Crochet WIP

Today I finished the main body of a blanket I’ve been working on. Not necessarily a summer project, but an easy one. I used the granny stripe pattern from Attic24 with a selection of Stylecraft Special Dk colours (I’ll list them when I finish it) and have really enjoyed the simple repetition of the pattern.

The only problem now is that I need to weave in the ends before I can start the border…

IMG_2410

Does anyone actually enjoy this bit? I know it’s the reason I don’t make many blankets! I’m off to get a cup of tea and make a start. Wish me luck!

Rainbow squares crochet baby blanket – finished!

This blanket seems to have been hanging around for a while.  In truth, I slightly lost interest in it once I got to the border and put it aside for weeks at a point when it only required another hour or so of work to finish it completely. Getting the news that the baby had been born, however, gave me the kick I needed to finish!

So here it is – the imaginatively titled Rainbow Squares baby blanket! Please excuse the poor picture quality; I had to take these on a dull, grey morning before I wrapped the blanket and took it down to Wales.

rainbow crochet squares blanket

I didn’t take measurements but you can get a sense of the scale from my feet! As with my first blanket, I made it larger than is typical for baby blankets so that it can be used for longer. The rest of the photos are much more true to colour…

rainbow squares blanket

As usual, the yarn is Stylecraft DK, in the following shades: Lipstick, Saffron, Meadow, Turquoise, Bluebell, Violet and Cream.

rainbow squares blanket

The border was simply rows of  treble crochet, with a final row of double crochet.

crochet squares blanket border

I think that blocking might have been a good idea…but you know, it’s rare that a baby blanket has to be laid flat and neat on the floor in a perfect square, so I think all will be well.  My sister-in-law loved it and the colours match the nursery perfectly (entirely coincidentally) so I’m counting this as a success!

crochet squares baby blanket

Crochet doilies

I’m going to a wedding this weekend, and then down to Swansea to see my parents for a few days, so I should really be doing all those last-minute things you do when you’re going away… I wanted to share what I made yesterday first though.

simply crochet doily

The pattern is from Simply Crochet issue 8,  and it’s worked in DK cotton. I used the cheap unbleached craft cotton that you can use for dishcloths etc with a 4mm hook, and it looks good! It needs blocking but that will have to wait until I get back next week.

dk cotton doily

I chose to leave off the final round of loops because I preferred the cleaner edge, and added a row of dc in purple cotton to make the doily a bit more ‘me’. It also means that it ties in quite well with the plant pot covers I made the other day!

crochet plant pot coversRight, I’m off to do all those little last minute things…like fixing the greenhouse door, picking caterpillars off the cauliflowers and painting my nails!

52 weeks: 27 / 28

Slightly cheating, but this way I can get back on track more quickly! The past two weeks have been somewhat manic – hence the lack of posts – but also scorching hot, as I’m sure anyone in the UK will agree. Personally, I have never encountered such a long run of *hot* summer days; I grew up on the Yorkshire coast, where the combination of the sea breeze and fret (thick fog that sits over the coast) means that temperatures very rarely get as high as they might otherwise. The concept of going to bed after a long, balmy summer’s day secure in the knowledge that you’ll be able to wear another sundress tomorrow is not one that I’m familiar with…but I’m enjoying it! Far too much to want to sit at the computer once I’ve finished essential work…

So, in no particular order, a peek into some happy moments from the past two weeks.

sweet peas

evening primrose

evening primrose

Evening primroses – so colourful and sunny!

blueberries

The blueberries are getting nice and plump…

bumble bee in clover

bee in clover

…and the bees are enjoying the clover flowers.

hot cat in shade

carrot and lentil burger

A delicious carrot and lentil burger in a sesame bun – far tastier than it sounds!

rainbow squares blanket

…and the blanket is coming along well. Not that a woolly blanket really suits the weather…

52 weeks: 26/52

Hm. Halfway through the year! The first half has been largely positive; I’m hoping that the next twenty-six weeks are just as interesting. Although I’m mildly disturbed by the number of festive (I’m not going to mention the C-word) images popping up on Pinterest… I’d rather not think about the end of the year just yet!

This week has been busy once again, and I haven’t been taking many pictures – I’m aware that the photos for the past few weeks haven’t been especially interesting, but then that just reflects how life is – sometimes it’s the most mundane things that provide the happy moments in a busy week!

Firstly, rain; we’ve had a lot of this in the last fortnight. In itself, it isn’t my favourite weather by a long way; once this week, though, I opened the back door and smelled that wonderfully-fresh ‘summer rainstorm’ smell – almost as good as newly-mowed grass. Since you can’t take photographs of scents, I went for a shot of the friendly gargoyle that guards our back step.

gargoyle in the rain

In addition, rainy days mean more of this – crochet and tea! Two of my favourite pastimes. (The cosy was knitted by my sister!)

tea and crochet

And when you need a break from crocheting, there’s always baking! This was my attempt to make something satisfying to keep me going as part of my packed lunches this week – oats, barley flakes, pumpkin, sesame and sunflower seeds, prunes, cinnamon…oh, and a tin of condensed milk. Which is guaranteed to raise a smile!

healthyish flapjack

Finally, don’t you love it when you rediscover something you’d forgotten about? I came across a jar full of flowering teas (it had got pushed to the back of the shelf; that I categorised it as ‘lost’ says a lot about the state of my kitchen cupboards.) You can’t tell what flowers they have inside until they bloom in hot water; the first one I tried was a beautiful ‘dragon’s eye’. Lovely isn’t it?

flowering tea

Have a good week all!

All done: stripy crochet bag

I have to admit that I finished this two weeks ago; I’ve been waiting for the combination of time and dry weather to take photos of it! I’ve been using it almost every day – I’m not really a handbag sort of woman -and it’s holding up well, although I’m considering putting in a lining  as the holes aren’t great when you’re carrying things like keys, pens and lip balm…

stripy crochet bag

But – I’m so happy with the bag! It was fairly easy to make, although I did make one change to the pattern; if anyone else plans to make this, I found that when I was working on the main body of the bag I had to alter the pattern repeat so that I was making 4dc in the 3rd, not 4th, stitch, for the second and all subsequent pattern repeats (contact me if you want me to make that clearer!)

handles crochet bag

I also added little rosettes to the bottom of the handles. Primarily to cover the messy stitches from where I sewed the handles on, but they look nice too!

crochet bag

I used Drops Paris cotton in the following shades: Dark Purple, Petrol, Raspberry, Pistachio, Vanilla, Light Turquoise, Heather, Dark Old Pink and Light Blue Purple, with a 5mm hook. The yarn isn’t bad to work with, although as with all cotton I found my fingers beginning to ache after using it for a while – going back to work with Stylecraft DK on my blanket felt lovely! I do love the look of crocheted cotton though; the stitch definition is wonderful.

Finally, I feel I should explain that I had help in photographing this today. Well, he thought he was helping… I wasn’t convinced.

stripy crochet bag and cat

52 weeks: 25/52

I’ve been so busy over the past few days that I haven’t had a chance to post here, so I’m a little late with last week’s moments of happiness!

Now this doesn’t look as tall as it is in real life!  The pile of squares for my rainbow blanket – all I need to do now is join them together…

rainbow squares

This is the first posy of sweet peas that I have picked in 2 years – last year, the slugs got to all of the plants before they’d even made it outdoors. Hurray for sweet peas – and the best bit? The more you pick them, the more you get. Perfect.

sweet peas

You can tell, even though there are patches of blue sky (international readers, this is what is known as a typical summer’s day over here) that it wasn’t the brightest of days. But there’s something about York minster that suits the gloomier weather. We had a lovely day out in York, and hardly got soaked in the rain!

york minster

That’s all for this week,  although if I’m realistic the final picture here should really be one of a jam doughnut. Seeing as we’ve already had a post full of those, I won’t add any more…but if you haven’t made any yet, do!