Monday 31 March 2014

Handel's Messiah

I had a lovely treat on Saturday evening.  Eve and I went to the Catholic Cathedral for a performance of Handel's Messiah.

It was beautifully done in such a lovely building.  Liverpool has two cathedrals, but the Catholic one is my favourite.

Sunday 30 March 2014

Happy Mothers Day

A very Happy Mothers Day to all Mums out there.  For my Mum I did some more embroidery to make into a card - I'm so loving doing little bits of embroidery these days.

Little yellow bullion roses on a leafy green heart.  (I saw something similar on Pinterest and couldn't resist the design).

I add some lace to the top and bottom of the fabric and attached it to some colourful backing paper before inserting it into the card.

I think it looks lovely and is just perfect for my Mum.

Friday 28 March 2014

Happy Now?

At last my Braid Hills cardigan is finished.

I redid the sleeves and now they are a sensible length.  I'm so glad that the sleeves were knitted top-down, it made the alteration so much simpler.

Anyway, here it is.

My feelings towards the cardigan are mixed.  The yarn is lovely and I like the colour.

I love the cabled pattern on the fronts but not sure about the cabling on the cuffs.

The neck line is quite low and this is after I altered it from the pattern.

I definitely don't like the way the button bands curl when it isn't buttoned up.

Also, because the button bands are worked at the same time as the body and are in rib, they give a slight gaping appearance.  The original pattern was for less buttonholes but I added extra to try to avoid the gape.

The photos were taken as the cardigan came straight off the needles and I have since soaked the cardigan to relax the stitches.  Once it has been properly blocked I may feel kinder towards it.  For now, though, it's still on probation.

You can see full details of the project on my Ravelry page, here.

Wednesday 26 March 2014

Lessons Learnt?

I've been knitting away lately at my Braid Hills cardigan (Kate Davies design).  All was going well.

The pattern is for top down sleeves - I've tried this method before but didn't like it - but I gave it another go.
The excellent thing about top down sleeves is that you can try on the work-in-progress to check the fit.  So why didn't I do this?

I was so eager to get on with it, that it wasn't until I was at the cuff of the first sleeve that I thought to try it on.  And yes, you've guessed it - the sleeve just wasn't right.  Far too tight - I don't have fat arms and I'd followed the pattern exactly but it felt like a straight-jacket on me.  So the sleeve was ripped out.

As the top down sleeve method was going well - I'd sorted out the tangle of needles and had a good rhythm going, I redid the sleeves using the same method, but added extra stitches.

You would think I would learn from my first mistake.  Yes I tried on the sleeves to check for tightness - all fine and dandy now - but what about length?  Too eager to finish to try on!!!

The cardigan is all finished but oh no!  The sleeves are too long!  I'm going to have to undo them - again!

Here's a photo of the current finished article as it is at the moment.  I need to work up the enthusiasm to do the alterations - at least I don't need to undo them by much - just back to before the cabling.

When I've redone the sleeves, hopefully I'll have a photo of me wearing it.  In the meantime, I think I've learnt my lesson!

Thursday 20 March 2014

It's Arrived...

It's arrived... Pretty Nostalgic magazine.

I've been waiting for the post every day for the past few days anticipating the moment it drops through the letterbox.

It's only issued once every two months, so it's very exciting when it arrives.

And now it's here.  So time to put my feet up with a large mug of tea and some fun crochet and browse this joyful, feature-packed mag.


Wednesday 19 March 2014

No Longer a Teenager

Yesterday our lovely Eve was twenty years old.  No longer a teenager.  She's all grown up and independent.
It was wonderful that she was home from university - we collected her on Sunday - so we could have this time with her.

Most of her home friends are still away, their Easter holidays do not start for a while, which meant that I had Eve all to myself yesterday.

We had a delightful lunch out in a local coffee shop, catching up and having laughs.

For her birthday card I embroidered this little picture.

Then machine sewed the fabric to a colourful piece of craft paper to make into a card.

A wonderful, memorable day - I hope she enjoyed it as much as I did.

Tuesday 11 March 2014

Another Year Older?

What a wonderful week I have had.  With an approaching birthday, I put myself on "light duties" last week.  So plenty of time for treats!

One of my treats was a trip into the city centre.  I love going into Liverpool and being a tourist.  It makes you appreciate your home city when you look at it through a stranger's eyes.

I had a lovely afternoon at the Maritime Museum.

With tea and a cake overlooking the Albert Dock.

At the weekend we went and stayed with Grace in Sheffield on the Saturday night then on the Sunday (my birthday), after Skyping with Eve, we went on to York.

York is one of my most favourite cities (after Liverpool of course).

We walked around the city walls.

Pity about his thumb and my closed eyes

And who could resist this little treat.

We explored all the nooks and crannies of the city and found some beautiful spots away from the main tourist areas.

And it wouldn't be a proper holiday if we didn't find ourselves a quaint old pub.

Now I'm back home and it's time to catch up on the jobs around the house.  I'm sure I'll still find time for some treats.

So am I another year older?  Certainly not, I don't feel any older than I did many years ago.  I am, however, another year wiser and as such, another year more content.  I believe the passing of time is all about becoming the person you are meant to be.

So here's to another year of becoming me!

Wednesday 5 March 2014

Finally a New Knitted Cardigan

I seem to have been crocheting, embroidering and everything else other than knitting lately.  I haven't felt inspired to start a new knitted cardigan for ages - it's so unlike me.

I bought some Debbie Bliss Blue Faced Leicester DK wool recently, a lovely pale blue - an early birthday treat for myself.

Now, finally I've found a pattern I want to knit.

The pattern is called Braid Hills and it's by Kate Davies.

Some very easy cabling and lots of plain stocking stitch.

It's going well and I'm enjoying the pattern.  Let's hope I can keep up my enthusiasm.

Tuesday 4 March 2014

Bees and Blossom

Pinterest has some beautiful embroidery inspirations.  I've pinned so many ideas, I'm sure if I sat and embroidered forever, I still wouldn't be able to work my way through all the lovely designs.

There were two though that I saw recently that particularly caught my eye.

This one from flossbox

...and this one from

I already have an embroidered bee and flowers picture that I made way back in 1998...

...but I felt that the time was ripe for another one to be made.

So, based on the lovely inspiration from Pinterest, I drew out a design, selected the colours and off I went...

And here's the finished article.

There's something about bees and flowers that lifts the spirits, don't you think?