Thursday, 8 November 2018

Behind the Scenes......



Hellooooooooo.....How are you?



I'm just popping in, because I wanted to tell you the story of a blanket. I was going to do my usual yearly round up post in January, but I felt that this deserved a post of its own. I felt like it needed to be written down and remembered.


This year my hands have not stopped with a hook and yarn. It's been euphoric and draining all at once. I'll explain more about my crafty year in my round up post in January, but this blanket, well, I have thoroughly enjoyed its journey.

Here is the story of how it came about........




I had an idea to make a granny squares blanket using pastels. I had been spending time on a project that was draining my life force, and I was dreaming of a simple little granny squares blanket that would restore my 'happy' box. 

The kind of pastels I wanted were sludgy and faded pastels. 

That was all I knew.

Then I watched a film. The Light Between Oceans. Whilst I enjoyed the film, what struck me most was the scenery in which it was filmed......and the costumes. The film revolves around the life of two main characters who live on a lighthouse on a remote island. The time is just after the First World War.

The scenery was beautiful; windswept and rugged.

The costumes; natural fabrics, wool, lace and utilitarian.
 
The colours, oh the colours, they really spoke to me. Just lots of neutrals, greys of the sky, blue of the ocean and grey blues in their costumes.

After I had seen the film, I suddenly thought how nice the idea of my pastel blanket would be if it reflected the ruggedness of the land with the hues of the windswept skies and seas in the film.

So....a new blanket was born.

I had a specific idea on what I wanted. Similar tones, and a blanket with an outdoors utilitarian feel. I chose most of my yarns to be pure wool or Alpaca mixes. I think I had only two colours which had any percentage of acrylic, albeit a small percentage. Many were tweed yarns as I wanted to replicate this connection with nature. I did not want soft or fluffy or cosy. It's funny, because usually the soft warm feel is very important to me in a blanket. This was the total opposite!

Now.....in my usual haphazard, non thinky way, I just made the squares and made enough to try and work out what length and width I would like it to be. I needed 360 squares.

They were an utter joy to make.

After working on a project that was huge and all connected, it felt like total freedom to just make the odd square as and when I could.

Turns out I became absolutely besotted with the blanket. I couldn't crochet the squares quick enough. My brain would start itching about five in the morning, so I was up with a cup of tea and a hook. Yarn and a hook seemed to go everywhere with me to get the odd one in. I made the granny square quite a compact one, as I wanted it to feel thick and tightly bound.......more hard wearing for the outdoors. I wanted them to be quite openly seamed together to create a more vintage feel. For the border I wanted something simple, plain, and utilitarian.

So......do you want to see it in all its glory? Get ready for an epic amount of pics. It was a nice day, what can I say?

meet........



Isle Of Skye












































































































It's everything I wanted....and more. I'm totally in love with it. It's HUGE. As usual it's way bigger than I had in my head! Of course it would be, it wouldn't be me if it wasn't big. 

360 squares. I made a basic granny square, but I wanted it quite compact so the blanket would be tight and robust. I just omitted the chain one from in-between each cluster, and did 6 trebles (uk) on the corners without any chains. I used a 3.5mm hook using dk yarn. It turned out just how I wanted it to turn out. It sort of links it to the era of the film in my mind (which is somewhat fitting too with Rembrance Sunday this weekend).

It's SOOOOOOOOO heavy. Oh my word it is heavy. Ridiculously so. The squares are compact and tightly crocheted, and using mainly pure wool yarn, crikey.......it's hard on the back to carry!

Also, I'm not gonna lie.......it has a faint whiff of sheep and wet dog. Sounds a tad gross I know, but actually, I like it. It sort of adds to the whole entity of what I wanted to achieve. It's a different one for me. I rarely just use one hue of colours. I loved working on it though. I loved how it was plain. I think my brain, at the time, needed plain. Of course, it looks totally out of place nestled in amongst my other blankets. However, this one will be amazing in the coming Winter. It's soooooooo warm. The Bear's are fighting over whose bed it will be going on. I'd like to think mine, but I am turning into the Princess and the Pea with the number of blankets thrown on my bed.

We shall see.

All I know is that I love it.

I truly LOVE it.



So there you are. One of my 2018 creations. I shall be back in the New Year with a round up post. I might even have my act together and have some photos of all the projects I have been working on. Seriously, I have been so creatively stupid this year, you wouldn't believe!!!!!

Have a super few months. I'll see you in the New Year with a round up post of all my 2018 makes and goings on.

cheerio


XXX


P.S   I forgot how long it takes to write text and upload the gazillion photos I took of this blanket. I have loved it though. I have missed it a lot this year. I have thoughts I will share in January.

P.P.S  After I published this, I went and lay under said blanket with a huge cup of tea and a book. It was HEAVEN. This thing is going to be utterly toasty in the Winter months. BRING IT ON!

68 comments:

  1. Absolutely gorgeous! I think you've inspired me to pick up my crochet needle again. Did you use a basic square pattern??

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    1. Hi Tammy,

      I used a basic granny, but I missed out the chain one in between the treble clusters, and I crocheted 6 trebles (uk) at each corner without any chain spaces. I wanted the granny squares to be tight and compact and it worked out well this way. I hope this helps! Have a super day x

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  2. Hello! Lovely to 'see' you again. The Isle of Skye blanket is beautiful. Thank you for sharing it xx

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    1. Hello back! I just felt I needed to record this blanket whilst it was all fresh in my mind. It was such a joy to make and I love recording the memories involved in the making process! xxx

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  3. Oh I love the colors! And I love heavy blankets & quilts. They are the most comforting.

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    1. Thank you! This is such a mighty weight.....but it feels amazing on the bed.....really old school which is what I wanted to achieve x

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  4. What a lovely surprise to see a post from you and thank you for sharing your sumptuous blanket. It's unlikely that I would have chosen "sludge" colours but you have changed my mind - I LOVE that colour combination! I know what you mean about the weight - I made a king size aran weight granny square blanket in wool and oh my it's heavy. So cosy though. Enjoy your blanket and have a lovely Christmas x

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    1. It was such a weird thing because these colours, although ones that I love, I would have never put together without any others to break them up. It's such a far removed blanket from my usual, but it's one of my favourites. I achieved what I set out in my head and have a super warm blanket that, hopefully, will be around for many many years! x

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  5. I was just reminiscing about blogs I miss, and here you are! What a lovely surprise! Love, love , love the blanket, beautiful colours, and it looks sooo cosy!I loved that film too, so emotional. I shall look forward to your yearly roundup. Hope you have a wonderful Christmas xx

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    1. Awe thank you lovely. I just loved the film. I've watched it several times now. The blanket has been put to good use already! Have an amazing Christmas! xxx

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  6. Oh my goodness, it’s beautiful! Love the story and the thinking that went into too. I really recognise that not knowing exactly but thinking it should be a bit this and a bit that. I also think, although it’s different and more neutral it’s still got lots of you about it! If that makes sense? ❤️ I’ll look forward to your round up post although I do think maybe the big blanket of ends probably deserves a post of it’s own too πŸ˜‰πŸ˜‰. Maybe I’ll suggest that when you’ve sewn the last end in, you’ll be as high as a kite from the relief and accomplishment, I’m sure you’ll agree to anything at that point!! πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚

    S xxx

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    1. Ha ha! Oh my word, that blanket will DEFINITELY need a post of it's own!!!!!! I have the border to do, but i've run out of a colour of yarn I wanted to use, and typical me, I didn't make a note of what it was! Man I SUCK! I'm glad I persevered with it, but it was not all that fun to make. Having said that, I'm snuggling under it now and it's super warm. Even Big Bear said he thought it was lovely! Wowzers! xxxxxx

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  7. Hello dear. Fabulous "behind the scenes" story. I often get inspired by shows I'm watching... Outlander, Poldark... I just love that era and the beautiful clothes and colors. Shawls wrapped across the chest and tied in a know in the back... I tried that at home. It is really nice and cozy to wear a shawl like that, but I think it requires you wearing a dress... It just doesn't do with jeans. Stoles worn over shoulders. And the colors of nature, red hair, freckles, white lace underwear sticking out under tweed skirts... I so get you had to make this blanket and I think you've captured it bloody perfect! I so so so adore this color theme. It is right up my alley... Thanks for sharing it Vanessa. If I don;t see you around blog land or on the continent of Instagram I know where to find you... Snuggled up under this creation, obsessively hooking away on next creation and with a warm cuppa within reach. Have a lovely evening. And thanks for popping in over at my place, nice surprise. :)
    Xxxxxxxxx
    Annette

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    1. Oooooooh yes......I have pinned Outlander shawls on Ravelry that I'd love to have a go at. DEFINITELY a must make. Trouble is, like you said, you really need the rest of the outfit for it to work as well. Maybe I think I need to start going along to those kind of re-enactment groups!

      The blanket is sooooo heavy , but you know, it's really nice weight to have on you. It's almost like it's hugging you on a winter's night. Perfect for the cold weather snap at the moment! xxx

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  8. Gosh it's a delight to hear your voice here in Blogland, I do so miss you! Your blanket is sublime, made all the more lovely by the way you describe the inspiration behind it. A friend of mine made an aran weight granny square blanket using Alpaca/wool yarn and like you say it's so heavy and so comfortingly snug. Happy that you sound so happy Ness, I'm looking forward to seeing more of your makes and inspirations. Big hugs from the Attic xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

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    1. Awe thanks lovely Lucy. You know, I have actually started to REALLY miss this space of mine. I have found myself thinking on blog posts in my head, or suddenly just felt like I needed to put out a really rambly post on this and that. You never know.......! Much love xxxxx

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  9. That is BEAUTIFUL! I love the colours and the pretty shell pattern of the squares (adds to the seashore feel). It's a triumph! When I think of your blog, the diamond pattern blanket always comes to mind. I don't think I've ever seen a blanket so beautiful (until this one! Joint faves!) xx

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    1. Awe thank you for your kind words! This blanket is up there with the diamond one. That one was a joy to make too! xxxx

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  10. oh my! its absolutely beautiful!!!! ;) xxxx I love the story behind it. must check out the film. I love fair isle and reminds me of that. The sea washed blues and sand stone whites. I bet it feel very snuggly on these damp, cold days. Its lovely to see your blog pop-up in my feed~ Your photographs give me warmth and visual beauty...hope you come back again soon x x x x {{{{ hugs }}}} x x x x

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    1. Oh you must see the film Kazzy. You would absolutely LOVE it, I know it! If I was to think of a person who the film would 'fit', that person would be you! Big Love xxxxxxxxx

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  11. This blanket looks to be very beautiful. I have truly enjoyed reading your page. Thank you for sharing your thoughts & your blanket. Do you have a pattern for this beauty? Thank you Xx AnnieB

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    1. Thank you for your kind words Annie. I don't have a set pattern for the blanket. I just used a basic granny 4 round granny square but omitted the chain one's throughout. This made the granny square compact. I just made as many squares as I felt I needed for the size of blanket I wanted and then I crocheted them together in rows at the end. So, in terms of ability, it was a very simple blanket and design. The aim was no fuss and being so simple in pattern achieved it. x

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  12. So lovely to see a post from you... A perfectly wintertime blanket - beautiful colours. Happy November!

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    1. Thank you! Gosh it REALLY is coming in handy now the temperature has dropped sharply!!!!!! xxx

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  13. Absolutely stunning!
    A very happy Christmas to you too ������❤

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    1. Thank you....and a Merry Christmas to you also x

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  14. It is so nice to see your blog pop up on my feedly link again. No wonder you had do a special post for your blanket. I love it. The colours are perfect. I can understand why there will be fierce competition to use it. Maybe a roster will be required.

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    1. Ha ha I LOVE the idea of the rosta! Currently it is on my bed, but I keep walking in my room and finding a kid snuggled under it working on their laptops or reading. I turf them out then find another one has taken their place! It's nice to see it being used though! xxx

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  15. Well hello!
    What a wonderful surprise, not least because I have just finished reading The light between oceans. I can honestly say your blanket captures the essence of the film, completely.
    I absolutely LOVE the colours. They are my colours. Personally, this is my favourite of all your blankets.
    Not that I am wishing away time but very much looking forward to your year's round up.
    In the meanwhile and if it's not too earlier... Merry Christmas!!

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    1. Hello back! Oh wasn't the story just lovely?! I haven't read the book but really want to read it. I want to know if it captures the magic of the setting in the text as well as in the film. It was such a change for me to use a palette of similar muted shades. I just really felt like I needed it. My blanket pile is definitely eclectic! ha ha! Merry Christmas also xxxxxxx

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  16. How incredibly lovely that blanket looks!! I love the colours. Looking forward to your January update - I miss seeing your regular postings.

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    1. Awe thank you for your kind words. I will hopefully be back in the new year with an update. My hands have not stopped this year! xxx

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  17. Just lovely... and how satisfying to use something of your own making!

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  18. I watched that film last night!

    Just love your blanket, it is beautiful. What a lot of work. Just adore the colours too.

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    1. I so enjoyed the film. It took a while to make but it was such a joy. I LOVED EVERY moment....even sewing in the ends! xxx

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  19. LOVE IT AS WELL!!! I am always wistfully hoping you have magically posted a blog, so I check once in a while. Today was that once in a while moment, and low and behold the grey skies have turned bright and sunny!! You really should consider coming back and posting more than just at the top of a new year. I follow on Pinterest as well. Thank you for sharing your beautiful design. The colours are romantic, yet neutral. You can never go wrong with a granny square!! Come back soon...your forever wistfully hoping fan from Canada

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    1. Awe thank you for your kind words. I have actually missed blogging this last year. You never know, there might be more next year from me! xxx

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  20. Oh your new blanket is gorgeous and I can well imagine how toasty it must feel being snuggled underneath it! Looking forward to your next post and seeing all you've made this year xx

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    1. Gosh it is soooooooo warm. It really does feel like you are getting a huge big squeeze in it! Have a Lovely Christmas! xxx

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  21. Soy de Argentina, me encanta tu blog !! siempre entro averlo porque sΓ© que alguin dia estarias publicando.
    me encantΓ³ la manta !!los colores !!! sos una genia !!!!!

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    1. Hello! Thank you for your kind words! Have a beautiful day! x

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  22. I sometimes still visit your blog for a dose of old fashioned (in a very good way) instant feel good! And how great to see this post up as a surprise to us all! Your blanket is amazing and your pictures spot on, what a treasure! Have a very nice sparkling last months of 2018, looking forward to your yearly sum up! Heidi

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    1. Thank you! Every now and then I go back through a few posts to remember things I did and made. I realise it's nice to log it all to keep the memories alive.

      Have a super end to 2018 and may your New Year be awesome! x

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  23. That's such a beautiful blanket Vanessa!Everything about it is beautiful - the story behind it, the soft colours, your choice of yarn,the obvious pleasure in the making of it, the fact everyone wants to snuggle under it. Just everything! Thank you for the inspiration. 😊😊😊

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    1. Hello! It's funny how not very often you manage to achieve absolutely everything in your criteria of a make. I have been making a blanket that has taken me over two years. That's seriously long for me, but it was just such hard going. The end result I'm over the moon with as it looks and feels gorgeous, but I just DID NOT enjoy the process of making it. This blanket was an absolute joy from start to finish and became everything I had hoped it would be. I am a happy girl! xxx

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  24. It is breath taking. love the colors so much, I think you achieved your goal. Alene

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  25. Now that is a beautifully epic blanket. The colours are just perfect in your inimitable 'Coco Rose' style. Thank you for sharing. What's better though is to 'see' you back here because you're truly inspirational and very much missed, I have no doubt of that.

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    1. Goodness, thank you for your kind words. It's funny as I have really missed this space this past year. I have felt like my voice is returning, and there have been moments I've REALLY wanted to just post random thoughts and loves and pictures. Well, you never know what 2019 will bring.....! xxx

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  26. Absolutely beautiful!! I love these colors! What method of joining squares did you use? I have never made a crochet blanket with small squares because I am scared of the part where I will have to join the squares. You are an inspiration! Thank you!

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    1. Hello Angela,

      I did a simple SC (uk) stitch to sew each single square to a row. I knew the blanket was going to be large and a join as you go method would not work as I needed it too (I wanted the whole blanket to be compact). There are lots and lots of tutorials for joining granny squares on you tube. I think if you just look up something like 'basic joining of a granny square blanket' you'd find something similar to what I did. The one valuable thing I learnt was that you ALWAYS count the same number of stitches to stitch together on each square.....even if you've missed a stitch! xxx

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  27. So lovely to see your blog again.
    Oh wow Vanessa your blanket is wonderful, I absolutely love everything about it. The granny squares and colours are so perfect together. It is Superb.... I am lost for words to describe how much I love it x

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    1. Thank you Annie it was such a joy to make I can't tell you x

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  28. It’s beautiful! It totally evokes the mood of the movie (which I loved - and the book). I do hope it keeps you warm and cosy and loved over your Winter. Love all the pics - just gorgeous

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    1. I REALLY need to read the book! The story is beautiful. Sad, but beautiful xxx

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  29. Hello Vanessa, what a joy to see a post from you...
    Your blanket is wonderful, it gives me a rustic feeling of nature.
    It must be a lovely feeling to lie under it, with the "sky and ocean" above you!

    Have a beautiful day,
    Ida

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    1. Oh I'm glad you feel it too! I currently have it on my bed, but I think I'll love taking it out and about with me places xxx

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  30. I love everything about this blanket, the size of the squares, the colors and the fact it's made with wool. How do you join the squares? I have never joined squares before. I read about the join as you go method but I am a bit scared to mess the whole project. Thanks for sharing.

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  31. It's absolutely beautiful, V. I love the colour palette - you've captured your rugged seascape perfectly. I hope you're well darling girl and that you and yours have a wonderful Christmas. xxx

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    1. Hello gorgeous Heather. I've been thinking about you lots lately. I did email you but I'm not sure if you are still at the same email. I just wanted to say hello and give you a great big 'virtual' squeeze! I MISS you in blogland. You brighten up my day no end. I hope you and the blondies have a super duper Christmas xxxxxxxx

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  32. It was a joy to find your new post on your blog. I just love the way that you have designed the colours for your blanket. The colours are lovely and earthy, subtle with muted tones. I have an idea for a blanket for my daughter from her wedding flowers. It has been in my mind for two years. I should really start. Enjoy your blanket. I am looking forward to your post in January. Keep well over the coming weeks and see you next year. xx

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    1. Oh my, yes make a start on the blanket for your daughter....it sounds AMAZING! Have a wonderful Christmas xxxxx

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    2. Have a lovely Christmas and New Year. Take care xx

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  33. Dear Vanessa,
    Its good to read something from you again and earlier then usual You are my favorite blogger I love all the colors in your photos and all the beautiful things you have.
    Your blanket is wonderful the colors you chose are perfect and it really looks so comfortable and relaxing. Have a wonderful rest of the year and hope your Christmas is a merry one full of happiness to you and your wonderful family.
    ~Helen

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  34. Thank you Helen. I have enjoyed creating this year, and I have missed having an outlet to voice just the random as well as the creative. You never know, I might be more vocal next year! Have a wonderful Christmas and New Year xxx

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  35. Vanessa,

    As always, visual perfection...a feast for the eyes...glorious work!
    It is so nice to see your post...

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  36. Meeting you and visiting your blog has been a plesure...I love your beautiful blankets
    Merry Christmas!!!!!

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