Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Porcelain and Crochet

Yesterday I was fortunate enough to see a demonstration by a very talented lady called Tania Tuominen who specialises in hand made ceramics in porcelain. Her current range is called “Women of Influence”- a range of contemporary hand built ceramics in Southern Ice porcelain with a fresh look at the art of crochet. Tania uses crochet doilies to imprint the porcelain and most of the doilies were made by her Finnish grandmothers over 30-50 years ago. She has named the pieces after the women in her family who have most influenced her creative life and they all have interesting Finnish names such as Maija Liisa and Iida Vappu. A short narrative of four of these women is included with each tea light or vase Tania sells, so the customer can appreciate and share in the sentimentality of the work. I fell in love with a pretty medium sized tea light which is big enough to also be used as a little bowl for sweets, potpourri etc.  Isn’t it pretty ....

Here it is with a lit candle inside

I love how the glow from within shows the pattern so beautifully.
Tania’s whole range was awesome –

 I would have loved the lamp but it was a little out of my range.

My crochet (and a little bit of knitting) this week has been a bit of this and a bit of that – wasn't motivated to work on my baby blankets and just needed to fiddle.  I have fallen in love with the flowers – don’t know what I’ll end up using them for but they’re such fun things to make. The green and white thing on the left is a coaster which is part of a set featured in Simply Crochet - totally not worth the effort so I won't be making the placemat and serviette ring !!

If you're interested in Tunisian crochet, Bev from One Yarn After Another is having a crochet-a-long to learn the mitered square stitch. Bev has had a lovely baby's blanket pattern using this stitch published in the February 2013 issue of Crochet World. I'm sure she'd welcome anyone wanting to join in.

Hope you enjoy the rest of the week.

Monday, February 18, 2013

All done

Finished this afternoon

The pattern link is in yesterday's post. Size wise, its probably for a toddler, maybe a 2 year old. The yarn was part of a haul I bought at a garage sale last Saturday - the brand is Carina print, 100% acrylic, made in Germany.

In an effort to stash-bust a little more, plus I needed some stress free activity to take my mind off the fact that my daughter was having her first flying lesson, I started another basic beanie late this afternoon. As my other daughter commented, 'she has jumped out of a perfectly working airplane, and can now fly one, what next?'  I shudder to think !!

Thanks for visiting.

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Bloomin' Crochet - Flowers that is

Figured I should post to let you know I haven't dropped off the planet. Its been quite awhile - I really ought to try to post more often. I do enjoy reading everyone else's blogs and follow my favourites each day.

For some inexplicable reason, I got the urge to make flowers last week. Don't know what I'll do with them but it was lots of fun playing with the different colours.

I've seen teapot cosies adorned with lots of flowers on the top but I don't actually know anyone who uses a pot these days. Teabags seem to be the go when you're going to have a cuppa. Maybe these might end up with a pin back or even sewn on to a hat.

Still have a few works-in-progress - the urge to knit hit me again yesterday

This little hat is very easy and the pattern is free here.  I'm halfway through the crown shaping so should have a ta-da for you tomorrow.

Also on the go is this baby's blanket

I'm going to have to stop buying King Cole yarn as I can't resist starting something whenever I receive a package. This is one of three blankets on the go with yarn for another in my stash.  Maybe I should make a rule not to start another till at least one is finished. I wonder if other people are like me - compulsive project starters with several WIPs at any given time?

I have another recipe for you today. Many years ago I was the Activities Supervisor at a nursing home and we had the most awesome chef who always provided the most yummy morning teas and lunches.  This spread (or dip) was a favourite of the residents (and me) and goes very well with savoury crackers.

Larry's Savoury Spread

1 chicken cube
250g Cream Cheese (Philadelphia in Australia)
450g crushed pineapple (drain juice)
1/2 tin corn kernels
200g gherkin, chopped
100g finely chopped ham
1 tablespoon parsley

Cream cheese, add all other ingredients and mix well.
Will keep in fridge for 2 weeks.
Can be made smoother by adding pineapple juice to be used as a dip or left firm to be used as a spread.
That's it for today ... see you at 'your place'. Have a great week.

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

What a Riot

A month or so ago I bought two balls of luscious King Cole Riot from the UK and was anxious to start something straight away.  Thinking 'scarf' I decided on a knit pattern I've used before. Well, it was absolutely yuk !! After frogging about 8 inches, found another knit pattern - guess what? It was also yuk !!!! Disaster - what to do?  In the end I decided to try a crochet pattern and I love the result.
I need to find two one inch buttons to finish it off but wanted to show you how it eventually turned out. This woven look stitch really appeals to me and I'm sure I'll be using it again.

Another experiment was this Mobius scarf which will be going to charity. I used Carnival 8ply with a 5.00mm hook. Pattern can be found here and I started with 102ch.
I've been fascinated with these mobius scarves and have made a few but I think I might be 'over' them now - well for a while anyway.

Still working on a blue/white baby's blanket but its going oh so slowly.

Being a person who gets bored easily, I gave into temptation and started another blanket - this time in Tunisian.  Talking about temptation, it reared its head again this morning - look what the delivery man brought ....
Isn't it gorgeous. Needless to say, I can hardly wait to get my hook into that too.

Before I finish for today, I want to share this delicious recipe with you -

Date and Walnut Slice     

125g butter
1/2 cup dark brown sugar (must be dark)
1 cup chopped dates
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
1 beaten egg
1 cup SR flour (self-raising flour)

 Put 1st 3 ingredients in a saucepan and stir over low heat until syrupy, then cool a little before adding the remaining ingredients. Press into greased 28x18 cm slice tin and cook for 10-15 mins in a moderate oven. When cool, dust with icing sugar and cut into squares.

Bet you can't stop at one piece.