Monday, 9 January 2012

Hello 2012!

I've been feeling quite guilty about the fact that I haven't blogged again for so long, which I know is really ridiculous because it really doesn't matter in the grand scheme of things! Every day I write or think of little lists of all the things I want to get done and often blogging is on the list but it is always fairly near the bottom of priorities and often just gets bumped off the end!

Anyhow, not to worry I'm finally here and writing and it feels good... hello 2012 :) Did you have a nice Christmas and New Year? Ours was very nice, though pretty low key! We spent actual Christmas here just the two of us, and we barely moved off the sofa... lots of Christmas films and telly were watched and lots of crochet was done! I didn't get dressed properly or actually go outside for 4 days, had baths in the middle of the day and generally slobbed about... after the manic rush of Christmas run up it was bliss and I enjoyed it very much. I  also caught up on much needed sleep, I think Christmas Eve I slept about 10 hours straight without waking up  once which is pretty unheard of usually, I must have needed it!

Then on the 28th I travelled up to see my parents who now live in Staffordshire. My brother Laurence and his girlfriend Rachel had come down from Newcastle and it was so lovely to see them. We normally only cross paths for this one day a year as we live so far away from each other so it was really special. My sister Harriet was at home too - I have to share a room with her whenever I go back to visit and I love our catch up chats late at night. I didn't really take many pictures, I never do, even though I always take my camera, but I got some very lovely gifts this year so I'll show you some of those instead...

Lots of red and white gorgeousness! The tins and mug were from Karl, and the spotty pie and baking dishes from our good friends Bryan, Sarah and Harry. I LOVE them all!! Our kitchen is quite basic and utilitarian in style so I'm trying my best to pretty it up!

Mum and dad gave me lots of lovely little bits - including this gingham heart chalkboard... so sweet, mum knows me too well, she always has such good taste in presents :)

They also treated me to this gorgeous red coat when we were out sale shopping in Birmingham...

Excuse the quite rubbish picture of me doing some headless modelling! Mirrors and flash = big bright flare right in the middle of the photo so you'll have to make do with a grainy shot! But isn't it nice? I really like it! I've been wanting a red coat for quite a while now, but since I hate shopping for clothes I rarely ever find anything I like.

And these beautiful silver heart spoons were from them too..... 

I just think they are so so pretty, I really do love them.

And my last present picture for today is this lovely aqua heart hanging candle holder from Harriet... she also knows me too well :) Hopefully we will be doing the garden up this year - I can't wait to be able to use it outside in the Summer.

Laurence and Rachel also bought me some very lovely gifts including wonderful smelling handcreams and some aqua spotty pjs which are perfect and so 'me'... but they are in the wash at the mo so can't show any pics right now. I was very lucky this year with so many lovely presents, and that people know me so well to choose gifts that I truly really do love.

Anyway, so maybe that's enough about Christmas now, since we are already well into the New Year. I'm not the hugest fan of actual New Year's Eve itself though - I have spent it at my parents for the last few years and it's always a fairly low-key family affair with the traditional board games of Cludeo and Boggle always coming out... This year was no exception though by about 10.30 we were pretty much boggled out! We did manage to stay up until midnight though and watch the fireworks on the telly and in the courtyard outside where one of the neighbours was putting on his own show! Beats some years when we have been asleep by about eleven! I haven't actually been 'out' on New Years for years now - when I was at Uni I would be staggering around the streets from pub to pub with my friends from back home which was fun at the time ;) but I prefer a quieter life now, haha!

As for New Year's resolutions, I do have some (unlike Harriet who has about 4 pages of them!) but I think I'll save them for my next post otherwise this will end up being a super jumbo one again! Talking of Harriet actually, I did manage to teach her to crochet whilst I was up. 

She's not the most patient of people but she got it in the end and made a really cute granny square. She wanted to make it into a cushion cover like the ones I was making but ran out of time before I left so she made it into a phone case instead by folding it over and sewing up two sides, then chaining a little loop to close it. Isn't it cute? I got this pic off her facebook page but I'm sure she won't mind me posting it :)

I decided to make two cushion covers for our sofa over the holiday, and managed to get the fronts of both crocheted up, but I need to buy some bigger pads and decide what to do for the backs. Here's a quick pic of the first, twenty five small squares all edged in white. 

I love how this one turned out, even though I got so frustrated sewing the squares together, I find it so difficult just to catch the back loops. Maybe it's cos my tension is quite tight? Or something... it nearly drove me up the wall though, was so glad it was only a cushion cover size and not another blanket!! (Though such a shame as wouldn't a blanket like this just be gorgeous??)

I also made a co-ordinating one just one big granny square which was so much faster to crochet, just round and round and round!

Despite my best efforts of turning my work as I went and joining the new yarn on different sides, the middle of the square still went kind of wonky! In fact this picture makes it look really wonky!!! It's not that bad in real life and I'm hoping when I block it it might sort itself out a bit.

They are pretty bright and to be honest won't really go with much in our living room (except of course the equally bright crochet blankets I've been making) but I find I don't really care very much if it all looks a bit mismatched, as long as I like it all! Hopefully I will finish them soon... I do have a horrible feeling that they might be cast aside for months until I get around to getting new pads but hopefully not!

Anyway that's about me done for today but will be back later in the week with a more work related post. My shops are all now open again and I am having a massive SALE in my Not on the High Street shop to sell off some of my older designs and every single thing is in the sale this time (only until the weekend though). Will  probably ramble on some more about it in my next post but there will be quite a few changes for my little business this year so I am making room for lots of lovely new stuff and to hopefully make things a bit easier on myself! Pop over if you have a minute, there are still a few good bargains to be had ;) Anyway hope you can enjoy some of the lovely sunshine around at the mo, take care, Jenny xxx


lemonade kitty said...

Hi Jenny, happy new year. Love all the red bits for your kitchen and the love heart spoons are cute too. Isn't it nice to just have some "me" time just relaxing and generally doing nothing but not feeling guilty about it.Your cushions will look lovely when they're finished, lucey x

greenrabbitdesigns said...

Hi Jenny, Happy 2012!
It sounds like you had a lovely Christmas and you did get lots of lovely gifts, I'm really taken with that beautiful aqua heart. :)
Lots of lovely crochet has been completed too, your cushions are very pretty!
I'm looking forward to seeing all your new ideas for your business this year!
Vivienne x

Unknown said...

Some fab presents you got there! The NOTHS link doesn't work for me, btw.

Unknown said...

Love the crochet cushion covers....on my list of things to do one day! Your Christmas sounds wonderful.... That is exactly how I would spend my Christmas if allowed!! xx

Sandies' Patch said...

Happy new year to you and yours too!

I like 'wonky', much prefer it to absolutely perfect lol!
Are you crocheting back covers or using fabric on your cushions?

You have some gorgeous presents at Christmas! My favourite is the turquoise hanging heart , must treat myself to one of these!(At least one).

Let's hope 2012 is a good year for everyone!

Sandie xx

Emma Thomsen said...

Three words, Fab-u-lous! Happy New Year! Emma x

magie said...

A Very Happy New Year to you! :) I spent Christmas the same as yours pretty much, just taking it easy and relaxing.
You sure received some lovely pressies. I love all the red and white kitchen goodies.
I love the crochet cushion cover front..such bright and pretty colours. I look forward to seeing the finished cushions :)
Have a great week!

Pipany said...

Lovely cheery post Jenny and I have pressie envy too! x

Andrea said...

Hi Jenny,
Lovely red and white gifts! They would look perfect in any kitchen.
Both the crochet covers are lovely it doesn't matter if one is wonky, adds character!
A lovely jolly post!
Love Andrea x

somewhere on the avenue said...

Happy New Year :0) Loving the deep reds and the aqua heart is quite stunning, glad you had a good time xx

Unknown said...

oooh Polka dots and hearts, my faves! Happy New Year!

Tabbyroo said...

Happy New Year, I am struggling to keep posting on my blog , but still enjoy reading everyone elses. Looks like you had some beautiful and well co-ordinated presents!Linda xx

my4lilgirls said...

Happy new year Jenny, love all your gorgeous gifts, am particularly in love with your new coat & those lovely future cushion covers, fab!!!!
Lol Karen x

my4lilgirls said...

Ps me girls loved their cute Jenny Arnott mirrors
Karen x

Helen Philipps said...

Hello Jenny! Happy 2012, I hope you have a wonderful year ahead! I loved seeing all your gorgeous red and white things, your kitchen will look so cosy. And I love your red coat too! It's great that you had a lovely relaxing Christmas and spent time with your family too. Your sister's crochet is lovely! (I am teaching my daughter to crochet but it's rather hard with two young children about!) I love your new cushion covers too...the cream background works really well!! Have a happy crafty week.
Helen x

Emma Thomsen said...

Thanks for dropping by my Blog, if you do make a 'Jenny' doll you must share it with us!

Maria - A Playful Stitch said...

You were lucky - what lovely presents! Loving the cushion covers too, and your sister's mobile phone case!
Maria x

fee @ chipper nelly said...

what a good idea to simply fold a granny square over!
looking forward to seeing your new business ideas...(off to visit your wares next)
Lovely to see you over at mine earlier - and YES to loving the hearts. Valentines blocks are my fav!
fee (♥!)
ps sisters are ace aren't they. I love Nelly to bits x

♥ Mary Janes TEAROOM said...

Hello Jenny...I hope you have a wonderful 2012!.....It sounds as though you had the perfect kind of Christmas relaxing with your family and recharging those batteries...
I completely understand how hard it can be to juggle everything...I love my blog and I'm going to try my best to give it more time because it is one of my favourite places...but sometimes the days just fly by, don't they?
Love all your pressies and your little heart spoons are so pretty..
You know that my crochet envy will start again at the site of your lovely cushion covers....I live in hope that one day soon I will learn!
Looking forward to visiting you all through the year lovely friend......
Susan x

Nelly said...


I had the same thoughts on not blogging for a while, ha ha, so silly. Laptop hopefully sorted at the weekend though.
Sounds like a lovely Christmas with great gifts, loving the red coat,
Nelly x

Anonymous said...

Happy New Year Jenny. LOVE the cushions :)

Jooles said...

I LOVE your new red coat!
and those little heart spoon asr so sweet, what thoughtful gifts you received.
can't wait to hear all about your new shop goodies :o)
love jooles x

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