Thursday, 26 May 2011

crafty swaps

A few months back, when it was still cold and grey outside, I spied this sweeeeeeet little crocheted flower garland. Swoon! It had me dreaming of Spring when the weather was still quite frightful. Sadly, I don't know how to crochet (other than a simple chain stitch). Fortunately for me, my friend Kate does. And very well! So I proposed a swap. Here's what I got:
That's a heart in the background.
The orange flower makes me think of my home state's flower - the orange blossom.

But my absolute favourite is the rainbow! Kate had remembered that I had once said I heart all things rainbow-ish, and she searched out a pattern just so she could include one in this garland. I am totally head over heels in love with this garland, and it has been hanging across our back door ever since it arrived.

I was a bit stumped as to what to make Kate in return. She had asked for something 'housey'. I know how important food and mealtimes are in her family, and I considered making a table runner and napkins.  Union Jack bunting? Luckily, she had a request. A peg bag. I had to laugh, because a peg bag has been on my own list for about two years, but for one reason or another I have never made a start on one. To be honest, I've been a little daunted for some unknown reason. But now I had to just get on with it. 

I trawled through Flickr. I Googled. I searched Cath Kidston's site. Finally, I found this tutorial. Just kitsch enough to be cool. And for modern homemakers like Kate and me, just ironic enough to inject joy into the task of pegging out of wet washing. (I know that pegging out washing is enjoying something of a revival in America. Here in England, where tumble driers are less common, smaller and inefficient compared to their Yankee cousins, hanging out the laundry is, for most homemakers, a necessary task. And it's often a thankless one, thanks to the fickle nature of the weather here. I can't count the times I've hung the washing in bright sunshine, only to look out the window half an hour later to see rain re-dampening everything!)

So here's what I made:
I altered the pattern slightly in that I lined the bag with muslin. I think she's quite cute. Needless to say, I still haven't made myself one.

Swaps rule.

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