Verb: pootle
poo-t(u)l To move in a leisurely unhurried way,
with no real purpose

Monday, 27 January 2014

For the love of grey...

A couple of weekends ago I spent a very contented evening clicking away on Pinterest, and one of the boards that seemed to grow extremely quickly was the one simply titled 'Grey'..
Since then I have ummed and ahhed alot about why it is that I am currently having 
a bit of a love affair with all things grey.
By rights this shouldn't really be a colour that draws you in with all its usual connotations...
  grey day, grey clouds, grey mood, grey weather... and so the list goes on.

Looking grey up in the dictionary doesn't add many plus points either...
of a colour intermediate between black and white, as of ashes or lead:
(of the weather) cloudy and dull:
(of a person) having grey hair:

But, despite all of this -  quite besotted with it I am !

I wonder if it all began when we got our beautiful Weimeraner, Lilou. 
She is the most delicious colour grey, with a coat that is as soft as velvet 
and ears as smooth as silk handkerchiefs.

Does it stem from my early working days as a teacher at a boys school 
when many an hour was spent writing on blackboards ?

Is it that it lends itself to beautiful, light living spaces ?
Looking back through my blog my much dreamed of Craft Room
 is all planned out in different tones of grey.

Is it because in my mind it is calm and soothing to the eye ? 
My everyday world at Nursery is full of such riots of colour that maybe 
this is what I need to balance my daily colour spectrum.

Or is it that I am simply an 80's girl through and through , 
brought up watching Flashdance and Madonna video's and listening to
Visage singing Fade to Grey, wearing my grey leg warmers and Pineapple Dance sweatshirt ,
( no sniggering at the back please ladies ! )
Who knows ?


Now if you happened to be holding a stethoscope to my chest at this very moment 
you would be able to detect that these two pictures have actually set my
 heart beating just that little bit faster
 - I cannot explain why -
 just LOVE these nail colours, 
simple as !

I could surround myself with all sorts of ribbons and threads, fabrics and wool in every shade of grey and I would be one very happy girl.

And don't even get me started on these little beauties...

.... or these two hugely snuggly cardies.

And so, the jury's out, its a done deal, there is no reasoning or answer...

Should more proof be needed, here it is ..... 
one grey, metal jug that was crying out to be bought this week and filled with spring flowers.

( Big thanks to Pinterest for supplying all but the last photo of gorgeous grey things. )

Monday, 20 January 2014

A little bit of calm...

After all the busy, busy, busy ness of the last few weeks suddenly a weekend of calm.
No evenings out, no entertaining, no visitors.... nothing.
Don't get me wrong I LOVE a houseful of fun and madness and chaos but every once in a while...
ahhhhh.... how lovely to just stop.
So this was me, Friday evening, starting my weekend of nothingness crocheting
 my blanket of the moment.
 It was whilst I was sat doing this that a thought occurred to me...
have I maybe got a bit of a thing for bobbles ? 
Quite possibly it would seem !

This thought led to another thought - what if I put bobbles in the Pinterest search ..... 
well, several hours later and I now have a Pinterest board entirely devoted to 
bobbles in all their wonderfulness.
And then, what about all my other favourite things ....
 and that was Friday evening pretty much done.
Oh , the joys of Pinterest.
 Sooo much to look at and drink in, so many things that spark the smallest little flame of inspiration.
My head was full to bursting with it all, in the most lovely buzzy way.
A very quick little Saturday pootle, a bit out of my comfort and colour zone but the 
perfect present for some friends who have a beautiful Salon in Bradford-on-Avon that has just been expanded and  relaunched this weekend.
I found the little flower pattern on Ravelry, one of Sandra's from Cherry Heart.
I knew I wanted to make something garlandy and the idea just sort of developed as I went along.
Flowers, front and back, a double wool chain of the two colours, and a handful of silver bells.

The garland now hangs on the door of the salon, jingling with the arrival of each customer.
Last weekend I had a go at making the "easiest bread in the world" that Lucy had written about
 on Attic 24 recently and it certainly, most definitely lived up to all expectations. The last batch lasted precisely 10 minutes so this weekends loaf was a little bigger.
I'm truly not a great or enthusiastic cook, as I like quick, simple and easy. 
This is pretty much the perfect recipe for someone like me.
I made the dough when I got in from work on Friday and stuck it in the boiler cupboard overnight all ready to be popped in the oven on Saturday morning to go with homemade vegetable soup for lunch.

Now at this point the house had been quiet for a whole 12 hours ( too quiet, not normal, bit odd ) ... so after a quick phone call to Mum and Dad we had a busy house again and more seats around the kitchen table.

Dad did ask what the bread was like toasted for breakfast, well we may never know as it just doesn't hang around long enough for us to find out.

Quiet and calm was soon resumed and crochet was picked up and worked on to 
the rhythm of a purring Itsy-Bitsy.
True therapy.

My scarf addiction is progressing nicely and my odds and ends of wool are definitely decreasing. 
The red one was made using some left over Sublime Merino DK.
 I think this is one of my favourite wools to work with, I just love everything about it, 
and it has certainly made a beautifully soft, warm scarf.

Sun on Sunday !
I can't remember the last time I pootled around the garden. 
Still quite definitely a 'wellies on' occasion but how lovely just to potter.
A little sorting of pots,

and filling of bird feeders,

and a lovely dog splosh through he fields.

The perfect end to a perfect weekend ? ...

... in bed by 8:50pm with a good book.
True, it wasn't a weekend living the high life but it was every bit as good.

Tuesday, 14 January 2014

Post Christmas reveal...

Now that Christmas secrets have all been opened and revealed I can show you the photo's of the blanket I made that was posted out to New York for my brother and sister law.
Watching the latest weather forecasts out there they have certainly
 been in need of things to snuggle under !

This pattern is so lovely to work on, as it doesn't require too much concentration and
 is a good relaxing bit of therapy each evening.
 The only thing to remember is front and back ( or row 4 and 5 ) and I tie a little ribbon
 on one side to remind myself. 
The pattern is one of Lucy's from Attic 24 and her simple instructions are
 so easy to follow.

As I have a bit of a thing for greys at the moment they were the colours of choice.

One of the things I love about making these blankets
 ( and I've made a few now as my husband will vouch for ... ) 
is that they work up really, really quickly.
When this one was the right size I made a border of a couple of rows of double crochet
 and then worked a row of clusters all the way around to match the main bit of the blanket.
So, pretty nearly there at this point but then I discovered ....
Oh wow, hours of fun...
... Of course there had to be pom poms on Pete and Fiona's blanket.

Small, but perfectly formed.

With a picot edge all the way around and pom poms top and bottom, that was it - job done.

And look, here it is in its new home, many, many miles away from wet Wiltshire.

I think one of the reasons that I am so addicted to a spot ( ! ...understatement...! )  of blanket making is that whilst sitting happily hooking I love thinking about who its for, hoping they will like the colours and wondering where they'll put it.
 Giving a blanket to someone is, in my mind, like giving them a huge, huge hug,
and I love that, being a very huggy sort of person.
As well as that it is complete switch off for my brain which during the day
 is full to bursting of a 101 things Nursery related. 
The calm starts literally the minute I pick my hook up.
And just before I go, these photo's found their way to me as promised... very happy toque owner.