Sunday, 22 January 2017

SIMPLY COLOUR........


My Opal Advent calendar twenty-four mini-balls of loveliness are disappearing fast! I'm on a roll! I'm just a teensy-weensy bit addicted! I'm pretty much totally addicted! I'm in love! This colour blast is simply amazing and just what is needed on cold, dark January evenings.


These little beauties are not quite uniform in size. My tension when crocheting these has clearly not been consistent, but with a little bit of blocking I'm sure they will be fine. I'm planning on completing in another round on each square and joining as I crochet. It will be a new venture! Wish me luck!


Oh my word! How I love these! 


I've used sixteen balls on the first four socks. Each sock takes four balls, right down to the very last few inches. How luck is that! I'm now onto sock number five and mini-ball number eighteen, so not many more to go. Every last inch of gorgeousness will be used to complete six socks and forty-eight Granny squares. 


Then what!!!!!!! Well, there is a hidden away secret stash of all the sock yarn remnants ever used chez Snoops' with the added addition of a fair few swaps from Josiekitten and other mini-skein additions. These tiny lovelies are hibernating and awaiting a warm caressing hand to gently welcome them back.................. yep, they need some tender love and care. Sock Yarn Blankie your wait may be over!


Colour has not only been in evidence on Snoops' needles and hook; our Norfolk skies this week have been ablaze with colour. This shot was taken on Wednesday evening at around 4.30p.m. It doesn't really do justice to the stunning natural beauty that slowly paled and disappeared as the sun went to bed.


Then there was this little pop of colour that burst forth yesterday morning. How I love these sweet little early reminders that Spring is not too far away!

Sunday, 8 January 2017

JANET CLARE CUSHION .....


With all the busy chaos and excitement of the Christmas and New Year period, I completely forgot to show you my latest sewing endeavour. Having learnt to make my first patchwork cushion under the expert tutelage of my pal Josiekitten, I have now made two on my own. The very bright spotty dotty cushion shown two or three weeks ago, was a Christmas gift for my younger daughter, whilst this very contrasting colour scheme will work wonderfully well in my elder daughter's sitting room.

I have only recently re-discovered my love of sewing and along with it an absolute adoration of the fabric designs of the very talented Janet Clare. She uses one of my favourite colour palettes and has produced some wonderful designs. My favourite has to be her 'Hearty Good Wishes' prints, but alas, these seem to be no longer available. You could say, I've missed the boat!


Running a close second, comes the 'More Hearty Good Wishes' collection; again using the same colour palette and very similar designs. I have managed to snaffle a couple of charm and mini-charm packs for future 'stitchy' indulgence!


For the cushion, I have used the 'Nocturne' collection of prints. Everything is so understated and muted. I just LOVE them! I've learnt to keep a close eye on the seam allowances in order to maintain the same length of strip. This is essential if the cushion is to arrive at 20" in diameter and with the squares lined up precisely. Practice certainly is the way to go!


The actual pattern order is a time consuming job. Any amount of re-distributing, swapping around, starting again and turning around takes place before I'm finally happy with the layout of the squares.
Then it's sew, sew, sew!!!!! I love it!

WISHING YOU A PEACEFUL 2017!



Christmas has been and gone and before we know it we are into yet another new year. Decorations are dusted off and put away, the house is cleaned and normal day-to-day routines are re-established. I love Christmas, but there is always a good feeling when all of this has been achieved.


Socks are still top of my 'favourite knits' list, so it's quite exciting to know that I still have my Opal Advent calendar mimi-balls to play with for at least the next couple of weeks or so, in my spare time. 
I decided to crochet two small granny squares from each ball, before embarking on as many 'Dave' socks (Coop Knits) as the yarn will allow. I've photographed the min-balls in the order of their arrival and am using them in that same order, whatever the design, colour or match! 



So, here we go with Days 1 and 2! The granny squares will become a cushion cover and the socks will keep my toes toasty!


I have to admit to having become a teensy weensy bit addicted to this lovely project and am managing to squeeze in every little bit of precious free time to spend with it. 


A spotty - lined bag always adds a little extra pleasure  to the activity! ;-)


So far, each sock has used four mini-balls exactly, almost down to the last few inches of yarn, so I'm expecting six pretty little beauties by the time I get to the end of ball twenty-four. 


My Christmas knitting was completed on Christmas Eve, with this lovely pair of stripey socks for my son. I've now made four pairs using West Yorkshire Spinners' Signature bird range and have loved them all. Mr Snoops' pair have washed very well so far!

 

 I was a very lucky recipient of the above Christmas gorgeousness. Aren't those colours just beautiful? Along with the yarn came the pattern to work it with, Susan B. Anderson's 'Smooth Operator' socks. I've admired this pattern ever since it was published, and of course my dear friend, Josiekitten, remembered! The yarn has taken up residence in the yarn bowl, beside the sofa, so that i can feast my eyes on it. It won't be there for long though, because just as soon my little Advent cuties are complete, this stripey goodness will do it's job. I can't wait!


Sunday, 18 December 2016

LOOKING SPOTTY!


Well, what do you think to this little beauty? I know I really shouldn't be telling you how totally thrilled I'm feeling with myself, as well as just a teensy weensy bit proud, but I am! I can't contain my  pleasure. I just love sewing these little beauties. 

This is my first attempt at completing one completely on my own. I used a charm pack for the coloured squares and have to say, it took almost as long deciding on the arrangement as it did on actually making the cushion! 

I used my new overlocker for the first time too, having never used one before. Luckily it was threaded up and ready to go, so after a quick little practice I was ready to go too. It makes such a difference knowing that the project that has been so carefully considered and sewn, also gets to be properly finished off. I'm certainly loving my return to the sewing machine. Long may it continue!

Sunday, 11 December 2016

COLOUR........


Yep, afraid I'm a total sock machine at the moment. They seem to be rolling off the needles at a pretty fast speed. It's just as well though, as these are all family Christmas gifts and there is still one more pair to go. Then it will be the turn of my own fairy feet to receive a pair of snuggly socks in yet another colour way of this same gorgeous yarn.


In case you hadn't remembered the yarn is by West Yorkshire Spinners and knits up beautifully. I really like the beautiful colour ways; most are named after British birds. So, above from left to right we have Mallard, Pheasant and then Holly Berry, with matching solid colours, Juniper, Nutmeg and Cherry Drop.


This is the Mallard pair fresh off the needles and below is the fourth colour combo about to start out on the journey to become a pair of warm socks for yet another of Snoop's family members. This is Bullfinch with heels and toes in Grey. Loving those matching needles too!  ;-)


It's been very exciting first ten days of Opal Advent Calendar opening. As you can see, the colours are absolutely gorgeous, with plenty of choice to suit all tastes. Once my Christmas gift knitting is complete, these little lovelies and their, as yet unseen,  friends will become random socks and granny squares to make a cushion. C.A.N.'T W.A.I.T!!!!


There was such a pretty sky this evening too. Oh I do love COLOUR!


Sunday, 4 December 2016

CHRISTMAS IS COMING.......



There has quite a lot of quiet anticipation over the last couple of weeks, since my Opal Advent calendar landed chez Snoops'. It was a birthday gift back in July from my dear friend Josiekitten, but it was only recently delivered. I suspect she didn't trust me!!!

I have to say, it is quite the most exciting Advent calendar ever. There's definitely no weekend lie-ins when you have the next mini-skein to discover. Oooh, the anticipation!


Here are the first four days worth. Cute aren't they! Such sweet, dinky little mini skeins of sock yarny goodness. The only shame is that I'm still up to my eyeballs in Christmas knitting and so am in no position to cast on imminently. I suspect that when I do, it will be to make a pair or two of random multi-coloured socks and maybe crochet some little squares too. Who knows! I am saving that delicious delight for the Christmas holidays, when I will have a little more time. In the meantime....... well, more anticipation  of course.


Mr Snoops has been to this afternoon, playing in a Bridge competition, so I have made the most of a peaceful house and not too much school work to get done, to get my new beast of a sewing machine out and start work on another cushion. This one will be a Christmas gift for the younger Miss Snoops. Then I have the fabric ready for another for Miss Snoops the elder. Hmmm, time is definitely not on my side. 

I'm loving these little squares of spotty gorgeousness and I'm loving the re-discovery of stitching. I just need a lot more hours in every day. I think this will look lovely once finished!


December is certainly marching on with giant strides and the early dark evenings have rushed upon us. I love our city at this time of year, with it's array of twinkling lights, trees and festive garlands. 
Despite the rush to reach the end of my shopping list, I never forgo time to just soak up the simple beauty of this lovely time of year.


We strolled down into the city centre in search of coffee this morning and were greeted with this wondrous sight. Well yes, I guess the clear blue sky was pretty impressive, but so too the smokey smiley halo settled protectively over our city centre church. Perhaps a very special visitor was inside!


Have a good week!

Sunday, 27 November 2016

SOCK LOVE.....



It's all about the socks again. I haven't been in such a 'sock' place for a long time, but let's stay with the hygge and keep those little red 2.5 DPNs smoking! These are the completed pair of Pheasant Socks, which will be a Christmas gift. The yarn is from the WYS Signature 4ply, 'British Birds' range, in 'pheasant' colour way with a 'nutmeg' heel and toe. The yarn isn't the softest and I've yet to see how it works after a couple of washes, but the subtle colour mixes are just gorgeous. I've used Rachel Coopey's 'Dave' pattern again, as it just works!


Of course, the next colour way in the range was then ready to go. These will also be a Christmas gift! The colour way this time is 'mallard' with a 'juniper' heel. Such relaxing stripey knitting!


Let's hope the sock love continues, as I still have another pair or two to complete before the big day!