Sunday, February 28, 2010

Flowery squares

I'm busy making these lovely squares at the moment, easy to transport ( will I be allowed a crochet hook on the plane ?).

They are very easy to make::

Using any colour you fancy:

foundation 5 chain, slip stitch to join

row 1 chain and 7 double crochet

row 2 draw up the loop from last stitch until it is about a cm and a half long, yarn over,pick up yarn stretch out to same length- But leave on the hook
repeat the yarn over and pick up yarn until there are 9 loops on the hook, then take all the loops off the hook in one nice tight stitch, make 2 chain then repeat into the next double crochet until you have 8 petals of your flower, join circle with a slip stitch.

row 3 Join colour for circle ( I have used turquoise )
make 3 chain and 3 trebles, in the next space 5 trebles, the next space 4 and so on , join circle with a slip stitch

row 4 Join colour for border ( I have used blue)
make 3 chain then 5 trebles in the next 5 stitches, in the next stitch make 3 trebles, continue 8 trebles in the next 8 stitches then make the next corner as above. Continue to the end of the round and join with a slip stitch.

row 5 Make 3 chain then 6 trebles into next 6 stitches, make 2 trebles between first 2 corner stitches from previous round, then 2 more between next 2 (there are now 4 stitches in the corner). Continue in this pattern to end of the round and join with a slip stitch.

They look so nice joined together I suspect they may grow into a lovely blanket, I didn't really plan to make one.
I really want to make something to wear but I haven't got a pattern I fancy making -yet !

Friday, February 19, 2010

Making Skirts

I have been making skirts from this lovely book.

It has a very pleasingly retro look about it, I love the drawings...

It shows you how to cut your own simple pattern based on your measurements, so the skirt fits PERFECTLY.It's not as difficult as it sounds -Really!

I've just finished making one in an embroidered denim that I bought in Malaga.

The cat is not strictly part of the process but they do like to be photographed...

I made a plain black one before Christmas with circles applique Boden style.

At the end of last summer I whizzed up a couple in cheerful cotton that I bought on Market stalls.

I really like the ricrac hems on these.

I'm on the look out now for new spring fabrics, I fancy something in purple but I think it must be out of fashion as I can't find anything yet. Maybe in England...

Have a nice weekend, we have Scout Parade tomorrow morning. What fun !!

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Fruit bread recipe

This is a lovely tea bread recipe, not very sweet, very fruity. It is from Delia’s “How to Cook” book. The best thing is that it makes 2 loaves, one for you and yours and one to give away (or freeze for another day). It keeps quite well and I even like a slice for breakfast…surely it must be healthy with all that fruit and look -no butter.

8 oz raisins
8oz currants
8oz sultanas
8oz sugar (Delia uses Demerera-I’m not so fussy)
10 fl oz hot tea (I like to use Earl Grey, but normal would be fine.)

Put all of the above in a bowl and mix well. Delia leaves overnight, but at least a few hours for all the fruit to soak up the tea.
Delia also adds 4 oz dried peel but I’m not a fan…

Pre heat the oven to 170 degrees C, Gas 3

Add 4 oz walnuts/pecan nuts
1 large egg beaten with 2 tablespoons of milk
1 lb Self raising flour

Mix everything; it is quite sticky and heavy.
Divide the mixture between 2 1lb loaf tins and bake for 1 hr 15-1hr 30 mins. Remove from the tin and cool on a rack.

I gave one loaf to my in-laws and we are half way through the other one.Mmmmmmm...

I am very excited because I am going on my holidays in a week, YES, I'm off to Blighty. I'll be spending a week with my Mum, drinking tea,chatting and shopping together. I can't wait. But please- no more snow !!

Monday, February 15, 2010

Edging a blanket

The blanket for my daughter’s bed is just about finished, I’m just doing a lacy edging, can’t decide if one row is enough or if two rows of lacy-ness would be nicer. Probably two, it’s a shame to cut corners at this late stage.

There hasn’t been a lot of skiing on yet, so only a few circles in a square to add to the pile. I have been in touch with Mrs Twins (who is very clever with her crochet hook) and I will be making some squares for her lovely project this week. I have to make them a bit bigger I think.

However, I have been busy with my sewing machine:

I just love this little house:

I think it would look nice on a tea cosy as well. Or maybe in a different colourway...

I have also made myself a new skirt this week . I'm going to photograph it for a post later this week, and I have a recipe for something nice too!

Friday, February 12, 2010

Circle in a square

At the Stitch Club this morning I had it in my head that I would make a circle in a squre out of crochet( my blanket is a bit heavy to carry around). Should be easy I thought, I've seen loads of pictures of this design. Don't think I'll need a pattern...

Well suffice it to say it was much more difficult than I thought to make it lie FLAT.
However after a number of un-doings I did it.

Where there's a will there's a way.

This is my pattern::

Row 1 Make 5 chain and join to make a little circle.

Row 2 Make 3 chain (first 3 chain act as first treble) then 11 trebles into the circle (pink in picture) slip stitch to form circle

Row 3 Make 3 chain (first 3 chain act as first treble) then 1 chain, 1 treble between each treble in previous round (turquoise in picture) slip stitch to form circle

Row 4 Make 3 chain and then 2 trebles in first space from previous round then 1 chain, 3 trebles into next space then 1 chain etc. At end slip stitch to form circle (white in picture)

Row 5 Make 3 chain then 2 treble 3 chain and 3 more treble all into the first space.
In 2nd space 3 treble
In 3rd space 3 treble
In 4th space 3 treble, 3 chain, 3 treble( this makes the corner)
In 5th space 3 treble
In 6th space 3 treble
The 7th space is the same as the 4th
You can see the pattern now…

I’m going to pin mine to my ironing board now , nice and square , and steam it with the iron a bit. That should neaten the shape.

Then I'm going to watch the Winter Olympics and make lots more! How I love all that skating and swooshing down mountains, well I like watching other people do it anyway!!

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Crochet square maths

Last week my big granny square blanket ran out of wool so it had to stay in the work bag,

... however I had some turquoise and turquoise mix that I had been wondering what to do with so I started making little squares and seeing how many different combinations I could make with 3 colours and 3 rows. No doubt there is a formula for working these things out but I'm not clever at maths...

Anyway it turned out to be quite a few,then I started sewing them together into little strips ( and sewing all those little ends in )

Then I joined my little strips and went round the edge a few times

But now I can't decide if I should sew it to some nice fabric or make a reverse in a different pattern. Hmmm...

I found some sweet little alice bands in the supermarket this week and I've matched some sweet little flowers to the colour of the band.I will sell them at the craft fair if I don't give them away first! The little girls who live downstairs would look very sweet in them.

I'm going to the wool shop this morning to have a little stock up, hope they have some lovely colours.
Happy hooking x

Friday, February 5, 2010

Sewing and stitching

I am on a sewing high this week; I haven't been called to any schools, my sewing machine is back from the sewing machine hospital( having recovered fully from it's illness) and I have so many ideas I can't decide which to make next.

I have made little needlebooks-

And little tissue holders-

And little pin cushions to go on the end of scissors-

My favourite new product is the crochet hook holder. I get particularly over-excited about things that are ever-so-nicely stored away. Possibly I need some kind of therapy !

Sadly a local haberdashery shop is closing down today. What a shame. However I have consoled myself by spending rather a lot on half price ribbons.Aren't they lovely?

AND even more thrilling I think
FLOWERY BIAS BINDING- only 20p a metre. Now that has to be useful for something doesn't it?

I got a couple of commisions for knitting needle holders at craft club this morning, and I am going to a Craft Fair next weekend at Ocean Village. I am still aiming to make more from my craft than I spend!

These buttons were only 75 centimos in a bazaar in Spain, no-one can complain about that ! I love all their lovely cheerful colours.

Still thinking of a boy craft... the idea of applique on a t-shirt got a big thumbs down from my boy ( he is 9 and he knows what he likes), the applique on the underpants idea got a screech of outrage! So, I'm still thinking and sketching...

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Craft for boys

I've just been to visit the blogs of these clever women, they are making things for boys all of this month. I feel completely guilty on behalf of my son who has been completely left out of all my pink and flowery stitching, poor boy. I'm off to applique pirate patterns on his underpants while he's not looking.
Check out the blog and you will know what I mean...

Monday, February 1, 2010

A nice cup of tea

In my random photographs that I have been taking for project 365 I have quite a few cups of tea, and as you know I love tea-cosies, so I thought I would make a post about a nice cup of tea. Domestic-ali has been thinking about tea rituals and taking tea photos too. It must be something to do with the weather !

I took photos of favourite tea cups for special days...

The above photo is of a cup from the set my Nan gave me. She remembers buying it in the fifties.

This one is from Zara home-a very nice shop.

I have photos of tea drinking in progress...

I have seen a mug in the Emma Bridgewater catalogue saying "happiness is a cup of tea and a new magazine". I'd like one of those.

I even have photos of my favourite teas...

And of course a home made biscuit or the tea is too wet.

Tea is so relaxing and yet uplifting, although a large glass of wine is rather nice - Cheers!