Crafting, fun and friendship

Crafting, fun and friendship

Wednesday, 15 November 2017



Well, the black sheep might not have much but there's lots of yarn on my blog this week! But first, the Jan Cave progress.....

It's still all piled up as we've been doing the gloss painting of the doors and skirting boards. But it's all finished now and we'll be putting everything back together this week - woohoo!! *Happy Dance*  I shall take this opportunity to have a bit of a sort out too, I'm sure the stash can be rationalised somehow!

So the only crafting I've done this week has been knitting:
I'm using up my chunky yarns matching the plain colours (in the bag) to the coloured yarns in the box - nothing special, just beanie hats for a charity thing.

I have bought some more bits and pieces:
Three more balls of chunky for hats or something and some buttons - well, you can never have too many huh?!

I went with my mate Helen to Llandeilo on Monday, primarily to have lunch at the Gin Haus, where I'm getting to be a bit of a regular!  But we found another wool shop in another part of the town:

Oooh, so much choice and so many colours....I didn't know where to start.

I was a happy bunny!

I loved the way the displays were laid out...

I may have bought some of these..... :-D

Helen succumbed too - well, it would have been rude not to! The place is called Deb's Wool Shop - I don't think they do online sales but if ever you come to stay with me, I'll take you there (and the GIn Haus...*grin*)

All the shops in Llandeilo were getting ready for a festival this weekend and the girls in the wool shop had been making Christmas trees out of tinsel yarn:
There are patterns for these but they'd all sold. They remind me of Cousin It from The Addams Family :-D

Finally, this is the view from the front of my house - it's been weird weather recently and we saw a cracking rainbow. 
Do you think the owners of that white house would mind if we dug up their garden looking for the pot of gold?? Maybe not, lol!!

Have a cracking week xxx

Wednesday, 8 November 2017



Well, dear friends, there's very little to show you this week - life and decorating have simply got in the way of crafting....

But the JanCave has had two coats of Jasmine White, rollered on by yours truly:

...and it's looking a lot fresher. The newly plastered walls were worth every penny! Ron doesn't look that impressed however :-D

So this has been the downstairs crafting - but as usual, I never seem to have one project on the go!  The navy knitting at the back is going to be a snood for me to pull on when my cold ears need some TLC - no pattern, I just guessed! The Caron yarn is for a blanket, I've just started the foundation chain. I'm not that keen on the yarn, to be honest, but as I have quite a lot of it, it WILL be used up. The navy yarn is Debbie Bliss Merino, bought for me by our New York visitors and boy, that is gorgeous to work with - so soft. There might be enough left to make some wrist warmers for when I'm playing carols very soon. And the red is for a poppy I knitted for a band friend.

Talking of band, it's been all go - we're rehearsing hard for a contest:

We did a recording in Cardiff on Sunday as part of a televised competition. We're on the long list and have to wait and see if our performance is good enough to be included in the shortlist for the telly appearance next Spring.

And five of us did a community event, where a local Victorian arcade is slowly being done up. Three new shops were opened by the MP and Mayor and we were asked to play some tunes.
We were up on the balcony, hidden from view but the acoustics were stunning, we sounded really good!! 

I really hope the shops make a go of it, it's too lovely an arcade to lose. 

Now do you see why I've hardly crafted - it's all go!


Tuesday, 31 October 2017



I honestly cannot believe it's Wednesday again - I was convinced it was Monday yesterday and it's thrown me out completely!  The Jan Cave has had its two manky walls plastered and they're as smooth as a baby's peachy derriere. Such skill to do that, it's perfect- look:

Now comes the painting - next week though, after everything has dried out properly.

So I've still been working downstairs...
My dining table is covered with stuff, which doesn't matter as the room is full of the study contents, as that room was plastered too. Detritus on the left, finished articles on the right!

I'm going to give these to the Knit Stitch and B*tch group on Thursday - I've made quite a few now, this is the second batch and I fancy doing something else!!

Some new purchases - half a metre of that Land Rover fabric to make a boy's PE kit bag and I'd used up all my bows on the Christmas penguins so had to buy some more. 

What else have we been doing - you wouldn't believe the half of it so I'll leave you with some images of the harbour area in my town where we had a picnic lunch last Friday to escape the madness for a moment:
The egret was busy hunting for his lunch too!

But these were way too big for him - they're about 20 inches long!

We watched a boat go flying in the air :-D Off to have its bottom scraped or something!

But mostly, we just sat and enjoyed the view:

Absolute heaven.....

I doubt if the JanCave will be finished by next Wednesday so goodness knows what I'll have to share!  Hope you have a more productive week than me :-D

Wednesday, 25 October 2017



This is what the JanCave looks like at the moment:

Bit sad, huh?! I've had to clear my stuff out as Romeo is coming to plaster my walls :-D  Yep. not kidding, he really is called Romeo and is hopefully going to make everything all smooth again so I can slap some paint up - this is all to make good the mess that was left after we took the wallpaper off!

So my desk has moved downstairs...

More cutting out for Christmassy stuff, the sewing machine is on the floor but will be called into action in a minute. See that orange stencil? I bought it whilst away at the weekend from a proper old fashioned stationery shop (you'd have loved it Julia!) 

I mean, how many circles does a girl need??! But I've got one for every occasion from now on. A bargain at £2.95!

The Use-it-up blanket is coming on well and I'm getting through some stash yarn. Woohoo!

Last week, I heard that a dear old friend had become a Grandma for the first time - it makes you feel old when you remember the new mum as a young girl! Anyway, they chose a fab name:

They're bright and breezy folk so I had a lovely play with colourful stash - hope they like it!

G and I were attending our third wedding in 9 weeks last Saturday! An old friend from our Wiltshire village was getting married after a tough couple of years. She and her hubby had specified definitely no presents on the invitations but I wanted to give her something so spent a happy hour making a charm for her:

I tried to channel some of Judy McCarthy's talent as she does some beautiful vintage work...I really enjoyed myself making this. It's good to try something different occasionally eh?!

Have a great week xxxxxxxxxxxx

Wednesday, 18 October 2017



It's going to be short and sweet this week! Desk activities have been few and far between but this is what it was like yesterday:

There's a basket of Christmassy bits and bobs on the left for the Knit Stitch & B*tch charity stall, a penguin decoration needs some eyes before blanket stitching/stuffing and I'm making some more personalised bunting for a friend's great niece. 

Most of this has been done whilst watching TV. The stockings are ready to have candy canes or something popped inside.

The song lyric today refers to something that's been washed up a lot on our beaches recently. We don't normally see these creatures but the strong currents and storms have been playing havoc.

Portuguese Man of War. A really weird thing as it's not a single animal but group of organisms acting as a unit. The colours are surreal - there are many signs up on the beaches not to touch, especially aimed at dog owners. After Storm Ophelia whooshed through on Monday, our big beach resembles a jellyfish graveyard and the amount of sand that shifted is unbelievable. The power of Mother Nature!

Blimey, I have been a good girl and kept it short and sweet today - brownie points for me, I think!!

Have a good week everyone :-D xxxxxx

Wednesday, 11 October 2017



It has been another crazy week - five band rehearsals, a contest, catching up with a long lost cousin, stuffing Ferrero Rochers into knitted Christmas puddings etc etc. (more later) I wish this week coming up would be quieter but it's not.

The girls at Knit Stitch and B*tch asked me to make some more felt Christmas decorations so that's what I've been doing when there's been a spare five minutes here and there. I stopped at Hobbycraft in Swansea last Friday because I was running out of lace trims, white embroidery floss and ribbons.

Festive colours!

A close up of my new stash - I'll enjoy using these, especially the tartan, I'm really into it at the minute: it must be the after effects of meeting Elizabeth at the Crop :-D

I met up with the Knit Stitch and B*tch mob last Thursday in a local cafe where there was a mass stuffing going on, lol!! The girls have knitted about 400 mini Christmas puddings and attached a loop to hang them - there's just enough room inside in which to stuff a single Ferrero Rocher choccy. These will then be sold at a stall in the local hospital in December - all profits are going to the Breast Care unit and another women's ward. I've made felt decorations, doggy bandannas, mini stockings for the cause. 

Here's a piccy of the girls...

A happy bunch - they're great fun!

...and the stuffed puddings!! Local businesses have donated all the chocs and the yarn was from everyone's stashes, so it's all profit! We sold £42's worth whilst in the cafe. They'll have to knit some more now :-D

One evening G and I walked down the harbour, it was a beautiful evening and we just fancied stretching our legs:

I do love living by the sea again!

Have a great week everyone xxxxx

Wednesday, 4 October 2017



After months of planning, the Crop shot by in a whirlwind! No sooner were we driving up than we were heading back home again. Margaret played an absolute blinder in organising everything and worked so hard on the day - Thank You just isn't enough.

I have posted an extensive photo report of the day here if you're interested!

On the way up, Julia, Gordon and I stopped in the small market town of Machynlleth to stretch our legs and grab a bite to eat. There was a small community gallery there - click here for details: Julia and I homed in on these beautiful little felt, embroidery and beaded duckponds, set in vintage china teacups...

They were sooooo pretty - we thought one would be perfect as a thank you for Margaret. They were all gorgeous but one stood out in particular, it's the one at the back with the red flowers. The lady behind the till was the artist (Mo Couper) who'd created it and she was really pleased that it was a gift for a crafter!  Luckily Margaret loved it too :-D

The Crop was full of giveaways and ATCs - as you know, my papercrafting skills are non-existent so, remember my painted stones from a couple of weeks ago? They became these:

Fun, huh?!  I really enjoyed making them and they seemed to be acceptable in place of an ATC, so that was good!

Back home, I was contacted by a crafting friend who told me that the things I'd made for the MacMillan coffee morning had flown off the table and had contributed to a total profit of £1000! She asked if I could make some more things for the charity stall at the local hospital so that's what's on my desk today.

I'm really making headway using up my Christmas fabrics, it's really pleasing. I'm doing some Festive doggy bandannas....

That's the last of all those fabrics shown - yee haw :-D

But nature abhors a vacuum and when the stash boxes are approaching emptiness, well, there's only one thing a gal can do.....go shopping!!

These are from an amazing fabric and yarn shop in Machynlleth, just around the corner from the gallery. I could have spent a lot more but just got these. Love the colours, I think I was inspired by the autumnal hues driving up through glorious Wales :-)

It was so lovely to meet a few online friends in reality - I was especially looking forward to meeting Neet, Fab gal, she's a real babe with her funky punky hair and clothes. The overwhelming feeling was of love, support and friendship...I'm so happy to be a part of it.

Roll on the next one!