing. Finally, House of Hemp had several beautiful kits, but I settled for a mega-skein of the undyed hemp yarn. I will probably get one of their kits later - the designs were stunning.
Works in Progress
I got sick of the hap, so I cast on Ysolda's Liesl, in Mirasol Miski which is GORGEOUS and I want to eat it. Or possibly sleep with it.
I have started spinning up a lovely batt I carded a few weeks ago. I'm spinning it on the new Banksia spindle - I've not fallen out with Caroline, but I wanted this to be super-fine and she's not really the right tool for that. I can spin frog-hair singles if I want on a light spindle :-)
In other news - I'm still employed, enjoying it (phew) and have just this week caught up on all the tasks that needed doing. I just hope they keep me on now everything is organised!!! One thing I have learned, is that I'm not as fluent at understanding Weegie as I thought. I was down in the entrance to our building on my way to the loo, and a bunch of the yard workers were waiting to clock off. I realised as I listened to their conversations, that they may as well have been speaking Swahili. Hmmm. I'm hoping that exposure and practice will solve that problem...