Monday, 27 July 2015

Fibre East 2015

Hi everyone! 
Thanks to you lovely lot for purchasing my Baby Jayne Buggy blanket pattern, it makes my day to know you are happy to part with a few pounds / euros / dollars to get the download. I really hope you enjoy making it and would love to see pictures if you take any. I will look on the Ravelry project page and if you use the hashtag #babyjaynebuggy on Instagram I will check that out too :o)

The above photo is from my Instagram feed of the goodies I got from Fibre East in Ampthill on Saturday. Yes I did go a bit mad didn't I? I have to confess I spent quite a bit but I had been saving my pocket money, good job because I obviously I can't resist the temptation can I?

I met up with my lovely friend Sandra and we had such a fab time. We mooched and chatted, oohed and ahhhed, squished and cuddled lots of yarn!
We got talking to loads of different people which was just brilliant. I was pleased to meet Sara from Sara's Texture Crafts as I have bought from her in the past and her yarn is lovely. I discovered the guys from EasyKnits with their totally luxurious selection and we even had a conversation with Janie Crow aka Jane Crowfoot and I was a bit starstruck as I admire her work and have one of her books.

So coming home with such a wonderful selection of yarn is very difficult as it's so tempting to jump right in and start making with it! However, I am trying to be restrained and finish off my Waterlily first. I have finally got the hang of the lace pattern - after 3 failed attempts, so it feels like the end is in sight and that's exciting, I'm really loving this design and looking forward to wearing it.

You might have noticed in the top picture that there is some fibre there? Yep I am taking my first steps into spinning, eek! I have a drop spindle and have done a small amount on that - seems I will specialise in 'texture' yarn - you know the stuff that varies from thick and thin, from super chunky to lace in one skein! My husband also bought me a second hand spinning wheel for my birthday, but this seems quite a bit more difficult to get the hang of so I need to maybe go on a course perhaps. It's  a beautiful thing to have in the corner of my front room, but I want to learn how to use it properly so it's not just an ornament.

I hope you all have a fun-filled crafty week!

'till next time...


Friday, 24 July 2015

Baby Jayne Buggy Blanket

In my job as a registrar I see lots of babies when they are bought in by their parents to register their birth. More often than not the babies are in the car seat and I always love it if they have a homemade crocheted blanket keeping them warm and snuggly! 

Baby size blankets are also good for trying out colours and patterns together without the long-term commitment of a full size throw. And I also like the idea of having a ready stash of little warm hugs to gift to newborns as and when they make their entrance into this world, so how could I resist trying out one of the new Stylecraft colours (parma violet - 1724) that I think sits so well with the cream (1005) on this pretty granny square coverlet?

I added a simple border, with cute corner ties and I think I've got a bit of a thing about crab stitch at the moment as I like the way it finishes off the edges so neatly!

Of course with things like this you can go as large as you wish by just adding more and more squares, but I certainly found smaller blankets like this very handy when my little poppet was younger and would sleep in the car seat or buggy. I would cover her over to keep her warm and not have to worry about the blanket dragging on the ground and getting dirty.

A yellow and white one would look pretty too, and what do you think about blue and white or even gray and orange? I guess there are endless colour combinations, but using just 2 colours means you only have to make one decision!
Sitting here thinking about colours I reckon this would look really sweet if the squares were several different pastel colours and the centres of the squares, the joins and the border were white. Do you know I don't think I could ever run out of ideas when it comes to yarn crafts, the possibilities really are endless!

Baby Jayne Buggy Blanket

'till next time...

Tuesday, 21 July 2015

Glad it's done, but none the wiser...

Hello my friends, excuse my absence will you? I have been slightly obsessed with my Waterlily knitting I talked about a few posts ago. I have now reached the 'hard bit' - the lace sections. Boy it's a challenge for me, that's for sure!
I cannot let it get the better of me and I am determined to finish the top, it's such a beautiful pattern and definitely  worth all the effort. I will report back when I have something of substance to show you.


In the meantime let me tell you about my second betsy shrug. You see I started this not long after I released the pattern. I wear the pink one quite a lot, well I did when the weather was cooler, it's a bit warm for it now. I love the casual yarny hug I get when I put it on, it's so easy to wear and fits in with my style, so I wanted to make another one using this Stylecraft Alpaca Tweed (Colour  Sage 1661). I liked the idea of a more rustic, wooly version, a bit more autumnal than the first.

It is a quick make (especially compared to my knitting speed) but this one has taken me a while to complete because I have been leaving it to one side a lot. Not for the usual reason of being distracted by other projects, but because whilst working on it my cheeks started to go quite red and my nose got itchy!
Ok, so I am quite an allergic type person. Furry pets need to be admired for their cuteness from a distance and I can't cope without my anti-histamine in the hay fever season. But for heavens sake, this is 77% acrylic! There is only 20% alpaca in it, the other 3% being viscose, I have also worked with baby alpaca before with no problems, so I wasn't expecting this reaction. I can't quite accept the fact that I have a sensitivity to this yarn, I really like it and want to wear it! I can only suppose it's because it's quite a hairy yarn that I might have a problem with it. I say might because I need hard and fast proof that it is the yarn that causes me irritation because there are so many other things in the air and all around that might be the cause.

Finishing this off a week ago was satisfying, as is finishing any wip that has been languishing, and I managed it because I didn't suffer any adverse reaction. That of course is because I'm taking a regular hay fever remedy at the moment which means I'm none the wiser as to whether I am allergic to it or not!
I am hoping that once Autumn comes, with the cooler temperatures and when I'm no longer taking the tablets I can wear this comfortably and enjoy it.

Only time will tell.

If you fancy having a go at making this in a yarn that suits your skin type you can buy the pattern here at Love Crochet or here at Ravelry.

'till next time...

Sunday, 12 July 2015

Wednesday, 8 July 2015

WIP Wednesday

Knitting round and round is good.
I thought when I started this pattern this lower section would be long and laborious. Well, it is quite long which is because:
 a. I have so many other things on the go at the same time and
 b. I'm not that quick at knitting.
But it is very enjoyable and relaxing. After a long, hot day chasing a 3 year old around it's good to sit down and just knit.
I think I have become a bit smitten with knitting. Don't worry, I have not abandoned crochet, no way. But I'm getting into this other yarny craft too and enjoying learning and doing. The pattern is a top called Waterlily by Meghan Fernandes, it's worked from the bottom up and is plain stocking stitch to just below the underarms and then the top is all lacy, and for me a bit daunting. I hope I can manage it...

Do you like the little zip-pull sewing machine on my project bag? I picked up the components to make it at Hobbycraft, it's so cute isn't it?

So I have another 11cm of stocking stitch to do before I start the hard bit. Wish me luck...

'till next time...

Thursday, 2 July 2015

Spun Sea

Sitting at my computer working today I'm glad it's not quite as hot as yesterday, although the lovely blue sky and sun shining were more cheerful than the overcast clouds I can see now. I was just thinking it was exactly a month ago that we took a trip to Brighton and believe me the weather was much worse!

Hubby had booked us tickets to see Elvis Costello at the Brighton Dome, and as we drove down to the coast the rain plummeted, my first sight of the sea was of high brown waves rolling in, and the wind propelled us along as we tried to have a mooch around the shops.

I had been hooking up another Spun Gold scarf and had given myself the deadline of the Sunday before we went to finish it so I could wear it, and I'm glad I managed it as I needed the extra warmth it gave! You might remember I made one for my friend's birthday and it's such a lovely Kat Goldin pattern that I wanted one for myself - especially when I spied some Debbie Bliss rialto lace in a gorgeous greeny-blue (calm) sea colour named 44025.
Ah, colour 44025, I love this colour...

Now I did make this holding 2 strands together, I wasn't sure how the scarf would work in lace weight yarn, and anyway I think I've got a bit of a fear of working with such fine yarn (I need to get over that). In hindsight though I think it may be quite nice. But anyway I am super delighted with how it's come out and loved wearing it, it's lovely and soft and lightweight so ideal for Spring or Autumn.

Elvis's show was brilliant - what a showman! My husband told me that Elvis's Dad was the guy who did the R White's secret lemonade drinker ad - do you remember it? 
There were videos and still images shown of his family, and his two brothers came out to perform with him, which was just amazing!

And you know what? The next day - when we had to travel back home - the sun was shining and it was a perfect day to spend at the seaside. Typical isn't it?