My mum owned a wool shop when I was a teenager and she taught me to knit. My first projects were firmly rooted in 1980's fashion. Brightly coloured mohair batwing jumpers and huge chunky cardigans. I used to help out in the shop at weekends so coming to work at baa ram ewe was reassuringly familiar even though 25 years had passed.
I stopped knitting when I left home but started again in March as it seemed criminal to work at baa ram ewe and not knit. I was surprised how easily the rhythmn of making the stitches returned to me and remembered immediately how soothing and satisfying knitting can be. I just needed to be reminded how to cast on and off and which stitch was which. I'm very lucky to have a team of experienced knitters around me every day so support has been close at hand. I'm constantly impressed by the support the team at baa ram ewe offer to our customers. Helping them understand patterns, working out where mistakes have been made, praising and cheerleading all the way to encourage them to learn and develop.
My first project just had to be a gift for my lovely Mum so as a Christmas gift I made her Sybil, the Sheep hot water bottle cosy from our Learn To Knit At Home book. I found the illustrated instructions invaluable and the spiral binding helped me to navigate from the pattern to the techniques pages easily. I used our Dovestone Natural Aran for her body and Aire Valley Aran for the head and legs and am very proud of her. It was my first project using circular needles and I'm now a firm convert as I find them more comfortable and easier to use than straight ones.
I then tackled a project for myself. Using the leftover Dovestone Natural Aran I knitted a pair of Glenda mitts, also from the Learn To Knit At Home book. I still have to sew them up - a job I'm sure most knitters are very good at putting off. I'm looking forward to wearing them as they are very soft and have a lovely thickness to them from the welted stitch pattern.
Just this week I have finished the fabulous Riot Scarf. I used our gorgeous Dovestone Natural Chunky for the cream bands and Riot Chunky for the colour changing yarn. It's a great project for a beginner knitter. The rows are short so progress is quick and the colour changing yarn adds interest throughout the project. My next challenge is knitting in the round. To learn this new skill I'm planning to attend a workshop at baa ram ewe. A brilliant way to learn new skills, meet new people and spend a guilt free day knitting. I'm hoping that I'll get away with never having to learn how to sew up neatly.