Wednesday, 29 October 2014

An Ally Pally Adventure . . . (and a giveaway)

 Firstly, thank you for your kind get well wishes - I'm happily feeling way better than I did last week, with just the pesky sniffles lingering on.  
 And then, a hearty welcome to my new followers, I hope you enjoy joining in on my crafty adventures here. Do leave me a little comment if you like so I can say hello properly  :-)

So, what seems like ages ago now (in reality it was just earlier this month, but with lots of other stuff inbetween),  I spent a couple of days at the beautiful Alexandra Palace in London at The Knitting & Stitching Show,  with the rest of the lovely Sew Me Something gals.

the beautiful Rose Window at Ally Pally

Ably assisted by The Bearded One, Jules' kind &  helpful other half, we loaded up the van and departing Stratford upon Avon, headed south to the capital.

it WILL all fit . . .

see . . . I told you so  ; - )

Next on the agenda was to turn this:


 . . . into this :

Then over the course of the show, we took turns on the stand meeting lots of lovely fellow crafty peeps and showcasing the new Sew Me Something patterns,  

at all times watched over by our mascot, William The Bard himself . . .

Regular readers here will know that I'm a big fan of Jules' designs and at last count I have already made six of The Kate Dress in various forms and two Viola reversible skirts, so I couldn't wait to try my hand at the new patterns too.   So far I've made two of the lovely cowl neck Peaseblossom t-shirts - and I think the Rosalind Pyjamas would be just perfect for those wintery PJ days at home, don't you?  

Anyway,  so the good news is that lovely Jules, the designer extrordinaire  has kindly let me have one of these fab new patterns to give away to one of you lovelies.  Yay : - )

The lucky winner will get to choose between the stylish Portia Trousers, the comfy Peaseblossom T-shirt or the pretty Rosalind Pyjamas - please do pop over here to read all about them from Jules herself, and see some more lovely pics.  

So, if you'd like your name to go in the hat, all you have to do is be a follower here (either via GFC or Bloglovin' or email) and leave me a little comment below, ensuring that I have a way to contact you if you win.  (This is especially important for all the "no-reply" bloggers out there.)

The giveaway will close at midnight (GMT) next Wednesday,  5th November 2014 ,and I'll draw and announce the lucky winner asap thereafter.  Good luck . . .

'til next time,
be happy

Oh, and ps.  Sew Me Something will be at the Knitting & Stitching Harrogate show on 20-23 November too, so if you're going along too, do pop by.

Thursday, 23 October 2014

The holiday project . . .

Things were a bit busy around here with just one day in between getting home from The Knitting & Stitching show in London, and getting on a plane heading for Venice, but being a fairly seasoned traveller, I knew it wouldn't take me long to get the suitcases sorted.    What I hadn't thought about however, was what to take along as my holiday project.  Now, I don't know about you, but in my world, a holiday crafty project is de riguer .  Like other travellers and their American Express cards, I just don't leave home without it. 

So what's a gal to do ?
A quick rifle through my yarn basket revealed several half-done WIPs . . .

The pretty lacy Louisa Harding Noema poncho ?  Nope - the lacy pattern in the round requires too much concentration.  Not suitable for picking up & putting down at short notice.

The latest addition to Edward's Menagerie, Bridget the sweet elephant ?  Nope again - despite being an easy one, the various elephant body parts require to be stuffed as you go along, and taking a bag of toy stuffing with me on holiday didn't seem like an option.

The Wingspan shawl pattern & yarn that a lovely friend gave me for my birthday ?  Another one that will require a bit of attention, so it's a no for now too.

How about the yummy Plump yarn & scarf pattern from Mrs Moon that I bought when we were in London in the summer, and have been dying to get stuck into?  Another nope - just way too chunky & bulky (albeit delicious) to stuff into my bag.

Or something warm & wintery made up in the chunky Debbie Bliss Roma yarn that was on sale at Tangled Yarn, way too much of a bargain not to buy and add to my stash for a rainy day ?

Sigh . . . some inspiration was needed . . .

Why, oh why had I not thought of this earlier ?
And then, in the ultimate ta-dah moment, it came to me . . . the perfect holiday yarny project . . . a simple stripy buggy blankie for the latest little addition to our clan, born a wee bit ahead of schedule, just days before.  So with pattern in hand and postcode in SatNav, I headed out to nearby Bournville (yes, not only famous for its chocolate &  home to Cadbury World, but also the location of the lovely City Knits yarn shop that I'd been meaning to visit for ages.  The lovely, friendly ladies were very patient as I humm-ed & haa-ed over all the pretty colours, eventually deciding on the Debbie Bliss Rialto yarn, which would go nicely-thank-you with the Rooster Almerino already in my stash.

So, that was that.  Phew . . .

It's a great easy pattern from Nicki Trench's book " Crocheted Baby Clothes" -  I do so love her books which are always full of fabulous project ideas.

Needless to say, we had a lovely holiday with just perfect weather and smooth sailing so I didn't really get as much crochet done as I'd anticipated, but I made a good start and hopefully I'll get it finished soon. 
And then I really must tackle the rest of those above-mentioned WIPs too  ; - )

And as I'm linking up today with Ginny's Yarn Along over at Small Things, I should tell you my latest reads too:  The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion and Good Morning, Mr Mandela by Zelda la Grange - both of which I thoroughly enjoyed and highly recommend.

Do pop over and have a wee peek at what everyone else is making & reading too.  I'm laid low this week with a sore throat, snuffly cold & a very croaky voice, so I'm off back to snuggle under the blankie on the sofa & have some yummy hot chicken soup for lunch. But it's good to be back, and I'm looking forward to catching up with you soon.

'til next time,

Friday, 10 October 2014

Another wee break . . .

Back from London, just long enough to unpack & re-pack my suitcase as it's holiday
 time here again . . . 
yes, the Big Birthday celebrations continue  : - )
This time we're off on a cruise with my lovely family - can't wait . . .

So see you all in a week or so, and I'll look forward to catching up again.

'til next time,

ps.  Had a fab time at The Knitting & Stitching Show at the beautiful Ally Pally - and I promise to tell you all about that when I get back too.

Karen, Jules & moi

Sunday, 5 October 2014

This week & next . . .

 Thanks sooo much again for all your kind and lovely birthday wishes.  I fully intended to spend some time this past week catching up, but time seemed to just fly by and here we are at Sunday again.  The new week ahead promises to be a busy one too - but more about that in a moment.

So, besides the happy continuation of Big Birthday celebrations, I have also squeezed in
 a little bit of sewing . . .

a spot of crochet,  and some knitting.

But if truth be told, it's mostly been about the birthday : - )
(I did warn you that I was planning to stretch it out for as long as possible . . . )

So on to the week ahead . . .

I'm heading down to London this week for The Knitting & Stitching Show at Alexandra Palace with my lovely colleagues at Sew Me Something.   We'll be at Stand F21 so if you're planning a wee outing to the show (I'll be there on Tuesday setting up and all day on Wednesday), do pop by and say hello.  Oooh, and the three new hot-off-the-press Sew Me Something patterns will be launched at the show too, so all you local knitting & stitching peeps out there - it would be so lovely to see you.

Right, I'm off to pack my bag . . .

Have a happy new week,
'til next time

Friday, 26 September 2014

Ooh -la-la . . .

This "big birthday" malarkey is oh-so-much fun . . . Just how long can I spin it out for, do you think ?

We started the celebrations two weeks ago with a gathering of lovely friends and family for a yummy soiree & dinner at one of my favourite restaurants, then flitted off to the Cote d'Azur for a few days (an awesome birthday gift from my lovely sis) exploring & savouring the delights of Nice, Monte Carlo, Cannes & Antibes with one of my BFFs & her hubby who flew in from South Africa to celebrate their "big birthdays" too.

We wined, we dined, we walked, we talked, we shopped, and there may or may not have been quite a lot of ice-cream too . . .

It was sad to say goodbye again, but just so special to spend this memorable time together.

Then the celebrations continued this week beginning with my actual birthday . . . cake, lunch with lovely friends & tea with another, both of which called for more cake . . . and that leads us nicely into this weekend and the celebration of the Hubby's birthday : - )  Not a "big" one for him, but equally as special.

Thanks for all the lovely birthday wishes, lovelies - I am very blessed.

There hasn't been much time for any making in between, and I'm way behind on blog reading but normal service will resume soon and I hope all's well with you. 

So, 'til next time . . .

Wednesday, 17 September 2014

Back soon . . .

Just popping across to la belle France for a few days - all part of my BIG (eeek. . . ) Birthday celebrations (merci beaucoup, lovely sis).  

So chat amongst yourselves, keep the home fires burning, and I'll be back soon
 to catch up  : - )

A bientot mes amis,

oh, and ps.  to my lovely fellow bloggy friends and family in bonnie Scotland - please vote wisely tomorrow.
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