Saturday, 28 February 2015

The Replacement Hat...



For those of you who follow me on Instagram, you'll remember that I have been working on another hat... well, it's finished! :-D

Most of you are probably looking at the photo thinking "I'm sure that's an old photo, we've already seen that hat!" - I can assure you, my dear readers, that it is a new one! This is the fourth time knitting this pattern - the Cafe au Lait Tam - and the third time knitting it in this colour!
The first one was for my friend Steph for her birthday (which I didn't get photos of), and the second was gifted to my grandmother.

I thought that was it for the green hats, but a few weeks ago Steph came to me quite upset... she had lost her hat whilst rushing to an exam. Knowing the stress of an impending exam, and also how much she wore and loved the hat, I decided to make her another one :-)

(Well when a person is a fan of handknits, you can't let them go cold, can you?)

Off to John Lewis I went, and bought 2 balls of the exact same yarn and colour to make another hat - each hat only takes 1 ball, but I wanted to make sure I had enough, just in case!! (As it was there wasn't much - you can see what was left sitting next to the hat in the photo!)
I didn't see any more of this colour after this trip... I have just one ball of this colour now left in my stash to make another replacement hat if need be - I will keep it in my stash, and it will be Steph's ball of yarn. I know that if I use it, that would tempt fate, and so I'm keeping this last ball safe!

Project details HERE.

Are there any patterns that you keep going back to?

Tuesday, 24 February 2015

Bekah Learns to Sew (Part 1)

I warn you, this is an epic tale of fabric... and not a lot of sewing... read on at your will.

As many of you know, my Mom is awesome at patchwork, meaning that I have always grown up around fabric and sewing. And yet, try as I might, I've never been able to work a sewing machine without supervision. I find it incredibly intimidating!
I can manage handwork - templates and hand-piecing? Yep, I can do that. Curved piecing? Yep, I managed to figure that one out too. Paper piecing hexagons? Yep, done that too.

Working a sewing machine? Still a mystery to me.

So a few weeks ago, I decided to have a go. "How hard can it be?", I asked myself. After all, I am my mother's daughter, and so must have inherited the natural ability to do it, right?

Umm... not so much.

I'd already had some strips of batik scraps sewn together to make some cuffs for a pair of jeans that were too short, so I decided to carry on with that. I'd decided to make them a bit like crazy-patch, with a foundation underneath, as this would give them the weight they needed. I figured I already had the pieces for the top, I just needed to cut some fabric for the foundation.
I cut out a couple of pieces, the way I thought I should (I had completely forgotten about the internet - I perhaps should have looked it up first...oops!) and ended up with what I thought was the right size and shape - yay!

Then it dawned on me - I'd forgotten to allow enough room for seam allowances! Nooo!!!

Out came the cutting mat and the ruler again, and this time, making sure I made it the right size, I cut out some more fabric. I thought it was perfect this time - I then layed it out on the floor, and... well... I saw that I had ended up with a rectange of fabric with an elbow.
(I have no pictures... I was too busy weilding my rotary cutter, thinking "how can I fix this?")

I must have stared at it for about 10 minutes, and could come up with nothing. Next option? Phone my mother. "Sewing is really hard!", I complained. And of course, in her motherly way, she gave me some sage advice about measuring twice, cutting once, and to remember to line my ruler up. I'm sure it was more technical than this, but I'm not that technically minded, and so can't remember.

So after battling with my little cutting mat and my ruler, I tried again. This time, I ended up with something the right size and less elbow-y.
By this time it was lunchtime, so, throughly exhausted, I left it at this:


Two foundations with two rows of batik scraps each, and then a band of white that will only be visible from the inside of the jeans...
I didn't dare get out the sewing machine. I'll save that adventure for another day! 

Friday, 20 February 2015

Friday Link Love!

Happy Friday! It's been a busy week, and I'm looking forward to a quiet weekend with hopefully lots of tea and knitting!

So what has caught my eye on the internet recently?

Mollie Makes is celebrating their 50th Magazine, and with it has come some great blog posts! They share some creative advice here...

...and I'm hoping to complete this list of things before I'm 50! (I've already done 12 or so! Yay!)

These things to be learnt from knitting made me smile...

Who knew knitting could cause so much panic?

I'm so excited about this book!

Some people's artwork is incredible... I would have never thought do draw on a Starbucks cup!

I think I must be liking advice this week - some more words of wisdom here.

Oh to be out in the outdoors again - hurry up warmer weather!

This photographer's project was interesting - It's amazing what people read on the train.

How craft can change our lives...


Have a wonderful weekend!

Monday, 16 February 2015

Granny Square Crazy!

I had a feeling that when I got into crochet, granny squares would become a favourite - just how much of a favourite, I never quite anticipated!
Much like socks, I seem to always have a granny square project on the go...

At the moment, I'm working on two - this first one is for charity. I was bored with my project at Knit and Knatter, and so with some scraps that were in our group box, I started some squares, and it just seems to have taken a life of its own! 


I'm working them all in shades of pinks, purples and blues, with the lighter tone in the middle and a white border to tie everything together.
 

I decided a slightly different technique for this one - I am joining the squares as I go using Lucy's tutorial, and I'm absolutely loving it! No fiddly sewing up, and it saves on yarn too!


The other project is my blanket that you've seen before HERE. I wasn't so clever as to join as I went, but I am still loving how it's turning out.


Remember I asked for your suggestions as to whether I should checkerboard the design with plain white squares or whether to just stick with the coloured ones? Well, I've decided to do both. Because why not?


I'm going to do a central panel of 6 squares by 7, add a few borders to it, and then have another border of the checkerboard effect, then maybe add some more borders. There is still a lot of work to do, but I think it'll be worth it! :-)

Thursday, 12 February 2015

Sock progress!

As you've probably figured out now, I always have a sock on the go. Whether I actively work on it is another matter, but I always have one on the go :-)

I am quite enjoying having these ones on the needles...


Aren't the colours fab? Nice to be working on during grey, dreary winter days. There is just something about pink that cheers everything up, don't you think?


What colours do you turn to when you need cheering up?

Sunday, 8 February 2015

I'm baaack!



 I seem to go through ebbs and flows with blogging... I keep knitting and crocheting (that never stops!) but writing blog posts tend to fall by the wayside when life gets busy. Luckily, I'm back! I have spent the morning taking photos of what I've been working on, so I can share my projects with you lovely people! :-)

And, if that isn't enough, I'm back on Instagram! You can find me HERE.
For some strange reason/technical difficulties, I had my account deleted. Which I was very mad about, and so caused a bit of a rift between me and IG (we have a love/hate relationship - apparently so does Justin Beiber, as the same thing happened to him, and some other celebs too) and so I refused to get myself back on IG straight away... but I couldn't resist any longer - it's such a great way of sharing what I'm up to, and I love seeing what you're up to as well!
So if you're on IG, let me know in the comments - I'd love to see what you're working on!

P.S. Above is the yarn I treated myself to yesterday when I went on a yarn crawl with my friend (Hi Emma!) - aren't they pretty? Two of the sock yarns are for a friend I'm doing a swap with, but the rest is for me to play with - yay! :-D


Wednesday, 21 January 2015

WIP Wednesday...

I've been in the mood for mindless knitting recently... easy work that I can enjoy in the evenings, or just knit a row or two when I have the time...

These socks have made a little progress...


My major project love at the moment though has been this shawl...


I'm using the simple shawl recipe from Stephanie Pearl-McPhee's Knitting Rules, and just increasing the width of the rows of brown as I go along...


I don't really have an intended size in mind... just until I run out of yarn. I'm hoping it will be quite large and cosy - something to keep me warm in the snow :-)

(Okay, so we haven't actually had any snow yet... but a girl can hope, right?)
(Also, can I just say how hard it is to photograph a shawl in progress??)