Thursday 31 July 2014

Vintage Doily

One of my favourite possessions is my Grandmother's sewing box.

I've had this now for over thirty years and I still love emptying it out and going through all the bits and bobs that are in it.

One of the items in the sewing box is this vintage hand- crocheted doily.

The stitches are small and neat and the work is beautifully done.

Unfortunately the stitches in the centre are coming undone.  Holding the doily in my hands I began to wonder why this doily, and no other, was one that my Grandmother kept in her sewing box.

Was it simply that she never got around to repairing it, despite her best intentions?  Was it so important to repair it, when she probably had plenty of other doilies?  Did this particular doily have a special significance for her?  Perhaps it was one she had made for a special occasion, or had been given to her as a handmade gift, or perhaps her grandmother had made it and left it in a sewing box for her to find!

Obviously I'll never know the story behind this doily, but it nice to wonder.  I'm going to try and repair the centre.  I don't intend to use the doily, it belongs with the sewing box, but it would be nice to try to stop further deterioration of the crochet work.

I've also decided that it would be an interesting challenge to try and recreate the pattern for this doily so that I can have a duplicate that can be used.   I'll let you know how I get on.

Wednesday 30 July 2014

Sailing Away

I'm in a very crafty zone at the moment.  I've got a couple of big projects on the go but I'm also loving taking some time out making some impulsive small projects.  And here's the latest...

A little padded fabric boat.

I don't know why I felt the need to make it but I just went with the flow and this is what came out!

To make it I drew up a template and patchworked some scraps of fabric together.

I had fun choosing some embellishments.

I added an old curtain ring so that it could be hung up.

When it was all sewn up and turned the right side out, I added some buttons and stuffed it lightly with some toy filling and that was it.

At first I wasn't sure whether the project had been a success but I'm liking it now and it makes a cute summer decoration.

It's good to give the creative feelings full rein.

Tuesday 29 July 2014

I Can See Clearly Now....

...the strain has gone!  Yes, I have new glasses.

Two pairs to be exact.

My distance vision is perfect but reading is still getting worse.  So I've got some lovely new reading glasses.

And a pair of magic glasses!  Oh yes, they are completely magic.  They are an enhanced prescription which will allow me to do really close work, especially embroidery.

My reading glasses have never been strong enough to let me do close work for any length of time, but these glasses are specially tailored to my embroidery needs.  So no more limited embroidery time for me - there'll be no stopping me now - no more eye strain, no more headaches - how magic is that?

Monday 28 July 2014

The Next Stage

Back with the grey blanket, I've now combined all 144 of the little squares into 36 bigger squares.

The next step is to decide in which order the squares will be joined.

I always like this step, seeing the squares laid out and rearranging them until the right combination is reached.

At this point in the development of the blanket, there's a sense of "nearly there", with just the border to be decided upon and worked.  Is it weird to be so excited about making a blanket?

Sunday 27 July 2014

Sunburst Granny Square

I've put the grey squares of my crochet blanket to one side today and picked up some brights.

Another cushion cover, on it's way - well I've made the first square!

Isn't it a pretty pattern?

The pattern for the square is called Sunburst Granny Square by Priscilla Hewitt.  It's a popular pattern and available for free.  I'm using just the first five rounds of the pattern - the original has a total of nine rounds. Using double knitting weight yarn and a 3.5 mm hook, my square measures 12 cm (4 1/2 inches).

I reckon I'll need sixteen squares for my cushion, so, one down, fifteen to go!

Saturday 26 July 2014

It's Hot, Hot, Hot

Are you enjoying the hot weather here in the UK?  It takes some getting used to but I think I'm adapting.  I'm enjoying breakfast outside in the mornings.

What a rare treat!

I follow it with some crochet time before the sun moves round and it gets too hot and sticky to even think.

I like this slower pace to the day, it's good to enjoy it while it lasts.

Friday 25 July 2014

By the Seaside

What amazing weather we are having at the moment, just perfect for a stroll down to the beach first thing in the morning before it gets too hot.

No one else around, just me and the wildlife.

Time for my annual paddle in the Irish Sea.

Very refreshing, if a little muddy.

Thursday 24 July 2014


Today's little diversion - buttons, felt and embroidery thread.

I saw something similar on Pinterest and couldn't resist having a go.

So I sorted through my button collection to find suitable buttons - ones with four holes, not two.

Narrowed down the candidates - a metal one, some shell ones and a few with a bit of colour.

I attached the button to the felt with a nice cross stitch and embroidered some petals.

Snipped round the outside and there you have it - I think this one looks like a sunflower.

They are so quick to make, I had three more completed in no time.

I think they would look good as brooches or they would make gorgeous embellishments on a birthday card. What do you think?

Wednesday 23 July 2014

Despite My Worst Efforts

Sometimes, just sometimes, when the sun is shining and the camera is angled in the right direction, the garden looks beautiful and colourful...

...despite my appalling skills as a gardener.