Tag Archives: Mollie Makes

300 Miles Later…

Well hello there dear reader! Oh my, what an absolute age it has been since I last shared my latest crafty bits and bobs with you. What has kept me from you? Well, a couple of fairly major obstacles have stood between us dear reader, beginning with the fact that I have moved 300 miles north! Yes, I finally did it, I moved to Yorkshire (hence the photo of the sheep and the Dales above) and once I had settled in ‘up north’ I was just beginning to get around to starting up my little blog again when, you’ve guessed it, obstacle number two hit: a global pandemic, who’d have thought it? As I work full-time in a primary school, the last few months have been extremely busy/stressful/exhausting, for my school never closed; we were always open to key worker children so I never stopped working. With the world in chaos, as well as having to cope with a surreal new school working environment, it never seemed the right time to blog, although I count myself very lucky to have still had a job to go to and to have had the opportunity to seek comfort in all my crafting, which I know many may not have had. However, school’s out now, dear reader and the time feels a bit more ‘right,’ so here I am and I do hope you and your loved ones have managed to stay safe and well during these strange times. I never stopped crafting throughout lockdown, although I have to admit I did find it hard to focus on anything more complicated than a simple granny square (oh faithful one) with so much weird/unimaginable/sad stuff cramming my thoughts, so let this be a bit of a heads up for you dear reader, what follows will contain many, many granny blankets, for they were my solace in times of need. Much craftingness has been accomplished since we last met dear reader, so settle down with a cuppa and hold onto your sofa, for this will be a fast-paced, lengthy succession of makings; a no yarn spared bounty of blankets, with a smattering of socks and shawls, to bring you bang up to date. Let’s go…

Aren’t they perfectly-pretty, pink petal squares? They were certainly super little squares to hook up, using Stylecraft dk yarn shades of White, Raspberry and Candyfloss. It was such fun as they were so jolly and I used a dc continuous join to bring all those little lovelies together, as one whimsical baby blankie, with a candy stripe border to boot. Come see…

My second baby blankie was a beachy beauty in blue, using King Cole Baby Comfort dk yarn in shades of Pebble, Glacier, Silver and Jeans. Like the waves on the beach, it rippled…

From itty-bitty baby blankets to bigger, bountiful blankets, this time a rather glamorous striped one in unassuming treble stitch, but with a super-sparkly glitter yarn (ooh) and a soft scalloped border. I used Robin dk in Cream, with Stylecraft dk Pale Rose, Silver and Parchment and of course the heavenly Hayfield gloriously glittery Midnight yarn…

And now for a gorgeous granny blanket, crocheted using Stylecraft dk in Mushroom (pink), Silver and a rather lovely variegated, tweedy-greys yarn from Fistas, which I happened upon at a craft fair a while ago, finished with a shell edging…

I hope you managed to spot it, hidden amongst my jungle of houseplants! And now for my second granny blanket (I did warn you, there’s no going back now) which I crocheted using Robin dk yarn in Cream (now discontinued, too sad for words), Stylecraft dk in Parchment and a lovely variegated dk yarn by James C. Brett called Stonewash in gorgeous greens, completed of course with a cream scalloped border…

Bit of a favourite that one, with its vintage vibes and I can highly recommend the James C. Brett Stonewash, as the colour mixes are glorious. Now for another granny blanket (now, now, there’s always the need for a good granny) and this one has a ‘cosying-up-by-a-fire-with-a-hot-chocolate-in-a-log-cabin’ aura about it, being as it has been crocheted using Stylecraft dk yarn in shades of Parchment, Walnut, Sandstone and another sample yarn I foraged for at a craft fair by Fistas, in beautiful, balmy browns, finished with a (no, not scalloped) striped border…

Here’s a break now from granny blankets (I hope that wasn’t a sigh of relief from you then, dear reader) as I reveal another of my lockdown lovelies and latest obsession: a crocheted shawl pattern called Paintbox Palette by Laura Strutt from her beautiful book Modern Crocheted Wraps & Shawls. First I crocheted a super summery version in a dk cotton blend yarn from James C. Brett called Harmony (and it was) in glorious greens and petal pinks…

Ooh, you even had a work-in-progress pic there as well dear reader, how I do spoil you but you’re worth it. My other version was crocheted using a sumptuously chocolaty, chunky yarn from King Cole called Tonal in a Zinc shade, which was exactly the same pattern but turned out obviously much, much bigger and ended up being a real beauty…

Look at you being thoroughly over indulged with another work-in-progress pic! Amazing what a simple change of yarn can have on a pattern, isn’t it? I think you’ll agree though, she’s a bounteous beauty!

Let’s have a bit of stitching of the sewing variety now, just to mix it up a bit, keep it fresh and keep you entertained dear reader. First up, a cute kitty key chain, embroidered from a Mollie Makes magazine free kit…

Perfectly pretty, isn’t she? A treat to stitch too and she rekindled my love of embroidery, so expect to see more like her soon. Next up on the catwalk (sorry, pardon the pun) a delightful doggie, all wrapped up for winter in a wee coat and a perfectly peach scarf. He was fashioned from another Mollie Makes magazine free kit, this time in fabulous felt…

How jolly is he? I love working with felt to create cute creatures, so expect more of those soon too. Still keeping with the Mollie Makes magazine free kits (I like a consistent theme) I crocheted a marvellous mandala wall hanging, which was sparkly-sweet…

Have to confess, I found the sparkly silver yarn a thrilling treat to work with, so I’ll definitely be using that again! More Mollie Makes magazine free gifts again, this time in the shape of a diddy dino as a playful pincushion, fashioned from felt. Of course he was a most indignant Dino, with a strong opinion regarding his purpose in life, as he declared quite distinctly: “Stick pins in me? Are you quite mad? No wonder us dinosaurs became extinct!” So there you go, no pins for this disgruntled dino…

Continuing with the cute theme, if you remember during lockdown, everyone was displaying a rainbow in their window to show their support for the NHS and to provide a spot of much needed jollity to passers by, out for their local, hourly exercise? Well, here’s my little crafting contribution to the national effort to lift the spirits…

…a lovely little smiling rainbow, crocheted from my own pattern, with cute accompanying clouds. Isn’t it adorable? It’s no longer dangling jauntily in my front window now, but is instead brightening the blinds in my new craft room (more about that later).

Now for my last finished project, a new neutral blanket, crafted from knitted squares using a pattern from Jane Ellison of Purl & Jane, who is based in Skipton, North Yorkshire, called the Carlton Gill Blanket. I used Stylecraft dk yarns in nicely natural shades of Cream, Parchment and Mocha; a very simple to knit pattern, which once the squares were combined, produced a stunning effect, as you will see…

Gorgeous, isn’t it? But don’t stare too long or it will make your eyes go a bit wibbly-wobbly and I’ve more goodies for you to feast your eyes on yet, dear reader. Let’s start on my works-in-progress now, beginning with a couple of granny blankies (you were warned right at the beginning dear reader, so there’s no backing out now) both of which are using a super soft, variegated range of yarns from James C. Brett called Stonewash, with the unassuming shade names of SW4 and SW12, but oh my, do not be fooled by those unimaginative titles, for sheer magic and majesty is contained within those yarns, as you shall see…

So so pretty, is it not? That was little old SW4 for you: who knew a couple of letters and a number could produce such glory? It has an aura of Monet’s watercolours about it, don’t you think? Well if you like that one, you’re going to love SW12, hold onto your hat…

Told you, keep breathing dear reader, for I expect you too are blissfully basking in a balm of peachy-pink heaven right now. Plus, did you spot cute kitty key fob and my new beautiful bunny progress keeper from Cosy Barn Yarns? Go check out her little shop on Etsy, for it is full of fabulous crafting goodies, more of which will no doubt pop up in my future bloggings. And yes, that is a pink pineapple crochet hook you spy, enough said.

Other works-in-progress include a couple of new crochet blankets (no, not grannies) in their very early stages. Firstly, I have started one consisting of circles of three colours, based on the Blanket of Hope pattern by My Rose Valley (and don’t we all need a bit of hope at the moment) where the circles are later squared off, then joined to form a beautiful blanket. I have to confess dear reader, crocheting these little beauties has been such a tonic: playing with colours has provided a touch of colour therapy, while the simple, meditative roundness of them has been a mindfulness joy…

And there are many, many more of those jolly jewels around here, believe me, for they are truly addictive! Talking of addictive crafts, I have also been crocheting up lots of the little hexies from Katherine of Crafternoon Treats fame on You Tube, both as single colour varieties…

…and three colour ones…

Oh boy, I just love playing with the infinite colour combinations: each heavenly hexie is a little pop of perfection. At some point I will have to cease my colour-play sessions to begin the task of joining the frivolous fellows into a blanket, probably by crocheting a final round of cream, so those colour combos really fizz and pop like fireworks. Such fun!

For my final work-in-progress, I have a super sock (just the one for now) which I’m knitting from a King Cole self-striping (so clever) dk yarn in Lilac Haze…

Lush lilac lovelies aren’t they? Did you spot my matching sheep progress keeper from Herdy? It was obviously meant to be; a perfect purple pair. My new luscious llama project bag from Jo Pickle Lily on Etsy is also a new favourite of mine and such fun. I’m rather pleased my bunny plant pot too and I have a growing collection of creature-themed pots, which bring me such joy in the kitchen whilst I’m ploughing through the washing up!

Well that’s it, dearest reader, for you are now bang up to date with all my latest makings. You made it to the end, well done and I hope you remembered to drink that cuppa. I hope you enjoyed the parade of pics but mostly I hope you are staying safe and well. I will leave you with a parting pic of my new craft room (oh-so-lucky-me) in my new Yorkshire abode and remember: keep safe, keep smiling and keep on crafting…

Knittingness…

Hello there my lovely reader! I do hope my latest bloggings finds you full of the joys of Spring and bursting with fresh ideas for seasonal stitchings. As you can see, my cosy cardigan in khaki is complete. I’m muchly adoring the colour and following a gentle steaming, the Stylecraft yarn has once again produced a garment with a delightful drape. My second knitted niceness is my jolly jumper which has a moss stitch ribbed pattern to the front and back, adding a gorgeous texture to the rather wonderful self-striping effect of the Stylecraft Vintage Life yarn I used…

Sublime colours, aren’t they? Darling daughter has already tried it on and put a request in for a duplicate! Still on the knitty theme, I finally found a use for a couple of balls of Yarnfair self-striping yarn: a rather jaunty pair of slouchy socks…

This pretty-in-pastels pair is for darling daughter and as I’d forgotten quite how much I like knitting (and wearing) hand-knitted socks, I already have the itch to stitch another pair, so watch this space…

Remember that scrappy blankie I was working on from time-to-time? Well, it’s finished! Not only has it used up a fair stash of yarn scraps that would otherwise have gone to waste, it has also bought a smile to darling daughter’s face with all its super stripyness…

Of course, as one has two darling daughters a second scrappy blankie is already been hastily hooked up as we speak…

Over Easter I produced a prickly pair of embroidered cactus, courtesy of a Mollie Makes free craft kit I had hanging around…

Quite a couple of cuties, are they not? They have definately sparked a yearning for a spot of stitching; I’m thinking flouncy florals or beautiful botanicals…

Well I’m off to peruse a few embroidery books for inspiration, so I’ll leave you with a few seasonal shots from my latest wanderings. Until next time dear reader – keep on crafting!

Crafting Colour…

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And a jolly-cheery hello to you, my dearest reader! Don’t you just adore this time of year? I love watching the trees erupt into a blaze of glorious jewel-like colours, along with foraging for acorns and chestnuts (sorry squirrels) and picking pumpkins in their glorious array of shapes and shades. As you can see in the photo above, I love to fill my home with a constantly growing collection of autumn’s bounty (once again, apologies squirrels) which tones in quite happily with my crochet cushion cover, in shades of silver, graphite and mustard. Granny squares are most definately my not-so-secret passion at the moment, for not only did I crochet a cosy cushion cover using the groovy granny square, I also made a beautiful baby blanket…

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…which I am calling my Peony Poppet Blanket, as it is in peony shades of pale peach, fondant, candyfloss and white. The granny squares didn’t stop there however dear reader, for I have finally finished the Blossom Baby Blanket I started back in the spring, which is composed of pretty little candy-coloured squares of sherbet, white, candyfloss and fondant…

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Cute colours aren’t they? Colourful colouring has also been occurring in my Mollie Makes colouring book, with a bit of botanical beauty…

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Of course, it will probably soon be that time of year to crack out my wonderful winter wonderland colouring book, so I can cosy up in front of the fire for a spot of festive fun with my colouring pencils (rock and roll!) I’ve already been busy puzzling, another perfect pastime as the evenings begin to darken earlier…

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Well that’s all for now, dearest reader. Here’s wishing you a happy Halloween – stay spooky but keep crafting…

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Stitching Seaside Shades

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A warm and sunny hello to you, my lovely reader! I do so hope you have been enjoying some summer sunshine of late and have escaped being drenched in dreaded downpours. As you can see, I have been crocheting delightful-deckchair-style, seaside stripes of cream, mustard, denim and meadow, which will hopefully adorn the headboard of a darling daughter of mine very soon. Simple treble stitch blankets are a pure joy to work on – so simple and soothingly rhythmic.

My pretty pins have now found a new summer abode courtesy of a Mollie Makes free kit, in the shape of a sugary-sweet, pretty-in-pink, shades of summer pin cushion…

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Adorable, isn’t it? Whilst hooking up this little beauty, I also remembered just how fond I am of the rather jolly old granny square. As a result, I am currently working on a candy-coloured granny square blankie, of which I will share a pic of next time (can you bear the wait, dear reader?)

Remember my cream quilt of many, many squares I have been beavering away on for a while now? Well, you’ll be glad to hear that I finally finished stitching together all 70 (yes, 70) of said many, many squares and have subsequently embarked upon the mammoth task of knitting a border. Of course, as darling daughter has selected a lacy stitch for the edging of her cream quilt, said border is not such a chore after all; you know how much I love knitting lovely, lovely lace…

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Ooh, I’ve also been crocheting a bounty of bunting in summery shades too, so shall share pretty pics of their jaunty jolliness next time, promise. I’ll leave you with a few fancy, flowery pics of prettiness, dear reader, as I wish you endless days of lazy, hazy sunshine. Keep on crafting…

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Stitching, squares, shawls and such…

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And a happy-hello to you my dearest reader! I do hope that you are bouncing around in the sunshine, full of the joys of spring like a newborn lamb. However, fear not if you are feeling a little damp and dismal in dreary drizzle, for I have some oh-so-cute-as-a-button pics coming up later, that will have you ‘oohing’ and ‘aahing’ with delight. As you can see from the above photograph, I have been happily stitching stems for the ‘Azure Bells’ embroidery from Landscape magazine which I’m currently working on. So far I’ve dabbled in stem stitch for the stem (so fitting) along with satin stitch for the leaf and I can’t wait to break out the blue thread to start stitching those tantalising blue bell flowers.

On the crochet front, my first ever shawl has been completed (the one from a Mollie Makes pattern) and I have to confess dear reader that I am rather chuffed with it…

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Of course now that I’ve finished it, I’m itching to get started on another one…But, my darling daughter’s cream quilt is so very nearly finished that I’m cracking on with it at full steam now, as I’m just finishing off the very last knitted square…

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…after which I can start sewing all those many, many, many squares together. Of course that does involve totally monopolising the lounge floor for a few days, while I rearrange said many, many, many knitted squares into a pleasing pattern! Anyway, now the moment you’ve been waiting for: the cutie-pie pic parade! I was lucky enough to visit the rather marvellous Devon County Show on Saturday, so summon up all those ‘oohs’ and ‘aahs’ in preparation for some cute creatures of the rural variety. First, gorgeous goslings…

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I know, fabulously fluffy. Now for one of my favourites – baby Indian runner ducks!

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And then there were the cuddly and comical alpacas…

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I also watched a bit of horse jumping for the first time and was suitably impressed…

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…such stunning animals…

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Well I do hope you are all overloaded with cuteness and feeling all warm and toasty inside. If you are still sadly lacking on the sunshine front, I do have some fabulous flowers to banish any remnants of dull dreariness you may be suffering with…

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Well, by now you should be full-to-the-brim with heart-warming cuteness and summery sunshine meaning my work here is done, so I shall leave you basking in a rosy glow of gladness while I crack on with the crafting. Until next time dear reader, take care…

Shall Share Shawl…

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…with you dearest reader, my first attempt at such a garment – what do you think? It’s in its early stages as yet of course, but I’m loving my choice of shawl shades…

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The pattern is from issue 66 of the marvellous ‘Mollie Makes’ magazine, although I did wander away from the all-green colour as depicted in the pattern, opting instead for a striped combination of colours (once I had had a little play around with my beloved yarn pegs) that were pleasing on the eye. I have to confess dear reader, crocheting shawls may become rather addictive, so watch this space…

Remember that blissful blanket I was upcycling from the back of an old headboard cover- the one where the front section has already been transformed into a cosy cushion cover? Well, I managed to complete it over Easter…

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So what started out as a rather useless block of silver grey crochet, has now been transformed – via the magic of a crochet hook wand – into a thoroughly useful blankie. Hurrah!

Keeping with the crochet theme, a bounty of bouncing bunnies was created for my spring display, via a crochet pattern in the spring edition of the lovely ‘Landscape’ magazine…

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Amazingly, each bunny is made from a single knitted or crocheted square, sewn up in such a way as to form a bunny shape, as if by magic! Easy-peasy!

Landscape magazine has also inspired me to attempt a little floral embroidery on linen…

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…I can’t wait to start stitching. Ooh, I must crack on with those knitted squares for darling daughter’s dream cream quilt as well though; I’ve made over 40 now so the dream is nearing reality! Keep on crafting…

Bouncing Bunnies Bonanza!

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Well hello there dear reader! I hope you are ‘hopping’ with egg-citement now that Easter is fast approaching, for we are certainly full of the joys of spring here. As you can see, I have been busy crocheting a bunch of bunnies from a pattern in the latest issue of Mollie Makes magazine. The bunnies in the magazine were all worked in pastel shades of yarn and joined together to form bunting. I decided to use more natural colours for mine, such as grey, chocolate brown, camel, stone and mocha, as well as abandoning the constraints of bunting, by allowing my bunnies to become ‘free range’ through the addition of a piece of rustic twine, so that the bunnies can all hang on my twinkly-twigs as individuals. Before they received their rustic twine adornment however, they all had a little spring dance to ‘ring-a-ring-a-rabbit’…

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Aah, bless the little darlings. Still on the bunny theme, I also crocheted one of my girly bunny toys for a colleague to give as a christening gift. It’s been ages since I crocheted one of my creature creations and it made me realise that I must get back to designing some more cute critters soon…

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Keeping with the crochet theme, you remember that headboard cover made out of grey granny squares that I upcycled into a cushion cover? Well, the back part of the headboard cover was just a plain, silver grey block of treble crochet, which I didn’t want to go to waste, so I decided to add further blocks of different colours to form a blanket. Of course, this involoved a little preliminary playing around with my yarn pegs (ooh, loving my yarn pegs muchly) to achieve a pleasing combination of colours…

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…those colours being: silver, camel, mocha, parchment and cream. I have to say dear reader, crocheting a blankie from purely treble stitch is extremely therapeutic, as well as being particularly warming on the knees as it grows…

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Fear not dear reader, for darling daughter’s cream dream of a knitted blankie has not been abandoned, as many squares of many patterns are still being produced in all their glory…

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I think I have nearly thirty squares now, so nearly halfway there! Well I’m off to crochet up a few more bouncing bunnies and with Easter fast approaching I had better ‘hop’ to it! Here’s wishing you an egg-static Easter dearest reader and keep on crafting…

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Falling For Autumn

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A happy-hello to you dear reader chum! Here’s hoping my latest bloggy post finds you full of autumn cheer; for who can fail to smile at the gorgeous array of jewel shades adorning the trees right now? Whilst wandering in the crisp air of the chilly outdoors, I am always foraging for little seasonal treasures to bring home, rather like a large squirrel, except I don’t eat the items of course, they are purely for display as you can see in the pics above and below…

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I have also collected together some rather sumptuously earthy, autumnal shades of yarn, which are just crying out to be knitted into a cosy cowl of some description. I’m thinking stripes of alternating shades using different stitch patterns, we shall see…

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Currently, I am knitting a skinny scarf in a gorgeous coppery-brown shade of cotton yarn, in a lovely lace stitch…

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This also has a scattering of tiny pearl seed beads knitted into the cast-on edge (which you can’t see in the picture, unfortunately) and this will be repeated for the cast-off edge as well. I’m just loving knitting a lace stitch once again and the yarn has such a beautiful sheen to it too, much like a burnished brown autumnal oak leaf.

As for crochet, well one of my darling daughters requested a ‘granny-square-type-dreamcatchery-thingy-in-earthy-natural-colours-with-driftwood-and-tassels-and-stuff-you-know?’ so I came up with this…

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It ended up on the wall by her bed, so I am assuming it was just as she ordered- phew! I also had a go at the freebie little loom kit from Mollie Makes magazine, which was also claimed by said darling daughter with a quick: “Mine!” once I’d finished it…

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My cosy throw is coming along well, as I am still busy knitting many, many (many) squares in various shades of grey and in many, many (many) different stitch patterns…

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I just adore experimenting with new stitch patterns and have found the Deramores blog a super source of unique ones. Well I’m off forthwith for a brew and a little taste of Christmas: mini stollen bites, mmm…

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I will wish you a happy Halloweeny time dear reader, just don’t get too spooked…

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So, a Sunless Summer Spent…Saving the Universe!

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Well hello my lovely blog-reading friends! I hope you managed to have some fun this summer, despite all the gloomy damp weather. It was all a bit disappointing wasn’t it? As the sun failed to make many appearances in the sky for us, I have added a sunny yellow glow to my bloggings for you, by way of the delightful dahlia pic above. I just adore dahlias: so vervaciously vibrant they can’t fail to cheer you up.

If you managed to escape to anywhere exciting for the summer dear reader, I hope you managed to find some sunshine, for we certainly did when we visited wonderful Wales for our hols. During our time there we enjoyed the many delights of Cardiff such as the castle..

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…all very impressive with rather a lot of steep steps that were fine to climb up but somewhat scarier to descend (eek!) We also loved ambling around the many Edwardian and Victorian shopping arcades…

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…enjoyed a brew and Barabrith in the many cosy coffee bars…

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…we wondered at the many delights of Cardiff Bay, or Tiger Bay as the locals call it…

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…such as The Roald Dahl Plas…

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…the mighty Millenium Centre…

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Oh, and did I mention that we saved the universe there too? Yes indeed, we visited The Doctor Who Experience and had an epic-awesome adventure working with the current Doctor Who to save the planet from various aliens…

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…and generally had a fab out-of-this-world experience…

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We also visited the beautiful Barry and Barry Island, where we walked in the footsteps of TV’s Gavin and Stacey and I’m not gonna lie to you, it was crackin’!

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We were made up to visit Trinity Street where Stacey, Gwen (not Gwen from Budgeons), Bryn (don’t mention the fishing trip) and Doris lived, Marco’s where Stacey worked, the arcade where Nessa (sort of ) worked…

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…Boofy’s their chip shop of choice…

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…and sat on the same wall that Gavin, Stacey, Smithy and Nessa all perched on for that final episode and looked out to sea…

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…genuine!

Back in England, we had a delightful day out in Teignmouth: still as serene as ever…

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…a trip to Totness and Dartington…

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…and gazed in awe at the beautiful, big, big skies of Budleigh…

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What have I been crafting up this summer? Well for starters I’ve only been at the chalk paint and had a go at a bit of upcycling! Yes I ‘updated’ my ‘dated’ solid pine bed with a lick of pebble grey chalk paint and I have to confess, I am rather chuffed with it…

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I must warn you though dear reader, painting furniture is seriously addictive, as I have been eyeing up other suitable candidates around my abode that look ripe for a quick makeover! My new watercolour paints had a quick testing too…

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…and my ink pen enjoyed a little ‘mindfulness zentangling’ or doodling as we know it…

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My crochet hook worked up a sweat on a chic chevron cushion I designed with a buttoned closure on the reverse…

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…along with a whimsical wall hanging for darling daughter, complete with tickly tassels and dreamy driftwood…

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A trio of charm bracelets were crocheted from a Mollie Makes’ kit and as there were three I let my two darling daughters squabble out the distribution between themselves; far too dangerous an area for me to venture into…

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My knitting needles have been happily stitching up some cosy treats for autumn, such as a textured caress of a cover for my notebook…

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…several squares in many, many patterns, in glorious greys for what will one day become a warming throw…

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…and a cosy cushion cover in gorgeous grey stripes of a selection of stitch patterns…

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I had a little go at crafting with leatherette via another Mollie Makes kit, this time a tropical cocktail of a couple of brooches…

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Thankfully there were two of them, so I was spared any teenage traumas when it came to sharing them out – phew! A bit of baking was also enjoyed which produced a lush lemon loaf…

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…it didn’t last long mind you! Bit like our summer… Well I will leave you now dear reader and as I began my bloggings with a dahlia, so I shall end with a dahlia, well, a jug full of the dashing darlings actually! Keep on crafting…

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Bountiful Blossoming Blooms

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Yes indeed dear reader, summer has well and truly arrived in my garden, as you can tell from the bountiful blossoming flowers that have appeared on my courgette plant in the photo above! Courgette flowers are definately not ‘backwards in coming forwards’ as far as blooms go, for they are indeed rather enormous and rather yellow. They do however perform the most breathtaking magic, by turning into one of these beauties…

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Rather impressive is it not, dear reader? My first ‘crop’ I do declare, but maybe just a ‘cropette’ seeing as it’s just the one. My pepper plants are also producing perfect peppers of the green variety…

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…and to top it all, I’ve only gone and grown real live olives on my little olive tree!

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There has been much excitement in our household dear reader, at the tentative initial success of our petite patio potted allotment efforts!
It’s delightful to sit amongst the bounty of blooms in my garden, all buzzing with the hum of happy honey bees. Ho hum…

There have also been a few ‘blooms’ in evidence in my latest sewing project, for I have finally finished the cute-as-pie Lucky Bear free project from Mollie Makes. The flowery embroidery was a joy to stitch and has left me yearning for more floral-fancy needlework and as for the little bear himself, well I was so enamoured with the cheerful chappy that I just had to draw him…

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He’s quite a flowery, fanciful fellow isn’t he? Talking of fancy flowers, my coloured pencil sketch of the cottage garden hollyhock ‘bloomed’ (pardon the pun) this week…

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I just love the blousy blooms of the handsome hollyhock, don’t you? On the knitting front, the delightful diamond lace stitch cowl I was knitting is now complete…

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…which leaves me with an empty pair of knitting needles and in a bit of a quandry as to what project to pick next, from my infinite list of ‘oh I must try that’ to-do list! I also have an endless list of ‘ooh I so have to bake those beauties’ cakes and cookies to-do list. One such scrummy delight was baked up during a rather miserably muggy day of rain at the weekend: my oat and chocolate chip cookies. A Facebook pal has requested the recipe, so as promised here it is…

Oat & Chocolate Chip Cookies
Ingredients:
4oz (115g) butter
4oz (115g) dark brown sugar
2 eggs, lightly beaten
3-4tbsp milk
1tsp vanilla essence
5oz (150g) plain flour
1tsp baking powder
Pinch of salt
4oz (115g) rolled oats
7oz (200g) milk chocolate chips

Apologies for all the ‘ounces’ reader, for although I declare myself to be fully ‘metrical’ whilst in public, at home behind closed doors I am totally beholden to my dear old imperial chums: pound and ounce!

Method:
1. Cream the butter and sugar in a bowl until pale and fluffy, then add the beaten eggs, milk and vanilla essence, beating well. I usually add a little flour with each glug of eggy mix, so as to prevent curdling hazards.
2. Sift in the flour, baking powder and salt, stirring until well mixed.
3. Fold in the rolled oats and mix well, then add the chocolate chips.
4. Chill the mixture in the fridge for at least an hour.
5. Place 2 teaspoon-sized heaps of the mixture on a greased baking sheet or one lined with baking parchment. Leave room for them to spread a little and press them down a bit in the centre with the back of a spoon. You should be able to make about 20.
6. Bake the little beauties in a preheated oven set at 180°C/350°F/Gas 4 for 10-12 minutes, until they are just starting to colour at the edges, then carefully transfer them to a wire cooling rack with a spatula.

These cookies are of the soft and squidgy variety even once cooled, but you must devour at least one whilst it is still warm from the oven, as they are divine! They are also extremely fabulous when warmed slightly and eaten with ice-cream but they are also lovely just enjoyed with a cuppa…

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Mmm, don’t they look delicious…sorry dear reader, but my cookies are calling me so I will leave you to bake, blossom and bloom my friend!