Friday, 27 April 2012

Best Sellers

The geraniums are looking bright!
Hello to another wet and wild day here in Somerset. It's been a funny old week here busy with family life and consequently not much crafting going on and I really miss it! Yesterday was P's birthday - she had lots of crafty type presents and a huge chocolate cake (most of which is now gone!) and spent the evening sewing a cushion and then went to her tap lesson. Her dancing school are doing a show in the autumn and her tap class are doing a stomp number, it sounds like a great deal of fun and I'd quite like to have a go myself!
This is one of her presents - I want one too!
Today I am trying to finish off lots of things - some Union flag baking bags and baby bunting kits.
 A little while ago Fiddly Fingers asked me what my best sellers were. Now to be honest I haven't kept track of how many of things I'd sold, but rather did a stock take type approach of topping up items as they sold. I know all the seasoned craft sellers are now probably tutting and shaking their heads - so I started a simple tally chart of my sales.
My best sellers are ... Lucky dips!!! I started these as at many fairs, children come clutching a pound coin of their very own to spend and there was not much around for them to spend it on. So P and I now wrap up little parcels for little people to spend their pounds on, and they love it! We don't 'make money' on these, but it also means lots of adults look at the stall while their child is choosing and I can often make a sale as well!

Baby Blossom Bunting kit

Red, white and blue owls with baby bunting in the background.
The other best seller (at the moment) are the baby bunting kits. I made four up as a trial run last week-end, and sold them all, so I have spent evenings cutting out felt flowers to make up another set for this week-end. I've also created a red, white and blue version for all the summer's festivities and thought it would be more manly as well.
I have also been given two blogger awards! So firstly thank-you to Christmas Pie Crafts and Fiddly Fingers for the Versatile Blogger Award. I now need to pass this award on ..... I think this will have to be a whole post of its own, so watch this space ... as I have to chose fifteen blogs!
But I'm going to finish this post with
Happy Birthday P!

Monday, 23 April 2012

I do not like it at all!

Today's post is about an owl I knitted for a very dear friend. She is the teacher of owl class and asked me to knit her a Plop. I used lovely muted colours from Rowan to knit him in, very different to the red, white and blue owls!

Plop is a baby barn owl who is afraid of the dark - he does not like it at all! It is a beautiful story by Jill Tomlinson, with a gentle sense of humour, as he meets various people who try to persuade him that dark can be a good thing. This is the picture book version - there is also a short story version . I also have a fabulous story tape read by Maureen Lipman (but I think that would have to be an ebay find now).
This picture book has the most beautiful illustrations...
Look at the fireworks reflected in their eyes
But as I logged into Blogger, everything had changed! First Facebook and now Blogger, so I now need to find time to read and then re-read and re-read to make sure I've sort of understood everything! I'd much rather be reading all the lovely blogs over on Wendy's Handmade Monday - thank-you Wendy.

Tuesday, 17 April 2012

A girlie day out

Don't you love this sign!
The finished cushion
Last week Pickle-Lily and I had a girlie day out in Frome. 17th century St Catherine's Hill in Frome is full of retro and vintage shops as well as Millie Moon and Marmalade yarns. P had been given a cushion workshop at Millie Moon's for her birthday and spent a lovely three hours learning how to use her sewing machine to make a beautiful envelope cushion cover.
This is the inside - very neat seams!
Which one shall I choose?
I spent a lovely morning visiting all the shops - buying lots of yarn in Marmalade yarns and chatting to the very friendly lady who was more than happy for me to sit and knit a while on their comfy sofa. I can recommend The Little Red Cafe at the top of the hill, where I had several cups of tea and some scummy cake whilst I waited for P. I also came back with a lovely bag full of London / Jubilee themed fat quarters which I love!
Aren't these fab!

No 2!

When we got home P decided to use her new found skills to make another cushion cover. She has now decided to raid my fabric stash to make some more cushions to sell at fairs, and use the money to go on a tunic making workshop at Millie Moon. Bunting has also been mentioned as well!
I'm spending this week at school, knitting more owls and reading all the other lovely blogs over at Wendy's Handmade Monday.

Friday, 13 April 2012

Red, White and Blue

blue, white and red

It having been the Easter holidays, I have been out and about with the children, and I've noticed that Easter is done! All the shops have rapidly cleared away their Easter goodies (I was hoping to pick up a few bargains) and they are now full of Olympic and Jubilee things. This made me think ... that statement usually worries Mr P-L a lot... and I've come up with a Red, White and Blue Collection (that sounds posh!).
'The first design along the catwalk are the owls...'

red, white and blue

 I just love them so much!
'Next up along the catwalk is....'
This is red, white and blue dolly mixture with some beautiful fabric P and I picked up in Millie Moon yesterday (more about that in another post), she will be wearing a skirt made from one of these lovely fabrics, but at the moment I just like looking at them and don't want to cut them up!!
There are lots more ideas in my head on this theme waiting to come out of my fingers, but P is making chocolate cakes with her friend in the kitchen and I can see clouds of cocoa powder so I must go!
Have a lovely week-end!
Jo x

Sunday, 8 April 2012

Hoppy Easter

Lots of chocolate this way!
 Happy Easter everyone and to celebrate, the old favourite Easter Nests - very simple and you could make some in the next ten minutes!
Easter Nests
You need...
22gg of chocolate - any sort or colour!
50g of butter
2 tablespoons of golden syrup  (these last two ingredients make your nests more chewy and less brittle!)

Mix together in a big over a low heat
until melted, then add 100g of cornflakes
and stir together.
Dollop in the cakes cases and add mini eggs. This mix makes about 18 including some mix for testing and some for missing!

Have a great Easter week-end, off now to have a cup of tea and an Easter nest. Big Pickle is back from Marine camp this afternoon and there won't be any left after he gets home!
Jo and Pickle-Lily
P.S Have decided to be lazy and use this post for Handmade Monday - why not visit all the other blogs and see what goodies they have to share?

Wednesday, 4 April 2012

The chain gang

I'm excited - my first pattern in print! My April copy of WI Life arrived today....
and on page 71 is my knitted paper chain pattern!
and a name check too!

It is being used at the WI AGM at the Albert Hall in May for an attempt on the World Record for knitting together.
Am I sad for being so excited?
Jo x

Monday, 2 April 2012

Lavender Pekoe and Coronation Chicken

Spring chicken and friends
Now that Pickle (brother of Pickle-Lily) has returned from touring the battlefields with the camera and spent all of today downloading hundreds of photos on Facebook, I have managed to regain use of the camera and computer. So, here are Spring Chicken's cousins Lavender Pekoe and Coronation Chicken.
Lavender Pekoe

Coronation Chicken

Inside Coronation
I've since thought of the Little Red Hen and speckled hen variations that could be made! Coronation's pattern was created by knitting two rows red then white then blue in garter stitch and using the reverse side as the outside.
I did two fairs this weekend and my baby blossom bunting was much admired.
Had to take this picture with that background painted on the wall behind!
I was asked quite a few times if I sold the bunting, and during the driving between fairs the cogs in my brain were whirring away and I decided my next kits would be baby felt bunting kits. Pickle-Lily is creating my prototype (I get her to test run my creations) so watch this space!
During the week I will be fighting the children for access to the computer to visit all the other brilliant blogs on Wendy's Handmade Monday.
Have a lovely week!
Jo x