Warning: overly smug half term post :P

Aaaahhh….Half term at last.  The week I can pretend I don’t have a day job and let my crafting alter ego take over.  The husband is working this week so I got up early with him and I’m glad I did.  It’s only lunch time and I already feel like I’ve had a whole day.  Bliss!

Spent some time pursuing a very exciting lead for possible workshops over the summer, and putting some thought into my June WI workshop.  Really excited that things seem to be getting off the ground a little bit; can’t wait till the summer when I have more freedom to get my craft on!

The other plus of holiday time is I can spend more time doing nice cooking.  I’m no masterchef, but everything tastes better when I have more than half an hour to get it ready!  Took a nice walk to the local butcher earlier and picked up some delicious smelling garlic sausages that I’m going to turn into meatballs for dinner.  Yum!

Got the rest of the afternoon to work on crocheting a strap for my gorgeous new hexie handbag:

DSCF2416[1]

As you can no doubt tell from the god-awful lighting in that photograph, it’s one of those gloomy, rainy days here, but at least the handbag is summery 🙂

Zoë x

 

What I’m up to in 2016

Thanks for stopping by and welcome to my blog.  There’s not a lot here right now but I’m hoping to add more updates soon.

I’ve got a couple of exciting projects for magazine commissions going on (my very first!) and I can’t wait to share pictures as soon as the first one is published.

I’m working on two new baby blanket designs for a friend- one in star stitch and one a simple ripple.  I wish I knew boy or girl so I could pick colours easier!

As for classes, I’ve had to put them on the back burner for a little while as I’ve got a lot on with my day job for a few months, but once that’s sorted I’m really hoping to get some workshops going for people who want to learn beginner crochet or perhaps try out a new technique or stitch.  I’m looking at a few venues around Barnsley and Sheffield.  If you’re interested please get in touch and I’ll add you to my mailing list.

 

That’s all for now!

 

Zoe

Class updates

Excellent news!

I’m getting my crochet classes up and running at Oh Sew Sweet at the Hut as of next week- there will be mum and baby sessions, adult beginners and parent and child.  I’m really excited at this as the start of making something more from my hobby.  Find the shop on facebook for news on when the classes are running.  The more the merrier!

I’m also trying to finish up some of my WIP before embarking on new projects.  Still got that wavy afghan on the go, a crocodile stitch cushion cover to  sew up, a beanie hat to finish the ends of and the stay puft man to complete.  I’ve also just had my first Christmas order for a custom crochet Elf on the Shelf that I’m going to make up as a prototype then hopefully I’ll be able to make more of them in time for Christmas.  (Starting early this time!!)

I’ve got a few other things I want to start as well, including having a go at African flower crochet with a Happypotamus from http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/happypotamus-the-happy-hippo-crochet-pattern.

Take care!

Never smile at a crocodile

I like to try out new things with my crochet as often as I can.  I’m looking forward to the possibility of teaching a regular beginners’ class soon, starting with the most basic stitches then working onwards, and it made me think, what new stitch or technique have I learned recently?

So, this week, I’m trying out crocodile stitch, following the advice given here: http://www.lostandfoundlane.com/p/croc-stitch-easy-way.html

It’s a surprisingly easy stitch to do with a fancy looking result.  I’m planning to make a cushion cover in tones of blue and grey:

IMG_0849 IMG_0850

What do you think?

Zoe

There’s no place like home

“There’s no place like home. ” So said Dorothy, and clicked her ruby slippers together three times.  I’m all about the comforts of home, and these simple crochet slippers from http://www.allfreecrochet.com/Socks-and-Slippers/Two-Tone-Ballet-Slippers are a lovely little slice of warmth and comfort.  They only take a couple of hours to make up, and the pattern is simple and easily adapted for different sizes.

Here are mine:

IMG_0840IMG_0834

I used a 5.5mm hook and chunky yarn leftover from another project.  My feet are quite small (UK size 4) so I made up the small version and they fit comfortably.  I used around 60-70g of wool so you’ll only need one ball, I would think even for larger feet.

I think they need a flower or something to brighten them up, so I’ll add that on next and see how they look.

Zoe x

Oh I do like to be beside the seaside!

I don’t know about you, but for me, one of the best things about finally owning my own home a couple of years ago was that I finally had the freedom to decorate it any way I want.  After years of rented accommodation (no complaints, we had some fab landlords and comfortable places to live) it was wonderful to be able to choose how we want things to look.  2 years in, our home is, and I think always will be, a work in progress, but now there are some parts I love even more because we’ve made them our own; the dining room with the curtains I sewed myself, my calming green study that was the first room I ever painted unsupervised, and our seaside themed bathroom.

Wall art from B&Q
Wall art from B&Q

We are very lucky to have more than one bathroom at home, so this one is my little oasis, used almost exclusively for actually having a bath.  Total luxury.  I decided on a seaside theme because the sea is my favourite place to be, I just love to listen to the waves, explore little rocky beaches and smell the salty air.  Luckily for me, it is actually a pretty trendy look at the moment too, so picking up decorative items is easy and fairly inexpensive.

IMG_0824IMG_0825

I’ve got them all displayed on the bit I’m most proud of, my home-made shelves.  When we moved in, I found some forgotten strips of decking in the garden (mysterious, as there is a slabbed patio and no decking where we live) that had been left out and become weathered.  They reminded me of driftwood and were the right sort of size for shelves, so I rescued them and brought them indoors to dry out.  (I wish I’d taken pictures of them before so you could see.)  Once dry, I sanded them down to remove all the dirt and debris and smooth the edges off.  I wanted them to still look weathered, so I painted them in a matt emulsion, but just one coat and allowed the wood to show through where the paint didn’t take.  I sanded off some edges where I thought it looked too neat.

IMG_0827IMG_0826

I bought the brackets and B&Q- I thought they had a nice Victorian seaside feel to them, but their white colour meant they fit in with the light room.

Making a pair of shelves is no great feat of DIY I know, but the feeling of satisfaction of making something for myself, out of what was essentially waste material, makes me all warm inside.  I’ve since made a small table out of a larger broken one, and rescued a 1940s bureau for just a tenner!

What’s your favourite upcycling project?

Zoe x

Oh, the places you’ll go!

For months I have been wanting to set up a blog to record all of my crafty adventures.  It’s been on my to do list and forever getting pushed to the bottom by other more urgent things.  But, today is the day!

Congratulations!

Today is your day!

You’re off to Great Places!

You’re off and away!

(Dr. Seuss)

It’s a bank holiday, the sun is shimmering through the silver birch outside my window, and having been a very good girl yesterday, there are no chores for me to do today.  Today I can indulge myself and do whatever I please.  For me, that is spending some time in my beautiful little study with all of my favourite things; my 1950s Pinnock sewing machine, my nan’s knitting needles and crochet hook, a stash of yarn in all sorts of colours and textures and all my craft books and magazines.

My current projects are a lovely wavy crochet afghan for me:

(method/pattern from here: http://attic24.typepad.com/weblog/neat-ripple-pattern.html)

…and an amigurumi version of the Mr. Staypuft man from Ghostbusters for a friend.  I’ll be working out the pattern for him as I go, and I’ll share how I do that with you once I get him properly started.

Once that’s done, I’ve got a vintage blanket made for me by my great grandmother that I’m learning to re-create myself, a gorgeous cabled cardigan to knit, some gingham tablecloths to sew to go with bunting I’ve made already and a 50s dress pattern to have a go at.  So, I’ve plenty to tell you about as I go along.

Zoё x