Tuesday, 22 March 2011

Ta-daa! Unveiling the Pansy and a new Bauble and more Birdies....

My name is Mrs Jones and I am a hooker.

Yes, once again, I've put down the knitting needles and reverted to my beloved crochet hook.  Knitting's weird, people. Having to manipulate two long thin metal spikes and a ball of wool in order to veeerrrryyy slooooowwwly create something that looks like my 5-year old nephew made (actually, he could probably do better) is just not my idea of fun.

I know millions and millions of people can do it and it bothers me a bit that I just can't seem to manage it when, on the face of it, it doesn't really seem that difficult but it's got me flummoxed.  So, for the sake of my sanity, I've gone back to crocheting.

This past week I've made another couple of Birdie decorations, and I now have a little flock of them hanging in my front room:

I've had to stop for the moment though, because I've run out of buttons for the eyes, plus I want to get some different colours for them.  I'm making them in a 100% cotton yarn (I normally use acrylic for everything) which makes them feel, sort of, I dunno, more classy somehow and a bit posher.  I'm heading into my nearest big town on Thursday this week so I'll swing by the wool shops then to check out what colours they've got and check out different coloured buttons for eyes.

My intention, at the moment, is to carry on making a few more of these and then see if there's a market for them, either on my craft stall or in my (currently defunct) Etsy site.  I'm also planning to do something similar with the Bauble decorations.  If you recall in my previous post I'd made a blue one, while earlier this week I made a purple one, and decorated it with more beads:

This one has faceted crystal beads (the clear Aurora Borealis - like a clear rainbow glaze -  ones on the outside, and the blue ones in the middle), small silver metal beads and a pearl in the middle.  Sadly, it's a plastic pearl - I'd much rather use a real pearl but the holes in the middle of real pearls are not large enough to pass even a very fine needle and thread through.  I do have a pearl clamp and a Dremel drill but enlarging a hole through the middle of a real pearl is an unbelievable faff.  Takes ages and the pearl gets really bloody hot.

 I'm not sure it's worth the bother when a plastic pearl will do the job and look just as nice.  Still, I'd like to use real semi-precious stones and pearls on these eventually.

I want to make more of these in different colours and, like the Birdies, see if there's any market for them.  They'd look great on a Christmas tree as well as just hanging them up in the house all year round.

My final ta-daa for you today is a flower that I crocheted.  I bought myself a book called 'Crochet Bouquet' by Suzann Thompson which tells you how to create all kinds of different flowers.

It arrived a couple of days ago, so I've had a quick look through it and have started to decide which flowers I want to have a go at.  I'm not sure it's as easy as she makes out, though, mainly because it's written using American crochet terms and I use English ones.  For example, what they call a double crochet (dc) in the States, is a treble (tr) over here and their single crochet (sc) is our double (dc).  It means you have to really concentrate while reading the pattern until you get the hang of it.

Still, I had a go at her Pansy design yesterday and I think it came out pretty well - at least, it had a passing resemblance to a pansy so I'm pretty pleased:

Sorry the picture's a bit dark but you can click on it to make it bigger. You might just be able to spot the small gold glass bead I attached to the middle.

One of these things is not like the other....

Not sure what I'm going to do with it.  I absolutely adore the tea cosies covered in flowers made by Alice over at Crochet with Raymond but, sadly, I don't use a teapot (nor know anyone who does) and - as whinged about above - I can't knit yet.  But the cluster of flowers is to die for - I suppose I could try and crochet my first beanie-style hat and attach a load to the side....

Anyway, apart from fannying around with fibre, I've been enjoying the arrival of Spring and today mowed the lawn for the first time this year.  What a hateful job that is.  Took over an hour to mow our tiny little patch of lawn and the sweat was literally pouring down my face by the end.

And I've been a very good girl and have been going to the allotment more frequently - in fact, I ought to pop down there now for a bit but I've promised myself a session on the Wii Fit and there's other things I should do this afternoon, so I'll probably leave it until tomorrow, but a few days ago I sowed over 300 carrot seeds (you can't really start carrots off in the greenhouse, they don't like being transplanted, so you have to sow them where they're going to grow), and weeded the flower bed beside the shed where I grow plants specifically to attract the bees - lavender, potentilla, foxgloves, sedum - and put in a couple of delphiniums and a small clump of Golden Rod.

But I am feeling a bit guilty about not going because it's just such a glorious day.  I mean, this is my view from where I'm sitting writing this - our back door is open onto the bridge, Sylvester's sitting on the doormat and the sun is just streaming in through my filthy dirty windows:

I hope the spring's arrived wherever you are...

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