Hello! I’m sorry its been quiet here for a few weeks, I’ve been very busy with secret knitting and I passed my driving test! which was very exciting but meant I was practising that instead of knitting – anyway I passed so that’s good. I also went away for a peerie trip to Glasgow to see some of my friends and go to the Dixie Chicks concert, my trip also included going to Ayr to visit my pal Amy which was great!

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So yesterday I headed up to Whalsay with my Mam to meet up with one of my knitting pals Linda, I was very excited to see the current exhibition at the Whalsay Heritage Centre. Whalsay is one of the many islands of Shetland and you have to get a ferry to get there – so I had my first experience of driving onto a ferry!

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The very exciting exhibition they have on this summer is called Fair Isle Knitting Through The Decades and includes over 140 items, Whalsay knitters are some of the best in Shetland in my opinion and I wasn’t disappointed with the items on show. There were items from the 1920’s to the present day and because they were donated for the exhibition everything wasn’t behind glass which was great – you could have a good look!

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the photo shows a group of three brothers and the tank top above is one of the ones worn in the photo.
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yokes, swatches and another sample with a photo showing the garment worn

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early garments, an unusal jumper and the original sample cardigan from the Traditional Knitting from the Scottish and Irish Isles book, knit by Ina Irvine
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mam looking at some of the great texts alongside the exhibition

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I found the whole exhibition really interesting and inspiring. Its really funny to see how the fashions change over the decades but also to see how something’s don’t change much at all! They had organised as much information about the pieces as possible and it was so interesting to read. If you get the chance to go they are open: 2-5pm Wednesday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday from 1st May – 2nd October which means if you are coming for Shetland Wool Week it will still be on. Thank you Linda for showing us around!

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It was such a beautiful day that after our trip we went up North to visit my Granddad in Ollaberry, where my Mam grew up.IMG_8095

Spring has definitely sprung now and there are lots of lambs everywhere..

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As well as the lambs running free with their mams on the hills some of the newer babys are still being kept in the shed’s until they are ready to go outside which is nice as you get a close look at them, they are so cute!

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I went with Granddad to feed a caddy lamb, one who’s mam has died or wasn’t accepted by their mam, you have to bottle feed them until they can fend for themselves, again – very cute!

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I had a great day out with Mam and it made me feel very happy that the weather is getting better!

As an aside.. Shetland Wool Week Memberships are now available, see here! And if you dont fancy a membership the programme will be available from the 17th of May with booking opening on the 24th – its all very exciting!

Ill be back soon with some of the fruits of my secret knitting.. til then Happy Knitting!

16 comments on “a good saturday

  1. Yay, and huge Congratulations Ella on passing your driving test. Well done. Thank you so much for sharing those beautiful pictures of the Fairisle knits, so stunning. I loved seeing the jumpers alongside pictures of when they were being worn. Did you see patterns or jumpers there you have in your own collection?
    The lambs and spring time pictures were so sweet, I know I’d have been more than a little tempted to try hide one of those lambies up my jumper x

  2. Marilyn F.

    Ahhhh . . . what wonderful pictures, especially of the countryside and the little lambies!!! The Fair Isle Knitting is also spectacular. Thanks for sharing!! Happy Knitting . . .

  3. Cherylfromcreemore

    Huge congrats on passing your test! I remember how incredibly nervous I was when I did mine.

    Thanks so much for sharing your day…it may be years before I make it to Shetland …but just now, I felt like I was there.

  4. torirot

    Congratulations on your driving licence! And the exhibition looks interesting – I’ll see if we can fit that into our wool week schedule!

  5. Ruth P

    The two Karens and I went up to Whalsay yesterday for a look at the exhibition and spent a lovely hour there. So interesting. We thought we might have bumped into you and your Mam (she had said to Karen M that you were both planning a visit) but we went to the Shoard first ( and got some really good things there), so we didn’t cross paths. Lovely photos of the lambs!

  6. Oh Ella, you are the ONE! Just pass your test in Shetland and flee off to Glasgow? WOW. Nice trip up north and that museum exhibition was wonderful, lucky you. Congratulations and ‘we’ are awaiting your secret project :)

  7. Kathy Bernett, Michigan USA

    Thanks, Ella, for taking us along with you & your Mam on your springtime rambles. Loved seeing the exhibit as well as the darling lambs, especially the one who just had to have a meal in the middle of the roadway. Congrats on passing your driving test & being so brave to take the car on the ferry so soon after. Can’t wait to find out about the secret knitting.

  8. Congrats that you passed the driving license. The exhibition photos are interesting and inspiring.Beautiful landscape pics and the lambs are so cute.
    Happy knitting

  9. Congrats that you passed the driving license.The exhibition photos are inspiring.The lambs are so cute.
    Happy knitting

  10. You are a mind reader. When I saw you”d gone to the Whalsay Heritage Centre, I hoped there’d be examples of Fair Isle knitting. What a bonanza of knitted pieces!

  11. Thank you for the lovely high-resolution photos. I can enlarge them to see every stitch!

  12. What a great way to spend a Saturday. I hope to get a visit to these wonderful places someday!

  13. Oh, the sheep!! I’m working on my driving too, so I feel for you. :p :)

  14. I’ll be coming back to this post to zoom in on the knitting. I loved seeing the photos alongside the garments, many of which were quite beautiful. Congratulations to the folks who put the exhibition together. Thank you for photographing and posting it.

  15. Wonderful blog – I felt like I was there with you on your day out. And that exhibition – stunning!

  16. What a fabulous post,Ella. I am just sick that I can’t see that exhibition. It’s perfect. I applaud the curators and organizers for avoiding glass and just packing it all in the space available.
    Congrats on grabbing with driving. Come to Nebraska where you can tear around at 80+ miles per hour on the freeways….all on the ‘other’ side of the road of course.
    Thanks for a great post.

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