Wednesday, 15 January 2020

A Finished Project

Whoo hoo, my first finish of 2020 😃  My Sweet Pea blanket is all done and being used as well.  It's been a joy to crochet this blanket during the cold and wet weather we've had.  It's the first Attic24 blanket I've done but will definitely not be the last.

All done and in use by DH who's recovering from an operation

Parts 1-6, just the border to do now

Parts 1-5

Loving the feel of the wool and my new crochet hook

Parts 1-4

Look at those colours, so cheerful in this dull and wet winter

Parts 1-3

Parts 1 & 2

Part 1 - colours don't look as vibrant as in real life

Just starting - couldn't find my stitch markers so safety pins from the first aid box had to do

All my Sweet Pea blanket wools in a lovely bag from the Wool Warehouse

Thursday, 2 January 2020

Sweet Pea Blanket CAL

I've had a pretty busy Christmas, not all of it good, but I have cracked on with my crocheting every chance I had and managed to get quite a few rows done on my sweet pea blanket.

In fact it's feeling like a proper blanket on my legs now as I work on it!  Best thing about making these blankets during the cold spells is that they keep me warm so I can work longer 😃

Part 2 completed on the 22nd December before it all went downhill.

Part 3 completed on 24th December...not a lot of sleep going on in our house!

Part 4 completed on Saturday 28th December - seriously needed to relax and it's amazing what you can do at 5am in a morning when everyone else is in bed!

I am so pleased with how this is turning out, once you get into the flow of the pattern it's so easy. Must admit I'm eyeing up the next one much to the kids disgust...apparently we have enough blankets now!  Think if it turns cold again I'll turn the heating thermostat right down so they feel the cold and then ask if they'd like me to make another blanket 🤣🤣  I will get back to my stitching but when the kids go back to school and things have calmed down. 

If anyone fancies making one of these blankets they're by Lucy from #Attic 24 and you can buy the wool she uses from #Wool Warehouse in one of their special packs.

Wednesday, 18 December 2019

Sweet Pea Blanket CAL

I couldn't resist and ordered the wool for the Attic 24 Sweet Pea Blanket CAL  Thankfully Lucy from Attic 24 teamed up with The Wool Warehouse so we could buy her crochet-along colours already in a pack - saves so much time and searching!

I can't recommend The Wool Warehouse enough, never had bad service from them. This time whilst I was ordering my pc crashed, when it came back up the order said pending but nothing was in my basket. A quick phone call to the company and a lovely lady sorted it all out for me. A couple of days later and the postman was knocking on the door with my wool...  15 balls of wonderful soft wool all in a handy bag to store them and my WIP.

I did do a tension sample using a 5mm hook for my starting chain then swapping to a 4mm hook as it's the recommended one for this wool. (I use a 5mm most of the time but I was itching to use my new soft handled 4mm.) 

I love how the Trellis Stripe pattern works up.

Part 1 has all the information you need including the colour changes for the first 30 rows, you do 2 rows per colour. I wasn't sure of the colours blending quite together at first 
See what I mean, it seemed a big jump from the light purple to red then green.
But by the end of Part 1 I was in love...

Unfortunately the photo really doesn't do the colours justice but it's my fault for taking it on my phone instead of going to get my camera. Just too impatient to get on with part 2!  By the way the pins you can see at the bottom I put in whilst doing the beginning chain so that I didn't lose count, much easier that way when you're doing over 200 chains.

Saturday, 14 December 2019

A New Blanket

After making our daughter's crocheted blanket I decided that it was time I made one for myself. After seeing some amazing wool on Wool Warehouse I found a corner to corner blanket that I liked the look of and I thought would work well in the particular shades I'd chosen.

The wool I chose is Stylecraft Batik Swirl in the Highland colours. I loved the blue and purple colours mixed. Stylecraft Batik Swirl - Highland (3735) - 200g
The pattern I used was free from the Yarn Inspirations website. Click here to get the pattern yourself. It's a very easy pattern to follow and once I got into the flow of crocheting it off I went. There is also a video if you prefer, just click here. There are lots of videos showing you how to do the corner to corner but I've always used Bella Coco as my go-to crochet tutorial when I've needed to.

Anyway, I ordered 3 of the Highland Batik Swirl in the understanding that after 1.5 balls I'd then stop increasing and start decreasing. I was amazed how fast it grew...

By the time I'd done the requisite 1.5 balls I was enjoying myself so much I decided to continue increasing and turn the blanket from a single size to a double. I used the 3 balls on the increase and ordered 3 more from Wool Warehouse to do the decrease. I am so pleased with the result! The whole blanket covered the top of our king sized bed, although it now lives on the back of the sofa so when it gets a bit nippy I snuggle under it when I'm reading or watching tv.

That's another new blanket made and I'm going to work on my stitching for a couple of weeks until my new wool arrives. Yes I've been back to Wool Warehouse and ordered more wool, another blanket but this one is a bit different as it's an old crochet-along.

Thursday, 7 November 2019

I was sat bored one afternoon looking at some wool I'd found in the bottom of my wardrobe and decided I'd like to learn how to crochet. Now I've tried numerous times over the years and failed but that was before YouTube. I didn't want to learn how to do the fantastically detailed blankets but a simple granny square one for our daughter.

A lot of video watching later (wow there are some horrendous tutorials out there!) and I finally found someone who made it all make sense to me. The name of the channel is Bella Coco and after watching her tutorial on granny squares  I picked up the wool and off I went. I did go wrong a few times on my first couple but before long I was whizzing along without the video and had completed my first 8...this was where it got interesting.

My 11yr old daughter Darcy had been watching me playing around with some old pink wool and suddenly decided she wanted a blanket making out of these squares but she wanted the colour around a centre white square that had to be different.  So a trip to the library to get a book on crocheting and I found a square that had a circle in the centre, after many many tries I figured it out and off I went on these squares.  Meanwhile Darcy had found other colours she wanted so after buying the wool - a 100g ball of DK did all 8 of the granny squares with leftovers - I set about crocheting the squares. I'd got the hang of them so sat crocheting them at any time I could find including sat outside school waiting for the kids to come out!

Once I'd done all 8 of the colour and a white centre I stitched them together to form a big square, then just double-crocheted a white border to tie in with the centre square.

When Darcy said there were enough she arranged the squares into which order she wanted the blanket putting together.

Last night whilst our boys were training at #dragonsacademyeckington I sat and put them together using  the single crochet method from another one of Bella Coco's videos.   I'd done all but one square by the time the boys had done so finished it at home whilst Darcy was in bed.

This morning our daughter's face when she came downstairs to find her completed blanket was well worth all the time and effort learning to crochet. She loves her blanket 😀 

Now I'm going to start working on my own, not a granny square one though. My mum bought me some wonderful wool from the Wool Warehouse and I'm going to try and crochet myself a blanket using a different method...wish me luck 🙏

Seeing Progress

Sometimes when you're working on a big project it feels like you hardly make any progress no matter how long you stitch for. I was feeling like that on my Once Upon a Time, during the summer it felt like I'd stitched on it for hours but nothing looked any different.  

At the beginning of October I decided to take a photo of how it looked and then not take another one until the very end. The difference shocked me.  I'm stitching this a bit differently to how I normally do. I bought some easy count 28ct fabric and am stitching 1 strand over 1. Now as the whole stitch area fits onto my scroll rods I decided to try out doing one colour at a time. I started with the colour with the least amount of stitches and then worked up. By the way I use my tablet and the app ezPDF reader pro to not only find the stitches but mark off where I've done. It's a lot easier on large projects and this is the first time I've gone solely to the app and not had a paper and pen back up, soo much easier. I'm now over halfway through the colours and the details that are emerging are well worth the confetti stitches. 

I've not been able to put needle to fabric so far in November as I've been working on another project. I think I'll carry on just taking a photo at the end of each month, it's such a rush to see the project come to life as you don't notice the same when you're actually working on it.

Thursday, 10 January 2019

End of Another Year

Well by the end of 2018 I'd managed quite a few finishes on the stitching front. The kids had done some amazing things and although the year started off badly when my father-in-law got rushed into hospital by the end we were looking up again. Although, I do hope for some much needed quiet times in 2019!

Firstly here's a round up of my big finishes. There were a few smaller ones but I cannot find the photos (probably on my old phone!)

 As you can tell I'm a fan of Heaven and Earth Designs, hoping to have another finish in 2019 :-)

Then we have the kids, Lumps finally got to black belt in Taekwondo in September. All three of them completed their Get Active Challenge in the Summer.  We all had fabulous times at the coast this year, from the British Taekwondo training camp in Great Yarmouth in May to visiting Edinburgh in August during the Fringe and then down to Broadstairs in October to spend half term with my mother-in-law.  Peter has moved into his last 2 years in seniors (eek where has the time gone?!) and finished his University of Sheffield mentoring program. Luke is happily settled into Y8 and Darcy is in her last year of junior school (so not ready for my baby to move to seniors!).  Here are a few of my favourite photos from the year.

Here's to another year of lots of stitching, walking and fun. Happy New Year to you all xxxx