Published Patterns: Getting Festive

I am really excited to see the new issue of Inside Crochet hit the shelves, the sneaky peeks on twitter and facebook promise this will be another outstanding issue. Inside you’ll find a couple of patterns by me, including these felted baubles. I made these as gifts last year and they were a huge hit. Simple enough for beginners you can really go to town on the decorating and show off your artistic skills!

Now, I might finally start to feel a wee bit festive x

Feeling Festive

This year I really seem to have got my festive spirit back. It may be a bit early for some of you, but I got very excited when I saw these  lovely cup cakes in Sugar Junction last week. I went home and whipped up this little santa hat.

This pattern makes a hat for a child with approx 35 - 45 cm head circumference.

You can have one just like this if you have a ball (or approx 100m) of Aran weight yarn and a 5mm circular needle (40cm long). Just cast on 50 stitches, knit until you have a piece roughly as long as it is wide, turn inside out and bind off using a 3 needle cast off. (If you can’t manage a 3 needle cast off and don’t have the time or inclination to look at  a video simply cast off as usual and sew up. Embellish as you wish. I used 2 beaded felt balls bought from Fibre and Clay in Knutsford, but you could easily make a couple of pom poms or tassels with the same or contrasting yarn.

PS I was in Sugar Junction with my lovely friend Debbie. Do check out her latest workshops, especially the dye and steeking days which I am desperate to attend.

A blog about friendship (and Christmas)

Last night I was lucky enough to spend the evening in the company or two gorgeous, creative and talented friends. We were talking about Christmas, our plans, the traditions and rituals we keep up year after year. I shared the photo of the gingerbread house the teen and I made years ago when she was just a toddler. It was a beautiful house, but the heat and steam from a kitchen full of baking reduced it to a soggy heap. Even though it tasted delicious, the lasting memory we have is that I am not perfect!

Back home I started thinking about friendships, I’m lucky to have lots of friends. There are the mates from my university days who still have the ability to reduce me to tears of laughter with “Remember when…” stories, the newer friends I’ve met through being a Mum and the friends I’ve made through writing, knitting or baking. They are a diverse group, but there are a few common ingredients.

All my friends show respect for each other and consideration for other people’s feelings. They are generous with their time and their ideas. Above all they are patient when I get it wrong. Maintaining friendships is hard work,  but the rewards are many. Now it’s getting closer to Christmas, I’ve been reminded that the greatest gifts you can give are friendship, loyalty and love. And, like the cliche says “It’s better to give than to receive”. So, money may be tight this year but I can still show my friends I care. There will be letters written (proper letters, in envelopes with stamps, not emails), home made gifts delivered to friends who deserve a treat and cards sent with “I haven’t seen you in a while, but I still think of you” messages.

The gift of friendship is more precious than diamonds, so this post is a tribute to the many ladies who have given me that gift this year.

So, to A (for the Costa mornings I love), to Z (for unfailing sense of humour), R and A (who keep my going), to another A (for keeping in touch – thank you), to J (for the bolt hole) and most especially to N who is my daughter and my friend – what more could I ask for?

T x