26 July 2015

New Pattern: Quite Quant

I'm really excited about this one!

Actually, I could probably always say that, because if I didn't love it so much I'd never manage to get the pattern all written out and ready, but it is true.  I just am so happy with how this little blanket turned out.

It is a pretty small blanket, it'd be just right to use on a push-chair.  It's the sort of size blanket I use when I take my little niece out for a walk (and hopefully nap).  It'd work for a large pram or carrycot too though I would think. 

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It's the first time I've made a blanket entirely from Debbie Bliss Baby Cashmerino and it was such a treat to do it.  It's so lovely to crochet with and the colours are just gorgeous.  The ones I went for are hopefully in keeping with the sort of sixties 'flower power' type feel I was going for with these little quarter petal flowers.  I think they are very Mary Quant and overall it's got quite an Orla-ish feel about it too.

Rarely, for me, I actually wasn't very far at all into the blanket when I decided I had to come out with some sort of layout plan so that I could get all the colours nicely arranged and 'just so'.  I did a little thing on the computer so I knew what colours were going where.  I had a few goes at it, trying to get it all just perfect but to be honest it seemed impossible to order them perfectly without falling into a repeating pattern, which I prefer not to do.  So in the end it's still a little random in places but doesn't make it any less perfect in my eyes.

As I say, it's not my usual way to plan it all out in advance like this but I must say it does speed things up when you do.  Normally I enjoy making decisions as I go, it's all part of the fun.  But this method means that once you are ready to join, you just whizz through it.  Pretty cool!

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The part that caused the most agonising, was the border.  I had an idea for a quite wide border, which was going to echo the petals and be very in keeping with the sixties theme.  It was all quite lovely and thinking my test piece was perfect, I edged the whole blanket in it.  But when it was done, lovely as it was, it just wasn't right.  It was too overwhelming and so it had to go in favour of something simple and understated that allows those cute flowers that somehow manage to look geometric too, doing the talking instead.  Much better.

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: :   Q U I T E   Q U A N T   : :

by Sandra Paul

A full written pattern which includes:

UK Crochet terms and stitch abbreviations (with a guide to convert to US terms)
Helpful pictures
Layout information (if you want to duplicate my colour layout)
 Photo tutorials for special stitches
Crochet chart
Also includes guidance on yardage for making larger sizes


(Find more details in the Cherry Heart Pattern Shop)

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S x



23 July 2015

And relax.... Sort of!

The holidays are here.  Phew!

So school has finished, the bags are unpacked, the uniform is washed (or chucked) and the feet are well and truly up.  Well, sort of.  We're not having to get up so early at least, which is a very good thing.   We don't always hurry to get dressed, another good thing, especially as far as Little Miss is concerned.  
But as ever, holidays with children are not idle affairs and this week we have a riding lesson every day, a pony day, a trip to the library, play time with a friend and a visiting niece to keep us busy, as well as all the usual mundane chores to fit in.  Yikes.

I think the first steps in the gradual transition from Mummy, 'Entertainments Officer', to Mummy 'Taxi Driver' are beginning with this holiday though.  Today I will ferry her to 3 different locations, tomorrow only 1.  I suppose this will all become very tedious, but at the moment the pockets of time that I get between trips are welcome opportunities to get things done.

The hot play things of the holiday so far are Play-Doh which is having a massive revival at the moment.  Many hours have been spent at the table, rolling, cutting, squeezing and moulding so far.  Colour changing cars, hot and cold water necessary to make the miraculous move from one colour to another.  Watching 'You've been Framed' or 'Brainiac' on You Tube, which makes a refreshing change from 'Pets that make you laugh out loud 2' that was popular for a long time.

But then the subject of pets is also not far away.  The campaign has been under way for some time.  Since she's realised a pony simply isn't going to happen she's turned her thoughts to various different pets. Dogs, rabbits, hamsters and gerbils are all under consideration and she informs me that she's bookmarked a few of her favourite dog breeds that would work best for our family, should we go for that option....

Watch this space eh?

 As for me, I'm trying to take it as easy as I can over the summer.  We'll be going away soon, so I've just started a small and portable little knitting project (top pic) with this amazing yarn, Angora Merino by Regia.  Have you used it?  It's amazing - so soft!  I'll fill you in more on that later though.

I just wanted to tell you grateful I am for all your help and wonderful suggestions for potential yarn and fabric emporiums that I might be able to visit while on the other side of the pond.  I'm not getting so much time to keep up with emails and messages at the moment, always difficult in the holidays.  So, apologies if I haven't gone back to you personally but it really is very much appreciated I promise you.

I'm also most grateful for your input on Flotsam and Jetsam.  Who would have though tassels would be so divisive?  Some of you loved them, others would happily lose them.  Being a well documented lover of 'dangles' of all sorts, I do have to say that I'm all for them but I was most inspired by your thoughts on the subject and (as mentioned on Instagram) have merrily dismantled 'Flotsam' to make a new and improved 'Jetsam'.  I think it's going rather better this time round too, but I'll keep you posted...

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Last of all, I just wanted to let you know that the little Flowery Baby Blanket (shown here) is finished.  Yippee moment!  I'm just checking over the pattern and will hopefully get it out before we jet off to sunny climes.

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S x



19 July 2015

Sneak Peeking and Advice Seeking!

: : Sneak Peeking : :

(From my IG feed)

I thought I'd just pop in and show you a little something I've got cooking up that I'm really excited about...

These cutesy flowers are making up a little baby blanket and I've almost finished it too.  It's all a bit Orla-ish and Quant-y and I love it so much.  I'm just trying to get the last bits together to I can get the pattern out before we go away for the summer.  Yay, holidays!

Anyway, that brings me nicely to the other thing I was going to say...

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: :  Advice Seeking  : :

(Calling all Floridians (is that a thing?))

We're going to sunny Florida this year (we'll be in Orlando) and I was just wondering if any of you know any good yarn or fabric shops that should be on my list of places to visit while I'm there?

You know the kind of things I like, yummy yarns in all colours and sizes.  Good sock yarns, something I can't get in the UK maybe?  And fabulous fabrics, I love the cute and ditsy kind best.

Where do you like to go for your craft shopping, friends from Florida?

S x



16 July 2015

Flotsam and Jetsam

This blog has always been a place to share my crafty creations.  Pretty much all of them.  So everything I've made, be it good or bad, ends up here.  There are a few exceptions, but not many.

Most of the time I'm happy to share them because to a greater or lesser extent I like or even love them.  Sometimes things don't go to plan and I end up a little less enamored with them but I'm going to keep sharing them anyway because that's life, especially a crafty one, isn't it?

It started with love though, this, or rather these, projects.  A love of an interesting new yarn that I'd not seen before.  I found it at Black Sheep Wools when I was last there and fell for it straight away, buying up a few balls with not much idea in mind other that the fact that surely they would be good for something.  It's called Beachcomber by Sirdar, have you seen it?  It's a cotton yarn that's got a really interesting spin to it.  It's one of those that goes from fat to thin and it's sort of wibbly, like it's been for a light crimping.  Most interesting.

The colour above is called 'Collecting Shells' which is just a great name and I decided to go for something very summery and light.  My plan was to come with a pattern for a simple, one skein, make it in a couple of hours type scarf that I could throw on with summer outfits.

I guess it is that.  It was very quick and simple to make.  It's light to wear, you could throw it on with summer outfits... but I don't.  It just doesn't grab me the way I hoped it would.  I called this one 'Jetsam'.  I think it's fairly appropriate.  I wanted a rough and ragged, washed up look to it.  But I think it's my old nemesis the variegated yarn that is it's undoing for me.  As is so often the case, I love the colours.  I adore how it looks on the skien.  But, once it's made up.... meh.

I had another couple of skeins though, just white this time, so I thought I would have another go.  I was aiming that chic look, that I'm sure you'll be familiar with called 'discarded fisherman's net'.   It's so often the way isn't it?  While wandering along the beach you come across some net, now full of holes and you think to yourself, 'that would make a good scarf, I shall pick it up and wear it.'

Ok, maybe not but for some reason that was the look I was thinking I wanted.  Similar to the first one but this one was going to be called 'Flotsam' and was going work so much better this time around...


Oh well, you win some, you lose some. To console myself slightly I do think I pulled off the 'knackered netting' effect quite well.  It's just that in doing so I didn't create anything I really want to wear around my neck. And I was so sure the general 'ragged beach things' look it was going to work.  And you know what? I've still got a little niggle that tells me that a 'Jetsam' made in 'Flotsam' colours might not be bad, but all in all I suppose I really ought to accept that this is an idea best consigned to the scrap heap!

S x



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