Wild and Weedy Wednesday

Cathy at Words and Herbs has been running a lovely series called Wild and Weedy Wednesday – so interesting – I’ve learnt a lot.

So many weeds are allowed to flourish in my garden, both intentionally and otherwise and this year seems to be a bumper year for them.

Am I too late to link this to another Cathy’s In a Vase on Monday? I’ll sneak in anyway! 😉

This is a quick weedy posy I gathered from my garden to take to a friend yesterday. I save jam jars for this purpose so that I can take the flowers in water and leave the jar and flowers which can immediately sit on a table or windowsill, without having to be arranged by the recipient.

The cowparsley and red campions are particularly beautiful this year

These photos were taken on an early morning walk from my house, it’s a steep climb to get there, but oh so worth itglorious to get up high and see for miles when this part of the world is just waking up.

I hope you are enjoying some beautiful weather in your part of the world – it has been a long time coming here, so I’m enjoying every ray of sunshine!



Silent Sunday: Welcome May Sunshine

Inspired by Lichen

I have started a fourth version of the pattern Virtue by Helen Shrimpton

This comes as a free pattern with full video tutorial.

I love the texture Helen creates.

Her patterns are super reliable and this is becoming my favourite, because of how the corners are built up, without masses of ends to sew in.

I am making this for a friend who has asked for colours inspired by lichen and bark. Tricky to get right when one is restricted to the colour palette of the yarn.

In order to get some blending in the colour order, for the first time I am mixing 12 colours from Stylcraft Special DK:

Hint of Silver, Warm Grey, Mustard, Silver, Meadow, Pistachio, Sandstone, Lime, Lincoln, Khaki, Mocha and Walnut

with 2 colours from Stylecraft Batik

Mint and Silver

The Batik yarn has some wool content but the same washing instructions, so I hope it will be ok.  It is working up well so far.

Yesterday I met my daughter and niece for a coffee and a catch up at Fables and Food, a lovely friendly new Cafe in Dorchester, which delicious food.

It was the perfect spot to sit, in the sun, listening to the fountain and sewing in some ends while I waited for the others to arrive

Silly Saturday: Knees

Knees are oh so Silly!

Inspired by @_lasandra_ on Instagram.

Sunny Silent Sunday

Little Surprise from Chailey Iris Garden opened yesterday.


Silent Sunday

Autumn Virtue

This is becoming my favourite Helen Shrimpton pattern (And it’s free!)

I like it because the corners are built up in the round, which means there are a lot fewer ends to sew in than on other patterns where the corners are built up separately.

I have made this Throw for the daughter of one of my closest friends.

Lucy is the same age as my first born and her Mum and I lived in the same village. We became friends when we had our babies together in 1976.

Lucy has a Podcast: Spinsterhood Reimagined, which celebrates the positives and discusses the challenges of a single, child-free life.

She had seen my blankets and throws on Instagram and remarked ‘I want one!’.

I had wanted to make another ‘Virtue’, so when she said she would choose Autumnal colours, I was thrilled and started immediately. I just love this colour combination.

So cosy!

Stylecraft Special DK, 10 colours:

Tomato, Spice, Gold, Dark Brown, Burgundy, Claret, Copper, Walnut, Khaki and Bottle.

The pattern comes with Video Tutorials and is lovely to make.

I stopped short by a few rows and edged the throw with Helen’s Knot Stitch, from another free pattern – Sacred Space, Part 9. Penultimate row.

🙂 Haggis (f) likes it. 🙂

Happy Valentine’s to You All

I am a member of a group of slow stitchers who collaborate on textile projects.

Nanacathy is also a member.

Last year we made a card for someone we knew, who had been going through a difficult time. Each one of us made a twinchie (two inch square piece of decorated textile). Colour and design was not specified. Many of us were moved to create hearts and we packed a lot of love into that card

The piece of vintage blanket in the middle was there to give a feeling of cosiness – a virtual hug

and created pockets for messages, cards and of course chocolate.

I am sending the sentiment and the hugs to each and every one of you who read this blog – becoming companions in a wonderfully inspiring supportive community.




Ombre Blues

You might remember that I started a Ripple Blanket for Miss E.F.

I have not found it easy to get the ombre, graded effect she seemed to like. There has been much unpicking or ‘frogging’ as they say in the crochet world.

This is my fourth attempt.

Stylecraft Special DK and a 4.5mm hook

9 rows of Midnight, 1 row of French Navy, 2 rows Midnight, 2 rows French Navy,

1 row Midnight, 8 rows Franch Navy, 1 row Royal, 2 rows French Navy, 2 rows Royal, 1 row French Navy, 8 rows Royal

The next colour to be introduced next is Lapis.

I hope it works!



In a Vase on Monday: Snowdrops and Ivy

Something has had a good old nibble on those ivy leaves, providing must needed food in the depths of winter.

Joining Cathy for In a Vase on Monday.

Silent Sunday: Full Moon Rising

as the sun was setting

at 5pm today

A Blanket for Haggis

What has happened to me? Making blankets for dogs – oh dear!

When Big Bro and Little Bro saw how much their Border Terrier, Haggis,  seemed to like this blanket they asked if I could make for a blanket for her.

I had made one for Pebble, who lives with my daughter and her children, so how could I refuse.

My son and his wife both love to wear tweed, and since Haggis looks a bit tweedy herself, I searched for a picture of Harris Tweed and used the App (yes sorry NanaCathy an APP!) ‘CrochetStudio’, which was introduced to me by one of the ‘Friends of Attic24:Dorset’ group.

And got the colours for Haggis Tweed. I tried a few options. You can add and subtract colours from your chosen range of yarns.

In the end I went with 9 colours:

Dark Brown, Walnut, Copper, Warm Grey, Charcoal, Graphite, Waterfall, Parchment and Sandstone.

I made the blanket in Extended Linen Stitch (also called Extended Moss Stitch), which gives the most wonderfully dense, warm, reversible fabric.

It looks a bit like weaving when the colours blend together. There are several You Tube videos describing how to do the stitch. I followed this video, but did not find it helped with the edges. If I ever work out how to do it so that the edge does not wrinkle, especially on the side where the colour change is made, I will make a photo tutorial. Have you made anything in this stitch?

I would really like to work it out as I think it is my favourite stitch for a warm and cosy snuggly lap blanket.

Using a 4.5mm hook, the finished blanket is 97cm  x  71cm

Chain 141sts to start.

Each row is 140sts and takes just over 3 grams.


Colour order

2 Foundation Rows in Dark Brown

2 rows Walnut, 2 rows Sandstone, 2 rows Parchment

2 rows Mocha, 2 rows Warm Grey, 1 row Waterfall

2 Walnut, 2 Parchment, 2 Dark Brown, 2 Sandstone, 2 Warm Grey,

2 Parchment, 2 Mocha, 2 Walnut, 1 Copper, 2 Charcoal,

2 Parchment, 2 Warm Grey, 2 Mocha, 2 Sandstone, 2 Walnut,

2 Dark Brown, 2 Graphite, 1 Charcoal, 2 Warm Grey, 1 Waterfall,

2 Parchment, 2 Mocha, 2 Walnut, 2 Sandtone, 2 Dark Brown,

1 Walnut, 2 Graphite, 2 Warm Grey, 1 Copper, 2 Mocha

2 Charcoal,  2 Dark Brown, 1 Sandstone, 2 Walnut, 2 Warm Grey,

2 Parchment, 2 Graphite, 1 Dark Brown, 2 Walnut, 2 Mocha,

1 Waterfall, 2 Warm Grey, 2 Mocha, 2 Sandstone, 1 Charcoal,

2 Graphite, 2 Walnut, 2 Dark Brown, 1 Sandstone, 2 Parchment,

1 Waterfall, 2 Warm Grey, 1 Copper, 2 Walnut, 2 Dark Brown.


Dark Brown, Copper, Waterfall, Warm Grey,

Last Row of the Edging was in Crab Stitch in Walnut.

If I made something in the Haggis Tweed selection of colours again, I think I would use a higher proportion of dark browns and less of Parchment and Warm Grey, but I don’t think Haggis will mind the current selection.


My daughter took this of me whilst we were on a walk on Monday.

We have had a lot of rain recently. The roads were so flooded that Miss M could not get to school so we were able to add a couple of miles to our target of walking 500 miles (cue the Proclaimers).

Our rate of clocking up the miles, which when we started was about 48 per year, was first hit by the pandemic and some very busy Summers on the farm. Now Miss M’s very full social life and list of sporting commitments means we have to grab any chance we can get.

We only managed 18 miles in 2020 and last year.

Current total: 185.4 miles.


Scrap Happy: Flask Cosies

This could have been a ‘Silly Saturday’ post!

As part of my birthday celebrations (in November), I treated myself and a couple of friends to a day in a hut on the island at Sculpture by the Lakes.

We took a picnic. I took a couple of flasks for hot drinks. To keep them warmer for longer I used my nifty Flask Cosies.

They are made from the sleeves of an old (charity shop) jumper that I felted by mistake in the washing machine. I was chopping the jumper up to see how I could use the slightly felted knitted fabric and once the sleeves were cut off it was obvious to me what to use them for!

The Hut was very cosy, with a wood burner and lovely bright cushions,I also took a couple of my Scrap Happy blankets. To wrap round our knees if necessary. We had a wonderful time, with a wander round the sculpture park and nice gentle chat and a bit of crochet.

I would love to do it again in another season.

Joining Kate for Scrap Happy Day

In a Vase on Monday: Candle Holders

My daughter asked me if I had any candle holders I no longer needed, to go in a line, down the centre of a dining table.

Hmmm???? I thought for a moment and went looking in cupboards.

Ah ha!

One little candle stick, and behind it, a collection of little glass bulb jars, found in charity shops over the years. The ones at the back are for hyacinths.

I have tried growing bulbs in the small ones with no success, but collected them anyway. I think they were made for crocuses. What do you think?

Would they make acceptable candle holders?

Then I wondered if they would also make cute little vases for an IAVOM post

I also tried them with sea glass, in white vinegar, which I like a lot!

After giving the bulb jars to my daughter (she is very happy with them), I put the fennel, rosemary, viburnum and hellebore from my garden into a nightlight holder for my own Vase on Monday.

Joining Cathy and her happy band of gardeners for In a Vase on Monday.

Ice Creams Down by the Sea

This is the title of my latest finished crochet blanket.

I thoroughly enjoyed Eleonora Tully’s recent Crochet Along, ‘Down by the Sea’

Her design uses a few new techniques which have been fun to try and I was inspired to make a few alterations.

I tried Eleonora’s way of representing the balustrades found at seaside resorts,

but they didn’t go with the dreamy quality of the ‘atmosphere’ of the blanket. Can a blanket have an atmosphere?

I wondered if they would look better in pastel colours, but after a couple of days of looking at it, I realised it was the pointiness of the zig-zags that didn’t sit happily in my version and so I changed them for the waves. I also added a picot on top of each ice creamdid two more stripes in the ‘parasols’ and added an extra row of granny stitches to each side to give the blanket a little more width. Ta Dah!

Made with Stylecraft Special Double Knit and various sized hooks.

8 Colours: Cream, white, toy, clematis, powder pink, duck egg, storm blue, lincoln

Scrap Happy Baubles

I guess most people, seeing a old bit of steel cable, rusting in a hedge, would have walked by without a second thought but ….

to me it was treasure and full of potential.

Then I saw Kirstie’s Handmade Christmas and knew what needed to happen next.

Scrunch up some newspaper into a ball and wrap wire around it. Kirstie uses florist’s wire, which I suspect is a lot thinner than my find.I cut the wire with the red handled pliers and then turned the ends into little hooks with the other pliers, hooking each new piece on and pulling the wire as tightly as I could.

Then the fun bit!Burn the newspaper. It takes longer than I thought it would to get the scrunched up paper to completely burn away. I put mine in the woodburner, but Kirstie used a barbeque.

I know these baubles would not be everyone’s cup of tea, but I think they are seriously cool. Especially the shadows they create.And with a few found feathersand a bit of festive blingit is edging dangerously close to looking a bit Christmassy around here.

I am joining in with Kate and her band of Happy Scrappers:

KateGun, Sue, Lynda,
Birthe, Turid, Susan, Cathy,  Tracy, 
Jill, Jan, Moira, Chris, Alys,
Claire, Jean, Jon, Dawn, Jule, Gwen,
Sunny, Kjerstin, Sue L, Vera,
Nanette, Ann, Dawn 2, Carol,
Preeti, Debbierose, Nóilin and Viv

An inspiring monthly meme which supports using up our scraps of any variety.

Down by the Sea

Another Crochet Along started whilst I was making the Flamingo inspired Virtue blanket.

This one by Eleonora of Coastal Crochet

Resistance, as they say, was useless.

Eleonora’s colour ways are sunny and bright, but as soon as I saw the pattern, I saw it in ice cream colours and then just had to make it.

The pattern is so clever. There is Tunisian crochet made on an ordinary hook in the centre, and there are hook size changes to accommodate different techniques. I am very aware of how much trial, error, unpicking and time that must have gone into creating this pattern.

In order to create the verticle stripes there are chains across the back, and because I chose to make them in two colours my chains are longer and create a thick woven look on the back. If one wanted to create a blanket to keep out the cold, this would be an excellent stitch to choose. I might catch them down at the back once the blanket is finished if I feel that the long chains would be a nuisance in use.

As the green strands became longer to get round the corners, I did the rows on each side separately

I am posting progress photos on Instagram

Made with Stylecraft Special DK

Colours: Cream, White, Toy, Powder Pink, Clematis, Duck Egg, Storm Blue, Lincoln.


Crochet Along Complete

I did love making this blanket and it feels wonderful to have finished it.

Started on 30th September, this year. A Crochet Along really helps to get a project done.

Ta Dah!

16 Colours used of Stylecraft Special DK:

Spice, Tomato, Vintage Peach, Blush, Parchment, Lincoln, Storm, Duck Egg, Cream, White, Clematis, Soft Peach, Buttermilk, Stone, Petrol, Cypress.

The colours were inspired by Flamingos on a cushion.

The pattern is by Helen Shrimpton and comes with an excellent video tutorial.

This photo was taken at an earlier stage

I love the texture and using colours that I would never have thought to put together. I am so looking forward to giving to my niece when I see her later this month.

A Week of Flowers: planting combo

Again from West Dean in July, I love this planting combination

And I am on the look out for one of these

what a colour.

Joining Cathy for her Week of Flowers – what a joy it has been.