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Winter is coming…. Very slowly

The third patch I finished in my Game of Thrones blanket was the sigil of my favourite house in the series, the Starks. I won’t put any spoilers, for those catching up on the books or the show, but lets just say they are not a lucky house.  I love their ethos though, and the fact that they don’t give up even when the odds against them look overwhelming. 

I really enjoyed making this patch, even though it was back to black and grey.  I found the pattern on Ravelry.com by a great designer.  The pattern was easy to follow, but it a pattern you need to concentrate on, especially whilst doing the words.  The designer has captured the font of the sigil, so each stitch needs to be correct for the pattern to look right.  It is also important to keep your tension even during the frequent colour changes.  It is very easy to pull the wool tighter in an attempt to minimize any gaps, but this will lead to  a misshapen patch unless you keep the same tension all the way through. 

As you can see from the close up, stitch placement and tension are important, so it is a project to take your time with.  It is better to count twice than get to a few rows up to see you have miscounted and have to unravel your work.

The wolf part of the sigil was actually easier for the most part, as the areas between colour changes were bigger.  It is at this stage the cut and tie method really came into its own, as carrying yarn over large areas greatly increases the amount of yarn you use.

You can use any combination of colours for the stark patch, black on white is amazing, or you could copy the colours from the TV show, but I thought black and grey worked.  I decided to use a limited palette of colours for the blanket, sticking to black, grey, red, yellow, blue and white.  I thought this would look  effective when spread out, rather than using lots of colours.  Most of the blanket will have black, white and grey, but there will be splashes of colour from the Lannisters and house Arryn.

Off to start on the Taragyeans dragons.
See you in the funny papers
Vxx

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My biggest project 2 : Roaring on

After Nights Watch patch of my blanket, I thought I would do one of the more colourful patches next.  There is a limit to how much black and grey I can deal with.  I chose the Lannisters as the red and gold would be a perfect foil to the dark patch I had done.  There was no pattern for the Lannisters Lion on Ravelry.com so I searched on Google. I found a great pattern on a blog called interoception on tumblr.  The only problem I had was that I am left handed.  To ensure the pattern did not come out mirror image, I had to insert an extra “blank” line so that I was starting from the right side.  This seemed to work.

The Lannister pattern was a little more complicated than the first patch but as long as you count stitches carefully and mark rows, it is straightforward enough.  I recommend printing the pattern, then highlighting or marking rows you have finished.  This will save hours of unpicking, and in my case, sobbing.  The designs are so detailed that one stitch out of place can throw an entire area off.
The finished patch looked very effective, and I could see the project beginning to take shape.


As well as my blanket, I was also asked to make some flowers to sell on a charity stall.  Again, I couldn’t find a pattern on Ravelry.com, but this time I decided to be brave and make up my own pattern.

Using various scraps of yarn and appropriate size hooks, I came up with the following pattern to make pretty effective roses.

Chain 41

DC into the 4th chain from the hook.  Ch2 and 2DC into the same chain

*Chain 1

Skip 2 chains

2DC ch2 2DC *

Repeat until the end

Turn

Slip stitch to first Ch2 space

Ch4, 6Tr into Ch2 space

*SC into Ch1 space

7 Tr in next Ch2 space*

Repeat 4 times

SC into Ch1 space

*7DC into next Ch2 space

SC into Ch1 space*

Repeat 4 times

*SC into Ch1 space

7SC into Ch2 space*

Repeat until end

Finish off

Sew rose up through base chains, rolling as you go.  The stepped third row produces a natural look easily.  Attach the last petal firmly to prevent unravelling.  You can adjust the size of the roses by increasing or decreasing the number of chains in the first row.

Anyway, must go and work on the blanket

See you in the funny papers

Vx

My biggest project so far

Being a bona fide geek, I decided to embrace the geek by making something I had only imagined.  My very own Game of thrones blanket!  I even managed to out geek my daughter by crocheting a Game of  Thrones blanket, while wearing a Game of Thrones T shirt and watching GOT!  Her head nearly exploded. 

Searching Ravelry.com, I found fab patterns for the major house sigils.  My original plan was four patches plus fillers.  But then I made the mistake of telling my daughter my plan.  Big mistake.  She thought that wouldn’t be big enough.  So we decided on nine patches.  I am doing the four major houses, Starks, Lannisters, Baratheon and Targaryen, plus the Nights Watch. Plus the weirwood tree, Greyjoy sigil, Arryn sigial and the motto “valar morgulis, valar dohaeris” with the logo.  Some of these patches don’t have patterns, so I created my own charts using Stitchfiddler.  I’d never done my own charts before so that’s another new skill I have learned. 

I decided to use Sirdar bonus yarn as it had all the colours I needed plus washed well.  The first patch I attempted was the Nights watch.  The pattern was easy to follow but I had never attempted a pattern which changed colours so often. I used the “cut and tie” method as I will be backing the blanket with fleece, so am not too bothered about the back.  There are other methods which produce a neater back, but they can result in the blanket looking bulky and colours seeping through if you lose tension.  

The finished patch was bigger than I thought it would be, so the blanket will probably end up double bed size by the time I have added the borders and blocked it.  

I am quite impressed with the first patch if I do say so myself. 

I will describe the next patch in the next post.
See you in the funny papers 

Vx

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I’m back!

Well after a very long break, due in part to very difficult personal circumstances, I am back. It has been a very long time, but I am finally ready to rejoin the world of craft and baking.  I have spent the time learning new skills and perfecting old ones. I have a new motto, as you can see above, and I aim to be brave and be kind in everything I do or say. If you are brave and kind, nothing can stop you.

A few months ago, I realised that all my projects were either gifts, or things made for charity groups I was active in. One amazing group is called Woolly hugs and is a fantastic group that provides warm items for refugees, blankets for ill children in hospital, or for anyone anywhere who is in extra need of a hug. They also provide blankets for recently bereaved families, which is how I came to hear of them. They very kindly offered to provide a blanket when my darling husband died. I was so grateful. This made me realise that craft can do good in the world. They are always looking for donors, crafters or anyone who can help. They can be found at Woollyhugs and are well worth supporting.

I did manage to make myself a shawl, appropriately called Angel wings.  It is perfect for wrapping up in for comfort or on a chilly day.

The pattern can be found at Ravelry.com

 

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TTFN xx

 

 

 

 

LTW Payment plan update

botwatchblog

I have been informed by people from LTW that my last calculations were misleading and do not show how people actually earn money in their scheme. I have re-examined the payment plan and found that I was mistaken in the requirement to do three months shopping to be eligible for bonuses. Here is an updated version of how you are supposed to make money. Update to the update (27 May 2016), I have seen the official compensation plan for April 2016. I will write updates in red, to reflect this document.

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I cannot access the official information on the compensation plan because the official website has no reference to it at all. This is still the case. If you were about to sign up to this ‘business opportunity’ you would be doing it based on what bloggers and Facebook members told you it was like. This must be concerning and…

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When words can’t

Wow! Very eloquent and true

Cristian Mihai

words2Don’t you feel sometimes that certain human experiences can’t really be expressed? Certain depths of the soul can’t be put into words, no matter how much we try? Yes, it feels at times that words are simply bleeding out of our hearts, and, yes, we do come close to revealing the essence of the human spirit, yet we fail. Time and time again.

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