Thursday 31 March 2016

A glass Cadbury's Creme Egg!

I recently ran a class on these cute Amigurumi Creme Egg chicks, designed to pop perfectly over an egg to give as an Easter Gift.

Then one day I noticed that one of my chick was significantly heavier than the others.... why?   I puzzled.  Squeezing the egg from the nether regions of the chick I soon discovered why...because it was made of glass!

Well, there could only be one person who could do such a thing and that was Hubster.  Yep, he had stolen a chocolate Creme Egg then nipped out to The Shed to make a glass one to replace it.  He even sandblaster the logo into the side.

He is a bit clever my Hubster.

And you just cannot tell when the eggs are dressed in their chick costumes  ;)

Wednesday 30 March 2016

A crisp white crochet baby blanket

A colleague at work was leaving to have a baby and I wanted to make her a blanket.  Now I usually do my baby blankets in bright colours - perfect for hiding ground in rusk and baby puke, but I thought, for a change, I would do a nice crisp white one.

I decided to do a lovely textured pattern to make up for the whiteness, so did this one that I call "kisses".

A couple of rows of Trebles for edging left me some little holes in which I could thread a ribbon  (You didn't think I would actually leave it all white did you?)

And it was finished.   I am quite pleased with this one, I think it looks quite traditional with a twist.

Tuesday 29 March 2016

How to make a quick Yarn Wrapped Wreath

These Wreaths are so easy to do, yet look so beautiful on display.

All you need is a styrofoam wreath ring and some scrap yarn, and as simple as it sounds, wrap the yarn around the wreath.

After wrapping this wreath once in yellow, I went back over it in pink, leaving small gaps for the yellow to show through.   Then I added some wired daisy embellishments to make it all spring like and cheerful.

Let me know if you make one for yourself.

Monday 28 March 2016

Crochet Firework Blanket

If you follow my Facebook page you have probably seen this blanket a hundred times by now.  It is my 'Firework' design and I am pretty pleased with it.

I had in mind "popping" colours edged with black to make them stand out.  Then I went a step further and made the coloured parts with variegated yarns, so they change colour within.

Each square is a little Catherine Wheel of colour, just like a Firework.  Edged in black to represent the night sky - as there is no point setting Fireworks off during the day is there?

I just used my stash for this blankets, hence the many different colours throughout, but I think it works ok.

I will write up the pattern very soon   :)

Sunday 27 March 2016

Crochet Easter/Spring Bunting - Free Tutorial

I am aware that is probably a little late for me to tell you about this Easter Bunting that I made for the Hobbycraft Blog, but hey!  Bunting is not just for Easter, and this gorgeous soft springtime colours mean you could drap it around your house to feel all fresh and springy, ready for summer.

It is made in crochet, UK terms, and you can find the step-by-step photo tutorial over on the Hobbycraft Blog.

Do let me know if you make some.

Saturday 26 March 2016

Plate Weaving at Rheged

During the half-term holidays, the week that the Harris Tweed exhibition began, I was asked to pop along to Rheged Centre and do some crafts for young folks.

I decided on Plate Weaving, as Harris Tweed is woven, and I needed something to fit in with the theme of the exhibition.

I also added little woolly hats as a side in case they finished their plate weaving early.

As it happened, they all seemed to want to go for the mini woolly hats first !!

But how cute are they?  And they sit perfectly on the top of a pop bottle  (or wine bottle for the parents  :) )

But plates were also weaved -  in and out, round and round with colourful yarns.

I did three sessions in all, one after another. It was quite tiring but a great day.  Can't wait to go back!

Have you ever been to Reghed?  It's close to the M6 at Penrith, only a mile or so down the road.  The centre is kind of hidden in a grassy dome and there is loads to do for children there.  Check out the website and find out more.

Friday 25 March 2016

Young Folks Crafts over the Easter Holidays

Due to popular demand, during the Easter Holidays this year I will be offering some more Young Folks Classes.  

Each class is £6.00 per young person and runs from 

Age guidelines are 8-16 years.

The class times are all  12.30pm - 2.30pm  at Hobbycraft in Carlisle.  The places MUST been pre-booked as materials need to be prepared.  You can find booking details HERE.

The crafts are as follows:

Tuesday 29th March 2016 - Wool Wrapped Wreaths. 

Friday 1st April 2016 - Sewing Machine Bunting. 

Monday 4th April 2016 - French Knitting.

Tuesday 5th April 2016 - Beaded Bangles.

Friday 8th April 2016 - Button Tree Canvas.

If you would like any more information, please contact me on

Thursday 24 March 2016

Kid's Club over the Easter holidays

Due to popular demand, during the Easter Holidays this year I will be offering some drop-in Kid's Club workshops.  

Each class is £2.00 per child, per activity.  The craft takes around 30 minutes to complete so please allow enough time to finish.   The children need to be supervised by a parent or appropriate adult.

Age guidelines are 3-12 years.

The class times are all 10.00am - 12.00pm at Hobbycraft in Carlisle.  They are ran on a drop-in basis, so it will be first come, first served.

The crafts are as follows:

Tuesday 29th March 2016 - Mini Woolly Hats. 

Wednesday 30th March 2016 - Juggling Balls. 

Friday 1st April 2016 - Stained Glass Tissue Jars. 

Monday 4th April 2016 - CD Wind Spinners.

Friday 8th April 2016 - Cardboard Tube Owls.

If you would like any more information, please contact me on

Wednesday 23 March 2016

The Harris Tweed Exhibition at Rheged

A little while ago I was invited to the opening of the Harris Tweed Exhibition at the Rheged Centre near Penrith.

(I should have blogged a while ago about this but have just discovered the photos on my camera :) )

The exhibition is in conjunction with The Harris Tweed Authority and contains the  most stunning photographs by photographer Ian Lawson who spent many years travelling back and forth from the Outer Hebrides to make this collection.

Before heading stright into the exhibition we had a little glass of welcome fizz and an explore around a couple of exhibitors that had connections with the Outer Hebrides.

A gin maker......  How utterly gorgeous are these bottles?  It would have been worth buying the gin just for the bottle, if it not had been for the fact that the gin was quite gorgeous in itself.  With notes of Juniper, Coriander, Angelica Root, Orris Root, Cubebs, Bitter Orange Peel, Licorice and Cassia Bark and Sugar Help, it is a really unusual yet delicious Gin. You can find out more about it HERE.

Then it was off for a wander around the Harris Tweed shop, which has 15 different Harris Tweeds along with an especially commissioned Westmorland Tweed, all for sale by the meter.

Also in the shop are some gorgeous gifts, all made up using Harris Tweed and ready to treat yourself to.

Handbags, wallets, tablet cases....

And these delightful purses from Emma at Hole House Bags.

Really lovely gifts such as Harris Tweed hanging hearts and the cutest little owls.

Of course, I had to treat myself, well it would have been most rude not to have.

Then it was time to go into the exhibition to look at the magnificent photos and meet the artist.

Here is a small selection of Ian Lawson's photographs.  The Exhibition is full, do go and see them for yourself.  I love the way he teams a Harris Tweed up with each photograph here, it makes your really appreciate the colours of both the cloth and of nature.

And this is the man himself, on the right, with Patrick Grant!! 

 Oh, did I mention Patrick Grant was there?  Him of Saville Row and The Sewing Bee fame?  No?  Well here is another photo, with me grinning like a Cheshire Cat!
Him in Tweed, me in Double Denim...... I really need to re-think my wardrobe!

Patrick gave a little talk on his love for Harris Tweed and his many visits to the islands.

There were loads of interesting exhibits on show too alongside the photograph.  Like old looms from the Harris factories, and colour samples like these..

I'm so glad they don't use 'urine' to set the dyes any more, I can imagine it had quite a pungent smell when the cloth got warm!

This exhibition is running until the end of May (2016), if you get the chance, do go and see it.  It's FREE to get in and well worth seeing in my opinion.  (but I think Patrick Grant already left  ;)  )

Sunday 13 March 2016

Clover Adjustable Tassel Maker

These fab little gadgets popped into the Hobbycraft store recently, so of course, I had to take one home to try it out.

It is a Clover Tassel maker.  Basically an adjustable frame that you change to suit what size tassel you wish to make by using the screws on the side.

Then you simply wrap your yarn, cotton, ribbon, thread - anything you want to use really, around the frame, tie it in the middle, cut and wrap the tassley head bit.

It really is that simple and quick!   The instructions are clear and show you exactly what to do, and the tassels are really good when finished.  You could use them to make curtain tie backs, keyrings, earrings, corners for cushions, anything really.

Sorry for the duff photo though!!

Now, do I need one of these for myself?  I think I might do actually.