Okay this will be the last post about Simba bears for a while, I swear. I just wanted to show the whole set of sizes all lined up now they’re finished.
Thankfully that was enough bear for now and I’ve been able to get back into Roses for Grandma properly. All the current squares are finished and I’m now making motifs again, as I decided I want a bigger blanket than first planned.
It’s not quite mindless enough to work on at choir, so I’ve also started another hat. This is strictly for choir/travel crochet so it won’t take any time away from my Grandma blanket.
I think I’m finally getting a good balance between charity makes and projects just for me. Hopefully I can keep that up.
I don’t know how a month can feel like it’s never-ending and still go by in a flash, but January just managed it. Right now I simultaneously can’t believe it’s February already and don’t understand how it’s not at least 2025 yet. Isn’t time funny?
There wasn’t a huge amount of making for me last month, but I’m happy that the majority of it was for charity.
I also finished off my baby Flax Light and made some progress with Roses for Grandma.
The reason I didn’t get much making done is because a lot of craft time was spent trying to get my flat into some sort of order. You may remember the hugenormous pile of yarn:
That turned out to be around 400 skeins of yarn.
I Marie Kondo-d that mountain and got rid of all the old, nasty acrylic that squeaks when you use it, any colours I wasn’t in love with, and odd bits of leftover skeins I knew I would never do anything with. That left me with 355.5 total. Yes I counted some as half skeins, not to make the total look better, but to give a more realistic idea of what I’ve used up. No using little 25g balls and patting myself on the back for clearing out whole skeins.
So another goal for this year is to make my stash less ridiculous and use up as much as I can. Even though January wasn’t particularly crafty I still managed to knit and crochet two skeins, one into charity hats and one into Roses for Grandma, leaving me with 353.5 to go.
You’ve got to love the crafting community. The Animal Rescue Collective Craft Guild (link here) has received so many donations for Australia that there’s currently a stop on sending any more, to give them time to take stock and work out what’s still needed. What an excellent ‘problem’ to have!
So there’s been no crafting for Australia for me just yet, and I’ve been finishing up my other charity projects instead.
I now have four bears to go to Simba.
Still not looking like twinsies.
And two hats to go to Knit For Peace.
I was going to block both hats, but I tried on the rolled one and I actually really like the look of it so that’s staying as it is.
I’m still hooked on the charity-crafting thing so now I’m making a pair of large bears for Simba. Once they’re finished that will be a full set of sizes and hopefully my crojo will let me get on with some of these WIPs that have been lying around for months.
It’s quite addictive, this making for charity thing. I’m onto a second pair of bears for Simba (small this time).
And a second hat to send to Knit for Peace.
Plus there’s been a call for knitted and crocheted items to help animals that have been injured in the fires in Australia. My boyfriend lived in Australia for a chunk of his life so the whole thing is hitting him pretty hard, and that makes it personal to me. I’m hoping to get a few things made up over the weekend so he can take them to the Post Office on Monday.
I just love the double joy of making something and knowing it will help someone (or an animal) to feel better.
Here is my first charity make of 2020: a pair of little bears for SiMBA memory boxes:
They’re really quick to make (once I deciphered the frankly terrible pattern) so I can see myself churning out quite a few more in my spare time. Hopefully with a bit of practice I can get them looking like twin bears rather than distant cousins!
Being so small, they’re not going to use up much stash very quickly, but every little helps and it’s all for a good cause so I’m going for it. My next project can be a big blanket or something to balance it out.
I was doing some research on West Yorkshire Spinners yarn for a blog post, and found myself accidentally clicking on the ‘Stockists’ link and searching for Scotland. Completely by accident, you understand.
And it just so happens that there’s a stockist a mere 5-minute walk from my work! That’s close enough even for my measly 30 minutes of lunch break (yes I am still a bit miffed that I don’t get an hour any more), so that very day I paid them a visit.
I Sew 2 is a cute little shop on Townheadin Kirkintilloch. With a real bell on the door! I love those.
There’s not masses of stock, as about a third of the space is set up for workshops and socials, but they’ve still managed to cram yarn, fabric, ribbons, buttons, and notions in there; enough to fill up my lunch break no problem.
The owner is super friendly and chatted the whole time I was there, but not in a sales-y way.
We talked about knitting and crochet (obviously), setting craft budgets and sometimes sticking to them, the pros and cons of knit/crochet groups, patchworking, sewing machine techniques, and all the events that run in the shop.
I will definitely be going along to the Crochet Chaos social at some point, and I’m all booked in for a 3D needle felting workshop this week.
Something I learned from the leaflet the owner gave me is that they also work in conjunction with SiMBA, a charity that creates memory boxes for parents who have lost a baby, either pre- or post-natal. The boxes contain a knitted or crochet blanket, butterfly, and stuffed toy – all made by volunteers. There are monthly sessions in the shop to create these donations, which were during the day but after I asked about it they started an evening session as well.
Back to my visit – I naively planned to just have a look around, see what was on offer in case I ever needed some yarn faster than Love Crochet could deliver it.
Silly me! 20 minutes is clearly beyond my limit for being around crafting goodies without buying some, especially when there’s a bargain bucket and the words “of course we take card” are involved.
One gorgeous skein was very clearly calling my name and I was powerless to resist as it jumped into my hands. It’s like fuzzy Autumn.
And then I just had to have this bundle of fat quarters.
Luckily for my bank balance I stopped with those two, but oh I could have spent so much money in there. If I ever get a working sewing machine again I’ll definitely be back for some of the beautiful fabrics, and in the meantime I get the feeling I’m going to become a regular at the Crochet Chaos socials.