Wednesday 29 September 2010

Sewing machine woes

Hello everyone!
It has been a busy time over in my little corner of the world.
P's Parents came to stay for the weekend. I do enjoy them coming to stay. There's loads of chatting and catching up. Loads of laughs too!
Sometimes though, I worry if I am being rude. Like when I wash up or pop off to make the beds. I think it is probably just me. I do have a tendency to worry. Even if I haven't got anything to worry about, then I worry that I have forgotten something. Go figure!
Anyhow. P's mum has helped me a huge amount with my sewing machine.
I've hardly used it over the last few months. You see, everytime I used it, the fabric would pucker, bunch up, and jam up the works. After using the trouble shooting pages in the manual, I found out that tension was the most likely problem. So I followed the instructions, and nothing changed. Next stop was Google. I must have looked at 10-15 different sites about how to fix tension problems. Sill no luck.
Stitch stitch stitch, bunch, pucker, bunch,
So I put it in the storage cupboard under the stairs. (With the cobwebs)
I very nearly put it in the bin. The ONLY thing that prevented that from happening was if there are cobwebs in the cupboard, then it stands to reason that something made them. Something I have no desire to see or be near thank you!
Now though I am happy to say that the machine and I are pals again now.

Would you like to know what the problem was?

I'm embarrassed to tell!


Each time I have threaded the machine, I have wound the cotton around the little thing that you only use to keep tension whilst winding a bobbin. Effectively double the tension. No wonder it was all puckery and bunchy!

Before help

After help

I don't think I would have ever guessed that threading would cause such a fuss!
Now the machine works like a dream. I think I need a lot more practice though.
I'm quite pleased with this little pin cushion I made this morning.

I also wanted to quickly show you the progress on Granny stripe MK2.

It's 43" wide by 22" long. I'm very pleased with it, even if I not overly keen on the colours!

Friday 24 September 2010

How I use a flower loom

Hello People!
My goodness, things have been hectic here the last few days.
P&J have both been home from work and school with man flu. Lots of tissues, and headache pills/ medicine have been taken. Lot of OOOOOOHHHH I don't feel good, and extra hugs.
Actually they have both been quite poorly, poor things! So far I seem to have escaped. Fingers crossed it stays that way! Now they are feeling better I have had some time to take the pics to go with the flower loom instructions.

Firstly tie a little knot in your yarn and wedge in in the little slit on the bottom of your loom.

Keeping the yarn fairly taught, start winding it in a figure 8 between every set of opposite pegs.

All the way around.

The number of times you wind the yarn around, will dictate the puffiness of the petals.
I've gone around 4 times. Just so you get the idea.

Finish off on the same peg you started on, and pull the yarn through the  little slit again.
Repeat again on the inner pegs.

How you do the center is up to you! All you are doing is stopping it from coming apart, and to look pretty.
I have just back stitched around.

Now pop the petals off the pegs.

Fasten off at the back and poof up the petals.

All done!
This yellow and white one was made by P.

Fantastic!! He was checking if my instructions made sense.
I hope you like it.

Tuesday 21 September 2010


This last few days has been pretty much crochet/craft free. Instead I have found myself being mechanical assistant. As I mentioned in a previous post, P's car is undergoing a a huge engine rebuild. I forgot to mention that he's doing it himself, which means so am I.
I don't have too much of  an issue with helping, it's just I can't stand having grubby/ grimy hands.
As helper/assistant my jobs are as follows:
1. Go getter of greasy things. (spanners, hammers, etc)
2. Maker of coffee, to all blokes who happen to have their head under the bonnet, or are in the shed.
3. Reader of manual/ Internet researcher.
4. Problem solver. A typical problem solving conversation goes like this:
P " Why wont it start?"
Me " I'm not sure. Have you checked blah, blah and blah?"
P " Yes any other ideas?"
Me " Coffee"
5. Body work expert.
J and I spent an entire weekend gently pulling off the nasty stickers that were on the car, using the special sticky stuff remover (that smells like fly spray) and finally giving everything a good wax/polish.
She looked lovely when we finished, but I couldn't crochet for 3 days because my hands hurt soooooooooooo much, and they were stuck in a claw like position.

P wanted a project to get his teeth into. He's definitely got that!!
She's so close to running now.  We've joined the local Subaru owners club.
 I liken it to rav, because everyone has the shared interest, and are really lovely.
We'll soon be able to go to the meets, and drive in a convoy! I truly can't wait!!

This is how she looked when we got her. A little bit tacky IMO.

After all the hard work done by J and I.

Tons better!

I hope to be hooking again soon, and have written out a how I use the flower loom. Just waiting to take the pics to go with it.

Friday 17 September 2010

Granny stripe No.2.

I've swapped my normal choice of colours, for more manly ones, to start Granny stripe no2.
It's for my dad for christmas. He likes things to be "in keeping" with his decor.
To try and reduce boredom, I'm going to try and stash bust the entire blanket.
Here's the colours.
Today's progress.

I think it will be enough yarn.
 It's smaller than granny stripe no1, and I had loads of the Stylecraft left over.
Most of the yarn I'll be using has been hanging around for the last four years. Ever since I tried my hand at knitting.
I only made one thing.

It took me 3 years to make this blanket!!!!!!
I found knitting takes to long.
Give me crochet over knitting any day of the week!!!

Thursday 16 September 2010

Flower loom

I have been playing with my flower loom today.

I bought this in a charity shop about 6 months ago, and had totally forgotten about it, until found it at the back of a draw.

I love how old fashioned the photos look!
I remember my mum had one of these looms when I was a little girl, and I loved making the flowers.
I' m a little out of practice.
Still pretty cool though!
After a bit of practice the memories came flooding back, and they started to look a little better.

I'm going to add them to the cushion I've been making.

I haven't sewn them on yet, but I think they give the whole thing a lift.

I'm already having ideas for more crafty things I can do with these flowers.
I'll post them on here soon.

Sunday 12 September 2010

A beautiful day

Today is a beautiful day.
The sun is shining, little puffy white clouds are gently floating by. The birds are chirp,chirp,chirping. Singing there little hearts out.
I'm currently sat in a sun beam writing this, feeling a warm breeze against my face.
Most of the time, I write what I'm going to say on paper, then type it out, and add the pictures later.
Starting this blog has certainly made me take notice of the little things.
 Take this flower for example.
It's one of only a few remaining.
Here's what the rest of the plant looks like.
BB.(before blog) I would have been sooooo sad that summer is coming to an end. Now I am grateful that there are still lovely things to see.
I'm seeing life in a far more positive way. Something I haven't been able to do in quite some time.
When I'm feeling a little braver I might share more about that. 
Till next time, I hope you enjoy a look at some of the things I have found lovely today.

A busy little hover fly.

A bundle of crochet blankets.

A lovely cupcake.
Better make that 2 lovely cupcakes!

Some bunting I threw together. Made out of an bag that came free with a magazine.

Friday 10 September 2010

Flower granny blanket the beginning.

I probably haven't picked the best time of year to start a new blanket. It's only a little while till Christmas, and I have plans for at least 2 blankets to make as gifts. Both of those blankets are not going to be my normal choice of colours. They are both going to be  granny stripes. One brown, beige, black and white. The other is going to be in several shades of blue.

So maybe this is going to be the last colourful blanket I make this year.
Here's my progress so far.

( please excuse my feet making an appearance!)

To start of with, I used white as the joining round, but it sucked all the peppyness out of the colours.
I'm glad I pulled it all out, and used the pink instead.

I've also made my first few felt balls.

After adding a few beads.
Yay little bracelet!
I think for the rest of this afternoon, I shall fill my kitchen with more felting wool, and the smells of lavender soap!

Tuesday 7 September 2010

Circle in a granny square // Flower in a granny square.

Here's my version of Circle / Flower in a granny square.
Ch 4, Join to form a ring.

Ch3 (counts as first )tr
15 tr into ring. (16tr) Join to to of beginning 3ch.
Fasten off.

Round 2.
Join new colour in the space between the spokes. NOT the top of the stitches,

Ch 3 ( counts as 1st tr ) ,1tr, ch1.

Then work (2tr tog,ch1) in every little space all the way around.

Join to top of beginning 3ch.
You should have 16 2tr clusters.
Fasten off.

Round 3.
Join new colour in the 1ch space between tr clusters.

Ch 5 (counts as 1dc, 4ch. )
Miss 2 tr clusters, then work 1dc.

4ch, Skip 2tr clusters, 1dc in next 1ch space, all the way around.
Join in the first ch of beginning 5ch.

Round 4
slst into first 4ch loop. ch 3 (counts as first tr ) 2tr,ch2,3tr. in same loop.

3tr in next loop.

3tr, 2ch, 3tr, in next loop.

First side done!
Now work 3tr in next loop, ch1
3tr, ch2, 3tr, in next loop, ch1
3tr in next loop, ch1
3tr, ch2, 3tr in next loop, ch1
3tr in next loop, ch1.
Join to top of beginning ch.
Fasten off.

Round 5
Join new colour to any 2ch space.

Ch 3 ( counts as first tr ) 2tr, 2ch, 3tr in same space, ch1.

3tr ch1 in next 1ch space.

3tr, ch1 in next 1ch space.

3tr,2ch,3tr in next 2ch space,ch1
3tr,1ch in next 1ch space
3tr,1ch in next 1ch space.
3tr,2ch,3tr in next 2ch space,ch1
3tr,1ch in next 1ch space.
3tr,1ch in next 1ch space.
3tr,2ch,3tr in next 2ch space, ch1
3tr,ch1 in next 1ch space.
3tr,ch1 in next 1ch space.
Join to top of beginning 3ch.
Fasten off.

You are done! 1 circle in a granny square!
If you would like to do the flower in a granny square.
Join new colour to the right hand st of the 2x tr missed in round 3.

Ch1 (counts as 1dc) 1htr,1tr.
in same st
work 1tr,1htr,1dc. In next st

Now work *1dc,1htr,1tr in next skipped st.
in next st work 1tr,1htr,1dc*

Rep from *to* 6 more times.
Join to beginning 1ch.
Fasten off.
That should be just about it!

If you find any mistakes let me know and I'll correct them.