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On Monday I went up to Stonehaven to the HEATED outdoor sea pool pool.  A bit of an epic trip from Edinburgh – two hour train journey. However through throughly beautiful countryside in great company. We promptly nabbed a table and took out our needles and had a wonderful time putting the world to rights! These photos are actually from a trip I took there back in June but somehow have not had the time to post. The pool on Monday was a balmy 29 degrees – at points steam was rising from it. I highly recommend getting the hot choc after. unfortunately we went on its last day this season you now have to wait until May to sample its delights.

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Rubbish photo from the In the Loop conference which I decided to go to at the last minute after listening to Louise Scollay’s podcast KnitBritish. I got myself off my metaphorical sofa and emailed on Monday about going for one day. Got up stupendously early to make it on the 7.45 train. I’ll have to look at the programme to remind myself of the range of topics covered. Oral histories of machine knitting in Easterhouse in the late 70’s early 80’s, crafting and the digital life, a presentation by an artist who collects unfinished knitted items, NZ traditions in knitting, the trade in hand knitted stockings in Elizabethian times, Dorcas Societies … barely scratching the surface here. Also good stimulating discussions in the breaks and lunchtime. (Covering MOTHS, the thorny issues of sponsorship and podcasts and the lack of racial diversity on Ravelry).Sorry to miss the Norwegian Sweater presentation yesterday… but was able to fondle a collection of them and buy postcards. If you are interested in craft in terms of history, anthropology,  sociology and art  do go to this if you see it on again. I’m so sorry I can’t go tomorrow but must do some work :(

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So on my first day in London I went to the very good Shirley Baker exhibition at The Photographers Gallery then set out to find the fabric shops of Soho. This is after buying an umbrella at M&S as it was monsooning it down. I chanced on The Cloth House and stepped in. I had peaked in the window before but didn’t realise there was another room at the back and a basement. I was in search of black linen to copy a beloved but worth through skirt I got from Hobbs some years back. I’m tired of traipsing around shops being faced with horrible fabrics and even worse designs. So am opting out of it all my making my own. This means reacquainting myself with my hand sewing machine. I’ll keep you updated.  The assistant was very helpful and I bought some black cotton for lining as well. It was beautifully wrapped in tissue paper and in a cloth bag, then a plastic bag to protect it from the rain. Just as well as it was quite pricey.

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My photo group Edinburgh Lo-fi organised a photo walk at Newhaven as a homage to Hill & Adamson. Pioneering early Scottish Photographers who went to Newhaven often in 1840’s. I took two rolls of medium format and we had lots of pinhole cameras with us. unfortunately the light was low in the morning with exposures having to run at average of  3 minutes. I hadn’t charged my digital camera so only got these three shots. Heaven knows when the film will be processed. We explored the new developments around Newhaven after a lovely lunch at the Old Chain Pier.

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