Monday, 29 December 2014


A very warm welcome back! Did you enjoy Christmas? We certainly did. Just a lovely family time together with lots of delicious food. Thank you for all your kind comments and welcome to new followers.

The weather has been getting colder each day since Christmas. Today is the coldest so far as we had a very heavy frost last night. And snow on the Mournes. This picture was taken at 9:30 this morning.

Beautiful, clear and crisp. What a joy to discover that our boiler has stopped working! The husband made a phone call and someone has promised to come out and look at it today. Meanwhile the little wood burner will be lit and we'll all have to snuggle round it to keep warm.

Hope you are keeping warm (unless you're in the southern hemishpere where I'm sure you are pleasantly warm enough). Have a very happy New Year!

Edited to add: the boiler has been fixed so we're toasty warm again.

Wednesday, 24 December 2014

Homegrown Christmas Tree

First of all I'd like to say thanks to you all for your lovely comments and Christmas wishes. I really appreciate them and love reading them all.
We planted these conifers in our garden a few years ago. They started off as potted Christmas trees and we used them both inside and outside the house decorated with lights and so on. We planned to cut the trees, once big enough, to use as our main Christmas tree inside. Then replace with a new baby tree, keeping the cycle going. But we never actually did it. It seemed such a drastic thing to do!

This year we looked for a tree to use with my handmade decorations but couldn't find any that we liked. So we came home and the husband cut this one - the one right in the middle of the picture - and brought it inside. It's just as well for, although it doesn't look particularly big growing in the garden, we wouldn't want it any bigger for the house.

And here it is - decorated with all my handmade decorations. You can look back at them in more detail here and here.

Here is the finished tree topper.

This is my second attempt at a robin (again based on Jacquie's owl pattern) and I really, really love it. Robins have a lighter coloured underbelly so I just wasn't completely happy with my first robin that had only a red belly.

My hedgehog family have come to live below the tree. They're very happy there; it's warm and dry and they can find tasty morsels of mince pie and shortbread crumbs when we've gone to bed.

We have another real tree (that sounds a bit strange as all trees are real - by real I mean not artificial) in the sunroom. It is decorated with a variety of baubles we've collected over the years. We have quite a lot of Waterford baubles which we bought in after-Christmas sales. They are big so you don't need very many of them. We certainly won't be buying any more!

This is our ancient artificial tree that stands in the hall and is decorated with a heap of gold and silver decorations. Not for any theme's sake but simply because I have them. At some stage in the past I must have gone with a gold theme and then changed to a silver theme for another year.


The husband and I both love Christmas though not the commercialism that goes with it. We like it simple and with family and friends. The husband is keen to decorate using simple things like greenery from the garden. This is what he did with some of our holly and ivy ...

The carnations aren't from our garden! I bought them in the market in Banbridge.
Well, here we are; Christmas Eve! Can you believe it? I certainly can't. It only remains for me to wish you all a very lovely Christmas. Enjoy it immensely.

Tuesday, 23 December 2014

Snowflake Wall Hanging

This is a sort of unfulfilled post. I have been making lots of decorations and also wanted to make a snowflake wall hanging. So I crocheted lots of different snowflakes; different sizes and different designs.

And I sewed them to hessian backing. My intention is to iron some bondaweb to the back, cut out each individual snowflake and attach them all to a piece of linen.

Unfortunately this is as far as I've got and it's beginning to look like the wall hanging won't be finished on time!

Never mind. It will be done for next year. Are you excited? Or totally frazzled? Not long to go now.

Monday, 22 December 2014

Felt and Other Christmas Decorations

Welcome back. I'm trying to get all the pictures of my decorations posted before Christmas as there's not much point keeping them until afterwards. Here are some more that I made; mostly felt from Corinne Lapierre's book Felt Christmas Decorations (Twenty to Make). Some I just made myself with, no doubt, inspiration from something I've seen somewhere.

The beaded embellishment on this heart is from an old necklace.

I made this angel wall hanging last year in my patchwork quilt class. Unfortunately the class is no longer being run.

This was also made at the class last year.

Hope you like these! I've had so much fun making them.

Sunday, 21 December 2014


Did you know that snowflakes are actually crocheted and then stiffened before falling from the sky in their beautiful, magical way? No? You aren't convinced about that? My snowflakes were crocheted and stiffened and then used for various decorative purposes, mainly hanging on the Christmas tree.

I used Rico Essentials Cotton with a 1.75mm hook. Sometimes I crocheted King Cole Cosmos yarn along with the cotton. The patterns came from a variety of sources that I've picked up over the years.

Well I hope you liked the snowflakes. Just a few of the many I've made recently!

Not long to go now to the big day. Then Christmas will be over again for another year and we can all relax. I really love Christmas time. I'm actually quite sorry when it's over. What about you?

Saturday, 20 December 2014

Crocheted Christmas Decorations

I've been making lots of Christmas decorations to use this year. In this post I'm going to let you see some of the crocheted decorations as well as a few knitted ones.

First of all, this robin is crocheted using my own version of Jacquie's owl pattern. This was my first attempt but I've made a different version that I'll show you later in another post.

This tree, stocking and penquin are made from Val Pierce's Mini Christmas Crochet (Twenty to Make) book. I used different yarn and hook sizes and made other various tweaks to get these results.

This bauble and the little star and heart are made using Lucy's patterns here, here and here. I also made some of the baubles with the points and they were really nice too.

The acorn is from the same book as above.

These hearts are made using Teresa's pattern here. I crocheted some King Cole Cosmos along with the red and purples yarns.

This tiny wall hanging was made by crocheting some Drops Eskimo scraps to make a square and then felting it. A crocheted cotton snowflake was then sewn on and a hanging loop attached.

This is my star tree topper ready to be joined up. See that needle stuck into the point at the right hand side? I've lost it. Actually ... my memory has just been jogged and I think I might know where it is. Must check when I've finished writing this. This is my own design crocheted using Rico Essentials Cotton together with Jomil Starmist yarn. It starts out as a hexagon and then the points are made individually by decreasing the number of stitches on each side of the hexagon until only one stitch is left.

The Christmas trees (to hang on the Christmas tree!) are knitted. Basically made up as I went along.

Most of the decorations were made using Rowan pure wool as well some 50/50 acrylic/wool yarns. This is just a sample of the decorations I made but I'll let you see them and others when they are hanging on our Christmas tree.
Needless to say I had to go and look for my darning needle and I was right. The needle has been found and put away in its proper place.
The girls in my crochet class surprised me, on the night of our last class before Christmas, with this beautiful bouquet.

Stunning or what?
Better go and do some more preparing for Christmas. Need to bake mince pies. As well as lots of other things. More decorations coming this way very soon.