Tuesday, 29 March 2011

Fun with Cotton

Where does the time go? It's been a couple of weeks since I last posted, so what have I been doing??

Well, there's been work, and visiting family, and even a night out - a very rare event, which knocked me flat for two days! It was fun at the time though...heh heh.

Last night I attended a talk at NUI, Galway on The Story of Lace, given by Veronica Stuart of the Traditional Lacemakers of Ireland. I was delighted to be asked by Galway Crochet Craft to demonstrate some crochet at the event, alongside two of Veronica's very talented lace-making students. I met some very funny and interesting women on the night, and of course I'd now like to try a lace-making workshop. *Sigh*... :)

Apart from that, yes I have been crocheting. Not as much as I'd like mind you, but there never seems to be enough time! I've made some flowers:

I've also made a couple of hats, and am working on another scarf. :)
That's all for now folks - but a few questions for you:

How do you fit crochet or other creative arts into your daily routine?
Are you lucky enough to be crafting full-time, and if so, what do you think are the pros and cons of crafting for a living?
Do you enjoy it as much now that it's no longer just a hobby?

Please feel free to leave a comment, I'd love to hear your views. :)

Saturday, 12 March 2011

Freebie Friday!

On Freebie Fridays I'll be seeking out links to free patterns and giveaways for crochet and other crafts. So pop by for Friday night updates. :)


The talented crochet designer Allesandra Hayden of Just Be Happy has just announced a great giveaway to celebrate reaching 2000+ fans! There are some gorgeous kid's clothes and accessories on offer from Allesandra and some of her crafting friends - details for the giveaway are here - this offer closes on March 18th at 9p.m. Pacific time, so get clicking!

Crochet Me is giving away 5 free crochet lace patterns this month - all you have to do is join the Crochet Me community. You can download the patterns here. Enjoy!

If you're in the U.S., Red Heart Yarns have a super 75 Days of Giveaways to celebrate 75 years in business. This offer started on February 14th and finishes on April 28th.

Good luck!

Monday, 7 March 2011

Update - Completed Rose Scarf...and a Blog Award!

We apologise for the delay in transmission...

I've spent more time looking at blogs than actually crocheting this week! I've been blown away (and a little intimidated) by the talent out there. Inspiring stuff - more of that later.

Anyway, here's the finished rose motif scarf, as promised:

It's finished with a picot edging. I quite like the picot stitch, it's very simple, but gives a lovely finish to a crocheted piece. I'm starting to get the knack of these scarves now, and can whip one up in an afternoon, provided my laptop is switched OFF, no distractions.

In other news...

Aideen, the queen of scrapbook loveliness herself, has kindly given me a...


This award is all about getting lesser-known blogs out there so with that in mind, it's time to pay it forward.

What you need to do is thank the person who gave you the award and link back to them (well it's just good manners innit?) - so thanks Aideen. ;)

Secondly, you need to share seven things about yourself:


1. I live with my fiancé in a tiny one-bed apartment. :)

2. I still don't know what I want to be when I grow up, but I hope it involves kids and/or the outdoors.

3. As a child, I had a slightly OCD thing about even numbers, specifically the number eight. I counted everything in eights!

4. I'm quite shy, and I blush a LOT. I try not to get embarrassed about it though, for obvious reasons.

5. As well as crochet, I'm also interested in horticulture and sustainable living.

6. I drink an obscene amount of tea.

7. It took me half an hour to come up with the previous six points (I don't do well when put on the spot - stage fright! :D).

Thirdly, you need to nominate seven other blogs for the Stylish Blogger Award.

So here are my nominations:

1. loveandasandwich: I absolutely love Chelsea Bloxom's plush designs - especially the Monsteroctopus. :) Very unique and lovable gifts - give one of her critters a home today!

2. Cottage Garden Studios - Sarah's blog is packed with original drawings, paintings and crafts, not to mention stunning photography.

3. Another Sarah, this time over at Fairyface Designs. Check out her gorgeous quilts and kiddies clothes.

4. Chase Clark's blog Oh The Cuteness! is a treasure trove of crochet patterns, yummy recipes and fab photos - and I love the How-Tuesdays! :)

5. Fiona at Cute As A Button has a special talent for breathing new life into seemingly ordinary things, turning new and vintage buttons into cute and quirky jewellery. Just so sweet. :)

6. Pippablue is a gorgeous craft shop in Galway, selling beautiful yarn and fabric. Pippablue also hold knitting and sewing workshops in the store.

7. http://www.i-do-it-yourself.com - great ideas for DIY weddings. :)

Three of the blogs nominated are Irish blogs - so hooray for the craft revival in Ireland!

Lastly, leave a comment on your nominees' blogs, to let your 7 people know you have sent them the award so they too can pass it along!

So there you have it, I'm off to crochet some flowers now, just because...

Happy crafting!


Tuesday, 22 February 2011

Rose Scarf

This is the wool I'm using for a Rose Motif scarf for my sister: Tivoli Celtic Aran 100g in shade 954 - a navy blue. I can't remember where the original pattern came from, but will include a reference with the finished piece.

The starting flower for the motif.

A second round of petals.

A finished square.

This is the third rose motif scarf I've made, they're really fun to do and can be made to any size - super slim with a silk or cotton yarn, or super-chunky to make a lovely wrap! Thanks to Mary at Galway Crochet Craft for teaching me this pattern.

Stay tuned to see the finished piece!


Here's a rather grainy pic (taken with my now almost-vintage phone) of a girl's poncho to suit a 9-10 year old. It's made with Tivoli Celtic Aran superwash wool in a woven (or "seed") stitch, and is finished with a picot edging. I made this one before Christmas and a second one in blue just last week, for the same girl - I hope they keep her toasty and warm. :) Tivoli Aran weight wool is machine washable on a gentle cycle, these ponchos should be dried flat to keep their shape.

I'll soon be on the hunt for some lightweight yarn to make some more ponchos for those chilly spring and summer evenings; we get plenty of those here in the West of Ireland! Maybe I should add a hood...we do get the odd sprinkle of rain too...;)

Sorry about the picture quality, will try to upload a better version soon!


Admitting your wool addiction is the first step...

So here's the reason I've decided to start this blog. Having crocheted a few Christmas presents, including a VERY long scarf for my dad (which nearly divested me of the will to live), I put away all my wool and hooks until a couple of weeks ago. I knew I had a few projects to finish though, so I decided to face the music and sort out THE STASH. Having piled it all onto our little dining table, I realised I had developed a bit of an unhealthy addiction to wool. But then, there are worse habits!

Since then, I've made a tiny dent in the dreaded stash. But I've also had to buy more wool for new projects, sigh... ;)

So this blog is my way of motivating myself to keep on top of the wool mountain!

Here's a couple of the items I've put together in the past week:

This baby matinee coat is for a mum-to-be. I used Sirdar Snuggly DK in snow white - it really is snuggly soft!! I chose these sweet yellow teddy bear buttons, so it will suit a boy or girl:

I finished this cute pink smock top last night - it took about 2 days. It's for my friend's little girl Alexia, who's 2 years old. The pattern is taken from "Crochet for Babies and Toddlers", by Betty Barnden, published by New Holland Publishers (Available at eason.ie).

It still needs two buttons for the shoulders, which means I have to go shopping, aw shucks... ;D

A Close-up of the flower motif:

I also completed a girl's poncho for a lovely lady in County Mayo, but sadly forgot to take pics before I mailed it to her. Will try to upload photos of one I made previously, stay tuned!

Thanks for reading, I'm new to this blogging lark so I welcome your feedback and queries! :)


Hello All!

Hi all!  I'm Marie from Galway, Ireland.  I've recently rediscovered the art of crochet, thanks to my fiancĂ©'s lovely mum Mary.  She teaches crochet classes with a friend and neighbour, Anne, in Galway city (find them at http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=269902317782). 

And crafting obviously runs in Mary's family - check out my future sister-in-law Aideen's gorgeous scrapbook and card creations here!: piecesbyaideen.blogspot.com

When you're done ooh-ing and aah-ing at her beautiful mini-scrapbooks, don't forget to check back in here, where I'll be posting pictures of my crochet work - I'd love to get your feedback.