A QUICK AND EASY TODDLER HAT [FREE KNITTING PATTERN]

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A few weeks back I set out to knit Orla a cosy winter hat using some long neglected yarn from my stash (you can see the work in progress here!). Children’s hats are tricky things – on the one hand they need to be warm which to me means real wool but on the other hand they tend to disappear into the ether so they’re not something I want to spend too much money or time on…

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HOW TO MAKE: ROLLED BEESWAX CANDLES [DIY TUTORIAL]

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Beeswax candles have some pretty amazing properties – did you know they clean the air as they burn?Β They also smell amazing and best of all, are easy to make at home! Round about this time every year I make a pot of tea, dust off the record player and spend an evening making a big old batch of these DIY candles to see us through winter. There’s no hot wax involved so you can even do it with one eye on the TV! They’re easy to make at home and I’m going to show you how in today’s tutorial…

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KNITTING OUT OF NECESSITY [WORK IN PROGRESS]

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I’ve had this yarn in my stash forever – in fact it’s the remnants of the first jumper I ever tried (and failed) to knit. It’s 100% merino wool by Rowan and is now on it’s way to being a cosy ribbed hat for Orla! I’m using size 5 needles and a 1×1 rib – I swatched a 2×2 rib originally (inspired by the work of one of my favourite Instagrammers at the moment) but the scale looked so wrong against Orla’s tiny head!

I’m aiming for a thick cuff in the hope that it will last through next winter as well (who am I kidding though because nursery is a black hole for hats) and might add a pom pom if I feel the vibe. I’m freestyling the pattern for now and will share once it’s finished – which will hopefully be very soon as, goodness isn’t it getting cold now? Knitting for small people is very satisfying for someone used to jumpers that take years of my life – I’m already planning a few more pint sized projects in the run up to Christmas!

BLOCK PRINTING [MY LATEST MAKE]

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Easy to learn, difficult to master.

A couple of weeks back my good friend Anna and I spent a fun (if somewhat chilly) day at The Handmade Fair where we learned how to block print with The Arty Crafty Place! Continue reading

A RECIPE FOR INDIGO DYE [DIY TUTORIAL]

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A few weeks ago my Aunty (the very creative and inspiring hand weaver, spinner and textile designer Madeleine Jude) very kindly spent the day giving me a little glimpse into the alchemy of indigo dying. Working with natural dyes is quite daunting – I’m so glad I had someone to show me rather than trying to figure it out for myself from a book. Today I’m sharing some photos of the dye making process along with the recipe we used for our indigo vat. Next time, I’ll be taking a closer look at my finished shibori dyed muslin squares and the folding techniques I used so don’t forget to pop back next week!

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DIPPING MY TOE INTO INDIGO DYEING…

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My very creative and talented Auntie Madeleine taught me how to make indigo dye last weekend! I’ve never worked with a natural dye like this and had no idea what is involved – it’s a delicate balancing act between all the ingredients, the temperature, even the humidity and the air. I’m looking forward to sharing more of the process next week, and showing off my new Shibori dyed muslin squares! In the meantime you can hop over to Madeleine’s website here and see some of her amazing handmade textiles.

BABY NUMBER TWO…

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…is on it’s way! I can’t quite believe how quickly this pregnancy is going – this picture was taken on Friday at a lovely friend’s wedding when I was 22 weeks exactly.

THE CARL LARSSON-GARDEN [TRAVEL DIARY]

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Carl-Larsson-Garden-paintingWe had such a good time visiting the Carl Larsson Garden in Sweden! The family home (‘Garden’ means house in Swedish) where Carl lived with his talented wife Karin is still privately owned by the Larsson family but you can have a guided tour which I highly recommend!

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