Blogger of the month - December
It is time to announce the final 'Blogger of the month' from 2013. The December winner of blogger of the month goes to............. Bakercourt blog!! A huge congratulations to the author of the blog Stacey. There are allsorts of crafty posts about knitting and stitching on Bakercourt blog, alongside many other creative sources of inspiration such as photographs and baking. We sent Stacey a selection of questions to find out more about her time blogging.
How long have you been blogging? What made you decide to write a blog?
I’ve been blogging for 4 years. I moved to the UK from South Africa in 2009, and I started my blog as a way to keep in touch with my family. It grew into an exploration of knitting, baking and making from there!
Who taught you to knit?
My grandmother-in-law taught me how to cast on when I first moved to the UK. The rest, I learnt from books and blogs. When in doubt, search for it on YouTube!
What was your first ever knitting / crochet project?
I knitted Pamela Wynne’s “February Lady Sweater”, and I crocheted a scarf for my husband. Knitting won.
What is your latest WIP (Work in progress)?
I’m knitting a shawl for a friend who lives in Brazil. I’m using a fabulous yellow/orange/pink yarn which makes me think of sunshine.
I’m also about to cast on for a Caitlin ffrench pattern using some silk/alpaca singles dyed in a purple-pink colourway and huge 8mm needles. I usually knit lace, so this is a big knitting step for me!
Do you watch TV or listen to music while you knit? If so what?
I take my knitting everywhere – to work meetings, on the tube, while travelling, to restaurants. … Anywhere I can get a few rows in while waiting. I do knit while watching TV, often the Food Network or a series like Lost Girl.
Do you have a favourite knitting snack?
I hadn’t thought about it! I drink a lot of tea while knitting…
What is your favourite yarn to work with? Is there a particular brand?
I love all-natural yarn, particularly handspun. I regularly stash Araucania lace yarn – it’s a delight to work with, and I love the colour variations.
What is your favourite item to knit? And why?
I love knitting small shawls. They’re quick to knit, make great gifts, and best of all – they only use one skein!
Who do you knit for?
I knit for friends and family, usually for birthdays and special occasions. I also knit jumpers and socks for my husband; he even chooses his own yarn.
Do you have a preference when it comes to choosing your needles? E.g. bamboo, interchangeable, circular, metal etc
I collect second-hand knitting needles from charity shops, and I love old needles that look like they’ve got a story to tell! When I buy new needles, I particularly like KnitPro interchangeable circular needles made from Rosewood as they’re completely effortless to work with.
Would you say you are drawn to a particular colour or shade palette when knitting?
Definitely! I love purpley-blues and greeny-blues. I’m quite predictable like that.
Do you prefer fine yarn or chunky yarn?
Is there a knitted project that you treasure? Made by yourself or a handmade gift from a loved one?
I have two knitted treasures: a tiny Fair Isle cardigan I knitted last year (I felt like a really triumphant knitter once I had finished it!) and a really long red scarf that my friend knitted for me about six years ago. It is the longest scarf I have ever seen, perfect for English winters.
Do you have a knitting tip you would like to share?
Always use stitch markers to mark off pattern repeats or groups of stitches. It’s so much easier to keep track of where you are, and you can concentrate on other things while knitting – like chatting, or watching TV. If you make a mistake, you can quickly and easily see where you’ve gone wrong and fix it.
Do you follow other blogs? If so which blogs?
Yes! I follow loads of blogs (you can see my following list here http://www.bloglovin.com/bakercourt). My current favourites are Soule Mama, Posie Gets Cozy and Sew Liberated.
I notice from your blog posts you use many fancy stitches. Do you have a particular favourite stitch pattern?
I particularly love lace knitting with lovely big pattern repeats. I don’t have a favourite stitch pattern, and I rarely knit the same thing twice (except for the Holden Shawlette, a shawl pattern by Mandy Wilkes which I love!).
What other past times do you enjoy?
I love spinning yarn, sewing, and baking.
Do you tend to work on just one project at once or have lots on the go? Do you vary your craft?
I have LOADS of projects on the go, and I vary my crafts from sewing to knitting to baking. I always have something on my needles for knitting as it is the perfect travelling craft and fits easily into a handbag.
Do you have any advice for new bloggers?
Find your voice. Write about things that interest you, and in a way that feels natural to you: this is your story! Also, don’t be afraid to contact more established bloggers and make friends out there in the blogosphere: everyone is really friendly, and I’ve met some incredible people all over the world through bakercourt.
If you have your own blog or a favourite blog please let us know. Head to our blogger of the month page here.