Friday, 28 March 2008

Crochet Shopping Bag

A little while ago, I posted that I was going to crochet Inga's Bag with some Anchor Magicline I had in my stash. I was hoping to come up with something as lovely as this,
but I've realised that I need to have a multitude of colourways to achieve the look I like...and I only have one. Ho hum.

So, I've been playing with other crochet bag patterns like this and this
...and I've finally decided to have a go at designing my own.
I've started by crocheting a circular pattern for the base:

I've used the crochet circle recipe from Debbie Stoller's Happy Hooker (how I love this book.)

When the base is big enough, I'm going to crochet mesh sides using a v stitch...and I don't know how I'm going to do the handles yet, I'll wait until I get to them!

It's fun.
And, if it works out, I'll post the pattern here when I'm done.

Happy weekend, everybody!

Tuesday, 25 March 2008

Daisy Table

Thank you to all the people who noticed, and said nice things about, the mosaic table which was in one of the last photos I posted. I originally blogged about it here but I thought I'd write about its construction in a little more detail, for those of you who might be interested.

I found a sweet little wrought iron table at the local St Vincent De Paul charity shop which was just the right size and shape to mosaic.
I created a big orange daisy design,
inspired by my seventies kitchen,
and worked outside for three full days,
mosaicing late into the evening
by candlelight
in the hush of my garden.

I made the mosaic out of wall tiles, mirrors and broken china. You can see all three materials in this close up:

(If I was to make it again, I'd build up the mirror and the china so that the centre of the table has a more even surface.)

Unfortunately, the next stage of making the table, grouting the tiles, was less than blissful. In my inexperience, I used too much acrylic paint to colour the grout and, when I put it on to the tiles, the grout filled with air bubbles and wouldn't dry properly. Sadly, grout takes minutes to apply but it takes ages to remove. I cried (literally) when I realised the enormity of the mistake I'd made...and I've been chipping the grout out, on and off, for the last three years.

Not surprisingly, I lost my momentum and the table has sat untouched for a long time. However, after some prompting by friends, and a pep~talk by a terrific mosaic artist called Chris, I decided to have another go at finishing the table in February. I used commercially coloured grout this time, applied it successfully ~ to my relief, and ended up with this:

Here's another close up
(showing just how deliciously smooth the new grout is) :

I am very, very happy to have finally finished it
and I'm also happy to report that I've rediscovered my enthusiasm for mosaicing. I've been gaining inspiration from Helen Baird and her book The Complete Practical Guide To Mosaics, Emma Biggs and Tessa Hunkin's fabulous text Mosaic Workshop and the wonderful work of Kaffe Fassett. I have also started preparing to mosaic my kitchen splashback
...and this time I'm booking into a mosaic studio so I can get immediate advice as I'm working.
Wish me luck!

Sunday, 16 March 2008

Daffodil Stitch Vintage Tea Cosy

At the beginning of the year I posted about the Aussie Knitters Tea Cosy Swap I was involved in over at Ravelry. I posted pictures of the tea cosy I crocheted but didn't share any photos of the beautiful knitted tea cosy I received from my swap partner, Kate of Knights Don't Knit. Kate used a vintage pattern, from 1937, called the Daffodil Stitch Vintage Tea Cosy and she created the loveliest of details which included a clever undercosy, delicate flowers and delightful edgings.

Here's Kate's tea cosy, in all its gorgeousness:

Kate sent over lots of other goodies too, which you can see here
(on my freshly grouted mosaic table, Felicity!)

I was also given a tea infuser weighted with a sweet little red tea cup, organic english breakfast tea, a china tea flower (which I can’t wait to try), a card and bookmark decorated with lovely native Tasmanian flora, a pretty and ever~so practical small projects bag and matching crochet hook holder, two vividly coloured handmade candles, three balls of wool (hidden in the photo, I’m sorry) that match the tea cosy (I’m thinking that I’m going to make some egg cosies with these) and a wonderful Canadian pattern book for kitchen cloths. I just love the way Kate caught my colours, my love of things vintage and of things floral, even my preoccupation with dish cloths!

I am so spoilt!

Wednesday, 12 March 2008

Sedge Stitch Dishcloth

I've finished the bark sedge stitch dishcloth.

I love the colours, the pattern, the texture and the way they all swirl together.
Simple but satisfying.

Sunday, 9 March 2008


I'm just getting over a nasty stomach bug.
I'll spare you the horrible details
but I will say that being very sick gives one permission to focus completely on comfort and rest
...and that is a blessing.

Of course, comfort has involved a little crochet ~ last night I felt well enough to start making Inga's Bag out of some Anchorline cotton I have in my stash. It looks like it will be fun to do.

And, speaking of blessings,
I went out into the garden for the first time in days this morning and discovered a flush of roses, caught by the sunlight, at the back door:

Aren't they divine?

I also wanted to say thank you to all the lovely people who have left comments here of late, including some new visitors who've dropped by through Small Is Beautiful. I really appreciate the kind things you've said and, if I haven't already responded, I will as soon as I can.

Happy Sunday.

Monday, 3 March 2008

Unexpected Pleasure

Sometimes beautiful things happen unexpectedly,
like flowers suddenly blooming...

...and fellow bloggers giving you awards.

I was very grateful to receive a You Make My Day Award from the lovely Riggwelter, over at Jazzy Crafts

and an Art Award from my blog friend indigoblue

I'm really touched. Thank you!

The rules of the You Make My Day Award are:
"Give the award to 10 people whose blogs bring you happiness and inspiration and make you feel happy about blogland. Let them know by posting a comment on their blog so they can pass it on. Beware you may get the award several times."
and, for the Art Award:
"Post the award on your own blog.(Post who gave it to you)
Indicate its original link and link to that site. (The Award originally came fromArte Y Pico's Blog at,
from Uruguay)
Give the Award to 5 other blogs that you enjoy, find creative and inspire you."

I am going to present both Awards to:
Rachelle at Magpie Girl for writing with such sensitivity and helping to build a nourishing community ~ Small Is Beautiful,
Leah at Creative Everyday for her beautiful drawing and her lovely community, which is so inspiring,
Ellen at Los Angeles Is My Beat for her generosity and amazing creative output,
Peta at Createcraft for thought provoking, intelligent posts, beautiful craftwork and fabulous links,
Christina at Matroschka for her beautiful photography, fantastic etsy links, and the vicarious pleasure she provides by documenting how she is decorating her swish new apartment,
Kate at knights don't knit for her sense of fun and her incredible generosity (sometime very soon I'm going to post about the gorgeous gifts she gave me in a tea cosy swap),
Carola at my living room for organising the granny along blogspot which has brought me so much inspiration, motivation and connection,
and Lisamoon at dances on the moon for her honesty and lyricism and joyfulness (even in the midst of difficult life transitions).
I'd like to return the favour and award
Riggwelter at Jazzy Crafts for her warmth and beautiful knitting,
and indigoblue for her kindness and industriousness.

I really appreciate Blogland. I love how inspired I am by you all!