Header pic

"Mukluk slippers" - pattern by Diane Soucy on Ravelry, HERE.

Thursday, 8 December 2016

The Wedding Shawl...

I finished making my daughter's wedding shawl a few days ago, and I'm so happy with it.  My crochet tension is sometimes not the best but it has turned out okay! :)




I loved every moment of this precious project, which was so dear to my heart.  Sometimes I have a tendency to rush through projects, but I s-a-v-o-u-r-e-d this one.






Here's a piccie of it draped over the back of my favourite dress, just to get an idea of size...







A little reminder too of where to find the wonderful free pattern...HERE.

Back soon, with piccies of my new project! :)


Ta-ta for now! xxx




Wednesday, 30 November 2016

Lover of candlelight...



Living in the Northern Hemisphere, it can be pretty grey and grim at this time of year.  Oh, how I love candlelight!  So soothing, so warm, so comforting.

I love reading about hygge, the Danish way of life that can't be translated into one English word.  It's warm, loving, gentle, simple, and much more besides.

Can there be anything nicer than flickering candlelight at the table?  

I light candles at breakfast, lunch and dinner.  It makes our meals much cosier. 

:)

Ta-ta for now! xxx


Monday, 28 November 2016

An extra Christmas prezzie...



It turns out we will be having a bonus Christmas guest at dinner this year.  One of my daughter's friends (and bridesmaid-to-be) will be joining us. :)  I have never met her, as my daughter lives quite a long way away from us, so all I know is that she loves Autumn colours.  I'm looking forward to meeting her!

I knitted up this hot water bottle cover in a couple of days as it's made with chunky yarn, or in my case, two strands of DK held together.  I used Stylecraft Special DK in Copper and Gold.

The pattern is in Jane Brocket's book..."The Gentle Art of Knitting".




I highly recommend this book, as it's full of easy projects.  I've made most of them now, and the hot water bottle cover is my favourite.  It's super quick and easy to make! :)

I decided to decorate the front of it with a few crocheted Autumn leaves.  Lucy's lovely pattern for Spring leaves was exactly what I needed!  Thanks Lucy!

I'm now in the process of working out a crochet pattern for a hot water bottle cover for one of my sons.  All done in plain single crochet, but in a nice colour-changing yarn. (I tend to work in US terminology with crochet, it seems to make more sense than UK terminology)

More on that next time...

Ta-ta for now! xxx

Saturday, 19 November 2016

Playing...




You knew I wouldn't be able to resist having a play with the new yarn, didn't you? :)





There seems to be two main colour schemes, so far.  The grey/white/camel combination....








And the dark blue/light/blue/green combination....




(with odd bits of camel thrown in!)




I laid them out randomly...







Then I laid them out in rows according to colour scheme...








Alternating....






Then in a kind of gradient...



I'm not joining them as I go, because I'm not sure whether to have them as a random all over pattern, or in a gradient from dark to light.

I'm having fun already, trying to imagine it as a blanket. :)  

How would you arrange the finished squares, random or gradient?

Inspiration and pattern HERE.


Ta-ta for now! xxx

Friday, 18 November 2016

Wedding shawl progress...



You know you're making progress with a shawl or blanket when you can drape it "artistically" over a large piece of furniture. ;)

I would sit and crochet this lovely project all day long if I could get away with it, but instead I'm savouring little pockets of time here and there to indulge.

It looks quite big in the pic, but I have a fair way to go before I can add the border.  Not that I'm in any hurry, as I really am loving every stitch of this.  I quite often want to get to the end of a project so I can start a new one, but not this time. :)  


The free pattern is available HERE.

Ta-ta for now! xxx


Tuesday, 15 November 2016

Blanket beginnings...


Look what arrived  today! :)

After reading this post over at Annaboo's house, I was inspired to check out the yarn Sarah had used for her blanket.  Oh the choice!  

Take a look HERE.

Gorgeous yarns, aren't they?  And a bargain too!  As you can see, I went for the white, grey, camel, and blue combination because I love the seaside, and the colours reminded me so much of trips to the beach.  The plain grey in the pic is James C Brett DK with merino, which I already had in my stash.  I plan to use it for the border, although it is a teeny bit thinner than the mulit-coloured yarn, so I might have to rethink that one, we'll see.

I loved Sarah's idea of making circular grannies for this project, and she was kind enough to provide the pattern for free.  I am very much looking forward to starting my blanket soon.  No hurry though, I'm enjoying making the wedding shawl too much! :)

Ta-ta for now! xxx

Thursday, 10 November 2016

Simple and homespun...


I've been a knitter for as long as I can remember and  I've attempted some tricky things over the years, like fair isle and lace knitting and also socks, but must admit that those challenges were rather tense, and involved soothing my nerves with copious amounts of Green & Blacks choccie (not a bad thing really).

No, I'm a bit of a plain and simple gal, revelling in the rhythmic and meditative patterns of easy makes.  I say "easy", but I still have my moments of "arrghh!" when my tension is wobbly or loose, or I'm TOO relaxed and end up going a bit wonky. (rustic charm?)

My daughter is getting married next May on the West Coast of Scotland, outside, on a beach.  Potentially rather chilly!  She wanted a cosy shawl to wear over her wedding dress and I was given the honour of making it!

I popped over to Ravelry, and must have looked at hundreds of patterns.  Most of them fairly elaborate.  I found this one... "Tristano" by Dee O'Keefe.  Stunning eh?  I promptly bought it.


"Tristano Shawl" 

Lovely, lovely pattern, so well written, but a bit beyond my peri-menopausal brain capacity.  
Boo. :(


Then I found this one...mostly plain with a rather nifty, wavy border.

"Ho'okipa shawl"




The "Ho'okipa" shawl by Paulina Popiolek is named after a beautiful beach on Maui.  I fell in love with those gorgeous waves!   By shutting myself away upstairs every night in complete silence, I was able to do the pattern (which is beautifully and clearly written) but oh.my.goodness, I could not keep my tension right.  The silky yarn (more on that later) was soooo slippery, that my stocking stitch looked uneven and scruffy. I had to concentrate so hard to make my brain fire on all cylinders that I wasn't enjoying making it either.  Sitting there, as tense as a drum skin night after night was not my idea of happy crafting!

I wrestled with myself a bit, wanting to make something special for my daughter, but knowing deep in my heart that the most loving thing I could do was make something that really reflected my homely, down-to-earth and normal way of making things.  I've crocheted blankets over the years in my favourite granny shell stitch, wrapping my loved ones up in stripes of warm, simple love.  It made perfect sense to wrap my daughter up in the same way.  So, back to the drawing board.

I was rummaging round Ravelry again when I came across this pattern....


"Crochet Granny Triangle Shawl"


I fell in love with it instantly, imagining it in one shade of creamy/natural yarn.  I felt as if I'd come  home, back to my roots of simple, gentle yarny goodness and my excitement grew.  The pattern is called "Crochet Granny Triangle Shawl" by Zeens and Roger.  The pattern writer, Rosina blogs over HERE, and it's such a lovely place to visit. :)  Rosina also provided the pattern FREE, woo hoo!  

I tend to struggle a bit with following crochet patterns, and usually need photo tutorials, so I was extra grateful for the piccies on Rosina's blog.

It wasn't long before I was hooking away, enjoying the gentle, familiar rhythm, and able to think about and pray for my daughter, rather than be completely consumed with having to concentrate hard.  I am also enjoying being by the fireside with my family every evening, chatting away, instead of being holed up in the spare bedroom in silence! :)

The yarn I went for is this one...



Drops Baby Alpaca Silk, which is 70% alpaca, 30% silk.  I am usually a Stylecraft girl, as you can see from the blanket in the pic. (Lucy's wonderful Cosy Stripe blanket).  I wanted to make the wedding shawl with something a bit more luxurious, but having very sketchy experience of luxury yarns, I went with the one with the most happy reviews.

It's 4ply and rather thin at that, and for me, soooo slippery to work with but the end result is smooshy and soft as butter.  Cosy too, which will be very welcome on a windswept beach!


Progress, so far...



My work is far from perfect, but I still love it.  It's the real deal, a genuine effort from a loving Ma, and the scalloped edge will be spot on for a beachy wedding.

I started working on the DK version of the pattern without realised there was a 4ply one, but I like the closer texture best I think.

See how tiny the stitches are, compared to DK?...



Adorable!!


My thanks to Rosina for a fabulous, easy-to-understand pattern!  I think this will become my go-to pattern for cosy shawls.  Think of all the different colour combinations I could make!  


Ta-ta for now! xxx