Tuesday, 31 December 2013

By the Seaside

The last day of the year and not too windy, so I decided to take my morning walk beside the sea.

The tide was high and it was dull and wet... but still magical in its bleakness.

Can you spot an Iron Man?

Here he is.  All the others are submerged.

The lights of the docks (a bit of a shaky picture).

No one else about. 

Too cold for a paddle.

The high water mark left by the recent storms.

By the seaside ... I'm so lucky to be able to walk here.

I'm looking forward to many more walks during 2014.

Monday, 30 December 2013

Getting Ahead of Myself

As I've mentioned in an earlier post, one of my New Year resolutions is to be better organised.  Obviously the New Year hasn't arrived yet but I'm getting ahead of myself and starting early, whilst I'm still enthusiastic.
I've sorted all my double knitting yarn into colour groups and put them in pretty storage boxes on a new shelving unit in the spare bedroom.

To distinguish the different boxes, today, I've made labels so that I can locate the colour I need swiftly.

Rather than write on the labels I thought it would be fun to glue on coloured buttons.

So now I'm feeling very smug and organised.

It's debatable whether or not I can keep this resolution going beyond the end of January, but for the time being it's going well!

Sunday, 29 December 2013

Cute Little Mouse

It's the Twilight Zone - that time between Christmas and New Year when Christmas is over, the stress of preparing for it all is a thing of the past, but the holidays aren't really over.  It's not until after New Year when you can get back to some sort of normal routine.  So I'm on light duties as far as housework is concerned!

This gives me plenty of free time to waste spend on making pointless lovely little critters.

And how could anyone resist this cute little mouse?

The pattern calls for double knitting weight yarn but I used up some old aran weight yarn so my mouse is slightly bigger than in the pattern.  Knitted all in one piece and in just one evening.  He has such an appealing face.

And, even better, it's a free pattern.  You can download it direct from Ravelry, here.

Saturday, 28 December 2013

A Little Bit of Embroidery

I'm getting in on my New Year resolution a little bit early but, today, I felt the urge to embroider something.

I grabbed some scrappy fabric, some embroidery threads and then I had a doodle.  This is what I came up with.

I'm now thinking that it would be fun to combine this with other bits and pieces of embroidery to make an interesting collage to hang on the wall.  I'm thinking, ribbons, beads, more embroidery and anything else I can add.

This could be an interesting project to develop during 2014.  I could definitely run with this idea.  Pinterest, as ever is responsible for this inspiration.  Where would I be these days without Pinterest?

Friday, 27 December 2013

Planning Ahead

Well Christmas is now over, and I must say it was a good one.  I'm now planning ahead and thinking about New Year resolutions.  Obviously, the first resolution is to be better prepared for Christmas next year!  I also would like to do more embroidery next year and generally make more time for crafting.  And in 2014, I am most definitely, no doubt about it, going to be better organised!

So, making an early start on getting organised, here are some of the projects I've finished recently but not got round to sharing with you.

Firstly, I crocheted some covers for coat hangers for Grace and Eve for Christmas.  I used double knitting weight yarn for them all.

For the cherries, I used this free pattern.

For the daisies, I used my Daisy Daisy Earrings pattern.

For the flower, I used my Simple Flower Corsage pattern.

At some point I'll make some of these for myself.

I finished the top I was knitting in plenty of time for Christmas Day.

The pattern is called Thelma and it's by Martin Storey.  Full details of the project can be found on my Ravelry page, here.

Having finished the top, I had a day or two to spare before Christmas Day, so I made this bookmark.

Flat Rat Bookmark - not for the squeamish, but I think he's fun.  The pattern is free and I knitted from the nose down, all in one piece.  You can see the details of the pattern, here.

The flat rat bookmark only took a couple of hours so I decided to start a project which has been top of my queue for several months now.

This lovely snake pattern is also free and it's nice and easy.  It's actually striped but I was using up some old yarn so my colours don't show up that well.  I knitted until I ran out of yarn but it would have been nice to make it really long.  Maybe I could make another one - more colourful and extra long!  Full details of the project are here.

The snake was finished off on Christmas Day morning.  Which fitted in nicely with the receipt of my Christmas present - Jamieson and Smith 2 ply jumper yarn, all the way from Shetland.

A beautiful tweedy pink.

And this is what I've knitted so far.

It's going to be a cardigan and I can't wait to wear it.

So that's everything up to date.  I've still got an excessively long wish list and Pinterest never fails to inspire me on a daily basis, but I'm optimistic that my good intentions for being organised in 2014 will mean that there will be 25 hours in each day!

Wednesday, 25 December 2013

To You All



Monday, 23 December 2013


I've decorated the doors of the girls bedrooms for Christmas...

Another great inspiration from Pinterest.

Sunday, 22 December 2013

Bring It On

Yes, I'm ready.  I'm organised and well-planned.  I'm definitely ready for Christmas.

There's just the last minute food shopping to do tomorrow; the baking to be done on Christmas Eve and of course the knitted top to be finished and ready to wear on Christmas Day.  Apart from all that, I'm ready.

Grace's hamsters have come to stay for the holiday.

I have my pile of library books to keep me going...

Although it would be a bit optimistic to think I will be able to get through all those during the holiday, but at least I've got plenty of choice.

I've even started planning what I'm going to start knitting on Christmas Day with the wool that Father Christmas will be bringing me (after all I have been a good girl).

It's all so exciting, I think I need to go and calm down before I start squealing with delight.

Monday, 16 December 2013

Will It Be Finished?

An update on the Black Forest Log - despite looking like someone had sat on it, it was delicious.  I'd definitely make it again but I think I need to work on my construction techniques!

Moving on, I thought I'd let you know what I'm working on, knitting-wise at the moment.

A few weeks ago I couldn't resist buying this pattern book by Martin Storey.

I particularly love the pattern called Thelma.

This would be lovely to wear at Christmas.

Now, Angora Haze is a gorgeously, soft and cuddly yarn by Rowan - but rather pricey!  I also have issues with the idea of Angora as a yarn, not all Angora yarn is produced from happy bunnies.  Rowan have categorically stated that theirs is ethically sourced with a view to animal welfare but I'm still not comfortable with the idea. So in the end I settled for some 4 ply wool cotton by Rowan in a lovely jewel pink shade.  This gives wonderful stitch definition which shows up the pattern beautifully, with the Angora yarn I feel the pattern is a bit lost.

I've finished the back - just.  I've started the front and I'm conscious I'm running out of time.  So, forget the housework, I'm going to just have to sit and knit to make sure it's done!

Saturday, 14 December 2013

I Tried...

The tree is up, the knitted figures have colonised the living room, so I'm all set for Christmas.

So how about baking something exciting...

Black Forest Log - sounds delicious...

... but sadly looks like road kill.

Never mind, I tried!