Wednesday, 27 April 2016

Fimo Clay Charm Bracelet

Last year after Christmas, I treated myself to an awesome Fimo clay charm book called Make Clay Charms (you can see my post about it here). It comes with everything you need to make yourself a charm bracelet, as well as a book full of lovely ideas for cute little charms (a lot of which are food with faces! Yay!).

As I mentioned in my last post about this, I was pretty keen on making my bracelet all food, so I decided to do six charms for my bracelet and then set to work.

The clay wasn't as easy to work with as actual Fimo clay is, but after a lot of rolling about in my hands trying to heat it up, it eventually stopped breaking apart. The dark brown colour was super sticky though, and my hands kept getting covered in it, which meant a lot of hand washing to stop everything ending up brown!

The instructions for each charm are really clear, and the little diagrams at the start of each pattern show you how much clay you need, meaning you can check you've got the right amount just by lying it on top of the picture.

After making and baking the charms, I drew faces on some of them with a Sharpie, glazed them, and hung them up to dry. The book even came with an awesome little drying stand!

Clay bracelet

And then all I had to do was assemble the bracelet!

Clay bracelet

So we have an apple and a pea pod.

Clay bracelet

Some fries and a chocolate chip cookie.

Clay bracelet

And a milk carton and a doughnut!

Clay bracelet

How cute is it?!

Clay bracelet

Clay bracelet

Clay bracelet

I'm a bit worried about the hooks coming loose in the clay, as it was quite hard to get them in in the first place without squishing my ceation, and most of them still spun once I had baked them, but the book says if they come loose you can glue them back in again, so I'll just have to keep an eye on it! If one falls off I can always make a replacement.

Now that I've made the bracelet kit, I really want to have a go at making some of the other patterns from the book. On my first post about this book someone in the comments section said how they thought the charms would make lovely stitch markers for knitting, and I think that's an awesome idea. So a set of cute stitch markers may be on the cards.

My only other Fimo clay effort has been some Super Mario magnets, and I think the charms have turned out far better, so hopefully I'm getting better at working with clay. I also liked the way the glaze looks on the clay, so I think I may need to invest in a bigger tub of glaze for future projects.

Also while seaching on Amazon so I could link to this book, I've discovered there is a glitter version too, which I may just need to buy!

This project is a step towards completing my New Year's List. You can check out my progress here.
  • Clear as many free and purchased craft kits as possible.
  • Make things from my huge collection of craft books.

Sunday, 24 April 2016

Colour Block Ribbed Turban

After the success of my heart pocket apron from Crochet with One Sheepish Girl, I decided to make something else from the book while I was at it.

I already have the wool for the Diana camera bag, but I decided to tackle the colour block ribbed turban, as it looked super cute.

I used the same green wool from my apron, as well as some lovely bright blue from my stash, as I love how these colours look with my hair. Again I used acrylic yarn instead of the cotton suggested in the pattern, so it'll be super cozy in the colder weather.

This pattern had a couple of stitches I had never come across before, the front post double crochet and the back post double crochet. Reading the instructions confused me a bit, but a quick Google for some images of the stitches (front post double crochet explanation and back post double crochet explanation) I knew exactly what I was supposed to be doing.

My crocheting/wool combo meant I only needed 56 rows to get to the desired length.

Crochet turban

Crochet turban

Crochet turban

Crochet turban

I was a bit confused when it came to sewing the parts together though. The instructions made total sense but I when I was done I just wasn't sure it looked exactly like it was supposed to. But after a bit of fiddling around in the mirror, I think it is actually right and looks lovely, though I'm not sure if the bump in the middle is too bumpy! I might need to play around with it a bit more.


Yarn Used:
  •  Lion Brand Vanna's Choice.
    • Aqua.
  • Stylecraft Special Aran.
    • Teal.
Raverly Project Page.

This project is a step towards completing my New Year's List. You can check out my progress here.
  • Make things from my huge collection of craft books.

Wednesday, 20 April 2016

Heart Pocket Apron

This is a project I've had the yarn for for ages, and I've just finally got around to making it. However, I did realise that the pattern called for cotton yarn, and I had just bought normal acyclic Aran weight yarn. Whoops!

I'm thinking I might use this as a craft room apron to project myself from glitter and stuff, instead of using it in the kitchen, where it might melt if it comes in contact with heat! I'm guessing this very reason, teamed with the washable aspect, is why the pattern calls for cotton yarn, but I'm not too bothered. I actually hate working with cotton yarn anyway. I'm quite happy for this apron to get a bit grubby while protecting my clothes anyway.

The pattern for this heart pocket apron comes from Crochet with One Sheepish Girl by Meredith Crawford. This is just a lovely book and all the patterns are super lush.

Crochet apron

Crochet apron

I adore how this look, and I love the colour combo I went with. It just turned out so lovely, and the little heart pockets are super cute! It's also a really nice fit (though I can't get a photo where my hips don't look huge! Trust me, it fits lovely).

Crochet apron

Crochet apron

Crochet apron

This was also a really easy pattern to follow. The only thing I did different was joining the sash to the apron body with a slip stitch (using this technique) instead of sewing it on as the pattern describes, because as I've mentioned before, my sewing can sometimes let a project down and make it look messy.

I was left with nearly two full balls of plum yarn and nearly a whole ball of teal yarn. I think because I used different yarn to the pattern (and the eternal debate of what worsted weight actually means in the UK! I go with Aran every time, but it never seems to turn out quite right) I ended up with a lot more left over than I should have had, so my stash just got a little bigger! I have so much left over yarn of this weight, I really need to make a big blanket or something to get rid of it all!

Yarn Used:
  • Stylecraft Special Aran.
    • Plum.
    • Teal.
    • Magenta.
Raverly Project Page.

This project is a step towards completing my New Year's List. You can check out my progress here.
  • Make all the things I've bought supplies for but am yet to make.
  • Make things from my huge collection of craft books.

Sunday, 17 April 2016

Crochet Beanie for Ivy

The other day I said to Donald how cute it would be to make a hat for Ivy and attach the biggest pom pom possible. And so a project idea was born. I basically wanted to make a hat to pop on a giant pom pom.

I found this free pattern for a basic beanie, which comes in loads of different sizes, and decided to go with that.

I was actually aiming to make the 0-6 months hat, but because I had all the instructions on the screen at once, I ended up making the 6-12 months one instead! I would say whoops, but it was actually a bit short for Ivy once I was finished.

Crochet baby hat

Crochet baby hat

I think that face says it all! I even use the exact same yarn from the pattern, so maybe Ivy just had a really big head, but she's only 4 months old, so I doubt this would fit her when she's a year. Perhaps my tension is off! Or maybe I made some mad combo of different sizes in the confusion, so who knows!

I decided to add another three rows of  double crochets (single crochets in the pattern) and then one row of triple crochet to finish it off. And yay it fits a lot better!

Crochet baby hat

Crochet baby hat

And check out that pom pom! Huge and in neon orange! What could be better?

Crochet baby hat

It's good to know the pattern comes in so many different sizes, because I can make her a bigger one if she needs it in the future. It's really easy, so I would give it a bash if you're looking for an easy beanie pattern.

Yarn Used:
  • Caron Simply Soft.
    • Grape.
  • Rico Basic Acrylic.
    • Neon orange.
Raverly Project Page.

This project is a step towards completing my New Year's List. You can check out my progress here.
  • Craft for Ivy

Friday, 15 April 2016

Anniversary Card

Tuesday was mine and Donald's two year wedding anniversary! And aside from making me feel awful that I still haven't finished our wedding scrapbook, I decided to make him a cute card for the occasion.

I got him a Star Wars t-shirt as a present, as the second anniversary is cotton, and he got me some awesome Studio Ghibli socks and The Adventures of Superhero Girl book, so it was a lovely day all round.

Anyway, here's my card!

Anniversary card

I copied the Yoda picture from here.

Who doesn't love cute Star Wars' characters and bad puns?

Wednesday, 13 April 2016

Flying Ducks Cross Stitch

After finishing off the cards from my last post, the only thing I had left from those massive cross stitch kits was one small frame. I decided to whip up something I had been wanting to make for a while, to use up that last frame and finally get rid of those cross stitch kits forever! They've been haunting me for ages!

I used a cute flying ducks pattern from X Stitch by Sarah Fordham., which is just one of my favourite cross stitch books.

Flying ducks cross stitch

Flying ducks cross stitch

The pattern was super quick to whip up, and fits perfectly inside the frame! It's now sitting proudly on my craft room shelves alongside many of my other makes!

I'm so happy with the massive dent I'm making in my free craft kits, especially those massive ones! Now they're gone, I feel I definitely tackle the remaining kits.

This project is a step towards completing my New Year's List. You can check out my progress here.
  • Clear as many free and purchased craft kits as possible. 
  • Make things from my huge collection of craft books. 

Sunday, 10 April 2016

Cross Stitch Cards

In a final bid to get rid of my final two huge cross stitch kits, I decided to do what I did with my Christmas ones, and just use all the supplies to make some cards with simple designs instead of spending ages making cards with patterns from the kit just because I thought I should.

I had 12 card blanks in total to use, so I searched through Pinterest for some simple patterns, and finished them all off in a couple of evenings. I'll link to sources for search pattern below the photos.






The kits both came with some stickers to decorate the cards for special occasions, like "Happy Birthday" and "Thank You", so I can stick those on when it actually comes to using the cards to make them a bit prettier.

This project is a step towards completing my New Year's List. You can check out my progress here.

  • Clear as many free and purchased craft kits as possible.

Friday, 8 April 2016

Daisy Socks

I have been meaning to knit a pair of socks for a while. It was on my list all last year and I never managed it, though I did manage to crochet a pair, and I decided to finally just bite the bullet and give it a go.

I had a pattern and a yarn kit from Let's Get Crafting! Knit and Crochet Issue 37, which was apparently an easy sock pattern for beginners, so I've had that set aside for ages, hoping one day to finally make the socks!

I'd like to start by saying I never really intended to make these socks as socks I would actually be able to wear, purely because I thought they might turn out a bit rubbish, or might not even fit! This whole process was more about having a shot at knitting socks, and experiencing things in knitting I had never done before, such as turning a heel. That's why I kept this pack of free wool aside, instead of adding it to my car cushions I made a while ago, as I did with all my other free kit wool, as I wasn't too worried about possibly wasting it if I ended up throwing the knitting across the room.

This pattern didn't come with a desired gauge, so I just ended up going for it and hoping for the best. I also used the magic loop technique on an 80cm cable, which after a workshop at the lovely Ginger Twist Studio in Edinburgh, I am really comfortable with it for knitting in the round!

So here is the first sock I made, according to the pattern.

Daisy socks

Daisy socks

Daisy socks

This is the second attempt really, as I got as far as the heel in my first attempt, and made some mistakes, and in trying to pull it back a couple of rows, ended up pulling the whole thing back! The second attempt worked a lot better and I managed to make it to the end of the sock without any more rage quitting.

To finish the sock off you had to use the Kitchener stitch, which was a technique I hadn't used before, but basically makes it look like the seam is more knitting instead of sticking out as a big seam. It was a really easy technique to actually use (I used a combo of this Craftsy post and this video tutorial), however, I had a bit of a lump at one side, and it wasn't as neat as I would have liked.

When I was finished the first sock I was happy I had more or less managed all the technical stuff in the pattern, but my sock was pretty messy. And I think a lot of this was down to the colour changes. There were so many to get those stripes, and loads in the heel, and it meant my tension around the colour changes just wasn't the best, so there's a lot of quite wide holes in places. My colour changing technique isn't always the best, and usually better hidden at the edge of knitting, but there was no place to hide here!

I decided I would knit the second sock but I would do it all in one colour. This way I could get another practise at all the difficult, new bits, but wouldn't have to worry about all the changes and ALL THOSE ENDS!

So here's my second sock!

Daisy socks

Daisy socks

Daisy socks

I used pink because it was the only colour in the free kit I hadn't used, but as you can see, I ran out near the end and had to use a little grey from my stash. I thought grey went lovely with the pink and I didn't want to risk running out again and having to do more changes than I needed to.

I am much happier with this sock. My bits where the round starts and ends in much neater in one colour, along with my heel and my decreases in the foot.

My Kitchener stitch on the toe is much neater too, though I still have a little bump where I started it, which I'm not sure how to get rid of. I think with a bit more practise, maybe watching more videos of the technique will help with this. The video I watched was joining two pieces of flat knitting, instead of finishing something in the round, so maybe I'll hunt out a video of someone actually finishing a pair of socks and see if that makes a difference!

Daisy socks

And best of all, both socks actually fit!

Daisy socks

Daisy socks

Daisy socks

Daisy socks

Though as I said, I don't think I'll actually wear them, I think I'll use them to protect my newly purchased sock blockers. I really just wanted to see if I could actually knit a pair of socks and I can! I've always had it in my head that socks are like the Holy Grail of knitting, so I'm pleased to see I can actually manage them.

I blocked my socks (with a little help from this Craftsy post) by washing them on a quick cycle in a dedicates bag in my washing machine, then popping them on my new sock blockers and leaving to dry.

I plan to knit more socks in the future, but I think I'll make sure I do them in one colour to avoid all the colour changes for worries of making them messy! I've been looking at some lovely self-striping yarn on Etsy and Wool Warehouse, and there is plenty to chose from, so I think I'll work up to that. That way I can work in one colour, but my socks can still be a bit different!

So if knitting socks is scaring you, just got for it! Knitting still gives me the fear, but I managed it, and I'm really keen to give it more goes in the future!

Also, if anyone has an easy sock patterns please let me know! I'd love to try out some different patterns.

Yarn Used:
  • Let's Get Crafting! Knit & Crochet free kit.
  • Stylecraft Special Double Knitting.
    • Silver.
Raverly Project Page.

This project is a step towards completing my New Year's List. You can check out my progress here.
  • Clear as many free and purchased craft kits as possible.

Wednesday, 6 April 2016

Embroidered Duvet Update

It's been a year since I last stitched on my duvet cover! I whole year! But after doing quite a lot of knitting lately, I decided to spend an evening doing some embroidery, and finally managed to add to it!

I decided to add this awesome sloth mama and baby pattern from Wild Olive for me and Ivy. I used three stands of thread, and just went with backstitch as I haven't done any embroidery in a while, so it was nice to just get back into it.

Sloth embroidery

I've been trying not to drag my thread too much across the back, as the duvet is super thin, but I did it in little places like the face, so hopefully it's not too noticeable.
 
So here's what the whole duvet looks like with the grand total of the three patterns which I've stitched on it! It really feels like this might take forever for it to get anywhere near full!

Sloth embroidery

This project is a step towards completing my New Year's List. You can check out my progress here.