Thursday, November 4, 2010

Birthday Treats and weaving update

Hi everybody ! I have had a very nice week beginning with yet another birthday on Monday past.

Thought I would share with you some of the lovely things that came my way !! I'll start with a wonderful present from my husband ! I am well known for being a bit of a gadget freak and always had to have the latest computer going with Tony getting any cast offs. I have been quite well behaved of late having been extravagant in buying my new loom and a lot of yarn. So it was a lovely surprise to find Tony had bought me an iPad.  A lot of time has been spent these last few days getting it set up and ready to use, it is great for internet access and e-mailing when I am on the move.

I have two new books in my weaving library, this one from daughter Gillian.....

and this one from daughter Alison......

We went out for supper with Alison and her husband on Monday night and another surprise was in store ! As I have said previously, Alison has taken up cake decoration as a 'hobby' and she had made this for me.........

The whole cake is edible ! The balls of wool have chocolate cake at their centre and the 'yarn' was made by extruding the icing and forming the balls of wool. The basket is also filled with moist chocolate cake. Alison says this is her best yet and I would have to agree. It was a shame to cut it but Tony and I have been enjoying chocolate cake all week. I am in trouble for spending too much time on the iPad and being late with this blog as Alison has been desperate to see her cake on the web !! 

I had another surprise parcel which arrived from Canada from my very special friend Susan ! Inside I had a lovely card and one of Susan's very special tea towels in lovely soft colours. The draft is 'Heart to Heart' and she blogged about weaving these while all her kitchen renovations were in progress. The picture I am going to post here will hopefully show the very professional hand sewn hem ! I am so impressed with the finish it has set a new standard for me to live up to ! The hem is hardly any thicker than the tea towel and just sits so beautifully I hope you can see what I mean.....

Although this picture shows the hem it doesn't do the colours justice. the colours are very neutral and soothing, maybe this is slightly better......

Along with the tea towel came these handmade stitch markers. they are just the kind I like, they stay on the needle and don't fall off making you lose the place !! They are much more 'sparkly' than the pictures shows.

So, very many thanks to Susan and to everyone who made my birthday such a special occasion !!

With all that excitement, what else have I managed to be doing ?

The Drall scarves are progressing, many thanks for all your comments last week about colour choices.
I did as you all suggested and tried out a few different things and in the end settled on eggplant or aubergine for the third scarf. The photo doesn't really show it off very well but I am pleased with it. If only I would remember to take pictures in the daylight I would get better results !

That is the third scarf so only one more to go ! Next on the loom will be a snowflake shawl for daughter Gillian for her Christmas so watch this space !

The rigid heddle has another warp on it using the same lacey draft as the one I had to cut off. I liked the result when I washed the piece I cut off so thought it was worth another go. This time I am using Manos del Uruquay Lace in baby alpaca, silk and cashmere. No problems with the warp this time but I am not happy with the selvedges. I find it quite difficult to do good selvedges particularly on the left side. Hoping the washing will help a bit, otherwise I will have to learn how to do a crocheted edging !! Anyway, here is what it looks like on the loom............

I have another swallowtail shawl on the pins and decided to try placing a bead instead of doing the 'nupps' Thinking I knew how to do that I threaded about 250 beads onto the yarn before I started and have been carefully sliding them down as I knitted, all a bit tedious I was thinking ! When I had placed two rows of beads I decided I didn't like the result ! Inspiration came to me, ask on Ravelry Now, why I didn't do that first I don't know ! The answer was not to thread the beads onto the yarn but to use a crochet hook to add a bead to a stitch exactly where you want it to sit. First thing was to buy a 0.6mm crochet hook, now that is fine ! I soon got the hang of it so decided to undo the two rows done previously and start again with the crochet hook. The result is much better and now I am quite a fan of beading on lace.

Well, I hope you have enjoyed this update and thank you again for visiting ! There won't be a blog next week but I should have a good story to tell you the week after with lots of good pictures too !


  1. I wish I had known it was your birthday! Many happy returns. I am a bit envious of your fantastic presents, both ipad and weaving books...
    That twill scarf comes out very nicely. Really looks very much like one I did earlier this year with the only two colours of tencel I had.
    The birthday cake looks just unbelievable!!

  2. Happy, happy birthday, dear Dorothy!!!! It sounds like you had a lovely time! The CAKE is MARVELOUS!!! What a labor of love, indeed!! Your projects are beautiful, as always (and Susan's work is always of a standard to inspire us all!!!)!!
    I've also considered but have yet to brave knitting with beads. The result is just so pretty! Now I know who to go to for encouragement when I finally make the plunge!! Enjoy!!!

  3. Ooh, toys! I am interested in the Scandinavian weaving book as that is a new one to me... looking forward to seeing some projects take shape on the loom.

  4. Wow, that is one beautiful cake! An amazing job indeed... the patience that Alison has is amazing.

    No doubt about it, you were royally spoiled! Books, iPad and cake... lovely.

    Thank you for the compliments on the towel and its hem. There are plenty of lines for me to keep my stitching on track! I have taken to hand hemming most things as I really dislike the heavy line of machine sewing as its distracting ( and in my case, seldom straight!)

    Your drall scarves look wonderful... I might steal that idea and do some myself!

    Happy Birthday!

  5. Happy Birthday Dorothy,
    What wonderful celebrations you have had; what wonderful gifts! You will enjoy your new weaving books, and an iPad - great fun. Your birthday cake was beautiful, how artistic to design a basket of wool - you daughter did well.
    Then you leave us with, "no blog next week, but will have a good tale to tell and interesting pictures" ...... can hardly wait.
    Weaverly yours ............ Barbara

  6. Love, love, love the cake! How wonderful to have something so special made for you!