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Silent Sunday: Summer

lake

leaves

Yarn Along: Mosaic Crochet

Daisyknots Mosaic Crochet, Santa Cruz, on Ravelry

I am having a go at Mosaic crochet for the first time.

The pattern calls for Aran weight yarn, but I have so much SSDK in my stash, I am using that in 5 colours of Stylecraft Special DK and a 4.5mm hook.

The colours are Parchment, Cypress, Lincoln, Copper and Silver. This will be for my nephew (aged 30).

The pattern is Santa Cruz by Moira Douglas of Daisyknots, on Ravelry

I am left-handed and at first I thought I had to flip the charts over to follow them, but no, they work if read from left to right.

It is easier to create these patterns than I expected it to be. Moira’s You Tube videos were a great help to get me started.

My top tip is not to cut the yarn at the end of each row until you have completed the next row, because it is easy to make mistakes in the placement of each stitch. Put the yarn on a stitch holder until you have finished the next row.

Warning: this is addictive, it is hard to put down as you just want to see how the pattern works out.

Which makes it hard to read a book right now, but I have been lent this book and it comes highly recommended. Have you read it?

Delia Owens and mosaic crochet, yarn along

Joining in with Ginny’s Yarn Along

Textile Tuesday: Stitchbook progress so far

The year of Stitchbook Collective is nearly over. What a well timed, fabulous course of workshops it has been! Just one more delicious box to come winging its way to me from Yorkshire and Helen Birmingham of Untangled Threads.

Would you like to see progress so far?

Although there is a slight sadness that this project is drawing to a close, there is also excitement going into Year 2!!

There are about 65 of us who are embarking on Year 2 which is in a different format – quarterly instead of monthly. I am very excited about this and it feels so good to continue in the community of supportive stitchers that has built up over the last year.

Helen is also starting a new Year 1, which I highly recommend.

And

The Workshop boxes are still available from her Shop.

Are you working on any textile related projects at the mo? Leave a link in the comments if you would like to share them with us.

Happy Stitching!

In a Vase on Monday: Altered Art

In a Vase on Monday, altered art, pink dandelions, figs

In my vase today is a posy of Pink Dandelions, thank you so much for the seeds Cathy, they are such gems! And twigs of snowberry bush, well that’s what I called it as a child, don’t know its proper name.

These were picked to accompany a card and three figs from my fig tree, for a dear friend, for her birthday. I also gave her a book, ‘Waterlog’ by Roger Deakin, which I forgot to take a photo of. She loves swimming, in fact she was a swimming teacher and taught all my children to swim.

She is an artist and I absolutely love her sketches and paintings, but she often struggles to like them herself. She tore up one of her paint sketches and gave me a piece folded over into a card for my birthday in November, I tore it on the fold line and did some stitching to make a card for her.

Then I took some of the paper I coloured with Koh-i-Noor, watercolours,

looking for colours that would make a good background

choosing background

I chose this one

Koi - nor inks

staining papaer with inks

I was a bit apprehensive to see what J’s reaction would be to what I did to her painting

altered art

It took her a little while to realise it was one of her painitngs. I think she liked it.

Do you have any blooms to pop in a Vase this Monday?

Joining Cathy at Rambling in the Garden.

Textile Tuesday: Wild Twinches

Yes, I’m going with that name for this project as a working title.

wip twinchie

I have made a start on my square. I might add some beads and French Knots, and maybe blanket-stitch the edge, not sure yet. I might take out some or all of the machine stitching.

(The camera never seems to capture blues correctly, the embroidery threads are darker in the middle, getting lighter towards the outside.)

fabric collage cut up for twinchie making

So far there are 6 people interested in joining in with this project, 3 blog followers: Cathy, Margaret , Amanda and Tracey.

And two Instagram followers: Lindy and Sue

❤  Thank you everyone!  ❤

That makes 7 altogether including me. If we had one more person we could do two squares each – anyone?

If not, the 7 of us will do one, two or 3 squares each

You do not have to be a blogger, you do not have to mention this on your blog, if you blog about something completely different you are still welcome to join in. I will post to anywhere in the world.

If you are one of the 6 Wild Twinchers, please go to the Contact Me page and send me an email with your postal address and I will send you the randomly selected square(s).

Please let me know if you would like to make one, two or three squares.

You will have up to 3 months to complete it/them and send back to me.

After that, I will create a piece of textile art bringing them all together.

You do not have to stick to the colours of the fabrics and you can take the square anywhere your imagination leads you, using any technique you like – it will be fun seeing what comes back to me and an exciting challenge to see what I can do with them.

Of course, I will post progress and when the project is complete I hope it will be clear what to do with the piece. If there is a local exhibition it could go in, I might exhibit it.  Or maybe we keep it amongst ourselves and see if any of the Wild Daffodil followers would like to buy the finished piece,  with proceeds going to a Mental Health charity. I am open to suggestions.

Eeek! I am more than a little bit excited to see what happens!

Spidery Social Saturday

spider

A wonderful afternoon on a socially distanced walk with my granchildren, my daughter and daughter-in-law.

I have loved lockdown as a long-running creative retreat, but today recharged my batteries in a way that meant more than I realised it would.

O Happy day!

Textile Tuesday Twinchies

Now I am back in the swing of blogging, I thought I would try and make most Tuesdays all about textiles. If you would like to share any of your posts about textiles, past or present, put a link in the Comments, I’d love to see them.twinchie prep

On Friday, I shared a project that I am making with a private group called, Stitched Together, which is a splinter group of the Stitchbook Collective.

A few of you expressed an interest in joining in with a twinchie project. This makes me very happy! I am really interested in working in a collaborative way and seeing what unfolds. So I have created another set of Twinchies for us to do together. Exclusive to Wild Daffodil followers (on WordPress and Instagram).greens, embroidery

This time, I tried to make my squares slightly more uniform, by measuring and marking up the squares on the backsquares for twinchies

I think it worked – well – good enough for me anyway.

squars fo twinchies

In Stitched Together we are working towards an exhibition to raise money for Mental Health charities. Our collaborativley created work will be exhibited and pieces will be sold to raise funds.

fabric collage cut up for twinchie making

So what will we do with this piece made by Wild Daffodil followers?

I could put the finished article up for sale with the proceeds going to Mind, a UK Mental Health charity (the chosen charity of Untangled Threads) but I am happy to hear your suggestions.

How will it work?: Any number up to 15 (+me) can join in. I will post you one or more squares, depending on how many join. If you only want to make one, that’s fine.

We all work on our squares with stitching and embellishments in any form we like.

When done, post them back to me, within 3 months of the initial posting date.  I will put them all together to create a piece of textile art.

I am happy to post to anywhere in the world.

~

I picked one square to make a start

IMG_0307

and will share progress as I go.

IMG_0309

This is by no means an example of how yours ‘should’ be done –  just one way to do it in case anyone is completely at a loss. I am hoping for 16 completely differently decorated squares – let your imagination run free.

~

I am tempted to call us the Wild Twinches, but do you have a better name for the group or the project?

Edit: It is absolutely fine to join in and not mention the project on your blog. So if you blog about something entirely different, but would still like to join in, you are very welcome.

In a Vase on Monday: Pink Dandelions

pink dandelions

These pink dandelions are SO pretty – I love them

pink dandelion

and don’t you think they look just right with the chartreuse green of Lady’s Mantle

rose quartz, shell pink, pink dandelionsThey are the colour of Rose Quartz and shell pink

pink dandelion

I am completely in love!

Joining Rambling in the Garden for In a Vase on Monday

and

Cee’s Flower of the Day

 

Twinchies

 

I have long wanted to make a collaborative piece of textile art and there are a few members of the Stitchbook Collective who are also keen to join in.

calico squares

Between us we have lots of ideas, so it is going to be a fun challenge to decide where we go with it. Early days.

Somebody mentioned Inchies and I went to Pinterest to see what they were talking about. Cute! But I thought a one inch square is too tiny – hence Twinchies– also to be found on Pinterest.

To get us going I have been doing some experimentsfabric collage

A 10 inch square of calico, allows for 16 twinchies. I am making them appproximately 2.5 inches square to allow for creative eventualities.

pinned

I laid some scraps of fabric on the calico, pinned them and ran some machine stitching through, with the stitches at the longest settingprepping twinchies

Then measuring about 2.5 inches, I cut them into strips

fabric collage - twinchies

and then squares

squares

As you can see – not accurately measured or cut! I know that will drive some people mad, but I like the randomness of it. Others might like to trim them to an exact square.

They will all get jumbled up in any final arrangement

twinchie starters

The idea is to send these little fabric collages out to a few people for them to decorate as they wish. When done they will all be reunited and mounted as a piece of textile art.

I don’t know if anyone else will want to join in with this particular method, I am interested to see how my fellow stitchers react to my rather drunken twinchies.

A little bit of recycled sari ribbon will be sent with each one, to be used or not.

fabric scraps

What do you think? Could you cope with randomly sized ‘squares’ to work on?

Have you ever made an Inchie or a Twinchie?

EDIT: This project is just for our Stitchbook Collective splinter group which is called Stitched Together (a closed group). I’m excited about Crafty Creek’s comment below, so if there are more of my blog followers out there who would like to join in with another wonky twinchie project let me know in the comments and we can see where we go with it.

A Bedspread Reborn

Back in February 2015 I made a bedspread for Little Miss M

DSC_0179

She loved it but sadly it got too close to something hot and looked like thisIMG_5166

I could not bring myself to throw it away so I folded it up and put it in a bag and forgot about it …. until now. In my new bid to sort out WIPs and UFOs etc I washed it in the machine, dried it and chopped out the damaged bits.

IMG_5169

The rest, I have unpicked and rolled into balls. It is making its way into another scrappy blanket. Inspired by Mrs Snail, I just tie the ends together with a reef knot and leave them showing.

Scrap Happy crochet

Little Miss M now has this blanketMandala Madness, crochet blanket

You can see more photos of this Mandala Blanket on my Throws Page.

The pattern is Mandala Madness, by Helen Shrimpton, a free pattern.

~

Joining Kate and other Happy Scrappers for Scrap Happy Day, the 15th of every month.

Kate Gun, TittiHeléneEvaSue, Nanette, Lynn, Lynda,
Birthe, Turid, Susan, Cathy, Debbierose, Tracy, Jill, Claire, Jan,
MoiraLindaChrisNancyAlysKerryClaireJean,
Joanne, Jon, HayleyDawnGwen, Connie, Bekki, PaulineSue L,
Sunny and Kjerstin

 

Textile Book

My eldest Granddaughter, Miss E has just had a birthday, and I was thrilled to be able to give her this book – I have been making it for ages.

The fabric I have used for the cover is from 1946. My mother-in-law used that fabric to make a cot mattress cover for her baby son (my husband). When my first son was born she gave me the fabric. It felt so precious I never found the courage to cut into it to make anything with it … until now.

Where the desire to make books comes from, I don’t know, I have been on several courses and started quite a few books, but this is the only one I have finished to date.

This book was started during a wonderful few days one-to-one with Frances Pickering in Spring 2016;

then a day’s one-to-one workshop with Kim Edith. in Southampton in 2018. I can highly recommend both workshops. I learnt many things I have yet to put into practice;

and now I am making a Stitchbook with Helen Birmingham,  also highly recommended.

I am not quite sure what it’s all about, but if I discover why, I’ll let you know.

Miss E has been watching this book take shape and she beamed with delight when I gave it to her – I asked her if it was ok for me to share the video and she gave her permission.

I hope you enjoy it .

In a Vase on Monday

spode jug, nigella seed heads, crochet cotton mandala

Nigella seed heads sit in a beautiful Green Spode jug, given to me many years ago by my mother-in-law.

It sits on the turquoise crocheted mandala which I have just finished, at last! It has been sitting in the WiPs pile for far too long. I will write another post soon about the edging I made.

I am joining in with In a Vase on Monday, Cathy’s weekly meme, where gardeners from all over the world pop things in a vase for us all to enjoy.

Gardeners are a generous lot and sharing seeds and plants is one of the great joys of gardening.

Cathy, very kindly, sent me some pink dandelions seeds last year. I sowed some in the garden but none came up. This year I sowed them in a Veg Trug, and the first one came into bloom at the weekend

pink dandelion

So pretty.

Another gardening triumph this year are these

Angels Fishing Rods

my friend Anne’s Angels Fishing Rods, grown from seed harvested from her garden at least 6 years ago – this is the first year they have flowered. I am so proud that I have managed to keep them going for 6 years not knowing if they would ever flower or not – it is a minor miracle. They are tall and beautiful, but hard to photograph to show their full splendour, dancing in the breeze.

Friend Andy is represented in my garden in Loganberry form 🙂loganberry

I gave him a plant from my garden in about 2004, I moved a couple of times and then, when I moved to this house, he gave me a plant from his.

Then there is the gorgeous Hot Princess! My Flower of the Day, given to me by Nanacathy for my birthday.

rose, Hot Princess

She is such a gorgeous rose, all pink perfection with a beautiful delicate scent. She seems very happy here and has given me the confidence to try a few more roses in the border for next year.

I am also joining in with my daughter @newgatenarcissi for her  #gardencollagemonthly

She is just getting into gardening and was so thrilled that a few of you joined in last month. Thank you ❤

I chose all the pinks for my July collage.

#gardencollagemonthly

It is a great way to feel good about the garden and ignore all the work still to be done.

Happy Gardening!

Silent Sunday Sand Spiral

Ringstead beach

Made by Miss E.

Textile Tuesday: July

couchingWe are edging towards the end of The Stitchbook Collective year, in August we will receive our last kit. Was there ever a better timed project! There are 150 of us in the Collective and it has been a wonderful creative community to be part of over the last few months.

Our June box was all about Laid Work and Couching, including how to couch lettering.

Of course I had to include a bit of rust dyed fabric – Rust Dyeing has been my favourite process of the whole course – I love the magic, alchemy and serendipity of it.

The Laid Work was a real challenge for me

stem stitch outline

I like to be messy and abstract and fairly free with my stitching

pineapple design

but Bayeux stitch is not any of those things – keeping within the lines is what is required, (and as I am writing this, I am already creating a design in my head of a messy, borderless piece, but still using some of the Bayeux stitch technique…. ooo .. but no … I have to finish writing this post first – ‘inspiration’, a blessing or the opposite?! sometimes both)

embroidery, Bayeux stitch

I searched online for an Art Deco pineapple design (you might already know how much I like pineapples, here is just one post about them, but there are loads more and if you want to see them, just type Pineapple into the Search Box top right) and created the above from a wallpaper pattern.

After all that control, my inner rebel needed to get messy again so time to experiment with some eco-dyeing

eco-dyeing

An old calico curtain pickled with mould spots has found it’s time to shine. Soaked in soya milk, and then wrapped round a rusty nail, encasing leaves soaked in rusty water.

steam dyeing

In they all go to be steamed

I like the look of the bundles as much as I like the dyed fabric. There is something intriguing about the mystery they hold. (Argghhh! another idea …. project of bundles as the art work themselves, on a theme, so wrapping pertinent pieces of memorabilia in a bundle and then working on the outside to hint at what it holds ……. noooo … get back to writing this post!)

To speed up the process of drying, I sat them on a wheat-filled heat pad that is heated in the microwave

drying bundles

But even that wasn’t quick enough for me, so I later put them under the grill on a very low heat.

I also tried printing the leaves onto paper

eco-dyeing

I was a bit disappointed with the results at first, but there are definitely marks to work with …. I wonder where inspiration will take me.

Although there is a tinge of sadness that The Stitchbook Collective is coming to a close, there is also celebration as our books are going to be exhibited at the Kniiting and Stitching Show in Harrogate in November.

Even better news! Anyone who would like to be part of the next Stitchbook Collective can be. Helen is running another one next year – I can highly recommend it! Suitable for beginners and experienced stitchers alike. You can subscribe for a whole year or buy the individual kits.

Must go, I have messy Bayeux stitch to figure out and a few bundles to make.

~~~~

If you would like to share any textile related posts in July, just pop a link in the comments below, current or archive, anything textile related,  are all welcome.

 

Sand Circles

Today I learnt a friend and unique artist has died.

I am sad beyond words. I need no sympathy because that belongs to his family and closer friends. I just want to celebrate his talent and his art.

Marc created this wonderful ceremonial expression of connection – a magical time on Mwnt beach. One of those people casting moving shadows is me.

Here is the post I wrote about it.

And another when I went with my cousin to Mwnt beach for a New Year’s Sand Circle.

~

Sand Circles

 

Fields of Blue and Yellow

fields of blue and yellow

I took a dear friend to a hospital appointment today – round trip 166 miles. The furthest I have driven, prior to that, since the beginning of March, was 10 miles. It was wonderful to spend time with my friend and to get out and about, seeing the world with fresh eyes.

If you click on the photo you can see it full screen – the spire of the magnificent Salisbury Cathedral is on the left hand side. I was there in 2016 with Miss E.

Now 14 days of keeping as much to myself as possible and being on the alert for symptoms. I’m pretty sure all will be well, but we live in uncertain times.

How beautiful the countryside looked after the recent good dose of rain, and a field of linseed is always a joy to behold

Be safe, be happy, be well.

 

In a Vase on Monday: Cool

gardeners gaiters, stacchys, quaking grass

It has cooled down now, but there were a few days last week that were so hot.

I picked a few stems to cool things down a bit.

Stacchys, Gardeners Gaiters and Quaking Grass, with a few tiny white pebbles collected from the beach.

Joining in with Rambling in the Garden.

Crochet: Sunset Blanket Edge

Attic24 Dahlia Cal, my sunset version, crochet

Here it is finished!

Measuring 1m 32cm x 1m 65cm, it makes a cosy lap-blanket or throw.

To see the row order for my Sunset Version of Attic24’s Dahlia CAL go to this post

crochet throw, blanket, Dahlia CAL Attic24

I love – it makes me feel warm just looking at it.Attic24 CAL

I think it might be my favourite and I am keeping it for myself!!!

blanket edge

I followed Attic24’s stitch pattern for the edge, but changed the colours.

Here is my colour order:

Shrimp, Blush, Claret, Magenta, Spice, Tomato.

~~~~

Another project finished during lockdown – very satisfying.

❤ Keep safe. Keep Well. ❤

 

 

@newgatenarcissi

garden collage

My daughter is getting into gardening and has an Instagram page @newgatenarcissi where she posts photos of her new garden and asks for advice. This month she has launched a new idea – a picture collage of blooms in her garden, which she intends to make each month for a year, with the hashtag #gardencollagemonthly.

She would love others to join her each month with a collage from their garden, and I wondered if any of you would like to join in.

I had fun creating mine and was quite amazed at all the flowers I found. Most of my garden is frankly, a bit of a mess! But this was a wonderful way to show off the best bits, and such a good record of June 2020.

In a Vase on Monday

Also joining in with Cathy and her happy band of gardeners forIn A Vase On Monday.

Dianthus Carthusianorum, bronze fennel and stacchys in a kettle on top of the woodburner.

I grew the dianthus from seed and at last, in its 3rd year it has come into a decent sized plant with healthy looking flowers.

It grows up through the bronze fennel in my long border – a combination I love.

bronze fennel and dianthus

Hard to see the joy of it in a photo, but I love the mix of textures.

Also joining Cee’s Flower of the Day.

Now, it is a weeding day for me today, let’s see if I can get some of my garden under better control!

 

 

Seaside Saturday

to see a Blue Sky in detail

Many years ago, when I was going through a really tough time, I sought the help of a Life Coach. One of the quotes he gave me was “To see a blue sky in detail”

The meaning I took from this was: when times are tough, notice something gentle, clear and beautiful and really concentrate on seeing and experiencing it in every single subtle detail.

I am mercifully coming out the other side of a rocky time, life is calming, things are settling. Thank you so much to everyone who sent encouragement and good wishes. It really did help, more than you could know.

walk by the sea

Yesterday, just after it had been pouring with rain, I nipped down for a walk on the beach – the first time in 3 months. Oh! What joy, what bliss. The sounds, the smells, the colours , the air – ALL seemed so vibrant, so new, so wonderful.

I wanted you all to be there with me, so I imagined us all together, savouring every second!

Is there something bringing you special moments of joy right now?

Have a happy weekend.