Tuesday 9 April 2024

March Round Up

 Well it would seem I am rubbish at keeping a regular schedule for my blog.  Of course, life gets in the way...grandkids, travelling to Nova Scotia and then this stupid rotator cuff issue.  Anyway, I thought it might be fun to do a monthly round up of what I did knit, cross stitch and quilt in March.


I finally managed to finish Clue 3 of the Geogradient Shawl by Stephen West.  It was last October's mystery knit along, and as alway....I fell behind.  In fact, I think I kept putting off working on it, because Clue 4 seemed so daunting and way too many stitches.  However, I have a plan for that!!

Geogradient Shawl 

The Starlight Blanket by Attic 24, while not knitting but crochet...got some love during the rotation of my Gideon Method.  It's already getting so big and I am only on row 52 of 99!! It's amazing to see the way the colours interact with one another and make the blanket look so different from when I started it.

Starlight VStripe Blanket

The Musselburgh Hat by Ysolda Teague was my favourite thing to knit this month. I started it on February 12th and finished it March 13th.  Using my own hand dyed yarn, "School Uniform" I made it for one of my son's.  Having tried it on both of them to see what the fit was like.  Shawn won it.

Musselburgh Hat

March 21st while in Nova Scotia on vacation, I cast on the Helen Stewart mystery shawl....called Twenty Four Birds.  First time I have ever knit a circular shawl!! I dyed up three 100% Merino Fingering weight skeins in Mocha Brown, Yellow and Pale Purple to go along with a gorgeous bright red from stash.  I sprinkled red throughout the yellow and purple yarn to hopefully blend in with the red yarn.  Fingers crossed it works.  Each clue is released once a week....I am now working on Clue 3. 

Twenty four birds Shawl

Also on the drive up to Nova Scotia I managed to finish the third Emotional Support Chicken by Annette Corsino  which is for one of the grandchildren.  Easter gifts!!  These were so much fun to knit and a pretty quick knit too!

Emotional Support Chickens


I am currently working on two cross stitch patterns, although I may just have ordered something new!!

The first one is for my son Shawn, who recently lost one of his lovely dogs....and it's a Dimensions Kit called Peeking Puppies.  It's a very addictive stitch, considering it is mostly blacks and greys!!

Peeking Puppies

The other, to add some colour is for Tristan's little sister....her birth announcement, which is a Bothy's Threads kit and called Woodland Welcome.  It's so enjoyable watching these cute little woodland animals pop out of the fabric.

Woodland Welcome


I am still working on my Cotton Cuts Puzzle Mystery...actually two of them.  One is the Carnival PMQ and the other is Tree Of Life PMQ.  I am hoping to do a big catch up LIVE video next week.  You will have to tune in to see photos of those!!

I have also been working on another mystery quilt...from 2022.  This is the Around The Kitchen Table by Lynda Smith.   While I am still working on the last block, I am planning to put these together as a QAYG.

Around the Kitchen Table Quilt

Hope you enjoyed this quick round up of what I working on in March 2024.  Drop me a note to tell me what your working on, or join my Facebook Group and spill the beans there!!

Until next time......

Tuesday 5 March 2024

Where's All The News?

 It's been a strange two weeks in the land of Mailerlite for me.  What's Mailerlite?  Its the email service I use to send out my newsletters.  Granted, I only started sending newsletters out in January of this year, to add a little more to my community.  Have they been successful....not sure, are people reading them...yes, some have been opened and some have even clicked on links.  

Anyway the issue is now with Google and Yahoo....I do not profess to know all the details (it's over my head) but it's something that was introduced Feb 1, 2024. I had to do something in Mailerlite to allow emails to go to those services.  Can I do it, NO!  Have I tried tons, yes!  I have watched videos, read reports....and helpful notes, but NO, I still can't do it.  So Mailerlite won't send my newsletter emails.  That's okay.  I am fine with it now.  Who needs another email newsletter in their inbox anyway.  Plus its one less task for me to do each week, when I could be knitting or quilting ha ha.

Toby and I enjoying some knitting time

So my plan is to set up a new Page here on my blog with ALL THE NEWS. Bookmark my blog and each week check out that page to see what is occurring in Tobyknits land this week.  When are Lives scheduled, New podcast ups and so on.  I have no idea how you can subscribe (if you still can) to my blog...but again, who needs another email in their inbox.  Now that's out the way......how's your week been?

I have been having tons of fun knitting on my Musselburgh hat by Ysolda Teague, it's my car knitting as I have no socks on the go at the moment (apart from my new design I am working on...sneak peak above). That will be rectified shortly though!!   The hat is currently at 13" in length from the tip...and I placed a progress keeper at the 10" mark to make it easier for measuring.  I am hoping to go another 5" before I start the decrease.  It will definitely not be the last, in fact I have eyed up some yarn in my stash for the next one!!

Musselburgh Hat - Yarn is School Uniform by Tobyknits

I also managed to finish my Jungle Welcome cross stitch kit by Kate Garrett  (Bothy Threads kit) this past week and took it to Michaels to have it framed.  Well, until they told me how much it would cost!!!!   So I purchased a frame from them, had them cut me a nice "Geen" mat and some acid free foam core board and frame it myself. 

Pinning my cross stitch

I stretched the fabric and pinned it into the foam core board, starting at one side. Then directly opposite and so on.  It takes a little time, but it is so much neater and will last for years. I am thrilled with how it turned out.

Jungle Welcome by Kate Garrett

This week I plan to finish the "Ambience" quilt for Megan....and work some more on Woodland Welcome cross stitch.  Don't forget this Friday is the Sit and Stitch with me LIVE on my Youtube channel.

Anyway, need another cuppa, so until the next time...

Tuesday 20 February 2024

Family Day and Family Knits

Yesterday was Family Day here in Ontario, Canada.  A day to celebrate the importance of home and family.  So I didn't write my blog or newsletter as I normally do on a Monday morning, but spent the day with my son and his family. Oh and Hello Bob too.l

First off we went to the Snowflake Festival here in the village...played with ice balloons, had roasted marshmallows, took a wagon ride, played at the library before coming back to ours to have more fun in our back garden.  On the snow hill. As you can see, someone stole my scarf again!!  I need to hurry up and finish his.  He calls it a neck warmer ha ha.

As I played with the kids, and chatted with my son...it made me think of my knitting.  As it does...as it does!  I suddenly realised that this year, so far...I appear to be doing more Family Gift knitting, than knitting for myself.  Which is making me feel so happy, so content. Each stitch, knit with love.

So far I have made one Emotional Support Chicken for my East Coast Grandson, and one almost finished for Tristan.  Yes, when he was here yesterday he needed to see the progress.

I am knitting Tristan the Do Not Disturb Shawl by Louise Tillbrook, which he has promptly relabel the Crocodile Neck Warmer. Think the "Geen" yarn has something to do with it.

I am trying to finish Bob's sweater...The Pemberton Pullover by Bobbi Intveld. Something I started ages ago and have added it to my Gideon 6 list...and I have to say I am really enjoying knitting it again.  I am sure I will finish it for him this year.

I have cast on the Musselburgh Hat by Ysolda Teague for one of the boys....depending on who's head it fits!!

And I am designing a new pair of socks as part of the "Mommy and Me" series which will go to one of my daughter in laws, and one of the grandkids.  Again...not sure which one yet, depends on who they fits ha ha.  

Of course, there is still a bunch of blankets on needles, and a shawl....maybe one of them will be for me.

What about you....do you do much gift knitting?  I would love to know what your favourite gift knit is too!!

Until next time......

Tuesday 6 February 2024

Carnival - A Puzzle Mystery Quilt

 Some of you will know that at the beginning of the ........pandemic......I taught myself how to quilt.  I already knew how to sew dresses and the like, heck I made a wedding dress for a friend and all my own maternity clothes.  Plus I dabbled in bag making....you will all remember The Netherwood Bag, named after my family.

The Netherwood Bag

However, I never really understood the craze for cutting perfectly good bits of fabric up, to sew it all back together again.  Wierd.  Or so I thought!!

At the beginning of my quilting journey, I was not that great at cutting the fabric.  Didn't have all the correct rulers etc.  Or the knowledge of how to get the best use out of a fat quarter, let's say.  What's a fat quarter??  Yeah took me a while to learn all the different cuts like, fat quarters, charm pack, mini charm pack, jelly roll and so on.  All complicated stuff for a newbie.

                                               Beautiful Blooms Fabric by Sherri & Chelsi

Now you also know how much I love mysteries.  Well fast forward to the day I found Cotton Cuts Puzzle Mystery Quilts.  Wait what!!!  Yes, a quilt that's a mystery.  Best part....it arrives monthly precut! Let me say that again....PRECUT!  Yep, you just open the package, grab the handy dandy colourway booklet, the printed instructions and away you go.

It really is a treat to get these little packages each month (or you can opt for getting them all at once in a cute box) and spend a lovely hour putting them together. Now, when you do put them together, you will see from above photos that each quilt piece does not resemble a normal quilt block....at all!!  That's because they are like puzzle pieces.  So you pop the sewn puzzle pieces back into the labeled bag and wait till month 10.  Yep, trust me.

Month 10, and your package arrives with border fabric, and finishing instructions.  You then get to put all the puzzle pieces together to form a beautifully designed quilt. THAT my friends, is my favourite part. I just love putting them together, digging through the bags for Clue 5A to sew to Clue 2B and so on.  So much fun. 

The first Puzzle Mystery Quilt I did was back in the fall of 2021 and was called Olympia.  The colourway I chose was named Dorothy.  My mums name.  I decided to make it and gift it to my Dad in memory of my Mum.  

I am working on my 4th puzzle mystery quilt right now, it's called Carnival and the colour way I am doing as you saw above is Ferris Wheel.  The 5th one....Tree of Life, IS ON THE WAY....I am so excited.  You may still have time to sign up.  Go to Cotton Cuts Get Started to select your colourway, and at checkout mention my name to get a free gift with your first order.  Yep, I am an ambassador for them. Great company, fab customer service. I highly recommend you give their puzzle mysteries a try!!  I am keeping my Tree of Life colour way a secret...for now.

Also, quite often I do video tutorials on how to put the clues together, is this something that your interested in?  Would you prefer a LIVE tutorial where we can sew and gab together??  Let me know below and I will set something up on my Tobyknits Youtube Channel.

Until next time....

Tuesday 23 January 2024

The Mighty Mitred Square Knit Along

Dear Readers, 

It's pretty cold here in Eastern Ontario, Canada at the moment...so cold all I want to do is stay in and knit. Of course, that's not a bad thing right?? 

I am getting on really well with all my WIP's using the Gideon Method...and look forward every evening to pulling out and carrying on with each project in its rotation. Of course, one or two new projects have crept in...WHAT!!!! Yes, don't blame me, I was influenced ha ha. 

I have been enjoying watching Kay Litton's Vlogmas videos The Crazy Sock Lady and although she knits tons of socks (the woman is a knitting machine) she also makes gorgeous mitred square blankets with her advent and leftover sock yarn. So remembering I had some unfinished Mitred Square blankets...I dug them out.  

I was amazed to see none of them were finished, go figure, and none of them were actual blankets!!  So I decided I needed to rectify that....and naturally start a new Mitred Square Blanket....and then I thought, maybe you might like to join me in a Mitred Square Knit Along????  After all, you are bound to have leftover fingering weight yarn, just sitting there, right?

So here is the deal.  

*    The KAL will be year long, ending December 31, 2024.
*    Either start a new blanket or use an unfinished existing mitred square blanket.
*    Post photos of your newly added square in the Tobyknits and Friends Facebook Group.
*    Monthly chance to WIN a Tobyknits hand dyed 10g Mini to add to your blanket.
*    Live monthly Knit Alongs on Tobyknits Youtube Channel

For the next three days, check out my Tobyknits Youtube Channel for videos on the Mighty Mitred Square KAL info, How to Make a Mitred Square, and How to Join a Mitred Square.

Then the first LIVE knit along will be on the Tobyknits Youtube Channel on Friday January 26th at 11:00am EST.....

and another one in the Tobyknits and Friends Facebook Group at 2:00pm EST.  Both will be recorded, so if you can't make the LIVE....watch on replay.   I


I am so excited for this and hope you can join me in the Mighty Mitred Square adventure.  Till next time dear readers.....

Tuesday 9 January 2024

New Year, New Start, Old WIPS

Happy New Year!!  I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas and/or Holiday Season...and hopefully got lots of new yarnie goodness.  Or maybe some quilting fabrics, books or cross stitch??   

Believe it or not, I didn't get anything craft related.  Well unless you count my gorgeous new Daphne's Diary Planner.  Have you seen it yet?  

Oh my, I am obsessed with it.  The illustrations are beautiful and so much room for writing, To Do lists, Ideas, and Notes every single week.  I should be able to stay on track with everything this year now!

Do you use a planner, diary or journal?  Maybe you use a digital tracker?  I am interested, let me know below in the comments.

Another thing I am using this year to help get my WIP's down (Works In Progress) as I was horrified to see how many Knitting and Crochet WIP's I actually had (did you see my Vlogmas Video where I went through them all?) is a little Planner I made up.  

I am using the Gideon Method, where I jot down ALL my WIP's, then select just 6 of them to work through a rotation.  12 hours each project.  If it's finished....replace it with another WIP, if its not finished, down to the bottom of the list after the 12 hours of work and pick the next.  So far, this system is really working well for me.  I actually have a finished object!!!

This little beauty was finished two nights ago.  Granted, I only had to do her dress, hat, hair and face....but the little doll body had sat in the basement unfinished for over twelve months...so I was happy to move her up to my craft room, finished!!

Now I am back working on the My Favourite Blanket from Kay Jones, of The Bakery Bears. It is fun to fall in love again with an old project.  How do you handle your WIP's?

If you interested in getting a free copy of my Tobyknits Wip Planner PDF, just sign up for my Weekly Newsletter and it's all yours!!  

Have a great week....I am off for a cuppa and work on that squishy blanket....it's snowing like mad here!