Sorry - no journal page today - I am off on my travels again. I have been gifted a loads of vintage knitting equipment / patterns / yarns - for which I am amazingly grateful - but I have to go to Hampshire to collect it all. My son is coming with me to do the carrying and lifting and we are going to stay with the lady who is my second mummy and I haven't seen since we moved up north. I am really excited - but I am deading it too. Bear with me next week when I get back and don't ask to much of me. It will take me a while to recover - so the blog will be a mess - I will be a mess - - what do you mean - you won't notice the difference ;-) Love kitten
One thing I noticed was that there were several more die cutting machines launched at the show. Yes - even more - and as well as a couple of high end machines - there are now a couple more of the smaller 'budget' machines just to make it even more complicated. To be honest I have given up trying to keep track. My big argument is that it is the quality of the dies that is important - the good old Cuttlebug style and the Sizzix deep ones are fantastic for cutting anything and everything - these new overly fancy, lightweight chaps just don't stay cuttable with for long. But then - that sort of opinion gets me into all sorts of trouble! Also - more Alcohol ink pens! I upset the lady demoing the new Chameleon pens. They are fine if you just want to colour - expensive felt pens really, but I can get that effect with my Copics - and you can't blend between shades properly - you can't shade or shadow - you can't blend tip-to-tip. She got really huffy with me - I really must learn to shut up. I have just put an order in with Creativ. I love these guys and I have wanted to get involved with them for ages. I have picked up a couple of boxes of Silk Clay kits for the kiddies (and the grown ups judging by the way the Goat took to it!). Also they do wonderful boxes of paper mache blanks to decorate - so I have some Easter pretties on the way. I will update you as things start to drift in - like the Facebook page for quick tips and updates. Love kitten
Starting to get my breath back and pile through all the leaflets and catalogues I came home with. Two more suppliers to tell you about First - I have chosen to go with the supplier Solo Crafts. It will take me a while to go through their catalogue and choose for you - but they have a wide mix of simple - harder - something different - and they do a few (very few I am afraid) ready printed on fabric. Give me a couple of week to choose the best assortment I can find for you and I will let you know when they arrive. We will also be stocking Pink Pineapple 'Colour Me In' range.
This is a range of hand screen printed fabric goods that you can colour / paint to create your own look. I picked up some kiddies T-shirts - cushions - soft bags - shoulder bags and canvases along with the felt pens they do (we already stock So Soft fabric paint) to start us off - and if you like the range I can add other things to it - they have loads of choice. Very reasonably priced for you to treat your self to something a bit different - or for a gift. Again - I will shout out when they come in. I am going to make a huge effort to keep the website up to date - and will list everything as it arrives.so if you are a visiter to the town - you can still support us when you get home - we are going to need all the heklp we can get this year after the floods. Love kitten
Please tell me my head is going to stop spinning sometime soon - wow - what a show. I am not sure the Goat knows what hit him - once he got sketching even Kuretake had him on their stand experimenting with their pens. Soooo many things to tell you - it will have to be in bite size chunks as I will be working my way through it for the next couple of weeks. I saw loads of people - caught up with my very fave suppliers (and you know who you are - xxxx) - got loads of new ideas - found new stuff for the shop - caught up with a few old friends - actually met my boss (HI Linda - xxx) - found a couple of fantastic, new - oh-so-very quirky - design studios for new kits - projects and supplies. Settled on my new cross stitch supplier - sooooo much to follow on that one! Chatted to my new Jewellery supplies chappies - it will take me a while to find my way around the new site - but - loads of new stuff coming! - more details to follow. Quick first impressions - the craft world is changing again!!!! After 3 years of shoving everything 'baking' down our throats (sorry - bad pun) - there was not one single baking / icing / cupcake (cakepop) company to be seen - not even a sugar crafting flower - or a soft icing sculpture in sight - what a turn around. And - - - a lack of 'technology' type stuff. No fancy printers or sculpting printer / pen tools - no big CD launches - no airbrush equipment - very much no big 'buy-in' techno type stuff. Yeah up for that - bring craft back to it's roots. Visitor numbers - seemed much quieter that I have ever seen - and they pulled the plug on free parking - to save outgoing costs????? - one has to wonder. I also noticed - there was a lack of foreign languages - over the years I have got used to (and love the look of) several strange tongues and costumes - this year I heard one French speaker - nothing else - no arab or african groups in all their regalia. Scared to travel these days? Who knows. I expect all the hype will tell you it was the best event ever - they always do ;-) . And - the new 'what's hot ' theme? - sewing. Yep - good, old fashioned, stitching is gaining the high ground. Huge increase in the sewing / fabric section - and that includes sewingpatterns and kits. Sewing kits have expanded from cutie little kits for the kids - to much more sophisticated kits (still for the kids - but for you as well) which consist of fabrics as well as felts - and buttons and embellishments - - to fabric aprons / bags / purses / cushions / home accessories and even clothes! The range of clothes patterns from the small design houses is growing up - and is just amazing So - First Showcase - Clara
Lovely felt kits that are a natural step up from our 'kiddies easy kits with pre-marked holes' - BUT - also have lovely little details so that the teens (and - dare I say 'bigger people'? ) can get involved in too. Felt is an amazing fabric to work with - no fraying - and you can embroider and add beads / sequins to your heart's content, You can seriously go to town with these - if you have the experience - the basics are there - but they have added extra layers - and buttons - to the kits - - and if you want to embroider or add fancy stitching - who am I to stand in the way of personal creation. I loved the seaside range - and the little bags with handles too - brilliant change from a toy. I have ordered a good selection will let you know as soon as they arrive here. Love kitten
Thinking and working through the sketch is really focusing my mind on all my craft projects. Here is this month's sketch -
You don't have to use a photo to create a page. It was a dark dreary day when I set about this project - and I wanted something bright and hot to cheer me up. I coloured this dragon image from Victoria Louise in the hottest yellows - reds and oranges I could find - no shading system as such - I just wanted to graduate from orange to red and yellow.
I cut the film strip by hand - and the stripe in the background is all sorts of left over border peel offs. I put buttons in the film squares just to keep the solid colour look. The white is a bit loud in the photo and you can't see all the background dotting - but it's there - along with loads of glitter finish on the dragon! Love kitten
I am not doing a journal page today - I am buzzing about ready to go to the Stitches Show at the NEC over the weekend. Trying tio organise all the paperwork I need- and all the lists of people to see - and gather the things I need to take. I am really excited about going - and this week has dragged on so long. Hubby is coming with me and we are staying in the Hilton for a treat. I got a really good deal for dinner, bead and breakfast - and they are even going to park the car for me! I will take loads of pics and share them as I can Love kitten
This is just soooo stinking cute!!! It ticks all my boxes
I have been keeping an eye out for some type of new storage for all the Posh Dog bits and bobs - I have out grown what I was using and it was stating to creep across the floor in various guises. Then I saw a picture of this and went on a hunt. Prices varied from £25 up to £49 for exactly the same thing - it just shows that you have to look around.
It has 10 shallow drawers - so it is perfect to divide up for the clasps and the sliders stc. I can have a drawer for each type of fitting - as well two to sort out the wide / narrow ribbons. It's small and neat - but the trays are quite big - and it's very pretty - and it's quite strong.
I am happily playing with all my dog stash to organise it all. I may do you a video when I have finally worked out a way to keep everything in order- and you can see all the bits and bobs that go into the dog items
I love playing with yarn. I love the whole process of making a long string into something you can wear or use. At the moment I am playing with crochet. Now - I am the first to hold my hands up and say I am still learning so much about crochet - and you lot have cornered me into it because you all want to learn it. This week I have been experimenting with a poncho pattern for the dogs for the spring nights when they just need a bit of warmth round the shoulders when they go out.
This is a very light and lacy pattern worked up from an inspiration from posh pooch patterns. I am rewriting the whole pattern to break it down in stages so I can follow it and create the bigger sizes I need for the bigger dogs. As I write patterns for the beginners - I understand much more that you have to explain and break things down into bite size chunks. Also in work is this
This was inspired by a photo I saw. It is a technique called 'Crocodile stitch' and I wanted to practice how to create the look before I started experimenting with the various lengths for the guys. I have the idea of working it up as a 'party' collar in the metallic yarns. So sparkly gold and silver - red for the guys - perhaps it will need to be 3 layers deep for the bigger dogs. Imagine sparkly red on a black lab - oooooohhhh yumms. It takes AGES to 'do the math' and work and re-work up this kind of project - there is only me here - doing everything ;-) - - - so for next Christmas (!!!!!) - we should have a full set of party collars for the guys to strut their stuff in.
This year - on the second week of the month I will bring you a new knitted square pattern.
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 (works up to fit a 16” square cushion pad – which we stock in the shop) – 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.
You will need a pair of 6mm knitting needles to work each square – and a large blunt needle to sew them together.
This week we are staying simple this month with a Stocking Stitch Square. This one is brilliant for putting in between patterned squares to space them out
You will need;
Double knitting or chunky weight yarn – about 20g
6mm knitting needles
·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 the rows as you work up the
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.
Rows 5: and 6: form the central pattern – repeat
these rows until you get to
Row 27: *(knit 1, purl 1) – repeat from * to last
stitch, knit 1.
Row 28: *(purl 1, knit 1) – repeat from * to last
stitch, purl 1.
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.
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 (works up to fit a 16” square cushion pad – which
we stock in the shop) – back with another 4 squares or plain fabric. Several in a row will make a scarf – 3 x 3
will make a baby blanket – 4 x 6/8 will make a lap throw - or go the whole hog
and make a bed throw. You can use the
same pattern – you can make each square different – you can create your own
design by placing the squares in a pattern – just experiment.
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.
Disclaimer: 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.