Sunday, 28 October 2012

Visting Ophelia

It's been a full packed week but in between a vineyard tour, making new cushion covers, bottling my blackberry gin, singing Jerusalem (don't ask!), altering a pair of curtains and worrying if we'd bought enough wallpaper I took a trip to London.

Ever since I saw the Pre-Raphaelites exhibition advertised at the Tate I had plans to visit especially when I saw that Ophelia by Millais would be featured. It was really interesting seeing how William Morris designed his wallpapers and fabrics too.
If you would like to go the exhibition runs until 13 January 2013 and you can find lots of interest here on their Pinterest board.

I also found time to finish a scarf and knit up some matching handwarmers.
I'll get these added to the shop and although they are a perfect match they will be available to buy separately. I'm particularly fond of the handwarmers maybe it's the vintage button trim?

Saturday, 20 October 2012

Scarf Update....

Hi, just to let you know that I have added the scarves to my online shop......
........working on some handwarmers now :-)

Friday, 19 October 2012

It's Friday

Even though it's dull and grey......and raining outside I've still got that Friday feeling. Today is also my last scarf post - you've probably had enough by now.
More soft and cosy, more giant buttons but this time in a lovely shade of blue.
I also promised yesterday to update you on a crochet project. Back in May I posted about my efforts to learn how to crochet. I made a start by learning how to do a granny square.
The plan was for it to be a cushion cover but it turned into....
.....this and it's still growing although it's reached such a size that using oddments of wool is no longer an option for completing a round. I had been taking it to my stitching group but it no longer fits easily into my basket. I suppose in the winter months if I work on it I will have the added bonus of it keeping me warm at the same time.

Another project that is still going although sadly neglected in favour of scarves is my jumper. I really must make an effort. I started it in August and at this rate it will be August before it's finished.

Thank you for the interest in my scarves :-) Once I have them in the shop I'll let you know.

Have a great weekend.

Thursday, 18 October 2012

Thursday.....time for another scarf

Are you bored yet? Yes, I've got another scarf for you
This one is all natural and very soft being 85% wool and 15% alpaca.
Instead of a button this one has a wooden decorative bead and the colour of the yarn is not quite black. In fact it's a very similar shade to the scarf that's on my needles at the moment knitted in yesterday's scarf design.

......nearly complete.

Join me tomorrow when I'll have another scarf and an update on a crochet project.

Wednesday, 17 October 2012

Wednesday's scarf is full of warmth

Todays scarf design is my scarf of choice at the moment. It's a very versatile shape and can be worn lots of ways.......traditional flung over the shoulder look.
......wrapped snugly.
......used as a shawl for those chilly evenings. Knitted in aran it's very cosy.

This pink one will be available in my online shop soon and I'm working on a charchoal grey one too.

Thank you for your comments on yesterdays scarf it's always nice to know what you think. I'll be back tomorrow with another.

Tuesday, 16 October 2012

Time for a bit of cosy

As the weather changes and there is a noticable nip in the air my thoughts always turn to scarves and gloves. My scarf has been in evidence for a while but as yet the gloves are just on standby but I'm sure it won't be long before they are a permanent fixture as I leave the house.
The change in the weather has encouraged me to knit up a few scarves too and over the next few days I'll share a few and hopefully get some into my online shop. This design is knitted in super chunky yarn in a lovely rich shade of purple trimmed with a giant button.
I'm working on some handwarmers too the ones I made last year were so popular that I sold them all before any could even make it into my shop. In fact the ones I've knitted so far have already sold. It seems everyone loves handwarmers.

I'll see you tomorrow with another scarf - keep cosy wherever you are.

I'm nominating my scarf as my October Monthly Make and wishing Annie well.

Tuesday, 25 September 2012

Tear, Sew, Paint

Recently a colleague of mine retired and I wanted to make him a keepsake that could hold photos and messages that he could remember people by. An altered book seemed an ideal choice so after much tearing (I hate that bit!) I made 'pages' by sewing about 5 book pages together. This makes them sturdy enough to take paint although it's still best not to make them too wet.
Here is my page, a tentative start, ideas seemed to develop more as I went on. I tried to build up layers with masks and stamps with of course a bit of doodling. emergency elastic band. He's very keen on flicking elastic bands, you have to keep your wits about you. Between us all we managed to include many shared jokes and humorous moments.
I was lucky enough to find an old postcard of a local building which was part of a project he worked on. I was also lucky to find a treasure of a book page in a Plundered Pages pack that I had from Julie used for another keepsake. It referred to the exact area and raised a few smiles.

To finish I stitched a fabric cover. It featured a photo that I had printed onto photo canvas which I was able to then stitch into the design with a button closure to keep everything safe.

All in all I think everyone who contributed enjoyed adding their comments and I think my colleague was touched to receive it and I know he loved it which makes it all worthwhile.


Sunday, 16 September 2012

Rewarding and Simple to Knit

....that's how the dachshund is described in the knitting book Best In Show.
And he was.

Have you seen the book? It's not new but I found it at a bargain price so snapped it up.
He is supposed to have a knitted collar but I couldn't resist giving him a neckerchief made from a scrap of liberty fabric.
You may notice that the book he is standing on isn't knit your own dog but knit your own cat. That was a bargain price too and I don't think my own cat is impressed that I decided to knit a dog before a cat. Perhaps I should knit a cat next it will sure be less trouble than the real life version and a whole lot quieter.

I'm nominating this little chap as my September Monthly Make.

Wednesday, 12 September 2012

Inspired by my home town...

Recently I was asked to make some brooches with a 'Margate' theme. It sparked a whole host of ideas all based around my home town, hence my lack of blogging over the last few weeks as I've been busy creating.
A cushion with a bit of machine and hand quilting and I was able to use some jelly roll strips I'd been saving for the right project. The centre 'Margate' panel was hand stamped just like the Love Is The Drug block I made. This is it before quilting, a simple construction around the centre panel.

I used the same alpha stamps to make some hand painted and stamped cards.
And finally a small selection of the fabric and felt brooches.'ve got to have ice cream at the seaside - right?

Friday, 24 August 2012

The Height of Summer

Hey Shorty - yep, that's me. At just 5ft 0", I can't even squeeze an extra half an inch, I'm almost certainly going to be one the shortest bloggers joining Julie in The Height of Summer

I've never really minded being short but it can have drawbacks every now and again......

  • It's guaranteed that at some point in the weekly supermarket shop the item I want to buy will be located on the top shelf. On more than one occasion I've had to ask a suitably tall person for assistance and in the absence of one of those I make sure no one is looking and use the bottom shelf as a step.

  • In family photos I seem to get pushed to the front I think mainly as it's unlikely I will block the view of anyone else.

  • Being short it kind of follows that I have small feet. I'd look a bit silly with size 7s so my feet are size 3 (that's 35.5 not 36 as some shops sell) or even a 2.5....or even a petite size 2.

  • Before the days of all seater stadiums just before kick off I'd take up position with what I thought would be a good view only to be disappointed to find that right at the last minute someone who seems to biggest person around would come and stand right in front of me. Now music gigs are just the same......
I bet even in this very blurry photo you can pick me out in amongst my tall friends.

I had a think about how I would take part in The Height of Summer so as well as this blog post, earlier in the week in the tradition of all good children's programmes of the 70s and 80s I put my details on a postcard and posted it to Julie.

If you follow Alexa's blog you might have seen the post about her painted journal pages. If so you will recognise the technique as being the same one that Alexa used by Carla Sonheim. Instead of abstract flowers mine seemed to morph into sunbursts which seemed appropriate for The Height of Summer.

So have you shared your vital statistic? If not you've still got time to join in pay Julie a visit to find out how.

Friday, 17 August 2012

Beside the Seaside

Hello I have a paper project to share today. 

I took a small canvas to create a keepsake for my Uncle's 60th birthday. I reversed it and covered it in a layer of book pages. When dry I gave it a coat of gesso and added some stencilled paint and a touch of blue distress ink. 

The reversed side gives the perfect nook to create a scene and for this I chose to recreate the seaside. I cut lots of waves from different coloured blue papers and used some of my shell collection to create a seabed. I could have used some photo editing software to colour the ring but for ease I coloured it using promarkers. Washi tape makes very simple bunting with some bakers twine and for the last finishing touch a pinwheel.

.......beside the seaside, beside the sea.

Wednesday, 15 August 2012

An Olympian Effort

Hello I've just about recovered from all the excitement of the Olympics, have you? So much to watch and cheer for.

I've just embarked on my own marathon - knitting a jumper. I've admired the pattern for over a year and when I finally found some yarn that made it an affordable project I took the plunge. I totally miscalculated how much I needed and was lucky that I was able to go back and order more  the cost of my bargain jumper was rising especially as I also had to buy the right sized circular needles......and I'm still not convinced I've got enough.
I managed to overcome the hurdle of the provisional cast on and found a new method of using a crocheted chain only then to be stumped with the major calculations required to make the pattern fit me (see scribbled notes on pattern!) Even the Engineer of the house was perplexed. However I got there in the end.

So with calculations and cast on done I'm now stuck trying to work out the stitch pattern, honeycomb brioche......A You Tube search produced a tutorial which was very continental and just confused me even more but I'm getting there. I'm going to consult with with some experts at my stitching group this week I'm sure they will come up trumps.

Wish me luck I'm trying focus on how lovely those kimono sleeves will look when it's finished. See I'm being optimistic......when not if!

If you are interested in the pattern you can find it on Etsy by Karen Clements

Friday, 27 July 2012

Not created but found

Hi I don't have anything creative to share today although I have a couple (ok more than a couple) of projects on the go that aren't quite finished - but soon. So instead I thought I'd share some of my recent finds.
My heart skipped a beat when I saw this 1978 Horsea mug
And I had to have this owl when I spotted him at Deal market.
(When we bought our current house the bathroom suite was this colour!)
I've been longing for a pair of clogs for ages and while these aren't quite what I was looking for I was more than happy to give these Scholl clogs a home.
A Chance Glass like cake stand and some very orange De Luxe Shu-maid shoe shapers. The lady in the shop commented that they were a very good colour match although I don't think I'll be using them at the same time.
And lastly a knitting pattern and bias binding. This haul also included some very vintage seam binding but it's already in use as I've used it on some recent cards.

If you would like to see more vintage finds pay Vix a visit at Vintage Vixen she really is the Queen of all things vintage.

Wednesday, 18 July 2012

Woolly Wonders

This weeks crafting looks something like this....
Still on that learning curve but I'm feeling a bit more confident.
Getting funny looks when in answer to what I was making came the reply 'knitting a jumper for Sindy'. He should have been thankful it wasn't the Batman cape and matching jumper. After much frantic searching I found Sindy and once I've sorted her hair out (I obviously wanted a punk Sindy as there was a large chunk of pink!) maybe she might do a spot of modelling.
As if my hexie obsession isn't bad enough I found a pattern to crochet them too.
What are they going to be I was asked. Just.... you know.......a blanket? To go with the patchwork quilt I started months ago.......;-)

Tuesday, 10 July 2012

Rain, rain go away......

Yesterday I wore a scarf and today I considered boots. The great British summer......mmmmm.

So the knitting continues.
That's my new basket in the background, I had big plans to use it shopping but I don't think it will be much good in the rain.

However the stay at home wet weather has given me the opportunity to complete a few other projects including this ereader cover.
So it's not all bad........still hoping the sun makes a return soon though.

Thursday, 5 July 2012

Fancy a Cuppa?

Are you a tea drinker or more of a coffee person? Me? I like nothing better than a strong cup of black coffee freshly produced by my coffee machine. But whatever your preference you need a mug.......or a cup and saucer?
Maybe it's because of the miserable weather but I fancied a return to a bit of knitting and this small cabled mug cosy seemed just the thing. Of course I couldn't stop at just one so I made another......
Both of these mugs and their cosies are currently awaiting owners and are for sale on my shelf at Rough Trade in Margate.

If tea is your drink of choice are you are local to Margate you should definitely pay a visit to Lady Tesla's Loose Leaves & Mud in King Street. I popped in yesterday and came out with some Arctic Fire which is a scented china black tea with blue cornflowers. It smells and tastes delicious.

Happy brewing.

Thursday, 21 June 2012

Progress and Perseverance

Where has June gone? It seems to have passed in a rainy blur. I was hoping for a bit more sunshine to aid my recovery but hey ho this is Britain.

So in the blur that was June I have been perservering with the crochet and now I can make something other than a granny square and even had a go at following a pattern.
My first finished granny square cushion.....don't look too closely.

I then moved on to trying to crochet in the round. All did not go well to start with but I got there in the end. I wanted to make a round cushion cover but thought I'd start small until I got the hang of it so instead.....
....a pincushion
....and another.

I'm getting the hang of it a bit more now and things have started to make sense, at last. I can make flowers without having to refer back to a pattern and yesterday I bought the loveliest tin to store them in ready for another project.
But I won't be getting carried away I still have lots more to learn but it is quite addictive. Now if only I could do granny ripple......

I'm just in time to nominate my pincushion for my June Monthly Make