Monday, 18 January 2016

Splashes of colour

January is a grey month. More often than not, with the weather here, the only colours you see each day are varying shades of grey to black. Black at night, dark grey in the morning, slightly lighter gray around lunchtime then swiftly returning to dark grey again by the time you head home.

It can be pretty depressing. Sometimes I feel a bit like the world has ceased to exist, and that I'm just trudging along in a little bubble, surrounded by blackness. That's when I have really bad January blue. But I try not to let myself wallow in it too often. I expect everyone does this, but to avoid the January blues, I try and work some colour somewhere into the day. Whether it's something I'm wearing or something I have around the house. Flowers, obviously are a good bet for this time of year.

I thought I would share some of those splashes of colour.

Yup, hyacinths again, but I just love them, sorry.

I did manage to finish the finger breaking crochet top I was working on the other week. I'm pretty pleased with the result so far, although I haven't quite finished weaving in the ends, and it needs a press. I added fewer rows of motifs to the length of sleeves and body. 2 less rows to the sleeves and 1 less to the body. The sleeves are a perfect half length for me, but I'm undecided on the body - I may go back and add the final row after all. I'll show some pictures when I've finished weaving in and pressed it...and when we actually have some daylight here again!

In the meantime, I've been working on this, which I LOVE! I have made one of these before, and have meant for ages to go back and make a second in another colour combination. Only trouble is, now I have ideas for a third in my head! Argh! Well, I have a v. long list of projects waiting after this one, so I think number 3 will just have to wait a while. The link to the pattern is on my Ravelry page if you are interested.

Sunday, 3 January 2016

Happy New Year 2016

So I know a lot of people post highlights of their year at this time on blogs. I would love to join in, but I don't think I blogged enough in 2015 to make it worthwhile! I'll just have to enjoy reading everyone else's highlights this year. But instead, I thought I would share a funny, technology related highlight of the year story with you.

I'm not a person that loves social media. I know that's sort of ironic coming from someone who has a blog. But blogging always seems different to me, I'm here writing about something specific, and it's mainly for myself, to create my own space amid everyday life - something I can control and shape how I want. I don't really tend to go in to great depth about the minutiae of my life here. Mainly because I can't imagine who would want to read it, or ever be interested! I do have a Facebook and Twitter account, but I'm a 'lurker'. I don't really post on either of them, but use them more as news services. I love the Internet - it's such a great resource for craft - but I sort of hate the insidiousness (is that a word?) of social media and the world of internet on phones. I know I'm a mass of contradictions here, but it's just how I feel. Google ads bug me - I hate that they track what web pages you've visited and then use the info to advertise things to you when you're trying to do something else. I hate the fact that we're all now constantly expected to be contactable because of mobiles.

I am going somewhere with this rant I promise! Amid all my dislike of some aspects of modern technology, I have a smartphone, like pretty much all of us do now. I use my phone to take the occasional picture, again like pretty much all of us do (though I mainly use a proper camera - better picture quality).

Well, just as I was heading off to bed on New Years Day, post champagne celebration of midnight with S, I noticed a little message on my phone. It was a video clip. Creepily, some software on my phone had decided to create a little film of what it thought were my highlights of 2015, by splicing together all the photos I had taken and stored on my phone, with some backing music. As I say, I found this very creepy...until suddenly it became hilarious, when, as I watched the video scroll through my photos, complete with plinky plunky music backing, I realised that the software had picked up and included some pictures which I had taken for our plumber, of a leak on our toilet!! It was so hilarious - whatever my phone thought, I can tell you that a leaky toilet was definitely not one of my year highlights!!


One of my New Year resolutions was to finish every craft project I start. Yeah, I know, good luck with that! Well so far I am on track, I have finished my Nanook cardigan. The peach colour seems less peach now that it's knitted into a full garment. The light here has been rubbish though, so no pics yet.

I also finished a shawl over Christmas. Again, sorry for the slightly lurid colour of the pink, it's the bad light.

My latest make, which actually I am starting to regret a little, is the Rose top, from Rowan Filigree crochet book 3. Don't get me wrong, it's a lovely design. It's just that working with 4 ply cotton and a 2.5mm hook is really crampling my hands and fingers, and the motif design, though lovely is quite painstaking...and there are 140 to make! I really wish the published had included crochet charts in the book too. I can't understand why there are only written instructions. I know some people prefer that, but I find a chart so much easier, especially with quite a fiddly motif. And I know I can't take a break and work on something else, because I just won't start again! So must press on to completion. Sigh. At least it is pretty.

Happy New Year!