Tuesday, January 8, 2013

A thank you card

Yesterday I was clearing some papers out of my office, and I came across a thank you card from a former colleague, David.  David had a very aggressive form of cancer.  It was discovered in the summer, and by the winter, I was at his funeral.  

I went to visit him at home one day and was shocked to see how much weight he had lost.  He was wearing a big thick sweater, and was still feeling the cold.  As is the way of such things, I asked "Is there anything I can do for you?"  He indicated that there was.  "I have seen the beautifully coloured socks you have made for people.  Might I have a pair of socks?"  Of course he could!

The socks were started and I took them along to a social evening.  Someone asked about them, and when I explained that they were for David, she took the sock from my hands and started knitting a round.  These socks were passed around.  Knitters knitted rounds, and complete novices were shown how to knit a stitch or two.

When we went to Ireland on holiday the socks went with me.  I was working on them during coffee time after church, and a woman asked me about them.  I explained and said that so far the socks had been knitted by over 20 people.  She reached out and said "Twenty one", and another woman looked on and said "Twenty two."  All of those people prayed whilst they were knitting, and wanted to send their very best wishes to him.

When David received the socks he was utterly delighted, and quite awed by the fact that in the end over 26 people had knitted his socks.  

My little one's first sock

My daughter wanted to knit socks.  One of the easiest ways to learn to make socks is by making slipper socks on big needles and using thick yarn.  It gives a feeling of how to do it.  

She is using King Cole Mirage double knitting yarn.  This was held double and she cast on 40sts.  The yarn is in reds, in shade 870, with a dyelot of 43448.

Saturday, January 5, 2013

Crafting Materials Bought in 2013

I have a lot of craft materials, and my desire is to reduce the materials in increase the number of finished objects. 

For the last few years I have been taking part in "52 in 52" - producing 52 items in 52 weeks.  I lost track last year of the projects I had finished, but the year before, I managed it.  This was largely due to a month of knitting baby and children's hats; it really pushed my total up.

My current plan is to keep a record of the materials (and their cost) coming into the house, as well as recording the finished items.

The totals so far are:
2 finished items, a fake beard and a Rubik's Cube tissue box cover
£3.20 on more plastic canvas (this will become the front of a TARDIS tissue box cover)

Thursday, January 3, 2013

A Wizard's False Beard

The beard was knitted for the Ankh Morpork’s Guild Wars. Terry Pratchett, writer of the Discworld series of novels, wrote about wizards who would sneak out of the university at night to listen to The Band With Rocks In

The university gets locked up at night.  The wizards have developed the trick of climbing over the walls, but they are not meant to be climbing the university walls after dark (or any time really).  Therefore, they need a disguise.  Who would think that a false beard would be covering a real beard!

This is the second item complete in 2013.  Only another 50 to go.

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Colours on a Cube

Ah...  I have just been told that the normal combinations of colours on the Rubik's Cube  has red opposite orange, blue opposite green and yellow opposite white.

My pattern was taken from the cube my daughter has.  On it red is opposite orange, blue opposite white and yellow opposite green.  This means that if someone want to use my colour placement chart and wants to use the original colour combination they should switch the placement of green and white.

Rubik's Cube

The Rubik's Cube tissue box cover is now complete!  My first finished project for 2013.

Banana Loaf

110g butter, softened
110g caster sugar
2 large eggs
3 large ripe bananas (mashed)
225g plain flour (Dove Farm for gluten-free)
2 tsp baking powder (Dove Farm for gluten-free)

Line a 1kg loaf tin with parchment paper, or 2 1/2 kg loaf tins, or 24 small paper muffin cases.

Preheat the oven to 180C.

Cream the butter and sugar together until pale, light and soft. Alternate between adding a little egg, and a little flour (mixed with the baking powder).  Add the mashed bananas.

Pour the mixture into the loaf tin(s) or into 24 small muffin cases and bake in the oven for about 1¼ - 1½ hours for the large loaf, 40-45 minutes for the smaller loaves and 25 minutes for the mini muffins.  Bake until golden on top and a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean.

Remove the loaf from the tin and cool on a wire rack; cool mini muffins on a rack in their paper cases.