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August 2016

3 colours

And joining Ginny for yarnalong

Yarnalong 31 08 16

So glad to be starting something new today! I'm moving onto the 3 colour cowl (pattern by Jojilocat on Ravelry). And can you see that hanging in the background? That's SPRAY cardigan, all done!! I will be photographing it this weekend to share on Monday, so so so so very please with the finished result.

I'm also thrilled to say that I have a finished book to celebrate today too. The Penguin Lessons was a charming and sweet read that I thoroughly recommend. Now back to Poisonwood Bible!

C xx

Yarn yarn and more yarn

and yarnalong with Ginny

Craft room clear during 4

My yarnalong photo today was taken on Saturday during my  study/gym/craft room clean up. This is the yarn that was piled up next to my desk and hadn't made it's way (because there is no space!!) into the expedit unit. Far too much has been acquired over the summer, and explains my need to have a yarn shopping ban for the remainder of 2016. It's a mammoth task but i'm pleased to say that i've made good headway. I'll share the process in a few weeks.

I'm making good progress on the SPRAY cardigan, back and fronts are done, sleeves growing fast. My deadline of the 31st is doable.

No reading again this week, and i'm really starting to feel twitchy about it.

C xx

A Floral Brooch Bouquet

Brooch bouquet 5

Brooch bouquet 8

Brooch bouquet 4

Brooch bouquet 6

Brooch bouquet 7

Brooch bouquet 3

Last year I made a Brooch Bouquet. I love the idea of having an everlasting reminder of a wedding day that can be displayed in the home and become a family heirloom.

There are two types of Brooch bouquets. one made entirely of brooches (usually collected over time from family members and friends - this is a great idea if you start collecting after the engagement), and one with brooches added to a faux floral display. I love both ideas and as I love to actually wear brooches I opted to buy diamante embellishments from The Handmade Card Company.

Choosing flowers and brooches can be a bit horse and cart as you need the brooches to try against the flowers but before you buy the brooches you'll want to know how many and what size you need. I was very lucky to have won a lovely selection of brooches from the THCC so I had a starting point. Some of the brooches don't have hols to thread wire through so make sure you can borrow (if you don't own) a glue gun.

The first step is to wire your brooches, I used some florist wire that I bought off eBay. I chose a good weight (thickness) wire on my first try. Your local florist or Hobbycraft will have.

Brooch bouquet 9

I'm not sure I would have been brave enough to buy faux flowers online and am lucky enough to have a lovely shop that stocks an excellent range. Be warned, good quality faux flowers (ie ones that don't actually look fake!) are quite pricey. I took my wired brooches with me when I chose the flowers.

This bit was very trial and error and as I have NO floral arranging experience it was very daunting. But you just need to trust your eye and look at ready made bouquets for ideas. A hair band is a very effective tool for this job as you can quickly tie a bouquet together to look at it from all angles and swop hands without it falling to bits. Also don't forget to take photos of each arrangment because you'll kick yourself when you think that the third one you tried was perfect and you're now on 349 and can't really remember what it looked like!!

Once you're happy with your arrangment (and again don't rush this bit, live with it tied in a hair band and keep coming back to it in different lights and times of day), wrap the stems together with florist tape (another eBay buy) and secure tightly so the centre blooms don't slip.

Top Tip: Wind the brooch wires around the flower stems to keep them secure.

Then wind ribbon over the tape and tie off. I chose a simply gingham ribbon with a bow.

Just a note: I looked a countless brooch bouquets online and thought I could make it for less. My supplies did cost less than a ready made one but I spent a LOT of time on it. If you're not crafty or don't have the time to make your own then consider buying it. Etsy has some really beautiful ones!

The internet has lots of ideas and video tutorials (so I didn't bother making another one!), which are a great help if you choose to make your oen bouquet.

Happy crafting!

C xx

Using my knitting/crochet planner

I can't believe I've been using this planner for 6 months already!

WP planner list page

K&C planner project page written

KC journal notes pages

KC journal inventory pages

KC journal diary pages

It is so nice to keep all my yarn craft information in one place, and handy in my current WIP bag. I've used random notebooks over the years with little success. The fact that I can add and move pages as well as sections around this planner has meant I can make it work for me. Along with the TO MAKE list and project pages, I have printed notes pages, recorded what needles and hooks I own and use the diary to record how long each project takes me. This has come in very handy when I write up a finished object post here on the blog.

The personal size is perfect for this type of planner/journal. However if I was doing designs then maybe the A5 size with some grid paper would be the better option. I'm not at that stage yet, but perhaps one day!

C xx

Good progress

And joining Ginny on a yarnalong

Yarnalong 17 08 16

I'm making good progress on my SPRAY cardigan. The back is finished and I am nearing the armhole shaping of the fronts (knitting them together). I've set a deadline of 31st of August to finish this. I wonder if I can squeeze in another holiday make! 

Reading has been pretty non existant this week with the Olympic games making early bed times impossible.

Yesterday I put a ban on yarn buying. I had to. Really it's out of control. The ban will be in place until I finish the following projects:

Cardi (the one i'm currently knitting)
Brushed fleece throw (Christmas gift)
2 x Igloo socks (for Christmas gifts)
Igloo socks (currently on the needles)
Brushed fleece hoody
Stu cardigan (don't have the yarn for this but as dear husband is buying it, it doesn't break the rules)
3 colour cowl
Handknit cotton throw (on the needles)
Cotton glace throw (Christmas gift-this is nearly finished, possibly just needs to be joined with maybe a handful of blocks to make)

I'm giving myself until the end of the year to finish all of this (except of course the Christmas gifts must be done before Christmas)

Wish me luck!!

C xx

Onto new things

And joining Ginny on a Yarnalong

Yarnalong 10 08 16

On Sunday I cast on a new project. It's the SPRAY cardigan from the Kim Hargreaves book, ECHOES, in Rowan Cotton Lustre. This is my second knit from this book and I have yarn for a third. I'm about half way up the back and loving the drape of this open stitch. I want to take it on holiday at the end of next month so i'm determined that it's going to be a quick knit!

I've done more reading this week, however have not managed to finish either of my books, Poisonwood Bible or The Penguin lessons.

C xx

PS. My Summer hoody is DONE!!

A hoody for summer

Yarnalong 20 07 16

Summer hoody front top

Summer hoody hood

Summer hoody

I am thrilled with my summer hoody!! This is going to get so much wear when the cooler evenings arrive. I have to thank my friend Linda who did the ground work and gauge squares to make it work in cotton yarn.

So lets talk details:
The pattern is from the Kim Hargreaves book STILL and is designed for Rowan brushed fleece yarn (I have the yarn to make a winter version!)
I used Rowan cotton lustre on 7mm needles. This cotton/linen ribbon yarn has been lovely to work with over the warm weather, although it did take me a little while to get used to the texture.
It took 5 weeks to complete, including 2 and a half days of sewing up and sewing in ends.
The front inside edge is worked as 2 knit stitches on each row but I have done 5 as I preferred the more solid look.
This yarn is not good with the magic knot so all joins should be done on the seam edge. I had lots of ends!

Lesson Learned:
I have often been advised to rewind every ball of yarn before using it to check for knots. Thankfully only one ball I used for this project had knots but they were at a really inconvenient place! I rewound each ball after that!!


C xx

The hood of the hoody

And joining Ginny for yarnalong

Yarn along 03 08 16

I'm setting a new deadline of Sunday to finish my summer hoody. The end is well and truely in sight.

The colour looks very blue in this photo but in fact it is more green in real life. This yarn or ribbon as it is in appearance, is so lovely to knit with in the summer months. I have a second project with it lined up as soon as this one is done.

For a second week in a row I have done very little reading, I blame it on late nights and too much rubbish TV!

This month i'm working on a big make over in my craft room. I'm still waiting for the inspiration to hit *rolleyes*.

C xx