Sunday 25 November 2012

Patchwork Granny Square!

I brought my laptop to work so I could write a quick post between shows. Its been a little while again since I had a catch up with you all. So yes that's right... I'm sat at my dressing room table with my monkey make-up on, writing about my latest project :-)
Those of you that join me on the "According To Matt Facebook Page" will know that I recently ordered myself some more Stylecraft DK from Masons. I couldn't resist!! After finishing and struggling to give away my Solid Granny Square blanket I had made for a friend, I knew that I had to order more wool and make myself a similar blanket.
I picked most of the colours from the 'Stylecraft colour pack' and added a few extra colours to my order. My bundle of yarn was delivered to the theatre last Monday so I've been playing around with that in my free time!

I ordered myself 31 colours in total and made use of a discount code I had received from my last purchase. I was so excited to take the parcel home and have a look at 31 different shades of scrumptiousness. I loved the variety of colours I had! There were a couple of surprises though, some colours were not exactly the same as advertised on the website. 
I found a couple of choices a little too bright, almost florescent looking!! These "flourescent" colours have been locked away in my yarn box for another project.
Here are the colours I finally settled on for my blanket: 

Here are the colour name and codes in the order they appear above for those of you that wandered :-)

1123-Claret, 1246-Lipstick, 1083-Pomegranite, 1132-Shrimp, 1114-Sunshine, 1081-Safron, 1263-Citron, 1065-Meadow, 1116-Green, 1062-Teal, 1422-Aspen, 1068-Turquoise, 1302-Denim, 1003-Aster, 1019-Cloud Blue, 1034-Sherbet, 1082-Bluebell, 1188-Lavender, 1067-Grape, 1432-Wisteria, 1390-Clematis, 1080-Pale Rose, 1241- Fondant, 1023-Raspberry, 1061-Plum, 1084-Magenta, 1435-Bright Pink.

I'm really happy with how the colours look grouped together! A little more yellow than I would normally go for, but I'm going to stick with it and see how the blanket progresses.
I've been making squares at work, when I'm not on stage. I've already made quite a few!!


I carry a ball of yarn, hook and scissors around with me and try making a quick when I can.
I make sure not to complete a total square or sew in the ends. I do this so I can join the last round properly to another square once I am at home. It probably sounds like a bit of a long winded way, but this way means I can make squares without carrying much yarn. It also means I'm still be able to use the 'join as you go' method, rather than having to sew tons of squares.

I've only been making this for just under a week and have already got half of my squares made! It really is growing fast!!

 I've also started with the joining of the actual blanket, that is also coming along nicely!!!

Already loving it!!! I can't wait to  have it finished. To have it to snuggle up in as winter takes over and Hamburg gets colder!!
As always I'll keep you posted with my progress! Hope you are all having a lovely Sunday?!

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Thursday 15 November 2012

Book Worm

Hello gorgeous people!! How are you?
I'm just splendid, although I (like always) can't quite believe how fast time is whizzing by. Before I realised the weekend had come and gone and we're back around to mid-week. Golly Gosh!!! :-)

Last week I posted about my Birthday and the lovely day I had. I recieved some fabulous gifts from my amazing family and friends. Craft material, chocolate and...books. Since then, I've been on a book reading frenzy and It seems not a spare minute has passed by without me having my nose stuck into a good book.

I thought I'd share with you my new books and why I'm so excited to be reading them :-)

Similar to my crochet projects, I struggle to only have one book on the go. I guess I have a short attention span or something? My way around getting bored with one book is to have a second one I can turn to.
That's why I have two books lying on my bedside table. The first being "My awesome (awful) popularity plan" by Seth Rudetsky. I was delighted when I saw that my Mum had bought this for me, I am a big fan of Seth. I've read his other books and they're never short of laugh out loud moments.  This book is actually a "teen novel" and is making for a very quick read. Its hilarious and full of lots of camp comedy, the reason I'm such a fan of Seth.
I first came across Seth Rudetsky while watching some of his Youtube videos. He interviews Broadway Musical performers and de-constructs their performances, It's a lot of fun! Tons of Broadway references with a little bitchiness and sparkle, It gets me every time :-) Have a look at one of my favourite videos of Seth and you'll see why I'm such a fan of him and his similar style of writing.

The second book that I'm stuck into at the moment is "the Casual Vacancy" by J K Rowling.
To say I was a fan of the Harry Potter books would be an understatement!! I read those books sooooo many times and just had to buy J K Rowling's new book to see what it was like. I was prepared that it was a "grown ups' book and was not going to be anything like the oh so lovely Harry Potter series. It's true they are not comparable, although I am still enjoying this book very much. It's just a little tricky to shake off the fact that J  K Rowling is writing other things now....makes me sad......I miss Harry!! :-(

Having already read books by Paulo Coelho I was thrilled to receive Aleph. I have heard lots of great things about it. I haven't started it yet!  (Lets finish one of the other two of first!) But am very much looking forward to jumping into it!!

Now those of you that are on facebook with me, would know that I've been giving knitting a whirl. It's a struggle to say the least! I've been trying to learn continental knitting as I've been told that it will be easier for me as a crocheter. Continental knitting is going well. Purling is a DISASTER!!! I just can not do it!! I've had tantrums, I've thrown my work across the room out of pure frustration and now, I'm turning to this lovely book for help and guidance!
I'm hoping it will be my savour with it's big bold pictures and simple wording. I'll keep you posted on how my lack of knitting talent (hopefully) progresses.

The book I'm most EXCITED about getting stuck into is "Is it just me?" by Miranda Hart!! I love her!! I have watched her television series "Miranda" over and over again and it still cracks me up every time! I love the faces she pulls and how clumsy she is, such fun!!
Sometimes I daydream about which celebrity I would most like to meet. Who would I most like to have a gossip with and share a bottle of wine with? It's got to be Dawn French or Miranda! What can I say......I loves my funny ladies!! This is going to be a cackle out loud read for sure!!! Just look at her cover picture! :-)
Check out this clip from her television series! It tickles me!!

Finally the last book I recieved for my Birthday was the biography of Cuban ballet dancer, Carlos Acosta.

I've read this book many times, especially when I was at dance school.  Carlos Acosta is my idol and was a big motivation for me throughout my dance training. He is the most phenomenal dancer and has performed with all of the best dance ballet companies throughout the world.
I loved this picture of Carlos and had it on my dorm room wall throughout dance school.

When on holiday during my second year at dance school I tried to recreate the picture. Sure my picture looks nothing like his, but it goes to show how much he inspired me at that time.

When I was in my last year at dance school we had our end of year show at The Royal Opera House in Covent Garden. After rehearsals a group of us headed to the canteen for a bite to eat, much to my delight Carlos Acosta was sat across the room having a drink. Like a giddy school girls, my friends and I went up to him and asked him to sign a pictures of him the we had bough from the Opera House gift shop. He was a very kind man and seemed interested in our performance and schooling, I treasure that picture. Hmmmmm....Fond memories.

As you can see I've got a lot of reading to do to keep me busy until the new year. What are you all reading? Here's a trickier question....What is your favourite book EVER?

P.S I've had to give into my granny square addiction and once again just ordered myself a load of Stylecraft yarn! OOOOOPS!! Naughty me!!! :-)
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Friday 9 November 2012

Very Lucky!!!

Hello There!!! How have you all been?
I've been great,! A tad spoiled to say the least! It was my Birthday on Sunday and I had a day full of fun and friends.
I'll be honest with you, I don't really look forward to my Birthdays, I don't enjoy the attention (sounds wierd I know!).  I like to keep things relatively small and just spend it with my close family and friends.
This year I really wasn't planning anything. I'd taken the day off from work and wanted a day of "ME". A day by myself doing the things I wanted. That's what I was looking forward to. 

So Sunday morning I woke up with my free day ahead of me. I opened up the cards and the gifts my family had sent.

As always Mum had sent me a supply of chocolate!! What would I do without her!?

Much to my delight, I also received some books.

I then sat at my kitchen table not really knowing what to do?!
Something had changed. I was no longer excited by the prospect of being by myself on my Birthday. I was alone in my apartment and it dawned on me that I was away from my family and I knew my friends would soon be heading to work. I hate to say it, but...I guess I was feeling a little lonely. Something I really don't feel often. I'm usually perfectly content doing my own thing and when I have nothing to do I pull out some thing "crafty".  Hmmmmmmm?

Thank God I got the call from work saying too many people had called in sick. They needed me to go in! I guess, a blessing in disguise.
I ended up  going to the theatre and having a lovely day with my colleagues and friends.
We played two shows and then a group of about 10 of us went out to a lovely Mexican restaurant for a Birthday drink.

We had so much fun! Talking about everything and sharing funny stories! I really felt (not only a little drunk, but also) very lucky to have such great friends.
Not only did they treat me to my yummy meal and one too many cocktails, they also bought me a lovely present!
A bag full of crafting supplies!!!!!!

Now you know when people are really your friends, when the "get" you. These guys totally "get" me. I could not think of a more suitable and perfect present! It was really super sweet of them!
I received an assortment of lovely yarn!!

Also a lovely crafting treasure chest filled to the brim with crafting treasure!!

Glitter, felt and glass beads........

Googly eyes and decorative keys....

Pipe-cleaners, feathers and ladybugs.....

 Butterflies, baskets, pots and little hearts....

It really was a super gift and I'm definitely going to be making some good use of these supplies!!!
It turned out to be a lovely day!! I am very very lucky!! Thankyou!!!
Now to get stuck into some of those books :-)
Matt xxx
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