The moorland that borders Sheffield and Derbyshire and stretches as far as the eye can see toward Edale, is carpeted in heather and speckled with thistle. The heather is knee high.
In the sun and breeze, the air is constantly heather scented. Everyone the you pass along the way, shares their complements on the miles and miles of purple. Apparently, it is a good year for heather.
If you walk from my flat, through the Hanging Water allotments, up the path winding through Whitely wood to Ringinglow, cross the road by the old toll bar house opposite the Norfolk Arms and walk across Hound Kirk Moor, which is an Toll Road, you’ll see the360 degree purple carpet. Along the moorland track are two old milestones. I head for them every time I walk this way. The most interesting milestone registers the miles to Tidswell (Now spelt Tideswell) and Buxton and has a skull and cross bones carved underneath it. The Milestone was reunited in 2014 with its base after it was found in a garden in Dore where it had been part of a Rockery. You can read about it here but go and see it for yourself – it’s always a joy.
This is the second walk that I have done in two weeks where I have seen this natural purple carpet. Today, the view so enriched my walk that I have chosen the colours of heather, thistle, stone, rock, sand, pale sky, gravel, blackberry and blackberry for my yarn colour palette for my new work. I have been knitting the colours into Fair Isle samples for a workshop I am doing on 2nd September but in doing the samples, I can see how beautiful this colour palette is.
In September, I will bring Fair Isle back into my work and the colour palette will lean towards autumnal heathers. In the Winter, when I look at the yarns and colours, I’ll remember this summer day and the carpet of heather.