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Sunday, December 24, 2006

Nephew number 5!


I'm a bad Aunt....nothing in this picture was hand done by me! But soon I will have that blanket done...He was born on the 22nd just as Rich and I were on the plane to come over. He is healthy and so is Mom, though they both had a rough journey. I get to spend a few days with them in the new year so I'm looking forward to that.

Rich and I were lucky. The fog that was cancelling a lot of the flights out of London, didn't stop us. We flew with Aer Lingus (Irish company) and their flights were taking off, though they were an hour late. We enjoyed the fact that you can go through immigration in Ireland, and don't have the hassle when you get to the States. Chicago was warmer then London....go figure! We are holding up pretty well, though I'm still feeling the effects of a head cold I had before I came over. One December I would like to go without a cold.

I'm busily trying to make this for my niece...last minute present. I also plan on working my way through The Creative License book by Danny Gregory, and using my new moleskine to do it. I'm using real artists pens, which are making a difference. I don't want to get to where I am a master drawer. I just want to be able to interpret what I see in my head or eyes on to the page for embroidery.

I did order the book The Art of Knitting and it is wonderful. I haven't had the time to really look at it, but since I had it sent to my Mom's I will hopefully have some time soon to get to it!

Off I go to spend time with the family!

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Christmas part whatever.....

So this is what I've been up too. I've made my ATC (Artist Trading Cards) for the Creative Mom's Podcast swap. The heart is the wrong size, I thought it was postcard size but it was suppose to be 2 1/2 by 3 1/2. I like heart a lot. That is going to be my signature I've decided. The painted one is what Amy the Creative Mom sent me. I got it today, what a very nice thing for her to do. (That is how I figured out that I was doing it wrong.So here is outfit 2. It didn't work out anything like the pattern....and netting is H*!! to work with...but I got it done! She had to have a little ballet outfit!

And here is outfit 3. This worked up pretty well, and I like how it fits which I can't say for the other two outfits!

I've had a good day really. I've got my room put together so that I can actually find things. That is the best, not to have to search and search for the beads or buttons if I want to use them. I made the doll a pearl necklace too, which can used to put her hair up too. I've also started stocking up on supplies. I used to think that I only should have what I was using at the moment. But I've found that it is good to buy small quantities of different supplies so that I can play. Playing is what I'm going to do in 2007. I need to break free of the constraints of patterns I put on myself. I never felt that I was artistic, but I'm trying to expand. I bought a great book this weekend, my friend Sarah found it...fortunately she said she would order a copy so that I could have the one that we found. The Art of Embroidery: Inspirational Stitches, Textures and Surfaces (Paperback) It is by Francoise Tellier-Loumagne who is a French textile artist. The book is fabulous!!! The pictures are wonderful and she goes into just enough detail on different techniques that you can still do your own thing. It is wonderful. I've ordered her book The Art of Knitting by her also. I'll get that in the US, it was easier to have it sent there.

The only real problem is I need to get to doing my studying. I've got about a year left and am struggling because I feel that I want to be more creative. I want to work in my craft room, instead of my desk. But I just have to get it finished and then I can do what I want. That is what 2008 will be also.....study study study...then craft! We shall see how it goes!!!

But for now...back the Christmas crafting!

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Update....

sorry no pics, but hubby and I have a new computer and he hasn't totally finished playing with it. I don't want to download anything new until he has finished...techies....they just love to play!

Wanted to catch you up though....I've been very busy working on the ATC's for the Creative Mom Podcast swap. And clothes for Paige's doll, a friend's present and the baby blanket. I'm a bit upset that I don't think I'll find time to make anything for my secret pal, but she has forgiven me already. She will get something before the end of the swap!

Well, since I'm typing on my knees...I'll stop posting and will give you all the pictures another day!

Thursday, November 30, 2006

Blanket number 3

So this is what I'm up to for Kenner (my nephew-to-be) The colors looks so much better in this pattern...which is odd...really since they are all mixed up as they were with the other pattern I was doing. This pic isn't that great, I hope to get another outside this weekend, natural light is so much better. But I wanted to post so you all know I'm getting on. Biggest problem with this? All the crappy ends to weave!!!!! The pattern is from Zoe Mellor's "Nursery Knits". Since I'm using thinner thread it will have to be done with a few extra rows...but that will be ok.

Doll

What do you think...enough bling...NO of course not...not for a little girl. It is just the beginning of the pink and purple that this doll will be covered in. Though I will make her some cords and stuff in more neutral colors. But my niece is 3 1/2....she needs more bling!!!!
So can you tell which has more hair?? I didn't like the way the pattern only called for one layer of hair. You couldn't really do anything with it without her looking bald, so she has lots of layers of hair......(the doll on the right anyway).

I think the color of her eyes looks good. Better then the light blue I have on the other doll (see previous post). It goes with the gold of her hair better...though now that I look at the pic she looks a little uneven....but we can't all be symetrical!

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Curve of Pursuit....not!

Well, there it is...the sort of disaster. The silk/cotton yarn just didn't take to the pattern that I bought at all. I decided that I could do it by crocheting it and love the pattern...I might even write it up if anyone is interested. The picture isn't very good because I have it hung from the top corner. I'll try and get a better picture outside this weekend if I get a chance. Anyway, the disaster is the colors. They aren't anything like the quilt I was basing it one...which I can't show you because I took a picture at the Internation Quilt show and I don't have permission to post it. Anyway....I have now decided to switch to another pattern that I will be able to use the same colors but it will look better. I have to buy a few more colors...and can't use all the colors I bought...so that means more yarn for my stash!!! Oh well......

Thanks Melissa!

How cute are these??? Unfortunately, it isn't avery good picture. These stitch markers were made for me by Melissa. Her son did the toast that is smiling....how cute!

She also made me this lovely knitting bag for my birthday. I love the fabric so much and she did such a good job! I can't wait to get all must stuff inside it! Got a baby blanket to get on with!

Thursday, November 16, 2006

A great day....

yesterday was my birthday and I have to post a big thank you to all my friends who sent me well wishes! Thanks! I enjoyed the day. For the first time in years I actually took the day off. Rich decided to take time off too. I started out with a wonderful lie in (isn't that I nice phrase?? lie in.....). Then Rich brought me up my toast and tea with my cards. When I got out of the shower, the postman had stopped again and brought me two gifts from my mom and one from my sis-n-law in Wales! We went to lunch at my favorite tearoom and lingered over our tea. Then we went up to Whitchurch to the Silk Mill. It was really nice. You can watch them weaving and it was so interesting. They even have have a loom set up that you can have a go at. I want to weave sooooo badly. I will have to to something soon. Even if it is only tapestry.

Mom got me "The Crafters Companion" that everyone has been posting about. I was so excited to get it! It is really good...full of inspiration. Then my friend Alysha sent me "Wendy Knits". It was sweet of her and it looks like a really good read.

I'm of to Wales this weekend to see my sis-n-law and family. I'm so excited. Wales is gorgeous and it is going to be even better with the fall leaves on the ground! I've got tons to post, new independent artist and everything to talk about....but just don't have the time. Must go pack!

I will say though that I got some lovely silk cotton from Dragon Yarns. I'm going to use it to make the Curve of Pursuit pattern from Woolly Thoughts. I've been looking forward to this for awhile now. I got the color inspiration from a quilt I saw at the international Quilt show. It is really different, but I hope that it turns out ok. I'll let you in on the process...I promise!

Friday, November 10, 2006

Magknits Wristwarmers....

I've finished another project...for me!!! I'm getting very selfish. But in my defence, the yarn came from my good friend and I didn't want to give it away. This is Magknits pattern. I enjoyed the pattern so much, I'm using the cable pattern to make a scarf to match. I have enough of the yarn, so thought it would be good to make a match. I wore them today and lots of people commented on them.

London tomorrow for a shopping trip!!! YEAH!!!

Saturday, November 04, 2006

Thanks Secret Pal!

I've had these on my wishlist for awhile and they are much appreciated! Thanks so much!!!!

Schwag.....

Finally able to show you all some of the schwag I got a few long weekends ago! It is hard to believe how quickly time has flown by...and still not getting many projects done! Oh well...we all know that story! Anyway, below is a picture of the most expensive buy of the day. I had 5 min before I did the Lucet workshop and I just HAD to buy these. They were actually well priced. I mean....were have you seen whole strings of real gems and not just little boxes of one or two? I just had to buy them....what I will do with them....well that is what I'll have to figure out....These are just a few things I picked up. The wooden object is the lucet. It makes a very square braid which is lovely to look at and very easy to do. I hope to get good enough to use some of the silks I bought to make some braid to use for some of the projects I make. The threads are all silk...I was trying to step up my embrodiery and see what size etc I liked. The fabric are patches of silk velvet that I want to practice emabrodiery on...The buttons are recycled off of thrifted items...well I just can't pass up recycled stuff. I also bought stuff for secret pals and friends....but won't post those so there!

This lovely ball of color is some wonderful merino wool I bought at the guild. They had Wingham Wools come down from Yorkshire and sell their lovely stuff at our guild meeting. The day is open to all, and I need to make sure I invite a few people next year. I will be felting most of this. Either into objects...or into flat felt so that I can make stuff out of it. I'm actually itching to do it tonight...but not sure I shouldn't finish a few projects first. I've got a few things promised and must fullfill my promises!

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Trying to post...

but can't get Blogger to download my pictures...so here is plan B.

I have made a bit of a break through today and want to spread it around a bit. I have such wonderful people in my life. My family, husband and friends are all so loving and supportive. It is time that I honor them by loving myself. I know this sounds like boring piffle.....(good English word there)....but I mean it. I've been going through a terrible time trying to come to terms with my past. But I'm ready to move on now...I'm ready to live and love and be HAPPY! That is all I've ever wanted, to be happy. It is time I actually help myself to live that way. I hope that you all can look at yourself in the mirror and say "I love you". It is so important! Women especially find it hard to do this, because they feel they are never good enough. Trying to juggle being a mom, wife, employee, daughter etc....takes a lot out of us. It is time that we realize that women that went before us fought so that we could have choices...not so that we have a burden. It is time we start to give ourselves a break. Love ourselves for our foibles, failings, strengths....everything. They make us unique and loveable. It doesn't mean that we don't try to improve ourselves...but we do it to make ourselves happy...not to prove we can do it!

Love yourself as you love others!!!!

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Knitted Babe

Well there she is. This is the first of two I'm making, I'm making one for my niece and thought I ought to make mine first. I'm not sure about the eyes.....and she needs more hair. Maybe if I gave her bangs the eyes would look different. The head is wobbly too. The picture isn't too bad. Her undies were fun to make. We shall see how he next one goes......Yes, she will have a dress soon.

This is from the book Knitted Babes by Claire Garland. There are two websites for some reason. Have a look and see if you think I've done alright....

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

2 craft weekends....and a cold

I had such a good weekend last weekend and then on Monday I woke up with a terrible cold. It has been awful. I've not been able to craft or anything, which is really unlike me. I went in to work on Thursday, but that was a mistake and I ended up home on Fri. So here is my chance at catching you up with what I've been doing!!!

First, to show you what I made at the workshop with Gillian Harris.
I'm actually very proud of this bag. I for once picked colors that I really like and made a shape I like. It is suppose to be a bag, but of course it is wayyy to small for me. But it is very inspirational. I might do some beading or embroidery on it, just to add something to the front. The back is an experiment...well it all was I guess....but she encourage us to throw caution to the wind. The pink nubs were hard on the hand, when you are doing the rubbing. But the flicks were really nice.



She also told us to decorate the inside...so this is what I did. We were all so keen on getting going, we forgot to do very much decoration. I love the color though, there are three layers of color, so each layer adds something to the top layer.

It was great fun and my friend Ruth and I were able to catch up afterwards with a nice supper!

Friday, October 13, 2006

Crafty Weekend!

Well, I will be spending the weekend with all kinds of crafty goodness!!! First I'm going to the Knitting and Stitching show! This year I'm better prepared and plan on spending my money wisely?!?!?! Well, I'll try. Poor hubby will probably be drafted in to coming with me....we shall see. We always make a day of it and to the Texas Embassy for TexMex anyway!! Yummy!

Then on Sunday, I'm meeting my friend Ruth from CraftyPeople and we are going to go to a wet felt workshop! I'm really excited about this. I signed up for this in June or something. The lady who runs it is very busy and gets booked up quickly. I'll give you more details when I get back! She has a new book out, so I'll talk about that when I get back too!

Have a wonderfully crafty weekend too!!!!

Sunday, October 08, 2006

Pink pocket....


I finally got in one of the Japanese books I ordered several months ago and it has the BEST ideas for embrodiery. Simple things, not the big projects that you get in most books. So here is my first project from it. They had this on a sampler with lots of other designs and I decided to put it on a little pocket that I'm going to put some beads in for the Swap-bot bead exchange I'm doing. I've decided this will be my last Swap-bot for awhile...I'm going to concentrate on Christmas, swap with a friend and Secret Pal 9!

Saturday, October 07, 2006

Email notification...

I've added FeedBlitz email notification on the sidebar. If you sign up you will be emailed when I add a post. Let me know if you have any problems with it!

Thanks for reading my blog! I really enjoy posting!

Monday, October 02, 2006

Secret Pal 9....questions....

1. What is/are your favorite yarn/s to knit with? What fibers do you absolutely *not* like?
I mostly like natrual fibers....though a mix isn't too bad. I love some more sock yarn.

2. What do you use to store your needles/hooks in?
I have a lovely wicker vase that I display them in.

3. How long have you been knitting & how did you learn? Would you consider your skill level to be beginner, intermediate or advanced?
I've been knitting for the last 8 yrs....but more now then I use to. I'll try anything as long as I have a pattern for it! I've tried to knit gloves...with more then 2 colors....stupid!!!! But otherwise I can get along with lace, double point needles, more then one color ... etc...

4. Do you have an Amazon or other online wish list?
Yes Amazon, and it is full of creative books I want!!!!
5. What's your favorite scent? (for candles, bath products, etc.)
Vanilla or lavender
6. Do you have a sweet tooth? Favorite candy?
Of course, I like fruity things and Milk Chocolate (not dark)

7. What other crafts or Do-It-Yourself things do you like to do? Do you spin?
It would be easier to tell you what I don't do. I try to stick with fiber/textile arts at the moment. I've recently learned how to drop spin.

8. What kind of music do you like? Can your computer/stereo play MP3s? (if your buddy wants to make you a CD)
I love alternative music Cold Play, Tori Amos....etc....

9. What's your favorite color(s)? Any colors you just can't stand?
I like bright colors. I'm not too picky really. As long as they are rich or bright I like them.

10. What is your family situation? Do you have any pets?
I live with my hubby and 2 guinea pigs, 3 pet rats, and 4 pet mice.....

11. Do you wear scarves, hats, mittens or ponchos?
No ponches...but have to have the rest....have to walk to work!

12. What is/are your favorite item/s to knit?
Anything and everything! (Though I've not done a sweater for myself yet.)

13. What are you knitting right now?
Secret project. I'm going to start a blanket for my nephew also.

14. Do you like to receive handmade gifts?
Of Course!!!

15. Do you prefer straight or circular needles? Bamboo, aluminum, plastic?
No plastic...but any of the others types.... I love wood ones. It depends on the project I'm doing and the yarn I'm using.

16. Do you own a yarn winder and/or swift?
No, I actually prefer to do it by hand.

17. How old is your oldest UFO?
I have a really old sweater that I'm going to do free form knit and crochet on...it is from about 5 years ago.

18. What is your favorite holiday?
Now that I don't get a Thanksgiving I miss it terrible!

19. Is there anything that you collect?
Teddy Bears. (Russ are my favorite) Craft supplies, old books....

20. Any books, yarns, needles or patterns out there you are dying to get your hands on? What knitting magazine subscriptions do you have?

Spinning in the Old Way: How (and Why) to Make Your Own Yarn with a High-Whorl Handspindle
Priscilla A. Gibson-Roberts

Knit Fix: Problem Solving for Knitters
Lisa Kartus

Patterns I would like....hmmm....there are, but most of them are free anyway!

I would love to have some of the great sock yarn everyone in the States talks about Socks that Rock etc.

I've been subcribing too Vogue Knitting but I've stopped that. I also get Knitters but if I could I would drop it....gift subscription for like 3 years for some reason. I always buy Interweave Knits when I can. Would love to have a look at Rebbeca sometime.

21. Are there any new techniques you'd like to learn?
I would like to do better at intarsia, and would like to make something from the yarn I spin.

22. Are you a sock knitter? What are your foot measurements?
I like to make socks...but have trouble making my own. I have big feet US 10 and my ankles are very thick so that makes it hard for a tight knitter like me to actually make them to fit. Though I am working on it!

23. When is your birthday? (mm/dd)
November 15!

I'm looking forward to this secret pal. The last one was loads of fun and it is great to be able to put together little packages for someone that you are getting to know from their blog and their emails!

Sunday, October 01, 2006

From my good friend Melissa!

Here it is...I'm so greatful for this bag! Melissa did a great job with my requirements of...large!!! Pre-felting this must have been huge!!! She told me she thought she was going to fall in....such a smarty she is! This is from the Internation Tote Exchange! I've sent mine off to Holly on Friday...so I'll post a pic soon when I know she has recieved it!
Melissa took pity on me and supplied me with some pumpkin faces, which I adore and can't get here!!!! She also sent me that lovely yarn and a few pieces of jewlery and the cutest tape measure you have ever seen....(sorry...pics didn't turn out to good). She also sent me a replacement for my quilting chalk pen that broke.
She did such a good job with the lining! You can tell she has sewed a thing or two in her day! I love all the pockets and as you can see I've filled them!

Great job Melissa! Melissa and I have hit it off really well...well we both have the same strange sense of humor! We are going to make a few things together and do some swaps between the two of us!!! Check her blog out!

Thanks Bonnie!

This is what I got from the Homemade swap on Swap-Bot. I really enjoyed this swap because you had no idea what the other person was going to make you! This was wonderful and it looks great in our living room! (I have to admit to making out like a bandit the last two weeks! Packages almost every other day!!!)

I made MYSELF something.....


And there she is.....can you believe it??? We ducked out in between the rain showers to take a quick picture. I finished it last night..and couldn't wait to wear it! It turned out good. I have to back the button band with some fabric I think...because it pulls and I want to find some nice buttons or make me some. I loved making the pattern though, and it didn't take long.

Pattern: Button Wrap
Book: The Accessories Collection
Brand: Louisa Harding Yarns
Yarn: Impression and Sari Ribbon

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Thanks Maria!!!
















Here are the lovely things that Maria from Berlin sent me. The ball was done up so beautifully and I'm so excited about the wool felt!!!! It is funny how I'd been thinking about making one of the mushroom pin cushions and now I don't have to! She also sent me some lovely stitch markers with dyes wool and embrodery floss. They are very cool!

My next Swap-bot swap is for beads, thought I would try something different. Melissa, my friend from the tote-bag exchange and I are talking about doing a magic ball swap for Christmas. It is a wonderful way to send little sweet things that someone can use, without spending a fortune!!!

Speaking of Melissa...she said she has sent off my tote!!!! So I'm waiting with baited breath!

Sunday, September 17, 2006

Niki Guy - Jewelry from Shropshire




Aren't these necklaces great??? These are by Niki Guy a jeweler in Shropshire. I've been wearing the pastel colored shells since I picked them up at the Shrewsbury flower show in August. I get more complents on it! I could have sworn I have been on her website, but I can't find it now. I love the way that she doesn't use metal clasps. Instead she uses a very nice circle




of crochet and a button. She is a wonderful person, I had a long talk with her while at the show. She also makes jewelry with tumbled recycled glass. They are so lovely!

















Her contact information can be found here though. I know that she makes to order.











I've been alone this weekend. Hubby has gone up to Shropshire to visit his sister. I couldn't get off work, so I stayed at home. I've been watching "Sex in the City" and knitting away. I would have liked to have done more....but don't we all wish we could. I'm almost done with my bag for the tote exchange, but I won't post it until I know that Holly has it...just in case she peeks on to my webpage.

Oh I couldn't resist buying this yesterday. I just have to figure out if my bro-in-laws will let me give them to my nephews!!! I can't keep making things for my niece!!!! Her stuff at Wee Wonderfuls are so great. I wish I was that talented! And she lets you down load these so you don't even have to wait for the mail! How cool is that!!!

Oh and MOM....leave me a comment...or else!!!!

Monday, September 11, 2006

Not Forgotten!

As many of my fellow Americans and others around the world,
I don't need to watch the film...
I don't need to watch endless repetitions of what happened.
I may not have been in NY or Washington...
but I was there...
and I won't forget those that were lost
or their families.
Nothing is ever gained by hatred.....
let us love one another.

Sunday, September 10, 2006

Romsey Show

So here are some very very very funky chickens!!! Now do you see why I think they are so cool?????

The show was great. We all had a great time...AND our group won first prize for our booth. Shoshanna did such a fabulous job getting it all together. She recognized me as I walked in and made me feel at home at once, introducing me to everyone and letting me display my pitiful attempts at spinning. One of the ladies taught me a different way of handling my Blue Face Leiscester wool when I spin that I liked...everyone has to find out their own way of doing it...and I had a great time sitting next to Sue nattering away about doughnuts (which obviously the show knew I was coming so they marked them on the map of the grounds!) and playing with the bits she kept breaking off with her attempts at spinning. Nothing ever goes to waste! She went to town beautifully when no one was around...but as soon as someone wanted to see what she was doing....bang....it would break. Typical isn't it!!! She was such a sport and at the end of the day we both said it was too bad we live so far away from each other!

People were really interested in my needle felting. One lady could hardly keep her hands off of it and I think if I had, had an extra kit she would have bought it. I think I might do that next time actually, sell it for cost, but it is a lot of fun and people are interested in it. The kids were great. The ladies had a great interactive table, where the kids (and adults) could make braid and felt beads. Both are sooooo easy to explain, and very timely. We had a group of teenage girls that sat out in front of the tent and busily worked away. They were great advertising for us! The little boys and girls were the most fun. We had a lad of about 10 or 11 that was soooo enthusiastic. He tried EVERYTHING, except my needlefelting. But he did the braiding, made lots of felt balls and had a go at the loom that was there. He must have made 6 in of fabric on the loom. He was so great and everyone was so kind to him. I hope that he keeps up his interest and does succumb to the football hooligan thinking that "boys can't craft". I wanted to personally pick him up for the taster day we are having next week so that I could be sure that he got the chance to come!


Well anyway, here is a pic of our booth and me having a go at needle felting. I made the yellow and blue "flower" on my shirt. Actually, people were really interested in it and I think I'll put a back on it and wear it with my blue jean jacket. The blue in the middle are the little bits and piece off of Sue's spinning and the blue on the picture I'm working on is the same. The PVC pipe you see sticking up above the date is Sue's wheel. And the head you see on the other side is Helen who spins beautifully and was kind enough to bring me home!


I think the thing I found out the most, other then the fact that everyone there was very inspiring...I love to teach. I loved showing the kids and adults how to make the braids and the felt balls. I'm going to talk to the local craft shop up by the university and offer to show the kids how to do those very simple projects and see what happens. The older ladies were especially interested in the braids, because it was something they could do even if they had arthritis. Contrary to what people think...you can do a lot with braid!

Friday, September 08, 2006

Craftsainty 20min challenge....




















Right, for those who are wondering...what the heck those pictures are! They are my horrible attempt at drawing. I've been a faithful listener of Jennifer's Craftsainty podcast. She has the most clever, wonderful artists on her cast. The last lady, Claudine Hellmuth, is a collage artists who takes pictures and mixes them with other paper stuff to make wimsical creations. Even though I'm not into paper crafts she inspired me to try doing some pictures on the laser print fabric and try embroidery on them. We shall see....

Anyway, Jennifer sometimes has contests and the publisher of Cladine's books gave her a few to give away. I was really struck with the idea of making something in 20 min. It would be a bit difficult to do the embroidery in that time, but when I wrote Jennifer she said...just send in your paper draft. So that is what I did. I sat down outside in lovely Winchester, waiting for a friend for an even lovelier supper, and drew the above pictures. I'm toying with felt applique and embroidery probably. I'm not sure if the childs face in the second pictures looks too mean, or if he portrays the "cheeky" or ornery way I want him to be. He isn't be malicious...just getting his own back for having his cheeks pinched. I must state, though I said it is a contest, they aren't going to be judged. She is going to take the names of those who send something in and have her daughter pick out four names for the four books. I'll keep you posted...and if you like podcasts??? Listen to Craftsanity. It really is inspiring!

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Would love to post....

But as usual, having trouble getting pictures to upload! Anyone out there really like their blogging software so much they will recommend it????

Monday, August 28, 2006

Devon Guild of Craftsman - Bovey Tracey

We have had a wonderful weekend. We found a really interesting Craft show that I just had to tell you about. I saw some of the BEST textile art I've seen in ages. I can't show you pictures...but I can give you the websites so that you can see them for yourselves. I'm trying to make this more on a feature of this blog...not just me going on about what I make...but about what I buy from other indie designers or see. England is full of wonderful artists and because they aren't as organzied in a way on the net like in the States...you don't get to hear about them as much.

The website for the guild is www.crafts.org.uk.

The first is a wonderful team of sisters from Lyme Regis that use recycled wool to make some of the extreme sweaters that could be worn I've seen. They are absolutely gorgeous and funky. Take a look at the website: http://www.kathrens.co.uk/pagesB/kathrens.html They are expensive...but are worth looking out just for the inspiration and awe of them.

The next I'll feature is Yuli Somme. She was born in Norway, but moved to Deven in 1962. She makes wonderful art out of felt. The one that attracted my attention first, was a felt wall hanging of chickens. I'm getting a real thing about chickens for some reason. These were so well done and made me want to get the felt making kit out again! She doesn't have this hanging on her webpage, but she does have some similar so go check out what is has going on. I might have to do one of her workshops sometime....it would be cool to have a go with her! Webpage is ... http://www.yulisomme.co.uk/ She does talk about Cocoon's on her webpage also. These are burial shrouds that she is making with the help of fellow felter Anne Belgrave. This is a extremely eco-friendly way of being buried.

I'll cover a few more as the week progresses. I couldn't believe all the cool stuff from Kumihimu to beading. Stay tuned!

Monday, August 21, 2006

NEC Quilt show & Teaching craft

I got a call from a good friend on Fri...did I want to go to the Quilt show with here....I didn't hesitate....yes my hubby and I had just been talking about money issues.....and yes we had just discussed what cleaning we were going to do....but I couldn't resist! This is the BIG quilt show of the year. They are very international, and though I've never gone before...and don't quilt...I wanted to go badly. So I got up early...ON A WEEKEND...what I sacrifice for my crafT!!!!!...and off we went. It was wonderful. I did buy a few things that I'll show. I told Hubby that I wanted to get some fusible batting (wadding), and Linda and I ended up buying a Queen size and splitting it. I found some fabric to make a bag for my nephew...decided not to knit his like I did the others....with really cool dinosaurs on it. I also found some chicken fabric for me...don't know what is going on with the chickens...I think because it reminds me of my grandmother.... I also picked up some silk hankies so that I can try drop spindling them. Also picked up...you won't guess...two more BOOKS. These are really cool though and I will do a review of them latter in the week. For tonight...I have to finish up my project for my Homemade swap!!!! Must get that sent off!

I also had a real treat this weekend. There is a lovely couple who I go to church with that bring their grandkids. A lovely girl of 8 and a boy of 4. One day I went to help her do the Sunday School and I had my knitting with me. I got it out and the girl was fascinated! She wanted to know how to do it....so we had a go. I also showed her crochet. So yesterday, she was at church and kept asking if I could show her knitting again. We didn't get a chance to do it during church or afterwards...so she asked me if I could come over to her grandmothers house in the afternoon to show her how. I decided to stop and pick up a French knitter for her and some yarn. The French knitter came with a pompom maker and I picked up some thick yarn, thinner yarn and a crochet hook also. I wasn't sure how much time we would have. She was so excited I barely had to ring the bell before the door was thrown open! We started with the French knitter and as soon as we figured out the best way for her to hold it (she is left handed), she was off! She did about 6" while we were sitting there. I had time before I went over, to make her a pink bag out of some fabric I already had. I didn't put a handle on it...I told her that was her job! I made some terrible buttonholes for her to run the rope through when she was done. I need to practice my buttonholes more!!!! Anyway, she was thrilled and me and her brother made a couple pompoms and did some finger knitting. He did quite well...but at that age your attention span was only long enough for 3" of finger knitting! All in all, it was fun and I really enjoyed getting the experience fo teaching! I highly recommend it!

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Books purchased

I had a great weekend and purchased all kinds of good stuff. I will try and cover some of it over the next few days. I want to spred things out a bit.....

So first books, I picked up Debbie Stoller's Happy Hooker which I've not had a chance to look through to much. I hmmm'd and haw'd about buying it, but I've heard good things so I thought I would go ahead and get it. I heard her interview on Crafty Sanity and also decided to subscribe to Bust magazine. It sounded like a good alternative to all the fashion mags I usually read. The one thing I've seen in the book I really like, is the cowboy hat she wears on the cover. I'm tempted to make that...but not wear it myself. Surely someone I know would like it.







The second book I bought was another one I heard the gals on Craft Sanity podcast. It is really kitchy. I won't really do to many of the projects....but they have GREAT how-tos. I've seen some really cool things using shrink plastic (I remember it as Shrinky-dink.) I'm going to try and make a button with my weblog address so that I can wear it when I go to craft shows. Ally Pally is in October and I'm so looking forward to going this year. I hope that some of the other weblog crafters will be there so we can meet up. I think I will also try to make some of the pins I've seen some really nice ones.





I also picked up Lucinda Guy's other book. I found a yarn shop in Shrewsbury!!! Yeah!!! So I had buy something...didn't I??? Well, I'll show you the yarn I bought later...but I bought this and it has the cutiest stuff in it for kids. Great toys and sweaters and things. I've got my eye on a few things already.






I also found this in the bookshop I love in Much Wenlock. I didn't think I would get there this weekend, but they are open on Sunday so I couldn't resist running in. This has some very simply knits in it, so it would be good for a beginner. The bonus is it has some lovely things for the mommy-to-be also. Sweaters that could be worn while preggers and after!

Thursday, August 10, 2006

Email problem (cross post)

I'm having trouble with my yahoo email account. If you get an email from dlam_1999@yahoo.com DON'T open it. I cannot get Yahoo to help me at all! I can't get into the account and I'm trying to get them to cancel it, but they don't seem to be able to. If you have IM and get a messaging saying that your account has been used for unauthorized purposes and you need to click on an URL to clear up the problem DON'T do it! That is what happen to me.

I am hoping to get a new address soon, maybe gmail...we will see. If you want to write me, please write dlao_1967 at yahoo dot co dot uk.....

Thanks

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Wesley's blanket and mouse....

Well here they are finally. I must admit I like the blanket. The colors are so much fun. For some reason I have a lot of that color around at the moment. I wasn't sure about the mouse until I put the ears on! Until then I thought it looked really stupid. I have an idea to make this mouse with canvas and beads. I think the pattern would look really interesting.

I found out that my other sister, Ra'Net, who is pregnant will be having a boy also! One niece out of 6 kids....just doesn't seem fair for a crafter! But that is ok, I will just have to keep my eye out for boy crafts! Better go, got another blanket to buy the yarn for, denim I think this time!

Monday, August 07, 2006

Cat bag....

My mom is home now and called to tell me she received her bag so I can post pictures! First things first though....Wesley is home!!!! He went home on Sat. He isn't breathing as bad as he was, and Ja'Net and Mitch are having to feed him ever 1 hr 1/2, so you can imagine how much sleep they are getting! But he is home and eating great! So I'm very relieved!

The pictures on the bag I cut out of fabric and machine satin stitched on to the denim. I'm really happy how the bag turned out. There are three pockets on the inside. Mom said it fit all her library books, so she was happy! We use bag so much here in the UK, hopefully she will get lots of use out of it!

I found out who my spoilee is for the Homemade Swap will be this weekend, so I've got my brain going on what to make her. I've not been well this weekend so I've been busy making things that I could sit in front of the fan and do. I went to the doctor today and he said it probably was sinustis so he has given me some antibiotic. I'm hopeing that it will make me feel better for this weekend since we are going to the Shrewsbury Flower show and I always enjoy meeting up with Rich's friends.

Anyway, here is the front of the needlecase I'm working on. I've been thinking about this for ages! I'm using the 100% wool felt I bought. I'm not that happy with the colors of the felt, but it is good for a first try!I also decided to use some of the felt scraps I have to make name tags for the stuff I'm making. Mom's bag doesn't have one, but Wesley's blanket will have the bottom one on before I send it off. It says "With Love Aunt Dawn '06". I finished the blanket and knitted the makings for a mouse from the same yarn, but I'll post that after I've made the mouse up. It is from the Lucinda Guy book I have.

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Secret Pal 8 questionare....

Saw this on another participants (well my new hostess website) and I thought I would add it for my secret pal...

1) What is your favorite season of the year? Fall....I love the smell and the chill in the air! Leaving in the UK it isn't quite the same, which I miss terribly! Especially, since there aren't any high school/college football games to go to!

2) Where is your favorite vacation spot? Wales, any where there. It is gorgeous and everyone is very friendly! There are hills, sea side, forests...everything that I love!

3) If you could visit any place in the world, where would it be? This is a hard one, because there are many places that I would like to go to. I think I'll say Iceland, it is cool to go over it in the plane and think that one day I might just go there.

4) If you could pick any job, and be paid well, what would it be? Head Librarian of a wonderful modern public library, OR a crafter

5) If you were going on vacation for 1 week, and had to take ONLY one project with you, what would it be? I would take a free form crochet project, because then I would never get bored with it!

6) If you won a shopping spree to your favorite Yarn shop, what would you get?? Wow..this is a good one! Firstly books (Erica Knight has another new one I'd love to have. Magazines (I love Interweave knits, but don't get it here). YARN of course, would love to have some Louisa Harding or more recycled sari yarn!!! I would also buy gadgets...I'm fond of gadgets. At the moment I would love to have those spring looking needle holders that keep your needles in pairs and something to put on the end of my dpn's to keep them from fall out of the socks I'm making!

There that was fun, I'm looking forward to my person that is to handmake me something through Swap-bot. I'm so enjoying making things for other people it makes me smile......

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On a serious note, my nephew Wesley was born on Monday the 31st of July. He isn't doing very well. He is breathing too fast and they don't know why. He is eating through a tube in his tummy and his Mom doesn't get to hold him very much at the moment. Could you all send postivie thoughts and/or prayers his way please. My Mom and Dad and Mitch's Dad and Step-mom are there and I feel so out of the loop so far away!!! These are the times I hate living in another country!

Monday, July 31, 2006

Great crafting weekend...

I finally got around to making a bag! I was so pleased how it turned out...where is the picture you ask??? Well....it is a bag for my mom and though I did take a picture of it before I sent it off I don't want to post it if she gets a chance to look at the blog. I don't know if she will since her and my dad are spending a week with my sister (and bro-n-law and niece) since she is having my nephew TODAY! I've not heard anything yet, so I'm sitting here frantically knitting up his blanket for good luck! Anyway, I promise to post a pic of it when I know she has recieved it...because I must admit I've very proud of how it turned out!

Thursday, July 27, 2006

Embrodery sample

I was finally able to download my picture from this weekend. So here is what I've started doing. I especially like the one on the far right. It is a simple running stitch with another thread looped through the stitches. I like that a lot and will use that one something soon. I learned that I need to have two lines drawn for stitch patterns like the far left two. I'm doing this on felt, because I want to make some needle accessories out of felt. We shall see. I've got great ideas...but if I get around and do them will be another thing! If it cools down a bit this weekend I plan on spending at least a few hours in my room making a traveling knitting bag. I've got the concept in my mind...but lets see if I do it.

The gal at Moonstitches talks about stopping her downsizing projects. She wants to work on a big one...her quilt that she hasn't been working on. (You have to pop over see her lovely quilt!!!! It is a modern take on a quilt pattern I've seen many times. ) I need to do the opposite! I need to stop just working on the big knitting projects alone and actually do more playing like I did with the pincushion. I've got lovely fabric and I want to get to sewing some softies for my niece and nephews...bags....spinning...beading....braiding....Whew...I'm tired just thinking about it, and yet energized!

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Pincushion Tutorial

So here is my tutorial pictures...(well as much as I could get on flickr)

Flickr Pincushion Tutorial

let me know if you can't get it and I'll try something else.

Monday, July 24, 2006

Weekend project....

it finally cooled down for little bit this weekend, so I did get a few things done. I worked on the tutorial for the pincushion. I decided to do it on Flickr, since it is difficult to download all the pictures on here....but Flickr isn't behaving tonight. So it isn't quite done yet. I also ran out of download space (I got rid of 4 pics but they still wouldn't let me download more....sheesh....). So you will get a shorter tutorial then I wanted to do....sorry.

I was trying to download a picture of a sampler I've been working on, but Blogger or my computer isn't co-operating....so you will have to wait to see that too....Jeez Man-netly....(Do I know how to spell or what.....;-D.)

I also have been working on Welsey's (nephew-to-be) blanket. It is coming along...but I found out that he is coming on the 31st of July...a bit earlier that I had heard last time....sooooooo I'm going to be late with it also!!!!

Ah well...best laid plans and all that. It is back to being really hot, so I will try to get on with something....we shall see......

Thursday, July 20, 2006

To hot to craft....

I can't believe how hot it is here. I've not been able to get myself motivated to sit in my craft room with a fan blowing on me...blowing everything around. It would have been to much a struggle! Sorry about that. Will try to post the tutorial on the pincushion next week, hopefully it will cool down! They say that the UK is as hot as Bermuda and Brazil at the moment...UGH!!!! We have hit over 100F in the last couple of days.....

I did run across something really cool that I thought I would share with you all.
While helping out in the School Resource center I came across this book. I was entranced! It is a hard to believe how inspiring this book is. Though it is paper, the pictures have all been made on fabric. There is embroidery, applique, tatting, buttons, shells....etc.... I really would like to do even just one picture! It is so cool...so check it out. The ISBN is 1841480606 and it is illustrated by Rachel Griffin, retold by Tanya Robyn Batt.

Just goes to show that you should check out children's books sometimes for inspiration!