Hello and thanks for visiting my blog. I have been knitting on and off for 50 years and I recently learned to crochet. I love looking for wool bargains and making them into something useful. I mainly knit for charity. I occasionally knit for myself and family members if I find a really good pattern or if they ask nicely!!

Wednesday, 15 May 2019

Third worry monster...

Good things come in threes, so here is my third worry monster. It is supposed to be a type of winged insect, though the wings don't show up very well against the wicker background. Oh well, there is no chance to take a better photo because all three monsters have now gone off to Knit-for-Nowt from where they will be distributed to therapists who work with traumatised children. The busy Clare has just received them and emailed me to say how much she likes them. You're welcome!

The therapists have requested lots of details and colour as these start conversations with the children. I have problems making my monsters scary, so I tend to use strong, clashing colours to add drama. Instead of my usual white eyes, I used green and edged them with black woolly eyelashes. They have ended up looking more like slices of kiwi fruit. Yummy; though that probably wasn't the look I was aiming for.

I learned a new skill. The hair is loopy knitting and here is a close-up:

I was pleased with how the loops turned out and the fact that they don't unravel or pull apart, which is a consideration when young children might be playing with them. They are quite slow to knit, so I could never knit a whole loopy garment. But as a detail they are interesting enough.

The green pocket on the front is a little post box for the children's worries. You would never believe how long it took me to crochet this square. I have been knitting most of my life, but only learned to crochet a few years ago. I am still not a natural crocheter and have to read instructions every time I make something. Otherwise I go horrendously wrong, which I did twice with this square. This is actually my third-time-lucky attempt. I was starting to wonder how many times I could crochet with the same yarn before it disintegrated!

Monday, 6 May 2019

Second worry monster...

Here is my latest worry monster. I'm not sure what has happened to its right ear. It does match the left one, honestly. This will be going to Knit-for-Nowt and will eventually be part of a therapist's work with traumatised children. The pocket on the front is where the children post notes about their worries.

The therapists have requested lots of colour and details. I used some VERY bright variegated yarn, added a messy hairstyle and my trademark eyebrows to change the look from gormless to anxious. The eyes themselves came from my huge spare button collection. They are a mottled brown and look very life-like.

I've just noticed that the wide arms are almost inviting cuddles from the children. I think this is my favourite monster...... so far.

Thursday, 25 April 2019

Another worry monster...

Here is my latest worry monster. It will eventually go off to Knit-for-Nowt from where it will join others on their way to social workers and therapists working with traumatised children.

Some of the monsters on the above website are amazing. Apparently, the social workers have asked for lots of details on the monsters as they encourage the children to talk. So this one has ears, messy hair and a pocket for the worries. Finally, inspired by a recent trip to the vet with my lazy cat, I added what I hope looks like a set of neatly trimmed claws. (Fleur, take note!)

I thought I had finished this monster and I was working on the next one. But every time I caught sight of it, I couldn't help noticing its vacant expression. So I added a monobrow this morning, which I hope has made it look more worried than gormless.

Friday, 12 April 2019

My new favourite hat pattern...

I promise this isn't the same hat photographed from different angles and blogged about several times! I have quite a lot of this Aran wool to use up. I loved it when I bought it and I still do. It's navy blue with a small beige fleck to give a bit of interest.

This time I followed a pattern that I can't remember knitting before. It's the Easy-Fit Ribbed Hat by Mary Jane Protus. It is almost identical to my previous favourite pattern. But this one has a much neater crown and for that reason is the pattern that I will use in future. It is knit "in the round" and very easy to do. 

The ribbing helps it to fit any shape head. My hat will fit an older child and will eventually go off to Operation Orphan. But I like the wool and pattern so much that I am planning to knit an adult size for myself. That is a big statement for someone who usually prefers to freeze than wear a hat. The beauty of this pattern is that you just use a slightly larger knitting needle if you want a larger size. There is no wading through rows of numbers with this pattern. 

Presently, I am working on three different worry monsters and they are all at the ugly duckling stage. I will blog about them when they are a bit more presentable!

Sunday, 31 March 2019

Knit-for-Nowt competition

Calling all busy crafters....I'm advertising this competition on behalf of Knit-for-Nowt. I can vouch that this is a fantastic organisation that needs and will find homes for all your creations.

The monsters go to social workers who help traumatised children. It doesn't take long to make one of these and they are a great way to use up scraps of yarn and material.

(Sorry about the tiny font size at the end of my post. Whatever I try, Blogger will not allow me to make it larger.)


The charitable service Knit-for-Nowt announces a fun competition.  For a chance to win a prize, send in an item to donate to therapists working with seriously anxious children. Entries are welcome now from knitters, crocheters and stitchers.

1           Knit, crochet or sew a Worry Monster or hand puppet for the Knit-for-Nowt charity. You may enter up to 10 items.  Full details and patterns are on the website  Your monster(s) must have three or more of these features added to the basic pattern: hair, ears, hands, arms, feet, legs.  They must be in bright colours and must comply with all safety rules on the website.
2          Attach a label to each individual item, with your full name, email address and County.
3           Send to Knit-for-Nowt – for posting details please email   
4           2 lucky dip winners and 10 runners up will be picked out at random during the week beginning 17th June by a senior social worker.
5           All entries will be photographed by Knit-for-Nowt and put up on a new “Competition Gallery” on the website for all your friends and family to admire!

PRIZES: a £30 voucher each for two lucky winners, and ten x £10 runner up vouchers for the online knitting shop “Love Knitting” – go to to browse the shop.  Winning entries will be featured in the Summer Knit-for-Nowt Newsletter, which is distributed to up to a thousand knitters.  Please note:  entries will not be judged, but picked out at random in our Lucky Dip.

CLOSING DATE BY WHICH ENTRIES MUST REACH KNIT-FOR-NOWT = 17th JUNE 2019 Please go to  for full details, terms and conditions, and safety rules.

Sunday, 17 February 2019

Preemie items; off they go...

I have been busy knitting bootees and mittens for PreemiesUK. The pattern is a really basic one which is on their website somewhere. Each item weighs about 5g, so it's a great way to use up leftover yarn. I usually prefer to knit bigger items such as blankets and hats, but they are currently snowed under with them and have specifically requested bootees and mittens.

They have also requested items that could be sold at an Easter craft fair, so I threw in a bunny blanket and a couple of trinket bags that I knitted years ago.

Daylight is stronger today, so the yellow colour is showing up better than in my last blog post. I really loathe any shade of yellow. After knitting the bootees I had to force myself to sew them up just so that I could post them off. To prove that my heart was not in the sewing, I actually managed to sew across the top of one of the bootees. Duh! Luckily I was able to undo it. Phew! I wonder what daft mistakes other people have made...

Saturday, 2 February 2019

Another bunny blanket, and a gift...

Here is another small bunny blanket that I knitted recently, this time for charity. It will go to PreemiesUK as they are having a sale at Easter and this might suit the theme. It's hard impossible to tell from the photo, but the colour is a pale lemon. I think that is perfect for an Easter bunny; more perfect than for a baby unless it likes the jaundiced look.

The pattern came from Ravelry. It is a free pattern, but you might need to register and log in to view it. It would be fairly easy to adjust the pattern if you wanted to turn it into a cat or dog.

Another photo that suffered from our lack of real daylight at this time of year is:

These woven towels are a rich shade of terracotta. They were handmade on a loom and sent to me by Joanne who writes the Cup on the Bus blog. This a chatty blog written by a feisty lady and well worth a visit. Thanks for the gift, Joanne; they are really well made. I don't think I own anything else that has been hand-crafted to such a high standard. The colour actually suits my kitchen which is basically cream with a few pops of terracotta in the vain hope of making it feel warmer. I can't complain too much about the weather though. Our thin layer of snow this week is nothing compared to what is happening in other parts of the world.

Oh...and as for the big, thick, pink wool. I managed to knit a square measuring about 18" x 18". I will probably donate it to the first family member to have a baby. It is beautifully thick and would make a nice liner for a pram. Here is another photo that doesn't do anything justice!

I don't know what went wrong with photo. It looks like the bottom edge is wonky, but it really isn't.

I thought I hadn't achieved much this week. But, reading this back, I'm satisfied, especially as I tend to hibernate at this time of year!