Saturday, 11 February 2012


The UK is in the grip of a Siberian deep freeze, and even here down near London it is hovering around freezing during the day. It's been very cold for about a week now, and we've had a dusting of snow twice: about four inches the first time, but only about an inch and a half on Friday.

This is what our garden looked like on Friday.  So I've been wearing layers of woollens to and from work, gloves inside mittens, legwarmers etc.  Our house is fairly warm but I still feel chilled some of the time and am wrapping up in quilts while I watch TV.

I knocked off another 'Cowl at the Moon' out of the Debbie Bliss Fez that I bought online.  These cowls are so wonderful that I am living in them every day - they solve the whole problem of endlessly arranging a scarf to block out all cold drafts down the neck, and fit smoothly under a coat.  I might even knit a third one out of the Knitpicks Sierra that I have left. In fact, I'm wearing one right now as I blog, which is keeping my neck warm.

I finished piecing the centre of my Kaffe Fassett Snowball Quilt.  I am pleased with it but unfortunately I have the perfect blue & white toile fabric for a border but not enough of the toile.  I spent ages searching online but toile fabric seems out of fashion at the moment, so perhaps I am going to have to improvise with what I have.

I finally got around to blocking the strip of sideways knitting that I did on my knitting machine, which will be the body of the Cabled Yoke sleeveless pullover.  Now I am picking up stitches along one edge to knit a row of garter stitch then cast off again - this will be the top edge that I seam to the yoke.

Despite the cold weather, it has been gloriously sunny.  DH and I ventured out today to enjoy an afternoon at the antique shops.  We went to The Swan at Tetworth, a rambling ex-medieval inn with about 80 dealers, where I found this lovely two-cup teaset in Aynsley China.  It's some kind of chintz pattern but I can't find it online, but the backing mark dates it to likely the late 1930s.
I love chintz china and if I won the lottery then I would collect loads of it.

There is a discount book store near Waterloo Station that I check regularly, as they often get knitting books in cheaply.  I found this book "Knitted Socks East and West" by Judy Sumner this week.  The sock patterns are based on stitch patterns found in Japanese stitch dictionaries, and there are some really interesting architectural patterns in it.  I particularly like 'Kaiso' which is a lace pattern separated by garter ridges, so I might have a go at that one next.

I turned the heel of my second Harry Potter Vanilla Sock during an evening talk that I attended at the travel company that we booked through to go to New England.  They were showing slides and talking about other areas of the world that they go to, so lots of eye candy and wine and nibbles as well, while I knitted away.

Last week I was awarded the Kreativ Blogger award by Daisy whom I met when she moved to our area and started our local knitting group.

So, the first step is to thank the person who gave you the award, which I've done above.

Second, I have to tell you 10 things that you may not know about me.

1. I was born in Canada, but have lived in the UK for over 20 years.  Still have an accent though!

2. I work in communications, and among other responsibilities, I am the editor of our staff magazine which goes out to over 1,000 staff.

3. I have the collecting bug, and have several collections, including about a hundred or so old needlework magazines from the late 19thC right up to the 1980s.  Love to see the period fashions and advertisements.

4. I have a somewhat embarrassing taste in books, reading mostly urban fantasy (werewolves and vampires), paranormal romance and historical romance.  I blame my English degree which ruined me for serious literature.

5.One of my favourite places in the world is Venice, and yet I haven't been there for about 12 years.  Time to go back.

6. I have a terrible sweet tooth, and very little willpower when sweet things are in my vicinity.

7. I had severe math anxiety as a child and am still really cr*p at arithmetic.

8. I have an almost perfect record of picking lottery numbers that don't come up, not even one.

9. One of my favourite foods to order when we go out to dinner is Crispy Duck in Pancakes.

10. I played saxophone and clarinet in my school band, and had years of piano lessons as a child.  Don't play a thing now!

Now I am supposed to bestow the award on six other bloggers (this is like a chain letter, isn't it?). If any of these people want to do the Kreativ Blogger (don't feel like you have to - it's entirely optional, but it's a fun way of finding new blogs) just follow the instructions above.

I don't actually get time to read many blogs very regularly, I tend to skim about the net just clicking on pictures I like, plus I listen to podcasts while I am doing things.  Daisy's (who gave me the award) is one that I do try to keep up with, because I know her.  Let's see if I can come up with six others.

1. Marthaamay O_o epitomises the new young trendy crafter, and is even in the Shoreditch Sisters WI.  I enjoy her pictures and her take on life. We met at an Innocent Big Knit night.

2. Mark in Mayenne is creating with his green thumb rather than with yarn or fabric.  My friends Mark and Anita moved to France to live the dream several years ago, and their gardens are just amazing.  Lots of nice pictures from beautiful French and European locations as well.

3.Quilter Kathy is a quilt teacher in Canada who turns out the most amazing quilts.  She is incredibly productive and always creative, an inspiration to us all.

4.Paula at Knitting Pipeline produces the most wonderful podcast which I listen to regularly.  This may be cheating as I listen to the podcast rather than reading her blog, but she has a lovely way of sharing about her life and knitting that really makes you feel included. 

5. Swooze is a quilter in Texas who actually got me into blogging in the first place.  She's had a rough few years and suffered a bit of blog-fade, but is recovering her blogging mojo now. She makes some great quilts and also does knitting on looms.

6. Creating Dollshouse Miniatures is a fantastic archive of links to all kinds of dollshouse videos from all over the web, everything from how-to tutorials through to tours of museum dollshouses and privately-owned dollshouses.

Whew!  That was hard work.  Thank you, Daisy, for my award.

1 comment:

Daisy said...

I've added the cowl at the moon to my queue. Looks like just the thing in this weather (of course, it will be non-stop sunshine when I do make it!).

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