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It’s a day late due to an infernal ear infection but Episode 3 of the Mrs M’s Curiosity Cabinet podcast is now live.

The podcasts is also available on iTunes or PlayerFM.

In today’s instalment I provide a short update on my all-natural sock experiment. This includes sharing your suggestions for possible yarns, including Cuthbert’s Sock Yarn from Whistlebare, and your musings on the Craft of Use when it comes to socks.

In Lessons from the Sewing Room I talk about some hard-learnt lessons about muslin making, design selection and pattern modifications. I share why the lovely, casual Factory Dress (pattern by Merchant & Mills) will not become a wardrobe but why the Coco Dress (pattern by Tilly and The Buttons), made in classic black jersey from the Organic Textile Company, will.

I talk at some length about the typical modifications I need to make to dresses. One such tweak is moving the bust dart, a tutorial of which can be found here. I also mention the Françoise Dress (also a Tilly and The Buttons pattern).

In comfort knittings I ponder the minimalist mantra “Experiences, not stuff” in the context of a recent comfort knit and some comfort knitting. In particular, I talk about finishing the Strokkur sweater (design by Ysolda Teague, knit in Icelandic Lett-Lopi wool, and working on the Talavera top (design by Amanda B Collins), knit in Uradale organic Shetland wool, naturally dyed by Woollenflower.

Finally, I share my explorations of another ancient fibre art, paper making. In the context of London Craft Week I had the opportunity to attend a paper making workshop organised by the Institute of Making and run by paper artist Mandy Brannan. I also talk about Alexander Monro’s The Paper Trail, An Unexpected History of a Revolutionary Invention (2014, Penguin). In this section I also mention the Institute of Making’s annual Festival of Stuff and Blenheim Forge, a London-based forge that specialises in making chef knives.


Music: Springish by Gillicuddy on FreeMusicArchive and shared under Creative Commons Attribution license.

  • africandaffodil May 16, 2017, 7:37 pm

    I was really enjoy this episode, until 20:43 when the sound disappeared… I’ve re-tried a few times so am assuming it’s not me, though technology and I are not best of friends.

    • Meg and Gosia May 16, 2017, 9:58 pm

      Thanks for flagging up the glitch. As a Luddite my instinct thought was “what did I do wrong”. Fortunately the master recording was fine and something happened when the file was uploaded. The whole episode with sound is now available here and on Podbean. The final segment starts at about 19:35.

  • africandaffodil May 18, 2017, 6:34 am

    Thanks for fixing it so promptly- especially as I really loved your description of paper-making. What wonderful workshops you find! I too have fond memories of the airmail paper (a dozen or so penpals of my own as a teenager, and then a year in an African village in the days before mobile phones and the Internet when a weekly letter home was the norm). I’ve been eyeing up a large nettle patch in our garden with thoughts of extracting the bast fibre for spinning, but I’m now wondering whether it could equally serve for paper-making? Anyway, it’s always fascinating to have insights into other fibre crafts and I thank you for sharing your experiences.

    I’m pleased to hear that the raw disappointment of your toile-making has subsided and you have found an excellent way forward. And your mohair blend socks sound perfect. I am in full agreement about going off the feel of superwash harns- for me it was discovering KnitBritish last year and starting on my own more discerning journey into the varieties of fibres and yarns and different breeds available that ruined superwash for me. I’m currently working on my second pair of all-wool socks, this pair made from some handspun and they are giving me all sorts of ideas of blends to spin soecifically for socks.

    Yes please to a Ravelry group!

    • Meg and Gosia May 20, 2017, 10:18 am

      How lovely to have a garden large enough to be have a nettle patch. I am eyeing up some nettles on my local forage routes. I pick the tips in early spring for soup but I may go back later in the year for paper making fibre 😉

      • africandaffodil May 21, 2017, 7:44 am

        My husband comes from a non-nettled country and his first experience of the plant was when I made a delicious nettle, watercress and potato soup. You can imagine his surprise later when he has a close encounter with a plant in the garden and it turned out to be as unfriendly as the soup had been comforting.

        • Meg and Gosia June 18, 2017, 8:41 pm

          This made me giggle but I can imagine that it would seem like an incongruous plant if your only previous acquaintance was a heartwarming healthy soup!

  • Annmarie May 19, 2017, 4:37 pm

    I am so pleased to have found your podcast! I saw a mention of it on an Instagram post by @louleigh_ and searched you out. I’ve listened to all three episodes and look forward to hearing more from you. An interesting podcast and very different from the usual fare.

    • Meg and Gosia May 20, 2017, 10:20 am

      Thank you Annemarie for your lovely comment. I’m very glad to hear that listeners are enjoying the podcasts. It was a a little worried about trying something different but the feedback has been so encouraging.

  • Anita May 30, 2017, 10:47 pm

    Thoroughly enjoying your new podcast.
    Sewing and knitting are so complementary, and a Ravelry group would be very useful fir discussion. Certainly more than Facebook, which I confess I avoid. Your forays into other crafts and musings on making are a welcome companion to like-minded folk. Here in my home studio outside Washington, D.C., it is heartening to hear from a kindred spirit and enjoy London just a bit as well.

    • Meg and Gosia June 18, 2017, 8:40 pm

      Thank you Anita. Glad you are enjoying the podcast. I love that the Interweb, Ravelry, podcasting… allows me to connect with people with similar interests. I don’t seem to bump into many of them here in London. By the way, I’m setting up a Ravelry group.

  • Mary Gordon June 12, 2017, 8:31 pm

    thanks for reminding me of blue airletters. As a refugee / immigrant these were so important for so long!I used to look out for special editions but I don’t think they do them any more…

    • Meg and Gosia June 18, 2017, 8:39 pm

      I have heard so many people remember the blue air letters with fondness!


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