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Blankety goodness.

Hi guys and gals! I’ve been deep in the blankety goodness just recently, the air is starting to turn chill and I’ve been hooking away at the old popcorn stitch in the top left corner, and its been nice to see the other two put to good use again as the nights turn chilly. With summer fading away and another glorious season just beginning the garden was perked up a bit by my washing line wonders…

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They look so pretty hanging there and wash remarkably well and I can’t wait to add to the collection. Summer was great for me and though I didn’t take my camera with me to Whitby this year we did take the niblings (nieces and nephews) to the seaside at Bridlington, which in the heat was almost like being abroad. The sky was cloudless and the sea was caribbeanĀ  blue and it was such a wonderful day.

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The little ones played on the beach and in the surf and little toes felt the North Sea for the first time.

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As anyone who reads this blog will know I love the sea and I was having the time of my life with the little ones taking buckets of water to our little moat and sand castles, jumping the waves with them, playing football and picnicking on fish and chips. What a memorable day it was.

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One of my friends kindly loaned me her camera as I am in between devices at the moment but as you can see the zoom on hers is quite something, this pirate ship was quite far out to sea, we had quite a bit of fun waving at the passengers! I’m hoping to get to the coast again before winter so watch this space!

Back home I’ve been busy trying to complete my list of jobs to do and have managed to finally complete another baby blanket I was working on, the nautical coloured stripes remind me of the seaside so much I’m thinking of making a single bed sized one for our spare room.

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As I said, I’ve been deep in the blankety goodness and hope to continue whilst Autumn sets in.

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I absolutely loved these bright colours and the wool was beautiful to work with, it was Milla Mia for you yarn lovers and I just did the stripes randomly. I can’t believe I’m about to say it but I actually didn’t mind sewing in the ends for this one, whether because I was just determined to get it finished or I loved the colours that much I can’t say. It was a joy to hook up.

In between the happy hooky I did a little baking and made for the first time ever, my own homemade Quiche!

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The one on the left is bacon and mushroom and the one on the right is cheese and broccoli and I didn’t think they were too bad for my first attempt. Also culinary herbs have been a focus in my house recently as I’m sad to report all my little bonsai saplings failed šŸ˜¦ Feeling like a total green fingered failure I planted some herbs, knowing that I’ve grown them before and being more determined than ever. The result is pleasing.

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It took two attempts for me to get the coriander and parsley to grow, I probably tried planting them too late in the year but they are coming along, and the beauteous basil already needs re-potting, something high on my to-do list. I think once they’re in bigger pots I can start to use them for cooking. I am quite pleased with the way they’ve taken off. I may attempt not to kill another houseplant soon.

Other goings on in my house have been craft related. I had been trawling the internet and once you see somethingĀ that catches your eye you can’t seem to get it out of your head. I had spotted the soap making community! and oh those gorgeous pictures of stacks and stacks of chunky pretty soap that looked good enough to eat! Here’s just a taste of the things that got me inspired.

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I defy anyone to look up homemade soap and not want to give it a try. For my attempt I started with a simple glycerine soap base and followed the instructions.

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Chopping up the soap was quite satisfying, and your left with lovely icecube-like blocks of meltable soap. As it was my first attempt I wanted to start with something simple and natural to mix it with so I chose oatmeal and honey.

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I didn’t add any perfumes or colourants as I just wanted to make something wholesome and natural. I melted the soap base at first on a bain-marie which seemed to be taking ages so I resorted to the microwave which worked a lot like melting chocolate, short bursts with stirringĀ  and the residual heat melts the last few lumps.

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I did find there was a little bit of vapour whilst it was heating which was probably the alcohol in the soap mix to help it melt. I tried not to breath it in and carried on. I mixed my oatmeal with honey and a bit of water and blended it, strained a couple of times and it was ready to mix with the melted soap base. If you are thinking of trying this yourself be warned the oatmeal mixture didn’t mix in easily, but after a few minutes stirring I put the mixture into a silicone loaf mould and left it to set. It’s probably best to leave it overnight but mine seemed set before I went to bed and I couldn’t resist chopping it up into soap-sized pieces.

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To be sure the colour is 70’s beige and all my oatmeal sunk to the bottom and it didn’t really smell of anything, but forĀ a first attempt I was quite pleased. As it was just for home use and not for gifts or anything I wrapped the soaps up in clingfilm with fears of mould in the back of my mind.

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but I’m glad to say the soap, despite its natural ingredients has lasted really well and is quite lovely to use. I have a second tub of melt and pour soap and hope to make a scented soap next, again trying to keep it as natural as possible I’m thinking lavender!

Though my soap was a success the 70’s beige counteracted my blanket pics at the beginning so for another pop of colour I can proudly announce that I finally completed my Morrocan cushion, complete with pom pom border.

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It didn’t turn out as big as I expected but I do love the colours, not sure how long my pom poms will stay on for. I backed it with a bright colour to try to keep it vibrant and added the pom poms last.

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It felt good to get it finished and hopefully the completed projects will start coming thick and fast so I can share them with you next time. Cheerio.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Hello everyone, I always seem to be starting my blogs with an apology on how I haven’t written anything in a while and this time it’s no different. My last blog was in March which seems like such a long time ago. The reason for my absence is quite straight forward, my family needed me. We are currently battling a monstrous crisis which will hopefully resolve itself in a happy ending, it’s going to be a long tough road though. As I have finally found the time to write here are some of the things I’ve been up to. Firstly . . .

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Me and the bf had a short break in Whitby back in June as we usually do, this year we took it the week after our normal week and lo and behold, we finally got glorious sunshine. So this year my photos are particularly good.

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The view from our window never fails to impress me. I could stare at it for hours, and our first night in particular was simply breathtaking.

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With the sun shining Whitby was a little busier than were used to but enjoyed it all the same, there were old cars out and the old bus, and when we climbed the 199 steps the view was crystal clear. Here are just a few pics from our few days there.

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It was on my to do list to fly a kite on the beach, something I’ve never done before, so me and the bf bought this one for Ā£1.99. It flew brilliantly but it did feel a little bit of a cheat as it said on the packet (guaranteed to fly) I couldn’t have got it wrong but I enjoyed it all the same, maybe next year I’ll get a more challenging one.

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Anyone who has read my blog before knows I’m a bit of a geek when it comes to steam trains (or anything else for that matter) so when this huge engine came into whitby station I had to get a few snaps, I also took this sneaky one of the inside of the cabin because I just love all the brass dials and wheels, very steampunk don’t you think?

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As we strolled along the beach we also came upon wildlife my first and only time I’ve seen a crab on the sand, we had to wash a bit off to get a photo then covered him back up when we were done.

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I just love this last pic, the sunlight on the waves is just so beautiful, if only I could pause the sun at this time of day. On the way home from whitby we stopped at Goathland. The bf’s parents kindly drove us to and from whitby this year and this gave us an opportunity to meet the steam train at the little station that was the setting for Harry Potter’s Hogsmede station.

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I’m a huge Harry potter fan so as I stood on the railway bridge and watched this steam train come in I was super excited and I managed to get a video for my nephew.

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Goathland is also the setting for Heartbeat (a popular show once aired in the uk) and they still have many of the old cars and things on display, but I thought this picture of the garage was what I remembered most about Heartbeat. We then met up with the bf’s brother and gf, and we had afternoon tea at the Middleton post office and tea room. I’ve written about this before back in January and I couldn’t express to you enough how wonderful it is. It was just as good as I remember.

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So the bf’s brother and girlfriend took us the rest of the way home but on route we stopped at some roman ruins where we caught a glimpse of this lizard which stood still long enough for me to get a photo.

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My camera picked up his patterning quite well I thought. What type of lizard he is I’m not sure, a bit of googling might be in order. We drove the rest of the way through Dalby forest, a beautiful place which I hope to visit again soon. We returned home tired but content. It was a happy time.
Now onto crafty things. I’ve been very productive recently, trying to finish projects before I start new ones. So naturally I made lists! Lists of projects to complete, lists of projects ready to start, and lists of projects I’d like to do one day. I’m a bit of a list fanatic.
Many moons ago I began a blanket, a ripple blanket to be exact, from Lucy’s pattern at Attic24. It was when me and the bf lived in our teeny tiny flat. Well it’s been almost three years or something like that but finally . . .

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. . .i have my own Ta-Dah!!!!!! This was quite a big project for me, I have a full time job and finding the time to finish any project is quite impressive for me. So I was glad that I finally managed to complete a full sized blanket.

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I also completed a smallish baby blanket for my new nephew, who was born early and weighed just 4lb 3oz, so it didn’t really matter that the blanket was on the small side. I completed a couple of other projects that were sort of prototypes and didn’t really warrant a photo shoot, a small baby girl headband (he turned out to be a boy) a little pixie type hat (which my 2 year old niece didn’t like) and a very plain striped phone/glasses case which was just to use up a bit of spare wool. I’ve also been continuing my cross stitch which came along quite nice during the hours of Wimbledon I watched this year. All these projects complete made me feel quite justified when I purchased some drops cotton which was on sale at Wool Warehouse, (a tip off from the bf’s mum).

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My first thought was to buy some summery colours as I need some new cushion covers, which made me put the above selection in my basket, but then . . .

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I saw these and thought they were very prettily autumnal and it is my favourite season, in the basket they went. My first thought had been to do some cushion covers in summer colours, then autumnal cushion covers. As this was limited edition cotton I was then beginning to panic a little because I put these together . . .

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And I quite fancied a Lego coloured shawl for chilly summer evenings. My mind was running away with me and even moreso when finding that, when I put them back in the bag randomly . . .

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All the colours went together so nicely! I’m still undecided what to create from this lovely limited cotton, but I’m really holding off until all my other WIP’s are complete.
So that’s it for now folks, I don’t know when my next blog will be, family is so important to me and things are so unpredictable right now its hard to say how things will turn out. Hopefully I’ll be back here soon enough with happy tidings.

Hi guys, welcome back to Minnie’s. I just want to do a quick post about a couple of things I’ve been up to recently. Last week me and the bf went to Leeds, about an hours train ride from where we live, I had booked tickets to see Ryan Adams, an alternative country singer who has been touring Britain the last few weeks. I adore his music and when I found out he was doing a gig in Leeds I knew I had to go. If your not familiar with his music I urge you to check it out. I did take my camera with me but unfortunately I had neglected to change my settings before the actual gig and I had not the room nor inclination to be fidgeting with my camera whilst the gig was in full swing, but there is plenty of coverage on social media, twitter and the like so please check it out, I highly recommend it. Nevertheless I did take some photos and bare with me I know they’re awful but I feel I must share them anyway. :/

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Okay I promise that’s the last of the crappy photos I’ll share and I’ll be sure to change my camera settings before I go next time. So the next day we spent in Leeds City centre, our hotel was directly opposite the 02 arena and being a rather smart looking building I had to take a pic . . .

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I also took a pic of the Hedley Verity pub, purely because Hedley Verity was my friends great great grandad or something of the sort, also he was a famous cricketer, hence a pub being named after him.

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A rather smart looking pub, if I have to say, though we didn’t have time to stop for a drink. I had been given Cath Kidston vouchers for Christmas and knowing there was a store in Leeds we set off in search of it. After some deliberation I purchased some new pack lunch boxes, a matching water bottle and a pair of fish earrings,

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The fish earrings I particularly liked, as regular readers will know I’m a bit of a nerd, what with my amateur twitching and other minor interests, and I have to admit, I like a bit of fishing. Well, not myself, I’ve never actually tried it, but I quite enjoy watching it on t.v. I may add it to my list of hobbies one day. Carrying our bags round Leeds had taken its toll by around 11 o’clock and we stopped for a drink at Costa Coffee, and I was delighted, not only had they white hot chocolate left over from the Christmas period but they sprinkled little gold stars on top too, which were super cute . . .

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It was a perfect end to our trip and I hope to repeat our experience many times in the future.
On the run up to our Leeds trip I had been playing around with colour, I got my balls of spare wool out and just had a play around with them to see what pretty colour combinations I could make . . .

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I think I knew subconsciously I could never resist temptation and despite what I thought was all my effort, (clearly not!) I started a new project. It was very very very naughty of me, I have so many other things on the go, but those of you who share my interests will know the utter joy of starting something new. I threw a few colours together under the excuse that I was just practising a pattern and using up some left overs and began yet another blanket. This time I chose a pattern by the Cherry Heart blog, it’s called the clamshell, I’ve wanted to do this pattern for a while as I think it looks very Art Deco. There are many clamshell type patterns on the web but I liked this one the most as it was a bit more solid and didn’t have any big holes.

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Now I have three blankets on the go, at least I hope it’s just three, who knows what might be lurking in the craft corner! On returning home from our trip I promptly got another dose of germs and am fighting off yet another cold, so I thought now I’d got a little further with this blanket I would indulge myself in a little blanket wip photoshoot . . .

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All three of my unfinished blankets, I actually got a lot of pleasure just laying them out and looking at the pretty stripes, (I may have to do a granny square for my next project, I feel I may be obsessed with the stripes) my ripple blanket from attic24 is the biggest and as I laid it over the bed the thought crossed my mind that it might be within days of being finished if I put my mind to it. Imagine me finishing something!!! The bobble blanket is slow going, there’s a lot of work that goes into them little popcorns, but I think it still is my favourite, the texture is just too good. And then the clamshells, all girly and lovely, they crochet up quite fast and I hope to make speedy progress with it.

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That should do it for now I think, I’ll keep you posted on the trio of blankets and anything else I can’t resist to start. I love starting new things, I’d love to hear about new projects you’ve started or things you need to finish, and maybe with a bit of moral support we can complete things together. šŸ™‚

Happy New Year!! 2014 has been and gone and here at Minnie’s me and the bf eased our way into the new year with Ferrero Rocher and Harry Potter. So as I did last year I’d just like to do a quick review of events and perhaps share some of 2014’s pictures that didn’t make it onto the posts of last year.

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We enjoyed beautiful skies.

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Beautiful flowers.

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As much craftyness as possible with the occasional short break . . .

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And the odd spot of baking . . .

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Sitting down to sift through the years photos really does lift my spirits. When I look around and see all my unfinished projects and my extensive list of things to do it really makes me realise that I did actually achieve something, that some things however small, got done. It reminds me of the happy times on holiday, even if it did rain a lot. It reminds me that I’m thankful that I’m able to do these things. This is also why I need this blog, to access my thoughts and feelings and hopefully share a little of what makes me happy.
I hope to take this sentiment with me into the new year. I aim to be a little more organised and a little more productive, I have many ideas, hopes and dreams for 2015, and I’ll try my best to realise them.

Hello again and I hope all is well in your own little crafty worlds. I’m happy to say despite the recent lapse in posts here on Minnie’s today is the 2nd birthday of this blog and I’m more determined than ever to keep on top of things.
Yesterday I informed you of a little project which has been keeping me busy on the run up to Christmas. In fact it was far from a little project it seemed to have taken over my life for a considerable chunk of the year. So without further ado I give you . . .

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Minnie’s Dollys! I had been asked to make some by friends and then it sort of spiralled out of control . . .

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Then came round two, this time a boy dolly (slightly boy bandish), and then . . .

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Finally round three of Dollys. I must admit, despite enjoying the majority of the doll making, I was glad when I had finally finished them, albeit feeling a little lost with myself when there were no more to do. The pattern for my dolls is not currently on my etsy shop, it needs some serious editing and re-writing before its fit for sale at Minnie’s Markets. However its on my list of to dos and my plan is to be as organised as I can this coming year. I’m actually looking forward to the new year, I feel like after the challenge of the doll making I can really achieve things if I put my mind to it, and possibly a better schedule, I feel ready for bigger things. So as it’s still December I’m taking the opportunity to relax and get some more of my bobble blanket done.

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See you in the new year!! šŸ˜€

Hi guys, summer is here and I am rather proud to announce I’ve had over 1000 views here on minnies. It’s quite easy to become disheartened when I read all the lovely crafty blogs out there and see how these crazy talented people have a gazillion followers and post at least once a week, but I’m always incredibly appreciative of the views and likes I get off my small following and when I saw I had reached a thousand views my heart leapt, thank you so very much! Yippee!!!

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So back to business. I have been utterly impatient for summer this year, the slight increase in temperature and I felt the need to buy some new summer clothes and dig out my shorts, albeit a little prematurely. These lovely summery coloured flowers the bf got me made me a little too excited as we had some rather stormy weather to begin with.

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As well as trying to organise my summer wardrobe I have been desperately trying to contain my enthusiasm for beginning new projects when there are older ones to finish. I have been slogging away at crocheting my seat cover together, the squares are a delight to do but crocheting them together always seems like a bit of a chore and I admit it still isn’t finished, here it is after I’d finished all the squares . . .

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My impatience to start a new project also may have something to do with these . . .

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Lovely balls of tutti fruitti coloured stylecraft. I’d bought some balls previously but the project I have in mind calls for more wool and when it arrived I had to sit on my hands to stop myself, I’m sure my resolve will break soon though, how do you resist colour like that???
I did however complete something! Yes you read right! Me and the bf booked a little holiday (piccys to follow shortly) and I wanted to make a little summer hat for myself in case the sun did show itself. So I crocheted it up following the pattern. However I must have done something wrong because it ended up too small, still very cute though so I added a little ribbon and gave it to my year old niece, yes it was quite small.

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I think she pulls it off better than I ever could, isn’t she adorable!
Hatless we went on holiday but co-incidentally we didn’t need them, the weather was gloomy and quite fitting for Whitby’s gothic atmosphere. Low lying cloud hung about the cliffs . . .

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And it remained gloomy for most of our stay. Here’s a few of the pics I got in the wet windy weather . . .

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With the wet weather we ducked into little places to escape the rain and decided to go for lunch at a cafe called Sherlocks, the interior was very much as you’d expect . . .

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The cafe had numerous little nooks and crannys to sit and eat the scrummy food and it was a welcome break from the rain.

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These houses are a short walk from our b&b and they are meant to emulate the famous regency houses in bath, a place which I’d love to visit. I love a good period drama.
There was a Royal Navy training vessel for sea cadets and this also was very reminiscent of the regency era . . .

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I love to see the rigging on these type of vessels, and just had to get a close up when it came back to harbour . . .

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On our first evening we took a stroll along the pier to get a good view of the town, it does feel a little like your way out into the water when really it’s only a short walk but the view is really spectacular . . .

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There was a few breaks in the weather later in our stay and we managed a stroll around Pannet park enjoying some slight sunshine.

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I was glad to see the bunting in the sunshine rather than in the rain but alas, it didn’t last long. We stopped off at the train station to see if the steam train was in but it was a little diesel called . . .

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And though not a steam train the little sign on the front was rather charming.

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Towards the end of our stay there was better weather and we walked the 2 3/4 miles to sandsend close to the cliffs I’m always taking pictures of. It afforded a better view of the gnarly hills that jut out into the sea.

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The better weather also made for better views from our b&b which I was truly thankful for, the views in Whitby do not compare. . .

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Of course I couldn’t come away from holiday without buying something crafty and as it happens we found this wonderful little fabric shop down one of the side streets, and I bought suitably seasidey fabric for the eventual refurb of our spare room back at home.

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I also bought this wonderfully quirky Art Deco fabric which must have been popular as I managed to get the last metre.

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So after filling our bellies with seafood and our lungs with sea air we made our way home and said bye bye to Whitby for another year.

Hello again, it was the spring equinox the other day and I’m happy to say you can almost feel a little warmth in the air. Things are a little bit damp and drizzly in this part of the world at the moment, but the smell of fresh spring rain and the emergence of tiny flowers here and there really leave you with no doubt that spring is well on its way. Despite all the lovely things that go on in February, ie valentines . .

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And pretty pretty snowdrops . . .

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I’ve struggled to make any real progress with my crochet which has been incredibly frustrating as I have a ton of ideas. I really wanted to catch up with a few patterns before Easter arrives, as I’d like to do something seasonal for chocolate egg day. Whether time will permit I’m not very sure.
I never really paid much mind to Easter until a few years back when I worked in a gift shop, one of my favourite times of year was Easter and one of my favourite jobs was doing the Easter display, so I was hoping to make some decorations, crocheted eggs, lambs, chicks, baskets, I really relish the idea of doing a crocheted Easter display and though time is scarce I’m going to make the most of it.

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The colour of my flowers the bf recently bought me serves as excellent Easter inspiration, I just think they are such eastery colours and I can’t tell you how much I want to get started just looking at them.
So enough of what I haven’t made and let’s move onto what I have . . .

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Mr. Owl, the next in my woodland animals collection which I’m hoping to list on Etsy in the very near future. I’ve got rather mixed emotions about starting an online shop, nervous, scared, excited, worried. But I know its something I’ve wanted to try for such a long time, and if nothing comes of it then at least I’ve tried. I’d love to hear any advice you may have as I know a lot of bloggers are already making and selling their products. My collection is growing slowly but I’m hoping to use every spare minute I have in the next few weeks.

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As some of you will know I’ve had a little flirt in the past with beads and they’ve been sat in one of my containers waiting for some random project that’s been cluttering my head for months. Well finally I’ve had a little experimentation and produced my first ever beaded necklace. . .

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I wanted to make something bright and funky for spring/summer and picked out a few glass beads I had and strung them on some jewellery wire I’d bought by mistake when I was looking for spangling wire. I love the bright colours which are almost Lego-ish but I think they work really nice. Would love to get some feedback as the prospect of making some more might be too much for me to resist. I’m a bit of a magpie when it comes to jewellery. šŸ™‚
So just to sign off I’d like to show you picture of a stamp set I bought from Hobbycraft in a pretty wooden box . . .

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And just for the hell of it some indulgent pics of buttons (also from Hobbycraft) . . .

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See you soon!!!

Hi all! I’ve been rather naughty and haven’t done a post for well over a month. January has completely passed me by. However I have been a little busy in a crochet kind of way . . .

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. . .working on my ripple blanket has been very convenient with the nights getting colder. Though I feel this project is coming to its end and I’ll soon be working on the border.
With the colder weather comes the winter sun, low in the sky but when the clouds part it’s a vivid goldeny orange colour, I just love looking out of my bedroom window to watch it over the rooftops.

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I especially love the silhouetted trees . . .

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We recently took another trip to Beverley, and went on the Westwood for a stroll, an ancient common where people still graze cows even today. The weather wasn’t great but it was good to be outside and as some of you will already know I love to take outdoorsy photos. A little robin sat still long enough for me to take his picture as he poolted about his little thicket . . .

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. . . With lichen on the trees and bushes.

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But soon the clouds caught up with us and it was time for home.

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But not before stopping to look at an exceptionally proud looking cockrel . . .

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It’s very rare, when we go on these excursions, that I come away empty handed, and this visit was no exception. I came away with a few supplies.

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A few balls of stylecraft life dk chunky . . .

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Some earthy pastel coloured buttons . . .

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And some blue stripey triangles that I couldn’t resist. Speaking of triangles . . .

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I finally found a place for my bunting. I’d also like to show you a book the bf’s mum got me ‘An encyclopaedia of ribbon embroidery, birds, butterflies and blossoms’ by Deanna Hall West. Here’s just a snippet of the exquisite work in this book.

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It’s on my ‘to try’ list. After acquiring some more supplies and not quite having anywhere to put them, I had a little sort out and put together all my spare odds and ends which looked like a box of possibilities and projects waiting to happen.

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I must admit there was another motive for my sort out. I wanted to start work on some patterns of my own. What do you think? . . .

20140209-155941.jpg He’s just a prototype, he needs a few tweaks here and there but I’m hoping, with some alterations and some hard work Mr. fox will have a whole set of woodland friends. At the moment I’m just using up my bits and pieces and need to look into different types of wool, the colours are a bit too bright and I’m not sure of the body shape. I’d love to get some feedback and will take on board any suggestions, about this or any of my projects.
I hope to have much more to show you in my next post, til then.

Hi guys, I am proud to announce, Minnie’s Memoirs is 1 today!!!!! Whoop whoop!! That’s right, its been a whole year since I first started this blog. I haven’t written as much as I would have liked but I can tell you it feels damn good to have kept up with it. To have shared my little adventures, and crafty endeavours with you all has been some of the happiest times for me this year and I hope to continue and improve my blogging skills in the years to come.

So without further ado, here’s some of the festivey bits I’ve been getting up to recently . . .

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Christmas stockings, never made them before but thought I’d have a crack at it. I crocheted some snowflakes and then some smaller ones for my dads, and sneakily put some chocolate coins in before Christmas day.

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The snowflake pattern is from “150 blocks to knit and crochet” by Heather Lodinsky, a very good book for this kind of project. You may recognise these snowflakes as I’d hung some on the tree last year.

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Next on the agenda was the bf’s stocking, I wanted to do them quite different so I opted for Christmas trees, I purposely made them chunky and childlike, because I think they’re more fun and its always good to have blocks of bright colour to break up the red of the stocking.

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They’re a bit topsy turvey but I think it adds to the charm of it, bold stitching is also a must, (nothing to do with the fact I finished it Christmas Eve night and was in a bit of a rush)

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Here in England we can no longer depend on snow for Christmas and this year brought nothing but rain and wind, which aside from keeping me awake all night and making me dream of tornados, brought utterly spectacular skies.

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I love the winter moon as it bobs cheekily in and out of the clouds, I find I look more and more to the sky recently, it has a wonderful calming effect on me, and seen as me and the bf haven’t been on a long walk for a while its all I can do to snatch a bit of enjoyment outdoors.

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Before we knew it Christmas was upon us, and this year I invested in this wonderful polar bear knitted jumper, which I wore proudly on Christmas Day as well as my works night out. So with Christmas jumper at the ready all that was left to do was bake.

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Mini orange and cranberry cheesecakes, I’d done a test run on these just before Christmas, and was going to make another batch Christmas Eve, but neither found the time nor room in the fridge. The bf seemed to like them though so New Years cheesecakes they may have to be.

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The customary mince pie/tart, in fact more tart than anything else as I couldn’t find my large fluted cutter anywhere so they didn’t curl up in the tin like they normally do, but these went down ok with my sister and so was quite satisfied at the dwindling pile in their tupperware container. Now I normally do gingerbread biscuits at Christmas and this year was no exception. The only thing that had been bugging me was I could never get them gingery enough, no matter how much ground ginger I put in, so this year . . .

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. . . I chopped some crystallised stem ginger, quite a generous amount and put that in as well as the ground ginger. I anticipated them to be too strong but when I finally tasted one I was over the moon, I’d got it just right, and was thrilled that a whole forest of gingerbread Christmas trees hadn’t been a disaster.

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I’d like to show you some hand embroidered gifts I got this year for Christmas, especially these incredibly beautiful embroidered hankies that the bf’s mum got me, they’re old and they’re so delicately sweet I wanted to share just how much love and attention had gone into them. depicting some of my favourite subject matter, it was such a wonderful gift.

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Aren’t they stunning! One of my other Christmas gifts this year was made by the bf’s mum, who is such an accomplished lady there doesn’t seem a limit to her skill.

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This fluffy nose belongs to a sleepy hedgehog entirely made by hand from a pattern on the Internet.

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With buttoned moveable joints and knitted scarf he’s super cute. She also made me a little scissor keep, using ribbon embroidery with little lavender stems and tiny tiny bumble bees.

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So as well as a festivey feeling Christmas, I’ve had a very happy 1st Birthday.:)

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Just before I sign off I’d like to dedicate this post to a very special lady who passed away on the 17th of December – Pauline xxxx

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Autumn . . .

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Things have definitely turned autumny this last week or so and despite it being unusually warm for this time of year I felt the need to cosyfy things. I got out the autumny blankets for the bed including a cute fox print fleece.

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I then realised none of my floral cushion covers matched my autumn blankets and so, feeling slightly O.C.D. and an urge to start some granny squares in autumn colours I had a good long crochet session . . .

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I’ve an idea to do some zig zags as well so we’ll see how that turns out. I also have some autumny fabrics to tinker with. I picked up this bundle of fat quarters whilst we were down south and think they would go great as an autumny quilt.

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I also would like to show you these wonderful prints that we picked up, the title of the print is “Imagine” and its a mixture of watercolour and collage.

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It’s created by Lucyart and published by Susie Watson Design, the above is just a section of the full piece . . .

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I think the whole thing is enchanting, wizards and pirates, castles and mermaids. I love it! It’s so magical and detailed there’s so much to look at. I also picked up another print.

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I just loved the colours in this one and the childlike dimensions and scale. Speaking of colour, late summer and early autumn has brought some rich colours to our neighbourhood. Recently we took our not so regular walk and found berries galore!

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There were brambles ripening amongst the hedges, green, red and deep deep purply blue, and buckets and buckets of elderberries which I didn’t even know we’re there until we took our walk.

20131008-215947.jpg so tiny shiny and black with vibrant red stems. We even spotted a little squirrel, busying himself with winter preparations no doubt.

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He sat still just long enough for me to take a piccy. I’m quite looking forward to seeing more autumnal colours, its one of my favourite times of the year, especially for nature. And I can’t wait to take some snaps of the changing leaves and lights of the fair when it comes to town . . . Watch this space.

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