21 December 2013

happy christmas

Hi, just a quick post to wish you all a Merry Christmas, as I wont be posting now till after the holidays. Thanks to all who have visited my site or have become followers over the last year. I hope you have found some use for the knitting patterns and maybe been inspired a bit as well. Thanks also for those who have taken the time to leave comments as they are much appreciated. I do try to respond to them all but if you are a no reply blogger it is difficult.

Now all is left is to overcook the turkey and burn the sprouts! Ali


14 December 2013

spool tree decoration

If you read my last post - I wish to announce that I have now a pair of socks completed!
Now if you are looking for a sewing themed tree decoration......look no further. I recently made one using a wooden spool.
I purchased my wooden spool from a craft stall but you could use a real vintage spool..... mine were too precious to use.
Firstly, I sprayed mine with silver metallic paint which can be bought cheaply and can be found amidst the Christmas Decorations at this time of the year.

I decorated the "thread" part of the spool with machine embroidery. First I measured a piece of iron on pelmet Vilene to fit the spool. I covered the Vilene with white cotton, making it slightly larger than the Vilene on all four sides, so it could be folded over.
The Vilene is a good foundation for machine embroidery, so no hoop is required.

If you prefer not to machine embroider you could wrap a pretty ribbon round the spool or even paint a pattern. I then stuck the Vilene to the spool and sewed the edges where they met together. I thought the white fabric was too white so splashed some colour on using my Koh-I-Noor palette.

Using beads, buttons and a sewing machine charm (plenty of inexpensive charms to be found on ebay) I decorated the top and base of the spool. I used a silver cord, threading down one way and then up the  other way. I lost the knot inside the spool. Here it is .......the finished item..............just have to put the tree up now!

Hope your pre Christmas preparations aren't too stressful. Ali


7 December 2013

sock saga

I have always have a mental block as regards sock knitting. Recently, a friend of mine explained the different methods of constructing a heel and so after carefully choosing a pattern, I have decided to take the plunge. The pattern I chose after wading through all the sock patterns on Ravelry, was Cat Bordhis's Hidden Treasure Pocket Socks (click here) with what she calls her Sweet Tomato Heel. It has to be said the pattern is superb ...concisely written with links to videos on her site. I have had two false starts, the first sock was too large for my narrow foot and the second too small for my large heel.

The third attempt fits my strangely shaped foot and I am now on to my second sock. I am using Lang Jawoll Magic yarn, which knits up lovely.

The idea was to knit a pair for myself to get to grips with the pattern and then knit up some for Christmas gifts. However progress has been so slow, I will have to see how time goes. Are you knitting up any Christmas gifts at the moment?
Bye for now, Ali.

2 December 2013


We took a quick whizz up to Londonderry, for the final night of the Luminere festival of lights. I had seen pictures on the news but it was even more  spectacular in real life. First thing we saw were the massive inflated coloured cones.

Crossing over the Peace Bridge was the installation "The Travellers". Illuminated men made out of what looked like chicken wire. They were dotted and suspended at various points along the bridge.

The neon balloon dogs made me smile.

There were many other installations, dotted round the city but my wee camera struggled with the darkness.

Have a great week everyone, the sparks will be flying off the knitting needles as I try to complete some Christmas gifts.