The above four yarns were spun by me during the last year. Question was: what to do with them when they are finished? Answer: find a pattern that you like and adapt it. Easier said than done.
Then I saw this pattern in an old ‘People’s Friend’ magazine. I thought it would be just right. It was just right for someone short-waisted, like me, and lots of opportunities for using more than one colourway.
My spun-off merino knits up like Aran so knitting with 5mm (u.k. needles) I began.
…and here is the finished result. I’m pleased with it. It’s not at all itchy and very comfortable to wear.
The colour panel at the back breaks up the vast expanse of lavender yarn and compliments the front panels.
I like the way it sticks out at the front.
Now on to my next project, but first I need to make something with the left-over yarn from this one. Any ideas?
I am currently spinning with this beautiful dark purple roving, which I bought from E-bay. It’s a very soft merino. It spins up quite quickly and is a joy to work with.
So far I have several spools of it and some of it is already in use. More of that another day.
However, I am excited about getting a raw fleece to work with, later in the week so I will be back on here to tell you how I’m getting on with that. I’m not sure what I’m getting yet, but it could well be a long staple variety, like the one in the following video. You will see how http://www.taylormadeyarns.co.uk spins up an art yarn using a Wensleydale fleece. It’s quite fascinating. Do take a look:
I’ve just been enjoying a trip to Bath. On one of the days we visited the Kaffe Fassett exhibition, which was, to me, spectacular. This post is heavy on pics but I simply could not choose what to leave out so please enjoy the feast…
This is the entrance hall, which was very pink like everything else in the exhibition – a riot of colour.
With pictures like these, who needs words? If these pictures have wetted your appetite for more, click here and you can read some more about this interesting designer.
I saw the pattern for this lovely jerkin in the window of my local haberdashery shop last week. The baby looks a little like my grandson, Sam, so of course I had to buy the pattern, didn’t I!
I had just the right yarn to make up the jerkin – some of my handspun, which has been sitting in a basket for a while now. Do you like the colour? Being handspun, it varies from dark to lighter shades. I like that. I like a bit of variation. So now I’m doing the V-neck of the front and it won’t be long before I’m on to the borders.
I love knitting. It’s very relaxing in the evenings after all the chores are done. I like to put my feet up, watch TV or listen to the radio and knit. Bliss!
I’ve been working through my stash of yarn recently. All those odd balls of wool knocking around doing nothing. I began to feel like I should be doing something about them!
I would love to have a dog, but at the moment it isn’t possible and I don’t think Millie would be too pleased if we invited a dog into the house. However it occurred to me that if I couldn’t have a dog here, then I could do something to help a dog I didn’t own. Perhaps one who needed a blanket? So I got out my knitting needles and followed the pattern on the Battersea Dogs’ and Cats’ Home website and made a colourful blanket. I enjoyed making it and when it was done, I packed it up and sent it off to London.
Very soon back came the picture of Bonnie,one of the dogs for re-homing, lying on the blanket. That made me so happy, I think I’ll make another one!
and if I’ve made a little mistake in the pattern, well – the dogs won’t notice, will they.
Here’s the detail of the basket stitch: Four stitches plain, four stitches purl, alter the order after four rows. Sounds easy, but it isn’t difficult to go wrong, especially when there’s something good on the TV.
Every Monday afternoon for ‘so many’ sessions, I go to my Patchwork Club. It is held in a church hall and some of the money collected each week goes towards the church funds. I think it’s a lovely idea, don’t you. It gives the chance for we ladies of a certain age and younger (also one or two men) to come along and chat, make new friends and sew in a nice environment. It does get a bit noisy sometimes.
We make lots of nice things, which we can use afterwards or give away as presents. During this latest session, the theme has been on ‘scrap patchwork’, which basically means using up all the scraps of fabric that are lurking in your basket, or large cardboard box or whatever. Here is an example of scrap patchwork:
I liked this next one best. I liked the way the stripes gave opportunities for lots of different colour schemes. In this example, half of the square was plain cream coloured calico but for mine I chose the purples and pinks.
I tried to crop the pictures a bit in Picasa, but it wasn’t playing the game so please just look at the centre of the pictures to get the gist of the different arrangements. They are displayed on a large board at the club to give us all inspiration.
The next picture shows scrapping but using bird pictures in the centres of some of the squares. It’s so pretty and such a good use of those little bits and pieces:
The cushion cover in the last pictures is lovely, isn’t it? The lady who made is is currently away suffering from shingles, poor thing. I hope she gets well soon.
I have made enough squares now for a table runner and this afternoon I am hoping to sew some of them together.
While I was in America, I introduced Larry to rug making. I didn’t know if he would like it, but he certainly did. We started him off with the rug of the deer, see above. It’s now hanging on his bedroom wall, right above his bed and looks wonderful, don’t you think?
After making about five other rugs of varying sizes whilst he was waiting to come over here, he decided to design one for himself. This is it below and I think he’s done a great job of it too. He plotted out the chart in Excel and then ordered the back-cloth and the yarns to make it. It took a while because it is very thick and luxurious, but now he has something he can be truly proud of.
I’ll be showing you some more crafty items that Larry has made. He really is very talented.
Meanwhile I progress with my patchwork. Here are some squares I made recently. When joined together they will be a table runner.
I chose pinks and purples because I had quite a few bits and pieces of fabric left over from making the quilt for Larry’s bed.
Here is the quilt:
The picture turned out a bit dark, but you get the idea, and here are the squares I’m making:
So we keep ourselves busy. Busy hands don’t get into trouble, do they!
This is my second grandson, Sam. He is sitting on his mum’s lap, opening his Christmas presents. He is a little confused about it all because it is his very first Christmas and he’s not sure what it’s all about. The quilt over his knees was his main present from me. You can see more about it here… I think he likes it. It has a jungle theme so I bought him a tiger to go with it and a storybook called ‘The Tiger Who Came to Tea’. Don’t you just wish you were that age again?
So now that I’ve finished that quilt, what am I working on next? Well, here it is, a quilt for Larry (my husband). When I was in America, I loved going to Joanne’s Fabric Emporium. They have every sort of craft going on in there and they are very big on quilting. I was inspired every time I stepped through the doors. Now that I’m back in England, I feel deprived because the nearest shop I have to that is quite a way away and my local shop is tiny. I buy a lot of materials online, but I did bring some American themed material back with me so the quilt for Larry has an American theme (in case he gets homesick) and I’m making it in a homespun sort of design. I fell in love with the homespun style while I was there and for those of you reading this who are English and unaware of the style, take a look here:
I love the spooky nature of the Primitive Style. It appeals to that side of me as I love all things natural and home-made.
Here’s a preview of Larry’s quilt, which I still have to sew up. The layers are in place like a sandwich and I’m pinning them together so they don’t shift about when I sew.
and one more picture of Baby Sam’s first Christmas:
Millie is my six year old calico cat. She likes to sit on the window sill and listen to the radio. Isn’t that cute?
Since the New Year began, we’ve had so much rain and high winds, that it’s been difficult to get out much. I don’t know about you, but I’ve become a bit lazy! I enjoyed Christmas a lot and got used to the routine of eating what I fancied and slouching around watching lovely cosy films on TV. I’m in the fortunate position of not having to go back to work because I’m retired so at long last, I can enjoy life without worrying about that annual return to the workplace. I do miss my jobs, but I love being at home so much that the days just fly by.
I’ve been spinning. This is my latest spinning project: a lovely lavender roving in Merino, which is a delight to spin with and will be fun to knit with later on.
Have you got any new aims for 2014? I don’t make resolutions, but I do have aims. This year’s aim is to study the Druids. In my Wiccan world I try to study something different every year so that gradually I get more knowledgeable as the years go by. The Druids have always fascinated me so I look forward to reading more about them and perhaps sharing some of it with you.
I so enjoy blogging with all of you. I’m looking forward to following you through this New Year and trust that it will be a good one for all of you.