Friday, 29 December 2017

2017 - a productive year

Wow how long it has bee since I updated this blog. One of the problems being I had forgotten my log in details - got round this problem by updating all my passwords. As it is very nearly a new year,  I thought I might do a bit of updating on here...

The run up to Christmas this year was more hectic than usual, as family problems took up more time. But I did manage to get a few presents made, though only one on the knitting machine - a scarf for a dear friend who taught me to play the ukulele. I had punched out a guitar card and was determined to use it. At that time I was debating whether to treat myself to a mid gauge machine to use some of the masses of double knit yarn I have in my hoard. My chunky machine has no punch card and no ribber so has been retired until I decide what to do with it.

For an experiment I rewound a ball of Stylecraft DK and tried it on my machine. Being pleasantly surprised at how easily it  knitted. I then did 2 DK jumpers for the Great Grandsons as 18 months and 4 years. Nothing fancy, plain crew necks that I intend to tart up with some duplicate stitch embroidery.

This has also been a year when my crochet has rather taken over from my other crafts, and my best make to date has been a c 2 c unicorn blanket.

Also this year I crocheted my sister a cushion and cardigan for birthday and christmas.

Her favourite colour is purple and her favourite thing is butterflies :)

Hand knitted finger puppets for the children have proved to be popular, as has a machine knit monkey puppet.
Having spent a lot of this year collecting patterns for hand and machine knitting, not to mention crochet patterns, I am wondering what I can produce next year. Hopefully one of the things is getting back into this blog. this space

Sunday, 20 December 2015

Bah Humbug - not really

A recent BBC 2 program titled Back In Time For Christmas, had me reminicing about Christmas past. The first Christmas in the 40's, not one I remember due to having been born in 1949. But the 50's one brought back so many memories - our presents being red dressing gowns or slippers from our parents. A stocking with nuts and an orange from Father Christmas, and my favorite, a  childrens classic book from my grandparents. I eagerly awaited each new book, from Little Women to Moby Dick. In a house with few books, these Christmas and birthday presents topped my most wanted. I can still remember the thrill of opening them and starting to read. In the afternoon we played board games and had a tea of tinned fruit and evaporated milk, a real treat.

By the 60's we had a TV installed by Radio Rentals. The most watched programs being, Andy Pandy, The Wooden Tops and The Flower Pot Men. All in black and white of course, colour did not enter my life until 1970. In 1963 my main present was a pair of brown ankle boots with a zip. Very useful as we had the coldest winter then I can remember. By the mid 60's I was becoming a teenager, and the best present I ever had was a hand held transistor in a brown leather case. Oh the joy of listening to Radio Luxenburg in the evenings.

In 1970 I married and Christmas changed again. I was the one cooking the dinner. I made a cake and the pudding, and there were more presents, although I have to admit I cannot remember any of them. Although in 1971 when I was pregnant with  my first daughter, my present were all for the forthcoming baby.

The  mid 70's arrived with 2 daughters, and presents covered the living room floor. Although at this time the yongest still preffered the paper and boxes.

1980 and more food, more presents. It was becoming a bit jaded. Shopping for presents began earlier and earlier. It almost felt like Christmas lasted a month rather than 2 days.

In 2010 I rediscovered the true meaning of Christmas with Carols at church, Christingle and Midnight Mass.

So this afternoon I will be going and listening to Carols. I have brought rather too many presents for the little people in my life, and will hopefully get my cards in the post tomorrow for last post before Christmas.

Todays children will have many many presents to open, but will they remember in 20 years what that presents were? Will Christmas past be looked back on for being something special? Will they have just one present that they will look back on with such special memories as I have remembering my wonderful children classic books?

Saturday, 14 March 2015

I <3 Owls and I <3 cream eggs - what a combination - these have proved very popular among my friends. Pattern here at -  here

 The loom band craze passed me by as I could not see the point of having a load of rubber bracelets. However when I found a picture for crochet hook covers, I changed my mind. Picked up a £2 box of loom and bands and sat down with youtube to see how to use them. Must say I am very pleased with the results :)

 Another way of keeping cream eggs safe - better for figure than eating them, but can I resist temptaion forever?????


Sunday, 17 August 2014


I am a hoader, I have a house full of various crafts that I know I will never use again. Every room has stashes or yarn, cross stitch, card making. Plus enough needles and crochet hooks to stock a shop. On top of which are my 2 knitting machines, a sewing machine and an over locker.

When did this compulsion start? I am guessing it was when I arrived up here with only 2 carrier bags of clothes and nothing else. Summer clothes at that, and I arrived on New Years Eve. The charity shops became a home from home.

In an effort to regain my home and am getting rid of of as much as I can. Even clearing out my wardrobes of clothes that I will never wear again.

But now I am worrying that I may throw away something that I later need - I remember selling a lot of my stock from the shop for silly low prices, only to now having to buy more at approx. 3 times the price.

As I will be 65 soon, I very much doubt I will even finish a lot of my wip, so why am I so jittery about passing on stuff to someone who will be able to make use of it? 

It is not only my craft stuff that I have been collecting. I have also got a fair amount of technology floating around. 2 Kindles and a Hudl is rather excessive, not to mention an ipod and mp3 player that I never use. There are 3 camcorders, 4 cameras and enough leads to nearly stretch around the world.

I like order, but with this amount of stuff it is more chaos that reigns. No matter what storage system I use, it still seems cluttered and messy. I have made 2 trips to the local tip, recycle religiously and throw away rubbish, but still there seems as much as ever.

 2 knitting machines that have not been touched in months. Or rather have not been put to any useful purpose.

 Boxes of yarn and material. Cones of wool, stuffing and 2 pairs of trousers that are waiting to be shortened.

 Magazines that will never be looked at again.

Boxes and boxes of wool, buttons and thread.

 The next lot of clothes for the charity shop.

This is some wool I could not resist buying yesterday.

 One good thing that has come out of all this destashing - I bought a new pair of boots last winter, then promptly lost them - I have now found them again ready for this winter.

Is it St Jude that is the Patron Saint of lost causes? I think I need him here with me now to sort me out.

Saturday, 21 June 2014

Crochet Takes Over

It has been such a long time since I updated this blog, I had nearly forgotten about it. But I have been busy with bits and pieces. Thanks to Youtube videos I taught myself to crochet, something I had never got the hang of before. I started with simple granny squares, than moved on to amigurumi. 

I have also been given 2 more knitting machines. A Brother that needs some repair and a Bond which is minus one of the table clamps. Have been unable to find one yet but will keep trying. My beloved Knitmaster standard and chunky are set up and patiently waiting for me to have time to "play" with them again.

I now have a box of various squares that I am waiting to turn  into something.
Then turned to thread instead of yarn to make a couple of the doilies pictured below. By now I was getting a bit more confident reading patterns.


 My next door neighbours little girl loves Peppa Pig, so of course I had to put my crochet aside and make her one. She squealed with delight when she saw it, which made it all worthwhile.

 Somehow my projects were getting smaller, but not easier. Certainly not on the eyes, but great fun doing the earrings and am trying out some more  at the moment.

 Now all I need to do is learn to write out the patterns so I can do these again. It is easy to forget, and once I have given them away I do not even have them to try to work out  what I did before. I have sort of written out the parrot one, though probably not in a way anyone , including me, can follow. :)

 A quick break to knit Princess Holly for a friends granddaughter. Not that I enjoy knitting toys very much, but a few changes to the pattern, like using crochet for the eyes, cheeks and wings, made it easier.

Monday, 28 October 2013

knitted crib

 I have been wanting to knit a crib for angel babies, and when I finished this ice cream, it seemed the perfect time to start.
 The knitting was very straightforward, and instead of lace or ribbon I knitted icords to thread through the eyelets. A row of crochet around the edge in the same colour. Then it was simply a matter of constructing the crib. At first I thought maybe the hood should be sewn onto the top of the back of crib, but this did not look right. At this point I undid my sewing and tried it various ways until eventually putting it inside the crib.
This looked much better, and I am quite pleased with the result. Although I am sure I will get better when I have a bit more practice. So I guess I had better eat more ice cream :)

Thursday, 17 October 2013

Gruffalow puppets

 My neighbours little girl loves the Gruffalow, and wanted some finger puppets for her favourite bedtime story. Manged to find some patterns on Ravelry and them adapted them a bit. Her squeals of delight when I took them round made it all worthwhile.