Monday, 17 October 2011

A New Coat

Not for me though.  A new coat for Dyl.  Next week we are off to Cornwall and when we go in Autumn Dyl comes with us. As he recently had a good hair cut - read short back and sides, I thought he might get a little chilly.  I did search the net for a crochet coat and I found a great one but when I looked through my ample stash there was nothing either inspiring or in the correct weight.  So I made him one.  I did this over two days whilst there were quiet moments at the workshop.  I draughed the pattern myself and guessed the size.  Basically it was sort of a large bib shaped piece of cloth - a wool knit from Louise's ample stash lined in black cord.  I sewed the two shapes together leaving a gap to turn through.  I ladder stitched the edges closed and then hand stitched a red running stitch around the edges for decoration - this can't be seen on the outside but looks good on the inside.  Actually it is reversible.  I then found some nice elastic and joined the front together and put an elastic band for under Dyl's tummy.  Voila one nice snug doggy coat.  He has worn it around the garden and whilst playing ball and it stayed in place so I think it's good to go.  Want a look.  Here he is the handsome boy.

Ah Mummy no photo's thank you.

Got a sneeky one whilst he wasn't looking

Very dapper.

Sunday, 16 October 2011

Crochet Night Update

Just a quick picture free post.  I did take my camera but didn't have time to take any photos.  It was very busy but great fun.  There were lots of new crocheters (is that the right term) and they must have enjoyed it as quite a few people have booked for the next one on the 10 November.  It was a great learning curve and I have some ideas for improvement/different techniques etc..  Something exciting for me personally may come from the evening, can't say too much at the moment but will keep you posted.

Wednesday, 12 October 2011

Button Necklace Tutorial

Hello.  Tomorrow night I am going to be teaching crochet at Hope and Elvis at their Knit and Crochet night.  I am really looking forward to it (I am also a little nervous).  I have been crocheting for about 4 years now and am self taught so to teach others is a little scary.  I know that I can pass on my crocheting knowledge though as I have taught the girl's and I did intend to teach K but I sort of ran out of time.  Anyhow I took over some samples of some crocheted bits and bobs and Louise asked if I could write some patterns.  Eeeeek.  I have never written a pattern before so I have been avoiding it - you know the head in sand , lalala, type of stuff.  Anyhow I have indeed written a pattern for a very simple crochet necklace.  This is not my very own unique idea I have seen these around on the net but this is how I do mine.  I have written the pattern down in rough note form and I thought it would be a grand idea to take some photos and blog about it here.  After all it's kind to share and I thought the photos might help.  Here goes. 

Crochet Button Necklace

Take some crochet thread/embroidery thread or similar then select an appropriate hook.  Think skinny thread, skinny tiny hook or thicker thread/wool thicker hook.  It's not got to be precise, its going to be worn around your neck so tension etc doesn't matter - this is a necklace not rocket science.

I am presuming one very minor fact here, that is you can crochet a chain.  You can't -  Oh, have a look on You Tube or go to Google and ask them very nicely if they would mind showing/telling you how to make a chain or go to the library or book onto the next Knitting and Crochet night at  

FYI I am using fine crochet thread - I don't know more than that it was out of a workbox I bought on the car boot the hook I am using with it is a 1.25 mm.

skinny hook, skinny thread

Ok lets begin.  Take your yarn, chain about 12 chains.

Make a button loop by popping your hook through the first chain stitch you made and making a further chain stitch.

You made a loop.

Then chain 25 more chains - more or less if you wish. 

Now it's time to make some choices, don't say 'Arrgh' it just means that you can now add on your buttons where you like when you like.  I personally like to space mine out quite evenly but you might choose to put two close together then leave a big gap.  It's up to you.  It's the fun bit.  When choosing the buttons I just dig into my button tin and pick what I fancy, I don't have a pattern or style in my head I just do as I damn well pleasy.  Of course you can line your buttons up all ready to be added to your necklace in a pretty pattern if you wish.  It's your necklace so it's up to you.  Ok.

 This is how I do it.

 Poke the hook through the hole in your chosen button.

wrap your thread around the hook and pull through the button hole pull this through the first loop on your hook

your button is attached - do a dance - are you happy - yarn and hook and button - all together doing a happy crochet dance. 

Carry on and chain approximately 20 more then add another button - carry on until the necklace is as long as you like.  When you have your desired length choose your final button.  I like to use a button with a shank for this part. 

Its the button that will fasten your necklace.  Very Important Point (VIP) make sure the button you choose goes through the button loop you made or there will be tears.  Join in this very last button in the same way  the others. 

Tie a few knots around the base of the button very tightly.  For extra security finish with a tiny blob of clear nail varnish just so it doesn't take it into its head to come undone you can even do this at the other end too, just to be super safe after all your hard work you don't want a crochet disaster.

Button loop and button - yeah.

A buttony, crochetty necklace.  (a pants photo sorry).

Look you can even wrap it round your little wristy - oh my goodness look at my wrinkles.  Yuk.

Hopefully this will make sense and you might end up with a useable item.  Would you let me know if you have a bash?  Thanks.

Good night.

Ps.  just watching Location, Location and one couples request is a flat to make their friends jealous.  WHAT.  Never heard anything so ridiculous in all my born days.  How about a flat you like, that you can make your home, thats cosy and welcoming.  Bah Humbug. 


Tuesday, 11 October 2011

Paper Shoes

On Saturday I went along to Dream Shoes workshop with tutor at Hope and Elvis.  Louise had gathered lots of vintage books, maps, scraps, old books etc for us to use.  I hadn't had any set ideas, other than making paper shoes, of course, before going to the workshop but as soon as I saw an old birthday card with the words Happy Birthday Daughter Dearest it all fell into place.  Here are a few photos from the day.  I was actually so engrossed in the making that I forgot to take any photos for about 3 hours.

Vintage card

Our table was the messiest.

I chose to collage the pieces for Nellie's shoes.  Can you see the old Sheffield Telegraph and Star bill, the tiny rose (her middle name is Rose) and old pages from a dictionary.  Little bit of Cath Kidston too.

Can you see Marcel the Shell and the little crab.  Nellie loves these there is also a mermaid and an octopus hidden on the shoe.

Pretty soles and inners.

After sticking, cutting, ripping and stitching the shoes were ready to assemble.

It did take me much longer than I expected to make the shoes possibly because I tried to include lots of references personal to Nellie.  I put the town where she was born, where we live now and where we lived when she was little.  There were the words and music to 'What a Wonderful World', old bills, doilies, children's illustrations from a book.

I was really, really pleased with how they turned out.

I couldn't wait to give them to Nellie (her birthday was on the 9th) and gave them to her almost as soon as I got in.

She cried.

Result - Louise said she would.

She said they were the best thing she had ever received and she was going to keep them forever and ever. 

I decorated the top of her 'shoe' box with sheet music and more nostalgic roses.

It was so absorbing finding all the papers to collage together to make Nellie's birthday shoes.  I eventually made just one pair of shoes.  Other members of the group where extremely productive making lots of the different shoes that Jennifer demonstrated. 

In the afternoon Jennifer showed us several different methods of laminating, layering, waxing and making other 'mediums' to use in crafts.  This was fascinating.  I particularly liked the method whereby you took a tea bag, took out the tea, popped in little scraps of fabric, paper, petals, buttons etc then you melted was with an iron over the top of it and it transformed the tea bag completely.  I have a project in mind for mine but have just not had the time to implement it.  Will do a show and tell when I do - if it's any good - if it's pants then it will remain with me.

If you would like to see more pictures from the day pop over to Daisy Moon and have a peek.

Nellie decided to have a Banoffee Pie for her birthday instead of cake this year.  It was delicious.


Just to let you know that Nellie found the word 'whore' on her shoe - NO I did not put that there on purpose.  It was in part of a descripton from the dictionary. 

Paphian - a votary of Venus; a whore.

Nellie found it hilarious.

Good night.

Tuesday, 4 October 2011


Twenty five years ago today K and I were married.

This is my favourite photo of the day a snap shot taken by my Mum's friend.

We look soooooo young.

Memories of the day:-

I walked down the aisle with my bouquet upside down.

I walked up the path to the church and my suspender twanged which I announced loudly to my Dad and it was captured on video.

My Dad made all the wine for the evening 'doo' K's Aunty got very drunk and had to be taken home.

A fabulous family day. 

Wonderful memories.

A few gifts for me from K - we don't generally 'do' anniversaries.

Betty bought a cake and decorated it for us - I bought the tea cups as a joke pressie for us to have a celebration cup of tea.

I bought K a piece of glass by at Origins in London a few weeks ago.  K was delighted as he admired her work when she was on telly and he had visited Liberty to see her work when it was showcased there.  It's now on the 'cornish' and has pride of place next to his beloved Batman picture and bakerlite scary bird. 

Well I am going to go now tea to cook.  Life in the fast lane.