craft, knitting, Uncategorized

30 Day Knitting Challenge – Day 6

And on to Day 6 already!

Day 6: What is your favorite piece that you’ve knit?

This is one of my earliest knits as a gift for someone – this blackberry (also known as bramble stitch) scarf was a present for my brother.

I was so thrilled with the outcome and made very few mistakes in it – being a bit of a perfectionist they were very noticeable to me but not to my brother who loved it.  So much, in fact, that he refused to use it except for on special occasions!

A few months later I finally managed to encourage him to wear it more often and I’m still delighted when I see him sporting it.

I’ve started making him another scarf since then but have yet to finish it…

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Autumn, charity, craft, crochet, knitting, sewing

Seasonal Plans

We are now coming into my favourite time of year – Autumn.

I love Autumnal colours, smells and the darker evenings where you feel happy snuggled up with a project or a book and some music on the stereo.  I would say also the lovely crisp sunny mornings but, well, the UK is going through a bit of an Indian Summer and the heat is rising rather than abating, even Patrick can’t take it…

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It’s a hard life, isn’t it!

Last year I didn’t do many Craft Fairs and I really missed it.  I’ve been thinking about some ideas and have a few days off now to take them forward (as well as relax…)

Firstly some Wreaths – firstly I was just thinking about Christmas, but once I got started I couldn’t stop!  I’m trying to decide the decoration for these (apart from ribbon to hang them with) – I’m thinking something simple and not too fussy.

Over the last few years I have made some Halloween baskets, and even shared a pattern here last year.  This year I decided to focus on four of the designs and have been asking for votes on which people like the most… Comment below by 5pm Sunday (GMT – UK time) with your four faves and I will enter you in the draw to win a set of four!

Finally, I am still struggling on with my brother’s scarf – reversible half-moon stitch in this gorgeous wool – Katia Basic Merino Flash – going from bright crimson to a dark rich red.  Hopefully it’ll be finished soon-ish…

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With more to do I’ve started looking at a couple of local Christmas Craft Fairs so I will soon have to start making my very popular Christmas Puds and stockings, and maybe a few more ideas to come.

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craft, crochet, knitting, yarn

Works in Progress and Stash Love

I’ve been very busy with some projects for friends and family, which has been great relaxation, as the weather has been grotty for ages and I’ve had a nasty cold…

First up are a really fun couple of projects for my friend Donna and her new baby, wee Olly.  This baby blanket is my first large self-designed project – it is cot/pram sized and I’m so thrilled with the design and how it has turned out, so I will be giving it to them in the next week or so.  I had enough left of the gorgeously soft Drops Merino Extrafine DK to make a quick pair of baby booties.

Thankfully I made them sized for around 6 months old – at only 8 weeks I thought he might have to wait a while to wear them, but Donna has said that he’s already in 3-6 months clothes, so he may get use of them sooner rather than later…

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Next the ongoing project for my brother, I didn’t quite finish it for Christmas!  I hadn’t done any knitting for a while and I’m still pretty slow.  But it’s coming along finally, now I’ve finished my other projects…  I love the combination of bright, medium and dark reds in this Katia Basic Merino Flash DK.  The design is reversible – Half Moon Stitch – and looks great.

 

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Now these projects are either done yarn, (or very nearly dusted!) I’ve been on another couple of trips to reinvigorate my stash.  It is impossible to resist when passing a yarn shop, or browsing online on Deramores or Wool Warehouse.

I bought the Noro Kureyon and Noro A La Mode (both Aran/Worsted) at my favourite yarn shop, Marmalade Yarns in Frome.  I have a particular project in mind for this but won’t say too much as I might spoil someone’s surprise!

I bought some Malabrigo Merino Worsted to make Mum’s scarf for Christmas (which I haven’t got a picture of yet but she has promised!) so I bought an extra couple of skeins to make something for myself.  As yet, I haven’t made myself anything so I think it’s about time I got started on this!

Next up is some Jillybean yarn from Marmalade Yarns – this lovely red wool is called Yabbadabbadoo and as it is made in such small quantities and not marked up but it seems to be a DK sort of weight.  At 60% organic Shetland and 40% Mohair it seems quite robust and yet soft.

Finally a quick visit yesterday to Marmalade Yarns (again!) I could not resist these beautiful blues by Fyberspates – Scrumptious 4ply/sport weight 55% Merino, 45% Silk but machine washable.

So I think I had better get making!

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Etsy Countdown Revisited… 3!

My Etsy plans are finally back on track…

After a longer than expected hiatus due to illness, I am raring to go and very excited about restarting my Etsy Countdown!

I have begun taking some photos with my fancy new camera and coming up with descriptive and accurate details for my sewn, knitted and crocheted goods – there’s certainly more to it than I expected when I initially came up with the idea to sell my wares online.

So whilst I’m working hard on this I will leave you with a short and sweet post with some of my tester photos, trying to offer different views of the products.  Any feedback would be gratefully received, but be sure there is a bit of cropping and other tricks to be applied before they go live!

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Happy crafting!

Lou x

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Marbella Crafting Fun!

Well, I’m pretty much unpacked and back to normal (ish) after my trip to Marbella with Mum.  The dull British weather has certainly brought me back down to earth with a bump!

I managed to find the haberdashery/wool shop again in Marbella, but was a bit disappointed with their lack of range.  I did manage to find one yarn that I really liked – Retinella by Oso Blanco.  It’s a mix of Merino and Acrylic with a bit of Polyester to add a bit of sparkly shimmer.  It feels like an Aran / Worsted weight but knits up as Bulky.  I’m making a stretchy V Stitch crocheted scarf with this.

I also bought some more of the Marbella Cotton which made up lovely coasters which I left at the Marbella apartment last time and was glad to see that they are still there being used!

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On our last couple of days we wandered around trying to find a shop that we had seen earlier in trip.  The Old Town in Marbella is full of windy cobbled streets which all look the same, but I have a pretty good sense of direction (usually!)  We found the shop but on our way discovered another Wool Shop which had a fabulous range of Lanas Stop yarn.  This is really good quality stuff – I bought some in Bath and it cost me a fortune, but made up this lovely simple ribbed Alpaca mix scarf for my Dad when I first learnt how to knit.

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So I went a teensy bit mad, bought some gorgeous Extra Merino double knit in burnt orange, to make a scarf for Mum, and Algodón Soft which is 3-4 ply and I’m not sure what to do with it but I’m sure it’ll make something very pretty.

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More news to follow about my Etsy plans and also naughty cat behaviours!

Happy crafting!

Lou x

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WIPs and a mystery project…

Afternoon all…

What a week it’s been – a funeral, a manic week at work, grumpy cat and very little time to myself.  So now the weekend is here, phew!  And lots of lovely plans afoot.

Thought I would share a few of these with you, including some of my WIPs.

I’ve been asked to do a Craft Fair in Devon, my friend’s lovely Mum has offered us both a table.  So I have had to make some quick plans to make some Spring gifts (unfortunately it’s the week after Easter!).

These flower headbands sold so well I don’t have any left so am frantically crafting some more in various girlie colours in sizes from baby to adult…

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I made some Spring baskets in pinks, greens and then realised that I never make any boy-ish colours.  So I found some blue variegated yarn and started making these ones.  I had a very small amount left of a peach speckled yarn which came out so beautifully I had to give that one away to a friend for her granddaughter (and didn’t get a photo of it, damn!).  The yarn was given to me and I didn’t think I’d ever find it again.

Imagine my surprise when I was lazily daydreaming in the ever-reliable Wool Warehouse, and I found it!  This fabulous package turned up today (as if I really need any more wool – I haven’t updated my Ravelry stash as I’m rather frightened of how many skeins I have hanging around at the moment!)

 

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This was THE peach yarn!  King Cole Splash DK – bargaintastic price as well at £2.99 for 100g.  And wowzers – they do it in all sorts of colours including a fabulous blue mix and this rather mental combination called ‘Sunshine’ (for which you need sunglasses so I prefer to call it ‘Headache’).

 

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The colours aren’t really adequately expressed in this dreary dank natural light.  Imagine a neon nightmare including a bag of Refreshers smashed together and sprinkled with pixie dust.  Well, that doesn’t even cover it.  It’s mad, but I kinda love it!

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I also got some more Rowan Creative Focus Worsted (above) – in other exciting news, plans for my Etsy shop are coming along nicely, although I am rethinking my start date as I have two holidays coming up which are going to put my original dates under pressure.

For this lovely yarn (which I also have in Fuschia) I am going to knit (yes, I know, I will be brave and practice!) some handbags.  I am awaiting some lovely bamboo handles which are coming from China (via Ebay).

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This scarf is a wedge stitch scarf in James C. Brett’s Marble Chunky – I rarely work in Acrylic as I find it too uncomfortable next to the skin, and not always of the best quality.  But this is a quality yarn, bought in my fave shop, Marmalade Yarns, in Frome, is really lovely to work with and the colours are amazing.  As a geek, I thought I’d give this finished scarf a suitably geeky name – Wedge’s Antilles Scarf.  Get it?  If not, it might take a geek to explain!

Finally my other work in progress at the moment is a secret mystery project – what on earth will these covered curtain rings become?  Answers on a postcard…

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Happy crafting!  Lou x

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Geek Chic Week (end)

Brrr it’s freezing here in the UK…

It’s a fine excuse to spend a lazy weekend at home with nothing much planned apart from crafting and geeking out.

This fantastic book has just popped through the door (thank you Amazon!) and I’m really excited to start some geeky new projects.  I have had a few ideas in my mind for a while, but have now been sidetracked by the fantastic Princess Leia hair buns hat and Padme Battle Cape sported by the model on the front cover!

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OK – so they’re not practical (can I see myself wearing either to work?) but there are some really fun projects.  I surprised myself at my lack of geeky knowledge of the books / films in this – I’m not particularly keen on comics (I tend to think that’s more of a boy thing) and most Fantasy is not really my bag, but I love a bit of Sci-Fi…

With the cold weather and my general laziness this weekend I have decided though to spend some time researching the two geeky gifts I want to make next (one of which is for myself!)

Firstly, since I started knitting two years ago, I wanted to make myself a Tom Baker-style scarf.  Yes – for the uninitiated I’m talking about Doctor Who.  Tom Baker was my first Doctor (I came in on the very end of his reign) and although I found him quite frightening in many ways (particularly the hair and teeth) – I always loved his scarves.

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What I’d like to do though is a finer version – just as long but using finer wool (perhaps DK or Aran).  I love this idea which I found on Pinterest

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This is actually made from beads – it’s really gorgeous.  Perhaps rather than a DK / Aran one I’ll make one in lace / 4ply.  That would be a bit more complex methinks…

I have also found this wonderful pattern for a Death Star by the brilliant Pops de Milk – this is so mega-cute that I think I’ll make one for me and one for a friend, who I hope will love it.  He’s even geekier than me, so no doubt he will be impressed!

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But for this weekend, I’m going to stick to a Star Wars day today (original trilogy of course) and then tomorrow I may be Star Trekking (yes, geek fans I may be letting you down by admitting I prefer the J.J. Abrams reboot to any previous Star Treks)  And now he’s in charge of Star Wars.  I may be just a little excited about that…

Happy crafting!

Lou x

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