Sunday, April 3

All fired up (Nottingham MK show 2016)

Had a lovely weekend. Saturday morning I had a bit of time to kill so made a start on the front of a charity sweater - of course, only having an hour, everything went wrong from row 2 but I got there, kind of - the fair-isle isn't quite right, but it's not a distinct pattern anyway and it kept looping on the right and I decided I didn't care enough to frog it back. After lunch I popped over to my friend P's house to help her get started on her CSM (an imperia like mine) - she hadn't used it in 20 years but it worked remarkably well, all things considered, and I got her making herself a cast on sock. I don't like using the umbrella cast on basket as it's too easy to knock it part-way off and then your weighting is unbalanced. She was missing a weight hanger, the half-moon and a dental pick - luckily she has lots of ribber weight as she's also a flat-bed machine knitter. The CSM just needs a little oiling, I think. The weather was glorious and we had a quick coffee out in her courtyard. When I got home, the Cog was doing roast beef - he had decided, partway around Sainsers that morning, that he wanted to do another roast after Easter's lovely turkey in a bacon lattice - and he expected us to have it Sunday, until I pointed out that we were both going to be out all day. Hence a Sunday roast on a Saturday. Anyway, I digress!

Saturday evening I installed the Brotherlink 5 cable I bought last month - Windows XP didn't install it automatically, so I had to grope around under advanced settings and somehow managed to pick the correct file. The following morning I got the cable installed onto the KH950i - it attaches via velcro, so can be used on my punchcard machines also. I've been measuring up my room ready for a remodel, so please excuse the mess and the make-shift laptop table, which is actually a shoebox. The sensor seems to be working, the next step is to try the interactive knitting and the download function.

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Sunday was the annual Nottingham MK show. I went with two ladies from my MK group, and we didn't leave until 10am, so when we arrived an hour later the carpark was completely full - so we parked over the road. R ducked straight into the Bill King talk, which was standing room only I think - whilst M and I started our tour of the stalls. I picked up some James C Brett Baby marble chunky I've been eyeing up online for a while - although it does mean I'll need to dig the chunky machine out I think - and some lovely merino from Uppinghams in a peacock blue. We met back up with R and realised we were ravenous, so popped out to the specially-laid on cafe area to eat our sandwiches and get coffees. After lunch, we went back in and split up - it was lovely to catch up with familiar faces, meet new ones (hello J!), browse the gadgets and bits. Beryl Jarvis is retiring due to ill health and I'm sorry about that, she's a lovely lady - so she was giving away her info sheets and asking for charity donations for her sample garments. I nearly picked up her lovely strappy knitted evening dress, except that I'm pretty sure I'd never get into it unless I was dreaming. Andeeknits wasn't there - I think she's cut back due to maternity, so fair play - and of course, Dennis Wright wasn't there with his CSMs as he's also ill at the moment (I was on his stand last year). As the afternoon wore on, it got quieter, so M and I chatted to various people. M asked me if I could help her with her calcuknit at some point - and lo and behold, Knits n Bits had one on their stand - so I got talked into buying it by Wendy Piper's very persuasive son. It looks like a useful little tool - a calculator that also does neckline and sleeve calculations - but having switched it on this morning, mine is Japanese! Luckily the manual seems pretty clear (and is in English). I decided against the KR11 - it's the electronic charting device for Silver machines - as the KR7 will work on all of my Silver machines and doesn't need plugging in. I picked up a lovely aran cardigan pattern from Karabee designs - and debated buying the aran there and then, but the handknit stall didn't take VISA, and I was low on small change (plus I've some Hobbycraft vouchers I need to use up, so this is the perfect opportunity). I helped a lady who knew me from the MK Treasure Chest website who was having trouble with her KH260 not tucking when it ought to - I suggested she try simulating it by hand using HOLD and see how that went. I had a nice natter with Bill King and admired his samples - I really wish he'd bring out a techniques book, I'd be first in the queue!

All in all a lovely weekend - and I was so fired up about it all, that I slept very badly last night. I kept wanting to get up and knit something! Completely forgot to take any pictures of the show this year, too :) If I had any criticism of the event it's that it's not at all well advertised outside of MKM magazine, and on their website it's only under the shop (under products - exhibition tickets) - which means many folks might not realise it is even running. But the car-park was testament to the machine knitting community still being alive and well!

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Current mood: inspired

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