Saturday, 31 May 2008

Knitted Cushy-ness

There was a time I thought I'd never pick up knitting needles again, and that was when I discovered quilting fabrics. Sewing is still my main "thing", but knitting and crochet seem to have a much more positive vibe now than they did 15 years ago, with more and different creative possibilities.
And there's something about the warmth of the wool and the rhythm of working that's very calming. In my case, that can only be a good thing!

This cushion (pillow) cover was inspired by a pattern for a throw in the book Pretty Knits by Susan Cropper. I would consider some of the garment patterns in this book to be a bit on the girly side for me, but many of the home and accessories patterns are very nice.
Rather than knit a whole throw, I made a sort of "cushion version" of the throw, using the same stitches but to fit a 16 inch cushion pad.

The cover itself is Rowan Pure Wool Aran. The lovely pale blue shade is called Cloud. The flowers are made from oddments of dk that I already had.
The front is just a square and the back is 2 rectangles.

The crocheted thing in a rather muddy green you can see in the picture is a throw I made last year. This is the ensemble for my blue sofa, including the quilt. Maybe I could squeeze on some more cushions?

Friday, 23 May 2008


I made this doily a few months ago. Yes, I've become a closet doily maker! I wanted to make a classic pansy doily and found a good free pattern here.

It was enjoyable to make if you don't mind crocheting the same thing many times. Darning in all those ends can be a tedious part of the process, but it's got to be done! My pansies are all purple, but they could be made in any colour or in a combination of colours.
I did have to steam press the pansies to make them lie flat, because the petals are quite full and they all need to be folded the same way.
I used my favourite 4-ply-weight cotton, and it's a bit heavier than an authentic vintage doily, but I like it that way.

Friday, 16 May 2008

a bit of everything

A whole two weeks after I started sewing blocks and sashing together, I've finally got this quilt top assembled. It's okay, but I don't think it's one of my best. The whole thing's quite buttery-looking, and now I'm thinking it could have taken a darker yellow. I like yellow, but it can be a tricky colour to get right. *sigh*
It was all from stash though, and I'll be making a pieced backing to use up more stash.

More knitting, and this will be another cushion (pillow) cover. It doesn't look much now, but hopefully it will when it's finished. (Think knitted flowers.)

We've had some beautiful sunny weather this week, and our auriculas are just about at their best now, a riot of colour! Most of them are planted together in an old ceramic sink. I like this photo which shows them against a background of bluebells.

Friday, 9 May 2008

Dog Blog

This Scottie dog is from Toy Knits by Debbie Bliss, not a new book but new to me, which I first saw on this lovely blog.
The knitting was all right, but I don't mind telling you sewing him up was a pig. I think I must have chosen the most fiddly thing in the book, or maybe I'm just not used to knitting in 3-D. The making-up instructions seemed to me to be sketchy, and there were a LOT of small pieces.

That said, I still like the pattern. With dogged persistence (pun intended) I muddled through, and on the whole I'm pleased with him. I changed the angle of his head, and I think he turned out a nice doggy shape.

The yarn is Rowan Pure Wool dk, knitted on smaller needles than usual, which makes a nice close fabric for stuffing. There are other nice animals in the book as well - I've got my eye on the pigs and sheep.

I couldn't just leave him as he was, so I made him a felt collar with a button flower.

I think this is his best side.

Friday, 2 May 2008

Spring Flowers

Just a few garden pictures to look at today. I was outside taking pictures this morning but this afternoon I'll be getting on with sewing blocks and sashing strips together.

It's a calm sunny day here today.

I don't know the name of this plant, but we always had some of it in our garden when I was growing up. It might even be considered a weed for all I know! It has tiny flowers and I let it grow wherever it likes because it's so pretty. It must be very strong to flourish in a crack on concrete steps.

Our bluebells are just coming into bloom.