Nature and crochet courses

24th November

The sky as I came out of the supermarket yesterday
Sometime just sometimes nature makes me stop in my tracks and yesterday was one of those days.  I know that the natural phenomenon of the world can produce disasters and frightening conditions but  on the other hand mother nature and the world around us is awe inspiring.  Yesterdays sunset in Oxfordshire was truly spectacular.  Are you near, did you see it?  Luckily, I had my camera and so could take a few shots but as with anything amateurish, it does not do the sunset justice, but I had to share, it made me so happy yesterday.

As I came out of the supermarket yesterday, the whole sky has the most amazing glow to it.  I was stopped in my tracks and immediately just looked all around and soaked it in.  I had actually just stopped in the entrance of the supermarket and so caused a bit of a commotion and had to move almost in a drunken state of awe.  People around me must have thought I was nuts.  Quickly I scrambled to the car to retrieve my camera worried that the sky would change before I had a chance to pull off the camera cap, but the sky stayed this amazing orange pinky purple for about half an hour.  I do abhor it when people forget to soak up the moment and rush to video or take photographs.  How many parents fail to watch their child in a performance 'live' because they are busy filming?  but after having soaked up the sky yesterday, I too wanted to 'capture' it!

Such strong contrasts

This is my road, how beautiful a journey home yesterday

The reflection in the puddle was amazing

...and finally onto some personal news.  I am moving my crochet life onto the next level and will be running a six week course on a Thursday evening starting in January.  We will be making blankets.  Already 4 of the 6 places are taken, but if you live in the Oxfordshire area, near Wallingford and would like to join in, just give me a shout at eclectichomeandlife[at}gmail[dot]com  Wish me luck in this new phase!

Letter and crochet bag with Norwegian biscuit inside,
food and crochet go hand in hand, don't you think?

  Happy Monday everyone

Attic 24 Cosy CAL Part 3 Scandinavian style

23rd November

It's beginning to look a lot like a blanket

This blanket is almost making itself. In three weeks of hooking it up with I feel very little effort I am now half way to completion. Any one making this great blanket? Do you feel the same?

Those of you who maybe interested the previous posts relating to what colours I use, where they can be purchased from and colour order to date can be found on the following links: 
and here

This weeks 15 colour order is as follows:  
This week I  began and ended with white rows

White rows 61 & 62
Cream rows 63 & 64
Silver rows 65 & 66
White rows 67 & 68
Cream rows 69 & 70
Stone rows 71 & 72
White rows 73 & 74
Silver rows 75  & 76
White rows 77 & 78
Parchment rows 79 & 80
Cream rows 81 & 82
Stone rows 83 & 84
Parchment rows 85 & 86
Silver rows 87 & 88
White rows 89 & 90

I think the blanket is coming alive and growing well.
A few pics of it in situ around the house ...

A sea of neutral

Wherever I laid the blanket the cat found it!

I love the contrast of the calming blanket
colours with the hot pink bench
I am also beavering away with Christmas decorations and gifts to make and thought you maybe interested in making incredibly quick felted slippers, just in case follow this link and enjoy! felted-slippers
Enjoy your week and I will post
the next colours next Sunday, the last Sunday of November!

Felted slippers

21st November
My mother has always knitted and crocheted for as long as I can remember as did her mother and her
Felted slippers are toasty warm
mother before that.  I crochet, a lot and I knit, a little.  It is one of the things that next year I would like to correct and even out the balance a bit.  Saying that, one thing I have knitted recently are slippers.  The pattern I use is an old one my mother swears by and goodness knows how many hundreds of these she has made over the years.  When I told mamma that I wanted to write a blog about these slippers, she set to for me and began knitting in earnest, these are her slippers and her pattern.

You will need:

100% wool, you will need just over 100g
recommended knitting needles size 5.5

These slippers can be made in a variety of sizes

age 2-4 (age 6-8)  age 10-12 (female) male      [So there are 5 sizes in this pattern] 

These slippers have to come with a warning I  am afraid! 
They are warm, toasty warm.  There will be no cold toes in your house with these felted slippers!

Cast on 48 (52) 56 (64) 68 stitches

Knit in garter stitch till the work measures 12 (12) 13 (13) 14 cm    

Cast off 8 stitches on each side of the children sizes
and cast off 10 stitches on each side of  the adult sizes
so you will have 30 (34) 38 (44) 48 stitches left
Carry on with garter stitch until the work measures 18 (21) 24 (28) 31 cm

On the next row you will need to knit 2 together till the end of the row
Then knit two rows without decreasing
Now knit another row knit 2 together until the end of the row
Again knit two rows without decreasing
Knit a further row of knit 2 together till the end of the row
Finally knit two rows without decreasing
Cut off the yarn leaving a very long tails, so you have enough to sew the slipper together
It should look like this...

Fold the slipper in half, using the long piece of yarn, sew the slipper together... it should look like this. 
The top section is kept open, enabling ease of getting slipper on and off

Now your slipper is ready for washing and felting.  I tend to wash them with my usual washing detergent, in Norway mamma uses something called gronnsape,
a product often used for washing wooden floors!
Place in the machine and wash on a high temperature, about 60 degrees.
When washed and wet, leave to dry naturally, but they may need a little shaping and pulling here and there, quite a good idea to put them on to help the shaping!

This is what the knitting should look like before final decreasing rows

Slipper sewn together and ready for felting

Lots of slippers, great as gifts, or to have ready in the house for guests

Almost a little elf's workshop going on here!

These belong to Mr H and number one son

I have a few pairs, but these girlie ones are my current favourite,
of course in December my ultimate favourite pair will be worn,
RED of course!

This pose took some photographing, I can tell you!

I dare you to make a pair, you will be hooked and everyone once they have tried a pair on will want some.  Get the wool in and start knitting!!! Let me know how you get on!  As an aside, mamma once made these as table presents for everyone on Christmas day, it went down really well.  just an idea ;)

♥ CAL blanket update will be posted on Sunday ♥
Thank you mamma for making these slippers so I could write this particular post, love you to the moon and back

Cosy cal with Lucy from Attic 24

November 16th

Loving the look of the stripes

I am loving this CAL with Lucy from Attic 24.  It is the easiest blanket and project ever, I am able to be with the family and fully interact in conversations and yet crochet too, just one stitch.  Genius.  Thank you Lucy !  Also thank you for featuring my blanket on your gallery too.

So how is it coming along this week, as said, I couldn't help but pick it up at odd times and whilst it is still relatively small has made a few outings with me, but that may have to stop soon as it grows...


Crocheting whilst out having coffee this week

I even crocheted at the hairdressers!

It now covers my legs, yeah, it is growing

I am really enjoying the CAL and I must confess to being delighted and surprised by the gracious comments people are making about my colour choices.  I had hoped to post the next 15 colours, but am only posting 14, apologies...

So the next colour stripes are:

16  Parchment rows 31 & 32
17  Cream rows 33 & 34
18  Silver rows 35 & 36
19  Stone rows 37 & 38
20  White rows 39 & 40
21  Stone rows 41 & 42
22  Cream rows 43 & 44
23  Parchment rows 45 & 46
24  Silver rows 47 & 48
25  White rows 49 & 50
26  Stone rows 51 & 52
27  Parchment rows 53 & 54
28  White rows 55 & 56
29  Cream rows 57 & 58
and colour stripe 30 will be Silver will be rows 59 & 60
To see the previous colour stripes list follow link  here
So what does the blanket look like so far, here are a few snaps taken
outside my house this fine Sunday morning.

♥ Do let me know what you think
and share your photos of your blankets too ♥

Scandinavian influenced Attic 24 Cosy cal COLOURS

November 11th

I would like to say a huge thank you for the over whelming response to yesterday's post about  my CAL blanket with Lucy at Attic 24.  If you missed the post, you can find it here

Also as it is Remembrance day, I have popped my poppy ring in the corner.  should you wish to make your own follow the link here
I love colour and have been adding as much as I dare to our home before the family tell me it is enough.  But even I needed a colour break and so when my son switched bedrooms with the spare room a couple of weeks ago, before I moved all the spare room furniture back in I decided some redecorating was in order and do you know what?  I didn't choose gorgeous vibrant happy and cheerful colours.  Instead I opted for a Scandinavian influence of calm and natural.  I painted the blue wooden floorboards an off white cream colour and will be slowly adding more and more neutrals into the room.  So Lucy's CAL Cosy blanket came just at the right time for me to add a little personal touch into the bedroom, so it had to be calming and neutral. Not my normal choice!

Lucy recommended using Stylecraft Special DK and having used it before myself was keen to do the same.  I hopped over to one of my favourite wool websites, follow link here , searched through the vast array of colours, finding it very difficult I might add, not putting in beautiful autumnal colours in my basket.  But I held off and stayed focused. 


The colours that I finally decided on were: 
Stone, 1710, Parchment 1218, Cream 1005, White 1001
and Silver 1203.

Colours influenced by Scandinavia and nature

So for the first 15 colours the random choices for my CAL with Lucy are as follows:

1  Parchment rows 1 & 2
2  Cream rows 3 & 4
3  Silver rows  5 & 6
4  Parchment rows 7 & 8
5  Stone rows 9 & 10
6 Silver rows 11 & 12
7  White rows 13 & 14
8  Cream rows 15 & 16
9 Parchment row 17 & 18
10  Silver rows 19 & 20
11 Cream rows 21 & 22
12 Stone rows 23 & 24
13 White rows 25 & 26
14  Parchment rows 27 & 28
15 Silver rows 29 & 30

...and it should look something like this!

From top to bottom rows 1-30

All folded and ready for me to pick it up again this evening
Hope this helps those that wanted to know the colour choice of my CAL with Lucy and the order in which I am crocheting.  I do think that I will end up making a second one and it will be in her vibrant autumnal colours, I just cannot resist!  Lucy has kindly said she likes these colours herself and finds them calming and may add them to her CAL gallery on Sunday!!!  Link to Lucy's wonderfully easy and perfect for wintery evenings pattern can be found here .

♥ Have a great week and thank you for all your comments and support ♥