Sunday, 30 September 2012

Roses and lavender

I crocheted a little lavender sachet this weekend, with a crocheted rose on it for decoration.

I used Rico essential cotton dk yarn from stash, a free pattern on Ravelry (note: Rav log-in required for link) and a 3.5mm hook. The pattern used UK crochet terms and I am so used to working with American patterns, I forgot and did the last round in American trebles and not single crochet, so I had to rip it back! I did this twice as well, once on each side. How silly of me!

I specially like the picot edge. This is the first time I did that in crochet. I also think I have now mastered the magic circle, finally.

These would make pretty christmas presents, so I might make another. If I was making again, I would use a smaller hook, as I had to line it before filling with lavender because the crochet was quite big. I would also probably omit the last round of (US) double crochet, as I think smaller would be even prettier.

Sunday, 23 September 2012

Flower garden

I sewed some flower pin cushions this weekend. I made them out of wool felt, and using a pattern in issue 38 of Sew Hip magazine.

They are quite simple, folk art type style. I like the one with the little flowers best. I also learned to do French knots whilst making the circular one with the big flower.

I mean to put these in gift parcels for sewing friends. As I have plenty of pin cushions already. But perhaps you can't have too many?

The felt flowers are more reliable than the ones in our garden, at least this year. We suffered from a cool and wet Spring and early summer too. Not only were there fewer flowers than usual, the apples on our trees are very small this year. My purple sage plant and gooseberry bush were drowned owing to heavy rain standing on the ground for a long time. We suffer from clay soil, and are also located at the bottom of a hill, so drainage can be a problem.

It's raining again now. At least we have no water shortages!

Thursday, 13 September 2012

The apple doesn't fall far from the tree

I sewed this cushion last weekend:

I made this pattern before, in a different colour palette. The first version was too insipid to look good in our front room, so I gave it away. This version suits our wall colour better, and also goes with the apples cushion I made last year, as I used a similar gingham border, and some of the same fabrics. As an addition this time, I sewed a little fallen apple on below the tree.

The apple didn't fall far from the tree also with me and ds. We share an interest in history; this week we were much excited by the discovery of possibly Richard III's bones in an archaeological dig in Leicester. Very timely after our recent visit to Bosworth.

Friday, 7 September 2012

Baby knitting

I really enjoy making baby things. I think it's the instant gratification, as there is hardly any time involved in making such small items. It's a long time since there were any very small people in our house, so I take every opportunity to knit for babies I know, however distantly! This week, I knitted this little set:

The cardigan is the Puerperium newborn baby cardigan. Because it buttons right down the side, there is no need to try and get it over a newborn head! The hat is the tiffany lace baby hat. Both patterns are free. And awesome! I used Sirdar smiley stripes dk for these, as it is machine washable.

Hope the mummy of the expected little boy approves.

Sunday, 2 September 2012

The Wars of the Roses

Ds has become a Young Archaeologist this summer. The benefits of this include free admission (usually only for him, unfortunately) to a range of UK historical sites. The membership pack came with a booklet of relevant sites, two of which are within easy driving distance of our house. I'm rather ashamed to think we lived here nearly twenty years and I hadn't been to either before.

Yesterday, we went to Bosworth Field heritage centre and country park. This was the site of the final battle in the Wars of the Roses, in which Lancastrian Henry Tudor, later Henry VII, defeated Yorkist King Richard III.

The actual battlefield site has moved! It was thought at one time to have been fought on the hill, but you can read here how archaeological investigation found cannon balls and gilt badges in a field nearby, which was therefore identified as the actual battle site. This is what it looks like now:

This is the route we took to get there, with dh and ds doing a spot of brass rubbing for the children's activity trail (£1 from the visitor centre, and you get a free poster if you complete it).

On the hill is a memorial to the soldiers who died:

And in the visitor centre courtyard is a stone erected for Richard III, although his body was supposed to have been taken to Leicester, and buried somewhere there.

Someone had left white roses at the foot, and one was wedged into the plaque too. White roses of Yorkshire for Richard of York.

We had an excellent day out. The activity trail for children was engaging and interesting also for adults - we especially liked the sound recordings. Tips for visitors to keep costs down, bring your own picnic. There are plenty of picnic tables. Admission to the exhibition is pricey at £7.50 per adult, but there is a family ticket available for £15. Or, if you have a Young Archaeologist like ds, they can get in for free.

Saturday, 1 September 2012

Stashdown2012 #8

I didn't do much knitting in August -  too busy being on holidays and generally chilling. But I did complete two items. I made the lovely Koigu scarf I wrote about in my last post. That was 440 yards. And I made a little baby hat, 60 yards, really just so I could get points for Ravenclaw House.  And I scored five Ravellenics Medals in the process!

I'm sending this one off to for distribution. This is a charity that collects knitted and sewn items and sends them where they are needed - maternity hospitals, projects for elderly people, overseas collections etc.

Altogether that was 500 yards worked up. I also discarded some more yarn, as I had some to take to the church group from last month (my sock yarn, still waiting to actually be donated. Blush). I did a quick review of my stash and added to the bag some paton's washed haze (200 yards approx), some old Sirdar country style in a colour I do not like (200 yards) and some Wendy Peter Pan (200 yards approx). So my total down for the month is 1100 yards.

But of course, the Fall term begins today over at the House Cup and so this morning, I went to the yarn shop. I'll tell you what the damage was in my stashdown post on 1 Oct!