Saturday, September 20, 2014

old scrumbles - revamped

A couple of weeks ago I discovered 2 scrumbles that had been hiding in a box of yarns.  They were originally made as workshop samples, years ago.

I joined them up and revamped them a bit, and figured they were now worthy of a blog post ;-)

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

a new, non-weekly scrumble ;-)

i thought i would share a few photos of the piece that i made for the latest challenge by the International Freeform Fiberarts Guild.

the theme for the challenge this year was 'one colour', and as you can see, my chosen colour was green.  i would have loved to have had time to create an entire garment, but for the moment my piece remains just a scrumble, but you never know, it might grow into something else one day.  a photo of the entire piece, plus a couple of detail shots, are below.

54 freeformers from around the world took up the challenge this time, and as in previous years, a book containing all of the challenge pieces has been put together, and it has just gone on sale.  every year we donate the profit from the sale of the book to a different charity.

Cyra Lewis has done a fantastic job of putting the collection together, and you can see a preview of the book at

if you are looking for inspiration for your freeform creations take a look through all the preview pages there, but if you like what you see you might also think about buying yourself a hard copy, to help with the fund raising.



Friday, June 13, 2014

#52...the last one?

#52...the last one?

Here, at last, is scrumble #52...a rather seaweed-ish one, even if it is rather blue.

I know that I didn't manage to make them very 'weekly', but had I done so, this would have brought us up to the end of the year.

So now a you want me to intermittently keep them going? or have you had enough ;-)

Sunday, May 11, 2014

finally...Scrumble # 51

Well, I guess you may have noticed that I didn't actually get the last 2 'far-from-weekly' scrumbles  done nearly as quickly as I had hoped.

I see that I promised them nearly a year ago.  Ooops! ...sorry about that...where does the time get to?

I did finally finish both a couple of weeks ago, and took photos while I was travelling down south, but am only now getting around to posting the first of the pictures.

Not much of a blogger, am I?

Anyway, here is the first, and a bit about how it was done:

All crochet.  Mostly wool, or wool blend yarns; some smooth, some bouclĂ©.  
Vaguely circular in construction, but changing the height of the stitches in each 'round' created lots of peaks and troughs around the edges.
Most of the stitches were worked into the back loops only of the stitches in the previous rounds, so that the front loops could be used later for a bit of surface embellishment. A few ruffles were added at the centre; some raised crab stitch (reverse single crochet) helped to add definition around the outside.

Many thanks to everyone who is still hanging in there and following this rather quiet blog.

Don't want to spoil you, though, so I won't add the other photo for a day or two ;-)

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Week # 50

At last, here is another new scrumble for the blog.

A bit of random lacy knitting with lots of roundish and oval crochet shapes. 

This time I just used some leftover bits and pieces that I unearthed the other day.  They had all been put away together in a bag, but they certainly hadn't been from a single project originally.  Mostly there was just a metre or two of any particular yarn.  Nearly all appeared to be either wool or a wool blend.

The colours were all rather bright, and I decided that I would just go with the combination of scraps that was already in the bag, using them all up and trying to arrange them in a reasonably pleasing way without leaving any out or resorting to adding any extras.

To give a bit of extra dimension to the piece, crab stitch was added to the edges of many of the curved crochet sections.  Sometimes this was done before the smaller pieces were joined on to the scrumble, but sometimes after.

My original intention when I started this blog had been to do a year's worth of scrumbles, adding a new one every week!  Obviously I didn't quite keep things on track that way...but since I am now finally up to #50, I plan to get the next 2 done fairly soon.  That will at least give me all 52 'weeks', even if it has taken me quite a few years to finally get there     ;-)

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Scrumble # 49

First off, a very happy and creative 2013 to everyone reading here.  I have to say I am rather proud of myself for getting around to posting a scrumble so early in the year.  Hope you like it.

As you can probably see, this one is all crochet.  Lots of different yellow-toned yarns in cottons, wools, silks, rayons and a weird synthetic blend. This last yarn would have been just awful if used in an entire garment.  It had absolutely no stretch, and went from being a really thin thread to having thick, oddly fuzzy and almost matted sections.  It was just great for freeforming!

I started the piece by wrapping a sunny yellow rayon yarn around the tip of my finger a couple of times to create a ring-like shape, then slipped it off my finger and worked over this 'padding' to create the initial motif.  Once this circle had been filled with a round of short stitches (UK:dc/US:sc) I continued on, creating more loops, filling them as I went.  The first few were made with the same yarn, but then I changed yarns periodically, using up other yellow bits and pieces from my stash. 

For each new loop I made 5 or 6 chain, then, after missing a stitch or three, I added a couple of slip stitches to attach the end of the chain firmly back onto the work.  Then I turned the piece to the other side, and filled the gap with as many short stitches as it took to completely cover the chain. 

There are also a couple of small crochet domes, and a few bullion clusters.  Sometimes I worked into the tops of previously made stitches, but sometimes behind other stitches, to create little ridges on the surface. 

When the piece measured about 6 inches across, I was sort of feeling that the scrumble was finished, and I went looking for the camera...and that was when I spotted a packet of printed wooden beads and the small ball of the funny synthetic yarn mentioned above.  Both said 'add me, add me', so I did.  The beads were strung onto the yarn, and I randomly pulled them up and crocheted them in place as I added a small and then a larger triangular shape on opposite sides of the piece, which elongated the original roundish scrumble into the more oval shape that you see above.

Thursday, December 27, 2012


Figured that I'd better get another scrumble posted to the blog pretty soon, seeing that it is almost the end of the year already.  Where does the time get to?

I suddenly realized that the last one was posted here back in March, so my resolution to post photos reasonably often throughout the year didn't quite work!  Perhaps I will manage to update on a more regular basis in never know ;-)

Apparently I am still in red-and-orange-mode, by the look of it; this one, like the previous scrumble, is very much in those tones.

This piece was actually the trial scrumble that I recently made when I was trying to decide on which yarns to use in a new freeform vest I am currently creating.  Most of the threads that I have used here are going into the actual garment...but not the one that was used for the slightly lighter, soft and bubbly section just under the bullion stitches towards the top right.  That yarn turned out to be a bit too soft,  and it felt as though it might be likely to snag, and also the colour looked lighter and had a much more pinkish tone when viewed in daylight (although at night it definitely seemed to go well enough with all of the other oranges)...but I wasn't intending to keep the vest for evening wear only, so unfortunately that particular yarn will just have to bide its time in the stash for a little longer.

Most of the yarns used are 100% cotton, and some are handpainted, but I have also included a little bit of angora in a fabulously bright mix of oranges with hot pink undertones, plus an interesting synthetic, tape-like one that I bought in San Francisco about 10 years ago (that's the dark bit on the left) and another bright orange rayon mixture that I found in the marketplace at the CGOA conference in Reno a few months ago.

This scrumble is nearly all crochet, but I am adding a bit more knitting to most of the others that I am creating for the vest.  Doing that, along with keeping things fairly 'open' by using lots of lacy crochet stitches, will help keep the weight down a bit, and make it more suitable for our summertime in our sub-tropical climate.   It will be one I know I will wear a lot, but it is also being done to help illustrate another book, which I hope to get done in the not too distant future.

Once again my new year's resolution will be to update the blog a little bit more often.  I hope that everyone reading here has managed to fit some creative fibrearts into their lives this year, and fingers crossed that we will all have time for even more in 2013.

and as a PS, and because I guess it's OK for me to do bit of self-advertising here...since I have almost run out of reprints of 2 of my books, and because I have decided that I won't be printing hard copies of either of them again, then I'm going to add that we have just made 'Freeform: serendipitous design techniques for knitting & crochet' and 'never too many Handbags' available as e-books...both can now be purchased in PDF form through   ;-)