Friday, January 22, 2010

New baby girl!

My cousin had her baby, and she had a lovely little baby girl - 7lbs 11oz. No name yet that I know of. I had made a roll brim hat in a lovely dove grey/silver bamboo yarn but that seems a bit bland for a little girl. Maybe I will embellish it with something pink and girly first before I send it.

I have never experienced this before, but I have come across a ball of yarn who's will was stronger than mine. I bought some lovely Debbie Bliss Prima yarn in a really nice aubergine colour and thought I would make a slouchy lace beret with it. I like making hats, and I'm normally quite quick at it. But this time.....hmmmm.....I managed to cast on the wrong number of stitches (even though I counted); I made an error with the ribbing for the brim - three times I frogged it and started again!?!?!. Then I was part way into the lace pattern and completely forgot where I was and miscalculated and messed up the pattern (have never done that before!). Then even though I checked my gauge when I got far enough along to try it on, the hat was too tight on my head. I have never had this happen before! I think that this yarn definitely did NOT want to be a beret. Perhaps I will just have to wait using it until it tells me what it wants to be!!

Here's a couple of pictures of other projects I designed and made this week. Mind that the second one is a bit rude.


I'm due for an eye test soon and a friend in my optician.
I might give this to her - she has a good sense of humor.

Still mostly brainstorming on ideas for things I'd like to make in the next little while. Sometimes it seems like I come up with so many ideas all at once, and then sometimes I don't really feel inspired to come up with anything new. I'm on an idea high at the moment, so I'm going with it!

I am terribly sad that I didn't win the Gisele and Birdie draw for a new blog design, but congratulations to Sue at who did!

Monday, January 18, 2010

Craft fair in Inveraray!

I like days when you feel like you've accomplished things - not just ordinary things, but those things you've been meaning to do for AGES. Like sorting out bedside cabinet drawers, or rearranging the kitchen cupboards. I like those days! I have made phone calls today, followed up on emails, and generally organized stuff. YAY ME!

I also went to visit with a friend who is planning a craft fair in Inveraray on the Easter weekend. And I'm going to have a table. Now is definitely time to put that NY resolution into play - no more just saying I want to sell my crafts, now I have a deadline and I can't let Marine down. Hopefully that will be the kick up the backside to get me going.

So, this evening I have been brainstorming like crazy, and digging through sketchbooks to see what I might like to make for this sale. Nothing too big or expensive I think.....I think it would be easier to sell a few things for £10 than one bigger thing at £100. I have always struggled with knowing how much to charge for my crafts.

I have been coming up with some quite cheeky but funny things that I might cross stitch, so I've been drawing on graph paper for the last while. That always makes me feel a bit cross-eyed after a while so I think I will leave that until tomorrow to finish.

Poor Charlie has been a bit out of sorts today as she has had two humans to play with for the last month, and now today she's been back home on her own again. So, lots of games with bouncy ball and squeaky toy have been played tonight. In honor of her being so lovely, I thought I would post a couple of photos of her. (In case she is online later on and reading this blog?!?!?)

Playing in the snow for the first time!

Back when she was wee, still with her "floppy" ears -  so cute!!

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Back to the grind

We have had snow in the UK - lots of it, for quite a long time now. My SO has been home from work for an extra two weeks after the Christmas break as his work site has been closed because of the bad weather. But he's back to work tonight and I now have to get back into the routine of being on my own all week. It was such a treat to have him home for a whole month in a row, but I think we were both perhaps tripping over each other at some points! But, now its back to ordinary life of looking forwards to the weekends and having him home again.

On top of feeling a bit blue yesterday, I woke up with a big ugly zit on my nose. Seriously - wasn't that nonsense meant to end once we stopped being teenagers?!?! Well, with my best obsessive teenage mentality in place, I poked and prodded at it (all the time with my mother's voice in my head saying "leave it alone - you'll just make it worse!") And damn you Mother, you are still right - I did make it worse. This morning there is a big weird scab on my nose that looks like I have been a victim of some sort of flesh-eating disease -ARGH!!!

Tomorrow a full major re-vamp of my craft room must begin. (Another NY resolution!) I am struggling for inspiration for storage options. I am looking for something cheap and cheerful that I can store my fabric and yarns in that makes it easy to see them. I feel like I am always spending a long time looking for things - on the up side though, quite often I find things I didn't even know I had!

Another resolution is to actually sell some things that I make this year. Which is a bit scary - I love to make things as gifts, but its a whole other things altogether to make things to sell. There is a local hotel here that is planning to do some upscale craft fairs throughout the year and I am (I AM!) going to start selling at those, I think. I am not sure exactly what to make or quantities, but I guess all I can do is guesstimate at this point and learn as I go. Then we'll see where to go from there.

First things first though - must get rid of this bloomin' cold and the scary nose!

Saturday, January 16, 2010


So today I woke up feeling pretty blue and that perhaps (just perhaps!) I was not queen of the world. I never really put much faith in the telly, but are powers that be at work today I think - Bridget Jones' Diary is on. YAHOO! No matter how bad you feel, you can't possible not laugh along with Bridget Jones.

On to better things, I've been so interested in the mathematical knitting that "Woolly Thoughts" ( are doing that I've even been googling fractals and all sorts of mathy things. Been A LONG time since I've actively thought about math!

I seem to be getting on quite well with my first resolution (to start a blog) perhaps I should start on the rest. Don't suppose anyone would be reading this that lives nearby that could teach me how to use my new sewing machine?? Or spin wool?? Or dye wool?? Or teach me to wolf whistle?? Oh and the list goes on and on!

Mostly my hope/plan for this year is to improve my self confidence and really to try to go for things I want. Mostly I would like to go back to school - art school, ultimately. But in between there will be lots of work to get my portfolio up to scratch. So that's my main plan for this year - learning lots of new types of crafts - YAY!! That will definitely be hard work and lots and lots and lots of fun.

So, blue as I might feel just now - look out (crafting) world - here I come!!

Friday, January 15, 2010

Less than a week!

My favorite cousin in the whole wide world is having a baby one week from yesterday! YAHOO! (She really will be having it then, she has to have a c-section). It will be her third (and final, she says!) little one - two beautiful girls so far. I am super lucky as another cousin's wife is also having a baby in February (her fifth - four boys so far - I am so in awe of her mothering skills!) Aren't they nice to have babies so I can knit cute things for them!? I have some nice bamboo yarn that I will make hats and booties sets out of I think - I live in a different country than they do, so postage is always an issue!

I am really chuffed as my new knitting needle sets arrived today from China. I was able to get every size of needle from 2.0mm to 10.0mm in 16" circular and also 5" DPN delivered to Scotland for about £12 total. No more frustration (hopefully!) of desperately wanting to start a new project as soon as the inspiration hits and realizing that I just don't have the right needles for the job!

I also got some new cross stitch fabric today; I am wanting to learn blackwork. (Amongst all the fifty thousand other crafts plans I've got on the go!) I am interested in using blackwork in a more contemporary way. Something like this pattern from

I am also thinking of something for the new additions, maybe their names stitched in a funky font like a circus font? I'll have to ponder on that one a bit.

I've also just got an a couple of new books - "Hattitude" by Cathy Carron (LOVE the Haughty pattern!) and "An Echo in the Bone" by Diana Gabaldon. Her books are so wonderful - I've been waiting for the new one to come out for absolutely ages it seems!

And, I'm all registered for the Toasty Toes felt workshop being held at Kilmartin Museum in February and I'm also booked for a rag rug making course in Dunoon in March. SOOOO many crafts, so little time!

I love the designs that this girl does (I am using one of her designs for my blog) and she has a contest on the go at the moment to win a custom designed page.....have a peek!

The rules to enter the contest are simple and its well worth entering!!!

Am I the last person to start blogging??

Well, its a new decade and I have the mother of all New Year's resolutions lists this year/decade!! Firstly, I refuse to be the LAST person in the world to start blogging. Phew, I can at least check that one off my list if only the others were so easy!

I have moved to a small village about a year ago, and its taken me a long time to get to know folk here. Slowly but surely I have and it all paid off yesterday - I was given possibly the funniest thing ever! A friend saved (salvaged!) some sewing bits and pieces from the skip a while back and he gave it all to me. Amongst all the buttons was a small metal badge. A "Woman's Illustrated Gnomes Club" badge!! What in the world is that?!?!?
I love the badge though - sorry the picture is so rubbishy, but you get the idea.

Suppose I should introduce myself - on the off chance that someone other than my mother reads this blog someday! My name is Karyn, and I live in the beautiful town of Inveraray in Argyll, Scotland. Despite what my hobbies might make you think, I am not a 80 years old.....much younger in fact! My main hobbies are knitting, sewing, crocheting, and other various textile arts. If you aren't really interested in that kind of thing, I will wager that you won't be spending much time on my blog as I can prattle on about fabrics for hours!!

I am also lucky enough to have a very lovely West Highland female dog named Charlie. She pretty much rules the roost in our house, and frankly, I wouldn't have it any other way! She's such a good wee dog and its a great pleasure to share my days with her. (Except for when she helps me in the garden - by digging up all my veg and freshly planted flowers!)

Can't guarantee I'll write often, or say anything terribly philisophical or even inspiring - but you are more than welcome to follow along to see if I get even one more resolution completed this year (or decade, for that matter!!)