September 13, 2011

Made with Love

One of the good things about being back in the UK is having our extended family around us once more.

Both my Mum and Mum-in-law are very creative and it wasn’t long before some very lovely handcrafted gifts arrived for their grandchildren. Gifts to treasure and make them feel at home.

A beautiful quilt each – perfect for snuggling up on the sofa to read a book or watch some TV.

 And these quirky, soft little creatures to play with, go adventuring with and of course cuddle.


(They are made using the patterns and instructions from this book – which we found at the local library – though the fabric mum used is slightly different.)

Thank you G and A. Love you both xxx

August 8, 2011

11,682 miles, 21,000 stitches and a free pattern

Well, here I am, back on the outskirts of London. This was home for me for over 20 years, but right now I’m  feeling very far away from home. To be honest it’s all a bit of a shock to my system – it’s so busy, noisy, fast and  I feel  out-of-place. Maybe things will settle down, but in the meantime I am staying in quite a lot, spending time with my lovely husband and kids, and enjoying connecting once again with our extended family.

Anyway, new place so maybe a new craft?  I was really inspired after flicking through this book recently. Tapestry/needlepoint embroidery is something that my mum has always done so now I’m finally having a proper go at it too.

Here is my first attempt – thanks Mum for lending me some supplies! And thanks Kath Kidson for this lovely little design.

Once that was done, I had the idea of trying to convert one of my own repeating fabric designs. Here is the progress so far.

The design is approx 12 inches square, with 21,000 stitches, so I will be here for some time!  Though I’ve worked out that if I stitch the cream flower outlines and the little dotties first, I can fill in the background and inside the flowers later on without having to follow the chart. (Should really be using a frame but I haven’t got around to that yet.)

If you would like to join me in this project, feel free to download the chart below and get yourself some supplies. I’m using a cushion sized piece of  12 count needlepoint canvas, and three colours of Patons Diploma Gold Double Knitting  Wool – Cream for the flower outlines (06142), Delphinium (06171) inside each flower and Violet  for the background (06242 ). I think it’s meant to be stitched using proper (Anchor) tapestry wools but they were a bit over my budget.  One shaded square on the chart equals one stitch. 

You can sew this design in any number of colour combinations so feel free to adapt it as you wish. If you don’t fancy all 21,000 stitches, you could do a small section and make a mini tapestry for a pin cushion or a greetings card. Like this…..

 Please note that this design is for personal use only. Any questions, just ask.

Have fun! I’d love to know what you are up to so please leave a comment.

July 14, 2011


Things have been a little slow here on the designcrafty blog – but only because I have been running around trying to pack up our home, and life, so we can be ready to travel next week.

My sewing machine, knitting needles, stash and supplies have been packed away – then unpacked and packed again several times – just to make some last-minute gifts but also to keep me from going completely crazy – because yes, I do find crafting extremely therapeutic.

Here are sneaky peeps of a some recent makes….using some of my fabric designs.

I think the next few weeks will be spent focusing on adjustment and holding our little family close whilst we all settle into our new environment on the other side of the world. So if you are one of the lovely people checking in regularly only to find an old post every time, why not hit the subscribe button over there on the right hand column? Then you can receive an email when I finally manage to put something  thoughts together again.

Thank you and see you soon. All my love, K xxx

June 30, 2011

Crochet Comfort

Whilst sorting and packing I found a little ball of very soft viscose chenille. Many moons ago I hand-dyed it this crazy violet colour. All week, I’ve been moving it around from place to place, not quite ready to pack it away properly. So today, I made a little time to sit down and just start using it.  I didn’t know what to make with it so I started a shortish row of granny stitches.

Now I have seedling of an idea for a soft, drapey, brightly coloured scarf, but there’s probably not enough of this yarn for that. I might have to unpack and dig around for other leftovers to extend this into a patchwork granny scarf. Who knows! it’s just fun making something. Hope you have a great weekend everyone!

June 24, 2011

Going under the hammer

I’m on a roll with the decluttering and packing, so I’ve put some cones of my weaving yarn and four small lots of fabric stash goodies up for grabs on trademe.

Just in case anyone desperately needs any more fabric or yarn – hee, hee.

My apologies for this blatant advertising, but I’m on a mission!

June 23, 2011

Fare Well Loom

This week, my lovely old loom moved to its new home up the coast and into the hills.

It has been my faithful friend and workhorse for over a decade, but I’m so happy that it will get a lot more use and attention than I’ve been giving it recently. Today, I spent a lovely morning helping to set it up in its new residence. I wish T & C  lots of very happy, creative and productive times with it for many years to come.

I dug out a few pics of some of the fabrics I have woven on it in the past – to say ‘thank you dear loom’, and to celebrate its new beginning…..

June 2, 2011

Hitting the Workroom….

Hello. I want to share this with you today. Our family is preparing for a house move fairly soon – a big geographical move. I am very sad but it’s unavoidable at the moment.

So, this week, I have been getting my head around packing up and the general logistics of moving. Most of my time has been taken up with beginning to un-clutter our house and so far it has been fairly straightforward. But only because I hadn’t really started to tackle my studio.

My lovely studio on a very good and warm day can look like this….

Today, however, it looks nothing like that.

Sorry, no photos because for a while there my camera was buried deep and now its too dark and cold to do much more. You’ll have to just take my word for it when I say I have been pulling EVERYTHING out and creating TOTAL chaos! There are toppling piles and heaps and boxes ALL OVER the place and I have to keep leaving the room to refill my teapot, do some washing up/laundry/vacuuming (!) and take a few deep breaths.

I can see a small speck of light at the end of the tunnel though. And it does feel good to be turning out all those boxes, drawers and cupboards and to sort what I’ve got, what I really need to keep and what I am ready to let go of. (Like these little embroidery yarn bobbins – they are on their way across the straits soon with the lovely M)

I think by next week, I might be able to walk through the room again. Hope you have a great long weekend everyone.

ps. Luckily this designcrafty blog doesn’t have to move house –  it can stay right here – YAY!

May 30, 2011

Gentle Geometry Fabrics now available for you….

Some of you may remember me working on these a while ago.

Well, they are now ready!   Would you like a peep?



 There are 4 Gentle Geometry Designs named Contour, Linear, Boundary & Orb. Each available in 3 colour stories.

Design Name: CONTOUR Colours: DENIM,LEAF & MOCHA


Design Name: ORBS Colours: DAHLIA, DUCK EGG & SOOT

I made these two small, lined drawstring bags – using CONTOUR in Denim and Leaf colours. It is one of my favourite designs from this collection.

One little bag is proving very useful to hold my small knitting projects and the other is for a friend. A few fabrics are available here and lots more here…..

Have a really good week.

May 29, 2011

These Amazing Colours

Snapshots around and about my beautiful neighbourhood in between the heavy rain and blustery wind.

I always find that a little walk lifts my spirits and makes me smile.  Hope you had a great weekend.

May 23, 2011

Afternoon tea

Over the weekend I managed to take a little time to sew this tea-pot cozy, using some on my leftover kitchen scales fabric.

I sort of made up the pattern as I went along but I was very inspired by this cozy made by the lovely Jill at Jill’s Today I saw blog.

This afternoon, my little one and I enjoyed a nice cup of red-bush tea on the verandah. We read a book and basked in the gentle autumn sunshine for a few minutes too. Happy Monday!