Tuesday, 15 July 2014

Wilberforce in the Wars again

Poor Wilberforce has another eye infection.  It is only three months since his last.  His vet cannot seem to find the reason and we wonder if he is alergic to any of our plants or shrubs as he does seem to frequently blunder through the undergrowth and I have to pick burrs off his coat.  So he is back on the eye drops, antibiotics, and cream for his eye.  He has also got arthritis in his front leg and is taking tablets for that too.  Fortunately, he's already starting to look a bit better since I took this photo so we are keeping our fingers crossed.
I have finished another blanket (number three) for the local dog shelter we adopted Higgins from.  In the past I have sewn the squares together which took a couple of evenings but since taking a course on finishing and joining crochet I crocheted this one together using 1 double crochet and one chain in every other stitch and it took me just an hour and a half to complete.  Result!
 
 I am still working through my small cross stitch kits and made this little pansy card topper.  I used my new Big Shot die cutter I got for my last birthday to cut the apertures so it is proving very useful as I have also used it for cutting applique and designs for embroidering over in fabric as well as paper and card.
Because this house is crowded with Airedale Terrier paraphenalia I decided we should have more Border Collie stuff and whilst looking through my old stitching magazines I found this chart in New Stitches no. 63.  I think I will make it up into a hanging sachet. 

 

Thursday, 19 June 2014

Hundreds of crochet flowers


Can't believe what a long time it is since I last blogged but with the sun shining and so much to do in the house and garden there has been little time for crafting.

In the evenings I sometimes crochet a few flowers and have now decided my flower throw is big enough.  I have not counted how many flowers I've made but it must be a few hundred and as I used 4 ply wool and a 2.50mm hook the flowers are quite small.

I used the JAYGO (Join as you go) method to make this so once it was finished, it was finished and no ghastly joining up to be done so in that respect it was brilliant.

 Ruff the dog
Seraphina
 
I have a huge basket of small cross stitch kits which have been knocking about for years so last week I decided to sort through them. I have given a lot to my local Wet Nose charity shop and have started working some of the ones I kept.  I have done the two above so far and figure they will make usful card toppers as and when I need a greeting card in a hurry.
I didn't want to throw this old bread bin away so got John to put a few holes in the bottom for me and used it for some bedding plants.  I think it makes a great recycled planter and is one less item going to landfill.
 
Higgins just loves to be in photographs and it is often difficult to keep him out.  I just managed to get one photo of my throw before he popped up again, he is such a comical little chap.
 
 



Monday, 5 May 2014

Cross Stitch Samplers

 Finished my monochrome sampler, it was the quickest piece I have ever done probably because there were no colour changes although I did use 10 skeins of DMC 5200 which is quite a lot of thread. 
 I really love samplers but I realised I only work them about once every ten years.  The one above is my first piece of cross stitch ever, (about 20 years old). I had previously worked needlepoint from printed canvases so wasn't sure what to do when I opened the kit and found a plain piece of fabric!  I worked it out eventually although I didn't know at the time you had to keep the stitches in the same direction.  
Then this sampler was worked around 1999/2000 to celebrate the millennium.  It is still one of my favourite pieces, I love all the events it commemorates.
 
I must not leave it another 10 years before I stitch another sampler.
 
Wilberforce is totally unimpressed
 
Yawn

Tuesday, 15 April 2014

This and That

Not a lot of crafting going on here at Doggy Towers over the last few weeks, I did frame my Airedale Terrier (above) and here he is next to this cute lamp I bought at Cath Kidston.
 
I have a few projects on the go:
 Cross stitch
Crochet 
Knitting
but nothing finished to show. 
I am always on the lookout for anything Airedale related and found this Airedale Terrier motif when shopping in Hobbycraft recently.

 Wilberforce is now fully recovered from his eye infection and here is Higgins enjoying one of his favourite pastimes, tearing up boxes so they fit neatly in the recycling bin.  He is a very eco-friendly dog.
Happy Easter to everyone in blogland and I hope we have good weather to enjoy it.
 
 


Tuesday, 11 March 2014

Airedale Terrier in Stitches

 I finally finished my Airedale Terrier cross stitch I started last year.  There were so many colour changes that it took me ages.  I found the perfect frame in my craft room so it just has to be washed, pressed and framed now.  I love his cute expression.  We both think he looks a lot like our darling Archie.
 Wilberforce has been in the wars yet again with an eye infection and has to wear the "cone of shame" yet again.  With the help of eye drops and antibiotics it has healed quite a lot since I took this photo.  He still has to wear the buster collar except when he is eating or we are with him as he keeps trying to scratch the skin off!
 Higgins is in fine fettle, he never seems to get ill (touch wood) I guess the Welsh Border Collie is a pretty hardy breed.  Here he is enjoying a Jumbone type treat.
 I have finally finished my patchwork squares and have started putting them together.  I am not sure if patchwork is my forte though.  When sewing clothes or home furnishings if a seam is 1/4" bigger in some places it doesn't really matter but with patchwork it means the squares don't line up so you have to be super accurate which I find a bit tedious.  I have got to learn how to quilt it next, with the help of another class so it will be quite a while before I finish it.
My cross stitch sampler is coming along faster than I expected probably because it is in one colour so there is no stopping to rethread and join different colours.
The weather has been so warm and sunny this week, hotter than Spain and Greece so we have been in the mood for spring cleaning.  I started with my craft room and have filled three bags of craft stuff (it is amazing how the trends change) for the Wet Nose animal rescue shop and have been going through my hundreds of craft magazines to see if I can reduce them.

The issues I did not want to keep have gone to my local hospital shop and any with ideas I like I have stuck in this hardback book and then recycled those magazines.  I have a lot more shelf space now.

Thursday, 27 February 2014

Scrap 365: March Challenge - Sherlock Bones

When I saw the March Scrapbook challenge I new exactly what I wanted to scrap.  In this photo of Archie he is wearing an outfit I made for him to enter the fancy dress competition at a doggy fun day we attended.

The little magnifying glass is real and I placed a tiny photo of Archie wearing his deerstalker hat in it.  I used old watch parts as my "confetti" to complement the docrafts Chronology papers I used.

Thursday, 20 February 2014

Long Term Projects and Sweet Treats

The long winter nights have made me feel like hunkering down with a couple of big projects to see me through till spring.  I started this crochet throw at the beginning of January, it uses 4ply yarn which is quite thin (D.K. is my preferred weight) but I used to do a lot of machine knitting so I am able to use up some of the boxes of coned 4 ply yarns I have had stashed away for years.
 Then I decided to start a big cross stitch projects which will probably keep me busy for the rest of the year.  The design is on the front cover of the book below and here is my progress so far.
 I practically ate my own body weight in chocolate over Christmas so have been on the wagon for a while but I got cravings the other night and began to search around for any I might have forgotten.  Was just about to give up when lo and behold I found these guys lurking on a shelf in my utility room.  They were a present from John's brother and I had put them in here away from the boys.  Needless to say they did not last long.
 I had a lot of sweet making ingredients left over from Christmas too so yesterday I made this easy cheat's chocolate fudge.  Well, you should not waste food should you?  I only made then last night and today they are all gone.  I think I have a seious addiction.

 Hotter Shoes are giving away the knitting pattern for this London bus, I have already downloaded my copy.  I thought it would make a cute doorstop as well as a children's toy.  They also have a free Alan Dart pattern there too which you can find here.
Happy crafting and keep warm.
Shirley x

Monday, 3 February 2014

Stay Cozy and Craft

I am resisting the urge to hibernate, I do not like this time of year, the best thing I can do is stay close to the fire and indulge in some crafting till Spring comes.
I have not been crafting as much as usual recently instead catching up on the huge pile of books and magazines I have beside my armchair and bed.  Over Christmas I knitted these owl fingerless gloves, they are quite a sociable project, ok for knitting and talking at the same time.
Then I decided to knit this cable beret, the pattern was free from the Love Knitting Website and also a crochet collar for Wilberforce which only took about an hour to make. 

Christmas seems ages ago now but I only just downloaded my photos, here are two of the boys enjoying a couple of their presents. 

 During my post Christmas clear up, I came across this fabric I bought last Autumn from a department store in the city.  It is called Terriers and is from Makower.  There are a few different designs but this one has Airedale Terriers on it so I had to buy some.
Have a few projects on the go at the moment but am waiting for the better weather, at these times of year I wish I lived in a hot country - roll on spring.

Sunday, 22 December 2013

Merry Christmas

Not sure where the time has gone over the past few weeks.  I have been so busy shopping and wrapping presents, buying all the food and preparing the house for Christmas there has been little time for crafting.

In between fixing a leak in the roof!! and installing a new wall light in my hallway, I just managed to make a felt reindeer and crochet a snowflake for my tree.


I managed to grab a photo of the boys sharing a sofa which I turned into Christmas cards using readymade photo cards.  This was quite a rare occurance as they each have their own sofas and never the twain shall meet usually.  It hasn't happened since.



Before returning to trim my tree I would like to wish everyone in blogland a very merry Christmas and a happy, healthy and peaceful new year.
love,
Shirley and the gang
xxx


Wednesday, 27 November 2013

Sweet Swingers

This is my latest finish, Sweet Swingers from a knitting pattern by Debi Birkin.  I fell in love with her patterns after seeing them on Ravelry. It only took a few nights and I changed the colours of the right hand budgie so it looks like Dudley.
I have just finished a course on Craftsy on joining and finishing crochet and learnt so much.  This is the class project below. Each segment in the throw was attached using a different stitch and then the whole lot joined together with one ball of yarn so there was only one end to sew in.  Brilliant.  When I think of all the hours I used to spend sewing projects together.  Never again 

When deciding how to join the segments I laid them out first so I achieved the right balance of colour.  Then as I laid it out to photograph, Higgins decided he wanted to Christen it.  I think he approves.

I finished putting my Christmas cuties ornaments together.  This is my least favourite part.  I really struggle to get them looking neat no matter how I try.  These are a bit better than some of my previous efforts but they could still be better.
 With the time for Christmas visitors coming up I will be definitely by making these cheese straws.  The recipe was in the Co-operative Supermarket magazine and they are delicious.
I don't really know why I put them in a tin as they never lasted very long.  We all love cheese in this house, including the boys so they were soon polished off!