Tuesday 24 December 2013

Twas the Night Before Christmas................

when all through the house,
not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse.

Except this cute little Christmas mouse, that I have quickly knit for my friends Granddaughter. I really wasn't going to knit any more gifts but last week when I saw this pattern Winter Mice at The Tearoom by Mary Jane's Tearoom. I had all the yarn I needed in my stash so I just couldn't resist.

All the little details are so adorable, I love her little snowball shoes and stripy tights..............

her cute little snowball scarf, the sweet Fair Isle dress, which was my first time knitting Fair Isle. I did knit her a little bow to put in her hair too instead of holly berries........In fact, I thoroughly enjoyed knitting everything and will be knitting another one for my niece.

Wishing you all a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year, thank you to everyone who stops by and leaves such lovely comments, I really do appreciate it. I'm so sorry I haven't got back to everyone who's left comments the last week or so but I will get back to normal over the new year.

Happy Christmas

Thursday 19 December 2013

Bloomin' Crochet Along.....a new project on my hook.

Good morning, I didn't post last week for Bloomin' Crochet Along but I have something to show you this week.

I've started another Fairly Isleish Fair Isle Style Cardigan., don't you love the name of this pattern!!!! I'm making this one for my friend's Granddaughter, who's birthday is at the beginning of January. 

I thought I would give myself plenty of time  but I forgot how quick it was to make. I started this at 6pm on Tuesday evening and worked on it until midnight, I'm half way through finishing it. It does help that it's worked in Aran on a 6mm hook.

I'm using Drops Nepal, which is lovely to crochet with but it will definitely need blocking as it looks quite small, it has loads of stretch though.I had some pinks leftover from my first one and went with grey for the main colour, this time. 

I'm linking up to Chrissie and Marrianne's Crochet Along, pop on over to see what everybody else has been up to, this week.

Lastly, I want to show you these gorgeous decorations, that were sent to me from Jules from the Little Woollie blog. Aren't they gorgeous, this was part of the Christmas Decoration Swap which was organised by Ladybird Diaries. Thank you for organising it, Marriane and thank you, Jules, for my fun, colourful decorations.

Thanks for stopping by, have a great weekend.

Wednesday 18 December 2013

Yarn Along........One Rosebud Sock Finished.

Good morning, my friends, I hope you all had a good weekend. We went up to Stoke to see Jodie, who we haven't seen for weeks. We went to Trentham Gardens, which is beautiful at Christmas, with all the Christmas tress and fairy lights up, it's very festive.

We also got to meet her new boyfriend, the poor lad, it wasn't just the three of us, it was my Mom and Dad and Aunty and Uncle, too. He seems very nice and if us lot didn't put him off nothing will!!!!!!!!

It's a busy time of year so not as much knitting time, normally if I get a few spare minutes, I pick my knitting up but instead, I've been wrapping gifts and writing cards.I haven't worked on my Henslowe Shawl at all this week, so no progress on that. I'm going to my friends house tonight for a Crafty, Christmas get together, so I think I'll take that to work on and hopefully finish.

I was determined to finish the first Rosebud Sock and cast on the second, this week,  which I have managed to do. Hopefully, I will get the second sock finished before Christmas. Do you set yourselves, little goals for your knitting?

I'm still reading Knit the Season by Kate Jacobs, it's taking me ages to finish but I go to bed so late, I can only manage a few pages before I fall asleep. Check out Ginny's Yarn Along for my knitting projects and good books.

Also pop over to Tami's blog for more Works in Progress, these two blogs are great to visit for 'yarny' inspiration.

Thanks for stopping by, have a great Wednesday.

Wednesday 11 December 2013

Yarn Along.......my weekly round-up.

A quick post today, as I'm off to do some more Christmas shopping in a bit, hopefully this will be the last trip. I haven't done a lot of knitting as my little finger has been hurting where I'm constantly bending it, so I've had to learn how to hold my yarn a different way, it's taken a while to get the hang of it but I think I've got it now, I just hope my tension will be o.k.
I'm still on the first Rosebud Sock and have nearly finished turning the heel. The Rowan Fine Art sock yarn is so nice to work with and I love the narrow stripes on the foot.

I'm on the last part of my Henslowe Shawl and have started the Cast Off Picot edge, I should have this finished by next week.

I'm still reading Knit the Season but I'm also reading Inventing the Christmas Tree by Bernd Brunner, an history of the Christmas tree. I told you I love everything about Christmas but it is a lovely little book. If you pop over to Ginny's blog which is called Small Things, you can see what everyone else is knitting and reading this week.

My festive red yarn has arrived from Tangled Yarn, it's Malabrigo Sock in Ravelry Red, a luxurious 4 ply, pure merino. I think I've changed my mind about knitting a pair of socks with it though, I quite fancy making a pretty lace beret with it. Watch this space!!!!!

Also check out Tami's blog, where you'll see more WIP's, it's a great place for finding new patterns.

Thanks for stopping by.

Tuesday 10 December 2013

It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas...........

I'll start off by apologising, it's an extra long post today, so you may want to make yourself a hot drink and settle down, while you listen to me waffling on about Christmas.
It's one of my favourite times of the year, I just love everything about it from decorating the tree, to shopping, watching Christmas films, wrapping the gifts and of course spending time with my family.
I have all my family around Christmas Day, 15 of us all together, it's hectic but fun, my Dad dresses up as Santa and delivers all our presents, the kids love it and even though my girls are grown up they still get very excited. I hope they look back at their Christmases in years to come and remember all the good times and traditions we had.

Our pink themed Christmas tree went up, the last weekend in November, it's not very traditional but I love it, especially the fluffy feather boas. We did try just putting just the silver decorations up this year but we sat there looking at it and wasn't happy so on went the pink!!!!

My first Christmas outing was to a local village to watch the Christmas lights been switched on. Santa stopped by and all the quaint  little shops were open, all looking very festive with their beautiful window displays.

My Christmas cards have been made, I just need to write them now, I've gone with three quick designs, I love shabby chic cards but they are very time consuming so for Christmas I go for a more clean and simple look. The Merry Christmas wreath card is very traditional, while the snowflake card is more contemporary with the colours of aqua and red and then the Holly card is middle of the road using traditional gold and glitter but with kraft card.

Our next little trip was to Birmingham, where we got my Christmas present and then visited the Frankfurt German Market. This has been part of our Christmas tradition for a few years, now, it really gets me in the holiday spirit.

We had a wonder around, looking at the different stalls, I always end up buying a new tree decoration. I loved watching the ice skaters, this year, the rink hasn't been here for a few years, I just wish I was brave enough to have a go.

We had to stop for a short break and get some fried potatoes, mushrooms with garlic sauce and a mug of hot Gluh Wein, mmmmmmm, delicious.

We also popped onto The Jointstock for a drink, it's such a beautiful building and it had the biggest tree that I'd ever seen indoors, it was at least 30 foot high and decorated so pretty!!!!!!!

I've had my first festive Costa coffee, I went for the Salted Caramel skinny latte, yummy!!!

On Saturday, Paige and I went to see The Nutcracker, performed by the Birmingham Royal Ballet. It's the first time we'd seen it and it was absolutely amazing!!!! This could be a new Christmas tradition for us. The costumes and the set were breathtaking, the ballerina's so graceful, it really was a treat to watch.

One last little thing, today I decided to buy a real tree for the conservatory, we haven't had one for a few years. I'm the only one who likes real Christmas trees, I love the smell and I love that they're not a perfect shape or stand straight, it's all part of the charm.So as you can see it really is beginning to look a lot like Christmas at the Hickman house. 

Thanks for stopping by and listening to me waffle on, you can probably tell we love Christmas in our house, it was a bit of a long post, so if you made it to the end, thank you,lol. I'd love to hear about your Christmas traditions.


Friday 6 December 2013

FO Friday.......I'm on a roll!!!!!

Good morning, I hope everyone has had a good week, I've been on a bit of a roll as far as Finished Objects are concerned. My goal for December is to finish my WIP's, I haven't got as many as I first thought as I've gone through them I decided to put a couple into hibernation while I decide whether I want to carry on with them or frog them. I frogged the Livingston sweater as mentioned in my last post. I have two crochet blankets which won't be finished in December and then I have this little Debbie Bliss Matinee Jacket which I plan to finish, I've only got one sleeve left. I will also try and finish the Henslowe Shawl as well as some Christmas socks. I'm not sure whether this is a bit of a tall order but I will give it my best.

I have finished my Pennycress socks, which for some reason have taken me months to finish, the pattern was a bit more complicated and I also changed it to toe up rather than doing top down. I love Rachel Coopey patterns and once I've got all my WIP's out of the way, I will try knitting another one of hers but next time giving top down a try.

I'm linking these to Tami's FO Friday, check out what everyone else has been finishing up this week.

I've also finished my first adult sized garment, it's the Anzen crochet cardigan from Pom Pom Quarterly Issue 7. I love the pattern but when I was working on it I wasn't loving the yarn which is Jenny Watson Pure Merino. It's not one of the most expensive merino yarns but it's not budget either, the balls of yarn felt quite nice but I found the cardigan very stiff not soft and squishy like other yarns I've used. After soaking and blocking though, it is a lot softer, perhaps not as soft as I would like but much better than before.

I love the actual look of the cardigan though, I'm sure I'll be wearing it a lot through the winter and spring, it will go with most things.

This is what I've been working on this week for Marrianne and Chrissie'sBloomin Crochet Along, pop over, there is always gorgeous projects on the hook.

Have a great weekend, everyone, will you doing anything festive over the weekend?

Thanks for stopping by.

Wednesday 4 December 2013

Yarn Along...........another pair of socks on the needles.

Good morning, I hope you all had a good weekend, it's a busy time of year and not so much free time on our hands but I have found time to cast on another pair of socks.

I've always got socks on my needles for a few reasons.........

1- I have lots of sock yarn that I want to use up in my stash, my goal for 2014 is to knit from my  stash.

2- They are portable and can just throw them in my bag if I go anywhere.

3- They are quick to make, I love seeing my knitting take shape and very satisfying when you've finished a project.

4- I like to have a smaller project to work on when I'm knitting larger projects so if I start getting bored I can pick up my socks.

 The pattern is Rosebud by Wendy D. Johnson and they are from the book, Toe-Up Socks for Everyday. I'm using Rowan Fine Art sock yarn in shade 302, Tawny. It is a variegated yarn and I know some knitters would perhaps do a Vanilla sock or less patterned as you don't really see the full effect of this pretty lace pattern. I prefer to knit a patterned sock and though it's hard to see the pattern you can see the texture which I love.

As you can see, I've started Knit the Season by Kate Jacobs, it's a fun read with the same characters from A Friday Night Knitting Club. I'm linking this to Ginny's Yarn Along, check out what everybody else has been reading and knitting this week

On the subject of sock knitting, I've decided I need to knit myself some festive socks and have just ordered some Malabrigo sock yarn in Ravelry Red, it should be here by tomorrow. I haven't decided on a pattern yet but I'm thinking something with cables.

I've also been working on my Henslowe shawl and have now started the lace edge, it's coming along quite quickly to say it's a 3ply yarn. The yarn has a very soft halo and is so warm without been bulky, I can't wait to finish it so I can wear it.

Check out other WIP's over on Tami's blog, enjoy the rest of your week and I'll be back on Friday with some Finished Objects. One last thing do you remember the Livingston cardigan I was knitting my nephew, well I've decided to frog it. He is 6 months old and he is growing rapidly, he is in 9-12 months clothes already It would just about fit him now but wouldn't last him a few weeks so made the decision to undo it and maybe knit him a cardigan instead.


Friday 29 November 2013

Bloomin' Crochet Along........Quick Christmas Gifts.

Good morning, I hope you've all had a good week. It's been a busy week here, with lots of Christmas shopping and making Christmas gifts. I haven't been giving my hexagons much love lately and probably won't until after Christmas now.

I have been crocheting these Bow Tie Mug Hugs, filling an Ikea mug with a sachet of hot chocolate, marshmallows and candy canes. The pattern is from Simply Crochet Issue 11 and I used Drops Nepal, which is an Aran weight wool/alpaca blend. I added a few more rows to the pattern so it would fit the mug better. I think they are great fun stocking filler and quick to finish if you need to make a last minute gift.

I'm linking these to FO Friday over on Tami's blog, check out all the great projects this week.

I've also been working on my Anzen cardigan, it's coming along nicely, I've finished the body and have started the first sleeve. It's a DK weight yarn but crochet grows so much quicker than knitting.

This is my regular post for Chrisse and Marrianne's Bloomin' Crochet Along. I hope you all have a great weekend, I'm off to a local village tonight for the turn on of the Christmas lights, there will be stalls and all the pretty little shops will be open with hot Pimms and mulled wine. I love this time of the year!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


The Handmade Sock Society 3 by Helen Stewart

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