Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Christmas challenge

For the past two weeks Karen's photographic challenge was Christmas and in particular Bokeh.

Here are my offerings, my focus was our Christmas tree.
A tripod was used for each of these photos.
Manual  - Focal Length 20mm   f8  2s  ISO200
Manual - Focal Length 32mm    f4.5    1.3s    ISO200
This was my best effort with bokeh. It is a little dark.
Manual - Focal Length 18mm  f3.5  2s  ISO200
   this one is my very creative shot. I turned the lens while shooting and focused on the school-made Christmas ornament that craftily got placed on the tree. I'm not sentimental when it comes to tree decorations, however when this face was found in the decoration box and placed on the tree I didn't have the heart to remove it....

.......and it so happens that this next photo is my favourite.
Manual - Focal Length 55.4mm  f4.5  1/5    ISO400
Christmas here has been fantastic,we have exchanged presents, seen most of the family.....still some more days with family planned.......eaten lots and drunk even more. This morning i've slopped away to post these photos in case I don't get another chance.

I'm looking forward now to entering 2012 so all that's left for me to say is Happy New Year to you all xx

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Winter Warmers

 Last week I had the girls for lunch and we got talking about Christmas pressies. I happened to mention the mug warmers that I see appearing everywhere and joked that I should have made them all one for Christmas..........they all laughed...... they think I'm mad......with all my messing around with paper and such! So I showed them a photo of the mug warmers in the Mollie Makes Magazine. 

Now they all awwwwwed!!  

I can crochet but I haven't crocheted anything since I made this bag which I finished in February.  That night I looked through my wool collection - the collection you can see in the bag in the photo.....not a massive decision to make....pink or Green? The pink looked a little gaudy so I opted for Green. I had a look at the mollie makes pattern and then didn't follow it at all.......maybe that's the reason a lot of my things don't quite turn out right :)  After measuring my mug, with a Christmas film on the telly, I got to work.
  The first two, the one on the left I used a treble stitch and the one on the right a double crochet.

  A little plain...... I thought it might be nice to add some dimension..........oh and the gaudy pink!!
 So bobble stitch all the way around and a little cream trim.

Bobble stitch took more time than the plainer ones so the next one had bobbles....... top, middle or and bottom (wasn't that a game show - what was it called? anyone remember? oh that will be nagging at me all evening now!)....... with cream stripes.
 Even less bobbles on the next one, a strip around the middle!

 A photo of the button to fasten them around your mug
The next evening I was looking at them all together and decided that I really liked the all over bobble so I made another in Green.

At the next lunch I'll present them all with there winter mug warmer! lol!!  and there may be one or two extra pressies for family members too........any excuse to make some more!

Pattern
For all you crocheters I measured a chain of 35 around my mug.
Row 1. Make 35 chain, ss together. 
Row 2. dc all the way around the cirlce.
Row 3. turn work around and work back around the circle in desired stitch - do not join at end, leave 2 stitches and turn.
Row 4. work to desired height following row 3.

To make button fastener, when get to desired height, do not fasten off - 15 chain (length of chain will depend on how big your button is)  ss to top edge, turn and dc back along chain....fasten off.

Thank you
This may well be my last post before Christmas - so if it is I'd like to thank you all now for stopping by over the year and to the kind words you leave me....I enjoy them all.

Wishing you all a fantastic Christmas xxx

Thursday, December 15, 2011

I got my eyes on you...

....is what Stan would say if you caught him looking at you. 

Who knows where he got it from...... 

....but he kept us all amused this summer with his saying and action.
caught in action
Today I've done a couple of pages in my Christmas journal working around the photos I've taken so far. You see last week I sent off for some photos to be printed and I must have clicked the wrong box *doh* .......the photos arrived a few days ago and have parts missing and heads chopped off......I must have been having a *Der* moment!!

So now I need to get them re-printed and I think I'll try somewhere else..........is it me or are these photo places trying to save money by printing on thinner photo paper? The photos I've just received are *wafer thin*. 

How are all your Christmas plans coming together?...all my list writing has paid off, I now have everything ticked off. Just the food shopping list is left!!

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Self Portrait

It doesn't seem that long ago that I had to take a dreaded self portrait photo for my weekly photo challenge. 

Still I find taking a photo of myself cheesey.......whilst trying to concentrate on taking a photo, balancing the camera and not showing 10 chins.....they are not the most flattering photos!

But hey ho a challenge is a challenge so it had to be done. I'd just walked in the door from the school Christmas concert and grabbed the camera quick before I could change my mind!

For ages I've liked the self portrait's taken in a mirror so this is what I tried.

All photos are taken in Manual and I had to up the ISO, which has given the photos more of a grainier look than I would have liked. No flash was used.
Focal Length 79.6mm   f5.6   1/10   ISO1600
 Photo 1. from this challenge i've noticed that all mirrors in my house seem to face a door. In case you wonder why I still got my coat and gloves on.....i was freezing!! This mirror gave the best light advantage.
Focal Length 18mm  f3.5  1/25  ISO1600
Photo 2. A photo holding the camera rather than looking through it - this is not as easy as it looks.... I found!
Focal Length 44.1mm  f4  1/25 ISO1600
Then later on in the evening we were getting ready for a Christmas night out with friends when I thought I'd give it another go. You can see the difference in the colour of the photo - daylight vs artificial light!

If you would like to see more - pop across to Karens to find out who joined in!

It's not often I find myself sitting at my laptop on a Sunday Morning.....we had to cancel Rugby this morning as I couldn't get my handbrake off my car....apparently the handbrake cable has broken....so once I've posted we will have a crafty morning here instead. I'll let you know how we get on.

Thursday, December 08, 2011

Christmas Journal

I've made a start! 
The front page is done and I've sent the first weeks photos for printing.  
Gosh I feel so much better now!
 After last years journal where I used a 8x6 photo I've gone for a mixture this year. There will be some full size photos pages mixed with 4x6.
 Today I should have written about the weather - it is awful here - so so windy. Hoping that where ever you are you are safe and warm.

Tuesday, December 06, 2011

Lists galore

We are now in December and I have done nothing but write lists. 
  • a to do list, 
  • a left to buy list, 
  • a what I've brought list, and
  • a what's happening this week list
Usually I write lists because I keep forgetting to do/buy something, then there are occasions when I have that overwhelming....lots to do......feeling.... and I excessively write lists and rewrite them.

Between my list writing I have managed to hop around and see all the gorgeous Christmas journal entries - I've been taking photos and making notes but really need to start my book *big sigh*

Needless to say the only crafting going on here is the doodling on my lists!!

I wanted to share something so here are two cards, crafty but not at all Christmassy, that I've recently made using leftovers from  Sarah's Kit.
 My friend's son passed his driving test

 and my nephew is 15 next week - I must get this in the post!
Have a lovely week and if you are crafting....enjoy.
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