Granny square trial no 2

Half the size of the first one. I like this one better.

IMG_3416.JPG
Aran weight, 4.5mm hook.

I made this one up as I went along. (US crochet terms)

Round 1: 12dc into a slip ring, close with slip stitch.

Round 2: Ch3, 1dc into same stitch, 2dc into each dc round. Close with a slip stitch.

Round 3: *Slip stitch into next stitch, sc, half dc, (dc, ch 2, dc) into next stitch, half dc, sc. repeat 3 times. Finish with slip stitch into first slip stitch.

Round 4: Ch3, dc in next 3 dc, *(2dc, ch2, 2dc) in corner, dc in each stitch to corner, repeat twice, (2dc, ch2, 2dc) in last corner, dc in last 3 dcs, join with slip stitch in top of ch3.

A little Marmalade…

Today I popped up to my fab LYS Marmalade Yarns for a pair of 5mm needles. While there I bought some Sirdar Wool Aran in the most gorgeous silver grey colour. I want to make a scarf/ shawl for my youngest stepsister (the one who got married in Sydney in April) as a gift for Christmas. She’s a very glamorous young woman who generally wears neutrals so grey is ideal. This will be useful for her when she’s visiting the UK or goes to the mountains in Oz. (I was quite surprised to discover there was snow and skiing in Australia!)

IMG_8021.JPG My friend is making a shawl with this and it is gorgeous. I am seriously busting to cast on…

While there I had a chat with Janet, who runs the crochet courses. While signing up for one in three weeks time I mentioned that I wanted to try and make my Dad a crochet waistcoat, possibly in Noro Kureyon. She suggested the best way to create what I’m trying to achieve! I’m so pleased and grateful to be getting started, so I’m going to make some test squares in this colour way over the next 3 weeks.

IMG_8022.JPG

IMG_8023.JPGApparently a circle in a square is best, so that’s what I’ll be doing! Check out Janet’s gorgeous blog http://janetfrieldesigns.blogspot.co.uk

My final purchase can be put firmly at the door of The Twisted Yarn who made this book sound so enticing when she blogged about it that I ordered two on Amazon straight away. (The second is a Christmas present.) SHE IS RIGHT!!! I love it – I know I will use this book a lot.

IMG_8024.JPG Buy one! Unless you’re someone I buy Christmas presents for, in which case, best not, just in case I’ve got you one already! 😉

I can’t show you what I’m crocheting as it’s a secret as the recipient is a reader…

A weekend in Kent and more

Last Thursday was the council by-election I’ve been working on and consequently not knitting, crocheting or blogging! My husband was the candidate and despite working his very hardest unfortunately came second. You can’t be involved in politics without being extremely philosophical so although he is understandably disappointed, life goes on. And indeed it did as my sister and I left on Friday afternoon to visit our Dad, whose birthday it was, in Kent, some four hours away.This is the first time we’ve gone away together, just the two of us, since she had her children and it was really good fun. Mollie came too…

IMG_7975.JPG

When we arrived at Dad’s, the birthday boy was wearing this hilarious T-shirt, a gift from our stepmother for his birthday:

IMG_7977.JPG

IMG_7980.JPG Blue is their whippet lurcher!

Next morning we hit the beach with the dogs. The weather was glorious, not very sunny but very warm.

IMG_7994.JPG

IMG_7996.JPG

IMG_7989.JPG

IMG_7985.JPG

IMG_7999.JPG

IMG_7997.JPG

IMG_7998.JPG

IMG_8002.JPG

IMG_8005.JPG

IMG_8006.JPG

IMG_8003.JPG

IMG_8004.JPG

Gayle and I observed, as we were getting ready to go out for lunch, how unalike we are!

IMG_8008.JPG

We went to Margate for lunch and ate at this amazing Indian French fusion restaurant called The Ambrette. Afterwards we walked round the old town, which has, like many British town centres been regenerated in recent years. We came across this amazing shop called Alice and the Button:

IMG_8016.JPG

IMG_8015.JPG

As the name would suggest, it does sell buttons, but not just loose. Many things in this shop were decorated with buttons! Hairbrushes, notebooks, jewellery etc. There were also gorgeous scarves, fabric, oh many things. We loved it!

IMG_8010.JPG

IMG_8009.JPG

IMG_8012.JPG

IMG_8011.JPG

IMG_8014.JPG Very much recommended if you’re in Margate. Purchases were made in this and other shops…

IMG_8018.JPG

Ella cardigan

I promised myself that when I had finished Hitchhiker I could cast on this:

IMG_1149.JPG

And this is how far I’ve got:

IMG_7805.JPG

I’ve also had to frog and restart my secret crochet project because I’d done it wrong – argh!

And in real life, as well as work and the all-consuming by-election, the school where I’m Chair of Governors has Ofsted today & tomorrow…… (For those of you not in the UK, this is the national school inspection service.). The school is given notice they are coming the day before! I had missed my mock interview with the school’s improvement partner last week when I was ill, but luckily he was free yesterday evening, when he gave me a coached interview. I was so pleased I had done that work as I felt so much more prepared when I was interviewed today. Although governors are unpaid volunteers, the quality of governance is a significant part of the Ofsted inspection. Since the last inspection the Ofsted criteria have changed; under the previous criteria we were Good and had the system not changed, I believe this time could have expected Excellent. However it has changed, the bar has been significantly raised and while Outstanding would be wonderful, Good would also be ok! (For the curious, the other categories are Requires Improvement and Inadequate.) Tomorrow’s meetings in London are cancelled; I am due to be in school for feedback at 4pm.