Tuesday, 26 August 2014

Holiday Snaps Part 2: Country Walks...

I'm sure you can tell from several of my Friday Link Love posts that I love being outside! So it was natural for me to take the opportunity on my recent holiday to go on some beautiful country walks...

Past some pretty signs...

How can you not love a view like this? Stunning!

Lots of pretty flowers to be seen...

And of course some amazing country cottages...

Can the front of my house have an arch and garden path like this?

It was so amazing to get away from the hustle and bustle and to step out into a different world which is quiet and green... very peaceful, and has made me love the countryside even more!
Which do you prefer? City or country?

Friday, 22 August 2014

Friday Link Love...

I hope you've had a good week! Mine has been very productive - lots of projects in the works, which it has been good to see progress on :-)

Here are some interesting things to look at to start your weekend!

This is so interesting - the stories behind the seemingly "perfect" photos we see on the internet.

These are such beautiful images... magical!

I used to love Barbies when I was a kid (mostly for all the pretty clothes!) and some people still do.

Do you know the A-Z of Quilting song?

So true - I always knew Anne Shirley was a kindred spirit!

And finally, some inspiring words to get outside this weekend (makes me want to go for a walk in the woods!)

What are your plans this weekend?

Sunday, 17 August 2014

Holiday Snaps: Chipping Norton

I love taking road trips to see different parts of the country - this past weekend we packed up the car and went camping in the Cotswolds. It is a very scenic part of the UK, full of rolling hills and stone buildings. We spent our first day exploring the areas surrounding the campsite.

 We decided to find our way to Chipping Norton - a lovely little town with lots of places to explore. Of course no visit to a town can truly begin until one has fuelled up for the day! The place we decided to stop was the adorable bookshop/cafe Jaffe and Neale. I love books, and I love Hot Chocolate, so this was the perfect place for me! The atmosphere was lovely, and the drinks delicious...

(They haven't told me to review it, by the way - I just thought a bookshop/cafe was a great idea!)

Next stop was St. Mary's Church, named a "wool church", so called because the building was paid for by the booming wool trade in the area. It was a beautiful place to stop...

I found it particularly cool, as a knitter, that wool could pay for such beauty :-)
It was only fitting then, that all around the area were little signs that there were knitters... yarnbombed door knockers being especially common...

My knitting radar must have been on, as while we were wandering around, I turned the corner to see every yarn-crafters favourite sight...

This was a lovely little yarn store. Small, but wall to wall yarn! Lots to choose from! I didn't end up buying anything, but I was very tempted! :-P

The next day our first stop was the historic Chastleton House. Unfortunately it was closed, but we still went for a walk around the area, and found this beautiful building...

I loved all the country walks available in the area, and took several more photos - but I'll save those for another post! :-P

Tuesday, 12 August 2014

Baby Steps...

I've been quite busy recently! Lots of yarny things being made :-)

First up is a little baby sweater! This was started for Cousin #1 by my grandmother about 3 years ago... as you can probably guess, he grew out of it long before it was finished! Well this summer I asked my grandmother to dig it out of the project basket, so I could finish it in time for Cousin #2 arriving in October.

It isn't quite completed - I need to find some ribbon to feed through the eyelets, as that is how it fastened. What colour do you think I should use??

I have also been making baby steps of my own, expanding my knowledge of crochet. Up until recently I only knew how to make granny squares, and so I thought it was high time to challenge myself and learn something new... My mom needed some new dishcloths, and so I armed myself with some cotton and a hook...

Tada! I love how crochet looks - it has a totally different feel and texture to knitting!

Of course I could see that plain squares could get a bit dull, so...

Stripes anyone? I am having fun trying out different things, and they are very quick to make up as well. It is faster than knitting, so I may choose crochet for dishcloths from now on...

What projects have you got on the go??

Friday, 8 August 2014

Friday Links - quite a few of them!

Hello! I don't seem to have done a Friday Link Love post in a while... which means I have quite a lot to share with you! So get yourself a nice hot drink, a cozy seat, and enjoy :-)

I loved this article - as a student, I can totally relate.

Related - students know better than anyone else the importance of frugality.

More house love (there's always one!)

Can I live here? So pretty!

This is really interesting.

Some words to think about.

I need this poster! :-P

Hope you have a wonderful weekend!

Wednesday, 30 July 2014

No more monkeying around!

Once upon a time there was a girl who said she would never ever knit socks. Her mother kept asking for a pair, to which the girl would reply with a flat out no. She did not see the point of knitting on toothpicks, risking her sanity, all for something that would end up on her feet.
Then one day, while surfing the internet for a pattern for her next project, she found a sock pattern that didn't seem too scary after all. She purchased the relevant yarn, and got to work. (You can see the socks HERE... scroll to the bottom of the post...) They had a short row heel, and so were managable. But she still would not risk knitting the dreaded kind with a heel flap. No way. They were for those knitters only read about in yarny blogs in faraway lands...
Well. That was until the girl's knitting fairy godmother gifted her this book...

It had all the answers to her questions, all presented in an easy to understand manner. Suddenly she had the courage to try a "traditional" sock. Monkey, by Cookie A. seemed perfect.
Her first attempt was a Christmassy, sparkley achievement (The girl was proud to have even been able to complete a heel flap)...

But still, the socks were missing something. They were just that bit loose, and the heel flap did not fit just so. The girl was determined to get it right... and so started the quest for "THE PERFECT SOCK". The girl knit burgundy ones, rainbow ones, thicker ones... and although they fit well, they were not quite what she was looking for.
Well dear readers, recently that girl nearly achieved it, thanks to the encouragement of the My Sister's Knitter KAL! Tada! I have knit another pair of Monkey Socks!

I am so pleased with these socks - I have gone down a needle size from the suggested one, and I did a slip stitch heel flap to get a better fit. The fit is wonderful, and I can see these becoming a favourite pair :-)

The only thing I would change is to knit them in a more solid colour next time. I think with this yarn the pattern gets slightly lost... but apart from that, I'm very happy!!! Thank you so much to Andi for the motivation :-)

I have a few other projects on the go at the moment too, that have been started recently... I look forward to sharing them with you all soon! :-)

Wednesday, 23 July 2014

Getting there!

Is there anything better than an afternoon knitting outside in the garden with a lovely cup of tea?

This was my view, quickly snapped with my phone (so apologies for the low quality)...
I am a little further than this now, and should hopefully get my Knit-A-Long socks done by August 15th! They are my priority knitting at the moment, even though my stash is calling to me... I could knit a hat, or a blanket, or a skirt... choices, choices!
But for now I shall stick with my socks :-)

Hoping you're enjoying the summer weather too :-)