October Goals

I’m going to stick to crafty/ life goals for this post as I have MILLIONS (yes millions) of side hustle/ work goals and this post would rapidly turn into a 10,000 word book if I included those too!

Now that I’m reading over what I’ve written, I realise these are also autumn goals in general…it’s a lot for October and it’s already the 5th with no progress made!

1. Finish what I have started!

I have several projects on the hooks/ needles/ in the queue that have been on the go since the start of this year. I’m fed up of them to be quite frank. I want them off my needles before I cast on anything new.

Here’s what I have on the go at the moment:

  • Grey chunky knitted sweater
  • Grey Fisherman’s Rib knitted sweater
  • Green knitted tunic
  • Crocheted top
  • Halloween granny square blanket
  • Knitted blue baby cardigan
  • Chunky knitted hat in the round
  • Top down knitted sweater in natural fibres
  • Knitted lace cowl

And in my sewing queue are bags mostly…a few patterns and a few zipper bags. As well as another Tilly and the Buttons cardigan in a plain fabric.

So. What to focus on?

  • Halloween Blanket – 2 more balls of black yarn to use up for the border. It’s chunky weight yarn so will crochet up quite quickly.
  • Knitted baby blue cardigan – got the right front, sleeves and collar to do. Won’t take too long once I get started but it’s a lace pattern so I have to concentrate which is what’s been putting me off!
  • Green knitted tunic – I’m working in the round now, bottom up. Once I fix my tension problems, I’ll be able to go quite fast on this one.
  • Chunky knitted hat – Did about 6cm of this in the round at work one day! Shouldn’t take too long to finish.

And then we’ll see what happens after that!

I want those 4 things done at least this month!

2. Christmas Socks

I have 3 balls of Christmas sock yarn and ideally, I’d like at least one pair of socks for Christmas this year. The yarn is thin and takes ages for me to knit a sock, so we’ll see. But I want to make a pair of socks and before I can do that, I have to finish at least ONE THING on the list above.

There’s just no room for loads of project bags otherwise!

So, I would like to be casting on a pair of Christmas socks near the end of October, if possible!

3. Use up other crafty things

I have a leather handbag to sew up.

Another cotton bag to ice dye (cannot get plastic ice cube bags for love nor money locally).

Lots of recipes to try. Flours and other dry ingredients in the cupboard to use up!

Finish the last book on my shelf to read – The Testaments by Margaret Atwood. At least I can read the book in my breaks at work!

I think a general goal could be to just do a bit of some of the above! Start the book, sew a little bit, bake some bread…


So, there you go. Just some things I want to do this month.

You’d think that by writing this all down and putting it out into the world, that I’d be more accountable to myself and would ‘get shit done’.

Nope!

What usually happens is that I write a blog post like this, life happens and I need to change my plans and do something else instead!!

I get sick, I’m too tired, I do more hours/ different shifts at work…

For example, last week I did a night shift, so the next day I had planned to write a bit was completely out because I was sleeping! The week before I had the Monday off for the Queen’s funeral…I was so tired from health complications I did nothing!

So, life can almost get in the way sometimes. Of both side hustle and crafty plans…but at least by writing this in the first place, I’m trying to prioritise what’s most important/ urgent and get a little something done.

Hope you’re having a good Wednesday and talk soon x


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Acquisitions and Ideas

New Wool

Last week at work I was so good!

I gave away 2 free knitting kits (that you get with knitting magazines and which I always end up throwing away) and 4 balls of wool to a colleague.

I was slowly making some room in my stash tub.

NOPE!

I instantly bought 2 balls of sock yarn to replace some of the old!

Both are technically Christmas themed sock yarns – 1 by Stylecraft and the other by West Yorkshire Spinners (the left one).

But the one by West Yorkshire Spinners looks more autumn-y to me rather than the ‘gingerbread’ it’s supposed to be.

I also bought a pair of tiny circular needles to have a go using instead of the DPNs. We’ll see if it works!

You can get the orange one here from The Knitting Network, one of my favourite places to buy wool online. I’ve shopped with them a few times before, they’re quick to dispatch and quick and all of their products come in eco-friendly packaging!

And the fabric in the picture above is a gift from a friend (thanks Lizzie!). I’m not sure what to do with it…a bag of some sort maybe? But I also like the idea of making a cushion too…


Ideas For Future Projects

I have 1 1/2 balls of some chunky James C. Brett yarn leftover that I want out of my stash (they’re huge 200g balls so take up a lot of room!) and I was thinking of doing another chunky knitted hat in the round.

I knitted my first hat in the round earlier this year (usually I just do them flat and seam them up) and now I have all the right size circular needles for that!

Also, I’m making another baby blanket out of some scraps of aran baby wool I had leftover. I’m desperate for the room!

I sent off a load of stuff to Knit For Peace today and I still have the main box to go! I think I’ll do a few smaller things such as hats and maybe a cowl or two just to fill the box. There’s already a shawl, baby blanket, baby hats and cardigan as well as an adult hat.

I have the yarn for 2 summer vest tops and the patterns bought and ready to go.

The thing is, I have 5 tops, 2 blankets and a hat on the go already. I guess it’s never to late to start a project, but I want to knit woolly warm things now it’s autumn. And it’s getting cold so it’s definitely autumn now!

I have enough sock yarn for 6 pairs of socks!

I have DK yarn for a pink and cream jumper which I have yet to find the perfect pattern for.

I have some single balls of hand dyed yarn which need to be made up into something.

And lots of single cotton balls that I had an idea to make into lots of dishcloths.

So many ideas and not enough time, energy or money to do them all!

And then, after making a concentrated effort to get my stash down to a manageable amount…I saw the pattern below in a knitting magazine and I want to have a go at it.

Even though colour work makes me want to jump screaming out of a window…

The pattern is by Jenny Watson for West Yorkshire Spinners and was in the magazine Knit Now Issue 146, but I’ve seen it other places online. I bet if you googled WYS Festive blanket you could find it!

But seriously, look at those dark traditional colours.

I might have to quickly try and finish as many little projects as I can, so that I have a spare project bag or 2 for this!

But I really don’t need another blanket!

Ah such terrible decisions to be made, haha!


Christmas is nearly here, and I have a lot to do to get ready for it this year.

There’s the blanket above I want to make and a pair of festive socks too.

I would love to make a Christmas jumper, but I just don’t think I’ll have the time this year.

A few years back I made a load of decorations, so at least that’s one thing done…although I might make a few more baubles as they’re pretty quick to make.

And a Santa hat, too, maybe?

I’m working on a crocheted chunky Halloween blanket right now, but I think I might keep that one for myself.

Anyhoo, that’s a lil catch up. It’s late and I’m tired and I want to go lie on the bed and read a book.


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Green Tunic Progress

I am knitting my third ever jumper, and this one is bottom up in the round…sort of!

It’s a pattern from a magazine called Let’s Knit (issue 180 Feb 2022) and it’s by Susie Johns on page 22.

But it’s a funny construction, to me anyway, in that you knit the front and back very bottom part seperately and then join in the round to work the body, THEN separate again to do the front and back yoke parts back and forth.

And that is where I’m struggling with it.

My tension has dramatically changed from working back and forth on 4mm needles to working in the round on 4mm needles. So, I bought some 4.5mm needles in the round and I’ve gone up a half size…but I need to do a few more rounds before I can tell whether it’s working or not.

Other than that, I’m not sure what to do, as the difference in tension is HUGE!

Can you see at the top on the picture below how it has changed? Argh! So frustrating!

The colour is more like a mix between the 2 pics above, why does the camera always struggle to get a perfect likeness?!

It’s DK and quite nice to work with. It’s Highland Heathers DK by Stylecraft in the shade 7228 lichen. You can get it here from The Knitting Network if you want to have a look.

I really like pattern itself. it isn’t difficult, it’s just the tension I’m having trouble with.

This is what it’s supposed to look like below:

But I have to say, my magazine is now a lot tattier than when this pic was taken!!

I’ll keep chugging away at it, I desperately want it off my needles so I can think about autumn/ winter knits!


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I Tried Plastic Free July

I don’t know when Plastic Free July became a thing – until this year, I’d certainly never heard of it before.

But I thought it was something I could have a go at. Usually I don’t jump on bandwagons…I like to watch them roll by! The thing is, I thought this was doable for one main reason…work!

I could pack my own lunchbox for work!!

So, what did I do?

I bought myself a glass water bottle from Wilkos for a measly £2.50 and it has worked perfectly as my workplace has a staff canteen where I can refill it with either water or squash.

I also bought myself a glass pyrex lunchbox and some metal reusable cutlery.

There is only one problem with all of the above and that is the very obvious ‘But Sarah, they’re made of glass!‘. Yes, yes they are! I proved I had the reflexes of a cat ninja the other day when my glass water bottle fell out of my locker.

Overall though, the plastic free lunches worked quite well. I still had the odd bottle of Coca Cola or Fanta…it’s a heatwave kind of summer you know? So, there were a few plastic items that slipped in.

The thing I did really well was that I started recycling MORE of my plastic last month. I didn’t realise my local supermarket took in soft plastics to recycle, so on the way to work lately I’ve been dropping off a plastic bag full of soft plastics to recycle. Soft plastics such as bread wrapping, food packaging, food bags etc.

I’ve used my local greengrocers more and opted for paper bags over plastic ones.

And as always I’ve brought my own shopping bags with me (such as the one below I designed myself for my Zazzle store).

tote bag woolly orbit zazzle

So, my ‘plastic free’ July was mostly focussed on food and shopping. I didn’t go completely free as it just wasn’t possible for me then. I got sick in July and something else cropped up and I had to just focus on a couple of things.

But I still class it as a success though as I got into the habit of thinking about plastic and I actually made a start!

What’s next?

I guess there’s always health and beauty products, but honestly, I’m not ready to completely change my period products just yet!

I do have some ideas for other things though; a selection of either sewn or knitted facecloths or pads, buying shampoo bars instead of bottles, hard soaps instead of in bottles etc.

And there’s always cleaning products for the home. I’m experimenting in finding the right dishcloth pattern with cotton yarn. I find cotton quite hard to knit with, so I’m still looking for the ‘perfect’ pattern.

Such as the ones below from a couple of months ago.

I did buy more cotton yarn in different colours, so I might have a go and see what I can make.

I quite like the colours and the texture of the yarn of James C. Brett’s It’s 100% Pure Cotton DK range. Another cotton yarn by James C. Brett which I’ve used in the past is Craft Cotton which is good for cotton dishcloths. You can get it from The Knitting Network here. It’s also quite cheap for a 100g ball in my opinion!

I quite like The Knitting Network as they don’t use any plastic in their packaging. I’ve ordered from them before and can recommend them!

I’m glad I tried Plastic Free July, even if I still bought and used some forms of plastic. It just goes to show how widespread it is in our lives. It’s also given me a bit of a push to look at how much plastic I’m using in other areas of my life, such as crafting and hobbies.

But more to come on that in another post!

For now, I’m going to continue using my glass bottle and just pray I don’t drop it!


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Crochet Blanket Finished

I haven’t done much crafting in the past few weeks. I’ve been busy doing other things!

But, I finally managed to get something off my hook. It was the easiest pattern I had on the go as I didn’t need to look at a pattern, being only a simple Granny Square Blanket. I didn’t have to think about what I was doing, I just carried on crocheting!

I used up spare yarn, 1 x blue ball and 2 x pink balls of STYLECRAFT SPECIAL DK, which you can get here from The Knitting Network, if you’re so inclined. I used 2 x 1435 Bright Pink and I can’t remember the blue colour (but it was a nice bright, almost neon shade).

It’s not huge and I still have a bit of each colour left, I just didn’t think there was enough to go another round in each colour!

So, those scraps have now been added to my scraps bag and I’m almost at the point where I’ll have enough DK weight yarn to make a blanket completely out of scraps. Yay!

Not sure what to do with this one, maybe I’ll donate it again to Knit For Peace or a similar charity once I have a few to go in a box together.

The colours look all blown out with the lighting, but they are actually quite bright in real life.

I agree, it’s not very big! But it can be a pram blanket or even a doll’s blanket!

I can’t help thinking how gorgeous this would look as a cushion…maybe I’ll have to look into that!

Hope you’re having a crafty weekend x


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Try Dying Your Fabric With Ice For Cool Effects

My friend Lizzie bought me an ice dying kit for Christmas (thank you!) and I’ve only just now found the time to have a go.

The results are pretty cool if I do say so myself!

I’d never heard of ice dying until she bought me the kit but basically you place ice cubes onto a piece of fabric, sprinkle over powdered fabric dye and as the ice melts it makes some really funky patterns depending on whether you scrunch up the fabric beforehand.

I think it’s supposed to give a kind of tie-dye effect.

I placed my fabric on a baking rack over a baking tray (I didn’t have a bowl or bucket wide enough for the fat quarter so I used a tray).

I also folded my fabric into 4 quarters and laid it flat.

Once the ice had melted I realised that on the bottom the baking rack had made a striped pattern which was quite interesting! All 4 quarters had different patterns, I’m just waiting for it all to dry before I decide what to do with it.

So, if you want to have a go at something different and easy to (you could do this with kids it’s so easy!) then this is definitely an option!

C2C Crochet Cowl

Look at that title for some awesome alliteration!

I started this on Sunday 10 April and had it finished the day after.

It helps when you use chunky yarn and a large hook of course, though!

The yarn is Marble Chunky by James C. Brett in MC9.

It comes in 200g balls and is 100%acrylic

You can get the yarn here from The Knitting Network. It comes in so many beautiful shades, I’ve used the red/ pink and the dark purple colours before. And there used to be a really dark brown one that they stopped doing that I loved. So much yarn goodness to choose from!

I’ve always loved the Marble Chunky range, for years and years it’s been one of my favourites and it’s only in the last month or so that I bought some more of it as it was on sale in my local yarn store (£2 instead of £6…come on I just HAD to buy 3 balls of it!).

This cowl is just for me. I have one and a half balls of it leftover so I’m not sure what to do with it…maybe a matching hat? Hmmm….one to ponder!

I figured out how to make a square pattern into a rectangular one as I went along and I really love how the colours have striped up. I think you’d miss the stripes if you made a blanket or something much larger than this.

I’m really pleased to have a finished object to show (even though it wasn’t on any of my crafty to-do lists) and that I completed it the second week after surgery so it means I’m feeling better if I can craft something super quick!

Hope you all had a great weekend and managed to get lots of crafting done! 🙂


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Q1 Makes and Creations

I don’t normally measure my life or crafting life in quarters…but why not for the sake of keeping count?!

What have I made or done so far in January, February and March 2022? Let’s take a look and see!

Knitting

I have cast on a LOT of things, but don’t have many finished objects yet. Here is what I actually managed to finish:-

  • I made a baby hat using up neon yarn I had spare from previous projects and donated it to charity (no pic)
  • Not finished, but I’ve done a few more rows on my sock yarn shawl. It’s taking ages coz it’s 4-ply!
  • Again, not finished, but I’ve done some more of my lone sock!

What have I cast on this year so far?

  • Grey fisherman’s rib tunic
  • Chunky grey cabled sweater
  • Green tunic top
  • Pink cowl

Crochet

I’ve been loving getting back into crochet, which sort of got put on the back burner for the last few years apart from the odd granny square or two.

Finished objects include:-

  • Pink and purple granny square blanket
  • Baby blanket in yellows and greens
  • Orange baby blanket
  • Pumpkin colours granny square blanket
  • Blue and green blanket for a friend (C2C)
  • Cowl for me using up neon yarn

And I’ve also cast on a few projects here too…

  • Crochet top
  • Pink and blue granny square blanket to use up scraps
  • C2C cowl with brown James C. Brett yarn


The thing with both knitting and crochet this year, is that instead of just looking at patterns, I’ve also been buying them!

A v-neck sweater by Petite Knits.

A few patterns by Jennifer Steingass on Ravelry. I decided that her Dreyma sweater was going to be my ‘Fair Isle’ top down sweater that I wanted to use my natural aran weight undyed wool for. So, once I have a top or two out of the way, this will get cast on pretty quick!

And I’ve noticed on every single knitting podcast that I come across on Youtube they mention the Ranunculus sweater. I looked at it and I looked some more and eventually I left it at just looking. But if the pattern comes in different weight options…well, Aran weight is my favourite and I might have to try it as a thicker version (instead of the thinner lacier version).

Not that I have to follow other people’s trends…but I can totally see why people do more than one option.


Sewing

Nope!

LOL…so many plans and so little motivation to set up all the million pieces I seem to need to just sew a bag or two! I just haven’t been bothered is the short answer here.

But I’m sure, like Austin Powers, I’ll get my mojo back somehow!


Books

I’ve not been as prolific this year with reading as with other years, but I’ve managed a book or two.

What have I read so far?

  • The Gods Themselves by Isaac Asimov
  • Happy by Fearne Cotton
  • Make It Happen by Jordanna Levin

I’m in the middle of Walden by Henry David Thoreau and Bird By Bird by Anne Lamott.

On my to read list are:

  • On Writing Well by William Zinsnerr
  • The Stars, Like Dust by Isaac Asimov
  • The Testaments by Margaret Atwood

As you can see, not an exhaustive list. And I’ve been saving On Writing Well for when I feel like I have more mental headspace to process it. I’ve been so tired in the last few months that I’ve just left things to one side if I can’t find the will to tackle it head on. It seems like one of those books you have to process and make notes on! Or at the very least highlight some passages!

As for Walden…the idea of someone just leaving modern life behind and upping sticks to live in a cabin you built in the woods for a year or two is incredibly modern and almost ‘hippyish’. Is that the word? It’s alternative and whilst most people nowadays wouldn’t bat an eyelid at someone trying something like that, I’m pretty sure they would have in the 1800’s which is when it was written.

I just find it fascinating that people would choose the ‘oddball life’ in the 1800’s as they would now!!


Miscellaneous

I haven’t really done much else to be honest. I haven’t done much baking and the other odd bits on ly lists still to do are, well, still to do!

Like my leather handbag which needs finishing or the ice dying fabric kit that a friend got me for Christmas…I just haven’t had the time!

I also haven’t written much on Medium, which is a shame because I love it over there.

As for print on demand?

I made a couple of alphabets and a few other tiny designs, I’m around 250 designs on RedBubble now. That’s going well. People in Australia seem to like a particular cushion design of mine, I sold a couple whilst I was off work last week.

Here’s my shop if you’re nosy!

And I’m wanting to get back to that quite soon. It’s spurred me on to get to 300 designs!!

This is what people have been loving lately! It’s such a simple design too…

I want to do more crafty designs for knitting and crochet. Just simple ones. I am not a graphic designer after all and it probably shows!

I’d like to do more along these lines:

There’s a few other things regarding online creations and ideas but for now I’ll leave it there otherwise this post will be hours long to read!


Q1 could be summed up with the fact that I’ve suddenly started casting on like crazy and wanting to get back into things that have been put aside for a while over winter.

Spring is here along with the brighter days and I want to get stuck into things.

My goals for the next quarter is to finish one of 4 tops I have on the go with my knitting and crochet before I cast on another (yeah, we’ll see how that goes!) and to try to finish that damned knitted sock! 🙂

We’ll see. No rush or pressure for anything though…

Green Knitted Tunic Progress

I’ve actually done some knitting on my top!

I know, I know, you were worrying about it only being cast on and no stitches done for quite a while now, but rest assured, you can breathe easy now! I’ve actually done some more on it!

I finished the moss stitch border at the bottom and am now on the main pattern part, which aside from the moss stitch sides is all stocking stitch on 4mm needles so is going a lot faster.

I wasn’t in the mood for much knitting or anything at all last week, all things considered (I spent the time recuperating after surgery) but this week I feel awake and much more mobile so I’ve been working away at the green top and even started a new crochet project!

But I’ll show that in another post. For now, here is what I have so far and a pic of what it is supposed to look like when finished…

Yes, it’s not a huge amount done, but it’s something! And there is absolutely no rush for it to get finished.

I’m finding that after a good six months of hardly any projects on the go at the same time, I’m really liking casting on a lot of things at once!

I could never be a truly monogamous knitter. I guess it’s shiny new object syndrome!

C2C Blanket

You know when you have a list a mile long of WIPs to finish but something else comes along that just HAVE to start working on immediately? This is one of those times!

I met up with a friend a couple of Saturdays ago and went to York for the day which was nice to catch up as I haven’t seen her for ages.

I made her a lap blanket years ago which I always thought was a little on the small side but she says it’s the perfect size to put on her lap whilst watching TV. Well that got me thinking…

And now I started a larger C2C (Corner To Corner) blanket for her in chunky yarn.

I’m on the decreases now (when you crochet a C2C blanket you basically make a triangle to the length and width you want the finished size to be and then decrease to make a square if that makes any sense?!). So, I have about 2/3 of a gorgeous chunky blanket done!

This project just pushed its way in front of all the others on my hooks and needles!

It’s not massive or a large bed blanket by any means, but I’m confident that it’s a lot bigger than the first one I made years ago. Also that other old blanket was a plain old granny square and this one looks a little bit more complicated if I do say so myself, so it even looks like my skills have grown!

It’s James C. Brett Marble Chunky yarn which is one of my all time favourite yarns! And the colours look more varied and richer in real life…they look quite cool colours on the photos.

[Edit: I managed to finish it completely and send it off last week so it’s all good. Of course, I forgot to take a photo…but you get the idea of how it looked from the pics below!]

March Goals

It’s funny that my last post was almost a month ago…so much for posting every day in February!

But, you know what? Life got busy and I had a lot of hours at work last month and when you get in late at night, you just don’t feel like blogging…or doing much else at all!

But, this week I’m off and I’m back to writing and blogging with a vengeance, so what better at the start of a new month to set some goals? I love reading other people’s goals posts, yes, I’m sad like that!

So, what do I want to achieve with my crafting first of all, and then what do I want to get done with life and everything else?

I’m saying goals for March, but let’s face it, some of these will probably roll over into April or even May!


Crafting Goals

Sewing

  • Do something with denim fabric I got for Christmas – maybe a bag?
  • Find a skirt or top pattern for the dark denim I bought myself a few weeks ago.
  • Use up old wool fabric for a draught excluder (the front door is VERY chilly!).
  • Use up old fat quarters and zips and make some zipper bags.
  • Go through all my sewing patterns and get rid of the ones I am realistically never going to use!

Knitting

  • Work more on my grey top in Fisherman’s Rib. I’ve done a few inches on the front but I’ve put it aside for a few weeks as I’ve been working so much!
  • Try and finish a sock that I cast on a while back, literally only a few cm done on the top cuff rib at the moment.
  • I cast on a green sweater a few weeks ago and haven’t touched it since, so, try and do the rib at the bottom as it’s on quite small needles so might take a while.
  • Sock yarn shawl – just do a few rows, it’s getting long to finish a row now.
  • Measure and design a top down sweater with aran natural fibre I got for Christmas. Or just find the right pattern!

Crochet

  • Finish pink and purple granny square blanket. Not much yarn left, so just finish what I have for a few more rows and then see what size it is!
  • Do some more on my bright pink and blue granny square blanket, not much done so far.
  • Finish top piece of my crochet top. I’m crocheting the front, which has the sleeves and yoke bit all in one if that makes sense? So, it’s taking a little while to do a single row, but it’s looking good so far!
  • Make a hat with scrap yarn.

Miscellaneous

  • Ice dying kit to do with fabric.
  • Leather handbag to pick up and sew together with saddle stitch. All the pieces are dyed and ready to go.
  • Get back into baking bread again, haven’t done any in AGES!

Work/ Life Goals

  • Schedule a week’s worth of posts in advance for this blog and on Medium. I’ve neglected both a little bit recently.
  • Get up to 500 designs on RedBubble by the end of March (I’m about halfway there already).
  • Get up to 50 designs on Society 6, oh what a pain it is to upload on that site!
  • Launch my 2 other blogs I have waiting in the wings…just how am I going to find the time to write so much content?!
  • Do more with Pinterest.
  • Publish my book which is about 2/3 done, most of the printables are done I just need to do the actual writing, like the introduction and conclusion etc.
  • Launch/ ope my Etsy store with printables to download and print yourself at home.

  • See more of my home county! I feel like there are lots of places in Yorkshire that I haven’t been to even though I’ve lived here for years!
  • Do more Yoga – either DVDs or from Youtube.
  • Do something physical, either cycling, or go to the gym. The ‘worry’ about going to the gym is starting to ease a bit now the pandemic is lessening (is that the word?).
  • Finish all the books on my shelf. Only 5 to read and I’m halfway through one.

What I really want to do this year is use stuff up.

Read all my books and either donate or sort out somehow those that I’m not likely to read again etc.

Use up my wool and fabric stashes before buying any more of either. There is literally NO ROOM for any more!

Just make some space and get rid of the old things that are taking up space and that I’m fed up of!

I’m making headway on that already. I’ve already made a bright neon cowl that I started to crochet on my lunch break at work and finished at home the next day. I just have a tiny bit of neon wool left now and I’m not sure what to do with that. I’d love to crochet a pair of wrist warmers but I don’t think there’s enough yarn left!

Anyway, that’s my rough goals for March. It’s a lot, but it’s all doable as long as I plan my time carefully and get motivated!

What are your plans for this month?

Aside from relaxing and taking time for yourself of course!

The grey fisherman’s rib sweater progress below as well as books I’m reading now, a crochet blanket I’m nearly finished and my sock yarn shawl progress!

Ah, the colours look so good on this scrap yarn pink and purple crochet blanket!

Happy 1 Year Blogiversary!

It’s been exactly a year since I started this little blog as an outlet for my writing and sharing my crafty exploits.

I’m still enjoying it, even though I haven’t been posting as much in the last few months or so. I started a new job a few weeks before Christmas, so things got a bit hectic for a while back there…but I think I’m finally getting back to normality with blogging, writing and publishing and all that.

I’ve been writing on Medium and uploading a lot recently to my print on demand shops recently too, which also takes time away from this blog.

The First Year

I published 159 posts in 2021.

Surprisingly January and February were my best months for views!

I mainly focussed on showing what I had knitted, crocheted or sewn last year. But there were a few posts about writing, life and other creative outlets such as designing for print on demand.

Last year was the year when I joined everything!

Medium, RedBubble, Society6, Spoonflower etc. As well as getting to grips with all the software you need to use them, like Photoshop and Canva.

RedBubble has the process sorted, but it takes me a little longer to upload to Society6! Nevertheless, I hope to carry on more with both of these print on demand sites and more this year.

Medium has gone brilliantly! It’s a different style of writing over there. More self-help and actual articles, along with some shortform pieces. You can write about different topics or niche down, it’s up to you. I tend to write about writing, print on demand, making money online and honestly, whatever other crap pops into my head. And it works…last month in January 2022 I meant to post more but just haven’t had the time with work. And it still made me money with literally NO POSTS PUBLISHED!

So, the other online things are going well as well as this little blog.

If you think about it, this little blog started it all! Small beginnings…


Below is a gallery of some of the crafty makes I completed last year in the first year of this blog.

And that isn’t even half of it!

I made my first 2 knitted jumpers, my first sewn skirt, my first backpack, my first wreath…a lot of firsts last year!

It’s been fun and full on!

Since I’ve been away for a few months from the blog, I thought I’d try and post something everyday in February. So far so good! No constraints or challenges, just a post every single day. To, you know, get back into the swing of things!

Hope you’re all having a lovely day! x

Crochet Baby Blanket- Finished Object

This is my first finished piece of the year. And it’s just a simple Granny Square blanket!

I was trying to use up some spare baby wool I had lying about and I used 2 colours of the same type of yarn. You can’t really tell though as it’s all variegated. It looks alright, if I do say so myself!

But everyone I know who has a baby has already received a blanket from me! So, this one is going to charity I think.

I started it and did most of it (until it got too big) at work on my break! So, I feel like I’ve done something productive in otherwise wasted hours…I know, I know, it’s not all about the productivity, but this was something to keep me sat at the table and feel like I was doing something, rather than just scrolling on my phone all the time!

Anyway…here it is draped over my desk chair!

I used a 4mm hook and maybe 5 1/2 balls of wool? I can’t remember the exact amount but it was about that and I lobe how it turned out!

Now, I just need to find a local baby donation centre to give it to, but I think I’m going to hold on to it a while and make a few other things with spare yarn too!

It’s been living in my knitting projects bag for the last few weeks (oh the irony-it’s not knitting, it’s crochet!) which incidentally you can get here in my Society 6 shop or the same design here in my RedBubble shop.

I think I might make a separate post about print on demand products I’ve designed and bought to do with crafting because there’s quite a few!

But that’s it for now, just a quick show and tell! Hope you’re all having a great weekend and getting lots of crafting done!


This post contains affiliate links, which means if you click on the link and make a purchase, I may receive a commission on that purchase with no extra cost to you.

2022 Knitting/ Crafting Goals

I thought I’d write my crafty goals for the year here.

To be honest, it’s mostly going to be knitting for now. Yes, there’ll be the odd crochet or sewing project too, but I have a little list of knitting projects to get out of the way first (or at the very least, started!).

Sock Yarn Shawl

This is an ongoing project with no particular urgency, but it’s the project I cast on before all of the others on this list, so it gets first place! It’s a 4ply yarn by West Yorkshire Spinners in a GORGEOUS colour way (you can get it here from The Knitting Network if you want it in your stash!).

It’s going to take a while to finish it, but there’s no rush!

Socks!

I have only ever knitted one sock. As in, ONE. Not a pair…but one!

I threw it away last year as it was all twisted and would never be worn!

Socks are my knitting nemesis. They take ages and they seem so slow to make any progress with at all. I’m a bit impatient!

So, this year, I’m going to focus on socks. I’ve cast on and knitted a couple of rows before Christmas, and then I put it aside. It’s time to pick it up again.

I just find DPNs so fiddly and no, I’m going to try any other methods like the magic loop anytime soon as I think it will be just the same amount of fiddliness!!

Fair Isle Top Down Sweater

I have the aran wool all ready for this. I have the book all ready to look at. I don’t have a pattern!

I’m going to have a go at designing one myself, which means I need to measure myself, design a Fair Isle Yoke motif (I’m thinking trees) and then write up the pattern itself for me to follow.

I’ve never designed a sweater before, I’ve only ever knitted 2 in my life in fact. Last year.

But, it’s a huge project I’m really looking forward to!

Miscellaneous Bits

I have wool for the following projects:

  • A soft grey hat
  • A neon cowl
  • A baby blanket from scraps
  • Aran wool for a tank top (sweater vest)
  • About 20 random single hanks/ balls of yarn that I have NO IDEA what to do with!

And I’m currently crocheting a scraps blanket which I’ll donate somewhere that accepts baby knitted items.

Sewing

  • Christmas fat quarters
  • Denim fabric – maybe a skirt or a bag?
  • Grey wool fabric into a draught excluder?
  • Fix a pair of shorts I made last year!

I also bought 3 metres of some striped fabric, with the intention of making either a dress or top. I’m thinking a t-shirt, which isn’t my first choice of garment for sewing…but it’s something I’ve never done before and will give me good practice with pattern matching. I could make it into a mix of t-shirt and dress by doing a long tunic type top.

We’ll see!

And finally, I’m going to finish a leather handbag I started last year…it’s all dyed red and green, it just needs to be sewn up. I’ll have to refresh saddle stitch, but it should be no problem once I get into it!

That just needs a big chunk of time to focus on it!

Well, that’s it. All my crafty projects for the year.

There is not a lot on here really, I feel like I finished a lot of the bigger projects last year so I’m almost starting with a clean slate this year. And that feels pretty good. 🙂


This post contains affiliate links. This means that if you click on a link and make a purchase, I may get a small commission of that purchase with no extra cost to yourself.

Little Catch Up

It’s been a while since I last posted on here.

Happy New Year to you all!

Hope you all had a wonderful Christmas and New Year and managed to get a lot of crafting in. I haven’t managed to get much crafting done at all lately.

Christmas kind of takes over everything, but I’ve also started a new job in the last month and since that was in retail…well, you can imagine how manic that got over December!

Honestly, I simply haven’t had the inclination to sit down and knit and it’s been kind of nice to step back away from the crafty side of things for a little while.


I’ve been doing some reading lately. With all the books I’ve been buying people I racked up 10 stamps at Waterstones which means a free book! I chose The Left-Handed Booksellers of London by Garth Nix.

It’s set in the early 80’s (in an alternate 80’s) and is about the coexistence of the Old World and the New. Our heroine Susan is caught up in an adventure after witnessing Merlin, who is a Left-handed fighting bookseller, kill a crime boss with a silver hatpin…

I really can’t explain it anymore than that! I enjoyed the book as a fiction read that wasn’t a science fiction book by Isaac Asimov (which feels like all I’ve read over the past 3 years!) and it was an interesting concept.

The writing style was almost a little too simplistic. And the heroine was mostly swept up in things rather than participating in a lot of it. I guess it felt more reactive than active until the very end.

Some things could have been explained or detailed a bit more. And the relationship between Merlin and Susan could have been expanded upon.

But overall, a good read.

I wouldn’t be surprised if they turned this into a film…

I’m currently reading Bird by Bird by Anne Lamott...it’s about the art of writing. Some writing and life advice. It was going OK, until she started mentioning God every 3 pages and made a comment about France losing the war! I can’t get that throwaway comment out of my mind and it’s coloured the whole book now, haha!

So, we’ll see if I can finish it!


I thought I’d show you some of the crafty bits and bobs I got for Christmas…

I got some fabric. Denim in dark blue and yellow/ gold. I’m thinking a bag or a skirt. Not sure yet!

You can just see the yellow and blue denim in the background below…I couldn’t get the other pics to upload, internet just went funny at the crucial moment!

I also got a set of gorgeous dark red Christmas fat quarters. The colours are a lot darker in real life. I’m saving them for next year as the desire to make ANYTHING festive has completely left me.

My brother bought me a wool winder and since I’ve treated myself to 3 new balls of wool today and all of them are in hanks and not balls…well, that’s going to come in useful!

And the wool I bought?

Some 100% British Wool by West Yorkshire Spinners (Jacob in Aran weight) on the right of the pic below. I bought 2 balls of that, thinking it would be good for a hat or as part of a Fair Isle yoke for a jumper I have in mind to start soon.

And I also bought just the one ball of Washted Malabrigo (684 Chameleon colour).

You can get that one here from Wool Warehouse if you like the look of it(the one on the left). It’s really squishy and soft!

And for Christmas I got some more wool by West Yorkshire Spinners in brown and cream colours for the jumper I just mentioned above…so I’m all ready to start measuring and designing my first ever top down jumper!

And these are natural fleece colours…no nasty chemicals or fixatives, just pure wool as it came off the sheep! So…an eco-friendly option!


And finally…

The next post will be looking at my 2022 crafting goals. And then, hopefully back to blogging with a vengeance in January and beyond.

Last year in February I did a 30 day blogging challenge and I’m thinking of doing that again this year. Last year was about crafting, not sure what the topic/ theme could be for this year. Maybe a specific craft like knitting or crochet?

I was almost thinking of sharing a small business or a pattern I’ve enjoyed every day…something like that? Not sure! What do you think?!


This post contains affiliate links. This means that if you click on a link and make a purchase, I may get a small commission of that purchase with no extra cost to yourself.


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