Archive for the ‘knitting’ Category

How can we keep the cosy vibes going after Christmas…?

Posted on: December 18th, 2019 by samdrawsthings No Comments

ponderings banner by Sam Goodlet - www.samdrawsthings.com

I find winter hard.  I’ve written on my Instagram about how much I prefer Halloween to Christmas…. although this year does feel easier.  My mental health is much better, AND I’ve created the HiberNATION to celebrate the cosy, dark vibes of this time of year.  So I’m feeling a lot more chilled out about the Christmas part of winter (you can read about the Christmas I stayed in bed and ate pizza here!), but I’m wondering how we can create some intentional rituals to fight off the post-Christmas blues….

join the hibernation illustration by Sam Goodlet - www.samdrawsthings.co.uk

Christmas day comes so close to Solstice; here in the UK it’s bang in the middle of the darkest time.  We’re celebrating the returning of the light.  But it’s a slooooow return, and still a way to go before hibernation time is over.

Once the decorations come down on Twelfth Night, it can feel kind of bleak, can’t it? We been collecting and doing things that helps us survive the winter and lift our spirits – pretty lights, evergreens, socialising, exchanging gifts, eating comfort food – and then at New Year BAM! We give them all up again, even though there’s a lot of winter left.  Astrologically, Solstice marks the START of winter!

I used to work with a lovely lady called Mel, who would countdown to Valentines Day, because from that point she knew she could pretty much always drive home from work at 5.30pm without her headlights on.  It’s a nice measure of when the evenings begin to get lighter again.

So, what can we do to look after ourselves and each other as we wait for the light to come back…?  Here are some ideas:

  1.  January Decorations! Apparently, the tradition of taking the Christmas decorations down to avoid bad luck is a Pagan one, linked to the evergreens and their foliage – you could deck the halls, but you had to get them back outside by the 6th of January or the tree spirits would start to get antsy.  So last year we made sure we got the tree outside, then kept some of the fairy lights, and jiggled around some of the not-to-festive decorations.  It definitely helped the house to feel warm and welcoming.  Other years, I have purposefully made January decorations to replace the Christmas ones, to brighten the place up and celebrate the New Year.
  2. Join the HiberNATION.  Recognise that it is still winter, all the things that helped us before Christmas ARE STILL ALLOWED!  Pyjamas, chocolate, snuggling, catching up with friends, bingeing on box sets, knitting and/or wearing all the warm knitted stuff… keep making time for the cosy things that nurture your heart and soul.  This is the best time of year to enjoy this stuff!  You don’t have to stop just cos it’s not December any more 🙂
  3. Look for the beauty.  Right now, my garden is a muddy quagmire.  Every time the dog comes in, we gain some indoor mud too.  Sometimes I have to search out the beauty of this time of year.  But it’s there.  The resting quiet, like the pause in between breaths.  The silhouettes of trees against pastel winter skies.  Ice, frost and snow.  And then slowly, the tiny signs that start to creep in of returning life and noise, like snowdrops and little shoots of green bursting up from the mud…
  4. Do some reflecting and look to the future.  I’m not one for full-on, high-pressure New Years Resolutions, but there is a ton of advice out there about setting intentions or themes for the year.  This year I think I will do a little bit of journalling to reflect back on the previous year, create a list of things to look forward to in the next year, and list some of the qualities I’d like to call in to my life for 2020.  (If you need some help, my friend Alice is doing a mini-course that could be just the thing!).
  5. Allow your feelings.  Winter is by nature a darker time, for slowing down, reflecting and planting seeds.  You don’t have to be ‘jolly’.  It’s ok to feel whatever you feel.   I think we can sometimes make things harder for ourselves if we fight what we truly feel.  I’m working on welcoming my emotions and seeing what they are here to tell me. And a lot of the time in winter, they’re saying ‘go slow, be gentle, plant seeds.’

And, as ever, allow time for self care 🙂

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⭐️message from the Comfort Fairy⭐️ . Step up your self care. . I’m learning about leaning in to opposites. Gently breaking my behaviour patterns by doing the opposite of what I use to do. The times when I have the most to do and that ‘busy busy busy’ vibe is ramping up are the times I need to claim some of that time for me. . The times when I am giving the most are the times I need to up my self care. . The times when I feel the most triggered and anxious and flighty are the times I need to slow down, feel and breathe rather than rush and run. . And it’s strangely hard; it’s like my inner martyr just kicks in and is ready to take the world on her shoulders until she breaks. But what’s the point of that?! Who can I help if I’m in a puddle on the floor? . I’ve been that puddle more times than I care to admit. It’s been a pattern for me; the hurtling followed by the crashing. . So I’m learning this new way to navigate. . I’m here to serve, I’m here to help. My calling to magicalise is powerful and exciting. But I’m remembering I can’t serve anyone from the puddle! . . . . . . . #ComfortFairy #StepUpYourSelfCare #SelfLove #MentalHealth #Recovery #FairyDog #FaeriesOfInstagram #Faeries

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Banshee Yarns branding looking fab!

Posted on: May 29th, 2019 by samdrawsthings No Comments

It’s lovely watching a brand new brand blossom.  I love the moment when a logo I’ve designed starts appearing on things.  It takes on a life of its own away from my sketchbook and it’s pure magic.

The yarn bands I’ve designed for Banshee Yarns have just been wrapped around their first skeins of yarn, and their colours are so stunning, look! 🙂

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Dorcha, Stain & Apocalypse on 70/30 Merino/Silk

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Go follow them for news of their other colours, online shop and first wool show.

If you’d like any help with logo design or branding, you can drop me an email here.

A couple of new knitting-based projects

Posted on: March 22nd, 2019 by samdrawsthings No Comments

Design work is a funny business – sometimes there’s a really tight deadline and turn around; sometimes things are in the pipe line for ages before they come out into the light of day.  Through a combination of both of those, I’ve got a couple of new pieces of work to share with you!

I was so excited to see Cartref Yarn appear on my Instagram feed today.  I designed their logo last year and have been dying to talk about it. Jennie and Zoe knew that they wanted something based around a Welsh map.  Below is a page from their branding pack (everyone I work with gets a shiny pack with tips on how to use their new goodies in).

Cartref Yarn branding by illustrator Sam Goodlet - www.samdrawsthings.com

You can follow their journey on Instagram here (it’s already looking really good):

Hutch of Dye Candy reached out at the end of last year with a more general idea for us to collaborate on something.  We’ve got lots more to share with you soon, but we kicked off with a drawing of Hutch inspired by Tank Girl!  I’m going to be doing a few of these drawings with different poses, backgrounds and text on to share on her social media feeds.

Although both in the yarn world, these projects are so different, and I just love how the diverse members of the community bring their own personality into their brands.

Both projects also gave me a nice push to try something new – I’d never drawn a map before, and animals and plants are definitely my comfort zone over drawing people.  I never really know how a project is going to turn out when I begin it, but I’m so pleased with how these worked out.

You can see more of the projects I’ve been working on here 🙂

All Welcome

Posted on: January 18th, 2019 by samdrawsthings No Comments

ponderings banner by Sam Goodlet - www.samdrawsthings.com

Over the last couple of weeks, anti-racism has reached the knitting and crafting communities online in a big way.  It’s undoubtedly been incredibly tough for the people of colour who have been doing an awful lot of emotional labour to educate white people (like me) about their experiences of exclusion and racism, and show us that even the (superficially) fluffy knitting world is racist.  I’m incredibly grateful and humbled by their hard work and bravery.

It’s brought amazing activists and educators like Rachel Cargle and Layla Saad to the attention of lots of us crafters. I’ve been slowly Doing The Work and considering how much white supremacy really isn’t a thing of the past, or just the purview of a few extremists in white hoods – it’s EVERYWHERE and something that I benefit from.  I’ve also been discovering amazing activists challenging gender (and race) issues, like Alok.

When I’ve found the work challenging, I try keep in mind the image of how I would like a man to react to #metoo.

You know how Kavanaugh and Trump made Christine Blasey Ford’s hearing all about men, and how hard it was for the poor men of the world to be attacked in such a way, when SHE was the one who was threatened and terrified…?  Yeah, that’s the opposite of what the world needs right now.  We white people need to shut up, sit down, listen, shut up some more and not make it about us.  And then we need to make some changes to how we behave, so that we challenge exclusion when we see it, and build things from the ground up that are open to everyone.

The gorgeous hashtag on Instaram #diverseknitty has also helped amazing creatives from around the world share their wonderful work with new followers and fans.

There are also, I hope, lots of other makers, podcasters, brands, shows and shops who are considering how they can be more inclusive and reach out to make everyone feel welcome.

I don’t have a physical shop (or really do much out in the real world at all to be honest right now!), but I wanted to draw something to let everyone know that they are welcome in my online spaces.

A drawing showing a diverse group of people with the text 'all welcome' above. By Sam Goodlet - www.samdrawsthings.com

Whatever your background, or however you identify, you are always welcome here.

And if you’d like to collaborate or if there’s something I can do to help you feel more included or access my work, just give me a shout.

Looking back at the Flower Power Fund

Posted on: January 2nd, 2019 by samdrawsthings No Comments

The 1st of January saw the announcement of the grand total raised by the Flower Power Fund.  I posted on Instagram about it on New Year’s Eve, with a bit of back story as to how I became involved in this brilliant community fundraiser…

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Feeling philosophical and thinking about the amazing @flowerpowerfund😀 Last New Year’s Eve, my partner Josh & I wore these amazing 🦊 masks to a party. It was super last minute (we don’t get out a lot these parenting days) and my mum whipped up these masks on her sewing machine. I had to dash into town to get some more threads and a thing happened… ⭐️ I walked into the haberdashery department and had this really strong feeling of returning home. 🏡 The yarn and threads, the fabric and buttons, the patterns and all those ideas in waiting… my creativity has always been about more than drawing. My dad can make pretty much anything from a bit of wood, my mum, from fabric. I’ve almost trained as a sculptor and a costume designer. And I didn’t really know what it meant that day in the store but it was a lovely feeling. It reminded me I was more than just an illustrator… ⭐️ I’d also done a little bit of work with @begentlekel on my business plan and had this big ‘I’m a social enterprise!’ revelation. Kelly is fab 😘 Again, I didn’t know what that meant yet, just that I wanted to do good. 🌈 @sherlock_knits emailed me about @flowerpowerfund on the 20th of December last year. By the 15th of Jan, we had the logo all sorted and approved by Marie Curie. I’d casually suggested I could also draw each flower from the year of flower-inspired yarn and give a donation from the prints…I didn’t expect anyone to buy them! But they did. And I had to get my packaging act together. Then we decided I should try and design a pin, and the last 2 sold just before Christmas. 💐 This year, I’ve made the loveliest new friends, I’m learning to knit, and have a yarn stash to be proud of. I was a proud part of #titsoutcollective and my designs have raised money for Marie Curie, the Badger Trust, Together Rising and Care4Calais. 🙌 2018, you’ve been magic (as well as hard work, scary and a bit of everything else). I’ve got some exciting ideas percolating for the New Year, but I also just want to sit with this lovely feeling for a bit… Happy New Year old friends and new. Loads of love 🥳 #happynewyear #goodbye2018 #flowerpowerfund

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Honestly, when Sarah first got in touch with an idea to raised funds by asking independent dyers to create flower-inspired yarns, she thought she might raise £1,000.  She also involved other crafters, ran a MARATHON and had regular raffles (all while working as a Doctor for Marie Curie).

Sarah had an existing network of lovely creatives, which just blossomed and really got behind her (self titled) slightly bonkers idea with such enthusiasm.

£22,628.91 raised for Marie Curie!!!!

A new yarn was released every month (sometimes more than one) with the dyers donating a percentage of the proceeds.  A lot of the yarn sold out almost instantly, and dyers were frantically trying to keep up with orders.

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Thank you doesn’t seem quite enough but it’s the best I have! This time last year I was hoping that we might sell about 10 skeins a month and perhaps raise £1000 if we really tried. When @edencottageyarns said she’d dye 50 skeins for me I panicked and worried that I might be sending her hurtling towards certain bankruptcy!! But month on month you have ordered yarn in your hundreds, and the £1000 grew quickly to £10,000 and then nail-bitingly I began to hope for £20,000. To smash that target utterly and reach over £22,000 is beyond my wildest dreams, and all to help @mariecurieuk support more people living with terminal illness and their families. So thank you to all the dyers, bagmakers and other fabulous crafters who made products to sell each month, or who donated raffle prizes. Thank you to everyone who sponsored me or donated to the fund, or who bought raffle tickets month on month. Thank you to all the people who listened to my #slightlybonkersidea in the first place and told me I wasn’t being ridiculous. Thank you to all the people who knitted socks for my patients this year and smashed that target too. And thank you to @samdrawsthings who listened to my idea and utterly embraced it becoming my partner in crime over the past year. What shall we do next?!? 😉 #flowerpowerfund #slightlybonkersidea

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I did the branding for the project, and then drew each month’s flower and sold the prints.  I also designed my first pin.  A percentage of all my sales was part of the grand total.  My initial thought was that I might raise £50…

But I raised £1082.12!  I really hadn’t sold that much via my online and Etsy shop this time last year.  I’d had a couple of really depressing attempts at craft shows and felt quite dispirited.  So it was amazing when people started to buy the flower prints, and the 200 pins sold out!

I am still feeling a bit reflective and looking back at last year, thinking about what worked and what didn’t, what rocked and what flopped, so that I can put some really solid plans in for the coming year.  My little social business is still in the early stages in a lot of ways and I am excited about helping it to flourish in 2019.   There are a few things in the pipeline, and if you have a project or idea you think I could help with, do get in touch 🙂

Flowers for the Flower Power Fund by illustrator Sam Goodlet - www.samdrawsthings.com

Gift ideas that give to badgers too

Posted on: December 9th, 2018 by samdrawsthings No Comments

The Badger Sett has a really lovely new collection of badger-inspired crafts and goodies that make perfect gifts for Christmas.  We also all donate a percentage from these sales to the Badger Trust’s badger vaccination project – a positive alternative to the badger cull.

The brilliantly talented Amanda of Maysie Daydreams has some very special Christmas decorations:

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EVERYONE, I finally made it! The Limited Edition Badger Hearts are here! They are £10 each and made to order, you can choose if you want wool felt, or vegan ecofelt, you even have a choice of ribbon. You could use them as a Christmas decoration but I might leave mine up all year round! There will only be 5 available and every penny will go to the @badgertrust . (PS I've only made this available to the UK but if you are from elsewhere and you are ok with the fact that it might not arrive in time for Christmas let me know and I'll open the listing to you!) #badgertrust #stopthecull #animalwelfare #wildlifeconservation #consciouschristmas #thoughtfulgifts #vegan #vegangifts #animalrights #handmadechristmas #christmaswithlove #handmadehome #feltcrafts #slowstitching #ooakgifts

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And some beautiful brock textile art pieces that are just adorable!

MAD Scientist Yarns still have their gorgeous Trufflehunter colourway, as well as two new festive badgers too…

This special Badgermas colourway can also be ordered with an exclusive print from me!

The Crimson Rabbit is busy writing up a pattern for some leg warmers, which look just stunning in the Trufflehunter yarn.  Do follow Debbie on Instagram for news of when the pattern is released.

And I am really excited to add some new things to the Sam Draws Things shop!

The Yarn Badger very kindly donated 5 Goose Eye hat kits in different colours (with a name like that, they had to get involved).  100% of the sale price of each kit is going to the badgers!  They include yarn and instructions, and are selling quick, so do order soon if you want one.  You can find them here.

My lovely and talented friend Jane Brumwell made beautiful Stirling silver and copper progress keepers.  They are each rolled with the impression of a skeleton leaf, and are so delicate.  Each one is unique! You can find them in the shop here. 

And there are also badger prints and Christmas cards 🙂 You can see the whole collection here. 

Huge thanks to all the super creative members of the Sett, and to everyone who has bought something so far.  It’s so wonderful how the craft-y community gets together for good causes.

 

More lovely badgers for Badgerween

Posted on: October 17th, 2018 by samdrawsthings No Comments

badgerween logo by illustrator Sam Goodlet - www.samdrawsthings.com

Badgerween is a black and white stripy celebration of Halloween from the Badger Sett – a group of compassionate creatives fundraising for the Badger Trust.  We are supporting their badger vaccination project, a positive alternative to the cull which is being increasingly rolled out across the UK.

How gorgeous are these textile are badgers from Maysie Daydreams?

The badgers are available in Amanda’s online shop here.

And you can pre-order some of this scrummy Truffle Hunter Yarn from Mad Scientist Yarns:

You can get your hands on some Trufflehunter yarn here.

And there will be lots more coming soon, including project bags from Annie at Busy Pottering, who has found the cutest fabric!

I’m also still busy drawing things,and have been following some of the prompts for #mabsdrawlloweenclub on Instagram.  I wanted to draw something that touched on why the Badger Sett exists – so drew some ghost badgers, a haunted badger cage and a laboratory…

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These drawings for #Badgerween and #mabsdrawlloweenclub have turned into a little story about why I started the Badger Sett, a group of creatives fundraising for @badgertrust 🐾👻🐾 1. The #ghost badgers haunt the silent fields in their thousands. The wild landscapes they used to call home bereft of their digging paws and soft sounds. Uprooted and lost, they search for their old setts, crossing roads and drifting through supermarket car parks, meandering through dead grass where bees used to buzz. 🐾 2. If only each badger trapped and shot could warn the next badger not to enter the cage… #hauntedobject. 🐾 3. In the #laboratory, scientists plot and plan and explore less deathly ways to deal with bTb and keep our badgers safe…

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and I’ve added some colour to my mushroom badgers and they’re now available as a print:

You can find my Badgerween collection here.

 

Welcome to Badgerween!

Posted on: October 8th, 2018 by samdrawsthings No Comments

badgerween logo by illustrator Sam Goodlet - www.samdrawsthings.com

The Badger Sett are celebrating a black and white stripy Halloween this year, fundraising for the Badger Trust.

We are a collective of creatives making things to support the badger vaccination project and help end the badger cull, and the first few items for sale have just gone live.

There’s a little and growing collection of black and white and badgery things in the Samdrawsthings online shop…

And I am really excited to announce that MAD Scientist Yarns have just launched a Badgerween colourway!

This beautiful hand-dyed yarn is Trufflehunter, and it’s available for pre-order now:

Other members of the Sett are busy developing ideas for Badgerween (and Badgermas!) so I’ll keep you posted as more creations are unveiled.

I’m also attempting to keep up with the drawing prompts for Mab’s Drawlloween club over on Instagram, adding a badger theme to each prompt, and will be developing these into prints and things…

Happy Badgerween!  🙂

 

 

A new botanical illustration for the Flower Power Fund

Posted on: September 17th, 2018 by samdrawsthings No Comments

Wow.  September is here.  At the same time as feeling like it’s been a really long summer this year, I also can’t quite believer we are now heading into autumn.  If you follow me on Instagram you’ll know I’ve been a bit of a mess as my little boy starts a new preschool (he’s absolutely fine of course).

We are also into month 9 of the lovely Flower Power Fund, and onto our 12th flower already!

Every month, new indie dyers and makers create lovely things for cratfers on a flower theme, with a % of all sales going to Marie Curie.  This month, it’s all about Love-in-a-Mist, with a beautiful new yarn from Eden Cottage Yarns , a bag from Betsy Makes (both of which have sold out already!) and a new print from me:

You can find the print and everything Flower Power Fund related in my online shop here. 

 

Marie Curie Sock Quest Bits & Bobs

Posted on: August 28th, 2018 by samdrawsthings 1 Comment

Marie Curie Sock Quest logo and banner by illustrator Sam Goodlet - www.samdrawsthings.com

This is the original #slightlybonkersidea from the wonderful Sarah Holmes:

“I am a doctor working at Marie Curie Hospice Bradford, and in my spare time I am also a knitter.

Last year, I decided to knit a pair of socks in limited edition Marie Curie yarn for every one of the patients in Bradford Hospice at Christmas. When I posted about it online lots of kind knitters offered to help, and the project grew. Hand knitted socks came in from all around the world, including U.S.A, New Zealand and Dubai. In the end, we collected over 229 pairs of socks, enough for EVERY patient in EVERY Marie Curie Hospice in the UK to have a pair of hand knitted socks for Christmas.”

Isn’t that amazing?  Sarah is also the lady behind the Flower Power Fund.  And this summer she also ran a marathon!  She’s one of the most inspiring women you could hope to meet, and you can find her JustGiving page here.

This year, The Marie Curie Sock Quest is running again, and there are lots of people knitting already!

There is a special yarn by West Yorkshire Spinners that’s available from City Knits here.

And there’s a sock pattern by Sarah you can try here.

I’ve created a couple of downloadable things to help – a wrapper to go around the socks and a little card that you can fold up to go with them.  You can add a note or just let the recipient know who their socks are from.

You can download them both to print at home by clicking on the buttons below.

They are both A4 sized.  The card folds down into quarters, and the sock wrapper has a green line so that you can cut it down the middle.  You can then stick the back together to fit it around the socks.

(If you find that you lose bits of the edges due to the margins of your printer, try again and using the ‘scale to fit’ option.)

Happy printing!  I’d love to see any pics of your socks and wrappers 🙂

You can find me on Instagram here.

The finished socks need to go to Sarah at the address below before the 7th of December 2018:

Dr Sarah Holmes
Marie Curie Hospice Bradford
Maudsley Street
Bradford
BD3 9LE

UK

 

 

 

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