Thursday, 24 February 2011

Folksy Friday - Yarn

Hello everyone, well its that time of the week again, the end of it AND Folksy Friday.

This weeks theme is Yarn and yarnie things,this is because earlier this week, while having a few minutes downtime I was mooching around Folksy and I stumbled onto this whimsical little Wreath by Bumble and Cosmos
Yarn Rabbit Wreath

From there I decided to do a search under Yarn to see what other goodies could be found under the word 'yarn' (and this was such a chore for this yarnaholic - honest!)

Below is what I found, as usual click on the image to see that item in more detail or click on the shop name to see what other yummy things they have to offer.

Violet Post-Sport Weight Merino Yarn Earrings Yarn Blue
Abstract Cat Crafts and Teasemade
Framed Art Newspaper Yarn Knitting or Crochet Yarn Bowl
Zygotegifts and Caractacus Pots
WPI Gauge
Tree Gems (I want/need one of these) and Bodrighy Wood

There you go, hope you enjoyed this weeks selection?  See you soon.

Tuesday, 22 February 2011

From Russia with love

No, its not a post about James Bond.

Now I am sure that there are many wonderful things to have come out of Russia but my 2 favourite have to be Vodka (!) and the Russian Join.  What is the Russian Join I hear you all ask, if you are not a yarnie then this may be of no interest to you but if however you have a love of yarn then pay attention.

As a fellow yarnie artisan, I am sure that you will have experienced either this situation, lots of yarn left over (from the same dye lot) from various projects
or loads and loads of little teeny tiny balls of different colours that are neither use nor ornament.  Well no more, enter the Russian Join !

The Russian Join is an invisible way to join ends of yarn without knotting and the sewing in of ends.

Take the end of one bit of yarn and thread a sewing needle, turn the needle back on itself and feed it through one or two of the yarns ply's for about the length of needle, like this
Pull the needle through your yarn leaving a loop or 'eye' at one end and a tail at the other.
Next, thread the second yarn (I am using 2 very different colours to make it easier to see) through the needle, pass the needle through the eye of the first yarn like this
Then weave the needle through the ply's of your yarn like you did with the first piece, you should then have something like this
Now pull firmly on each tail to tighten the 'eyes' and you should have something like this
Now you can snip off the tails close to the main yarn and there you go, an invisible join that is very strong and wont come undone, if you are using the same colour of yarn then it should look something like this

So there you go, you can join all those bits and bobs of yarn together to make a decent ball to work with or you can do what I am doing and make your own ball of colour changing yarn like this
and the best bit is that as I make up the ball, I will forget what yarns have been joined in so it will be a surprise when I make something with it.

This should work with most yarns as long as they are not too splitty, just make sure that all yarns are the same weight, 4ply, DK, Aran etc.

Have fun and enjoy.

Monday, 14 February 2011

Day one of half term picnic time

Oh well, day one of half term and its already what can I do with them today, we had all had a very quiet weekend as both of the littlies look like death warmed up, so gave them a rest on Sat and Sun.  As you might gather then,  they would not tolerate another day in the house and apart from that it did look like a bright and breezy day outside so I decided to take them out to the beach on our way to drop off some papers at my new employers (yes, I have got a new job - yay!)

The plan was to have lunch outside on the grass but once I had realised that it was a lot colder down by the beach than it was behind glass (duh!) I thought it might be better to have lunch in the car;

After lunch, we decided to go for a walk to the beach and took the little ball with us (not such a good idea it would appear considering how strong that breeze was!)
(Catch the ball, quick!)

(Buts its my go!)

(I am enjoying this mummy, honest....)

As it was a purely female trip to the beach because the one man we all love was at work, I decided to write him a message,

We went over to see Anthony Gormely's statues that make up his piece called 'Another Place'.  At number 87, the youngest seemed quite curious as to why he had no pants on...

And at number 88, both of them seemed quite concerned that they may also sink if they stayed there much longer...

After the above pic was taken, I turned around and saw this, it was then I decided it was definitely time to leave...

...with a brisk trot back to the car just before it started to rain.  I thoroughly enjoyed myself, blew a few cobwebs away and now the littlies are warm again they told me that they did enjoy themselves too ( and they should sleep really well tonight after all that fresh air! )

See you all soon.

Thursday, 10 February 2011

Folksy Friday - Flowers

I was out in the back garden (for garden read yard with pots at the back of an inner city row of terraced houses!) with DH, taking a look at the back wall (or what was left of it after a neighbours wall blew down and took ours too but that is a whole other story) when I noticed in one of my poor neglected over-wintered pots Spring had sprung.  I had snowdrops and crocus, I know Winter will probably come back and bite us once more before it gives way to the inevitability of Spring but for the next few days at least Spring is in my back garden.

So for that reason I have chosen Flowers for this weeks Folksy Friday theme, as usual click on the pic to see more information on that item or click on the shop name to see what other crafty goodies they have to offer.

quilled pot of flowers Snowdrop tealight plate
Quillmag and Phoenix Glass Art
Fabulous Flowers rug blue flowers silk lined purse
Ragtag Rugs and Dadacreations
Mosaic stepping stone candy flowers papier mache bowl
Eclectic Arts and ameliagreenheart
Fabric flowers of your choice mini calendar flowers
Court&Spark and Cassia Beck
funky felt flower purse Felted bag with flowers
Laura Lee Designs and That Fuzzy Feeling
fish bowl vase with origami flowers cushion cover retro green flower
Shinee Things and Ruthscrafts

There you go, flowers, lots and lots of beautiful flowers and there are so many more to choose from on Folksy so go and check some more out and enjoy the beginnings of Spring.  See you soon.

Monday, 7 February 2011

Car Owners (or for some read Idiots!)

Now I know it is said that owners can start to look their dogs and can share certain characteristics but as I spend more and more time on the road I am starting to notice this with certain makes of car and their owners.

There are far too many traits that car owners share when they own the same make of vehicle but there is one in particular that many people who spend time on the road will be able to identify with, I will say no more other than it is a German manufacturer and I am just curious if this type of car is bought by people who already have the traits of arrogance, impatience, rudeness, idiocy amongst others that arent polite to type all rolled into one or whether as soon as they purchase a car of this make then these traits suddenly take them over?

I have just had a very amusing episode (well it was for me anyway) with a driver of this type of car, not only did I have the cheek to carry on driving on the road, when he rolled out of a side street and fully expected traffic to part for him (must of thought he was Moses or something), so not only was I in front of him but when I slowed and indicated to turn right (but because another car had rolled quite far out of the street I wanted, I couldnt turn in so had to stop) but I had the sheer nerve to stop alongside a parked vehicle so this poor driver couldnt get past me - how selfish and inconsiderate of me to forget that when he bought his car that he owned every bit of road he wanted at any particular moment in time and that I should facilitate this!

After he let me know his annoyance (in no uncertain terms might I add!) that I wasnt willing to ignore the Highway Code and to move onto the wrong side of the road into on coming traffic to turn right and therefore allow him to continue his journey uninterrupted, can you imagine just how much more annoyed he got when I laughed at him, and then put my handbrake on to allow any and all vehicles that wanted to move around do so while he had to wait for me?  Probably very childish on my behalf but I dont appreciate being bullied by some *!@*!# who has spent a lot of money on what basically is an extension for an inadequate part of his anatomy when I have both of my children in the car and have just as much right to be on the road.

Right, now that I have written this I am now free to continue to crochet calmly so, catch up with you all soon.

Sunday, 6 February 2011

Anyone getting married?

If you or anyone you know is planning on getting married between April 2011 and April 2012 then there is a wonderful competition to enter.

You can either click on the MASSIVE button for handmade giveaway to the right of this post OR click on this link to enter

This giveaway is for any or all of the items listed, just leave a comment on the competition page stating what you would like to win.

Closing date is 14th Feb, go on, give it a go!

Thursday, 3 February 2011

Folksy Friday - Four and things in fours

My eldest had a birthday on Wednesday of this week and she is now a very grown-up 4.  It is very difficult to remember what my life was like four years ago before she arrived and I cannot believe how much my life has changed, she enthrals me as well as exasperates me on a daily basis but when she smiles and tells me that she loves me, I just melt and it fascinates me just how much she can make me feel.

It is for her that this weeks blog theme is 4, everything shown is sold in 4's, as usual click on an image to see the items in more detail or click on the shop name to see what else they have to offer

framed set of prints four seasons glasses
Photography by Gail Griggs and re-crafts
Four toadstool fabric badges Four flowers A4 print
Kaela Mills and as seen through the lens by Kelly Powell
Little set of hearts Four stacking rings

four large ceramic buttons set of four coasters
Dottery Pottery and Top Floor Treasures
stripey egg cup set lego block crochet markers
Cuckoo Interiors and TheBotheredOwl
love letter magnets tree hug notelet cards
Kikichoo and Snow Queen Trinkets

There you go, hope you enjoyed my choices this week, look forward to seeing you all again soon.

Tuesday, 1 February 2011

What I love about 12"

Sometimes 6" just isn't enough, you just have to go all out for 12", you can get much more variation with 12".

As mentioned in my first post on squares, this one would be about 12" squares ( why, what else were you thinking of?)

There are many many patterns to choose from for 12" squares on the internet.  You could make a traditional granny as discussed last time and keep doing rounds until you reach 12" or you could decide to get adventurous and try something new.
As most of the free patterns are American therefore use American terminology, this has to be remembered when making stitches otherwise the pattern will not work.
Conversion Table

slip stitch (same in UK and US)
dc (double crochet) UK - sc (single crochet) US
htr (half treble) UK - hdc ( half double crochet) US
tr (treble crochet) UK - dc (double crochet) US
dtr (double treble) UK - tr (treble crochet) US
trtr (triple treble) UK - dtr (double treble) US

UK terminology I believe is based on the number of moves it takes to complete a stitch and US terminology refers to the number of loops on hook before inserting hook through to pull yarn and complete stitch.

Right...back to 12" squares, I also take part in another Ravelry group swap called Bakers Dozen.  This is where groups of 13 people, over the course of a year (13 months actually) makes squares for each other in the group.  Each member if the group has their own month when they dont make a square but instead will receive a square from each of the other 12 members.
Here are some of the squares I received when it was my month (Sept)

I think my 12" squares will also be used with 6" squares for that camping blanket that I mentioned.

I fell behind with some of my squares for this group but have no got them done, they just need to be posted off.
This purple one is for Novemeber and the pattern can be found here

These 2 squares were for December, an extra one was done for a birthday (can you guess what country the recipient might live in from the second square ?)

This is January's square and the pattern can be found here

And as I have caught with myself I decided to do February's square while I was on a roll, the pattern for this square can be found here

Another thing to bear in mind with American patterns is that they tend to use yarn that is classed as 'worsted weight'.  The nearest equivalent we have in the UK is Aran weight but the US has a much wider range of colours in this weight so if you plan on using DK yarn (in the US this is classed as light worsted or even 3), more rows of pattern are generally needed to bring up to 12".

There you go, 12" squares, the difference between UK and US terminology, yarn weights and some examples of patterns and where they can be found....see you soon.