Sewing book giveaway winner(s)

Hi there

Well, 5 people were interested in my giveaway of sunshine sewing

And the first name picked out of the folded up papers in my hands by my obliging husband was…….

Hannah from quiet water craft

However, there is a surprise second prize, of the book ‘the sewing machine’ by Natalie fergie

The second name drawn was Faye from the chicken grandma. Let me know if you’d like it (as I realise you didn’t sign up for that and may already have a copy, or not want to read it!) and I’ll either pop it in the post to you, or draw another name from those left!

It was a fun book, published by crowd funding through unbound which I’m loving as a way of being involved in helping authors to publish their books.

I had totally misunderstood the concept of this book, but really enjoyed reading it despite that! It took me a while to get into it but once I had met the main characters I was drawn in and read it really quickly. I loved the historical aspects to it, and looking back to previous generations. I would recommend it as a good read, even if you don’t sew.

Congratulations to you both 😊


A first attempt at bookbinding (!) and my completed paradox zentangle.

Well, as you do, today I had a go at making my own notebook, using some of the paper sent to me a week or so ago by the lovely rebecca. I can’t remember how I came across this idea but I’ve had two tabs (this and this) open on my phone, with instructions for coptic book binding, and decided today was the day to give it a go!

I folded the notebook pages into sets of three sheets

I cut two pieces of card that are a bit bigger than the inserts

I marked and made holes through the inserts, and then through the card… Just using a sharp but thickish needle worked for the thicknesses of paper and card I had

And then I sewed it up!

I think I might need to watch some other tutorials as I don’t think this is how it’s supposed to look…. But it holds the notebook together which is the most important thing, and it’s not a complete mess, which makes me want to explore a bit more about how to do it properly.

Finally I decorated the front with a sleepy cat which I tried to copy from here. It’s not as cute as I’d hoped, but it looked pretty rubbish when I only had thin lines and making some of them thicker definitely rescued it a bit. Note to self… Decorate the cover before sewing it into place!!

It’s not perfect, but I’m really pleased with it as a first attempt in something I’ve never tried before.

And finally, here’s my completed zentangle.

Rocks, paradox and an ammonite

Today’s crafting has been a bit of a mishmash.

I started the day by continuing a project I started for school. Small rocks with the numbers 1-20 painted on one side and spots to count on the other in order to match them up.

Then I progressed onto the smaller stones I had. I started using acrylics but discovered I have more control with sharpies. Here’s the whole collection.

I did copy a few of the ideas from here, here and here

Some of them I’ll keep and some I’ll give to a friend who is involved with an idea to hide decorated rocks in the local area for people to find.

My favourite is my second attempt at the fox,

And also this one inspired by a photo on linne’s blog. You’ll have to scroll down a fair way through her post to find the photo.

After that I got going with another paradox zentangle, this time with lots of triangles next to each other. I used a ruler for the main structure but have been drawing the other lines in freehand. It might be quicker not to turn the paper for each line, but it’s less confusing if I do, and it’s more relaxing and forces me to slow down and be careful. I’m loving watching it grow.

And finally this afternoon I finished off my ammonite crochet hook roll, pattern by dedri uys. I’m so so pleased with it 😊

Update about stones

Someone told me last night that it’s illegal to take stones from British beaches. This has worried me as I took my stones from a beach. I’ve decided to look this up but at the moment I am mainly finding lots of comments on forums saying ‘yes it’s illegal’ but with nothing to back that up. I have found that there is the 1949 Coast protection act and scanning through that I’ve found that section 18 allows the act to be applied to sections of coastline, and this would forbid the removal of anything found on the beach. But, it is really hard to find out if this is now a general rule applied across all British beaches, or if you’d need to find out about a specific beach before taking any stones. I’ve tried finding out for the area I got mine from and can’t find anything specific. I also wonder why, if this is an issue, they don’t add this rule onto signs that prohibit dogs at certain times of the year, or fires etc. Or maybe the beaches where this law is applied do have those signs?

I’d be really interested to know if anyone can shed more light on this issue, with some degree of back up.

In the meantime, I shall not be taking any more stones from any beaches I visit on holiday, and shall instead look to buy some from somewhere.

Zentangles and progress on my crochet hook roll

Hey there everyone

Today I explored a new craft of zentangles. I’ve often seen hannah’s work on quiet water craft and been inspired, I’ve just not got round to trying them before. So today I started by following her tutorial for puf.

Here’s my go at it. It was simple and fun to do.

Then I scrolled through more of her posts until I came to another one I liked the look of called paradox. She linked to this tutorial, so I followed that, and produced this.

Again, it was simple to do, especially if you turned the page round for each line. It was relaxing as I did each line quite deliberately with a ruler. It’s so cool that you only draw straight lines but you end up with curved designs.

I’d love to know how to do the combination of them in the picture on her post here.

During the afternoon I came back to my crochet hook roll. It progressed a lot faster once the front pockets were finished and I was just working on the back, but I had trouble with the beads. I had some cute small beads I wanted to use but I couldn’t thread them on, so used bigger beads instead. They stayed there while I crocheted up the back and then did the top flap, but then I decided I really didn’t like them and would try the smaller beads instead again. For some reason this time they threaded on,so then I frogged the top of the pocket and replaced the beads, unfortunately breaking the wool as it had worn thin with all the friction. So then a game of yarn chicken ensued, which I happily won, only to discover that somehow all the beads were slightly offset from where they were meant to be anf didn’t mark the pocket entrances at all!

So frogging number 2 and numerous checks meant it ended up right. Poor yarn though has been through a lot and has definitely been weakened. Hopefully it’ll be OK now it’s crocheted up.

So then I just had to get the beads in the top flap to line up with the lower ones, and that’s me done for the evening.

Hopefully tomorrow I might manage to crochet round the edges and make the ammonite, but we’ll see !

A quick update… And a giveaway

This weekend hasn’t seen any crochet but I did add a button on to the purse I made

I got some gorgeous post including this gorgeous stash of papery goodies from the lovely rebecca

And this fantastic painting of a fieldfare from my 9 year old nephew.

I wrote a few letters and included these postcards I’d coloured in.

And now to the giveaway. I’d ordered a sewing book, but now that it’s arrived I’ve realised I’m unlikely to actually make anything from it… The things I like are too complicated, and the simpler things don’t appeal to me. But I figure there must be someone reading my blog who would like to make things from it, so it’s free to a good home

I was going to include photos of some of the things in it but I’m not sure if I’m allowed to with copyright, but if you click here you can see some of the makes. There’s also a giant octopus toy, a couple of quilt designs, and a very pretty paper piece appliqué cushion.

Let me know in the comments below and if more than one person is interested I’ll pull names out of a hat on Friday.

And just to finish, a couple of photos of some hardy little daffodils, standing up to the snow

Cute little purse

Morning everyone!

Yesterday was a busy crochet day, though i also read a lot as I’m trying to work my through all the books my niecephews lent me so I can give them back when I see them over Easter. So In the morning I read pippi longstocking by Astrid Lindgren, and in the afternoon I started on my ammonite crochet hook roll. My new clover amour hooks arrived, so I was doubly motivated to get started on it. I figured out that the wool I bought in India is double knit (by following these useful rules involving wrapping the wool round a pencil and checking how many wraps there are per inch), so I could use it as I’d hoped.

Dedri’s photos and descriptions make it an easy pattern to follow, even though some parts of it are new techniques for me. So far the dividing parts seem to be lining up so that’s good news!

In the evening I went next door to ania’s. She’d discovered this cute purse

but wanted help to translate the Spanish video tutorial. We worked through it and wrote out our instructions, with diagrams to help us keep track of the increases for the flap, and then we sat down and made them.

We had a few issues with getting the initial chain right, but once we got going it seemed to work pretty well.

Here’s my purse doing an impression of a frog or a snake!

After just over 2 hours of crocheting this is what i’d made

It just needs a button now, which I’ll find and sew on later today. I’m so pleased with it, and although I just grabbed the first ball of yarn that came to hand, I really love the colour of it. I was so pleased too that I cotis understand the Spanish she used. Obviously there are crochet terms I don’t know, but that’s easily worked out from the video. I love how the puff stitches are called pinas… Or pineapples!

It was a fun evening, and it’s given me confidence that I’ll be able to follow the tutorial for the sheep I want to make, which is by the same Peruvian lady…. Watch this space!

Octagons, stash buster blanket, and introducing Derwen

Hey there everyone. I’ve not blogged for a while but I’ve been working on a few things while I’ve still been off poorly, and I’ve mixed up reading with craft.

Last week I didn’t have a chance to blog about the progress i’d made on my octagons while at a crochet group at my neighbour’s house. It’s fun to sit and chat while crocheting, and it was good to get out of the house, especially as it was only to next door, so the Dizziness wasn’t too bad.

Anyway, they grew and this evening I added two more rounds to one of them. I had played around with swapping the hooks over so that I worked on the bigger octagon with the smaller hook, and the smaller octagon with the bigger hook. I hoped that this would mean they’d end up a similar size with the same number of stitches. Here they are :

I think they’ll work! One is still a bit smaller (it’s stretched a bit in the second photo) but i think I’ll use that for the back, and the slightly bigger one for the front!

Today I spent most of my time working on my stash buster blanket from eleonora’s CAL . I was a week behind, but I’ve caught up, adding colours that reming me of sea anemones on rocks, and limpets, with more sea colours.

I also decided now would be a good time to sew all the ends in… Before it gets to be too big a job for one sitting. So Here it is :

And finally, meet Derwen.

He’s a nostepinne and I decided to buy him from Thomas Wood and wool etsy shop because I bought some skeins of wool in India but when I tried to crochet from one of them it got tangled up! I Needed a way to turn the skeins into balls and didn’t fancy a plastic motorised ball spinner. I liked the idea of connecting with our heritage, and making the ball by hand. I Love wooden objects too, and it appealed to me that this was going to be made for me in Wales. And hence the name. I decided he needed a Welsh name and looked for something beginning with n, But couldn’t find anything I liked. So then I scrolled through Welsh boys names and found derwen which I thought sounded cool and means oak. Guess what wood he’s actually made from?!!

I watched a few you tube tutorials and got on with it. It was a bit awkward to start with but I’ve got quicker, and it helps that I can work either left or right handed, so one arm doesn’t get tired! Here are my first mini attempts:

I spent a long time yesterday with the tangled skein and here’s what happened:

No cutting required! Just lots of patience. Now it’s ready for me to make a gorgeous ammonite crochet hook holder by dedri uys.