Thursday, 31 December 2009

Friday night sew in and a giveaway

If you nip over to, you will find details of a fantastic giveaway.  Heidi is also organising a monthly Friday night sew in, which seems to be a fantastic way to get projects completed.

Wednesday, 30 December 2009

Eventually-A Wall Hanging

It's taken a while, but I have finally finshed the autumn wall hanging.  The fabric that I used for the backing and binding came from the oddment bin at the fabric shop.  It cost me less than a pound and there is still some remaining, so I can't complain.

There was a little of the leaf fabric left over, so I made it into a bookmark.  I was lazy and used a shop bought tassle.

All  I have left from all these autumn projects are some leaves.  Now I have to decide how to use them, I think it might be some cards, but I'm not sure yet.

Tuesday, 29 December 2009

Notebook Cover

This is the first notebook cover I have made from crochet, and I might try and do a bigger one now I know it works.  Once the crocheted cover was complete, I added the button and then the felt strips inside to hold the book.

For a first attempt, I don't think it was bad.

What is even more satisfying, I have a sleeve that has the correct dimensions.  The child will be a gorilla no more!

Monday, 28 December 2009

For my Budding Artist

With the children away, it means I can make them things without having to pack up half way through so they can't see.  One of those items was a paintbrush holder for D.  He is beginning to get quite a collection of papers and paints, so I thought I would help him on his way with some different paintbrushes.  The ones I have here for the children aren't so specialised-I did have a couple of expensive ones I bought for myself, that they weren't allowed to touch.  You know what young children do to paintbrushes.  Now he is older and doing more painting, he is needing specialised brushes.

I thought this fabric would be just the thing, it reminds me of the pictures we used to get when they were younger.

I used some white fabric for the lining and some blue that I had to form the pockets.

The top folds over, then it is rolled up and tied to keep closed.

Now all he has to do is to remember to clean the brushes properly and put them away when he's finished with them.  Mmm, think that might take a little longer to accomplish.

Sunday, 27 December 2009

Draughts no more

It seems that our British weather has made the news in some parts of the world.  It has certainly been cold over the last couple of weeks, so while we were out last week, the boys and I decided I would make some draught excluders.

I made three and no, they are not all for the one door!  The fattest one is to go by the front door, and the others are for internal doors.  I used fabric that has been in my stash for so long, I can't remember where it came from.  I either inherited it from my mum, or else it was an ebay bargain.

As per usual, once you think of a solution to a problem, the problem goes away - it is now warming up outside.  Never mind, we will be prepared for the next cold snap we have. 

I am now waiting to see now if the cats will decide these need to be killed, or if the boys are more likely to use them to hit each other rather than to keep out the cold.

Saturday, 26 December 2009

Flower of the month-December

This is the second of the flower BOM's I have done, and I thoroughly enjoyed stitching it.  My favourite bits were the holly berries.  It was stitched throughout using three strands of DMC thread.

Leaves-#367-split stitch, straight stitch.
Narcissus- blanc- split stitch, straight stitch and #725-straight stitch for the stamens
Holly-#321-split stitch, padded satin stitch
Holly stems-#938-split stitch
Letters-#321-split stitch

I used split stitch for the outlines and lettering this time, as I prefered the look of it compared to the outline stitch I used last time.

I've also been working on J's jumper which is a lot easier when he is away.  I have now worked out why the sleeve seemed to be taking forever to get to the right number of increase stitches and was going to reach to J's knees. 

I was counting the rows according to the shape of the stitches, (knitters will understand what I mean).  However, as the knit stitch is knitted into the row below, what I was counting as one row, was actually two!  The 14 rows I was counting between increases, was actually 28!  Having now worked that out, I  now have a sleeve to unpick and reknit, but at least it will be in proportion to the rest of the body. The bonus to counting properly, the second sleeve is knitting up relatively quickly now.  Maybe I can catch up over the weekend.

Friday, 25 December 2009

A more relaxing holiday

Last year I was decorating over the Christmas holidays, but this year it is going to be more relaxing.  It's going to be a stitching and knitting holiday.  I've even rearranged the furniture yesterday so that my cutting table is down the warmest end of the room and I have a working triangle, or rather a working square. 

My settee is in the centre, to the left, my fabric chests, the cutting table to the right, and the sewing table opposite the settee.  It is definitely easier having everything to hand.  I'd better not get too used to it, I  will have to change it back for when the boys get home.

Once the furniture had been moved, I was ready for a couple of easy finishes, two cards.

The first I just mounted onto coloured card, then onto a plain white card.  By chance, I had card that matched the pink of the ears and cheeks, almost as if it had been planned!

The second card was mounted in an aperture card with wadding behind.  Again, it was more luck than judgement that the card matched the colour of the leaves on the flowers. 

Now to sort out something else to do.

Hope you all enjoy your day

Tuesday, 22 December 2009

A big surprise

Going through my emails this morning, I came across one I didn't recognise with the subject, "you've won".  I nearly deleted the message until I realised there was something very vaguely familiar with the address, so I opened the mail.  So glad I did as I have won this giveaway at Retroknit Design.

I have the pdf pattern for Harlow and will receive the Madelinetosh Wren yarn in due course.  I look forward to knitting this pattern and receiving the yarn too.

So glad I wasn't too hasty in deleting the message, I might never have known.

Sunday, 20 December 2009

Number 9

This is the last of the clown numbers, so for all those who don't like clowns, they won't be making another appearance until the wall hanging is complete.

I've just noticed in the photo, about half a dozen back stitches are missing!  I would never have noticed without the photo.  I suppose I had better go and rectify that before I do anything else.

Friday, 18 December 2009

Super Chunky Neck Sock

I had some of the yarn leftover from the montana tunic, so I thought a neck sock might be the perfect way to use it up.  I think next time, I will cast on less stitches, or use finer yarn.  I must say though, just what we need with our temperatures at the moment.  If I got the right colours, I could even do some for the boys, they are a lot easier to keep on than scarves.

My floss arrived yesterday, so both Sew and So and Royal Mail did their jobs perfectly.  I suppose I should finish the last clown today so he can join the others waiting patiently in the pile.

Thursday, 17 December 2009

Number 8

Number 8 was stitched without a hitch, and as the number takes up so much room, it was a  quick one to do.  Number 9 is underway, but I've run out of some of the floss.  It has been ordered, and I am hoping it will arrive today, though, that will very much depend on Royal Mail.

Wednesday, 16 December 2009

Number 7

The second attempt on number 7 worked out perfectly and we have another cheerful chappy to add to the pile.

I went to the fabric shop today and found some fabric that would go to make up the wallhanging.  On the way home, I remembered I would need binding, so it looks like I will have to go shopping again. So much for being prepared!

Monday, 14 December 2009

Not as planned

The day started off well, the washing and ironing got done, the front room got cleaned and all by half nine.  Time to jump in the bath and then spend the day sewing.  Trouble was, the boys dinner was cancelled as the family they were suppposed to be visiting were ill.   My sewing time had to be changed to cooking time.  For some reason the boys don't appreciate not being fed.

I did manage to finish an ATC that was hanging around, and Clown Number 6 has joined the completed pile.

I might have had number 7 if I hadn't miscounted the number of stitches in the first row.  I had done the number and as I was starting to stitch the face and hands around it, I realised it was too small, by two stitches. It was easier and less time consuming to start again.

Let's hope today works out a little better.

Sunday, 13 December 2009

Number 5

What with sleepless nights and catching up on housework after a busy week, I haven't had the time or inclination to get stuck into somthing substantial, so it is another clown.

Now number 5 is done,  there are four more to do.  My pile of prepared squares is rapidly diminishing.

The boys are out for dinner today, so I am hoping that, once the necessary chores are done, I might get to some of the projects on the finishing pile.  If another clown pops up, you know I was too tired and didn't get there.

Friday, 11 December 2009

Number 4 and a postcard received

As I expected, this week has been full of coming and going, and it's been a matter of grabbing the odd minute here and there to stitch.  These clowns have been ideal as they are very simple and quick to do.

Number 4 is now ready to join his friends and wait for the next five to be stitched.

In the post yesterday, I received this lovely postcard from Mary Lou in the USA.  This is part of the autumn exchange on Stitchin Fingers.  I know there is at least one more travelling it's way to me.

After a tiring day, there is nothing more that a girl likes than to have a bit of TLC.  However, this is the price you have to pay if you let DS2 massage body lotion into your legs and feet!

I'm not sure how much is left in  the bottle after that!

Thursday, 10 December 2009

Number 2

Back on track now, with number 2 done. The fact that these are all different, certainly makes them easier to stitch and they are ideal for this week when we don't have much time. Another 6 to go.

J spoilt my knitting routine.  He decided he wasn't well, so didn't go out as he normally does last night.  It meant that progress on his sleeve is going to be even slower than normal.  Never mind, there is always clown to be stitched.

Wednesday, 9 December 2009

Clown Number 3

I know 2 should come after 1, but for some reason, I started stitching the 3 before I realised.  I think it was to do with the position on the page, or maybe, I just like to be awkward.

For all you clown haters, there are only another 7 to go.

Tuesday, 8 December 2009

Clown Number 1

Apologies to all my readers who don't like clowns, but here is the next in the series of clown numbers.

DS2 doesn't like clowns in real life, but he doesn't mind the pictures.  I hope I won't be giving some poor child nightmares by making this wall hanging!

Number 1 was quicker to do than the '0'.  These are great for stitching in spare minutes as it doesn't take long to see progress.  Only another 8 to go.

My ball of yarn has arrived, (great service, from  McA Direct), so I am hoping to get time between outings with the boys to get the jumper finished this week.  This week is going to be rather hectic, so I am not holding my breath.

Monday, 7 December 2009

Another Quick Finish

This Cross Stitch Crazy magazine is great for quick stitches,  This cat design makes for a lovely card.  DS1 said the cat was the wrong colour, our cats are black and white!  It doesn't seem to matter what colour cats are, they seem to like flower pots.  Throughout the summer, I had either one of our cats, or next doors, sleeping in our flower pots.  They seem to think they have been put there especially for them.

This cat has his very own pot, though  I think he might have to wait for the flowers to die of before he can get in there to sleep.

Sunday, 6 December 2009

Sweet Smell of Lavender

I have been gathering the bits needed for this project for a couple of weeks.  It has been lovely to come in and smell the lavender every day and it was a delight to work with it yesterday.

I have made two different types of lavender bags.  The first is made from  lavender coloured chiffon.  I made a basic bag, filled with lavender and then tied with ribbon.

The second lot of bags are made from muslin.  I made drawstring bags using ribbon for tying.  Before filling with lavender, I stamped the bags with a lavender stamp.

These would make lovely gifts, even DS2 has tried walking off with one to put in his bedroom.

Saturday, 5 December 2009

Number Clowns

In between being busy with the boys and dealing with a couple of domestic disasters, I have managed to do a little sewing and knitting.

I finished the front and the sleeve on a girl's jumper and am just waiting delivery of another ball of yarn to get the second sleeve finished.  The first sleeve on J's jumper is still growing, though I still haven't completed all the increase rows.

I have also started a larger project from the Cross Stitch Crazy magazine.  This is a series of number clowns.

This is the first one, and the numbers go up to 9.  I am thinking of making it into a wall hanging for a chid's bedroom.  I am now on the lookout for some suitable fabric.  This project combines the joy of quick finishes with that of  doing a larger project.

 If I can find the fabric, I think this will be something to finish when the boys are away.  I have almost two weeks of peace and quiet to fill and I think this will do nicely.