June NIFA part 2!

We left you having dyed all Sunday morning….

In the afternoon, the kirk had a visit from the Men of Orkney, a male voice choir made up of men from various Kirkwall churches including the Salvation Army, the Baptists and the Church of Scotland.  There were 11 of them – a choir of 10 plus conductor.  Four of the choir were also brass players, so the service was a feast of sound!  After the service, in true Flotta Kirk style, we had coffee and cakes and had a chance to chat.

Back home, we had a session getting ready for Monday morning.  Jane was going to be spinning, aiming to get her yarns finer, so she was selecting and preparing fibre and getting her wheels ready.  Anita was going to be looking at colour in Fair Isle, so she was looking at possible stitch patterns.

That meant that on Monday morning we were ready to go at 9 am!  Jane soon found that having the right fibre and preparing it well immediately got the diameter of her threads down.  She spent the morning making small adjustments to get the yarn she wanted, and then went on to spin a reasonable yardage.

Meanwhile, Anita was playing with coloured yarns, putting them in various groups and seeing how different colours worked together.

As the day went on, we narrowed the yarns down to the 4 ply/fingering weight only, and finally to a series of colours which should work together in a Fair Isle sampler.

After lunch we all squashed into my car and went round West Hill, on a war-time road round the West coast of the island, stopping off at various places to see the penguins and the guns…

Then after tea it was time to go over to the Community Centre for a felting evening with ‘the locals’!  There were 6 visitors, 8 locals and me.  And we had a good laugh!  We were felting round stones (later to be cut open to make bowls) and making ‘Papay Rattles’.  These are old toys originating on the Orkney island of Papa Westray (or Papay).  They are made by putting a small shell or pebble between two limpet shells and felting round them.  The result is ball-shaped, and the pebble makes a rattle when it is rolled or shaken.  Lovely for amusing cats!!


Cakes were provided by Phyllis and Christine – they must be the best bakers in Orkney…!

The finished products, still wet.  The larger ones have stones in which will be removed in a couple of days time.

Today is lace!  Both Jane and Anita have done some before but never used the cobweb yarns.  Both are in the process of making a triangular min-shawl to practise the various techniques.  Watch this space for progress reports later in the week!


2 thoughts on “June NIFA part 2!

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