Playing with paper

A while back I bought the flow book For paper lovers.

I was tempted to get some other things at the same time and that included a little art journal. I didn’t think I’d use it as it included bits of advice, and pages from someone else’s art journal, but then I thought I could use paper from the paper lovers book to cover them up and then stick other things in.

I cut pictures out that I liked, I went through my box of keepsakes and took out pressed leaves, and petals, little pictures, cards and photos, and began sticking them in. I’ve added doodles and thoughts and here are the pages I’ve got so far. They’ll get added to as time goes on. It’s fun playing with colour, pattern and ideas, and having spaces to add little doodles without feeling the pressure of producing a complete picture. Here they are. Which one/s are your favourite?


Working with sissy… And a little bit more crochet

Well, since she’s been named, poor sissy (my sewing machine) hasn’t been brought out to play. But today was the day!

I wanted to make a little present to say thankyou to a teacher in school who gave me a beautiful faux fur long gilet that she was wearing for world book Day (in order to dress up as a bear!). She didn’t like it as she thinks she is too short for it and she thought it would suit me better as I am tall! Well, I love it, and it has certainly kept me warm during the snow.

I decided to make a little bag that she could use in school, maybe to put things in for the kids to pull out etc. But I wanted it to be a bit interesting too.

I had this gorgeous material with little woodland creatures on, so decided to copy the bunny and blanket stitch on a felt version to the front of the bag.

Of course this meant I had to line the bag to hide the stitching, so this is the result of a full morning’s work (not least because I unsuccessfully tried satin stitching the detail on the ears and tail before unpicking it all at it looked too messy). I’m really, really pleased with the result though and think it was totally worth all the effort. I really love the sparkly ribbon that I had in my stash… I’ve never bought ribbon… Just kept anything that came my way!

This evening I carried on with a bit more of the second octagon for my top. Here they are next to each other. The one on the left is made with a smaller hook, and has one row less than the one on the right. I’m thinking I’ll add that round to it and then continue both with the bigger hook and they’ll be fine for front and back with no frogging required! What do you think? Can you see flaws in this plan that I haven’t spotted? Let me know more if you can! All help and advice will be gratefully received 💞

More crochet

I discovered yesterday when I finally moved off my couch and went to church that the fact that my right ear is completely blocked and pressurised from an ear infection makes me feel really dizzy, off balance and sick when I move very far. Its also really disorientating when there is noise as I can’t pick out one sound from the others. This resulted in another trip to the dr today, a referral to ent for an appointment later in the week (I couldn’t believe how quickly they sorted that) and telling work I won’t be in for the week. None of those symptoms are conducive to working in a classroom of 4 and 5 year olds unfortunately, so I’m back on my sofa.

Thankfully crochet, Reading and watching TV are all possible.

Crochet for today has involved trying the octagon pattern with a more appropriately sized hook.

I’m loving the colours…. But that’s not the point! It’s already going crinkly, so I think blocking will be necessary regardless of hook size once it’s done. My question now is can I get away with not frogging either and having the front and back made up with different sized hooks? Or will that just not work? Gosh…. I’m so lazy!

Also, I discovered, courtesy of white Hill crafts about a project to raise money for Leckhampton Court hospice, which is not far from where I live. They are asking for crochet hearts which will be made available to people at the rhs malvern show to hang on a tree for a donation. Check out the work of heart website for details. This evening I used tiny balls of leftovers to make the tiny hearts.

They give both a crochet and a knitted pattern, but something went a bit squiffy when I followed their crochet one, so I used the attic 24 teeny tiny hearts pattern instead, which is very similar to their pattern but slightly easier to follow. I’ve only made 4 but I figure that’s better than none. I’ll also hopefully find little snippets of time to make more before they need them at the beginning of May.

Next project on the go

Hooray, my lovely husband has finally managed to get home from London after being stuck there for a few days sur to the snow. But, today while I was feeling anxious about him making the journey I started a new crochet project.

I’m still not motivated to go back to spirits of life, but have started a second pattern for a top by lilla bjorn (who wrote the spirits of life CAL). Sitting here earlier I spotted 2 rainbow sprinkles caron cakes in my stash and immediately wanted to make a top for myself with them. Though I also have 2 cakes of blueberry kiwi and I can’t decide at the moment if I might use one of them for the back instead of the second cake of rainbow sprinkles. I’d love your thoughts on that, though i don’t have to make the decision until I find out if I can successfully crochet the front!

I’ve started on the front but was having trouble concentrating due to my anxiety, and I also had to frog several rounds twice when I realised I’d missed a stitch 🤔.

The caron cakes call for a 5mm hook, but the pattern uses a different yarn and a smaller hook. I started with a 4mm hook but felt the holes were too big, so dropped to 3.75mm. Now my octagon is going quite wrinkly. I don’t know if that is just how it would be… The pattern says the octagon will start going curly but that can be remedied with blocking… Or if its because I’m using the wrong size hook for the wool? What do you guys think? Does it matter? Will it sort itself out if I block it?

Anyway, here’s how far I’ve got… I’m about half a round off the orange colour change which I’m looking forward to!

Meanwhile, Emma bunny has found a home on one of my bookshelves… I think she might be working her way through the Arthur ransome books (swallows and amazons etc) while I’m asleep at night!

Snow days rock!!

Oh how lovely it was to have a Friday morning where I didn’t set my alarm, woke up naturally at 8:15, fed the piggies and took my cereal and coffee back to bed with me, read from two different books and caught up with blogs, and finally got out of bed about 11.30! I can’t really say I got up, as I’m still in my pj’ s now, but at least I haven’t been back to bed since then!

Then this afternoon held an unexpected surprise. My friend Adelina also works in a school and lives across the park from us. She messaged just to say hi and when I found out she was thinking of going out for a little walk and then home to do some sewing or drawing I suggested she could come here and draw or sew while I crocheted. With Mark being stuck in London since Tuesday I was beginning to feel the lack of social company.

Adelina came over and we started talking crochet. She’s done some in the past and it’s trying to work out how to get back into it. We talked about granny squares and she fancied making a blanket from lots of small squares. So we got out my stash and she found colours she liked, and we started working together on a square from a book of different patterns that I hadn’t got round to using yet. It was so much fun to share my stash in this way.

I made the swatch alongside her, and had my usual trouble of working out what is the first stitch of the row. Does anyone have a good explanation for this, or does it depend on the pattern which stitch they refer to as the first one?

Adelina wasn’t worried though as she was using this first attempt to get the feel of things. I’d suggested not making the chain too tight but then she felt she was crocheting more loosely than she’d like so she deliberately made it tighter about half way up.

It was so exciting and satisfying to help someone to explore crochet. I’ve helped her to learn double crochet, and treble crochet, as well as how to crochet into the chain, and how to count stitches. I’m really pleased with how her swatch has turned out.

Here’s mine too.

We’ll hopefully see each other on Thursday evening for a crochet session at my neighbour’s house, so we’re going to work on a traditional granny square together then.

In between rows, this morning and after Adelina left I’ve managed to finish off Emma bunny. Here she is exploring the piggies’ cage.

She’s decided she’d rather stay out here with me as I’m more friendly than the piggies, even if I do take cheeky photos of her bottom (I looked on line to try to find out what her tail is supposed to look like but couldn’t find any photos or instructions, so thought I’d show you how I did it!).

I’m really pleased with her and love how her ears flop.

That’s all my crochet sanctuary projects finished off. I might have to go back to spirits of life and see if I can get a bit more of that done, and I’ll keep the seaside stash buster blanket rows as a reward for later in the week.

Emma bunny

We got sent home from school early today, so I’ve spent the afternoon watching the first episode of masterchef, finishing reading a book, and catching up on call the midwife while crocheting 4 limbs for Emma bunny. I’ve just got two ears and a tail left to make and then the tricky bit of giving her character by sewing her together and adding a face. We’re probably not in school tomorrow either,so hopefully I’ll have a finished bunny to show you by tomorrow evening.

Hope the snow is bringing you crochet and crafting opportunities too, and not creating stress for you.

I’ve just realised how funny it is that toft already named her Emma bunny, and now I have time to crochet her due to storm Emma! 

Crochet socks

Yay! I’ve finished off my first ever pair of crochet socks. I made the first one at the crochet sanctuary, and then I made the second one last night and tonight. They’re not exactly the same… The heels have turned out different from each other, but i don’t think it matters. They both fit and they are warm and cosy and comfy. I deliberately made one purple with pink stripes and the other pink with purple stripes, as I didn’t think I’d have enough purple wool to make them both the same. Now I have a reasonable amount of each that I can use in my stash buster blanket.

Anyway… Without further ado… Here they are!