Friday, 27 March 2015

This really is the last wooly hat

Following a rather lovely look through my knitting and crochet books, I decided to make this, the lace beret from Claire Montgomerie's easy kids knits, for a little girl's eighth birthday. Otherwise known as the strawberry beret
but I think that may be because of my colour choices! I already had this pretty green wool - the never ending ball of  Rico Design Fashion Country Aran in pistachio - and was looking for something pretty to go with. As I stood in the shop dreaming of all the things oh I must make right now, I saw this beautiful dusky pink wool and thought it was just the thing to go with the green. The pink is Sublime extra fine merino wool dk in the yum sounding toffee apple.

A sweet and gentle knit and the Sublime wool a joy to knit with. This  hat does come up rather large, it almost fitted me. Oh, after just measuring my head that is because the size I choose - large - fits a head up to 22inches. Which mine is. I really should have measured that earlier... I just thought that as the book is for 3-10 year olds, that the largest size would be best for a soon to be eight year old. Let us hope that Lucy is embracing the slouchy look.

And then because the ball of green wool is never ending, another pair of half pint fingerless gloves. Each pair of these mitts knitted so far has looked different, not sure which part of the pattern I'm not paying attention to, though I did intentionally increase the length of the ribbing and added a few more rows along the top edge. The largest child size did fit P when he tried them on but I felt a few extra rows at either end would add extra snugness
Hope you had a happy birthday, Lucy!

Tuesday, 24 March 2015

There was one more wooly hat...

How could I forget this fun make? 

I followed Ashlee Marie's crochet striped beanie and bobble beard patterns. Made for a friend's little one's sixth birthday in a teen size beanie with a medium beard. 

I first made Patch and his Daddy matching bearded hats last year (see here) and then for Reuben and Casper's birthday presents - which remain photo-less as they were finished and swiftly wrapped one eve before my parents were off to the Netherlands. I realised during the first two hats that they are slightly small and certainly are rather shallow. Is that what I mean? They seem to finish quite a way above the ear - which I find not so snuggly for a hat. I suppose the addition of a beard makes this not such a problem, but I still like a hat to be able to cover an ear or two. So for this one I added more rows, oh and attached the beard with buttons sewn onto the inside rib of the hat in case the wearer wishes to go beardless.

Continuing with my nice-pattern-can-I-use-Drops-wool theme (the price, the washability, the softness - yum) this hat was made with Drops Big Merino in navy blue, orange and off white with mocha for the beard. Hope you had a happy birthday, Logan! 

Friday, 20 March 2015

It's cold out there still... just the thing for some more wooly hats

And I can't promise that this is the end of the wooly hats made, though it may well be... have I made any others? Hmmm, not sure. I shall look through the photographs. But anyway part of me (a rather small part) is glad that it is chilly still so I can show you my seasonally appropriate makes.

As it seems to be the year of knitting hats, I decided to continue with the theme for some birthday makes for Patch's friends, and I even tried a new to me pattern
 This is Barley by tin can knits and I love it. The garter stitch section... ooo, I may have another favourite hat (the purl bee classic cuff hat being the other contender). Knitted in Rico Design Essentials soft merino aran in mouse grey with the trim in Jarol heritage DK in teal. And a pom pom, of course. The garter stitch section of the hat meant that it really needed a garter stitch scarf which always look delicious on children
Same wools as the hat with the addition of a ball of cinnamon from the basket.
And then I knitted another hat, but now I have no idea which pattern I used. I do know it is knitted in Rowan pure wool worsted in granite with some Jarol heritage DK in gold and Rico Design Essentials soft merino aran in navy
Happy birthdays Harry and Eddie!

Tuesday, 17 March 2015

A birthday carpark wash kit... and the blanket

Our dear friends Ems' birthday was approaching, a fact I must have shared with Mr R, and surprisingly he insisted that what Ems would really like is a carpark wash kit. (Surprising as he doesn't generally get so involved in present buying). I think I looked a little bewildered - I had an image of an uninspiring Tesco supermarket carpark and was rather baffled as to why Ems, or anyone, may feel the need to make use of a wash kit there. Mr R explained, and once I got the idea of a pretty National Trust carpark and a wash kit kept in the boot for freshening up after a surf, or a run, or a strenuous walk I agreed that this was indeed the present for Ems.

Mr R than looked through the piles of fabric (also unheard of) for something suitable. I suggested a duck cloth for a hard wearing and water resistant outer, and once we had agreed on that he then selected a tropical-surf-like fabric to prettify the inside. Actually the fabric came back with me from Thialand and has since travelled with us to Norwich, then Peterborough, then back to Brighton, then on to Newbury and finally to Suffolk, as part of an ever increasing pile. Since being in Suffolk I have used some of it to make a wrap skirt, and now this. I do love using fabric from the pile! A bit of bias binding, a clip and some elastic later, and we had a wash kit fit to grace any carpark
 We had fun finding the mini goods... and not so much fun working out how to place them so the wash kit still successfully rolled without too many lumps and bumps. Do hope you are enjoying using your wash kit, Ems!

And here is the blanket... loving doing it, and the colours make me cheery but it would appear that our weekends are just too busy as I'm finding it tricky to dedicate any great amount of time to it!

Monday, 9 March 2015

Presenting Hiccup Horrendous Haddock III

Patch decided he was going to use the full title of his chosen character for World Book Day. I was happy because the Hiccup costume had been made for Patch's birthday in January and so no last minute sewing and gathering of clothing necessary. Unheard of.
 The top is a basic tunic with Velcro closure at the back. I made it from a cotton lining fabric, apparently the same colour as our garage doors. I was planning on doing a fancy threading of the faux  leather lace with buttonholes but realised I had cut a v-neck shape rather than the slit that would have made such lacing possible. And actually this way the lace isn't going anywhere, nor can it be whipped out to trip up a poor unsuspecting viking, or put to any other use dreamed up by an eight year old. No, this lace is simply sewn into position.

 Not too sure it can be seen in these photographs, but the waistcoat is made out of a tufty type fleece fabric. I'm sure there is a better term. It malted horribly during construction but has since behaved. And a strip of felt for a belt, with yet more Velcro at the back. When Pea wore this for his party there was extra lacing on the arms, done with more of the brown lace tied in a criss cross fashion. It sort of stayed there for the party, though I was sure it wouldn't survive the school day.

Oh, I did have fun crocheting a Viking helmet
I followed Crochet Parfait's viking helmet pattern, which includes instructions for a child size. The
helmet is made using Drops big merino in grey with off white horns, and trim bits in (I think) Drops extra fine merino in light grey. This wool is oh so soft, and a lovely price, but has made quite a drapey helmet. I probably should have used a smaller hook size, but the size given in the pattern gave the correct tension... I think this floppiness has resulted in the horns being a little droopy. There were plans to crochet a Toothless for a birthday present for Pea, which I started. I then thought I may finish him for World Book Day, but I ran out of wool so Toothless is still also legless. And wingless.

And progress on my weekend blanket. Not much different from last weekend!

Friday, 6 March 2015

Sweet birthday mittens

Though if they are fingerless can they be mittens? Still sweet though, and actually called half-pint fingerless gloves
Hmmm... same pattern, same size and yet quite different at the top edge. I must have been watching something exciting on telly. The top pair are as the pattern. 

These are both knitted in Rico Country Aran in pistachio and are the 3-6 plus year size, knitted for two five year olds. The contrast cuff on the second pair is some Jarol Heritage 4ply from the basket. Pip has informed her Mummy that she loves her fingerless mitts as she can still suck her thumb - so one happy girl.  The pattern also has baby and toddler sizes, as well as a Mama size. Matching mitts! Pip and Flo's Mummys have been warned... Happy birthdays Pip and Flo!

It was my birthday, too, this week... such a lucky duck, we spent a sunny day in Southwold and I received some lovely presents. Mr R laughed when he saw a collection of them, and wondered how old I was

Love my coloured fairy lights! Just as I remember our Christmas tree lights when I was little... I am (or have been up until now) a definite tasteful white lights on the Christmas tree, but must have mentioned my hankering for some of the lights of my childhood Christmases when Linda and Ems were visiting. Patch decided that they should be birthday lights as well as for Christmas, so they are up. And may not come down. Thank you so Linda and Ems! And the original flying ducks were a present from Mr R!

And then an equally lovely, but un-birthday related, parcel arrived - full of delicious things won on the delightful teawagon tales recent giveaway. Thank you so Mrs Teawagontales! Oh what a treat week!

Monday, 2 March 2015

Another (slightly less wintery) hat

I am excited about March. I love the winter with woolly tights and boots, candles, sitting by the log burner, snug under a blanket knitting or crocheting... yet somehow by the first of march I am ready for spring. To open all the windows, put fresh pretty bed linen on the beds. But today there has been sleet and it is blowing a gale out there, so the weather isn't quite as advanced as my feelings. So I am sitting snug with blanket and candle.

And I don't feel too bad talking about woolly hats
 I enjoyed making this hat for my Mum... It is the floral beret from Nicki Trench's Crochet Living made with the recommended and delicious Debbie Bliss baby cashmerino, in dusky mauve. The little added posy is almost springlike
 Happily I did spend some of  my weekend with my weekend-along blanket though looking at it now there doesn't seem much difference between Friday's photograph and the one taken today
There is no thought when selecting which colour ball of wool to use next, other than the same colour doesn't touch. I think I have quite a few weekends before I have to start thinking about what size I want this blanket to be and therefore placing the hexies more carefully. Thank you for the encouragement Cherry heart!