Monday, 22 May 2017

Cute kitten day

Monday is kitten's day off


Saturday, 20 May 2017

Saturday Art Day

You know - I am sure someone creeps in and steals a day here and there.  I have been chasing my tails about all week and I am still massively behind with what I want to do.

Anyway I thought I would take a bit of a break this afternoon to do a bit of simple practice.  This is one of my favorite songs - not sure if I should really admit that - but  I love it.

I have to keep stopping every few lines and take a rest.  Blooming nuisance - but that's where we are now.  It's such a shame the weekend is brewing up to be grotty - I could really use some lovely warm sunshine.


Friday, 19 May 2017

Huge great chopper

Well it is! - It's a butcher's cleaver in remembrance of the original purpose of the ally (Shambles were ware the butchers gathered together).  The council has had 2 of these made - one for each end of the alley to help us stand out a bit.  There are no butchers in the alley now - the last guys retired last month.

We have also had new sign board added each end of the alley walls - and the hodgepodge jumble mess of the old signs has been cleared away and the entrances refurbished.

I rather like it - it is much cleaner and neater.  There are 2 empty spaces - the butchers shop is empty (hopefully in the process of being sold - so it won't be empty long) - and Alex in the Polish shop is hoping to move to bigger premises down the way a bit.

The town square is also having a bit of a makeover.  It will take much longer than normal though because of the market - they keep having to stop and clear away so the stalls can set up.  They are supposed to be putting in a pretty paving area and several new benches.

I upcycled the boards I had on the end that were removed and put them on the shop front - you can't waste them can you? 

The goat repainted them for me and put the logos on properly and then screwed them to the shop front.  They are covered during the day with the table and display - but they show at night and when we are closed so I can put stuff on them.


Tuesday, 16 May 2017

Project Tuesday - wires

I promised to give you a basic breakdown of wire thickness used in jewellery making.  So here we go
There are many different thicknesses of jewellery wire, and the sizes are referred to as the ‘gauge’. 

The first thing I want you to remember is that the smaller the gauge number, the thicker the wire. As you can see, 10 gauge wire is pretty big (about 2.6mm in diameter) and 28 gauge wire is very very tiny (about 1/3 of a millimeter in diameter). 

Gauge 10 - 2.59mm - rings, cuffs, necklets - very hard to work with
Gauge 12 - 2.03mm - rings, bangles, heavy duty structure work
Gauge 14 - 1.63mm
Gauge 16 - 1.29mm - a nice thick wire to work with - perfect for sturdy clasps, heavy jump rings and structure work.
Gauge 18 - 1.02mm - as a 16 gauge - can also be used for earwires and connecting chunkier beads and wrapped loops - as well as chainmaille work
Gauge 20 - 0.813mm - perfect for ear wires and beaded chains.
Gauge 22 - 0.635mm - good for making beaded chain with small holed beads - the thickest wire for wire wrapping.
Gauge 24 - 0.508mm - too fine for jump rings or support work - use with tiny hole beads - good for wire wrapping and weaving
Gauge 26 - 0.455mm - great for wire wrapping and weaving
Gauge 28 - 0.320mm - great for wire wrapping and weaving, knitting and crochet and more delicate work
Gauge 30 - 0.254mm - too delicate for wrapping - not suitable for structure work - best for knitting, weaving, crochet
Gauge 32 - 0.203mm

Hope that helps a bit



Monday, 15 May 2017

Cute kitten day

Monday is kitten's day off


Saturday, 13 May 2017

Saturday Art Day

I have had a much better week this week.  Alfie has slept well every night - and he has been much better at going out for his wees.  So with the extra rest - and the lovely sunshine we have had all week - it doing me the world of good.

On my cupboard clearing out kick I found a set of letters that I made ages ago.  The used to hang in the kitchen before I had the centre wall unit put in.  I thought I would put them up in the living room - there is a perfect space for them beside the curtains - but then I thought I would jazz them up a bit. My style has evolved over the years and I like loads of layers.

The letters were originally cut from foam board - 3 or 4 layers I think - about 1" thick.


Tuesday, 9 May 2017

Project Tuesday - knitted square - Squares

Love this one - so delicate!!

The idea behind this series is to expand your knowledge and build your confidence by tackling new techniques with small, simple projects.  Each square knits up to the same size and has the same border frame so that you can sew them together and make larger projects.  4 sewn in a square make the front of a cushion – back with another 4 squares or plain fabric.  Several in a row will make a scarf – 3 x 3 or 4 will make a baby blanket – 4 x 6 or 8 will make a lap throw - or go the whole hog and make a bed throw.  You can make each square the same pattern – you can make each square different – you can create your own design by placing the squares in a pattern – knit in 1 colour – knit the rainbow - just experiment – shout me if you get stuck – and have fun.

The squares worked in DK measure about 4 ½” square – and the larger ones 8” square.  You could use 3 strands of DK together – working on 8mm knitting needles – and the square will be bigger

You will need;
1 strand of double knitting to be worked on 4mm knitting needles – about 12g
Or 2 strands of double knitting (equal to chunky weight yarn) to be worked on 6mm knitting needles – about 20g

·         If you are using the double knitting weight of yarn, then use 2 strands together throughout.
·         If you are using the chunky weight of yarn, then use 1 strand throughout.
·         Remember to count all the rows as you work up the square.

Cast on 29 stitches.
Row 1: *(knit 1, purl 1) – repeat from * to last stitch, knit 1.
Row 2: *(purl 1, knit 1) – repeat from * to last stitch, purl 1.
Row 3: *(knit 1, purl 1) – repeat from * to last stitch, knit 1.
Row 4: *(purl 1, knit 1) – repeat from * to last stitch, purl 1.

Row  5: knit 1, purl 1, knit 1, purl 1, knit to last 4 stitches, purl 1, knit 1, purl 1, knit 1.
Row  6: purl 1, knit 1, purl 1, knit 2, purl 4, * knit 1, purl 4 – repeat from * to last 5 stitches, knit 2, purl 1, knit 1, purl 1.
Row  7: knit 1, purl 1, knit 1, purl 1, knit to last 4 stitches, purl 1, knit 1, purl 1, knit 1.
Row  8: purl 1, knit 1, purl 1, knit 2, purl 4, * knit 1, purl 4 – repeat from * to last 5 stitches, knit 2, purl 1, knit 1, purl 1.
Row  9:. knit 1, purl 1, knit 1, purl 1, knit to last 4 stitches, purl 1, knit 1, purl 1, knit 1.
Row 10: purl 1, knit 1, purl 1, knit to last 3 stitches, purl 1, knit 1, purl 1

Rows 5: to 10: form the pattern – repeat a total of 4 times
Row 29: *(knit 1, purl 1) – repeat from * to last stitch, knit 1.
Row 30: *(purl 1, knit 1) – repeat from * to last stitch, purl 1.
Row 31: *(knit 1, purl 1) – repeat from * to last stitch, knit 1.
Row 32: *(purl 1, knit 1) – repeat from * to last stitch, purl 1.
Cast off.

I use Robin double knitting 100% acrylic yarn for all my knitting work.  If you are using pure wool, or a wool mix you will need more as the yarn is heavier.

**** This is my own original work.  Use it for your own use or for charity selling.  Use it to inspire you, and to lead you on to other projects.  But, please do not resell the pattern as your own workings.  It takes me years of learning, and months of work to produce a final pattern.

The Kitten and The Goat

9, New Shambles, Kendal, LA9 4TS


Monday, 8 May 2017

Cute kitten day

Monday is kitten's day off


Tuesday, 2 May 2017

Project Tuesday - key fob kit

Something a bit different to wet your sewing buds.  I have used this fun little technique to make a bag charm - but  you can use the same trick with all sorts of fabrics to make decals and hangers - detail to add to bunting - make tiny ones in Christmas fabric to add to the tree.  The method is below - and on my website - the complete kits are in the shop - while they last

You will need:
8” x 8” patterned fabric
8” x 8” contrast fabric
1 x fancy button
1 x key ring or bag fob
Thread sharp needle
Short piece of ribbon

1 – cut a 7” diameter circle from each of the patterned and contrast fabric.
2 – with the right sides together- ¼” in from the outer edge stitch around the circles – leaving a 2” gap to turn.
3 – before turning – clip around the curved raw edges to help it sit flat.
4 – turn fabric right side out and press well.
5 – top stitch around close to the edge all around the circle to close the gap.


6 – with the contrast side on the inside
– fold the circle in half and mark the edge crease with a pin or pencil.
- fold these marks together and mark the edge crease with a pin or pencil.
7 – bring 2 opposite marks together and over sew a couple of times to join – do not break the thread.  Place the join in the centre of the circle.

8 – bring in one of the other marks to the centre – and over sew a couple of times
- bring in the last mark and secure to the centre.  Do not break the thread.

9 – open up each petal in turn so that it sits flat and fold the point over the base corner into a ‘collar’ shape.
10 – Add a fancy button to the centre.
11 – loop the ribbon through the fob and sew on to the inside of one of the corner.


Monday, 1 May 2017

Cute kitten day

Monday is kitten's day off

Well that's another month gone!


Saturday, 29 April 2017

Saturday - Art-ish day

I actually managed to make something- yeah!!

It's a practical thing really - I had the idea to store the leftover printed tags for my Posh Dog Bakes - and use them for the next batch.  It works if I don't print the date and batch numbers - and I am all up for re-cycling.

I did chicken out of making the index cards - I think it would have driven me nuts - so I bought the smallest size file index cards I could - but the boxes for them were way too big.  I went and picked up some mount board scraps from the picture framers - they have a box of free left overs.

The width of the box was fixed to the size of the cards - but I wanted to lower the height of the cards so that the tags did not get lost under everything - and I did not want a really deep box.

I actually cut 1" off the bottom of the cards - so the actual box is only 2" high.  I wanted the top tabs to stand out to make it easier to sort through them.

I cut the base and sides out of the mount board and just sellotaped them together - them I went round with double sided and covered it with a thick scrapbook paper so that it was stable and pretty.

I have lined the inside too - so that the seams are covered and not vulnerable.


Tuesday, 25 April 2017

Projest Tuesday - pants for our dolly

I had intended to make a vest and pants set - but Mummy's little 'helper' was chewing up my notes quicker than I could work - and he looked so cute too!!!

You will need a small amount of soft cotton or poly cotton fabric – a needle and thread – a short piece of thin elastic – some paper to work out the pattern and some scissors.

The pattern is basically 4 L shape pieces with a bit of a curve.  The short part of the L is the waist part - it needs to be deep enough to reach from between the legs up to the high waist - with enough for a turning to put the elastic through.  The long part of the L shape is for the legs - it needs to be long enough to reach down from the waist down the leg to where you want it too - plus a bit for the bottom hem.  the short width needs to be wide enough to reach halfway round the doll's leg - plus the extra for the side and centre seams.  It sounds a bit of a mouthful - but this formula will work to fit any doll - and yes - you too!!!!  Just draw round the shape - cut the paper on the large side - then experiment before you cut for the final fabric sections.

1. Using the pattern - cut out 4 pieces of fabric from the fabric.  Make sure you have the fabric pattern correct so that you have a right leg front and back and a left leg front and back – and that any fabric pattern runs in the right direction.

2. With right sides together - sew together the short top sections on the tops the front and the back pieces. 

3. With the right sides together – sew the long side seams together.

4. Turn up a little of the fabric twice on the bottom of each leg to make a neat hem and sew in place.

You can make a normal small hem – or make a wider one and add elastic to make bloomers.

5. Turn over the top twice and sew round – when you get about 2cm from the beginning – slip through a piece of elastic for the waist and sew the gap shut.

Turn right side out and put on the dolly.

with a bit of practice - adult bloomers are sooo cool - and it's all the same basic pattern!!!


Monday, 24 April 2017

Cute kitten day

Monday is kitten's day off


Saturday, 22 April 2017

Saturday - Saturday

Yips this week has flown by!!  I seem to have been running round in circles - and still have a huge to do list.

The little fella has been getting me up early in the mornings - and I don't have the luxury of telling him to wait a bit yet - we have to get up and out pretty fast.  On the plus side - I have deep cleaned the coker - had the workroom emptied out and the carpet vacuumed and cleaned - and moved the furniture around so that the sewing machine is now in the middle of the room.  It was getting awkward to work on large beds and coats tucked at the side of the room.  It has opened up the whole space so much because the big table is now tucked in the corner.  I have tidied loads of heaps - finished several projects - make some cushion covers.  Phew - shattered now.

I am seriously behind with my computer and book work - there just seems to be so much to do.  I had a big order in from Robin in the week - that's all out now - and I have been sorting out my dog treating baking stuff.  Every job I tackle seems to need something else done first - or throws up 2 more jobs


Tuesday, 18 April 2017

Project Tuesday - make a dangly charm

So - let's make a little dangly charm piece - you can use it as a pendant - or make 2 for earrings.  You don't have to use these exact materials - it's more the process that you can use and reuse to make your own projects.  Once you have mastered it - you can go on to use the same process to make bigger projects - add several to a chain - or make a bag charm - multi hanger necklets - add several to a bracelet - once you can master the process - you can do anything with it.

you will need - a pair of round nose pliers - a pin with a flat base - a feature bead of you choice - a couple of small charms - a couple of small size jump rings

anything along these lines will be fine - the most important bit is the round nose pliers - that is what gives you the perfect round shape that makes your work look professional.

Personally I like to use oval jump rings - it moves the join spot just out of the way so that all the wear is well away from the join.

add a jump ring to the top of each charm

slide the feature bead onto the pin

add the charms onto the pin

use the round nose pliers to shape the top of the pin.  You will need to leave a bit of a gap before you start to shape the end shape.  Work high on the plier arm so you get a bigger ring space.  Let the plier shape the ring so that you get a good 'round' shape.  

Then you will need to use the pliers to pull the wire end really tightly around the wire close to the added charms.  Give the end a couple of wraps round the pin to really secure the loop and snip off any tail.

Slip onto a chain.