Wednesday, 31 October 2012

Homemade Christmas Gift Ideas

I've been having a little think this evening about the gifts I can make for Christmas. A little early I know but it always comes around too quickly and I always end up rushing out and buying things instead.

 I already have Oscar sorted with his little blanket, but other than that I'm not sure.

My sister wants a tea cosy, I'm thinking this one designed by Ruth Cross:

(But I'd have to buy the book)

Alternatively this beauty by Keren Smith looks amazing but potentially a little beyond my knitting skills

The link to the pattern is here

I thought I might knit my mum a lacy scarf like this one

How did I ever cope without Ravelry? If you aren't a member then get over there and join quick sharp.

I've also been looking at edible gifts for the male/not so into knitted gifts members of the family.

Here are some that look amazing:

Candied Cinnamon Almonds

Toffee Blondies

Cowgirl Cookies

Incidentally the last website took up a good portion of my evening. Be warned. 

Any other good ideas for gifts? I like things that don't look handmade but people know they are. 



Tuesday, 30 October 2012

Oscar's Chevron Stripe Baby Blanket

There is a new baby. His name is Oscar. He likes to be slung over your shoulder. He is going to South Africa to meet his grandparents for Christmas. He will be coming back to England in January. He likes to be warm. 

So I started making his Christmas present early. In fact I started making it before he was born but I was a little ambitious with how much time I could devote to it (about an hour a week, watching Downton Abbey). 

This is the yarn I used, it's Peter Pan DK from Wendy. It was not too expensive (wasn't sure how well this was going to turn out and whether I'd actually want to give it as a gift), Machine washable (who knits things that can't be washed that are going anywhere near a newborn?!), and supersoft. 

The three colours I used were Raindrop (910), Freckles (903) and Primrose (380). This yarn comes in 40 shades so is perfect for making something really personal to the baby and their parents. 

I used this pattern and it's perfect. Simple, repetitive, good for knitting whilst watching TV. 

There's only one problem with this project, it's making me very broody and wanting to knit lots of other lovely baby things. 

I may have ordered this book.

I want to make this, this and everything from this

I'm also going to start making another one of these blankets when I've finished in more girly colours, I'm thinking Debbie Bliss Baby Cashmerino in:


Enjoy your Tuesday!


Sunday, 28 October 2012

Back from a break.... and a new theme!

Well, what a year! I've been sporadically looking at my blog and thinking... do I have time?

I think that blogging should be a pleasure and an escape, not a duty and a bind. I started feeling that way about it when I began a new job in January which seems to drain all of my time and energy, and since then have not quite gotten around to blogging again. However, as half-term has rolled around again and I have found myself at a loose end with zero-degree temperatures outside, I think now is the time for a return to blogging. 

And with that return comes a new theme alongside the craft/thrift/cookery side...

The sailor and I got engaged in August and my whole life has been turned into a whirlwind of planning and DIY-Weddingness. (This is no bad thing as it has led to a huge amount of new blogs for inspiration, the ones I've been looking at daily are listed below). So, as this is our wedding and weddings are nothing if they don't represent the couple, lots of the details will be handmade and homegrown. 

So, want to see what I did yesterday?

I used the Martha Stewart instructions for making tissue paper 'pompoms' (I think they look more like peonies but hey ho). The actual ones we are using at each place setting will be smaller and in a much paler pink/peach colour but this is what I had for a trial run. Pretty non? I'll do a proper post on these when I make the real ones and give some details on sizes etc. 

Still on the place setting theme, I made the placecards. These seem ridiculously expensive in shops and often unimaginative. We wanted something a little different so I did a bit of scouring the internet and got inspired. 

I bought 100 sheets of 300gsm Kraft card from here (I used 8 sheets for the placecards, a total of £1.60). Then I downloaded this font (free) and typed out the names 10 to a page (38 point font). I printed these onto the card, used a label cutter from Hobbycraft (11.99) to cut them and a hole punch to put the small hole at the top of each tag. I bought some ribbon from a local market, cut 40cm lengths and threaded through the holes (£13.50 for enough to string 75 tags and to tie the ends around napkins). I actually already had the label cutter so these worked out costing 20p each, I think they look lovely. 

I can't find the cutter on Hobbycraft's website, but the same shape one can be found here for less money! 

Lovely wedding blogs/websites: (Check out the printables section)

I'll most likely be blogging every day this week because I've got a whole lot of ideas to share! (That and the fact that our boiler is being replaced so I need to stay in and knit/blog/make things, what a hardship)

Have a lovely Sunday!