Tuesday, December 22, 2015

My Friend

Here's me thinking I was being *clever* by taking the last spot on Woolly's 10th Anniversary Blog Tour... I didn't anticipate sitting here feeling a little speechless, because everyone has covered a lot of the things that I was going to say :P

But , you know me right? 
Never short of a few choice words :)

Woolly and I have been friends for around 7 years, but I know I bumped into her quite early on in our *online* lives, as we both started blogging in 2005. 
I followed a lot of blogs around that time, being a stay at home Mum to two beautiful boys, and knitting woolly trousers and shorts to be used over cloth nappies to keep me creative.

I remember sending her these yarn oddments... and how completely *fangirl* I felt being mentioned on her blog... hahaha :P

Woolly's adventures with her dyeing and spinning inspired me to follow my own woolly dreams... and a few years later she was including my hand dyed and hand spun yarns in her patterns !

I loved reading about her life... feeling so closely connected to her through her words, as I struggled with my own darkness... 
Her frankness about her feelings and how she made sense (or not) of it all always comforted me... and still does :)

We met 'for realz' in 2007, at Skipnorth, an annual get together of knitterly folk at Hawarth in Yorkshire and then again later in that year at Woolfest, where I got a sneak peak at the samples for her first book, 'Going Straight' ...

Rainbow Warrior and me :)

The move to 'Mutonia' in 2008 saw her really begin to blossom as a designer, and having such a beautiful son to inspire her has opened up a whole new world of playful constructions.  Being a mother unlocks a whole new level of emotion (both good and bad) and these feelings are expressed by us sensitive, creative types in the only way we know. Living in such an artistic community has also encouraged so much wonderful work to emerge, and also allowed for a much simpler way of life for her and her Boys...  something that wouldn't be possible to achieve within the stifling constraints of bricks and mortar.

On her returns to the UK, we always try to meet up at least once, if not a few times (Wool Shows, Teaching and Hat Clinic schedules permitting) and Summer family get togethers at my houze are fast becoming a tradition... 

There's always a lot of laughter, always alcohol (in varying quantities) and ALWAYS some time to go clothes shopping :P

Over the last 4 or so years, we've been growing increasingly closer to each other in the dark times, the friendship becoming stronger because of it. 
She's gently schooled me on ways to cope with the darkness, to embrace it and work through it. 
You have to understand how it works to ever think of overcoming it, and that knowledge is a real gift, one that I am thankful for every day. 
Without her unwavering guidance I would still be drowning, especially with the mess that is my head over losing my Mother so unexpectedly.

As you all know, I have an incurable Hat addiction... and for my 40th Birthday, she designed 'Sarahs Slouch' for me ... my very own WoollyWormhead design, from one of my very best friends in the world.

And that's it for me, plain and simple.
She is my friend, and I love her with all of my heart :)

I feel unfaithful if I contemplate knitting any hat other than one of Woolly's *GRiNS*
The way I see it though, I have no need to look any further than Woolly's comprehensive inventory of 8 Books and over 150 single patterns to find something amazing to knit. Her written instructions are so simple to understand (that's perfect for me!) teaches me new techniques, and new ways of looking at construction.
A lot of the other Guest Bloggers have chosen their favourites, but I am afraid I cannot, because they are all awesome!

Now, you guys know how important Music is to me, I live for it and the way it wrenches feelings out of me ... 
Woolly and I have shared a memorable kareoke moment or two, hehe, but over on the Instagram recently, she shared a fantastic song, 'Vagabonds' by the New Model Army.
I dunno if any of you have been to a NMA gig ? I have, and it was one of the most amazing experiences of my University years. The passion and absolute surrender to the music of the fans was astonishing to me at the time, being a newbie gig goer at the time... and it coloured my Live music appreciation forever. 

So, Woolly, this one is for you, my soul sister. 
Thankyou for being in my life, and for helping me to attend to my head, in more ways than one!

Sing it LOUD !

'We are old, we are young, we are in this together
Vagabonds and children, prisoners forever
With pulses a-raging and eyes full of wonder
Kicking out behind us again'

As per previous blog posts, you guys have the opportunity to win a totally, one of a kind, reversible project bag, sewn with love by Woolly.... 

..of course, being a Yarnie, you will also get a skein of yarn from me. 
Because I love ya :P
....just leave me and Woolly a comment here, telling us what you'd say to us, if you met us in the street... away from all the bluster the industry creates... and also what hat patten you'd like to receive!

... because at the end of the day, we both are just, as my youngest son says, Hoomans :) 

Be excellent to each other... !


Blogger MommyDoc said...

This is so beautiful. I don't know where id be without the kindred spirits I've met in my life. I'm so glad you found each other - a great match!

If we met in the street could we just go in a shop and have a cup of coffee and knit for a bit and be glad to exist together in the world?


6:31 AM  
Blogger Anne-Marie said...

You guys are both special to me, I rarely blog these days but I still read yours (and not many others) As the years have gone by and the time has passed I feel more connected, and reading about your dark days helped me cope with my own. I would imagine meeting you on the street would be like when I went to Sarah's house earlier this year, I felt at home and we had a coffee and a chat and I left feeling like I'd made a friend for life. Plus I had a new Louet, which I think is how I found your blog all those years ago... The S10 years :-)

6:44 AM  
Blogger Clair Coult said...

An awesome blog post about an awesome lady, written by an awesome lady. And I don't use the word awesome lightly! You guys ROCK!

If I met you both on the street I would say thank you. Thank you for introducing me to Woolly Wormhead's weird and wonderful hats, for giving me the opportunity to play with amazing yarns, learn new techniques I would never have had the confidence to try and most of all for being a good friends.

Then I would say which way to the pub? :p

7:48 AM  
Blogger Stitched Together said...

Well first off if I saw you in the street, provided I could get out of the shop faster than the LAST time I saw you, I would give you a massive hug because I'm a hugger. Then I'd probably grill you about your current projects and almost definitely compliment your hat choice 😉

For me both you and Woolly Wormhead will be inextricably linked. My first indie pattern and first indie dyed yarn purchases, discovered at my first knitting group where Lottie and Liv introduced me to both. Both of you have have inspired me and enhanced my hat collection for which I'm incredibly grateful. I'm sure I'll be buying Babylonglegs and Woolly Wormhead products for as long as you choose to sell them, because I love the way both of you work.

I adore the new Painted Woolly Toppers patterns and know that will get round to them soon, but as I haven't bought the book yet, I'd love the Lamitra pattern to play with.

7:58 AM  
Blogger Zonneke said...

If by incredible magic we'd meet in the street the only thing I 'd be able to utter is 'love you too !' and give both of you a very big hug and won't want to let you go ;-)

8:14 AM  
Blogger Cottonon said...

Wonderful words, Sarah, it is rare to come across such a strong friendship and it warms my heart to read about it and to have witnessed it in real life (see photo) :-)
If we met in the street there would be screams of delight but I would have to wait for Mr.C to finish hugging you to get a look in!!

Much love


8:44 AM  
Blogger Jessica Hashbarger said...

Absolutely beautiful. So glad that you shared. Thanks. I would see you in the street and stare from a distance, so as to not bother you.

11:26 AM  
Blogger Unknown said...

Hi :) I met the two of you at stitch Solihull a couple years ago. It was my first time seeing either of you and having hats tried on me to find something that suited me and yarns to make it with...such a special time.
Fiona (scarletprincess on ravelry)

12:54 PM  
Blogger ambermog said...

Fabulous post from a very special person and about a very special person. Can't remember how many years ago I met you both but if we met up then it would be hugs cause that's what me and Mr Mog do but also it would be me saying thank you to both of you. Your blog posts about the dark times echo how I feel and seeing someone brave enough to speak about the dark makes me feel I am not alone when the black dog rears its head. Specially at the minute. So thanks Sarah and thanks Woolly you rock xx ps any hat pattern would be enjoyed. Pops which ones do you two recommend for apres chemo as I need to knit Mr M some xxx

5:56 PM  
Blogger Cyndi Johnson said...

I would say "Thank you for the raw honesty and the fantastic yarns & hat patterns!" Here's to another 10 years of life, love & awesomeness, fellow humans!

6:36 PM  
Blogger Nyree Dawn Dowell said...

I'd probably melt into an anxious fangirl shaped puddle and be totally unable to ask if you'd like to join me for coffee/cider!!
Sarah - you have inspired me so much...from the early days of my (now not so) smalls wearing your woolies, your gorgeous yarn and your handspun (which was a huge part of me wanting to learn to spin!).
Woolly - your patterns have become my go to for all my hat needs!! I rarely look elsewhere nowadays for a pattern and they never fail to impress.
And on those days when this bloody black dog completely refuses to sod off and let me live, the open rawness you have both written about your dark days gives me hope that, with knitting, friends and family (including the awesome knitting community ones I've gained) I'll beat it again!

10:32 PM  
Blogger Jane McAtee said...

If I met you, first i would be awestruck, then I would try to be normal and ask about books, kids, what's on your needles....and I would consider myself so lucky to have been in your presence

10:19 PM  

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