For Five on Friday this week I thought I would share some new projects that have begun this week. Is it the effect of Spring? There have been some very chilly mornings but the sun has shone creating a mood of optimism. Time to start new challenges.
1. My first ever CAL
Until recently I did not know what a CAL was. A friend mentioned she was doing a knitting KAL and I had to ask her what she meant. Apparently it is an event where people get together to knit or crochet for a common purpose. Shortly after our discussion I came across Marinka Slump's blog acreativebeing.com and read about her last CAL idea: Last Dance on the Beach. Her story, which you can read here, really struck a cord with me. Although I have been very fortunate not to have been personally touched by mental ill health I have friends who cope with it in their families. It is often hidden and can be a sadly neglected area of health provision.
This inspired me to take part in my first CAL.
I chose "Dance in the Sea" as the colours reminded me of many happy years sailing in Greece and Turkey. Whenever I need to relax I try to imagine I'm on a beautiful beach or splashing in the sea. My days of dancing on the beach maybe over but in my head I am skipping and twirling across that sand!
The first week's squares are completed and I have learned to do popcorn stitch. They just need blocking now - another new skill to add to the list.
This week, Week 2, it is star stitch and attempting to get the tension correct to match the sample tension square.
I am looking forward to learning lots more stitches and skills over the coming 14 weeks.
2. New Shoots
There are lots of pots in my garden and half the pleasure of filling them is growing the plants myself.I do not have the space to grow everything from seed so cheat by growing some plants on from mini plug plants.
There is something very satisfying about potting them on into progressively larger pots and watching them grow. They can be quite demanding; having to make sure they are warm, have enough light, ventelation and are well watered. However, they bring irresistible pleasure when I go out each morning to check on them.
They start out on a rack in the conservatory.........
.......... then graduate to the plastic mini greenhouse in the garden to toughen up.
It has been a challenge this week with frosty nights but they are looking pretty healthy.
Fingers crossed they stay that way.
3. New Knitting
After the success of the Spiral Staircase shawl I shared last week I decided to start another. This time in pinks and purples.
It looks darker in this photo than it actually is but I like the randomness of the stripes. My mother recently gave me all her old knitting needles and the pair I am using here were from that set. I am not sure if it is all the years of use but the yarn moves really smoothly on them and they are a pleasure to use.
The points have been altered and are slightly smaller and shallower than the original pattern. I'm not sure whether to decorate them with tassels again or maybe go for beads this time. That is a decision for when the knitting is finished.
4. New Buds
Despite the cold and frost this week the cherry tree blossom is just beginning to emerge. It is a miniature tree, which was planted two years ago and is growing in a large pot.
Last year it actually bore fruit with small bunches of cherries. It was most unexpected as I thought the tree would need to be more mature. A real treat of tart, juicy berries. Mind you, the blackbirds were quick to spot them too!
5. New start on an old project
These needle cases were started quite a while ago but have been sadly neglected in a drawer in the workroom. The linen outer covers were prepared with Liberty Lawn strips and a couple had been embroidered. I finally picked up my sewing needle again this week and progress is being made.
There are two more to embroider then completion of the inside can begin. Soon, (very soon I hope) there maybe new stock for my Etsy shop. It has been a long time coming!
Well, I had better get on with more stitching,
or shall I knit,
the crochet squares need finishing too............
Linking up with Amy at Love Made My Home