Saturday, 29 November 2014

Some more camera shots, with colour selector

Last week I shared a few photos with you, after playing with my new camera.  You can find the post HERE if you want to look back.

This week I played with a fabulous little effect called "Colour Selector", and here are a few shots for you to look at   :)

The camera picks out the colour you set it to pick out, and leaves the rest black & white.   Quite effective don't you think?

The next two shots are the same rosehip bush but selecting a different colour.  One picking out the rosehips and the next picking out the leaves.

And here is one I took in a restaurant, I like the atmosphere it hints at, moody with a hint of red passion  :)

Then there is this one.  The red selection has picked out the colour in the wine, the chilli in the naan and the tomatoes on top of the Biryani  :)

Such fun.  (little things please little minds, as they say.)

Friday, 28 November 2014

Lynn's amazing "12 Days Of Christmas" cake

Sometimes I am just totally blown over by other people's work, and this is one of those times.

Now, I know I can bash out a cake or two, and stick some icing on so it looks half decent, but please take a minute to appreciate the work in this "12 Days Of Christmas" cake.

It has been made by Carlisle Hobbycraft colleague, Lynn, and is currently in the window of the Carlisle store if you want to pop up and have a look at it yourself.

Just look at all those little figures.  How detailed and amazing are they?

5 gooooooollllllllld rings......

And a Partridge in a Pear Tree  :)

But before I go, look at this other one she did for the managers big birthday  :)

Do do do, da do do do, da do do do, da do do do do........ do........ do do....... do do   (strippers theme  :) - have I given you an earworm now?)

Thursday, 27 November 2014

Dreadlock Rasta hat - the pattern

A wee while ago, back in February in fact, I made a rasta style hat with dreadlocks.

I have been asked a few times for the pattern, but I made it out of my head as I went along, without the forsight of scribbling it down.

So, I took some time this week and looked it over carefully, fiddled with my hook a bit and a written pattern emerged.

Please be aware this has not been tested, so let me know if there are any mistakes and I will edit accordingly.

It is written in UK crochet terms, using a 4.5mm hook.

You will need:

  • 100g Black DK yarn
  • 50g Yellow DK yarn
  • 50g Green DK yarn
  • 50g Red DK yarn
  • 4mm Crochet hook
  • Wool sewing up needle
The pattern:

Start with the black yarn and make a magic ring
  • CH 3 then work 14 TR's into the ring.  Pull the tail tight so the ring closes up. (15)
  • CH3 then work a TR into the base of that chain.  Work 2 x TR's into each stitch around. SS to join  (30)
Change to green.
  • CH 3,  then ** 2 x TR's into the next ONE. Work a TR into the next ONE stitch then repeat from ** SS to join  (45)
  • CH 3, work a TR into the next ONE stitches, then ** 2 x TR's into the next ONE. Work a TR into the next TWO stitches then repeat from ** SS to join  (60)
Change to yellow.

    • CH 3, work a TR into the next TWO stitches, then ** 2 x TR's into the next ONE. Work a TR into the next THREE stitches then repeat from ** SS to join  (75)
    • CH 3, work a TR into the next THREE stitches, then ** 2 x TR's into the next ONE. Work a TR into the next FOUR stitches then repeat from ** SS to join  (90)
    Change to red.
    • Work two rounds straight (90)
    Change to black.
    • CH 3, work a TR into the next THREE stitches, then ** 2 x TR's into the next ONE. Work a TR into the next FOUR stitches then repeat from ** SS to join  (105)
    • Work the next round straight (105)
    Keeping the stripes going........
    • Work two rounds straight in green (105)
    • Work two rounds straight in yellow (105)
    • Work two rounds straight in red (105)
    • Work two rounds straight in black (105)
    • Work two rounds straight in green (105)
    • Work two rounds straight in yellow (105)
    • Work two rounds straight in red (105)
    • Work two rounds straight in black (105)
    Continue with black.
    • CH 3, work a TR into the next TWO stitches, then ** TR2tog (using the next two stitches). Work a TR into the next THREE stitches then repeat from ** SS to join  (84)
    TR2tog = Treble two together.   Go as if to work a regular Treble stitch, but stop before you finish leaving two loops on the hook. Now go into the next stitch and do the same, again leaving two loops from the stitch on the hook, along with the loop from the last treble still on.  You will have three loops on your hook.  Wrap your yarn around and pull through all three.  This had made two trebles into one stitch.
    • Work a row of DC to finish (84)
    Dreadlocks.  (using black)
    • CH 43.
    • Work 2 x DC's into EACH chain across, turn.
    • Work 2 DC's into each chain across.
    Attach the dreadlocks to the rim of the hat, leaving a gap at the front where your face would go.

    For a printable PDF version of this pattern, please visit:

    Wednesday, 26 November 2014

    Christmas Stocking competition

    I thought it might be fun to throw a little competition out there for you all, and your offspring.

    The challenge is to design your own Christmas Stocking.

    This is the template you need to use....... print out out and get designing.

    These are the stockings I will be using to place your design upon, so the stocking colour can be either red or green, your choice,

    Simply email your designs to  I will reply to say I have it, if I do not reply you can assume I have not got it, so please try again.

    You can also pop them on my Facebook wall which you can find HERE

    All entries must be received by Saturday 13th December 2014, UK time.  Anything received after this date will not be accepted.  Only one entry per person please.

    All entries will go into a random generated draw and a number of entries will be picked at random.  The ones that are picked using this selection will then be put onto our Facebook page for the winner to be picked by our Facebook fans.

    The winning stocking will then be made up, as per the design, and posted to you in time for Santa's visit.  (Overseas entries will be accepted, but we cannot guarantee Christmas delivery for this year - but you can pop it somewhere safe for next year should you win.

    Ok, have I covered everything?

    Off you go then, get colouring   :)

    Tuesday, 25 November 2014

    Sukie the Sirdar Woolly Doll

    Recently, when I was going through my Mum's old vintage patterns, I came across this.... Sukie, the Sirdar Woolly Doll.

    Did you ever have one?

    They were quite the thing when I was young, I remember having a few, although my very favourite one was purple. 

    Well, it would seem very rude not to make one when the pattern is there in front of me, would it not?

    I might make one tonight, do you fancy joining me?  :)

    Monday, 24 November 2014

    Crochet Christmas Stocking

    I spotted a granny square crochet Christmas stocking on the front of a Hobbycraft free brochure - of course I had to make one right away.  Unfortunately there was no pattern inside, it was just an inspirational image, and a small one at that!  

    So I got to work making one of my own, using the little picture as inspiration.

    Using three shades of yarn......

    I made a series of random colourway granny squares, 4 rounds in each.
    19 square in total were used for this particular stocking.

    I then sewed them all together with an outside seam for design purposes.

    Then, making a final check that I couldn't find someone to credit, I found the instructions for the stocking on a Hobbycraft blog.   Mine is ever so slightly different in that it is joined in a different way with a row of DC's (Double Crochet) in a ridge, and a rim of DC's rather than TR's as in the pattern.  Otherwise, I don't think I did too bad a job   ;)

    You can find it HERE if you fancy a go.

    Sunday, 23 November 2014

    Beginners Patchwork at Hobbycraft

    On Friday I held a Beginners Patchwork class up at Hobbycraft in Carlisle.

    I took a big box of various fabrics, templates, needles, threads, etc..... and we all just dug in and got to work with a basic hexagon shape.

    Two hours later, and a lot of "ooooing and ahhhhhing" over fabric, we had the start of a patchwork panel.

    This is Janet's work....

    And Mary's.....

    And Elaine's....

    I think their fabric choices worked really well and looked superb together.   They also took enough home to add another couple of rounds, so can't wait to see them once they are a bit bigger.

    If you fancy having a go yourself I will be holding another one in the new year.   Check out my Facebook page for more details, or watch this space  :)

    Saturday, 22 November 2014

    Joe and the Camera - another visit to the Etterby Street window.

    If you have been following for a while you may remember a blog I did a year ago, almost to the day actually, about a window that changes all the time and is just, quite simply, magical.

    Click HERE to revisit, refresh or have a peep for the first time.

    In a nutshell I have been admiring this window for years, so when I found out last year that there was to be a book written about that very window I had to sneak myself along to the launch, (held in the actual house) to buy a copy.   That book was called "Joe and the Window"

    A year and 8 days on and there is now another book called "Joe and the Camera"
    This time I was invited to the launch, of course I had to go - the books are sold for fabulous causes both local and away, and they only cost £6.00.
    Yep, just £6.00 for a book that you can read to your little ones time and time again.  And trust me, they will love it.

    If you would like to buy a book for yourself you can find them here:

    So off I pop, camera in tow, to buy a book and take some more photos for you to drool over.

    It's just a regular terrace house, on a regular suburban street, in a small city, up North.

    Or is it?........... come inside and have a look.

    Could you live in a house like this?
    I certainly could, would and really, really want too  :)  I need my trees to grow in my garden so I can start hanging things off them  :)

    Speaking of gardens.... follow me into this one.

    Then at the end of the garden is a greenhouse.  The most perfect place for a cup of tea, a glass of wine, a read of a good book or some chill time.

    Thank you Hilary, for opening your door and letting us see your amazing collection of things.  If I visited every week for the rest of forever, I am sure I still wouldn't see everything.

    Wednesday, 19 November 2014

    The Big Christmas Gift Box

    Do you remember way back in February this year, it was my bloggy birthday (5 years) and I  put together, over a few weeks, a collection of random bits & bobs in a box, which went to one lucky person.  No?  Then you can read about it HERE.

    So now I have decided it is time to do it again.  I seem to accumulate loads of samples of bits I make and I really need to do something with them.

    This box is a CHRISTMAS gift to someone, it could be anyone.  The draw will be done by a random name generator and one person will win EVERYTHING in the box.  Whatever that might be at the time.

    I will open the list for names much nearer the time, but in the meantime I need to start popping things into the box. 

    The first is a knitted doughnut with beaded decorations. Because everyone needs a knitted doughnut in their lives....... don't they?

    What might be next, I  hear you ask.  Well, watch this blog, or my Facebook page for more updates   :)

    The draw will be on Thursday 18th December.  Anyone can enter, home or away   :)  I will let you know when it it open for entries  :)

    Tuesday, 18 November 2014

    My new camera & some B&W shots

    A few days ago, when I was visiting my parents, Daddy L mentioned that he had treated himself to a new camera, and wondered if I might like his old one  :)

    Well, how could I refuse such an offer.  The camera that I have at the moment, and love, was also one of his old ones and I do like to have a play with it, shooting all sorts of rubbish and things that look interesting - well to me anyway.

    Daddy L has a photography Facebook page, click HERE to go and visit if you like, and see what he does.

    My new toy is a Nikon Coolpix P510 Bridge Camera with a 43x wide optical zoom lens, which is rather nice  :)

    I was a little bit in awe of all the fabulous features it has.  One being black & white shooting. Now, I know, you can easily edit photos to end up being black & white with a computer program, but it's really nice to see them as you shoot.

    Another feature it has is 'colour selection' where you can choose one single colour that the camera picks out with the rest of the image being black & white - I feel I might have some fun with that one!

    In the meantime, here are some black and white shots that I took on my walk round the park the day after getting it   :)

    If you would like to see a few more that I took at the same time, you can find them on my photography Facebook page  :)