The beauty of crafts

Last summer I picked up an embroidered picture from a little bric-a-brac stall at a local craft fair. It hangs on the wall outside our bathroom and I look at it many times everyday. It’s a lovely garden scene with a path leading through beautiful floral borders and a bird table alongside, all set off in a lovely antique gold style frame.

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I often look at it and wonder who the lady was that created it? Where did she live? Did she have a family? She must have spent many hours working on it.

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I love the detail of the flowers and it really makes me smile to look at it. The dark blue flowers on the right are my favourite. I wonder what variety they are? I don’t really know a lot about gardening yet but I’m inspired to learn.

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And these delicate pink flowers, so detailed.

I wonder if she ever thought someone else would get so much enjoyment from it when she made it? Don’t you think it’s a wonderful testament to the fact that we all put so much time and love into our craft projects that they might get a second lease of life and be enjoyed in this way? The beauty and longevity of crafts. It really gives me a warm glow inside to think about this, don’t you agree?

Do you have any little gems in your collection that you’ve found or inherited? I’d love to hear about them. It would be lovely to know you’ve stopped by…

Sarah x

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Sunday shortie

Hello! If you read my last post you’ll know how much my flowers are making me really cheerful at the moment. Well yesterday I finally got around to planting some spring flowers in containers in the garden. I’ve had them ready to go for a week or two but I have to be in the mood to do gardening and the weather has to be ok too! Needless to say I’m really chuffed with myself for finally getting them planted. Here are my results…

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I bought the chimney pot on ebay a couple of weeks ago. I love it as it brings height and interest to the display next to our purple shed! And look – my pretty pink hyasinths are now fully out too!

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I’m very much a novice, fair weather gardener. As we rent the house we try to stick to containers too rather than to spend loads of money on things we can’t move.
However this little bit of work and not much money has provided lots of lovely colour in the house and the garden to make me feel like spring is around the corner!

Ripply ramblings

Hello lovely readers. I hope you are well. In my last post I mentioned how it was coming up to my birthday and that I was going to be really busy but would try to make sure I kept up with my blog posts. Well clearly I failed and three weeks have passed. I did have a great birthday though! I’ve just realised that I think it has got to a point where I was putting off writing a post because I felt like I ought to be catching you up with everything that I’ve been doing in the meantime and that felt like a big task. Then I realised that the whole point of writing this blog was to write for fun and to share the things I enjoy making and so to stress about it is ridiculous and I should just sit down and write!

So here we are. It somehow got to nearly the end of February! The seemingly endless rain has seemingly started to run out of steam and I’m almost driving to and from work in day light again, all of which add up to a pretty cheery mood really. Work has been pretty stressful the last couple of weeks so I’ve been so grateful to have a house full of colourful flowers to come home to after my birthday and Valentines day and they have helped to keep me smiling! Would you like to see? The lighting in these photos is awful so please forgive me – blame spontaneity!

I also have a ton of crafty projects on the go at the moment and that always gives me something exciting to come home to.

This lovely pile of chunky baby yarn…

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… is slowly turning into a baby blanket…

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… inspired by Lucy at Attic 24 and her lovely crochet ripple blankets. I wish I had the budget for all that lovely Cashmerino yarn she uses!

And here’s me playing around with the colours for the blanket on top of my foxy footstool, a pile of crochet squares and the front of a cushion cover they became…

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…and a pile of fat quarters I loved the look of but haven’t decided what to make them into yet! I got my sewing machine back from the servicing man last week and am determined to make more use of it although I keep procrastinating about a couple of projects I have in mind. I’m not that confident a sewer yet so I just need an evening when I’m in the mood to have a go and I’m going to sew up a storm – I’ll let you know how it all goes! And how exciting is it that the Great British Sewing Bee is back! Perfect timing to help get me motivated… Are you watching it?

That’s all for now. Thanks for reading!

Let’s get crafting!

I seem to have got through quite a few projects lately so I wanted to update my progress on my blog but today I’ll just focus on a couple of them. A few weeks ago I bought a copy of Let’s Get Crafting! Knitting and Crochet (Issue 52 if you’re interested!) because it contained a kit for a fox cushion – which given my last name (and that of the blog) I just couldn’t resist! I’d never bought this magazine before and at almost £8 I thought it seemed a little pricey but in this case it was definitely worth it. I also like the concept of the magazine – it contains several balls of wool and an appropriately sized pair of knitting needles and crochet hook and you can choose from a whole collection of patterns which ones you make, but obviously I went for the “Crafty Fox.”

So here he is…

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He’s positioned on my reading chair on the landing and cheers me up when I walk past!

So with the leftover yarn I had from the kit I wanted to make another one of the patterns from the magazine. A large, bright crochet flower really caught my eye. I wasn’t sure what I’d ever do with it but just had to make it! I did have to buy a new ball of orange yarn as I knew there wasn’t enough left over and didn’t have anything suitable in my stash.

Here you can see it in the un-finished state…

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As it turned out I didn’t have enough of the green yarn to finish the last row of petals either so I had to “re-interpret” the pattern from the magazine! It took a couple of attempts to work out how to complete it with the yarn I had but I managed in the end. The pattern is created by working a chain (which was meant to be a chain of 18 in the green section but I used 16) to make a series of loops behind the last row of petals and then you go around again crocheting different stitches along the loops of chains. The green petals should have been 1dc, 1htr, 1tr, 2dtr, 16trtr, 2dtr, 1tr, 1htr, 1dc (standard UK abbreviations). I used 2 trebles then 3 double trebles at each side instead of 1 and 2 respectively and only 12 triple trebles in the middle but this was enough to ensure the green petals still showed behind the red ones in front. Ta-da…!

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Having started out not knowing what to do with it when it was done I think I will try to find a way to mount it in a box frame so that it can go in my kitchen with the big green cupboard (see first post!) and won’t get damaged. What do you think?

Thanks for reading my blog – I’d love to hear what you think! One last thing before I go – I ordered some yarn to work on a knitted/crocheted patchwork blanket I’ve been working on all year and I got so excited when it arrived…

DSCF1715  It started out life as the Knit and Stitch Collection from Bergere De France but I got bored of getting the magazines each week for £4.50 when I didn’t like the rest of the patterns very much so I’ve decided to free-style it from now on! Look out for my progress in future blog posts.

‘Till next time… happy crafting!