Tag Archives: granny blanket

Growing granny blanket

Standard

More than a year ago I came across a blanket my auntie had made for my cousin.

DSCN7644

It was made of knitted squares and backed with fleece.

DSCN7650

It was pretty weighty and hugely cosy. It’s kinda stayed in my mind since and I loved the idea of making a crochet version. In fact, I even had plans to turn a CAL blanket into something similar.

But the CAL blanket it still unfinished (along with so many other things!) and I obviously forgot about my original plans. But the idea for a chunky blanket stuck with me. So back in May last year I ordered some Stylecraft Chunky. As soon as it arrived I crocheted a very long chain and got to work on my granny stripe blanket. (I followed Lucy’s Granny Stripe tutorial to make sure that I didn’t end up with wonky edges!)

DSCN2435

Well, it got off to a good start and I fairly rapidly made my way through 3 or 4 balls of wool. But then I did my usual thing of putting it down and leaving it – for about 7 months!

DSCN2431

I only found it again as I was packing to move. Last weekend I went away with some friends and wanted something easy to take with me, something I could work on and still be sociable. The blanket seemed like the perfect option.

DSCN2425

So I ordered some more wool (I hadn’t ordered nearly enough the first time!) and have more than doubled the amount of rows in the last week.

DSCN2424

It’s going to take a while to finish. Each row takes about 15 minutes, so it’s not a quick project! But I’m hoping that my current momentum will last a while…

DSCN2429

…although I can sense the momentum will slow when I get to darning in the ends!

I’ll keep you updated 🙂

Today I have…

Standard

…enjoyed working on my chunky granny blanket.

DSCN2446

…unpacked two more boxes of books…

DSCN2465

(…but it’ll still be a while before the room is properly sorted out!)

DSCN2466

…found two friends hiding in boxes.

DSCN2451 DSCN2452

…enjoyed my favourite flowers in colourful vases.

DSCN2455

…curled up with a good book.

DSCN2462

What have you done today?

In the last 10 days…

Standard

… I have attended our annual carnival.

Because I grew up with this, I thought it was something that everyone did. As I got older I realised that not everyone had carnivals like we do! As a child I remember being bundled up in all my warmest clothes, walking into town early (to get a good space) then standing around freezing for what felt like forever. But it was all worth it when that first wonderful float came trundling towards us, dazzling us with hundreds of light bulbs and playing music so loud we could feel it through our feet.

I still love carnival time, although the wonder of it isn’t quite the same as when I was a child. But I still love wrapping up warm, finding a good spot with my friends and marvelling at the creativity of some of the ideas.

Some of the carnival clubs go for really energetic routines – it amazes me how they manage to keep going for the whole route. Others (like the one below) go for a still life. I always think they must get so cold just standing there in one position for so long!

There were five or six majorette groups this year. They had some amazing dances, but were impossible to get pictures of because they kept moving! Each group had a really wide age range, including some really tiny girls (they must have only been 3 or 4 years old) who mostly looked like they had no idea what was going on, but looking incredibly cute!

… I sent off a blanket to some friends.

This was a blanket I finished a few months ago. I started it after I found out my friend was pregnant, then added the pinky colours when I found out they were having a girl! Just a couple of weeks ago she gave birth to a super cute little girl, and I’m hoping it’s arrived in the post by now!

… I was given a thoughtful gift.

When my friend was on holiday in the summer she came across this cross stitch in a craft shop and bought it for me. Last week she remembered that she hadn’t given it to me! I haven’t done much cross stitch in years (with the exception of this Union Jack) so I was really excited when I saw what I’d been given. I’ve made a start on it already, but as I’ve only done cream stitches on a white background there’s not much to see yet!

… I have nearly finished a blanket.

Although this looks very similar to the baby blanket (and in fact the colours were based on some of those in the baby blanket) I assure you that it is a different one. This is the one my friend asked me to make for her Nan for Christmas. I only have 2 more rounds to go, not including the border, so the end is in sight – hurrah!

By the way, I haven’t yet decided what sort of border to do on this blanket, so if anyone has any suggestions I’d love to hear from you!

Catching up

Standard

Autumn has definately arrived here in the UK. The days are feeling much colder and I have spent every day this week with a scarf firmly wrapped around my neck. I’m quite an odd person as I really don’t like being too cold, but I love autumn! It’s my favourite season – I love watching the trees change to glorious reds and yellows, I love the golden glow of the morning sun, and I love getting wrapped up in scarves and gloves. My favourite days of all are those when it’s really cold, but when the sun is brightly lighting up all the wonderful colours of the trees. 

The lakeside Pantheon at the National Trust’s Stourhead House near Warminster.

Of course, we’re not quite at that stage yet (and knowing what our crazy weather is like, we may yet have another mini summer before we enter the full glory of autumn) but I’m looking forward to crunching through fallen leaves and getting wafts of sweet, smoky air as the neighbours light their fires.

Autumn also makes me want to knit. I sort of dabble all year round (although this year my focus has mainly been on crochet) but the colder months seem much more suited to knitting than when it’s warmer. As I seem to have so little time in the evenings to just sit and be creative I’ve come up with another solution – I’ve taken my knitting to school! I usually spend the first part of my lunch break in the classroom, tidying up from the morning, getting ahead with some marking or setting up for the afternoon. But I try to make sure I have at least half an hour in the staff room, and after I’ve eaten lunch I normally have at least 10-15 mins of just chatting before the bell goes. So that chatting time has now become knitting time. I’m only making a scarf, so I don’t really need to concentrate, meaning that I can still be sociable. But it’s a lovely relaxing end to the lunch hour before doing battle with an art or science lesson.

Photo: Had such a fab evening learning to crochet! Laura Dimon and Emma Higgs what great teachers u guys r! Thank u so much, am well proud of my coaster... That may be going to grow into a hat, or a bag, or a purse, or a table mat... Ah just endless possibilities = one WAAAY too excited Helen!! Lol!! <3

Helen’s first ever crochet circle – so much better than my first circle was!

I’ve also taken Debbi’s advice (see her comment here) and set aside Tuesday evenings as my craft time. This week that involved teaching a crochet class! That actually makes it sound grander than it was – a few friends and friends of friends gathered together and I attempted to show them how to get started on crochet. I was expecting it to be really stressful (I’ve only ever tried to teach crochet to one person at a time before, not a whole group) but thanks to my friend Emma (who’s far more professional than I am!) who lent a helping hand, it was a really fun evening.

Helen’s second circle – she started this at home with no help from anyone. What a star pupil!

One thing Emma and I both learnt was that there is often more than one way of doing something in crochet. Pretty much everything I do one way, she does another way! We tried to make it as simple as possible for people, so hopefully they weren’t too confused! I saw one of our ‘students’ yesterady – she came bounding up to me asking when the next crochet evening would be! This is someone who claims she doesn’t have a crafty bone in her body, so I was so excited that she’d enjoyed it enough to want to do it again. And she’s been practising at home too!

As well as teaching others, I’ve also managed to add a few more rounds to the granny blanket I’m making for a friend (she’s going to give it to her Nan for Christmas).

I’ve also enjoyed flicking through a couple of mags – I’m already getting very excited about all the Christmas stuff and am planning out some projects. I think that realistically I won’t have time to make them all, but I can dream!

And finally – I was recently nominated for a couple of awards. Rainbow Junkie passed on the beautiful blogger award

…and the wonderful team member readership award!

Thank you so much for your generosity in nominating me for two awards! I really feel like I don’t deserve them as I’m hardly posting anything these days, but thanks for your encouragement! I’m not going to pass them on at the moment, but may do at some point in the future.

Now I’m off to catch up on some blog reading – I have about 120 new blogs sitting in my inbox demanding my attention! Enjoy your evening, and I’ll maybe see you in another couple of weeks 🙂

Spoke too soon?

Standard

When I said I was back, I thought I meant it. I fully intended to start my regular posts again. But perhpas I shouldn’t have said that before I went back to school. I forgot quite how much time it takes out of my week! I spend most of my day at school, get home in the evening and have dinner, then get on with any planning for the following day before collapsing into bed as early as possible.

So I haven’t had much time for anything fun and crafty the last couple of weeks. I’ve added about 2 rounds to a granny blanket I’m working on, and that’s about it!

Hopefully once things settle down a bit I’ll be able to show you some pretty things again, but who knows how long that will take! So please bear with me – I’ll be back with you as soon as I can 🙂