Crafty weekend plans

Ooh it’s been ages since I’ve got into my sewing room. The reason? There’s a great big cot in the way:

I’ve instructed the husband to find a new home for it as we won’t be needing it for months yet, and then I can get on with some projects I’ve been itching to finish (and start for that matter)…

The nightie.

Remember I bought a couple of metres of adorable swiss dot at Walthamstow market a month or so back? I’m trying my hand at making a one-size-fits-all-or-at-least-most nightie with contrasting yoke neck for myself. If it works out and looks good I might think about running a few up to sell on Etsy or something (hey this kid’s gonna have to eat and my maternity pay is shite). But I’ve got to get it finished first. So that’s first up come Saturday morning.

The blanket.

We are now on 145 squares and the blanket’s measurements so far are 40 by 45 inches. I’m loving this project and I’ll be completely bereft when it’s over. To be honest I’m not even sure when it will be over. Will I just be forever addicted to churning out pink, white and grey granny squares until I cover everything south of the Watford Gap?

The baby cardigan.

In an effort to prise me away from the granny squares I’ve started on a crocheted baby cardigan, using a free pattern from Bella Bambina Knits. Below is what the finished cardigan is supposed to look like. It’s. so. damn. cute. it. kills. me.

This is the first thing I’ve attempted to crochet other than granny squares so we’ll see how it turns out but it’s such a lovely little project to undertake and I just love the wool and the colour – it’s Debbie Bliss Cashmerino in teal. Oh yeh – I forgot to mention this baby will be dressed entirely in teal whether it’s a boy, girl or monkey-cat hybrid. Awesome colour.

In other news I will be bidding a sad farewell to a good chum of mine, Tanya of Strikk Handknits. She’s heading off to a fab new job and life in Zurich for a while, at least until we can tempt her back. There will be tears! In the meantime why not browse her beautiful handknitted items and give her some extra work to do? ;-)

What are your weekend plans – crafty or otherwise?

Works in progress

It’s been all go here at S&W towers. I’ve been busy this week crocheting up a storm, whilst the weather continues to NOT play ball. Bad weather, naughty weather. It’s June. Why have I got the heating on again?

I had crocheted about 120 little granny squares and had started to despair that I’d be crocheting into my pension years before I had enough to make a blanket… until I had the (durr) brainwave of adding an extra outer rim of ivory wool to make them bigger – hence less squares required! Genius? No. Genius for me? Yes.

Woollen loveliness

In fact I much prefer them with this lovely soft ivory outline – it should lighten the whole look of the blanket. I’ve started stitching a few together using a basic blanket stitch. I reckon 12 by 12 squares ought to do it. The wool is gorgeous soft merino by Millamia of Sweden but by god it’s expensive stuff. Just one ball sets you back about £5.50 and there’s already at least 14 balls in here. Cripes! And to think I bought a massive crocheted throw off Etsy for about £20 recently.

I’ve almost finished another sewing project – I downloaded this simple kimono pattern from Salme Patterns:

Kimono Salme Patterns

I figured I could easily shorten it to make tops as well as the dress, but first up – the dress! Here’s a sneaky peek.

Kimono

I’ve used some gorgeous Marc Jacobs crepe de chine I’ve had in my stash for a couple of months. I just love these colourful parrots. I seem to be developing a taste for birdy fabric!

It’s also fully lined with this sumptuous silky plum lining which really bolsters the dress’ volume and makes you feel all slinky when you slip it on. I just have to hem it now. More pics to come later this week hopefully!

Kimono lining

Hope you’re all having wonderful weekends wherever you are. xxx

Colette Violet – the sequel

So I have a bit of a confession to make. I had intended to do something different with this version, maybe some piping or something round the collar. But I was so excited to be whipping up a blouse in a day I just kind got on with it instead. So it’s pretty much a carbon copy of the previous Violet – but in a different fabric. Hey – if it ain’t broke etc.

Colette Violet: The sequel

Again I used fabric from Walthamstow market at £2 a metre. Bargainous. The buttons are vintage and are from a stash my mother-in-law gave me a few years back. I love their larger size – they make me feel like a kid again for some reason!

Colette Violet: The sequel

I absolutely know I will make this again. I just can’t resist how easy or how cute it is. I’m in danger of slipping into Violet-dependency though…

Colette Violet: The sequel

In other news, I’m woefully behind on the Minoru sewalong. I’ve only just cut out the fabric. Plus, I know I won’t get any sewing time over the next couple of weeks so I’ll miss the deadline completely.  Thank god for blogs where you can go back in your own time and start again!

I’ve really been enjoying Sewaholic’s Renfrew pattern-testers cropping up all over the place. Karen and Jane‘s are particular highlights – fantastic versions and a great advertisement for the pattern. One for the list.

And finally, I’ve mastered* crochet! I’ve been whipping up granny squares when I get a moment for the last couple of days, ever since my friend Bridie came round for another tutoring session last week. I shouted and cried all the way through (sorry Bridie) but I got there in the end. I’m not up to the crochaliser standard yet, more’s the pity.

Yay for crochet

*When I say mastered I mean I can do one version of a granny square and my tension is probably all wrong but I’m happy as Larry just knowing that I’ve got the basics.

What about you? Any new crafty skills you’re learning? Does it feel weird being an absolute beginner again?

Time, time, time… see what’s become of me…

Where does the time go, I ask you? Is it hiding from you as well? At the moment it eludes me all day, only popping out at bedtime to say ‘You missed me again today – see you tomorrow sucker!’

Because time has been such a precocious imp, my sewing has pretty much stalled in the last week. And I’m away this weekend so there won’t be much more done. But I did manage to practice a bit of crochet this week – here’s the big reveal!

Crochet-tastic

Stop that sniggering at the back. Don’t mock the yarn-challenged. It’s a start isn’t it? I couldn’t have got anywhere near this without the help and guidance of my good friend Bridie, who is currently churning out about a squillion granny squares in the most gorgeous colours of teal, ivory and fawn for an as yet undecided project (wish I’d got a pic).  We hooked up (sorry) at a pub in Islington last night for a natter and an impromptu tutoring session

Her patience and ability to resist the urge to rip the crochet needle from my fat stuttering fingers and do it herself is exemplary. Not only is she a wonderful teacher, she’s also a wonderful friend. Check out this wonderful gift she presented me with last night. (Should I say wonderful again? Alright – wonderful.)

Handmade with love by Stitch and Witter

How amazing is that? I mean, seriously? Couldn’t you just kiss her yourself?! Thanks Bridie I can’t wait to use them! x

In other news I have been a colossal t*t when it comes to diary scheduling. I had planned to go away glamping with a bunch of chums from school and I had it in my head (and my diary) that it was the last weekend in October. Hence my complete and utter surprise and panic when I was alerted to the fact that it is (ahem) this weekend. And tragically my husband now cannot come because he’s on the rota for working the weekend :(. So it’s going to be me, my hot water bottle and three couples. Sans husband. Sigh. I shall have to pack extra socks and a thermal vest for bedtime. Wish me luck and warmth. Oh and, I’ll bring the crochet…