On my desk this week – 28 May 2017

I was hoping to be back with a new recipe at the tail end of last week but I’ve been laid low with what might be whooping cough (how Dickensian!!), so I haven’t been cooking at all.

Instead, it’s time for a craft update.  Can’t actually show you what’s on my desk as it’s basically a heap of crap which has nowhere else to go.  Clearing it was one of my tasks for last week but have hardly moved from the sofa.  Instead, I’ll show couple of projects I have on the go at the moment.

First up is this gorgeous baby blanket from A Year of Baby Afghans (Book 4) published by Leisure Arts.  This one is for the month of March and is designed by Mary C Abadir.  It’s the first pattern I’ve done from this book and I’m a little bit in love with it.  In fact, I keep looking at the blanket as it’s so pretty.  Once downside of the book is that a few diagrams would help for reassurance, but saying that, I’ve managed fine without them.  I’m using Drops Baby Merino, which is a 4-ply yarn, in Powder, Light Turquoise, and Light Grey, with a 3.5mm hook.  That yarn is thicker than some 4-plys I’ve used and the colours are gorgeous; I’m especially fond of the Powder which is a slight pink hint to it which, when mixed with other colours, gives a gorgeous soft neutral effect.

Another crochet project I’ve just completed (with the exception of sewing in 2 ends), is this Edlothia shawl by Jasmin Rasanen, available for free on Ravelry, worked in Sheepjes Whirl in Strawberries and Scream, with a 3.5mm hook.  I am very pleased with the finished piece but the pattern was a bit challenging to understand, perhaps owing to some translation issues. On a positive note, it really made me learn how to understand crochet charts!

Finally I’m still toiling away at the necklace I’m doing, incorporating this beautiful Lost Girl bead by Soul Silver.  I have been doing this in fits and starts for about a year and at the stage now where I’d really like to get it finished this week.  The flowers are from a pattern in Spellbound’s Floral Beaded Jewellery by Julie Ashford, and the rope design from Beautiful Beaded Ropes by Jill Wiseman.

I’m also at the finishing stage of a silver and copper bangle, using some form folding, at Silversmithing classes, so will hopefully have it home to show soon.

Thanks for looking.  Hope to see you again soon..and I promise I’ll have a new recipe soon.

xoxo

On my desk this week – 15 February 2017

The weeks are flying by this year already, so looking forward to spring coming.  I’ve got a few new projects on the go this week.  Two are long(ish)-term ones that I can hop in and out of to suit my mood and time availability.

First up, I’ve finally started the Persian Tiles crocheted blanket by Janie Crow.  This has been on my to-do list for a while now and I bought the pattern around a year ago, but have only felt like doing it now.  I’m using Stylecraft Special DK in 9 different colours.

Persian Tiles Colour Selection

I’ve finished my first motif and I’m pretty pleased with the way my colours have worked out.  I’ll be doing half the motifs in this colourway, swapping out Cypress and Pistachio for Storm Blue and Duck Egg for the other half.  I feel the chains in the middle are a bit long but hopefully the sections will stretch into themselves as I start to sew them together.

Persian Tiles

After my recent forays into cross stitching last year, I decided I’d really like to do some embroidery samplers, so although I’m a bit late, I’m going to jump into the “1 Year of Stitches” project.  Whether I’ll stick it out for the whole year remains to be seen but I would like to have a good variety of stitches in my finished piece.  I ordered some lovely Dove Grey linen …actually I ordered quite a lot, as I though it was sized in centimetres but it was in inches, but I’ll have plenty for a few projects.  I also couldn’t resist the little dinky oval embroidery hoop.  I only hope it isn’t too small to work on but if it is, I can always use it as a frame for a mini project and go back to one of my wooden hoops.

The last thing I started this week was at silversmithing classes.  I’ve decided my latest project will be a bracelet made of irregularly shaped links and connectors.  First link is done, although it still needs a good polish.  Doesn’t look much on its own but I’m hoping once it’s finished, the bracelet will be one I wear regularly.

Wonky Link Bracelet

I have to dash now, as really want to start my embroidery project tonight.

I’ll be back soon with more things to show and make.

2016 recap

Well, last year’s attempt at getting back into blogging didn’t quite go according to plan.  To be frank, my whole year didn’t go quite according to plan.  Nothing terrible happened to me but the year just seemed to fly by and I managed my time very badly indeed.  That said, I did 2 beginners blocks of flamenco dancing and also started silversmithing classes, both of which I really enjoy and hope to continue into 2017 and beyond.

Had great times in the kitchen, cooking up a storm, although still haven’t learned to decorate sugar cookies or make quite as many new dishes as I planned.

Beading took a bit of a back seat, with only 3 projects getting finished but have some new ideas and plans in the pipeline and I’d like to incorporate some of my silver work in with it once I develop my skills a bit.

I’ve been crocheting up a storm, it’s such a nice hobby to do on the couch, in front of the tv, on cold dark winter nights.

Again, I’ve failed badly at my attempt to dedicate more time to dressmaking.  I’m really mad at myself, as I love clothes and it is one of my ambitions to become skilled at making them.  I actually think I may be putting too much pressure on myself, so this year I aim to just chill and enjoy the process.

I’m about to embark on an embroidery sampler project, which I’m really looking forward to – I don’t know many stitches at the moment, so it will be a bit of a journey of exploration.  Can’t wait for my linen to arrive.

Anyway, enough chitter chatter, I have a ton of unfinished projects just begging to be completed.

 

Woolly Bully

Just  before Christmas I treated myself to a copy of Vanessa Mooncie’s fantastic book, “Animal Heads – Trophy Heads to Crochet”.  Once I had looked through it, I wanted to make almost everything, but once I put my sensible head on and told myself I was only allowed to do one until I had some other projects finished, I decided on the bull.  It will be perfect in our bedroom, which you may recall from a previous post, will eventually have a Spanish flamenco bar feel to it.

The bull didn’t take too long to do, as he’s mainly done in chunky yarn.  Also, there weren’t too many parts to put together.  I did find my hands got a bit sore making him, especially my “holding” hand.  This is probably not helped by me being a bit hypermobile, as it’s pretty easy to overstretch fingers.

Oodles of Obliciousness - Paco

Before I added the embellishments, I had fun pretending I was Kevin Keegan with his curly hair – luckily no  photos exist. I would  have finished him last week, but I was held back a bit trying to source a wooden ring which was large enough to go in his nose.

Oodles of Obliciousness - Bull Nose

 

I’n not sure he’ll be to everyone’s taste, but I love him so much, in fact he’s quite possibly my favourite make to date.  At the moment he’s resting on top of one of the sofas, as he’s pretty heavy, so will need to get hold of a masonry drill to put a rawl plug in to support him.  I’d love to hear what you think of him.

OOdles of Obliciousness - Bull (finished)

As yet, he doesn’t have a name, but I’m on the case (…and open to suggestions).

Bedroom (P)revamp

I’m so pleased I’m sticking to my craft project list and not adding anything new until I tick something off.  It has helped hugely that my lovely hubster has been clearing out someone the old stuff we seem to hang onto for no reason.  It means I have space in there to take photos and set up a temporary work tables and when I need it; it’s just down to me to go through all the bags and boxes of craft stuff I have and get rid of anything I won’t use.

I’m really looking forward to having a more minimal craft stash. As often I find the sheer volume of stuff I have is a bit daunting and ends up putting me off making anything.

I’ve also decided to decorate our bedroom in a Spanish flamenco style.  In case you didn’t know, I love Spain, especially Andalucia and dream of living in Sevilla one day. It’s one of those jobs which will take some time to complete así don’t want just go out, buy a ton of stuff, and shove it in the room; I want it filled with Spanish style knick knacks but also want it to reflect our own style and taste.

The first thing for the walls is almost finished…

Oodles of Obliciousness - Paco

…all will be revealed in the next day or so.

Oblibby xx

Meet Fibi

I’m still crocheting away on Sophie’s Universe.  One round to go on my first one and up to Section 8 (I think) on the one for me.  Sometimes I liked to take a week off and do something else, so few weeks ago, I decided to have a go at amigurami, mainly because I fell in love with some Lalylala patterns.  A couple fell into my basket, and I decided to have a go at Fibi the Fox first.

After a few mishaps, mainly because I wasn’t marking the start of my rounds (if you’re new to amigurami, please don’t think you won’t need markers – you will!).  Once I learned about using a scrap of yarn to mark my place, on Dedri’s blog I didn’t look back.

Although I love adapting patterns and I’ve seen a few of the Lalylala ones used as the basis for something else, I decided it would be a good idea to stick with the original design, especially as this was a first attempt.

..so, let me introduce you to Fibi, the cutest little fox you’re ever likely to meet.

Fibi the Fox
Fibi the Fox
Fibi the Fox
Fibi the Fox

I can thoroughly recommend these patterns.  I’ve already started my next one.

Sophie’s Universe – Parts 1-11

At last, a post about something that isn’t food!

Last month, I kept seeing the most gorgeous crochet afghan showing up on my Instagram feed.  After investigating a bit further, I discovered the joys of a crochet along and the beautiful Sophie’s Universe.  After crochet like crazy since I returned from Sevilla (travel report still to come), I am finally up to date and eagerly awaiting the next installment’s release on Sunday.

This is a little closeup of my favourite part of Sophie.

  1. Oodles of Obliciousness - Sophie's Universe, flower detail

We’re now about half way through and I have to say the pattern has been a joy to crochet.  Very little repetition and lots of interesting new stitches and features throughout.  If you’d like to give it a go, pop over to the designer, Dedri’s site at Look What I Made.  The instructions are very clear and well written.  If you do decide to give Sophie’s Universe, I’d love to see your colour scheme and progress.

I decided to do this Sophie in Stylecraft DK from my stash.  I’ve had to buy a couple of balls when I’ve run out of a colour I’ve wanted to use again, but it has been great stash-buster so far.

Oh, and did I mention I’ve already started another one in a more subdued colour scheme, as my original is earmarked for my niece as a starting school gift.  I’ll miss Sophie #1 so much when she goes though!

Happy hooking xx

Sophie’s Universe 2015 CAL – Parts 1-5

Finally, a crafty post on my new look blog!

I kept seeing Sophie’s Universes popping up in my Instagram feed and was really taken by how pretty they looked.  It’s been a wee while since I’ve had a crochet project on the go (with the exception of the Granny Square a Day – hahaha -blankets I’m (not) doing).

I decided to use Stylecraft Special DK from my stash.  It’s cheap, but doesn’t feel it, works up really well, comes in a great range of colours, and is easy to get a hold of.  I’ve now got the first 4 sections completed, and have decided I’m going to give the finished one to my niece when she starts school in August.  Because I love the design so much, I also got some Stylecraft Chunky to make another one for me.

I’m really enjoying the crochet along – it keeps me focused without allowing to go hell for leather and get sick of it quickly.  I’m still a behind, but once I get caught up, I’ll start me new one and try to work the 2 consecutively.

Here’s Sophie Parts 1-4:

Oodles of Obliciousness - Sophie's Universe (parts 1-4)
Oodles of Obliciousness – Sophie’s Universe (parts 1-4)

I’m being very good and sewing in my ends after each part, having learned my lesson from the first crochet blanket I did, where I spent as much time sewing the ends and bits together as I did crocheting, and almost lost the will to live in the process.

If you fancy having a go at Sophie’s Universe, you can find all the details over at the Look What I Made blog.  Don’t be put off by how complicated it looks, as long as you can do a basic crochet stitch and follow a pattern, you’ll be fine.  The instructions are really clear and easy to understand.