Tuesday, 24 February 2015

Crochet Essentials

A couple of nights ago I couldn't find my scissors or my yarn sewing needle. They did turn up but I was panicking! I couldn't continue with any crochet until I found them, they are so necessary! So, that got me thinking about what else is essential to me for my crochet...

...crochet hooks of course. Here is a selection of mine. They are basic hooks, which were inexpensive but I find them absolutely fine to work with. I tend to use a 4mm crochet hook most often for my projects and the red one is my favourite. I had lost it for ages and I was so happy when it was found down the side of one of the armchairs in the living room whilst I was doing the Hogmanay clean last year!

...scissors. Essential for snipping those yarn ends. I love these scissors and their pretty case, they were a gift from my lovely mum and dad and I use them all the time.

...measuring tapes. I think I have a measuring tape in almost every room in the house but can never seem to find one when I need one! (I think I need to work on storing my crochet things more carefully). I use these a lot, mainly to check if the latest blanket I'm making is big enough. Again, these were a gift from my parents...they are very good at choosing exactly what I like!

...a yarn sewing needle. So important! I only have one of these and I keep it safely stored in my little apple pin cushion.

...lots of large headed pins. Really important for blocking projects. These pins are really pretty which pleases me too.

...and last but definitely not least - a nice cup of tea! Tea really is essential when crocheting I think!

What about you? What are your crochet essentials? Is there anything that I need to add to my 'must haves'?


Sunday, 22 February 2015

Four blankets in progress

Quite a few of our friends are having babies this year, so naturally I have a couple of baby blankets on the go in preparation!  The pretty little circles above are the start of a girly blanket. The pattern is the Sunshine Granny Baby Blanket by Little Doolally. I have to apologise yet again for my lack of technical blogging skills as I still haven't worked out how to do a link when blogging from my phone. Sorry about that!  But there is a link to Little Doolally's gorgeous blog in my blog list on my sidebar. ( I think it was a fluke that I managed to do that link!) 

My striped blanket above seems to have been put on hold. I really love the colours in this and I love crocheting stripes, but...I think that I've made the foundation chain just a bit too long as doing one row seems to take ages! It's going to be a huge blanket. Too big maybe? I'm not sure, I may frog it and start again, I'm undecided as yet.

The Camellia blanket from Cute & Easy Crochet. I'm still really loving making this blanket although I think it's one that will take me a while to finish as I want it to be quite a good size. I really love making the flower squares though, they are so pretty, and the plain squares are ideal to make when watching television in the evenings as they don't require too much concentration. 

Another Sunshine a Granny Blanket! In boy colours this time with a silver edging. I'm enjoying making these little circles so much and they have actually been perfect for using up small amounts of yarn. Pattern as before is by Little Doolally and the link is in my sidebar. 

So, four blankets in progress and to be honest I'm having to really stop myself from starting another. But I think four WIPs is enough at the moment!

Thank you so much for the lovely comments recently! Especially about my Pretty Circles Baby Blanket and my sewing efforts. It looks like lots of us are enjoying The Great British Sewing Bee again this year! 

Wishing you all a lovely week ahead.


Tuesday, 17 February 2015

The Sewing Bee Effect...

Since the new series of The Great British Sewing Bee started a couple of weeks ago, I have wanted to do some sewing. I was exactly the same last year! I am enjoying this series so much and have once again been inspired to buy pretty fabric and dust down my sewing machine!

I bought some ditsy floral fabric from Fabric Rehab online - a metre of soft cotton lawn. It was £7.20 per metre which I thought was pretty good. I love the print and the fabric feels like good quality. 

Today I spent a very enjoyable couple of hours making myself a scarf. It only took me a couple of hours from start to finish and was a simple project to get me used to using my sewing machine again. I wear a scarf everyday and I think this one will become a new favourite! 

Even better, I still have half a metre of the fabric left! Any ideas what I could make with it? It has to be simple as my sewing skills are pretty basic!

Are you enjoying the sewing bee too? 


Thursday, 12 February 2015

Pretty circles baby blanket

A really good friend of mine recently had her first baby, a wee girl. I knew as soon as I found out she was expecting that I wanted to make her a blanket but I didn't start making it until after the wee one was born, since we didn't know until then if the baby would be a girl or boy. 

I really loved making this blanket! I think because I enjoyed using the colours so much, I was keen to keep making more squares! The pattern is from the book Granny Squares by Susan Pinner. I made 25 circles in squares and used a dc seam to crochet them together. For the border, I did one round of trebles and then added a shell edging.  I used a 3.5mm crochet hook and DK yarn...a mix of sirdar snuggly and stylecraft special in nice girly colours! It's not a very big blanket but is big enough for keeping cosy in a crib, buggy or car seat. 

I just love making things for babies do you? When Miss M was a baby my mum made lots of sweet knitted cardigans, hats and blankets and I just loved to receive them, they kept Miss M so warm and cosy. There is something so nice about handmade baby things! I really hope that my friend will feel the same and will enjoy using this blanket for her gorgeous wee girl. 


Tuesday, 10 February 2015

Feeling good

It feels so good to feel well again! There have been lots of winter bugs around the ladybird household over the past week or so. I was unwell for most of last week with a horrible heavy cold...I don't think I've ever felt so exhausted! In fact I was too tired to do any crochet or any type of craft at all...a sure sign that there is something wrong! G treated me to some lovely flowers to cheer me up and I was certainly glad of my hot water bottle and many crochet blankets.

I started to feel better at the weekend and we went out for a lovely fresh walk in the sunshine. It was great just to get out of the house! 

Our old radio completely packed in so we treated ourselves to a new one. I think I could definitely manage without a television but I wouldn't like to not have a radio.  G and I both love the radio so much and have it on so often when we are home that we decided to get a decent one. It has the added bonus of looking really pretty too!

We have still had the fire on most days and I've been eating lots of porridge (with blueberries and golden syrup - my favourite way to eat it) to keep the cold out. It was great to get back to my crochet hook too and I made a wee hat for my cousin's new baby. I'm quite pleased with it as I've never crocheted a hat before! It was pretty easy though so I will definitely make another. The pattern for the hat is from the book Cute & Easy Crochet With Flowers by Nicki Trench. 

Talking of books, thank you so much for your comments and suggestions on my crochet books post! I certainly have a few to add to the list now, and some that I hadn't heard of at all before, have now gone on my birthday list!