Monday, 26 October 2009

Growing Up

This is what you wear to build a base on a chilly autumn day if you are three and dress yourself.

The shocking pink Blue Faced Leicester sock is coming on, we had a quick measure of Miss Belle's foot, 6 3/4" round 6 3/4" long. Flicking through my sock knitting note book I was transported back to an early pair of Louisa Harding socks when her feet were 5" round and 5"long. I hadn't realised but I have been recording both of them growing up in sock inches, this little notebook also has lots of little scribbles from them, I will have to treasure it.

Todays making has been scones for the WI and a couple of Shepherds pies from Saturdays roast beef, the freezer is groaning.

Sunday, 25 October 2009


Todays making has been a base, no idea what part the pipe plays?

I obviously need to get my eye in with the sock knitting, these should have fit me but are perfect on my assistant, maybe I'm to relaxed and this has come out in my knitting.

Saturday, 24 October 2009


Today we had a trip to Birmingham for a bit of culture? I bought the heaviest book on Photoshop that I could find and a desk top sharpener I have always wanted, every pencil in our house has a perfect point tonight.

We went to see an Argentium exhibition and Taking Time, Craft and the Slow Revolution which sparked a lot of ideas. I particularly liked the stop frame installation, "Cardigan Study", by Amy Haughton, a cardigan unravelled.

Friday, 23 October 2009

In Training

Three years old and threading a needle with such concentration. The youngest crafter spotted this brand new Disney Princess kit in a charity shop and grabbed it before the other children spotted it, she was so pleased.

My socks are off the needles and ready to wear, took just over a week. The shocking pink is Blue Faced Leicester from Woolfest, I could not walk past it. Might have a look for a patterned/lace girls sock in my vintage patterns. Already wound in to two 26g balls, I love my electronic scales, they have only just moved out of the studio and into the kitchen, only ever associated them with the weighing of yarn!

Thursday, 22 October 2009

As Good As The Beverly Hills Hotel

Whenever we are on holiday I have Eggs Benedict and the Beverly Hills Hotel was the first place that I had them, they have never ever been beaten. As he knows that this is probably my most favourite meal my assistant has mastered the art of the perfect poached egg. Hollandaise has always been a problem, shop bought is never just right and so I have eventually turned to Delia, don't know why I never tried before but it is fabulous and with the egg whites added it won't split, can be re-heated and frozen. What more could I ask for.

This is a Cauliflower, although I wouldn't have known had by veg box not told me so, how amazing is mother nature?

Having a nine year old book worm in the house I always look at the childrens book section in the charity shops and am particularly drawn to the older more interesting books. Emile and the Detectives was on Radio 4 at the weekend, we haven't listened yet, and Louis does have a smaller version of this that he has already read so I couldn't pass this one by for 99p. As soon as a child can read the illustrations disappear which isn't really fair, we love the Artemis Fowl graphic novel and Bones so having any sort of illustrations is a real treat let alone ones as inviting as these.

Wednesday, 21 October 2009


My assistant and I have been to Manchester today to see the Surrealist women exhibition, 'Angel's of Anarchy'. We also had a spot of lunch at Carluccio's and were stopped for an interview about bankers.

Anthony Gormley's 'Filter' in Manchester Art Gallery.

Tuesday, 20 October 2009


Today started with a croaky voice which meant no school and therefore tears, so a deal was done to stay in bed with a Princess breakfast on a proper breakfast tray listening to a story tape.

As you can see by mid-morning spirits were much higher with daddy assisting in the making of a princess tiara for the big not-to-be-missed school trip tomorrow.

I attempted to do some work for my course. Tonight we had a lecture from Paul Sermon, on art, virtual reality and interactive installations, really good.

At last my assistant has linked the original didyoumakeityourself - see top right-hand corner - I seem to have not blogged for about a year and therefore not documented the stuff that I made in that time which is a real pain because blogging does make me record what goes on in our lives. I may get around to taking more photos but for the time being here is The Estonian Lace Shawl. I went up to Woolfest on my own and had a fabulous couple of days, stayed in a posh hotel with great food and met loads of people at said hotel that I would not have met had I not been on my own. I did a day school with Nancy Bush, bought some cashmere and cranked this beauty out, it is constantly about my person.

I knit a pair of socks for my brother's birthday but he didn't turn up at the alloted time, as usual, so my assistant got the socks, don't mess with the hand knits.

This is how you try get a good sock photo but the arm chair will of-course flip back!

Monday, 19 October 2009


Today I have been talking to Mabel about her Bottom Drawer. The second sock sneeked past the heel while I was watching the Glamour Season on BBC4.

Sunday, 18 October 2009

Boy's Work

Today everyone in this house has been doing their share of the chores and Louis is the laundry pegging out boy. His usual Sunday attire is pj's but today he wore a pair of tights - originally from his 'Thing 1' costume - a pj top and Hunter wellies, he goes his own way!

Sticking to the new Sunday rule of meals from the freezer we dined on Shepherds Pie and Plum Crumble, although I did make Nigella's 'Norwegian Cinnamon Buns' for afternoon tea.

They went down well with the workers.

Saturday, 17 October 2009

Back to the Knitting

This is my Florida knitting, started in haste for the long holiday flight at the end of August, I motored on with the body and then the contrast knit-on border until I got to a corner. Having altered the number of repeats I now have to do some intense math to get around the corner, keep the pattern and keep the left and right corners even, not a relaxing evening task, and so...

I set off on a pair of socks for some mindless knitting using some multi-coloured from a yarn swap and some vintage charity shop sock wool. How good it is to knit the simple sock.

I love half an hour flicking through my very old pattern books, The Book of "Hows" was published very early 20th century - three pence - it has a green velum cover which overlaps the pages of the book by about a quarter of an inch, the pages are stitched in with red thread. It features such gems as child's gaiters, sleeves or armlets, knee caps and a fabulous golf jacket. The golf jacket indicates that it wasn't aimed at the ordinary working class housewife.

Friday, 16 October 2009


The completed sketchbook...

and more sketching.

Today was Betsy's first chapel service at school, 'We like Blackberries in a pie'.

Tonight we did some making while boys were out, sweetcorn soup and fairy cakes.

Thursday, 15 October 2009


I love the simplicity of the little tissue paper transfers, a thin blue line waiting to be transformed, or not...

My very dull, black sketchbook needed a cover so I painted it with a bit of quick drying eggshell I found under the sink and rooted out some transfers that have been in the back of a needlework book for about 30 years. I had a bit of fine cream wool from a nightdress to hand and kept it simple with some Danish flat embroidery thread which I have adored since I got it about 15 years ago.

I was going for a 1930's nursery feel and I am chuffed to bits, looks great on the sketchbook - will post tomorrow - but now I need to do more.

Wednesday, 14 October 2009

The Overcoat

Today has been a day of sorting, cleaning and organising, I had an old, possibly vintage, Parkernoll sofa delivered and the whole house has had to shuffle around to accommodate it. Every single thing in our sitting room has now come from a second hand warehouse, except for the T.V.

My best ever ebay purchase, Betsy's tweed overcoat, she wore it for a couple of years and I let down the sleeves and hem, she even managed to squeeze herself in to it the other day but it doesn't look so good with three quarter length sleeves.

It has now become a specimen for my textile studies and still it is adored by both of us.

I love the simplicity of these transfers before they have been embroidered.

Tempted to do something with the ducks...

Tuesday, 13 October 2009

The Housewife

Today we went to Land Of Lost Content in Craven Arms, a fabulous place to spend an afternoon. I picked up this little gem which I will of course be studying closely.

I think 3 must be old enough.

A section on how to look after a sick husband!

Monday, 12 October 2009

Guitar practice

Today has been a lot of guitar practice and a tap dancing lesson...

A trip to the art shop with a twenty year old Rotring pen and a colourful purchase...

A bit more sketching...

Sunday, 11 October 2009

Where has the time gone?

Fossil hunting in Dorset

Camp Bestival

Louis is now highly skilled at pegging out the washing, so good in fact that he is able to turn it into a comedy act.

Miss Betsy glamorous as usual.

First day back at school.

Damson picking.

Today we have eaten completely from the freezer, Butternut Squash soup, mince pies, lemon traybake, chicken pie and Damson cobbler, just that I could make a start on all of this...

Getting back to drawing...

and sketchbooks.