Tuesday, 14 May 2013

Blanket Love

One of the main reasons I wanted to learn to crochet was so that I could make blankets.  Right up there on the top of my list was a traditional granny square blanket for myself! 

This is the beginnings of that blanket!  Only three years later I am making myself that traditional granny afghan. 

The reason for this massive wait?!  Making lots of lovely blankets but giving them all away!!

There were the ripple blankets..........

The granny stripe blankets............


(That there on top of the Starburst blanket is a granny stripe for my aunt's birthday.  Her birthday was 6th March!  I still have the blanket in my flat.  Only difference is that it's now safely away in a cupboard not adorning my sofa but the temptation is there, I'll tell you!!!)

The Spring Time Throw blankets........

The Fancy Square blankets .........


The Blankets That Appeared in a Book Blankets ......

The Catherine Wheel Blankets ........


(This one was for Kath's baby George.  I've make another one like this, very similar indeed.  Just different ribbon.  It was the original one that Kath admired so I said I'd make her one for when her little one.  Had to make this a bit quicker than I'd planned as George was five weeks early!)

The Japanese Hexigon Blanket.......

I love this one.  I'm currently making myself one of these too (running out of yarn has halted the process at the mo!  I'm reliably infomed at least one of the colours I'm using has been discontinued!)

Finally The Granny Square Blanket......

It was making the blanket above that made me get my ass into gear and make myself a granny square.  I found it very hard to part with the blanket above (but doesn't little Bethany look content with it?!)

I have made many other blankets.  I just don't happen to have pictures of them all.  The problem is that most of my friends keep reproducing.  I can't help but make blankets for all the little babies that keep popping up.  Blankets are a joy to make.  They're not quick projects but a whole lot of love get stitched into each and every one.  The added bonus to making baby blankets is that they are small (although I do tend to make them a bit bigger than I probably should.  I like a blanket to look like it would be a useful size for a very long time and babies grow you know!)

What's your favourite thing to make?

Must dash.  There's more blankets to be made!

Love love love

Erin xxx

Sunday, 12 May 2013

About two years ago, yes it was two years ago, May 1st 2011 to be precise (thanks Statigram) I set myself up an Intagram account.  I didn't do very much with it.  I only joined because I was being nosey.  A couple of my FB friends were posting IG pictures on their pages and I wanted to see what it was all about.  I can't remember when I started using my IG account as much as I do now (and by that I mean obsessively!)  I think that may have been around Easter time last year but without trawling through my account I'm not really sure how I'd find that out.  I think it may have been after reading about some of my favourite bloggers using IG so I went to check them out (ie. stalk!)

It was only after I started using IG more and following more people and talking to people on it that it got me thinking a bit more about my IG aims.  Here, inside my phone, were loads of people with whom I shared multiple interests.  People who I would never have met or found if they hadn't lived in this little community in my phone!  The more I got "talking" to people the more I thought about how great it would be to meet some of these people IRL (see how I'm converting to text speak! haha!!  I don't use it seriously, just as a bit of a joke with a few other IG buddies.)  These people didn't make me feel like I was strange because I enjoyed making things in my spare time (an aside to this, I have been told by a lady who worked with me that I was born in the wrong century and that I should be out pole dancing of an evening, not embroidering or crocheting!!)  The more I thought about it the more I thought that some of these people could actually be "my kind of people" and I was sure that we'd get on swimmingly in real life.  I often got that feeling when I read other people's blogs but as a non blogger I didn't tend to leave many comments on people's blogs and thought that contacting bloggers was a bit stalkerish if I wasn't a blogger myself!  Although there is a stalkerish elemement to IG at least there was the potential for it to be mutual!! hehe!

So, reason no. 1 for loving Instragram my new found crafty buddies. 

Without IG I would never have met the super lovely Cuckoo  and the gorgeous Beany  both of these fabulous ladies I now consider as dear friends (IRL.)

Cuckoo is one of the "my favourite bloggers who started using IG that I went to stalk" as mentioned earlier!  I have already confessed to Cuckoo that I was a bit of a stalker.  She's ok with this!  She's even given me a couple of tests to check!  I must say I failed the test, so maybe I'm not such a stalker after all!  The first time I met Cuckoo it was a bit like meeting a celebrity (in my eyes!)  She said I looked a bit shellshocked when she threw herself at me! haha!!

Haha!!  Cuckoo will no doubt go mad when she sees this! ( It's the only pic I had of you, honest!! I wish I still had the text in which you gave me permission to publish any pictures I had of you!)  Cuckoo in her Bird Box after we'd had a couple of drinks with dinner!!  Such a fun weekend.  I love my time with Cuckoo and her brood!  Can't wait until half term!

I'm laughing now as this is the only picture I have of you Suzie!! haha!!  (thought I had the one of you holding the baby you found in your tights!)

This picture makes me smile.  Suzie loves beans and this is one of her cuddly beans!  I was making one of these while at Suzie's one weekend and it turned out far bigger than it should have been.  Suzie tells me that my tension was too loose.  I gave it to this bean as a hat!  I think he looks happy about it!

Not many friends would knit you!  This always makes me laugh.  It's a pincusion that Suzie designed of my head.  I can't even remember how this came about other than one lazy crafty Sunday Suzie decided to knit me!!  I'm definitely adding this to my CV.  Pin cushion model!  I bet no-one else has ever done that!

Monday, 6 May 2013

A Little Sunday Crafting

Last Sunday I had an utterly blissful day.  I didn't get dressed.  I stayed in my PJs all day and didn't leave The Granny Shack.  I pottered around and crafted to my heart's content! 
I had a little idea in my head. 
It started with a little customising idea.  I decided I wanted to put a little something on the pockets of a plain nave cardigan I had.  I fancied the idea of some cherries (I have a soft spot for cherries.  Anything with a cherry design gets my vote!)  I'd made a cherry brooch before but that used red spheres for a more 3D effect.  I just winged the pattern.  I made two red circles (or four as I made a pair of cherries for each pocket.)  I then didn't fancy faffing about with leaves (even though I know they are super simple to make.)  I wanted this to be a very quick make.  I decided that a long green chain tied into a bow would look just darling for this purpose. 
Ta dahhhhhhhh!  A super quick, super simple make.  It has definitely brightened up this cardie.  I've worn it once and it was much admired.  Now I feel the urgent need to change the buttons.  I think I have just the ones too.........
My super crafting Sunday didn't come to an end there.  I found some cute flowers that I knew would make lovely brooches in this book So I had a play around with the pattern and made this.
This was a fun make and I enjoyed doing a bit of stiching for a change.  I wore this one day last week but unfortunately I lost the flower!  That'll teach me for taking short cute.  I used my glue gun to attach the flower to the brooch back.  I should have stitched it!  Lesson learnt!
Still, there's more!  I have developed a little love of all things cute and housey (you may remember my little line of homemade house on my Mantelpiece of Special Things in my last post.)  When I was at Knit and Natter the other week I purchased this gorgeous brooch from the selection of gorgeous hand made goodies on display in the Glass Cabinets of Temptation in the shop!
I love it and this brooch together with my gorgeous beany pal's Arthur pattern got my creative cogs a tickin and I decided I could knit a house brooch of my own.  I raided my fabric and button stash and the ideas kept a flowin!  First I knitted a house...........

Then I crocheted a house .............
Then I knitted another house (and had fun with stripes and dinky bunting......
By Sunday evening I felt a great sense of achievement.  Sometimes making small things really hits that urge of instant satisfaction.  I had great fun playing around with different ideas.  Each house lead to new ideas and half way through each one I was excited about possible ideas for the next!  I still have some other ideas jotted down in my Notebook of Crafty Ideas but they are saved for another day.
A few days later, on Wednesday, I was out in my local shopping centre with a friend I am teaching to crochet (although we didn't do much crocheting this time!) and we ended up browsing John Lewis' habadashery department.  I found some cute bird box fabric which I knew I had to buy for my gorgeoud buddy  Cuckoo as her craft room is called The Bird Box and all things birdie/bird boxy always make me think I her.  I had no idea what she'd be able to do with it or if she'd even like it but I just had to get some.  The fabric created another little crafty idea in my head.  Her birthday is today but I had it in my head that it was later in May so hadn't even started making the (not so little) project I had in mind so I hoped I could pull off my new idea in a jiffy and pop in it the post in time for her to get it for her birthday.  Here's what I made.......
a dinky bird box brooch fitting with my current crafty theme!  I'm rather pleased with it.  It was made with a whole lot of love and thoughts of Cuckoo
I wonder what kind of brooch I can make next?!  I loves a brooch I do.  I find that they really perk up a cardie or a jacket (or a cape!)
I'll leave you with a little WIP that became a FO since I last posted.  A baby blanket for an old uni friend who had a baby in March (I got a bit slack at sewing in the ends.  The blanket was finished yonks before I actually got my ass into gear and sewed them all in!)
I found it tricky to part with this one as I had grown quite attached to it and think it looked quite good over the back of my sofa on top of the other one!  Currently planning a Cath Kidston inspired granny square blanket for myself!  Watch this space!
What have you been making lately you lovely people you? Hope your days are being filled with sunshine and crafting!
Love love love
Erin x