Sunday, 23 September 2012

The Arch is up!

And it hasn't fallen down yet.

Seriously, with the amount of 'Postcrete' that went in round the legs, it'll survive a nuclear attack!  It looks really good.  Eventually, there'll be clematis and roses growing across it.  For now, I've parked a couple of pots of Nicotiana at the base.
In yesterday's lovely weather.  Today, it's cold and wet - a different season entirely.

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Friday, 21 September 2012

I have some new projects nearing completion and some old ones going to new homes.  Very exciting!

A shop that's setting up in Lincoln has been in touch, expressing interest in my Hoot Hats - see here - and they also want two of my Hippoos - Mudbath Mungo and CandyStripe Hippoo.  They want to buy them upfront for their shop, rather than taking them on sale or return, so that's lovely!  I've started a new Hippoo already to go on Little Lovely Stuff on Folksy.  Some of my older items have been relisted there too, so things that may have disappeared are back!

New items.  A heart dangly in three parts.  This uses the same colours as the cushion cover I made, and it's covered in buttons and sequins.  They'll be joined together to hang with the largest heart at the top and the smallest at the bottom.

I use half treble crochet a lot, because it grows quickly and it's effortlessly decorative in a subtle way.

Another heart dangly - a single one this time.  I was experimenting with ways of increasing from the bottom to the top and this was the result of increasing in the middle instead of the edges.  It makes a nice chevron effect!  All these heart will be lightly stuffed to make them soft and three-dimensional.  I haven't decided how to decorate this one yet.  I'm thinking of threading a thin white ribbon through the holes down the centre and tying a bow at the bottom.

This is the Thistledown Scarf.  I'm using Rowan's Fine Lace, and it really feels as light as thistledown!  It may have a toning colour added to it soon, as I finish this ball, but I'm making it up as I go a bit.

Close-up of the granny stitch.  Really simple, but very pretty in such a fine yarn.

And the other project in these busy new-term days.  A new arch for the garden!  I painted the legs that go in the ground in five coats of fence preserver, and gave the top bit a coat too.  Better painting it on the ground than when it's up in the air, I thought.  The sides will get their coat when they're standing in the ground.  It's going to go beside the greenhouse to make a lovely separate garden room behind the greenhouse where we've got newly sown grass.  Clematis and other climbers will be planted to grow up the side.  Hopefully, that's going up this weekend.

And this is the cat that was at death's door on Tuesday.  Hattie was throwing up, squirting diarrhoea, and generally being very distressed.  Himself took her to the vet, got her an antibiotic jab, and she's back to her mischievous little self.  It's much more important to make love to the old buddleia stems than it is to pose for Mummy's camera, apparently.  She's got a few more days of antibiotics, but she's doing well, thank goodness!

Okay, time to go to work.  Bye for now!

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Saturday, 8 September 2012

Wednesday, 5 September 2012

September Already

Well, that was the summer holidays...  I don't know where they went.  Back to school we go!  Actually, I like the routine of termtime.  I'll have had enough of it by about November (September 14th), but after the summer hols, it's a bit of a relief.

I have not been entirely idle, although my study is still full of rubbish.  Slightly less full than before, having cleared the surface of the desk and filled the recycling bin with paper, but the shelves are still untouched.  Between outings, I've been crocheting like a maniac, always with two or three projects on the go.  Here are my creations!
Another little Folky Bird.  The wings are outlined with pearly beads and it's got heart-shaped shell button eyes.  I'm thinking that these might make good Christmas tree ornaments.  I might make some more for the shop for the season of joy and jingle bells.

Hoot Hats!  Daddy Owl, Mummy Owl, and Baby Owl.  A lady setting up a new shop in Lincoln got in touch with me through Folksy expressing interest in hats like the one currently on my shop.  These new ones are actually much better because they're in a nice cotton Rowan yarn and they're lined with the cotton jersey in the next picture.  Cuteness! 
Using my ironing board again for cutting out fabric.  It's just the best way to do this!  I use it for wrapping presents too.  Top tip!

Now, a senior moment.  The Hippoo hiding in the tissue paper isn't terminally shy, I just forgot to photograph it before wrapping.  *is idiot*  It's a very pretty Hippoo, made as a present for a friend who's having a baby.  Not sure what kind of baby, so I used a lilac shade of Baby Cotton Kapok and made little white hearts to go on the side.  I wish I'd taken a picture, because it was very pretty.  The next picture shows the yarn and the very first stage of making.  *rolls eyes at forgetfulness* 


And the major project of the summer - a gorgeous flowered cushion cover!  I worked out a pattern for a rosette square and picked some pretty colours in Patons 100% Cotton 4ply.  There was quite a lot of experimenting, and I originally thought of making the squares into a bag.  Much better as a cushion cover, though, I think.

The back's in plain white granny squares.  I had wanted to do a single large granny square to cover the whole back, but I cannot do one that doesn't swirl round.  More experimenting necessary.  I'm obviously doing something wrong...

The cushion cover has a plain white cotton pillow-case style liner, and the crochet cover slips over, closing with five little ribbon ties.  Sweet!
More pictures of this in progress are available on my Flickr photostream - just click on the badge in the sidebar.  The cushion cover and the Folky Bird will also be going onto my Folksy shop later on this week.

 And now for something completely different...
If anyone's interested in encouraging wildlife in the garden, this is a fabulous plant - a Monarda or Bergamot.  We put it in last year when we redeveloped a border, and it's been brilliant!  The most amazing flowers, and every time I look at it, there are at least a dozen bees on it.  They adore it!  The picture above was taken in June or July, I think, and the one below was taken this morning.  Still flowering away, although it's going over a bit, and the bees are still in love with it. 

Okay, I must go and get on with things, and I must resolve not to neglect my blog during termtime as much as I have over the summer.  More updates soon, I hope!