Saturday, 28 January 2012


As promised a little while ago I have finally got round to arranging a little giveaway on my blog! Yay! No particular reason really - I just see so many lovely giveaways on other blogs (I've even won a couple - thanks Laura and Zoe!) and wanted to get involved and say thank you for reading :o)

There are no rules and regulations - all you have to do to enter is leave a comment on this post and I will do a random draw in 2 weeks time on Saturday 11th February. You are of course welcome to become a follower or tell your friends but there is no obligation to do so! Depending on how many entries I get I might split the prize and have two winners...

So, a closeup of the prizes:

A little amigurumi owl (pattern here)

A sparkly dichroic glass necklace on a silver chain.

A decorative plush felt cactus - I use mine as a pin cushion.

And last but not least a smiley amigurumi fried egg (more info on this pattern in my previous blog post)

I hope you all enter (please enter! I don't want a giveaway with no entries!). Thank you for all your support and lovely comments over the 6 months or so!

Have a lovely weekend xx

Tuesday, 24 January 2012

Granny blanket update!

I've finally got some progress to report on my granny blanket! Yay! So I thought to celebrate I'd share some pictures with you.

After a lot of procrastination I eventually got round to attaching my 100 granny squares together and now it actually resembles a blanket!

After lots of thought and a few tests I decided to attach them using a slip stitch through the back loops (there is a fab tutorial here). I think it took a bit longer that stitching the squares together would have done but I like the effect so I think it was worth it.

Unfortunately, when I was finished attaching I laid it out on the floor to take a look and I wasn't happy at all! It was all lumpy and wouldn't lay flat. Very disappointing. I think a combination of my tension changing over the period I made the squares (as I was still learning) and crocheting the squares together too tightly combined to give this effect.

Oh dear! I was just hopeful that blocking would help and thankfully it did. Some water and over 100 pins later I had turned the wonky blanket above into this:

Phew! I am much happier with it now. After a few days blocking the blanket was much flatter and squarer (as in the first two pics). And in future I will block more frequently - maybe not every square but definitely smaller sections of squares.

I haven't decided whether to add any more squares to this blanket or not. My original intention was to make quite a large blanket but that was before I realised quite how much yarn making the blanket would take and the subsequent effect on my bank balance! Unfortunately due to my inexperience I chose a bit of an expensive yarn. At the moment I am planning to leave it for a bit and work on some other projects and see how I feel at a later date. I've already got lots of ideas for other things I want to make....!

Wednesday, 18 January 2012

Amigurumi Fried Egg

I've been doing loads of crochet recently and as well as working on my blanket I've had a go at some smaller amigurumi projects. I've also started using ravelry properly (oooh - so addictive!) which has given me access to loads more patterns. Which is probably how I found myself at 1 a.m. on Sunday morning (after a night out!) trying to finish crocheting a fried egg for no reason at all! Here is the result:

The pattern is on ravelry here. Unfortunately it is in Japanese and I don't know about you but my Japanese isn't up to much!! Luckily there is also a charted pattern here and some speedy googling led me to a conversion chart so I could work out what the symbols meant. Once that was done the pattern came together very quickly - the only frustrating bit was adding the safety eyes (does everyone else find them an absolute pain to put on?! they drive me mad!). The pattern didn't call for a face but I do love a spot of anthropomorphism. And who couldn't love an egg with a smiley face :o)

Having sent the photo to a few people telling them they were a good egg (aaaah I love a lame pun!) I decided to make another one, this time with a sad face:

Apparently the egg is actually supposed to be a tawashi which is a traditional Japanese scrubbing brush. I won't be using mine as a scrubbing brush though (I'm not sure I could with the safety eyes in there!). I will be giving one away and keeping one to add to my collection of cute but ultimately pointless things (item #713).

(Sorry - I couldn't resist a pic of the eggs together in a frying pan!)

I'll post some of the other things I have been working on soon. In the meantime if anyone wants to find me on ravelry I am here with the username thedottyone. Although I have been on ravelry for a while I have only just started using it properly and I will be putting up my pictures and completed projects soon. Please free to add me as a friend if you are on there too - I'd love to see what you are up to and don't have many friends at the moment!! :o(

Happy crafting xx

Wednesday, 11 January 2012

Dress a Girl Around the World

One of my intentions for 2012 was to get involved in doing some crafting for charity/craftivism and on Saturday I had the chance to do just that. My local craft studio, the Create Place, ran a session making dresses for a charity organisation called Dress A Girl Around the World. This is a fab project which sends dresses to girls in the developing world who wouldn't usually have a new dress of their own.

The dresses are simple to make using just a pillowcase and some trimmings (with patterns provided on the website) but look very cute and pretty. Our sewing gurus Jennie and Lisa were on hand to help us if we got stuck and provide refreshments as we sweated over our machines! We had lots of fun sewing and chatting and embellishing but most importantly we made a stack of dresses to send of to girls in the developing world.

I made two dresses. One fairly simple in white with blue straps and a little red heart on the front:

And another one in such loud material that I didn't think it needed any embellishment!!

I wish I'd taken more pictures of the dresses everyone else made but I was so wrapped up in my sewing I forgot until it was too late! By the time I took my pictures the light wasn't too great either! Jennie's blog has more pics.

I had a brilliant afternoon, made all the better by knowing that I was doing something worthwhile. I am definitely looking forward to getting involved in more projects like this.


PS. If you want to get involved in this project then a lady called Louise Horler is the UK coordinator. Her blog is here and the facebook page is here.

Saturday, 7 January 2012

Crafty Intentions 2012

I'm not really one for making New Year's resolutions but I thought it might focus my mind to think about some of things I would like to achieve this year creatively and for this blog. I have also posted photos of some of my favourite things I have made over 2011 in the hope that it might make you read this selfish post right to the end!!

My creative intentions* for 2012 are:

1. Try at least 4 new crafts - either in classes or self taught.

2. Get involved in craftivism/crafting for charity

3. Teach a crafty skill to someone else.

4. Finish my granny blanket - this will involve attaching together the 100 squares I already have and possibly adding many more!

5. Finish at least one knitting project. I've only just learned to knit and I'm not sure whether it will be my thing or not but I would like to try and make at least one thing to give it a go.

6. Hand make the majority of the cards I send.

7. Turn my Emily Peacock tapestries into cushions - this is something that I have been meaning to do for ages and I just need to get on with it!

8. Have another go at silver clay jewellery - I bought all the kit at the end of my course and its just sat in my spare room ever since. Whoops!

9. Look into getting a stall at a craft fair, probably selling mainly glass goodies, maybe with someone else.

10. Use up some of my fabric stash BEFORE I buy any more. I should probably try to do this for yarn too!

11. Write a tutorial for this blog.

12. Have 2 blog giveaways and participate in some swaps.

13. Aim to blog at least once a week.

14. Start using ravelry and documenting my projects on there.

15. And to finish on a more general intention, I always like to have several projects on the go but I would really like to get better at finishing things before starting new projects!

Phew - looks like I've got a busy year ahead! I've actually already managed to put the wheels in motion for some of these intentions already and it looks like I should probably get started on the others! If anyone is thinking of putting a list together like this then I would definitely recommend it - just typing this all out has got my brain whirring with things I want to get started on. Hmmm....maybe I should take note of number 15 in particular!!

Hope you are all having a lovely (crafty) weekend xx

*I was inspired to use the word intentions rather than resolutions by Heather - I think it sounds much more
positive and less pressurising!!

Friday, 6 January 2012

I'm back! And giveaway news.....!

I hope you all had a lovely Christmas and best wishes for the New Year. Mine was pretty hectic with last minute crafting and a holiday over New Year which is why I haven't been spotted much around these parts of late. I had a lovely time but I am also looking forward to getting back into a routine and checking out all your blogs to find out what you've been up to. I'm also excited about getting back to some projects for myself after all those Christmas makes!!

Before Christmas something very exciting happened to me: I won my first giveaway! Hurrah! I was very lucky to win an early Christmas present from Cute Crochet Creations. I got a gorgeous little crochet drawstring bag:

I don't know if you can see from the picture but the yarn has got sequins in - so pretty! I'm definitely going to hunt some of this out - you can never have too much sparkle as far as I'm concerned! In the bag were some festive earrings and a cute little phone charm too:

Thanks so much Laura - I loved my early Christmas present :o) My earrings were much admired on Christmas day and my little crochet bag was very useful for taking my jewellery on holiday!

If you haven't visited Cute Crochet Creations before then I suggest you head over there now! There are lots of cute amigurumi creatures and gorgeous cross stitch to check out. I only wish I could be that prolific in my creations!

Now also seems like an appropriate time to announce that I am planning a giveaway shortly too so please look out for that. I decided to have a giveaway when I reached 60 followers which I have done recently (actually 61 as of today! hello new follower!) so I am currently working on some goodies to send to one of you.

I know lots of people have a giveaway when they reach 50 followers but I chose 60 for two reasons. Firstly, although I do have 60 followers I am aware that some of them don't seem to exist anymore (or, less morbidly, their blogger accounts have been deleted!) so when I reached 50 followers I knew I didn't actually have 50 followers so if felt like cheating somehow. Secondly, and probably more importantly, I didn't notice I had passed 50 followers for a good while after it happened - whoops!! Anyway, I hope you will enter my giveaway when I post about it in the next couple of weeks.

I'm going to start planning my crafting for the year......YAY! I wish you all a lovely and creative 2012 xx
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