New ideas

Its been so busy here on the ol’ Creative Croft, tending to all the flora and fauna we’ve hardly had time to think. I did manage to get in a little bit of experimentation which I think has worked well and I’m looking forward to developing the whole felt direction.

Some new scarf pins and brooches.



Fair Isle with a twist

I’ve been busy developing a new pattern in polymer clay which I’m quite excited about. Its my contribution to the wealth of Fair Isle patterns that abound these days.WP_20170501_003

All ready and waiting to be made into pendants and matching earrings.




Blending colours

I’ve been playing around with my mini louet hand combs to see how versatile they are in terms of colour blending. I initially got them to help remove the many neps I seem to get in some of our fleeces, but they are actually invaluable for fine colour blending. Its a real pleasure working with them and I feel inspired to blend many more combinations – 

So I start with some fleece I dyed earlier, lashing on the colours in layers and begin blending.


It took about 4 goes of transferring the fibre from comb to comb, then I was left with lovely fluffy pink clouds of soft stuff ready for spinning


This is the leftover ‘waste’ full of neps and other stuff!




Carding and cowls

Beginning to work my way through the fleeces I dyed earlier with my new mini louet hand combs and my trusty jumbo drum carder. I blend the separate colours together until they form a pleasing colour (to my eyes) combination, full of neps I know but for this particular yarn they add just the right amount of texture –

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Once spun this is what these lovely batts turn into – not sure where to put these yet Etsy or Folksy or sell them locally.

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Working with wool

February weather keeping us indoors for the most part today,  strong northerly wind with blustery showers, not great for working outdoors. So we have been working with wool today. I have been have been carding whilst Iwona was spinning. 


New Year resolutions

These days I almost never make any NY resolutions because I invariably forget and lapse into my old wicked ways, but this year in January I felt a surge of ‘destash and get things finished’ energy. So as I needed to make a new topper for our bed and a lap quilt to keep out the drafts in our old croft house, I began sorting through my  hoarded stash of fabric remnants (many of which have been collected for decades) and with the help of my rotary cutter, sewing machine and iron produced these two –


I didn’t realise until I photographed the quilts just how much the one on the left reminds me of a tablecloth my mother had on the kitchen table when I was about 4 years, strange what we retain. The quilt on the right fits very comfortably on our king size bed and is just there as an extra protection for when the nights are really cold!

I am now down to one bin liner bag full of treasured bits of fabric and feeling quite pious about the whole thing. Not so my fleece stash – so having dusted off my lovely jumbo carder and armed with mini Louet hand combs which I got from Neil for  Christmas, I’m beginning to sort through all the portions of dyed fleece ready for spinning. Pics to follow.



Relief! Galanthus Elwesii

Must admit to having put this off out of fear – such a relief to be able to submit my final graphite assignment. Now I’ll be able to work on the watercolour module which is what I’m really interested in, but I’ve surprised myself at how much I enjoyed  the graphite section of the course. I’ve even had ideas for graphite sketches depicting eggs from various breeds of birds and such like.



Croft house cards

Some little cards I’ve been working on, this is the background which I’ve already felted and stitched on the machine.


I’ve needle felted a little Shetland croft house onto each one, attached that to a felt backing and then glued the whole thing to a card blank. I chose the kraft buff blanks and envelopes and some white blanks.

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Thought I’d list them in Etsy and which I’ve been selling in for a while. An eclectic assortment of talented (myself excluded) artisans some of whom I know very well.

The light is really starting to fade fast here and these last couple of weeks its been difficult finding a day that has enough light to take a decent image of the products I’ve made. Being more arty than teccy I’m not that good when it comes to making all the necessary brightness/contrast adjustments, so I tend to leave it although one of  the two pics above has been ‘doctored’.


Claying again

Isn’t scrap clay wonderful! Struck by the similarity of the colour chart squares to the scrap clay squares. I’ve used Fimo classic on and off for years now but they’ve change the formulation and rebranded to Fimo Professional and I’m not convinced at all. Its mushy and doesn’t hold its shape, I’m having to leave it cooling (which being the impatient type I find really irksome) before rolling and slicing and another of my pet hates, it bakes dark! Here are some tiles with scrap sheets which I’ll make into shawl pins and buttons.



This is a flower sheet in progress, which I’m filling with canes that I’ve made all from Fimo Professional, I’ll probably make some beads with this one. Think I’m going to have to play around with timings etc or maybe its time to give Kato clay another try. I used to love Kato clay it was perfect for making canes – flower or kaleidoscope and the colours were pure and clear, then they changed the formulation and I had real issues with baked beads cracking and the clay had also lost the firmness that it was known for.



Jelly and Quilts

Hard to believe but these last few nights have been hotter than usual and I’ve been beavering away trying to finish a summer quilt I started a couple of months ago. Its a thin wadding not sure of the tog rating but lighter than our ordinary summer quilt. I wanted a fairly utilitarian design – quick to cut, sew and quilt, which I did with my trusty machine. Thank god I changed my mind about hand quilting.



Gooseberries were ready to pick – thanks Neil – from this


to this. Gorgeous gooseberry jelly.