Hi everyone,

It is now just under five weeks until Woolfest! Sooo excited! I am pretty much only going to buy raw fleece I think, and one extravagent purchase – a new drop spindle. I am hoping to buy one from Spin City. Her spindles are beautiful, pretty, glittery and oh, so many words to use!

I’ve been busy with my fibre again and am happy with what I have done so far. I still have a huge bag of Zwartbles to card and a white Shetland. Maybe if I have a bit of time on the weekend I will try and get it done. A good few hours of carding might build up my arm muscles a bit.

What do you think of this lovely Gotland?

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I bought this at Woolfest last year – 500g I think.

It went through the carder twice. Here it is on the first round.

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Look how lovely and wavy it is! I opened all the locks out by hand, it took sooooo long! Def. a bit of TV watching whilst that went on. I got five batts out of this fleece.

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This is fluffed up lamb Hebridean. I got a small 200g bag from Woolfest last year too. I’ve always been a bit wary of Hebridean but this one was lovely when washed. Unfortunately I got rid of about half of it whilst prepping it due to second cuts, etc. But I have got three batts out of it.

 

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This is the unknown brown fleece that I found tucked under the stairs. It felt VERY dry but carded up really well. I got three batts from this. I’m REALLY looking forward to spinning this one.

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Alpaca! Even with the amount I washed I still have been getting rid of about half of what I take out of the bag. In future, I will not cheap out and buy seconds alpaca. As you can see I have made some rolags out of it. I filled the box and when spun it gave me a heavy, packed bobbin on my Bliss. So, I imagine another box will give me a full bobbin again and I can get perhaps two decent skeins out of it. Even with the washing there is so much dirt coming off it! My hands are left black at the end of it, haha. My blending board has been getting some decent use out of it lately.

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This picture makes me very happy! I fancy taking some decent photos outside though, this picture is a bit blurry. I imagine this will be a lot bigger when I have carded the rest of the fleeces.

I also fancied doing some more dyeing. I used kool-aid again and used the white Shetland as soon as I finished washing it. I didn’t wait for it to dry, just put it straight in. I also left it all curled up instead of carding it, as I want the fleece to get a mix of colours, not just one solid colour.

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I pushed as much fleece into each bowl as possible. Each bowl got several minutes in the microwave, the dark dyes getting longer. The red ones were nearly impossible to get the water to run clear. When I spin it, I will have to give the red skeins an extra rinse. I didn’t rinse these in the washing machine, but left them to dry outside. I loved the colours the pink lemonade dye gave.

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My little work station at the side of the kitchen. My lovely dried, dyed fluff. Each colour made a decent sized batt.

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They were very easy to card. I decided to use a diz for the first time on my carder and made roving properly. I was so impressed with how easy and effective this is! Why have I not done this before?!

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Most of them I managed to get done with just one ball of roving.

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I spun up the pink one in the photo. Small skein, but sweet.

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Lots and lots of fleece! I still can hardly believe that this was from a manky Shetland fleece!

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I got this little machine at a charity shop in Ayr. It looks complete. It is a Simple Frame Knitter, made in the early eighties. It looks brand new! I can’t wait to try it out properly, but I’ve left it at A’s for now. I had too much luggage to carry back this time.

I’ve also done a bit more on my CAL. I have sooo much to catch up on!

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Well, the next bit of this post is a bit sad. My lovely Martha died a few weeks ago. She was getting on a bit and not really eating a lot. (Except cucumber, she LOVED it). She had plenty of cuddles towards the end and died in her sleep. I miss her a lot and it’s not the same seeing five chickens when there should be six. Love you, Martha. ❤ This is one of my favourite photos of her. Beautiful girl.

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This post is dedicated to my wonderful dog, Ben. On the 11th May this year, it was six years since he has been gone. There is not a day going by where I don’t feel like something is missing from my life. He was a wonderful companion and friend. He was taken far too soon and if he were alive today he would still have many more years to go. I miss you so much, Ben. I hope you are happy with your best friend, Bo, who was also taken almost exactly two years after you. I love you and miss you loads too, Bo. Words can’t really describe how much I want to see and cuddle them again. Maybe one day I will. ❤

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Ben – 2004 – 11.5.2010

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Bo – 2003 – July 2012

xXx Love Kais xXx

Hey everyone,

It’s been another couple of busy weeks which I have enjoyed. I managed to get myself a little part time job which I enjoy. It’s not teaching so it is far less stressy and far more enjoyable! I am still open for supply work though so at least I keep my hand in for teaching.

I’ve been using the past few weeks for some major fleece washing and fibre prep. Let’s face it, it’s Woolfest in six weeks and five days. I need to shift the stash to add to the stash. Am I right??

I found my much neglected blending board and decided that I really needed to get some good work out of it. I bought it at Woolfest last year and have made perhaps one decent set of rolags from it (the gorgeous red and black mohair fibre ones). I checked out what I had in my fibre box (which is MASSIVE) and decided to blend some merino 70’s/tussah silk with some dyed merino and some tiny touches of black mohair.

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I was thinking that the rolags were quite hard to take off the board and wondering how others seemed to do it so flawlessly. Turns out I was doing it wrong. As you can see from the above picture I’m pulling them off from the top. I should have been doing it at the bottom and then pulling the fibre DOWN. A real DUH moment!

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My lovely rolags and the blending board from Hedgehog Fibres. Love this board. It is just the right size for me. I am not sure if they sell them on their website.

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I love these. Looking forward to spinning them very much! They are sooo soft. Must be about fifty in there?

I also found some clean Wensleydale locks tied up in little bundles in my fibre box and thought that I would dye them. Why the heck not?

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Five bundles and five sets of colourings. Two of them are different shades of red, one is pineapple orange, one is grape purple and the one on the right is lemonade. That hardly had any colour at all so I added a green shot of kool-aid and it worked much better. I did my microwave heat set and put them to dry outside.

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I can’t believe how quickly the fleeces managed to dry outside. Even though I was forever taking them in and out because drops of rain fell for five minutes and then it brightened up again! The fleece on the left is Gotland, also bought from Woolfest last year in a 500g bag. I am loving the silvers and greys in this fleece and it is a nice amount to prep. On the right side is black Shetland. First cut and sooo soft and lovely! I’ve prepped one half of that so far and the rest is soaking in the bath as I type.

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And of course, I had to bring it in at night, so here is the Shetland at the bottom, locks in the middle and Gotland at top.

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Oh, the photo above shows you how I wash my fleece. FARRR easier than dumping it in the bath or a larger tub. Rinses quicker and uses far less water. I then put the clean, wet fleece into a zipped laundry bag and put it in the washing machine on spin cycle for 16 minutes. Then I hang it outside or put it on sweater drying nets in the warm conservatory.

I try not to leave them in the front room because this is usually what happens…

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After checking out all of my fleeces in the shed last week I had four left to process. I did one full one but had to throw away most of the second one. It was dry and just not nice. Not something I would want to spend time on processing.

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Here is one of the fleeces. It is quite a large sack on an average garden table. (You can see the chicken house behind!!) This one was quite difficult to take out the bag as it was so big!

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This is it, still practically folded in half! These Zwartbles sheep are HUGE! I think this was the first one I did, so the good one.

Anyway, I know this has been a rushed post but I hope to bring some photos of the processed Shetland, alpaca rolags and Gotland batts for next time. I need to go and rinse the Shetland currently in the bath at the moment!

Have a great evening everyone,

xXx Love Kais xXx

Hello,

It’s been a relaxing, but busy day today. I’ve enjoyed just getting on with bits and pieces and sorting out stuff.

In my last post I mentioned that I had started some Christmas squares to make into a blanket. I had completed three full ones and yesterday I started the fourth one. I finished it this morning and did the complete white border with hdc border around that. What do you think?

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I can’t decide which square is my favourite. Which one is yours? The gingerbread man was my first C2C square and I really enjoyed it. Each one has a border of SC around it in the background colour, then the cream, then a HDC border. There are sooo many ends to sew in at the back! They are actually quite big, I’ll have to measure them. I am really pleased with how I have sewn them up. It looks really neat, and this makes such a difference in the overall blanket.

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I am going to do a strip at the top that spells out ‘Merry’ in sparkly red yarn, and one that says ‘Christmas’ at the bottom with the same glittery red yarn. I hope to get it done by this Christmas anyway!

I didn’t design the pictures, but they are really, really simple to do. I have so many ideas for C2C crochet blankets, one involving chickens!

I had a bit of a mad moment this afternoon and suddenly decided that I was desperate to see what fleeces I had in the shed! I got a bit of a shock!

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I think that’s a fair few – maybe 15? (And still inside the shed, can you see?) Amazingly, I didn’t actually count them. Perhaps too shocked? Most of them were Zwartbles fleeces. Such lovely, thick, dark fleeces. I skirted and sorted the ones which were not in the pillow cases. In the shed, if it is in a pillow case it is ready to be washed. Easier than having a million different bags all over the place. The pillowcases were 10p each from a charity shop. I found a beautiful black Shetland fleece, a white Shetland fleece, a chunky white fleece (can’t remember the name) and some other bits and pieces. I found a small bag of washed fleece, Manx Laughtan I THINK, which I brought into the house to spin.

Inspector Grace and Inspector Rose looked round the shed to make sure it was all ok to proceed with the fleece sorting –

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And more inspecting outside –

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I managed to get Mum to come and help me with the fleece sorting too. Dad has got wise and ran off before I could get him to help too! He helped me with loads before so I’ll let him off this time, haha.

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These Zwartbles fleeces completely cover the table. They are HUGE!

A neat(ish) pile of sorted fleece –

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Mum managed to put them in the shed, nice and neatly tucked away. Who knows, might get some washed the next hot day!

After all that working with the fleece, I fancied doing some spinning. I had some half finished alpaca that desperately needed doing. It must have been half spun for almost two years. This was a very quick spin and in no time at all I had some singles spun –

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Which in turn made some gorgeous DK plyed yarn. No idea what to make with it but I’ve decided to buy some more alpaca fibre from the Wingham Wool stand when I am at Woolfest. LOVE that stand!

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I have a whole bag of alpaca yarn to wash and spin up. I don’t think I will dye it. I might card it into rolags using my blending board.

I also found the purple mixed Merino blend I bought when I was in Germany so started spinning that. I am trying to do it super thin so it gives a 4ply effect. I felt like I had been spinning for ages when I took a photo of this tiny amount! I will take my time with it though, all I ever seem to do is  DK so this will hopefully be a fingering weight or a 4ply weight.

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I love this picture of Freddy. Soo0 relaxed!

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Anyway, I had better go now, it’s getting late here! Sleep well everyone.

xXx Love Kais xXx

Hello everyone,

I just want to say a quick thank you to everyone who follows my blog – I now have 101 followers! Thank you so, so, so much! It means a lot that people are following my blog, it must mean I am at least writing a little bit of what people find interesting.

I did start this blog off to show off what I have knitted and it just took off from there. People have witnessed my skills developing, learning crochet and my favourite, learning to spin. I have learned how to dye and created tutorials. I have created my own crochet patterns and learned so much about keeping chickens! So, once again, thank you very much for reading what I write.

So, what have I been up to?

Well, I am very excited to show off my, almost completed, hand-spun, hand-dyed, hand-woven (that was a mouthful!) blanket. I have spun all the yarn for it, mostly dyed it all myself and all have been woven on a (hand-made!) pin loom. I would recommend getting or making one, very simple, yet effective. I was looking through my wool stash the other night and came across thirty pin loom squares. I think I put them away because I planned on making a bigger blanket. But I looked at them and thought, ‘why not?’

I had already blocked most of them, but one was left. This was carefully blocked.

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I laid out all the squares on the bed.

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Don’t they look a raggy mess! I managed to sew them up quite successfully. I was very impressed with them really as, even after blocking, some squares were bigger than others. But the next day, the blanket got put into a hot bath to soak for ten/fifteen minutes. It was very heavy to get out! I rolled it into towels to squeeze most of the water out. I had already laid out a blanket and two towels on the living room floor and then placed a large piece of cardboard on top. The blanket then got some SERIOUS blocking. I kid you not, I must have used about a thousand pins.

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The squares look mostly the same size now and are mostly in straight rows/columns. I will unpin it tomorrow morning so I hope it will retain its shape! I even got my Mum to steam iron over it to give it a steam blocking too as it seemed to dry very quickly whilst I was pinning. Can’t be too careful, right?

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Please excuse the mess in the background. The blanket looks kinda of small, but I plan on putting a crochet border around it. Using handspun of course!

I’m very excited for this project.

I’ve done some more spinning. Some for the blanket using fibre I found under the stairs (don’t ask…) and some random other fibres.

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The top is Man Loughtan that was actually left on my wheel for ages. I decided it was time to ply it. This was from a fleece I bought at Woolfest last year, very clean and fluffy with lovely light brown tips. Prepped from raw, carded from batts. Batts were put through the carder twice.

The middle wool is Ryeland, also prepped from raw fleece purchased at Woolfest. This was bought in 2014… I think! This was an expensive fleece as it was so beautiful. Lots of silver and greys. I found some carded batts under the stairs and decided to spin them up. It is a nice, chunky spin. Dad wants a hat out of it, but I think it would be far too itchy for his skin! I still have so much fleece to prepare out of this though.

The bottom wool is Cheviot that I dyed with kool-aid, I think in 2013. So, a few years before it finally got spun! This MIGHT be going on my blanket, I’m not sure. Most little bits like this will hopefully go round my  blanket at least once, even if it is just tiny sc’s all around. I found LOADS of this under the stairs, all bright colours. I see some lovely spinning in the future.

What else have I been doing?

I was looking through my wool stash yesterday – look at the photo.

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Yep… I have a lot. The bottom one is full of fibre. Fibre I had completely forgotten I had. Carded Jacobs, angora, sparkly stuff, full braids. I am going to be busy this year as I am going to make sure that that box will be half empty by the end of December. The rest of the big boxes are full of acrylic and mixed yarns. One box is almost completely cotton and the top box is full of just handspun. I want to be able to knit from a lot of my handspun too. I have lots of fleeces to prep, so should have a lot of yarn to knit something decent with. Perhaps another pin loom blanket of natural coloured fleece? All from raw? Different breeds? Ideas, ideas!

In one of the boxes I found a load of crochet squares that I had made years and years ago!I remember crocheting around each square in yellow and then joining four squares together in red. It sounds bad, I know. I sort of cringed when I found it. I laid it out on the bed and decided hang on, no, it’s not THAT bad. I found some matching red, and crocheted the rest of the squares so I had sixteen squares attached. I went round the lot with red and now am working an SC around the border. I plan on doing a few granny square rounds (hdc3 in one sc, miss 2sc, etc). Then a couple of SC to finish.

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It is going to be a mini cot blanket. I’ll get a far better picture in the sunlight when it is finished.

I also remembered that I have seriously been neglecting my lovely Wonder Blanket CAL’s! One is much further on than the other and is only missing this fortnights stitches. I will see if I can do this tomorrow if I finish the above blanket. The other one is missing the last three weeks I think. Lots of catching up to do!

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I have completed almost four squares now! Attic24 blanket is slowly coming along. When I went up to A’s I took the whole lot with me so I could work on that and only that! It amazes me how much time it takes to do each square. I wasn’t best pleased when I left them in the living room on the sofa and Aya peed on them… I rinsed them with soap and water but they now STINK! They need to go in the washing machine.

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You can see the cool and warm colours emerging properly now. I worked on this whilst waiting for my train in Kilmarnock. An hours wait in the station cafe/book shop was well spent!

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I think that is all for now craft wise. I’ll leave you with a few animal photos ❤

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Aretha looks happy! They were tucking into boiled eggs with the shells still on. Absolutly lovely treat and it was a treat for me watching them. ❤

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The ground looks pretty naff at the moment as there have been a lot of heavy rainfalls. They still have plenty of grass, you just can’t see it! They have a lovely big yard though and lots of places to have dust baths and climb and just generally have fun!

Alfie has been giving us a few laughs lately!

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These dogs love their pillows, but Alfie took it one further. Pillow propped up against Freddy and he tucked himself into Mums cardigan and used it as a blanket/scarf. Sooo sweet! He slept for ages like that too. He has many funny poses – such as the meditation pose…

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He is fast asleep! He also sleeps like this –

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He loves sleeping on his back! Mind you, he is lying on his side with Freddy and me just now.

Look at them both – my whole world.

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I love Freds expressions ❤

Have a great evening everyone!

xXx Love Kais xXx

Hello everyone 🙂

It’s been a busy week or so what with being back at school. Gosh, it’s like I’ve never been away! I’ve had a lovely, relaxing time this weekend and enjoyed it, just doing some crafty stuff and watching what I wanted on my laptop.

There is a CAL (crochet a long) going on on Facebook and I thought it would be great fun to join in, just like I did with one a year or two ago. I saw some people had started two and I thought ‘utter madness!’ Then after I did the six rows required, I thought…. hang on, that was fun, I want to do it again. So, now I have two blankets started! It will hopefully make a decent dent in my acrylic stash and give me two gorgeous blankets into the bargain. No-one can ever have enough home made blankets, right?

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I really should weave in the ends straight away as there is nothing worse than having hundreds to do at the end…

I’ve also used up a bit (finally) of the gorgeous cotton yarns I bought last year from woolwarehouse.com. I haven’t made baby items in a while, and this hat was a lovely, quick crochet.

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You can get the pattern from here –

http://www.mooglyblog.com/blackberry-salad-striped-baby-bonnet/

The only thing I changed was the stitch count. It says to start with 58 for a 0-6 month old. I found it far, far too long so I took off 20 stitches and made it to 38 stitches instead. This would fit a 0-3 month well, I imagine. I did three or four rows with the original 58 stitches but it was too long for me. Another thing that I found odd (just personal preference) was that it started at the front of the bonnet, and decreased stitches at the back into the middle. I prefer bonnet patterns to start at the back and increase stitches. But again, just personal preference. I would make it again. It would make a lovely addition to any outfit, just changing the colours as you go.

The last big news from me? It’s snowing! Not so much news as it has happened over half of the UK this weekend. The dogs have loved being in it, and we have had some gorgeous photos taken. The chickens were a bit peeved at first but perked up when they were able to rummage around in the garden.

Alfie loves looking out of the window to see the snow outside.

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I’m off to watch some more Prisoner: Cell Block H. Does anyone else watch this??

Have a great night everyone,

xXx Love Kais xXx

Hello everyone,

Been a few busy days yet again. Getting back into the swing of teaching and not having as much time for my own craft activities.

I’ve been trying out some soap making and I love it! I need to buy some more melt and pour soap base soon as most of my supply has gone. Too much enthusiasm!

10342501_10208421306396556_7757856518952420219_n I’m really happy with it. I used a silicone loaf mould and I think the result is pretty good. I like the rectangle like soaps, but this one has sloping edges. The roses on top are also soap from a small rose mould. Most of them came off because I did not put them on top when the top was still sticky.

My favourite part was cutting it into blocks when it was hard enough.

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What do you think? It lathers up really well and we now have soap all over the house! I also had a bit of fun with some other moulds . . .

12391404_10208416333512237_6740030838972379392_n The LEGO ones are great! The heart ones were thicker but I cut them in half, so I could use them for things like this –

10530672_10208416351912697_1288020651576461263_n I used a white base on the bottom, with two heart embeds in the middles, and then clear base poured on top. I used a rectangular mould with six inserts. The soaps got pretty wet after being left in the room which was a bit annoying. I’ve wrapped each piece of soap in greaseproof paper and put them in a large plastic clip box.

What else?!

I’ve finished my beautiful woollen blanket!

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I’ve started a new CAL blanket. Only six rows to start with and the next lot is not up until the 21st January. Oh well, maybe I can make two?

I have also been doing a little bit of sewing too. I found an old, blue, polka-dot dress in my fabric stash so thought that I would make it into something useful. I have made it into an apron, so my clothes won’t get messy when I’m working with fleece or soap.

6033_10208442825814528_572755638986620374_n First attempt – very simple, waiting to be sewn.

10410801_10208449185173508_9117660978298288333_n Here it is with added pockets, sash sewn on and the bit around the neck too. I think it could possibly be a little bit longer and the bit around the neck a bit shorter. Pleased for a first attempt though!

And a gorgeous photo for finish –

8276_10208454309141604_529891883902836155_n My sweetheart not allowing anyone to take his Christmas present away!

Have a great night everyone.

xXx Love Kais xXx

 

 

Hello everyone,

It’s the night before I have to finish the weekend and go back to work. I can hardly believe I have been at this job for about five months now. I love every minute of it, even though it is a lot of hard work. I’ve had a good weekend and feel like I have achieved a few things crafty wise. The photos that I will show you have been from the entire month of May. I haven’t had a great deal of crafty time, but I’m hoping to get more done on the weekends than I have previously.

I’ve been working on a crochet baby blanket. This one is SO beautiful I had to buy the pattern straight away. The words spell out ‘Your first breath took ours away.’ How sweet is that?! I am using Drops I love 5. It is 80p a ball, so I filled up the online basket to get enough to make this blanket.

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I’m using white cotton from a local yarn shop. It’s dishcloth cotton, but it is so nice to use.

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I also finally, FINALLY used my weaving loom! I was going to cut everything off, but then I saw it had loads of thread left to weave on. I grabbed some of my white cotton in the thought  of making some dish towels, but when the time came to cut it off and cut it into separate bits, I couldn’t do it, so now it is a nice, white cotton scarf.

I haven’t worked up the courage to thread it all back up yet…

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A couple of newborn crochet hats. These crochet up REALLY quickly. I did the blue one first, then decided to reverse the colours. I like the blue one better.

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I started making a sock the other day. I didn’t use a pattern or anything, just sort of made it up as I went along. I think the sole is too long and wide. Not too sure where to go with this. I will probably frog it.

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Look at this beautiful fleece! I visited a craft fair last weekend, but it was disappointing because it was so small. However, I got chatting to one woman there and she informed me that just up the road they had some sheep shearing demonstrations and spinning. Me and Mum went there straight away and we saw some gorgeous Zwartble sheep. I couldn’t believe how big they are! The owners were very nice and gave me one of their fleeces. It is HUGE. I took some photos of it this morning after unravelling it, but they are on the other camera. I have washed some (JUST remembered I have left it outside… I do hope it doesn’t rain!) and am just waiting for it to dry. It seemed to wash really well and was pretty clean. I look forward to carding it and spinning it.

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I thought I would get the trusty drum carder up and used for a bit. It has sat on my shelf for a good few months now, which is a shame. I raided my wool tops box and found some bits and pieces. The red one is a mixture of kool-aid dyed Poll Dorset sheep fleece (prepared from raw fleece) with some sparkly trilobal nylon carded in too. The blue one is a mixture of German sheep fleece wool tops, with some blue bamboo fibre. Also, with some white sparkly trilobal nylon in too. Both have been spun up.

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A very poor photo, but it is the two on the left. The two on the right are the darkest of the following photo –

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It is showing a blend of colours from white all the way to blue. Very soft and smooth. It has been lovely to spin too. I simply spun the whole batt into a single, then Andean plyed it together.

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It is a mixture of white German sheep wool tops, blue merino tops and white sparkly trilobal nylon. I am unsure yet of what to make with it, but I shall keep thinking!

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I found out my old vintage carders this afternoon after I had a sudden craving to make some rolags! I have some alpaca fibre that needs spinning but it was quite difficult just spinning it straight from the fibre. I cleaned these up the best I could and then started on the rolags.

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They do look funny in the box! I think I did fourteen altogether. I couldn’t believe how much easier it was to spin alpaca this way! However, it didn’t take too long to spin them all up. I’ve been looking at blending boards lately… they look fun!

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And here is the resulting yarn! Very soft, but my hands were filthy afterwards! I’ve left it drying upstairs in the bathroom.

So, that’s been my crafty month so far! Before I go, here are some lovely pet photos of the month. I LOVE this one, it looks like me and Freddy are just in the middle of nowhere – the grass and colour is so beautiful.

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Little man hiding in the field!

And a cute one of Aya, just before I left A’s house yesterday.

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Look at that face!

Anyway, it’s getting late and I must go to bed. I hope you all have a lovely evening.

xXx Love Kais xXx

Ok, so this is it. The end of 2014. Can’t believe that it is the end of the second year of my blog! Last year I wrote about things I feel I have achieved and things that I wanted to achieve.

What I have achieved this year

  • I have been horse riding.
  • I have wall climbed! (I am immensely proud of this one).
  • I have been to the top of Blackpool Tower – TWICE!
  • I finally went to Germany!
  • I am now a high A2, low B1 language level in German.
  • I have been abroad on my own – full independence!
  • I have a new teaching job.
  • I got a summer job teaching English.
  • I finally went to a pub gig and did some dancing.
  • I rescued some more chickens.
  • My boyfriend and I got a flat.
  • I learnt how to sew.

Looking back over that list I am very proud of myself.

This is last years list. I will cross out what I feel I have achieved.

Things I would like to try/ achieve in 2014.

  • Learn long draw
  • Dye using proper dyes
  • Learn entrelac
  • Crochet a baby garment
  • Knit another pair of socks
  • Get as many of my kits done as possible
  • Finish CAL blanket
  • Do something with Tunisian crochet
  • Sew up my dpn holder
  • Sew the Christmas advent calendar
  • Create my own knitting pattern
  • Make some felt kits
  • Get lots of more sheep fleece prepped

Yeah, looking good! I kept meaning to sew the Christmas Advent Calendar but never got around to doing it which is a shame. Me and Mum will sew it for next year. I tried having a go at Tunisian Crochet again but I don’t think it is for me. I used the fabric for the dpn holder for making baby pants, haha. Knitting pattern, hmm, thinking about I think I did sort of adapt a knitting pattern so that is kinda my own pattern, right? As for getting kits done… urgh! Hardly any done. I really, really need to.

Ok, this is what I would like to achieve by the end of 2015!

  • Have at least ten baby items sewn, aging from newborn to age 2/3.
  • At least ten baby items knitted, aging from newborn to 2/3.
  • At least ten baby items crocheted, aging from newborn to 2/3. (Can you see the links here??)
  • To get every single fleece in the shed and porch washed and carded into gorgeous, soft, fluffy batts.
  • To spin up ten batts/tops/rovings that I have in my spinning box.
  • To spin up an entire fleece.
  • To knit/crochet/weave something using the handspun yarn under my bed.
  • To learn to weave on my weaving loom.
  • To weave on a pin loom and create a blanket from the squares using my handspun wool.
  • To not buy any yarn/wool until I have used up as much as possible from the cabinet. (See how long this one lasts!)
  • To lose at least two stone.
  • To reborn at least three reborn doll kits.
  • To go back to Germany at least once.
  • To have something I have wanted since I was little.
  • To make a baby blanket.

I think that is enough for now! I am looking forward to the end of next year to see if I have achieved any of these! I really, REALLY want to lose two stone so will be doing (after the New Year dinner) the dreaded diet and exercise… if possible! I would like to do some more reborn doll kits but will just sell them when finished. I already have two, it’s just the crafting that I love. And sooooooooo much wool craft – it makes me so happy to think of all that lovely wool!

Now, to see some photos of what I have achieved this year. Sadly, not nearly as much as last year but I have been working an awful lot. 🙂

January

JANUARY

February

FEBRUARY 1 FEBRUARY2

March

MARCH

April

APRIL

July

JULY

September

SEPTEMBER1 SEPTEMBER2 SEPTEMBER3 SEPTEMBER4

SEPTEMBER5

October

OCTOBER1 OCTOBER2

December 

DECEMBER1 DECEMBER2 DECEMBER3 DECEMBER4

Ok everybody. I hate this bit… it always feels so sad knowing that this is the end of a long year. I hope that everyone has a very, very Happy New Year.

Make sure you do all that you want to do. Love deeply, be happy and don’t regret anything.

Happy New Year!

xXx Love Kais xXx

It’s certainly been a while since I lasted posted. The longest gap yet I think. I have had a few reasons for this though. First is that I was in Germany for a month. Gosh… that doesn’t seem real really. It was only a few weeks ago I came back and it hardly feels like I was there at all. I miss it so much, but I know I will be back there one day. Maybe next year, if I am lucky.

Here are a couple of my favourite photos.

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Koln am Rhein. This bridge was very long – the Hohenzelle Brucke. Absolutely stunning. If you lean over the side you can see the ships and boats going underneath. The first few times that I saw it, the bridge was pretty empty except for a few tourists. The next time I went it was so busy I could barely move! I love the idea of the locks on the bridge. You put the name of your lover or loved ones on the bridge. You lock the padlocks (which are engraved or written on) and then throw the keys into the water below. This symbolises ever lasting love. (Apparently, if you split up, you have to dive into the water to retrieve the keys). I, of course, had to join in this beatiful tradition.

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Me and my boyfriend, my parents, my beautiful, beautiful dogs, and above, my wonderful family 🙂 I took a photo of the surrounding area and the number above the bridge so I can hopefully find them the next time.

Here is a quick picture of me on the way back home (after a 24 hour bus journey!!) I was almost home… I look so tired.

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If you would like to see some more photos of the Cologne trip you can view them here –

https://adventuresincologne.wordpress.com/

I created a little blog so I could show the photos to my family whilst I was away. I was there for a month but have only sixteen days worth of photos up. I need to get around doing the rest later.

I saw some beautiful craft shops in Germany, and the craft book section in Mayersche book store was beautiful. They sold sewing patterns too.

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I loved this sign on a clothes shop window!

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Knit Club!

I bought a fantastic crochet book from Mayersche shop. It is a pattern book for a really cute set of dolls with an entire wardrobe.

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It was E12,99, which is kind of expensive. Ah, who am I kidding, it IS expensive. I worked out though, it was the same price if I had bought it online at home. I think it works out to about £9/10. The illustrations are so pretty. As soon as I got home I found out my favourite Patons Smoothie yarn and started. (After I had translated several of the instructions). It didn’t take me too long to create the basic doll.

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After that I created some mini pants (whilst watching The Apprentice. Anybody been watching the UK Apprentice show? Last one was horrendous, was so annoyed with it) and then a little jacket.

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I haven’t done any features on the face apart from a teeny yarn nose. I think she is cute. And it gives me a great excuse to buy some more Patons Smoothie. I cannot rate that yarn highly enough!

Mum had bought back my jumper knitting project from my Nans house and it was waiting for me in my room when I got back. It didn’t take me too long to finish the sleeve and sew it up. It was a little too tight the first sleeve I sewed, so I unpicked it and sewed it as loose as possible. Still a bit tight but wearable. I love it.

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I had planned on knitting some socks when I was away but never got around to doing them. I started them a week ago and have them finished. I’m wearing them right now actually.

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I used Sirdar Crofter yarn that I had been given ages ago. I used Silvers Sock Class tutorial to make these.

http://www.cometosilver.com/socks/

Absolutely fantastic tutorial for anyone who would like to learn how to knit socks, either on four needles, two at a time toe up or one sock at a time on circular needles. I think I can remember how to do it without a tutorial now which is really helpful. This is my second two at a time toe up socks on circular needles. Invaluable. I don’t think I would like to knit socks singly anymore, haha.

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I added a bit of cabling and a picot edge bind off. The cabling was my own design. Not fantastic, but I like it. It might have worked better on non stripy yarn.

I bought some mini Christmas decorations back from Aldi in Germany. They were E2,99 and you could make six little people from it. It had an awful lot in the pack!

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I love the little knitted hats. I did a bit of one and Mum did the rest. They look so cute! She put our initials on each of the angels.

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They are hanging on a little tree in our hallway at the moment. They look so pretty. I need to get a photo of that.

The following pictures are of the little project I finished today. I fell in love with it when I saw the pattern online. It did not take too long to make and I want to make loads!

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I then put it on Christina doll.

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Haha, I love it. The pom pom took aggges. I haven’t made one in such a long time!

Anyway, I’d better go. Here are a few pictures of my babies… I was so happy to see them again. I couldn’t believe how much I missed them. It’s Alfies birthday today too, exactly one year old! Happy Birthday Alfie!

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Alfie fell asleep like this…

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Gorgeous boys together. Love you Freddy and Alfie.

Have a great night everyone,

xXx Love Kais xXx

Hello again everyone.

It’s been a busy few months, hence my rather long absence from this blog. I’ve missed writing it but I’ve been rather preoccupied with work and such. From starting out contracted with only a day and a half a week, this past few months I’ve been working almost every day. Sadly, today was my last day. I thought I’d be ok but nope, the tears started flowing. The staff were lovely and bought me a beautiful bouquet of flowers. I’ll have to get a photo of them and show you. Some of the kids made/bought me cards and I got a few chocolates!

Anyway, it just means that I’ll have a bit more time to myself, after the holidays that is.

I got a summer teaching job!

I’ll be teaching foreign children English. I look forward to it very much. It’s going to be for six whole weeks at a residential school, which means six weeks away from home! I’ll be ok, but I bet I’ll be sobbing when I have to go. It’s down in England, in Worcester. It’s a beautiful place and only twenty minutes from my Nans house, meaning I have some family there so I’m not totally alone. There are great school trips the kids go on, lovely evening activities and the teaching will be fun too. I teach three hours of English a day to a class of fifteen children. The first few days there are training days for the staff and then the kids come in. I hope that it is single person accommodation – otherwise some poor person is going to have to suffer with my snoring!

I went to Woolfest the other day 😀 I’d waited 52 weeks for it!! It did not disappoint. The fleece sale was great and it had changed a bit too. Instead of the fleece checking table being behind the payment desk it was at the side meaning it was far easier to check. I didn’t use the checking table last year as it seemed to be too much hassle cramming in past people. I used it plenty of times this time! A few fleeces I would have gone for from first glance in the bag were rejected because the inside of the fleece was poor. I remember seeing one that was a high price for something so awful – badly felted and dirty. I bought eleven fleeces this year. I only bought seven I think last year from Woolfest and I used all of them up, so didn’t feel bad in buying eleven this year. Image

I can’t really remember which ones I got, but I will try my best.

  1. Shetland X
  2. Wensleydale X (shearling)
  3. Black Welsh Mountain
  4. Shetland X (shearling)
  5. Whitefaced Woodland (shearling)
  6. Badger Faced Hogg (or something similar to that!)
  7. Jacob
  8. Herdwick
  9. Ryeland shearling (GORGEOUS!!!)

I cannot remember the other two though. Absolutely gorgeous. One of the Shetland X’s was really badly packed but was only £2.50. I thought, what the heck? I bought it to check it out. It wasn’t anything great by all means, but I will get something out of it.

I was very surprised to see that it had been rolled up (or rather, squished up) and then held together with a cable tie or two!

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My Dad is modelling it for you in the picture, ready with the cutters! You can see why I went for it in the first place, with the nice crimpy bits on the front. I won’t lie – most of it was rubbish, but I got some ok bits from it. This is what the fleece looked like all spread out.

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Very dirty, very dusty. I haven’t washed it yet, but I have pretty much skirted everything yucky from it.

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Some good bits of the fleece.

My ‘get rid of’ pile and ‘keep’ pile.

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I got some beautiful Ryeland fleece. This was the most expensive at £20 – most I’ve ever paid for one!

Ryeland

These pictures speak for themselves. Beautifully sheared, so soft and light.

Ryeland 2

The size of it! It swamps little Alfie, haha. The bottom left picture shows the different colours on this one fleece alone!

I will have to put more of the fleece on another post, my eyes  are getting a little tired staring at the screen. I’ve washed a fleece this afternoon, a lovely Shetland Shearling X and it’s drying outside in the sunshine now. It was so hot this afternoon! I didn’t spin it out like I should have so it is still a bit drippy. Next time I shall def. spin the water out.

I look forward to carding it on my Classic Carder and then trying to make roving using the new diz I bought from HilltopCloud at Woolfest.

I also bought –

A diz (Hilltop Cloud)

4 x wool tops  (Wingham Wools)

Carded Cotton (Wingham Wools)

Trilobal nylon, both gold and silvery white (Wingham Wools)

Blue alpaca tops, 100g (Wingham Wools)

All in one Easy Dyes (ColourCraft)

Dye squeezy bottles x 2 (Colour Craft)

Extra large syringes for dyeing x 2 (D and T Designs)

Purple dyed silk cocoons (Hilltop Cloud)

Alpaca 250g

Gotland fleece 500g (Eden Gotland)

Alpaca seconds x 3 huge bags (Why Not Alpaca – I think!)

Felting needles, extra fine, size 38 (Karl Hof? or something like that!)

Knitting magazines (Charity Stall)

Wool nepps (Wingham Wools)

I THINK that’s all I bought from Woolfest. We nipped into HobbyCraft on our way home and I bought a gorgeous cream metal container – looks a bit like a bin with handles, but it’s very pretty. I will use it for my washed fleece.

bin

Oooh, I didn’t mention – we got some more chickens! They are called Grace and Martha 😀 They are both beautiful girls with quirky personalities. Grace likes to jump on your arm and sit on your shoulder like a parrot 😀 Martha likes demanding to be let out of the run and is first out on the grass!

Martha

Hello, Martha! Rose in the background having a drink of water and Donna striding across the run! Gorgeous Donna 😀

Grace and Martha

 

Grace at the back and Martha at the front, checking out their surroundings.

Grace

An example of Grace sitting comfortably. She roosted happily on top of my hand for ages. They didn’t get on well with Donna and Rose for a while but now they are as thick as thieves and adore each other. 😀

So there we are – just a little peek into what has been happening the last couple of months. I’m going to go now and try and finish as much of this last sleeve as possible.

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This is just the front as an example. I’ve finished front, back and one sleeve. I’m only needing to do one last sleeve and I’m done, yay! I’ve never knitted an entire jumper for myself before so I’m very pleased.

Okey dokey then, have a great night everyone!

xXx Love Kais xXx