Monday, 31 October 2011

Getting Shirty! A new quilt.

Many moons ago, when I first fell in love with quilts and decided to start collecting fabric to make them, I began with old shirts and worn out clothes, firstly from hubby's wardrobe! then charity shops, car boots etc.  This built up into quite a big stash which has come in handy over the years, but a few months ago I decided that I had far more than I would ever use and decided to start thinning out the piles and cutting them up to make bundles (like jelly rolls) to maybe sell.  I've just about finished but need to sort out an etsy shop, which knowing my lack of technical know-how may take a while!

In the mean-time I've used the smallest bits to make 5" squares and then made lots of 1/2 square triangles.

 I played around with the design and have settled on a pinwheel pattern that I'm really happy with.  I love the fact that all the fabrics are recycled and well worn, giving it that homely "Little House on the Prairie" look.  As it's not too big I'm going to try and finish this one, using one of the girls' bedroom floors to spread out the backing and wadding.  Off to start joining the squares.

A couple of pic's of the garden.  Was hoping the sun would come out but decided to take them anyway before all the leaves fell off!

Tuesday, 25 October 2011

Blanket Ta-Dah!

So I finally finished my latest blanket and I absolutely love it!  Well, the ends haven't been woven in yet and I'm not sure whether to do a border yet, but it's good to get it looking like a proper blanket.  It's not as big as I'd planned but at about 3 x 3 1/2 feet it's big enough to snuggle under on the sofa or lay on the end of a bed.  The cream double crochet joins and edging really give it a lift and lighten the whole colour scheme.

It was very difficult to photograph today. Either too dark or too bright, but I hope it gives an idea of how lovely and soft and cuddly it is.  I think I used about 1/2 a ball of each colour, some were very alike so they only got used for 2 or 3 squares rather than 5.
In case you're interested, these are the yarns I used.  They are all machine washable 100% wool or merino DK.  Some of the colours are now discontinued but there's plenty of similar ones out there. 

Going from left to right

Row 1;   Artesano Superwash Merino       Hot Pink, Baby Green, Baby Pink, Baby Lavender, 
                                                                Baby Teal.
Row 2;  James C Brett Pure Merino          PM15,  13,  1,  2.
Row 3;  Sublime Extra Fine Merino           Alabaster (Joining and border), Limone, Redcurrant, Souffle,
                                                               Grape, Blueberry Pie.
Row 4;  Debbie Bliss Rialto                      Pale Blue, Salmon, Raspberry, Buttermilk, Baby Lilac.
Row 5;  Rowan Pure Wool                       Geranium, Tea Rose, Glacier, Gilt.
Row 6;  Biggan Design                             Gentle Green, Lime, Jacaranda.
             Patons Dreamtime                        Lemon
             Cascade 220 Superwash              Coral (827)

I loved all these yarns, especially the James C Brett ones which I hadn't used before. It is beautifully soft and silky.  The Biggan Designs wool comes in a huge range of colours, though I found them a bit bright and felt quite oily. I suppose this must be the natural lanolin.  Patons wool was used for the colour, but I'm not keen on this one, being a bit "harsh" and scratchy.

I think my next project will be something smaller!  Maybe cushions or perhaps some bunting that I can finish fairly quickly.  Now I'd better start weaving in those ends.

Ooh, nearly forgot. There's a great giveaway over on Wink's lovely blog. Pop over now and check it out.

Monday, 24 October 2011

Nearly finished!

It's taken a bit longer than I thought to put it together, but I'm on the home stretch now, doing the edging. Here's a peek,  more pic's tomorrow.

And yes, I know I'm obsessed by sunrises at the moment, but...Wow!

Thursday, 20 October 2011

Frosty garden

We've had a few ground frosts recently now that the nights have turned chilly, but the dahlias are still hanging on.  I keep expecting them to be all black and collapsed in the morning, but I guess the frost hasn't reached that high yet!

A couple of pics

and a pretty leaf

There have been lots of lovely sunrises too. This was a couple of days ago

And the view later in the afternoon

I've nearly finished my crochet squares. Hopefully I'll have some pic's in the next couple of days when I start putting it together.

Sunday, 16 October 2011

New bookcase

My latest e-bay find came yesterday and I'm thrilled with it!  The chap said it had been in a shop, but I'm not sure if he meant as part of the shop fittings.  It's been re-painted a very pale grey, though it looks white and fits the space just right.  

I've spent the day sorting out my piles of books and deciding which ones to put in there.  All the sewing/ quilting ones have stayed in my workroom, and cookery ones in the kitchen, but the gardening, interiors, crochet, and other random ones have gone in.  I made myself get rid of quite a few paperbacks and ones I know I'll never look at again and now I've still got some shelf space to fill :)
Not sure what to use the cupboards for. Maybe storing my spare wool, and I might use a drawer for seeds and catalogues.
I think the keys in the doors need some pretty tassels or something so I'm off to see what I can find!

Friday, 14 October 2011

More Hooky

I'm confined to the kitchen again today, while the front door and patio doors are done.  It's all looking very nice, but of course now the window sills are looking like they need re-painting.  I really don't want to start decorating again.  How on earth do you do it with a dog in the house that's bound to end up knocking over the paint tin or getting it all over herself?  Plus once you start, then the skirting, cornice and doors would all need doing too!  
Think I'll stick with the "shabby" look a bit longer :)

I had a hunt through internet land and ordered a ball of the Cascade wool in Coral from Here.  I wasn't sure at first if it was a bit bright, but now I absolutely love it.  A really pretty creamy orange that adds a bit of "zing". The balls are 100g, so are quite good value at £7.49 and it is beautifully soft and lovely to work with.
Here's where I am today, adding the next rounds.

I've been thinking about colours and why we all have our favourites. The ones that we come back to time and again.  I think for me, it's the ones that remind me of flowers, particularly beautiful mixed summer borders.  Maybe that's why I never feel happy with dark blues, brown,  mustard,  etc because you just don't get flowers in those shades.  Just a thought!

I'll leave you with a couple of pic's I took this morning from our landing.  I never tire of the view from here and when there's a pink sky it's stunning.

Wednesday, 12 October 2011

A chance to catch up with my crochet

The window fitters started yesterday and it hasn't been as bad as I thought it might.  They were working on the sitting room and my workroom, so I moved a dog gate to the kitchen door and we spent the day in there, with Lottie complaining a bit that she couldn't get out, but mostly happy with her new bed on the floor.
Not being able to do much else,  I sat in there with my laptop and crochet and churned out about 70 more little squares, making 5 of each of 24 colours in total. The Cascade wool I ordered months ago was out of stock and still hasn't arrived, which is a shame, as I think it needs some peachy colours to lift it a bit. But I'll carry on without.
Here's the squares ready to have the next round added.

Today we're shut in the sitting room, which is much more comfy, but Lottie's still not happy!  I'll be glad when it's all done.

Saturday, 8 October 2011

This and That

The garden has been very neglected recently and is next on my "to do" list, but the dahlias are looking amazing.  I haven't been picking many for the house, but as long as they are dead-headed they'll keep going 'till the frosts.  I think they seem to have bigger flowers when left on the plant anyway so for now I'm enjoying seeing them from the kitchen.  Here's a bit of a flower-fest to brighten up the day!

The bedroom tidying has gone well.  Youngest girl didn't want me to change anything or "prettify" it, not really sharing my love of all things flowery, haha!  Anyway, I gave it all a thorough clean and just generally got all the stuff off the floor.  Both rooms have got big walk in cupboards in the eaves, but I'm going to have a break before I tackle them!

I left the old duvet near the front door ready to throw out and guess who decided it was a great dog bed!  Ironic, since she's always turned her nose up at proper dog beds, preferring the sofa, or if no-ones looking, our bed!  I decided to cut it up to make some doggie size duvets which she seems to approve of. 

Just need to make some covers that I can remove for washing.  I've got an old duvet cover that is just the job.
I also made one for the floor in the vain chance she might use that sometimes!  I cut the cover off and cut a strip of filling about 1/3 the width and then folded it in 3, like this

Then I re-used the cover, sewing all round and trimming with pinking shears to make a nice comfy bed.

Hopefully it might keep her off our new sofa!