Crafty in the Med

I'm here to enjoy meeting other crafters and to share my ideas and projects. I love to crochet,cross stitch and embroidery but I'm keen to try new crafts too. I love music and I love to sing! Singing makes me happy. I collect jugs....its their shape I think! I am addicted to yarn and buttons. I get lost in book shops and can spend all morning there and I absolutely adore rummaging in flea markets. I love to read sci´fi/fantasy,buried treasure, and off world adventures. I have a passion for history! I would be the first passenger on the first time machine ! I BELIEVE IN MAGIC!

Friday, 31 August 2012

Does anyone know what is happening????


Have you got the same problem?


first of all it started with Susan at The White house she was on my  blog roll but everytime I went in to her blog a message came up to indicate the blog had been eliminated. I later saw a comment from her and her blog while blog hopping. I instantly thought she had decided not not continue following my blog for whatever reason...no complaints about that of course because everyone has the right to choose. 

BUT

then it was Yvonne at Just blethering
again exactly the same business and I was only just chatting to her a few days before!!!!
If you have Yvonne on your blog roll are you experiencing the same problems?????
and now this morning Hoots Cove
 and again we had exchanged comments a week ago!

Have you the same problems with these blogs???
I swear I haven't blocked these blogs or anything.


Amanda :-)



Thursday, 23 August 2012

Forest hearts and off and away to...

Hi there
 I have been extremely lazy lately and have forgotten to welcome my new followers so  I want to make up for it now
Hello and welcome to Kristen at Cosy things, Annie at Knitsofacto, Robin at Mynestofyarn& buttons, Mum at Mum's simply living and Carole at Serendipity,raindrops & roses . Thank you for popping in and joining me here :-)
IF THERE IS ANYONE I HAVE FORGOTTEN PLEASE TELL ME OFF!

My shawlette is finally ready to go over the seas and far away to the mystical land of OZ.
Sydney August 2011

Incidentally I can't resist saying I took this picture myself when I was in Sydney with my sisters last summer

The blocking worked a treat and I am very pleased with the results. What a difference blocking makes!
Nonetheless I did want to add my own personal touch to it.....I do like tweaking patterns to personalize it more.
Therefore I added a strand of what I call forest hearts
 



The forest hearts strand is detachable and can be placed wherever the wearer likes on the shawlette.
Do you like my model...bit thick around the neckline. I have no one to act as a model, my meanie hubby wouldn't oblige either!!! )-:
I had to improvise tch!!



or this way:
very versatile I think





How about as a bracelet? LOL






                                                 Amanda :-)

 oh! now then what's this 4 EMPTY bowls all in a row???





Tuesday, 21 August 2012

Little shop in Spain


Hello to you all,

Firstly, I would like to give a big THANK YOU to all those followers who have helped by kindly checking their blog rolls over the last two days to see if my blog icon had reappeared on their lists. It seems the problem has now been sorted but for the life of me I cannot tell you how. I'm wondering now if the glitch was caused by BLOGGER itself.



The last few days have been quite tiresome starting with that stupid glitch and then Sunday afternoon  when someone broke into our car and stole a make-up bag from the glove compartment. I don't use it for make-up but to hold the detachable front panel of the car digital radio and mp3 player! What a pain! Its of no use to the thief at all as the rest of the radio/player is fitted in the car but it is to me! I now have to see if I can buy another panel or have to buy the whole player again. Unfortunately too..... surprise surprise..... our insurance does not cover theft of personal possessions within the car only of the car itself tch!!!  We were beginning to count our blessings this morning that we leave nothing of real value in the car and that the car itself wasn't stolen either when Sr P discovered that his RayBan sunglasses are gone too!

*******************************

In an effort to change my tune and to a more agreeable one at that I thought you would enjoy this post I had previously prepared for publishing.

I'm very much in favour of giving my custom to the small shopkeepers; what with the recession and the large stores engulfing them they are having a rough time. Nonetheless I have to be honest and say I also get a lot back from being a regular at some of the small shops in this area.

It occurred to me that I could present Marie Carmen the person responsible for most of my crafting supplies to you . She has allowed me to interview her and take photographs of her little shop; a very amusing experience for both of us  :-)

Marie Carmen has a small shop in a very busy street in the Florida Plaza de la Viña neighbourhood  within Alicante City. Its situated about 10 minutes walk away from my flat so its quite near ,although I hesitate to say if this is practical or not. It is practical distance wise but not economically wise for me, as I walk past it much too frequently and am too often tempted to go in.
Its certainly a very well known shop in the neighborhood and you must know if you wish to buy in Mari's shop you have to be prepared to wait as she is always busy. She's busy because she has a lot of customers and not because she is slow!
I think Mari is a multi-tasking perfection I've never seen anyone move so fast and able to see to several customers at once and chat at the same time. I'm inclined to think she is popular as well as busy because her little shop offers more than just products for sale.
Merceria y Corseteria (haberdashery and Lingerie shop) Mabe (named after her daughter) has been open for 20 years.  I have known her personally for about 12 years now.
Her motto is she has everything in the haberdashry line but if she hasn't got it she'll get it.

Merceria & Corseteria Mabe  Calle Astronomo Comas Sola Nº 20 Alicante Spain

Monday afternoons are craft circle afternoons and from 5:30 to 8:00pm crafters come along to show off their makes,to learn from others and to get craft tips and advice. They sit,chat and knit,crochet sew and mingle.
Shopping and being a regular at Marie's shop means joining in the conversation,sharing your knowledge,popping around behind the counter yourself to pick up the wool you want or reaching up and getting the box with your size or grabbing something from a hanger and trying it on in the dressing room with a "just trying this on a minute" shout as you go around the back.

Unfortunately this relaxed somewhat bygone trust filled shop keeper & customer relationship was marred a couple of years ago as Mari had to have an automatic door opener bell fitted to get in and out of her little shop. She makes it sound comical when she relates why she had to have the door bell fitted. Those many incidents of how people tried to steal lingerie and nightwear by placing the item between their knees under a dress or skirt and trying to waddle out of the shop and Mari having to tackle the person to get the garment back. As she laughs and describes those situations one can denote in her tone an apology which I surmises is for having to have the door bell and an underlying tone of regret mixed with annoyance.

Its not a tidy shop. It isn't very big either some would say pokey although there is plenty of light and colour there. In fact the shop has an abundance of colour! Its a shop filled with......... things from floor to ceiling and one should never turn away to leave thinking that as you can't see the item you are after that she does not have it!  Its imperative you ask and ten times out of ten she does have it...tucked away!



Amanda :-)


Sunday, 19 August 2012

Shout out for a bit of help as I am not getting much from blogger




Hello to All

I'll be brief blogger is doing its best to irritate me greatly or MUCHO....it seems some of you cannot see my recent post titled "thanks and on its way"or my icon on your blog posts list on your sidebars

you know like this one:






















I've been fiddling around all morning looking here and there on google to get some help because the blogger help doesn't help much except to suggest the blog list should be updated frequently and to do so by logging out and logging in. I've done that and it still doesn't appear on some bloggers blog post lists although they have added it to their blog list.  Right well I've done this and that not really sure what but I think I've fixed it but I need you to check it out for me.

Could I ask you all pretty please when you have time to check you can see my icon on your blog posts list and if it is my latest post which is this one titled Shout out for a bit of help ect....

Just a yes I can see it  or no I can't comment here would be greatly appreciated.

Amanda :-)

PS: oh yes and  if you haven't ever added my blog to your posts list thats ok this doesn't mean you have to I'm just trying to get this glitch sorted.




Thursday, 16 August 2012

thanks and on its way


BYE BYE BB  safe journey back to the UK


my part of this blanket has been completed!


off you go now to MummyHen.

At present the bloggers participating in this bloggy blanket chain are as follow:
 If anyone would like to help keep this chain going and crochet a square for a good cause (it need only be one) please pop into Mum's Simple Living blog here.


Thank you so much you lovely lovely bloggers; Mrs Thrifty, Sue and MummyHen who have nominated me for the One Lovely Blog award. 
If you haven't visited their blogs before, do pop in and say hello.


The rules for the One Lovely Blog award are as follows:
Thank the person/persons who nominated you
Share 7 things about yourself
Nominate some blogs that you admire.
so...here we go....
1. I am too outspoken for my own good. 
2. I must have music in my life.
3. I dream of buying a summer cottage back home in Somerset.
4. I have been blessed or cursed with the most vivid imagination.
5. I would like to learn Japanese. 
6. I studied classical ballet for five years.  
7. My favourite dessert is my  mother's steamed chocolate pudding topped with Devonshire clotted cream!

Ass for nominating several blogs for this award.... I see that most of you already have this award and I also feel I cannot individualize as I think all the blogs I follow are scrumptious,fantastic and and and.........
therefore
I'm going to echo what Emma at The Log Cabin has said on her latest post ,which I feel is more than appropriate:
I'd like to  point you in the direction of the blogs I love to follow. They're all listed in my sidebar and some are crafty blogs and some aren't but they're all great reads so please pop over for a visit. I've made some lovely friends from that list.
and I'll second that Emma!!!!

Have a great day!!!


Amanda :-)




Wednesday, 15 August 2012

Promise kept with Dory



Promises and pie crusts are made to be broken.  ~Jonathan Swift

Now are they Mr Swift???    A promise is a promise and I don't agree with Jonathan Swift mine are not made to be broken otherwise I don't promise.
I'd philosophically add and advise that you shouldn't make a promise lightly and then you won't break it!

My promise is about reaching its completion but had to undergo a bit of blocking before I send it off to the other side of the world...to a place called Toowoomba. Sure some of you know where that is :-)

How did this all come about well I sent my sister a bronze wrap for her birthday and my neice wanted one. I of course promised I would get around to making one for her.

Bronze Wrap made in April 2012

Its very rare I do the same pattern twice as I enjoy trying out new designs much more then repetitive crochet,so I wasn't really sure what sort of shawl I wanted to make for my neice. I thought possibly something light,airy,young looking and browsing through Lynne at Pieceful  blog I found just what I was looking for. I found the Dory shawlette  and the pattern can be purchased here on Ravely. I used
Freedom spirit,Twilleys of Stamford 100% wool.
It was a real dawdle to make not at all difficult.   Nearly nearly finished too!
At present it is laid out on the spare bed undergoing the blocking process.
I had done blocking before but on much smaller items such as doileys and lace crochet dipped in starch but never anything so big. Luckily Lynne also gave me some tips about that too so I have managed to improvise,that and reading the tutorial on MarrieB at Purals and Pleats .

Step 1. Soak garment in lukewarm water with a dash of wool wash and leave for approx 30 mins.
Step 2. Do not wring at all,lightly squeeze and lay out on a towel




Step 3. Roll up in the towel

Step 4.


STAND ON IT

Step 5.

and walk across it!!!!

Step 6.
Now here is where Lynne's advice came to the fore.
Spread it on a towel across the bed. I didn't use a towel I used an old impermeable sheet I had from when Cookie baby was a little girl.
 By using this sheet I was able to cover all the bed and it therefore helped to keep the shawl taunt.
so this is before I started blocking the shawl.

Step 6. I had no T pins (blocking pins) so again I had to make do with what I had and those were normal pins.


open the windows and leave it for 24 hours approx to dry.



I had to shut the bedroom door in case Willie Shakespeare decided to have a nose. He may be yonks old but he hasn't lost his need to know everything that is going on in the house. He is so nosey!!!. I could just see him coming out of the bedroom his nose and paws covered in pins!!!

There you have it folks not at all complicated and later this afternoon it should be dry and ready to send off to OZ.


Amanda :-)




Sunday, 12 August 2012

The hurrier I go, the behinder I get



“The hurrier I go, the behinder I get.”
Lewis Carroll

 This quote from Lewis Carroll pretty well sums up how I've been coping with daily life this last week.  I've multi-tasked and multi-tasked and still feel behinder!

Finishing my squares for the Bloggy Blanket Chain-August 12


BLOGGY BLANKET CHAIN



These are the first squares that start another Bloggy Blanket Chain that is being hosted by Mum  at Mum's Simple Living blog When the blanket is complete it will be donated to a good cause.

I can't speak for the rest of the bloggers who are participating or who I hope will participate but I feel that although my few squares are but a drop in the ocean where helping people are concerned at least I feel I am doing something, so much more than just dropping a coin into a tin.
If anyone would like to help keep this chain going and crochet a square for a good cause (it need only be one) please pop into Mum's Simple Living blog here
I am convinced that the other participants will agree with me when I say I believe these squares are saying "you are not alone,WE care!"
Further more I'll echo what Arwedd so rightly said "I hope the end recipient feels all the love we bloggers sent along its journey"

The following squares are my contribution to the blanket and following on from the theme in a previous post ,I have designed these two squares myself for this purpose.
Both these squares are pretty straight forward and not too intricate, they are in fact, when you consider the multiple variations of motifs out there in the crochet world and new ones popping up continuously from creative crocheters,similar to others but not the same nor created by tweaking another design!

Double peak square


Six ring flower square



I have never written patterns before as I rely on samples for my patterns. However I am going to give it a bash and I'll be making up patterns for some of my designs in the near future.


Postal services has had me a bit stressed out these last few days as I waited for the bloggy blanket to get to me. However I finally received the parcel from Arwedd yesterday, safe and sound.
and there it was our bloggy blanket.



 I rather like the idea that I am actually going to add my squares to the blanket myself and I get to see and hold the blanket too and not just send a few squares to someone.  However that is not all folks I had one of the most thrilling surprises and Arwedd may be thinking what's all the fuss about but I consider it absolutely wonderful that a person I hardly know who hardly knows me has altruistically thought about me sufficiently to pop into the bloggy blanket parcel a few goodies for me too!!!!!
 I LOVE BLOGGING!!!!!

and here you have the surprise GOODIES:

A lovely little handmade notebook ,a butterfly biscuit cutter,ribbons,shortbread (gone into hiding now) and ......... I must highlight these because I've never seen any like these before:

four of the most unusual wooden buttons....I just love them and already know where I am going to use them.             Wait and see!!!! :-)

THANK YOU SO MUCH ARWEDD!!!!


At present the bloggers participating in this bloggy blanket chain are as follow:
 If anyone would like to help keep this chain going and crochet a square for a good cause (it need only be one) please pop into Mum's Simple Living blog here.

Hello and welcome to all my new followers, Tracy at if I knew you were coming I'd have baked a cake, Stitch of Love, Thrifty Mummy Hen,Vintage Sheet addict and Fading Grace,thank you so much for joining me here ,it does mean a lot to me. :-)

Have a wonderful Sunday everyone....I'm off to soak in the pool ,we're up in the 40s and its TOO much!
Amanda :-)


Monday, 6 August 2012

Giveaway winner and into the cool blue


MY FIRST GIVEAWAY WINNER

I feel a bit meanie that its only one winner but next time I win the National Lottery,the BIG one,
 then I'll send something to everyone :-)


As explained in my last post I finally decided to use the RANDOM NUMBER GENERATOR
and not
THE BOWL 


as originally planned. I assigned each of the participants a number which I indicated in a reply message to each participants' comments posted on the giveaway post, yesterday evening
and here you have the results:
NO. 9 IS THE WINNER


and Nº 9 is.........


 
CONGRATULATIONS CHERYL AT MY LITTLE PIECE OF ENGLAND YOU ARE THE WINNER!!!!

Cheryl please send me your address by email so I can send you your goodies. :-)

*********************************

"INTO THE COOL BLUE"

Browsing through blogs I've noticed that the UK bloggers are frequently posting about beaches,holidays and fun things that they are doing in the sun. Previously I felt rather reluctant to post photos of Alicante or our frequent trips to the beach or the swimming pool as I felt it was rather lile "rubbing it in". However I believe weather conditions have improved over there in blighty so I now don't feel so guilty about posting my own beach pics.
We never go to the beach at the weekend during July and August there are just too many tourists and the beaches are heaving with crowds.... and there are always long traffic jams to get there we prefer to stay at home and soak in the swimming pool when the heat gets to you. However we are beach lovers and much prefer the beach and swimming in the sea than a pool so we do during the week. Mainly just Sr P and myself but sometimes my grand-daughter accompanies us,as you will see in these photos.

We usually go to Urbanova beach or Las Arenales del Sol which is about a 10 minutes drive from our place. We particularly like these beaches because they are very natural. They have been disturbed but minimally to cater for the sun and sea lovers and keep their natural beauty but do have the necessary facilities. Some people do not like these beaches because there are areas where you can come across underwater rocks but this is something that has never bothered us, in fact we prefer this as we like snorkel diving too. These beaches are lovely and clean,the tractor goes across early every morning and they have been awarded the  International blue eco-label flags which is a guarantee that you are on a healthy beach.

keep well!!!

Amanda :-)










Sunday, 5 August 2012

Will an asteroid be named after me?



Recognition

Lucky him! Adam Douglas the famous science fiction writer has had an asteroid named after him; Asteroid Douglasadams.  
from Google images

 It has dawned on me recently, at my ripe old age, that it is highly unlikely that I'll ever be famous enough to get a rose,street ,planet or asteroid named after me!  
However in the world of crochet and like so many other crocheters out there I can grab a tiny weeny snippet of recognition through my own designs as sparse as they maybe. As mentioned in my profile I have been crocheting for well over 40 years, and over that time I've occasionally made up my own patterns,some I have forgotten,nothing remains,no sample was kept,but some I do still have.
As is the case of this square and which I made up a new square into the cushion cover included in my giveaway. 
This square has a tale to tell:

 I've called it THE CANARIAN SQUARE

 Crochet taught me Spanish. Crochet breaks the language barrier.

Having been married for just one year we moved to the Canary Island in 1973 to live, Las Palmas de Gran Canaria to be exact. 
There's me with a six month old baby,no Spanish except, Hola, Adios and Gracias and Sr P away every day working. So I was on my own then...left to explore and being a very active,inquisitive bod and having never been one to loll around at home I did...little T in tow in her beach buggie pushchair ( I loved that buggie it lasted for ages). 
One of the places I found was Parque Santa Catalina which was a bustling plaza near the beach where the locals went late afternoon to chat,sip cool drinks and watch the children play.


and also do this:


taken from Google images
or very similar to this in fact it was a circle of elderly ladies some with their grandchildren with them,some dressed in black like this, but all of them doing crochet. 
Need I go on??    
The very next day I took my crochet with me to the plaza and sitting nearish to them, my daughter just beginning to walk (the Spanish are crazy about kiddies) and tutting over my crochet I somehow got involved. 
Over the four years I lived in Las Palmas I learnt a lot from these ladies, to speak Spanish being one thing and a lot of lace crochet the other...they pinched my patterns and I pinched theirs.
 It was here where new designs were created and where I created this one in particular. 
So you could say crochet was the great communicator in this case as not one of these elderly ladies spoke English.
I thoroughly enjoyed my afternoons there at the plaza but they always seemed to be a little distant,nice but distant which I couldn't understand that is until my husband met me at the plaza after he had finished work and I introduced him to the ladies. The air seemed to clear after that and I was invited to their houses when the weather made it impossible to sit in the plaza. 
Later on discussing it with my husband he suggested it might have been because they thought I was a single mother and that was frowned on considerably in the 70s. 
That was approx 36 years ago so I imagine my Canarian square may very well have got caught up in the crochet network and have been copied by other people, which is just fine by me. 
I shall be making up a pattern for it when I get down to making another one from my old sample. I am sure though many crocheters can make it up by just looking at this picture.
Having noticed the same on many other blogs I have today posted a copyright notice on my blog to protect my patterns and designs which I will eventually post about on my blog. However its mostly the same as what everyone else has indicated. I am happy for other people to use my designs/patterns as long as I am cited as the source likewise I am learning to do the same on my blog when using other people's patterns. 

**************************
THE BOWL


AND THE BOWL

where I'll put all the names of the entries for the giveaway
however there is still some time left to enter if you haven't done so already (here )and it is open to everyone.
 ALL IS NOT IDYLLIC IN THIS LAND OF SUN SOAKED BEACHES, SR P IS GOING THROUGH A GRUMPY PATCH AND THINKS THE GIVEAWAY IS SILLY (no comment)!
 SO I SHALL BE USING THE RECENT DISCOVERED RANDOM NUMBER GENERATOR TO SELECT THE WINNER TOMORROW. 

 Pls see that you have a number or numbers assigned to you under each comment on the giveaway post. 
A xx
My goal was 80 followers and I'm there 
so I happily present to you my very First Giveaway

WHY DO WE PREFER CERTAIN COLOURS?

*******************************
Please contact me these bloggers who are now followers and who have entered the giveaway. I regret but I cannot link to your blogs and nor have I an email address to contact you.
Cate,Victoria & Gill.    Thanks

This photo was taken by a friend of mine in the Uk. Thanks SG :-) 
I've posted this photo here for no particular reason except that I think its a fantastic snapshot of London today.

Add caption

Amanda :-




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