Episode 7: “These Islands”

Hello and welcome to Episode 7!

This episode has been in the works since back in May when Claire and I went down to the Sheep’s Head Yarn Festival. We stopped off in Cork City to have lunch with Evin O’Keefe, the person behind Irish publishing company, Anchor and Bee.

We met Evin at her favourite restaurant Fenn’s Quay, which has been awarded “Best Restaurant in Cork” in the Munster Regional Final of the Irish Restaurant Awards in 2015.

We chat with Evin about two craft books she’s recently published and her future plans for Anchor and Bee.

The following day we met Sara Brietenfeldt at the Sheep’s Head Yarn Festival. You heard most of this interview in Episode 6 but I held on to some that was more relevant for the book “These Islands” which she worked on with Evin.

More recently, I met with Suzanne and Cathy. Suzanne worked with Evin on the books and Suzanne and Cathy share a blog “Fibre Friends“.


Fingerless mitts designed by Suzanne McEndoo for “These Islands” book.

Our craft beer focus for Episode 7 is Mountain Man Brewing. I met Phil and Sue Cullen to chat about their beers and especially what they were offering punters at the Irish Craft Beer Festival. While we didn’t mention it in our chat, it was through Sue that I first met Evin.


Mountain Man Phil with the selection of varieties available at the 2015 Irish Craft Beer Festival

And we’ve got a giveaway this episode! We’ll be giving away Evin’s books “Bake, Knit, Sew” and “These Islands” as well as a bag from Smudge Yarns and a skein of Smudge Yarns’ Superwash BFL Sock called “Skibereen” colourway.

Give-away prizes are: one copy of each book: "Bake, Knit, Sew" and "These Islands"; one skein of BFL sock from Smudge Yarns; one Smudge Yarns bag

Give-away prizes are:
one copy of each book: “Bake, Knit, Sew” and “These Islands”; one skein of BFL sock from Smudge Yarns; one Smudge Yarns bag

To be in with a chance to win this all you have to do is:

  1. Leave a review for Blasta Podcast on either iTunes or Stitcher.
  2. Leave a comment in the show-notes to say where you have left your reivew.
  3. Do this before the end of September.

I’ll announce in Episode 9 who the winner is of this prize.

Links to items also mentioned in this episode:


Toothpick and marshmallow models of the five Platonic Solids



Episode 4: Catching up with Catchloops

For Episode 4, Dearbhla caught up with Elanor King a.k.a. “catchloops” when they were both at Unravel earlier this year.

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Unravel souvenirs

During their chat they speak about a number of patterns:

To celebrate her Knitty success, Elanor has set up a KAL. The cast-on date was May 1st but you have until July 20th to be in with a chance to win a number of prizes, including one for best riff. You can sign-up on Elanor’s Ravelry group. Let us know if you’re taking part.

Our pattern release is coming – sorry for the delay. In the meantime, here is a close-up from the t-shirt pattern Dearbhla is pairing with this episode.

Episode 4 Pattern close-up

The “Sleeve of mad construction”

While chatting to Elanor, Dearbhla mentions a wonderful Irish-language poem that describes Inspiration as a butterfly that will be crushed if you try to grasp it but will rest on your hand if you sit and wait for it. Unfortunately we can’t find the poem.  We have trawled the web trying to find it, even calling on a few Irish teachers to ask them if they knew it. Dearbhla is beginning to doubt it even exists! Can you help us find the poem?

Revenge Ruby Porter from Kellys Mountain Brew

Revenge Ruby Porter

To wrap-up the episode we sat down over a pint of Revenge Ruby Porter from Kelly’s Mountain Brew, to talk about what’s happening in our community.  The Republic of Ireland is voting on Friday, 22nd May, for a constitutional change to allow same sex couples equality to marry.  While Dearbhla and Clara both support a Yes! vote, we mainly want to encourage everyone to get out and vote on this important referendum. Go to The Referendum Commission’s website to get the facts and an unbiased view.

Theme Music is “Trouble With a Capital T” by Horslips and is used with kind permission of Horslips’ management.