Wednesday, 4 March 2015

Woolly Wednesday

Great news - Edinburgh Yarn Festival is back for 2015! Some of you may remember the first one back in 2013 (was it really that long ago?!), which was held at the Out of the Blue Drill Hall in Leith.

The return of the EYF sees the event evolve a bit - they have expanded to a larger venue and the festival now spans across two days, Saturday 14th & Sunday 15th March at the Corn Exchange.

This rather curious creature greeted visitors in 2013!

The last one was well-attended and had plenty of things for the fibre fiend in you but this year the exibitor list boasts over 100 different companies ranging from local yarn stores to independent yarn producers. How exciting!

I dare anyone to try and come away empty-handed. If the last one was anything to go by it will be a serious challenge! It wasn't just yarny delights at the festival, there were also some fab indie designers selling their patterns and there were a few stalls with some lovely notions - all in all a great way to get some inspiration for your next/latest crafty project.

There are individual day tickets (£8 each) or weekend passes (£12) available, or you can go the whole hog and sign up for the evening events (knitty pub quiz, anyone?) or alternatively take part in one of the workshops and classes on during the day!
For more information about the Edinburgh Yarn Festival, 
visit their website:
Advance tickets and class bookings are available online.

To read more #WoollyWednesday posts, click here.

Tuesday, 24 February 2015

Cute Clay Creatures

I found this rather wonderful little film about the work of Designer Camila Prada.

It provides an interesting insight into her process and materials
- as well as a lot of cute ceramics!

Find out more about the pandas and more of Camila's cute ceramic creatures here.

Saturday, 14 February 2015

All you need is Love!

Happy Valentine's Day!

I hope you're doing something nice with your loved ones today.

I thought this year I'd have a go at baking some mini Red Velvet cakes with these cute heart-shaped silicone baking cases and they worked a treat! Turns out to be pretty tasty too - I used a Nigella Lawson recipe, since she knows a thing or two about yummy bakes.

I also spotted this rather topical knit over at Mochimochi Land - it's a free pattern to knit a tiny rose! So adorable and a lovely idea for a last-minute gift. Read this blog post to find out more and to download a copy :)

Image via Mochimochi Land

If you're looking for nice ways to gift wrap something for your Valentine, I also have a few ideas to give you some inspiration in this Valentine's themed post.

Friday, 30 January 2015

It's Fabric Friday!

I spotted a hashtag on Twitter that caught my attention a little while ago - #FabricFriday! It kind of hit me right between the eyes as a simple but effective idea.

I can't quite remember if it was a trending topic or if I just saw it because it popped up in my feed of "textiley twitterers" - in any case, I thought it would make a good theme for a (semi-) regular post on my blog.

If you read this post back in November, you might recall the mention of a quilt challenge... I was aiming to have something finished by the end of this month, but alas, it would seem that I was overly optimistic! I have made a little progress on my ideas and inspiration board for the quilt I'd like to make but hadn't quite anticipated how completely manic December and parts of January would be.

Image via Pinterest

I did a little bit of sewing, it's still in a slightly experimental stage, since I've been kind of making it up as I go - this is what happens when I get an idea in my head about how I'd like to use a certain piece of fabric...

So I suppose what I'm saying is that one of my new year's resolutions is to actually make a proper plan for my quilt, which will hopefully bring it one step closer to completion! (Wish me luck!!)

Image via Pinterest

What are your crafty new year's resolutions? Drop me a comment!

Tuesday, 11 November 2014

Autumnal Events

So, it's November! How did that happen? ...Come to think of it, where has this year gone?! It's certainly been an eventful one for me, in any case. 

I am enjoying the autumn show of colours and the crisp scent of bonfires in the air. It always makes me glad when this time of year rolls around, because however much the dark days are a little, well, dark, it's comforting to think of bringing all my cosy knits out of hibernation - and maybe finishing a few too. (Though lately that has eluded me somewhat as due to a bout of tendonitis I havent't been able to touch my knitting for a few weeks now - woe!!)

I'm consoling myself by living vicariously through the craft of others and gathering inspiration for wintery projects in the meantime. Cue a Pinterest frenzy! If you want to see what I've been pinning lately, you can find my boards here:

One of the projects I'm hoping to work on is my first foray into quilting. I've been fascinated by the industrious creators of patchwork quilts for many years and this year myself and two friends are challenging ourselves to have a go, with the aim of completing a quilt each by January. So I started to collect ideas and ponder designs, as well as having a rummage through my fabric stash. Despite not being an avid sewer, I have still managed to acquire (hoard) plenty of pretty fabrics. I think my degree in textiles might have *something* to do with that...

Photographs featured in this post are of some of the rather wonderful pieces as seen in my copy of Contemporary American Quilts published by the Crafts Council.

Do you have any tips for me, as a novice quilter? I'd love to know your thoughts, and please feel free to post links! :)

Wednesday, 8 October 2014

Wondrous Wool

This is a special edition of Woolly Wednesday - it's Wool Week!

(This is a kitty commission I made 
from Merino lambswool a few years ago)

...What's Wool Week, I hear you ask. 2014 is the 5th year of the Campaign for Wool's week dedicated to wool, that most wondrous of natural fibres. This year's edition runs from the 5th - 12th of October and features a whole host of activities and events promoting wool. Want to organise your own? Check out Picknit for some LoveWool resources.

I love the idea of the Wool Ride, a brand new woolly cycle ride held in London on the first day of Wool Week. It appears to have a similar feel to the annual Harris Tweed Ride in Glasgow, albeit perhaps a little more light-hearted and rough (fluff?!) around the edges.

My latest knitting project is a pair of stripy mittens (shown above) in a lovely pure wool yarn. Seemed like the perfect time of year to start something like this, now that the air is crisper, the leaves are turning and it's starting to get dark sooner in the evenings.

One of the reasons I love making things with wool is its versatility. It can be incredibly useful in its many different forms - the elasticity of the fibre lends itself well to clothing which will keep its shape well, but not only that, it has a natural tendency towards repelling water, due to the waxy lanolin of a sheep's coat, even more so if you felt the fabric as the water will simply bead on the surface and roll off.

You can achieve a great stitch definition in a yarn 
with a high wool content such as this one (80% wool)

As many of you will know, wool is a rather wonderful natural fibre, meaning of course that it's biodegradable, unlike many manmade fibres. One which is renewable (thanks to the sheep growing a new fleece every year!), breathable and happens to be pretty great at absorbing a vast rainbow of dyes, as well as coming in a beautiful range of natural hues. Did you know wool can even be used as an insulation material? It's also naturally flame-retardant, believe it or not!

If you're interested in reading further woolly witterings, click here for more #WoollyWednesday posts.

Friday, 3 October 2014

All the Pretty Things

Image via Flickr

Life has been somewhat of a whirlwind lately, so I'm taking a much-needed moment to slow down and contemplate the things that inspire me. Pretty patterned tiles and ceramics have been a feature in recent weeks so here are some of my favourites.

Image found on Pinterest

Image via Flickr

Image via Decor8

Pretty cups via Tumblr

I do hope you liked these pretties and wish you a happy Friday - enjoy your weekend!