I’m delighted to be part of the launch celebrations for The Woolly Hat Knitting Club by Poppy Dolan today. I have a personal reason for wanting to support this book as you’ll see further down after Poppy’s lovely guest post.
The Woolly Hat Knitting Club was published by Canelo on 25th September 2017 and is available for purchase here.
The Woolly Hat Knitting Club
Finding happiness one stitch at a time
When Dee Blackthorn’s brother, JP, breaks both wrists not only is he in need of a helping hand – or two – but the knitting shop he owns can’t function. Sisterly duties take Dee away from her demanding job and she is unceremoniously fired amidst rumours of inappropriate behaviour. Dee is certain that her hot-shot nemesis, Ben, is behind it all but has no proof.
When Dee bumps into an old friend who is new mum to a premature baby she convinces JP to enlist his knitting pals to make lots of tiny woolly hats. Then Ben turns up denying involvement in Dee’s sacking and she ropes him into helping the knitting cause.
But before long Dee’s good intentions backfire and she risks losing her friends, her family and Ben, who’s turned out to be not so bad after all…
Wool is in my DNA…
A Guest Post by Poppy Dolan
I’ve always loved anything crafty: I was that nerd in the lunchtime cross-stitch club at school and I’m not sorry. Never really being refined enough to class as ‘arty’, I loved any kind of craft that meant I could assemble something that (if you screwed your eyes up in the right way) would look lovely. If you can hot glue gun it or stitch it or turn it into a pom pom, I’m there.
So when knitting suddenly came back into vogue in the noughties, it had my name written all over it! I bought a beginner’s kit to knit a really thick, chunky scarf and away I went. It was slow going and to start with I somehow managed to accidentally double the number of stitches I had on my needle. I still don’t how know. But eventually I had a long, cosy scarf that I proudly gave to my mum. And being my mum and being really kind, she wore it.. From there I’ve knitted all sorts – tea cosies, hats with animal faces, toys and even a draft excluder! I love the challenge of a new pattern and seeing something come to life on my needles. And there is nothing better than when someone sends you a picture of them wearing or using one of your creations.
While I was writing The Woolly Hat Knitting Club, my beloved granny passed away.. She’s in the dedication for the book. In reflecting on all the wonderful things about her – she was a demon Scrabble player, an excellent cook and always looked at the glass half-full – I realised that I get my insatiable crafting appetite from her. She was from a generation where knitting wasn’t so much a hobby as part of your homemaking skills, but she definitely put the fun in knitting! When I was little, she made me a My Little Pony cardigan – the pony even had a long pink wooly mane and tail. It was amazing and I loved it; I’ll never forget it. And even when her eyesight began to fade, she switched to using really fluffy, sparkly yarns so that if she slipped a stitch it wouldn’t matter so much. She was creative and industrious, a truly inspiring woman. And so maybe knitting becoming fashionable again was just the excuse I needed to start down my own woolly path and carry on our crafty family DNA. Now, each time I pick up some yarn to start a new hat or scarf or toy zebra, I spend a minute thinking about my gran and how I think this would make her very happy indeed.
(Your post actually brought a tear to my eye Poppy. It will be our first time without my wonderful Dad for his birthday on 1st October and it was he who taught me to knit as a child over 50 years ago. I think I might need to knit something in his memory.)
About Poppy Dolan
Poppy Dolan is in her mid thirties and lives in Berkshire with her husband. She’s a near-obsessive baker and a keen crafter, so on a typical weekend can be found moving between the haberdashery and kitchenware floors of a department store, adding to her birthday wish list. She has written three novels: The Bad Boyfriends Bootcamp, There’s More to Life than Cupcakes and most recently The Bluebell Bunting Society. The Bad Boyfriends Bootcamp made it into the Amazon top 100 bestseller chart, so clearly someone other than her mum must have read it. She’s currently working on her fourth novel – it’s about friends, siblings and crafty things – and drinking far too much tea.
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