Sunday, January 31, 2010

Check out this beauty!

I was hoping I could show this off in a finished nursery, but that's going much slower than I'd like (too much napping and other obstacles...). So this weekend I took a few photos because I was eager to share this stunning, and very generous, gift from Bea:

Bobbin' for Hourglasses Quilt:

Bea had posted about this lovely quilt on her blog a little while ago and I found myself drooling over the pics - it is gorgeous, fun, and makes me happy just looking at all those bright colours. (The back is very pretty too - go check Bea's blog for better pictures).

I couldn't believe my eyes when only a week or so later she offered it up in a blog contest. WHAT? Give that stunner away? So of course I entered, kept everything crossed and hoped for the very best.

Seems my luck was in! I still shake my head in disbelief. It couldn't be more perfect for the nursery. And I love to think how it will become a treasured keepsake.

Bea, I can't thank you enough for this gorgeous quilt. (And Bella says to tell Gus and Abby that she's keeping a good, watchful eye over it too!)

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Penelope and pals

Here's the latest addition to the nursery critter collection - Penelope:

Pattern: Penelope the Empathetic monster by Rebecca Danger
Yarn: Main colour is the very lovely Mama Blue Troika Sport in colourway Poppy, with pink Berrocco comfort ears, feet and eye spot (which oddly enough matches the nursery walls perfectly).
Needle: US Size 5
Modifications: I used crochet to create the eye spot vs knitting it - just because I found it too fiddly to knit. (Lazy, yes! ;o) And then embroidered the black eye balls and white felt teeth vs glue.

Here's Penelope with her monster pals. Ooh I can't wait for the room to start taking shape...

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Having fun with the nursery

I finally got started on the nursery, and I'm super excited about how this could turn out. The room in question was a spare room that was looking a little ratty and so it was nice to rip out the carpets and replace with wood floors, and to add a splash of colour to the walls.

***Updated to add a picture of how the nursery turned out***


Now I hadn't planned on this being a super girly room. The theme is a little monster's playground (hope I'm not tempting fate here ;o) I was originally thinking neutral colours for the room itself with bright accessories to add some colour and fun. The bright accessories in question are ugly dolls, knit monsters (of which I made Frances, Daphne and Delilah so far) and knitted odd-bods (of which Jessica has made us Bert Bear).

But I guess some trigger went off at the paint store because I now have pale pink walls and a peachy ceiling and skirting boards, window ledge and door frames:

Plus the accessories I've been looking at are super girly too:
- I'm thinking this might be a cute rug - 'cos little monsters need fields of flowers to play in, right?
- And this might be an awesome wall decal - a little tree under which my monsters can get shade
- And then of course I need to find some cool shelves to display all those fun monsters and critters that I'm hoping I'll magically be able to knit between now and not-so-little lady's arrival.
- Ooh yes, and of course Etsy has a whole treasure trove of goodies of which I saw these 3 cute monster pics that I think would work well in the room

Not so sure about curtains yet... if anyone out that can point me to something fun that would work with the very-loose-at-this-point theme, I'd welcome the suggestions.

So on a knitty related note, I have decided to make a blanket for the nursery. I have a pile of rowan 4-ply cotton that needed to be put to good use. I loved the alphabet blanket I'd made a while back, but wanted something brighter like the Barnaby blanket with a fun trim around the edge-- so I'm making a multi-colour alphabet blanket that I'm thinking will work well with the colours in the room. I've set myself a goal to complete 7 squares a week. That way there's a chance of getting it completed before the baby gets here. (Originally it was one square a day, but with late night work meetings and baby classes at the hospital I wasn't always making the one/night... but this way I can play 'catch up' on my nights off.)

More than you ever wanted to know? More links than you ever wanted to click in one blog post? :o)))

Please, please, if you know of any decorations for the nursery that you think would work well with the theme, please let me know. At this point I still have a fairly blank canvas!

Saturday, January 09, 2010

A quick needlework update

I'm late to publicly thank Dany for the lovely gift that she sent over for the little lady. How cute is this - a hand stitched baby bib. It is gorgeous! Thank you Dany, as always you are very sweet and thoughtful xoxo

And on the topic of cross stitch, this Christmas I'd received a cross stitch project from a good friend. It's a 'Princess Palace' that I think will be perfect in the nursery. (Assuming that by the time I'm done, it's still a nursery and not a teen hang out for the little lady! - I'd forgotten how much time it takes to make seemingly small progress on cross stitch projects). But I am loving working on cross stitch again. Aaah too many crafty loves and not enough hours in the day to devote to them!

Last, but far from least, on the needlework update -- go check out Bea's blog. She has a contest posted out there for a gorgeous quilt! (And for those who prefer knitty swag there's an alternate knitty prize). Good stuff.

That's all I have this morning. Have a great weekend!

Thursday, January 07, 2010

Noro Wildfell

I've been plugging away at my big Noro Wildfell cardi/coat these last couple of weeks. I was figuring that it would get good use between the super chilly weather here and my ever-expanding belly! That's right - 32 weeks now!

I'd picked up the yarn a good while ago on sale - 50% off, yay! I couldn't choose between 2 very similar colourways that were available and so bought them both. A little decadent, yes. Since I didn't have enough of either colour for this big ole coat, I chopped and changed between the 2. I think it works ok, akthough there are areas where there seems to be too much of one type of colourway - in hindsight I should have changed it up a bit more. Hey ho, hindsight is 20/20.

The details for the Cardi:

  • Pattern: Wildfell by Jane Ellison from 'Noro Simply'
  • Yarn: Noro Kochoran in 44C and 47C - approx 8 and a half skeins used
  • Size: small - athough if I were to do again, I might make extra small. I don't think it needs to be quite this big.
  • Needles: US 10

I'm loving how snuggly this cardigan is. And light too. I think it's going to see a lot of use. Especially over the next few weeks.

Wednesday, January 06, 2010

Bert Bear

Over the Christmas and New Year my dear step daughter Jessica came to stay with us and celebrate the holidays. I'd taught Jessica to knit a couple of years ago, and although she's not been bitten by the bug (darn it ;o) she did offer to make a whimsical toy for her little sister's nursery. Awwwww :)

Here it is - Bert Bear. It's from Donna Wilson's Knitted Odd Bods book. There's a whole host of crazy characters in there that are fun knits. I'm trying to decide which creature is next on the nursery knit list!

Jessica used 6 skeins of Jaeger Matchmaker Merino Chunky that I had stashed away and knit this on US 7 needles. It turned out rather large, and I love it! I think she too was tickled with the end result. Here's a pic of her showing it off before we had to say goodbye at the airport. :(

Bert is now all stuffed and sewn up and waiting for his new home in the nursery. I'm making slow and steady progress there... but slow and steady wins the race, right?

Friday, January 01, 2010

Happy New Year!

I can hardly believe that it is a New Year already... where does the time go? I hope you had a fun evening yesterday and wish you all the very best for 2010.

I do like the New Year: Looking back at all the blessings of the previous year, and looking forward to the possibilities of what the new year can hold. Having this blog gives me the chance to look through my projects of last year. I find it interesting to see how I've been spending my crafty time.

There was the valiant effort at NaKniSweMoDo - knit a sweater a month. I was on target until the last quarter of the year. If only baby sweaters counted! Although I didn't meet the goal, I'm happy with how it spurred me on to complete projects that might have otherwise gone into hibernation.

Gift knitting also featured high on the list this year. I do like making things for other people; it's my way of saying I care.

And of course baby knits! A couple of friends had babies this year, and with BOB's impending arrival there have been a couple of projects there. Surprising though - I always thought I'd knit a lot more for my own kiddo. However I had never really anticipated how pooped I'd be - knitting was replaced by napping for a good portion of the pregnancy so far!

The last couple of things I noticed after reviewing last year's efforts are that:

I seem to be addicted to starting blankets/throws. Wish I could say there was as much energy invested into finishing them. Maybe this should be one of my goals for 2010 -- to finish those blankets I've started. The hexagon blankets for example might be a great addition to the nursery.

I have a fair few projects that have been in WIP status for well over a year. Hmm, maybe that should be my other crafty goal for 2010.

In truth, I don't know how realistic these goals are. At the end of the day I know the next couple of months will be pretty tiring and the focus will be on staying healthy and rested. And then of course after little lady's arrival I'm trying not to kid myself that I'll have a tonne of time for craftiness. My attentions will be on loving my new little bundle of joy, and learning the ropes as a new Mum.

Hope 2010 has all good things in store for you,