Sunday, 26 December 2010

We had a lovely Christmas day. We spent most of it visiting our family and exchanging gifts. I was so pleased  my hand made gifts were  appreciated and valued.It has really motivated me and can't wait to start some new projects. I have been mainly kitting this past couple of weeks but Christmas Eve I picked up a quilt I had been making but haven't touched for a while, I had forgotten how therapeutic it is to sit there hand stitching while the TV is on.

I managed to finish the large (approx 45cm x 45cm ) drawstring bag I was making to hold my wool.

I am very pleased with the result. The fabric was a 100% cotton quilting fabric 'Darla Rose' by Tanya Whelan which I love, and  the design is vintage inspired . I lined it with a fuschia coloured poly cotton and as I did not have any fabric left I threaded some cord through the drawstring channel. I also made a crossover loop on the back so that it can be hung on a hook.

Wednesday, 22 December 2010

anyone for a cuppa?

Andy does appreciate a second cuppa in the mornings so instead of draping a towel around the teapot to keep it warm I set about knitting a couple of cosies for us.I made this tea cosy from left over baby wool (it is 100% wool) and put a ribbon on the top, I think it looks very sweet and it knitted up beautifully. The reproduction of the colour is not that good as in reality the colours are warm and soft.
The second cosy I made was in a cheaper acrylic yarn that someone had given me, the difference in quality was striking. It was not as soft to knit with and it knitted up very thin. It looks fine though and I made a little pom pom in a different colour (I ran out of wool!). I much prefer to knit in good quality wool and at the moment I am knitting a pair of hand warmers in Sirdar Sublime extra fine merino wool which knits up beautifully.

Tuesday, 21 December 2010

Hand warmers

Yes it is snowing again outside but at least the temperature is now above freezing! It's hard work (and expensive) keeping the house nice and warm, but nice and warm it is with  the central heating on, the wood burner lit, together with the underfloor heating on in the conservatory and bathroom! Hate to think what the energy bill will be this year. As it has been so perishing my poor little hands have been really cold when I have to do the chores outside like filling the wood and coal basket and sorting  out the rabbits and hens. So I have made some fingerless gloves. They are really practical and keep my hands warm as well as allowing me to be dexterous (I think that's what I mean!). They are quite simple and stylish and  knitted  in an aran yarn. They can be viewed on my online shop
I love this colour for these long hand warmers, I think I have knitted something in all sorts of variations of this shade! I have knitted this particular pair in 100% merino wool by Wendy, as a gift for a friend who makes fine dolls house furniture and works from home, these will be an ideal practical gift to keep her hands and arms warm, as well as enabling her to carry out her delicate work. I like that you can turn the rib down to adjust the length, so you can have it long or short. I shall be busy making both pairs of hand warmers  for my online shop once I can get out and source some nice wool!

Tuesday, 7 December 2010

last of the gifts made (I think!)

I wanted everyone in my family to have a handmade gift from me this Christmas and these are the last two gifts,. The bag on the left is for Stephen, my six year old grandson. I wanted to make a draw string bag that was boyish and wanted it to hold some little gifts, a sack but not a sack, if you know what I mean. Having looked for some boyish material and not found anything I liked I bought some denim from John Lewis and white cord and blue felt. The felt was for an appliqué letter S. I haven't done much appliqué so I just have to go for it! After several attempts to draw a half decent letter S, I was able to trace it onto the felt and viseline, and using blanket stitch I attached it to the bag. Voila! I made the pretty bag next to it in a 1920s/30s inspired fabric by Tanya Whelan. The family member I made it for isn't into country style fabrics, so I thought this would be more her, (I hope so).

Monday, 6 December 2010

a really warm knit for this cold weather!

I have completed the chunky cable tunic I was knitting and it looks really good and it is so warm. Not only that but the wool used is supporting British Sheep breeds, the sheep breed is Suffolk, it is 100% wool and is undyed. Because it is chunky it did not take too long to knit. I have worn it today and it is fabulously warm .

Wednesday, 1 December 2010

Three little bags

Although the weather has been so bad this week it has at least enabled me to concentrate on my sewing. I have now collected some really lovely material for my projects and decided to review my fabrics. My best source has undoubtedly been Suffolk,  Stevenage, I am afraid is rather void of lovely little shops selling haberdashery and fabric especially quilting fabric, although of course we do  have John Lewis and Hobbycraft  who do sell a good range of quilting fabrics and haberdashery. But it is not quite the same as rummaging around not knowing what little gem you might find whether it be some pretty and unusual ribbon or   fabric. One of my favourite places is Halfpenny Home in Needham Market and I just do not get to visit it often enough! Its like a den of treats and Nic always remembers my name and asks whether I have started my rag rug (and I haven't) if you want to check it out have a look at their blog In fact I have just finished three little bags of which two of them were made from fabric bought at Halfpenny Home.I am really pleased with them, the fabric was nice to work with and I enjoyed making them. The problem is I always want to keep them! My bags can be checked out on