Grandaughter’s First Birthday!

I’ve been busy lately preparing for my grandaughter’s first birthday party!

First there was the cake! I so enjoyed making this!

Pink and green and purple birthday cake in shape if a fairy castle

Charlotte’s Fairy House Cake

 

the two tiers were homemade – Chocolate Fudge Cake with chocolate buttercream and Madeira cake with Rose buttercream!  To cover the cake I used ready made roll out icing and decorated with sweets, sugar paste hearts, flowers and edible glitter.  It tasted gorgeous although it was very rich and sweet so a small slice was an excellent sufficiency!

Charlotte shared the party with my daughter’s friend’s 4 year old and the theme was Super Heroes.  The older children were dressed in capes etc so I made Charlotte a Fairy Costume with Super Baby on the back!

Baby girl's fairy dress in pink, blue and lemon lace.

Charlotte’s fairy dress WiP!

 

the dress in progress and the dress in use!

One year old in fairy costume with Super Baby on the back

Charlotte the Super Baby!

 

I was exhausted at the end of the week and then there was the actual party with a giant bouncy slide for adults and children! It was difficult, but I managed to have a couple of slides – fab!  Mainly though I left it to the younger people!

Giant bouncy slide

Me and my grandson!

So when I look back at these photos I will remember we did have some summer this year after all!

Crocheted Fairy Tea Cosy!

I finally finished it! My first crocheted fairy tea cosy!

Crochet Tea Cosy in teal snd purple and pink in the shape of a Fairy House with flowers and Leaves sewn on.

My first one!

It’s taken quite a while as I had to adapt the pattern for my Tea Pot and crocheting all the adornments and sewing them on took longer than crocheting the base cover! I’m keeping this as an ornament for me and going to start some more smaller ones as presents  for … you know…(whispers quietly)  Christmas!!

The pattern for this was originally found  here but fortunately now part of it has been translated and stored in the files of one of my Facebook crochet groups. The other way I managed was by opening up the Russian web page in google chrome as it automatically asks you if you would like the page translating. It’s not perfect but it is a good help if you are an experienced crocheter

I’m still making my Sophie too!

Sophie's Universe Crochet Blanket

Crocheting in the garden!

and working on a fairy dress for my Grandaughter’s first birthday – it’s not sewn up yet as I need to have a fitting session – not easy with a wriggly nearly-one-year-old!

Baby girl's fairy dress in pink, blue and lemon lace.

Charlotte’s fairy dress WiP!

So once the dress is finished just the cake to design! Think it might just be a fairy house! Pictures will follow after the party in 2 weeks!

Linking up with Handmade Monday at Lucy Blossom Crafts

Linen and Liberty Love!

It’s no secret I love linen and Liberty so what better combination for a quick make the morning we were going on holiday! I’m one of those people who needs water wherever I go  – even in the UK – so I can’t imagine being without it abroad in hot weather 😓😓

Well it’s easy to take a water bottle with you but not so easy to carry it when you’re sight seeing with a small lightweight handbag.  I knew we were going away months in advance but somehow I left it till the day we were travelling to the airport hotel to start creating a bottle carrier! Nothing like time running out to get the creative mind in gear pretty quick.

So here it is – and it worked very well.  The ribbon came wrapped round the linen fat quarter bundle and made a comfy and quick carrying strap for over one shoulder.  It’s so light I didn’t even notice it was there most of the time

Linen bottle carrier

Bottle carrier for my purple Chilli Bottle!

 

The trim is a couple of Liberty scraps machine appliquéd on!

Linen water carrier

Linen Water Carrier

 

On holiday I had bottled water bought locally but I’ve since I’ve come home I’ve bought a handbag size Chilli Water Bottle. This lightweight bottle is like a thermos flask inside and keeps your water as cold as when it was put in there, for many hours.  It’s a brilliant little bottle and saves money as I now buy large bottles of water and keep them in the ‘fridge for decanting into my Chilli Bottle.  If your tap water is pleasant to drink it would be even cheaper to fill up!

So that’s it – I’m easily pleased!

 

Tuscan Inspiration

I’ve just returned from a holiday in Tuscany! A week crammed full of culture, churches, coffee, cake, gelato and pasta!

Cake and coffee

Lemon tart and coffee for elevenses!

Such a beautiful time touring medieval towns and hilltop villages and marvelling at the intricate detail in the artwork and architecture. I did take some crochet with me but only made one 6 inch square as I was so tired every night from sightseeing I had no energy to craft! I did however, get plenty of Tuscan inspiration!

We’ve always enjoyed looking at ancient sites and National Trust properties in UK so the decorative churches and stylish architecture in Tuscany were very appealing.  I loved these floor tiles in Siena Cathedral – they reminded me of the patchwork block which joins diamonds to make what appears to be tumbling blocks!

Tuscan blue and cream tiles with a crescent moon decoration

Each diamond has a crescent moon and makes a 3 moon box!

 

This table was so pretty – much more so than the photo captures

Pretty, pink marble table top

This table was in a the Viti Palace in Volterra – I loved the colours.

We had fun on the day trip to Pisa!

Leaning Tower of Pisa

Silly selfie!

 

On our last day we walked part of the Pilgrims’ Path – this runs from Canterbury in UK all the way to Rome, including the area of Monteriggioni in Tuscany where we stayed.

Green grass and wildflowers

I love the mix of colours with the flowers and the grass

Field with wild flowers

Wild flowers along the Pilgrims’ Path

 

So back home I have plenty of photos and memories for inspiration – I think a flower quilt or blanket project design may be taking shape, or an English Paper Piecing Diamond shapes quilt even!

Crocheted Fairy House Tea-Pot Cover!

So I’ve got this awful cough and cold and can’t get on with my caravan makeover so I have devoted my lolling about time to – what else? – trawling through Facebook and Pinterest of course😀   Best way to cheer yourself up – that and some crochet!    A while back I spotted on Pinterest a most gorgeous crocheted fairy House tea-pot cover with instructions which I really,  really wanted to try and make. Unfortunately as the pattern was in Russian and google translate couldn’t cope with crochet terms I though I would never be able to attempt it. So what have I been doing this weekend?

Crochet in shape of wizard's hat

The ‘wizard’s hat’ part complete!

Oh happy day! I found there was a part translation in the files section of a crochet  group of which I am (was) not a member.  Now I am revelling in the pictures of WiPs and patterns etc from the new group and on my way with the crochet tea pot cover! Can’t ever be in too many crochet groups eh?

Crochet tea pot cover in purple and teal yarn

Just started the side pieces

 

I’m enjoying making this immensely, despite the racking cough and general aches and pains.  It’s taking longer than the one day suggested but that’s fine!

Stylecraft yarn to make tea-pot cover

Crochet fairy tea-pot cover taking shape

This was my progress last night when I had to stop and rest! There’s no detailed instructions for number of stitches etc after the wizard hat part as you simply make the cover to fit your tea pot. It’s not too difficult though if you are experienced in making things.

Unadorned Crochet tea pot cover

Completed the cover all round – now need to add the little mushrooms and fairies and flowers!

 

So, here I am with the base cover crocheted!  Now I will have great fun making little extras to adorn it – some such as the door and windows are in the pattern, the rest I will make up or use some little flowers and leaves like ones found in Attic 24 patterns.

If you want to see what the finished thing looks like you can follow this link.Here to my Facebook page where I shared the finished crocheted tea pot cover by a page entitled Haken en breien en naaien en juwelen kantklossen woon idees.  I can’t work out any other way to credit the original as it’s somewhere on the page last year and linking direct to it won’t show the teapot

Next week I will have my very own crocheted fairy house tea-pot cover finished! Watch this space for pictures!

Linking up with Handmade Monday

 

Mainly Crochet..

Oh gosh it’s been a while!

I’ve made some nice things over the last few weeks, mainly crochet, just haven’t got round to writing about it!

Baby blanket multi coloured

Charlotte’s new blanket

Charlotte

new owner of the blanket!

Crochet cushion solid granny squares

Front of cushion

 

Stylecraft Candy Pop Cusion – one large granny square on one side and lots of solid grannies (😂) on the other!

Crochet cushion large granny squares

 

I’m also making a Spice of Life CAL blanket but I’m a bit behind!!!!

Next project is an amazing crocheted teapot cover I have found but the pattern is in Russian so not sure how I’ll manage yet! So it’s still mainly crochet for me!

New Year, Old Fabric!

Happy New Year 2016!

The title isn’t a misprint! One of my new year resolutions is to use up my old fabric stash and not buy any new fabric! So far so good as my first project of 2016 was to make a replacement bag for a favourite hessian shopping bag I received as a Yule present a few years ago.  I saw the exact same colour hessian in Abakhan last summer and bought the fabric with the intention to make the bag right away, but in reality just added it to my stash and forgot about it.  So last week I dug out the fabric and made a simple small shopping bag lined with yellow spotted cotton. I really like to make the interior of bags in a light coloured fabric as it makes finding stuff inside much easier!

Pink hessian bag

Pink hessian bag with Liberty print heart appliqué

 

I used some of my (ahem) small stash of Liberty to add a heart shaped appliqué on each side and then found a lovely white-cotton-with-lemon-spots fat quarter for the lining. I’ve had this fat quarter for about three years so using it added to the virtuous feeling 😀

Interior of a pink hessian shopping bag

The yellow spotted cotton lining

 

My second craft-related resolution is to clear out and streamline my craft room and to keep it an uncluttered and stress-free area …… yeah right!  But I have made a start – might even be able to photograph it for the blog if I keep up the enthusiasm 😀.

Linking with Lucy Blossom Crafts

 

 

Knitting Socks!

I don’t know how many of you read Attic 24 ? But Lucy recently posted about her foray into sock knitting, as opposed to her usual crocheting.   Well half the world (including me) seems to have gone sock bonkers been inspired to also take up sock knitting and the wool that Lucy used has vanished from sale as have nearly all the circular needles in 2.5mm! I tried to order from Amazon but they were cleaned out and didn’t have a restock date! The power of social media eh?!

I did manage to find some wool in the same range, but not the colour way as that had sold out completely! I managed to secure some pretty alternatives  though!

4 balls of sock wool

My 4 varieties of sock wool!

I couldn’t just order one ball though like a sensible person, no I had to have 4 so that I didn’t pay postage! Saving money! Totally justified 😜.

I selected my ball for my first ever hand knitted sock and joined the online support group called Winwick Mum Sock a long! The sock pattern was designed by Christine Perry  aka Winwick Mum and the FB group is full of devotees who are willing and eager to be as helpful as needed.

My post in the group of this picture has about 70 Likes!!

Opal sock wool and knitting needes

The adventure begins!

 

I was quite excited when I posted the above, but that soon gave way to frustration and misery as I tried to make the tiny little needles behave! So much harder than my lovely, comfy crochet hook! I’ve also got a gap in my knitting which obviously shouldn’t be there and I am a little embarrassed yet to own up in the FB group! Hopefully I can do a bit more this evening  and get it in better shape!

So that’s my crafting for the next few weeks sorted! As well of course as making Santa sacks for the grandchildren, finishing patchwork Yule items and making family pressies!

I’m going to hop round Handmade Monday blogs this evening and tomorrow where I shall undoubtably find most people have finished and wrapped their crafty presents already! Ho Ho Ho!

Auditioning the Fabrics

Hello!  I haven’t been around on here for quite a while so today I decided to write about ‘auditioning’ the fabrics for my grandaughter’s new quilt!

I’ve been getting over the knee replacement (much harder than anticipated) and also the return of the dreaded Sciatica!!  Having two bad legs has been pretty difficult pain wise and then to find there is an 18 week waiting list to see the Pain Consultant has been very demoralising.  Especially since the initial appointment only leads to another waiting list for the actual injection treatment, which is the only thing which made me better last time.

Anyway DH did some research and suggested buying a home ultrasound kit and it actually seems to have made a difference. I’ll never know if this time the sciatica was going to be milder or whether the daily ultrasound treatments have stopped it in its tracks so to say.  So I’m cautiously optimistic that I am improving and ohave started going about for a bit longer without any terrible repercussions.

I’ve only managed a limited amount of sewing in the last few weeks and it been more a case of sitting down with crochet hooks and a bag of cosy yarn!  But never mind that today! Today I must tell you of a new term I learnt in my weekly patchwork class, it’s called ‘Auditioning’ the fabric for a project.  So, if like me, you thought you were just messing about with your stash when you were wondering what to make and/or what to use, you weren’t, you were auditioning your fabric for a place in the final item, in my case it is a quilt.

Fabric squares for a patchwork quilt

Auditioning Patchwork squares for the quilt top!

 

DD is obsessed with pink girly everything after having two boys but I think it’s nicely balanced with some non pink in it.

That’s it for this week, hopefully I will be able to make it to the Knitting and Stitching show in Harrogate on Saturday and I’ll have lots to write about next Handmade Monday! 

 

Crochet-a-Long and a new project book!

I am very excited this week! I have started the Spice of Life Crochet-a-Long (CAL) run by Black Sheep Wools (you can see my blog post of my first visit to the shop here).  There is a Facebook page for the CAL which has lots of wonderful pictures of people’s blankets as they complete the first part. A new part is published on the BSW website each Tuesday.  I am slightly behind as I have only managed the first two rows but I will catch up soon.    I am also very excited this week because in perusing all the pictures last week I noticed some had a lovely looking project  book in the background in which they were recording their blanket progress. Facebook is wonderful for finding out stuff – of course I wasn’t the only one who liked the idea of a new project book and someone had already enquired in the comments as to where to get them! Quick bit of link-following and via the magic of PayPal I had ordered one. Today it arrived!

Crochet project book and two rows of crochet in Grape colour

Only two rows done but got my nice new project book

It’s published by Doodlestop – they make all sorts of wonderful accessories for knitting and crochet- the yarn holder is definitely on my present wish list! The WIP-0-PEDIA has some useful information at the beginning then the rest is printed pages with headwinds  for you to record your WiPs details, like yarn used and pattern source. As I never remember these things a couple of years down the line,  I intend to fill in all the details at the start of each new project as I tend to become bored and to start new projects before finishing the others 😀

And on that theme, here is my other WIP – summer blanket in cotton as I thought it would be more pleasant in the hot weather than crocheting with wool or acrylic.  This is the one I started on the day of my admission to hospital in early August for my Knee replacement.  The latter is also the reason why I haven’t got very far with it!

WIP-O-PEDIA book and a summer blanket in cotton yarn

My summer blanket – typically being finished in Autumn!

this too will now going to be recorded in my new book.  I’ve always loved new stationery so combining this with new crochet projects is just, well, perfect!

I should be able to have a good sized piece of CAL blanket to post next week as the pain from the surgery is much less now and I am starting to feel more ‘normal’ and able to do things without needing a nap every hour! Post surgery napping time is essential for recovery but really eats into your crochet time!

Linking up with Lucy Blossom Crafts Handmade Monday!