Brooches Galore in the Upcoming Shop Update

We are back on schedule for a weekly shop update after our move– I’ve forged an exciting selection of pennanular brooches, all a variation on my best selling simple brooch which has been featured in one of Staci Perry’s (Very Pink Knits) patterns.

These variations have semi-precious stone adornments– labradorite, amethyst, moss agate and carnelian.  Another is in a playful snake shape and another has scrollwork that is reminiscent of a moustache!

Like all my brooches these are cold forged, pantina’ed in sulphur and then tumbled to harden and polish them. Lastly, they are hand polished to bring out the detail in the work and the warmth of the copper.

After moving to a chilly part of the world (Northern Scotland) where on midsummer I was wearing a hand-knit cardigan, I have realised that my knitting is going to become an even more important part of life.  Knitting styles have a strong tradition here and I am looking forward to sharing what I learn.  These designs were fuelled by the excitement of living somewhere where even the summer climate is sweater weather!

Very Pink Knitting Tutorial Feature

It’s Thanksgiving and this year I’m really thankful to the rush of new customers who have found me through Staci Perry’s lovely knitting tutorial which features my Anglo Saxon Pennanular Brooch. I’m also thankful to Staci herself– who has been professional and inspiring to work with. She’s using her talents and skills not only to make us all better knitters but also to support small makers and independent businesses like myself.

This cardigan pattern pairs well with the brooch, and it’s exactly the kind of design I had in mind when I forged these brooches.  I love to wear cardigans but don’t like the fuss of buttons or belts so I’m always wearing my hand-knitted cardigans with these pins.  Staci’s pattern is the perfect weight for the Yorkshire winter, too!

The Anglo-Saxon Pennanular Brooch

The Anglo-Saxon Pennanular Brooch

A simple, endless circle inspired by the moon, ouroboros and archeological finds. This penannular brooch is based on an Anglo Saxon design discovered in North Yorkshire. My version is cold-forged in copper. Cold-forging means no heat is used to form the metal– just hammering and sheer force of will! The bottom edge of the ring has been hammer-finished, the small facets giving the piece an ancient, earthy feel. The pin comes in two sizes– the larger one for bulkier knitted garments and the other for finer, lace-weight shawls and scarves. – See more at: http://feralstrumpet.indiemade.com/product/anglo-saxon-penannular-brooch#sthash.Y9xN339u.dpuf

I am now a marketing demographic

No doubt many a Londoner has seen these billboards around town. Knitting has hit the mainstream. The other day I was in a pub wearing a scarf I’d made and this beefy punter actually turned his attention away from the footie long enough to admire it and say, “Why, that’s a lovely scarf.” and then with a knowing, conspiratorial wink, “I wonder who made that.” When big rugby-player looking guys knit-flirt with you, you know knitting has reached some kind of pop-culture pinnacle.

I am an avid knitter– I knit while on the tube and while watching telly or having tea. If I don’t have a project going to keep my hands busy I often feel bereft. I am one of these “new knitters” who picked up needles again as a social activity. Even though my mother taught me how to do it thirty years ago, I didn’t actually start knitting until I saw it as a community building endeavor.

In five short years knitting has taken off– if you blog your knitting you might get a book deal– you might become famous just for casting on. I’ll be glad when all this knitting-related ambition passes and we can just make cozy things in peace without wondering who is the next big knitting star to rise from our rows.

The trade off is that more people are learning about the craft from this resurgence, and in turn they are appreciating labor of this kind. If it can get more football fans to turn away from the game for a moment to admire something handmade– why, that’s a very good reason to wink back at the punters.