Monday, 25 November 2013

An Autumnal Walk ... ! x

Hello again ... !!

I have so much to share ... and I thought it would be so much nicer to split it all up into little 'bite size chunks'.

The one of the things I do love to do is a lovely early morning walk. So Sunday was a lovely autumnal day and although I wasn't up that early I did take myself on a little walk around the lanes by me!

It is wonderful to see the changing colours of the leaves and the berries ...

The wonderful Rose Hips ... beautiful blast of red among the changing colours.

These red berries aren't holly berries ... mmmm a little mystery ... !

The beautiful autumnal colours ... and a little green peaking through!

Last year I took a picture of this gate with one Poppy on it ... this year the numbers have increased! I wonder how many will be there next year ... ?

And of course, I had to take a picture of my favourite oak tree, the leaves are falling ... 

A glance back down the lane that I had walked ... an Oak bowing over the lane in contrast to the Holly hedgerow.

Continuing the oak theme a few changing oak leaves still on the branch ... 

Lost Property ... this blast of colour in an otherwise bare hedge made me smile ... 

And the wonderful tractor ... I love this so much, a picture you have seen a few times before but each time I pass it it makes me smile.

Honesty ... always the best policy ...

I love this cottage, and its wonderful seeing it so sympathetically restored ... this is an 'if only' cottage for me ...!

And I do really hope it doesn't lose some of its unique features in its restoration ... such as the water butt!

And the little door ... I wonder to where it leads ... 

Despite it being autumn there is a little new growth, promising the things to come as the wheel of the year turns.

And to home I returned refreshed and ready for a day of crafting ... a perfect way to start the day!

bye, bye for now.


A crafty weekend ... ! x

As well as enjoying oneself in Wales it was also quite a crafty weekend too! 

It was a 'Learn to Crochet' Workshop so the sign went outside ... 

The 'Learn to Crochet' booklets were printed out and the table set ...

And the cups and saucers were laid out ... and the cakes baked ... !

The Workshop this week was attended by Gill, Emily, Liz and Ann. They were all wonderful, and such a lovely atmosphere was created for all the crafting.

Ann's sisters both crochet, and she had never learnt so she was here to impress her sisters. While crocheting her sample of stitches she said she was "so happy I could cry!" ... that brought a tear to my eyes!

Emily came with her mom and had been told she was going to a craft fair ... she was a little amazed when she turned up a crochet lesson ... !! I think she did brilliantly she practised her stitches and progressed well.

I think they all did amazingly ... here are the flowers I captured from the Workshop ... aren't they wonderful!!

Here is Gill's flower ...

Here is Ann's flower ...

I love the stripy button Ann has used ... !

And here is Liz's flower ... with a fabulous spotty button this time.

It was such an enjoyable morning for me in the company of four fabulous ladies, thank you to you all for making it a wonderful Workshop to teach!! And I look forward to seeing all your crochet makes in the future!

And so the craftiness continued with Sunday arriving ... I started the morning with a lovely walk, which I will tell you about it another post, and then sat down and made Christmas Decorations!! I have recently brought the Prima Christmas Makes Magazine which has some fabulous patterns in it.

I thought I would make the 'Send it Santa' Decoration ...

So with my needles and embroidery threads I got to creative work ...

I am so proud of it ... I have even put a letter into it!!

I am not a tidy crafter as you can see ... to find the right colour threads the jar had to be emptied!!

bye, bye!! 


Remember there is a Snowflake Workshop on the 1st December, email me at if you woud llike a booking form!!

Sunday, 24 November 2013

Oh what a week ... ! x

Hello ... I do hope your week has been full of lots of wonderful adventures!

Mine has been fabulous ... !!

The week began with the usual day job and housework ... and then ... !

There was ...


Soo, Zoe and I went to Aberyswyth Arts Centre to watch the fabulous Bellowhead ... and oh my they didn't let us down!!

We were dancing in the aisles ... a truly wonderful evening!!

The next day saw a relaxing morning in Aberysywth ... with a visit to 'The Mecca' a wonderful shop for loose tea and fresh coffee... the smells as you walk into the shop are just divine!!

Look at all the tempting jars and tins ... 

I brought Christmas Coffee especially for the day itself!!

I loved the freedom of this person I spotted at the castle enjoying the view and the freshness of the day.

Wonderful ... !!

And of course being by the sea ... a very quick sea view was taken ...

And a close up of the seagull too ... 

Sigh ... oh to be by the seaside, to be by the sea!!

A fabulous sight awaited on the return trip home ... not far outside of Aber we came upon lots and lots of wonderful Red Kites ...!

The camera never does such a sight justice!

As close a close up as I can get with my little point and shoot camera ...

What a fabulous sight!!

And then home we headed for after a wonderful two days!

I love memories made with wonderful friends ... thank you Soo and Zoe ... and Jase to of course!!

I will share in another post the crafty time had over the weekend with a Learn to Crochet workshop and Christmas Decoration making.

And also making Mocha Squares ... a family recipe that I recently found out was taken from Womans Weekly many many years ago!

And a sock pattern ... which I am so excited about sharing with you all, I just need to decipher the painting!!

bye, bye for now!

Saturday, 2 November 2013

Poppies ... ! x

Hello all,

The nights are drawing in now the clocks have wound back and thoughts have turned back to crochet and wonderful winter nights spent in front of the fire!

Two years ago I made myself a poppy ...

It was my own little dedication to my Granddads.

The comments I received were truly wonderful, and filled me with pride!

Then this year, I received a little request ... "Are you making any poppies?" ... and then another request, and a comment by a work colleague!

This all got me thinking ... why not spend a few hours of my time to make poppies!

I asked that those wanting a poppy contributed £5 to The Royal British Legion ... and off I started making poppies ...

Here is the poppy production line ... !

The first batch was completed and sent to grateful recipients ...

And now I am working on the second batch ...

22 poppies are made,
25 felt circles are cut out for the backing (Thank you Mr Moo!)
4 leaves are made ... 18 left to go!

And then the sewing together of the second batch begins!!

A total of 40 poppies will have been made and a total of £202.00 raised generating £42.50 of gift aid on top!!

I am amazed!!

I have loved every minute of making them and thank all the glorious people that have brought one!

If you still want to contribute ... although now I can not promise that you will receive a poppy in time for Remembrance Sunday, but I am sure that The Royal British Legion will be grateful of your donation!

Thank you!!


Wednesday, 25 September 2013

Buying a vintage caravan ... ! x


I am dreaming of my very own little vintage caravan to hook up to the car and take away with Mr Moo and me on little adventures! 

I am yet to find my little van, but am having fun looking and learning about caravans and so thought I would share a few handy tips that I have gained! 

Image from Google

ooh ... being suitably distracted by this caravan ... its a cross stitch kit from Past Impressions 
Me thinks it needs to go on my Christmas list!!

So my tips ...

My first tip, is probably the most important.

Pop to see the Vintage Caravan of your dreams before you buy ... !!

It seems so obvious when I say it, but do please!! There are so many tempting vintage caravans for sale but ... give yourself a radius you are happy to travel to view a caravan. You will find out so much more about the lovely Caravans, and you can make sure its definitely the van for you!!

Or, as I have done on the ones I viewed ... fall more in love with them!

 I have been so tempted at times to bid for a van I am unable to visit, but the more you visit the more you will be sure of what you want from a caravan!

Take someone in the know ... !!
It is worth taking someone with you that knows a little about caravans, knows where to look for damp, is happy to look at the underneath of the van, and can ask those questions you'd never think about. 

We take Dad, he will not proclaim to be an expert but he knows a little after Mom and Dads own adventures in a van. With Vintage Vans the floors are wood and being a carpenter by trade Dad knows what to look for!
A damp meter ... !!

A brilliant little machine that finds out the damp, if there is any, in the van. Being Vintage they may have suffered damp problems. If the seller says they have dealt with any damp problems the van has previously suffered from, the damp metre will tell you how successful they have been!

Check around the windows and skylight, check down the inside of the seams, check in the cupboards and under the seats.

Water can get in around the seams, around the awning seams, around the windows or if the seals have rotten through the edges of the window openings. Ask if they have replaced the seals of the windows? Have they resealed all the seams, before painting the van?

If there has been any damp or leaks, ask what work they have done to rectify any issues.
I have to say though that none of the vans I have looked at have any damp, they have all been good solid vans!

 Take something to lie on ... !!

Yes, get on the floor and look underneath! Look at the metal work, has been painted? Has the suspension been cleaned up and freed of rust? As the floor is wood by the edges of the van will be joists supporting the ends of the floor boards, are these soft? Feel the floorboards themselves, are they soft?

Ask about the brakes, have they been replaced? Ask about the tyres, are they new? When were they last replaced?

Try the workings of the caravan ... !!

If the van is hooked up, switch all the lights on! Close all the curtains! Try the gas, if you buy the van it would be strongly recommended that you get the gas serviced see if it all works! Some of the old vans may have gas lights, ask if these still work as they may just be there for decoration, which is good!

Try the water pump, obviously to see if it works, but it is something like this that may have a little technique to get the water in the pipe! At one I saw recently we realised you had to pour water into the pipe before it would start pumping water though it! Its a Vintage Van so there will be little quirks!

See if you can make the bed! Just so that you know how it all fits together and all the bits are there!! If its a fourth berth with a hammock, how does the hammock fit?

Sit on the seats!

Open the cupboards, look under the seats!

Open and close the windows ... !!

I love all the nosiness when looking at a caravan, opening and closing the windows mean you can check the windows work, see what the seals are like have they rotted, are they clean, have they been replaced!

 Ask lots of questions ... !!

Mine include ... and I ask these before I visit as if the answers raise concerns I will decide whether or not to visit.

Do you usually cover it while not in use?
A cover protects the caravan against the elements, and will be worth an investment when you find your perfect Vintage Caravan ... after all we want them to last many more years!

Has the caravan been regularly services, if so when was the last service and were any issues raised?
The service will check the electrics, gas, tyres, brakes, chassis, jockey wheel, as well as many other things on the van! I have been recommended, and I pass this onto you too, while you can do all teh checks when you visit a service will confirm all is ok with the caravan.

What work did you do in the refurbishment?
If the van you are looking to buy has been refurbished its good to know what work they have done, this should all be confirmed as you look around the caravan.

What is the unladen and laden weight of the Caravan?
Your car will only be able to pull a certain weight of caravan, your cars service books should give you the details of the total braked weight you car can pull. Apologies now if I state the obvious, the unladen weight is the weight of the caravan without all your bits and pieces, the laden weight gives the weight of adding in all these bits. The caravan club recommends that you limit the weight to 85% of the Kerb Weight or Maximum Allowed Weight of your car.

Would you mind telling me the reserve price?
If you are looking at a van on ebay, and there is a reserve price, ask what it is. The reserve price may exceed your budget.

Could you confirm what is included in the sale i.e. gas bottle, awning, hitch and wheel lock etc?
If these are included in the sale then it will be something you won't have to buy once the caravan is yours, if they are not included you need to add them to your shopping list!

The towbar ... !!

If your car hasn't got one obviously you need one ... ! My quotes have ranged from £225 to £300, and one great tip my Dad gave us at the weekend was to let the garage know that you are buying an old van as New Caravans have different connections these days. You will only need a single plug towbar if you are only going to be using electric to power the lights and plugs!

Well, I think thats all the tips I have learnt so far on my hunt for a lovely Vintage Caravan!! No doubt there is still lots to learn ...including once I have it how to tow it and look after it ... and of course enjoy it!!

Feel free to ask any questions ...and I will attempt to answer them from my limited knowledge!

And if you have brought a vintage caravan, do feel free to add your own tips, or correct any of mine, to the comments below ... I am still learning!!

bye, bye for now,



Monday, 9 September 2013

More boodling ... !! x


Oh my ... I have just heard some fabulous exciting news ... !!

If you have heard and seen boodles yarn you will have seen this glorious bag ...

Courtesy of Google and Avec website

 Well ... the pattern is being released to Hobbycraft stores on the 1st October!!


bye, bye, for now!!


Remember to have a nose at my Workshops for Learning to Crochet, Making Crocheted Bunting, Snowflakes for Christmas and the Classic Granny Squares!! x

Tuesday, 3 September 2013

A little bit hippie ... ! x

I spent this weekend camping at a wonderful little gathering in Warwickshire, it was good to get away from the routine of life and have a little time for me to relax and chill out ... a lot of that was thanks to a little bit of meditation and tibetian singing bowl bathing over the weekend ... !!

As I was planning my break away, I remembered the summer edition of Simply Crochet and the barefoot sandals and gorgeous headdress ... so I had to make!!

Unfortunately, I didn't wear the sandals as to get from the campsite to the events field you had to walk along a dusty path!

But ... the headdress was worn on occasions, and it got some great comments too!

As with any festival, there are always so many tempting stalls to buy such wonderful goodies!! And I was tempted by this beautiful velvet coat ... a bargain at £8.00!! It looks amazing on, and I do feel a little bit of upcycling will be required ... maybe a big crocheted flower me thinks!!

And from the same stall ...

... this wonderful upcycled skirt, I fell in love with the details of the buttons and the lace!

Oh and while I think about it the next item purchased was also from the same stall (!!!), it was a wonderful stall full of lots of upcycled clothing, items ready to be upcycled, beautiful jewelry and crockery!

So ... when I saw this trio for sale and heard its cries of 'bye me, bye me' I had to oblige!!

And so after a relaxing weekend, yesterday saw me returning to reality and catching up with all those weekend jobs, there were a couple of parcels to post ( I will tell you about these another time once the recipients have recieved them!!), washing to be done, and a home to tidy. 

Yet, it was also time to catch up with a few magazines too ... so on the sofa I sat with a mug of tea and the cats to read!


What a fabulous weekend!

I am looking forward to the gathering next year!!

bye, bye,


Remember to have a nose at my Workshops for Learning to Crochet, Making Crocheted Bunting, Snowflakes for Christmas and the Classic Granny Squares!! x

Sunday, 18 August 2013

A crafty catch up ... ! x

Hello, its been a while hasn't it but here I am back into blogland, and it feels like home!

So my feet are up and my laptop is balanced on my lap, there is a cuppa on the floor by the side of me and I am ready to catch with you all!!

So ... what have I been upto ...?

At the start of August it was Lammas, and to celebrate I made a corn doll ...

They are so simple to make yet so effective, the corn dolly is believed to have the corn king spirit living in it, it will be made from the last sheaf of corn. It will be kept until the following sprig to ensure a good harvest.

I have been cataloging all of my vintage patterns ... I didn't realise quite how many patterns I had.

I am thinking about do a few crochet workshops inspired by these patterns ... but first I need to make sure I am "ok" to do this, as long as I credit the original pattern. It would also be lovely to share these to a wider audience on my blog!

I am asking a few questions to find out if this would be "ok" ... I will let you know!!

And while I am feeling all vintage inspired at my last Hobbycraft session I was asked to make an item for the shop to display. I chose a pattern from the last issue of Simply Crochet ...

I love it ... it was so easy to make and the end result is brilliant!! I used Sirdar Sublime Baby Yarn, and from the two balls of wool suggested you can make four collars, I did two in contrasting colours and one all in blue and one is beige.

Oh ... and now a catch up on the dressmaking. It now looks like this ...

I was well instructed on cutting out the paper pattern and pinning the pattern to the fabric ... and then the cutting out of the fabric! Gosh I was nervous doing the cutting out ... I don't think I breathed while doing it, it was the worry that I would do something wrong and mess it all up! Once I got into it I actually enjoyed it. I just need to find the time now to start sewing it all together ... gulp!!

I have submitted more samples for the International Diploma in Crochet ...

This time I submitted samples of textured crochet, a piece of two coloured crochet without texture, tunisian simple stitch with a crab stitch border, a two colour tunisian simple stitch crochet and a sample of broomstick.

I love both tunisian and broomstick crochet, they are fabulous to do and so satisfying!!
The results came back ...

Textured crochet - Good - although unwittingly I did a starting row of a stitch too many!
A piece of two coloured crochet without texture - Very Good Indeed - Whoop whoop!!
Tunisian Crochet Simple Stitch with a crab stitch border - Fine - I forgot to do crab stitches in the corner!
Two coloured tunisian simple stitch - Very Good Indeed - Whoop whoop ... and a little surprised!!
Broomstick crochet in fours - Pass - but with a request to resubmit, so I get to do this one again ... which isn't so bad as I loved it so much!!

I have also begun the next sample to submit ...

Its a triangle in trebles decreasing to a point ... I want to master the decreasing ready for a workshop I have planned. It sounds so simple, and I have been decreasing crochet for years but this is known within the diploma circles as the 'dreaded triangle'! The edges are looking straight(ish) and I have trebled into the turning chains ... but I suppose there is only one way to make sure its right ... it needs to be posted to Pauline!!

The other morning I awoke to a wonderful sunrise ...

Isn't it wonderful, the stormy clouds look amazing in the morning sun.

Anyway I am being distracted ... this is a crafty catch up ... !!

And so some crochet ... victorian style gloves for me ...

Now I want winter to come so I can wear them!

I mentioned workshops earlier ... well today saw another Learn to Crochet Workshop, attended by Alyson, Dot, Sarah and Wendy. Spookingly all attendees had a connection to the village I grew up in so it was great to reminisce and catch up over crochet.

This is the flower created by Wendy, it was a perfect match for her cardigan!

And this beautiful blue flower was made by Sarah for her daughter.

I think Alyson's confidence grew in her ability after seeing the end result of her glorious flower!!

Dot concentrated on double crochet, and made a fabulous sample. She had tried and struggled to crochet before the workshop and didn't have high hopes for what she could learn today. She concentrated on the chain initially, perfecting her technique and then tried double crochet. As she carried on with the sample you could see the stitches improve, and the realisation that she was crocheting!

She was so chuffed by the end of the workshop, and while she didn't make the flower I feel she did brilliantly and achieved something she never thought she would!! 

I have set up a series of more workshops also looking at increasing and decreasing by making bunting, snowflakes ready for Christmas, and granny squares as well as more Learn to Crochet workshops! See the workshop tab at the top of this page. If you are facebook you can keep in touch with me at my page ... please do go and "like" it (pretty please)!!

I have loved being in the garden recently ... not working, the grass is really long and the weeds are growing well!! I have been watching the butterflies there have been so many, it is wonderful and does bring tears of joy to my eyes.

I am hoping you can see all of these photos but I didn't want to take any out ...

And how many can you count in this photo ...

Sigh ... isn't it glorious!! I stand in the garden and the butterflies are flying all around me ... truly beautiful!!

I think we are now all caught up!!

bye bye for now, and I promise I will be here again soon!!


PS can I say a big thank you to all of you that visit my little blog and a big hello to my new followers, it is lovely to have you all visit!!

Remember to have a nose at my Workshops for Learning to Crochet, Making Crocheted Bunting, Snowflakes for Christmas and the Classic Granny Squares!! x