The last few days have been very busy sorting out the final bits for Lucy's 21st birthday and housework. I decided that despite the weather returning to winter it was time for a spring clean. The downstairs of the house is now clean and tidy and the ironing mountain is only a foothill, On Saturday John and I also found time for a 12 mile walk. We are currently walking the London Loop with our friend Tony. The path runs for 152 miles around London and is split into sections that start and finish at public transport points. We started the walk at the end of June 2011 and so far have completed 13 sections. We will finish the walk by July. This last section from High Barnet to Enfield Lock was delightful with nearly all of it going through countryside paths and parks.
However I have found time for some stitching and I have completed sorting the fabrics that Beth gave me. The patchwork pieces have come up very well following washing and pressing. I am now restitching areas that have come undone before deciding how to use them to make a new quilt. Quite a bit of it is torn or very thin so will have to be removed.
I also pieced together this quilt top to use up the remaining squares from the Guides quilt project. Having sewn 9 squares together each block was cut into quarters, each quarter turned 90 degrees in the same direction and then sewn back together as a block. Depending on how you move the pieces you can make a variety of different patterns. All I have to do now is to finish it for the end of project deadline on the 30th May,
I have also been following the talk about hexipuffs. Knitted hexagons that can be stuffed or left flat. The pattern is by Tiny Owl Knits and makes into a bee-keeper quilt. I decided to have a go at knitting a hexipuff without a pattern. On YouTube there is a tutorial showing the hexagon being knitted using 3 double ended needles. However the bunny blanket buddy I knitted used a different technique to create the head using only 2 needles so I decided to give this a go.
As you can see the first one I knitted which I didn't stuff was a bit 'wonky' but the second one worked well. John and Richard really liked the idea of a blanket made from the hexagons.
To make it I cast on 20 stitches using 4 ply wool and size 10 needles (US 3, metric 3.25mm). It is knitted in purl and as the piece grows if you have kept the slip 1 purl 1 pattern correct you will be able to pull the two sides of the hexagon apart. This method only works using purl stitch.
The first row was purl 1 slip 1 to end.
2nd and 3rd row Increase purl wise in first stitch, slip 1 purl 1 to end.
4th and 5th Row Increase purl wise in first stitch purl 1 slip 1 to end.
Repeat these 4 rows until you have 44 stitches.
Work 2 rows.
Then maintaining continuity of purl 1 slip 1 pattern decrease by purling 2 together at the start of each row until you have 20 stitches.
I then separated the stitches alternately onto two double ended needles. This allows the stuffing to be inserted between the layers. How much is a matter of personal preference.
Finally either cast off taking stitches from alternate needles or use Kitchener stitch to close the opening. I cast off loosely purl wise.
Now to make some more. I am not sure if I prefer them stuffed or flat. Maybe need to make 2 quilts?
In writing this blog I am helped by our dog scamp. He is a Yorkshire terrier and likes to sit on laps when not chasing the cat. He isn't very keen on needlecraft as it gets in the way although he was happy when I knitted the hexipuffs as they are small and leave room for him. When I am using the computer he likes to help by sitting on my lap and making sure the laptop stays still by resting his head on it.