Gypsy Rose and my 400th post

11/02/2015 § 14 Comments

400 posts – W O W

By far the most popular post on my little blog followed my progress with Gypsy Rose, a colourful crochet blanket made of granny squares and a wide multi-coloured border, back in 2012.  I remember finishing the final shell border whilst sitting in the car, waiting for Himself to stock up at the local supermarket, after we’d travelled down to Cornwall for the half-term holiday.  It seems like a lifetime away.

Gypsy Rose block

Gypsy Rose crochet blanket

Gypsy Rose crochet blanket

The border in what I called Tweed Stitch, has attracted SOoooo much attention from when it was first photographed in this post “Between the Lines” …

Tweed Stitch

Tweed Stitch

Gypsy Rose now lives in one of our bedrooms, where I have my desk, and makes me smile every day.  Life is nothing without colour!

Four hundred posts Four Happy Things

***1***  The Garden – I’m ultra excited about rediscovering the garden, following the recent landscaping team’s efforts!  Today I treated myself to a rambling rose called Albertine. I’ve wanted one for years and for no particular reason had never got round to actually making the purchase.  The collies and I took a short jaunt this afternoon, to Pococks Roses.  Out went a poor old rose that I’ve never particularly liked, in front of the house and now, my beloved Albertine is planted to one side of the porch where I’m hoping it will thrive and scramble over the front of the house, like this one!

Illusions of Grandeur

Illusions of Grandeur

such a pretty, delicate rose

such a pretty, delicate rose

***2*** House Number – nobody seems to be able to see the little slate house number that’s on our gatepost.  So, having picked up the numbers in the Homebase sale, I’ve been on the lookout for a piece of wood to put them on.  I wanted something rustic rather than just screwing them into the wall.  Yesterday, on my walk through the woods with the girls, I found a perfect offcut left over from some forestry clearance and today I drilled (with my new cordless drill), screwed and hammered (when in doubt, use a hammer) – and here’s the new house number …

Rustic house number sign

Rustic house number sign

I love the sawn ridges in the wood and especially the mossy bark

I love the sawn ridges in the wood and especially the mossy bark

***3*** Quilt commission – I’m working on a couple of quilt commissions at the moment and today I met up with a lovely lady to chat about her dream quilt – pinks and roses – oh boy, I can’t wait to get started!  One very happy way to spend a morning, surrounded with fabrics and having a good ‘ol chat!  I’ll let you see the finished quilt in a couple of months!

 ***4*** Feeling OK-(ish) and not unhappy – some regular readers will know that my life changed dramatically last October … here … I haven’t blogged about the day to day challenges but family and friends have never been more important and I think I’m doing OK.  One tip I’ll share is that if you ever have a friend who’s going through a difficult time, bake them something. Everyone asks if they can do something to help and I hope I’ve thanked everyone on whom we all leaned so very heavily in those first early days and weeks.
When one of my friends asked what she could do, I said “Please make us a shepherd’s pie”.  It was enormous and despite not feeling hungry, we all cut slabs and enjoyed some good old-fashioned comfort food.  My best friend kept us supplied with teas and coffees, bread and essentials then arrived with a wonderful homemade Victoria Sponge.  Never have I been so grateful for friends who are awesome cooks!  It’s easy to feel a bit guilty about feeling happy – or at least not unhappy.

Well, that’s a long 400th post.  Well done if you’ve got this far and do, please let me know you’re out there by leaving a comment – I love to read your comments.  I’ll hand back to Flora to do a picture-post next time!

Lots of love

Adaliza x

Gypsy Rose blanket tutorial …

03/09/2012 § 11 Comments

My thanks to a reader  (Susan) who’s question finally spurred me into action, to make a tutorial for this:

Click here for the tutorial and PLEASE let me know how you get on!

Click here for the Gypsy Rose Ta-Dah moment too!

Have fun!

Adaliza x

Quilting days …

02/09/2012 § 7 Comments

just a taste of the quilts that I finished over the summer …

Phew!  I did a lot of quilting in my holidays this year.  I’m completely addicted to the whole process as I was back here  in January, and have found some stunning fabrics here and there when jaunting, as well as discovering a fair few that I’d forgotten about when I sorted out my room into a proper studio space.

I’m going to a post about using larger prints in patchwork – watch this space!  Hopefully next week.  Just working on a tutorial, as requested by Sarah for the pattern for Gypsy Rose, too.  As you may know, I seldom follow a pattern or recipe, but I’ll work out what I did easily enough – Gypsy Rose spent last night warming my toes in bed!  It wasn’t chilly enough for a full blanket like Ripple 1 or Misty Morning, but toes definitely needed some extra warmth – Autumn has arrived!

Hope you all have a lovely week.  Pop over to see Wendy’s Handmade Monday get together and share what everyone’s been making and creating.

Adaliza x

PS I didn’t get to the Vintage & Retro market today for complicated reasons, but all is well now so I hope to be in Alton next weekend, as planned.

Do follow along by clicking over on the right side, then you can receive all my posts by email!

Rain, rain, more rain and gales …

07/06/2012 § 2 Comments

it must be summer in England!

Apparently it’s an ‘unseasonal’ low pressure area whipping up a storm.  There are gales forecast for tonight; today has rained almost non-stop.  Poor Flora had to be picked up and dried off – she rarely gets wet due to all the oil in her feathers, but she was looking sad and soggy this afternoon, so we had a bit of a cuddle to warm her up!

What do you do on a blustery, wet day in June then? Himself has gone off on academic business for a couple of days.  I felt quite perky so after dropping him at the station at an unearthly hour, I decided to do some long-overdue cleaning in the house.

I can’t remember the last time I did this – it must be a few years ago. Housework routines really aren’t my thing. However, I really rather enjoy a day to myself when I can get on and turn the music up loud (classic fm –  – you can listen online – I recommend Beethoven for scrubbing the kitchen floor, Strauss for bathrooms (just glide around), Rachmaninov for sorting stuff out (all dreamy and romantic), Tchaikovsky for hoovering and when it’s all done some Chopin please.

I’m actually aching a bit after all that strenuous exertion so it’s time to put my feet up and do some crochet.  I’ve just started a granny square blanket in subtle, soft shades.  A bit of a departure from the riot of colours in Gypsy Rose and Ripple One!  I think I’ll call it Misty Morning or maybe Rainy Days – it’s one for snuggling up in, by the fire.  I’ll show you soon …

Adaliza x

Gypsy Rose blanket …

11/02/2012 § 39 Comments

Wow – I’ve finished!

Gypsy Rose crochet blanket details:

Yarn: Julia – designed by Kristin Nicholas  About 14 balls I reckon – all different colours. Wool, alpaca & mohair.

Purchased from : Webs, USA (beware the import duty that you pay when it arrives in UK)

Kristin’s blog Getting Stitched on the Farm is well worth a visit if you like farms & yarns, collies & sheep + all sorts of other really interesting stuff!

I had the yarn shipped over last Autumn and have gently created circles in squares over winter.  The border is the simplest double-crochet – a different colour for each row.  Then all around with the shell border and a splash of Fuschia.  I love it – it kept my knees warm on a mammoth journey yesterday as we took it in turn to drive and doze (whilst not driving)!  I don’t just love it –

I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE this blanket!

It’s heavy, warm and vibrant – it make me feel happy and is a perfect size for lap, shoulders or over a chair.

I have loads of wool left – over 30 balls!  Yippee – I can start another one now!!!!!

By the way, Cornwall is amazing today.  I must finish some other projects this week so that I can make the most of this amazing light.  Good thing I brought my little portable Elna machine, 2 bags of fabric and a tub of wool!  Wouldn’t be a holiday without some designing & creating, now would it?  The collies have just returned from their second walk along the beach, digging, chasing ball and paddling!

Misty on lookout!

Flora is at home with the boys.  This was the cottage that we stayed in when I found her – it brought it all back when I passed the gateway where I first saw her as a tiny chick.

Adaliza x

Read about that BORDER and how I chose the colours Between the Lines

Enjoy that?  See my latest blankets :

Carnival 2013 – the most colourful blanket in the world!

Ripple One 2012 – the joyful colours of Spring and early Summer.

Misty Morning 2012 -subtle shades reminiscent of mist in the valley

Strawberry Moon 2017 – soft crushed pinks with blues and greys hooked by the seaside in Cornwall


Sofa surfing …

05/02/2012 § 16 Comments

These collies of ours are getting way too spoilt …

Belle has always been a mountaineer and loves to sit – on look-out – on the top of the cushions on our old sofa.  Last night they were both cuddled up on it – for extra warmth presumably!  I turned my back for 5 minutes earlier on this afternoon and Misty had decided to keep my place warm for me, whilst keeping a watchful eye on the progress I’m making on the Gypsy Rose blanket!  I think she knew I wasn’t best pleased!

Today was Flora’s first sight of snow (click on the photo to take you to more photos in previous post)

Friday finally arrived and I set of to set up my first Gallery Show (again, click on the photo to see how it all turned out) …

And to round off the day, I finally got to grips with the Magimix that I bought for Christmas – excuses, excuses – but I’ve been busy quilting!

Anyway, for supper tonight there’s a chicken & leek & lentil casserole with potato dauphinoise – all veggies chopped and sliced in less than a minute – what a super time-saver this machine is!

Do stop by Wendy’s Handmade Monday to see what everyone’s been making. I will try to leave a few more comments on other’s blogs this week but last week – excuses, excuses – I was busy quilting!

Have a lovely week and enjoy the white stuff if it’s still around …

Adaliza x

PS I reckon that with a fair wind there’ll be a Gypsy Rose Blanket Tah-da moment tomorrow!

Between the lines …

30/01/2012 § 12 Comments

Gypsy Rose, my crochet blanket, is coming along …

I shared the beginning of our journey together last week (here) and I just adore the circle into square pattern that I ended up with – a variation on many trials!  Thirty-six squares later, I made the decision to stop making squares and add a border.  I came up with this one (from Crochet Bible) …

Now, it doesn’t look exactly inspiring, in my opinion.  But I closed my eyes and thought about how it could look in a myriad of colours.

Close your eyes and try it …

does it work?

You bet it does …

It’s the simplest stitch ever.  I double-crocheted a row all around the edge of the squares and then just add row on row of 1dc, 1ch – it’s that’ simple.  A slip stitch to join the end of the row and on to a new colour with 3 ch to start the row.

What I have discovered is that as the pattern grows, I need to think carefully about the way the colours work together …

See how the colours in every other row link together.

I’m so enjoying the journey of this blanket.  With my quilting, I feel driven to finish a quilt and have frequently cut out the next one before finishing the quilting, but this wool by Kristin Nicholas is so amazing, I almost want it to last forever!  Having said that, I do have a whole tub of yarn left!  In fact, I may finish this one and make another one simply using this pattern!  Decisions, decisions – eh?

So, the lesson I’m learning from Gypsy Rose, is to read between the lines – see beyond the obvious, don’t be afraid, trust your judgement and live a little!

I’ll keep you posted!

Adaliza x

UPDATE:  See Gypsy Rose finished here

More of my blankets:

Carnival  2013 – the most colourful crochet blanket in the world!

Ripple One 2012 – the joyful colours of Spring and early Summer 2012.

Misty Morning 2012 – subtle shades reminiscent of mist in the valley

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