Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Black crochet tea cosy - surprisingly tasteful for me

Those of you who hold each and every update I write close to your bosom, remembering every word and every project as though they were your own children, will have no trouble in recalling this "trendy tea cosy" (as I dubbed it at the time), which went disastrously wrong thanks to an ill-judged bit of sizing guess work on my part.

Well, I finally got the unfinished project back out of my stash box and added the extension required to make it fit my tea pot. And now I have an *actual* bit of tasteful crochet in my house, as well as a very nice warm tea pot. It's like some kind of Christmas miracle. Except for without the Christmas.

The cosy didn't really suffer from the half-arsed bit of bodging I had to do to make it big enough. In fact, I rather like the sideways rows I've added to each edge of the cosy. And the fact that it's custom-made to fit my pot gives it that special edge that I know will drive all my friends crazy with tea cosy-envy. They'll try to hide it with looks of complete indifference or polite interest, but *I'll* know the truth.

Saturday, June 07, 2008

Yet another baby tomato hat

I don't really see the point in having babies unless you dress them up in ridiculous clothes for your own amusement. Luckily, there have been plenty of powerless babes appearing in my life recently, and I've taken full advantage of their helplessness by plopping a tomato hat on their innocent noggins as soon as they hit the air.

My latest victim is my nephew, George, who's shown his gratitude to his favourite aunt by instantly growing too large for his. What he doesn't know, however, is that I can knock these things up at a hell of a rate of knots, and each time he outgrows a hat, another one will soon appear to replace it.

It's important that these youngsters know who's boss.

Here's a picture of him pretending he doesn't care that he looks ludicrous.

Whitting in the Wood - my first handmade wood crochet hook

We bought a woodland recently. You know, as you do. The story of how it happened is too long (and possibly not very interesting), but the short version is that we love camping, we love woods, and we found a woodland for sale that was near enough to Crystal Palace for us to be able to drive to our very own woodland campsite in an hour.

Most of our time spent there so far has been used for clearing some space for the undergrowth to start returning, making a few paths and taking down dead trees. But in between the hard work, there's plenty of time to sit and stare at the camp fire and pass the time with a spot of gentle whittling.

I thought I'd have a go at whittling a crochet hook. As you can see, I still have a long way to go before I'm anywhere near to making something that's usable. But since this photo was taken, we've got some proper wood working knives, which makes life easier. It's also a lot easier once you've got a bit of wire wool involved in the process to help keep it looking a bit more tidy. I've made better attempts since this one, but still nothing I'm entirely happy with.

My brother in law is an especially keen whittler, and he produced this finished hook (above), which he's sanded and gently waxed, making a hook that's surprisingly easy and comfortable to use - much better than those jumbo plastic ones I've got. (Click for bigger)

Maybe one day, we'll be as talented as the amazing Jimbo. Check out his blog for some truly beautiful handmade wooden crochet hooks.