Yarn, Yorkshire and All Manner of Wonderful Things!

Posts tagged ‘Repair Cafe’

Knit and Natter Friday!

This has been such a busy month for us with one thing and another. Far too much time spent on hospital appointments, garages and dentists, but these things have to be done. The TV was safely delivered last Saturday, it does seem enormous to me and it is still a novelty to push the on button and a picture comes up straightaway. The last one was taking ten goes to get it to start, and it wasn’t a faulty remote control in case you were wondering.

I was able to spend the last hour in the Kirkbymoorside Repair cafe. I gather it had been a very slow day for everyone, which was just as well as not many repairers had been able to attend. A lady from a nearby town had visited having heard of the venture and is very keen to set up one in her community, so that was a big positive for everyone.

I have finished sewing in the ends and adding a black border on the crochet blanket which is to be a raffle prize for the cafe.

I was thrilled that so many people could see the dragon emerging from my knitting last week. I am still working on the same wing, so not much to show this week. I have been able to do some more crochet on the Attic 24 weekend bag, which look bigger now I have done more, but I can’t help feeling there is going to be an awful lot of leftover yarn.

Hoping that when I sew in the ends I can get rid of the joins which look awful to my mind. The instructions said to join on alternative sides and in a different place each time to avoid a seam. I think I would rather have a seam than a mess. Must be me and my poor crochet skills!

So we are at the end of a month and I am quite surprised that I have managed to go a whole month and not buy a scrap of yarn, or a book or fabric. Nothing, zilch in the craft buying department, not even a button or a piece of tape or even glue. Have I turned over a new leaf? I doubt it!!

I am hoping that February will be a quieter month and so have more crafting time. What about the weekend, do you have anything exciting lined up, was January filled with craftiness? How is your stash?

This weekend for me, tomorrow is Holocaust Memorial Day and I am participating in an event in the library, I shall be doing a couple of readings. Sunday is the day I shall do my bird count for the RSPB. According to the pet shop where I get my bird food people have been buying lots of bird food this week in anticipation. We shall have the fattest sparrows and pigeons you ever did see I reckon. Still very good that so many people want to join in and care for our feathered friends.

So over to you now, please join in with the natter wherever you like in the comments. The natter is what makes these Friday posts.

Be Happy,




Knit and Natter Friday.

I have had a busy week as we run up towards Christmas. The visit to Wales was lovely, so nice to have someone coooking for me, and my brother is an excellent cook. We visited Mum and she was in good spirits. Mum has Alzheimer’s, and we went on one of her better more lucid days. She knew we were her children and was able to tell us that she loved us very much. I think this will help us no end in the future, as she had become very bad-tempered with us as her health deteriorated. A happy memory to treasure.

The French Windows have been rescheduled a total of four times  now. Currently due for installation 8.30 on Monday. Humph!

Mr E is under the weather, we have  few medical appointments lined up for him, please keep us in your prayers.

Mr B and Ms G should be with us tomorrow for the all important de clutter!

I met with June and using the appointment numbers we had dished out at the repair cafes had a little draw for a prize, namely a £20 voucher for a meal at the Penny Bank Cafe in Kirkbymoorside, here being drawn by Phil the proprieter , and ably assisted by your truly. I don’t often appear on my own blog. Picture by June.

I have finished the secret santa knitting with the pink hat and an owl shaped lavender bag, made from the leftover wool from my Dartmoor lamb.

Soon have that ready to post.

Now on the needle I have a baby toy.

A last-minute Christmas gift for this little chap, here sporting his Nana made blanket, picture by his Dad Mr J.

Hard to believe he’s only 7 weeks, quite a bruiser!

So, time for me to press on, I have some Boxing Day Chutney to make. Turns out it is a Kirstie recipe. I think you know you have arrived when you just need a first name for people to know who you are.. Nigella or Delia for example.  For non UK readers that is Kirstie Allsop who is  a property guru come crafty type TV person, Nigella Lawson and Delia Smith are TV chefs.

Anyway, enough chatter from me, over to you. If this is your first visit then please just jump into the comments, feel free to chat amongst your selves while I stir the cranberries, and get on with some knitting.

Have a great weekend and

Be Happy,






The Repair Cafe.

The Kirkbymoorside Environment Group advertised in the Summer for volunteers to help in their new venture, a Repair Cafe. Mr E and I volunteered.  A repair cafe is where you can take things to see if a volunteer can fix them for you, thus saving the environment from unnecessary waste and you from having to buy a new thing.

The first cafe session was yesterday.   We were nervous no-one would come, or that we couldn’t fix the items brought to us.

We started early to be on the safe side, allowing an hour and a half to set things up.

That little notice by the flowers reads Repair Cafe. But the town is so little I think everyone knew where we would be.

In there , to left, in what was once the library. Library has moved and is now run solely by volunteers.

A welcoming table with a disclaimer for everyone to read and agree in writing too. A signing in sheet, which records what needs to be fixed and whether it was fixed. A pot for donations, this service is free. Donations are welcome, because there is the hire cost of the hall to consider. Tickets for the queue.

Sewing machines in place. The other three tables we covered in the cardboard to protect them from oil, solder, glue etc.

A place for people to sit, have a chat, and drink tea and coffee. There was cake too.

So did anyone come? Yes they did. We had 19 people over the threshold, 1 was just curious, but ended up carrying a lamp to a car for a satisfied repairee, 1 came to say he could fix toys and stayed to fix something , 1 husband came to  be with his wife who helped with the teas and fixed a drill whilst he was there, and 16 people with more than one thing to be fixed.

Lady with a hedge trimmer which she had fetched on a bus all the way from Pickering.

Mr E fixing it. It was working when it left but the advice was to replace it as it was very worn internally.  We gave her advice on where to buy a new one.

Our first lady in the door with a skirt to be altered, way past my abilities. Here she is discussing it with a talented seamstress.

And here leaving, very happy and making a donation. The chap is having a favourite shirt repaired.

Broken zip on a bag under discussion, and see the people waiting behind enjoying the refreshments.

I think that’s a dvd player under repair. The CD player behind was fixed. Periodically a machine or music player would leap into action to the joy of the owner and delight of the volunteers. Each successful fix was cheered mightily.

I made a note of the things that came in :-

a skirt, a shirt, a pair of trousers, 2 laptops, a  plate, a flower pot, a hedge trimmer, a watch strap, a radio, a dress, two hoovers, a CD player, a driil, a hot plate, a speaker, an angle poise lamp, a cassette player, a charger and a handbag.

Sadly for me, no darning or knitting to fix, but as I had been put on the Welcome table, I was kept busy and I crocheted 6 small granny squares, apparently I am now making the group a blanket to be raffled for all the people who come for fixes, and some how that was my idea. One day I will learn to keep my great ideas to myself.

We thought that the room was too small, but actually it was the right size unless we get more volunteers. Two of the volunteer repairers let us down, one had a cold and one just didn’t turn up and wasn’t answering his phone. Which meant Mr E and Mr C in the last picture were rushed off their feet, and some people had to wait a very long time to be seen.

Some went off and did their shopping and came back, some stayed and chatted. One lady sat with me for ages, mesmerised by my ability to talk, crochet and not watch what I was doing the whole time, we compared the way we held our crochet hooks and yarn. We talked about yarn and knitting for our families.

I spent a while too chatting to the bag lady, the broken zip could not be fixed on the bag , we contemplated some velcro I had with me before deciding 2 buttons and nice strap or tape to link them might work.

The atmosphere was relaxed and casual. It was lovely the way people waited patiently and were so very happy. One of the broken Hoovers was brought down by the owners daughter and she was especially thrilled  for her Mum.

One lady said the publicity had been good, posters were up in all local shops, so she said you could not avoid them or forget when it was.

We have scheduled the next one for November. October being half term for grand children, family visits and a give and take day.

The whole day was a huge success, so much saved from being thrown away. The lady who organised us all  is 80, a talented and still professionally performing musician and artist. Her organisational skills are phenomenal, minutes kept, people chased, hall negotiated, insurance checked through the group, forms written, posters made and distributed etc . She is a marvel. Don’t believe me,  this is June Emerson. 

Her daughter now runs the sheet music business, but wait for it June still does the office work. What a role model.

It’s a privilege to be part of this repair cafe venture.

If you have the chance or the wish to be part of one, then go for it. It really is worthwhile.




Sew, Knit and Natter Friday!

I tried drafting this yesterday, but I was too tired, and managed to both publish and delete it entirely in a space of seconds, oh dear! Let’s try again.

It’s been a strange week, and I have been tired. I did a longer shift at the library than usual, and promptly fell asleep for two hours afterwards, which then meant that I slept poorly that night, which meant I was tired the next day and so on and so forth. We have an exciting night ahead of us tonight, so I am hoping I improve during the day. More on that next week.

Meantime the plans for the Repair Cafe are going well. Insurance is sorted and posters are going up. We went to see the hall we will be using yesterday.

The Moorside Room at Kirkbymoorside is slightly smaller than we expected, but it will be good for the first one and we shall see after that. Inside it’s quite swish.

There are four big tables which we shall make into four areas including sewing and computer repairs.

A little kitchen area so we can provide teas, coffee and cake for people while they wait. Now we just need to hope lots of people need help with their repairs.

I sadly annoyed a fellow blogger recently with a comment, turns out she wasn’t really up for a discussion at all. I decided that it would be my last comment on her blog when she got a bit unpleasant, her final comment dismissing my opinion, was that I am only a blogger who mostly writes about the knitting she does for her grandchildren.  Too True, a label I wear with pride! Next to being a Mum being a Nana is the best thing I have become, and I feel very blessed in that.

As a Mum I only had one friend who knitted, Julie, who taught me to crochet too. In the 70s and 80s it just wasn’t cool to knit, unless you were Kaffe Fawcett I guess.  So when I came back to knitting 10 years ago it was wonderful to discover that Knitting was back in vogue, and when I found blogging, to find a whole community of crafters was just wonderful.

So yes I will continue to blog about the knitting I do for my grandchildren! But I will be more careful on which blogs I leave a comment on.

The little blue cardigan is finished and awaits buttons, I’ll show you next week.

Meantime here is the back of a hooded jacket I started.

Yes it has blue and pink. It’s not only the John Lewis Partnership who can be gender neutral with their baby clothes! This first size will be the only one I get away with as far as the Dad is concerned.

Of course back in the day before we knew whether baby was a boy or a girl all baby clothes were gender neutral, pale lemon, purple, green, white or cream, although we did have a vivid orange babygro.

I wonder how long before all clothes are just clothes, do we need men’s suits and women’s suits for example, could we just have suits?

No, now I am being just ridiculous, not an unknown state of affairs round here.

Remember the Cath Kiidston sale recently, not the fabric one, there was one before that. I bought something and decided I then had the perfect project for the cowboy fabric, which in turn I replaced because I liked it so, well here’s what I made to go with my purchase.

Is that not cute and the place mat is ok too.

Actually its far from ok, the quilting is diabolical and the binding pretty dreadful, but oh its made with love.

So that’s it for this week, over to you for some nattering, what are you planning this weekend, any nice outings or projects? Did you ever leave what turned out to be an ill advised comment?

Do tell,

Meantime be happy!


Sew, Knit and Natter Friday!

I left you in the Weald and Downland Museum yesterday in a rather insalubrious place, the privy. Lets’ go back inside the Victorian cottage and see what we can see,

That’s more like it a nice cup of tea, oh and look, crochet.

Now couldn’t you just settle down here , tea, cat on your knee and something yarny in your hand. Talking of yarn, which I was sort of, I mentioned hands on demonstrations yesterday.

I had a quick go at carding while no-one was looking. As I left, another Nana came in with her grandson, picked up the bit I had just carded and showed how it was spun! Hurrah for Nanas.

I mentioned also that there were crafts people at work on site now. We were especially interested in this incredible  gridshell building. The lower part is used for storage and the upper for conservation and repairs.

Now did anyone see a TV programme called The Repair Shop on BBC 2? Basically people take broken treasures and have them fixed/ upcycled by experts.  I was super keen to see just where at the Weald and Downland this was situated. Tucked away behind the Watermill and the under re construction Bakehouse. There it was.

So disappointed I could go no further , because that notice on that board  was to stop us interrupting filming for a new series. Hurrah and Boo at the same time.

Which very nicely leads me onto a new venture Mr E and I hope to join in with. Now have you ever heard of Repair Cafes? These began in the Netherlands and are places people can go to have every day items repaired by volunteers. Well now I can sew a zip I am an expert.. seriously though I could darn a sock, sew on a button, untangle knitting, fix a hole in fabric, and as for Mr E he is King of computer fixes, saucepan lids, parcel shelves, grill pan handles etc etc.

We spotted an article in a free local mag, by a small group of people wanting to start one close by, and we have volunteered our time. Last Saturday I visited one in Leeds with a couple of people, such a good idea. Saves waste, land fill, money, teaches people , what is not to like to want to be involved with. Early days yet, but am super excited.

Sew down to business. Did I finish the skirt? Yes I did.

Feeling quite pleased with myself.

Safely dispatched to Little Miss F. Hope for a picture soon.

And as to knitting, well we have a back and a front to the jumper for Master T.

In the meantime there has been a bit of cross stitch and I now have enough scraps to get  going with my hexie quilt which has seen nothing doing to it for ages. I also feel another elephant coming on.


So over to you now, do just join in for some nattering. What are your weekend plans..

Be Happy!



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