Monday, November 16, 2009

I've Done it Again

Ignored / forgotten about my blog that is. I have been busy both with the new(ish) job and with family - my sister gave birth to a very healthy baby girl on November 10th. The picture above is baby Eve being held by her big sister Mae and hiding behind his boat is Eve's big brother Thomas.
I have also been doing quite a bit of crafting but have not made much progress on any one project; rather I have been jumping from one thing to another. I am going to try and settle on a few projects to concentrate on for the rest of the year in the hope of finishing of at least a couple of WIPs before the year is out.

Saturday, September 26, 2009


Sorry it has been so long since I last posted; life has been a little hectic recently and I have felt up to much blogging or crafting. Re-adjusting to working life has been difficult plus there were a few bumps along the road back to work (the worst of which could have seen me out of work again within a few weeks of starting my new job) but hopefully that is all behind me now and I can concentrate on getting on with my job.

I have managed to finish these socks;

I shall (I think) be knitting several pairs of these as back in the summer when I was not working and had plenty of spare time on my hands I agreed to knit 7 pairs of socks for my Mum as she wants to give them away as Christmas presents. With October nearly here I have not finished a single pair for her so had better get a move on. In fact I am going to have to spend a lot of time crafting as once again I seem snowed under with things that need to be finished to a deadline.

Friday, August 14, 2009

Present for My Sister

Happy birthday little sister.I always have good intention but also always leave things to the last minute; I have just finished making this little bag as a birthday present and not a moment too soon as I should be packing up my car in readiness to go & collect my sister and her family from the airport. Her birthday was yesterday but she will never know that her present was almost late.It is my fist attempt at this style of hand bag and while there are changes that I would make when I construct another one I am reasonably please with the end result.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

A Tiny Knitting HD

Last week in order to celebrate finally having got a new job I placed an order with The Knitting Goddess for a couple of skeins of sock yarn. Not that I need for sock yarn you understand but I just had to celebrate good news. I purchased two colourways (well it would not be right to have only one lonely skein of yarn in a parcel as it would not enjoy the journey to my house all on its own) Goddess Chakra Green [pictured at top] and Alice's Ocean [pictured at below].
The parcel (in a pink envelope and wrapped in purple tissue - perfect) containing not only the scrumptous yarn I had order but also a kit to knit a lavender sachet (complete with lavender). I could not resist starting to knit with my new yarn so it was lucky that the free kit was a quick knit and in no time I had created:
Winter Sun Lavender Sachet
Started & finished 12th August 2009
Created from a kit by The Knitting Goddess
With thanks to Scully for the pattern amendments and for introducing me to the Knitting Goddess

Sunday, August 02, 2009

Stitching and Sewing

Yesterday I spent the day at a quilting workshop at my favorite local (ish) quilting shop and could not resist celebrating the fact that on Friday I was offered a job which was exactly what I was looking for. So just as soon as the HR department of my new company gets the contract sorted out I will be once again employed. I should really have waited till my first pay cheque is sitting in the bank before making a celebratory purchase but could not resist two new quilt top kits that they had in the shop and somehow ended up buying both.
I am thinking of making the blue quilt for my sister's baby to be as my sister is not a great fan of babyish stuff and the red one is for me. But before I make a start on either I really must finish a few WIPs.

Today I have been very lazy; a teeney tiny bit of housework has been done but apart from that I have spent the day sitting on my sofa either surfing the internet (and trying, so far successfully, not to spend any money), stitching or knitting. I managed a small little finish:


I just love stitching biscornu, they are small & quick to finish and are a great way to use up scraps of thread and fabric.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Knitting Progress of Sorts

Last week was spent sorting out my knitting stash & WIPs and over the weekend I added most of it to my Ravelry pages. I shocked myself at just how much I really have, but at least now I have an upto date stash list and no excusses to just buy more yarn. I also found several nearly finished WIPs most of which I had totally forgotten about. One of which is the blue baby blanket which only needed 5 rows of garter stitching to be complete. Why I put something away so close to being finished I do not know, but I have been good and it is now completed. I have since cast on a baby raglan sleeved cardigan in the same yarn and hope to have enough yarn left over to also knit a hat. Once completed the set will be sent to the AC4C groups August charity which is Algerian Action [].

Since the vast majority of my knitting stash is either baby yarn or sock yarn I plan to spend the rest of the year either knitting baby stuff to give to charity or socks to give to friends as Christmas presents. Not having to go to work means I have much more time for crafts so I have also managed to finish a pair of socks last night or rather very early this morning. The pattern was called Sunshine Socks and is one of many free sock patterns that I have found on the internet, printed off and now can not find the source for.

Then this morning because I have plenty of knitting, stitching and sewing WIPs to be working on (not to mention the housework) I cast on a new pair of socks. At least I am using a ball of yarn from my stash!!!

Thursday, July 23, 2009

A Productive Day

Recently being out of work has been really getting me down and I have been spending most of my time sleeping or doing nothing. So I decided at the begining of the week that I needed to focus on using all my free time to better effect. I now have a list of jobs around the house that I want / would like to get done - the main one being to have a major clearout of all my stuff. I have decided that it is time to get rid of some of my stash, I have far far more stuff than I could ever hope to use in this lifetime. So it would be much better to get rid of some of it and the concentrate on using what remains (and eventually buy some more!!).
So this morning I got everything out of all the cupboards and have piled everything up according to type. I have already got rid of several bag fulls of stuff (I can not believe some of the total rubbish that I had put away in cupboards) and had a trip to the local charity shop to donate a whole load of stuff. Tomorrow I will start going through my stashes and decide what to keep and what to get rid of. I have already found several nearly finished projects which I had totally forgotten about.
Then in the afternoon since it was not raining for the first time in over a week I walked down to my allotment to look at how the weeds were growing. I managed to return home with broad beans, cabbage, potatoes and courgettes which means I have enough veggies for the rest of the week. I do love picking and eating my own veggies. Just as I got to the final corner before home it started pouring down with rain so I had to run the last few last yards.

Tuesday, July 07, 2009


Last week while watching the tennis the stitching got well and truely negelected as I got bitten by the sock bug. In one week I managed to complete 5 socks; even getting two pairs done.

Back to stitching this week though as I would love to complete Monthly Musings.

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

June's Stitching

Sorry for the long delays between posts but my home computer has died and I am still waiting for it to be fixed so my time on the internet is limited to a few hours a week. I have however been stitching and have made good progress on Monthly Musings (hopefully it will be finished this week) and have completed another little biscornu.

Sunday, May 31, 2009

May Biscornu

I just love how a flat piece of stitching can be transformed into:

Once again I stitched this from a free chart (from the website) on a piece of left over fabric using a skein of overdyed floss from my stash.

I think I have become obsessed with using stuff up and zippered pouches:

I have another three on the go in the same fabrics. My plan for this coming week is to have a clear out of my crafting stashes, or at least make a good start on getting organised & getting rid of stuff I no longer want. As well as sorting out my stash into what I want to keep & what I will get rid of (I have far too much, much more than I will ever use in this lifetime and it is time to say goodbye to some of it) I want to get all my WIPs into one place (& each WIP into its own bag) so that I can work on each & every one sometime in the near future.

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Busy, Busy, Busy.

I am determined to make the most of not having to go to work and spent all day Friday being lazy sitting on my sofa catching up on all the TV programmes which I record each week and never seem to get around to watching. I managed to get the border completed on Monthly Musings along with the first four months.

Monthly Musings by Heart In Hand Needleart; progress as of 24 May 2009.

I also started a knitted baby blanket for my sisters new baby and a cardigan for myself. Other than scarfs and three socks I have never knitted an adult sized garment so thought this was as good a time as any to do so. Note to self - I really really must cast on a fourth sock to complete the second pair of socks.

Yesterday, Saturday, I spent some quality time with my sewing machine and made three more zippered pouches using the same fabric as before. I still have more of this fabric left so plan on making yet more pouches either to store my knitting / stitching projects in or as gifts for friends.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Weekend Report

I have been rather productive this weekend; I am coming to the conclusion that being stressed brings out my creative side. I have been stitching on Monthly Musings; which is coming along nicely. I am going to try and keep stitching on this till it is done possibly with a short break to stitch a biscornu. I think that one of my first tasks once I am no longer working (I am begining to create a rather long list of things to get done while I am unemployed) is to re-organise my stitching stash. Although I don't have a stitching plan I would like to sort out the WIPs which I like the most and am most likely to finish and try to work my way through them before starting something new.

And I also created a zippered bag to co-ordinate with my tote bag; I used the Cutie-Pie Case tutorial found on This is my first attempt at a zippered pouch and I am really pleased with how it has turned out. I now have rather grand plans to make several in different sizes to house all my knitting, stitching and sewing projects so I can do away with the plastic mesh bags I usually use. This one now houses all the threads and the small charts for Monthly Musings; as it is only 8" by 7" I will need to make a larger one for the fabric and border chart.
In other news my sister has just anounced that she is expecting her third child in Novemember; Mummy & baby are doing well and although they don't know the sex they do know there is only one in there. Sis and BIL were a little concerned since she is already showing (just at 12 weeks) and his brother & SIL have just had twins (they wanted one little boy to add to their 2 girls and have instead ended up with 4 girls).

Wednesday, May 06, 2009

Tote Bags & Biscornu

Firstly; thanks for all the good wishes it is great to know that I have friends; even if I don't have a job. I am finding out just how lucky I am to have the friends & family that I have got. Having hobbies which occupy both my hands & my mind is also helping me cope; unfortuately the current ecomomic climate means it is looking increasingly likely that I will be out of work for at least a few months.
Secondly I have just remembered to share with you the biscornu I made last month (in the last few hours of the month, there is nothing like doing things at the last minute).

This past weekend I met up with two stitching / sewing friends to discuss a group project that we are creating. For the last 2 years I have spent the first weekend of June in a Derbyshre cottage (Dove Farm) in the company of stitching friends. Children (unless they are breastfeeding babies) and husband are banded and the weekend is spent stitching, knitting, gossiping and laughing. This year we have been asked by the owner of the cottages if we would mind producing a wall hanging for her. So a trip to choose quilting fabric and a very enjoyable few hours looking in quilt shops followed. Once I got home I had the urge to get out the sewing machine and since I had liberated some very girly pink & purple fabrics (complete with ballet shoes and dancing mice) from my friend Sally's stash I created a small tote bag for my niece who has just started ballet lessons.
The bag is just a smaller version of the one I made for my mother last month and the one pictured below which I made for myself last weekend.

Monday, May 04, 2009

Enforced Change

I may well be a little quiet for awhile; I am currently struggling to come to terms with the fact that last week after 4 years in my current job (which I love) my employer informed me last week that I am to be made redundant. Which gives me 6 weeks to either find a new job or I will be unemployed for the first time in my life. It is somewhat ironic that the best job that I have ever had is the one that gets taken away from me. This weekend has been spent getting myself ready to try and get another job; which give the current economic climate may be hard but I will give it my best shot and if the worst happens & I become unemployed I have enough insurance plus a little bit of savings which means I will be able to survive for a few months. I certainaly have enough crafting stash to keep me occupied I will however have to make some drastic changes to my spending habbits but maybe a period of watching what I spend will be no bad thing.

Monday, April 06, 2009

The Great De-Clutter 2009

At the weekend I decided that the time has come for a major de-clutter. When I first moved into my current house from a small one bedroom flat I loved the fact that I had loads of storage space and could put everything away in an organised manner. Now nearly 3 years on my stuff has expanded to fill the available space and I often can not find what I want or if I can find it I can’t get to it easily as all my cupboard space is stuffed full; some won’t even shut properly and I also now have bags & boxes of stuff lying in corners and the spare room is filled with stuff. Actually it is the spare room and my niece’s horrified expression when she saw it on Sunday that has led to the start of the de-cluttering. My niece (5years old) was most upset when she could not get to the bed in the spare room as she now has no where to sleep when she comes to live with me. Not sure when she is coming to live with me but she seems to think that she will be moving in one day and when she does she wants a bed to sleep in.

So the time has come to get organised and de-clutter; stuff that I have not used for years will be sent to the charity shop or given to someone who will use it; rubbish will be binned and what remains will be put away in an organised fashion so that I can see what I have and put it to use. I now plan to spend an hour or so each evening when I get home from work tackling a cupboard, box or pile of stuff. At lunchtime I am going to go and get myself some boxes in which to put stuff and then tonight I will start attacking the clutter.

At the weekend I did get a little stitching done but not much as I felt the need to start some knitting; most of which has now been unravelled as my tension was totally out so I need to re-start on a larger set of pins.

Friday, April 03, 2009

Bluebird's Message

After much deliberation I finally decided what to stitch on next and once I had picked my needle up I found it hard to put down. So much so that a late night (or should that be early morning) followed and I can now present:
Bluebirds Message by Blackbird Designs
Completed 02 April 2009
Stitched using the recommended threads on the recommended fabric
I am now left trying to decide what to stitch on next; the two projects that are screaming the loudest are Monthly Musings by The Trilogy which has been neglected since January when I started it and stitched 6 of the boxes and one lonely snowman and The Big Zipper by Bent Creek which was also a new start in January but has also been somewhat negelected recently.

Big Zipper by Bent Creek
Started 01 January 2009
Progress as of 03 April 2009

Wednesday, April 01, 2009

Weekend Report

A Trio of Biscornu
Jan; Feb & March Biscornu completed as part of the 2009 Basket of Biscornu Challenge.

The weather co-operated with my plans; it was wet, cold and windy on Saturday while I was at the sit & sew day at my local quilting shop and on Sunday morning the sun was shinning while I was out in the garden. However, my health decided to put an end to my plans for Sunday afternoon and I got a migraine.

Despite this set back I did manage to get a couple of small finishes:

On Friday night I finished a scarf for the AC4C group project for March; finished and in the post to the recipient just in time.

Then on Saturday evening I finished my biscornu for March (I just love doing things at the last minute!!). I did start a new quilt top as well but it is not ready for a photograph just yet. Two (small) finishes and one new start is not too bad for a weekends work I think. I am now having trouble deciding which project to work on next; I am blaming the migraine for my indecision.

Friday, March 27, 2009

Weekend Plans

Thanks goodness it is nearly the weekend, this weekend has been rather busy and it will be nice to have two days in which to slow down a little. Since getting out my fabric & sewing machine last weekend to make the tote bag my head has been full of things I would like to create. Luckily tomorrow I am off to a local quilting shop for a 'sit and sew' day. The only thing is I can not decide which of my current or even new sewing projects to take with me. I shall have fun this evening trying to make up my mind. I think I am in the mood to get something finished so I think I shall take along a couple of projects that are near completion and maybe a new start to reward myself with.
My plans for Sunday depend a little on the weather; if it is nice I shall be out in my garden getting it ready for planting later on if the weather is bad I will be in doors stitching, sewing or knitting. I have several things that close to being finished that I would like to get done. Having said that I shall probally end up starting a new project.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Mum's Tote Bag

Created as a gift for my Mother using fabric brought while on holiday with her in Florida last year. The bag is based on the reversible tote bag pattern on the Windham Fabric site with a few adjustment – the handles are a smidgen narrower and made from both fabrics as I made an error while cutting the fabric. I am really pleased with the way it turned out and think I may well make myself one.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Spring is in the air

I have been inspired by the sunshine and dug some fresh spring-like fabric out of my stash to create a tote bag for my mother. Now that I have made the first cut into the fabric my head is full of ideas of things to create; in fact I have already started a second bag and have plans for more bags or maybe a quilt. There are just far too many things I want to do with my time. Tonight I am going to start knitting a scarf for the March AC4C project and maybe stitch a little on Bluebirds Message.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Fabric; Fabric; Fabric

I have released that my fabric obsession has gotten worse; with Mothering Sunday just around the corner and a mother who loves presents but hates us spending money on her I thought I would put make a shopping tote for her. So last night I decided to get out all my fabric and see if I had anything suitable. After pulling fabric out of all the places I had stashed it I shocked myself with just how many meters of fabric I own. I knew I had a considerable stash of fabric and that I had trouble with resisting the urge to buy more but what I had not released is that I have a problem with using fabric. I kept picking up pieces of fabric which would make lovely bags and putting them down because they were too nice to use. After giving myself a sever talking to I think I have managed to convince myself to use some fabric to make the said bag but will not know for sure till I come to cut out the fabric this evening.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

No more rotation (again!!)

While reading other peoples blogs this week I have been thinking (yet again) about my crafting and why I do the things I do or to be more precise why I stop doing the things I do as once again I find myself in stitching slump. I am still knitting and quilting but only a little bit of the first and the second only at class. What I think I have finally realised after a great many years is that although I love crafting for other people and I adore the thought of rotations & goals and all the thinking and planning that can go into creating rotations etc. once I set my self goals; targets or deadlines I immediately fall out of love with whatever it is I have decided I need to be doing. So from now on no more plans for me I shall just go withever what feels right in that moment - at least until I come up with a different plan of action that is.

Sunday, March 08, 2009

Square Weekend

This weekend has been a mixture of housework and crafting. On Saturday spring was in the air as the weather was cold but dry and sunny so I spent the day getting the garden ready for the spring and then came indoors to spring clean the house. The rest of the weekend has been spent creating squares, some pathwork ones and some knitted ones.
The patchwork ones are for a quilt top that I am making in the quilting class that I attend; although I am making several changes from the original design as I just can not get my head around distored blocks and the orginal design includes several. I am having alter the design to make it work without the distored blocks, luckily I have a really good & understanding teacher who does not mind me making changes to her quilt designs.
The fabric for the quilt is a mixture of calicos and lovely faded linens in blues, greens & pinks. I really must try and remeber to take a photo of the fabric before it all gets cut up.

The knitted squares are to be sent out to be made into a lap blanket for this months project for the AC4C group. I do love knitting squares and sending them off to others to do the hard work of joining them into blankets as they require very littl thought, are a quick finish and are a great way of using up odds & ends of yarn that I can not bare to throw away but can not decide what to do with. Hopefully this week I will be posting a total of 18 squares to various recipients and I may even be able to close one of the crates of yarn properly with having to resort to putting heavy items on top of it to get it to stay closed.
At the moment feeling the need to up the anti on my current attempts to reduce my stash piles in general and my quilting stash in particular since I have recently become obsessed with the idea of starting a Dear Jane quilt. There are so many wonderful examples of this quilt and my mind is turning over several different ideas for colours / themes for making my version it may well be that one Dear Jane quilt will not be enough. I do however think this quilt will take many many years to finish and will be a learning journey as I am still very new to quilting.

Thursday, March 05, 2009

February Biscornu

I can not believe it is over a month since I last posted. I had a great holiday, very relaxing but came home to no central heating and no hot water (and a large repair bill). I now have a warm house but for awhile things were rather cold. Work has also been a little frantic since getting home both in terms of the volume of work and also there are a few politcal things going on which makes things a little sensitive around the office.
I have decided not to bother with a February report since I have done almost no stitching, the only thing I have stitched is the little biscornu pictured above. I have been knitting but the only thing I have been knitting is squares. They are a great way of using up some of the large stash pile that I have and don't need too much thought or energy. Things have settled down a lot now so I hope that March will be a better month for crafting.

Monday, February 02, 2009

Off on my Holidays

I have finally managed to get my packing done. I have stuffed every last corner of my case with knitting yarn and am also taking with me five stitching projects plus a crate load of Cabury's Creme Eggs. The stitching projects I have decided upon taking are:
The Big Zipper by Bent Creek
Growing Like A Tree by Moria Blackburn (because I fancied a new start)
Just Be Claus by Lizzie*Kate (because I need to get the image out of my head the Kitty gave me)
Bluebirds Message by Blackbird Designs
and a biscornu as I would like to keep up with the SAL.
Belinda, the Caron bright squares are knitted so are not part of the 63-square afghan but now I am wondering where I stashed away the start I made on teh 63-square afghan which I really really must get around to finishing one day (if I ever find it again). I should make an effort to not put away things part done and not to start anything new until I have finished all my WIPs and UFOs but then that would not be any fun.

Saturday, January 31, 2009


Well I knew it would happen - I am now lying on the floor of my lounge surrounded by balls and balls of knitting yarn. It looks a little like a bomb has gone off in a yarn store, I am not sure where or why I brought so much yarn. Especially the pile of very very bright Caron Simply Soft yarn. Although guessing by the pile of 7" squares that I also found I was probably intending to make a blanket but I can not remember who the blanket could have been intended for. So now what I am going turn the remaining balls into squares and either just send them off to one of the various charities or sew them into a blanket.

I have also found a nearly finished green scarf and a hald done red scarf (why do I put things away half done?). Right I must go and try to put all the yarn back into its crates.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

I Can't Make up my Mind

Having done this months required stitching I am having a hard time deciding what to stitch on for the remainder of the month (at the rate I am going it will be February before I make up my mind). Part of my dilema is that I want to start something new but really really should work on a WIP or even a UFO. The two most wintery / Christmassy WIPs that I have are Just Be Claus by Lizzie*Kate (pictured above) and Snowy Night by the Triliogy (pictured below).

On the one hand it would be nice to get one of these finished before the start on Spring but on the other hand I want to start something new, maybe a Blackbird Designs piece.
I am also having a hard time deciding on what crafting projects to pack to take on holiday. Next Wednesday I am off for a few days in the sun with friends who live in Abu Dhabi and will be getting lots of relaxation done hopefully on the beach. I will definately be taking The Big Zipper with me and some knitting plus a few other stitching projects but I am not sure what will get packed. I have a strange feeling that over the weekend I will end up getting everything out of the crates in which my stash is stored so that I can fondle it all and see what screams that it needs to be taken to the beach.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Weekend Knitting

I decided to spend the weekend knitting rather than stitching since I fancied a change of pace but did not want to start anything big. As I could not decide what to do it was lucky that the AC4C yahoo group that I have recently joined had a weekend challenge to knit (or crochet) baby bibs and washcloths. A quick look in my stash revealed a ball of 100% cotton yarn in baby blue and a few hours later I had made one bib and one washcloth. I am adding the shop bought botties and hat as a little extra as the bibs and washcloth looked a little lonely on their own.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

January's Snowman

I have made a start on Monthly Musings by Heart in Hand Needleart and have managed to finish the January design, several of the frames and just a tiny little bit of the border. I am stitching it on a piece of 32 count natural linen using the recommended threads. I just need to hunt down the buttons which will be added to the border but have plenty of time since I plan to stitch a little each month, hopefully completing the relevant monthly design and some of the border so it will be completed by the end of the year.

January's Biscornu

I am finally able to share photos of the biscornu which I stitched at the weekend. I used up a little scrap of fabric and a partial skein of Vikki Clayton silk which had lost its lable so I am not sure what the colour is called. The pattern is a freebie which I found somewhere on the net. I am looking to find it again and when I do I shall post a link.