Knuts about it!

Craft | Sunday January 17 2010 | 3:13 pm | Comments (3) | Tags: , , , , , , , |

Although leaving the house was the last thing I felt like doing yesterday I had set my heart on going to Knutsford, and going to Knutsford we did. 

My main purpose was to go to Fibre and Clay as I wanted to get some lovely yarn to crochet something for myself.  I’m right in the middle of baby projects at the moment and looking forward to using some luxury yarns and vibrant colours just for me.

As usual Riana and her team were really helpful and remembered me from their crochet course last August!  I had to admit to having not touched knitting since then, in favour of crochet.

I didn’t go tooooo mad but I did buy a few lovely things.  I chose a book which I had been looking at online a few days earlier which didn’t really appeal until I was able to flick through it.  Loop Vintage Crochet by Susan Cropper contains 30 patterns for garments, accessories and the home.

Fibre and Clay stocks a great range of yarns and had quite a few in the sale – and it turned out all the ones I chose were reduced!

 Fibre & Clay shopping

I got 7 balls of Louisa Harding’s Flotsam in a gorgeous pink to crochet a wrap from the Vintage Crochet book, 2 of Miraso Hancho, a red and purple hand dyed merino, and 2 of Rowan 4 ply cotton in a rich aubergine plum shade.  I don’t yet know what to do with the Rowan Cotton, but it is in my mum’s favourite colour so I shall make something for her with that.

So this will be my next project – the ‘Ava’ wrap from Vintage Crochet:

my next project

 

We also went to Waterstones and I got 3 novels to get myself back into reading, as I have got out of the habit in the last month or so.  I also got some pretty little butterfly post-it type stickers, just because they were so gorgeous – and useful as little bookmarks and place markers when following patterns.  Caveman can’t leave a bookshop without a) buying more books and b) saying ‘I just don’t have enough time to read’!  He was true to form on this occasion, but I wouldn’t want him any other way!

Books & butterflies

 

All in all we had a rather lovely afternoon out, followed by dinner in Pizza Express and then home for an evening playing with yarn and books!  A perfect Saturday!

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TFI Friday

Craft | Friday January 15 2010 | 11:51 pm | Comments (2) | Tags: , , , |

I don’t know when I was last so glad to reach Friday evening.  I haven’t had a particularly hard week in the day job but I have had a headache since Monday!  Yes, 5 whole days and nights of sore head and eyes!  As a result I have not done anything crafty all week.

Last Sunday I finished the baby blue ripple blanket, which I am so delighted with and will post pics over the weekend.  I have another to make for someone who doens’t know if they have a boy or girl arriving so on my way home from work this evening I dragged myself to the Trafford Centre to go to John Lewis and bought the same yarn, replacing the blue with cream.  This matches really well with the mixed pastels of the contrast yarn.

Despite wanting to do nothing but fall asleep on the settee watching Corrie this evening, I started the new blanket.  It’s rather a monotonous pattern but that was just what I needed!  However, sleep is now starting to get the better of me.  I can’t believe I’ll end up going to bed tonight earlier that I would on a school night!

I am looking forward to tomorrow as Caveman and I are having an afternoon out to Knutsford.  It’s highly likely to involve tea and cake and I shall be visiting my fave LYS, Fibre and Clay, and I think I deserve a treat!

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Everyone’s at it!

Craft | Tuesday January 5 2010 | 7:54 pm | Comments (3) | Tags: , , , , , , |

I know lots of people who are pregnant at the moment and it’s making me twitchy!  No, silly, not my hormones!!!  My crochet hooks!!!

Whenever I hear of the patter of tiny feet my initial excitement for the happy mummy and daddy to be soon turns to thoughts of crochet opportunities and right now they are rife!

The things I love about making for babies are the colours, the delicate yarns, the anticipation for the expectant family and the appreciation with which home made gifts are received.

My friend Anne became a granny to baby Joseph just before Christmas and even though I don’t know Joseph’s mummy I have made him a cosy hat.  I based it very loosely on a pattern from Haakpoes for sizing and made a couple of alterations.  Instead of stripes I used one main colour (blue for a boy, of course) with contrast turn up brim and tassles.  I love the ‘noodle’ on Haakpoes hat but it didn’t look quite right on mine so I added a few twists to the top instead.  The pattern says its for a 3-6month old but I have no idea what size a babies head is so I hope it doesn’t only fit him in the summer!!  However, the way the weather is going here at the moment we may still have snow!!

Doesn’t this look cosy? However, a strange phenomenon occurred, whereby the variegated yarn didn’t variegate itself very well and came out in chunks of colour rather than stripes!  I think it adds something to the hat in a funny sort of way, as you can turn it around and have a different hat for every day of the week!

 baby boy blue hat

My sister in law, KellyAnn, and one of my closest friends, Mandy, are both due in the latter half of February so I haveplenty time to create some baby gifts for them.   I have already started work on a blanket which I am really pleased with.  I have wanted to tackle a ripple pattern for some time and a baby blanket seemed the perfect opportunity.  Lucy at Attic 24 has lots of beautiful and colourful crochet blankets to I tackled her Neat Ripple Pattern.  I had a few false starts, mainly because, as usual, I cut straight to the simplified version of the pattern without looking at the great walk through that Lucy had done.  Turns out I needed my hand held and when I had read it all fully it worked a treat.  Here’s the work in progress:

 Ripple baby blanket

I’ll add more pictures when it’s finished.  Turns out Ali at SnipSnapHappy has been having the same ripply thoughts as me too!

It’s worth mentioning here the yarn I’m using for these baby items.  It’s one I picked in a different shade for a little phone case a few months ago and I really like working with it.  Its Patons Fairytale Colour 4 Me DK machine washable 100% wool.  It’s labelled at double knitting but I beg to differ as it really does have a slightly thicker handle.  As a result I’m using a 5mm hook and that feels just right.  There are loads of shades available and its a great price (around £2.60 / 50g ball).

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Secret Santa

Uncategorized | Monday December 7 2009 | 11:48 pm | No Comments | Tags: , , , |

So here’s the problem…  I’m making lovely and intresting and pretty things as Christmas pressies but I can’t write about them here for fear of spoiling the surprise for their recipients. 

I’ll just need to wait until the new year and let it all out then, or a little sooner if you’re on my Christmas list!

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An evening with frou-frou

Craft | Friday December 4 2009 | 10:54 pm | Comments (3) | Tags: , , , |

SHS displayThis time last night I got home after my first ever craft fair, and was very glad of a seat and a cup of tea!  It was lots of fun and an interesting first outing for frou-frou!

The event was described as a having Craft and Gift stalls and overall there was actually very little craft and mine was one of only 2 or 3 with handmade and crafted items.  In fact, many stalls were (cheap) wholesale jewellery and hair things.  I don’t want to be too rude about them as everyone has their own reasons for being there, but it was hard to sell many of my things when there were trendier, cheaper and more sparkly things all around.  

After the cost of the table fee I didn’t come out with much, but it wasn’t about the money and at the end of the day I had my first experience of selling things I have laboured over and loved for a long, long time – and that was a great experience.  I think I learned a lot of what is most popular, and that is the cutesey and pretty girly things, in particular the butterflies and button hearts. I also think that an actual ‘craft’ fair would be much more appropriate for me and my goodies.

butterfly hair clip holdersOne thing I did realise is I need to add some more interest to my stall display.  I did have a few display items, but these were all at the back and quite tall.  The cake stand and sweetie jars worked well too, but the rest was very flat.  Also, because there was quite a lot of colour it all looked like quite a jumble, so maybe some streamlining would help too, or more colour themes.

Caveman was a great help as shifter, carrier and chief packaging operative!  At one point he said ‘You know, you’re really good at this’ which was a relief and lovely words of encouragement!!  It helps that a) I LOVE to chit chat and b) I knew every stitch of every item on that table!  It is a strange feeling putting yourself  ‘out there’, no matter how much you love your own work, it’s a risk in how it will be received.

If you like what you see, or want to buy anything as I have lots of stock left, drop me a line via my contact page, or you may see them on Folksy some time soon. 

Thanks to my lovely chums who came along for support! xx

I’ll leave you with some pictures…

 

crochet brooches on cake stand

puff brooches in sweetie jar

 

whole display

santa hats and jingle bells

cherry brooches

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Coming to a craft fair near you…

Craft | Friday November 20 2009 | 12:39 am | 1 Comment | Tags: , , |

… well, depending where you are!  My first ever sale of frou-frou fast approaches.  I spotted an advert for craft makers to take stalls at a local Christmas Fair at Sale High School on the evening of 3rd December 2009.  I thought it was a great opportunity to try my first craft stall. 

I’ve been busily crocheting and sewing and planning and making and have lots of little ideas on the go.  I’m aiming for a few little Christmas ornament / decoration things as well as some gifty things.

I’d really love to hear your experiences (good and bad) of craft fairs as a buyer or seller.  What works, what doesn’t etc.

Here’s a little taster of what you can see on the evening…

  

gatehring of crocheted mini santa hats

pink and yellow butterfly hair clip holder

 

crocheted gadget casebeady bookmarks

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