Tag Archives: drawstring bags

Hello dear readers

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My apologies for the long silence. What was that? Oh, you didn’t miss me at all. Well then!

I’m sure you realised that I was on holiday and that of course I was staying in a house with no internet, no wifi (oh, the horror!) and I had to snatch moments of internet time at other people’s houses or coffee shops where the speed was as slow as a snail with a broken leg.

I have to admit it’s good to get away from the dependence on ipads/ipods for a bit. We all had more sunshine and exercise than we get at home. We also had some good family and friends visiting time, back in the island of our birth.

For those who haven’t heard of Jersey (no, not New Jersey, the original Jersey) it’s a small island in the English Channel. One of the Channel Islands, close to France but part of the British Isles. There’s a whole lot of info about it on Wikipedia if you’re interested.

We stayed with my FIL, spent time (not enough) with my sister and mum, met up with some of Tai Chi Man’s numerous cousins, had dinner with an old friend of mine from way back when our children were small. It was great to have a mini reunion with two schoolfriends, one of whom I saw four years ago; the other I haven’t seen for over 35 years. I love my sister’s family – my niece and nephew have become delightful young adults, and she has two stepsons and a daughter-in-law now.

I actually swam in the sea – it was freezing!

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We walked a lot, sometimes twice a day, along cliff paths, narrow lanes and beachfronts. We were reminded of the joys and frustrations of living on a small island with too many cars, miles of winding roads (some of which are only the width of one car) and the constant issue of whether one will find a parking space.

I bought souvenir yarn…

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This from a small but well-stocked shop called Country Wools which I came across accidentally next door to a farm shop. They even had Stylecraft!

My sister had booked 12 of us for a tour to the Ecrehous, a reef that lies between Jersey and France. We showed up early on a drizzly Sunday morning, wondering whether it was a good idea, but even though the boat operators gave us the option of cancelling or postponing, we went ahead anyway. We were provided with waterproof jackets and lifejackets and took our seats in the rigid hull inflatable. It’s a good thing we all had handles to grip, because it was a white knuckle ride across the open sea to the reef, but in a good way! The drizzle stopped as soon as we left the harbour, and the sea was pretty calm, but there were still some interesting bumps to make some of us scream as if we were on a rollercoaster. That was fun!

The reef itself is, at high tide, made up of a few tiny islands – at low tide, a sandbar is exposed. There are some fishermen’s cottages built there which are rented out in the summer months. One of Tai Chi Man’s cousins actually honeymooned there. You have to take everything you need, including fresh water, and there is nothing to do except swim, sunbathe and watch birds. The day we went, it was a little chilly, but three of our group did go in the sea, and a couple of seals popped their heads out of the water really close to my nephew as he stood in the sea. Of course it happened when he didn’t have his GoPro to hand.

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This is my windblown tourist look!

We were on the reef for a couple of hours, and hadn’t taken any food with us as we had lunch planned for later at my sister’s house. Or so I thought. I sat on the pebbly beach and dug into my backpack for something and found two bars of chocolate. My brother-in-law is an avid photographer and you can’t move without being in danger of having it recorded for posterity, hence this shot. The boat ride back was more eventful as we were accompanied by dolphins, which really made the day special.

Our round trip to Jersey was over 14,000km, with three flights each way. It’s a long way to go for only two weeks but it was worth it to see everyone again. However it’s good to be home. There’s nothing like your own bed, your own kitchen. Sometimes I think the purpose of going away is to make you appreciate what you have at home.

Before I sign off, I had better show you my FOs. I have no current WIPs as I haven’t decided what to make next.

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More gift bags for jewellery, most of which were given away. And the finished Dragonfly scarf, which was left in Jersey with my sister. The colours are more blended in real life.

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That’s it for now. I have to work tomorrow so I should probably get to bed and dream about my next project!

 

Gift bags and a new wrap

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The Dragonfly scarf is temporarily on hold as I wanted to crochet some itty bitty gift bags for small gifts I intend to take with me on holiday. I have used two colourways of Red Heart Boutique Unforgettable so far.

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I’d like to get three more done tomorrow. Tonight was too busy house-cleaning and doing laundry. One of these guys fits in the palm of my hand with room to spare.

Another idea I had was to make a rectangular wrap, inspired by many of the convertible wrap ideas on Ravelry. However I just didn’t have the time to crochet one so I bought some loopy fleece-type fabric from work and some clear snaps (didn’t want to make buttonholes).

The pattern I was most interested in was called Pillar to Post and the schematic looked something like this.

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I increased my desired width from 52 to 60 cm. The centres of the snaps were spaced 5 cm apart. The ‘male’ parts of the snaps were sewn on the wrong side, upper left and lower right corners, and the ‘female’ parts were sewn on the right side, upper right and lower left.

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This is a neat idea – you can wear it as a shrug (fold together lengthwise, snap together for sleeves), poncho (fold the other way, snap together at one side for the shoulder join), cowl (snap one end to itself, stick your head through the hole, wrap the rest around your ┬áneck), cardigan shawl (drape around your shoulders like a shawl, snap together at the front like you would a sweater). The colour of this fleece is close to the sweater I plan to wear on holiday and it will give me an extra layer that I can wear indoors or out if it’s chilly. It may be mid-20s here at home, but it’s probably more like mid-teens in the British Isles.

If I had more snaps and more patience (I really didn’t enjoy sewing on those snaps) I would put more along one or both ends for more wearing options.

Oh boy, I just noticed the time, so I guess there won’t be any more crochet for me tonight.

Have a great day!