knit

A duck in a knitted shawl in London Woodlands

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I recently discovered an enchanting volunteer-run farm in Shooters Hill, South London.  It was hosting a small but interesting textile and wool festival. It was a great surprise to discover such a treasure in this built up area and the views from outside the farm are far and wide across to the City, quite clearly you see Canary Wharf and The Shard (Shooters Hill is one of the highest points in London).

http://www.thewoodlandsfarmtrust.org/

In years gone by it was a huge pig farm, complete with abattoir and the site has battled over the years against redevelopment.  It is a working farm with produce (great jam!), animals, ponds, facilities for school trips and a lovely cottage garden, namely ‘Peter Rabbit’s Garden’ complete with knitted animals and birds hidden amongst flowers and vegetables. Here are a few pics just to give you a taster of the day. I only wish I’d taken more, not only of the garden but of the festival too. Roll on next year’s one – I will go back! Here you see a scarecrow family outside the farmhouse, Jemima, a green parrot and one of the ponds with fantastic lily pads.

 

A little about the cottage garden too.

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And one marvellous exhibitor on the day.

http://www.rayslaterclothdolls.co.uk/about.html

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Wow! Her cloth dolls are amazing!
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Knitting WIPS or WNIPS and other acronyms

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It’s rather hot to knit so I have just renamed the two knitting projects beside me WNIPS – adding a ‘NOT’ to the WORKS IN PROGRESS acronym.  You see, I stalled with one a while ago when I got to a tricky part.  I then started a simple new project in cotton, hoping simple and quick would mean I could wear it this summer – oh no chance – it grew and it grew and it grew until I realised the raglan shaping meant it would only fit a chimpanzee with very long arms so it’s been RIPPED right back to a pile of balls.  For me, this is actually pretty good, being as it is not a UFO for the next few months or years – to unravel and add it to the STABLE is actually better than rediscovering it in a bag or a drawer later.*

I have managed to do a little more machine sewing, so the mini pile of blue piecing for a quilt top has grown.  I shall pop photos up another day.  I hadn’t realised just how many squares I needed to make a cover for a single sized bed so it is a longer project than anticipated but I haven’t ‘redesigned’ it yet and I haven’t decided to make a cushion instead (ie. cheating!).

I hope others are crafting more efficiently than me !

 

As a key for those who don’t know:

WIP – Works in progress

RIPPING or FROGGING – undoing a yarn project making ripping or frogging sounds as you do it !

UFO – Unfinished Object

STABLE – Stash beyond life expectancy

More bunting and beach huts, a little bit of early summer

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Lovely readers know I adore bunting and beach huts.  Recently I blogged about both.

I had made some bunting to donate to a friend for a charity event. I used cotton fabric from my fabric stash which I’d been holding onto for something special. I loved it so much it was almost difficult to gift it! Therefore I made another length for myself.

 

We’ve just been away to France for a few days.  We had glorious sunshine, mostly.

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Here’s my bunting, in situ, decorating the outside of our house in France! 

A little visit to a nearby town, Houlgate, reminded me of the inspiration for the beach hut in another recent blog post (on the right!)

https://handmadehomemadeknitstitchdesign.wordpress.com/2018/05/23/crafting-sharing-beach-huts-and-bunting/

Houlgate has this great line of beach huts, each year reconstructed on the promenade.  I often wonder where they go for the winter. This year we were there when workmen were putting together the last few and lining them all up ready for their summer use. They are numbered, some are named and even though I have been visiting for more than ten years I have never counted how many there are.  In this photo the last one is number 154 !   Some numbers are missing, some are in better condition than others, but they are all orange and white stripes.

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As for crafting over the last few days… here’s a snippet of me one afternoon …

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Knitting and sewing is high on the agenda at the moment but so is getting a little bronzed !

Where do you like to knit if you get the chance?

 

I should have ripped it back, a lesson learned

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Today, a gorgeous sunny Sunday here in Kent, I am wearing a cotton summer top I knitted last year.  I loved the cotton I knitted with (Paintbox DK from Loveknitting.com). When the back and front were finished I sewed it together and finished the armholes and neck.  The neck looked awful, lumpy and bumpy, not a good finish! It is often more difficult to get a neat finish with a cotton or cotton mix, based on past experience. I added some extra rows and attempted to make the neck edge roll back on itself to neaten it up.  I had an idea that if I added a lace trim it would enhance the neck and be a ‘feature’.  I should have ripped it back there and then but I didn’t.

So I tried the top on ….

I have no idea why I waited until the final furlong.  It fits badly.  It is too snug in places, but too wide across the shoulders and chest (think of me as a lumpy triangle, narrow on the top, getting wider across the bottom (!).  This is not a flattering photo, deliberately to show off a bad knit, ha ha! It’s the top’s first foray into the limelight. I am wearing it with some fabric shorts I sewed in February this year (love the shorts and they fit well). I have just been in my garden enjoying the sunshine. I could have gifted this top straight away to someone else or to a charity shop, however I decided to wear it and work out exactly what I shall change when I made Version 2.  Such an easy knit.  Such a dumb mistake.  I have plenty more yarn to make a different size or a striped one, minus the lace, with a different neck finish.  Wish me luck!

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A small knit a la plage

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A little break in Normandy, France.  One afternoon, Cabourg on the coast.  A gentle breeze blew the winter blues away.  Briefly the beach was empty and perfect.

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Later, pins and wool in hand, half a baby dress. This is an ongoing project but there is a time limit.

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Unfortunately due to hand trouble it is a little slower growing than I would like.

More another day …

 

Visiting Ye Olde Faversham and a Rainbow Knit

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This weekend the warm weather made a pleasant change from the recent snow and chills. On Sunday we had a trip to Faversham in Kent for my husband’s birthday treat. He and our son went on a tour of the Shepherd Neame Brewery, whilst I relaxed in a nearby coffee shop then took a stroll around the town.

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Parts of Faversham are very old, 14th Century Pub, The Sun Inn, we ended up here later for lunch, yum!.  The Colonades in Market Square (lovely market in the week apparently, but very quiet on a Sunday).

There’s a wonderful looking yarn shop – unfortunately for me, closed that day for private workshops – a good excuse to go back another day. The Yarn Depository is housed in The Old Pharmacy, built in 1240.

yarndiposfaversham   pharmacyfaversham

Much of the town isn’t as attractive, but I think I saw some of the best bits!

On returning home I cast on a new project. I am supposed to be completing WIPs but I am allowed a few new ones – and this is actually an attack on my stash so it counts towards ‘tidying and sorting’ my yarn.

It’s difficult to see here but these are sleeves for a baby dress and the green will be part of the body of the dress.  Watch this space! Adriafil Knitcol knits in stripes ‘like a rainbow’.  Rico Baby Classic is one of my ‘go to’ yarns for many a baby project. Anyone here also knitting rainbows?

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The beginning of ‘a rainbow’

Buttons in a tin

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Whose Mum or Granny had a button box or button tin?  I have fond memories from a young age of being allowed to sit and sift through my own Mum’s buttons.  Different sizes, different shapes, some matching pairs or sets, lots of odd ones, lots of old ones, many that stayed in that tin year after year.

This week I was searching for buttons in one of my own button tins – so I thought I’d show some of my favourite ones. The first picture shows leftover fabric buttons made ages ago, dorset buttons from a workshop and two fabulous buttons with cute printed fabric which I bought in France.

buttons1The second photo has horn shaped buttons which used to be on a handknitted cardigan, I Ioved them and I loved the cardigan, unfortunately after two years I shrunk it in a wash(!) and couldn’t wear it again. Then there’s a couple of ceramic buttons from a gorgeous shop in Westerham, Kent http://www.anniesattic.co.uk/shop/ – and more ceramic ones from a friend’s trip to Denmark.  The rainbow ones I found on a stall at the Knitting and Stitching Show at Alexandra Palace about three years ago.

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Here’s the reason I was searching for buttons.  I needed eleven for this chunky cardigan – finally finished – it had been a WIP for a while! These are wooden and were an internet purchase from China.

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I wonder if anyone else has favourite buttons to show off. I’d love to see!