The (Bumper) Craft Journal – 16th September

Hello Crafters!

It’s been a while since I posted and I have been very busy. I think I’ve only just recovered from a busy but fantastic week with the Settlers of the Nene Valley. Now that our Meet the Settlers event is over we are busy planning the next Settlers activities!

Monday 16th September

I wanted to start the week with a bang, so I chose some pieces of jewellery from the pieces I had been making over the past few days to photograph. Then I listed them all in my Folksy store. There are several bracelets and necklaces all in different styles so I hope there is something for everyone there! If you would like to view any of the pieces, click here.

After listing the new items I settled into writing last week’s instalment of The Craft Journal, which you can find here. In the meantime one of the guinea pigs decided it would be a great idea to poke herself in the eye with a piece of hay, so a trip to the vets was made (again).

My plain squares

In the evening I started gathered all the double knitting yarn I could find in my stash and settled down to make some crochet squares. This was all part of a crochet along I decided to do. Annie Design Crochet (aka Carmen Heffernan) is hosting a stash busting blanket crochet along, and heaven knows my stash needs a bit of pruning. The idea of the crochet along is to make granny squares, half plain and half with flowers on, to make up into a blanket. The patterns for the flower squares are released every two weeks. I managed to get four plain granny squares made up before bedtime!

If you would like to join in with the crochet along you will find Carmen’s blog here, and the CAL Facebook group here. Week two’s flower squares will be released on 30th September. This is the first Crochet along I have ever done and I love it! It’s lovely to see everyone’s squares and colour choices coming along on the Facebook group, including some of the Woolly Workers!

Tuesday 17th September

All my CAL squares

Having made all my plain granny squares on Monday I decided I would make up the flower squares for the crochet along! I am so pleased with how the squares turned out and I even learned how to do a new stitch, the popcorn! All my squares so far have either a yellow Hobbycraft WI boarder of a Stylecraft special denim boarder. I still need to decide on what colour I would like to use for the main colour of the blanket, which will be the colour used for the final round of all the squares. I fear that I will need to buy some more yarn (disaster!) for the main colour as I don’t think I will have enough of any one colour to go round all the squares! After making my flower squares I felt motivated to carry on with the dreaded Comforolled sweater.

Let the arm hole shaping begin!

Wednesday 18th September

I had planned to spend the day prepping for the Meet the Settlers event and visit Hobbycraft on the way home to pick up the yarn for the final round of my CAL squares. What actually happened was I woke up with a splitting headache and couldn’t make it into Stanwick Lakes or to Hobbycraft. I spent most of the day asleep. I had thought I could spend the day on the sofa working on the sweater; instead I spent most of the day on the sofa asleep! It must have done some good as by the next day my headache was mostly gone.

Thursday 19th September

Another day of crochet today, I started on a new shawl as someone asked me to make one for them after they saw mine. After doing a few rows of that I moved on to the sweater. I actually got to the next stage of the sweater and began shaping the arm holes! Result! Then I had a quick social media scroll and noticed a few people had been showing off some yarn they had bought from Aldi. Then I saw an ad from Aldi, craft special buys in store on 19th September. “That’s today!” I thought to myself. So I decided I would take a trip to Aldi to pick up the yarn for my final round of the CAL squares.

Just a few balls of yarn…

I had a slight, yarn related accident. I did buy the yarn for the CAL blanket, as well as some other yarn… But I do have plans for it! Honestly! I decided on a mustard colour for my blanket. I had thought about grey, white and black; but I really loved the mustard colour and I thought it would make a bright and cheerful blanket.

Most of the yarn I bought was DK, but I did notice some lovely chunky yarn (again in mustard colour) which I bought two balls of to make another Harris Tweed shawl for Christmas. I started this when I got home. At this point I have now lost count of how many yarn based projects I have on the go.

Finally I had a lot of fun making my mixed media project for the gritty gets trading swap this month. The theme this month was stamping, so the project had to have two areas of stamping as well as using some Pretty gets Gritty products. I decided I wanted to use some of the Pretty gets Gritty background stamps and I wanted to use a resist technique. I then decided I wanted to use the Hunkydory ink pads, my favourite colours of which are blues and green and by this time I decided to make it an under the sea themed make! I am pretty happy with how it turned out, and so is my swap partner (they have now received it). I was filming when making my project, however the camera battery ran out and I didn’t notice! So I will at some point put together a blog post on how I made the project!

Sample Coats of Arms

Friday 20th September

I had a hugely busy and productive day prepping for the Meet the Settlers event. I got to Stanwick early and stopped on the way to get some pastries and fruit for breakfast for all of the volunteers and staff. I was hungry so assumed everyone else would be! I laminated all the Viking long ship flags, trimmed the excess laminate, and mounted the flags on their poles. They looked really good! I was so pleased with how they turned out! I would never have thought of making these flags without my scan’n’cut!

After all the flags were made up I made some final tweaks to the backing sheets for the “create your own coat of arms”. Once those were printed all the sample shields were placed on the backing sheets and laminated, as were all the sample rune prints! So much laminating.

Just before lunch there was a slight hiccup with the display boards. The adhesive holding the boards up was not strong enough and some of the boards had started to slip. Never fear, I had the solution. Ultra-clear high tack tape, otherwise known as red liner tape! As I knew what I was looking for I volunteered myself to grab some from Coleman’s. Slightly concerned my reputation had been entirely staked on this product I popped down the road, purchased two rolls and bought them back. The display boards were re-stuck, and thankfully they stayed put!

Saturday 21st September

Another day not going to plan! I had hoped to get down to Stanwick and do some final prep for the Meet the Settlers event, but Phoebe had other plans. Not content with one trip to the vet this week, Phoebe had a second visit. After a few days of eye drops the cloudiness and swelling had gone down in her eye which allowed us to see that she had a piece of hay stuck in her actual eye ball. I swear this guinea pig has a special skill in getting hay stuck in her left eye.

Those Vikings know how to party!

Amazingly the vet managed to take the hay out with his fingers, and a lot of dramatic squealing from Phoebe. This was followed by more squealing when he gave her an injection of anti-inflammatory medication. She was not impressed with the vet, I was not impressed with her.

We got the guinea pig home and rushed out to Stanwick. Although there was no more prep to do, we still had the end of the Nene Valley Festival to celebrate. There were Vikings, archery, axe throwing, archery, hog roast, drink and a huge fire pit. It was a really lovely night and I even got an award for completing 50 volunteer hours, which I was not expecting at all!

Flags and display boards in the craft tent

Sunday 22nd September

The big day is finally here! All the Settlers arrived at around 8.30 AM and completed the finishing touches ready for the general public to arrive at 10.30. I ran thirty minute jewellery workshops throughout the whole day! The morning started with wire wrapped rings, after lunch we made braided cord bracelets and finished the day off with more wire wrapped rings. The day was non-stop and everyone seemed to really enjoy themselves. This brings me on to a small announcement. I will be hosting two jewellery making days with the Settlers of the Nene Valley. The first will be aimed at children and will take place in October half term and then second will be in the first week of November and will be aimed at adults. More details will be out soon so keep an eye on the Settler’s Facebook page and the blog!

At home I started working on some new ideas for settlers craft projects, this time round I’m looking at paper crafting!

Monday 23rd September

Wow. I am feeling exhausted! What a day we had yesterday! I decided I was going to spend the day working on the Comforolled sweater. I have now moved on to working the second piece of the sweater, and now I have ironed out all the problems I had with the first part, the second part should come together much more quickly!  

Medieval Parchment projects

Tuesday 24th September

Still feeling slightly bewildered from the weekend, I didn’t quite feel up to writing up this week’s Craft Journal just yet. I decided to do something productive still and I did a little more work on the paper crafting project I started on Sunday. I wanted to create a project based on medieval illuminated parchment, I have made a Christmas card in this style and I am thinking about ways to make some decorations too.

Such a cute dog!

Wednesday 25th September

Well I think I am finally recovered from the weekend. In the morning I had a lovely meeting about a new and exciting Settlers event for next summer. I had a request for some design work for some greeting cards in the day so I went into Coleman’s on the way home and picked up a couple of new stamps to mess around with ideas for cards.

That’s all for now. What a mammoth entry in in the craft journal. I am looking forward to getting some crafting done tomorrow and spending the day at woolly workers on Friday!


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