Sunday, 31 October 2010

Sweet Baby Crochet Book

My blog today comes in three parts. The photos are all from the Sweet Baby Crochet book by Sandy Scoville and Denise Black. I like almost every project in this book which is a rarity for a crochet book. Normally I just like one or two things in the book but with the exception of the baby bibs, christening dress and coat hangers I think that I would make everything else in the book if only I had the time.

Sorry for my lack of posting but I am still feeling incredibly tired all of the time. The knee continues to improve but I am turning into Rip Van Winkle. I haven't done much crochet or knitting as I keep falling asleep. Yesterday I crashed out on the bed for a couple of hours in the middle of the day which is unheard of for me. I don't think that I have managed to watch a full TV programme from start to finish this week without falling asleep. I even fell asleep when I turned my S.A.D light on so what does that say? It's supposed to stimulate my brain but I guess that it didn't work on me that day. I have it on now as I type and hope that it manages to keep me awake as I have some housework to do.

I was up extra early today as I forgot all about the clocks being turned back an hour. I got up when my body clock said it was time to get up and didn't realise for a while that I should have put the clocks back an hour. It will take my body clock even longer to adjust now.

I am still plodding on with my crochet jacket. It is turning out to be quite an epic. I am on the last sleeve now and then only have the belt to make. My niece has got me the navy aran wool from the Yarn Barn to make the jacket for my other niece's friend's birthday so that will be the next project to start. The scarf is not needed until the 6th December for Louise's birthday so I will work on that as and when I want something that I don't have to concentrate on. I can take that with me when I go to hospital appointments.

I hope that you enjoy all of the photos in the baby book. I would love to start something from it but I really must press on with my other stuff first. Making crochet baby clothes is something that I really enjoy doing.

Sweet Baby Crochet - part 2

Part Two pf the photos from Sweet Baby Crochet by Sandy Scoville and Denise Black. I love the little top with the matching panties.

Sweet Baby Crochet - part 3

The third set of photos from the Sweet Baby Crochet book by Sandy Scoville and Denise Black. I just love the little hoodie jackets.

Thursday, 28 October 2010

Crochet Today Nov - Dec Issue

Photos from the latest crochet Today magazine that arrived yesterday. Sadly another issue where there isn't much that I will use. If I was an afghan crocheter then there are a couple of stitches that I like.

I do wish that I had somewhere local who stocked crochet magazines and then I could browse before I buy but as it is I have to subscribe to get them which means I get a lot of magazines that I would not otherwise have bought. I can sometimes pick up copies of crochet magazines in W.H.Smith but I have to travel into Manchester as the one in Bury does not stock them all. Interweave crochet is one that I have to subscribe to as most places only stock the Interweave Knitting.

The fingerless mittens and the green baby jacket are, to me, the best of the patterns this issue. The Kings Arms Knitters Club are doing a Happy Knitmas with tree and other decorations for the Knit Club so the Christmas Trees Garland might come in useful for that project.

The baby crochet book that arrived at the same time has some things in it that I will use and I will post photos tomorrow.

Sylvia got me a set of scales for weighing wool. I admired her set and said how useful they are when making things when the wool appears to be running out. I can weigh the one sleeve, bootee or sock that I have made and then weigh the remaining wool to check there is enough before I carry on with the second one.

I am having a PJ day today. I had a rather sleepless night and that has left me a bit droopy so I have just been nodding off on my recliner in between doing a bit of crochet and watching a bit of daytime TV. I have knitted 100 grams into Louise's scarf and asked my niece to get me some extra wool as Louise wants a long wrap around the neck scarf. I have worked a bit more on the sleeve of my crochet jacket but I am having to amend the pattern as the sleeves on the pattern are straight without shaping and my arms are quite chunky at the top so I am increasing and so will then have to do a bit of altering for the sleeve head shaping. I had made the armhole a bit deeper than the pattern as when I tried it on that was also a bit too snug so the larger sleeve head will still fit it. I am getting quite used to doing this sort of thing. Lots of patterns for plus sizes seem to forget that if a lady is plus sized then she is likely to have wider arms at the top.

Hopefully I will stay awake this evening to do some more knitting and crocheting. My niece has gone to the Yarn Barn in Shaw today to get some aran for my other niece's friend's Navy jacket and has hopefully picked me up another couple of balls of the grey for Louise's scarf. I have quite a lot of things to make before Christmas so I had better find my energy and my mojo before then.

Wednesday, 27 October 2010

Secret Project Revealed

Yesterday was my friend Sylvia's birthday and so I can reveal the secret project that I have been working on. I used the Blue Heaven Sweater pattern from the Crochet Closet by Lisa Gentry. This time, however, I made the body longer and altered the sleeves from the elbow length bell shape of my blue cardigan to a straighter long sleeve. Sylvia is always telling me that she has long arms but I think I went a little mad with the sleeve length and she has to turn the sleeve up a to make a cuff. I used 6 x 100 grams of King Cole Riot DK in Shade 403.

It was nice to have an afternoon out and even nicer to have my dinner made for me. I am not sure how that worked out. It was Sylvia's birthday and yet she finished up cooking dinner for me and her daughter!. That doesn't seem fair does it? Both of the foster babies have not been well with coughs and colds so the elder one was a bit whiny and clingy. The baby was just full of a cold. Sylvia's daughter brought her dog so that cheered the elder child up. Luckily the dog is very patient with being patted and dragged about.

Today I have been out for most of the day. I had to go to physio at the Hospital. I mentioned the swelling in my knee to the physio but wouldn't you know - it wasn't too bad this lunch time so not much for them to see. It's always the way isn't it. It's like dental appointments and when you get there the tooth has stopped aching. They measured my knee bend angle and despite my thinking that my knee was a lot worse they actually said my movement was better by a couple of degrees. Still far from where it should be but still heading in the right direction.

Today the postman brought me a crochet baby book that I had pre ordered ages ago from Amazon and a copy of the latest Crochet Today. I will show you those tomorrow. I have also started knitting the scarf for Louise and managed to knit about 8" whilst waiting around at the hospital. I have still only done the cuff of the first sleeve of my crochet jacket. I didn't want to take that with me as I would have had to carry the hook with me as well to read about the sleeve shaping so I decided that a mindless scarf was better knitting for picking up and putting down in the middle of a row at the hospital.

I am hoping that my niece hasn't been to the Yarn Barn for the navy wool for Kath's friend's cardigan as I have a feeling that I will need more wool for Louise's scarf. She wants a long scarf so it takes a lot more wool than you think especially as I am making it in Fisherman's Rib. Even more wool if she wants a fringe on the ends.

I am still feeling rather droopy despite putting myself on some vitamin tablets. I have no energy and even fell asleep whilst waiting for the appointment ambulance to collect me this morning. Luckily my bag was packed and I was ready to go. The driver had to beep his horn to wake me up! Good job that the recliner is in the bay window so he could see me. I am still not sleeping well at night so that is one cause for my daytime nodding.

Monday, 25 October 2010

Increasing My Stash Yet Again

Well I did go to the official opening of Purl City Yarns so how could I come away without buying something? I think that I was remarkably restrained considering all the goodies that were on display to choose from. Lovely as some of the yarns are as you know I do have a problem wearing anything wool so I chose some King Cole Bamboo Cotton DK as that is lovely and silky smooth and I know that it won't itch me in wear. I haven't yet decided what I will make with it so for the moment it is just in stash.
I bought 5 King Cole patterns. 3 for crochet and 2 for knitting. As the patterns are double sided I photographed them on one side and then the other so it looks like I bought 10 patterns. As you already know I find it very difficult not to buy every crochet pattern and book that I see but this time I didn't buy every one. When I manage to go down for another visit then the rest might get bought then.
I have almost finished my secret project and will photograph it and show it on the blog later in the week. I also crocheted a cuff for my jacket so that will be the next thing to get finished. My niece went to Yarn Barn in Shaw for some wool for me to make a scarf for a friend's birthday in December and my other niece's friend has chosen her pattern for a knitted cardigan so I will ask my local niece if she can get the wool for that. I think that this next couple of months is going to be a busy knitting time for me.
I went to the local Farmers Market on Sunday. They come about 4 times a year to the precinct. I just love the French bread. It does help that the two guys who sell it are very handsome and have such lovely accents! This time I managed to get to the stall as they had left a gap for my scooter to fit through. The downside of this was that I spent far more as I could see all of the wares. The pastries at the front of the photo were delicious. One was raisin and was similar to a Danish pastry and the long pastry was filled with chocolate and some kind of a custard cream filling and was truly scrummy.
I also bought some lamb for the freezer and some Greek Moussaka for later in the week. I cooked a Lamb Henry yesterday and there is enough left over for my dinner tonight. I am not sure which part of a lamb the Henry comes from but I roasted it like a leg and it was very tasty.
Time to finish off the secret project and then scoot up to the bank to pay something off my credit card. I have not been adding to the card but it does have the scooter and the recliner armchair on it. It will get paid off very soon but no doubt I will have to use the card over Christmas for presents etc. I am glad that I bought both of them instead of saving up for them as they have both come in very useful in making my life easier over the past couple of months.
It's cold again today and next door's cat is curled up on the spare bed in the warm.He is not daft. He leaves his house in the morning and decides it's too cold to be prowling the street so comes and taps on my patio door to come in here. No doubt when he leaves me he will tap on the window of next door to be let back in again. It's a cat's life!

Saturday, 23 October 2010

Great Afternoon of Crochet

I had a fun afternoon/evening out at the official opening of Purl City Yarns. It was great to sit and chatter knitting and crochet with lots of crafty folk. Some that I had met before and others that I met for the first time. When these photos were taken it was late afternoon and so the crowds hadn't arrived by then. Charlotte's Father and Mother came and as the Mayor of Stockton resplendent in his mayoral chains he cut the ribbon that officially opened the shop and the gallery upstairs. There was a film show later in the evening but as it was upstairs in the gallery and it was heaving with people I elected not to slowly ascend the staircase and hold everyone up. Apparently it will be shown again so perhaps I can view it on a less crowded day.
I had a good chat to Sean and a couple of students from the MMU who are studying design and using crochet and machine knitting. Chatting to them and seeing some photos of Sean's work made me think once again about getting my bigger knitting machine cleaned up and working properly again. I have all the gadgets and gizmos for it and it would solve the problem of my slow knitting. Well it will once I remember how everything works. It has been many years since I used it properly. Crochet will always be my first love though.
As you can see from the photos there is plenty of stock to chose from and Charlie is adding more every day. I had a good browse and decided on some King Cole Cotton and a few patterns which I will show you tomorrow. A lot of the people who came bought something so I hope that they will make plenty return visits as it is good to have a quality wool shop in Manchester. I can't wear wool as you know but there are so many people in Manchester who appreciate the chance to view the top end wools in real life. I have ordered many things from the Internet as my shopping ability is somewhat limited at the moment and it is always a surprise when the things arrive as they are never quite the colour that I thought I was ordering. Purl City Yarns has the King Cole Riot in stock so when I need more stocks I know where I can see the colours properly.
For those of you unable to visit the shop I have been told that the website for mail. order will be up and running very soon - possibly next week. I have also put the blog link through my blog title so that you can keep up to date should you wish to do so.
At the moment I am crocheting a hush hush project so I can't update you on my work at the moment. All will be revealed at a later date. I still have the two sleeves to crochet on my jacket but that has taken a back seat once again as I push on with my secret project. I have just been asked by my London Niece to knit a cardigan for her friend. I did promise this friend that I would knit her one a while ago when we were chatting at my niece's wedding but she has had a baby in between and has only just got around to deciding on what she wants. My niece is going to get the wool for me and send it to my address. My niece is away in Spain at a family wedding at the moment but will be back next week.
I will have to be starting my Christmas presents soon as some of them will be knitted and my knitting is far slower than my crochet.
My knee has felt like it has been run over by a bus since the physio. I am back to day one pain wise. I know that it is going to hurt but what is alarming me more is that since my scar healed my knee is starting to swell back up again making the knee bends even more difficult to do. I just feel that if I could get this swelling down then the knee exercises would be a doddle and I would be walking again. I haven't felt much like blogging over the last couple of days. When I hit a down day I try not to inflict myself on other people. My blog would have just been one long moaning woe is me rant and not very interesting.
I have bought another subscription in for the Interweave Crochet magazine and I am hoping that they don't keep up the trend of adding knitting to their magazine. I debated whether to renew but as I find it so hard to find copies to buy in the newsagents I decided to take a chance on the new editions improving.

Wednesday, 20 October 2010

First Physio Class

I have just been for my first physio knee class at the hospital. My knee now aches so much I want to scream. I know that I have to do the exercises but they were so hard and most of the class had their knee ops weeks before mine. I didn't feel quite so much of a wimp though when I realised that a lot of people were still struggling with the knee bends that I find so hard when I would have thought that they would have been further advanced than I am. Apparently I have to concentrate on getting the muscles to work behind my knees when the swelling goes down. When I asked for ideas on how to move this swelling which is stopping me from bending my knee they didn't give me an answer. I asked my specialist after the op if it would go down and he said that he didn't know.Maybe it would , maybe it won't. No one seems to know the answer to this question. It is this swelling that is stopping me from bending my knee properly. I have tried ice packs as the hospital suggested and today the physio suggested to use heat so I am none the wiser.
Today I managed to finish the band on my long jacket. I have the sleeves and the tie belt ( if I decide to make one) still to make. I think that the jacket is a bit on the small side for me but then I am supposed to be losing weight and crochet always 'gives' a little in wear. Apart from it's snugness it looks quite nice even though it doesn't yet have it's sleeves.
Today I went to the hospital via the appointment ambulance. It means waiting around for it to call for me and then waiting around for it to pick me back up again but I just don't feel confident enough to face the lurching of the buses and trams until I can get rid of the crutches. I am now allowed to walk about the house without them but still need to take them out with me if I go for a walk. I didn't mention that I have a scooter as the range that it does would not take me to the hospital and back again . Walking up to Tesco and carrying shopping is something for the future anyway so I will continue to use the scooter when I need to shop and save the walking for around the block where the pavement is more on the level. As I have mentioned before I live on a hill and I don't feel up to walking up and down inclines just yet. I have been told never to carry heavy shopping bags after my spinal operation so when I can walk again it will be back to the trusty old shopping trolley.
The weather today is nice and sunny but quite cold. My neighbours cars all had a coating for frost on them when I woke up. Last night I had to bribe the neighbour's cat with chicken to leave the house. Every time he stuck his nose outside in the cold he dashed back in. He must have needed the loo as he had been in most of the day. He is sleeping on the spare bed as I type. He doesn't like the cold weather at all.
My knee has now stiffened up so perhaps I will try that heat and massage.. I feel muscle bound like someone who has been in the gym too long for the first time. I hope that this feeling passes soon as I didn't sleep last night and so I don't fancy another night of wakefulness.

Tuesday, 19 October 2010

Trying To Remember The Pattern

I know from browsing on Ravelry that some people like to have loads of WIP on the go. I am terrible if I do that. Once I put something down it takes me forever to find out where I am up to on the pattern and forever to resume from where I left off. I haven't touched this jacket since before I went into hospital and today I managed to sort out where I thought that I was up to on the pattern and crochet the two fronts. Now that I have started the back the fronts look very small although the jacket does have a very wide front band. The pattern also looks a bit short in the armholes for my chunky arms so I may have to add a couple more rows onto each piece before I finish off completely for the shoulder seams.

I spent the other day unravelling a couple of WIP as I decided that they never would reach completion and so I was ruthless and ripped them apart. Once a WIP goes beyond a certain time I figure that I must not really want it or need it otherwise I would have finished it off by now. I still have a babies hooded jacket that I started just after Christmas that just needs a half of a sleeve the hood and the bands. As I mentioned the other day it will now fit the younger brother and not the older one that it was intended for. It is one of those pieces of knitting that I just can't seem to find enthusiasm for.In this case it is the colour that I don't like. I don't know about you but if I like what I am crocheting then it flies off the hook. If I don't like the pattern stitch or the wool that I am using then it can take me forever to make it.

My scar is now healing nicely. The District Nurse still hasn't been. I was supposed to get a visit on Monday but no-one called. I am out to the hospital tomorrow for physio so I bet that they call then. If they don't call soon then I will ring them up as they are supposed to sign me off from treatment on all of the paperwork otherwise it looks as though my treatment has not been completed. I was hoping to get out today for a bit of fresh air but it has been raining solidly since I got up this morning so I think fresh air will be delayed until tomorrow when I have to go out.

I am hoping to get down to Purl City Yarns on Friday for the grand Opening between 2 - 8pm. I now feel mobile enough to get a taxi there and see the shop and the stock for myself. This is an extract from the e mail that I got inviting me to the opening

***Join us at Purl City Yarns this Friday for a double whammy yarn filled event, that should not to be missed!!!

Between 2pm - 9pm we would love you to come along to our Grand Opening where we will have knitting, crochet and spinning demos throughout the day with nibbles, wine and much more ...

Then, at 6pm we have the very first exhibition opening at Purl Gallery (above the shop) of Knit and Destroy's new exhibition 'Knit and Destroy Goes To The Movies' by Kandy Diamond.
Join us in the gallery for wine and popcorn, meet the artist and get the first look at our brand new gallery.

To all of those yarn fanatics who have already visited the shop since we opened on the 12th October thank you for all your purchases, support and enthusiasm - we have been really pleased to meet you all.

If you haven't yet visited us then this Friday is the time to come and see what we have in the shop - we look forward to seeing you in the shop.

Until then please visit our blog to keep right up to date with everything that is happening at the shop:

See you Friday :o) and please feel free to invite all your friends along... ***

I am going to try to finish off the bodywork on the ribbed crochet jacket tonight. Not sure if I will start the sleeves next or tackle the wide band that I will need to add. That will be like crocheting all around an afghan. It's a good job that the weather isn't warm as it makes a very good knee warmer as I am crocheting it.

Monday, 18 October 2010

Shh Don't Wake Me I Am Napping

Just a few lines to say that I am OK but just incredibly sleepy. I am not sleeping through the night and doing a good impersonation of a Jack In A Box in and out of bed, wandering around the house when I am supposed to be in bed sleeping. My knee just decides to ache the most as soon as I get into bed.

This means that whenever I am supposed to be awake I am in my chair napping. I have been like Rip Van Winkle these last couple of days. Every time I pick up my crochet I nod off over it. Good job that nothing has a deadline to be finished!.

I also feel really cold despite wearing a fleece jacket and cranking up the heating. I hope that I am not sickening for something. The good news is that, touch wood, the scar seems to be healing at last. I am just waiting for the District Nurse to call to confirm this.

Thanks Linda and everyone for all of your advice. My knee feels very stiff and numb as I haven't been doing the exercises properly. No doubt I will get a telling off when I go to physio on Wednesday. I hope that they put me back on the machine that works my knee for me as I found that to be a great help whilst I was in hospital. They really should loan them out for people like me who haven't used their knee properly for years before the operation.

Saturday, 16 October 2010

Blue Curacao Shawl

Everytime that I use the Blue Curacao Shawl pattern by Doris Chan from tne Amazing Lace Book I promise myself that one day I will make one for myself. This version has been changed to add two more rows of pineapples as the wool was finer than the wool specified for the pattern. I used 6 x 40 grams of Patons Promise Brushed DK for this version, It is now in the post and I hope that Debra will get it on Monday or Tuesday.

I got a Tesco online food order today. I always seem to spend far more money when I shop online than I do when I visit the store so I hope to be out and about and doing my own shopping very soon.

I have spend a bit of today tidying up the plastic set of drawers that I keep my WIP in. Today I was ruthless and took back and rewound a couple of WIP that I just know that I will never finish. I decided to unravel the Tunisian crochet as it was working out rather thick in my sample so would have made a rather rigid baby cardigan. I have found the long jacket that I was part way through making before I went into hospital and found the rest of the wool so I am poised to crochet some more on that after dinner.

I have been feeling rather tired today so I doubt that much crochet will get done today. Oscar, next door's cat has been asleep on the spare bed for most of the day but has now decided to go home. He had his breakfast at my house and when I made no moves to feed him again he decided to go home! Hopefully I will get some crochet done tonight although unless there is something on the TV to grab my interest I will probably have a doze in the recliner. I hope that I don't do that as then I won't sleep all night through.

My dinner is pinging. My menu consists of very easy or ready to eat meals as I just don't feel like chopping and cooking at the moment. Another thing that will hopefully come back soon. It takes me all of my time to cook a bit of bacon for a breakfast sandwich. Today I just had a piece of toast. I would have stayed in bed for a little while longer but I knew that my niece was calling early as was Tesco Direct so no chance of that happening.