Shinybees - The Knitting, Comedy and Yarn Podcast

The podcast for those who like their knitting, yarn and comedy in equally large measures. Hosted by UK knitter Jo Milmine, there's also a regular Sock Surgery co-hosted with Clare Devine and Kate Read. Business minded? Enjoy the interviews with industry entrepreneurs for top tips and inspiration on making it in the yarn industry. Finally - enjoy the finest fringe knitting pattern picks that Ravelry has to offer.

The Podcasts

Knitting: Is it *just* knitting? Or is it more than that?

That's what we are going to be exploring today and in future episodes is how knitting transcends just being handiwork and becomes something much bigger. Today that's going to be using the Pussy Hat Project as an example. This is not a political rant episode, it's about using this case study (yes, I am a Geographer) to understand how knitting can spark change and allow people to be heard on a wider level.

In community news, I'm inviting you to join the new Facebook group - Shinybees Podcast Community. There's loads of chat going on in there about podcast stuff and knitting, Use the Facebook Groups App to avoid having the rest of the Facebook guff making your phone go. 

Big goal for this year is 1,000,000 downloads for the podcast. I hope you'll all join me in reaching this target and I'll have lots of info for you about how to make that happen.

Lastly a shoutout for 5647rhats45 for a lovely iTunes review. 

Knitting as more than craft is the topic of the chat this week and I'm pulling apart the Pussy Hat Project from a technical/case study perspective. I am staying well away from passing political comment as to my own personal views, so if you are sick of hearing about it, I hope you will still find this useful. There are lessons to be learned around the idea of knitting as more than craft and how we achieve change through the medium of knitting. For those not aware, the Pussy Hat Project aims to provide the people of the Women's March on Washington DC a means to make a unique collective visual statement, which will help activists be better heard. It also aims to provide people who cannot physically be on the National Mall a way to represent themselves and support women's rights.

Whether or not you agree with the politics of this project, there are lessons: power of a community gathered around a common aim; ability to inspire and motivate people to take part; accessibility to new crafters; creation of new connections within the project; the sheer logistical effort involved in managing a project to create and distribute 1.2 million pink hats.

In Enablers' Corner, I enable you to the Not Seen Before MKAL which starts on 31st January 2017. This is part of the Sight is Life project (and collection) which raises funds to support a facility in the DRC who conduct sight saving and restoring operations.

Show notes are at shinybees.com

Music for this episode is Adam and the Walter Boys with 'I Need a Drink'.

Direct download: Episode_105_-_Knitting_As_More_Than_Just_Craft.mp3
Category:Knitting -- posted at: 11:22am UTC

Permission. You don't need it from anyone to enjoy your hobbies, especially and most particularly if that hobby is knitting.

This week the chat is about two notions: 1) selfish knitting and 2) hiding yarn purchases from significant others. Selfish is a bad word. It has negative connotations and is not a compliment. Why, oh WHY then, do we use this to describe engaging in our hobby if the thing we are making is for the benefit of ourselves? It's utter twaddle! Nobody expects it from football players or golfers. Nobody calls them selfish for doing their own hobby for their own-flipping-benefit. Why is it an accepted thing as a knitter?

Secondly is the idea of it being a big joke to hide yarn purchases from significant others. To the extent of it being an 'amusing' sign in yarn shops. No, no, no. 

You are allowed to give yourself permission to buy whatever you want, whenever you want and knit whatever you want with it for your very own self UTTERLY UNAPOLOGETICALLY.

Also - family who think you knitting in public is antisocial (whilst they play on Facebook) - do one!

In Enabler's Corner I have a huge amount of love for Sam and his geographical knitting and travelling. 

In Active Stash Exploration, I revisit a very special skein from South Africa. It is leftovers from the Tanya's Train project. 

Show notes are on the blog at shinybees.com

Music for this episode is 'I Need a Drink' by Adam and the Waterboys.

Direct download: Episode_104_-_Your_Permission_Is_Not_Required.mp3
Category:Knitting -- posted at: 3:48pm UTC

The first show of 2017 brings the project of the year for podcast to you. This year, we're all about Active Stash Exploration. What's that you say? It's definitely not cold sheeping, that is for sure.

First up we have a quick catch up on happenings, before diving in to some news both for the Bees on the business front and for the podcast. Bees Inc is restructuring and that means we will lose some parts of the empire in order to focus on others. There is a free business group on Facebook (Business Without The Boll*cks) as well as a new online community portal that I am currently building. If you're sick of tying yourself in knots about what you 'should' be doing in your business and getting nowhere because of it, I'm the girl for you.

I also organised a business retreat in Cumbria at the end of January. There is one place left - email me to enquire.

On the pod front, I have lots of exciting stuff lined up for the year. The main project will be Active Stash Exploration, but there will also be lots of mini themes and challenges to go along with it. I have started a new Facebook group as an alternative to Ravelry which is getting less engagement in the forums due to the clunky interface. The group is Shinybees Podcast Community.

In Enabler's Corner, I am enabling you to the Brioche Challenge over in Louise Tilbrook's new group on Facebook - Everyday Knitter. If you have ever wanted to learn brioche and have been a bit intimidated, there are loads of great folks over there casting on, ripping back and trying again. If you want a go and need moral support, that is definitely the place to do it. The community is already really chatty and helpful. 

Hat Enabling this week is courtesy of Gillian Harkness of Mina Knits Designs with the Rios Rocks collection. It's a group of 6 hats designed in Malabrigo Rios and inspired by the Rio Olympics. If you prefer the more understated look, this could be the collection for you. Quick to knit (worsted weight yarn) and great for nice, semi-solid colours. My favourite is the Rio hat. Collection is available on Ravelry at £14.40.

And then we have Active Stash Exploration. This is my rally against the idea of cold sheeping and stashing down. I've tried it before and I am no good at it, chiefly because when I am told not to do something I have to spend time thinking about how to do it without flagrantly breaking the rules. I hate the idea of depriving myself of something that brings joy. Counter this again the feeling of FOMO when you go into the stash and find stuff you cannot believe you own and you can't wait to knit, but you don't have chance yet.

Active Stash Exploration is the method I will be using to kick those feelings of missing out to the kerb. It's NOT about cold sheeping - the emphasis is on active exploration of what we already have and the stories attached to the yarn. A nifty by-product of this probably will be less acquisition but the emphasis is not on that.

My theme for January is reacquaintance with what I have and thinking about which stories I want to share first. I would love to hear your stories if you decide to join me in this with the hashtag #activestashexploration and in our shiny new Facebook group.

Full show notes for this episode ate at shinybees.com

Music is by Adam and the Walter Boys with 'I Need a Drink.'

Direct download: Episode_103_-_Active_Stash_Exploration.mp3
Category:Knitting -- posted at: 2:00pm UTC

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