Saturday, 30 August 2014

Truly Hooked Wishes Knit Nottingham a Happy Birthday!

It's only a couple of days until we're FOOOOOOOUR! Four years old. At this point we're walking, talking, still snotting, occasionally throwing a wobbler in the supermarket and thinking about school. Excellent. Luckily, the shop isn't an actual human which means that we are allowed to celebrate with booze. :) AND LOVELY WOOL! I'm doing the same thing as we did with the Love Your Local Yarn Shop Day and I've got some gorgeous yarn dyed up by Vezza that has a message and you have the chance to win it!

A ticket to win it costs £2.00. You can buy as many as you like and opt for as many colours as you like. You'll be entered into the competition and the winners will be announced on the Facebook group at the end of Saturday and then on the blog here on the Monday or Tuesday afterwards (whenever I'm back in the shop basically). But this time there's a little extra element because one of the colourways hasn't been collected from last time, despite my best efforts to contact her, so each time you enter the draw you'll also be entered into a separate draw for this beautiful lot:

 Which is the Berries colour from the Love Your Local Yarn Shop Day Yarn. Gorge yeah!?

So, here are your options:

I don't know why the 'Jam' ended up so small. My favourite is September. I know it's a weird name but to be it looks like the beginning of Autumn and also a little bit like school books and folders. I think it's gorge! Do you love them!? Who am I kidding? Of course you do.

So, click here for the link and buy buy buy. :)

But that's not your only chance to get some Truly Hooked yarn. Oh no! On the day we'll have lots of grads available and hopefully, subject to what Vezza's up to, some other bits too! LOOK:

HEHEHEHEHEHEHEEHHEHEEHHEEHHEHEHEHEHEHEHEHEHEHEHEHE! These are gonna be roughly £15.00 for 100g (but some might be a bit less and also luxury fibres might be a bit more - all to be decided when we know what's going on...). So you can see how much of a bloody bargain the BIRTHDAY PARTY BLANKS are! YEAH!!!

I'm off to prepare for tomorrow's lesson/tidy because somehow, it's got to 5.20 and I've no idea where the day's gone...

Love Eleanor. xxxx

Friday, 22 August 2014

Good Old Fashioned Granny Squares.

To cut a long story short - click here for the pattern (automatic download) and here for the Rav link.  

In my head there were no basic patterns for granny squares written in UK terms on t'internet. It made me mad. And I decided to get even. So I've written a pdf that I'm giving away free of charge to spread joy to the world! I've not included explanations of the stitches - for that you'll have to come on a lesson or google it. What it is, is the anatomy of a granny square and simply that.

There are twenty five stages. From slip knot to sewing in ends. Each stage has a photo and an explanation. 

I decided to go ahead and do this for a number of reasons. Firstly not everybody can get to the shop! IMAGINE NOT BEING ABLE TO GET HERE! Poor things. And if they can't get to the shop then they can't go to a lesson. Boo hiss. Secondly, some people can't afford the lessons that we do. Can't argue with that - hopefully if I'm nice and helpful you'll spend what money you can on my yarn? Thirdly, Some people can already crochet a bit but haven't done a granny square in the way that they need to for the Crochet Number Two lessons. Now they can! And fourthly, I've now discovered that there are perfectly good UK termed granny square patterns online buuuuuuuut they all seem to do the weird thing where you start the round in the middle of a side rather than at the corner or the even weirder thing where they finish off every round and reintroduce the yarn (sorry if that's the way that you do it - follow my instructions and you'll never have to be weird again... in regards to your granny squares anyway, I can't help you in any other way). And finally, I feel like I haven't done anything friendly and nice like a free pattern or something on here for aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaages. So there you have it.

Here's the link from our website (it should automatically download when you click). 

And I've popped it up on Ravelry too so do link projects as you do them, much appreciated.

On a separate note, I've officially launched the birthday party. We're having a get together on the 6th of September, normal shop hours. Everybody is invited! Bring your knitting/crochet, a bottle if you want, some snacks if you can and come and relax. I'll be doing a little work and as much chatting as possible on the day so we can have a reet good catch up. SO looking forward to this winter. :) Facebook event here.

And finally. Another little goodie for you! This is what the weather looked like today:

And what it threatens to look like for the whole of the bank holiday weekend... So to cheer us all up, and make sure you've got a fantastic project to keep you going, how's about double points on the loyalty card on whatever you buy tomorrow? YEAH!? Good! See you then then. :)

Love Eleanor. xxxxxxxx

Wednesday, 20 August 2014


... on my knit club. And don't I feel terrible?! Haha! NOT A CHANCE! I feel great! But I may still be drunk.

So, there's a lady called Allison who came to some of my lessons recently (Learn to Crochet maybe?!?) and it turns out that she's not only great fun and a lovely lady but she's also one of them there dead annoying people who gets. things. done. And one of the things that she's gone and done recently is starting a knit club in Beeston (called Wool and Wine I think?!). The inaugural meeting was last Tuesday and I missed it because I'm a tit but I was determined to go this week because I'd heard from a few sources that it was jolly good fun. I got Boyf on board too.

It starts at 7 and it's at the White Lion which is a lovely little pub right in the centre of Beeston (if you can get yourself to the bus station then you can see it. Whether you can get to it through the maze that is Beeston town centre at the moment is an entirely different matter...).

I feel super bad because I've not been to my knit club in yonks - a mixture of holidays and being a generally miserable bugger who uses all my good will up on you lovely customers and then has none left over for knit clubbers. Bah humbug. SORRY STEPH!

Anyway, the ladies there were great. A right mixture of newbies and experts, knitters and crocheters, crafters and artists and one particularly lovely lady who had a 'thing' for Mr Tumble. *snort* It was so great catching up with a few customers who I've not seen in a while and meeting some potential new ones (always a bit awks going to a knitting club as a yso because there's a fine line between being excited and talking about your life and sell sell selling).

Lovely Pat was there in her AMAZING jumper and after having seen her and her husband Ken in the day time I'd persuaded them both to come.

That's the King Cole Riot DK in Neon and pattern number 3828 and if you make it you too could be as happy as Pat. :)

I knew that Ken, miserable bugger that he is, would get on like a house on fire with Chris, miserable bugger in training and they sat in the corner buying eachother pints of real ale and putting the world to rights. Ha. It left the rest of us to get on with the important stuff. A lot of knitting was done, but not by me. I managed to crochet together one strip of squares. And that's it. Happily, Pat forgot a needle so I set her to work on my tunic which is at the moment just a large swathe of stocking stitch in a colour I don't really like and she got about 3 inches done! I call that knitting vicariously. :)

So, once again, it's every Tuesday from 7-9 (but we stayed later) at the White Lion in Beeston and I had a whale of a time so I reckon you lot will too. And if you're closer to town, pop into the Broadway every Tuesday from 6-8 where you'll find more mad knitters crying because I've broken their hearts by cheating.

Three cheers for Allison!

And now just a few update-y bits because I've been away accounting for so bloody long.

I took the blanket to Chester Races on Saturday. It was grand and I got a lot done! All of the 'verticals' are done now and I'm working through the horizontals but it's BLOODY HUGE so it's taking its time.

That was before it all of  the verticals were done but it's one of the few places I was able to spread it out properly. I haven't got anywhere near measuring it but it's 22 squares long and 17 squares wide and each square is about 5/6 inches across so that's 9 foot by 7 conservatively and potentially 11 foot by 8.5. Plus border. Plus stretch. I keep joking that it means that me and Chris can sit on opposite sides of the sofa under the same blanket and never have to touch. Anyway, I'll be writing a much more in depth post when it's done. Taking you through the journey. And what a journey it's been! Haha.

I wore heels. I just wanted to get this noted for posterity because those beautiful (and *almost* comfy) red shoes are falling apart and I'll not be able to wear them for much longer. It was fine because the grass was 'good to soft' and my heels kept sinking in making it feel like I was wearing flip flops. Haha.

And finally a Versace update:

She's still the most beautiful cat that's ever been born. Obvs. She's SO much better now. She doesn't have to follow us when we leave the room anymore and I've seen her properly sleeping - like twitchy legs catching mice sleeping. :) The other morning she jumped onto the sofa near the kitchen and looked us straight in the eye whilst having a piss. Hahahah. Usually I would have grabbed the bugger and told her off then shown her the litter tray but it's a fine line with little Versace because she's still an abused cat even if she is one that pisses on the sofa whilst retaining eye contact. Blurgh. She's much less scared of the shower now, she'll even sit at the top of the steps to the bathroom whilst you're having one but she won't under any circumstances come into the room whilst it's on. She still hates Kanye but she luuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuurves Beyonce. Good cat. 

Also this:

No words necessary. Apart from why does Chris insist on having a phone with such a terrible camera?!??! It's almost as if he doesn't think his photos will end up on the blog of an award winning yarn shop... Have you voted??? ;)

Tomorrow I have a tutorial for you... hopefully... 

Love Eleanor. xxx

Wednesday, 13 August 2014

Dirty Rascal Big Reveal.

I am THRILLED with how this one turned out. I thought it might be too 'castle-y' iykwim but I think it's just perfect! It's only castle-y if you know it's castle-y - it's a completely wearable thing! And I don't really know what to call it - is it a scarf? Is it a shawl? Is it a shawlette? I guess it's kind of an elongated shawlette but surely that makes it a funny shaped scarf? WHO KNOWS?! I just know that it's bloody great and I can't wait for this weather to be over so that I can wear it! 

I explained a little where the idea from this came from in the blurb but basically the rampart type trim has been in my mind for a while, the rest came from discussing my holiday with Jem and went from mermaids, to beach huts to castles. 

I am thrilled with the photos! It was such a lovely day and Boyf got well into photographer mode. I love the fact that I've got like a million photos from Castle Rising Castle as it was such a great, inspiring place. I LOVE the history. Isabella was such a woman wasn't she?! Although, if she were around now I wouldn't want to know her probably. I loved the fact that Castle Rising Castle, that I'd never heard of, had a strong connection to Nottingham Castle. And then the Black Prince's main castle home was the one just around the corner from where Boyf grew up. Such strange connections. 

Anyway, hopefully you can see that this is an interesting project - I spent a lot of time working out something that a lot of people could wear and that would be simple to crochet for newbies but just interesting enough for us more experienced crocheters. I'm dead pleased that part of it's called 'murder holes'. For obvious reasons. I think I'd wear this with the widest part at the back of the neck, to keep chills out at the back and to keep bulk from the front. But it could be worn the opposite way - with the widest part at the front or as a sort of shawl over the shoulders.

I chose the Moods DK mostly because I like the stone-y texture, secondly because it's a new addition to our range and lots of people haven't got around to working with it and finally because it's rustic looking so lots of people overlook it for refined projects (it's very much an everyday cardigan/man's accessory yarn at the moment, but it deserves so much more!!!). I figure the more I get people to work with it the more it'll sell and the more excited everybody will become. Give it a chance!


And a last photo for good measure: 

See! It's refined. On a side note, I had to jump to get it up there, loved the photos I got and then couldn't get it down. Chris had to climb onto the walls. We are terrible middle class culture nerds. Haha. 

So, what else did people get? 

Obviously, they got the wool and the pattern: 

AND A FLAG! You lucky beasts!

The real highlight were the stitch markers, made locally just for us by the glorious Steph of Nettynot.

I didn't really giver her any guidance I just said the theme was 'dirty rascal' and the colours were grey, green and red. She knocked up a storm didn't she?

I suggest you use these in the ramparts part of the pattern by placing them on the 9th, 8th or 7th stitch after you've worked them at the beginning of each row. Then you'll know where to work to on the next row. You'll understand when you get there.

She also whipped up this beautiful bracelet for one lucky Knit Nottingham Boxer including her signature buttons:

I'm beyond thrilled with it! I would have totes kept it myself if I could. Hopefully the recipient (and I have no idea who it is - I did it randomly by swirling my finger over the list and now I've got no idea who it was) will love it as much as we do.

Once again, that's Nettynot and we'll definitely be working with her again. Love. :)

And then the extras. I didn't lose any this time!

I went for little flags - very British, very Royal. Some Castle Rising Castle rubbers - I wanted to support them and you should have seen her eyes widen when I bought 25 of them! Haha. I think I left them with about six left. And British toffees of course. :)

Once again, I'm a tit who forgot the sneak peek of the new yarn. So that'll be in the post to you on Monday (unless you want to come in and collect - just let me know before hand). I think you'll love it - I bloody do!

(And also, hopefully that explains some of the weird gifts with the Sailing Pi boxes. Haha. Sorry!)

And that's it. I'm absolutely thrilled with both boxes. Me and Elizabeth were working out what the boxes were worth if all of the bits were bought separately and we never quite got to the end of it because we've always got too much to talk about but we were both pleasantly surprised that I could be making a profit and you could be getting exclusive little luxuries in your life sent straight to you and we could be supporting amazing artisans like Nettynot and Doodlestop and everybody works out a winner! I think I've hit on a mega idea here (mostly thanks to Vezza and Truly Hooked - but I hope I've made it my own enough to not be stepping on toes!). 

I did think I knew the theme for next time but I've just seen a photo that has inspired me like you wouldn't believe. I can visualise the crochet pattern already. I just have to work out how to translate that into knitting. Ahhhh such wonderful, creative days. :)

Love Eleanor. xxxx

P.s. Here's a link to a survey monkey thing to find out what you all thought about the boxes. I'd be thrilled if you had a box and would fill it out so I know what to do better next time. Thanks in advance. :)

Tuesday, 12 August 2014

Sailing Pi Big Reveal

Ahhhh. I'm so sad it's over! I've loved this process from start to finish (apart from a few niggles that I'll tell you about in a mo). First - let's get onto the good stuff.

This is the pattern written exclusively for the Knit Nottingham Three Ships Came Sailing Pi Box. The first one we've ever done and the pattern that inspired and kick started all this box nonsense. The original version was a massive hit in the shop and I hope it will be a massive hit with everybody that bought the box.

(Look at me trying to be a model! Ha! There are about 50 photos of me just being a moron. Three came out acceptably...).

It's a shawl!!! Obviously! But it's one of those shawls somewhere between full sized and shawlette that works perfectly over your shoulders or around your neck as an interesting scarf. I was wearing it both ways over my holiday and can't wait to wear it again now it's not a secret anymore.

The shaping is like a standard shawl+ in that it starts from the top and gets bigger and you finish by casting off on the long side. But you can see there are two spines which makes for a more flattering shape (nobody needs a bit pointy arrow down to their bum really, do they?).

The yarn used is the King Cole Bamboo Cotton DK in Navy (or Claret) and King Cole Bamboo Cotton 4ply in Cream. It provides a nice textural contrast without being one of those weird too thick in parts to be summery and too thin in parts to be wintery. They match, making a contrast that works in your everyday life. And, being Bamboo it draaaaaaaaaaaaapes like you wouldn't believe.

The stitches are very simple - stocking stitch and garter stitch. Until you get to the very end where you have five rows of something more interesting. All of the excitement before then is based on the Fibonacci striping sequence which will be enough to keep you on your toes without getting in the way of real life (like watching Big Brother...). It did cause a little ripping for me though so I'd feel less like a tit if you let me know when you go wrong - fanx.

And that's the pattern - you like? Alright alright, one more shot:

The pattern was the big thing for me with these boxes. It informed the yarn that came with them and the gifts. AND WHAT GIFTS! Only, this is one of the things that went wrong. The highlight was deffo the seaside tat willies. Five of you got them and hopefully you loved them. :) Anyway, that's a lie, it wasn't the highlight - this was:

Stitch markers by the marvelous Becky from Doodlestop. Here's a better look:

They're little life rings and pies!!! With jazzy striped beads. Ahhh. It was so lovely (and eeeeeeeasy) working with her. Will deffo be doing it again once I've got my head around the next theme. :) One more time, that's Doodlestop.

And then the gifts. Obviously Hunstanston rock. That was a given. At the time of buying the rock I didn't know exactly how many I needed so I made a not-so-conservative guess and bought 30. Me and Chris had one each when we got home and then I used three in the seaside themed window. Which left exactly 25! Very pleasing. And I still have rock to eat. I hope you enjoy it. :)

And the last gift. This was the problem really. I bloody lost them. They were silly really, just little bits of funny seaside-tat-type-crabs but they made me smile and fitted into the last of my budget so I bought them. And now they're gone. If I find them again I'm going to have 30 seaside-tat-type-crabs to do something with. Luckily, I also overestimated with the gifts from the Dirty Rascal box so you've got some random bits from there. I'll talk a bit about that tomorrow when I launch that - otherwise you'll know too early. But that's why some of them don't make sense and why you're all missing your crabs. Haha. So organised!

And finally, you've got a bit of a ramble from me about Fibonacci and why I love him. Hopefully it makes sense! I had them all printed out organised on Wednesday evening and then Boyf read them and noticed a spelling mistake (I'm sure there are many more) so we completely reprinted them and then we realised that the numbers on the back had come out in black rather than blue and grey. So we spent thirty bloody minutes putting the right coloured squares around because we just couldn't justify reprinting.

So, I did try and take one of those photos where everything's all together but I am terrible. Here's what I got:

Whoever got this box - you're the only one with shredded paper - I bought some but not enough so I couldn't put it in every one. I'll do something with it, or donate it to Versace who took a real liking to it. :)

And really finally - I totes forgot to put the sneak peak of the new yarn in there! I AM A TIT! I will send them out or you can collect them from Monday (need to spend some time balling them up). GAH! Next time I will be organised!!! And it's lovely yarn - you're going to love it!!

And that's it folks - what do you think???? I hope you love the pattern as much as I do and the little gifts. It's been a lot of fun to put them together, but also a lot of stress. Haha.

Love Eleanor. xxx

Thursday, 7 August 2014


So the boxes are done. I'm waiting for Chris to come and collect them in his trusty little car to take them to the Post Office for me. He is good! And he's saved me carting 41 MASSIVE boxes around. There's been a series of mini disasters relating to the boxes over the last couple of days. I'll save the specific disasters for the show off blogs but one of them was that I ordered too big boxes! Which means that everything looks a little sparse. I wanted to make sure that the patterns weren't folded but really - does it matter if they're folded? I don't know. But it means that big boxes are BIG. Be prepared. Haha. They are still small parcels though, don't worry. Anyway:

That's just a few of them.

I've had an idea for the next lot. I'll do the same theme for knitting and crochet and then all of the gifts can be the same and I only have to write one introductory piece. I've got SUCH an idea but really, I need to not get ahead of myself and find out if you lot like them first. *NERVES* Probably ought to get my accounting done too...

Part of the reason that this week has been so hard is that we have a CAT! We collected her on Monday like I said but my parental units have been away with the nephew and I've been left in charge of the garden so I've been torn between spending time with CAT and spending time looking after their garden and one's in Beeston and one's in Wollaton and in between that I have to work and buses break down. A lot. Especially Trent Barton's. And Your Buses need to get their act together. Ugh. AND THE BOXES ARE BIG! Haha. Almost impossible for me to carry more than about 10 when they're done up and more than about 20 when they're not despite the fact that they're quite light - awks. At least I've learned something from this.

So, introductions.

This is Versace. She is the love of my life. :):):)

I'll start at the beginning. 

When me and Chris went on holiday to Norfolk we left a bloke in charge of the garden and feeding Cat. He left food down for Cat but didn't really see him. When we got back Cat was crawling (and I mean crawling *hurl*) with fleas. So I decided that we needed to find out if somebody else actually was looking after him and I went to buy some collars. We've been on about this for a while because although he spent every spare minute with us and he was raggedy like I've never seen before, he wasn't a thin cat or particularly mangy and I haven't noticed fleas on him so we've never really been sure if he had owners. But as soon as the put the collar on there was a note round to say that he did have owners and they love him very much. He's still got fleas though. Hmmm. Anyway, as soon as we knew for definite that he had owners we stopped letting him in and feeding him - I'd hate somebody to do that to my cat and it's only fair. 

At the same time as buying the collar though I got a load of cat food for dead cheap. With that and the stores that we'd accumulated through sales and specials and knock downs we were left with about 70 sachets. So Chris suggested we get a cat of our very own!!!! And I said no. But then I started looking at Bramcote Cat Rescue and got sucked in...

Versace caught my eye but then I saw that she was a house cat and got put off. I like to have windows and doors open in my house at all times. So I saw Suzie right at the top and fell a bit in love. Apparently people don't rescue black cats as much and she's fully grown and not a kitten. I think if you're going to rescue a cat then you might as well properly rescue one, kwim? So I rang the lady at the centre and asked about Suzie, she told me that Suzie came with Queenie (just underneath) who I hadn't even really looked at because she was too pretty and I arranged to meet her the next day. Then I rang Chris and told him we were going and he was just as excited as me!!!!

When we walked in the door Versace was right there! I hadn't even clocked that Versace was being fostered in the same place. I gave her a tentative tickle and then got chatting to the lady. Chris got right down on his knees and had a right old cuddle with her. She loved him!!! When we went in the room where Suzie and Queenie were I fell in love with Suzie. She was a beautiful cat, really loving and a bit quieter than Queenie. Queenie was all up in your face wanting treats and stroking and playing. Chris liked her. But we both loved Versace. 

So we talked to the lady about maybe taking all three. But we couldn't afford it really and then there's the extra food and vets bills and. and. sensible. Then we talked about taking two which would be V and S because V and Q don't get on but I didn't want to split S and Q up. So it left us with no choice really. Thing is, she's been abused. The lady told us that V had no claws because they'd taken then out and that she is scared of feet suggesting that she's been kicked and for the first few months at this lady's house she didn't leave the kitchen. We are both hoping that Versace doesn't actually end up a house cat because it is nice to throw the doors open and relax but it might be a possibility - I'll explain later. 

Bramcote Pet Rescue do home checks for all of their animals so we had to wait for that. On Sunday we spent some time tidying and sorting bits and the lady that came around on Monday said everything was good to go. And that was it!! That was the text that I was waiting for on Monday when I was writing the blog. I couldn't wait to get her so we traipsed all the way up to Mansfield Woodhouse on Monday with a little basket and then she was ouuuuuuuuuuuurs!!!!

On the way home we agreed that she'd probably run straight out of the basket and hide so I wanted to get the litter tray and food set up to release her in front of them so that she'd know where they were. But Chris had other ideas and by the time I'd brought my bits in from the car she was already running free. She didn't run and hide though which I thought was odd - she ran from place to place sniffing and checking and rubbing very urgently. I read an article yesterday - click here - that suggests that that's normal for an abused cat. She also suggests that it's normal for abused cats to not want to eat around people - Versace is a weird mix of that and waiting until we're in the room but can't see her to have some. Dreamies are another matter - she loves Dreamies. The other thing they talk about it cats weeing in funny places and this morning we found that she'd gone just next to the litter tray - don't know whether that's an accident or a weird cat thing (I don't know much about litter trays - feel free to chime in!). 

She does seem to have settled in well - she's playing and eating and going to the toilet, showing affection, waking us up by jumping on the bed every morning but she's still really nervous - she jumped out of her skin at my alarm this morning and had an actual hissy fit at the shower the other day. Versace does not like Kanye West. Which is a real shame because Kanye West really likes Versace. As long as she knows where the other one is, she'll follow us round the house until we get back together. Once we're together she'll go off to do some more urgent sniffing and rubbing and then if one of us gets up she's back trying to herd us together. The saddest thing is stuff like if she can hear somebody coming down the stairs she stops dead in her tracks with wide eyes. It's hard to imagine how anybody could be so cruel. 

I did a bit of research this morning about how to help her. It's early days and I think this is just a 'time' thing, but I would so like her to be able to relax and not sleep with one eye open. Lots of ideas like making sure she's healthy (had a vet checkup on Monday before we got her so no worries there hopefully), her food and water are full so there's no anxiety over whether she has enough, lots of interesting toys (Chris had been crocheting up a storm), some safe hiding places (it's been hard to persuade Chris not to bother her when she's hiding behind the sofa), some spaces up high so that she can climb, we're living life normally but quietly for her sake. This morning I left her food in little bowls hidden all over the house like an Easter egg hunt. Apparently that's a good thing for their instincts. And I'm going to invest in some of that hormone spray. Obviously she's getting love and cuddles when she wants them. Any more ideas to make her feel at home? Unfortunately Cat came back last night and was crying and scratching at the door - I felt like a right bastard but I used a spray bottle full of water through the letter box (which is down low) to get rid of him. Why is life so hard??? Any ideas for getting rid of him??? *sob* He's still so lovely and he loves us! 

I think that's the introduction done. She's lovely isn't she?! There's more to tell you but you'll no doubt be hearing lots about her - especially the first time she starts playing with wool, she's not been too fussed so far.

More about the boxes tomorrow. 

Love Eleanor. xxx

Monday, 4 August 2014

A Door Stop and More Importantly...


Have I told you lot about my marrows? I've become domesticated. I have a garden. It is a bloody brill garden. The first thing that started growing way back when (when is it you start planting things? I did it at the right time) was my marrow. I love him. He was the first thing I planted out and I've since found out I should have 'hardened him off' (is that the right thing to say? Sounds rude. *snigger*) but I didn't and he has survived. THRIVED! Look:

That's what he was. And this is what he is:



He produced his first marrow about a week before my holiday to Norfolk and I chopped him up into some delicious (homegrown) pea, marrow and curry soup. We took some with us for the journey and there was none left when we got back even though it was supposed to be frozen. TOO BLOODY DELICIOUS!

Monster Plant produced *another* whilst we were away that was picked by the bloke helping with the garden far too early for my liking. And since that Mr MP has been busy working away at this:

The lighter was for scale but the photo still doesn't accurately convey the sheer MASS of this beautiful fruit. It's the size of a toddler. A small one. BUT IT GREW AN INCH OVER NIGHT! Imagine if all good things would grow an inch over night! I'm honestly considering showing him - I WOULD FIT RIGHT IN! I've left him on the plant to grow even more gargatuan and harvested these beauts: 

That's 3.8 kilos. THREE POINT EIGHT KILOS! Of marrow deliciousness that made my dinner last night: 

Delicious. Fresh garden herbs too. And will make marrow curd and more marrow, pea and curry soup tonight.  MAYBE! If I don't collect the cat that I'm supposed to collect tonight!!!!!!

She's called Versace. Not for much longer! But we might not get her tonight. It might be tomorrow. I don't know. I'M JUST TOO EXCITED! And I will explain more about her when we have her and I have more than this grainy photo. Isn't she beautiful?!

And then on to the real meat of the blog post. Only I cooed over marrows and a cat for so long I don't have long to talk about it. Anyway, let me begin: 

So, that's what it looked like. Remember? Ratty and dirty. Ugh. 

I had to cut off the cover because I'd made it not to be removeable because I needed the strength. It was strangely satisfying cutting into my old work. 

This is what's underneath. Full of holes and manky. Ugh. It was leaving sand all over the place.

These are the colours I chose out of my spare wool. The mad one's Fab DK, the cream one's Cygnet Aran, the blue one's Comfort DK and the yellow one's King Cole Merino Aran. I thought better of using the dark blue because it's chunky and just a little too different.

Then Kayleigh came in with her GORGEOUS ripple blanket and I decided that it needed to be on my door stop. So I did it. Thanks Kayleigh.

And these were the bits. I just messed around for the end bits. Then I sewed the bigger ripple strip to the square bits at the end and then I sewed it up around the handle. 

I made the handle by chaining the right amount and working htr back and forth in each colour and then sewed it on around the handle. Again it can't be taken off but I think that will make a stronger item and that's good because loads of kids mess around with it like it's a handbag. 

 And the final product:

Worst photo ever but I've just heard about the cat and we're getting her TONIGHT!

I'm gone. LOVE. xxxxxx
p.s. in no way was this blog checked. CATCATCATCAT!