The Christmas and New year holidays are officially over and it’s back to work in earnest today. Not that I’ve been completely idle over the last few weeks of course but I’ve chosen to give pattern designing a bit of a break in favour of other less demanding projects that don’t require heaps of concentration and can be dipped in and out of and transported around much more easily. Basically, things I can do while out and about on car trips or sitting in the lounge watching festive films and Christmas Specials with the family and the decorations. I put so much effort into decking out the lounge that it’s a shame not to spend as much time in there as I can, tucked away among the twinkly lights and all the sparkly, shiny, glittery things that I love so much.
The fairy lights make everything look so welcoming and warm and it’s been fun to add the finishing touches to my decor with some of my new designs. The snowman doorstop was elevated out of the draft and onto the mantelpiece where he has a much better view of the festivities.
Tiny crocheted stockings were hung over the fireplace and had sweets for Santa stashed inside them.
Evie and Elvis sat around the tree on Christmas eve, keeping an eye on the presents to make sure the cats didn’t get into the gift pile and cause an avalanche. Luckily my moggies were much more interested in pulling decorations off the tree and chasing them under the TV unit where they sat patiently waiting for them to emerge again. I think they have confused the characteristics of baubles with those of mice. They’re going to have to be very patient…
Minnie preferred to steal pompoms off the tree then pretend it wasn’t her by gazing innocently out of the window and denying any involvement in this wanton act of sabotage.
I did catch her out indulging in a spot of high speed pompom juggling though, when she thought I wasn’t looking!
Pompoms have taken up a large chunk of my holiday down time. I’ve made hundreds of them over the past few weeks. Some have been used to decorate the tree and the window…
…and others are destined for a circular cushion cover, which I kind of wish I’d never started! I think I’m in too far now to give it up even though my hands are rather chafed and sore from winding and tying way too many pompoms already. Having said that, I’m loving the lush shagpile look so much and am pretty certain that once I’ve finally made it to the end I’m going to be very pleased with the result.
Three more rounds of pompoms to go before I can start to work out how to construct it so that it’s nice and sturdy and fit for purpose. It’s already passed Elvis’s comfy butt test with flying colours so that’s a good start!
Now Evie wants me to make a pompom saddle for her reindeer so that next year’s trip to help Santa out at the North Pole will be much comfier.
Better get winding a snipping a few more then.
As an occasional alternative to chafing myself to death with endless pompoms I dug through my work in progress pile and dragged out the Autumn Berries Poncho that I began back in October. Originally inspired by the combination of blackberries and raspberries it was lovely to spend a few dark wintery evenings going back over the memories of sunny hedgerow picking. I love how handmade projects can be so tied up in the memories of the times in which you made them. We haven’t had much sun around here at all recently so I had a good daydream about the joys of basking in that elusive yellow orb from last year’s bright and shiny autumn.
I chose the same edging from Edie Eckman’s Around the Corner Crochet Borders book that I used for my Mexican blanket. Now it just needs a bit of blocking to bring out it’s full fringy glory. Blocking isn’t exactly one of my most favorite parts of the crochet process and is usually to be avoided wherever possible, but in this case I think the pain will be worth the gain.
I also found a little spare time over the holidays to crochet some strawberry embellishments in matching yarn which I intend to add to the ends of the neck ties. They’re more of a summer berry than an autumn one I know, but I’m exercising a bit of artistic licence here! I’m also crocheting them in the winter and will, at this rate, be finishing it all off in the spring so it will be a poncho for all seasons in the end 🙂
The strawberries still need stuffing and sewing together but you get the idea. I’ll be doing a post about the poncho once it’s completed so I’ll save all the details for the big reveal later on.
One of my favorite Christmas presents this year was given to me by my lovely boys. Old enough at last to feel inspired to go shopping on their own they bought me a very thoughtful gift. A little Christmas tree for my bedroom and a wonderfully presented pack of 100 miniature glass baubles from Paperchase. Almost too pretty to unpack!
They know what a magpie I am and this made me very happy indeed. I spent a few hours making and attaching little silver plated wire hooks to each one.
I used most of my jewellery making stash of wire for this but now they will be easy to hang year after year and I enjoyed the calming repetition of the task. Now I can enjoy having my very own tree to light up my bedside table while also giving an added glow to a rather dashing kind of elf who doesn’t necessarily have anything at all to do with Christmas!
Lovely! It makes it much easier to tear myself away from the twinkly grotto downstairs at the end of every day.
I couldn’t resist filling the empty bauble box with some of my spare pompoms for no better reason than because they were the perfect fit. Maybe I should make a square cushion with these. But I think I’ll wait and see how the round one works out first in case it’s a total disaster and ends up just falling apart. The box will be a good little tool for getting the colour combos just right if I do decide to go ahead.
Christmas was also about putting feet up and donating spare lap space to needy cats. Mojo likes to remind me that hands aren’t just made for crafting but for fussing fur babies too. How could I resist?!
Tigger is not quite such a fuss ball as Mojo, being more emotionally needly than needy but he still appreciates a bit of company on the sofa from time to time.
He’s the self anointed King of Grumpsville and nobody messes with the King when he’s wearing that face! Not even when he turns this basket of harmoniously placed pompoms…
…because he couldn’t resist doing this…
Ahh, we do love him, hisses and all!
It really has been a most refreshing break but I’m oh so ready to get out the hooks and yarn and start designing some new patterns again. I’m looking forward to finishing the pompom cushion and the poncho, but I’m feeling especially joyful at the thought of all the brand new projects that 2016 will bring.
Thank you for stopping by and sharing the journey with me throughout 2015. Here’s to another year’s worth of colourful, yarn obsessed adventures!