Saturday, 17 January 2015

2014 in photographs

My baby. Grew into not so much a baby this year. Here she is off to nursery for the first time!

It is a very belated but sincere Happy New Year from me - as usual! I want to say my new years resolution is to blog more, but it always is and it rarely works, so maybe if I say nothing, it might happen organically?! 
I don't want to make excuses, but I have had an incredibly busy last few months, and it looks set to be a busy start to the year too, with some rather large life changes occurring on top of all the usual work stuff. So, before the madness really kicks off, I wanted to take some time to look back at last year through some of my favourite photographs. 
Another ambition of mine is to become a better photographer, and last year I tried very hard, most of these are mine, all are highlights. Other, more professional pictures posted here are by the talented and lovely Britt Spring who is now back in her native Australia, I am going to talk more about her soon.

2014 was all about the babies! A reassuring reminder in a stressful, sometimes shocking year that life is good. Nothing like holding a baby to ground you and make you feel like everything will be ok.

Lots of weddings this year too, my littlun was a gorgeous bridesmaid twice and loved the twirly dresses!
The vintage double decker at this wedding was amazing!

I tried out tapestry crochet and promptly designed possibly my favourite ever project this year, Polygon Blanket from Inside Crochet Issue 53 
I also tried out bead crochet and promptly designed another favourite project! This is my favourite ever shot of one of my pieces, by gorgeous Britt Spring. Necklace in Issue 58 of Inside Crochet - my favourite far!
Possibly my favourite ever shot from Inside Crochet so far - shot by Britt Spring. Stunning cami by the talented Jenny Reid from Issue 55.
I just shot this on the hubbie's iphone, but I love it. It is at Kenwood House, a favourite place of ours. There was so much beautiful colour abounding this autumn, this sums it up.

Gorgeous Judy, love this little lady, have enjoyed spending time with her this year and her adorable new little sister - her feet are in the pic above. Love everything about this picture, the colour, her lips, her hair.
Finally, the last images are all about friends, I see too little of beautiful little Grace and I am going to make an effort to spend more time with friends relaxing this year, especially as I am moving away from all of them...eek!
Grace has chickens. Loads of them! I love being at her relaxed house and this sign sums it up.  This bright, welcoming feeling is what I am aiming for in my new house! I am not afraid to use The Good Life cliche!
Another from our summer trip to Grace's. Millie loved the chickens, the dirt, the playing in the mud outdoors with loads of little friends. More of this this year please. 

Wednesday, 26 November 2014

double breasted knit coat

I have had one certain project from my first book, Easy Baby Knits, safely stored away in a drawer for ever such a long time, awaiting the longed for day when it would fit one of my own children. That day came this week, when I tried it on my littlun for size. Such an amazing feeling, it was a perfect fit! And just in time for the change in weather.
I love this project as the woven style stitch is a beautiful texture, the shape is very cute and boxy, it has just the right touch of vintage styling and the yarn - Debbie Bliss Cashmerino Aran - drapes wonderfully while providing a cosy warmth.
As for my daughter, I think she liked it, even though she was doing some faux sulking in these pictures (hence the 'pout') as she didn't want me to take her picture, so they aren't the best shots, but they do capture my own bright moment on an otherwise dull day.

Friday, 24 October 2014

new issue: inside crochet 59

Issue 59 of Inside Crochet dropped onto my doormat this morning and it is looking gorgeous, even if the thought of Christmas is making me a little nervous...! 
There are some beautiful patterns inside this month, so make sure you grab a copy. I especially love the pictures of the beaded collar by Jo Bodley, which we shot in front of an amazing old headboard to get that pretty backdrop. And the pattern I must start hooking right now is Sarah Reed's adorable mini stocking bunting. I am going to make mine into an advent calendar for the littlun and put in notes and treats for each day leading up to Christmas. Most will probably be filled with activities for the day like "making mince pies", "put up the tree!" or "time to feed the Christmas cake!" I love the idea of creating an heirloom decoration that she will always remember as central to those comforting family festivities and not bound only by chocolate or Christmas excesses. Must go find some yarn...
Images all by the lovely Britt Spring.

Thursday, 18 September 2014

popcorn flower blanket

This blanket was returned to me in the post from DK books recently and I am really rather pleased, as it is lovely! Littlun agrees and has taken to hiding under it, snuggling under it and wrapping it round her while she pretends to be a rather colourful ghost!
It was originally published in Crochet, from DK books, a bible I commissioned for, consulted on and contributed to. It is rather fabulous, as I have highlighted here, so if you are looking for a how to crochet guide, do check it out. (And yes, that is it on the cover!!)

This image is by the wonderful Britt Spring, who is leaving the UK to return to her native Australia later this month, and I will miss our monthly photoshoots immensely. More about that soon...

Monday, 25 August 2014

crochet colourwork hat

 The latest issue of Inside Crochet came out on Friday, which has a very autumnal theme and so the weather has been quite appropriate for some of the projects inside it. I am rather proud of the lovely little hat I designed for it. I wanted to recreate some of the beautiful scalloped colourwork patterns I have been noticing in knitwear recently, but without the faffing of doing any Fair Isle or Tapestry crochet, so I utilised the scallop stitch, comprising of shells, with some block stripes of colour to create the pattern. Here's the result!

All images by the talented Britt Spring Photography

Thursday, 17 April 2014

tapestry crochet blanket

I have just received my early copies of the latest issue of Inside Crochet and had to share the blanket I have designed inside. I have been meaning to master tapestry crochet - the art of colourwork patterning within crochet - for a while and have been toying with the idea of a geometric triangle pattern. Triangles are everywhere in homewares at the moment and I thought it would be perfect in a blanket for my littlun. So here it is! 
Using Sublime Merino DK, which is beautiful and comes in an array of gorgeous colours, this is my new favourite project, it was a joy to make and snuggly to use - I have to say I have used it more than the littlun! If you haven't had a go at tapestry crochet before, do not fear, the Polygon Blanket is published alongside a straightforward how to guide. If you aren't a subscriber, the issue is on sale in all good newsagents and supermarkets from the 23rd April.

Tuesday, 15 April 2014

Gawthorpe Textiles Collection

In my last post about the exciting project for Gawthorpe Hall Textiles Collection, I realised that I didn't show a picture of the beautiful scrap books I was inspired by. Here are just a few examples, mainly of the ones labelled 'poor quality' by Miss Rachel, along with the actual fragment which was the initial inspiration. I have so many of pictures of these - a wealth of inspiration for years to come! Thinking about the people who made them and used the the books to create new pieces so many years ago and the fact that these few tiny scraps of material have survived, thought worthy of recording by the foresight of Rachel Kay Shuttleworth, is just amazing, inspiring, humbling.