Verb: pootle
poo-t(u)l To move in a leisurely unhurried way,
with no real purpose

Monday, 10 February 2014

Try and try again ...

When I got in from work last Wednesday there was a much awaited parcel sat on the kitchen table...
my new book from Juju Loop's !
I had been so excited about receiving this and it did not disappoint. 

It has several truly beautiful wrap patterns in it ... and the layout 
and photo's in the book make it a real feast to look at.

I think if I hadn't already decided on the wrap I have chosen to make I
 would have uhmed and ahhed for some time over which one to pick.

The colours and yarns they have chosen are quite gorgeous.

But this one it is...
the Prairie Shawl.

My yarn was already chosen and bought ...
time to get started.

 That all sounds so simple and straight forward doesn't it .... 
...and then I looked at the pattern !
Oh man .... I think the pattern totals 5 pages with 5 charts, and written instructions as well.
I looked at it for a bit and then shut the book.
I then looked at it again a few minutes later, 
strangely it looked much the same and hadn't got any easier.
Add to that the fact that I haven't knitted anything for several years
 and it suddenly all seemed a little overwhelming.

However, the NEED for me to have this beautiful wrap far outweighed any further 
doubts and having told myself that I am an intelligent woman and it really would be 
very silly to let myself be beaten by this and that it is, after
 all, simply just stitches written down I looked at the pattern again. 
I cast on 246 stitches, 
very strange after crocheting for so long now with just the 1 stitch, 
and made a start...
...I made that same start three times altogether...
and it has to be said there was fair bit of huffing and puffing and a small 
amount of rather choice language thrown in for good measure.
But, after 3 evenings of working on it this is how far I have got ...

... it's a start and I am SO happy that I persevered because I really feel quite proud of myself now.
Admittedly there's a long way to go but I won't be giving up any time soon.

The other really, really exciting thing that happened this weekend was that a friend and I took the train to London to go and see Warhorse at The National Theatre in Drury Lane.
We had been given the tickets as Christmas presents and it was such a treat to have something all booked up and planned, all we needed to do was to get ourselves there.
We got to London for around 4pm and had a little mooch around Covent Garden, stopping for something to eat before heading off to the Theatre.

I have wanted to see this production for so long and even more so since seeing the film, as I couldn't imagine how such a complex story could be converted to be a stage play.
I had seen the horse puppets several times on the television and was quite transfixed with how real they looked, never still for a minute and with all the perfect mannerisms of a horse, from twitching ears and flicking tail to all the little snorts and whinnying, and stomping of hooves.

To say it was a triumph doesn't even begin to describe it.
It was compassionate and real, intense and brutal and utterly, utterly breath taking.
 I am still thinking about it constantly.
 It was impossible to not believe that the horses were real .

And most of all, with it all having taken place 100 years ago this year it was so poignant.

One million horses were taken from Britain to France during the war, with only 62,000 returning.
However hard we try I think we will never be able to truly know what it must have been like.

Needless to say, if you get the chance to see this production don't hesitate for a minute.


  1. I've seen the horse puppets and they do look amazing! Your new shawl project sounds very exciting and I shall look forward to seeing a picture of you wearing it with great pride :) xx

  2. Wow I am not sure I will manage with a knitting pattern. I'm just sticking with my garter stitch for now me thinks. Well done you for persevering and it is looking amazing!! I can't wait to see a little more of it. I'm also loving the colour you chose. The war horse sounds incredible. We have friends who went to see it and haven't stopped raving. I'm so pleased you managed to see it and also enjoy some time in covent garden, one of my fave places in London. Enjoy your week sweetie and have fun knitting xoxo

  3. Well done for not giving up. Your shawl is going to look fantastic and I see you have gone for your favourite colour of the moment. Grey:-)

  4. Ah ha, would that be grey yarn that you are using there Kate!! I look forward to seeing your progress. I have seen War Horse, and thought that it was utterly amazing. You really do forget that the horses are not real and you don't see the actors/puppeteers at all do you. So glad that you enjoyed it! xx

  5. Hi! I just wanted to say I've started following your blog and I really like it. I went back and read your October post about dishtowels, too. I go through phases, when I'm tired of knitting complicated sweaters & socks & all the other stuff, that I love to make dishtowels. Big rectangles are so relaxing sometimes! :)

    Anyhow, "hi" from California.

    1. Hi Mellanie
      Thanks for dropping by, I'm glad you're enjoying Just Pootling.
      I totally agree with you about the therapy that comes with lovely repetitive rows on big rectangles !
      Have a good day,

  6. Oh that is a beautiful shawl, well done you for persevering. I see you have a bag from Wool - I've been meaning to visit there for ages, you have reminded me. Next time I am in Bath I shall definitely look for it.

    1. HI CJ
      Oh you should definitely visit Wool in Bath, its such a lovely shop and stocks a good range of lovely, lovely wools. I could waste many an hour in there !

  7. Hi Kate, your shawl is going to look fab, well done for sticking with it, it does look quite complicated. Rowan pure wool is so nice to work with though and it's a lovely shade of grey. I haven't seen Warhorse but I have seen the horse puppets on TV and they look amazing. Have a lovely knitty week!
    Jane xx

  8. Brave brave brave! You are so brave. I'd have chickened out on seeing the pattern! J x

    1. Hi Juanita,
      I so nearly did - Unpicking it three times was a bit soul destroying !!
      Have a good day,

  9. That book looks amazing I so want to order it too but not sure I would have your staying power - 5 pages of charts sounds such hard core knitting. Can't wait it see it finished and thumbs up for colour choice x

  10. The shawl is so beautiful, it will be worth all the hard work in the end! Well done for keeping on trying to get is already looking lovely!
    Helen xx

  11. Well done .It will be wonderful when you finish it so keep going. I adore knitting but rarely do it as I have been very impatient .I often cast on filled with happiness and joy to hear the click click of the needles, but there is this little voice in my head that says if you did this in crochet you could have done three rows by now. Needless to say I never finish knitting. So well done you, keep going it will be worth it.

  12. Such a lovely collection Kate...I'm in love with them all...well done for your perseverance as it's definitely paying off...your work looks beautiful!!
    Would definitely love to see looks amazing...x
    Happy Thursday,
    Susan x

  13. Hi Kate! that looks like a really nice book! Complicated pattern you are working on but it will be so worth it and what you have done looks great, I love the yarn you are using. Your wrap will be pretty and elegant!
    Marianne x

  14. Dear Kate,

    Thank you so much for visiting my blog, such a nice surprise to have found your blog.
    I like your style, we have very similar tastes. I love the deco in your house from the peaks you have shown here and I even have the same Ikea chest of drawers!
    The yarn you chose is just beautiful and I love the colour, so elegant !
    You are right in persevering with your knitting. I learnt as a child and made myself a scarf, purl and knit stitches only. Countless practice I remember, but that was it. Then cross-stitch took over for a while, then crochet took over for the largest part of my life until last week that I took knitting again and started to make cables out of a pattern in a book, just like you are making this.
    I would love to follow your blog but have not found how to do it, other than by email . . .
    I will be back to check your progress . . . :-)
    xEva from Madrid

  15. Well done for persevering with the knitting! Its going to be lovely, you can tell already. What gorgeous yarn too. x

  16. The book is fabulous isn't it, and well done you for getting past your initial fears ... looks like you're already back in the swing of the two needle thing :)

    My sister, mother, younger son and I all have tickets to see Warhorse later in the year when it's at The Lowry ... I can't wait!

  17. Thank you for popping into Chalky's World and leaving such a lovely comment. I have just had a lovely time pooling around your little bit of Blogland.


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