A Coastal Castle (and a Finished Project)

Dunstanburgh Castle

Today we headed up the coast to Craster and beyond, towards Dunstanburgh Castle. Northumberland has many castles, but this is one, which dates from the 14th Century, is one of the most atmospheric, situated on a rocky promontory overlooking the sea, between the villages of Craster and Embleton.

It’s about 1.5 miles from the nearest car park to the castle and I haven’t been since I was a child. (I took these photos at Embleton Steads) It is in an amazing location – the cliffs on the north side of the promontory are home to nesting seabirds, including fulmar and kittiwake. There were cliff nesting house martins too at one time but I’m not sure if they are still there.

I also completed the Twiddle Mitt last night. These are given to Alzheimers patients to distract them from picking at dressings and canulae when in hospital. Also, repeatedly twiddling the buttons and other adornments and stroking the different textures of yarn can have a calming effect.

My Twiddle Mitt

A friend who has arthritic hands and can no longer knit donated a huge bag of wool, needles etc to the knit and natter group. This included some yarns that were perfect for this – mohair, boucle, some glittery ones. I used this pattern and added some beads, including some little jingle bells, buttons and threaded a ribbon through. I also added some to the inside. The knit version is easy – a stocking stitch rectangle sewn into a tube, doubled up and sewn together at the ends. It’s great for using up those odd little bits of yarn and the more you mix the yarns the more interesting it is. You can add texture by varying the knitting stitch too – blackberry stitch or moss stitch would work, or some cable. I think I might try the crochet version next time.