Monday 29 June 2020

Ginx Woolly Linx Party July

The features this month seem to all be garments.

Flickensalat has been making some clothes for her grandaughter's teddy bear. I thought this little cardigan was really cute, with its colourful stripes and buttons.

Con Hilos, Lanas y Botones has made this gorgeous Aiko summer top. I thought you might like to see the back view, which is just as lovely as the front.

Howling at the Moon has made this crochet sweater for her daughter. Her post reminded me of what I wrote about my daughter's knitted sweater. For a fashion conscious daughter you have to get it right.

And finally Hakelfieber has made this beautiful mermaid scarf. So pretty, and all those scales must have been a lot of work.

I look forward to see all your projects in July.

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Thursday 25 June 2020

Guban Jumper

I am not quite sure what is up with me. When we went into lockdown one of my positive thoughts was "at least I will have lots of time for knitting and craft", but you may have noticed less than normal craft posts. Hopefully this will change, as I have finally finished my daughter's jumper, which has taken a very long time. I am really happy with how it has turned out, and more importantly so is she. She was very specific about what she wanted, it had to be plain black, and not too long, and 4ply. This pattern appealed to me, as I thought the pattern would be interesting to knit.

The pattern is called Guban by Sarah Hatton, and is available on ravelry free, and is also a Rowan pattern. (I probably shouldn't mention this, but I don't think I have ever bought a pattern online. If you hunt about a bit is always seems possible to find a free pattern that suits.)

I did not use the recommended wool, so it was a bit of a worry whether the wool I did use would work. I used 6 x 50g balls of Drops Flora, which as the recommended wool took 225g, I thought would be plenty. I keep thinking that I may have mislaid a ball, as I ran out before I had knitted the neck, and had to use some other black that I had for that. (I have just weighed the finished garment, and I am right, I must have mislaid a ball of wool. I will have to do some hunting behind the sofa.)

Sometimes I don't knit garments because it seems to work out so expensive, but this cost £13.20 for the wool, from Wool Warehouse, which I thought was really quite reasonable for a pure wool/alpaca mix jumper.

This was not an easy knit, but I did enjoy the front and back patterned sections, once I got the hang of them. I think it was made harder for me because I was using black wool. Half-way up the front I had to unravel, as I could see a mistake lower down. Family told me not to, but I knew it would always be glaring at me if I did not.

So what next. I also bought some sock wool, so am going to have a hunt about for a different sock pattern, probably for me. There are lots of nettles in the garden, so my summer look is skirt or dress, but still with wellington boots on, so I don't get stung.  I also now have my sewing machine back (hurrah), and a half-written baby pattern which I will get back to now. My daughter is also working on an extended project for her art A-level, which is going to involve sewing and dancing. I do hope she lets me show you. Happy crafting!

Just a reminder that there is still time left to join in my Ginx Woolly Linx party for June. Click on the photo above or at the top of the page to find the party. I would love to see what you have been working on this month.

Monday 22 June 2020


I have been interested in photography for a long while, and trying to take good photographs for my blog and knitting patterns has really helped motivate me. It really does seem to make a difference.

Last year I did a short photography evening course, which covered a lot of theory, but was slightly limited by they fact we were in a school classroom with artificial lights at night. But being set projects for homework was fun and useful.

So looking through my huge library of photos, I decided to submit some to a stock photo site, and have had some accepted. I have already had 2 sales, which my family joke and tell me means I can now call myself a professional photographer. You can click on the picture above to go to my photographs for sale on Shutterstock.

Submitting the photographs has been quite a time-consuming process, which has meant looking back at all my photographs, picking ones I think may be good enough, and then labelling them for the search function. But I think this process has been really useful. Some of my photos that I thought at the time were quite good, weren't even in focus. But I am hoping that my now more critical eye, will mean my photographs improve. 

The subjects that I like to photograph, may not be particularly commercial, or where they might be of interest there are a lot of other photographers like me who like wild life and nature. But I am going to continue taking photographs of the things I enjoy.

Although many of these photographs that are for sale have been published on my blog, this does not give anyone permission to use them commercially. Please do not download photographs directly from this blog. You can buy them online and use them legally for quite a small fee. If you see any other photographs on my blog that are not for sale on Shutterstock, and you wish to use without breaking copyright rules, than please message me direct.

Thursday 18 June 2020

Gardening Diary June

I am writing this back in town. Very strange being back in our little flat, just me and my daughter who has 2 days back at school.  It has been very rainy since we came back, so it is rather to easy to be thinking of sunny country days, but it is also bad weather there too. I have entrusted the watering to my son, and hope my husband may be able to keep on top of the weeds.

So above is a close up of the peas. They started off rather weakly, but some have struggled through. And below are the courgettes and sweetcorn, which I have planted out, and am trying to water a lot. They may look a bit yellow, but there are flowers growing. Quite a few of our plants look like they need more nutrition, so we have been digging in bone meal and a seaweed fertiliser, and perhaps next year might have to get some manure.

A few more photos below, with the potatoes (which did all recover from the frost), and Jerusalem artichokes and broad beans. The broad beans are a bit of a worry, as I feel they should be a lot taller than they are, and have spotted a few blackfly aphids. I am spraying them with dilute washing up liquid each evening, as I don't want to start with the chemicals.

After our runner bean disaster with the late frost, we started again, and planted some beans that were from last year's crop that we found in a pot in the polytunnel. Not all of them came up, but the ones that did look really great. But we only had enough for one wigwam. The others have my sweet pea flowers, and a climbing flower called morning glory that I started off from seeds.

In the polytunnel the tomatos are doing great, and we also have some small pepper and cucumber plants. I think they may be a little behind, so we will have to see. Also below you can see the grape vine, and my armchair where I can go and shelter if it starts to rain.

And finally the photo below shows the polytunnel from the outside with the herb area around it. At the back are some fruit bushes, which we now think are red currents, not black as I had originally thought.

Just a reminder that there is still time left to join in my Ginx Woolly Linx party for June. Click on the photo above or at the top of the page to find the party. I would love to see what you have been working on this month.

Friday 5 June 2020

Lambretta Wedding Anniversary

I had an enquiry on Etsy from Ally, who wondered if I could make a lambretta scooter, as a gift for her husband on their first wedding anniversary. I hope she doesn't mind me mentioning that they went on their first date when they were 12, went their separate ways, but met up again 35 years later. How cute it that? She sent me a photograph, and I thought I could give it a go ...

I actually love this sort of order, when I am following my own pattern, but having to personalise it. The lambretta is different to a vespa in quite a few ways. The back section is longer and doesn't have the wheel hubs, and the seat has a very distinctive kink at the back. The front and hub caps are slightly different in shape, and the wheels smaller.

So I am wishing Ally and Col at very Happy Wedding Anniversary celebration on Monday.

Just a reminder that there is still time left to join in my Ginx Woolly Linx party for June. Click on the photo above or at the top of the page to find the party. I would love to see what you have been working on this month.