Thursday 6 January 2011

I don't have the blues I've got the greys!

Hello everyone, I've been meaning to do a new post for a couple of days now but this dreary, dull, grey weather is relentless and I am in some serious need of bright warm sunshine.

Before Alice was born I had the luxury of an annual trip back to my homeland of South Africa where I could get away from the grey January UK days but alas it's been a good 4 years since I flew back (Alice was 5 1/2 since we last went back) and I am dreaming of the bank balance this time next year taking us on a trip southwards....

South Africa is truly a beautiful country which I miss dearly at times

A few years ago we didn't see the sun for at least 3 weeks and I ended up making a papier mache sunshine which Alice and I painted with the brightest yellow we could find. Not sure what happened to it but it was good colour therapy at the time ;0)

Anyway, lets not dwell on the negative, I think I've just been feeling super frustrated with not having any light to take photo's for my blog and then I remembered that I had photographed this a couple of weeks ago when we had a momentary beam of light. It's a photo of the yarn Mr.A and I bought on a very rare (for him that is!! hee hee) trip to my LYS to choose colours for his man beanie I plan to knit and so here they are... 

And there he is when I first met him in 1996, he had shoulder length hair, usually tied back and on winter days his head was warmed with the beanie he is wearing. Oh yes a man and his beanie what more can I say? The very sad thing is that he LOVED this beanie sooooo much and then one day it was LOST and has been mourned for the past 10 years or so :0(
So, me with my new found knitting prowess decided it was time for me to take on the task of the return of the man beanie for Mr. A and knit away with the intention of semi-replicating the one he lost all those years ago with this yarn

I think the colours are very close to the original one and the yarn is Debbie Bliss and another merino variety for the grey (sorry can't find the label to tell you which one it is). It feels very soft and cosy and I have cast on the 150 stitches and started with the ribbing. The truth of the matter is that I am a wee bit nervous as I fear that the longing for the original man beanie might cast a shadow over this one.... I have been reassured by my beloved this will not be the case! I will share it with all of you lovelies out there in the land of blog and see what you think.

Do you like the Carrol Boyes lead free pewter frame I have hugged him in?

Carrol Boyes is an amazing South African Artist who sells all her incredible pewter and stainless steel hand-made products throughout the world. I have a few of her prized pieces I have collected over the years and just love them. See more of her beauties on the link to her web page.

So, as soon as we have some sunny shine here I hope to photograph my finished knitted bag and some other bits and bobs. Until then I wish you all beams of happy light xox


  1. Hi Penelope, Love your pictures of South Africa, stunning.
    Thankyou for getting back to me about my querie on picture size. I'm not having much luck as blogger doesn't offer me extra large :0(
    In regard to dark pictures can you fix them on your computer. I adjust the brightness on mine to make them look better.
    Hope this helps .
    Look forward to seeing your makes :0)
    Jacquie x

  2. Hej Penelope

    S.A. Looks a very beautiful country. I used to work in the travel industry I have been to several countries, but Kenya was the only country I managed to see within the African continent.
    How wonderful that you will be going back at the end of this year...I take it you have lots of family still there?
    I love the colours of the beanie hat I am sure it will be v.special for your husband as it will be MADE WITH LOVE ;-)
    Happy NEW January fill with creating and crafting and crocheting :D

  3. Oh my Penelope, it's bad enough missing the sun when we are used to grey Winters. I love the idea of a papier mache one though. I hope you get home next year.
    Looking forward to seeing your finished bag.

    Jo x

  4. Hi Penelope

    I just love going onto blogs people follow because you stumble upon such nice ones. Made a connection with yours immediately since I am also an ex pat living in Ozland. What's so incredible is that your last picture of SA, think it is the Hexriver Valley not sure, is part of my painting example pile. I had it in my hands this week considering painting it.

    The grey weather was the one and only rezson why we did not consider Britain although I love the country side and I know the weather forces one to stay inside and to be CREATIVE!!!

    We lived in Spain for almost 3 years before coming here. Was an amzing experience.

    Anyway I am blabbing away about me. I love your idea of a beanie. I received a Carrol Boyces for my last birthday. My husband didn't even know who she is. Ignorance is bliss.

    Good luck with yor project and I am happy for your planned trip down south at the end of the year.

    Take care and hope for some blue skies and a little bit of sun soon.

    6 January 2011 14:48

  5. Hello Penelope. So happy to see you at Tangled Happy today! Aren't you the sweetest wife knitting your hubby a hat to replace an old favorite. And I love your photos of South Africa. Beautiful! Must be hard being so far from home. Wishing you all the best for 2011.

  6. Hello Penelope!

    Oh I loved that picture of the beach, it made me want to go swimming so badly!
    I'm sure he will love this new hat as it is knitted by his beloved! And how cool to replicate an old loved item, have fun!
    When my pics are dark, as they often are, when I go into microsoft picture manager to crop (cropping is SUCH a blog lifesaver) it has auto-adjust which makes the colours perfect. Not sure if you have the same application on your computer, but it might be worth having a look whne you upload your pics, might make you think you have had some sunny adays anyway!
    3 weeks without sun, my god, we had that here last winter and it is a soul-sucker...
    hope you have some sunshine soon!

  7. Oh I can only imagine how much you wanna go to Africa and miss it. It looks so great and wonderful. Hope your grey turns into yellow soon!

  8. Hi Penelope. Those pictures of SA are fabulous, no wonder you are missing it. I can't believe how grey it is at the moment. Good luck with the beanie, it's tricky when you have to compete with a memory! I made the mistake of finding your last post and being confronted by that fabulous cake, oh dear, I got on the scales this morning and found Christmas has caught up with a vengence and I MUST NOT THINK ABOUT CHOCOLATE! Hope you continue to avoid the bugs and that the sun shines on you soon. love Penny xxx

  9. Hullo Penelope, these photos are stunning. Now straight onto the beanie and yarn, gosh I love these colours, and you know I think this beanie will be mega-treasured by your man. It's being made with love. As for no sun, gosh, sending you lashings of huffing and puffing to blow those grey skies away.

  10. Love your photos of South Africa.
    We've had sunshine today! Hope you have too after all the grey and mist lately.