Thursday, 30 April 2009

Craft Hope

I am taking part in a great project organised by Crafthope. The aim is to make dolls for children at Casa Bernabe orphanage in Nicaragua.

The dolls can be sewn or knitted. You can sign up and find tutorials for sewing dolls on Crafthope website. The deadline for receiving the dolls is June 13th. You can be as creative as you want, the only "restriction" is that the dolls have to have brown hair and brown eyes, to resemble the children they are going to.

I don’t have a sewing machine so I am knitting 2 dolls, a boy and a girl. I also enrolled a few people at my knitting group.
I've finished the boy doll:

I might knit him a shirt...
Go to Crafthope to sign up and if you can't do that one, you might be able to participate to the next project...

Tuesday, 21 April 2009


We spent a few days in Brussels to visit friends. I love that city, so diverse and culturally rich.

First, we went to the atomium on the outskirt of the city. We couldn't go last time because it was closed for renovation. It is a giant iron molecule, magnified 165 billion times, and built for Expo'58.

Inside, from the highest sphere, you get a panoramic view other the city and Mini-Europe. In the other spheres, two exhibitions were on display: one about Expo'58, the first World´s Fair of the post-war period, and a second one, Bipolar (from South to North, the extremes), about arctic and Antarctica.

We planned to go to Bruges on Friday, unfortunately the weather was appalling so we went to the musical instruments museum instead. This museum is really worth a visit. The art nouveau building itself is beautiful.

Some amazing and unusual instruments are on display and headphones allow you to hear the sounds of the various instruments.

We spent the weekend on the Belgium coast at Oostduinkerke. The weather was beautiful and we had a great time wandering around.

GruikGruik and Leon had fun as well :o)))

We are now back in sunny Dundee and we have to wait 11 weeks before our next holidays (3.5 weeks in France)...

Sunday, 12 April 2009


This weekend, the weather was absolutely beautiful. Yesterday, it was our monthly knitting group in Newburgh and as we had no chauffeur (Diane was coming back from Japan, and Louise was in London), Andrea rented a car. Then we (Andrea, Amberly and I) went to St Andrews for lunch before going to Anstruther for an ice cream and a walk in the harbor. The place was mobbed and there was a 30 min wait for the fish and chips! I would like to show you some pictures, unfortunately I forgot my camera :o(
Anyway, today was nice as well so I took a picture from the window:

I can show you some of my WIPs. First, a cardigan from knitty, called decimal (free pattern here). The body is knitted in one piece and the sleeves separately to underarm. Then, everything is knitted together for the yoke. The great thing is that there is only the sleeves seam to sew.
I've done the body and just started on one sleeve. The yarn I am using is Katia linen (53% cotton, 47% linen).

The second one is that lace project I mentioned earlier using 100% merino from Violet green. The pattern is called Balmoral. It is from this book:

The pattern is the one on the cover. The "small" version on the cover was initially a doily and the bigger version, a dinner cloth:

My version will be a shawl. I don't think I will have enough yarn to knit the whole thing but it will be big enough for a shawl. I am currently on row 136 and I have 816 stitches. I am still on the first ball of yarn but it is getting near the end. I am hoping to have it completed by next autumn, however life is getting busier with the nice weather so this deadline might be a little too optimistic...

It doesn't look like the book picture but the essential part will be the blocking stage. I have no clue how I will be able to do that, I am not sure I will have the space at home.
I am also working on a man jumper but no picture for this one.
On Wednesday we are going to Brussels for 5 days. I'll have my camera with me this time (hopefully) ;o)

Thursday, 9 April 2009

Lantern (the end)

Done! I brought it back home on Tuesday and applied the patina yesterday. The lid took much longer to assemble than I thought. Also, I broke one large purple piece so I had to re-cut/grind and copper foil it. Luckily, I had enough glass left to cut another piece!
The teacher helped me for the finishing touches (especially making sure the lead is smooth) as it is not my strong point yet (it comes with practice I've been told) and it takes me ages (so I would not have been able to take it home).
This is it before the patina...

and after:

The lead is silver when it's just been melted but then it becomes greyish. The patina I used gives a black finish. There is another type of patina that gives a copper finish.
So, now, I just have to put a candle in :o) Actually, I was thinking putting a photovoltaic cells instead to have a sun powered lantern (on the same principle as the "sun jar"). I should have a trip to the DIY shop one of these days...

My next project is a mirror for my cousin's wedding. I made the design myself :o) and I will incorporate some mosaic ceramic tiles with the glass.
There is no class next week, teacher is on holiday :o(, so you will have to be patient (I'll try not to forget the camera next time).

Sunday, 5 April 2009

Mousie Mousie

I know some of you have been waiting for pictures of the lantern. Unfortunately, it is not finish yet (I need to solder the lid) and I forgot my camera last time, so, no photos :o(

Instead, I took a picture of the couple of mice I made yesterday:

I am only knitting long term projects at the moment so I needed a quick one for a change (and I ended up making 2). This pattern is from Lucinda Guy book "Designs for kids".