Saturday, 26 February 2011

Speedy blanket

 Hello, wow I have been away for a while. The weather has been dire so I haven't really had a chance to take any photos. Also I have been rather busy crocheting this blanket. It only took just over 2 weeks to complete - that must be a record - well it is for me anyway. After finishing the granny stripe blanket I realised I had quite a lot of yarn left over. I optimistically thought that I might be able to make another two blankets from the leftovers so I decided to just start on a quick large granny square blanket, changing the colour every two rounds (cos I'm lazy and hate changing colours too often) and started joining the squares once I had 12.
 I joined them using the turquoise wool, which I needed to buy extra for this purpose. Here is me sewing in the ends - this took the good part of one afternoon (whilst drinking tea and chatting to the lovely Alison from Gingercat) and one evening. I was quite honoured that the infamous ginger cat actually decided to sit on the blanket on my lap while I continued to sew in ends! She's such a cutie.
 And here is the finished blanket in full use. It is getting lots of snuggly cuddly times whilst my youngest watches her new favourite film - How to train your dragon. I am not entirely sure this blanket will last very long - it has been slept with, dragged around, tugged, rubbed, screwed up, jumped on. At least it's getting some use anyway! I have a small amount of Stylecraft wool left over and am just using it up - will let you know what it is once it is finished.

Another little thing I have not mentioned on here is some new furniture for the garden. I have been searching ebay for some time, looking for the perfect comfy seating to go on the decking. I was really hoping for a sofa and armchair set so we could really use the decking as another room. Well I was very lucky to find just what I needed - a cane sofa and two matching chairs for less than £10. My wonderfully kind husband offered to drive the just over 2 hour round trip to collect them. Luckily they fit in the boot of the car quite nicely so he didn't need to drive back in the rain with the sofa on the roof! Here is a photo of one of the chairs - the other chair and sofa are in the garage until I can treat them with tung oil or something else that will waterproof them - any ideas/suggestions?
I already have a plan for cushions - will take photos and post once I have made them. Hope you all have a fantastic weekend. Hopefully I will be posting a bit more regularly from now on. And as if by magic, as soon as I buy garden furniture we get hit by another cold spell - temperature is going to be just above freezing for the next few days - super! xxx

Monday, 7 February 2011

Storage solution

 As I type this, the sun is shining - long may it last, but I think there are some more clouds heading our way. I will make the most of the sunshine while it's here. Anyway, hope you all had a lovely weekend and thwe weather is as sunny where you are. Ours was full of the usual jobs - eldest to guitar lesson, youngest to swimming lesson, homework, cups of tea, Sunday roast (which stank the house out - it was roast pork which is just too fatty and smelly. I won't be doing that again in a hurry). My husband has been working abroad a lot recently so he has been very aware of jobs needing doing around the house when he is back home at weekends. He asked about my five foot high pile of sewing stuff, which was dumped in the corner of our bedroom and very difficult to get to/find anything. Before we knew it, we were in the garage shifting the above cupboard into the house. This cupboard (good old Ikea) used to live in the conservatory in our old house and was the home for toys and arts and crafts stuff. When we moved, we didn't know what to do with this cupboard as we don't have a family room/conservatory. It sat unloved in the garage for just over a year as I was waiting to decorate the hall before putting it in there.Unfortunately, we decided that it just wouldn't fit in the hall and we would have to squeeze it into our bedroom if I were to store any on my sewing stuff in there.
 And here is the cupboard squeezed into the corner of our room, with all my sewing bits and bobs squeezed inside. I have used every last inch of this piece of furniture and I am amazed at how much it has managed to hold. The cupboard doesn't match our bedroom furniture but it is fine for the time being, in fact, a lot better than a five foot high pile! Just look at the beautiful 1970s purple shagpile. It really is a thing to behold! It is absolutely threadbare and I can't wait to get rid of it.
Just to remind us all that not everything is perfect in blogland, here is a photo of my fabric stash, which currently resides in one half of the airing cupboard. I very luckily have a double width airing cupboard so there is more than enough room in there to jam in lots of fabric. As you can see, it has been jammed in rather carelessly and it could do with a sort out. One day.

Wednesday, 2 February 2011

 Hello, I haven't posted for a while - I was busy making things and here are the results. As you know, I got a dressmakers dummy for Xmas and I have been trying it out with a top which I started making at the end of last summer. I used a Prima pattern (nothing like a free pattern donated from my Mother in law's magazine) which was simple and quick to complete. Although as you know, I tend to have an issue with finishing things so the cut out fabric pieces sat in a carrier bag all through autumn and over Xmas. I thought this would be a good project to start with on the dummy. The fabric was from my Mum's fabric stash - she let me have a rummage a while ago - and it was so lovely to work with. It is quite a light jersey, very stretchy and doesn't fray once cut. A dream fabric to use when sewing in armholes.
 I really enjoyed making this and I am looking forward to wearing it when the weather starts to improve. Roll on spring.
 Here's a close up of the pleats at the front.
 I also made another bag as you can never have too many bags. This one is to hold a crochet project on the go and my other bag is being used for shopping trips. You can just see the tablecloth in the background - another Ikea fabric which was cut into a square and edges neatened. I also made a dust cover for the dressmakers dummy (no photo - not very exciting to look at) so the sewing machine has definitely seen some action recently.
 I used some vintage fabric to line this bag too. Next time I make one, I think I am going to add an inner pocket for keys/mobile phone.
 This is another ongoing project that has sat neglected for possibly 3 years (I know, I told you I had issues with finishing things). My Mum bought this footstool from a charity shop for me over ten years ago when I was pregnant with my eldest. It was originally bottle green velour and it stayed that way until I finally got round to recovering it three years ago. I bought some wadding to cover the lid and stapled the new fabric on but I wasn't happy with the finish on the lid so I put it to one side. And it was left to one side until we moved and we found a new one side to leave it on! I was on a mission to try to complete projects yesterday as I couldn't justify starting anything else without finishing a few first. So after spending half an hour setting in sleeves and hemming the top, I dragged the footstool out and set to action. What can I say? It's grey. I love grey, I can't help it. I think this footstool will house my crochet bits and pieces - books, hooks, spare balls of wool.
One small confession - it's not completely finished. The lid is still not attached to the base. But it will be this weekend, I promise...

So that's the end of my makes for now. I currently have another small project on the go and I am hoping to make another item of clothing soon although I haven't decided what yet. A trip to a fabric shop in London has been planned with my Mum. I don't know who is looking forward to it more. I had a big sort through of my sewing stuff yesterday and discovered I don't have any other forgotten projects (other than the coat, ahem) however I do have a few little crochet things that need finishing off.

So that's what I have been up to lately. I have also been getting very fed up with the weather. I have absolutely had enough of the cold now, even though we will probably get another two months of it. Winter seems to have lasted an eternity this year. If it were just a little bit warmer (and dry) I could get out in the garden and do some serious destruction  weeding. Hope you all have a great week. x