Tag Archives: gift


Committed to supplying 100 cotton beanies for the Cape Gift Market in Sea Point this year.


One down. 99 to go.


mitten smitten

I’ve been busy with fingerless handwarmers lately. Doreen had given me another pair of legwarmers, which have now been repurposed for man paws:
because Rob says he also gets cold in winter…

Following on the success of Nicola’s cowl last week, I made another one with matching fingerless mitts** and added a bit of furry yarn top and bottom. I posted this on the Jam Tarts facebook page and had a buyer within 15 minutes. Thanks, Mr Zuckerberg.

alex cream

And how’s this weather!? This pic was taken two days ago – Alex was in a bikini lying on the grass in the sun when I asked her to model up. It’s supposed to be WINTER here, hello!!!

Today a few of us gathered at Mama Roma in Newlands to celebrate Gwen’s birthday (although any excuse for a grub-fest will do). She’s still doing the early-morning school run, so I made her some mitts** in shocking pink to keep her hands warm on the steering wheel. Everyone thought they were cute (but not as cute as Gwen herself!)


** My “pattern” for these mitts: with dk yarn and a 5mm hook, ch 31. Work 18 rows in htr. Fold in half and stitch the seam, leaving a short gap for your thumb. Optional – work 1 or 2 rows of dc top and/or bottom in a contrasting yarn.

Back soon x

Monday mish-mash

This post is going to be a bit of a mish-mash, I can feel it.

On Saturday Anne and I went to the Reformed Church in Gardens, where the Christmas market organisers set up their approval day. The xmas market runs for 3 weeks from end November at the Sea Point town hall, and this is their 11th very successful year. So please keep your fingers crossed that they liked our things and think they will be good sellers.

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It’s a relatively informal set-up, we just used half a table and our hat stand, and then you fill out your forms and leave them on the table. You pack up and leave when six judges have reviewed your range and then you wait until the end of June to hear whether you’ve been successful or not. There were lots of cushions from other people – but none that were owls – and no other hand-crocheted items (that we saw, at least). The organisers were extremely efficient and friendly, and had laid on tea and coffee and scones that you could just help yourself to.  That always helps, right?!

Jam Tarts had a message from Simone, our left-handed trainee crocheter, to say she’d found a use for the crocheted bunting that was our encouragement-gift to her after the first lesson:


My guess is that this is in her baby daughter’s bedroom (the teddy bear and pink wall decor is a bit of a give-away), and I think it looks stunning.

It’s always good when something you’ve made for someone else comes back for repairs – it means the recipient really used it! I knitted this hw bottle cover for my mother some years ago, but the bottle itself has leaked and she couldn’t figure out how to get the cover off. I think I did a bit of fancy hand-stitching round the neck so will just rip it out, wash the cover, and find a new hottie for it to live on. The heart was crocheted, I like it more now than I did when I gave it to the mater.


Then I had a mail from a lady who had ordered 3 pairs of slippers from me, to say that the recipients loved them. It’s so nice when people think to do that. She sent this pic:


Nearly five years ago I was lucky enough to meet Rob. The day after our first date, I was so taken with him (!) that I started knitting him a scarf.  He looked like the kind of man who would wear a handmade scarf (just the kind of man I like!) – and he also looked like a man who had never had a scarf handmade for him in his life.

As you can see, the old one has become a bit shabby-looking so I felt he deserved a new one. He has, after all, been obedient and useful over the years. For the most part.

rob scarf

Old scarf, garter stitch, variegated wool

I’m kidding. Rob is the best man ever: he encourages me in everything I do, helps where he can, looks after all my IT needs, cooks, picks me up when I don’t have a car, picks me up when I do have a car,  won’t let me drive alone at night, takes me out for sushi, looks after my daughter and her friends when they are partying in Camps Bay, has a great (and occasionally black enough) sense of humour (like mine), is an amazingly patient and caring father to his own sons, treats his parents like gold, underestimates his own talents and abilities, and is very generous and loving and considerate in general. I’ve been extremely lucky. And no, sorry, he doesn’t have a brother. He’s OOAK.

JillandRob2  Rob and Jill

Both these pics were taken at other people’s weddings, the first one was on the way to Megan (Anne’s daughter) and Jeremy’s wedding two years ago, and the second one is at Katie (my stepsister) and Peter’s wedding in Johannesburg last year.

So, yes, Rob deserves a new scarf. We went to Roger at Orion to choose the yarn and, after much debate (because I’m allergic to yellow!), he picked the dark navy in the Pure Gold DK, and he’s asked for three narrow rows of slate grey on either end.  I’m knitting it double for a nice chunky look, but he wanted loose and soft as well, so I’m using 7mm needles.

rob new scarf


It’s nice to knit for someone you love, isn’t it?

Back soon x

knit one purl one

Got my knitting needles out this weekend, for the first time in ages. I made this bolero last year and it was almost the very first thing that got sold when Jam Tarts had its first Open Day.



It was an ex-colleague who bought it for his 10-yr old niece, and he reported that she loved it so much that she practically slept in it. He has been asked to give her another one this year, in blues, so that’s what I’m busy with. I couldn’t find a variegated yarn with the right combination of blues that I wanted, so I’m mixing two strands together. It’s turning out a lovely rich denim colour, which I think any normal pre-teen will approve of.

It’s a great pattern, actually, designed by Dawn Leeseman, and it was a free download from I-can’t-remember-which-site, but I could probably track it if anyone else is interested. For once, I’m going to tackle this task as professionally as possible and actually Make Notes about how much yarn I use, any improvisations I make to the original pattern, and how long it takes to knit. Yeah right.

In other news, Alex made us a lovely lunch on Saturday. Sometimes, when she does something that clearly I regard as hilarious/stupid/original, she glares menacingly at me and says, ‘You’d better not put this in your blog.’ And other times, she’ll say sweetly, ‘Don’t you want to blog about this, cher maman?’. And so we have the Goldberg summer special: a variety of baby letttuce leaves, fresh orange segments, a sprinkling of quinoa and rice, slivers of smoked salmon, coriander, and a perfect dressing.

alex salad

Rob was going to join us for lunch but he couldn’t because he had to wait for his new bed to be delivered, but Nathan was here. Nathan has completed a year at the prestigious Silwood School of cooking, so when he says something is good, then you’d better believe it.

To be continued…

my first jar entry

At last – my first “happy event” of 2013 to write down and add to my jar: the arrival of my give-away goodies from Patricia at Daniella Joe’s blog, in Florida, USA. Thank you so much, Patricia, it was SO nice to finally find the parcel notification in the mail box, and to open the presents. (It’s been a long long time since I received anything wrapped in christmas paper!)

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Last winter Karen made herself fingerless gloves with that soft fuzzy Boa yarn and they were gorgeous, so I think I’ll use my gift for a pair of those. Karen already copied the pattern for me, now all I have to do is locate it….

The little mirror is just my taste – I have lots of Indian-y things in my flat, and I think with a magnet stuck on the back, this will look perfect on my fridge.

And as for arts and crafts keeping me sane – well, Patricia, I don’t think I ever really made the sanity grade even before I started painting and knitting – but it’s a nice thought!

I see from wikipedia that you live next to Dade County, which is where the book I’m reading at the moment is set (Stormy Weather, Carl Hiaasen). He makes me laugh out loud.

I hope your generosity gets returned to you times two. I’ll post a pic of the gloves when they’re ready, although it won’t be cold enough to wear them here for a while yet. But when it is, brrrrr, I’ll probably keep them on when I go to bed.

To be continued…