Thursday, December 06, 2007

Woops what happened there?

I don't know why tiger got cut in half.

I have been doing some crocheting!

I have bought a lovely new book with crochet motifs in and have been having a go at some of them. I found that I could follow a pattern after all, I know the basic stitches and techniques, although I find I get on just as well by looking at the picture of the finished motif. I don't think I could write a pattern though, I will leave that to someone else!

The tiger motif is just the right size for a dolls house rug. I love the way the crochet stitches give a ragged look, just like tiger fur. There are all sorts of possibilities based on this one....

I found a lovely lacy motif which I have put together to make a dolls house bedspread. It took quite a long time to make but looks really pretty now it is finished.

Perhaps I have gone through my crochet phase for the moment; my first love is still knitting after all. I have now started a Rowan wool jumper so that will keep me busy for a while.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Just had a pattern accepted for the Knitting-Pattern-A-Day calendar for 2009. This publication is great, gives lots of ideas for new designs and ways of using up spare yarn.
Otherwise still knitting as usual, no big projects on the go at the moment so just filling spare time with knitting tiny bits from my patterns to go onto ebay. Have been doing a bit of crocheting too, making tiny blankets, but my crocheting skills are limited. I love doing granny squares type though where you just keep going round and round with trebles. I can keep that up for hours.
We are off for an autumn break to Amsterdam at the weekend, the weather apparently is mostly cold! Hope to see lots of Van Gogh and canals no doubt.

Sunday, September 02, 2007

This week I have mostly been.........

........knitting tiny toys. Had an order for ALL my toy patterns to be knitted. This lot are off to Spain.

Friday, August 10, 2007

New 'I Love Knitting Shop'!

After not very good service from the supplier of my last on-line I Love Knitting shop, I have now set up a new one! Apologies that the link from the webpage has been broken for some time, but hopefully all is in order now.
Otherwise all is good, enjoying the warm weather at last even if it is not so good for knitting. One of the lovely ladies at my knitting club came up with a new idea for me which involves a completely new range of patterns to design, so I am working hard on that. Still at the thinking stage but hope to have something to show soon.
Our knitting club is known as 'Knit and Natter' and we meet on alternate Thursdays at the South Lodge Hotel, Brighton Road, Lower Beeding (near Horsham). We are a thriving club of about 30 members, with about 8 turning up on a typical evening. We enjoy sharing ideas and patterns, and have a good chat in very pleasant surroundings, overlooking the Sussex Downs. I am the only knitter who works in the mini-scale, but other members produce some very inventive knitting, with lots of colours and beautiful textures. I always find it a great inspiration. More details on request if anyone is interested in joining!
I have been quite busy selling patterns, and am finding that my latest idea of selling 1 and 2 ply yarn on Ebay seems to be taking off. It is not easy to find such thin yarn in the shops, but I am able to buy in bulk and sell in small quantities for the mini-knitter. Just need to keep that kitten well out of the way when I am winding!
No listing on Ebay for a couple of weeks though. We are away in a couple of weeks time, then I am on Jury Service for a possible couple of weeks. I am told that Jury Service can involve a lot of waiting around, will I be the first person to take along my knitting?

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Lots of new jumpers

I have been busy designing new jumpers in 1:12 dolls house scale. These are kits, providing all the yarn and haberdashery required, so no need to buy lots of different colours. My favourite is the rabbit!

Saturday, July 07, 2007

I have learned a valuable new lesson this week...

...kittens and wool don't mix. There should be at least two closed doors between a new kitty and any project involving knitting needles and wool.

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Latest magazine article

I received my preview copy of 'Dolls House Magazine' today, with my latest article. This is a general description of miniature knitting, with lots of hints and tips to get the beginner started. They have taken some lovely photos of my work and hopefully this will inspire lots of new knitters!

Thursday, May 17, 2007

What a strange find

So today (as it wasn't raining for a change) I spent the whole day in the garden. I prepared all the borders and put out the bedding plants, so now all ready for summer. I was pulling up an old plant which was spilling over the wall, when I noticed something round just sitting on top of the wall. I was going to throw it away but on closer look it turned out to be a coin.
I have looked on the internet (whatever you have got someone is selling one on ebay) and it turns out to be a French coin dating from the 1790's, minted in Paris - not a very good photo, it is much clearer in real life. On the back it says Cinq Centimes L'An .... (unfortunately the year is obliterated but it seems the number usually varies from 5 to 7 ish).
So how did it end up in my garden, and what was it doing just sitting on the wall? Presumably it was pushed up by a plant and left for me to find. I wonder who was the last person to hold it? Could it have been dropped by someone at the private school which was on this site many years ago?
How strange.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

New pattern

This is the new bedspread pattern I have developed. I have done it as a kit, with all the yarn included, in both a pink and a blue version. There is enough yarn left over to make a matching rug.

It looks very effective when finished, quite an intricate pattern, but once you get in to it not too difficult.
I have been to see a commercial printer this week and my brochures are now in their system, should be available in a lovely glossy version in a couple of weeks. Will make life much easier for me, and stop me cursing at the computer printer quite so often when it misfeeds or prints one side on the wrong side of another! (Why do printers work perfectly when you are in the room but misbehave as soon as you go to make a cup of tea?).
I will be having another article printed soon, which normally provokes a rash of requests for brochures, so I will be all ready to go!
Otherwise bitstobuy has been fairly quiet the last couple of weeks. Perhaps no-one feels like knitting when the weather is so nice and warm.
I am feeling fairly patterned-out now, but still have a few ideas in the pipeline. Time to catch up on all that other knitting and refresh the brain cells.
Oh and if Mrs D Lovatt happens to read this - thanks for your order and cheque, but there was no delivery address on the order form and I can't trace you! I haven't cashed the cheque of course, just hoping that you realise and get in touch.

Sunday, April 15, 2007

More wedding photos

Beeptwo is doing a sterling job on her blog in showing more wedding photos; she has now got some of the Indian ceremony up there. The official photos of the English ceremony are available on the photographers site for about another 6 weeks I believe.
I have taken the plunge and signed up for, so have now opened a shop to see how it goes. There are loads of lovely hand made things on this site, there are some very talented people out there. Will be interesting to see if I have any sales. I am also thinking now about supplying my patterns via etsy and ebay by attachment to an email, so that customers can download them instantly. It will mean that there is no P&P to pay for the customer, and it will save me printing costs, so should be of benefit all round. I will have to change the format of the leaflets from Publisher to Word, but apart from the time it will take, it shouldn't be too difficult. Another project to keep me busy.
Otherwise I am knitting up my new bedspread pattern, more news soon.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

What a wonderful wedding weekend

So beepone and her man are now husband and wife. Not many Mums and Dads get to see their daughter get married twice in one weekend!

Wedding 1 was at Coombe Abbey near Warwick on Saturday 7th April. The sun shone and everything was perfect.

Wedding 2 was at the Hilton Coventry on Sunday 8th April and was perfect all over again. Can't wait to see all the photos and DVDs!

Congratulations to Jennifer and Ram and well done to everyone who managed to stay the course for what was a long and tiring weekend!

Sunday, April 01, 2007

Me and him outdoors had a lovely walk this afternoon. It was blowy but sunny and quite dry underfoot so a very pleasant outing - we did 2 1/2 hours round and about Horsham. Him is busy photographing the countryside around to put images up on geograph, a very interesting project!

Saturday, March 31, 2007

More new patterns

Have been quite busy this week finalising some new miniature knitting patterns (ie knitting them over and over to proof the instructions). I have an outfit for a lady doll, consisting of a cardigan, skirt and top, with instructions on how to make a pearl necklace to go with it.

I have also finished a pattern for a belted car coat, hat and trousers. This one developed from a design I was asked to make for a customer in America, who was making a 'bag' lady doll!

I have nearly finished a new bedspread miniature pattern kit in 1:12 scale which I am quite pleased with, more on that soon. I need to knit a couple of versions and they do take quite a while to make.

I am hoping to have some more work published this summer in one or more of the dolls house magazines - more information when I have the final details!

I have enquired this week about having my brochure professionally printed. At the moment I print them off myself on the computer but I get through so many print cartridges! Not to say the frustration when the printer misfeeds or I manage to get the wrong page on the back of another. It may not be any more expensive than buying print cartridges to have the finished brochure printed, but I think the art work to set it up might be prohibitive. I will have to think about it very hard to see if I can justify the outlay, and also have to think that as I update it with new patterns quite often it could go out of date. I have had some customers think that because my leaflets are self-printed on non-glossy paper, that I have photocopied someone else's work, or that they are somehow not 'official' patterns. I can assure everyone that they are all my own work, and they do cost me a significant amount to print! It is not possible to have every leaflet professionally printed as I don't sell enough of each design to justify the cost.

I have had a lot of hits on the webpage asking for a copy of the brochure, so it was obviously of use adding the button to be able to do this. Strange how sometimes I get requests coming from the same area (I had a spate of orders from Tyne and Wear). It makes me wonder if I have had some publicity I don't know about, or if I have been mentioned at a Dolls House Club. The link on the webpage to the 'I love knitting' is down at the moment - the external site has undergone some changes and we haven't yet been able to pin it down.

So next weekend we have the big wedding(s) of the year, when beepone and Ram finally get it together! I have got the big hat(s) and the chocolate fountain is ordered, so nothing holding us back now. Might need a few days to recover before I am up to blogging (or knitting) again!

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

My new stash!

I have got around to sorting out my new stash of yarn which I bought in New Zealand. Firstly, I found a wonderful knitting shop in Auckland (no web page unfortunately) which sold lovely pure wool local yarn made by Touch. The first one shown here is a hand painted DK Touch yarn made from 65% pure wool, 35% possum. Possum is very light and very warm, so I am told that my 3 skeins of 100g will be plenty to knit a sweater. Possum are seen as a pest in New Zealand ('buy possum, save a tree') and the fur spins well with wool to make a lovely soft yarn. Anything bought ready made with possum is very expensive, but this cost me about £40, which is not an excessive amount for such a lovely yarn. The next one is also a handpainted DK Touch yarn, this one is 100% Super Fine Kid mohair, and again 3 skeins, for a total of about £30, should make a beautiful sweater.
Whilst driving along a typically empty New Zealand main road in the middle of nowhere, I suddenly spotted at the side of the road a largish warehouse with WOOL painted in big letters on the roof. I yelled STOP!!! and we found ourselves at the Wool Company. This was a big shed with sheep in the back field absolutely stashed full of beautiful 100% wool yarns and garments. They seemed to process the raw wool there, sending it away for spinning and dying. I was in heaven! They had every colour, every weight, both pure wool and possum mixtures. I really didn't know what to buy, but being restricted in what I could bring back, treated myself to some bright red DK. This was about £4.50 for a 200g skein. They do ship all over the world and the shipping rates are not unreasonable, so I might even think about ordering online.
By now I was banned from buying any more, but we just happened to stop at a little cafe cum craft workshop at the side of the road, and I spotted this bag of mixed pure wool in eight toning shades, for about £3 for 200g. I haven't opened it yet to see if it is spun for knitting, but it may need some attention before it can be used. Haven't yet decided what to do with it but I am seeing some sort of patchwork sweater with a linking colour. Need to think about that, but I am sure I have got enough yarn to keep me going for a while yet, so no hurry!!
Can't wait to get knitting.

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Have a huge stash of wool!

So we are back from our big adventure on the other side of the world, and I have reduced the stocks of wool in New Zealand by a fair amount, with help from airline baggage handlers internationally.
Just catching up on the sleep and wondering what to knit first. Will post piccies of some of the wonderful yarn I have acquired soon!
bitstobuy was left in the capable hands of beepone, and has been ticking over while we were away. I have some new ideas for patterns so hope also to get onto those soon. So much to knit, so little time.
I have opened a new shop on the website, selling knitting related items; see the 'I Love Knitting' button on the home page. There are lots of things for all those knitting fanatics out there, including t-shirts and tote bags!
Back soon

Sunday, January 07, 2007

Two warm feet

Very pleased with my socks! They are lovely and toasty and just right for this cold wet weather. Can't wait to start the next pair.
Quite a lot of yarn left over though. I suspect if I knit them with shorter leg bits I might even get two pairs out of the next ball. I shall have to do some weighing of knitted pieces to see how the yarn will pan out.
Am thinking that I could use some of my 2 ply yarn double to knit socks as that would give the equivalent of 4 ply to use with the same sock pattern. Then they could be in all kinds of stripey patterns as I have got most colours.
Signing out for a while now as am off for an extended period; back at the end of February. Leaving bitstobuy in capable hands so orders (apart from ready knitted items) will be going out as normal.
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