Thursday, January 10, 2019

A little house, crochet and other interesting things...

Isn't it good when a simple solution is found?
The issues I had with the yarn splitting on my cast on row and the first green pattern row were in no way the fault of this pretty and delightful was the hook. My hook was simply too small.

I had assumed that because I am a loose knitter that I must be a loose crocheter...not so. 
Turns out I crochet 'normal', so if the pattern says use a size 4mm hook then jolly well use one.
Alas, I did not have a 4mm hook on hand but I was able to switch from the 3mm I began with and over to a 3.5mm for the second and subsequent rows.

Now there will be some crochet purists who may want to suggest I unravel and begin over, right?
No. I may do that with my embroidery designs but I simply did not own the patience to do that awful cast on row and counting row again. If you ask me one day what I do not like about crochet my answer will undoubtedly be those first two rows.

Glad I began the lap size (36" square) because it will probably come together quickly and when it's complete I shall begin another blanket using a larger hook and be rather pleased with myself.

We finished the grapes.

Thank you to everyone for your suggestions on how to consume and enjoy almost 9 kilos (18 pounds) of grapes in two weeks. Many of you said to freeze them but we don't like frozen grapes, and I did not have the creative energy to experiment with jellies, wine, tarts or we just ate them like lollies morning, noon and night. Occasionally with a handful of cashews and brazil nuts. Other times with a bowl of potato chips on hand.

So when the final grape made it's way into my husband's mouth I thought "well, that's it, we can move on to cherries again"...but not so. Within an hour we were in the car and on our way to the supermarket to purchase two more bags of grapes - one green and one red. 

We may be addicted.
I'll keep you informed. 

Top of my to-do list this week was spending a full day writing the six patterns for the final month's issue of The Stitchery Club. Preferably this would have been yesterday but I had a delightfully long phone chat with Blossom after breakfast , followed by a wonderfully long visit from my neighbour who happened to bring over some Belgian chocolates for Mr E and I to share later.
You can see the morning was not at all wasted but full of lovely people and conversation!

So it didn't feel right to be writing that afternoon. I need a whole day with fresh brain cells to accomplish this task so it had better be tomorrow because today is already half gone. Oh dear, excuses.

My afternoon yesterday was spent finishing the next alphabet pincushion to share with you on Friday and then getting a start on something sweet to use up fabric scraps and simply have fun...whilst eating Belgian chocolates and grapes.

I finished it this morning because I have to take Bob-the-dog to the groomers before lunch which totally took away my pattern writing time again. Yes, I know, another excuse.

I saw this heart filled house block over on Bev's blog (Flamingo Toes) and thought what a nice quick project to make, one I have not designed, don't have to write a pattern for, and can pop away in my gift box for this year or keep for myself.

Lately I've come to acknowledge that my mind needs a rest from designing all the time and that kind of rest rarely happens, so this year I shall be changing that situation and allocating myself regular time out just to play.  (the sweet pea crochet blanket is one of my new playtime avenues as well)

I really enjoy hand quilting but I also like machine quilting on small projects.
There's always room for a spot of hand embroidery though...

Bev's pattern is for a 9" square mug rug but I've sewn a hanging sleeve behind mine to slide onto a small quilt hanger when I find/buy one. 

The three fabrics I used for the house section are from a 2008 layer cake "Chloe's Closet" which I purchased last year in a de-stash group. There's some very pretty prints in it but I do love the three I chose for this project so I've gathered the leftovers for a pincushion project one afternoon next week.

Now, a few things I'd like to share with you about three really lovely friends.

Fee has kicked off the year with a wonderful gift for all her readers. In fact, she's gifting them every single week through 2019!
Fee will not only share patterns and projects but she has tutorials you can watch as well, which is wonderful if you're new to a certain craft and need to 'see' how things are done.

Hop on over here to her blog and have a look see at the fun projects you can make.

Annabel from The Bluebirds Are Nesting has started a Tuesday Afternoon Club which you can read about here on her blog.
This will be something all we gentle domestic homemakers will find fun and just so you can get a better idea of what Annabel's intentions with this club are I shall let her tell you in her own words...

On The Tuesday Afternoon Club page as we make things we can post our own pictures and progress reports.  I will share whatever I have been making.   We can also share recipes, links to patterns and anything helpful to help each other with tutorials, packaging ideas etc.   Also it can be a place of help i.e. you might have materials you just can't think what to do with so you could post a photo and let everyone chime in with suggestions!

Another friend who is sharing the crafty love is Allie and bless her heart she's taken the Craftsy shop shut-down dilemma and put it behind her by embarking on something that blesses others.
You will love what Allie is doing so head over here to her blog to find out more.

Each of these friends are women I love, trust and appreciate because they have hearts for home, family and for being a blessing to others, me included.

Did you miss the first week of our book study?
It's in Tuesday's post (here) along with a free pattern and giveaway.

About KINDLE...

A number of you have commented or emailed to tell me you do not have a Kindle and therefore cannot get the book that way. Well, you know, we don't need a Kindle anymore because you can download the free Kindle app for your phone/ipad/tablet and read all your kindle books there!

That's how I use Kindle.

So if you'd like to have a copy of the book and cannot find one anywhere just go to Amazon and in the kindle section search for The Gentle Art of Domesticity...

It's easy to find and you're going to love reading ahead.
Or just look at the pictures.

Hope this has helped those who felt they were missing out on actually having a copy.

I'll be back tomorrow with the next alphabet pincushion. 
It's V this Friday...V for very very nice. Well, I hope you think so because I very much like it.

Be blessed, be brave, be adventurous, be kind, and be YOU.


Shelley said...

So happy your crochet issues have been resolved because those yarns area so yummy! I just loved today's post and hopping around to visit your friends! Blessings 😊

Ondrea said...

Your crochet is lovely. I have just finished my 10th colour. I googled the book last night and if I remember correctly it is available through the Book Depository and Amazon. I am going to take another look later and order it. Gee, I thought you would gave been so over graoes by now lol. Lovely little mini there.

Melody said...

Can I ask the bank of the pattern you are crocheting please. I have a friend here in the states that is doung a Christmas stocking project with her don. Their goals are to hand out 50 stockings next year. I am making stocking caps for her. I am a knitter but with u tube help you am learning crochet stitces as well. Thanks

selina said...

cute patchwork! love the fabrics too!
thanx for all the links, read the bluebirds every day there's a new post, wonderful inspirations there!

question for you; do you do kits? am at loss what to get for the embroideries i want to start this year & i think a kit would make it easier? maybe you know where i can get some beginner sets to get me started?

great post
thanx for sharing

Jenny of Elefantz said...

Selina, I will be adding starter kits to my Etsy Shop in February, plus a couple of kits for my designs. :-)

Joanne said...

HI Jenny,
:) I guess I'm not the only one who doesn't like eating frozen grapes!
When they're in season Greece, imported here,...we enjoy them!
Lot's to read today and enjoy ! Thanks!

Julie said...

Saw your little house block on instagram & LOVED it Jenny. You are rather like me my friend .... I have to do "the important things" in the mornings when my brain cells are fresh too!!! Otherwise I wait til the next day!

dixigirl said...

Have you tried foundation crochet? You can start and do the first row of the crochet all at once. You Tube has very good videos on how to do FSC<FDC<FTC<HDC.
Love the heart in the home block. Beautiful fabric choices.


dixigirl said...

Whoops! that should have been FHDC. LOL

Little Quiltsong said...

Love what you did with the cute house block! Hearts and houses are my favorite blocks - and your quilting on it is just perfect. Next time you snack on your grapes - try a few chopped pieces of cheese with them - my absolute favorite :)! Enjoy the rest of your day!

slowerlowermama said...

Jenny, I would like to thank you for always thinking about your readers. You are a great blessing to a lot of women. Your creatively with your designs inspires me to try and create lovely things for my home. Have a blessed day. Joan

Kay said...

The crochet colours are so pretty. I wouldn't worry about unpicking it, as long as you are happy then it is no business of the crochet police to tell you otherwise. Learning to crochet is one of the few things that I have wanted to do for ages, a friend did try to teach me but as I am left handed she found it impossible. We have a class at church next week tolerant knitting and/or crochet and I am really hoping someone comes along who can help. I know I can have a look on Youtube, but I really prefer people so I can ask questions and get help when needed. x

Natureluvr57 said...

I dislike crocheting into a chain/s also so I highly recommend learning the Chainless Foundation Crochet. Go to You Tube and in the search box type Maggie's crochet foundation stitch. Pick the single, double, etc, whichever one your first row consists of. She has many videos so those wanting to learn to crochet should be able to learn. She has many right and left handed videos. I started a Corner to Corner (a.k.a. C2C) afghan recently

Lin said...

Hello Jenny. So glad you have sorted out the crochet problem and I love the little heart house. xx

Allie said...

Your crocheting looks so lovely!!! Great yarn. I don't mind the first two rows anymore - been doing it SO long, lol. You and hubby are too funny with the grapes!!!! Oh golly you two need to plant a vineyard.
I have to get my physical stuff done first thing in the morning - I completely lose energy after noon. Usually my housework is done by 8am, which is nice, then I can relax and enjoy my coffee, lol. If I know I have to go anywhere, nothing gets done at all!
That's a very sweet little house block, I really like the way you quilted it. Can't wait to see the pincushion you make with the leftovers!
Thank you for the shout-out - I wondered why I had so many new members this morning, lol! Love the other two blogs as well, I haven't been to Fee's in a very long time and it's looking so lovely.
I use Kindle on my phone, love it. I've got the books on hold, just waiting for the library to email and let me know they're in! I can't wait!!

Sue Smith said...

What an action packed post today! I've had fun exploring the other sites you mentioned. Love the little house block, the fabric and colours you have chosen are lovely. I agree about needing to allow the mind to rest from the busyness of life. It's funny, but when I create the space to 'rest' then ideas and answers reveal themselves!

Createology said...

Jenny Dear you are so sweet to share other blogs and happenings in 2019. I love your Heart Home block. I actually think I can make one of these. I did not know Kindle has an app and can be downloaded on other my iPad. Blessings Dear and Gentle Domesticity...

Farm Quilter said...

I have crocheted a bit, but I like using larger needles...goes so much faster!! Lovely new miniature quilt of the house filled with love to display in your house filled with love!! Off to check out the links you gave us!

Winifred said...

How lovely all those grapes! I love them as they need no effort to eat. I am so lazy. I love mangoes but hate peeling them even following Hercule Poirot's instructions! I suppose strawberries are my favourite but only the Scottish ones. All the rest just don't match up to them for some reason.

I do love Lucy's blankets. She did some gorgeous wreaths for Easter & Christmas that I keep meaning to make. I've bought the plastic circles but maybe I need to make a start now.

Well at least you learned something from using the hook that was too small so it wasn't wasted time. Those sweet pea colours are gorgeous. I thought about making the blanket but I don't have a room it would suit. Maybe I should redecorate!

Love your little house patchwork, it's so dinky. Would be nice to keep on my bedside table.

Glad you are creating some down time for yourself. You deserve it.

TheAwakenedSoul said...

Thanks. I just signed up for a free trial of Kindle Unlimited. Your crafts are so feminine and lively. I am excited to read your book!

Susan said...

What a wonderful little house! Those are three special fabrics together, and I smiled when I realized you had done a heart in a house, because your home and family is where your life is centered, and it's the holy place where you stand with God and your Savior, too. Such an appropriate little block to freshen your mind. I knew about Allie and Fee, but thanks for the third site today. Something new to explore!