Well done to ‘The Bumbling Bee‘ on being nominated as our blogger of the month for November 2014. We were all very pleased to see Hannah aka The Bumbling Bee nominated. She writes a lovely blog where you will find various crafty projects, including sewing and knitting, plus tasty treats too. Take a look over on her blog where you will find her latest post with the promise of a new project on the horizon. Which blanket will she choose? As always we sent out a list of questions, Hannah has kindly answered and with lots of photos too.
If you write a blog don’t forget to get in touch or nominate one that you have just discovered reading. We are always on the lookout! Head to our nominations page here.
How long have you been blogging? What inspired you to begin writing?
I’ve been blogging for just over 3 years. I had discovered the world of blogs about a year before that and was intrigued to give it a go. This came around the same time that I was getting frustrated by how little time I had for creativity in my life anymore and starting a blog seemed like the perfect way to help motivate me to get back to crafting.
What is your latest WIP (Work in progress)?
I currently have a few things on the go in the lead up to Christmas. I actually thought about Christmas early enough this year to be able to knit some of my gifts. I’m usually very last minute when it comes to Christmas shopping. I’m currently finishing a set of knitted owl lavender bags for my Nana, as well as having a couple of scarves cast on. I’m still quite slow at knitting but I’m hoping I’ll get it all done in time!
Who taught you to sew/knit?
My mum both sews and knits and she tried to teach me when I was growing up – I just wish I had been a more willing learner back then! I have fond memories of lazy Sunday afternoons of making things alongside her. She is my go to whenever I have a sewing or knitting question. Last year, when I decided I wanted to learn to knit again, I arranged a knitting night with some friends where another friend of ours taught us how to get started. I would definitely recommend that as a fun way to learn!
What was your first ever knitting project?
This is the first year that I’ve been serious about knitting so I’ll ignore the partially knitted scarves from my childhood! I started making a scarf for myself but I made it up as I went and cast on too many stitches so that quickly became a blanket for my niece’s doll. My first successful project was my second attempt at a scarf!
Do you watch TV or listen to music while you knit / sew?
Craft is my way to relax so I love to listen to laid back music whenever I knit or sew – I find I get a bit frantic with the knitting needles if I listen to anything too upbeat!
Do you have a sewing or knitting tip you would like to share?
Just give it a go! Don’t worry about it being perfect, I personally think that the best way to learn is to find a project that catches your eye and just pick up the thread or knitting needles and have a go. There is very little that can happen that can’t be corrected and if you do make a mistake just find somebody to ask about it (take your project into a shop if you don’t know anybody). I’ve definitely learnt best from my mistakes and have found sewing and knitting far more satisfying since I’ve just enjoyed the making process rather than focusing on the end product.
Where do you find inspiration for a new project? E.g. online, local yarn shop etc. Do you choose the yarn or pattern first?
I can often be found on Pinterest and Instagram, the beautiful images just draw me in! I’ll nearly always pick a pattern first or at least have an idea of what I would like to make before choosing yarn.
Do you have a favourite project?
Without doubt it is the cot quilt I made recently. It is the biggest sewing project I’ve made and it was so satisfying to finish it. I’ve been wanting to try quilting for some time but felt a little daunted by how involved it is. As somebody who tends to like to see end results quickly, I was surprised at how satisfying I found the whole process… in fact I’m planning to make another couple of quilts after Christmas!
Do you follow other blogs?
Under the Sycamore is a regular read of mine, I love how craft is so naturally integrated into her life and how she captures beauty in everyday life so wonderfully. I also like to keep up-to-date with Emma Knitted and Caught on a Whim for sewing and knitting inspiration.
How many projects do you have on the go at one time? Do you like to vary between different crafts?
My house is filled with half-finished projects, I’m very guilty of starting things and never finishing them! I like the challenge of trying something new so I try a wide variety of crafts – I feel most experienced at making jewellery but love paper craft, sewing and knitting as well.
Where do you store all of your yarn and fabrics? Is your stash ever growing?
I’m a hoarder when it comes to craft supplies – you never know when that scrap of fabric might come in handy! I don’t have an allocated craft area so I’m regularly moving things around to try to create extra storage space but fabric is overflowing in our spare room, whilst I keep my yarn in the lounge to bring a dash of colour to the room.
What is your favourite item to knit/sew?
I love to make things that have a practical use so any kind of accessory or something for the home. It’s nice to be able to wear handmade accessories knowing that they’re completely unique.
Do you have any advice for new bloggers?
Be authentic, it is obvious when bloggers are trying to orchestrate their posts to maximise blog visits rather than just be themselves and it’s really off-putting. Also, don’t worry if you’re new to design or photography…it’s best to just get started and learn as you go. I am certainly not a designer or photographer but I have learnt a lot in these last couple of years to help improve the quality of my blog posts, I’d still be waiting to start my blog if I had waited to learn these skills first!
Who do you sew / knit for?
I love to make things for my friends and family, it’s a great excuse to buy new yarn when it’s a gift! I really enjoy the process of choosing a pattern and yarn that I know they’ll love. I’ll also soon be knitting for our baby which is due in February…so yet another great excuse to go yarn shopping!
Do you enjoy machine sewing or sewing by hand? Or both?
I mostly use the sewing machine because it’s much quicker and a lot less likely to fall apart than my slightly dodgy hand sewing! However I’ve become more and more attracted to the idea of relishing the making process and I also want to improve my patience at hand sewing so I’m going to try to start sewing by hand more often.