Sunday at Mel’s

It has been a quiet few days round here. Perhaps inevitably, my burst of hat-related energy was followed by an evil bout of post-stroke fatigue that has been all the more galling because I had been so looking forward to this week. Felix is in Edinburgh, and we had some fun things planned, none of which I have been able to do because I’ve been so damn tired. But happily today I did manage to haul myself out of the house and round to Mel’s for an afternoon of convivial knitting. The magnificent beast at the top of this post is Mel’s cat Moose — perhaps the superlative feline knitting companion. Please to note, in the photograph above, the insistent — yet respectful — way he has claimed Mel’s knitting as his own.

Unlike my own animals, who seem to enjoy disrupting yarn-related activity, Moose is a very calming and relaxing presence. Here, for example, he takes a wee snooze on my knee while the knitterly business of the room goes on around him.

And here he reveals himself as a cat of taste, displaying his approval of a couple of tasty balls of Rowan fine tweed, and Mel’s recently completed Betty Mouat sweaters – yes, that’s plural – of which more later.

Felix is sporting marvelous socks (spoils of a recent trip to Estonia), and knitting up a Deco in John Arbon’s new yarn, inspired by the pastel Art Deco buildings she saw in Miami.

Mel is knitting the Latvian Garden Blanket in some very pleasing shades of Jamieson and Smith.

and I am working on a pair of fingerless gloves to match last week’s hat.

After a tedious few days, it was lovely to spend the afternoon in the company of two of my very favourite people.

. . .and one of my favourite cats.

In other news:

:: I don’t know if the Rowan members out there have already seen the digital edition of Magazine no. 50? There’s all sorts of interesting additional behind-the-scenes content, including photoshoots and video interviews with Rowan’s designers . . . and, if you turn to pages 40-41, you can click through to see another wee video accompanying my feature on Shetland lace. This footage comes from the epic day when Mel, Emma and I drove the length of Shetland, took 8 boats, and braved the queasy horrors of some very choppy water between the mainland and Whalsay, to go and visit Ina Irvine and Hazel Laurenson. Ina and Hazel are two of the talented women involved in the Shetland Fine Lace Project , and, despite my shaky camera, you can get a taste of their marvelous knitting, which is on sale in the Shetland Museum Shop.

:: If you are out and about in Dublin next week, I’ll be at This is Knit’s annual yarn-tasting and am also looking forward to meeting the wonderful knitters who made my blanket. I think the yarn tasting may well be sold out now, but if you’ve booked, I’ll see you there!

As you might imagine, I’m hoping for a bit of an energy boost to carry me across the sea to Ireland. More on my return!