Sunday, 28 July 2013

Before I go

Before I pack my bag (yes, we are travelling lightly, one bag of hand luggage each for 8 nights) to go to abroad, I simply needed to crochet something and you may well have guessed that that something was 5 bunting flags for Lucy and her woolly bunting idea for the first year of Yarndale this year.

I loved rummaging in my stash of left over style craft and other DK yarns last night and included in this pile of yarn was a big ball of white style craft that I have never used. I guess I bought it thinking that I would make one of those very stylish granny square blankets bordered by white yarn one day, but just never got round to it and facing my "fear" of white yarn! When I say fear it's not that severe, I just can't stand the stuff, white yarn gives me the heeby jeeby's, I have no idea why? Anyway, I decided to face my fear and include white in my bunting and to be honest I think the fear factor has come down to about 98% now :O) How  about you? Do you like the white woolly stuff?

So, last night whist catching up with the last two episodes of the Swedish Wallander, I hooked these up. I blocked them this morning and was amazed at how well they turned out with Lucy's steaming method.

I'll be sending these off tomorrow morning and in the meantime, Alice and I have been playing with beads like I used to when I was a teenager and making ankle bracelets.

I can't help the inner hippie in me coming out when I head towards a sunny holiday!

Here's wishing you all a marvellous Summer time and see you when I get back...I've already done my homework and googled all the yarn shops in Barcelona (much to Andy's horror ha ha...well if I must watch Barcelona vs. Brazil in a football match next Friday night then I get to do my thing too! Marriage is all about compromise and balance isn't it? :o) Oh and by the way I found this great blog post about carrying knitting needles and crochet hooks on the aeroplane for any of you lovelies who might be jetting somewhere and cannot bare to part with your needles!

Hasta luego!

Saturday, 27 July 2013


Hello there!
It's time for my weekly moments of happies and I can promise you that quite a few happies happened this week but boy have I been busy and super stressed at work trying to do my job and then tie up 101 ends before going on annual leave. As a consequence I haven't been very snap happy with my camera so I only have a few bits to log here today.
The first gorgeous surprise was from my darling friend Bronwen who lives in Australia, she sent a lovely parcel with pressies for me and Alice and to my utter delight I received these pretty buttons. I love the colours Bron, thank you so much. Alice is at that age where she can control the urge to open a present before her birthday, so we have safely stored them away until her special day.

When I was taking a quick snap of these with my phone a flash of an idea went through my cluttered brain about a button collective type swap. I think I might just muster up the energy to talk more about his when we get back from our holiday, what do you think? For all you button lovers out there fancy a swap of sorts?

The next couple of snaps were from last Sunday after church, we lolled about on the beach and I enjoyed paging through this book I borrowed from the library. I adore anything art deco and our dream  would be to live in an art deco house one day...we can only but dream!
We live in Bexhill-on-Sea which houses the listed de la warr pavilion and I am always in awe of this beauty being an icon along our coast and being able to access it by means of a 10 minute walk away.

I'm quite impressed with my phone camera in this shot of it, I love the way the Seagulls congregate on the roof, no doubt eyeing out left over fish and chips from the day trippers!

Later on this afternoon I'm going to see the latest exhibition which opened last weekend, according to the newspaper some 25000 people have visited the exhibition entitled The univeral addresability of dumb things curated by Mark Leckey, 2008 Turner prize winner. I'm very curious and excited to understand this exhibition, no doubt I'll feed back here.

Loving an evening stroll on these heady heat wave evenings and releasing all my stress of the day whilst chatting to Andy.
The beginning of the summer holidays for our girly, she so deserves a break from being so disciplined about getting up at 6.30am, leaving the house by 7.10am to catch her bus to school and only getting back after 4pm each day. We are so proud of her achievements in her first year of high school and seeing her grow and deal with the twists and turns of early teenager years so far. Happy summer holidays my gorgeous girl, have fun!
We can also say cheerio to your list you so cleverly wrote and pinned up last September, it's now forever etched in your memory!
 The other little happies that there are no photos for include receiving some homemade blackberry jam from Helen who has been picking fruit like crazy on her allotment. Meeting up with friends for Pimms and nibbles on Wednesday evening and loving the little pots of chilled watermelon, mint and feta cheese crumbled into this mix, thanks so much Celia...delicious on a hot evening. The tunic pattern lent to me by Lindsay which I can't wait to sew and of course your comments on my latest shawl and casting on a cardy for myself.
Thanks so much for visiting and welcome to new followers.
Happy weekend to you all

Tuesday, 23 July 2013

I can knit, I can purl

Hello again
Do any of you remember when I purchased the above yarn {posted here}? It has 15% blue faced Leicester sheep's wool in it and was hand dyed by the seller. Well, it simply had to become another shawl now didn't it! My very first lacy shawl I knitted not particularly perfectly can be found here.

I chose to make the Holden Shawlette which you can download for free on Ravelry. I wanted to crank up my lace knitting skills another notch and build on my confidence with lace knitting. I can honestly say that I loved knitting this in the last 10 days despite the heat. It also came down to the beach with me for the odd row or two when I felt inspired.

Here it is unblocked last night... all curly and not very pretty, sorry the photo's are out of focus, I am getting my eye sight re-tested on Thursday!

And here it is all blocked and a lot prettier I think. Gosh, what a difference blocking makes with overnight drying in this Summer heat.

I must say that I am a little bit pleased with this pretty and have decided to give it to my mother-in-law for her 73rd birthday next week. She has blue eyes which I think will be enhanced with this electric blue yarn.

I still need to sew the two ends in, but simply couldn't wait to put it on my blog. I'm impatient like that :o)

I like all the little flecks of brown and beige and black in this yarn, adds to the texture I think.

I think I still have to pinch myself when I see the above picture. I have lusted and salivated after making a lacy shawl but NEVER thought I could do it. Believe me, if I can do this, any novice knitter can. It's a confidence thing and starting off simple and working your way up the ladder project by project and with a little help from my knit and natter friends, I've kind of got there. The world is my oyster, I can knit and I can purl and therefore I can make anything my heart desires. This is my new belief in myself! Lets hope it remains positive and onwards and upwards from here :o)

When we go to Barcelona, I am hoping to come away with some local Spanish yarn for making a memory shawl from our time there. I like to buy yarn from the places we go and to make something to remind me of the happy days spent there. I must do some internet searching for yarn shops I believe there are quite a few.
Thank you as always for visiting and your comments, always relished and appreciated!
See you all soon

Saturday, 20 July 2013


How glorious the sunshine and blue skies have been this week. I kept reminding myself about what a horrid Winter we have had and tried to bask in the beauty of real Summer of 30+ degrees. I have one more week at work then hip hip hooray 2 weeks off when we will be going to Barcelona and up the coast to Tossa de mar. I can't wait! 

So, how has your past week been? Mine seems to have developed into a funny little pattern of it's own, working then getting home to cycle down to the seaside for a dip and cool off and lie down and relax on the beach followed by alfresco eating and sitting outside with my little family and our bunny until the sunsets. It was almost like being on holiday :o)

Here are some of my little happy moments from this week....

Never being just satisfied with soaking up the sun, I always set myself a little challenge of finding pretty pebbles and shells that are in my immediate reach and making pretty collages with all the patterns, textures and shapes.

I can promise you that I never take it for granted that we live by the sea and I embrace and celebrate this always.

Alice and I made some thin crispy pancakes for dessert this week and filled them with cinnamon, honey and vanilla ice-cream, yum!

Squeeling with delight with all my guerrilla gardened poppies (in the front of our terraced house we have a pebbled garden which was crying out for me to scatter seeds a couple of years ago)flowering this week. I love that these self seed and cannot wait for how many more I may have next year.

Happy happy to see my roses coming out on our front door step. I planted them in an old watering can I bought for £1 about 2 years ago. It already had a few punctured holes in the bottom, so perfect for planting in. One day, I'd like to treat myself to a David Austin sweetly scented rose to greet us each morning as we head on our way with rose scented air. The other flowers were picked on one of my cycles.

Loving this delicious magazine a friend bought for me for sewing her a couple of cushion covers.It's £8 a pop, but only comes out every other month and feels more like book rather than mag quality to me. I shall treasure this Summer edition.

Being a little bit heart pounding when Alice casually told me that she was one of six who had been chosen out of 205 children in her year for an excellence in drama award and performing in her showcase last night was a wonderfully proud moment seeing her express herself so well and surprising us that she had had this little talent hiding away. She has had a difficult last term at school with some jealousy related picking on her and its been a very emotional time for us. I don't want to go into it too much here on my blog and it won't be easy for me to hold back the tears, but I wanted to log that last night I saw a new confidence, I saw our girl in her element and I saw her skipping down the corridor. I could not have asked for anything more.

I hope you have yourselves a easy and joyful weekend
See you soon.

Tuesday, 16 July 2013

Orange Summer

Are you all buzzed out with this hot weather and vitamin D overload yet? Na-ah not me, nope not one iota. I am loving cycling down to the seaside after a hot days work and dipping my hot head into the cool waters of the south coast, the water has been like a mill pond over the last couple of days and I am like a lemming to the sea, can't help it. The best bit is that the water has been crystal clear and you can spot your painted toe nails in amongst the jewels of muted pebbles through the water.

When I came home last night after my netball session I couldn't resist a bit of spray painting, especially when there is one last bit in the can begging to be used! The "victim" of my spray painting jaunt was this...

Yep, that poor impala was destined to turn a shade or two brighter than what it originally started out as.

As you can see this carved impala has angles and obvious carved bits all over, I was hoping that this would make it a bit more interesting when I spray painted it. I was a little bit disappointed that it turned out a quite shiny, but that will serve me right for choosing spray paint for glass and not wood!

So here it is...

Looking bold and angular and shiny in front of my mosaic mirror!

What do you think?

I think it's going to take a little bit of time for me to accept that I might have raced too enthusiastically into playing with spray paint :o) Poor impala, I love you anyway, orange or not, I'm not going to let anything drag me down this Summer.

Happy week lovely people. See you soon.

Friday, 12 July 2013


Hello there, what a crazy busy working week I have had. All good and well and now I can put my rather hot feet up with a glass of wine and enjoy the seaside weekend we have in front of us. 

How was your week? I hope you have been living free and easy and breezy in this beautiful sunny-shine we have been blessed with here in the northern hemisphere. Here are a few captured moments of mine.

Buying the Summer edition of Inside crochet and casting on another shawl whilst reading my magazine and sitting on the beach last weekend. 

Also falling into the temptation of starting yet another crochet project after paging through the magazine. It's full of great patterns this month.

I'm loving this shawl now that I am in shawl making mode :o)

The three of us cannot resist a treat from our very favourite generations run Italian ice-cream parlour and restaurant down the road from where we live, Di Paolo's. They are so lovely and there is something so satisfying supporting a local business and knowing that at least 3 generations of Italians have been running this successful business.

I had strawberry  sorbet, Alice likes hazelnut and Andy likes rum and raisin. What is your favourite flavour ice cream?

Nothing like lolling about on the beach with my crocheted beach cushion!

I was also rather pleased with how my elderflower cordial turned out and packaged some in bottles to give away to special friends.

It is sweet and delicious with some soda water and a sprig of mint, perfect for summer time cordial drinking.

Oh, and  I bought some girly printed bias binding for a little up-cycling of an old winter jumper. I think these pretty blossoms will make me smile when the seasons change.

Here's wishing you all a fabulous weekend

Sunday, 7 July 2013

Oaklet shawl

Wow, what an incredible real summer weekend we have had. I even managed my first dip in the sea for this year, it was that hot! With sunburnt noses and bbq smells in the air we headed home yesterday evening where I waited for the cool of the night to cast off and block my very first lacy shawl, the Oaklet shawl.

I'm not sure that my first effort at knitting lace worked out too well and I don't think it created the exact desired effect from the pattern, but I am still smiling and am happy with it. It can only get better can't it? Oh, I hope so as I think a new themed form of knitting has seeded itself in me and you may just have to be subjected to watching it grow on this here blog.

I do hope you all have had a great weekend and wishing you an even better week ahead.
See you all soon

ps. Well done Andy Murray!