Thursday, August 30, 2018

I Don't Think So

Admittedly I worked a very small sample, but I don't think crocheting the metallic thread together with the cotton thread is a good idea. You have to be very careful to keep the threads together to avoid loops of gold sticking out, which is unsightly. And the the metallic thread tends to loop and tangle, which makes for slow and tedious working:
I think I'd be better to do what I did on the previous top and incorporate beads to make sure it is 'evening wear'.

Wednesday, August 29, 2018


I don't know my way around Bloemfontein, the city where Jack was in hospital, but when I was looking for a bookshop, I came across a small yarn shop with a very helpful assistant. The yarn at the back is a mixture of cotton and silk, to knit a gilet for next year's knitting competition. The assistant suggested using a fine gold thread with the orangey-red crochet cotton to make sure it's seen as an evening top for the crochet competition.  I'll try it. There's another set of red yarn somewhere in the postal system, but I thought I'd better buy something while I had the chance, in case the parcel never turns up. That thread will not go to waste, I can make a plan when (or if) it turns up.

Tuesday, August 28, 2018

Another Pair

Since these socks are the same as the pair I knitted recently, I had memorised the pattern, so they were good for 'hospital knitting'. I'm a bit of a fidget fingers, didn't want to sit doing nothing while waiting for Jack's test results or visiting him in hospital. I did have my tatting with me, but Skipping ropes takes more concentration than I had to hand, the socks were easier.  I thought the toes on the previous pair looked a bit skimpy, so I knitted several rounds with the contrast yarn before I started decreasing. I didn't have my tapestry needle with me, so I cast off the toes using a 3-needle cast off:
I think they turned out pretty well considering they're made with three different oddments of yarn.

Monday, August 27, 2018

We're Back

The computer is back with a new keyboard, Jack is back with new arteries around his heart - well, not really new because they were taken from his left leg - and I'm back. Thanks for all the kind comments on my previous post, I appreciate your support!

I decided I needed a bigger bag for hospital visiting. I used Maria Wallin's Biabag tutorial  to help me, but I made the bag bigger and simpler. I used two fabrics instead of three, no interfacing and left off the side pockets and the pocket with a flap. I'm pleased with how it turned out, but I'm not sure that I'm well suited to a bag with a lot of pockets - you have to remember which pocket a thing is in, and put it back in the same pocket when you're done with it!

Tuesday, August 21, 2018

Not Today

Our computer is in for repairs, it needs to have a new keyboard fitted. I can’t work out how to add a photo to a post on my tablet, and a post about a new bag needs a photo! Things are a little fraught here at the moment. My husband Jack was suddenly admitted to hospital for major surgery. I’m keeping puppies fed and all the things required, so there’s not much time for crafting. I think I’ll have to opt out until things have settled down and the computer is back. I can still read blogs, for the next few days anyway.

Wednesday, August 15, 2018

More Ice Drops

Left to right these are Elana (my pattern), two Birthday Ice Drops (Nicola Bowersox), and Purple Fudge (Lace Lovin' Librarian).

Frivolity Ice Drop

This is Diane's latest Ice Drop. The pattern is on her blog here , scroll down a bit. It's also on the Facebook Ice Drop Addicts page. I'm pleased with it, thanks Diane.

Tuesday, August 14, 2018

A Pair

I've finished knitting the second sock. I like knitting the second sock because all the decisions, such as how wide to make the cuff, have been made, so just do it. And  I want to see how the pair looks. I think I'll be able to make a couple more pairs like this to use up my sock wool stash.

Monday, August 13, 2018

It's Complicated!

This is one of the most complicated things I've ever sewn, on a par with the lined velvet jackets I once made for my daughter and myself.   I had to read parts of the pattern several times before I grasped them. That's not a criticism of Maria Wallin's Biabag tutorial, you understand, just a reflection of my own inexperience at this type of construction. Don't panic, don't panic, I kept muttering the catch phrase from Dad's Army. Anyway, I have completed it and I have learnt how to insert zippered pockets into a bag, which was the object of the exercise.

Friday, August 10, 2018


The tulip beaded bag must have a zippered pocket in it, so I thought it would be a good idea to practice making zippered pockets in a bag. I did some sleuthing and found Maria Wallin's The Bia Bag as a free download from Craftsy. The bag is a little smaller than I was visualising, but it has three zips and a very detailed tutorial, so I decided it would do the trick. I had to buy zips, but found the three lots of fabric needed in my stash:
The pattern has a lot of pieces - I think it could only have been designed by a quilter!
I'm following the detailed tutorial step by step, very slowly and painstakingly.  At the moment I have a mish mash of half-completed elements, hopefully it will all come together eventually.

Thursday, August 9, 2018

Glasses Case

A friend of mine has bought the recommended thread for the competition embroidery for me, but I thought I'd make a glasses case as I originally planned, for practice. I'm sure there's always a home for a pretty glasses case!

One thing I like about keeping a blog is that I can look back to find links I need. I looked up the link to the tutorial I used for the peg bag. 
This one was a bit trickier than the peg bag because the top is so small. I think next time I'll do the top stitching at the top by hand rather than machine. It was hard to keep it neat.

Wednesday, August 8, 2018

One By One

I have a number of odd balls of sock wool left over from projects. I peer at them every now and then, but they're not colours that 'go' well together, I couldn't think how to combine them to make them usable. Then I saw this pattern, Broken seed stitch or moss stitch socks from FitzBirch. I saw it on Pinterest and followed the links. This is the kind of pattern that is really up my street - it looks complicated but is very simple. No slipping or stranding or complicated repeats. The original has a light coloured solid yarn with a variegated, but I realised that black would also work. It has an interesting texture

Tuesday, August 7, 2018

Two In One

I don't really suffer from second sock syndrome, where you knit one sock and then don't get around to knitting the other, but I am always up for learning a new knitting technique, so when I came across this post on, I had to try it.

It's a sort of double knitting, where you knit one sock inside the other, a stitch for the outside sock and then a stitch for the inside sock. I see the principle, but it seems an unnecessary complication to me. I'd rather just knit sock one and then sock two. Now I know!

Monday, August 6, 2018

Skirting The Issue

Or not. I've finished embroidering a border on my pencil skirt. I took a deep breath before I ironed it on the wrong side, but nothing alarming happened! I think the skirt looks a lot more interesting now and I've learnt several things that I can apply when I embroider a glasses case.

PS my sister-in-law tells me it doesn't matter that my blog says not secure, seeing as I am not collecting money nor personal information. She sent me this link to read. The blogger part, where I write blogs and have comments etc says that it is secure, so that's alright, Best Beloved.

Thursday, August 2, 2018

The Boys

I'm still working on the embroidery, there's not much change from yesterday, so I thought I'd show the puppies who have been part of the establishment for a month. It's difficult to catch them all together at once, apart from when they're eating, so eating it is. Their mum Fay is an Australian Heeler and dad Rag is a Border Collie.

PS Can anyone tell me why my blog page now says it is 'Not Secure' and what I must do to change that?

Wednesday, August 1, 2018

Room For One More

I thought the sixth repeat of the edging was going to complete the circle, but it turns out there's room for one more - or two-thirds of one anyway. I think it must be because I measured the pattern with the final twiddle and then decided the continuous pattern would look better without it:
Goes to show that even a small mistake in measuring can make a big difference when repeated. Luckily it doesn't matter much in this case.