Thursday, 30 October 2014

Some old tutorials, ressurected

A few years ago - way back in February 2009 in fact, I submitted a tutorial to a magazine for a daisy chain.

I had been mulling over this idea for a while.  What I wanted was a proper style daisy chain, with interlocking daisies, that could be added/removed to make various lengths - according to how it needed to be worn.

I had totally forgotten all about it until I was sorting out a box of stuff and found the original piece, the actual one that was sent away to be photographed for the publication.

Made using a needle and thread and small seed beads, each daisy locks into the next, just as if you were sitting in a daisy strewn meadow, randomly picking the flowers, trying to get your nail through the stem to make a hole for the head of the next daisy to pop through.

I never did that though - being a nail biter, I could never get the hole in the stem.  So, perhaps, this project was to fill in a part of my life that was missing something.

Of course, you could make it bracelet size, head band size, or necklace size.

I have now resurrected the original pattern, re-written it in a better format and put it up for sale for the price of a cup of coffee  :)

If you would like it, you can find it HERE  :)

I have also listed this one.... it is a cube bead bracelet, also beadweaving, a technique called Right Angle Weave, or RAW for short.

This pattern managed to bag the front cover, so you can imagine I was rather pleased about that  :)

It was way back in June/July 2009 and the magazine was Bead.  I have had the cover of magazines a few times now, but this one was the nicest I think - due to the zingy colours perhaps.

Anyway, if you fancy this one too and would like to donate to my wine fund, you can find it HERE.

I will be adding some more as and when I have some spare time.

Saturday, 25 October 2014

Broomstick Crochet wristwarmer gloves

Following on from my previous post on the Broomstick Crochet scarf, here are some wristwarmers   :)

Easy to make with no shaping, just the technique of the broomstick crochet to get - which is quite easy really, it's only two lines of pattern, one of them being a Double Crochet row.

If you fancy having a go you can find a free tutorial for Broomstick crochet HERE.

Or you can find the pattern for the wristwarmers HERE.

Or you can buy a kit for the wristwarmers HERE and the scarf HERE.   :)

Whooooo, that was a lot of "HERES"   :)

Friday, 24 October 2014

Kid's Club - Week 1

This week I started my Halloween themed Kid's Club for half-term up at Hobbycraft, Carlisle.

After doing a Kid's Club in the summer, I thought I would trial a half-term one to see how it went.
 Feedback I got from the summer one was that I was missing out the Scottish school goers who start back at school at different times, and as we live right on the border  (just 6 miles from Scotland in fact) I realised it was better to offer them to everyone.

So....... I set up two weeks of activities, made all my samples, turned up every day  (as it was a 'drop-in' class) and sat and waited.

Day one, no one turned up, but on day two I had the most charming little girl called Isla, who came along with her Nana to make a felt shape.

Isn't it just marvellous?  And, believe it or not, she didn't have much help at all.  A very clever young lady as she is only four years old!

As I had my kit from the previous day in the car and it was a quiet session, I offered that up as an activity too, so Isla made herself a most colourful bat keyring from Shrink Plastic.

Sadly, Isla was the only person to come along and do some crafts with me the whole week.

Here's hoping next week will be busier.  If you know anyone that might be interested, please feel free to share this blog post.  :)

Clean Eating Cookies

I got this recipe from a friend, and they are really quite delicious.

The recipe is so simple and easy, and so open to lots of different variations, I can see these being a firm favourite in our house.

Let me share it with you.

What you need:

  • 4 ripe bananas
  • 6oz Porridge Oats
  • 4oz Peanuts & Raisins
  • Real Vanilla Essence
  • Cinnamon
What you do:
  • Mash up the bananas with a fork.

  • Chuck in the oats and raisins, cinnamon and vanilla essence and give a good mix.

  • Divide the mixture into 8 - this gives you a very large cookie, so saves you having two  ;)   You might want to half them again if you don't want big cookies.  Pop the balls of mix onto greaseproof paper.

  • Flatten them down slightly and bung them in the oven.  Gas 6, for about  minutes.15-20 mins.
  • Hide ...... I mean, share  ;)

You can of course substitute the nuts for other things, like chocolate chips (not so healthy), dried cranberries, coconut, pecans..... the list is endless.

Thursday, 23 October 2014

A Crochet Cellular Baby Blanket

I've just finished another baby blanket, a cellular one.  I was reading that cellular ones are better so  if the baby gets underneath it they can still breath through the holes.

I used a James C Brett yarn called "Cotton On" which is a gorgeously soft feel yarn in a 50% Cotton / 50% Acrylic mix.   The drape on it works so beautifully on a baby blanket.

I used a variagated colourway - which to be honest, does not show the pattern up as much as I would have liked it too.  A plain colour would have shown this square design off so much better.

The pattern was Sirdar Snuggle DK, pattern number 1299. As you may see from the booklet photo, it looks much crisper in a plain shade.

Still, it's a lovely colourway  :)

This blanket is to go with the last one I made which you may remember, the zig-zag pram blanket, and the matching teddy bear.  The recipient has yet to make her appearance in this big wide world, but her mummy seems to like them   :)

Wednesday, 22 October 2014

Broomstick Crochet Scarf

I have been having a wee bit of a fiddle with Broomstick crochet.  It has been yonks since I did this.... yonks and yonks.  But it was like it was yesterday when I picked up that super-sized knitting needle and started to play.

I used an Aran weight yarn with a 4,5mm hook and a 20mm knitting needle for this scarf.

5 pattern repeats across until the yarn ran out   :)

It's James C Brett - Monsoon, which I believe they have discontinued now.  I am so sad about that as I love it.  You may remember I did a jumper a while back in this yarn, and also started a bag

 *** sigh ***

I am going to make this into a kit, so watch this space   :)

Tuesday, 21 October 2014

Norman, the Knitted Dinosaur

Meet T-Rex, a knitted dinosaur I have been working on for a commission.  He was to be a gifted, and now I have had confirmation that the person has received him, I can share the photos.  :)

He is rather large and I missed taking a photo of him beside anything to show him to scale, but this is him sitting on a full size pouffe.

Oooo, just look at those eyes - piercing!

He was from a so called 'kit' which turned out not to be much of a kit at all as you had to go out and buy stuffing, eyes, pipe-cleaner and florist wire as well as a doll's long sewing needle to sew him up with!  So basically, all that was in the 'kit' was the yarn and a pair of knitting needles.

The teeth took hours to make, but were quite good fun to do.


He has been named Norman and is getting on well in his new home  :)

Monday, 20 October 2014

Ruby's new slow bowl

Ruby the puppy has a little bit of a flatulence issue.  Quite bad in fact, and she has a habit of letting one go then walking away from it in disgust, leaving you with the lingering stench.

So we decided to get her a slow-bowl, to slow down her eating which hopefully, in turn, will slow down her digestion and stop her doing so many bottom burps.

There are a few to choose from, but in the end I went with the orange swirly one.

She didn't quite know what to make of it, having a cautious sniff before shoving her nose in and delicately picking out her kibble.

So far so good though, a definite drop in puppy gasses, which can only be a good thing.

If you fancy one yourself, you can find them HERE, on Amazon.

ps: The Amazon links I've scattered throughout the page are affiliated  if you click and buy I might get a few pennies.  

Friday, 17 October 2014

Slow Cooker Sweet Potato Risotto Recipe

I made myself this dish the other day and it was really rather yummy, so thought I would share it  :)

I was good and measured it for you - kinda......


What you need:
  • Risotto Rice  (Or I used the Gallo 3 Grains box which is a mix of rice, spelt and barley.)
  • A good sized Sweet Potato
  • A cup-a-soup sachet of your choice
  • Herbs & Spices of your choice
What you do:  

  • Pour a 'cup'  (100g) per person of rice into the cooker.

  • Peel and chop up the sweet potato and chuck that in too.

  • Grab your choice of cup-a-soup - I particularly like this Creamy Thai flavour, and spinkle it on the rice & sweet potato.

  • Spice it up a bit if you like with curry powder, or other herbs.

  • Cover everything with water, turn on the slow cooker and forget about it for 3-4 hours.

  • Eat   :)  The result is a lovely creamy, no hassle, no effort risotto style dinner  :)  Deeelishus!

 (That little thing that may look like a fly, isn't.  It is a bit of parsley - I am a vegetarian, don't you know?)

Change the soup, change the spices, change the veggies - what can you come up with?