Sunday, 20 January 2013


A few months ago, my Mum was clearing out one of her cupboards, and found some half-knitted gloves.  She doesn't knit anymore, so she handed them to me saying "You might as well finish these".

Not a problem - except that she no longer had the pattern.  Still, shouldn't be beyond me, I thought.  Yesterday, in the spirit of completing my half-finished projects, I dug out the gloves, and the remaining wool.  I gauged  guessed the size of needles, and sat down to knit, but then I realised that they weren't knitted in a simple rib, as I'd first thought, and that the inside looked like this, although the outside did just look like a normal K1P1 rib.  
Mmm.  Not to be outdone,  I then got all my knitting books out and looked for something similar, and I eventually decided that it looked like reverse seed stitch.  I did a test square to check and luckily it seemed to match, so I managed to get them finished over the course of the evening.  Not really my colour, but at least that's another project finished.
This morning I rang Mum to tell her, and explained that it had been trickier than I expected, not having the pattern, and all.  She said she definitely DID have a pattern at one time, and she could clearly picture it (pity she couldn't picture the instructions, then) 
Apparently, she was making them for my nephew, to keep his hands warm while he was doing his paper round.  As he is now in his late twenties and works in an insurance office, I can't really see him needing them now.
Anyway, there's enough wool left to make a hat, should I so choose.
Looks like I might need one ...............

You Can't Hurry Love - The Supremes

Friday, 11 January 2013

Hollywood (again!)

I know I intended to blog more regularly, but, to be honest, but I've been spending SO much time at the gym, and cooking healthy meals, not to mention practising the guitar until my fingers bled, etc, that I just haven't had a minute.
My friend Debs came down from Birmingham for the day on Saturday, and we met at the V&A, just before they took their magnificent tree down from the entrance hall.
We visited the Hollywood Costumes exhibition - (my  second visit, and I'm planning to go again in a couple of weeks) followed by my third visit to see the Ballgowns (this has closed now)  Then we went for lunch - Debs had never seen the cafe at the V&A before and was very impressed with the decor
and I opened my beautifully wrapped present
With this pretty rubber stamp set  inside ..
A lovely thoughtful present, thank you Debs.
I'm afraid to say that in spite of my best intentions, the chocolate coins and the little packet of Lovehearts included in the parcel were inadvertently consumed on the way home.

I have managed a bit better with some of my other 'good intentions' - I've done Pilates and Yoga classes, with more sessions already booked, and I've walked to Ware and back on two separate occasions, and  I've cooked delicious, warming homemade soups, (from real veg!).
As for completing ongoing projects, I've now crocheted all the squares I need for a cushion, and I've joined them together.  

So, not quite finished, but on the way.  
I have, however, finished a jumper I was knitting.  I'd bought 13 balls of Patons Husky yarn from a charity shop a couple of years ago.  I searched everywhere for a suitable pattern, then believe it or not, I found that I still had a pattern for the same yarn that I'd knitted when I was about 17. 
See, maybe it does pay to be less than ruthless when decluttering. 
Although it says Beehive, the Husky was a pure wool alternative on the pattern. I wanted to change it a bit to a funnel neck, and I had to make it an inch shorter in the body due to having barely enough yarn, but it turned out fine - and as I was meeting the girls for knitting today, I took it with me and put it on for a photo opportunity. 
Fairly sensible pose ....
and a less sensible one
And in case you were thinking "Blimey, that healthy eating regime hasn't come a moment too soon!", can I say that what appears to be excess flab around the middle, is definitely, at least partially, loose jumper.
In fact, I have knitted exactly the same size that I knitted when I was 17!  Although I am prepared to accept that this one isn't quite so baggy on me now.

Hollywood - Marina and the Diamonds

Tuesday, 1 January 2013

Happy New Year

Nothing like starting the Year as you mean to go on.  I'm not saying that any of these are resolutions, more  good intentions.

1) Get more exercise.
I haven't actually been to the gym, (it's closed today) but I've booked two sessions for later in the week.  

2) Eat more healthily 
 I've got homemade vegetable soup for tea, and so far I've not had any cake or sweets.   But then it's not bedtime yet.

3) Update the blog more regularly.
Well, so far so good.

4) Stop buying so much 'stuff' - and use up what 'stuff' you've got.
I haven't spent any money, not even online. Plus, I've actually used some 'stuff' today ...... making a case for my ipad.  I've had a 'practical' case for some time, but I fancied making a pretty one.
I used (or mostly re-used) fabric I'd already got, dismantling a cushion cover, and cutting up an old and tatty embroidered tray cloth that I bought in a charity shop a while ago.  I was a bit stuck as the 'recipe' called for pretty bias binding, and I didn't have any.  I was all set to wait until I could get to the shops to buy some, but then I remembered that many years ago I bought a little gadget for making bias binding.  Surprise surprise, it only took a few minutes to find - it was in the second place I looked!  
The price ticket said it was £3.55 from C&H fabrics in Ilford, (long since closed down) so I know I must have bought it at least twenty years ago - and the packet was still sealed.  Obviously, it's the first time in 20 years that I've had an urgent bias binding emergency.
I followed the instructiuons and cut the bias strips, and joined them together, 
then it was simple to pull the fabric strip through the bias maker and press the edges in place
I don't know why I've waited all this time to use it, it was a brilliant little gadget.

Which meant I was able to completely finish the project..........
Right, if you'll excuse me, I'm just off to practice the guitar and that's Good Intention number 5 covered.