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Friday, 20 October 2017

Fibre Friday

Hi Everyone
I’m on holiday today ! - not quite sure what difference that means to my day ? but I’ve got some deluded idea I can do a bit of knitting at some point during the afternoon. We are staying at home so no big packing etc required. I’ll let you know how things turn out next time.

So, I’ve started the new Nuuk (look back on Fridays for more on the Nuuk). As per my plan for last week, the Moussaillon cardigan has finally gone from my life and I now have an enormous ball of lovely Dovestone DK in Worksley Bob. The Nuuk is well underway and I’m very pleased with my decision (read back on Fridays for more background on this story).

                          


My Blacker Yarn KAL, again more on this over the last few Fridays, has three items completed, with one to go. The Azzurite Mittens and two pairs of Holt Wristwarmers are ‘done’. I still have the Polgooth socks (Sonja Bargielowska) to go. These socks are a top down sock in Blacker, Classic DK, so chunky socks. Although the pattern suggests no colourwork is involved, the socks are heavily striped and look like colourwork - they look very interesting. I’ll be casting on this week, so I should have something to share for next time. I have until December, so plenty time for other things too.

Next up - my blue Garland sweater (Stefani Pollmeier). I’ve tentatively started casting on for the sweater but am being a little cautious about sizing. My friend , mentioned last time and the time before, is still on holiday and I’d like a chance to chat to her about her experience of the sweater sizing before committing to my chosen size. I love her finished sweater and am quite excited about getting underway. I will spend some time looking through Ravelry posts about this project today but am still keen to chat with my friend first.

The crochet cardigan (Hanabira by Elaine Alcocer) from way back, is definitely coming out ! I’ll start it again with another crochet stitch - I think ? The majority of the make is done in single crochet, I’m thinking a ‘half double crochet’ could work ? I’ll let you know how it turns out. This cardigan has been going for some time and the yarn will be very crinkly when it gets unraveled, I’m thinking about re soaking and winding again today. I’ll take it out first but I’m thinking it could be a completely new beginning, if it’s done properly. I’m ok about ripping out - I’ve learned lots about crochet, so it all good.

Very little spinning completed. Only a few rolags. I’m hoping I can spend a few hours over the weekend, spinning. I’ll share more on spinning next time.

Thanks for calling in today. Have a great weekend.

Thursday, 19 October 2017

Silver Rings #3

Hi Everyone
I've another batch of silver rings to develop today. This batch will be a small one, five stacking rings in total with three ring elements each.

                      
                        

I've soldered and filed the silver wire and need to do some initial shaping. I always enjoy the shaping part, I'll find my favourite podcast videos and hammer away ! As I get near to the size I need for each ring, I'll start shaping the rings together.
Hopefully, I can get the shaped rings into the tumbler after lunch and have some bright, shined silver rings by the end of the day.
I'll get a few images before the rings go to their new homes.

Thanks for calling in today.



Wednesday, 18 October 2017

Knitting Journal

Hi Everyone
I've got a busy day today (I'm out and about most of them day) but I'm hoping to spend some time updating my knitting journal. Currently, I have lots and lots of yarn and fibre waiting for something to happen to it. I'm hoping I can introduce some organisation into the stash sometime soon. Id like to use my knitting journal to help me plan how to use all this lovely stuff.

At the moment, my knitting journal is organised into pages which detail specific knitting patterns along with the yarn I've used but it's only a record of what I've done. I'd like to develop some form of 'wish list' for what I'd like to do in the future and give me options for knitting projects. I think, I'm going to use some of the elements on Ravelry (online knitting site with lots of interactive knitting functions) but somehow I want to link plans and ideas to my knitting journal ? I'm not sure how I can do this but I'll try and work on it today.

                         

This is a quick look at the actual journal. It's a simple soft backed, lined exercise book. It does have a very pretty gold cover with spectacular flowers and birds on it. I do like writing in the journal and would like it to be more involved in my everyday knitting. I''m not sure how I can achieve my goal today ? but I'll link my ideas with my Fibre Friday Update in a few days time.

Thanks for calling in today.

Tuesday, 17 October 2017

Sewing Project

Hi Everyone
I have a new sewing project underway today. It's a hand crafted, fabric case for my DPNs (double pointed knitting needles).

                            

I have seen many of these lovely cases but found this tutorial on Pinterest. I had already worked out a plan of my own but having found this tutorial, I think I will stick with it.
I've found some fabric (from my own stash) and will cut out the sections for the case today. I especially like the numbered little pockets for the DPNs, which should make life easier when I'm searching for just the right size. Hopefully, this sort of case will also stop me buying duplicate sized needles in the future.

I'll share my 'make' as soon as I finish. My aim is to complete by the end the week and have my DPNs secured in the case, ready for use.

Thanks for calling in today.

Sunday, 15 October 2017

An old idea

Hi Everyone
I'm reviving an old idea this week. This design goes back about threee years and came from using plant material to make moulds for beads.I'd like to change the beads from the original design but use the old moulds. I'm going for a deep red colour this time, same mix as the last Everyday Collection (read back on Mondays episode for more on the last Collection).
I've been inspired by another bike ride yesterday, in the same woods as last time. As I was riding along, all I could see was 'seed pods' all over the tracks. Everywhere I looked the different seed heads seemed to appear. The shapes reminded me of my previously mentioned project. 
I had developed the original plant moulds with dried seed pods from my garden.When I got home from the bike ride, I searched for the moulds and my ideas starting forming.

                     

The original beads used two of the moulded pieces to form a 'shell like' bead. I'm thinking of using one of the moulded parts and developing a flat back to form a smaller and easier to wear series of beads, these smaller beads will then form a stretchy bracelet, that's the plan. Let's wait and see what comes out. I'll share my progress next Monday.

Thanks for calling in today.

Friday, 13 October 2017

Friday Fibre Update

Hi Everyone
My Fibre Friday Update is almost the same as last week ! I have been working away on my projects (honestly) but not so much to show for it. Generally, I've made decisions about some projects and have almost completed two projects .

                      

The Azurite Mittens have caused me most grief ! I'm finished the knitting part (eventually) and have struggled, mainly with the sizing ; although I have been going wrong with the colour pattern while watching TV (quite a few times)! I must have knitted parts of both Mittens 3 or 4 times. I've yet to sew in all the ends but I'm almost there. I do like the finished items and I've learned lots about Fair Isle colour management. I'm almost at home with holding my yarn colours in either hand - which is great. So all is well.

The Moussaillon cardigan is definitely 'going' and I will be casting on another Nuuk as soon as today. Hopefully, I will have something to share on the new Nuuk next week. Look back a few months for more on my first Nuuk.

The Amelia Ruffle scarf needs the ends to be sewn in. The scarf is a lovely colour and now the weather has turned a little cooler, I'm hoping I can wear it. The knitted part of the project has featured on Fridays for a while, so it's time to get it finally finished. I'm hoping I can do that over the weekend.

My last update is the Garland sweater. I talked about this last week and wanted to chat to a friend about the sizing choices she made for her Garland knit. I've swatched and I'm ok for gauge, so I'm hoping I can cast on today. I love the look of this sweater and can't wait to get going.

Thanks for calling in today. Have a lovely weekend.I'll be back on Monday.

Thursday, 12 October 2017

Silver Day Work

Hi Everyone
Thursday, is (usually) Silver Day. Some Thursday's need to be given to other stuff but today, it's definitely going to involve making silver rings. I've started shaping some of the latest batch of rings. 

                                


Most of my rings will end up as part of stacking ring designs, possibly three to five rings combined. I'm also prototyping a new design - I'll share the design when I have my first sample - not sure if it will happen today but I'm hoping. This new design will combine silver clay with sterling silver wire and Swarovski gems.
I also have a new earring range - using silver clay. I'm going for a simple range of designs - three in total. The earrings will have a shaped, textured silver element with a shaped wire, soldered to the shape. I'm starting with a square as my shape for the first pair of earrings, again I'll share my initial sample when I have something.

Thanks for calling in today.

Wednesday, 11 October 2017

Snowman Developments

Hi Everyone
I'm sharing the developments of the crochet Snowman gift bag story from yesterday (read back for details of the project). I've made two sets of eyes, nose and buttons. The red/white version also has a mouth.

                           

The features for the Snowmen have been mounded from polymer clay. Each little button has some form of hole to sew the features in place onto the crochet bag and I've tried to make the features proportional to the size of the Snowmen. 
As described yesterday, there are two crochet Snowmen bags, a red/white version and a green version - the yarn used for each bag is a slightly different weight and the green bag is smaller because the yarn is finer. I've used a 4.5mm hook for both versions.I'm hoping the features will instantly turn the little crochet bags into Snowman characters.
I'm also planning to add a draw string closure at the top of each bag and the 'extras' elements in my photo will thread onto the string - I may need to develop more extras ? I'm thinking, I will go further and make some candy canes or other festive items ? I'm happy to go with the basic elements at the moment, until all the buttons are in place. This will give me a good idea of what else needs to happen.

Keep watching over the next few days to see how the Snowmen grow.

Thanks for calling in.



Tuesday, 10 October 2017

Very Early Preparations

Hi Everyone
It's very,very early but preparations for Christmas (only mentioned as 'C' from this point) are underway ! I don't usually like to say the word 'C' before November but in the world of Making, early prep. is a must ! I have a new project and it's all about crochet, the project is a little Snowman gift bag or a possible hanging decoration. One of my lovely friends has made up a sample for me and I'm adapting and modifying another sample. I've used the same basic idea but will introduce a few different materials and techniques into the mix. 

                            


The red and white version will get some extra facial characteristics/buttons as well as a little draw string top. The green version will also acquire some eyes, nose etc as well as a mini knitted scarf and possibly a hat ? I'm having fun developing the ideas and will write up this project as part of a new Making Workshop to be launched next week.
I'll develop some polymer clay embellishments today, as well as finish the green bag. Hopefully, the mini bags will be used to make special gifts for 'worthy' people.
I'll take some photos of the finished bags and share here - later in the week.

Thanks for calling in today.

Sunday, 8 October 2017

Everyday Collection : News

Hi Everyone
I'm sharing one of my Everyday Collection bracelets today. It's taken quite some time to finish and string this collection of beads (look back last week for more on this project). I've already worn the bracelet and it's lovely to wear.

                       
My inspiration for the bracelet was riding through a group of tall trees (on a bike) and I'm happy about the final results of the beads. They give a hint of the layers of bark and have the appearance of the upright nature of the trees. I'm also happy with the range of red shades I managed to create within the bracelet. The individual beads are quite chunky and fit nicely together.

I have another couple of bracelets to finish later today. The remaining beads are different shapes but I'm hoping they will all sit' happily together as a Collection. I'd like to have enough beads to develop a couple of pairs of earrings, in addition to the bracelets - watch this space for the final outcome, later this week.

Thanks for calling in today.

Friday, 6 October 2017

Fibre Friday

Hi Everyone
My Fibre Friday update has a new planned project : the Garland Sweater by Stefanie Pollmeier. This is a lovely garment which I saw at my local knit group. One of my friends had made this sweater and I was inspired to make a similar version. The sweater is a wide boxy, cropped item with a generous , rolled neck and slightly flared (bell sleeves). I especially like the sweater as a layering garment.
My version will be made from Drops Kid Silk in colour 21 (a bright blue colour). I've done a swatch and it seems I'm 'bang on' for gauge, so that makes life easier. However, I'm not sure what size to go for ? The pattern suggests using the upper arm measurement as a guide. If I follow this advice, I'm knitting the largest size ? But my upper body, generally, is not that large - so I'm a bit confused about that one. I'll definitely discuss sizing with my friend before starting.
 I've never used a mohair yarn before and am quite surprised (from knitting the swatch) how enjoyable it is. I had visions of the yarn getting tangled and knotting. The Ravelry reports on the pattern suggest a lace section on the bottom of the sweater have caused problems for some people, so I'm aware of possibly having to undue knitting. I'm reassured that I could undo knitting, if I need to. I will take extra measures to try and stop any ripping out. I'll report my progress over the next few weeks.

                             


Other news, the Azzurite Mittens by Sonja Bargielowski (for the Blacker Yarns KAL) is moving on at a pace. I've ripped out elements of these mittens so many times but I'm almost there. Alongside the knitting, I'm teaching myself to knit a combined English/Continental style colourwork technique. I think it's a hybrid version of both but it's working for me and I'm very pleased with myself. I'll keep going with the mittens until they are as good as I can make them. Any unsightly elements will be ripped out and repeated. One of the issues with the pattern (for me) is the fit. The length of the thumb and the main part is too long and this impacts on the pattern. So, a bit of resizing is required.
The cardigan from last time (the red M) - read back last week for more, is to be ripped out. I've decided to knit another Nuuk sweater, with some modifications. I'll have more news on this next time.
I've also done a tiny bit of crochet (NO, not the cardigan) - a mini Christmas Tree (apologies for mentioning the word so early) for a Making Workshop project. There will be more on this over the next few weeks.
Finally, I've done a tiny bit of spinning. A few rolags of my current sweater quantity spin - read back a few weeks for background on my spin.

That's it for my update.
Thanks for calling in. Have a great weekend.

Thursday, 5 October 2017

Silver Rings

Hi Everyone
I've got a big batch of Silver rings to finish today. All my preparations went smoothly and I'm looking forward to seeing how I can develop the final rings.

                            

The rings are all soldered and ready for filing, shaping and polishing. I've worked on this batch in two sessions, I cut all the silver and prepared the ends before bending in the first session.I completed the soldering in the second session.
I'm hoping I can find some interesting stacking combinations amongst this lot. I'm not sure how many combination rings I will get ? I'm thinking about groups of 3 or 5.
I'll share my finished stacking choices next time.

Thanks for calling in today.

Wednesday, 4 October 2017

Magazine Style

Hi Everyone
I'm sharing the focus of my Writing Day today with a possible cover idea for a new publication, very exciting. This publication will be in the form of a magazine/book and will contain six new Making Projects with a variety of additional, related articles and/or tutorial style information. This new (for me) project is in the design stage but I'm working on a sample and will produce an actual 'magazine', ready for publication (print and digital).
Here is a quick look at the initial cover idea, this is again, a sample idea but I quite like the format. The title is yet to be agreed but (I think)From Scratch will be in there somewhere. In my sample, I've just written Magazine Style - more discussions needed. My little collage features only one project but I'm hoping all six will appear in the final design, forming a sort of 'patchwork' of the projects, at a glance.

                          
                      

The projects will have a central theme but will use different materials and techniques and will be accessible to most Makers. My sample theme for this edition is 'Bracelets'. I'm looking at a range of styles, materials and techniques with additional information around famous bracelets and museum pieces.

I'll keep you posted about the development of the project and will share more details over the next few weeks.

Thanks for calling in today.

Tuesday, 3 October 2017

Making Workshop Session

Hi Everyone
It's a Making Workshop session today. This time we are in the second phase of a Flat Kumihimo Project. We are producing the braid with 16 lengths of embroidery floss. The Kumihimo disc is used to create the resulting material in a flat, tight braid. The braiding does take quite a long time but is very simple, once the weaving sequence is mastered.

                      

Our Makers started the project last time and today we will add the findings, to finish the bracelet. There will be a choice of end cap and fastening options for our Makers, I'll be interested to see the choices made. We will also develop ideas and make mini charms for the bracelet.

Finishing the braids can be a little tricky and making a neat job will enhance the bracelet, so it's important to think through the process and choose the right technique, possibly practicing before finally deciding on whichbtechniquentomuse. An untidy attachment can completely trash the whole bracelet !

I'm sure all our Makers will produce amazing bracelets. I'll get a few images to share on here.

Thanks for calling in today.

Monday, 2 October 2017

The Final Words

Hi Everyone
Despite declaring last Thursday, that the Tree Beads would be finished by the end of the day - it's not case ! I did work on the project but other things got in the way and it's obviously going to take another day. I managed to start polishing and have made reasonable progress but I'm not there yet !

                   

I'm pleased with the way in which the beads are coming together and also with the general look of the three different bead shapes. The longer beads have worked well, they evoke just the impression I wanted from my original inspiration of the tree lined pathway which initially inspired the project. 
I'm hoping I can spend enough time today, finishing the beads and may even get to thread a bracelet.

The colours have also worked well, Ive used a range of different clay blends and mixed transparent clay with elements of Browns.This has developed a lovely range and depth across the colour range, hopefully this will result in an interesting bracelet design.

Thanks for calling in today.

Friday, 29 September 2017

Fibre Friday

Hi Everyone
It's Friday again ! - how did that happen ? I feel as of I've been super busy this week and it's flown by but not sure what I've done ? I do know,  I'm talking all about fibre today, no mention of the Trees Project until next week.
I've got good and bad news again on the fibre front  (I seem to say that often ! ). Nothing much to show for my efforts with fibre this week. No completely finished items as such, however, I have spent lots of time on the red Moussaillon Cardigan (to be referred to as M from this point)  and re knit most of it several times. I quite like the completed design ...... but its enormous, on me. I've already reduced the size considerably and although the front looks good - the back is twice as big as it needs to be. The only thing I could do is rip it out and redo the back for the third time. I think, I may have 'lost it' with the cardigan ? I've made the decision (several times) to rip it out and then thought better of it. I'm still a bit undecided. However, regardless of the final decision, I'm making plans for a new garment. I may re-use the yarn (Dovestone DK) if I rip out the M cardigan. 
Moving on - so far, I have a long list of 7 ideas for my new garment. See my list below with links :

These items are in no particular order, although, I'd like to knit them all at some point ! My main decision is where to start and should I rip out the M ? and use the yarn. It's lovely yarn and I want to make something I will love wearing.

While I ponder that one, I'm going to start the Azurite Mittens from Blacker Yarns , I've already completed my KAL effort (read back last Friday for details of the KAL). I completed the Holt Wrist Warmers (see last Friday for images). I already have the Blacker Yarn for the mittens so will join in and knit another KAL. Incidentally, the Bowmont Jumper  (from my list) also forms part of the KAL, so that would be good too. However, I'm not  sure if I want to commit to the Bowmont Jumper just yet ?, it's quite a challenging pattern.

No spinning to speak of - a tiny little rolag only ! I'm hoping for more next week. I'm excited to be going to a local spinning group on Monday - I've been meaning to join this group for a very long time so Monday's the day ! I'll report back next Friday, re my experience.

Almost forgot, on my needles at the moment is a second Bousta Beanie, and as its Shetland Wool Week this week (I would secretly like to be there !) I think it would be fitting to knit it. I enjoyed knitting the first version and am looking forward to this one. It's quite a quick knit so I should make progress this week.
             


Thanks for calling in today. Have a great weekend. I'll be back on Monday.

Thursday, 28 September 2017

Tree Beads

Hi Everyone
We are on day 4 of the Everyday Collection : Trees Project. The beads are here and will be finished today ! The finishing stage is quite a time consuming business. I initially, prepare the holes for threading. I use a bead reamer for this job. Each bead needs to be assessed and the reamer will tidy the holes as well as re shape the entry part of the holes. This process transforms the look of the bead and immediately improves the appearance.
The next phase involves tumbling the beads in a mild soapy water. I use various grades of sandpaper on the lining of a tumbler, changing the sandpaper 3 or 4 times, each time with a finer grade. The beads come out of the tumbler with a rather dull, 'washed out' finish - not very attractive ! The finial stage involves polishing with a felt pad using wax polish. After polishing, the beads take on either a matt sheen or a full shine, depending on how much polishing goes on.
The finishing stage does take quite some time - for the most part,I'm dealing with individual beads. I have just over 70 beads to finish. Hopefully, I have enough beads to make 3 individual bracelets. I will string the beads with stretch elastic, this is the 'Everyday' element of the bracelet (read back each day this week for more on the Project). I want the Everyday Collection to be wearable for most situations and will have this in mind when I put the beads together.
Here's a quick look at the beads, ready for 'finishing' :

                        

I'm happy with the beads, especially the longer beads. I was inspired by actual 'trees' and wanted to achieve an individual 'tree trunk' look for each bead. Although each bead has similar qualities, the shapes are slightly varied and hopefully the finished bracelet will turn out well. 

Thanks for calling in today.

Wednesday, 27 September 2017

Everyday Collection - continued

Hi Everyone
I'm on my third day of the Everyday Collection:Trees today ( you can read back each day for more on this project). I've reworked the oblong shaped bead and made them 'thinner'. The new shapes are much more like the 'trees' from my initial inspiration idea.  I was hopeful that I would stumble across the right solution if I kept working and experimenting and this has proved to be the case. I didn't need to drastically change the clay mix, I've altered the shade of red, slightly, but the consistency of the clay is the same as my first batch. I guess the narrower bead is proportionate and therefore more stable in the pre cured form.
Here's a quick look at the new samples :

                          

My job today is to develop lots more beads (the two shapes above as well as the round sample) and write up the recipe/tutorial as I go. I find the process of writing instructions more useful if I literally, jot down every step of production. I tend to review and edit my written instructions the following day and turn the words into a simple step format. I also like to include lots of visual prompts so will also take photos and possibly draw quick diagrams.

Thanks for calling in today.

Tuesday, 26 September 2017

Everyday : Trees

Hi Everyone
I'm extending my Polymer Clay session for another day, today. Read back yesterday for more on the Trees project. 
I had mixed success yesterday, a few issues presented themselves which have changed how I will make the next batch of beads. My main challenge was the texture of the mixed clay. I used a particular transparent clay (I have used this before and like the post cured appearance), it's a Primo Sculpey brand. The clay is quite soft and I really needed a more solid shape for my chosen design. The soft texture didn't hold the straight lines of my design in the way I had hoped. I'm going to blend up a new clay mix with another brand of clay today - to see if I can alter the final material. I need a firmer consistency to hold my straight cut lines.
I also struggled to decide on the final size of the oblong shaped bead. I'm quite keen to get a much thinner bead which is inspired by the 'trees' (see the image from yesterday). My plan was to make the bead in two halves, fused around the threading hole. My initial bead was too wide and combined with the soft consistency, the bead did not quite live up to my design. I did manage to produce a second smaller, square bead which I think is more successful for the Everyday Collection. I like the square shapes and will repeat the size with a round shape, using the same construction idea.

                       

The current beads are a rather bright red, my next batch will be a darker shade. I do want to produce a mixture of shades with lots of transparent random patches throughout.
I'm hoping for a better production rate today. In my defence, I did have lots of other things going on yesterday ! I'm keen to complete my Trees project this week, so will keep going with it - until I complete. Hopefully, I can have something significant to share tomorrow.


Thanks for calling in today.

Monday, 25 September 2017

Everyday Collection Designs

Hi Everyone
Today, I'm concentrating on developing new additions to the Everyday Jewellery Collection. I've mentioned this range of polymer clay jewellery several times (look back for details) and am keen to keep going with new ideas. The concept behind this range is, as the name suggests, is a Collection of jewellery suitable to wear for almost all activities. I always test out each design for running, cleaning (don't do much of that !), painting/craft, gardening and general living activities. If a design seems awkward or gets in the way of the activity then it's not suitable. I'm confident each design will work as an Everyday piece if it reaches the production phase.
The process for developing my designs usually follows a similar path. I will be inspired by something and a sketch is produced, followed by a workshop session to produce initial prototype pieces. 
My latest additions to the Everyday Collection has followed this process. I found myself cycling through a stunning forest of trees at the weekend and was struck by the tall, compact trees on either side which promoted thoughts about new beads and ways of linking them. Here's a quick look at my inspiration :

                    

These trees created an immediate sense of upright, rounded oblong shapes. As I cycled through the forest, I was surrounded by the shapes and immediately started thinking about bracelets and how to develop individual beads. I'm not sure I did a very good job on the photos, the inspiration was more to do with travelling through and being surrounded by the trees. My photo gives a more distant view, the inspiration was more of a 'feeling'. However, the idea was planted in my brain. Throughout my cycling session, I found myself thinking about how the jewellery could 'look'. When I got home I sketched out these ideas :

                   

I'm hoping to play with the colour mix and develop the first beads for this project later. I'm calling the new set : Trees, so will hopefully have something to share and wear for next week.

Thanks for calling in today.



Friday, 22 September 2017

Fibre Friday Update

Hi Everyone
Just a little news again today. I'm still going with the two knits from last week. Here's a quick look at my progress :

                           

The Moussaillon Cardigan is back on track and I'm now well into the back section. I think the fit is good ? I've tried on the garment several times and my only challenge is to ensure the width of the back is working. When I've finished the back, I simply need to repeat the other half and the cardigan is done. I do like the original design but need to rewrite the pattern for my particular version (read back last Friday for more on this pattern). I'm tempted to add a button band and a loose rib bottom to the design. I'm not sure if I will adapt this particular garment, I do like the simple garter stitch and the shape of this one but perhaps a second Moussaillon could happen with my additional modifications ?
My next item, the Holt Wristwarmers are finished (read back last week for more details on this knit).I've sewn in the ends and will block the Wristwarmers today. The colour is lovely and the fit is great. I enjoyed knitting these items very much and made light work of the job ! Unusual for me, I'm not a fast knitter but the pattern is great to use and the wool feels lovely and soft to knit. I have some more yarn for these Wristwarmers so will cast on the second pair soon.
The final box in my photo shows a new acquisition. This is a 100gms of Hayfiled Spirit in some lovely shades of pinks and orange. The yarn is a gift from my little, big boy and will turn into some walking socks for me. This gift was a lovely surprise and I will enjoy knitting the socks. I have a pattern, so I'm hoping to cast on this week. More news about the project next time.
That's it, again I failed to crochet or spin this week. Although, I did meet someone at my weekly Knit Group who helps run a spinning group locally. We had a lovely chat and I'm very keen to join the spinning group which hopefully will get me back into my spinning routines. The problem is 'time' and nothing to do with spinning. However, I do need to prioritise my time because I do love spinning and am missing it.

Thanks for calling in today. Have a great weekend. I'll be back on Monday.

Thursday, 21 September 2017

Silver Stuff

Hi Everyone
I'm making more rings today - see last Thursday for more on this. I have plans to make 4 new stacking rings. So far, I've cut the Sterling Silver wire and it's time to solder.

                               

My plan for the 2 ring stack in the centre of my photo may get some form of pattern on the silver  - not sure what I'm going for yet ? I have a range of shapes and sizes of silver wire in various combinations. I particularly like the idea of quite fine rings for stacking, my sample (left on the photo) will have 6 individual rings - designed to be worn together. 
I'll take a few images of the development process and share next time. In total, there are 15 individual rings to make ! - not sure how many rings I will get done today but I'm hoping to complete the soldering element.

Thanks for calling in today.

Wednesday, 20 September 2017

Project Recipe

Hi Everyone
I'm working on a new format for writing up my Making projects at the moment. It's quite a challenge. I'm mostly persuaded that diagrams and pictures are the favoured approach. Written notes and instructions seem to be incredibly difficult to get right. What seems straightforward and clear, often creates all kinds of issues for the reader. I have six new projects which need to be published, so I'm trying out several approaches with a mixture of notes and diagrams with an emphasis on the pictures.
The first project is something that had its first outing yesterday in a Making Workshop. The project was a simple Flat Kumihimo Braid. 

                             

I produced some simple notes and some of the instructions seemed to work for most people but I noticed specific points where I need to improve. I specifically used all written instructions this time, to check how our Makers coped. I will try again with a mixture of diagrams and written instructions in a second draft with a new group of Makers.

I like the idea of presenting the projects as a series of Making Recipes, so will keep going with that concept. Hopefully, I can develop my little Making Recipe booklet with six different projects within the next few weeks - I need to create a few different styles of presentation, so lots to do !!

Thanks for calling in today.

Tuesday, 19 September 2017

Sewing Day or is it ?

Hi Everyone
My blog today could be a little misleading ! - I'm sharing my sewing job for today but it's not the usual. I'm sewing in the ends of the Blacker Yarns/FineFettle Fibre KAL project. My pattern is the Holt Wristwarmers. I chose to knit in the round but the pattern also has an option for knitting flat. This is an amazingly quick knit. I don't consider myself a quick knitter but these Wristwarmers just flew off the needles. I started last Thursday and completed the second wristwarmer on Saturday evening. I have until the end of December to complete the KAL, so I'm amazed I've finished. I love the colour (Balsam Bog) and the feel of the yarn (Blacker Swan),the yarn is quite bulky but wonderfully soft. 

                          

I'll sew in the ends today and am already wondering what I should tackle next. I have another Blacker Swan yarn for a second pair of Holt Wristwarmers (in another colour) for a Christmas gift, so I may go for that ? However, I also have some Blacker yarn for a mitten pattern ? I'll make my decision for my Friday Fibre slot.
I really enjoyed knitting this pattern and have quite a large part of the second ball of yarn left. I'm thinking about knitting a Nuuk (check it out here).
I'll need more yarn but I think it's a possibility. Instead of finding a project to use up all my leftovers, I usually end up buying loads more yarn for a sweater !


Thanks for calling in today.

Monday, 18 September 2017

Polymer Day

Hi Everyone
I'm battling to get my work schedule on track today. Each day seems to bring yet another priority !! However, I'm trying hard to keep to the plan. It's my polymer day today. I'm hoping to complete another set of the Everyday Collection, a tried and tested range of polymer jewellery. 
This Collection is versatile and very 'easy to wear', I'm hoping to develop a red/translucent set of beads to wear for myself. I've recently acquired a few red items of clothing and would like to compliment these items with some simple jewellery that I can wear for most occasions. I'm also knitting a red  cardigan which will layer with lots of outfits, so there's an imminent need for the red Everyday set. Here's a quick look at some of the previous designs :

                       

My Red Set (I'm thinking of this as a name for the set) will include a bracelet similar to the blue one (right in the photo) but will also include a small, round,flat shaped bead which give a minimal bracelet. I'm also thinking I'll prepare a few pairs of earrings. I'm hoping to mix the colours of the Red Set today and play with some shapes. I will have a few samples of my new Everyday Collection to share next Monday.

Thanks for calling in today.





Thursday, 14 September 2017

Fibre Friday News

Hi Everyone
Can't quite believe it's Friday again ! This week has flown by. I'm back on schedule today with the usual Fibre Friday slot. I've got good and not so good news today. I was thinking of saying good news and bad news but I'm happy with the outcomes for both of my little featured items.

                        

If you called in yesterday, you will know I cast on for the Blacker Yarns KAL, the Holt Wristwarmers - photo top right. I really enjoyed spending a few hours knitting the cuffs of both Wristwarmers and started the cable part of the right one. I'm knitting the Wristwarmers as I knit a pair of socks, two at a time. Great news - the yarn is lovely and the pattern is very straightforward but mostly I love the colour - Balsam Bog (great name). I'm already dreaming  about wearing them.
The not so good news now - my Moussaillon Cardigan has been substantially ripped out. It was enormous. I knew something was not quite right, the start point was the left front and it almost wrapped around the whole of my back. So, deep breath and I ripped it all out to the point where I think the arm sleeve should start. The pattern advises trying on the cardigan for size, throughout, but it's difficult to get a sense of the fit without a reference for the sleeve and shoulder. I'm reasonably happy that I'm back on track with the size. I love the cardigan, even though it was huge, I did get the impression of how it will look when finished. Therefore, I'm thinking 'not so bad' news now. I know it will be a great addition to my wardrobe when finished.
Not sure I've done anything else on the fibre front ? No spinning to speak of and no crochet ! Must do better next week.

Thanks for calling in today. Have a great weekend. I'll be back Monday.

KAL News

Hi Everyone

I'm having yet another deviation from my blog regime today. I scheduled to focus on Silver stuff but feel the need to talk about a new KAL which starts today.
This KAL is a Blacker Yarns KAL (knit-a-long!) 14 September – 14 December. Blacker have been producing their own knitting patterns since 2008 but have decided that the time is right to refresh some of their existing pattern collection and introduce some new ones. On 31 August they will be launching a collection of twelve garment and accessories patterns – 8 refreshed ones and 4 new ones – that use a variety of Blacker yarns.To celebrate this event, Blacker are running a KAL and my local knit group, Fine Fettle Fibres, will be joining in the fun! 


This is how the KAL will work:

  • The new pattern collection will be launched on 31 August and the patterns will be available to download for free from the Blacker website www.blackeryarns.co.uk
  • We will have 2 weeks to have a think about which pattern from the new collection we would like to knit and which Blacker yarn we would like to use.
  • We then dig out Blacker yarns from our stash or get new supplies of Blacker yarn in.
  • We cast-on on 14 September (today), aiming to finish our project by 14 December.
  • To make it more fun, we hope to share the experience by :
    • adding comments and pictures to the Blacker Yarn Ravelry group thread 
    • sharing Instagram posts 
    • coming along to Knit Class and sharing progress
    • wearing finished items at Knit Class no later than 14th December 
    • And there will be PRIZES! Anyone who comes to the Fibe Fettle Fibres Studio wearing their finished object, or sends me a photo of the finished object being worn, no later than midnight on 14 December, will receive a voucher for 15% off any purchase of Blacker yarn at Fine Fettle Fibres and 1 lucky person, chosen at random (using random.org's random number generator) from those who have finished their projects, will receive a copy of Sue Blacker's book Pure Wool.

So, if you feel you would like to join in, contact Fine Fettle Fibres and get involved.

I've chosen my pattern https://www.blackeryarns.co.uk/patterns-etc/free-patterns/blacker-swan-holt-wrist-warmers-knitting-pattern.html. It's a pair of wrist warmers called Holt. I'm using the Swan yarn. Here's a quick look at the preparation I've done to start the KAL.

            


All my tools and materials are ready to go and I'll be casting on around mid morning, I don't usually knit during the day (at home) so it's a bit of a treat for me. I'm lining up a coffee and even a bit of cake. However, I'm quite busy today, so not sure how much progress I'll make ? but I'm determined to make an event of it. I'll be sharing regular updates on Fridays, so you can share the highs and lows of my KAL. 

Thanks for calling in today.

Wednesday, 13 September 2017

My Writing Day

Hi Everyone
If you called in yesterday, you will know it's Writing Day today. My writing focus for today is a piece about the versatility of Polymer Clay as a material for making embellishments. This particular writing will eventually be a piece for a craft magazine. My job today is to draft the outline of the article and produce a range of samples to illustrate my piece. 
My main message is clear (for me), so my job is to make sure I present my ideas clearly and have a variety of attractive samples to illustrate my message. That should be straightforward, should it not ? I do love this sort of thing but I'm not deluding myself - it IS difficult to achieve something a magazine is keen to use. But I'm up for the challenge.
Here's a sneak preview of one of my photos samples :

                         

You may, if you are a regular viewer, remember me talking last week about making buttons (read here for details). The white buttons in my photo are the result of that particular project. The other embellishments in the photo are a range of small gold bows which have been made to add to greetings cards/gift tags.
My piece will include several other samples which illustrate how polymer clay can be used in a variety of other ways to develop craft embellishments; as well as background information for making such items. I will point you to the final article at some point in the future.

Thanks for calling in today.


Tuesday, 12 September 2017

Blogging News

H Everyone
I'm sharing my new blogging restructure ! - all sounds very grand. In actual fact, I've simply scheduled a specific focus for each day of my blogging week. This is not written in 'stone' and from time to time, I will change things depending on what's going on in my creative world but in order to give an element of cohesiveness, I think my new approach will work.

                           
My official start day will be tomorrow, Wednesday. It's taken me quite a while to get into work mode following the long Summer break and I'm still struggling to get there. However, I've made my plan and I'll try my best to keep with it ! 
Alongside, the daily focus, I will have a special 'project'. My current 'special' project is a new Art Doll Project. Very exciting ! I'm not sure exactly how I will schedule this aspect of my work at the moment. I hope to have a flexible approach. Hopefully, I can weave in the development of my dolls with the different daily focus depending on what the dolls require at anyone time. The dolls will have a mixed media approach and should sit alongside elements of my daily focus work.

Thanks for calling in today.

Monday, 11 September 2017

Blogging Journal

Hi Everyone
I'm starting a new Blogging Journal today - very exciting development ! My usual process is to make a list of my daily blog episodes plans (each Monday) in my Work Journal, outlining each episode with a few notes/linked photos. However, I'm hoping to reorganise my daily stories about 'the Makes' or creative activities in a more structured and detailed way. I'm convinced, I work more efficiently and creatively if I plan ahead. I prefer to have an outline of a specific episode which I can then give some quality thinking time, well before I need it. Often my thinking time comes during a short run or walk each day, if I have a specific plan in my head new thoughts often seem to slot into place.
I'm hoping my new Journal will allow me to document, daily, the content of each episode (in more detail - ahead of time) but also act as a reference for future work ideas and supporting links to previously mentioned work. I'm organising contents lists at the front of the journal and will have some fun sticking stuff onto pages. The contents page will allow me a quick reference to build upon certain projects - I hope ?
Here's a quick peak at the actual book :

                 
The book is a simple, lined notebook at the moment. It's slightly shorter than A4 size with a plastic sleeve, plenty of room on each page for lots of sticking and doodling.
I'll come back to the Journal in a few weeks and review how it's going as well as share some of my scribblings.

Thanks for calling in today.

Thursday, 7 September 2017

Fibre Friday

Hi Everyone
Today in the Fibre update, I'm introducing my new main project - Moussaillon by Cleonis. This is a little cropped cardigan. I'm using Dovestone DK in Worsley Bob, the same yarn as my last scarf - look back here for more on the scarf, the Amelia Ruffle Scarf (now complete !!) It was the Amelia Scarf which inspired me to look for a pattern in Garter Stitch (same as the scarf) with a 'flared style' bottom. I particularly wanted the cardigan to layer up with a few dresses I have. The dresses have a wide silhouette and I'd don't like the fabric to be gathered in at the waist (as per a closer fitting garment with a traditional waist rib). After much research I decided to use the Moussaillon. This pattern, the Moussaillon, is a free pattern on Ravelry. The pattern is translated from an original French pattern and is a challenge to follow, however, there are quite a few projects using the pattern with some very helpful advice and tips. When I first read the pattern it didn't make much sense, having studied it for a few days, it seems very straight forward. I would recommend trying it.

                      

I'm well into the left front part of the cardigan and am really enjoying the knit. I swatched with a few different size needles and decided on 6mm, quite large needles. I like the resulting fabric, it's quite soft and drapes well for a DK yarn. 
I didn't include a picot edge on the neckline, as directed in the pattern. I think I may add a short rib neckline and a button /waist band ? - not sure at the moment. I'll wait and see how things turn out.

This week, the only progress Ive made in fibre projects has been with the Amelia Scarf and the Moussaillon. I do need to block the scarf and weave in the ends. I'm thinking, I may wait until both items are complete and block them together.

Other fibre news - my Hannabira (crochet cardigan) project has been ignored as has the sweater spinning project, must do better next week ! I also need to start a new pair of socks. I'm considering joining a sock KAL with the Ravelry Stranded Podcast group take a look at the detail. I'd like to dye up some yarn for the project - it's a Christmas theme and intend to look for a pattern, perhaps snowflakes ? I need to get on with it, if I'm going ahead. Will confirm next time.

Thanks for calling in today. Have a great weekend. I'll be back on Monday.

Wednesday, 6 September 2017

At My Bench

Hi Everyone
I'm using Thursday's to work at my jewellery bench. At the moment, my current jewellery project is a batch of rings. I have quite a few prepared pieces to finish. I've cut two sizes of metal, mainly Sterling Silver, which are now ready for soldering. Hopefully, I can get the soldering completed and cleaned up, ready for finishing and polishing.

                         


However, I think, I maybe struggling slightly today. I picked up my son from the airport (early hours of the morning) and don't function very well without sleep. I'm hoping to have a nap mid morning - compensation time !! So, if I can complete the planned work over the day, I will be more than satisfied.
I have plans to decorate some of the rings but will also use others as stacking rings. I'll have an update next week to share.

Thanks for calling in today.

Writing Day

Hi Everyone
The day has arrived - back to work day ! I've been leaving this day especially for planning my new 'term'. It's a while since I was at school myself but I do organise my working time around school term dates (one of my boys is still at school) and today is our first day back after the long Summer holidays. 
I usually find myself very unsettled on the first day back and it takes me a few days to get my mind into the right place. Hopefully my planning day will help to occupy my thoughts today.
I've drafted a new regime for my working week this new academic year with specific days for tackling different aspects of my work. Wednesday's have been designated writing day. The detail needs to be worked out but generally I will include articles, books, planning and project reviews in my day. I have lots of notebooks in my work life. I also use technology for recording stuff but my favourite planning tool is the notebooks. I tend to either decorate the covers or go for a pretty patterned paper. This decoration thing is part of what I do and I get huge pleasure from using my decorated items. My favourite is my current Project book, it's a larger, lined, soft backed notebook with lots of stuff stuck in. I find this book inspirational to work with, somehow my mind works well when I'm jotting down thoughts into this book. All the notebooks have a page reference section at the begining and all pages are numbered, I love to flick thorough my previous projects when trying to come up with new ones.
Here is a quick look at a very small sample of my notebooks :

                         

The notebook on the left (teal/gold) is the favourite I mentioned earlier. It's almost full and I will move onto the navy/pink version very soon. The third book on the right is my Knitting Journal.

My plan today is to get my stuff sorted (on paper) and be ready to start doing 'practical things' tomorrow - it's a slow start for me ! I need a coffee already - to help me start.

Thanks for calling in today.

Tuesday, 5 September 2017

Design Results

Hi Everyone
I'm sharing the final three design ideas for my mini hoops, I talked about this last week  (details here) and after changing my mind lots and lots of times, I've got my chosen three designs.

                            

I'm planning to start with the Bee. I have a larger hoop art kit (design top right which includes the Bee) and instructions on how to create the embroidered Bee motif. Hopefully, this will give me a good idea of how to tackle the other two designs. The kit comes with detailed instructions and advice on how to complete the embroidery with lots of drawings showing different stitches. The larger kit also has enough background fabric (spare) which I can use for my mini hoops.
 I'm going to set aside a little time later to embroider my Bee motif and hopefully complete one of the mini hoops. It's got to be the necklace -  so I can wear it as soon as possible ! It's the last day of the holidays and I need a treat !

Thanks for calling in today.

Monday, 4 September 2017

Mini Project

Hi Everyone
The big Summer break is almost over, only two days left ! However, I'm still determined to 'eek' out the holiday until the last possible minute. So, I've planned a very small project to make a few buttons today. I want to add a couple of buttons to a rather old, white cotton kimono style robe which I use as a dressing gown garment. I like to swan around in the morning wearing this robe and have never been keen on the original tie belt closure. Some time ago, I discarded the tie belt and adopted a safety pin closure - not a good look ! I add the pin on the inside - it's not visible but I know it's there and it's not a desirable or pleasurable thing to use. Everyday, I think, I will add a few buttons to the front and get rid of the safet pin and some rather unattractive belt loops (left over from the tie). I've not managed to tackle the job until now.

                      

Way back in May last year one of my Making sessions covered button making from polymer clay and Ive probably decided to go for one of the designs I used in the workshop (see bottom right images).im not sure which one ? I done have a white coloured button so will have to make new ones. I'm going for white to match the cotton of the robe (see bottom left image).

This project is a very small job but will make a big difference to the robe and my mornings (no more thinking about the job!). I also need to make some button holes on the robe with my sewing machine and will practice a few samples, I haven't made button holes for a long time and don't want to mess up !

As an extra self indulgence, I'm also thinking, I may develop several Everyday Bracelets (check out here) in polymer clay. I'll share my results over the next few days.


Thanks for calling in today.


Friday, 1 September 2017

Fibre Friday

Hi Everyone
Friday again ! - this week has flown by and the long Summer holiday is coming to an end. However, a few more days to go (4) and I'm determined to make the most of them. So, onto my fibre update. I'm splitting the news into a few different categories this week. 

                   

First section 'on my needles' (top row). On the left is my Amelia Ruffle Scarf by Alison Moreton using Dovestone DK, Wesley Bob. The pattern calls for Titus which is the lighter weight yarn but I'm very happy with the DK fabric. I've used Dovestone DK in quite a number of knitting projects and know the yarn well, so was aware of what would be produced. I started this project with a skein from my stash and added another to start the scarf. I've enlarged the scarf by just enough to need another skein - always the way ! However, I've already decided what I'm going to do with the yarn leftover ( will launch that plan next time). Top right row, just started last night, is my second Bousta Beanie (for my knitworthy husband !). Again, I'm using some leftover yarn from my own Bousta Beanie (you can check it out here) and I've added a few new colours. The overall colour theme will be blue/greens. I've only done the ribbed band which needed to be much larger (my husband has a very large head). I've gone up a couple of needles sizes and will add a lifeline so he can try it on this evening before staring the Fairisle pattern section. I have four different colours and will mix up the triangle patterns as I go. Not sure if he wants a pom pom ? I really enjoyed knitting my version so am keen to get started with this one. It's quite a quick knit, the last one only took me around a week to complete.
My next section is 'spinning' (bottom left). This is yet another project for my husband ! A whole sweater quantity spin of BFL and Corriedale. I've been talking about this project forever - look back for more on the blog if interested. I'm blending the fibres as I go and my new approach is to blend a board (blending board) full of fibres and turn into rolags, spin and ply - repeat. This is working well and feels less daunting than simply blending as I go. My total to date is approximately 300m, quite a way to go (1250m)but I've made much more progress this week using my new process. I'll update this project in more detail next time (including the pattern- revised several times !)
My last section for today is 'hand dying'. I've got lots of dying planned. This particular skein is the start of another sweater quantity of yarn. There are lots of colours going on in a mainly blue yarn. I'm liking the aqua and teal colours especially. My plan is to dye up some additional skeins in Teal and some Navy to make a cropped cardigan. At the moment I'm thinking about alternating the mixed colours (in the photo) with Teal for the body with Navy contrast cuffs, neckline/button band and waist rib in navy. All that could change but that's my plan (today). I have a couple of patterns in mind, again will firm up this week and report my choice next Friday.

Thanks for calling by today. Have a great weekend. I'll be back on Monday. x

Thursday, 31 August 2017

Kumihimo Returns

Hi Everyone
I'm introducing a new little Making Project today. I need a name but for now I'm just calling it - 'the flat/beaded K bracelet' - not very 'snappy' ! However, I'm confident, as I work a name will come to me.
My simple flat braided bracelet will use pre threaded beads on a Kumihimo disc. If you are a regular reader of this blog, you will know all about previous experiments with Kumihimo. You can read back for more if interested.
This time, I have some very pretty smallish glass beads in lots of bright colours, very pretty. I'm going to combine the beads with navy embroidery thread, held in double strands. I've practiced using the embroidery thread held double a few times and the resulting braid is a great option for a bracelet. I'm not completely sure about my clap yet but am thinking of making a slightly chunky sterling silver fastening from scratch ? I'll wait and see how the proportions work out before committing myself. I will ensure I can add jump rings into the ends of the design, this will give me a few different options when the time comes.
Here's a quick look at my bracelets basic ingredients :

                           

I'm still technically on holiday ! - so my day will be very relaxed. I may finish my braid today but maybe not ? I'll record my progress as I go, the Sun is shining - maybe I could sit out and enjoy it while I braid.

Thanks for calling in today.

Wednesday, 30 August 2017

Hoop Art

Hi Everyone
I've a new little project to share today. It's a pack of three tiny embroidery hoops (2.5cm across) which turn into jewellery. I need to find a design, some backing fabric plus threads and I can make either a necklace or mini broach. I'm thinking one necklace and two broaches at the moment ? - that may change !
Here's a quick peak at the kit :

                   
The kit contains 3 wooden hoops with the backing pieces, chains for the necklaces and mini broach findings.This is a very small embroidery job and will be a joy to make. I want to spend today looking for inspiration for the embroidery bits. I think! I will shortlist 5 ideas, then will sleep on it before making my final decisions. I haven't decided on colours yet - I can feel another shortlist coming on !
I like the idea of a necklace but also think the broach idea will be great for a denim jacket and a second pin for one of my yarn project bags. I'm already thinking about other little wooden shapes which could also have the embroidery treatment and turn into necklaces or pins/broaches.

I'll report my progress in a few days.
Thanks for calling in today.

Tuesday, 29 August 2017

Handmade Wardrobe

Hi Everyone
Following on from my blog episode yesterday (read back for details), I'm launching 'phase 1' of my Handmade Wardrobe Initiative ! Not sure I should be making this general knowledge - yet ? However, I'm quite keen to get going with the idea, so why not ? I don't have a timescale for my plan or indeed a plan beyond the initial 'make' but I am thinking about a plan. Before I start backtracking (the whole idea is rather scary), here is a look at my first project :

                               

I'm starting with a very safe bet, it's a pyjama set (far right image), very few people will see me wearing this stuff ! 

I've been looking for something like this for a few weeks and the pattern presented itself (on sale too) a few days ago. The fabric is a beautiful cotton in very pretty colours. I like a pair of pyjamas for lounging around the house and desperately need to replace my current range. Hopefully, this pattern will work well and I can make a few more sets, perhaps varying the pattern as I go.

My plan is to cut out the fabric one day and sew the next. I may need more time for finishing but the pattern is very simple so I'm hoping this make will be a quick one. I like perfection with my sewing so will take my time. I have a need for the inside to be as good as the outside ! - a throwback from my childhood - my Grandmother was a professional and insisted on high standards of finishing.

I love the idea of sewing but it's quite some time since I made a garment. I've made all kinds of stuff in the past : wedding dresses, coats and jackets etc so I am confident sewer but it's been quite a while since I made anything to wear for myself. However, I'm quite excited about starting. I'll share my progress as I go, I'm not sure when I will start, exactly ? but it will be before the end of the week.

Thanks for calling in today.

Monday, 28 August 2017

Handmade Stuff

Hi Everyone
Today, I want to share my thoughts on the latest Pompom Quarterly magazine (the 22nd issue !). I love this magazine and look forward to each new issue with much excitement. Take a look at their web site for more on PomPom here.

                          

This issue does not disappoint. It's full of lovely Autumnal knits and references to a hand made wardrobe, something which appeals to me, enormously.  

There is a lovely feature on Merchant & Mills, my favourite all time fabric shop. I love everything they do and they do lots of wonderful things (related to sewing). One day I will visit their shop in Rye (quite a way from me) but until then I'm happy to browse the online shop and drool over the beautiful patterns and fabric and notions etc. An online visit to their shop is highly recommended take a look - here. Each time I visit the online Merchant & Mills, I make plans to start my handmade wardrobe. - one day ! I do have one of their patterns and some fabric and will make a dress soon. The handmade wardrobe is probably quite some time away !

Getting back to Pompom, I have read the magazine from cover to cover and have wish plans (in my head) to knit ALL of the knits in this issues. The only pattern which made me think it wasn't for me is a long cardigan with a check-like pattern on the front, however, on further consideration, I've decided I would actually like a cropped version.

So, I'm hoping to work my way through the patterns - a cardigan, two cowls, the potential cropped cardigan (adapted from the long cardigan previously mentioned), a pair of mits, a cropped jumper, a scarf, another jumper (the one on the cover) and a pair of gauntlet gloves. There is no timeline or even a yarn plan yet but I will have a great time deciding on colours and yarns. My current yarn stash is enormous and I will definitely have some yarns for a starting point. 

My approach to making (everything - including knitting) : is all about taking time to consider all aspects of design as well as the actual making process. I don't like rushing things, I like detail and perfection. I don't always get perfection but I do strive for it. Anything which does not reach the standard has to go !! As I improve my knitting skills I find so much more pleasure in the process as well as celebrating the completed item. I find huge pleasure in wearing my knitted garments - if they feel right and look acceptable. 

I must start looking in my stash for potential yarns, I'll start a list when I can pair up yarn and patterns and see where there are gaps. I'll keep a record of my progress on Fridays in my Fibre Update blog episode. Sounds like a great plan, I wonder if I will need to buy for yarn !

Thanks for calling in today.