The start of something big and cosy…

Now that Christmas has passed and all gifts have been passed over I now have time in which I can get back to making some things for myself! I have a ridiculously long list of things I want to get made already this year and I’m sure it will keep on growing – along with the list of makes to do for next Christmas!

I couldn’t quite decide on what to start first and managed to narrow it down to two things; a new quilt and a crochet blanket. I really couldn’t decide on which to start first between the two, so I have decided to do both!! I like to have a few projects on the go at once as it means I can alternate between them if I’m having problems and get annoyed with one of them! As the quilt will take the longest to make, I have started getting that together first.

After successfully finishing my last quilt I have been really excited to start my next. Ive been collecting fabrics together for a few months now and I think I finally have enough to do it all.

I have opted for blues, greens and beige, and whereas previously I used hexagon shapes this time I am going to use triangles and mini squares. I have cut out my templates for both of these, and now my next job is to start cutting out the fabric and tacking it to the templates so that I can start sewing it all together. I haven’t fully decided on how to lay it all out yet, I will get a few shapes cut out first and have a play around and see what I like the best!

I will keep you all posted on this – it may take me some time!!

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Grannies grannies grannies….

I seem to be stacking up granny squares all over in my craft box, I am almost halfway there and have made another five to add to the pile!

Stacking into the pack we have:

Granny Aisla
Granny Betty
Granny Myrtle
Granny Mabel
Granny Doris

I’m really pleased with how all of these are turning out and I’m looking forward to putting them all together. Although I think it will be quite a task as they are all different sizes… I do love a challenge!

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A quick make….A big welcome to the pack to three Very special grannies

I have found myself with a little bit of spare time (I must have forgotten to do or get something to end up with it!) and managed to get some more granny squares completed from the square a week app. These will go together with my other finished squares ready to be out together into a blanket once I get them all finished…I’m getting there very slowly!

These four Grannies have very special meaning to me as they are all named after people very close to me and my family’s hearts. I couldn’t believe it when I saw them named in the crochet a granny square a week app, as soon as I saw them I knew I had to make them, and it was one of the main reasons I wanted to make something with all these granny squares.

A Big Welcome to

Granny Joan
Granny Marjorie and
Granny Violet

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Last project for Christmas finished and with perfect timing! Introducing 2 cute crochet dinosaurs!

When I saw the pattern for these dinosaurs in a craft shop I just had to make them – I know a little one who absolutley loves dinosaurs so knew they would be perfect! The pattern was a DMC amigurumi pattern (number 14889L/2) And I used DMC Natura Just Cotton in Prussian N64 (bright blue) Passion N23 (orangey red), Tournesol N16 (yellow), Pistache N13 (green), Ibiza N01 (white), light green N12, and Noir N11 (black) to make them. I chose to make one with scales and one with spots, I really liked the stripy one too so I will make that one another time, I ran out of time to make all three!.

The pattern was really simple to follow and the dinosaurs came together in no time, the longest time taken was putting them together and making sure all the spikes and arms were in the right place! I think they look great, I will be sad to see them go but I know they are going to someone who will be over the moon when they open them, I will just have to make myself some more!

So glad I managed to get everything ready in time for Christmas – just! I look forward to a short break from everything crafty and will be enjoying lots of mince pies! Although I have a mountain of projects to get started on for myself including a new patchwork quilt, a crochet blanket and to finish my half started granny square blanket – so I won’t be taking too long a break!

Merry Christmas everyone!

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I saved the biggest until last. I really didn’t think I would get it finished in time, but luckily I have managed it… Just!!!

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I had three cross stitch cushions to complete this year for gifts and this final one has taken by far the longest to complete. It was a much bigger pattern than the previous two and had much more detail and I didn’t think it was going to end! But, I have finally managed to get through the mountain of crosses and what seemed to be never-ending backstitching. I was a bit worried that once I had finished all of the crosses, the pattern wasn’t going to stand out very well but the backstitching in the pattern did its job and pulled it all together brilliantly. The pattern is from 365 Cross Stitch Designs (Volume 2)

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Once completed, I created the pillow. I didn’t fabric ‘frame’ the front of the cushion like the previous two as I think the picture itself was enough detail for the front and I didn’t want it to be overshadowed by any fabric colours. I again did a back flap cushion so there I wouldn’t need to fit a zip. I found a red flowery fabric in my stash and used it for the back, which I think complements the colours in the cross stitch really well.

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I cut two pieces for fabric for the back (one for each flap) and made sure I cut them big enough so that I could fold the fabric in half to create each flap. This meant I didn’t have to hem each of them and it also gives the back a bit more strength rather than just having a single thickness of fabric. I then laid them right sides together with the cross-stitch picture, ensuring there was an overlap on the two back flap pieces. Once I had sewn them together I turned it the right way and then pinned a line about 1 inch from the edge the whole way around the cushion. I then sewed along this line the whole way around the cushion. I choose a light blue shade of thread to do this so that it would stand out slightly and it also matched the blue that was used in the circle border of the cross-stitch pattern. This line gives a bit of a border to the cushion without using fabric and I think it finishes the edges off nicely, rather than just having the cushion going straight to the edge.

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This cushion turned out even better than I had hoped and I’m really pleased with it. It’s a shame I cant keep it for myself!

Wavy loop bookmark – perfect for someone who is always losing them!

A close friend of mine is book mad, however, they are constantly losing their bookmarks and consequently spend half their time trying to find what page they were on! Currently they have resorted to folding over the corner of the page but I know they are not too happy doing this. I have bought them a book for Christmas and had a think about making a bookmark that might be a bit more difficult to lose! I saw a wavy crochet pattern a while ago and really liked the effect it gave so decided to make the bookmark using this. To make it slightly more difficult to lose by just falling out I decided to make it into a full loop to go the whole way around the book like an elastic band but not quite as tight!

I had no idea how to start with the wavy pattern so had a look online and came across a pattern which made complete sense and made it look very easy to do!

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For my base chain, I chained enough so that the length would fit snugly around the book, and then I followed the pattern. I did three rows, each one in a different colour and then fastened off. I then slip stitched the ends of the rows together to join.

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I wasn’t too sure how it would turn out, but I am really pleased with it. Hopefully this one lasts a bit longer than the other bookmarks they have had!

Running out of time… only 12 days to go!!

Christmas is rapidly approaching, and despite cracking through numerous projects over the last few weeks, the number I have left seems to be increasing, if anything! Luckily, I think I will just get them all done in time. I have been whizzing through a few small projects over the last few days as these haven’t taken too long to make and I can squeeze in doing them amongst the mountain of other tasks I have on my list to do in preparation for Christmas, At least the tree is up, I just need to remember all the food!

 

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I saw a pattern a while ago in Inside Crochet   magazine (Issue 50) for some blossom potholders and knew I had to make one. I made two in the end, with two different coloured edgings, one in blue and one in green and I choose a white for the base and a pale coral for the blossom. I used a 3.5mm hook for both the holder and the blossom, as I wanted the holder to be a little bit smaller (the pattern used a 4mm for the holder and 3.5mm for the blossoms).

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The pattern was really easy to follow and the holders came together really quickly. The most time consuming part was making all of the blossoms and putting them all on but I think it was definitely worth it and I think they look great! I’m glad I made two; one’s a gift the other is for me!

A break from everything crochet…

Alongside completing my crochet projects for Christmas, I’ve also had a few cross-stitch projects on the go! I have been making a few cross-stitch pictures that I wanted to use to create a pillow. Finally, I have managed to get two of them finished – I didn’t think I was going to get there, but luckily, with a bit of time to spare, I managed to.

Make 1: Butterfly cross-stitch

I have made this pattern previously and really enjoyed doing it – I really like the butterfly detail, and it looks really effective despite only using crosses and some backstitching. This time I have changed the colours from those specified in the pattern so that there were some more greens and blues in it so as to match my friend’s lounge décor (she’s the recipient of the gift). The pattern is from the World of Cross-Stitching magazine issue 201 and I completed it on evenweave fabric.

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Make 2: lavender cross stitch

 

This is a great cross-stitch pattern, as aside from looking really good, it is surprisingly quick to put together. Instead of using French knots on the pattern I substituted them for small purple beads as I think it gives a much better effect. This pattern was from Cross-Stitcher magazine issue 229 and again this was completed on evenweave fabric.

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Once the two cross-stitch patterns were done, I made them into pillows. The two fabrics I used are both from Laura Ashley and found both in the offcuts basket. They often have some great pieces of fabric in there; it just takes a bit of rummaging around and there are all sorts of great pieces to be found! To put the cushions together I first machine sewed strips of fabric around the four sides of the pattern to act as a frame.

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I then used two large pieces for the back so it would make a flap opening, as I didn’t want to have a zip fastening. Once I had all these pieces (the cross stitch picture with fabric side pieces attached, and the two back pieces), I laid them out with right sides facing and machine sewed around all four sides. Next I turned the pillow to the right side by pulling it back through the flap at the back and then inserted the pad.

 

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I am really pleased with how these have turned out – and even happier that I managed to get them both finished in time! I now just have one more to finish cross stitching which I can then make into a pillow – I think it may be a close call to get it finished!