Thursday, 28 May 2015

Five Minute Finger-knitting Necklace Tutorial

I've been meaning to share this cute little project with you since I wrote the 'Knitting without Needles' post a while ago. As this is so quick and easy I've made several already and wear them a lot. They make a great stash-buster and if you use yarns left over from your wearable projects, you'll always have co-ordinating accessories (I do like some matchy-matchy). 
Five Minute Finger-knitting Necklace Tutorial at Crafts from the Cwtch blog
You will need:
- Your hands
- A sharp scissors
- Three or more strands of yarn depending on the thickness you require. I'm using Scheepjes Bloom which is a lightweight chunky cotton yarn. It is a hollow-knitted yarn (like an i-cord) which has an interesting texture while being comfortable next to the skin, and machine washable. For the tutorial I'm using three colours but you can use multiple strands of a single colour or any other combination you like.
Optional: beads at either end of the knitted section would be really nice.... but I don't have any.
Five Minute Finger-knitting Necklace tutorial on Crafts from the Cwtch blog

Five Minute Finger-knitting Necklace tutorial on Crafts from the Cwtch blog

Five Minute Finger-knitting Necklace tutorial on Crafts from the Cwtch blog

Five Minute Finger-knitting Necklace tutorial on Crafts from the Cwtch blog

Five Minute Finger-knitting Necklace tutorial on Crafts from the Cwtch blog

Five Minute Finger-knitting Necklace tutorial on Crafts from the Cwtch blog

Five Minute Finger-knitting Necklace tutorial on Crafts from the Cwtch blog

Five Minute Finger-knitting Necklace tutorial on Crafts from the Cwtch blog

Five Minute Finger-knitting Necklace tutorial on Crafts from the Cwtch blog

Finger-knitted necklace
When you've finished, you will find that giving the stitches a little wiggle will even them out. You could tie some decorative knots in the ends or customise with beads, or anything else you like. I didn't have time for that today as it's half term and photographing and publishing a "five minute" project, takes a whole lot longer than that so I'm just thankful I managed to get it done. (As you can see, I didn't manage to blow-dry my hair, put on lipstick, get a manicure, or arrange a nice back-drop for the photos - this is real life blogging!)
Tuesday, 26 May 2015

Out of Hibernation

There was once a pair of socks. They were coming along nicely. I loved the yarn, and the pattern was one I'd used before* and was very happy with. Then one day something happened. A mistake was spotted - just a silly mistake, but in a previous row, which would have involved ripping back or some dropping-stitches surgery and as they were being knit two-at-a-time on one circular needle, it seemed like a bit of an effort. I didn't get around to fixing it and so the socks went into hibernation.... for quite a long time.  
Hi-ber-nate1. To be in a dormant or torpid state during a cold period, especially during the winter.
2. To be in an inactive or dormant state or period. 
I've been in hibernation mode myself lately. There's been a lot going on in our family - health concerns, hospital visits, and so on, all alongside the chaos of day-to-day family life. In the animal kingdom, hibernation is a time of inactivity, of deep sleep and energy conservation. I've needed to take it easy, conserve energy and sleep more, instead of sitting up into the night crafting or writing blog posts. You may have noticed it's been a bit quiet around here. 

Then one day last week, I found those hibernating socks. I was heading for a day at the hospital (while a family member had surgery) and popped them in my bag. At that point I couldn't even remember what it was that had stopped their progress, so I knit on. Of course, a few more rounds in, I found the mistake,  but really it was so insignificant that it seemed impossible I'd let it worry me so much. 

That's often the way, isn't it? Little things can seem so much more important and stop us getting things done. It's good to put those projects (and worries) into hibernation for a while. To take time out and to come back to the 'problem' with fresh eyes. Often it's not really a problem at all. 
I'm happy to tell you that within a couple of hours, the socks were finished. They are not perfect, but I don't mind. They have inspired me to cast on some more. After the (unspoken) disaster that happened to Little Miss' socks after photographing them for the Demystifying Toe-Up Sock Tutorial series, I owe her a new pair. She's been patient, but it's been quite long enough. 

*The pattern is Hermione's Everyday Socks by Erica Lauder but modified to knit toe-up and two-at-a-time. The yarn is discontinued hand-dyed yarn from Nimu who are no longer trading. 
Monday, 25 May 2015

Get creative on Bank Holiday/ Memorial Day

As I'm busy with family things today, I'm just dropping in with an affiliate special offer for you - grab a one month free pass to Creativebug including one class to keep forever - there are some awesome classes and I think you'll love it as much as I do. Click on the image below and then use the code SUMMER2015.
Creativity is Contagious - 1 month free
Even better.... you can pass the offer onto your friends too, simply by clicking the banner (below).  Have fun and I'll be back soon. In the meantime, please leave a comment with your favourite class! (If you want to read more about Creativebug, see my review here.)
Creativity is Contagious - 1 month free
Monday, 18 May 2015

When Life Gets in the Way, Crochet

I had great plans for May but, as tends to happen every so often, life is conspiring against them - there are numerous distractions and inconveniences which were certainly not planned. At such times, I find it's important to prioritise and I've given myself permission to let certain things slide down "the list" - many of these things are related to the blog and to new designs I'd been planning. They can wait. I hope regular readers will forgive me for not keeping to my normal schedule, and for re-scheduling some planned posts I'd already mentioned.
#cftcmakealong - Transposition Shawl WIP using #Scheepjes Soft Fun Denim
I haven't done any knitting for a while, but thankfully waiting around in hospitals (for various things, for different people - because everything always happens at once!) is quite conducive to quiet crochet and I'm making good progress with my second Make-along shawl.

The pattern is Transposition by Joanne Scrace from The Shawl Project (reviewed here). I'm making it with a heavier yarn in three different colours of Scheepjes Soft Fun Denim DK (in Blush, Taupe and Brown). Unfortunately I ran out of the second colour before I'd finished the full number of repeats on the middle section, so it's going to have a further modification, but I think it'll work out fine.

This is the first time I've used this yarn (aside from swatching), and it's incredibly soft to handle, and will be lovely to wear. Unfortunately it is quite 'splitty' which might bother me if I were knitting with sharp needles, but I'm enjoying using it with a 5mm Clover Soft Touch hook - I can live with the 'splittiness' in exchange for the subtle semi-solid colours and soft texture, and being cotton/acrylic it's  easy-care.

I'll likely be waiting around again for much of Thursday, so there should be another finished project to show you before the end of the week. You can also follow along with this and the other participant's projects on social media using the tag #cftcmakealong.  I can't believe quite how relaxing crochet has become this month, although I'll probably always think of these 'make-along' projects as "the hospital shawls"....
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Crafts from the Cwtch is part of the Deramores, Craftsy, Etsy, Creativebug and Amazon Affiliate programmes and works with a few carefully selected sponsors. Where posts or projects are sponsored, the opinions will always be entirely my own. You can find out more about affiliate links and blog sponsorship here.
Welcome to CftC! You'll find lots of knitting, spinning, crochet, books and snippets of family life amongst the archives and you may like to start with my most popular tips & tutorials, or the patterns. You can read more about me on the 'Hello' page and if you like it here, you may also like to visit the CftC pages on Ravelry, Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest and Etsy. I hope you enjoy your visit! Sarah

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Let's Knit issue 80 Simply Knitting issue 115
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