Lots of advice and inspiration

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I’ve been to Italy before, but never to Florence and I very much looked forward to my week away. It’s a glorious time of year, but unfortunately the sun had shone from clear blue skies the week before. It drizzled when we arrived, poured down all week and I threw my umbrella in the bin at the airport as it collapsed for the last time. In the anticipated sight-seeing trek to visit the museums and churches, I spotted something amazing. The windows of almost every fashion shop in the city centre were filled with knitwear. If it hadn’t been so wet I could have jotted down hundreds of ideas, all of which had been machine-knitted in the first place. There was layer upon layer of fine knitting teamed with chunky tops and knitted scarves were everywhere. It was truly a machine knitter’s paradise.

When I got back, I looked at a number of boutiques selling knitwear on the Internet and was frankly staggered at the prices some folk are prepared to pay. It made me realise even more the huge potential our machines have to offer. I don’t think I’ve spent so long looking at women’s knitted fashion since I was at college and it might not have attracted my attention so much if the weather had been kinder. Taking shelter from the rain became essential and, after all, there’s a limit to the number of frescos and paintings of the Madonna and Child any one person can take in! All of us stick to the well-trodden path of patterns and styles we know, because they’re familiar old friends that won’t let us down. Nevertheless, it costs nothing to go window shopping and we don’t need to go as far afield as Italy because our own High Streets are filled with knitting. Perhaps the exercise to walk off the seasonal excess may also fill us with lots of fresh ideas for some inspirational knitting?

We probably need to avoid the January sales but, when the windows fill with the new season’s knitting, we can glean lots of ideas. Sally-Ann sets us on the right path each month with her up-to-date trends and colours, so we’ve no excuse. Let the New Year be filled with resolutions that we’ll all make a list of ‘must knits’ for 2013 : and knit them! Now all that remains is to send my very best wishes and sincere hopes for a happy and peaceful New Year, filled with good health and good fortune for us all.

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February 2013

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