Thursday, 30 July 2015

How to :: Foundation Half Treble (fhtr) ::

How to make a foundation half treble stitch (fhtr) or if you're using US terminology, foundation half double crochet (fhdc) ::

I love using this stitch and it's counterparts (fdc and ftr) because it creates a much more flexible foundation row for your crochet stitches than the traditional row of chains, it's also a really good way of starting a project if you want to turn and work into the underside of the stitches as it creates really clear loops in which to work into on the underneath. It's also really easy and in my opinion much quicker than the chaining option.

I've put together a little video showing you how to construct the the stitch ::

Tuesday, 28 July 2015

Design Wars Challenge with Scheepjeswol ::

I'm so excited to reveal my newest design for the Design Wars Challenge. If you don't know about Design Wars, it's a weekly challenge pitting 2 (sometimes more) designers against each other. Usually the designers use the same yarn, sometimes they follow a theme, both produce a pattern and the public votes for their favourite. The last time I took part was back in 2013 before the challenge went weekly, you can see my entry over hereYou may remember me posting about starting my design process back in May over here

The theme for this weeks design challenge was the gorgeous Sunkissed yarn from Scheepjeswol. This cotton yarn has a hand dyed effect, which produces lovely subtle colour changes, it's also really nice to work with, no splitting, which is pretty rare in my experiences with cotton yarn.

Obviously babies and baby garments are heavily on my mind recently, so I was very eager to turn this yarn in to something especially for my little Effie. Inspired by the many envelope neckline vests she has in her wardrobe, I made this envelope style t-shirt. I absolutely adore this Oceanside colourway and paired it with Scheepjeswol's Cotton 8 in Canary to add a pop of colour to the edgings.

I liked it so much I sized it up for Milo too. I moved the little pocket up to his chest to make it a little more boyish and made his in Rockpool, with a red trim.

My competitor for this weeks challenge is the wonderfully talented Ana of Accessorise, with this gorgeous crochet shawl.

You can cast your vote for your favourite of the designs over here.

The pattern will be available to purchase on ravelry from Thursday and if you use coupon code DWSALE you can get 50% off until Saturday too! 

Monday, 27 July 2015

Life Recently ::

Apologies for my sudden unexplained disappearance, life has been very strange and all consuming of late. Just as the summer holidays got ready to kick off, after over 3 months of waiting we were told we would be ready to exchange on our first house purchase, it's been a long time coming, we've been looking for 2 years, offered on 5 different houses, but finally it seemed as though we were actually going to be buying a house. However just as we were in the throes of packing we heard that the vendors we were buying from had pulled out. It was annoying and frustrating, but not the end of the world, these things happen. Unfortunately though, as we'd told our landlord we were buying a house, he is now expecting us to move out. We found ourselves with 2 weeks to find another place to live. Obviously there is no way we can buy a house in that short amount of time, so we're having to rent again. There was one 3 bedroom house to rent in the area, which we'll find out today whether or not we'll be able to have. It's all been so very stressful and exhausting, but I keep reminding myself to stay positive and really there could be a lot worse things happening than this.

One big thing that has lifted my spirits is the viewing of house on Saturday, a house which is just so perfect for us. We'll be making an offer today and we're keeping everything crossed that finally our luck will start to change. In the meantime, I'm going through all our possessions reorganising it into stuff we're going to need for the next 6 months and stuff to put into storage until we finally finally get a home of our own. In the meantime, I'll be over on pinterest fantasising about interiors!

Wish us luck!

Sunday, 5 July 2015

Wednesday, 1 July 2015

How to :: Rainbow Smile Necklace ::

Use crochet or knitted i-cord to make a fun, bright necklace.

Following on from yesterdays "Crochet I-Cord' post, today I'm sharing with you a little tutorial on what you can make from all that lovely i-cord. I simply made this necklace as a way of using up all the icord I myself had been making, I raided my jewellery making supplies and gathered together a rainbow of cords.

It's pretty easy to put together and such a fun and bright piece of jewellery. Of course you don't need to make a rainbow, I think it would look fab all in the one colour or use a super chunky yarn to make just one big cord.

So if you fancy having a go you can find the i-cord tutorial here, though if you'd rather you can also knit your i-cords.

Tuesday, 30 June 2015

How to :: Crochet I-Cord ::

Tutorial and video, explaining how to crochet i-cord.

I have a little jewellery making tutorial coming up that requires the use of some crochet I-Cord (though you can totally use knitted I-Cord too if you'd rather). So I figured before sharing that with you I'll give you a little tutorial on how to make the I-Cord itself first.

Tutorial and video, explaining how to crochet i-cord.

I-Cord is really very, very simple to make, both with knitting and crochet and is simply a lovely little tube of stitches, ideal for adding to all kinds of projects, or can even be knit/crocheted with itself.

Crochet i-cord is essentially exactly the same as knitted i-cord the way I make it, but if you're not comfortable with knitting or just find crochet easier on the whole, this is a great technique. I haven't yet timed myself, but I'm also fairly confident this way is much quicker for me.

Tutorial and video, explaining how to crochet i-cord.

All you need is some yarn and a crochet hook in a size best suited to your yarn. I've made a video which gives you a step by step guide, but if you'd rather words and pictures I have those for you too, just keep scrolling.

Friday, 26 June 2015

9 Months ::

Last week Miss Effie Tallulah turned 9 months, meaning she's been out in the world growing as long as she was inside growing. She is turning into such a feisty independent little character.

Crawling is now very much established and she's quick, much too quick, she also fears nothing, so must be watched like a hawk at all times, also she will put EVERYTHING she finds on the ground in her mouth. I made a beanbag last week, so I've spent the majority of last 7 days retrieving polystyrene balls from her mouth. She's started to pull herself up now too, not on the sofas yet, but anything a little shorter and she's up. I am very much not ready for walking yet. Of course she'll probably decide to do that the week we move house, but I am hopeful it will a long way off yet, Milo was well past one before he started.

She now has two very prominent bottom teeth. She's recently discovered she can actually use these to take little chunks off things, which she seems very proud of, I love watching her bite small pieces of rice cakes off with them, a look of satisfaction in her eyes.

Routine-wise not a lot has changed since last month, still having 4 milk feeds a day, 3 meals and one nap in the morning, sometimes a little afternoon catnap if given the opportunity.

She is cheeky! She seems to understand 'no' now and is aware of the things she's not supposed to touch/put in her mouth, I can tell this by the way she looks at me whilst doing exactly that as if to say 'look Mum I'm going to do that thing you don't like'. For the most part though, when you tell her 'no' she usually does stop.

She blows kisses and gives out high fives, she tries to clap, but isn't all that successful! She'll also come to me now and put her arms up to be lifted/cuddled. I completely forgot how it feels to be needed in this way. Milo's so much older than her and so independent he rarely needs me for cuddles. It's really lovely to have someone who does, even though I know it won't last forever. Which is exactly what I keep reminding myself when I feel like she's attached my hip and I'm not getting anything done.

She makes a lot of sounds now and has a lot of chat, but not really any words. So far we have 'at' (cat or any kind of animal) 'dad-eee' (daddy, of course she can see daddy and not mama and calls for him regularly throughout the day when he is at work!) and as of yesterday 'ilo' (milo, which prior to yesterday was 'arah' repeated very loudly when waiting for him outside school or when he was ignoring her). I'm not going to lie it would be nice to hear 'mama' soon, but I'm sure it will come soon enough.

She's such a happy, friendly, smiley, sociable baby and I'm so lucky to have her.
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