June 2018

The first of the month keeps taking me by surprise, at least in terms of writing this blog post. I’ve done a fair amount of travelling in may and therefore slightly less crafting.

Heres the list:

  1. Quilt – no change
  2. Beaded purse – no change
  3. Peyote card case – no change
  4. Beaded handbag – no change
  5. Beaded crochet – this has grown a bit
  6. Jumper – no change
  7. Epp stars – I’ve made 14 panels and edged all but 2. The panels are made of three lines of stars and contain 4 or 5 stars. Each row of panels will have 7 panels and there will be 7 rows. So I’ve done lots this month but still a lot to go.
  8. Beaded ornament made from daisy chains
  9. Beaded chain mail necklace – I started this at my beading group and I might keep only making it there.

I’ve decided that I’m going to document my pottery projects separately. I’ve been going quite regularly but they still take time because of all the drying. However this should help me keep track of them.

  1. Diamond dish, for teaspoons – glazed and being fired
  2. Coiled pot – glazed and being fired. I used a bubble technique to give a different finish to the glaze so we’ll see what happens
  3. Decorative bowl – slab built and decorated with stamps, has a petal shape. Drying
  4. Elephant statuette – drying

I have a sort of finish this month. We made a lovely spiral rope in my beading group two months ago, and I’ve finished the rope. I’m not sure what to turn it into though so it may wait til it finds a home.

The feature image is from one of the wiltshire wildlife trust reserves, that we visited during on of the bank holidays.

 

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Mini hoop

I always enjoy taking part in the swaps that Ali of veryberryhandmade organises. They are a wonderful way to try something new and help me feel connected to the community.

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My mini hoop

This swap was of mini hoops, and was primarily instagram based. The hoops have to be between 5.5 and 4 cm in diameter but after that it is upto you.

My partner gave me some great tips for what she wanted, including somethings she didn’t want. I find this really helpful and have been carefully editing my own version with each swap I do, however it is still quite vague.

I knew I wanted to try beading for this swap and as my partner said she liked a bit of sparkle, I felt ok to go ahead with it. She had also mentioned a colour scheme of green and purple so I decide to go with that. I searched my fabric stash for a background but what I actually found was a scarf that I had shrunk which contained a beautiful colour scheme of green, purple along with some yellow, teal and brown, that really inspired me.

I then went through my bead stash to find things of appropriate colours. I wanted various sizes, shapes and textures so I could really play. I also included some sequins as I had been inspired by the work of defiantembroidery on instagram.

I actually found more beads that I used but, I wanted to let the textures play so narrowed down the quantity and unincluded some that were just the wrong scale.

After that I just played. I tried to repeat some of the techniques or colour combinations in different areas as I find this helps to keep some continuity.

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I really enjoyed coming up with ideas, and seeing what they looked like. I find it quite freeing.

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I’m very pleased with the end result, I think it is pretty well balanced colour and texture wise. Hopefully my partner likes it as much as I do.

In return I received this beautiful hoop from @mudpiesandpins.

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May 2018

This one has snuck up on me. April has been an interesting month, it feels like I’ve been doing a lot of traveling and I was a bit unwell.

I’ve mostly been doing my English paper piecing and unlike predicted I haven’t started anything new. Lets see what happens in May.

  1. Quilt – no change
  2. Beaded purse – no change
  3. Peyote card case – no change
  4. Beaded handbag – no change
  5. Beaded crochet – this has grown quite a bit
  6. Jumper – no change
  7. Epp stars – I’ve joined up stars for the top section. Each section is 3 rows and is made up of 32 stars. I’ve sewn the stars into groups of 4 or 5.  I’ve also got started with the bottom section, and am getting along with it.

For finishes its been a bit scarce

  1. Pottery – all the pieces I’ve made so far are glazed and some of them are home. I will talk about the process soon.

I also need to tell you about my mini hoop and the one I received.

Pretty fixes

I am an avid user of instagram (you could say addicted but hey) and I have been seeing some beautiful repairs of clothes, especially the ones done by hunterhammerstein.

Because of recent changes in my life, the majority of my wardrobe is fairly recent and therefore there are fairly few repairs that need to be made. So I’ve been keeping an eye out for something with a hole in it (that was worth fixing). And then I found it, one of my plain jumpers had a snag in the body. I gathered it up and spent some time deciding on colours, in the end I went for quite a bright colour scheme but based off the wrong cross stitch scheme.

I then put the selection away because I had quite a lot of crafty stuff and life wise going on just before Christmas. However after Christmas I had a few days back at my place and I spent most of the time crafting in piece.

I began with the hole and went around it in a binding stitch. This made it quite a bit bigger but hopefully has stabilised it. I then embroidered the flowers around it. I started with the big red one, this is the one I’m least happy with. However it looks fine especially surrounded by the others. They were all trial and error stitches and the fairly open knit of the jumper made it pretty tricky to find stitches that worked well.

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I’ve since worn and washed the jumper, and all the stitches are still in place. I like the overall effect, it is pretty but not too over stated.

Let’s see if any more holes turn up.

 

 

April 2018

Despite it being easter here, it really doesn’t feel very spring like, its still very cold and damp. Hopefully April will bring some spring weather.

March felt hectic with work and travel so I haven’t done much crafting. I’m also feeling like starting something new soon so keep an eye out next month.

  1. Quilt – no change
  2. Beaded purse – no change
  3. Peyote card case – no change
  4. Beaded handbag – no change
  5. Bead crochet – a little bit of growth
  6. Jumper – the sizing wasn’t right so I started the first panel again
  7. Epp stars – I’ve got 42 stars cut and basted of which I have about 10 left to piece. I’ve added hexagons to the ones I’ve made and am now adding them as I go. I took this project with me while travelling so I’m feeling productive with it. I might start joining bits while at home and doing the small bits on the move.
  8. Pottery – I took this up recently and have several bits that need painting and glazing

Finishes this month are:

  1. My mini hoop – it is ready to be posted and I will write it up when its been received
  2. Some cards – I had a day off so got out my supplies
  3. My butterfly cross stitch – technically this requires some finishing but she has flown round the world with me and I added the last stitch on my way back from this trip. I’m not entirely sure what I’m going to do with her

This months feature image is from the summer palace in Beijing. I had a lovely two weeks in China this month, working and sightseeing. It was a fascinating country and I barely saw any of it. It is definitely one of those places where you can really feel how quickly we are developing.

March 2018

I’m watching it snow so it is pretty hard to believe it is March. Fortunately I’m not too badly affected by the snow yet, but I have not been enjoying the minus temperatures.

I had a busy February but also managed to get a craft weekend in, where I got my jewellery hardware out, so quite a few finishes and then a few new things added.

  1. Quilt – suprise, suprise no change
  2. Beaded purse – no change
  3. Epp stars – I’ve got all back ground hexagons cut and basted. 6 stars with hexagons attached. Another ~15stars made and ~12 cut out and basted.
  4. Beaded business case – on pause for a minute
  5. Bead crochet – I took this to my beading group and added another inch.
  6. Mini hoop – im taking part in a swap and am doing some bead embroidery
  7. Jumper – I got bought a kit from wool and the gang for my birthday and have started the first panel.

For finishes I have

  1. Lapis lazuli necklace
  2. Bead crochet necklace
  3. Chenille rope necklace
  4. Ring necklace
  5. Dishcloth
  6. An embroidered repair of a jumper

I dont think I’ll have that many finishes next month. Im doing some travelling so hoping to get plenty of my epp done, as long as I get some prep done beforehand.

My featured image is the vase I recieved for my birthday with some valentines flowers. Can’t get more February than that.

 

 

My blanket – version 2

When I was first learning to knit, I made a blanket. It was the second or third thing I started and it was a little dysfunctional. The full story of version 1 can be found here, but the short version is I ended up with a ‘blanket’ that was 2.10m x 0.85m.

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My original plan had been to add borders but I’d used lovely merino wool (and lots of it) for the middle and in my searches for something compatible I hadn’t found anything as nice but cheaper (perhaps not a suprise). I didn’t want to compromise but couldn’t face spending potentially hundreds of pounds to make an overly large blanket. So I sat and thought about it for over a year.

Then on a wander round the internet I saw a tutorial for knitting squares from the middle out, and I knew I had found a vaguely more sensible idea, so I began unraveling the blanket.

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At the beginning

Instead of just following the tutorial, I decided I wanted to make a rectangle not a square so cast on enough stitches to give me a 2 x 3 rectangle. However as you increase all sides by the same amount, you lose the rectangle pretty quickly because who can tell the difference when the sides are 150 x 151 sides. I should have gone back once I realised this at the beginning but I’m a little stubborn and too quick to rush into things. I think this might be why the final blanket tents a little.

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With 4 circular needles

I started on a long circular needle but quickly had to swap to using multiple circular needles like double pointed needles. Ive now ended up with 5 6.5mm circular needles, so I am set if I ever want to make another. I am a much quicker knitter now than when I started the first blanket and I was knitting it over Christmas and new year so there was a lot of in front of the tve knitting time, and it went together very quickly.

When I originally chose the wool, I’d planned on having a light purple center and dark borders, and had bought two balls of the darker colour. So when it came to thinking about casting off I thought about using up those balls. I found this useful comparison of cast offs a while ago and was drawn to the picot cast off. I decided to go for it and I really like the end effect.

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Picot edges

The finished blanket could really do with being blocked to help with the tenting and rolling of the edges, but my flat isn’t big enough so it will have to wait. I may have had to make it twice but it is a lovely blanket for curling up under.

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The finished blanket