Sunday, 24 February 2008

Knit Garden

After thinking about it for a long time, I recently bought Nicky Epstein's Knitted Flowers and I love it! I already had her crocheted flowers book, but if anything I think I like the knitted flowers even better.
The flower patterns are many and varied, and some of them are suitable for felting if desired. You can layer them and combine different components, put leaves on them, and beads or buttons can be added to them. I made all these from skeins of tapestry wool. Scale and tension aren't important in the land of flowers.

I was tagged by Ila to list 7 weird or random things about myself. Of course my mind immediately went blank. And what qualifies something as weird or random? Anyway, here are the 7 things I thought of.

1. I'm 4 days younger than my husband. Always marry an older man, that's what I say.

2. I didn't learn to drive until I was in my 30's. I grew up in a household without a car, and we walked, cycled or used public transport to go anywhere. My kids were both at school before I eventually learnt, and then I realised how much easier it would have been if I could have driven them around when they were little.

3. When I was a child my family lived in Australia for 2 years.

4. I have a phobia about being watched. If I'm cooking and someone is watching me, I'll knock things over and spill stuff. (You know who you are.) If I'm typing and I know someone is standing behind me, I'll hit all the wrong keys.

5. I can't swim.

6. I like cold weather and much prefer it to hot. It has to be really cold before I even notice. If I could have cold, bright weather all year round, that would suit me.

7. I'm a patternoholic. I have too many but I pretend it's a collection! Over the years I've collected hundreds of patterns, books and magazines, old and new, on quilting and other needlecrafts.

I think most of the bloggers I know have been tagged for this already, so I'm going to cop out and say if you haven't listed 7 weird or random things about yourself and you'd like to have a go, please do!

Monday, 18 February 2008


You know when you decide to do some sewing and you happen to be wearing a black sweater, and by the time you've finished you realise it was a mistake? I always seem to get covered in threads!
I've been working on my blue scrappy sofa quilt and here's a glimpse.

Just the borders to put on now.

There's not much happening in the garden at this time of year, but things are slowly starting to grow, and I took a few photos the other day.

A couple of years ago we had to have a dying tree cut down, and toadstools keep appearing on the path in front of where the tree used to be.
There are lots of snowdrops out.

And even a few other spring flowers.

Monday, 11 February 2008


We've had some computer trouble recently. It had been funny for a while, then a few days ago it crashed completely. It was only out of action for about 24 hours and the problem seems to be fixed now, but it had to be restarted from scratch, and in the process I lost all my email, EVERYTHING, past and current, and couldn't get it back. Oh no!
It seems to be running normally again now, fingers crossed.

I usually make some small Valentines for my daughters, and I used elements from two different patterns to make these hearts.

The idea for the hole-punched heart applique is from a Bird Brain Designs pattern, and the embroidery is based on the Sweetheart Sachet pattern by Crabapple Hill. I modified it slightly to fit my heart shape and added some buttons.
The heart is red felted wool and the cream overlay heart is wool felt. (Does that make sense?) I made the holes with a paper punch, the kind you hit with a hammer. That was great fun. I put a handful of dried rose petals in with the stuffing, and they smell lovely.

A jar of buttons just because it's heart-shaped.

Friday, 1 February 2008

Cutting, Piecing and Knitting

Isn't there something so satisfying about cutting squares and amassing a pile of them?

Especially when they start turning into 4-patches.
This will be a quilt for a specific purpose, and that's to go on the back of a plain sofa. I feel like freshening up the decor for spring.
As well as making squares, for a change I've been doing some knitting. I used to knit quite a lot before I discovered quilting. A long time ago!

This scarf is from Louisa Harding's newish book, Knitting Little Luxuries. There are also some very pretty fingerless mittens in the book.
One of the things I liked about this pattern is the matching flower pin. The flower is knitted in one long piece which is then spiralled up and sewn in position to make the flower shape. I must say I like the quirkiness of a green flower.
You can tie the scarf and then secure it with the pin.

I used a DK mohair, not the yarn specified in the book but a workable alternative. I haven't worn it yet, but I'm hoping it won't feel too scratchy because of the mohair, lol!
It did need pressing to make it lie flat. The lacy pattern needs a bit of concentration to knit, but the rows are fairly short and the whole thing only took a few days to complete.

I was thinking all I need now is some really cold weather, but there's snow forecast here for later in the day, so maybe I'll get some.