29 June 2009

make your own strawberries

I eventually got round to typing up the pattern for the strawberries. It is available on a printable pdf document, click here. Be warned it is addictive, once you've made one you'll have to make enough to fill a large punnet full
Bye for now, Ali

27 June 2009

new pattern release

I have just listed a new tart pattern on my etsy shop. It gives instructions to knit up three different types of tart.
* classic jam tart with pastry lattice on top.
* strawberry tart which has a swirl of cream topped with a strawberry.
* fruit tartlet which has a vanilla filling topped with pieces of kiwi, pineapple and blueberries.

Bye for now, Ali

20 June 2009

etsy treasury

I love picking items for a Treasury on etsy, it is a bit like window shopping and there are so many great things to choose from. A Treasury is a hand picked gallery by members. This time mine has a definite summer taste to it and Ive called it PYO (Pick your own). Take a look and see what you think.

One of my most favourite things about the summer months has to be the fruit - raspberries, strawberries, red currants, nectarines, peaches ....mmmmmmhhhhh. So I made a few strawberries of my own. Ill be posting instructions as to how to make these delic strawberries soon.

Bye, Ali

17 June 2009

wish you were here

I was ordering business cards from moo.com and decided to have some of my knitted bun photos printed onto the front of postcards. I am well chuffed with them ....I've just listed a pack of three pastel cupcake postcards on my etsy shop...have a wee look.

Postcards put me in mind of holidays, it's such a shame people text so much now!
That reminds me the school summer holidays start next Friday!!!!!!
bye for now, ali

11 June 2009

tie - dye day

With the settled spell of weather I decided to have the annual dyeing frenzy. Dyeing for me is not an exact science - whatever happens happens - that's half the fun - the outcome is always unpredictable.

Here's a few notes about how I do it. If the fabric is new then it needs to be washed. I cut the fabric into manageable squares of aproximately 40cms x 40cms. Always follow the manufacturers directions regarding, dyeing time, amount of dye, fix and salt. I let the fabric dry in its folded form then rinse with cold water followed by a hand wash in warm soapy water after each dye.
My three favourite dyeing methods are :-

1. Scrunched method. Crumple the fabric into a ball. Push the scrunched fabric into a leg of a pair of tights. Knot tightly at both end. When dry remove from tights rinse, wash. To obtain exciting results repeat the process in a different coloured dye bath.

2. Dip dye method. Drape the fabric over the side of the basin so the fabric is partly immersed. When half the dye reaction time is up, lower the fabric further into the dye bath so that slightly more of the fabric is immersed. Repeat this process with a different colour of dye, dipping the fabric at a different angle, creates interesting results.
3. Pleat fold method. Fold fabric into concertina pleats of about 4cms. Iron so that fold creases are sharp. Tie or peg at intervals along the folded fabric. When dry untie and unfold the fabric, rinse and wash. Refold the fabric at 90 degrees from the original folds, which results in a plaid pattern. Diagonal folding is another option

10 June 2009

tiny wee mouse

I was sitting in the garden yesterday evening, watching the garden grow, something caught me eye........a tiny field mouse staggered from under the lavender bush, I spose he was a bit dozy and just up out of bed. He was no more than 4cms long. I do fear for this wee creature, he needs to be more alert as my garden is the M2 for all the local cats.
I didn't get a photo of the wee mouse, but took one of the geraniums which have just popped into bloom...........
pink geraniums

and also my ladies mantle. I love the way the water droplets collect and sparkle in the upturned leaves........

water droplets

6 June 2009

summer sun

I took advantage of the amazing weather last week, packed my bag and headed where most tourists head in Northern Ireland - North Antrim Coast. I always have to visit Whitepark Bay when I go up there, which I think is the best beach on the planet....well OK maybe I'm a bit biased. Its worth the walk down the windy lane, where you even meet the occasionally cow...........
reflections of Portbradden
I very nice afternoon was spent on the beach soaking up a few solar rays!

Whitepark Bay

When I was there I swapped the knitting needles for a paint brush - I'm too shy or more embarrassed to post my attempts. In Coleraine I visited the art shop G.E. Kees, to buy a few sketch books. Its so rare these days to find a specialist shop such as this and the building is so paintable itself........

Bridge Street