A Tisket, A Tasket, I Have A Basket

Yes, I know that’s not how the nursery rhyme goes but it seemed to fit as I’ve been filling baskets lately. I’ve been absent from the blog the last few months and the baskets are part of the reasons. I’ll go backwards as that gives the most news first.

I’m opening up a shop for crochet and knit items! Crocheting and knitting are two of my main ways of filling my time. That’s why I started designing. But you only need so many things and I have a lot of yarn and time to crochet and knit. I could also use another income stream in the business. Working outside the home is next to impossible due to my chronic illnesses but this is something I can do almost entirely from home. Other than going to the post office to send out packages to customers I can do it all from home. So come October 31, baring technical difficulties, my shop will be open.

I’ve been busily making products for the last month or so and will continue to do so. I have people in the Starship-the business group I belong  to-who will be critiquing the shop this week. I’ve already started working on the behind the scenes part of the shop. I need to verify shipping costs, finish pricing my finished products and upload the products to the shop. At that point the critique can begin. I’ll make any necessary changes based on their critiques and the shop will be opening to the public on October 31. Yes, next Monday! The shop products so far include washcloths and hats. I’m working on some cowls or snoods as they are sometimes called. That will likely be my open products but I plan on frequently adding new products like scarves, shawls, shawlettes, mittens, hairbands, baby blankets in the near future. I haven’t decided yet if I’ll add things to the shop as I complete them or have a set weekly or biweekly update to add new products.

That’s part of the basket theme as I’ve been sorting through my yarn for shop items. I have baskets for washcloths yarn and hat yarn, a big one of yarn for all kinds of things and baskets of things I’m in the middle of working on. Here’s my washcloths basket:


This one is beside my chair in the living room. I read on my iPad or watch tv while making them. I also have a pile of products to weave in the ends nearby and a few finished products bins.

Another piece of news is my sister and five year old nephew are moving in with Mum and I. So I need to move my yarn out of the spare/yarn room as that will become my sister’s room next month. That’s where a lot of the baskets of shop yarn came from. As I sort through the yarn to move it some are going into a shop pile/baskets/boxes.

I’ve also started my usual seasonal fibromyalgia flare. I flare up whenever the seasons change. It usually lasts a few weeks to months depending on the transition period. And that depends on Mother Nature and the weather.

My flare started a little early due to a road trip to visit family in August. We had a great visit and I don’t regret it at all but the change from our weather to their weather and the two days road trip each way precipitated an earlier flare. It didn’t help that I received some bad news the day before we left.

And my diabetes program social worker believes I have depression and anxiety. I see my family doctor tomorrow. The social worker thinks things I’ve just assumed are part of my chronic illnesses are actually symptoms of anxiety and depression. So I’ve been adjusting to that and doing my best to stay positive.

All that lead to an absence of blog posts and major decrease in social media posts. I’m almost back on track and hope to increase all of those. Watch for updates on the shop!

FO Friday 15/07/2016

I’m quite proud and rather in love with this FO. My first Curious Handmade pattern, my first crescent shawl, my first star stitch, my first picot bind off and my first time using this base. Love the results!!! And I learned so much!
Talisman Shawl knit by Kimberley of www.BridgwaterCrafts.com Talisman Shawl knit by Kimberley of www.BridgwaterCrafts.com Talisman Shawl knit by Kimberley of www.BridgwaterCrafts.com

The Talisman Shawl  is the first shawl in Helen Stewart‘s The Shawl Society six month series. This one, a medium size, is knit on the Elizabeth Bennet base, a merino/bamboo/silk blend, in Frisky Cardinals and Frisky Cardinals Blue by Yarn Love Yarns. I’ve worn the shawl daily since finishing and definitely plan on making at least one more, possibly in the large size.

FO Friday 24/06/2016

Happy Friday! I have many FOs to show you but not many patterns were involved.
I crocheted some slippers for an ex-co-worker. She and her husband have worn through the last pairs to the point of being past repair. She asked for two more sets each. Unfortunately I forgot to take photos of the last set before giving them to her! They are kind of a hodgepodge of components from different patterns.
www.BridgwaterCrafts.com
FOs galore!
I’ve also made a bunch of cloths. Some as design samples and some as spare Alys Cloths as that ex-co-worker mentioned referring people to me who had asked about dishcloths. No one has approached me yet but I’m getting prepared. I can always sell them via the community Facebook Storage Wars Group.
I’m going to warn you now there may not be an FO next week. The Talisman Shawl has taken over all my crafting time. It’s a very addictive knit!

WIP Wednesday 22/06/2016

I’ve been working on quite a few different projects. I’ve worked on my own designs and on another person’s design. As a result I have lots of WIPs to show you today.

Here’s my knit blanket sample:

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It’s longer than when you last saw it. It may be going on hiatus for the summer. A blanket on your lap during the hot months is not ideal.

I worked on my Snips and Snails socks. The first sock is finished except for weaving in ends and I’m heading down the leg of the other!

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I pulled my Rona Socks out of the WIP basket when I needed a mindless knit project. The ribbing and about 5 cm of leg was completed before. I’m at the point of starting the heel now.

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I’ve been working on a design. It will either be a shrug or a shell. Right now I’m leaning towards a shell.

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The main thing I am working on however is a shawl from another designer’s pattern. I joined Helen Stewart of Curious Handmade’s The Shawl Society. It’s a mystery knit-a-long with a twist. There are six shawl patterns being published one per month starting June 9. Each is published in its entirety but we only get hints about it beforehand. I joined in to expand my knitting skills and because I love shawls! There are mini-KALs for each shawl and an overarching KAL for the six. Prizes are involved. So is a great knitting community. The forum thread on Ravelry for this first shawl, Talisman Shawl, grows by leaps and bounds. I’m pages behind on the thread-I think there are over eighty pages now! I love the pattern and Helen’s design layout. It’s almost addictive to work on the shawl.

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FO Friday 19/02/2016

I have two FOs (finished objects) today! And they are both old ones!

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I don’t remember when I first started this one. I think the yarn is from Tanis Fiber Arts but I don’t remember the colourway other than it was leftovers. It’s wasn’t in my Ravelry Projects until today. When I couldn’t find it there I tracked down the pattern page and entered it in. But it’s finished now which is great because I’m growing out a pixie cut. It’s the perfect time for a headband.

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This one  I started on May 9, 2014. I was one of the testers for the design. I finished the knitting on Nov. 23, 2014 but today I finished weaving in the ends. It still needs blocking so you may/may not consider it complete. I do. Unblocked the long edge is more than my wingspan! I’m afraid to see how big it grows during blocking!

I don’t know why I waited so long on the finishing these. Life just got in the way I guess. I loved the Drachenfels and planned on making another. I have too many projects on the go right now but when I get those under control maybe…

WIP Wednesday 17/02/2016

I have many Works In Progress (WIPs) but only a few are active so those are the ones I’ll talk about today. All three are design samples, two for the same design.

This is a Jayven Blanket in the double bed size. The finished product, once photographed, will be donated to a refugee family coming here soon. The squares are complete. I just need to join them and add the border.

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This is a Jayven Blanket in a king bed size. I’m working on the last rounds on the squares.

And this is the JJ Afghan. It’s about a third complete. It depends if JJ, my nephew slows on the growth spurts. The finished sample will be his fifth birthday gift.

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Happy Family Day 2016!

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I counted last night; I took ten medications and vitamins. I skipped a few that I’m out of-calcium, and vitamin C; I didn’t take all my PRN medications and rarely take my melatonin. This morning I took 9. I should qualify, I take one medication at different dosages in the a.m. and p.m.; another twice daily; and I also take three medications four times a day. I long for those childhood days when taking medication was a rarity instead of a daily ritual.

Oh, and I forgot to mention two other designs. And another illness, benign tremors which is a complicated way of saying my hands shake constantly.

This weekend I started a crochet project I’ve been putting off for a while but I wanted to make something quick since my other projects are all blankets. I’m making covers for a set of three stools I own. It’s an improvised pattern that I probably won’t publish. It’s just something I need and can make while still watching my four year old nephew.

Mum and I have been babysitting JJ while my sister spent Valentine’s Day with her boyfriend. It’s amazing how quickly you forget just how busy and noisy a four year old can be and how quickly they remind you on sleepovers!

I’ve set up a schedule of blog posts that I’m hoping I can keep up and will be interesting for you as well. We will see over the next few weeks how it works.

Designs Updates

It’s been a while since I posted a design update. There’s a few reasons for that; my own health issues, a death in the family, and family health emergencies. As a result, I’m lagging behind where I thought I’d be now.

The February chapter of the book is not yet published. I hope to finish that this weekend and upload it to the sales sites. Then I can show you the designs.

The March chapter is with the proofreaders. One of the designs is knit but the pattern not complete nor photography done. I decided I did not like the way the crochet design; a math error early on meant it did not turn out as envisioned. When even blocking didn’t correct that I ripped it out. It has been restarted with the correct math and a bigger hook. It is now looking as I planned.

While in denial of the crochet design fail, I started the April knit design. It was going great until I put it down to finish the corrected Cathlyn design.

Then my little great-nephew needed a spring toque so I started crocheting him one. That is almost done. A variation of it may go in the design pile for later. Basically I can’t focus, so I fallen onto a variant of are sign I’ve been crocheting for years as little brainpower is required. I’ve made a few modifications in the last few days that sparked a design idea. I’m almost done the hat but my shoulder is bothering me so I stopped for the night.

I have no design pictures for you but here’s one from my bedroom window a few days ago. I was not impressed at the newly fallen snow!

April Snow
April Snow