Thursday, 17 December 2009


Oops, I seem to have gone missing for a while. Been busy dealing with winter bugs, celebrating eldest DD's 11th birthday and preparing for a lovely family Christmas. Should quieten down a little just before New Year - maybe.. Merry Christmas everyone!

Friday, 27 November 2009

This week made me say...

Pardon? Our local chemist now delivers prescriptions to our village pub for us to collect if we want! Very useful - the pub is less than 2 minutes walk from us.

Eeek! The high winds this week were scary - they whipped up our gas barbecue which broke two of our roof ridge tiles! Thankfully the tiles were spares, on the floor - and the barbecue and gas bottle weren't damaged.

Mmm... I bought some mini fizzing bath melts from Etsy seller
mmmmhandmadesoap - so cute - a fab and affordable gift!

Wednesday, 25 November 2009

A day at the Fair

Last Saturday I had a stall at a local Craft Fair, and we had a great day!

It's a well-established event - well organised and attended, with over 100 stalls.

My eldest DD came along to help, and was very keen to run the stall by herself whilst I went off to browse the other stalls. She did very well too! We made quite a few sales, which is really encouraging.

The necklace display stands from Boo's Jewellery templates worked really well. I learned a few more lessons too:
  • My items need more labels - a pull-on cowl is obvious to me as I made it but I had lots of people asking what it was
  • I need to get a better-looking piece of fabric to cover the table with - I may invest in a length of black velvet for the next fair
  • My own invention of the hand display stands for my fingerless gloves worked well
  • Using our bathroom cabinet without the drawers worked well to add height
  • Some kind of backdrop would help to focus attention on the items on the table rather than whatever is behind it.
More thinking to do for the next one then...

Tuesday, 17 November 2009

Winter weddings

Tada! Here's my latest addition to my Etsy shop - and it made me very happy to make them!

Not that I'm going to a winter wedding or even know any winter brides to give them to. I just really enjoyed making them.

The Sublime Angora Merino yarn is just that - sublime to touch. I adore this stitch pattern and they are a quick knit.

I spent quite a while handsewing on the 130 glass seed beads but, strangely enough for me, I enjoyed doing that too!

I even liked staging the photographs as I had remembered that I still have my own wedding outfit pieces. I found them out, fondly looked through them, and decided to use my veil as the background. Quite romantic I think!

Alison from AMIDesigns must have been thinking along the same lines as she has just listed this beautiful bracelet too.


Thursday, 12 November 2009

A November Sunset

I was very happy to receive a message on Etsy from Caitlin tonight saying that she has included me in her treasury - A November Sunset - yay!

It is a beautiful selection; those colours are gorgeous and perfect for this time of year. Dark, rich, warm, and comforting.

Caitlin has very kindly included my Regal Bounty hand-dyed laceweight merino yarn.

You may want to take a look at Caitlin's shop too - she has some absolutely gorgeous crochet snowflakes for sale.

Thanks Caitlin!

Wednesday, 11 November 2009

The high..

The last few days have been quite a rollercoaster, starting with a high on Saturday - literally, terrifyingly high!

We went out to a huge local indoor play area as the weather wasn't very good and the kids needed to burn off some energy. Whilst there I was being nagged by our daughters (as usual) to try out the death drop slide (a vertical drop to start with, then a curve to slow you down at the bottom) which they go on regularly. I decided I would give it a go - despite being absolutely terrified of falling from heights all my life.

I went to the top of the lowest slide - about 36 feet up with a bump in the middle so it's not so bad - with my two DDs. That may not seem much for most people but I get electric shocks through my hands and feet even thinking of going up high or looking at high-up scenes on the TV!

I sat at the top and could barely get my legs over as I was so terrified. Youngest DD went down the slide and waited at the bottom with DH, and eldest DD sat with me at the top. My whole body was shaking with fear and according to DH I was hyperventilating - visible to him on the ground!

Eventually I forced my body to work, started babbling to myself about it being safe etc, and lurched forward.

I have no recollection of going down as it was so fast, but when I got to the bottom I lay there and started to cry! I had done it! I never in my life thought I would be able to do that.

My family were so happy for me, hugging, laughing etc, whilst I wiped away my tears. I had to wait for a few minutes to calm down - I was still shaking so much I couldn't hold my coffee without spilling it!

The other adults in the place must have thought I was insane, but I don't care. I did it!

Thursday, 5 November 2009

Sock disaster

Warning sock knitters....

If you are of a nervous disposition, avert your eyes now - graphic scenes of sock disaster coming up...

There - I told you it was nasty didn't I?

The most enormous hole in my beloved Tidal Wave cashmere socks in place of where the heel was when I put them on - and the same in the other one too!

This calls for some serious investigation into repairs.. watch this space..

Wednesday, 4 November 2009

Wedgewood Blue

I love wedgewood blue plates. They remind me of being at my grandmother's house when I was a child. The colours of my latest Etsy listing remind me of that plate!

I handknitted this scarf from 3 balls of variegated blue cotton yarn. That's all I had of it in my stash and I wanted to make something special with it.

I chose a lovely eyelet ripple pattern which highlighted the colour changes without giving solid stripes.

The eyelets meant I could thread ribbons through easily too. I took the scarf with me to my local haberdashery and got the perfect matching shades.

It took me ages to get around to threading the ribbons! I never quite felt like doing it, but once I did it hardly took any time at all.

I love the finished look. What do you think?

Tuesday, 3 November 2009

Oh yes.. knitting!

Yes, that is what I used to blog about isn't it - knitting and crochet projects?!

Well I think it's about time I showed some more progress..

A few days ago I sold the gorgeous cranberry  hand/wristwarmers which were one of my absolute favourite knits.

The yarn is Sublime Angora Merino DK - so very luxurious, like melted butter on the skin!

I love the Sublime yarns and therefore I happen to have more of this yarn - in a very pale cream shade (linen) and a rich deep purple (berry).

Of course I had to make more fabulous wristies with it.

They are a quick knit, with enough interest in the lace hand-covering part to keep them interesting. I'm modifying the edging slightly on this pair - the last one was good but a little longer than I wanted.

A current crochet project (note "a" not "the" - I like to have choices!) is a set of coasters for a family member for Christmas.

They are in her favourite colours of Rowan Linen Drape - lilac and purple.

The yarn is giving a lovely crisp stitch texture but should have the absorbancy I like of these coasters.

I seem to be almost following a colour scheme through my projects for now!

Sunday, 1 November 2009

Halloween happenings

The first of the Falmouth Craft Fairs is now done, and unfortunately only resulted in one small sale so the day ended as a financial loss.

However it wasn't all well as I did learn something - the necklace stands from Boo Jewellery certainly created interest, so I'd like to come up with display stands for my cowls and gloves too. I have a few ideas to play with - more soon!

I also bought my first Christmas present for this year! It's a really lovely felt flower mobile made by the fair's organiser Amanda from her stand Lemon Sherbet. I love it and intend to give it to my adorable newest for Christmas.

After the fair we went to a Halloween Party at my in-laws' house - great fun!

We played mummy wrapping and marshamallow bobbing, and had lots of great food.

I think the preparation for Halloween parties is as good as the evening itself - pumpkin carving and baking. Now I really must use a pumpkin for soup!

Thursday, 22 October 2009


I have struggled to find an inexpensive but effective way to display my crochet necklaces for a while. I purchased some bust displays from ebay only to find they are tiny and not at all useful for my long necklaces.

During my Etsy wanders, I stumbled across Boo Jewellery and her blog, where there are several very useful tutorials. One of them is a tried and tested necklace display stand template has been developed and is freely available for all to use.

I first tried it on thick mounting card and found that it didn't work (the bottom flaps to stand it up broke off as the card was too thick to be flexible). Then I read the note about not needing thick card!

This time I've used a pack of A4 240gsm silver card - 99p for 4 sheets. I enlarged the template a little to get one stand instead of two from a sheet of A4, to accommodate the length of my crochet necklaces.

Here's the result in very little time - great! I'll be using these at the Local Crafts and Gift Market I'm doing in Falmouth on Halloween.

Thanks Boo for sharing your experience and template - I can recommend it.

Tuesday, 20 October 2009


I recently received my order of Mini Moo cards and I'm really pleased with them!

The pictures have turned out really well, and the design is clean and modern, as I hoped.

I'm busy hole-punching lots of them to use as tags on my items for the upcoming Craft Market in Falmouth.

We may be well into autumn, but today has been stunning.

After a very blustery night, the clouds left us with a beautiful blue sky and brilliant sunshine to show off the seasonal plants.


Sunday, 11 October 2009

October treasury

I made it to another treasury on Etsy - yay! See my Red Heart Handknit Handwarmers at the bottom left. :)

I'm busy preparing for the Halloween Craft Market, although not getting too much time as youngest DD is not well - flu-ey symptoms, lots of inhaler needed as she's asthmatic, etc... Hopefully she'll fight it off quickly.

Saturday, 10 October 2009

Free worldwide shipping

..this weekend on all items in my Etsy shop!

Oh and here's the other hand-dyed wool/silk/bamboo I did last weekend - Denim Daze:

Mmmm, sheeeny... 

Some news too - I'm doing a craft market in Falmouth on 31st October - woohoo! It's in the WI Hall in Webber Street (behind Tesco's) - come and see me if you can!

Tuesday, 6 October 2009


My youngest daughter and I had some "us" time together at the weekend, and she decided that we should dye yarn! Not a bad choice for an 8yo...

This was the result - the fabulous Groover superwash wool/silk/bamboo fingering/4ply/sock yarn which I just listed in my Etsy shop. Those colours sure do groove!

Friday, 2 October 2009

Makeover time

Time for a blog makeover! I'm not 100% satisfied with it yet but it's a start. I still don't seem to be able to get away from the pink yet though.

Now time for bed. Late. Tired. Poorly little finger. Ow!

Wednesday, 30 September 2009

I think I'm addicted.. knitting and wearing these ladder yarn necklace/cowl type thingies!

I have my own in the Autumn colourway which I'm wearing LOADS.

These are the latest two versions in my Etsy shop.

They are so light and soft when they're on you forget they're there, but they still keep a little warmth around the neck.

Perfect for these autumn days as they get cooler.

Tuesday, 22 September 2009

Go Knit!

Help a bumblebee by knitting a scarf and getting it to a Seasalt store or HQ by 1st October!

Late Summer Garden

There is a dye-along on the "I'd Dye For Britain" group on Ravelry at the moment with a theme of "Inspired by flowers". I quite fancy taking part, so I took some pics in our garden yesterday.

They reminded me how lovely the plants still look, even as they turn towards autumn.

Monday, 14 September 2009

Anniversary time

I'm very happy to say that today is our 13th wedding anniversary!

We could never have predicted, back in 1996, that thirteen years on we would be living in our lovely home near the fabulous Cornish coast with our 2 beautiful daughters. I couldn't imagine it any other way, nor do I want it to be.

Apparently the 13th anniversary is associated with Lace, Furs and Textiles, Hollyhocks, Citrine, Malachite and Moonstone. I think I'll stick with the Textiles bit..

Happy anniversary hubsta!

Wednesday, 9 September 2009

I'm in a Treasury!

Woohoo, my ladder scarf made it to the beautiful "Autumn Splendor" Treasury in Etsy!

Tuesday, 8 September 2009


I've discovered a couple of quick projects that I'm loving at the moment.

These stretchy knit hairbands are made with oddments of 4ply yarn - great for sock remnants!

I'm finding that yarns with a little give are best for this. The most successful one so far has been using Panda Cotton Print which incorporates elastic nylon.

My DDs are wearing them and asking for more for their schoolfriends, and I've sold one on Etsy.

I see many more of these in my future!

The other quick project (although not a fast as the hairbands) are these ladder yarn necklaces - just beautiful!

I wear mine lots, and I'm now making other colours too. One is listed in my Etsy shop currently. What do you think?

Thursday, 20 August 2009

Two of three

Remember I said I had 3 FOs to show off? Well here's the second...

It's Sirdar pattern 8877 - which I've managed to lose. I never lose patterns. Good job it's finished.

It's knitted in Sirdar Just Bamboo, shade Driftwood. I have to say that when I bought the yarn (online) I didn't really expect it to be quite so grey.

I guess I was thing of the "wood" part more than the "drift"!

I do love this yarn though, despite having to oversew all the ends with sewing thread as it's so slippy.

I wasn't happy with the increases for the waist shaping as directed by the pattern instructions - they left big holes.

I did it my own way for the front, and they look better IMO. I also added more length as usual, and it's worked for me.

I attempted to try this on when it was half-seamed, and felt very unhappy that it seemed too small and showed up whatever underwear I had on at the time.

Thankfully now it's all done, it does fit as it's so drapey and stretchy, and the right colour underwear just blends right in.

I do love the hem and sleeve edgings - very pretty.

I think I will wear this after all!

Saturday, 15 August 2009

Birthday Pics!

It's my 43rd birthday today so here's a picture round-up of the highlights.

Our two clever and thoughtful daughters first presented me with a homemade gift. Our surname is Thornton, so they had spent several hours hand-making (with nan's help) my very own box of birthday chocolates!

They include chocolate covered brazils, chocolate covered marshmallows, chocolate covered ginger, chocolate covered nougat, and chocolate truffles!

Each one is so amazingly delicious - and I have 3 layers in a hand-decorated box too! What a fabulous gift. :-)

Then I had my first ever knitting gift from my DH (as requested) - a beautiful sunflower swift from Purlescence!

I've already put this to good use this evening, and re-skeined two skeins of my hand-dyed 4ply yarn ready to list in my
Etsy shop.

I wanted us to have a family day out as we all seem to be so busy all the time, and I wanted us to go somewhere there would be things for all of us to do - but not too expensive of course.

So we ended up using our
Muller vouchers to get a reduced-price entry to Springfields Fun Park and Pony Centre.

It was indeed lots of fun as the adults could go on nearly as many attractions as the kids!

I went on the astraslide - several times. Good fun, but the indoor one we went on later was so fast it took my breath away!

Also every photo of the faster one came out blurry, so this one will show you the idea.

Then there were the big see-saws.

For some reason every time me and DH got going on this I ended up in hysterics!

I don't quite know what I found so funny, but I had to get off in the end as my sides were aching too much from laughing. :-)

Finally there were the huge trampolines.

I've never been on one of these before. I couldn't believe how much energy they took. Only a couple of minutes in, I was out of breath! Amazing exercise and great fun.

I ended up with sea-legs when I got off - the ground felt like it should be moving like the trampoline!

It was a really fun day out - just what every 43yo should have. This evening was rounded off with a family buffet, and tomorrow me and DH are off to Carbis Bay Hotel in St Ives for a Sunday Dinner for Two that I won in a raffle! :-)

Saturday, 8 August 2009

One, two, three, go!

OK so now I've swapped the crochet hook for a darning needle, and I've now got not one, not two, but THREE FOs to show for it! Here's the info on the first of the trio - the Beachcomber Tunic:

This is a pattern from Interweave Crochet Spring 2007 using Garnstudio Silke Tweed yarn. I managed to drop on that exact yarn in the pale rose shade I wanted on ebay.

Although I started this back in March 2008, this has taken an age to finish - but purely my own fault. I just couldn't face seaming for a long time and I don't think there's much point trying to do it when you feel like that.

I lengthened the top knitted bodice as I wanted thew whole thing longer and wasn't keen on the knit/crochet split being right across my bust - the model in the original pattern is fairly neutral in this area.

I've been noticing this a lot recently - garments modelled on fairly small-busted women, which makes the finished item look very different on me - and not usually better!

Other than that, it's a great pattern, and very easy to do.

Now I want to wash the tunic a couple of times to soften up that silk/lambswool yarn before I actually wear it.

Tuesday, 28 July 2009

Hooked on crochet

I seem to be hovering on the darker side for the time being - happy to be using a hook rather than needles for now.

I've been busy making sets of coasters such as the vibrant "Can Can" set here.

There is another set is a different colourway but those are a special gift for a friend.

I've moved on to washcloths - crocheted in different stitches with various cotton blend yarns.

These are intended mainly for my latest niece (and her siblings) who is expected around the end of August, although some will stay with us.

My DDs have been dabbling too, although we've only done chains so far. The next lesson is imminent as they're keen to learn!

Wednesday, 8 July 2009

Made it!

Phew - the cabled tank is finished. Despite posting it the day before my nephew's birthday it arrived a day late, but that was quicker than he expected to have it so all is well.

It is liked and looks like it will fit - although it's been too warm to try it on yet!

Since then I've finished the split-toe socks for eldest DD and also one of the year-old projects for myself, but more of that later...

Monday, 29 June 2009

Faster, faster..

The ribby lace socks with the split toe for eldest DD are so close to being finished - just the toes to do on the left foot. Then I can finish writing out the pattern for that toe option and bat it over to some Ravelry test knitters. BUT...

I've had a request for a knitted garment for my nephew, after his little sister received her poncho - it's only fair. His 4th birthday is on 2nd July so I thought it would be a good idea to make something as his birthday present.

A quick chat with his mum led to the requirement for a vest-type tank top in a blue or neutral colourway. I scoured my yarn stash but couldn't find enough of anything suitable, so more purchasing was required.

I ended up buying
Sirdar Click Aran yarn (in shade "Loom Blue") and the matching slipover pattern - great value from Black Sheep Wools. I reckon the pattern will look just as good in girly colours on my DDs, so it'll get repeat use.

Of course since I decided this would be the birthday gift I've had precious little knitting time, so now the date is looming far quicker than I'd like.

The back and front are now finished - just the seams and rib edgings to go. The pattern is very easy but I need more time! Hence the delay on the sock pattern, and the manic cable knitting in every spare moment...

Tuesday, 23 June 2009

Dyeing again

This time with my oldest DD.

She did pretty much all of it: tied the skeins, picked out the Kool-Aid shades, mixed the dyes, poured them on, wrapped the clingfilm, microwaved the yarns, and then rinsed them once I'd unwrapped and cooled them a little.

Here are the results:

Lovely Lemon and Lime - this is the one DD wants to keep for me to make something for her to wear.

Sizzling Strawberry - this one taught her that you don't always end up with what you first envisaged, especially with Kool-Aid.

The initial idea was pink blending through to purple - quite different to the result!

Fire Light - we ran out of time before dinner to finish off the dyes, so later I mixed them together and poured them into a pan to kettle-dye this third skein.

These are all superwash sock yarns, and the red ones will be listed in my
Etsy shop ready for you to buy soon. Both my daughters are so excited to have their hand-dyed yarns up for sale!

I've recently changed the name of my hand-dyed yarns after finding another dyelicious in Australia. As we are so close to lovely Perranporth, I have settled on Perran Yarns. Please
take a look!

Sunday, 7 June 2009

The great Cornish outdoors

We've been trying to do more outdoor family pursuits since the weather has warmed up, in an attempt for me and DH to get fitter.

Last Sunday we walked up St Agnes Beacon. It was great exercise, and the view from the top is stunning.

One one side the Atlantic Ocean stretchs away into the distance, and on the other a vast expanse of Cornwall spreads out like a beautful blanket.

Just wonderful.

Today we cycled the Camel Trail from Wadebridge to Padstow - that's a total of 10 miles!

No doubt there will be some sore leg muscles tomorrow, but it was a lovely day out.

The trail is flat and follows the side of the estuary so there are great views.

Both of those outings are set to become regulars I think!

Friday, 5 June 2009

Developing patterns

I'm working on a sock design to publish and sell as a multi-way pattern right now. It's following on from the Toe-Footsies that I made, and will include three sizes and three different toe options.

These are the adult size with the regular toe version.

I used my Yarn Addict merino/bamboo blend sock yarn from my stash - very nice to work with, and hopefully very lovely to wear later this year.

This is the latest addition - the teen/small adult size with the split toe option to wear with toe-post mules.

I've used Regia Cotton Surf (again from stash!) for this one, and I love the way it's turned out.

So does DD - she wants me to start on the second sock right now instead of blogging about it!

The pattern should be ready soon - watch this space.

Thursday, 28 May 2009

Teach 'em young

I spent a while this afternoon playing with Kool-Aid dyes and 3 skeins of sock yarn with my youngest DD. What better way to spend a half-term cloudy afternoon - creative, educational and yarny!

I let her choose the colours to be used and then showed her how to make them up into the dyes.

She came up with the first colourway - her favourite - a rainbow one of course.

Then we decided together how to use the remaining colours on the other 2 skeins of yarn. Here are the results:
This one is a gorgeous bright mix of red and orange, which hasn't shown up in the picture well at all - goodness knows why not.

Then this one which is the leftover blue, green and lemon.


Thursday, 21 May 2009

Crochet adornment

I've felt more like experimenting recently with the lovely range of colours I have in the mercerised cotton yarns and glass bead stash.

These are two of the end results, currently for sale in my Etsy shop:

This was my first play, in beautiful aquamarine shades which I seem to be drawn to at the moment.

Must be something to do with catching glimpses of the sea so frequently!

The second one is also inspired by the coastline, with a combination of neutrals, browns and blues - more like the sand, rocks, and sky.

I really enjoy combining the colours, threading the beads on to the yarns and crocheting them together right now.

Of course this means I'm on the lookout for more large-holed beads to use, so I'll have to go bead shopping during my time off work next week. :-)

Sunday, 10 May 2009

Perfect Pink Poncho

The visit from my family last week resulted in an impromptu knitting project - a cute little poncho for my gorgeous niece, who is now 1 year old.

My eldest put her poncho on the little one and she looked so adorable that I agreed to make one for her.

I've used all stash yarns (phew, another small bite out of the huge mountain of yarns!) - Wendy Supreme DK cotton and Patons Sorbet knitted together, and Wendy Shimmer for the edging.

It's a really simple garter stitch poncho with a crocheted edging and applique.

I have to package it up to send it by post to her as we won't see them again until the autumn, when there will be another little one added to the brood! Hopefully I'll get sent a pic of her wearing it in return.