Wednesday, 27 November 2013

Days 327 to 331

Five more photos for my 365 challenge:-
Day 327 of 365
Yay, I finally found one!  Out shopping with my Hubby and I stumbled across this tin.  I have been looking for one of these for a few months and typically when you stop looking for something, that is the time you find it! :)  Cat biscuits now safe on top of fridge freezer - now more helping yourselves kitties!!
Day 328 of 365
Sunday I turned into card factory!  30+ Christmas cards made, written on and in envelopes ready for the stamps.
Day 329 of 365
One crocheted butterfly brooch to be posted to France as part of a birthday present for a friend.
Day 330 of 365
More card making!  This time one for baby J born to a relative, birthday card for C and a wedding card for L who is marrying J in Spain in December.
Day 331 of 365
Knitting a beret to match the wrist warmers I made recently.  I had better get a wriggle on as I want to wear it on Saturday and I still have to crochet the snowflakes!

Friday, 22 November 2013

Days 322 to 326

Another week has whizzed by!  These are my 365 photos for this week:-
Day 322 of 365
Maurice busy doing nothing!  The cats are definitely staying in more now that the weather has turned colder. 
Day 323 of 365
Getting home from work later than usual, as I had the bright idea of cutting out a map of the world for a new display (someone please stop me when I have these ideas!) and I was more than ready for a cup of my new favourite tea!
Day 324 of 365
Yucky weather!  The heavy rain turned into hail.  I was glad to be indoors with my wool.
Day 325 of 365
Out Christmas shopping - only one more gift to buy! :)  I like to get all of my shopping done early before the town gets crowded.
Day 326 of 365
Nearly finished my wrist warmers - just waiting for the snowflakes to fall! :)  I have also started another crochet project as a Christmas gift, but I can't show that here as it may spoil the surprise for someone.
Only 32 days till Christmas! :) Pj x

Magic Loop Knitting

I am so in love with this method of knitting in the round!  I know that I am rather late to the party, but I hadn't heard of it before I started my latest knitting project.  So that I don't forget this method, I am going to try to post a photo tutorial:-
Step 1  ::  Choose the longest circular needles in correct size for project (my cable is 100cm).
 Step 2  ::  Cast on required amount of stitches (42 for this project).
Step  3  ::  Divide stitches in half and pull needle cable to create a "magic loop" at this point (I now have 21 stitches on each side of the cable loop).
Step  4  ::  Slide front portion of stitches (with starting tail) onto front/left hand needle.  Working tail is always at the back.
Step  5  ::  Pull enough cable through back portion of stitches to allow easy use of right hand needle.  Join into the round with cast on edge at the bottom of work, making sure that the knitting isn't twisted.
Step  6  ::  Work all of these stitches as required by project.
Step  7  ::  Then turn work so that the right hand needle with the recently worked stitches is at the back and slide the portion of stitches that are on the cable onto the new front/left needle.
Step  8  ::  Move stitches from back needle onto cable and pull enough cable out to use needle in right hand (as in Step 5).
Step  9  ::  Continue working in the round as per project pattern.
It sounds complicated, but it isn't if I can do it! :)

Sunday, 17 November 2013

Days 318 to 321

Four more 365 photos that take us past the middle of November.  Only a month and a half left to photograph and then it will be 2014!
Day 318 of 365
Thursday I went Christmas shopping and managed to almost finish all my gift buying.  What I couldn't get in town I ordered on-line once I arrived back home.  I also popped into the supermarket on the other side of town and look what I found!  I have four vintage Babycham glasses, so I couldn't resist this 60th Anniversary glass.
Day 319 of 365
As usual my Christmas cactus starts blooming too early for Christmas!
Day 320 of 365
Jack Frost is definitely nipping at our toes now. The frost stayed on the garden for some time, making everything sparkle.  There are still plenty of leaves on the trees - whilst driving around the ring road this week, I noticed that the autumn colours are quite spectacular.
Day 321 of 365
Yesterday my new circular knitting needles arrived in the post.  I shouldn't really be using them as they are part of my Christmas present from my parents, but I so wanted to start these fingerless gloves and I so dislike double-pointed needles!  Dp's and I just don't get on - I always end up with a loose stitch at  each needle change, but a couple of days ago I heard about the Magic Loop Method and as it would happen I had already ordered (my parents aren't Silver Surfers!) these new needles for Christmas.  How serendipitous is that!?
So this morning I will be Magic Looping to my heart's content! :)

Saturday, 16 November 2013

Canny CAL and other Crochet

Over the summer I was so busy that I didn't get the chance to pick up my crochet hook!  Now that things have quietened down here, I have been able to catch up on some much needed crafting.
I actually made four of these little toadstools - two for a friend and then I had to make two for myself! :)
I was very behind with the Canny CAL on Ravelry!  I had completed Week 16, but the remainder I have crocheted this month:-
Canny CAL Week 16
This Twisted Square pattern can be found on Ravelry,

 Canny CAL Week 17
as can this Garden Gate pattern.

 Canny CAL Week 18
I have been wanting to crochet an African Flower pattern for a while and week 18 provided the perfect opportunity to do so.

 Canny CAL Week 19
I got rather carried away with the frills on this Squiggly Ruffle Flower pattern and my bloom has turned out to be a double rather than a single flower.  I didn't read the pattern correctly, but in my defence it was late at night when I made the centres.

 Canny CAL Week 20
Weekend in Stockholm Square.  Not so late at night when I made these, so I paid closer attention to the pattern! :)

 Canny CAL Week 21
Sweet Sixteen Square - I added an extra treble to my popcorns to make them stand out more.

I nearly have enough squares for my second SIBOL blanket, so from now on I am only making one of each square.
Canny CAL Week 22
I think this Granny Maze Square is rather effective.
 Canny CAL Week 23
A Celtic Knot Square.  I'm not too sure whether I like this one or not.
 Canny CAL Week 24
This Pinwheel Star Square wasn't as difficult at it looks.  I think lots of these would make an amazing blanket.
The following squares are meant to be 12", but I have adapted mine to 6" to fit my blanket.
Canny CAL Week 25
Magic Spike Mandala Square
 Canny CAL Week 26
Granny On Point Square
I just need to crochet one more square and then I will have sufficient for another lap blanket.
Meanwhile I have started another cushion for my rocking chair.  I still had some leftover Aran yarn from the previous cushions I knitted, so I have decided to crochet two more.  This one is finished already, but I need a cushion inner before I photograph it.
Right, I'm off to start another project! ;) Pj x

Wednesday, 13 November 2013

Days 313 to 317

More 365 photos - I find that the weeks are speeding by now and winter is starting to move in.
Day 313 of 365
Bonfire night was celebrated last Saturday in our village with the annual display of fireworks.  They are always worth a visit.  This year was the first time we have been without our children and it seemed a little strange. :(
Day 314 of 365
My Christmas preparations continue - Sunday I baked our mini Christmas puddings.  They are wrapped up and in the freezer now.  Another item off my list of things to do.
Day 315 of 365
Our homegrown pumpkins and winter squashes are sitting pretty on the patio table ready to be munched.  I love baked squashes and butternut squash soup - always a winter favourite.
Day 316 of 365
Catching up with the Canny CAL crochet.  I have three more squares to complete and then I will have enough for another SIBOL blanket.
Day 317 of 365
Last night we had our first frost of the season.  This morning I picked this Abraham d'Arby rose, the last one this bush will probably produce this year.
The dahlias are now looking a little sad, so this afternoon I will lift the rest of them from the garden and dry out the tubers in the greenhouse, before storing them in the garage away from future frosts.
I have heard that we are in for a cold winter - I'm hoping for snow! :)

Saturday, 9 November 2013

Days 308 to 312

Continuing my 365 project with another 5 photos:-

Day 308 of 365
Grocery shopping for Christmas ingredients and I couldn't resist this tin of treacle!  When it is empty I shall be keeping this tin.
Day 309 of 365
Tuesday I photographed these fossils that my Husband and I found on the beach at Charmouth last month.  I have various stones, shells and fossils dotted around the house and garden - souvenirs of past holidays.
Day 310 of 365
My crochet hook and I have been busy this week catching up on the CAL I am participating in on Ravelry.  These squares are for my next SIBOL blanket.
Day 311 of 365
It was a lovely sunny day here on Thursday so I tidied up the patio and planted some daffodil bulbs in the garden.  It made a change from all the rain we have had recently!
Day 312 of 365
The rain is back, so I stayed warm and dry in the kitchen, making 6lbs of mincemeat ready for Christmas.  I also crocheted this holly leaf - playing with ideas for the festive season.  
Next up are the Christmas puddings!