Archive for January, 2013


Sorry, Guv, I Made A Mistake

31 January 2013

Well, well, well …. Kerrie Allman has been at it again.  Who would have thought it?

In September 2012, Igloo Books published A Guide To Knitting – Basic Techniques plus 40 projects.  Inside the book, there is the statement that “All projects, content and images supplied by Handmade Living Magazine”, 

Handmade Living Magazine was part of the All Craft Media “stable” of magazines, until ACM went into Administration in May 2012.  Handmade Living of course rarely published knitting patterns, which went to its sister magazine, Knit (previously Yarn Forward). 

The publishing of this collection of patterns raised loads of questions, so the 500+ members of the Ravelry group dedicated to ensuring that Kerrie/Tallulah will never again get away with her, shall we call them, “dubious business practices” set to work and within a few hours had identified the designers of all but about 4 of these patterns.

THIRTEEN patterns had come from ONE designer.  She had no idea they’d been published and certainly received no money for this.  She hadn’t been paid for some of them previously published by ACM.  Some had never been published before and were to be transferred to Tailor Made Publishers, who bought the rights to Knit Magazine (now Yarnwise).  The knitted samples were also supposed to be sent to Tailor Made but they didn’t all turn up.  ACM had five lace shawls designed by this designer which Kerrie promised to post back to her.  They never arrived.  Another “lost in the post” story to add to a very long list of postal mishaps over the past 7 years or so. At least one of these shawls appeared in this book.

The designer is now in the position of not being able to sell these patterns as “previously unpublished” as without her knowledge, consent or any payment they’ve found themselves in the public arena.

Some of the patterns came from the KAL Media era, ie before All Craft Media. Rights to these patterns were NOT sold to All Craft Media when ACM bought the titles. 

There is also A Guide to Sewing from the same source, and I know that at least one pattern in it was acquired in the same fashion, ie without the knowledge of the designer and without payment.  I’ll leave it to the sewing community on the internet to investigate that one further. 

Igloo Books has withdrawn these two books from sale while they investigate this.  They even joined Ravelry so they could come into the forum and apologise to the designers concerned. This company has won many awards, including the Queen’s Award for Enterprise, so I think we can presume that they don’t want to tarnish their reputation over a couple of craft books. They would appear to hold a contract stating that title to these designs belonged to the person/business selling them.  I look forward to seeing what action they take.

And Kerrie/Tallulah, you can bleat all over the internet as much as you like about how mean and unfair we are to criticise you for what you are keen to present as the normal human failing of making the occasional mistake. 

Not posting samples, club packages, magazines and cheques when you’ve quite clearly stated that they’re in the post isn’t a mistake – it’s a lie.  Very many lies going back a number of years.

And selling something that you don’t own is most certainly not a mistake  – it’s criminal.  Perhaps you could mention that to the police the next time you pop in to see them? 

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Modern Quilting – Another One Bites The Dust

29 January 2013

Surprise, surprise ….. Modern Quilting magazine is no more.

The magazine that belonged to All Craft Media (which went into Administration in June 2012), then Craft Magazine Shop (owned by a deceased gentleman by the name of Derek Barnes. And I don’t mean he unfortunately died after launching the magazine.  I’m not sure how he managed this but he’d been dead for over 20 years when he bought it), then Craft Magazine Limited (sole Director and Shareholder Richard Rycroft, Kerrie Allman’s father).   Yes, THAT Modern Quilting.

Craft Magazine Ltd is to no longer publish it which, once again, leaves a lot of people who’ve bought annual subscriptions without either money or magazines.

The CM Ltd telephone number has been unavailable for a few weeks and emails are unanswered. But you can write and tell them what you feel if you think it may make you feel better – – or Unit 10, Huntingdon Business Centre, 14/16 Blackstone Road, Huntingdon PE29 6EF, UK.  That address is a mailbox address only so there’s no point in turning up there brandishing your scissors.  And while you’re writing, ask them if you’re going to get a refund.

If you paid your subscription by credit card or Paypal, you could lodge a claim with them.  And you can contact Consumer Direct at 08454 04 05 06 (if you’re in the UK) 

Simply Sewing seems to have disappeared too but there’s no official word yet that it won’t be published again.  So perhaps you could ask about that too. 

Kerrie Allman/Tallulah Ray is promising another issue of Truffle soon.  And I’m sure the denizens of Bishop Stortford and surrounding areas are waiting with baited breath (well, probably not. Most of them haven’t seen a copy of the first issue yet).  

How many publications are going to fail before it dawns on her that perhaps this wasn’t the right career choice? 


How Much???

25 January 2013

Do (non-knitting) friends, acquaintances and complete strangers tell you how you could make a lot of money selling your knitting? 

Do people, sometimes passing acquaintances, ask (sometimes demand) that you knit something for them?

I had someone recently admire a pair of socks I’d knitted for David and she asked me how long it took.  I said that it was about 20 hours knitting.  Without blinking, she then asked if I’d knit her a pair.  I’m lucky to have very good friends I’d feel comfortable going to if I needed a favour.  Even if that favour took half an hour of their time.  But I’m not sure if I could approach someone and ask them to do me a favour that would take 20 hours!  Pushing the friendship a bit, I think.

The two knitters who write the Yarn Floozies blog have produced a wonderful Knitting Time Calculator for just such an occasion.  I love the fact that it has a surcharge for knitting with acrylic and a discount for using cashmere! 

And I noticed that 20 hours is what they quote for sock knitting – I’ve often wondered how long other knitters take.  So if I charged $275  for a pair, I could just about make Australian minimum wage and cover the cost of the yarn. 

Now all I need to do is find people willing to pay $275 for a pair of socks and I’ll get knitting. 



Not For The Sensitive

14 January 2013

Are most Australians aware that religious institutions here (schools, hospitals, and charities for instance) are allowed to discriminate against homosexuals, people “living in sin”, adulterers (!) and a long list of others who are considered “undesirables” by some of these churches?  EVEN WHEN THEIR PAYROLL IS FUNDED BY PUBLIC MONEY.

I didn’t know this, and I’m pretty annoyed. 

As David Marr points out in today’s Sydney Morning Herald, our Prime Minister, Julia Gillard,  wouldn’t be able to get a job as a cleaner in an Anglican hostel when she retires from Parliament (she’s living with a man she isn’t married to). 

There’s a new law going through Parliament which will continue to allow this if the employment of such a person would injure “the religious sensitivities of adherents of that religion”.  As you’ve probably gathered in the past, I’m not particularly concerned about someone’s religious sensitivities but we’re all allowed to choose our own paths.  The law however shouldn’t be used to protect those sensitivities, nor should OUR money.  The law should be enshrining equal rights not rubber-stamping someone’s prejudices. 

Acts of Parliament can’t, and shouldn’t, cater for people’s “sensitivities”.   



Just Take Two Tree Trunks …..

10 January 2013

Another wonderful knitting story – this time at Men’s Fashion Week in London.   Yes – MEN’S Fashion week.

Go to the Daily Mail website for more pictures – scroll down for the knitting.



Just To Prove (Part V1)

6 January 2013

I’m still trawling through my archived pictures (and trying to recover my lost youth?)

This picture was taken when I was 16 or 17, I think 

 Sally 17


Two Sweaters – $119,000

1 January 2013

I’m starting the New Year with a blog about knitting at last – not mine but  Aung San Suu Kyii’s, believe it or not.  A woman not normally associated with needlecrafts.

Last week, two sweaters knitted by her were auctioned in Burma and raised about $119,000 for her political party. She made them when she was living in England about 25 years ago. 

The full story is here.