31 August 2012

A pocketful of rye

I think the Color Affection shawl of the last post not only turned out to be just what I needed at that moment, it also seemed to have sparked off the knitting bug within me again.  As result of all the enjoyment I got from Colour Affection, I wanted to knit more.

I had just started a lovely pattern from Louisa Harding's Beresford Beach when we went on our Cornish jaunt.  An appropriate pattern choice for a holiday trip with a name like that.  The pattern itself is called Rye and as you can see, this is a knit for my Little Miss.

It was a nice quick knit as it's in aran weight yarn and I was fairly whizzing through it when a little disaster befell my precious knitting equipment.  See if you can guess what happened as I tell the tale...

I was merrily stitching away on the sofa in our cozy little holiday chalet when I was called away for some reason or the other.  I plopped everything down on the sofa to attend to whatever it was, intending to come back and pick up where I left off later.  Next moment, my Little Angel comes jumping into the room, skipping around with girlish enthusiasm.  (Can you see where this is going?)  She then took a gigantic leap off the floor and onto the seat in question.  There was a small but definitely audible crack and I knew exactly what had happened... Yep, under the poor distraught child I discovered a  broken knitting needle laying pitifully on the cushion.  Disaster!

I hastened to reassure my madam that the fault was mine for leaving my stuff all over the sofa.  With a side note that maybe a quick glance in the direction she was about to chuck herself might have served us both well in this case and certainly would be a useful guideline for future life.

Now what to do?  Here I was, miles from home and my familiar yarny haunts.  Knitting to be done, time to do it in and yet no way of doing it.  I was using Knit Pro circular needles so I needed not just any old needle, but a replacement tip.  That required not only a knitting shop, but one that would be likely to stock such a thing.  A search of the internet showed me knitting places in Cornwall but the I couldn't find out for sure if they would have what I wanted.  I couldn't drag my poor family all around the South West of Britain on my quest for a replacement so there was only one thing to be done.... appeal to to great and the good of Ravelry!

And of course, they didn't fail me.  I had suggestions and sympathy within a matter of hours and the next morning, my knight in shinning armour was there to rescue me.  I got a message from a lady that told me not only was there a knitting shop in the closest town to me, St Ives, but that that shop very much did stock Knit Pro tips and that she was the proud owner of the said shop.  I was saved!

We found a moment to pop into this fine shop that same day and Kay, the wonderful and kind owner of The House of Bartlett actually replaced my poor broken needle absolutely free.  I was a little uncertain that I should accept this but she tells me that the Knit Pro needles are guaranteed for a year and she'd be able to send my broken one back and not be out of pocket one little bit.  Isn't that just the sweetest thing of her to do though?  Thank you again, wonderful Kay.

It didn't take me long after this incident to finish off this pretty little dress, and Little Miss obliging donned the garment and consented to a garden photo shoot once we arrived home.  She's likes it and is very happy about the fact I let her choose which colours the stripes should be.  (Purple is her favourite at the moment.)

As for me?  I extremely pleased with how it turned out but it's taught me a very important lesson too.

When you put your knitting down, make sure it's out of harms way.  Every, single, time.

S x

28 August 2012

Vanilla knitting

I hope dear Annie, of Knitsofacto fame, if you're reading, you'll forgive me using your newly coined term in my title but it does so perfectly describe that type of mindless repetitive knitting which can be so relaxing.  It's a term that's already slotted seamlessly into my knitting vocabulary and I would imagine I'm not alone!

After I had completed the epic saga that was the Grannie Patches Blanket I felt the need for something completely different.  Something calm, relaxing, mindless and I don't know... palette cleansing.

So I choose Color Affection.  I'm sure many of you will be familiar with the pattern as it's a firm favourite on the Ravelry pattern pages already.  It's one that I found recently myself and it seemed like the perfect answer after all that frantic hooky, row after row of mindless knit stitch.

I'm sure many of you will be shuddering at the mere thought of such a thing and I can assure you there was a time when I would have been right there with you.  I did fear that I would struggle with it.  I thought I might become bored and restless and want to start other things... but surprisingly, I didn't.  Not even once.

I loved it.  It was exactly what the doctor had ordered and far from being a slow, dull process I found that it whooshed past at an alarming rate.  Even those rows growing longer and longer with each and every increase just couldn't put me off.  I even found myself wishing there was more to come as I reached the end.  Wonders never cease.

I haven't really had the chance to wear this little beauty yet, as it's not really been cold enough to warrant it, but I adore very much already just from all the pleasure it's given me so far.

In fact, if I'm completely honest, I almost don't want to wear it yet as it looks so perfectly flat and shaped after it's blocking and the rippling folds look so neat and pretty that it almost seems a shame to mess with it's delightful unworn state.


S x

PS Yarny details and such are on my Ravelry project page.

23 August 2012

Hooray, hooray, it's a holi-holiday!

Well, we're back from our holiday. So why is it I feel like I still need one?

Not that it wasn't a lovely holiday.  It was very lovely and quite restful and relaxing too.  We went to Cornwall and despite the absolutely disasterous weather predictions before we went, we even got to enjoy a reasonable amount of sunshine.

The good thing about Cornwall is that there are two coastlines for you to choose from.  If the top has the best weather you can pick a beach along the top side.  If the bottom has the best weather, off you pop to the other side.  Such was our plan.  We eagerly watched the weather report each morning and then planned our destination for the day to ensure optimum chances of sunshine.

It worked pretty well too, as you can see from the pictures above.  That picture postcard view at the top there is Kynance Cove, just up a touch from the Lizard at the very tippy of the bottom toe.  There's quite a steep, winding route down to the beach but well worth it and stunningly beautiful.

We managed to avoid the worst of the weather until Thursday, when it caught up with us at Land's End.  It was a little blustery and even drizzly but we stuck it out in true British holidaying fashion and stayed until we had seen all that it had to offer.  A Pirates of the Caribbean show, two film 'experiences', a quest, a petting farm, a children's playground, the famous sign post, the 'End to End' exhibition as well as numerous shops and eateries and of course, the First and Last pub.  My my, things have certainly changed since my last visit!

Little Miss was very excited to visit Flambards again. She went last year with Nannie and Grandad and was pleased with the fact that she knew where everything was and took on the role of tour guide with much gusto.

We only really had one rainy day and that was the last one.  But, a meandering drive, some leisurely meals and the Board Games Olympics (me and LM in tied second place with 1 gold, 2 silvers and a bronze each) easily filled the time.

Isn't it a shame though that all that waits for you when you return home is the dreaded unpacking, a mountain of washing which turns into never-ending ironing and in our case, a dead fridge.

It's enough to make you long for another holiday...

S x

08 August 2012


What's that sound?  That's the sound of the summer holidays speeding by!

At the beginning of the holiday me and my Little One went on a jolly trip to top up her craft supplies and find some holiday entertainment.

I had plans for finally sorting out the 'hanging up of copious supplies of art work' problem in Little One's bedroom as part of my ongoing PCH quest.  She was obsessed with glitter and stickers.  Each of us left very happy with our selections.

So far though, all we've managed to make use of from that rather glorious pile is a little painting by numbers.

This week we're already far too busy to craft because we're preparing for the annual family jaunt to the beach.  Then, when we get back it'll be a rather special little person's birthday so preperations for that will be in full swing too.

By the time we've (or I've) recovered from all that it won't be too long until September is knocking on our door and the 'summer' such as it has been will be over.  I'm already wondering where it went.

So, there'll be no post next week while we're off on our rainy, beachy holiday and I'll update you when I can after that.

Thanks for keeping reading and I hope you're all enjoying your summer (if you've got one)!

S x

01 August 2012

Tough act to follow

Wow, you guys just blew me away with your response to my last post!  I'm slowly getting back to you all but it seems like that the Giant Grannie Patches post will be a tough act to follow.  Some lovely people have even started a Grannie Patchwork CAL on the Ravelry 'I Love Lucy' Group which is so awesome.

The only thing to do seems to be to go in a different direction altogether and talk about sewing instead!

This is one of those ideas I've had kicking around in my head for a long, long time.  I can't remember where I first saw it.  I thought I had it pinned, but I can't find it now.  I think it was the very clever Hen House though, and there's one in this post here (near the end with the cat).

Wherever it was that started it, I decided now was the time to make my own.

I certainly need the practise with triangles, my accuracy is not what it should be.  This cushion has certainly highlighted that.  Still, I'm pleased with the overall effect.

I did the front while school was still on, but happily I managed to catch a few hours the other day to finish it off.  The first time I've used my new machine's button hole maker too.  I need not have worried, it was easy peasy but I'm always learning when I'm sewing, that's for sure.

And I'm very happy to see it sitting in my comfy, crafty, corner spot.  Making it look just a little tiny bit more inviting I think.

I really do love those 30's fabric prints, they are so darling and I think the white fabric between really shows them off so well

I also found a few stolen moments for some baby crochet.  A little hat and booties set for my new niece.

The hat pattern is The Shell Stitch Beanie by Dainty Daisy and the booties are Leila Baby Booties by Rachel Hunsaker.  I've had my eye on these patterns for so long, waiting for a baby to come along.

So good to have such an adorable reason to make them now.  Being an Aunty sure is grand!

S x

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