26 April 2016

Podcast - Episode 13

They say 13 is unlucky for some and I'm starting to think they are right.  This very nearly didn't happen as I almost couldn't get the video from my phone to my computer and had to resort to using my hubby's machine.  Sigh... technical issues... so draining... Blergh.

But never fear, I triumphed in the end!  I hope you like it.

Episode 13 Ravelry Thread

...Show Notes...

: :   WIP's   : :

Happy Scrappy Sock Blanket

Pattern: Happy Scrappy Squares

Ravelry Page

: :   PIP's   : :

My First Socks

A 'getting you started knitting socks' type pattern by me...
Coming Soon...

Yarn: Luxury Sock in Light Blue Speckles by The Wool Barn

If you'd be interested in testing the pattern and are familiar with the Free Pattern Testers Group on Ravelry, I'll be posting there soon.

Diamonds and Tassels Shawl

Pattern: Coming Soon! (Currently in testing, so not long now)

Yarn:  Theseus Lace in Rambling Rose by Eden Cottage Yarns

Wonky Zebra / Zig Zag Shawl

Pattern:  In  progress at the moment

Yarn:  Titus 4ply in Coal (Dark) and Driftwood (Light) by Eden Cottage Yarns

: :   FO's   : :

Sweet Like Honey in April

Pattern: Wildflower and Honeycomb Socks by Olivia Villarreal

Yarn: Strong Sock in Cupcake Sprinkles by The Wool Barn

Joining in with the #BoxOSoxKAL with Kristin of Yarngasm

Ravelry Page

 Faded Painted Roses

Pattern: Painted Rose Blanket by Me

Yarn: Stylecraft Special DK

Blog post and more information about this blanket

Ravelry Page

: :   GOODIES   : :

Lovely minis and lots of goodies from the kind and generous Erin of Holland Handmade
Erin's Etsy Shop: Holland Handmade

More planner goodies from:

: :   PODCAST LOVE   : :

Sam of Betsy Makes
Sue and Chelsea of Legacy Knits
Jilly of The Knitting Broomstick

S x



20 April 2016

Faded Painted Roses

I mentioned that I'd been busy beavering away on this veritable garden of blankety flowers in my post about Easter and I'm happy to say that I've now managed to take a photo or two and gathered together some essential blanket facts together, ready to share them here with you.

Goodness, blanket making can be a mighty task sometimes can't it?  This one has seemed quite the mountain to climb at times but I that's mostly because I tried to have it hanging around as a 'background project'.  You know the sort of thing where you just work on it now and again, between other things?  Supposedly taking your time and not worrying if it takes months or years to complete?

Yeah, that's just not me.  I keep trying it and it just doesn't suit me, my nature, my personality... whatever.  The thing is, I need to see regular, tangible and preferrably significant progress on a thing or I tend to end up feeling like I'm stuck in the mud and going no-where.  I love the theory, but in reality it just doesn't seem to float my crafty boat.  And we all want to keep our crafty boats sailing along nicely don't we? 

I started this blanket late last year and I'd come up with the palette for it before that, in the summer.  I'd forgotten till I looked back that I'd already started making blocks for this before the new Stylecraft Special colours came out and that opened up new colour options.  I can see from the final palette that things did evolve a bit and a few of the new colours made their way in there.

As is usual, I started off in a very random fashion, just selecting the combinations that appealed to me most and making those up.  I love this stage, it's when the colours are fresh and experimenting with different mixtures is so fun.  Sooner or later though I generally feel the need for some sort of organization.  I don't like to repeat a selection more than once if I can help it and that takes some planning or I end up with duplicates.  

In fact, when I came back to this project with intent to 'get it done' earlier this year I got super organized and decided on the combinations for the rest of my blocks in advance, then just worked my way through the list.  That's a new tack for me and although I doubt that will become my preferred way of working, I can't deny it doesn't half speed things up.  I fairly whizzed along after that, first making all the centers, then the first set of petals and so on...  A sort of creative process/speedy progress trade off!

Pet helpers:  They're cute, but they play merry hell with your exposure settings!

I didn't spend too long on the layout this time around.  There are so many colours in here and so many parts where the colours ideally shouldn't be grouped together, which should take precedent?  The background, the leaves, the outer petals, the center?  It's absolutely impossible not the have some of the same colours touching so I had to throw my natural need to create rules for these things to the wind.

In the end I laid the blocks out according the background, and then just tried to mix up the rest of the colours as much as possible as I worked through the rows.  Just using the age old 'squinty, screwed up eye technique' to see if any obvious, jarring combinations jumped out at me.  Swapping a block here or there where necessary.

Overall I'm pretty happy with how that worked out.  Of course, in the intervening time I've had plenty of opportunity to find all those colour aberrations and rue the fact that I didn't take more time mulling it over.  Then again, I know that it could never have been perfect, so I'm not letting it get to me... too much.

So now let's get down to blanket business and give you some factoids about this yarny flower fest.


Pattern:  Painted Roses Blanket

The original pattern is for a baby blanket, which you can see here.
This time I've made a much larger version with more squares, but the pattern works the same.

Size: 190 x 144 cm (75 x 57")

Squares: 108 arranged 9 wide by 12 long

Yarn: Stylecraft Special DK

Colours: 21 different colours (29 balls)

1005 - Cream
1023 - Raspberry
1026 - Apricot
1061 - Plum
1080 - Pale Rose (2 balls)
1123 - Claret
1277 - Violet
1420 - Camel
1432 - Wisteria
1709 - Gold
1711 - Spice
1722 - Storm Blue
1820 - Duck Egg

1027 - Khaki
1065 - Meadow
1712 - Lime
1822 - Pistachio
1824 - Cypress

Background and Joining:
1203 - Silver (2 balls)
1218 - Parchment (5 balls)
1710 - Stone (3 balls)

1 ball of each unless specified above

Total Yardage: 1630g / 5411 yards

I find it quite interesting that I although used quite a lot of colours to make this blanket, if you look at the yardage alone, you could still make a blanket this size with just 18 balls.  For example you could make all the leaves with just one ball, and the flowers with only 8 different colours.

You can find more details of the yardage breakdown on my Ravelry Project Page.

I do hope that you like it too.  It's the perfect thing to have at the end of the bed at the moment, chiming just right with the sun coming out a little more and garden waking up again.

S x



14 April 2016

Podcast Episode 12

You Tube Link

It's been awhile since the last episode, so I hope you'll forgive my general lack of coherence and waffle.  Although I could probably say that every time!

I hope you enjoy it though and as always, you're welcome to come over the the Ravelry Group and chat in the thread for this episode.

...Show Notes...

: :   WIP's / SOCKS   : :

My First Sock Pattern
Ravelry Page
Pattern: In progress at the moment....
Yarn:  The Wool Barn Luxury Sock in Pale Blue Sprinkles

(My previous pair of socks in this pattern)

Sweet like Honey Socks
Ravelry Page
Pattern: Wildflowers and Honeycomb by Olivia Villarreal
Yarn:  The Wool Barn Strong Sock in Cupcake Sprinkles

Happy Scrappy Sock Blanket
Ravelry Page
Pattern: Happy Scrappy Squares

For sock yarn swaps and 'swapless' swaps
Sock Yarn Swappers Ravelry Group


Ravelry Page
Pattern:  From my head!
Yarn:  Rico Essentials Mohair and Rico Alpaca Blend Chunky, both in Cream

Grannie Goes Large Blanket
Pattern: Grannie Goes Large
(Including pattern details and links to original and most recent post on colours and tutorials)

: :   GOODIES   : :

Stag Bag from Betsy Makes on Etsy

Goodies from Heather of Pink Milk

Heather's new shop will be opening on the 26th April

Pink Milk
pretty yarny things
27 Francis Street, Stoneygate, Leicester, LE2 2BE

Goodies from Brenda (wbend on Ravelry)

My new Webster Pages Color Crush Planner (A5) from Amazon

Planner Stickers from Sea Salt and Paper on Etsy


Sam of Betsy Makes (Blog), Betsy Makes Podcast (You Tube)

: :   CAL/KAL's   : :

The Cherry Heart CAL/KAL Thread on Ravelry

Vitamiz CAL on Le Blog Purple
(featuring my Rosie Posie Square with French translation)

S x



12 April 2016

Some Easter Things...

There have been some very definite signs of Spring over the holidays here.  Cheerful daffs have been swaying in the breeze, my tulips are starting to burst forth and we've seen and felt the warmth of the sun a little too.

April has lived up to it's reputation and brought many showers.  In classic English style, it's been a mixture of a brisk, saturating downpour followed by a the sun breaking through the clouds and attempting to dry everything out again.  It actually makes a very nice change to be having absolutely typical weather, unseasonable seems to have been the normal for far too long.

The schools have gone back in my part of the world today and I have to say, although I've enjoyed this holiday, I am completely ready for it to be over now and for the warm comfort of routine to take over.  It's been nice to stay in pyjamas half the morning or play games and lounge about but there comes a point where you just want to get on with something constructive.

Having said that, I haven't been totally idle during the break... almost, but not totally.
I've been beavering away on my second Painted Roses blanket like a woman possessed and hoorah and hooray, it's finally complete.  I'm so happy to say that!

I'll need to get all the relevant information and details together before I'm ready to share that one with you properly, not to mention take some photos, but I've scattered a few tempting tidbits about this post to give you an idea of things to come....

I did mean to get a chance to get another podcast out during the holidays too, but tricky technology and lack of organization got the better of me there, so that's another thing I'll hope to address now that I'm getting myself back into the saddle again.

Still, for all that I haven't managed to accomplish during the holidays I'm pleased to say that I did enjoy a little relaxation.  We had a few days of action and activity, Little Miss had a couple of Pony Day's booked in, her absolute favourite way to spend her time.  We also went swimming, saw family and went on some lovely walks with the dog too.

I never realised how long it took to get these pups up to speed on the walking front.  Apparently it's not good for his joints to do too much too soon.  He's finally getting big enough that we can take him for a reasonable walk though and I'm looking forward to the summer when he'll be able to go further.  We've been exploring different places to take him and sussing out walks that combine with a park, good bike trails and picnic spots.  It'll make for some cheap days out when the warmer weather really starts to make it's mark.

Other than that it's been mostly home grown fun.  Lots of lovely slouching, much chocolate eating, some board games, plenty of pretending games and lets just say the Harry Potter channel has come in handy too.  Lunch and a film has become de rigeur in the Cherry Heart household.

Happily it makes for some good crafting time too!

S x



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