Musically needling my yarn

On Saturday afternoon I read about WWKIP – World Wide Knit in Public Day. We were encouraged to hold events not alone on the day but throughout the whole week 8th to 16th of June.

I did go out on Saturday, bringing my wool and needles. I had my crochet and not knitting, but that was allowed. I did not plan where I was going. I have no idea what I expected, but my walk provided no inspiration for a location, so I headed home with my needles not seeing the light of day.

Sunday brought blue skies with 20°C sunshine and a determination to try again to air my yarn and needles for real this time. I had visions of sitting in dappled sunshine and working away.

I chose Clotworthy House/Antrim Castle grounds as there were now plenty of options for places to sit.

In the shade of a well dressed tree, perhaps

A Sun dressed tree to feast the eyes

A Sun dressed tree to feast the eyes

As I walked Through the Courtyard I came across this sign.

Music in the Garden with The Ulster Youth Jazz Orchestra

Music in the Garden with The Ulster Youth Jazz Orchestra

Bingo! I thought.

Ulster Youth Jazz Orchestra (UYJO)  would be playing in the parterre from 2pm for one hour.

People were beginning to gather and the seats were set out ready and waiting

People were beginning to gather and the seats were set out ready and waiting

So I had my walk and came back in time to find a seat, and enjoy the music as I tapped my feet and worked the fingers on my crochet.

Making the final checks as we settled down

Making the final checks as we settled down

No need for formal dress and bow-ties, it was a day to soak up some vitamin D.

“You were not knitting!” I hear you shout.

“Oh yes I was! Well, crocheting actually.”

Both crochet or knitting were allowed according to the website. I had a cardigan in progress and there is less chance of losing stitches when crocheting than with knitting while working out of doors. It was also in a striking shade of Raspberry and more lightly to catch attention, which was the whole point in the exercise: To draw attention to and encourage others to take up or return to the hobby.

Sharing my work and yarning!

Sharing my work and yarning!

It was easy to set the work on my knees as I applauded the young talent. Vocal soloist Ayesha Akkari, entertained us with several numbers including Knock on Wood and Everything.

Vocal soloist Ayesha Akkari Knocks on Wood

Vocal soloist Ayesha Akkari Knocks on Wood

As we listened and tapped our toes, I had the bright idea to speak to musical Director Ken Jordan and ask for a photo to prove I was there. So when the programme ended I walked forward and asked to speak for a few moments.

I Thanked them for their wonderful music and singing as well as the exercise for my tapping toes. I explained why I was playing with my needlework as I listened and said I would be going home to write a blog post about my adventure and linking it to WWKIP. I asked if they had a website or Facebook page to which I might add a link.

Then the crunch bit I dared to ask if I could have that photograph with them. I was even brazen enough to suggest a swap…

Musical Director Ken Jordan & Vocalist Ayesha Akkari
with Grannymar on Saxaphone.

Fair swap – My needlework for a Saxaphone! Do you think I will be allowed to join?

I love to see young talent encouraged and acknowledged. They are a fine group of young people, I wish them well with a life filled with music. May they continue to bring joy, by sharing their talents with the world around them for many a long year!

As they plan their futures I will enjoy listening to the CD they presented me with.

Ulster Youth Jazz Orchestra Twenty Twelve CD

Ulster Youth Jazz Orchestra
Twenty Twelve CD

Perhaps some of these young people will read this post, so may I ask my readers to do me a small favour as a sign of encouragement for them. I know where most of you hail from on this globe of ours, but the youngsters will have no idea. At the end of your comment can you please say where you are writing from. e.g: Pune, India or St Johns, Newfoundland, ( I know those two will appear).

Just as I reached the car park, I was stopped by a lovely couple. She wished to ask me about my ‘knitting’. “So that is what you were looking at all the time!” Her husband said.

She had been a knitter, very fond of traditional Aran patterns, in the past and I discovered she also dabbled in cross stitch and other aspects of Needlecraft too. Seeing me working away gave her the urge to begin all over again. She does have a gilet in mind to knit – a great idea if you dislike doing sleeves!

We spoke about wool and I was telling her about a little coffee chop with a section for wool and needles. Several small finished items along with the patterns are on display to encourage people to have a go. It turns out she knew the family that own the shop – the world gets smaller every day! I gave her my card and hope she picks up that phone some day soon. I would love to meet and natter about our ventures with Needlecrafts.


40 thoughts on “Musically needling my yarn

  1. What a lovely experience. And how brave you are, Grannymar!

    Good luck to the UYJO – youngsters have a bad name so it’s nice to see them proving that wrong.

    Stockport, UK

  2. One of the saddest things that I observe now a days in urban India, is the total lack of interest in handicrafts. Embroidery, Tatting, Knitting etc have all given way to video games! It is still the older generation that keeps these activities alive and having spent many years in that field, I find it sad, Many shops that used to keep embroidery and crochet thread, knitting yarns and other haberdashery items have gone out of business.

    I write from Pune, Maharashtra, India.

    • Ramana, we are seeing a revival in many of the needle arts, and it is wonderful to see. We have a similar story to tell about haberdashery shops, but I am fortunate to have two wonderful suppliers within a twenty mile radius.

  3. K1,P2–super blog! And a nice Indian girl singing in the band. I do admire your adventurous spirit. From Bangalore, India!

    • Oops! Padmini, you arrived by the spam bucket. 😡

      There were several ‘Eastern’ sounding names in the group, all very talented young people. I have discovered that asking nicely, often opens doors to wonderful treasures. People are free to say NO. – As yet, I have never been refused. 😀

  4. I know this might be scandalous, but I sometimes wish I could crochet during church. I actually think it would help me pay attention better. 🙂 I had some friends who had a wayward daughter They were having problems with her when she was in her teens. But she would come to church as long as they let her knit during church. We were just glad she was there, so didn’t mind! 🙂

    • Delores, if you can pray when knitting or crocheting (at home), why not knit and crochet while praying? Most of the people that I know, who regularly use these skills, sit and watch television without losing the plot or a stitch!

  5. Gee, I am amazed. I would love to knit or crochet an artistic wall hanging for my home. Don’t know where to take lessons.

  6. Even though I have not posted,I very much enjoy your site, Grannymar. You have given me many a chuckle. Thank you.
    We are a knitting and crocheting household. Is felting considered a needle craft? If so that happens here too. Lori… from Canada

    • Thank you Lori, and Welcome on board. felting is certainly considered needle craft or indeed Needle Art. The latter commands a higher price!

    • Mc, that sounds like an interesting project. Northern Ireland will be a busy place then with the G8 Conference and all that it involves. I may end up staying home, well away from all the fuss.

  7. What a great day you had. Sun, music and crochet. My DIL is trying to teach her offspring but only one or two seemed to like it. Love hearing the music those bands make.

    • Celia, It was a pet day in all respects. Our sunshine disappeared on Monday afternoon, It rained most of yesterday and through the nights, but today it is dry, cloudy and no hint of sunshine. I hope that summer is not over!

  8. Interesting pictures. Karen has tried some yarn work — crocheting, knitting — but always returns to her quilting.

    • Karen produces wonderful quilts and at times incorporates other needle craft techniques in them. I admire her patience.

  9. I just love how saucy you are. Great pics. Great project. One summer I knitted away round the pubs. Must do it again this year.
    From the other side of the Atlantic – in Newfoundland…..

  10. Thanks, WWW. Giving encouragement costs me nothing and if only two people go home and pick up their needles,….. It will have been a day well spent, Far better than sitting in a corner waiting for…………….. No, I don’t want to think about that!!!!!

  11. Now that’s what I call a serendipitous moment! I admire your chutzpah in asking and receiving a photo op! No wonder you have friends absolutely everywhere!!!! 🙂

      • That’s right! And I just HAD to pop back in here to tell you that Hubby saw your comment and updated photo avatar on my vocabulary story comments and mused out loud: Grannymar looks really good these days! I told him to tap out a reply to you, but he says he’s too shy. Have a nice day. 🙂

  12. Hello there
    I found you via Gigi and hope you don’t mind me commenting along with all the others. Guess what my last post has been about – the same as this one (Knit in Public Day/Week)
    Would love to have been at the open air concert with you – Youth and Jazz go hand in hand. Aran and cross stitch are worked in my house also and I say thank you for encouraging your new friend to pick up her needles (both big and small) and giving it a go again.
    Must pop in and say hello to your friend WWW – we’re off to Newfoundland again in September lol
    Take care

    • Welcome Cathy, It is always good to meet up with fellow needlecrafters! I really enjoyed my day out with my needles. Now I am off to check out your post.

  13. I was wondering where my extrovert streak hailed from…. The inability to fit in and therefore why not enjoy standing out!

    I always thought it was down to having red hair… But an opportunity to draw attention to myself? Well it’s like red crochet to a Jazz Orchestra!

    Barbara, Weybridge, London xxx

    • 😆 Maybe you spent too much time with me when you were young! Wait now, You are still young. Very young compared to me!

      • You have red hair too. We stood out like sore thumbs as children…. Maybe that started the habit of a lifetime?

        I do remember being very fascinated by your jet setting lifestyle when I was a child, to me you always seemed to be off exploring foreign countries. Even in my generation I know people who haven’t left Ireland. In earlier generations leaving was a permanent thing. I was always worried about my inability to learn languages properly, but that hasn’t hindered me yet. Most foreign people speak almost perfect English!

        • Me – jet setting lifestyle? 😆 I suppose I covered quite a good portion of Europe back then. There are people in this little town where I live that have never ventured outside it. NEVER!

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