Four seasons quilt

Thursday, September 28, 2017

Wet felting

Vanda F. Sousa has a series of videos on wet felting so you can learn all the basic techniques. She explains everything carefully and well.  Felting is a skills set and has to be learned methodically. Both Vanda F. Sousa makes that point  very clearly. You have to start somewhere, you have to get going and you have to have an idea of the basics before you try anything too tricky. Any first attempts are not failures. They are First Attempts In Learning These videos encourage and support you in a very positive way when you want to learn wet felting. 

Sunday, September 24, 2017

Simple sock

This is another straight forward sock pattern where the socks are knitted on two needles. The advantage of this video is that it gives you a link to a site so you can work out how many stitches to cast on for socks of a particular size. The world really is getting helpful these days. 

Saturday, September 23, 2017

Garter stitch baby jacket

I wanted to make a baby jacket with my homespun wool. It's well under way now and I have been out to buy the toggles for it and am looking forward to seeing it finished. The Family Circle knitting book , Lovable Baby Knitting and Crochet , had a similar jacket to this called Jessica but this pattern is better for babies because it has a hood so the jacket really will keep them warm in winter and there is no chance of losing a beanie! I had a bit of trouble setting up the left front because of the way I think. I really would have appreciated a picture of the pattern with the stitches and measurements as they give in some patterns. This pattern is a free download from Yarnspirations

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Knit socks on straight needles

I was watching someone knit socks on two needles. Yes, you can! You do not need round needles and dpns. Her sock was looking really good. she said she got the idea from a book Knit your Socks on Straight by Alice Curtis. now everyone can knit socks! The video takes a while but takes you through the whole process of knitting socks on straight needles. 

Saturday, September 16, 2017

Health benefits of yarn arts and crafts

Image: BBL Pecha Kucha

Textile arts and crafts contribute to your mental and physical wellbeing and the research is starting to come out on this. Spinning maintains your peripheral dexterity , mobility and strength in your hands because you are drafting and managing fibre all the time. If you are spinning on a manual wheel it is keeping your ankles flexible and the circulation to your feet in order. Yarn arts and crafts keep tendons supple and your brain working. They are very much brain based learning and ensure you participate in life long learning. Kathryn Vercillo has written a well researched  article about the 10 most important benefits of yarncrafting.  The importance of textile arts and crafts to people's health and wellbeing cannot be denied.

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Wet felting for beginners

I was learning how to do wet felting on Monday. As with anything worth knowing , it takes time, patience and skill. The skills are learned as you go along. Gypsy Felting explains a way of doing wet felting which is straight forward and easy to follow. I particularly appreciated the cultural and historical information she gave as she takes you through a method of wet felting. We were doing it slightly differently. The slipper I was making didn't work but I turned the felt into a purse which I really love. This video has given me some clues as to where I went wrong. Since I took the photo I have added another felt flower on the back of my purse. . Not a bit of that failed slipper was wasted. That pleased me enormously because it was a lot of hard work and I really like the look of the fabric I had made. 

Felted coin purse

Rainbow baby beanie

rainbow beanie

I knitted this in the same way as the lemon baby beanie. Instead of putting a pom pom on it I decided to use my flower loom and add couple of flowers. I really like the look and think it looks so sweet. 

Sunday, September 10, 2017

Sheeple madcat

I was excited to be able to make a madcat with my own homespun wool. It was great to make and a good celebration of what I have achieved with spinning. His face is light ram's wool plied with cotton. The body has  mainly light and dark ram's wool, light and dark alpaca and then there are some coloured bits of merino. I put a platypus mad from Australian wood in his paw and then a plastic fishbone ornament. he is very much an Australian, outdoor cat who loves the fresh air and sunshine. I haven't made a madcat in a while so to come  back to them with my own wool was a lovely, creative journey. 

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Knitted adult bootie slippers

Valérie Vincent explains very clearly and carefully how to make these adult bootie slippers. She is using double wool strands but you could use a chunky yarn. We all have our beanies. Now we need to get on to the foot warmers! Instructions on her blog are in French and English.

Monday, September 4, 2017

Crocheted red poppy

I put up a post before about how we have been asked to provide knitted and crochet poppies for Remembrance Day.

I have made three crocheted poppies. They don't take long and they look really pretty. I am eally happy with the result. You can find a small poppy pattern on the Lincraft site. A display would benefit from different sized poppies.

I made my poppy in this way:

Red, black and green wool.
3.5 crochet hook

Make one chain in red
Chain 3
10 treble crochet into the loop and slip stitch round together at the end.

3 chain
4double treble (yarn twice over hook) into where the 3 chain started
Into the next stitch 5 double treble
Into the next stitch one treble and then 4 double treble
Into the next stitch 5 double treble

Alternate those patterns until the last stitch which should be 5 double treble. Slip stitch together and fasten off.

With green (I used Paton's souffle because it has a bit of mohair)
Make one loop.
3 chain
10 treble crochet into the loop and slip stitch round together at the end.
Fasten off and leave enough yarn to sew the green centre onto the poppy .

With black :

Join to green and make 2 chain
2 double crochet into next stitch
One double crochet into next stitch
2 double crochet into next stitich
One double crochet into next stitch

Keep that up until last stitich and then slip stitch round together.
Fasten off with enough yard to sew onto popply

Sew the green around the edge onto the poppy.
Sew the black around the edge onto the poppy

Weave in the loose ends