Sunday, 30 November 2014

Hooded Pixie Scarf Tutorial

Someone asked me to make a hooded scarf. I knew I had been cornered and I was unable to say no even though I am really busy, I don't know them at all and they have no idea how long it takes to actually make something but Hey ho! I took the situation as an opportunity to be creative and make a new pattern to share.

Little M is 5 so it is too small for her but I needed a model!
Hooded Scarf

300m /100g DK yarn
4mm Hook
3 Pom poms

UK terms. Made for age 18mths - 2 yrs 

Start with the length of the scarf. Chain 161
miss one ch and dc1 in every stitch. Turn ch1, dc in every stitch to the end of the row. Continue to make a length of double crochet with one turning chain at each end for between 8-10 rows. (160)

Chain 31 stitches
miss one chain and dc30 times. Continue for 27-30 rows, depending on how deep you want the hood, using a turning chain at each end. 
(30 sts)

Work pointed pixie end as follows:

row 1: Ch1, ss15, dc15 turn
row 2: ch1, dc15, ss15 turn
row 3: ch1, ss17, dc17 turn
row 4: ch1, dc13, ss17 turn
row 5: ch1, ss21, dc9 turn
row 6: ch1, dc9, ss3 Turn
row 7: ch1, ss3, dc9 turn
row 8: ch1, dc7, ss3 turn
row 9: ch1, ss3, dc7 turn
row 10: ch1, dc5, ss3 turn
row 11: ch1, ss3, dc5 turn
row 12: ch1, dc3, ss3 turn
row 13: ch1, ss3, dc3 turn fasten off.
Repeat for the other side of the head piece ensuring you have the fabric the right way round.

Sew two head pieces together along the curved edge and across the top of the crown. 

Front face border
Rejoin yarn at right hand side of front edge of hood. Dc4 rows. This makes a smooth seamless line around the face. You could add a picot edge, scalloped edge or your favourite shell border here now if you wish.

Join the hood to the centre of the scarf with dc stitches. Add pom poms or you could continue to put picot or shell around the scarf(you may need more than 300m yarn if you want to do this)

Hooray! a hooded pixie scarf. You could also make it in other colours for boys too.

Happy Making. I really must make something now for a loved one rather than a stranger to balance my inner crochet turmoil.

Jo xxxxxx

Thursday, 27 November 2014

Just in time for Advent

This months Minerva kit is a door wreath made from seasonal fabric. I hang my door wreath on Advent, the first of December but Christmas stays very much under wraps until the last week before Christmas day in our house.

The kit includes four seasonal fat quarters and a polystyrene ring. It looks a bit pink here but it is truly red, gold and green.

The Yo yo's or Suffolk puffs are easy to make and quite addictive.

The ring was covered in yarn wound round and round. I overlapped the yarn on the inner ring a little to allow for a full spread on the outside edge. I could have crocheted it but I have done this before and then covered all of my lovely crochet stripes with the decorations so I didn't think it was worth it.

The top has a bow made from two rectangles of fabric joined with a tied ribbon but you can go as wild or traditional as you like. Mine is quite traditional as it is going to hang on our front door which is set on a three storey house with sash windows. The buttons are added with a glue gun to cover the centre of the circles.

I like it, it has a sort of traditional longevity about it. 

Thanks for the materials Minerva. Jo xxx

Sunday, 23 November 2014

So Sweet.

I am waiting for my friend to have a baby. I don't know what it is going to be so I am going to make another pair in cotton the same cream cotton and grey just in case.

 Made from a book called First Crochet by Lesley Stanfield.

Happy Crochet everyone. Thanks for looking and always taking the time to leave such supportive comments. Jo xxxxx

Friday, 21 November 2014

Friday fantasy quilt practise

I have now cut out 270 squares and spent a lovely evening making 30 piles of 9, evenly distributing the fabric patterns and colours between each group. I labelled them with post its and pinned them together. I had a little help there from Little M as you can see.

I used the smaller squares that did not make the cut to practise sewing seam allowances. Can you spot the two mistakes?

The second blue one on the top row is the wrong way round and I want to try and avoid two patterns next to each other because it makes a new shape (parallelogram for any maths geeks), shown on the left hand side.

I have made some notes on my design. I am going to border each set of nine squares. I had to... wait for it... buy some fabric. Yes people, buy fabric. 

Then I spent an hour playing colour sudoku working out how to distribute thess fabrics over the whole bed area.

Next step sewing 9 patch squares without mistakes.

Anyone else got a quilt on the go? Last week there was a great tutorial on putting layers together on A little happy place blog.

Real work today. Happy Friday Jo xxxx

Wednesday, 19 November 2014

Hooray! Velvet Skirt

I made a velvet skirt. The fabric was gifted from my dad. I have used it to make a coat and I still have loads left. I feel an 'All Done' post looming in the next few months.


The pattern is from an Ottobre magazine. It is a skirt with pockets which adds some extra detail even though they are not really big enough for anything other than a paper clip!

I got a great fit on the waist and hips which I am improving every time I make a skirt. (sorry about the tights part of the image!)

To reduce hem bulk, I overlocked the edge of the velvet then machine sewed on a strip of satin bias binding then whip stitched it by hand to the skirt. A nice technique for thick fabrics.

I am wearing it with my portrait blouse and my new miette cardigan. A vision of petrol and purple, I love these colours together and I am all homemade today. Yay!

I have lost my expert pre-school photographer to full time education so I am grappling with the self-timer at the moment, however,
I have a lovely winter staple skirt. 
What are you making? Jo xxx

Sunday, 16 November 2014

Craft cards

My mum follows my blog so thank you for all your kind comments about her knitting expertise, she was thrilled.

I treated myself to a paper craft kit. I had really got down to the paper scraps and the children had been diving in and taking all the good bits!

I bought a kit called 'Sew Lovely' by Do Crafts. This weekend, in little snippets of time, I have enjoyed making cards for my crafty family members: my aunts, my mum, my next door neighbour and crafty friends.

I used the insert picture as inspiration and loved this craft pocket format. I repeated it in various different guises.

Of course, making cards creates scraps so I finished off my weekend of card making with a little card using the bits left on the table.

All stocked up for the ladies, now I need some cards for men - a much trickier affair.

Happy Crafting Jo xxxx

Friday, 14 November 2014

Miette madness

I tried, I tried really hard, to make the Miette cardigan by Andi Satterlund. I started it from scratch no less than eight times and couldn't get past row 26. There is nothing wrong with the pattern, I just couldn't concentrate on the hole pattern and this border wasn't for bodging!

I tried it at home watching TV, at home on my own with no distractions, at Knitting group, with my mum by my side reading it out but no joy. I just love this cardigan and I REALLY wanted one. I bought the wool specially for this pattern, I never normally do that so I was doubly disappointed.

My mum took it to start it off again for a ninth time and then she said, "Shall I just finish it for you?" Music to my miette madness ears.

She used four out of the five balls of Rowan Creative Focus worsted I bought in a petrol colour. It was a bargain and came in at under £12 for the cardigan. There is enormous yardage on these balls: 100g contains 200m (220yrds). The content is 75% and 25% Alpaca so the washing machine is out of the question.

A Huge thank you to my mum. I love my new cardigan. 

Wednesday, 12 November 2014

Little donations

I don't buy many craft supplies, it means I don't really have a style as such but no matter, as long as I am making things I don't mind. People know I have this obsession so I am often donated things - one families junk is another woman's treasure. This week...

I was given two and a bit balls of Debbie Bliss Cotton Denim Aran AND the junior Knits book! Whooo!

I made a little crochet handbag for the daughter of the person who gave me the book. Whoops, forgot to take a photo before I posted it.

Then I had one ball left so I made a headband ear warmer thingy. I don't need one but I think they will be a great little project for my beginner crocheters in the new year. A sample is always useful and I wrote down the pattern as I went along. I made it during one entire episode of Strictly come dancing which my girls love.

Big Sis chose to make a project from the book. She was quite serious about it so in half term week we went to the wool shop. I completely stood back and watched a 7 year old choose a ball of yarn, it had to be her project completely for her to have any chance of completing it. Not my choice but here goes....

James C Brett Flutterby in pale blue. I was lucky really because there was a really nasty pink! She held it up to her face and then her sister's face and said, "I love it, it is sooooooo soft."

She is doing well but the 17 stitches sometimes turn into 16 so I either pick them up with a crochet hook or.... shhhh don't tell, I unravel it when she has gone to bed and knit it back to where she was. Don't judge me! This is her picture inspiration from the book.

Keep your ears warm folks. Now where are my pom pom makers.... 
Jo xxx

Monday, 10 November 2014

A picture says a thousand words

A picture tells a thousand words...

St John's church where my great-grandad, grandad, dad and I were christened along with other family milestones of death, birth and marriage.  The Caradoc and Lawley hills of South Shropshire, watching sunsets, foxgloves and primroses, sheep and wildlife, hazel trees, a campfire for marshmallows and of course our cabin built in 2014.

But I think it says even more that I took the time to make the memory in naive stitches and I am really rather proud of that. I took inspiration on this crafty journey from Gillian's holiday image at Tales from a Happy House blog where I love to go every Friday for happy vibes.

This weekend we went to the cabin, lit the logburner, shared the evening with friends, ate hot potatoes and chilli, then we watched the children enjoy sparklers.

I'm feeling rather whimsical..... Jo xxxx

Saturday, 8 November 2014

Remembrance day

Tomorrow is Remembrance Sunday in the UK. Do remember to wear a poppy with your leaf pointing to 11 O'clock. A kindly pensioner stopped me and told me so with fervour last week. Especially if you have made a crochet one, don't get told off like me!!!

As part of my Heritage Scrapbook I have a page about my Great-great- uncle Edward Roberts (My fathers namesake) who died at Ypres. His gravestone is used as the memorial focal point for the church service every year. Our cabin is in the field behind the church.


Friday, 7 November 2014

Friday Fantasy quilt progress

Just checking in with my Half Square Triangle (HST) count. I have 186 out of the 270 I need.

They are looking good and a great way to teach Big Sis counting in 20's which she has needed to do for school.

I have not bought any fabric yet so I am doing quite well. I have used a Tilda Charm pack (100 squares) which I won from the Simply Homemade magazine for star letter on the letters page a few months ago. These quality prints sure lifted my scraps pile to a higher level.


...Some didn't make the cut. When I went to square them up after sewing, some were not quite big enough so I cut out a smaller square template 9cm x 9cm and made these slightly smaller ones for a practise before I start sewing the quilt together some time. I am really enjoying the journey and don't feel in any rush (at the moment!)

I am following a lovely quilt-a-long to get some tips here I am not doing exactly the instructions (as if I would) but I like finding out about the new techniques which I might need.

Thanks for stopping by. Jo xxx

Tuesday, 4 November 2014

All done #5 October

Here is a round up of this fabric stash. It all started with a gifted length of fabric - A Liberty Tana Lawn called Florence. A neighbour of a friend had become a widower and asked if I would like first dibs of his wife's fabric chest. That was five years ago.

I made the Mathilde Blouse but had to top stitch the pleats down just over my bust as they flared out and made me look ridiculous.

Here is what else I made using this fabric. There was about 4-5 metres of it.

A pocketed skirt from Sew Serendipity by Kay Whitt last year.

I made four mouse door stops two have been gifted and one is mine.

A girls dress which Big Sis wore three years ago and now is handed down to Little M. It is made from a vintage pattern that used to be my grandma's. My mum said she had one of these. Button shoulders, tie at the back, gathered waist - they stand the test of time don't they?

The watch strap revamp from earlier this year.

Finally, it's the turn of the left overs.

More recently my all time favourite skirt made a few weeks ago.

Another easy peasy peasant blouse over the weekend from this pattern which has been worth every penny, I highly recommend it. 45 mins work!!

A quilted tablet case on which I made a label out of a bit of the selvedge edge to remind me of this beautiful fabric's origins.

a pin cushion, then as the bits get smaller...

 ...more squares for my fantasy quilt in half square triangles. 

I have enjoyed every inch of this fabric and although it has all gone now, I can still enjoy it in all it's various guises. 
All done Number 5 - Liberty Tana Lawn Florence.

Which was your favourite?

Ps. This is a mosaic of projects.These are my makes over the last five years with this fabric, not all this week. There has been confusion in the past with these themed posts. During October I have made the skirt, blouse, pin cushion and tablet case.