Monday, 30 July 2012

Bits and Pieces requested by Tracey E  here's the finished framed crochet picture:

I'm really enjoying Tracey's witty rib-tickling and exciting P I G Y adventures.

Tracey T now has this piece of felted crochet on her kitchen wall!

There are a few more tiny owls to swoop into projects!

The owl was created by fiddling...and it is felted with the right side down to give a bit of extra texture on the upper surface.

 I seem to be drawn to taking shadow photos on Sundays... following Anne's fabulously coloured shadow shots last week - look what spontaneously occurred during the Golden Wedding celebrations!

A mention of the Olympics is a must: we all were captivated and moved by the awesome opening ceremony...too many magnificent moments to mention....we have also been glued to the epic achievements and stamina of all the competitors. Keep up all the inspiring work!

I've a few colourful projects on the go....hope to post some rainbows soon!

Sunday, 22 July 2012

Golden Wedding!

50 years ago two very special people were married....
we are enjoying celebrating this momentous achievement with them this weekend....

Crocheted Golden Wedding Bunting!

A time line...the woolly bows representing a few significant dates...

Congratulations and Happy Golden Wedding Anniversary xx

Wednesday, 18 July 2012

Out of this world!

I have finished not one of the granny square projects I showed a sneak peek of here....but two!

The second has been given as a present and the first is waiting to be hung when we find a space here!

I have learned a lot during the making of these....
not all of my grannies are the same size - (especially from the first,  made with superwash merino -  the second with acrylic was a bit more uniform!)....
a Tardis has 8 blocks not 6....
the first Tardis is much bigger on the outside
tapestry wool can be substituted when the original ball runs out (see previous two points) 

 blocking can really straighten wiggly lines..

.. its great to formulate the pattern as you go along....
there probably won't be two the same (see previous point)

I looooove the flow of making granny squares!

One of the first projects I wished to make was from this pattern...for a while the magic circle eluded me so I put it on hold....until this week when these four cheeky monsters fell to earth from my hook!

I needlefelted their features (designed by RWJnr)....

the success of the needlefelting surprised me as a lot of the fibres are not natural - but they all stuck fast so I'll certainly do that again!

 I've already had a request for some expect some future monsterous activity!

Linda has introduced her readers to The Totally Useless Stitch Along ...the original link is here.....I think its a great idea and have started a pot of yarn ends....

I usually keep my high wool content ends to felt with so I might have a two pronged approach to this.
I'm waiting for someone at home to ask what the pot is doing here...wonder how long it will be...perhaps they realise its just another of my strange collections!

Looking forward to some more joint collaborations with RWJnr over the summer!

Friday, 13 July 2012

Fabulous to be felting!

Last week I had the chance to indulge in some playing with the wet stuff!

I began with a blue background, some  Ruby  Rowan Silk Twist and whisps of the beautiful blue Masham curls Anne sent me from Woolfest.

One of the experiments was to see how well some of my crochet would felt....
remember these?

...they are a mixture of Tracey's 5 petal flower, Lucy's  micro flowers  and little picot flowers
I really wanted some bright zingy colours....

...the blue and green yarn is tapestry wool - bought in 10m hanks just what I wanted to add some extra brightness!
There's some sari silk in there too!
To my surprise the larger flower felted best...I scuffed the backs of the flowers with a bit of velcro to make the fibres fuzzier and ready to felt.

I'm really pleased with the results and will certainly try some more!
There is another piece but I have designs on that for another purpose and another post!

Hope you catch something bright and sunny over the weekend!

Sunday, 8 July 2012

Flower Power!

I had a white plastic lampshade when I was much younger, beautifully simple and memories of it have been rekindled by all the Scandinavian dramas we have been watching...and I keep shouting out during the criminal investigations or visits to politicians houses- 'That's the lampshade I'd like'!
Blogging has been a bit sporadic recently as we have been doing up a room, which necessitated a weekday (crowd avoiding) trip to Ikea.  I quickly spotted THE lampshade and along with the heavy flat pack furniture we brought it home. It too was flat packed in the most amazing compact triangular box and turned out to be an entire light fitting!
With the purchase of an extra circular ring we have been able to just use the shade. The instructions looked more complicated than they were (I am baffled by diagrams and don't usually read instructions) but a methodical rhythm soon enabled the construction.

It was more beautiful than I expected but when I looked from underneath this is what I saw:

a perfect flower with the energy saving bulb as a stamen!

The design is also a thing of beauty - 40 identically shaped pieces placed onto curved armatures creating different protruding shapes....

 It looks fabulous - and complements the orchid we have on the windowsill

It reminds me of Georgia O'Keeffe's paintings too...

As its a's a shadow of a different shade...its difficult to capture on camera - but looked like a giant ceiling covering daisy!

I can't believe I've written a post about a lightshade...but it is pretty cool!

Friday, 6 July 2012

Woolfest Swap

I really enjoy sharing Woolfest with lots of fibre loving bloggers and facebook fibre fans...the anticipation of crafters going to browse and buy,...the frenetic activity of sellers meeting the deadline for production...and then the wonderful photos of vibrant and textured purchases bought in all shapes and sizes, woolly wildlife,  tales of friends meeting...followed by plans for the purchases and final reveals! This year there was the added excitement of torrential rain in Cokermouth and its surrounds.
The power of the internet makes me feel involved even though I wasn't there!
Tracey over at Baking and Making organised a Woolfest swap this year...where one person who was going to Woolfest bought something for someone that wasn't. In return their partner would send something as Tracey said 'to brighten someone's day'!
My swap partner is Anne who writes  Frayed at the Edge, she sent me the most wonderful parcel:

...containing two exciting packages with pretty polka dot ribbon!

The Red Cross notelets reminded me of embroidery on tablecloths that my mum has.

Anne kindly sent some wonderfully squidgy and colourful felt pieces and some vibrant Masham curls from Woolfest

and some lovely creations from her studio including this frayed at the edge lavender heart (it's resting on one of the colourful nuno felt patches from Woolfest)

Anne's blog is full of beautiful photos of her surroundings, and creations. I really love the way she is able to take an ordinary subject and make it beautiful, as you can see in the notecards she enclosed in her studio parcel:

I sent:

..a needlefelted cake..Anne regularly has mouthwatering photos of cakes on her blog..
a cotton crochet flower from Tracey's pattern and a double sided butterfly with a needlefelted middle!
As Anne sews so beautifully I wrapped the parcel in some fabric...the patterned piece from our old sofa and the shiny purple from a favourite blouse (that no longer fits!). I am hoping she enjoys making something with it  - as I find incorporating bits I am given so inspiring!

I'd like to say a big Thank you to Tracey for organising the swap and to Anne  - its great to see and feel other's inspiring felt, my lavender bag is put to good use and I'll be using the cards soon. Some of the beautiful Masham fleece has already been incorporated into a piece of wet felt...
YAY! Yes, you have read that bit right..I've finally had the chance to play with the soap and fibres...
more of that in another post when we have some picture taking weather!

Looks like a weekend for staying in and being creative...hope you all have a good one!
Ali x

PS Tracey has had quite a few commissions for publications recently including a fab Boho scarf in Craftseller Magazine number 13

Sunday, 1 July 2012

Shadow Shot Sunday

I've often seen references to Shadow Shot Sunday and have sometimes strayed onto the blog to admire all the wonderful photos.
Today -  looking at photos I have taken  - was a  Sunday shadow opportunity too good to miss! 
We were up at 4.45am and the sun rose illuminating lots of spiders webs on the washing line....
street cleaners - people and vehicles  - were visible in good numbers, and the local pizza shop owners were polishing their windows...
after a brisk bracing walk in the sunshine we arrived at our destination, having passed quite a few locals waiting in anticipation or shuffling  slowly, drawn magnetially to the edge of the pavement. 
We could hear the fabulous steel band playing to a gathering throng of bleary eyed but cheerful camera clad onlookers munching on free bacon butties or veggie sausage sarnies!
The buzz grew louder as the first wave of police notorcycles passed.....then a convoy of large, loud  lorries....

...and eventually the Olympic Torch!

...its a bit of a blurry action shot...but as I looked at a following photo I spotted something right in the middle...and by the power of digital zooming.....'s the flame travelling through Birmingham on day 44 of the torch relay!
What an experience - and all over before 7.30am!

Now to carry on with normal Sunday routine...a bit bleary eyed, 
though I did start a crochet flower at 6am...not sure when I'll finish it!