Why I changed to Faber-Castell Polychromos

Happy Monday. I hope you’re having a great day today and the new year is treating you well. I wanted to let you know about my recent colouring purchase – I’m very excited!

I started colouring shortly after Luke was born and I’ve been working my way through the Secret Garden book. You can see my first attempt at colouring here. It’s been very relaxing to do when I can steal snippets of time whilst Luke’s napping.

When I started out I bought some Staedtler ergosoft pencils and I really like them but I don’t find them very easy to blend. They are still good pencils but I like to layer at least 3 colours and I find it quite hard to create a nice blend. I manage it sometimes but for me it’s quite an effort to work the colour onto the paper.

So I thought I’d do a bit of research and see what everyone thinks about alternative colouring pencil brands. There’s actually quite a few good ones to choose from but Faber-Castell Polychromos seemed to be a firm favourite amongst the colouring and the wider art community. Here they are in all their pencil glory! They are definitely very blendable which puts a nice big tick in that box. I went for the 36 pencil tin and I’ll probably add some single colours later on.

What do you colour with?

Faber Castell Polychromos Colouring Pencils

This is not a sponsored post and I purchased the colouring book and both sets of pencils myself.

Thank you Mr Fireman

Hello! I hope you’re all well and you’ve had a lovely Christmas. What are your plans for the New Year? We’ll be celebrating with a quiet evening at home whilst Luke sleeps. I’m quite looking forward to a cosy night at home just the two of us.

We all went out for a walk to the park yesterday. They’ve refurbished a play park near us with all things perfect for Luke’s age right now. He loves that he can climb up and go down the slide all by himself. Whilst we were there a fire engine drove into the street nearby. Luke loves fire engines and wanted to check it out straight away. It wasn’t there for an emergency thankfully so we wandered over to have a look. We stood there for a minute whilst Luke looked on amazed at a real life fire engine. Then the firemen saw he was watching and switched the lights on. The white and blue lights blinked on and off silently all over the fire engine and Luke thought it was just about the best thing ever! Thank you firemen, you made his day.

I managed to steal some time over the Christmas break to make the last of the half triangles I need for Luke’s quilt. I think I have enough to start sewing it up soon. It feels like I’ve been cutting up fabric forever. It’s a big sewing project for me. I’m getting there though and it should be a quicker job to sew all the squares up into the finish quilt. I’m excited to see how it turns out.

half triangles for lukes quilt

This colouring book belongs to…

Working on my colouring

I’ve always liked the adult colouring books by Johanna Basford. The illustrations are beautiful pieces of art, don’t you think?

I was looking for a new craft that I could pick up and put down easily when I have a spare minute. Colouring seemed like a good choice because you only need a few things to get going quickly. The colouring book and some pens or pencils.

I have a selection of Letraset Promarker pens already that I really like but I decided on pencils for a change. I didn’t really know which ones to go for but I liked the sound of the Staedtler ergosoft pencils so I’ve been giving them a try. They are made from a softer lead which makes it easier to blend colours together.

Staedtler ergosoft pencils

So after a few evenings colouring, this is my first finished piece.

My first finished colouring from the Secret Garden

By the way, I have serious job envy. How lovely would it be to be like Johanna and spend your days in your studio drawing and make a living from it too?!

This is not a sponsored post and I purchased the colouring book and pencils myself.

5 crochet gifts for newborn babies

Crochet fox. Image via engsidrun.spire.ee
Image via engsidrun.spire.ee

It really doesn’t seem like almost a year ago that our son arrived but it is. He’s going to turn one in a few weeks and I can’t quite believe it.

It’s been so lovely to watch him grow up this past year. You really can see them growing up before your eyes at this age can’t you?! People used to say that to me but I didn’t really appreciate how true it was until he came along. He’s not a little baby anymore and the down side to that is I no longer have an excuse to make little crochet baby toys.

But it’s OK. One of my friends has just given birth to her second little boy and another is due to have her second baby next month too, so I have an excuse to keep crocheting away.

Here are my favourites at the moment:

  1. Every baby need a little fox.
  2. Little rattles for little hands.
  3. Counting sheep.
  4. Tried and recommended rattle bunny.
  5. A second mention on the blog because it’s such a lovely pattern to make and give.

Hope you’re having a lovely weekend.

Top 5 pins I love this September

If you’re a regular reader you’ll be familiar with the series I started at the beginning of the year on my top 5 crochet pins from each month.

Well, I only made it to March and then our little boy came along. So I’ve been focusing my attention on him ever since. I’ve not really been pinning that much and unfortunately the series doesn’t work very well without those!

I’d like to get it the series back up and running now that I’ve got a bit more time again. I’ll still post monthly but what I’ve learnt so far is that I like to pin inspiration and projects on all sorts of crafty subjects. So instead of just focusing on Crochet pins, I’m going to post about whatever I happen to love pinning at the time. I hope that’s OK with you?!

Here goes…

What is shutter speed? I’ve picked up my dusty dSLR camera again now that I have a wriggling, giggling little boy to take pictures of! It’s been fun but he moves so fast I’ve had to brush up on my photography knowledge. Pins like these are so handy to reference when baby brain hits and I can’t remember which setting to choose.

Anything to made gardening easier sounds good to me! With limited time right now we are always looking for an opportunity to optimise tasks. Mowing our lawn is a relatively quick job as we don’t have a huge garden but edging it seems to take forever. I like this idea to use some decorative edging that can be mowed over with the lawnmower.

We decorated our bedroom and had fitted wardrobes built in when we moved into our house nearly 4 years ago. Since then the wall over the bed has looks quite bare. I’ve been meaning to put some pictures on it but haven’t found anything I liked. I just can’t find anything I want to look at for years and years. So instead we’ve added an Ikea RIBBA picture ledge to the wall and I’m going to put some photo frames on it. I like this layout so I think I’ll do something like this.

Artisan bread? Sounds fancy. Our bread maker hasn’t been used for a while. I can’t blame our little boy for this one, I’ve just been lazy. It’s so nice baking bread, even in the bread maker when most of the work is done for you! This pin has inspired me to bake a fresh loaf. It’s not a bread maker recipe but it’s supposed to be much quicker than the traditional method.

Did you have these perler beads as a kid? I did. We got them when we visited the US, before they had made it to the UK. I remember making lots of coasters! This is a fun and different way to use them.