Thursday, July 26, 2012

A Shawl, Generosity, an Exchange received, Scotland and my Lowery!

Well, in order to scratch off one of my July goals..... I have to post, quickly!  I have this long list of Things I Need To Blog About and each one is receding further into the past so without more ado, as they say..... and in no particular order of importance.....

First of all, thank you, all you lovely commenters, you have no idea how your words cheer me!  I am realising that I need to respond by email to you all and I will, I will, honestly!

Next is this and I must admit I am rather proud of it, now that it is finally finished.  It is very loosely based on a pattern that appeared in Piecemaker magazine in 2000 and was entitled A Prairie Shawl.  Well, I can't tell you how many attempts I made at this pattern and how many times I ripped it back to the beginning as I had lost the plot miscounted the pattern repeats.  Since my life back then did not have many quiet moments with full time work and the Wyoming Cowboy (third treasure) still living with us, I gave up and donated the wool to Goodwill but still kept hold of the magazine.  Fast forward to now and my falling in with the Knit and Knatter girls, I decided to make an exceedingly simplified version...... et voila!

Simplified Piecemaker shawl
James Brett DK yarn
You know, don't you that needleworkers are among the most generous people in the world?  Well, two of them passed on the generosity to me.  Andrea (can't find her blog, drat it!) drew my name in her giveaway and ! am now the lucky owner of the Souvenir Sampler by the Drawn Thread.  Lots of small motifs, specialty stitches and opportunities to make it my sampler.

The Drawn Thread
Souvenir Sampler
I was admiring Nicola's (Stitching by a Cornish seashore) awe-inspiring work - all the Victoria Sampler Alphabet series on one piece of linen and Sally (no blog) offered to send me the "O" chart!  It had been gifted to her and she was not going to stitch it.  I accepted with many thanks and a parcel arrived in the mail box all the way from the beautiful Pacific Northwest.

Victoria Sampler
"O" for Operator
Thank you both so much!

I showed you the Strawberry pillow that I sent to Jane in my last post, didn't I?  Well, finally it was time to open this, from Jaclyn in the secret Summer exchange on Needlecraft Haven.

Secret Summer Exchange
Needlecraft Haven
Isn't it lovely and I think....a Lizzie*Kate?  I wish you could smell the rose it is resting on, just heavenly!

The WT and I had a very short away day, well four, actually, back to the land of my birth, Scotland.  The weather wasn't brilliant but definitely a whole lot better than the rest of the UK. 

The border to The Promised Land!
We drove as far north as Fort William, stopping at Balmaha on the shores of Loch Lomond and a delicious meal at the Oak Tree Inn and a very peaceful night in one of their cottages.
The WT enjoying a glass of
beer orange juice!

The dining room at the
Oak Tree Inn
Cup of tea, anyone?

This was one of about a dozen
grandfather clocks in the inn's bar

We watched this event in the pub in Fort William.......

Good Spellers, don't look!
 Isabelle especially!

..... our Andy and Jo-Wilfried Tsonga battling through the semi final with a cup of tea for me and a glass of something invigorating for him.

After a night in Fort William and yet another wonderful meal here on the shores of Loch Linnhe at we took the very scenic but has to be said, somewhat nausea inducing (for passengers) road along Loch Sunart to Kilchoan on Ardnamuchan to catch the ferry over to Tobermory on the Isle of Mull.

Somewhere on the Loch Sunart road
or close to it!
It was lunch time when we docked in Tobermory and it so happened there was the Pier Cafe right where we drove off the ferry - a bowl of the most delicious leek and potato soup completely banished any lingering effects of the twisty drive!

Now, don't take this as any kind of precedent whatsoever, you understand, but a lovely Sri Lankan doctor at the next table with his family kindly took this photograph and since it isn't too bad, quite reasonable of me (though my eyes do look a bit peculiar, it has to be said), here's the WT and me looking rather relaxed!

Mr and Mrs WT
Well, sadly we must leave our intrepid couple until next time, join me for Part 2 of Scotland Revisited in the next blog post!

Because, I have to show you this....... a parcel arrived last week and I love what was inside!

My very own Lowery!
I placed the order with  Sew and So at 4.40pm on Monday and on Wednesday morning, via email telling me that the parcel would be delivered between 9.06 and 10.06, it arrived at 9.20 am!  I had gone out but know what time it was since I narrowly avoided hitting the van in the lane!

Wonderful service but a tiny complaint in that I ordered the Accessory Bracket but not the light Bracket and without that the accessory one won't work.  It does say so on the website but the lovely lady taking my order didn't point it out.  A very tiny complaint in what was exceedingly fast and pleasant service!  Big thanks to my Friendly Stitchers chums, Melissa and Jo, both of whom forced encouraged me to buy a stand too!

I can't tell you what a difference it makes not having to hold a frame.  I might even have some pictures of Around the World to show you next time if the Mordivinian stitch doesn't finish me off!

That is probably enough for now, if you are all still awake?  Oh good, you are, just in time to leave a comment!  Please?

Enjoy what ever life brings you, don't forget to smile AND cheer on your country in the Olympics!


  1. Stitchers are the most awesome, aren't they?! Lovely stitching all around!

    The shawl is beautiful! Well done!

    Lovely pics of Scotland! On my list to visit!

    Yay! What a great stand! Welcome to the Lowery Club!

    I always love to visit your blog. Thanks for sharing! ;)

    Melissa J.

  2. The shawl is very pretty. Glad you were able to modify the pattern. Looks like you and the WT had a great time in Scotland (on my "to visit" list).

  3. This is a quick blog post? :@ Beautiful shawl, lovely gifts and stitching, lucky girl. Scotland is so beautiful, tell Mr WT, I will join him for an orange juice. I thought you were the enabler on Friendly Stitchers :@ Great stand.

    I would wish you all the best for the Olympics but all I can say is Aussie Aussie Aussie Oi Oi Oi!!!!!

    LiBBiE in Oz

  4. ooo well done on the shawl
    i've got that chart started as one of my crazies ... love it need to get back to it ...
    lovely photo of you two and no excuse now having the lowery heheheh
    love mouse xxxxx

  5. I was at a stitching retreat and one wonderfully generous lady allowed me to use her Lowery stand for the weekend. Divine! I have one now :)

  6. Great gifts and great knitting, looks like a good time was had in Scotland and a Lowery stand. I expect your stitching to get quicker. ( just jealous really)

  7. Great gifts and I'm soo envious of Scotland as we haven't managed to get there this year :-( The Lowery looks great, you'll soon be bypassing my progress on ATW!

  8. I own a Lowery stand too, its just the best piece of sewing equipment I have, I wouldnt be without it. Have fun with yours.
    All those little levers to tighten things are great for hanging things on.
    I love your shawl, gorgeous.

  9. Lovely pics Gillie ... as for the Lowery, well in my opinion the very best stand there is out there! I have the light braqcket and also the daisy dish ... I bought mine years ago from a friend who had her own business at the time and got it at cost - so a great bargain ... enjoy it!
    Val x

  10. Gillie

    What a small world, my parents were married in Fort William in 1948, I've never been there!

    Great to see the WT in the photos, I've only ever seen rare glimpses of the intrepid WT!!

    Great things you've received in the post, would love to see your Lowery in person
    cheer and hugs
    Julie in Oz

  11. Lovely to see a picture of you!
    You've definitely had some great post lately, and I love the shawl you made

  12. Enjoyed the photos very much!

    My husband is from Scotland and has family still there, so we go about every 1 1/2 to two years. I love it there, but don't think I'm ready to live there.

    I've never seen a Lowery stand. I've had a stand for years, and I'm not sure I could live without it. Nothing beats not having to hold your stitching!

  13. Gillie,

    The shawl is beautiful. Love the colors. What a great picture of you & the WT. Both of you look very relaxed.
    One of these days I will probably break down & order a stand also. Enjoy.

  14. Lovely post. Nice to see what you have ben up to. And to SEE you and your husband. :)

  15. Good to catch up with you, Gillie--such a nice photo of you and your husband, too! It looks like you really enjoyed your time away.

    Lovely shawl and congratulations on receiving those lovely charts. I have the Souvenir chart myself and it is one of the prettiest I've seen. Have I started it yet? No--maybe next year (or the year after--ha ha!!)...

    Did your daughter transfer to the Wexford Whole Foods? Would you believe I still haven't made my way up there!!

    Enjoy your weekend and be glad you haven't been in Pittsburgh THIS summer--whew!! Hot and humid don't begin to describe things ;)

  16. Sounds like you had a very nice time at "home". Congrats on the stand!If you haven't tried already, you should consider stitching with both hands using a double ended needle...makes for quick finishes.

  17. So glad you had a great time in Scotland! My heritage is Scottish (my maiden name is Forbes). The Forbes clan is from the area west of Aberdeen. There is a Castle Forbes that it is my dream to visit some day. My rich uncle will have to get out of the poor house first, but maybe some day.

  18. What a lovely shawl! So glad you were able to finish it, quite a sense of accomplishment isn't it? I'm pea green with envy over your lowrey...I've wanted a floor stand for some time just haven't seen the right one. Enjoy! Can't wait to see pictures of the rest of your Scotland trip, another place on my bucket list I would love to visit. So glad you had some time with WT and look fabulous!! I may have to take up nordic walking! *Hugs*

  19. Scotland looked great! I love your new stand. I'm jealous as I would love one. Enjoy stitching with it.

  20. Hello!
    It's so good to see you and the WT, both looking very relaxed and happy. Love seeing your new toy all set up and in use as I've often wondered about one for myself. Look forward to more comments about it soon. The scarf/shawl is quite lovely so it's a good thing you held on to that book.

  21. What a great post, I'd love to read a "long" one if this is a quick one!

    The photo of you both is great, you look like a lovely couple.

    I love the two charts you received, especially the Drawn Thread Souvenir Sampler. Looking forward to seeing that one stitched.

  22. Hi Gillie, well, I think I am finally back to my computer and blogging (just wasn't in the mood to be on the computer)

    Caught up with what has been happening in your life - WT is still travelling I see, love the picture of your both in Scotland.

    Glad to see you have been getting some stitching done and that you have fellow stitchers and knitters to play with.

    You will, I repeat, you will love your Lowery floor stand!! I have one and it is wonderful.

    Take care my friend - chat with you soon.

  23. Hello Gillie, how lovely the pic of you and hubby is,looks like you had a wonderful trip up North.
    The shawl is stunning, a pretty colour.
    I've seen a Lowry at a meet up, they look so useful, I bet your stitching will increase now you have that, there'll be lots more pics to come and see on here.

  24. Your shawl looks wonderful. Congrats on a finish! How nice that you got to visit Scotland. Lucky you for getting a new Lowery stand!

  25. Congrats on your shawl finish, for the lovely parcels received. What does WC stand for? lol

    Glad you've come over to the darkside with the stand ;-) They definitely do make things easier.

  26. Ohh, that shawl looks just gorgeous and I love its name - Prairie Shawl. I think somehow it corresponds with the colour changes of the yarn - blue adn purple skies and a yellow-green-brownish prairie. I love that.
    Enjoy stitching the Souvenir Sampler. I also have it in my stash but before I will start mine I will have to finish my two DT WIPs, lol.
    Great to see pictures of Scotland. I have always wanted to visit there but it has never happened. So far ... Looking forward to read more about your visit.

  27. What a lovely shall and some lovely gifts you received!! That Random Thoughts sampler is beautiful and I can't wait for you to start it! Lovely pictures too of your trip to Scotland!!

  28. Your trip to Scotland sounds and looks like a lot of fun :-) And I loved seeing the needlework and your beautiful shawl too !
    Happy days to you

  29. Ooohhhh, I DO love Scotland adventures. Yours sounds like a bunch of fun. And your shawl looks beautiful!!!

  30. Wow what an update you put me to shame not been on mine since May!! Love all the pieces, I adore the colours in the shawl and the little bloom pillow. So envious of your trip across the border, Scotland is one of my favourite places on this earth.

  31. I enjoyed the photos of your Scottish trip. It's a while since we've visited that area and it's made me want to go back again. I have thought about a stitching stand but don't know if I would use it or not, it looks very professional.

  32. Scotland looks lovely, the pub with the clocks looks like a very nice place to visit. My hubby is English and that is one thing he misses here our pubs are nothing like good old English pubs.

  33. How nice to see a picture of you. Not to say the WC.

  34. No, no, I mean the WT!!! D'oh.

  35. Your shawl is beautiful. I love your post. A lot of beautiful pictures (I am such a visual person). I really enjoyed looking. Thanks so much for taking the time to share. Cathryn

  36. What a treat it was to read this Gillie! With all your travelling and moving about you still manage to accomplish so much. It was instant love when I saw your shawl! My colours exactly [remember to note that in your will!] I also noted that it was made in DK which means it is not outside the realm of possibility that I, myself, could make it before I die! I couldn't enlarge the sampler to inspect it more closely but it inspired in me an idea. I would love to stitch a sampler that included the names and birth dates of each of my children, along with a little motif descriptive of their interests and character. Don't be daft you say? Impossible for a novice like me you say? But I can dream.....Lovely picture of you and your WT. Nice to have a visual to go with the words. Will be watching this space for more masterpieces.

  37. I been looking at the lowery too but don't often use aflame so may be a waste of cash for me.

  38. A lovely post and so great to see a pic of you two!!


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