off the cuff – a workshop

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Last week Nichola of ninneynoo invited a group of us into her home for an amazing stitching adventure. Five of us from my knitting group arrived at what can only be described as one of the cutest houses I have been to. A beautiful cottage in a picturesque small village, the inside an Aladdin’s cave of Vintage meets Cath Kidston, we were welcomed by Nichola, her Mum and husband with homemade cookies and freshly brewed coffee.

I met Nichola during the Julie Arkell creature workshop weekend (you can read about it here) at my local craft centre where I was in awe at her ability of making the most amazing paper mache figures and stitching clothes for them. We started talking and soon a workshop date and subject was set. Nichola, who has a City and Guilds in Textiles (her final piece can be seen in photo above) suggested we make a needle or keepsake book using cuffs from old shirts.

 

Slightly daunted we all arrived to a treasure trove of fabrics, ribbons, buttons and everything else you need for a really good stitching extravaganza. With Nichola’s help we were soon snipping and stitching away letting our imagination go wild and could only be stopped by the lure of delicious smells of lunch and the tempting sight of cakes and cups of tea.

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What a fabulous day we all had and I am pleased to say that I managed to finish my needle book yesterday. I am so pleased with it!! Be prepared to see it featured in many of my future photo shoots!

Thank you Nichola for a magical stitching day…can’t wait for the next one soon!

Wishing you all a very happy Easter!

X.

 

Impressions of an Exhibition

Last weekend I travelled to Schwabsburg, near Oppenheim in Germany. A beautiful picturesque small town in Rheinland/Pfalz, very close to the mighty river Rhein and surrounded by vineyards, that produce the most delicious of wines.

I had been invited way back when by the lovely Claudia of Wollsinn Yarns to teach a couple of workshops at the Schwabsburger Wollfest. All preparation complete, I set off from Wales last Friday early and spent a wonderful weekend surrounded by beautiful yarn and lovely people.

Here are my Impressions:

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Oppenheim Market Square

Claudia  - the Organiser

Claudia – the Organiser

Spinning Workshop

Spinning Workshop

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Lang Yarns

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Collinette Yarns

 

 

 

One of my Fair Isle Workshops

One of my Fair Isle Workshops

…and look what came home with me thanks to my lovely hosts…

Gifted Yarns

Gifted Yarns

What beautiful things can I make with this?

Any ideas anyone?

Until soon…X.

a colourful weekend

Last weekend saw me traveling to beautiful Backnang, near Stuttgart in Germany. I had been invited to the annual Woolfest gathering to teach a couple of workshops, and had been preparing for it for a few weeks.

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This was my third teaching visit, and I was looking forward to seeing old friends, making a few new ones, and I was not disappointed.

After a long day traveling I arrived in glorious sunshine and almost summer like temperatures, being greeted by my friend Renate with big open arms. I can’t describe the warm and fuzzy feeling I get when I touch down in my homeland, knowing that I will be spending time doing what I like best, teaching some wonderful new techniques to eager students.

We started setting up Renate’s stall that first evening, finishing off first thing the next morning…

here it is in all it’s glory, with Renate eager to get started.

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I had a little wonder to see what other eye-candy I could find and to say hello to many friends from years passed.

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One of the highlights was meeting Konrad and Ute, two Rowan Yarn Ambassadors in person. We had become friends over Facebook and our blogs, but this was to be our first meeting in person. What fun to learn that both were going to take part in one of my workshops, truly wonderful. Lovely to catch up with what goes on in the world of Rowan Yarn (I used to work for them until I went free-lance), and fun to have these two very accomplished knitters join in the fun of crochet.

 

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Here we are after the workshop having had a wonderful time (Ute on the left, Konrad and I).

Time, as always, went far too quickly. Before I knew it I was back on the train and then plane homeward bound. Many happy memories came with me and can be treasured until next time.

I leave you with this happy photo of four ladies from the USA. Two are living in Stuttgart and the other two had travelled especially at this time not to miss this wonderful yarny experience. How amazing is that!

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Wishing you all a wonderful weekend. Enjoy!

X.

 

Workshops for 2013

dear diary,

I always love to spend a day with other like minded knitterly friends. What could  be better than a whole day having fun with beautiful yarns and notions, eating yummy cakes, laughing with friends and learning something new on the way. I am sure you agree that it is very close to perfect!…

…and as I like to share experiences, techniques and other stuff you might find useful, it gives me great pleasure to present you with topics, dates and venues of my workshops for 2013 – first half.

For the first time there are two lists: The first are the workshops that will be held here at Glanrafon House, these can be booked by sending an e-mail to heike.gittins@gmail.com. The second are the workshops I am teaching at other venues, book these by clicking on the links provided.

Come and join others in  Making Loops…

Loopy Workshops at Glanrafon House – 2013

Design your own shawl – Sat. 26 Jan. 2013

This workshop is aimed at knitter’s who would like to learn how to create their own shawls. During the day you will develop your basic understanding of the way a shawl is constructed and you will learn to understand how basic lace stitches are formed. I will help you to design your first shawl and by the end of this day you will be knitting a beautiful piece of your very own.

Please bring a 3.25mm circular knitting needle (80cm long), sewing kit, note book and pen.

        

My Norfolk Shawl design

Working with colour – Sat. 20 April 2013

This is the perfect workshop for knitters who are interested in sharpening their colour observation in design. The course inspires you to better understand the harmony of colour by working with a range of light and dark colours in contrasting tones. The experience gained will give you confidence to use your own personal colour scheme in any future knitting. No complicated techniques will be used during this day.

Please bring a selection of knitting needles, sewing kit, note book and pen.

Samples of working with colour

The Magic of Moebius Lace – Sat. 22 June 2013

During this workshop you will learn how to knit a true Moebius loop cowl/shrug. Using my own devised cast on I will show you how to knit one of these magical figure of eight shawls with no beginning and no end. You will work on a simple, yet effective, lace design of mine during this day. After learning the cast on and having mastered the first round, you will be on your way knitting eternally around the edge of this magical loop.

Please bring a 4mm circular knitting needle (must be 100cm long), sewing kit, note book and pen.

Moebius Lace Loop

 

Workshops run from 10.30am – 4.30pm

Cost: £ 40 per person

Inclusive: A full day’s tuition, all workshop notes and a free pattern designed by me. All materials needed during the day and plenty of refreshments for body and soul.

Not included: Lunch

Please e-mail me at heike.gittins@gmail.com to reserve your place.

Come and spend a day having fun with friends, or making new friends whilst learning something new.

 

Workshops at other venues:

Monday 18 March 2013 – Freeform Crochet – Westcliffe Hotel, Blackpool

Friday 5 April & Saturday 6 April 2013 – Courses TBCBacknanger Wollfest

Saturday 15 June 2013 – Continental Knitting – Westcliffe Hotel, Blackpool

 

Happy knitting :)

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