Saturday, April 30, 2022



Our paper flowers and boxes project went very well yesterday.  We managed to finish in one session, which was good because we had two little school girls with us who will be back at school next week. One of the girls is the great granddaughter of one of our craft group members and the other her neighbour. Hearts, beads, glitter, there was more bling than on my original sample! 

Thursday, April 28, 2022

Chaos Reigns


One of the ladies in the craft group I am now running (eek!) in a retirement home, told me recently that she only wants to do sewing projects, not paper projects. She has my sympathy, I'd choose fabric over paper any day of the week, but it's impractical to exclude paper altogether. I'm preparing tomorrow's project. 

I came across this gerbera type paper flower on Pinterest here. It's pretty simple to make, everyone in the group should manage it. But what to do with the flowers? 

I thought I'd make use of these boxes I was given. The box is sturdy, but covered in writing. I tried painting over the writing, but that didn't work, so I turned a box inside out and then painted it. I know the group members will decorate the boxes much more elaborately than I have, but I've made a sample to give them the idea. Now to assemble anything and everything that could be used for the job, from paper and templates to beads and ribbons. 

Tuesday, April 26, 2022

And A Hat


I know I criticised the Cloudburst Pattern in my previous post, but the gloves have turned out really well. 

Sarah, my fellow market stall holder, put pictures of my socks and gloves on her mailing group on Saturday evening and I got an immediate response, which was gratifying! Some one wants the Leaves gloves and asked for a hat to go with them. I sent her photos of various patterns I found and she plumped for Fishtail Hat Pattern, by Gail Bable. 

I spun the wool on Sunday and should finish knitting today. I spent all yesterday morning in the kitchen, making jam and helping a small boy make biscuits, otherwise it would be done already. 

Saturday, April 23, 2022

Longer Isn't Better


When it comes to patterns that is. This pattern is Cloudburst by Arienne Grey. It's six pages long and very garbled. There's no way I was going to print out six pages, much of which was unnecessary. I printed the page with the chart on it and, on the other side, the page with a picture of the finished gloves and then scribbled notes for myself. I made the gloves a bit shorter than the pattern, both before and after the thumb shaping. 

Nalu, on the other hand, was concise and clear. Hats off to Sparrowhawk. Leaves was somewhere inbetween. 

Thursday, April 21, 2022



This pattern is called Leaves and is by ValKnitting. I printed it out years ago, so I'm not sure where it came from. Ravelry? Probably. They're knitted on 5mm needles, which is a bit big for my handspun wool. Next time I might adjust the stitch count and use smaller needles. Of course I could spin thicker wool.... 

Wednesday, April 20, 2022

Another Batch


I finished spinning and plying another batch of wool yesterday and dyed it this morning. As usual, I poured the colours over and then put the wool in the oven to set the dyes:

My plan is to knit a pair of socks with half of it and sell the other half as yarn. It's not very drying weather today, but I have a couple of pairs of fingerless gloves to finish first, so that's not a problem. 

Monday, April 18, 2022



Nalu is the name of the pattern. Apparently it's a Hawaian word meaning wave. The pattern is by Sparrowhawk and is a free download on Ravelry. Of course I used my own handspun wool instead of the recommended yarn. 

Friday, April 15, 2022

Socks And Mitts


I finished knitting the socks I showed in this post and spun and dyed the blue before last week's market. I even found some labels from my previous incarnation.  I didn't sell any socks or yarn at the market, but there was a lot of interest, which is a good start. Now I'm working on fingerless gloves. I started with undyed yarn so I can see exactly how much yarn they need. Half the yarn of a sock, so that's handy! 

Thursday, April 14, 2022

Cushion Covers


When I was cleaning on Monday I came across the fabric left over from making curtains and remembered that I promised to make some cushion covers with it. Oops, better get on with it. My head boggled a bit and I couldn't work out how to fold the fabric to get the flap on the outside, as opposed to a pillowcase, where the flap is on the inside. Pinterest to the rescue, I looked it up and found this tutorial to help me. Easy when you know how! 

Wednesday, April 13, 2022

Didn't Work


Right, now I know why knitters don't finish off necklines with cables. When I finished Jack's pullover, I thought the cable finish looked good. But it stretched, so the pullover looked saggy and horrible. Not a good look. I did mean to correct it in the middle of summer, when the pullover was languishing in the cupboard, but of course I didn't get around to it until the weather turned cool and winter was definitely on its way. I used a circular needle to pick up stitches around the neck and work a more conventional ribbed neckline, without undoing the cables or anything else. It has worked fine and the pullover looks a whole lot better.

Monday, April 11, 2022

Morning Market


The weather on Saturday morning was cold and windy, not pleasant, so the morning market was a bit subdued, but it did go ahead. I sold the dinosaur towel and four bath puppets, so I it was worth my while to go. 

Of course I didn't just sell things at the market. there are always interesting things to buy. The trick is to bring in more than you spend, which I did manage this time.  I bought a jar of rasberry jam and 8 petunia plants from one lady; pitted dates from another; and handmade soap from Sarah, my fellow stall holder:

Thursday, April 7, 2022

Mock Pepperdews


The story of pepperdews is quite interesting, as you can read in this article.  They're a pickled pepper that are heavily trade mark protected in South Africa. The peppers I pickled this morning are not pepperdews, they're a mild chilli pepper called grandmother's bonnet. (I wonder if that's a nod to Scotch bonnets, a similar looking but very fiery chilli?) A friend gave me a packet of them  yesterday. I followed the recipe in the article to pickle them. It's a copycat recipe, the author's version of how she thinks it was done. These will have to mature for a few weeks before we start eating them. 

Wednesday, April 6, 2022

A New Gang


I'm working on a new bunch of bath puppets for Saturday's market. 

Monday, April 4, 2022

More Socks


 I managed to do some spinning last week, in between sewing monkeys and frogs, mainly in the evenings. On Saturday I finished plying the batch and then dyed the four skeins. My plan is to knit two of the skeins into a pair of socks and offer the other two as yarn at the next market. I'd like to do one more batch before the market, but I'll see how it goes.