8 December 2023

Progress on the sewing

As I’ve not got a lot to show at the moment I’m going to show you the small amount of progress made on this project.

I’m only working on this on a Tuesday morning at the moment.  Sometimes I get sidetracked during the get together with helping others with their work or just by sitting gossiping too!!!  

Anyway, here’s the latest progress picture!!

6 December 2023

A new short term project

I was given a brand new poncho some time ago and I just knew I’d never wear it.  The person who’d made it had given it to somebody else who then passed it on to me!!!  So the poor thing felt really unloved.
I took it apart and wound it up into balls.  Having donated three scarves (see here) and (here) to the food bank which they were really grateful for, I decided that they may need some gloves for those really in need.

I’ve never done fingerless gloves before as my favourite (to wear) are the top down to cuff ones that I make.  Here’s the pattern should you want it.  So I started looking for a pattern and came up with this one which was a lucky, lucky find.

This is my first pair.

4 December 2023

Busy tatting

I know I’ve been quiet on the blog lately but it’s not because I’ve forgotten it!! The main reason is I’ve been busy making Christmas presents which I can’t show you until after the 25th!!! 

The tatting I’ve been doing is dangles to give to people who put up with me at the craft groups.  This is the pile I’ve got done.  I don’t ‘do’ cards anymore as I don’t see why I should pay the Post Office to deliver them when they charge oodles more than the card itself.  I’ve always had a ‘love/hate’ relationship with Christmas cards anyway.

I do have another project on the go too and I’ll show you that later this week - hopefully!!!!

22 November 2023

Waiting in the wings!!

I’m not sure if I’ve shown you before but this is some yarn that Nancy kindly gave me when we met up in town a month or ‘several’ ago.  She lives in Birmingham.  No, not the one along the road but the one in Alabama!!!  
This is 4 ply and will probably be turned into more socks - unless I can find another project that takes my fancy!!!  I need a break from socks, really!!!

20 November 2023

Monday moan - returned book

Well the book which stole the picture of my bookmark arrived on Friday lunchtime.  It was on its way back to the ebayer shortly after.  I took a photo or two to illustrate how badly the contents are and then wrapped it in the same packaging to send it back.
I’m afraid I have to share just a very small proportion of the introduction with you as I find it highly amusing that we’ve all been enjoying a ‘roll in the hay’ all these years without even knowing it!!

17 November 2023

Neighbours and Needles

OR is it Needles and Neighbours?  Well I call it the ‘Tuesday Group’ as I can never remember!!!  We meet at Lifeways for a crafty session on a Tuesday morning.  Actually it’s more about the chatting and drinking tea/coffee and meeting up with others who live in the neighbourhood!!!

Over the years we’ve done projects to help the local community.  We do a project together to raffle/sell at our annual garden party and the money we raise goes to local charities.  Over the years we’ve done quilts and have been amazed at the talents our ‘non sewers’ have managed to find and contribute.  Some didn’t know they could sew until they joined us.  Taking part in a project isn’t compulsory but it’s a great way of keeping us together and building a community spirit.

For next summer’s project we’ve decided to make tote bags to raffle.  We’ve bought the bags out of our funds and people who want to take part have a square of fabric which we’ll sew onto the front and back when they’ve done their design on it.  I’ve started on my first one which I’ll show below.

We’re suggesting that they take inspiration from Boro - here’s a link and/or Sashiko as both are easily achievable - I hope.

16 November 2023

A chatty project!

Now I have to have a project on the go that I can take to my crafty groups and just ‘do’.  It has to be something that needs ZERO concentration so that the nattering can happen without being distracted by the craft!!!
After the four scarves had been finished (one was snitched by my daughter) the other three went to the food bank.  I know they’re not edible - I’m not that stupid but the volunteers there assured me they’d go into special hampers for those who really will respect that they’re new and handmade.  Anyway, they’re gone now and I had to have something to do with my free yarn that I ‘won’ from Hobbycraft.  So I wanted something new.  What about a shawl type scarfy thing?  Here’s what I’m working on.

I’ve no idea who will get this when it’s done but I’ll find it a home!!!  That’s unless I undo it and make it into something else!!  There’s time for that to happen still!!!

14 November 2023

Second sock syndrome - sorted!!

Well that’s another project off my ‘to do’ list.  I just knuckled down and knitted my little socks off.   A pun but that’s actually true, isn’t it?

The new owner put them on straightaway so I’m happy that they fit etc.  

13 November 2023

Further to last Monday’s moan

The good news is that most of the booksellers took the offending book down off their platforms.
EBay uk and .com also removed it too but Amazon refuses both here in the UK and in America.  So, a partial success.  

My main reason for chasing this up is to help stop people who want to learn to tat from being ripped off with very inferior books with poor contents.  Also to prevent them buying the same book with a different cover.  It was only because the seller put EXACTLY the same introduction in all the books that my ‘little band of spies’ (not really!) spotted this that I was able to confidently take a small amount of action.

A photo to cheer you up.

7 November 2023

Thank you

Thank you for all your support yesterday and I do have further news.  
There are at LEAST two further books being sold by different ‘authors’ with exactly the same introduction and layout of the cover.  However the other two have used other people’s images, I think.  

One poor lady who commented on Facebook or this blog said she’d ordered 12 books and they all turned out to be the same.  Fortunately Amazon refunded her money but what a nasty experience.

Here are two more links to the original book - here and here so it’s obviously going to be impossible to stop this rash of thefts.

Here are images of the other two books.

6 November 2023

A CROSS Monday Moan - copyright theft

I have a good friend who ‘tipped me the wink’ on Friday about a book she’d seen for sale on eBay (picture below). 

Can you see why I’m cross?  Yes the image on the right is mine and the original can be found for free here and has been available for the past 17 years!!!  What really annoys me is that people are paying money to buy the book (which probably has more stolen work inside) when they could probably get them all for free (like mine).  

I’ve ordered the book, which pains me as I’m buying my own work, and will report on the contents when it arrives.

Other action I’ve taken is to contact eBay.co.uk and eBay.com who have both removed the book although, to be honest, it might have been the seller as I contacted them too.  Amazon are ‘considering my request’ as well and I’m leaving reviews on sites where I find the book but can’t find how to contact them.  AbeBooks have removed it too.  

There will be more on this ‘issue’ as research continues.  If you see the book elsewhere could you tell the seller etc that it is using copyrighted pictures and (to yet be proved) probably patterns too.  TBC.

27 October 2023

Second sock ‘syndrome’

Now I don’t understand this ‘second sock syndrome’!!!  I obviously don’t suffer from it because as soon as the first one was done I had to get straight on with the second.
Trying to analyse this and I’ve come to the conclusion it’s because I’m terrified that if I don’t get on with the second one straightaway then I might not get it done at all!!!  So, having finished the cloth then the best plan was to get the second one cast on as soon as possible!!!

Ah, another reason to crack on quickly is because (of course) I’ve got other yarn lurking in the background too!!! 

25 October 2023

Second jacket finished

Sometimes things take time!!! 

This jacket was made over a fleece that the IT volunteers who work in the library were given many years ago.  Long before the pandemic.  It’s a lovely warm jacket and I’ve posted about it before but never got round to ‘quite’ finishing it.  I had to take out the side pockets as the zips were very large so I sewed up the slots which made an ugly inside front.  I luckily found some black fabric in my stash which was suitable for lining.  I lined the front and back but not the sleeves.

I added big patch pockets too so I could put my phone in one and probably other bits and bobs in t’other!!!

Then the poor jacket waited and waited as I didn’t need it due to the warm weather.  Eventually we had a cold spell and I went through my stash of tatting bits and found lots of ‘things’ (commonly known as motifs) from the ‘box in the cupboard) and sewed them on.  Very pleased with the jacket and have worn it out a few times.

23 October 2023

Results of the last Monday moan!!!

My inbox has become a LOT less busy since my last moan!!!  Not because I guess anything has changed in Tat Land but simply because I've taken action.
When I sat and thought about it I realised that the only thing I could do was to leave all the groups.  Well that wasn’t going to happen as I’m too darn nosy.  I then had a good look at the groups I belonged to and I left three which weren't very active.  

Then I had a brainwave (BC3 helped obviously) and I blocked the people who were forever advertising.  Shame really but I’m sure they won’t notice as they probably weren’t interested in me anyway!! 

I’ve had a lovely quiet week since.  

A picture of the river yesterday.  A bit high but at least it’s not over the banks yet.  We’ve been lucky here that we haven’t had the floods other parts of the country have had.

20 October 2023

The second scarf

As you know this is the second ball of yarn that I got from a swop shop.  

After I’ve done this scarf I’ll give all four away to - well not sure who or what but I’m hoping to find a local charity that can use them.

19 October 2023

Patchwork cloth finished

It’s finally done.  My winter project but winter has only just arrived!!!  I didn’t spend any money on this as all the fabric was in my stash.  

As it’s going to live on an antique table I decided to use some lightweight wadding/batting inside to protect it.  I’m going to ‘stitch in the ditch’ round some places to prevent the wadding from moving when it gets thrown in the washing machine.  I think this is one of the most satisfying projects I’ve ever done as I’ve not ‘fallen out with it’ yet!!!

For those who know me well - it will NOT be going into a box in the cupboard!!!

18 October 2023

I had another accident!

Yes, it's true.  I had two Hobbycraft vouchers for five pounds each so, of course, I had to go and check the local store out!! 
I spoke to the cashiers first to see what the situation was and I found out I could only purchase five pounds of 'goodies' twice - if you follow!!!  If I'd seen something for ten pounds then I'd have had to put another five in and couldn't 'combine' the two!!  This made life quite hard!!!!

In the end I bought these two balls of yarn.  Well, I didn't' buy' them but traded the vouchers for them.  I'd promised myself no more yarn but it was a case of 'use it (them/vouchers) or lose it (them/vouchers)!!!  The last picture is there to show the label so you can check it out.  I've used it before for scarves if you want to look here.

17 October 2023

A little off topic - but actually it isn't!!! Read more!

As you know from yesterday’s post I'm not a fan of Facebook and I just pop into it quickly and leave as soon as I've added whatever I think I need/want to add!!!  So I was surprised to get a message from a friend via the messenger app.  This was from Denise.

It was there for a few hours (well almost a day) because I was concerned about clicking on a link.  In the end I put on my 'old gits pants' and clicked on it.  Other people have 'big girl pants' but mine are slightly different!!!

Anyway - here's the link which is NOT 'off topic' as tatting is included!!  I thought it was such a lovely place that some might be able to visit if you live close by.  

16 October 2023

Monday moan back again!

I’m just FED UP with Facebook at the moment.  I’ve set up the groups that I’m in to send me email notifications of ‘what’s going on in Tat land’ and nowadays it’s constant advertising of people who are selling patterns on Etsy.  In fact it’s mainly just two people who are doing it.
When I say ‘constant’ I’m talking about several times a day from these people.  For GOODNESS SAKE if their patterns were that ‘good’ they wouldn’t need to constantly barrage the rest of us with their advertising.  I will NEVER buy off those people just because they’re so annoying.  Even the groups where advertising is banned are inundated with the adverts.  There’s one person who uses two names so that makes double the annoyance.  I’m monitoring the situation and leaving the groups that constantly let them do this.  I reckon I’ll soon not belong to any tatting groups.  Will you miss me?

13 October 2023

Plodding along

Things have slowed down considerably with the patchwork but that’s mainly because it’s a long way round on what is probably the final row.  
I say ‘probably’ because I’m not totally sure that this will quite fit and it may need an extra row on each end.  Whatever happens it’ll then need to be backed and that’s going to be another challenge!!!

11 October 2023

A cow!!!

I had this message from Mary Jane a week or so ago and I thought you’d like to see it!!!  She said

“My daughter in law has cows in her bathroom. So thanks to your patterns I made her one.   Fun too do. Thanks”

10 October 2023

There’s nothing like

Scrummaging through a friend’s button box!!!

This was last week at a neighbour’s house when we were looking for the ‘right’ buttons to put on the bunting.  We’d made (well, Jo made) bows to add to the places where the bunting is going to be tied onto the posts.  Just to hide the ends.  Well, that was a good excuse to have a rummage through Jayne’s button tin/tins!!!

Oh we did find the ‘right ones’ in the end but we had such fun searching for them!!!

9 October 2023


I don’t usually put personal ‘stuff’ up on the blog or on Facebook.  Mainly because I don’t think I’m interesting enough.
Well last week I hit 80 years old.  My lovely neighbours across the road took me out to lunch, gave me presents including flowers (see pictures) and that was lovely.  Another neighbour invited me round for a drink in the evening and we decided to have a ‘knit and natter’ evening.  BUT it turned out it was a surprise party with lovely friends and neighbours.  I was absolutely gobsmacked and had a MEGA evening with pressies, flowers and lovely nibbles’

Friday it was back to normal or thereabouts!!!!

Saturday more flowers arrived from friends who live ‘round the corner’ and my daughters plus other family all turned up with 3 out of 4 grandkids plus one girlfriend.  The weather was amazingly warm so we sat in the garden.  Around three o’clock they told me we were going out.  They ‘marched’ me into town to one of the big hotels where they’d arranged afternoon tea with Prosecco as well.  It was WONDERFUL 

We came home after and again it was warm enough to sit in the garden until it was dusk.  My son in law produced an amazing chilli con carne ‘out of the blue’ which was great as I’d not been told that any of this was happening.  WHAT a joy to be 80.  

I’m not sure what the family think but I’ve told them that next year I’m going to be 80 again.  Again and again and again.  THANK YOU to you ALL for an amazing birthday.

6 October 2023

On the ‘home run’ - but

Still a long way to go.  That’s the problem with projects like this.  You start from the middle and things go pretty quickly but as you get further out there’s more and more work needed.  
Here’s the next part.  As you can see I’ve added in four small seven hex motifs to make the whole thing rectangular.  I think the cloth needs to be a little longer but the depth is fine.  Now to work out the next part.  The end is in sight and my winter project will be done before winter has arrived. 

That’s the problem when you get addicted to a project.  

4 October 2023

I’m round the bend

Well you all knew that anyway but I’m also ‘round the bend’ of the heel!!!  
Now it’s ‘onward and upward’ I hope!!!!

Next time you hear about the sock I’m hoping it’ll be finished with just one more sock to make!!!  Liz has two legs so that means she’ll need two socks!!!!

3 October 2023

Now stitched but more decisions needed!!!

I’ve got those four large motifs done and stitched down.  Mainly because I stayed in ALL day on Saturday!!!
As you can see I’m now ‘squaring it off’ and hope that it will soon become a rectangle to fit my table.  There’s still a long way to go, though.

2 October 2023

A message but not in a bottle!

Life last week was a little ‘stressful’ so not a lot of crafting got done but I still have things to show you!!

First of all was this lovely message from Anita who said

“Thank you Jane!  For having this project online, it inspired me to make a miniature baby blanket.”

This cheered me up no end as it’s a rare thing to hear from people who use my patterns.  If they were in book form I’d know whether they were popular or not from whether people were buying the books but doing things for free leaves you in a sort of vacuum.

Ah, well, back to my vacuum with thanks to Anita for cheering me up!!!!

29 September 2023

Another scarf

You probably don’t remember but I had two big balls of yarn that I knitted this scarf out of.  Well the scarf only took one ball so I have another ball left to deal with.  

This is the start of scarf number two!!!  I’m using exactly the same pattern as last time as I found I could remember it pretty easily.  I’m only doing this when I’m at Friday knitting as I can work on it and chat at the same time!!!

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Happy Beaks

Happy Beaks
I beg your pardon? I didn't quite catch what you said.