Sunday, 24 November 2013

Mmm, chocolate...

On Wednesday I made this. Well, I made a half batch, and messed with the spices, and approximated the liquid quantities. I think I made it a bit less solid than it's meant to be, as it behaves like a very thick syrup when it's in the fridge.

I can confirm that it does make a nice hot chocolate. It is also a good ice cream topping, and the consistency I got is about right for that purpose. On vanilla ice cream it is much nicer than the standard chocolate ripple ice cream you tend to find.

And I've also discovered it makes a pretty good nutella substitute. Obviously it doesn't fulfil any hazelnut cravings, but it has the chocolate part covered pretty well.

I will definitely be making more, although I think the next batch will leave out all the spices, and possibly even the vanilla. I may also try throwing some brown sugar in, but it will depend on how I feel on the day.

Friday, 22 November 2013

Baby's First Blowfish

I have found the perfect baby gift!

Pattern is My Little Blowfish, by Selina S. It is well written, and contains humour (and ferrets). This fish is for a friend's new baby, but I will be making another one for my littlest boy for Christmas too. And possibly more, they are very cute, and strangely addictive. Yarn is Ashford Tekapo, I used about 33g.

The fish itself is felted by going through the washing machine a couple of times, the eyes were my first attempt at needle felting. That was very satisfyingly quick and effective, and definitely worth trying for doing little finishing details.

This pattern is part of the Great Indie Gift-a-long on Ravelry, come and join in and make your own blowfish!
(I suppose you could make any one of the 2000-odd other patterns instead, but the fish is very cute.)

Wednesday, 6 November 2013

New Chairs!

We have some old dining chairs which used to belong to Grandma-in-law. They are quite comfortable, but the upholstery is seriously in need of replacing.

After getting sick of trying to clean what was left of the pile fabric after the 2 year old has been eating in it, I finally got around to ordering some oilcloth to redo the seats. The stuff I found that I actually liked (aesthetically) turned out to be much lower quality than what I found locally and didn't like, but it will still serve well enough. It was also less than half the price, so I'm not particularly surprised.

Thankfully I didn't have to replace any padding, because the original upholstery I found under the layer I was replacing wasn't too badly beaten up. It had a few holes and was very worn, but not badly damaged enough to require major repairs.

And voila:

(I confess I have only done one so far. The others will be done by the time the baby needs a chair to sit in...)

Monday, 4 November 2013

Indie Design Giftalong

As a result of some whirlwind discussions and planning in the Ravelry Designers group, approximately 170 independent knit/crochet designers have banded together to run a craft-along to make gifts for the upcoming holidays (or for yourself, we're not picky).

All designers involved have selected patterns to discount by 25% (coupon code is 'giftalong'), I have discounted Hemigraphis and Radler.

I have been very tempted by sooooo many patterns, but have limited myself to a few (to start with). The discount will run until the end of November 15th GMT, and the giftalong itself runs until the end of December. There are lots of prizes planned, both throughout the next two months and at the end of the year. It's looking like it will be a lot of fun!

Sunday, 3 November 2013

Wedding Sampler

I finished this and got it framed just in time for the wedding we went to a few weeks ago:

The colours are a bit more vibrant than the photo indicates, but this was the best photo I managed to get. I'm just pleased I managed to remember to get one at all, the carpet in the background was on the floor in our motel room...

Pattern is All Because, by Imaginating. I changed most of the colours to match the paua shell theme a bit better. It was a fun pattern to stitch up, and reasonably quick too!

I also made some tidy clothes for two little boys, but failed to get any decent photos of both of them dressed up. This is the larger one, showing what church pews were really designed for...