Tuesday, 31 December 2013

Jo keeps warm knitting kit

Today I am sharing my December blog post for my monthly sponsor at the blogger network of Minerva crafts. I have made a very toasty kit to keep you warm in the coming months. 

There is a hat...


and ankle or wrist warmers.

The yarn is so warm but light and airy. There is a clever way to make a flower without knitting or crocheting...

You tie thread at even intervals along the yarn and then using a threaded needle, gather up the marked points putting the needle under the tied thread and it makes a flower by securing it in the middle.


If you are new to knitting, this is a great way to make something quick and successful. You can view other colours of King Cole Super Chunky Ultimate at Minerva Crafts too. The one I used was called Moorland. The balls are 100g and you use a set of 12mm and 15mm needles and one set comes in the kit. The pattern is for 7-9 years, 9-12 yrs or adult.

You get four balls so you can make at least two things or the jumbo bag which I haven't finished but is looking great so far. The bag uses 4 balls, the hat 1, the ankle warmers 2 and the wrist warmers 2. 

Maybe learning to knit is going to be your new years resolution?
 Anyway, best keep warm, thanks Minerva. 
Wishing you all a Happy New Year wherever you are in the world!
Love Jo x

Saturday, 28 December 2013

Crafty gifts

I received some lovely gifts over Christmas time. Bloke bought me the dressmakers dummy. I think he was trying to find a way out of the sometimes tricky situations I put him in to pin the back of a dress or pin a hem!

My friend Maddy (Hello Maddy) knit me this beautiful cardigan. I felt really overwhelmed because only my mum has ever knit me things and it felt really special for a friend to take the time to knit me a garment.

Isn't it lovely?

My other woolly gift was the most delicate 4 ply yarn from the Isle of Skye. My friend (hello Angela) told a holiday story in the summer of how she made the whole family visit a Dye House called Shilasdair down a long bumpy road in Skye. She said I would have loved it there. Then when I opened my Christmas present I had this...

It is dyed with Juniper and has a really delicate colourway.

Did I mention that my favourite colour is green?

I am off to find a shawl pattern on ravelry for this gorgeous yarn. Hope you had fabulous presents too. Jo xx

Thursday, 26 December 2013

Hooray! Noro pullover

Just a quick post to say hope you had a great day yesterday whether you were celebrating Christmas or just having a day with your family. Here is a little photo of my finished Noro pullover on ..... my new dressmakers dummy. Yay!

I LOVE my new pullover.

I have some other crafty and woolly gifts to share but right now I am going to prise small pieces of lego from down the side of the sofa! Jo x

Tuesday, 24 December 2013

Disaster averted

A disaster has been averted in the last half an hour by the power of sewing. We have just spent an hour searching the loft, our cupboards, under the beds and any other place we could think of to find the girl's Christmas stockings for them to hang on the end of their beds.... can we find them? can we flip! so Bloke played a few games with the children while I rustled these up.


Yes, I had to make two. They said they might hear Father Christmas putting the presents in because the bell will jingle (Doh! Didn't think of that)

A very Merry Christmas to all who stop by here 
and help to share a little bit of love.

Jo and family xxxxxxxx

Saturday, 21 December 2013

Pretty yarn good

This Noro yarn is pretty darn good. Knits up well, the colour runs are really effective and I am just in the knitting groove, whiling away the evenings, pondering, wondering but mostly knitting in a spiral. Top down knitwear just lends itself to mindless knitting and TV watching. Few more rows tonight watching the Strictly Come Dancing final with my twirly girlies.

Getting close to the moss stitch border. Hope all your preparations are coming along, I have sort of peeked too soon... Hence the endless enjoyable knitting. Jo x

Friday, 20 December 2013

Hexagaon Shortcut

I have been looking for one of these for ages. It is a fabric glue pen and takes the tedium out of paper piecing. This one is from Simply Solids and was recommended to me by Gilly from Gilly Makes.

You cut out your hexagons in paper and fabric.

Then apply the glue to the paper pieces. It is a sort of sticky and waxy, soft crayon.

Then fold over the fabric to make your hexagon. The glue is instant and it sticks without holding it down for ages. Then when you have neatly stitched them together you can pull out the papers.

 More time on the relaxing stitching bit rather than the boring preparation. More of that I say. Jo x

Thursday, 19 December 2013

Hooray! Lampshade

This lamp lights up my evening knitting and crochet on the singer sewing machine table next to my messy end on the sofa.

So I rooted out some of this (yes... it was given to me!)

Made some of these...


Glued on some ric rac...

Now that's better...

I have another lampstand and more hippy wool so that's tomorrows fun sorted.

Hope you like it. Jo xx

Tuesday, 17 December 2013


You may have been impressed with my wardrobe re-hashing of late but I have had a complete swing the other way and made a splurge purchase.

I have always wanted to knit and wear some Noro yarn but it has simply been out of my price range. Anyway, there was a sale on at black sheep wools who were offering Noro Chunky in a sale. My first ever purchase of wool for myself for sooooo long (about a year I would say) I always manage to make a silk purse from a sows ear and now I have my very own silk.

I have a pattern in mind from Ravelry which is here.I have done a tension square (get me!) and I can get the pattern gauge on 6mm needles. I have some really thick stretch jersey to make a mini skirt to wear with it.

All together now... OOooooooooooo! Jo xx

Monday, 16 December 2013

Hooray! Mini Skirt

I don't have any work now until the new year (my maths and crochet courses don't kick in again until the new year) so I am enjoying myself making things. Yes, there are other things I could be doing in this child free last week before the holidays like paint the back door, paint the front room, tidy up a bit in the garden but hey, it makes me happy.

I made this mini skirt from some boucle style fabric my friend gave me from a house clearance. Lets take a closer look...

It is thick and warm; perfect winter skirt material. I lined it and I bought this ribbon in the summer out of a a little basket for 20p on the market to trim the edge.

Pattern wise I am really getting into this drawing-around-your-best-fit-item system that I used for Little M's trousers. I got my best fitting skirt, drew around it with a seam allowance, marked on two front darts and cut away. I love top stitching, it makes people say, "where did you get that skirt?" rather than "did you make that skirt?"

Got my blacks and blues a bit jumbled there but it is so comfortable.

Oh the garden, brown bits and dead bits and places where the chickens have been scratching around. Maybe I should put some wellies on and get out there before it turns arctic.....

Thanks for looking. Jo x

Saturday, 14 December 2013

Hooray! Last present finished

I have knit a hat for my friends husband, they are our close friends and god parents to our children. I have made lots of knitted, crocheted and sewn things over the years for my friend Lisa and her three girls but the dad and son seem to have escaped some how so it is their turn this year. 

I used two strands of Sirdar Country style DK. These were the colours that did not go on my jumper.

In the last year I have been much more confident with my sewing up since watching a tutorial on Youtube here. You sew up with the right side facing you so you feel totally confident that what you see is what you are going to get. I even photographed the join for you to see today. Can you see it??!

The crown increases are highlighted (I would like to say 'in this pattern') but I made it up as I went along so it wasn't intentional but effective nonetheless.

Yippeee!! all presents done, cards sent, tree up... What more is there to do? I think I will just keep making things because that makes me happy. Hope things are going well your way. Jo x

Friday, 13 December 2013

Hooray! Roman Blind

Today I have made a roman blind for the office that has been on my to do list for sometime. I had a massive office clear out in March here and slightly over reached myself time wise with a complete makeover.

At the time I made a paper crafting tidy and later in the year, which I never posted, a notice board for all my favourite postcards.

I used the ribbon from which my girl's clothkit pinafores were wrapped in which is marked out in inches. I had to take off most of my postcards to show you the board. I think you know the story by now but the material was given to me by a friend who had had bespoke curtains made and this was the leftovers! Do I craft in any other way?

So that is another job finished. Hooray! Jo x