Crafty Cuppa · Creating · Crochet · Moths · Out and About

It’s an Improvement of Sorts

Well, I gave in to instinct and as I’m a huge believer in going with initial thoughts I should have done it much sooner. The felt panel is in the scrap bin.

Wondering what I could do instead I dug out some of the templates from the My Tweets, which is now 8 years old and still not quilted!, and put together this appliqué panel.

It fills the criteria of being floral and I hope they will be happy with it as I’m not doing anything more!

I’ve finished another 16 of the Jelly Tot squares so started another centre colour, 3 more to go after that. I also started a bit of the Linen drape jacket. I find cotton a strange thing to work with, splitty but nice hand to it.

I am becoming so frustrated with this weather as I can’t put the moth trap out! This week last year was our first outing with it and we had so many moths including loads of Hawkmoths. This year has been so slow, it’s not just me, the moth groups are all commenting. I’m glad we have the now not so little Emperor moth larvae to watch! They have just gone into their 4th instar and are about 3.5cm.

The oak trees on our dog walk have been absolutely covered in galls this year. I’ve always been tempted to see if I could make ink but I’m a little lazy about it and have actually bought some. Probably the better option this time as they now seem to be rotting off in all this wet. Maybe one year, just for the hell of it.

We had a Crafty Cuppa at the pub this afternoon too. Mal and Tracy are on holiday at the moment so it was just Pauline and I but we had a lovely lunch and natter together. Pauline was so excited we started her off again last month, she managed to complete the rabbit body in between living a very busy life! The head is well under way.

I’m off to London tomorrow with Elsa for a mosey around. Not sure what I’ll go and see while she is busy but I have never done the National Gallery so perhaps there. At least it’s inside and they have a good cafe!


Not Feeling the Love!

This is it, the felt base cushion panel I’m making. It’s wet felted after a Jackie Cardy method then fixed to a cotton base before stitching.

Most of the stitching is done bar some colonial knots, started bottom right, and a bit of beading but I’m really having to push this one through. I guess it’s not my usual type of thing but I know when the turn off point came. We were given a brief one week and I spent ages thinking up ideas and the next meeting we were given a photo to work from and that totally scuppered all my ideas and stifled any warmth I had towards the project.

Oh well, if it doesn’t make the grade I can always have it back and can cut it up into something else.

The Sketchbook project has FINALY digitised my little zigzag book Walk With Me! As I sent it off in November, it was lost until January (I recon they had it but couldn’t be arsed to acknowledge it in the Christmas hullabaloo) and it’s only just been released onsite, that’s a long wait and I don’t think I will be making the effort again. Link HERE .

The little Emperors have grown a whole centimetre this week and are in their 3rd instar. Still a little small for the big tent but getting there! We may have lost one but we’re watching just to see if it’s just taking a little longer to shed than the others.

Colour changes going on too. Perhaps I should sketch some!

Have a lovely weekend, I hope it’s not as wet for you as it is here.


Crochet Catch-up

I don’t know about you but I tend to have things on the go that are various levels of ‘can I do it in the car/away from home’ and ‘this needs concentration or is bitty’. This leads to the inevitable piles of UFOs.

Today, as I have several crochet items on the go, I thought I had better have a tally up to see what I can get on with and perhaps start or even finish!

This is a very quick bag by Emma Leith done on 9mm hook and double crochet which I finished off this morning. It can be a project bag for some of the others!

It’s done very much on the same principle of the three bags I made a couple of years ago. You gather up odd balls of yarn, usually of a similar colour group for harmony, and crochet with several of them at one time to make a thick yarn. You can change a colour as and when you feel like it or when one runs out. A fabulous stash buster to use up all those odds of different weight yarns and so fast.

My bag above was made using up the Yarns from the grandchildren’s knits and in a basket weave stitch which is very effective on this scale.

The Autumn Tartan blanket is coming along slowly. I am just starting the 4th square of 9.

As you’re working with 10 colours per row this is definitely a stay at home project! I’m saving all those ends to sew in, which I do enjoy, for being in the car or out.

Jelly Tots has 5 of the 9 coloured centres done. There are 16 squares of each colour-way.

It’s a good pick up and go one as it’s just the main duck egg colour and the current centre colour.

I’m about halfway through doing this poncho wrap in a V stitch. Very fast but mind numbing so definitely a project for complicated TV or chatty meetings! No pattern as it’s just a rectangle made large!

In the wings I have these bright, pretty baubles by Carmen Heffernan to get on with. Such cute 25g cotton balls.

A cocoon cardigan by Cygnet.

And this short sleeved jacket by Stylecraft.

The Yarns from the last picture are already in the bag of the first one so I think that must be my next job!

Did you know it’s Worldwide Knit in Public day this Saturday? I will be crocheting somewhere I’m sure as the day now embraces all use of fibre. 🙂



We Have Become Parentals

Well, custodians really.

Look at these little, teeny weeny beauties!

They’re Emperor Moth larvae, caterpillars. About 12 but I haven’t been able to properly count them yet. They’re rather wiggly!

As you can see they’re about 1cm at the moment and mostly in their first instar, a couple have already moulted once.

We’re really quite excited about being given the opportunity to rear these. They have been entrusted to us by a couple in the next village who rear them regularly. They should pupate by August and probably emerge next May.

This is the male of what we are hoping to see next year, one of our largest moths.

And this is the female version, to my mind the more beautiful.

Our only member of the silk moth family, Emperor Moth, Saturnia pavonia. Stunning.


Stinging in the Rain

Over the long weekend I had a lovely time putting together these 5 inch pieces from bits I have collected together.

Magic – paper, ink, textile, thread, shell, glass, crystal, wax, metal, bone, flora
Love – paper, ink, textile, thread, shell, mica, glass, wax, metal, bone, wood, fauna
Happy – paper, ink, textile, thread, glass, wax, metal

Life – paper, ink, textile, thread, glass, crystal, wax, fauna

So therapeutic to see them start to jigsaw together! Just waiting for their frames now.

Our rather large garden has become a rather large mass of nettles! Since my tummy troubles I can’t bend over for long periods like I used to when gardening so we have a gardener to help a couple of times a week. He’s been unable to come too regularly the past couple of months and everything has exploded. I spent Saturday pulling nettles in the sunshine and showers and, despite gloves etc, I was hit rather hard. My forearms swelled up quite large and despite lots of anti histamine in various guises they only stopped hurting late Monday night. I won’t be trying that again in a hurry without the appropriate hazmat suit!

The moth trap last week had 12 varieties in, including 3 new to us, and our first Hawkmoth of the year.

Privet Hawkmoth

In our iffy, changeable weather Ellie has perfected the art of temperature regulation at night.

I’m going to spend a little while stitching on the cushion cover, which I am not happy with and not enjoying at all. If it sees the light of day I will be amazed!

Have a great week.