Friday, 27 November 2015

Stacie's Chicken & A Clanger

I don't often get to see my daughter's work that she does at the art studio, but yesterday she brought home this lovely silk painting of a chicken.  I'm planning on making it into a cushion for her so that we can see it rather than have it hidden away.  Not bad for someone who has problems with fine motor skills!
Another Clanger completed and ready to go to his new home.  These are fun to make but so fiddly.
The knitting is easy enough, it;s the final assembly that's the tricky bit.
This one is going to Texas - funny how all my Clangers emigrate to the USA!

Thursday, 26 November 2015

Lovely Linen Lace

 I've been knitting this for a while now, squeezing it in among everything else.  It;s been made using some very fine linen yarn I bought a few weeks ago at a fabric show.
 I did start a different pattern with it but found the yarn did not suit, so tried this slightly simpler design which shows off the yarn to perfection.
 The linen is slightly crisp since being washed, but I think will soften with wear.  Now for sale in my Etsy shop.

Sunday, 22 November 2015

Web Warriors - Iron Fist

Apparently there is a cartoon called Spiderman Web Warriors, with a character called Iron Fist.  You'd have thought that anything coming under the Spiderman franchise would have some merchandise, especially around Christmas but it would seem not.  So rather than have their little girl sorely disappointed this year, a thoughtful mum and dad asked if I could re-create Iron Fist in wool.  So I did.  I'm sure given a bit more time I could tweak this pattern further, but I think he will pass muster under the Christmas tree.

Thursday, 19 November 2015

Savvi & Blue

 Here are the pair of greyhounds I've been working on the past couple of weeks.  This has been executed in Derwent Drawing Pencils on watercolour paper for a change.  I'm not sure I would use watercolour paper again - the tooth was quite rough and I had trouble getting smooth lines at times. Perhaps smooth paper would have been better!  However, it was good to be able to paint the background I wanted and have the white of the paper shine through in certain places.

This completes the Christmas commissions for the time being - I'm free if you would like to grab me!
Another Christmas commission currently on the needles is this gentleman - Iron Fist from Spiderman Web Warriors apparently. I'm having to design this as I go along and thankfully it is going well, because I really don't have the time for it to go wrong.  It's been a lot of fun actually - I'm very proud of the body shaping I have achieved - wait until you see the feet!

Tuesday, 17 November 2015

Walks In The Woods...

We've just had a lovely three day break in the forest cabin again.  The weather wasn't great, but we didn't get too wet over all and it was so mild I even got the chance to sit outside on the balcony and paint the view. This is just a little 30 minute watercolour sketch, but it gets down the colours at least.
My daughter thought the cabins looked like the houses in Twilight and also asked if there were bears in the woods!  All we saw were birds however.
The leaves were still partially on the trees, still with the glorious autumnal hues.
This was sunrise yesterday morning, bathing the woods with a beautiful pink light for a few minutes.

However, any benefits from being away from the world for a few days (and this particular weekend we were very glad to be away from the terrible events going on) were wiped out when we returned home to discover the water tank in our roof had leaked the whole weekend and the ceiling was streaming water through the smoke alarm, soaking the carpet below.  Desperate phone calls to the housing association ensued and they were brilliant in sending round an electrician and a plumber within an hour or so.  Nobody to sort out the saturated ceiling however, and we had to call out the electrician again as the residue water started to once again pour into our brand new smoke alarm.  Now we wait to see if the insurance company will spring for a new carpet!

Thursday, 12 November 2015

Funny Old Month...

November is proving to be a bit unusual in some respects.  This is the busiest I've been in the run up to Christmas for a while, so personal projects have had to be put on the back burner for a while.  I'm managing to put a little time each day into this though - a lace scarf knitted in a fine linen yarn.  It looks a bit like a dishrag at the moment, but I think once blocked it will be beautiful - the yarn is a soft grey with a bit of a sheen to it, and about as thick as crochet cotton.  It's quite tricky to knit with, but I am sure will be worth the effort.
I usually make our Christmas cake at the end of October in order to have plenty of time to 'water' it with brandy before Christmas.  A couple of weeks late this year as I've been so busy, but it's finally done and maturing in a tin tucked away.  I use a recipe in a Stork cookbook given to me by my parents when I left that's quite an old book!  It's proved invaluable over the years and I still refer to it for good basic home cooking recipes.
Bizarrely, while the cake was baking away in the oven, I was outside in my shirtsleeves mowing the grass and tidying up the garden, with all windows & doors open.  I still can't do all the clearing up that is needed to put the garden to bed for winter - cosmos are flowering more prolifically than they did in the summer.
The black-eyed susan has gone berserk covering half the pergola and shows no sign of stopping flowering.
And against the house the pepino (tree melon) has finally got a fruit and is also flowering more than it did in the summer.
I have a feeling this will end in tears once the frosts begin - it would be nice to harvest one fruit at least though!

On the easel:  still the greyhounds
On the needles: Christmas stuff!

Saturday, 7 November 2015

Greys 2...

For some strange reason, I had some spare time yesterday - doesn't often happen on a Saturday - so was able to make considerable progress on this.  Let's hope that happens today as well!