Thursday, 16 October 2014

Moss stitch cowl

Hello everyone. Whoa, this is my second post in just over a week! It's a long time since I've managed two posts in such quick succession - lets hope I don't strain myself (yup, being sarcastic there!).

Seriously though, it's nice to be able to be back here again so quickly - to have thought about it, and actually feel like it. To be honest I haven't done much of either of those two things for a while.

I've just felt tired, tired, tired. Not physically, or even mentally really... maybe more uninspired than tired. It's been a tough few months for various reasons. I think things are settling down for me again now, finally. Hopefully I will start to have more time, and to feel a little more inspired to get creative again.

I have some projects that I started in spring and early summer which have been sitting, waiting for something to happen to them. I'm still not sure what that will be - will they survive to be completed or be unraveled to turn into something else?

At least I have managed to finish the hat I mentioned in my last post, and also a moss stitch cowl. The cowl has another hat to match already actually, but I haven't had time to photograph it yet. Maybe I'll get S to take a snap of me wearing hat and cowl at the weekend!

The cowl was knitted in the round on a circular needles, using double moss stitch. It was very easy, and fantastic sofa-knitting in the evenings after work. Hmmm, maybe that it the secret to finding my crafty inspiration again - it's got to be something easy that won't require too much concentration!

Wednesday, 8 October 2014

Getting ready...

Hello everyone! After the weather we have had here in the last week or so, I'm sure you will all agree that Autumn is on the way!

I've been getting ready. I love Autumn. Love it. It's truly my favourite season. I love seeing the leaves decorating the ground, hearing them crunch under foot, seeing the misty sunrises and sunsets, the darkness slowly closing in. I love wrapping up in boots, woolly hats, scarf and gloves and going to rambles in the park or across the fields. Yes, all my likes about Autumn are very cliched, I know, but they're true all the same. I guess there's a reason why these things become cliches!

I always seem to churn out a series of scarves every Autumn/Winter. This year will be no exception! I've already finished one cowl (sadly have not had a chance to photograph and share it with you yet!). However, I thought I would try and mix it up a little this year by knitting some hats too!

I've already completed one in grey - this lovely design is called Pasha, and can be found  here.

The hat is finished, but sadly I only have 'in progress' pictures for you today - another thing I need to photograph in it's complete form!


S and I made our quarterly pilgrimage to Bristol to see his folks last weekend. I've grown to love Bristol over the years, particularly the lovely area known as Clifton. It has an arty, crafty village-y vibe to it. I though I'd share some of the love with you by sharing some snaps. Yup, some of them are a bit random - my journey of learning how to take better photographs always seems to see me veering into still life territory by taking shots of things like vegetable stalls and flower shops! As evidenced by the pictures from Borough Market that I shared last month.

There are so many great independent retailers in Clifton - the one in the shot below is called Sky and sells a mix of gift items, cards and stationary and prints - I love browsing there.

If only I lived near enough I would make sure I was a regular customer for all these little shops to help make sure they survive. I think it's so important to support these smaller stores, and I really hate clone-town high streets that have only the same big name stores on them.

Before I go, I just want to say thanks to all of you who commented on my (nearly) finished throw in my last post - I don't think I've ever had a post receive so many lovely comments so quickly before!

Stay snug everyone!


Wednesday, 24 September 2014

A finished blanket!

Hi everyone. For the firs time in a long time, I have completed a big project. Well, ok, I haven't actually fastened off all the ends yet, but it's basically complete.

I started this blanket last October, so it's taken me nearly a year to finish. I've only worked on it on and off. It came with me during my house move last year, and was the first think I worked on after I moved in. I remember sitting on the floor of my empty new flat (I had no furniture!) the day after I moved in making little circles and squares for this.

I hope it's going to grace my current and future homes for years to come providing cosyness.

The pattern is from The Gentle Art of Knitting. I used DK yarn. The blanket size is just big enough to cover my double bed. I made 272 little squares altogether, and then finished it off with a few rounds of granny crochet all around the edge, followed by one round in double crochet in yellow for trim.

Finished just in time for the cold weather here - lets hope it saves me some money on my heating bills!


Thursday, 18 September 2014

Slowly getting back to normal

It feels like life is slowly settling down again this week (though perhaps I shouldn't speak too soon!). Problems seem to be resolving themselves one by one - I hope it lasts! Thank you so much to the people who commented on my last post - it's nice to see that some of you feel the same sometimes.

I had some time today to play with my new camera - I'm still figuring out all the settings!

I loved photographing these - I think they are Gerberas? I always gravitate towards them at my local supermarket - love the colours.

I also remembered to photograph one of my recent completed projects - a shawl!

Sorry the photos don't give much idea of what the shawl is like - I don't have anyone to photograph me actually wearing it! It's the Cameo shawl - you can find the pattern here.

I feel good that I have managed to finish something. I really must be more disciplined about my makes...I just get frustrated with all the half finished projects lying doesn't make me feel any better!

Sunday, 14 September 2014

Easing back to blogging

Hi everyone.

It feels like it has been a very long time since I was here last. I can't even remember what the last thing I posted about was. I haven't looked at this blog for over a month I think. I've thought about it, but I just haven't had the energy for anything.

August was super-stressful and busy, and it looks like September is going to be the same. Hopefully October will be better.

So, I'm easing back into blogging with a short post, just a few photos from my weekend. Nothing crafty I'm afraid, as that takes more time and thought than I have at the moment.

Some of you may find this a bit of a weird subject for photography. S and I went for a wander through Borough Market yesterday, and I thought it would be a chance to practice my photography.

I love looking at the food stalls and the old signage at Borough. I never buy much, but I like to take snaps. I hope it doesn't annoy the stallholders too much!

I find the fish stalls particularly fascinating, with their rows and rows of geaming scales and glassy stares - apologies to any vegetarians reading this!

The cakes and bread are great fun to look at too!

I've just ended up wishing I was a better photographer though!

Do you ever feel like life is trying to fight with you, putting so much pressure on you to try and get you to give up doing things you love? I've felt like that the last six weeks. But I'm determined not to give up. I won't give up this blog, I won't give up crafting or any of the other things I like doing in my spare time.

Sorry about the slightly weird post this time around. I need to get my equilibrium back, but it's proving to be difficult. I read a magazine article over the weekend about trying to live a more simple life, de-cluttering, having a less materialistic approach to life. I think I need a dose of that. Not so much in the way of de-cluttering (I did a lot of that last year, pre-move) or being less materialistic (can't afford to be these days anyway!), but I think there's something I need to do in terms of slowing myself down, and taking things a step at a time. Not stressing about the stuff I can't control. I never seem to learn this, it's a problem that I seem to come back to over and over, like I just keep going in circles.

Oh well, must keep trying.

I will be back again soon I hope!

Tuesday, 12 August 2014

Happy pastel stripes

Hello everyone, I've been away for a while, and it's been nagging at my conscience.

So, here I am, back with a quick post.

To be honest, I haven't managed to actually finish many craft projects. I don't know what I've been doing really. I think it just took me a while to get over my post-holiday blues!

One thing which I have finished, and which I LOVE is this stripey cushion. The cushion is for my bedroom, and was inspired by the colours of the Amy Butler fabric shown in the picture.

I love this colour combination of duck egg, pink, fuschia, red and burgundy, and I've decided to try and make this a theme in my bedroom.

 I choose a random stripey pattern because I loved the stripey cushion that I made earlier. This cushion has the same double crochet design at that.

Hope you're all ok. I'm going to be taking a little bit of a break until September. I have more crafting, flat painting, work and studying to do, and I just need a bit of time out from blogging for a couple of weeks.

See you all in Autumn!

Monday, 21 July 2014

Post holiday blues...

Oh dear. I seem to be suffering from attack of the post holiday blues! Do you ever suffer from this? I've actually set one of the pictures of the beach that I took last week as the screen saver on my mobile. I think that's probably just making it worse though - being reminded every time I look at my phone that I wish I was back there!

I don't even feel much like crafting at the it must be bad. I tried yesterday to console myself with a little crochet, but I couldn't get into it.

My other escape activity is usually reading. This seems to be working better than crochet at the moment.

 What do you do to shake off the blues? I'm wondering what the remedy could be for me. Start planning the next holiday perhaps? This was my suggestion to S today - I know he's suffering with post holiday blues too.

Real life never matches up to a holiday though, does it? After all, if real life were like a holiday, then holidays wouldn't be holidays, and that magic would be lost.

Listen to me, complaining because my holiday is over. I always try to count my blessings when I'm feeling down, so I keep reminding myself that I'm lucky to have the life I've come back to, and I was lucky to be able to take a holiday at all. Not everyone can, and to some it must be an unimaginable luxury.

Still....the silvery light on the beach echoes in my memory, calling to me...I'm sure it must be in my dreams. It seems like a dream now, to be standing on the sand listening to the waves beating and feeling so peaceful.

The sea seems to have that effect on makes me pause in the moment. Suddenly the whole world seems to shrink and retract or fall away. Maybe time stops or perhaps the minute just stretches out...whatever the reason it somehow seems to make everything else unimportant. There's no stress or worry, just calm and serenity.

 Oh well...for now I will have to be content with my souvenirs, photos and memories...


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