Tuesday, 26 August 2014

In the round spiral crochet

It took me a while to understand how to know where the crochet spiral round ended and the next row began. So when I made a mistake with my increases/ decreases I wasn't sure where exactly I had gone wrong. It may sound daft, but I kept getting confused and my rounds gradually moved by one or more stitches to the right, as a consequence.

Then I purchased 
   Amigurume by Alison Hoffman 
                 and the light bulb came on and the problems                    disappeared.

She says:
'Insert a stitch marker into the loop on your hook. Each time you come back around to the stitch marker, move it up to the loop on your hook to begin the next round'.

If you have been confused, like me, it means that as you work any increases/decreases; if they don't fit between the positioning this marker and the chain/stitch to the right of it, you must unpick that round and try again. 

The chain/stitch that holds the marker is the first stitch of each round and the chain/stitch to the right of it is the last stitch/chain of the round.

Thank you Alison for your clear, instructions and tips and a wonderful book. I love it!

Saturday, 23 August 2014

Freedom to Fail

Hi all. While I have been silent, lots has been happening, including the funeral of my wonderful father, Stuart. 

During the weeks leading up to this moment I found solace in my knitting and crochet. While complicated projects were put on hold, I managed to knit a couple of Alan Dart  gnomes to take my mind off things, a little.

'Great creativity comes from freedom to fail' Peter Gabriel

I hope you give yourselves freedom to fail...

Tuesday, 24 June 2014

Arm Knitting ~ no needles required

Heavens I have seen it all now! Quick and effective, I've been told.

Sunday, 11 May 2014


The first time I came across the term Frogging was when I joined the web forum Ravelry.com  
It is meant to be derived from the idea that a frog says "rip it rip it" so fogging refers to unraveling rows of knitting or crochet work, and has thus come to mean  discarding a project or starting it over.

I regularly visit my Dad's nursing home where various members of staff are learning to knit alongside the residents. It is lovely to see. However, one confided that she was frustrated by her attempts and decided that knitting wasn't for her. She had made such good progress that I commented that it was a shame. I added that she was never going to get any better unless she kept going. After talking about it she decided she would practice at home so she could join in at the nursing home, which seems a lovely, empowering compromise.

I learnt to knit at the age of 11 years and then did not pick up a set of needles again until I was 21 years, when I made a whole jumper in
 <stocking stitch! 

By then I figured that as I knew the basic stitches and Mum could knit, then I must be able to do it myself and I did! Over the years I learned to write things down to remind myself where I've left off; use stitch markers and row counters (for both counting rows and decreases) 

generally take charge of the project, rather than letting it take charge of me!

Thirty years on I am still loving knitting and crochet and learning new stitches and techniques.

I am finding my own challenges along the way, such as vine lace which requires no TV or other distractions and lots of concentration. 

As they say Practice makes Perfect...that's not to say I haven't frogged projects because I need to rethink the wool I'm using, for example.

Do you ever Frog projects that are particularly frustrating or work in them until they are done?

Sunday, 4 May 2014

Textile Recycling ~ Cushions

I was sitting watching the UK Channel 4 programme SuperScrimpers wearing a top that was pulling under my arm uncomfortably, because it had become too tight; thinking:

 'I must put this in the textile recycling bag',

when a Top Tip item came up to recycle old T-shirts into cushions! 

So I got up and changed into a different top; cut up the top I'd been wearing; put a ballpoint needle and some navy thread into my sewing machine and voila!
                                a cushion was born.

Have you done any similar recycling projects yourself?

Monday, 24 March 2014

Spring Projects 2014

I am still very much knitting and crocheting. 
I have made a monster, am knitting a cardigan and also some more bed socks.

The pattern is from Beastly Crochet - Hubert and Cletus by Brenda K. B. Anderson
How about you?