Big Wool Hat

Last winter I was walking a lot and getting a really cold heat so I decided to knit myself a hat.  I went to my favourite ever yarn shop in Woodbridge, sadly now closed, and got a lovely ball of rowan big wool.  I like a hat made of natural fibres, they’re warm and snug and wash beautifully.

Anyway, for those wishing to make a hat like mine here is the pattern.

Big Wool Hat

Hat 2.jpg

Requires:

1 ball (80m) of Rowan Big Wool, or any other Super Chunky yarn with a similar yardage

10mm Circular Knitting Needles

1 stitch marker

Darning Needle

Large piece of cardboard to make the giant pompom

Gauge:

9 stitches and 16 rows over 4 inches.

Pattern:

Cast on 41 stitches using the long tail cast on method.

Join to knit in the round, placing marker at the start.

Knit 8 rounds in Moss stitch (k1, p1)

Knit 14 rounds in stocking stitch.

Decrease rows as follows

1. Knit 5 k2tog around the entire round apart from the last set of stitches where you will Knit 4 k2tog.

2. Knit 4 k2tog around the entire round apart from the last set of stitches where you will knit the remaining 5 stitches on the needle.

3. Knit 3 k2tog around the entire round.

4. Knit 2 k2tog around the entire round.

5. Knit 1 k2tog around the entire round.

6. K2tog around the entire round, there should be 6 stitches remaining.

Cut yarn and thread remaining stitches onto darning needle pulling tight to secure the top of the hat, darn in the end.

Using strong card cut a circle approximately 20cm in diameter (I drew around a dinner plate), cut a circle in the middle approximately 9cm in diameter.

Wrap as much yarn as you have left around the hoop to make a pompom.

Cut, trim and tidy the pompom and secure to the top of the hat.

Pop on your noggin and enjoy the warmth.

Pumpkin carving

Last night at WI the lady who was meant to giving a talk cancelled.  To be honest I was reasonably happy with this because we got to carve pumpkins. Big, fat and very tactile pumpkins from a local farm shop.  Emily did a great last minute job getting everything ready for us.  Of course I had to carve a knitting related pumpkin.

image

Have you ever carved a pumpkin? Do you save the insides to make anything with?

Rainbow feet.

This is going to be a short one because what can I say other than these socks are amazing and I love them. I made them using yarn dyed by Truly Hooked that I won at Knit Nottingham on Love Your Local Yarn Shop day.

image

Have you ever worn hand knitted socks? Do you think socks are things that should be bright and bold?

Aldeburgh food festival feast.

I have been a bit absent recently but with work and busy weekends I haven’t found much time.  It’s now time to catch up.

Last weekend was the annual Aldeburgh food and drink festival.  I have always seen signs for it but having lived elsewhere until recently I have never been. 

This year I was invited along to the feast in the evening and really enjoyed it.  One of the concert halls at Snape Maltings was turned into an indoor street market.  There was a lot of wonderful food and drink on offer and all in small portions so a lot could be tried.  I had the most delicious venison bruschetta, a mini longhorn beef burger, local mussels and a yummy chocolate truffle. I also thought a pine needle G&T sounded good, oh it was.

Not only was there food and drink on offer but a live band who played away all evening.  Towards the end of the of the night we were being entertained by a dancing Tomasina Myers (founder of Wahaca), Valentine Warner and not to mention many other recognisable TV faces.  It truly was and very lovely evening.

image

Do you have anything like this near you? Is local and good quality produce celebrated enough?

Reupholstering a chair.

Last week I ordered myself a chair to go next to my bed.  I didn’t have a lot.of room or money so decided on a Pello chair from ikea.  I knew straight away that I would cover it and I had an idea how.

It arrived today and despite having been at work 10 hours I just had to get my sewing machine out and make a start.  I purchased some beautiful fabric last year in Holmfirth and my intention was to make a skirt. Well that isn’t ever going to happen so I decided it would be perfect for my chair. 

image

It wasn’t quite wide enough so I used a patchwork strip to run down the back to widen it. It fitted perfectly.  The rest was very much a bodge it and see job but apart from some weak hand stitching which didn’t hold it’s pretty good.  Good enough for me anyway.  What do you think?

image

Do you like to personalise things? Have you ever restyled furniture into something special?

Little lightening.

A while ago I was browsing Facebook and saw a suggested post for Little Lightening.  Intrigued I had a look and discovered something that sounded brilliant.

Little Lightening is a cinema set up in a barn in Framlingham, run and owned by Chris and Georgie.  For an incredibly reasonable £12 per person you not only get to watch a good film but are given a 2 course meal and a complimentary drink, all themed around the film.

Last night we arrived and were warmly welcomed into the barn where we were told to choose our spot and make ourselves comfortable.  After trying out a couple of sofas we settled on a squishy two seater near the wall and away from the breeze.  We then collected our complementary cava and waited in anticipation for what was to come next.  We were ushered into the kitchen single file to collect our dinner. Lovely chicken and chorizo paella with a chocolate and almond cake for dessert.  We went in one door, out another and back into the barn.  So well planned.

Next the lights went out and Talk to Her by Pedro Almodovar started to play.  I have always been a fan of his slightly wacky films and thought I had seen this film before.  I hadn’t and I thoroughly enjoyed it.

Unfortunately Little Lightening have only been running over the summer and this weekend is the last one planned.  I wish I had discovered them sooner because the whole evening was wonderful.

image

Do you have slightly different but completely wonderful things happen where you live? Would you consider watching a film in a barn?

The Red House.

The red house was the home of composers Benjamin Britten and Peter Pears.  I have always heard these names mentioned in Suffolk but really knew very little about them.  I suppose I had very little interest thinking I didn’t like opera music, truth is I don’t know if I do having given it very little chance. I have visited quite a lot this summer to admire the gardens and view the exhibitions.  I just love how peaceful it is there.  Look at this house how could you not love it.

image

Photograph courtesy of http://www.brittenaldeburgh.co.uk

Yesterday I decided I would visit for a house tour.  The house has been set up exactly as it would have been in the 1960’s and what a beautiful time warp it is.  I was amazed by the sheer quantity of stunning art works and collections of ornaments and curious objects.  I left astounded by how wonderful it all was.

I knew I liked the place after my first visit so willingly offered to volunteer my time in any way I could. Having seen the show stopper of the house I now can’t wait!  If you have an interest in what is available at The Red House then visit he Britten Pears Foundation website here.

Do you have a local treasure tucked away nearby? Like me are you interested in preserving the past?

A fairisle cushion.

A long time ago I went on a fairisle workshop at the wonderful Knit Nottingham. We got started on a fairisle cowl and for whatever reason I put it away for a long time.  When I started again recently I just couldn’t stop and decided it would be more loved by me as a cushion cover.  By changing it’s purpose I found a new enthusiasm and before I knew it I had finished it.  I am so proud of this, I just adore it.

image

I loved choosing the buttons and decided I would sew each one on with a colour used in the main fair isle.

image

Do you find yourself making one thing that turns into another? How do you reunite yourself with long lost works in progress?

Ely

Today I went to Ely to meet my Knit in Notts friends for a day out. We figured it was near enough in the middle of us all so a plan was hatched.  What a lovely little town. We had a great time chatting, drinking tea, finding a beautiful fabric shop and 2 yarn shops, eating cake, visiting the cathedral and generally just being happy.  Oh it was rather delightful, we even found Jem’s book for sale in one of the yarn shops so we snuck it to the front of the selection.

image

image

Do like to go to new places with friends? Do you always have to hunt out a particular type of shop?

A bit of pampering.

I’m not the girliest of girls but I do like to have nice nails. I am however too lazy, too messy, too impatient and generally really really good at chipping them so I decided to try gel nails. I have to say I am very happy. The Cadbury’s look was not intentional but aren’t they brill.

image

Do you indulge in pampering yourself?  If not at a salon do you set time aside to do it yourself?