Dear Annie,

In our local area, there is frequently some unofficial freecycling going on. Unwanted but useable items are left on front walls, with a note saying 'please take me', or something similar. We've picked up all sorts of gems in the past, from children's toys to a Victorian door. 

I found this little stool last summer. It's rather a plain Jane- certainly not the most glamorous piece of furniture but sweet and sturdy. I decided recently that it was time to give it a well-deserved makeover. Initially, I was thinking of a shabby chic style paint job, but after a little perusal of pinterest, I was reminded of the fabulous wood & wool stool. Suddenly, I had all the inspiration that I needed. Armed with a crochet hook and some leftover yarn, I set to work.

The yarn was mainly leftover from items of clothing and blankets that I've made for the boys, and I was pleased by how harmoniously the colours worked together. The best thing about it, though? The entire project cost me not a single penny.

Love from,


PS:We'd also like to say a big thank you to Molly at Mother's Always Right for the blog award. As always, it's much appreciated, and if we really do inspire you to take up knitting then we will be very happy indeed! x


100% Polyester

Dear Laura,

When I worked in Capitol Hill there was an awesome vintage clothes shop just next to the metro station I took home. Sometimes as a treat I would go in there and browse the beautiful old gowns and shoes and handbags. Last year I went there and much to my disappointment they were having a closing down sale. I snapped up a dress but I have so many regrets about not buying more. Now I knew the dress I bought would have to be altered, I just liked the print but the style really wasn't me. Part of me feels a little guilty though, this was really a very stylish dress, but just not my style and I have decided I would rather alter it and wear it than keep it in my cupboard. Oh and it was of course 4 sizes too big for me. 

I had the foresight to take a picture of this dress so I could wow you with a before and after picture but I then managed to lose my camera before taking the pictures off! It reminded me of those wonderful clothes in Abigail's Party. This dress however, had long billowy translucent sleeves which were gathered in at the wrist. Maybe similar to this at Denas Vintage Closet or Catwalk Creative Vintage.

So after much pushing and pulling and tucking and cutting and recutting and pinning and frustration, finally here is what I managed.

I have been practicing my model poses, as you can see, also you might notice that the back is quite tight, I will not eat (or possibly breath) when wearing this dress.

Lots of love


p.s. We have been very remiss in thanking both Flora and Purl and No Knitted Knickers for our blog awards. Thank you so much, we are both really enjoying your blogs too and sorry for the late thank you.


buried treasure

Dear Annie,

Yesterday, I met the lovely Hannah at a local jumble sale. I got there a little late, and only just contained my sobs as I saw the big bag of colourful crochet blankets that had already been snapped up (and sadly not by Hannah, either!). Nevertheless, there were a few pieces of buried treasure that were worth rummaging for, and a mosey around the charity shops later unearthed a few more.. 

:: a small 'cutter' quilt, which could one day become something like this

:: an old wool blanket that is destined for this, or a similar crafty fate

:: two fantastic old quilting books, one of which contains the pattern and templates for one of my personal favourites- the schoolhouse quilt

:: a selection of embroidery hoops, which I plan to use to display some of my fabric collection like this 

:: a groovy jug, painted with boats, which reminded me of this print, and which is crying out to be filled with Pimms and lemonade

All of it junk to someone, and all of it treasure to me!

Love from,



A Very Royal Wedding

Dear Laura,

Yesterday was a very special day. It didn't start out that way but when I got home there was a parcel on the doorstep. A parcel with my name on it.

Was it my birthday?  No. Was it christmas? No. Who was it from, I recognised the handwriting but it has been so long since I received hand written letters. It is all electronic now, we all have helvetica handwriting these days. Then I saw the name, G. Oh G what have you sent me over the oceans? What made you think to send me this gift, at a random time. No could it be...

Oh my, Oh my oh my oh my... Tears have been falling from my face since receiving this, quite extraordinary gift. G I love you dearly for sending me this, I am getting the bunting ready, along with my knitting needles.

lots of love



whip up

Dear Readers,

We are very, very excited to tell you that we have had our first ever tutorial published on whipup
Do pop on over and have a look!

Love from,

Annie and Laura 

P.s. A post about the making of this cushion can be found by clicking here...


my oh milo

Dear Annie,

I've finished the Milo for Baby R. This really is a contender for my favourite knitting pattern ever! It's on circular needles (which is my method of choice) easy enough for sleep-deprived knitting, but with just enough detail to keep my interest. I've made four so far, one in each size for my tiny man, each with a different yarn. You can see the others over on my Ravelry page 

This latest one is the twelve month size, made using teal Baby Alpaca DK. It's a scrumptious yarn- incredibly soft, and a beautiful colour.  I've made Milos with a few different cable designs, but the owl cable really is my favourite. It's so very sweet!

I would call this a tank top, although in your neck of the woods I think it's called a vest. Whatever you call it, it's a thoroughly useful extra layer for little ones.

I'm sure that this won't be my last Milo- the pattern goes up to six years, so there's scope for many more. In the meantime, however, I'm perusing patterns for the marvellous yarn that you included with my birthday goodies- thank you, sweetie! At the moment, I'm thinking of making a retro style tea cozy.

In the spirit -once again -of yarn along: my knitting and my reading (or rather my looking at pretty pictures!) The book is the surprisingly inspirational In Print by Cath Kidston, which is giving me ideas for using up my vintage fabric stash.

Love from,



A Sparkly Cockatoo

Dear Laura,

A few years ago I came to America for the first time ever. I had just started dating R. We met in the UK through a mutual friend and he had come to visit me, now it was my turn to go to the states. Confident about travelling I was nervous about this trip. America is odd, we are exposed to it so much that I didn't think there would be anything new to see or feel or well get excited about, other than the boy of course. I was wrong of course. I was also nervous because I didn't know R very well at this point and I didn't know much about his life here. When I arrived I noticed these two birds on his fridge. 

I loved them immediately and just seeing them in his apartment eased all my nerves. Clearly this boy at least has an appreciation for handmade even if he doesn't do it himself. It turned out his grandmother made these. This made them even better.

Today I noticed that our fridge was in need of more magnets and thought that I should try to make these birds. Spring is blooming at the moment so I couldn't help being influenced by all the beautiful pink and purple blossom and new bright green leaves. I searched in my sewing box to see what I could find.

Magnets, beads, thread, that seems to be what I need

Felt cut ready for sewing and stuffing

Finally time to add the sparkles. Now Mr Cockatoo here insisted on extra sparkle there was no talking him out of it so he was blinged up.

whereas Mrs Bird was more after a subtle look.

And here they are in their new home

Lots of love


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