Yorkshire Crafts

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Yorkshire Crafts
Yorkshire, United Kingdom
Designer/maker of hand knitted, hand crafted, handmade items, avid collector and reluctant seller of vintage china, mum, home-educator and book lover. Blogging about our crafts and makes, our home education journey, and reviews of books we use.
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Copyright

We really hope you enjoy reading about our projects and products, but just because they're featured here in public, doesn't mean anyone else can copy them or reproduce them for commercial gain. Except where otherwise indicated, all items are ©YorkshireCrafts.

Vintage Watering Can

Vintage Watering Can

Spring Flowers

Spring Flowers
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Daffodil

Daffodil
Sunday, 24 June 2012

Handmade ironing board cover

Today was the day I finally reached my wit's end with my horribly manky old ironing board cover.  Rather than buy a new mass-produced one, I decided to make my own.

Having looked at a few tutorials which told me how to carefully dismantle the old cover blah, blah, blah, I found one that suggested a much simpler option.  Simply strip off the old cover, turn the ironing board upside down on top of the fabric you want to use, and draw round it.

If you decide to use this method, make sure you leave a 1.5" gap between the edge of the board and your drawing line, all the way round.  Pin and sew binding all the way around your fabric, insert the string/cord or whatever you're using to pull the cover tight, fold the binding over and stitch into place.

Put the new cover onto your ironing board and pull the cord tight so you have a nice snug fit.

Ta-dah!

Handmade ironing board cover

Not perfect perhaps, but a darned sight better than my old one!!
Thursday, 21 June 2012

Worth a very long wait!

Today I'm a very happy bunny indeed, because I finally got my hands on a replacement copy of a book I was given by my Aunt when I was about 17 which some thieving git then helped themselves to.

I'd practically given up ever finding a copy of this book again, as despite trying book shops in the past and more recently Amazon at regular intervals over the years, there's never been one available from them and the Amazon marketplace sellers only ever had acceptable copies at best.  Ebay produced the same negative results.  So I was delighted last week to find a seller that not only had a copy at a reasonable price, it was listed as appearing to be "unread", which it has proven to be.  Happy me!!

The book in question is Around the World in Eighty Sweaters, by Sue Bradley and it contains a lovely collection of ... yep, you guessed it, 80 or so garments inspired by textiles and styles from various parts of the world which have been adapted and incorporated into knitting patterns.


Although the styles themselves are somewhat dated now - we're talking 80s here when everything was either very baggy or ultra-wide at the shoulders - the actual pattern charts are timeless.  And while I doubt I'll ever knit any of the exact patterns contained in the book, there's a very strong possibility I'll end up adapting the charts to work with more contemporary styles.

I do remember making this sweater though, before the book was lost, and my mum still has a photo of me on display, aged around 18, wearing it.  I was so proud of the achievement as I think it was my first attempt at colour work and strand-weaving.  If I remember right, the results were pretty good!!


I did make mine without the white "bamboo" parts though as I thought they detracted somewhat from the lovely colourful butterflies.

The chart for the back and front of the sweater
A very happy day indeed :D
Wednesday, 20 June 2012

Kids Crafts - Animal Alphabet

I started making Junior an 'animal alphabet' a while back, but as he showed no interest in his letters whatsoever, it was all numbers, numbers, and maths, he's suddenly asking "what does that say?" and "what letter's that?" all the time.

Time to finish the alphabet!

I found the templates here, a great site with all sorts of free printables and craft ideas for kids and good for some home education resources too.  Lovely, with colourful animals or birds on one side, and with the upper and lower case letters, plus the name of the animal on the other.

The finished results are great not only for teaching the alphabet, but also for role play as well.  They're also a great way to use up those coffee-stirring sticks they hand out at the likes of McDonalds!!  Older children can join in with this craft helping with the colouring in and cutting out/sticking of the animal shapes :)

Great fun!

Tuesday, 19 June 2012

Book Review: World's Scariest Dinosaurs

Continuing on from our review of Dinosaurs: Tyrannosaurus Rex (published by Raintree), comes a review of a dinosaur book for slightly more advanced readers, World's Scariest Dinosaurs, by Rupert Matthews, from the Extreme Dinosaurs series published by Raintree.

Intended to interest reluctant readers - with Young Sir being a prime example - or to encourage further study of a topic of interest.  This book is actually way beneath Young Sir's real reading capabilities, but he thoroughly enjoyed reading it, whereas he sometimes struggles with the 'chapter books' he's handed at school.

World's Scariest Dinosaurs still has the same nice large font and relatively simple words of the beginner books, but has moved on to a small paragraph per page - perhaps two or three sentences - rather than just one sentence, so is ideal for improving readers and to encourage progression.  The book also contains the same vivid, imagination-inspiring illustrations found in its baby cousin, Dinosaurs: Tyrannosaurus Rex.

I do think though, that having read this book, Young Sir is no longer under the impression that any dinosaur was cute and cuddly!!

Highly recommended read, particularly for boys who aren't keen on reading but love dinosaurs.

World's Scariest Dinosaurs


The paperback version won't be published until February 2013, but the hardback is available via Amazon, using this link.  World's Scariest Dinosaurs (Extreme Dinosaurs)


Monday, 18 June 2012

Book Review: Dinosaurs - Tyrannosaurus Rex

"With life-like illustrations and simple text, the books in this series introduce children to different dinosaurs and their unique characteristics."

One of Junior's favourite things at the moment is dinosaurs, and in particular, T-rex.  I think the "dinosaur phase" must be something all little boys (and some little girls too!) go through, as I remember Young Sir having a similar fascination for them, and unusually for YS, it was an interest which lasted quite a while!

While visiting a lovely charity shop in Pocklington a little while back - Barnados, I think - which sells only children's clothes and toys and nothing else, Junior spotted a toy T-rex which he proudly bought with his pocket money, for the princely sum of £0.49.  It's gone virtually everywhere, including to bed, with him ever since, and I've had to sneak it out of the room without him seeing me just so I could photograph it!!


Naturally it followed that on a recent visit to a local library, he was instantly drawn to a book about Tyrannosaurus Rex, with a delighted comment of "There's my dinosaur, Mummy."  I couldn't not take it out for him could I, and since then, it's been renewed a couple of times as he doesn't want it to go back!

Tyrannosaurus Rex contains some wonderful illustrations, and nice large text specifically aimed at early readers in both font size and repetition.  It obviously works, because Junior can now "read" the word 'dinosaurs' which has also been stuck onto the bathroom tiles with his wet-n-stick letters.

The book conveys a good amount of information while keeping everything nice and simple for the beginner, and there's a nice little quiz at the end.

Tyrannosaurus Rex


I tried visiting the publisher's website given in the book, but it took me somewhere completely different to the URL I'd typed in.  I did eventually find the right website, but only after quite a bit of hunting around.

The author is Daniel Nunn, and there's a whole series of dinosaur books, which are also available in Spanish.  I've found the library does have the rest of the series, but for reasons best known to themselves, they're not letting anyone reserve the books :(
Sunday, 17 June 2012

Handmade Father's Day

I couldn't let Father's Day go by without showing off our handmade card and wrapping paper!

Handmade Father's Day card

Hand-stamped handmade wrapping paper

Young Sir had great fun getting all inky helping with the stamping, but unfortunately Junior decided it was more fun to rub his hands on the ink-pad than to stamp, and then promptly had a huge tantrum when he saw the mess he'd made of his hands!
Saturday, 16 June 2012

Book Review Oscar and the Moth

"Oscar is a curious kitten and one evening, as he watches the sunset, he is full of questions about light and dark.  Luckily Moth is nearby and can help with the answers."


Among the birthday presents Junior received this year were two lovely books about a curious kitten called Oscar.

The "Oscar" series is published by Walker Books, who publish awesome books for children and whose offerings include Maisy the Mouse, and "Oscar" is written by Geoff Waring.

Aimed at children in the KS1 age-range, the "Oscar" series is a clever way of introducing scientific concepts to kids through the medium of a story, so they're learning without realising they're learning.  As home educators, we like this way of doing things. :)


Oscar and the Moth introduces the idea of light and dark, and touches on the earth's rotation explaining very simply why we feel warm during the day but cold at night.  A great story all by itself, I love the way the book handles some of the common questions little ones ask about day and night, and the conclusion pages which encourage question-and-answer sessions discussing what Oscar (and the reader) has found out thanks to his helpful friend Moth.

Oscar and the Moth

We'll definitely be getting some more "Oscar" books.