29 September 2009

Getting Closer...

Just a quick post today....
I didn't get round to finishing anything on Sunday as planned because LIFE happened (nothing bad, just general stuff). Oh well. However, the big granny square blanket continues to grow

Not a great pic, but you can see it's getting there now.

I also decided that my next blanket is definitely going to be made of smaller squares in the Rowan wool/ cotton that I mentioned in my last post. I've convinced myself that if I continue with the big Granny and also make up some smaller squares at the same time then its not cheating (does anyone else have self imposed rules?). I made up one of Lucy's Summer Garden Squares in some nearby yarn last night (as in literally reach out and grab some from a teetering pile near the sofa).

I just did it in two colours so that I coud get a clear idea of how each row looks and fits together. I'm liking the rich reds and purples, browns and yellows that you can see in the picture. Not all of them together....well maybe, still not decided (I'm rather impressed that I've made ONE decision on this yet).

But very definitely, almost, nearly, but not quite there yet, at a final decision on this one.

EDITED TO ADD: Oops, forgot in the rush to add the pic of the square and the colours that I mentioned - didn't mean to confuse you!!!

26 September 2009

Decisions, Decisions

This morning I was browsing the English Yarns- Online knitting Store over my morning coffee and thinking how useful it would be to have some Rowan shade cards to choose the colours for my next crochet project at leisure. A look out of the window showed it was a sunny day and as Shoreham is only one "station stop" (when did they start saying that?!) away from me I thought I'd pop along to their shop (Shoreham Knitting and Needlecraft) in person.

Ahhh, the weather was lovely, I so wish I'd taken my camera with me so I could show you the Shoreham houseboats (next time - I promise!). I took a walk back to Southwick for brunch at Carats Cafe on the beach, mmmmmmm lovely! before heading back home.

Once the giant granny is done my next big project will either be a ripple blanket or a granny square blanket (smaller squares stitched together). Although I love the ripple - I'm leaning toward the granny at the moment because I think it'll be more satisfying completing each square as I go (not to mention more portable and easier to handle). Yes, I can just imagine a growing stack of squares being made over the autumn months ready for putting together for a winter blanket (double bed sized).

Sooooo....what about the colours? Well, I bought shade cards for the Rowan pure wool DK and the wool cotton (click on the pictures for a better view).      

I think I'm going to go for the wool / cotton mix. And depending on what squares I finally decide on (Lucy's summer garden, traditional granny or something from this book) I can choose the colours. I'm thinking warm, rich colours to snuggle up with. Decisions, decisions....

So, I will  finish the giant granny while I ponder on patterns and colour combinations for the next blanket. No more procrastinating....hooks ahoy!!!!

P.S. I haven't forgotten - I'm hoping to show you something finished later this weekend!

23 September 2009

Bits and Pieces

Despite having the week off work, I have come to something of a standstill.

Well - not quite.

The problem is that I have too many things that I want to do (plans for at LEAST two more crochet blankets - I blame the lovely Lucy !) and all that I have been doing is playing with embroidery (I blame the wonderful Jenny!). I think it's because of my new "don't start a new project until you've finished the one you're doing" rule. Oh, I HATE breaking my own rules, but oh well... 
Ooooh, by the way - I just got Jenny's new book (now available in the UK at last!) and am loving it!

I just can't decide what to do the next embroidery on. Maybe a bag, or my jeans, or a t-shirt? So far, I am just ironing and embroidering some designs on some scrap linen that was originally bought for a pair of trousers that I never got round to making  JUST that purpose!  But hey - that's practising isn't it? And today is the only day I've really had to myself so far (spent shopping), so maybe it's not sooooo bad.

Ooh! Ooh! I forgot - I did crochet a hat at the weekend, but for some reason it came out too small (grrrr!)

Still ... I hope to have something new to show you by the weekend!

13 September 2009

Finished Sleep Pillow

At last the sleep pillow is finished.The owl is from a Jenny Hart design, embroidered onto linen. Now that I've mastered stem stitch, I'm going to use that for future outlining; I think it looks neater. I have a growing collection of Jenny's patterns that I'm looking forward to stitching!
I made a small pillow case from a blue patterned patchwork cotton and sewed the embroidery to the front.
Inside the pillow case is a muslin pillow filled with a half and half mixture of dried hops and lavender, both renowned to aid sleep.
I decided to make the pillow case separately (rather then stuffing it) so that it is washable and the filling can  be changed easily. I'm gong to make a few more to give as gifts.  

05 September 2009

Updated Crochet Pics, with Thanks!

Hmmmm, well I haven't got much further on my projects in the last few days. I've been doing a lot of blog browsing though and got a lot of inspiration - as well as some useful info. I've never really got the hang of stem stitch....for some reason it never worked for me. It would either look spiny or just plain messy ....UNTIL I found this. I finally got it! Thank you Mary! Do go and visit her blog for some fantstic online embroidery demonstrations and lessons.

I also got some great photo tips from the wonderful floresita on the feeling stitchy website.  I wasn't about to  buy an expensive new camera or take a photogrophy course, but was struggling to get half decent looking pictures to share with you. Find the tute in the Crafty Blog School pages..

So ... ta-da!

Still not perfect I know - but just LOOOOOOK at that beautiful colour there :)
Want to see more? Oh, go on....
Now I'm ready for my close-up!
Incidentally, it was while taking these pics that another mystery finally resolved itself. I always finish at the end of a round. When I pick the work up again, I never remember which way round I'm working (a bit like how when I come out of a shop I don't remember which direction I'd been walking in!).
In fact it never crossed my mind as an issue until I heard someone mention about right side and wrong side of crochet. I couldn't tell the difference. One side - crochet. T'other side - yep, crochet again. But now see the difference between THIS:
and THIS:
You see it? Same bit of crochet - different sides. I'm still not convinced that it really matters... but now I know about it I'm going to have to take note of it. Actually, I'm now seeing where I have turned the work over in the above pic...a little bit of knowledge can be a dangerous thing!

01 September 2009


Hello and welcome :)

I've been inspired so many wonderful crafty blogs, I thought I would join in the fun! The craft blogiverse is such an exciting and rapidly expanding place.

I love to crochet, sew, embroider, bead and make cards. Actually, there's not much crafty that I wouldn't turn my hand to. I would definitely put myself in the amateur class (although mistress of the unfinished project perhaps). I'm looking forward to sharing my projects with you - mainly crochet and embroidery.

One of my current WIPs is this granny square blanket:

The photo doesn't do the colours justice - that is the most gorgeous deep teal blue in the border. I still can't decide whether to continue the whole thing with one round of each colour (as in the centre) or as I have just started adding bands of solid colour. What do you think?

I'm also working on this embroidery from a Sublime Stitching patterm:

I plan to make this into a herbal sleep pillow as a gift. I'm going to back it with a printed cotton fabric and fill with dried hops and lavender.

I decided to stick to one colour (blue) and one stitch (split) for this project.

I'll post (better quality) pictures of the finished projects when they're done.