Sunday, 12 June 2016

All Go

Oh, it's all go on the crafting front lately and it's making me so happy. My head is bursting with ideas and my crochet mojo (crojo?) has returned with a vengeance. 

As you know I started a granny stripe blanket for Angus a couple of weeks ago. I don't think I've added any rows since I last showed it to you, but that's ok, it's going to be a slow burner, this one - something easy to work on between other projects, or for those evenings when I just want something relaxing. I know that I can't work continuously on projects like blankets and that I need to alternate them with other things. 


While thinking about colour planning for this blanket, I thought I'd try this trick I keep seeing everywhere of wrapping yarn scraps around clothes pegs. I wondered it it really did help, and it does; it is much easier to visualise the next few rows this way rather than waving balls of wool around as I usually do, holding them up against each other and squinting. I found I had a much better sense of how the colours would work next to each other by using the pegs. 


I am loving the ease and simplicity of the pattern and, while summer is not an ideal time to begin a heavy woollen project, I hope it will simmer along nicely in the background before I work on it in earnest next autumn. 


In other crochet news, I became consumed recently with the making of a clutch bag, finishing it a few days ago. This length of chevron fabric was sew together, lined, zippered and taken Out-Out on Friday night. 


I need to write it all up into a proper post now but trust me, it's a beauty. It came out better than I could have hoped. 

My other current obsession, cross stitch - in particular cross stitching napkins - continues. I found four plain green napkins in the sideboard recently that I'd forgotten I had and thought they'd benefit from some flowers, it being summer and everything. (And yes, I am well aware that I possibly have too many napkins.)




I kept the stitches larger here, working over two holes in the soluble canvas, not one, as I did for these, and I like the more pixelated effect. 


I keep thinking about starting my cross stitch sampler but I seem to be having trouble. It's too dark, I'm too tired - plotting that first central stitch is tricky.


Also, I had some trouble locating the exact kind of linen the pattern specified - Zweigart Belfast Linen in Stone Grey - so I just ordered Cream, thinking it would be a good neutral colour. But when it arrived it was much too light, more of a pale baby yellow. Pretty, but not right for the colours in the pattern which are designed to be worked against a grey background. 


So I ordered more in Linen Raw, below, and it's much closer to the one in the image on the pattern. 



You can see the difference in the shades better below. Subtle, but important. I'll find a use for the cream fabric, it wont go to waste. 



I'm already kind of winging it with this pattern, as I refused to go out and buy the exact shades for every thread specified, given that I already have so many. I matched them as closely as I could by eye, and just bought two more when I really didn't have anything remotely similar. so I thought I should try and get the fabric right. Anyway, I'm really looking forward to starting this. It's a nice summer project.


The other thing I really want to do is make some hanging planters trying a macrame or knotting technique. The furthest I've got is buying this yarn and staring at images



What are you working on at the moment? Any crafting obsessions? 

I hope you've had a nice weekend. Ours was spent working on the kitchen (what else?) but those last jobs are done and the house is clean, the dining furniture is now where it should be and normality is slowly returning. It feels so good. 

35 comments:

Daisy Jones said...

Hello! so glad you have your crojo? back. Love the black and white...
We have been updating a garden tea light chandelier we made 2 years ago!
xxxx

Jennifer Hays said...

Gosh, you're so crafty lately. I can't wait to see your bag. I've been cross-stitching, mostly. Today, I taught my daughter to stitch on plastic canvas with DK yarn! It was slow-going at times but she's getting the hang of it. You probably already do this but I like to fold the pattern in fourths, as well as the fabric, to find the center stitch. I hope you have a good week, enjoy that kitchen!

Melody A. said...

Lots of great projects, love Alicia Paulson's designs!! I agree, as long as the color is close it will be fine, she would say the same thing I am positive. Your crocheted blanket is going to be marvelous!! and love your new kitchen. from Iowa USA

Susan Smith said...

Glad your crafting mojo is back & espcially your crochet bit. I'm busy with lots, knitting, a little crochet and lots on my big machine, as I'm quilting for our local shop at the moment, but do have one of my own on it now. The little cross stitch flowers look great and must look for that plastic and I did macrame a couple of times back in the "early 80's" when it was all the rage. Good luck with finding some good patterns, but email if you want an easy one as I'm sure I still have a little book & could send you some. Have a good week and take care.

Mac n' Janet said...

A lot of very creative projects, I quite like the Granny Stripe afghan and what a clever way you've found to plan the colors.

Gracie Saylor said...

Hooray for your final kitchen tasks being done! A friend told me awhile ago that she would like a stack of purple homemade dishcloths, so my obsession at the moment is making a stack of them for her. I have also started crocheting a preemie blanket and knitting another preemie blanket. I enjoyed making macrame plant holders many years ago, and I hope you will enjoy making yours as well. I haven't made yarn pins yet, but I can see they are helpful planning color sequences. Thanks for posting, Gillian! xx

Anonymous said...

I presume the sampler you are doing has a lot of colours, like the newest one just released which has 39. It makes sense to use colours you already have, otherwise it become ridiculously or even prohibitively expensive. I am not purchasing for that reason. In my local shop they are now over £1 a skein for DMC cottons. I believe they are much cheaper in the US.

Lisa said...

It is nice when the crafting mojo returns. All of your projects are so lovely. The macrame hanging pot holders will be nice. Please share pictures of them. My current obsession is to finish some of my outstanding projects. I have a granny square blanket and a hexi quilt that have been in the project basket way too long. I would like this to be the summer I complete one or both of them.

Jules said...

I'm so glad your crojo has returned. I love the colours you have chosen for the granny stripe blanket. They are so relaxing to do. I am currently working on a granny square blanket which I'm hoping to have completed in time to take on our honeymoon, although I have a feeling Lily will claim it. X

Librarian said...

Crojo - I like it :-)
You know I admire you for your creativity and patience with crafting. I am very much NOT a crafting person, although it would probably do my mind some good. Instead of patiently creating something beautiful and useful, I rather go out with friends, for a run or a drink at the pub, or read or play my favourite computer game... *sigh*

I am looking forward to the post about your new chevron-striped bag!

Amy at love made my home said...

So many beautiful things! Glad you are back and enjoying your crochet and crafting again! The yarn pegs are a great idea aren't they, I am loving my collection. Your napkins are beautiful too, no such thing as too many!! I hope you enjoy your cross stitch, there is a definite difference between the fabrics isn't there, the new one is beautiful, but they are both nice!

mags said...

Love the chevron and the napkins. The cross stitch looks challenging to me! Though gorgeous.

Gillian Roe said...

I am always happy to see friends or go to the pub (maybe a little too happy to do the latter!) and I should certainly run more - the computer games I'll leave to John. But crafting is (relatively) cheap and doesn't require a babysitter, which may be why it's so popular. X

Jo@awholeplotoflove said...

Lovely crafty makes! I'm trying to finish a hitchhiker scarf/shawl thing before my quilt block arrives with the post. I do however feel the need to start another blanket though. I adore your napkins, you've just given me an idea for Christmas x

Christina said...

Glad your creativity is in full swing, I look forward to seeing your projects as they progress. I am sewing mostly at the moment, just finished a sleeveless top with a peter pan collar. Unfortunately the summer has now retreated and I won't get to wear it for the time being. Happy crafting! x

Sarah said...

You make some lovely things Gillian and your eye for colour is non-pareil! I have a drawer of exquisitely embroidered linen (made by my mother and grandmother) and when I look at the tiny stitches I wonder how they did it. I haven't come across waste canvas before so I must look out for that. I've got a piece of black linen (abandoned from Alicia's Midsummer Sprigs) and I'm thinking of using it for whitework embroidery as I can see to sew light-coloured thread on the 28 count black linen and like you I have a box of inherited and leftover embroidery silks - I think I bought just four Weeks Dye Works skeins for Midsummer Sprigs. I'm currently doing some freehand embroidery on quite coarse linen. I've been inspired by some very naturalistic embroidery at the Petworth exhibition. Your clutch bag is super - can't wait to see how you made it.

CJ said...

I don't think you can have too many napkins. I like to use them as much as possible rather than disposable kitchen towels, wipes etc. I now have my soluble cross stitch fabric! Watch this space. But not too closely it might take me a while to get to it. I have an Alicia Paulson cross stitch languishing in a bag here. It's hard to see in the evenings once the light has faded and my contact lenses are out. That's my excuse anyway. But I'm in love with her new one with the little houses on it, so that might be some motivation. Crojo is an excellent word, I shall remember I heard it here first. CJ xx

piecefullane said...

I love the colours of your blanket, it's going to be gorgeous! And the napkins are lovely too; It's great when a wave of crojo comes along, and you seem to be riding the crest of a wave at the moment!

Cecily Graham said...

Lovely projects, Gillian - especially the blanket and the napkins. Inspired by you, I've learned to crochet and have started two (!) simple but satisfying granny square blankets as a way of using up odd bits of wool left over from knitting projects. It's incredibly soothing at this busy time of year. But now I've seen your lovely napkins I'm going to have to learn to cross stitch, too!

mrsrobinson said...

Oh my, gorgeous projects! Love the colours of the blanket, and so look forward to seeing the chevron clutch. After looking through the most recent Pom Pom I decided I needed to make every pattern... I've started with a shawl after a rummage in the wool basket presented a suitable wool

VeggieMummy said...

Crojo - what a fantastic word! Your napkins are beautiful and I can't wait to see your finished clutch. I wanted to do a macrame workshop recently (they were making a hanging basket). Sadly, it clashed with one of E's exams, so I couldn't make it. I think they are making a comeback aren't they. Looking forward to seeing yours. xx

Liana said...

Your napkins are so lovely!
I've watched too much floss-tube lately, so end up with three cross-stitch projects.

Jacqueline said...

You've certainly got a lot of things on the go. I knitted cushion covers once using the kind of method you're using with the pegs. I think it has a name but it escapes me currently. It is so much easier than getting in a tangle with lots of balls of wool.

Anonymous said...

Hey Gillian,
I am loving the bag. It is so cool. I'm already looking forward to getting back to normal from our re-vamp. All of a sudden the project has become much bigger than anticipated....
Leanne xx

AnnieOBTextiles said...

Wow what a lot of lovely projects. The chevron stripes look amazing and I'm looking forward to seeing the completed bag. You can never have too many napkins, particularly such pretty ones!

Sharon - creativity and family said...

I love the blanket colours so much! The napkins are beautiful, I never would have chosen that green but they look great 😊

Sharon - creativity and family said...

I love the blanket colours so much! The napkins are beautiful, I never would have chosen that green but they look great 😊

Cyndy Regeling said...

Wow! Exactly how is anyone supposed to keep up with your activity level!? Love the blanket idea! Inspired by your cross stitch! Made crib sheets like that for my son when he was born (eons ago!) Simple but lovely.

Jo said...

I am in love with those green napkins. Water soluble canvas? where the hell do I get that because I want to buy dome right now! Love your crafting Gillian. Jo x

Julie said...

I love the word crojo :) Loving the blanket colours and the cross stitch is going to be so pretty. X

Penny said...

Love all your crochet projects. I am in full quilting mode just now, working on Isaac's quilt. I have some other summer crafts planned too, I sometimes think planning is as much fun as actually doing! X

Lisa said...

I really like your choice of colours in the Granny Stripe - are they yarns you already had too? Some look familiar from the lovely Cedar River blanket. Really nice combo :o)
And your napkins have inspired me - I'd been meaning to get some proper napkins for ages as we've been using the muslins I dyed green after my youngest grew out of needing them! He's 5 now, it was about time! I've bought my first set of four, and seeing your gorgeous embroidery, I might have to acquire yet another craft and try cross stitch on them...

Anonymous said...

Hi there Gillian I too am looking for linen to do a cross stitch rather than buy an expensive kit! Please could you tell me where you ordered your from? Thank you, Jo.

Gillian Roe said...

I bought mine from here:
http://www.sewandso.co.uk/
I thought they had a good selection, especially of the Belfast linen I wanted.

Gillian x

Anonymous said...

Thanks so much, can't wait to get on I need some soothing cross stitching!