Thursday, 31 December 2015

Giving and Receiving

Hi guys, have you had a nice Christmas? I had a lovely time with my family thank you :o)

I wanted to call by to show you some of the gifts I made this year and a very special handmade thing I received too. It has just dawned on me that I forgot to take pictures of some of the gifts I made but never mind - here are the ones that got photographed:

I made both my husband and my son a Handbrake Cowl each in Rowan Felted Tweed Aran. This knitting pattern is a design by Kay Jones of the Bakery Bears podcast. It's an easy make that is very enjoyable to do. My gauge was really big to start with so the cowl was coming out really large. Instead of going down needle size I decided to reduce the stitch count and this worked out fine. I reduced the stitch count down further to make a smaller one for my boy - the pattern is quite easy so it's not difficult to work out the maths.
Both my men like their cowls but the weather right now is so mild they don't really need to wear them. I'm hoping the yarn isn't too itchy for either of them, I've yet to do the blocking and that might soften them up.

I also made my friend Saffron these socks and she loves them too! They are made with gorgeous cashmere, merino and nylon hand dyed yarn from The Yarn Gallery on Etsy. They were such a joy to knit due to the beautiful feel of the yarn. They are just vanilla socks, but who needs patterning when the yarn is so pretty? Look at all the subtle colours and the way they sit in the stocking stitch.
I didn't use a pattern for these, I cast on 60 stitches (she has narrow feet) using 2.25mm dpns and knit a 2x1 rib. Then I made the cuff 6" in stocking stitch and did a Fish Lips Kiss heel (funny name but super easy pattern)

And look what the lovely Sandra gifted me! I am so touched that she made me this gorgeous shawl, which is a new design by her (at the time of publishing this post it's still to be released, but coming soon I think!)
It's so soft and pretty, with a lovely drape. I think the yarn is Regia Angora Merino, it's fabulous anyway! I wore this all day on Christmas day with my favourite shawl pin and loved it. 
Thank you my dear for such a special present 

So lots of lovely things going on here over the holiday period. I'm trying to get up to date with all my patterns on Ravelry and will check in with you again soon with my updates. I will also be getting organised for my Spring crochet workshops, so keep posted for that too. In the meantime, take care my friends,
'till next time...

Wednesday, 23 December 2015

Merry Christmas Time...

I feel a bit like I've lost my place on my blog. It hasn't benefitted from much of my attention of late, probably due to the busy-ness of this time of year. I've also been doing Christmas present crafting which of course means not publishing pictures of the makes for the time being. Still I did want to pop in to show you my decorations, on the same red and white colour scheme as usual but with some gorgeous Gisela Graham additions picked up at the garden centre the other week. The tree decorations have worked well this year because the lights I bought in the sale in January are white coloured so the overall effect is more co-ordinated than previous years. I find festive decorations quite tricky - it's very easy to get it wrong. A few of my friends decorate in such tasteful and sophisticated ways, in comparison to the 'throw it all on and hope for the best approach' ! We decorate the tree as a family after dinner, it's a sweet tradition and one which we all enjoy. The children have all declared how much they love the tree and how our house is very cosy, and we've discussed our favourite bits. The little scene with the bisque house, glass tree and Santa's sleigh candle holder is probably the winner, but I love my little red car, carrying the tree home on it's roof (that I got form BHS by the way).

Apart from all the presents I've been working on I have been trying to knit on my #AdventSocksKAL each day - and not succeeding! There is doubt in my mind that they will be finished by Christmas day. But never mind - I love them anyway and will definatly wear them when they are done, even if that is January the 15th! I'm very happy with the cream contrast cuff and heel (the toes will be cream too). Both yarns I'm using have sparkle in them, which is brilliant and make for a super pair of festive socks. I will attempt to finish them in time, we'll see how I get on!

So all it remains to say is to wish you all a happy holiday time. Whatever you celebrate (or not) I do wish you all happiness, fulfilment, good health and peace in you hearts and I look forward to sharing my creative life with you all in 2016.

take care my friends, 'till next time...


Thursday, 3 December 2015

Advent Stockings


So my stocking advent calendar was finished yesterday, 2nd December, and of course better late than never! The cute printed stockings are a Makower panel that I bought from Singers in town. They had them made up and strung like bunting along the stair banister, but I couldn't think of a place to hang them like that in our house, so came up with this idea.

I'd bought the hessian a while ago with a vague Christmas purpose, and it came into it's own here and I was glad to have it on hand. I stitched the Merry Christmas ribbon horizontally and attached each stocking along the way. I sewed the red and green buttons on in embroidery floss, I so love four-holed buttons with a criss-cross middle.

It hangs on the kitchen door that leads through to the rest of the house and I have filled it with goodies for the children - they have to work out a system of who's turn it is to eat the treat!

When I was little the advent calendars I had were little doors to open and reveal a sweet festive scene,  there was no chocolate inside (my kids find this hilarious for some reason). Anyway, I remember it would really bother me that the numbers were all mixed up and not in the proper order, I think I liked things to be just so and it was far too random for my liking. However, I have deliberately arranged these stockings out of order, for the fun of searching for the right number. Appears I am a more random person theses days....

'till next time...

Tuesday, 1 December 2015

Advent Socks

Happy first of December everybody! Yikes my advent calendar isn't finished!! I've still got all those buttons to sew on and figure out a way of hanging it up. And fill with sweet treats of course.

Hopefully I can get it done this afternoon, but I have a busy day as I'm preparing all the last bits for my workshop later. As usual I'm holding it at Fancy, my friend Saffron's coffee shop, and tonight is our Christmas special where we will be making crocheted granny coasters and sewing them to scented pads that I have made. I filled them with festive smelling tea, the idea being you can rest your hot drink on it, and as well as protecting your table, it should also give off a lovely smell that will get you in the Christmas spirit. It really is a full house tonight, I'm a bit nervous as I want to make sure everyone gets the attention they need, most people however are my regular ladies and I'm sure they will have a super evening chatting and crocheting. I'm running a free raffle too, two prizes of handmade stockings filled with goodies are ready and I will get everyone to write their names on bits of paper and get Saffron to draw the winners from a hat. It's my way of saying thank you for the support of all my regulars, they are all such a fantastic bunch of people.

I'm also joining Sandra for our #AdventSockKAL. We've decided to have a knit a long for Christmas socks as we'd both bought festive skeins whilst at Festiwool a few weeks back. The idea is to cast the socks on today and do a few rows each day aiming to complete them on Christmas eve so we can wear them on the big day. I'm so excited, just as my little one is about having the chocolates out of her advent calendar (if I get it finished).

I treated myself to a pretty mug and made a project bag too so I'm all set, just need to find half an hour to actually cast on, even if it's a few rows it doesn't matter. I just want to get started!!!

If you want to join in with me and Sandra with our #AdventSockKAL don't forget to post your progress on Instagram :o)

Have a great day,

'till next time...