Thursday, May 14, 2015

The Postman always ring twice

I'm smiling right now, the postman has just delivered a new parcel of yarn, if you believe in coincidences how's this, it happened to be the same postman that delivered my last parcel from Germany yarn company ,way back in May 2013. silly I know , but it didn't half make me chuckle.

47 balls of my favourite cotton.  Over the last few days I have been looking at some of my work and I shared with you in the last post my shawl that I made with this stuff. I had quite a lot of leftovers that I decided to make my grandson a blanket I have just finishing the border and he is using it as we speak .I will share photos but this parcel has got me in a tizzy.

 I have a Mr that  has only ever wears a  Navy, black, brown scarfs and he always asks me to make him an entire scarf in one colour .For us that love yarn ,love colour I cant find anything more soul destroying and mundane as working in one colour. Needless to say I don't  make him very much.

Anyway, the Mr  said that my shawl is so nice if I made it the minus all the really bright colours, definitely no pink and he didn't want a flower motif,  he would like one. Yes, he actually said he would wear  a granny square scarf with colour. Well, you can knock me down with a feather. One thing leads to another and before he changes his mind I decided to visit the website and what do you know they have a sale. Catania yarn from here.

            47 balls , I settled on these sets for him I will be adding a bit of yellow to warm it up, but don't tell him .

I decide to buy most of the colours because, well you just have to have the lot don't you??.A rainbow isn't complete without every colour. I am so excited I have taken out my fancy pants camera .I bought it a few years back I rarely use it now as we all seem to use  camera phones. However, there is no denying it takes fab photos. The top two picture are from my phone ,the rest are taken with my camera.

                                          I love the clarity , I think I  will start using it again. Right , I'm off to get some granny square inspiration. Have a lovely day.

Wednesday, May 06, 2015

New blanket

Way back in October 2013, I bought some yarn from here. This yarn is the most delightful cotton ever. The colours are so mesmerizing I could just stare at them all day.

 I made my most favourite shawl ever, its a big thing  .I had made it to wear on the airplane as a shawl that would also be useful as a light blanket , however it is so heavy and too hot for the plane. I have ended up using it in the winter and it brightens those wet cold days.
 Gosh, I love this shawl. I adore the way the colours are so harmonious.Normally, I sit for hours trying to work out the best combinations for each square , it takes a lot of time  . With this one I simply put them in colour groups ie, shades/hues of blues, greens etc . With every completed square a smug smile was on my face.

                          I added the same pom pom edging I used for my Houndstooth scarf .I love bobbles/ pompoms they are frivolous and fabulous

I was bought up in a roman catholic home .Mother was very insistent that we were roman catholics, sometimes parents can be such snobs .Whatever she called it  I really hated going to mass. I thought churches were very scary, it  was filled with creepy rituals and the very distinct smell from the thurible can still make me feel uncomfortable.
I recently looked at my shawl and it suddenly reminding me  of all the stain glass in all the churches, cathedrals I prayed at. The one thing I did enjoy in church were the wonderfully elaborate stained glass .I loved the way the sunlight on the glass would give of an incredible display of colour and in the evening the  same piece looked so different ,darker .
Even if you’re not a church goer ,not sure this is even a word??  it’s hard not to appreciate the beauty of  Churches, mosques, synagogues and other places of worship .They are quite beautiful,
 Images  from google

I had quite a lot of yarn leftover from my shawl  I have decided to make a blanket from my grandson. It's a simple circle in the square motif. Every circle thrills me to make. Please excuse the grainy quality of these photos I took them on my phone .Once its finished I will of course share . I have decided to use the technique and make every  line hues of blue, green etc.

I have almost finished, a few more lines and then those blooming sewing in  of all the ends. I am curious to know if you sew all the ends as you go ,or are you like me , leave it  all to the end ?????
As soon as I've finished I will share it all, hope you had a lovely weekend

Thursday, April 23, 2015


Hello, I hope you are all enjoying this wonderful weather. I certainly am, there is nothing as nice as having the sun beaming through the blinds. I love opening the back door and the sky looks so blue. I don't have a garden I just have a balcony that I grow a few pots of herbs oregano, rosemary, thyme and sage but it make makes so happy to see them really thrive in this great weather . I think that is why I love blogs so much, I can pop over to your blogs and enjoy all  your beautiful photos of your stunning gardens, so thank you for sharing. It just makes me feel happier.
 When I was a little girl many many years ago in primary school , I was introduced to the magic of weaving . I remember being amazed that by simply weaving threads, intricate patterns could be achieved.
I woke up the other morning eager to recreate that feeling. I made a grid pattern  in cream and then I made a very long chain in the other colour . It was then a case of sitting down with a coffee and a homemade flapjack and off I went weaving over and under. I can't tell how addictive this is. I'm sure you will agree that when you use a random dyed yarn you get a beautiful fabric. I've made quite a few ,I just cant stop . I am going to weave in the other direction to try and made a plaid pattern I will share the results when I do.

 I found an interesting website called The Plaidmaker . My goodness this place is fun . I'm off to plaid .hehe.

Friday, April 10, 2015


Hello dear friends, Happy Easter to you all .It has been awhile since I last posted things have been very hectic around here. Hope you are all well and I will be visiting you all in the next few days.

I saw an image on Pinterest of a potholder but it didn't have a pattern and I had just had to make one. I really like dishcloths they allow me to work with colour and pattern on a small scale . I recently gave a friend a stack of dishcloths , she looked at me incredulously and asked why on earth I would do such beautiful work only for it to end up as a dishcloth /face cloths.

I explained that for me  the reasons I crochet varies .Some days my crochet is often about the process , the simple act of yarn over hook, the comfort of repetition. It is on those days that a quick dishcloth is the perfect piece. I don't have to commit to something that requires time, something that is  lacking at the moment . I told her it made me feel relaxed and that completing one dishcloth  was the equivalent of the few glasses of wine she has in the evening. She told me I was a really lucky person .When you are make to think about why you do something it makes you really think ,don't you think?  I'm so glad I have such an easy way to relax and apart from the occasional bouts of pain we can get in our hands its whole heck better than wine every night. Don't get me wrong I love wine ,hehe, but I'm glad I don't need it to relax .Why do you crochet?

My daughter and grandson have moved in for awhile and I had forgotten the amount of stuff that is needed for a baby. I'd forgotten the sleepless nights and the constant cuddling .He is the perfect companion for me as I never really sleep and I adore cuddling, we couldn't be happier .

Right , must dash ,I'm needed for kisses and hugs , lucky me.

Monday, February 23, 2015

Inside Crochet issue 62

 It seems in life you must have some bitter parts that then allow you to appreciate the sweet. That's a bit how I feel about learning to crochet .I learnt to crochet whilst battling illness. I had a stroke which resulting in paralysis of my left side .It suddenly meant my knitting was something I couldn't do. It devastated my live , I know that sounds dramatic but I  have always knitted and the thought of never playing with my beloved yarn was something I was not prepared for. My best friend suggested I come to her knitting and crochet class and learn to crochet. I enrolled and the rest as they say is history.
So there is my bitter sweet pill. If I had not had the stroke I know I wouldn't have put down my knitting needles ,which means I would never have fallen in love with crochet . I would never have set up my crochet group .A group that has made me meet some wonderful people over the years. I would never have learnt that I have patience to teach others and the patience it takes to design .The design process is very lengthy. inspired by Harris tweed and their wonderful duotone textile patterns.

This is my latest design, The Houndstooth Scarf .It is inspired by Harris tweed and their wonderful duotone textile patterns. We are all familiar with the classis black and white  I decided to make it in red.
 It is a very simply pattern and the two yarns are carried throughout the scarf and swapped at every row resulting in a very thick fabric. Perfect for those cold months

My love of pom poms and my  clover pompom makers (I have three sizes I really like pompoms and firmly believe everything looks great with a pom pom) lead to this lovely crocheted pompom edging .
It is a great unisex piece minus the pom pom edging if you are my Mr.


Saturday, February 07, 2015

Domestic Violence

It has been a dreadful two weeks. It started with a phone call , my daughter was screaming down the phone, please could I come and get her. She thinks she ended the call but I heard her screaming the words
' I cant breathe ,please stop ,'.
I heard my grandson screaming in that high pitch that babies only do at times of distress .It is a blood curdling cry. I called the police. I was in my pjs. I grabbed my coat , got into the car and drove like a bat out of hell .I have no idea how I didn't have an accident .I called all the family telling them they needed to meet me at her house.

Fifteen of the longest minutes of my life went by before I got to hers. The police were leaving her flat .I approached them . It seems my daughter had called during her attack but her partner grabbed phone and ended the call, it seems the neighbours had also called. They said that he had fled before they had arrived and that my daughter didn't want to press charges. He said she has very distressed and he knew she was scared to talk. He asked me to try and persuade her to report the incident. I have to say their response time was very good. they had arrived five minutes after my daughters call.

The rest of the family arrived .The scene that awaited us was horrific .My daughter had a burst lip and massively swollen left cheek, and finger marks around her neck. Scratches on her arms and bruising around her wrists. She was shaking, crying, trying her best to console the baby.

We talked, we listened, she  said wanted to press charges but she was afraid that they would take her baby away if she admitted she was a victim of domestic violence for four years. Yes, you did read correctly .She had told us for the first time  she had been beaten up for four years, almost weekly.

 We managed to persuade her that the only way forward for her and her son is that she finally goes to the police. I reassured her no one would take baby away. I told her if she got help and left him no one would doubt her parenting skills. If she stayed I told her I would report my fears for her safety and the babies and that if she stayed with him I would make her leave the baby with me. I believe in life you have to make a stand I would not allow my daughter or grandson to ever live in fear of violence now that I was aware of this dangerous situation. I know that she finally understood the gravity of the situation. Her love for her son is what has made her take a stand .I am incredible proud of her

We spent hours waiting at the police station before we where finally seen. In that time my daughters resolve waned .My only complaint with the system at police stations is that if a victim of  DV  comes in they should get them in a room as quickly as possible as the victim shouldn't be allowed to think too much about the consequences of reporting this terrible crime. My daughter was so fearful of his reprisal, she changed her mind so many times whilst waiting. She finally reported it and a warrant was issued for his arrest. This was an agonising wait. We reported the DV on the Friday and they couldn't find him until the sunday.

During this wait my daughter was advised to contact DV hotline and women's aid who helped organise emergency accommodation. She couldn't stay with us or my mum as her partner knows these places.It is a terrible thing when you cant keep your children safe. We spoke to social workers, solictors, housing officers all of whom wanted almost blow by blow account of her DV. I watched my daughter stripped bare , it is a terrible thing to hear about your child being hurt and we never had any idea. He'd even hit her during her pregnancy.I have never felt so powerless. Hugs and kisses and lots of tissues was all I could offer. Reassurance that he will never hurt her again.

He was arrested and let out on bail until his court appearance seven days later. The solicitor advises we should take out a non molestation order to prevent him from any contact with an power of arrest note added. So that if he contacts her in any shape or form he will be arrested and this is then regarded as a breach of the order. The process from the moment you report DV is so long and complicated and I know this is the reason that women give up. The molestation order costs approx £1000 and it doesn't last indefinitely ,I am however very glad that it is available because finally she can feel safe.

 I would urge anyone who is living with DV if you are hurt please at the very least report it to your gp .He will not be able to do anything without your consent but at least that bruise/slap/ whatever would be noted and it will help when you finally can't stand it anymore. I'm so proud of my daughter.

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Natural Dye Studio

 I recently had an email about one of my favourite online yarn dyers  closing their fabulous shop. The Natural Dye Studio exclusively uses historical plant dyes to produce an astounding spectrum of subtle colours. I am so sad as I love their yarns
I used the natural dye yarns for one of my designs called Milly Molly Mandy, Issue 35 published in november 2012. We are currently on issue 61 gosh doesn't time fly by?

I adore knitted linen stitch, I thought it might be fun to see
how  it would look in crochet.
I changed colour every
 row using  seven different candy coloured mini skeins striped with the beautiful  pink yarn
Instead of using seven mini skein this yarn is perfect. for the life of me I cant remember the
colour way but it was their dazzle 4ply yarn. Sad to think I cant get anymore of this stuff. If you have ever used Amanda's yarn you will know it is fabulous stuff. I adore her yarns .
I joined the Natural dye studio's rainbow club last year
 Amanda sends  you a different colour every month for a year , in the end you are left with a delightful rainbow that makes me smile every time I lay them on the floor.

Amanda is a fabulous crochet designer and I believe she will be concentrating on this part of her for the time being .Her designs are breathtaking , check out her work here. you can read her reasons for closing the shop on her blog. I wish her all the best and I thank her for her wonderful way with colouring , she is amazing. I am  so glad I have this beautiful stash for colour inspiration.