Monday, 2 May 2016

Alphabet Baby Blanket - Free Crochet Pattern

With a coulpe of friends expecting I wanted to create something special for them, both are keeping the sex a suprise so it needed to be neutral,  and I wanted it to be a keepsake and for that a baby blanket it perfect!

I discovered the C2C method last year so thought this was a perfect opportunity to design my own, and this is what I came up with, my alphabet baby blanket;

C2C basically stands for corner to corner as that is how it grows! its is made by creating small squares, these squares are created by doing 4 DC stitches, if you have never tired it before it is so simple, give it a go, you will be hooked!

I have put a link below to some great instructions available on craftsy, but YouTube is also a great resource, just search C2C and you will find loads of video tutorials!

Couple of things to note that I didnt get at the start - the odd rows are the right side and the even rows the wrong side.
You read the chart from the bottom right corner working the odd rows down and the even rows up

My alphabet blanket is made up of 30 small C2C squares which are then joined, 4 are plain so if you have never tried it before they are great to start with and practice,  then the other 26 each have a letter of the alphabet on!

Any standard Double Knit yarn can be used and a 3.5mm hook.

Here is the chart to follow for each square:

The squares are finished with a single chain stitch around the edge and it is this edge that neatens then up and is used to join them.

When you join the squares there are lots of different options, but I have used the matress stitch method as I wanted a flat join:

You basically pick up the bars In between the edge chain stitch

Once they are all joined I finished it off with a DC in to each of the edge stitches, when you get to the corner do 2 DC in the 2 stitches on the corner so it goes round smoothly

The finished blanket is 55x65 cm

I have now started to blanket number 2 but with one is going to be all white with each letter a different colour, its a great stash buster to get rid of some odds and ends of colours, and against the white the colours really pop, here is the start;

if you give this a go i would love to see the results, you can find me on ravelry or if your on instagram use the hashtag #owlinstitches

enjoy xx

Friday, 29 April 2016

Flower Cushion, KN Issue 60

So the latest issue of KnitNow hit the shops yesterday, do you have your copy? did you spot my Flower Cushion Pattern?

It would usually be a perfect pattern for Spring but with this crazy weather we are having maybe we should still be on winter theme knits, its crazy that a few weeks ago i was posting about our long walk and then these past few days I've woken up to snow on my car and had to dig my winter coat back out!

Anyway hopefully it wont last much longer, im ready for some nice weather, weekend walks, al fresco eating and eveining fire pits.

But if you've not had chance to pick up your copy yet, here it is, my Flower cushion pattern, this photo is one taken from the magazine and i have got to credit Dominic Crolla and Daniel Walmsley for the fantastic photo,

The cushion is knitted using Cygnet Superwash yarn, its a yarn i have used for a few patterns including my his and hers childrens pajama cases and my love a hug bear, its such a good versatile yarn. it comes in such a good range of colours too and it very resonably priced!

If you fancy giving this pattern ago then a have a few tips to help you get a good finish, the first one is the joining, there is nothing worse than spending so long knitting the piece but then rushing the joining, not done properly can really detract from the qulity of the finished piece. So with this in mind make sure you use the matress method to join the sides. Matress stitch is a very commonly used join and is perfect for joining two pieces of stockinette stitch, it is usually used on jumper seams etc.

Matress Stitch Instructions:
You need to pull the two pieces together I always use stitch markers to hold them in place

using the bar you will find inbetween the edge V, heres a photo to hopefully show you what i mean;

And here you can see the finshed effect;

Attaching the Petals:
You should have no issues following the instructions with in the Magazine for the joining ofthe petals but if you are more of a visual person you may find these help;

So once you have all 5 petals and you have threaded the yarn through the stitches you need to thread the yarn back through the first petal

Then place this over once of the flower centers and pull tight - VERY TIGHT to make sure it is secure and can't be pulled off.

If you have a go at making this i would love to see your photos, you can either link your project to this pattern in ravelry or if your on instagram, use the hashtag #owlinstitches


Sunday, 17 April 2016

Down the Mines

So this weekend was one i have been looking forward to for while and it didnt dissappoint!

We arranged it a month or so ago with friends; a mini road trip to Birmingham for a Friday night out and then the Saturday exploring the Black Country Museum.

So Birmingham is about an hour or so's drive away so we were able to go after work on Friday, we had a lovely eveing in Birmingham although the weather was very wet that doesnt matter when your inside sipping a cocktail or two...

And luckily the wet weather didnt continue on the Saturday, although it was cold, but thats OK.
Sothe Black Country Museum is just outside Birmingham in a place called Dudley. Its a museum but not your usual museum, its outside set across about 26 achres and through its streets, buildings and cars it shows you the history of the mines and the towns and people that worked them. it is such a fun interesting place, i remember going as a child on a school trip many moons ago.
As you walk round and enter the different houses and shops there are people dressed up in the fashion of the period who will tell you about it and pass on stories of the past.
We also got to go down a mine and hear about the conditions the men would work in and the jobs they would do.
 Oh and the fish and chips, done authentically in beef dripping.... AMAZING! although i dread to think about the calories, ah well .... they were worth it :)
Heres collage from the day i put on instagram;

And in crafty news i have just listed some new stitch markers on etsy, they are Hello Kitty themed, what do you think?

Also the other day i mentioned that i had been working on submissions for the latest KnitNow call, well i am pleased to say they went down well and 3 have been selected, so i am now just waiting for the yarn to be confirmed and sent through to start these,  as always they have to stay top secret until published so it will be September / December before i can share these with you.

But whilst i wait for the yarn to arrive I want to start a baby blanket for my Friend who is expecting, she is due in September, i have a few ideas for this and plan on using some left over yarn from a commission, its called Lana Gatto and its a super soft Merion Extrafine New Wool, its has a lovely bounce to it that i think will work perfecting for a blanket.

Sunday, 10 April 2016

28723 steps

Yes thats right 28723 steps, or 14.2 miles is what we walked yesterday.

We were hoping for good weather, it had been so on and off all week, but when we work up yesterday morning the sun way breaking through the curtains it was perfect! so at 9:30 we set out on our walk, i live in Alsager which is a small town in Cheshire, one of the neighbouring towns is Sandbach, a walk down an old railway line known as the salt line and a walk along the canal connects the two so thats what we did.

When we reached Sandbach we nipped in a place called Miola, we spotted it on our walk in to the town centre it is a sort of garden/home store and cafe, what caught out attention was the large metal animals at the front, the owner was a lovely lady and she explained they are hand made in Kenya, you can see from the photo how big the elephant was, my husband is 6ft5.

It really was such a lovely place, a bit of a hidden gem i think, i will be going back there again with my mum as i know she will love it, and they do afternoon tea and had a log burner inside, perfect!

And then to top it off there was a Makers Market in the center of Sandbach so it was lovely having a wander through.

When it came to lunch we really felt we had earnt it, we ate in a lovely italian cafe, i cant recall the name but it was so nice, and authentic, the food was so fresh, unfortunatley i forgot to take a picture but i did get one of our G&Ts :)

And here is the evidene.... 28723 steps in total :)

Friday, 8 April 2016

A Friday Note

Hello All,

So my last post was this time last week, on one hand it feels like yonks ago on the other i cant understand where the time has thing i will never understand the concept of time! the old i get the quicker time seems to go, im 30 this year as well so i am in no rush tomove in to the next decade!

So my last post was on my latest published pattern, the flowerpot doorstop and after writting that i spent some of the evening and weekend working on my latest design submissions for KnitNow which i sent off on Sunday, i am still waiting to hear back from them but hopefully they like my ideas, i always find this time a mix of excitement and annticipation its never nice when you get rejections but a rejection doesnt mean they dont like it, it may just mean it doesnt fit the theme of the magazine or there are other designs similar they prefer, it took me a few round of submissions before i had anything accepted.

Yesterday i received the PDF for the pattern i have in next months KnitNow magazine, so this wkends job is to proof read that and ensure it is correct, i must say the photos that have been taken of it are just fab and i cant wait for you all to see it :)

I think i also mentioned in my last post that i was planning on casting of some baby booties for a close friend who is expecting, well if you dont follow me on instagram here they are!

i have done this pattern a few times, its an old favourite of mine. i love the picot edge around the sole. unfortunatley i cant share the pattern source with you, all i have is a black and white photo copy it looks like its been taken from a book but with no detail on the pages i have, so it is a very prescious one!

On the sticks now is a request from the Husbean, which is rare indeed its not often that he asks me to knit him something which is a blessing really as being 6ft5 a jumper is no quick job for him, anyway its an accessory but not the usual sort, its a cleaning accessory, a dusting mit!
I knitted one years ago, i think it may have been one of the first things i did and i must say it was great but i never realised at the time Ad was usng it too, our home must have been spotless, anyway it soon went all tatty, and i threw it out, much to Beans's disappointment so finally i am getting round to making him a new one and in his requested Steelers colours. The pattern is from Rachel Matthews, Knitorama; 25 Great & Glam Things to Knit.

So thats my plans for tonight, continue with the dusting mit so Beans can get on with someSpring Cleaning :)

I have my fingers crossed for some nice weather tomorrow, its been so mixed this week one minute dry with the sun breaking through the clouds and the next its smashing it down with rain, but i am hoping for a fine day, it doesnt have to be warm just dry so we can get out for a long walk down the canal and old train line to work up an appetite for a nice pub lunch, and then work it off with a walk back, but we will just have to wait and see....

And next on the not too sure, i have a few personlal ideas i would like to investigate and self publish but also an endless wish list of patterns...i might swap the needles for a hook for a change who knows, once the dusting mit is done i will have a look through my stash and see what i fancy

Enjoy your weekend, i hope it filled with lots of relaxing, fun and KNITTING

Friday, 1 April 2016

Flowerpot Doorstop

April already, i cant believe it the year is flying by!
I am pleased to say i did not get fooled today, well to my knowledge anyway...

Anyway i just wanted to share with you my latest design which is out now in this months issue of KnitNow magazine, issue 59.

Its my Flowerpot Doorstop, i was really pleased with this design as i love the bright colours and extra element the buttons add, here it is....


And a birds eye view...

If you plan on giving this a go, one tip i would give is to pin your flowers in place before you sew them on, it just means you can make sure you have an even mix of colour and style across the top

I was really pleased with the buttons i was able to find to add to it, if you are interested these were from a store UK called Dunelm Mill and below you can see the tub details

If you do give this a go i would love to see pictures, you can create it as a project in Ravelry or tag me in on Instagram :)

On a personal note its been back to work for me after the bank holiday weekend, it was lovely having 4 days with lots of knititng time so im really pleased now its Friday night and i have the weekend ahead of me, i dont actually have any looming deadlines this weekend so i am going to take the time to cast on some baby booties for an expectant friend, its a pattern a have made a few times and had for years, an old photocopy with no details of the original source on so a very precious pattern, i really must get round to scanning it in i would hate to ever loose it, i will be posting pictures of my progress on instagram.

 Also really want to make my friend a cross stitch for the arrival, i will include the babies name, dob, and weight, she is due in September but with all my other plans i must start this sooner rather than later, the neutral sections anyway as the sex is not yet known, such an exciting time and i am so pleased for her xx

Thursday, 24 March 2016

Spreading the Bug

So last night for the first time I taught a lovely group of ladies to knit, dont get me wrong I have spread the knitting bug before to friends but thats always been a 1 to 1 lesson, last night it was to 20 keen ladies and it was so much fun.

And here they are, well their hands anyway - I didnt want to break their concentration with my camera I  their faces  :)

when i was first approached to do the evening i kept going back and forth on ideas for what they could make as the evening had other events happening they would only have an hour or so on the knitting, in the end i chose a bunny, given that its easter it seemed quite fitting and the perfet thing is its such a simple pattern to make the bunny, its just a square!!

So i put kits together with the stitches all ready cast on so it was just a matter of teaching them the knit stitch, and what naturals they were

Here are the bunny's...can you believe its just one square of yarn for each bunny

22 pompoms made for the kits

If you fancy a go the instructions are here