Monday, 29 January 2018

Hot and warm off the needles

The sweater is more like lukewarm off the needles...I originally knit a lovely cardigan and ran out of wool. The only place I could get another ball was a different dye-lot, and even with just one sleeve knit in the off-wool, it showed. So I ripped it back and knit this, using the off-wool for the ribs. And once it was finished, I had enough of the original wool left to cut the ribs off and knit them down in the original wool, and it was worth the extra work. I made myself finish it before starting my first little bird from the beautiful book Lorraine sent me at Christmas... I think my first "real" bird will probably be the long-tailed tit, but I want to knit another one in plain yarn first just to get more accustomed to the basic bird pattern before adding design into the mix. I had to order double-pointed needles as I didn't have any small enough  (this bird was knitting on size 1 US, and the beautiful birds of paradise knit from embroidery floss call for even smaller ones)- but I have plenty of scraps of wool to knit all sorts.

This one is hanging from what was our Christmas tree this year - I still haven't taken it down, although all the decorations got put away in early January. Just as well, C and I were both sick; fortunately not with full-blown flu, but still enough to need a week each off work.

Since it's nearly the end of January, and since I'm still struggling to catch up with all sorts of things, I'm going to add my favourite cards from the month in the same post.

This one used the last piece of coloured Tyvek in my box of scraps and spares - time to cut another sheet up and  have it ready to play with.

Friday, 5 January 2018

December Favourites

A bit late in the day posting my favourite cards from December - I didn't feel better till the day before I had to go back to work, so not much got done over the holidays.

Gift tag and close-up of the poinsettia, cut from plastic packaging.

This bag was to contain a gift set of 6 cards which had sea creatures on them. 

I liked this next one so much that I kept it and got C to give it to me for Christmas. The one following is the one I made (much earlier in the year)  for him - as he is somewhat of a Grinch. 

I have very few photos (4) from last January - so not much to choose from for a blog header. This is a grey wagtail in the Liffey at low tide.

Tuesday, 26 December 2017

Christmas Gifts

A couple of outgoing Christmas gifts which were fun in the making.

In hindsight I would have made the little tree canvases in landscape format and made them to hang downwards - so apologies, Lorraine, that this is not as easy to display as it could be. I just jumped in without thinking things all the way through, and then it was too late to change.

Søstren Grene opened near us earlier this year, and they have quite a good range of student-quality art stuff. When I saw these little canvases, I knew I wanted to use them with the Tree for All Seasons - and they were surprisingly easy to stamp on, which was a bonus. I only made a mess of one, which got upcycled into the bird card shared in my November Favourites post.

The snowman sampler was also fun to make - and as always with the samplers, there were a couple of squares created which didn't make the final cut. Thanks, Di, for contributing at least three of the snowmen used on it.

Monday, 25 December 2017

Christmas Wishes

And Christmas cheer; just as last year, the brew team came up with some fun names for our Christmas beer.

Friday, 15 December 2017

Christmas Treat

We treated ourselves to a trip to the Wild Lights at Dublin Zoo - and I was so glad that I got round to booking before it sold out. Since I came home with nearly 200 photos, and culled that down to 75 to upload to an album, I'll share the album link here for anybody who wants to see more, and just a few of my most favourites. I probably took almost as many of them as of everything else put together. Their tails lit up in alternating sequences, so there is a short video in the album too.
The lanterns are made out of some sort of fabric (described as silk), lit from within,  and I was very happy with my first attempt at night photography with my Nikon. Spent some time converting my tripod into a monopod - and as we walked up to the entrance, I heard something fall to the ground. When we got in, I discovered it was the little fitting which slots into the top of the monopod. Although I'd heard the fall, I didn't think it was anything of mine, so I hadn't looked. I've never lost one of those before - and luckily I still have a spare here. And even though I couldn't lock the camera into it,  the monopod was still useful as support to rest the camera on and hold it steadier than simply hand-held.
Look at the end, there were even some mandarin ducks on the lake.

Saturday, 9 December 2017


With the crisp cold weather moving in, we had a beautiful sunset the other morning. Since I had all my international Christmas cards and packages in my bag, I didn't (for once) have my camera, but snapped a couple of shots with my phone on the way to the bus stop.

Friday, 1 December 2017

November Favourites

...not too many. Life has been busy, and then we were away dog-sitting for a week. But there are a few.

I wasn't sure about that little bird at first. I thought the division between the purple and the head was too severe, and I should have softened it more. Especially as I added some soft "feathering" to his head with a white gel pen. But then I decided I quite liked it, as if he was peeking out of a cocoon of some sort. So I've left it as it as, though C thinks I need to stamp a sentiment on the base.

 This month's blog header is a photo from last December in Paris - Parc Monceau