Sunday 29 May 2016

Fantasy Fish #Increasetheshoal at Rowntree Park Reading Cafe

Just some of the fish, pompoms and finger knitting that came to #increasetheshoal at Rowntree Park Cafe
We had a fabulous turnout at our final workshop at Rowntree Park Reading Cafe.  I think we may have taken over all the seats indoors and a few outside too! 

As well as the fishy makes made at the workshop there were quite a lot of extra fish that swam in that day:

Gillian, Sarah & Imogen's fish
Gillian, her daughter Sarah, and grandaughter Imogen had all made lovely things to add to the Fantasy Fish Yarnstorm.  In fact Gillian had also used some of her Mum's yarn and her Grandma's buttons in her makes.  That means five generations of her family have had some input into the project - how impressive is that!

Mags's makes

Mags, who has come along to all our workshops and brought extra fish every time, had some new makes for us again.  Her starfish set off quite a trend as people started knitting starfish!

Sarah's octopus and fish

Sarah had been knitting an octopus at our last workshop at the Golden Ball and brought it along this time with some other lovely fish.  She also finished off the big knitting fish that Joanita from Radio York started when she came to visit me to hear all about the Fantasy Fish Yarnstorm.
Joanita & Sarah's big knitting fish is 67cm long

Everyone was very industrious
Helen and Sam brought a big bag of fish with them before embarking on a joint starfish.  And I believe they will be bringing some more fish from the Easingwold Knitting Group too - how fabulous!

Helen & Sam's fish

We had some tiny visitors who weren't too sure whether they wanted to share their mums with the project but they let them in the end - at least for a little while.

Knitting, stitching and finger knitting all getting done

Towards the end of our session Neil and Veronica brought some children along from the York Montessori Nursery and they made these lovely pompoms using a fork each!  We're wondering whether they took their new skill back to the Nursery and if it's now covered in fork pompoms!

Pompoms made by children from the York Montessori Nursery

And if that wasn't enough, Pie had brought along a bag of pompoms and Sarah had stitched some more #fantasyfish #fishfromyork at home so all in all we had lots to #increasetheshoal and with more than forty people at our workshop it really was a fab afternoon.  Thank you to everyone for all your hard work!  Thanks also to Rowntree Park Cafe for having us & for the fab drinks & cakes.

Fish knitting patterns

Our yarnstorm fish will be working hard to raise money for the York Flood AppealAnd there's still time to join in.  You can find the fish knitting patterns here and you have until 10 June 2016 to get your finished #fantasyfish to Rowntree Park Cafe if you want them to be included in the yarnstorm.  (They don't have to be knitted - they can be stitched, felted or crocheted - to any suitable design)

If you want to find out more about the project's progress you can check out the following blogposts:
Fantasy Fish Yarnstorm - The Details

The Fantasy Fish Project is sponsored by the Friends of Rowntree Park and has been supported by Hobbycraft, York, Knit & Stitch, York and York School of Sewing.

Sunday 22 May 2016

Fantasy Fish go to the Golden Ball, York

Natalie and her makes
We were made very welcome at the Golden Ball in York for our second Fantasy Fish workshop in Craft & Design month.  We took over a whole room and only just fitted in.

Everyone soon got down to fish making
and pompom making, stitching and knitting

and serious concentration

and colour co-ordinating

not to mention chatting
and cross stitch & crochet

It was lovely to meet lots of new people and old friends and have a great afternoon as we #lovetoCREATE.  By the end of the workshop quite a lot of #fantasyfish had swum by and some swam off to be finished at home.  A big thank you goes to all who came along to help us #increasetheshoal and to the Golden Ball for having us.

Fantasy fish & pompoms caught in the net at the Golden Ball

Our yarnstorm fish will be working hard to raise money for the York Flood Appeal.  You can read more about the whole project here.  Some ceramic fish also swam by to help with the fundraising and quite a few have already found new homes.

Ceramic Fantasy Fish brooches
If you want to find out more about how the project is going you can check out the following blogposts:

Fantasy Fish Yarnstorm - The Details

and you can find the fish knitting patterns here.

Our final workshop is at Rowntree Park Cafe on Thursday 26 May from 2-4pm.  Do come and join us!

The Fantasy Fish Project is sponsored by the Friends of Rowntree Park and has been supported by Hobbycraft, YorkKnit & Stitch, York and York School of Sewing.

Wednesday 11 May 2016

Fantasy Fish at the Winning Post, York

Recent Fantasy Fish catch

We have just had our first Fantasy Fish workshop at the recently refurbished Winning Post in York and what a great time we had - thank you to everyone who came along!  

Fantasy Fish Yarnstorming at the Winnning Post

big knitting and stitching

There was a great turnout with both yarnstorming newcomers and regulars which was fantastic.  We had knitting (and with big needles - thank you, Emma!), stitching, pompom making, finger knitting and crocheting going on.

Big blue fish
swapping tips

Naomi from the Crochet Collective came along and crocheted some very cute fish for us.  But she wasn't the only crocheter amongst us - we also had some fab crocheted plant life & fish from other workshop attendees. 

great opportunity for chatting & laughing

It was great to join in with Voluntary Arts Week and Craft and Design Month to celebrate making.  People had found out about #fantasyfish from all sorts of different places so we were pleased that we'd managed to get the word out.

finger knitting, knitting & stitching!

Not only did everyone create fish on the night, we had several fish who swam in to #increasetheshoal and some that weren't quite finished were whisked off to be completed as "homework"!  One shoal swam in and out (so no pics) as it has another engagement before joining the Fantasy Fish Yarnstorm in Rowntree Park.  How mysterious is that?

lots of concentration going on!

And just in case you needed to see those fab #fishfromYork that will #increasethe shoal again, here they are for a quick recap!

Fish, plants & pompoms from the Winning Post Fantasy Fish yarnstorming workshop

And very importantly don't forget after the display we will be selling the fish to raise funds for the York Flood Appeal so do come and support us in that too!  For more details about when the sales are, when the display will be up in Rowntree Park, other workshop dates, knitting patterns etc. click here.

This was our first time at the Winning Post and we were made very welcome by owners, Fiona & Malcolm, and barman, Ed - thank you!   

The Fantasy Fish Project is sponsored by the Friends of Rowntree Park and has been supported by Hobbycraft, York, Knit & Stitch, York and York School of Sewing.


Monday 2 May 2016

Craft & Design Month May 2016 & More Fantasy Fish

Craft & Design Magazine - May/June 2016

The Fantasy Fish project has been featured in the current issue of Craft & Design MagazineAs you may know, May is Craft & Design Month - a whole month to celebrate crafts across the UK.  First launched by Craft & Design magazine in 2011, Craft & Design Month is an opportunity to support, promote and celebrate designer makers and small craft businesses across Britain.  


And Hippystitch is joining in that celebration with a Fantasy Fish extravaganza.  Deborah New & I have three workshops in May where you can come along and unleash your creativity with knitting, stitching, pompom making, finger knitting, or knitting with very large needles. 

Tuesday 10 May 2016 – The Winning Post Pub 
127-129 Bishopthorpe Road, York, YO23 1NZ 
19:00 – 21:00

Saturday 21 May 2016 – The Golden Ball Pub 
2 Cromwell Road, York, YO1 6DU
12:00 – 14:00

Thursday 26 May 2016 – Rowntree Park CafĂ© 
Rowntree Park, Richardson Street, York, YO23 1JU 
14:00 – 16:00
Do drop in - all materials are provided and all the fish you make will go to make up our Fantasy Fish Yarnstorm in Rowntree Park and support the York Flood Appeal.
Catch of the day!

I have been knitting a few more fish.  Using my goldfish knitting pattern and self patterning chunky yarn - RICO design creative melange chunky 50g - I knitted 3 fish and had a small amount left over.  The recommended needle size for the yarn was 6-7mm but I knitted mine on 5.5mm to get a closer knit as I was stuffing them.  I used buttons for eyes and matched them to some of the yarn colours.  They ended up approx. 23cm by 8cm (9 inches by 3 inches)

Fat fish with fins

I also tried another self patterning yarn but using the Fat Fish knitting pattern.  I gave this one some fins by picking up a few stitches and knitting out till I thought it looked right.  I'm calling this one submarine fish because that's what I think he looks like!  He's knitted on 3.75mm needles and is about 15cm by 8.5cm (6 inches by 3.5 inches).  This was knitted with a double knitting yarn - James C Brett Marble Double Knit Yarn 100g (there's still about 90g left!) and the recommended needle size was 4mm.
If you're on Twitter try looking out for #fantasyfish and post a picture of any you make using that hashtag!