Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Crochet Christmas Baubles. Love.


Hello!  How is you week going?  
Are you getting super busy yet?
The silly season has definitely arrived at our house, I seem to have lost a few days last week!
I have been so busy getting orders completed and trying to have enough stock for the Emu Plains Market on Saturday, my house looks like a dump, there are bits of yarn all per the place, it has certainly been a bit cray-cray round here! 
  
We also had our big extended family Christmas party on Sunday for my side of our family,  it was great to catch up with all my cousins and aunts and uncles, I love being part of a big family, it is always a really good day, and is fascinating to see the next generation coming along and getting so big!!  

So Sunday was great day, then Monday was a shocking day for the country.
 What an unsettling week so far, with the terrible siege in Sydney leaving the whole country feeling stunned and so sad, it's hard to believe something like the has happened in Australia, but I have just been watching the news and it is heartening to see how everybody is coming together to support one and other, the aftermath seems to be bringing out the best in people, that is something to hold onto I think.  Love to all of Sydney. xxx

Anyway, this is not supposed to be a sad space, so  back to the hooky stuff.  
Here's something to cheer you up, in a very colourful, fluffy, frivolous way!

I have been crocheting like a mad woman, currently I am making some crochet baubles.  I have seen some lovely looking baubles around the internet recently, so decided to have a go at my own version, and this is what I have come up with.  
I have to say I am rather pleased with how they are turning out.  They are so fun to make! 
As usual, I have gone over the top with colour, the colours of the Cascade Ultra Pima cotton really look fantastic together, and I have got a few favourite colour combos going that are working well I think.

I am also pretty happy with my little pattern, a bit of trial and error, but they are fitting nicely and I love all the colour changes.  Might try and write it down as some stage.  I am hoping to have about 20 of these ready to sell at the market, but I really won't mind if I bring them home again, they can certainly brighten up my pompom tree!

So here are a few extra photos, just because I thought they looked cheerful! :)







So, I am right in the middle of decoration making and have found some lovely tutorials and patterns around the traps at this time of year.
Here are a few links for other decorations to hook up if you have a few spare moments.

* more Christmas Trees from The Royal Sisters (great for buntings or garlands)

Are you making any decorations for your tree?
Have you had a go at crochet baubles yet?

Have a great day! 
xxxxxxxxxxx

Monday, December 8, 2014

weekly stills....








Weekly stills:

1. Picking colour combinations for a new set of heart washers, this part takes me ages, I need to stop procrastinating! 

2.  Lovely snail mail! I received this gorgeous package today from my creative pen pal Mel, aren't I lucky!   (It is so nice to receive mail that is not a bill or a credit card application!)
Thank you Mel, I love it all!  
Just about to sit down with a diet coke and have a read. ;) xx

3 + 4. I have been into Melbourne a couple of times in the last few weeks and have done a little shopping!  New washi tape and a rather big pile of new crafty books to keep me busy over the Summer.  Can't wait to have a good read!

5. Had a little bake off this morning, feeling quite festive after making 5 batches of our family recipe shortbread.  I only make it at Xmas time because it is so moreish that I could eat a whole batch by myself!  These bags are destined for other people so I can't gorge on them myself, although I might have tested out a piece or 3! :) 
(Recipe is over here if you are tempted to make some yourself, although I decided to whizz it all up in the food processor rather than melt the butter this time.)

6. My cute card display. There are so many gorgeous cards out there by very talented illustrators, I have decided to create a little inspiration wall with cards that are too nice to throw out.  I really like looking at these! 

How has your week been? 
Did you have a busy weekend, or have you got a busy week ahead? 
It is getting to that time of year when there seems a million things on at once!  
xxxxxxxxxxxxx

Sunday, December 7, 2014

5 Friday Finds #26 - The Holiday Editions


This post contains affiliate links


Hello! 
How has your weekend been going?  It has been a wet chilly one here, we haven't really started any Sumer weather yet! 
I am running behind with my Etsy finds this week, but better late than never.

So here are some lovely things that I found this week that I think would make lovely presents for any crafty people in your lives, my wish list is certainly growing!! :) 

----------------------------------------------------



1.  Ana Campos is the owner of another beautiful indie hand dyed yarn shop,  ToilandTrouble,  I love the colours in these gorgeous yarns, and there are plenty of other beautiful colour ways, I'd be happy with any of them!! 
-------------------------------------------------------



2. I have learning to weave on my crafty to do list for 2015, and these gorgeous looms and weaving starter kits from Andrea's shop LoomandSpindleAU would be just the trick to get me started!  
------------------------------------------------



3. I love the gorgeous marbling of these hand made soaps from CanardLabs by Tanya Rasley, and I really like the packaging, just that little bit different. :)
--------------------------------------------



4.The shop CutieKatKat  by Maggie, has these super cute mini softies, perfect stocking extra for lucky little ones.  I love that little kitty queen finger puppet!
--------------------------------------------



5.birdhouse20 makes these very quirky retro caravan birdhouses, I think they would be a lovely addition to a whimsical garden, or just hanging in a window somewhere. There are also mini caravan decorations available in this shop, very cute! 
--------------------------------------------------------


6. Illustrator Sandra Dieckmann has a beautiful shop SandraDieckmann, with many cards, prints and other goodies like these wonderful postcard books, perfect for some interesting snail mail.

----------------------------------------------------------------------

So that's it for today, have you come across any good finds recently? 
Have a great day, talk soon! 
xxxxxxxxx

Friday, December 5, 2014

Puffy Flower Decoration Tutorial



Hello!

It's been a while since I shared a pattern with you lovely readers, so I thought it was about time to post a tutorial, there is still time to make a few of these before Christmas.  I thought you might like to make a Puffy Flower decoration, I have been making these recently and they are fun and not too difficult, I think they look pretty dangling around the place, or they make nice little gifts.
 I think it is nice to make a decoration or two each year to add to the collection, and I try and come up with a new idea each year, this is what I have been making this year!  

So I have made a little tutorial for you if you would like to have a go. This is a little thank you to all the people who visit here and my shop and leave lovely comments, thank you for your support and kind words, I really appreciate them! 

---------------------------------------------------------

Puffy Flower Decoration

Ok, so you will need small amounts of cotton yarn in different colours, I used 8ply and a 3.5mm hook for this example, but you could use what ever you have, just use a hook that is one size smaller than recommended.  This tutorial uses US terminology.

( Throughout this pattern the initial chains made at the start of each round to get to the stitch height do not count as a stitch unless otherwise stated)


To begin chain 4 and join with a slst to form circle.

Round 1: Ch3, make 12 dc into circle, join with slst to 1st dc (not top of 3ch)  (12 st) Fasten off.


Round 2 : Join second colour, Ch3, create puffy petal - make 4 tr into same st as chains, leaving the last loop of each stitch on the hook.....


......so it looks like this, with 5 loops on hook...... ( sorry about the sideways photo, it refused to be edited!)


.....then make the last yarn over through all 5 loops, creating a puffy cluster........


.....into the next st make 1dc and a puffy petal in the same way......


Continue making a dc and a petal into each stitch until you have 12 petals made.  In this round only, join with slst to third ch of starting chain. Fasten off. (24st)


It should look like this.

Round 3: Join 3rd colour to stitch at top of any puffy petal, chain1, make 2sc into same stitch, then 1sc into next st (top of dc of previous round).  


Continue making 2sc in top of petal, and 1sc in top of dc, 12 times in total till you are back to the start, join with slst to 1st sc. (36 st)




 Round 4 : Chain 1, make 2sc in same stitch, then 1sc in next 5 stitches, *then 2sc in next stitch, then 1sc in next 5 stitches* , repeat from * to * all around , join with a slst to 1st sc. ( 42st)  Fasten off.

This makes one puffy flower circle.


Make a second puffy flower circle the same way.

Take both circles and place wrong sides together. 
Working through the back loops only of each circle, join yarn and chain 1, make 1sc in each pair of back loops, with a 4 chain picot every 6th stitch if you wish, or you could just leave the join a plain circle of sc..........



......continue around the circle until you get back to the start, join with a slst to 1st sc.  Chain 45  and join with slst to 1st chain to create a hanging loop. Fasten off.


Use a needle to weave in your end securely.
And there you have it, one finished decoration! Yay! 

I hope these instructions make sense, if you have a problem, I'll try and help.


Now you can go and play with colour combinations and make lots of dangling goodness for your holidays! I hope these little things help make your Christmas very merry! 

Have a lovely crafty day! 

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

this week...and a winner!











 weekly stills.

1. Blanket love.

2. Playing around with colour combinations, fun!

3. Flowery abundance from the garden, gotta love this time of year.

4. We spent the night in Melbourne over the weekend, Christmas is big in there and everywhere, I liked the wrapped up town hall.

5. It been all about tapestry crochet round here recently!

6 + 7 My kitchen all set up for my Tapestry Crochet Workshop before my lovely crafty peeps arrived, and then everyone busy hooking away.  It was a busy afternoon, I think everyone had fun, it was great to meet some gorgeous crafty ladies, I have a lot of room for improvement in my teaching skills, but I have to start somewhere and while I was way out of my comfort zone, now I know what to expect, I think I can do better next time! :)

------------------------------------------------------------

AND it is over time to pick a winner for  Shelley Husband new crochet ebook 'More than a Granny' giveaway!  Thank you to everyone who entered the giveaway, 
the lucky winner is Helen from crazydaisycrochetcottage! 
Congratulations! 
If you see this Helen, could you drop me an email, thanks!

If you missed out, don't be too sad, 'More than a Granny' is now available to buy from lots of places, check out Shelleys blog for details.


Have a lovely day! 

xxxxxxxx



Monday, December 1, 2014

Garden Share Collective - December 2014


Hello!  So it's the start of December and Summer here in Melbourne and time for another little look around the garden for the Garden Share Collective over on Lizzie's blog.  I haven't joined in for a few months as there was very little going on in the garden except for a whole lot of neglect!  
But during November I have started to reclaim the veggie patch and have planted out some Summer things.
Sticking to Lizzie's format:
Planting : During November I planted zuchinis, capsicums, carrots and lettuces.
Harvesting : We have been eating spinach, rhubarb and broad beans from the garden 
plus herbs and lettuce.
To do : Still need to continue weeding out beds and planting beans, beetroot, tomatoes, sweetcorn, lettuce, cucumbers and pumpkins.  Keep up with watering, it is really starting to dry out around here.

Like a little tour of what's going on in the Littlewoollie backyard?.....


......these are some of the beds I have cleared for summer planting, must get onto planting out now before it get s too late.....


......rhubarb still has good stems on it although starting to look a bit dried out.....


.....capsicums looking good, if small........


...... carrot patch, I am growing baby carrots and the round variety, I liked them for roasting last year. The cages are to stop the chooks and cats scratching this area up, seems to be working, there are a lot of tomato seedlings coming up in here too, I should transplant them and see what we get, I grew lots of different tomatoes here last year.....


.....zucchinis starting to take off....


 .......English spinach has been good, just starting to go to seed now, must try and find the pack of this seed, the leaves are huge and very tender, think I'll grow this again next year......


......this shot and the top one are carrot flowers, I think they are some heirloom varieties, different colours, white and purple I think, so I am letting them go to seed, hopefully I will be able to save my own seed for next year......


..........random potatoes coming up in the garden boxes, they don't seem to mind all the kikuya that is growing there too! .....


.....mandarins, I think they are past their best, probably dry inside.....


.....drying off the broad beans to save seed for next year....


.....and finally my parsley patch going wild, it is lovely and green though so I am leaving it for now...


How is your garden growing, are you eating much from it at the moment?

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx