The Craft Journal – 08/04/19 South Africa Special

Hi! How is everyone? I am now back and just about in the swing of things again following an absolutely amazing holiday in South Africa. It was lovely to get away and do so many special things and it was amazing to be able to share in a second wedding for our friends and meet their lovely family! Anyway, it seems the last time I posted in the craft journal was three weeks ago, I have a lot of writing to do! Don’t worry, I will try and stick to just the crafty bits!

A beautiful lioness of the Timbavati

Monday 8th April

Flight safe crochet kit

A complete mad dash to and from dad’s to drop off the guinea pigs and then drive to the airport to fly away to South Africa. Hand luggage contained all the essentials; yarn, hooks, stitch markers, oh and passports. I had ordered a Bluetooth keyboard to use with my tablet but it hadn’t arrived. I managed to find one at the airport so all was well and I wrote the previous entry for the craft journal and then had a sleep on the plane!

Tuesday 9th April

This bull elephant made sure he didn’t go hungry!

After landing in Johannesburg we picked up the rental car and started to drive towards Kruger National Park for our safari adventure. We stopped at a café with wifi and I uploaded my blog post. Shortly after leaving the café, without warning, we nearly flattened a baboon. It was massive. It just ran out of the grass into the road, gawped at us and then carried on with its life. Thankfully the rest of the journey was less eventful! We got into Kruger just before sunset and on our way through to the lodge we saw so many animals! Giraffes, elephants, zebra, warthogs, impala, kudu, all before we left the main road. It was incredible.

Wednesday – Friday

We had an amazing few days at Motswari Lodge. Our guide Danell and tracker Lot took us out on two game drives a day and we got so close to the wildlife. It really was amazing. I have taken a lot of photos (4021 to be exact) and I am looking forward to making some digital art with them. These will be turned into paper crafting kits for you to download. I’m also going to get some of the photos printed so that I can make a scrap book. I will share the progress with you and perhaps do a few scrap booking tutorials?

Friday – Saturday

After the morning game drive we had to catch an internal flight to the coast for the wedding (which was on Saturday). On the flight I began making my shawl in a ball. I had found a really lovely pattern on ravelry but it needed two balls of yarn, I only had one. In the end I didn’t follow a pattern, I just made up a simple shawl using increases and bobbles. Look out for a review of the yarn coming soon!

The wedding was beautiful and I got more crafting inspiration! This time from flowers, another paper kit may be on the cards! True to form I collected lots of bits from the tables at the wedding to make a scrap book for Sophie and John. What I didn’t know was that John’s brother had designed all of the place settings, napkin holders and cupcake wrappers. They were so beautiful and professional, I loved them! The wedding favours were made by John’s father. He took a branch from a tree in their garden and carved and polished the wood to make key rings. Each one was unique and it was so personal!

The gorgeous place settings made by Johns, brother and the key ring made by John’s father. The flower featured on the place settings is a protea, the national flower of South Africa. It symbolises change and hope. They looked beautiful in Sophie’s bouquet!

Sunday 14th April

Incredible limestone formations at Cango Caves

We had a lovely breakfast at the hotel with all of John and Sophie’s family then headed out to some caves and a waterfall. Yet more beautiful scenes to take photos of, scraps collected for scrap booking and all the travel time put to good use making my shawl.

Monday – Thursday

The common dolphin

We started travelling along the coast and stayed for three nights in Plettenberg Bay. There was plenty more shawl making in the car. On our way we passed through a little town called Sedgefield. I would love to go back and spend a couple of days there exploring. It felt like the craft capital of South Africa. As we were driving a shop called “wool n things” caught my eye, we planned to make a trip to there one our way back through to Mossel Bay. We stopped for lunch in a town called Kneysna where I picked up some unique handmade paper (you can read more about that here) and we finally got to our hotel.  We took a boat trip and saw Plettenberg Bay’s huge colony of cape fur seals, a small pod of humpback dolphins and a pod of between 5 and 700 common dolphins. That was truly incredible and completely worth the sea sickness!

This bird was particularly naughty!

We found a great place called The Birds of Eden and planned a short visit there. We spent at least four hours there. It was fantastic. There were so many beautiful birds, and I may have been inspired to create a third paper crafting kit.

The yarn is so soft!

I had a nice crafty afternoon on our last day in Plettenberg Bay. We visited “Wool and More” which was not too far away and then we went back to Sedgefield to visit “wool n things”. I got some lovely yarn in both shops. I don’t have plans for all of it yet, but I did pick up some beautiful blue yarn by African Expressions and I have a couple of ideas I want to try out. A clutch bag and a cowl type scarf. I will let you know how I get on when I make a start on those! Sedgefield was also the home of Scarab Paper and Scarab Craft Village. After buying yarn we went to see how Scarab Paper is made using elephant dung. It is not nearly as smelly as you would think!

Friday – Sunday


We drove down to Port Elizabeth, I spent more time making my shawl, and at the hotel I wrote a blog post on Scarab paper. 

We spent time at the beach and the on Monday started the drive towards Mossel Bay.

Monday – Tuesday

My finished shawl in our frilly hotel room!

We had a lovely drive to Mossel Bay, more time to work on the shawl. We attempted to spend a day at the beach, but the weather had other ideas. We were rained off the beach! The good news is that I managed to finish my shawl before the heavens opened! We went back to our lovely (if slightly bizarre) hotel room and watched the beach from the window. I started a new project with soft and silky yarn from Hobbycraft and the WI, which gave me the idea for making the tablet cover which you can get the pattern for here.

Tuesday – Thursday

The last few days we were in Cape Town. We saw some gorgeous penguins (maybe I will save them for a Christmas paper crafting kit), went to Table Mountain and took a trip to Robben Island. We flew back home on Wednesday night and didn’t land until Thursday evening. On the plane I worked on my latest project (it is a gift for someone, but I will show you pictures when it’s done).

At home I had a lovely parcel waiting for me from Wool Warehouse. I had ordered the yarn pack for the Dune blanket by Attic 24. I have never made any of Lucy’s blankets before, however a lot of the ladies at woolly workers have just completed the Sweet Pea blanket and they are gorgeous so I just had to have a go. I can’t wait to get started on that, I am really excited to share my progress with you! If you want to see more of Lucy Attic’s designs check out her blog here.

Friday 26th April

Very much loving soft and silky!

After a long day of travelling yesterday I did not wake up quite as early as I had hoped. I went to pick up the guinea pigs from Dad’s and I didn’t get home until gone three in the afternoon. It was too late for me to go to woolly workers but I still spent some time doing crochet. I started working on the design for the tablet cover project. We went out in the evening and I had a sneaky trip to Hobbycraft to pick up some more soft and silky!

Saturday 27th April

According to the pattern this is finished!?

I managed to finish the tablet cover and write out the pattern for the blog. Once that was uploaded I had to find something else to do. I decided on having a go with the crochet kit I ordered from Aldi So Crafty a few weeks ago. Things started well, but quickly deteriorated (I will tell you all about that in a review coming later this week)! I also ordered a few scrap booking supplies and put my 4021 photos onto my PC!

Sunday 28th April

I finished my crochet kit from Aldi (with a little improvisation!) and my finished shark was quickly claimed by Mr Crafts, so obviously the finished project was not too terrible. I felt very pleased with myself that I had actually been able to finish the project, especially when I had to make up my own pattern for three fins and a tail!

Fish are friends, not food!

That brings us to today! I hope you enjoyed this instalment of the craft journal! Next week will be shorter and more crafty I promise! If you made it this far, make sure to give yourself a gold star! I have a lot of crafty fun lined up for the next week so keep your eyes peeled!

George

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