yarn talkin'

So, I decided to blow the budget and splash out on the Rowan Felted Tweed. I'm so glad I did, it's a lovely lovely yarn which works up beautifully, even though it's a tiny bit hairy.

I played around with the design a bit more. Having made lots of patchwork blankets where each square is a different colour, this time I wanted a single background colour, and here I've chosen a putty grey for a nice old-fashioned feel. I toyed with the idea of using more than one colour on each square, but in the end settled for these simple stars... I just really like the uncluttered beauty of their shapes, and I love the way the negative space between each star creates a perfect circle.

The squares are really tiny and such a fiddle to make... I am going to be learning a lot of patience with this project! They are just under two inches or five centimetres, so this sample block is just under six inches. They are worked using a 4mm hook. I've never made a large piece using such a small hook before - I usually choose to use Aran weight for a blanket with a 7mm hook, but I wanted to set myself a challenge to make something really fine and beautiful. Also, the colours in the Felted Tweed Aran are just not as lovely as in the DK.

In case you're interested, then, the colours I've chosen, as laid out below are Rowan Felted Tweed DK in 145 Treacle, 175 Cinnamon, 173 Duck Egg, 161 Avocado, 170 Seafarer, 177 Clay, 159 Carbon, 154 Ginger and 172 Ancient.

The Ginger is not so 'red' in real life, and the Seafarer is a bit darker than it looks here. The Treacle is a gorgeous browny purple that I'm totally in love with.

Off to do some more!

something old, something new

I'm going to be completely honest and say that this year has not got off to a good start. January has, on the whole, been rubbish so far and it feels like pretty much everything that could go wrong, has. I was fairly realistic about the chances of the year being 'new' in any sort of way, but even I probably couldn't have imagined just how much like old times it would seem.

At times like these creativity seems in short supply. I am slowly learning how to maintain the energy for myself when times are hard, but meanwhile crochet seems like a good plan. A little playing around with colour and shape and the prospect of yarn shopping is just enough excitement for me right now.

I'm planning another blanket, hopefully using Rowan's luscious Felted Tweed DK if funds allow. I've worked the sample squares shown above in a cheaper DK to see what effect I like best. At the moment I'm rather liking the little stars, but I might make the squares smaller.

I hope to be able to report back on progress very soon... tomorrow I'm going on a yarn-buying expedition. This makes me very happy.


I have been thinking about pathways... the sort that we follow through life... the sort that make connections in our brains... the sort we walked along this weekend along the beautiful shoreline in south Cumbria... somehow they all meet up along the way as we try to make sense of the journey.

As my aim for this year is to learn how to be kind to myself, I have been thinking about how my thoughts go along certain pathways when I don't actually want to go in that direction... how thoughts throw you off course and you suddenly find yourself wandering aimlessly and wondering how you got there.

When I am emotionally drained and feel burdened by the pressure of responsibility, I can't be creative. I just can't. But I'm not sure why. I become angry and full of a destructive energy that works directly at odds with creativity. I spin into a strange state where I simultaneously wish to deprive myself of stimuli and also manically sort things out into some kind of order. I need to work out why I do this and what would be a kinder way of reacting... this way I hope to learn how to continue creating at some level even when things feel difficult.

This weekend marks the two-year anniversary of my list-keeping exercise over at Listography. Five things that make me happy every day... it opens my eyes, makes me notice, makes me thankful, keeps me a little bit sane some days... it's a wonderful way of recording the rhythms of the year. You can read about why I started it here.