Monday, 26 April 2010

My Rosacea

I thought it's about time I started to talk about my rosacea. Mainly in the hope that I can inspire other rosacea sufferers to get to the doctors and get some help . That's just what I did and now things are a lot more managable and boy, does my skin look a million times better. To be honest, it's barely noticable now and I feel happy again. I was quite traumatised over christmas when it flared up really badly, so much so that I was glad to be snowed in the house.........

Rosacea is a chronic skin condition that affects the face and neck. For more information from the NHS, click here. Sadly there's no cure, but it's managable with various gels and medication. The main thing is that certain factors trigger off rosacea, such as stress, sunlight, cold weather, hot drinks, alcohol and certain foods.

The trick is to work out what triggers your rosacea. It's very time consuming but the best way to manage rosacea is to avoid the triggers.

My triggers are, hot water (eg. hot bath/shower), chemicals (eg. in shampoos, soaps, bathroom cleaners, those dreaded air fresheners that keep spraying every few minutes arrrrh!!!), direct heat (eg from radiators, fires, sun), various food products and drinks - any alcohol, pepper and I'm sure it's either sulphite additives or food that trigger a release of histimines. I'm still working on this one.

So, as well as my wheat and gluten intolerance, I have to avoid lots of other foods too.

I've seen three different GPs, had allergy tests and blood tests, and finally the 3rd. GP I saw prescribed Rosex gel and antibiotics for three months. The antibiotics really worked and now I just use the gel, twice a day, as well as avoiding all the triggers, which in itself is hard work. Cold showers, washes and no alcohol. I also take an anti-histimine every couple of days, which helps too.

I feel a lot happier now though, I look pretty normal again and my face is a lot less sensitive. I would urge anyone suffering from Rosacea to push their GP to find a solution for them. It's definitely manageable.

I blog more about my daily rountine and the products I use - as my GP said - you don't need to buy special creams that cost a fortune.  It's certainly helped me, so hopefully I can help someone else.

Monday, 19 April 2010


I was recently directed to a Craftgawker, a gallery where anyone can showcase their art, crafting and photography skills. It's a great place to discover new artists and handmade goods to inspire your own creations. The submission requirements are quite specific and they only accept "beautiful, well balanced, craft related photographs". They have to link to a blog (not just a shop).

So I was absolutely over the moon when my ladybird bootees were accepted. They're now on the front page. If you take a look - perhaps you could favourite me (click on the heart on the photo). The more hearts the better, just click here then click the heart on the photo.

The bootees link to my other blog at

Here's a clip of the front page

Tuesday, 13 April 2010

I've done it!!

Well, after much ado and with a lot of help from my patient hubby, I've finally launched my two new shops on etsy. I have split my old shop CakesKnitsandCosies in two new shops:

Lynne's Pattern Parlour, for my knitting and crochet patterns


Lynne's Knitted Notions, for my handmade gifts

I hope I've done the right thing. I've been wanting to do this for ages, as I don't feel that the name of CakesKnitsandCosies really reflects what I'm doing. I want to have shop names that are clear about what I'm selling. I'll be closing my CakesKnitsandCosies shops and blog eventually.

I need to open my shops in Folksy and MISI still, but I have a headache now, after all the computer work I've done today. So I'll tackle those another day.

I still have my patterns to list in Lynne's Pattern Parlour and I need to get some handmade goodies listed in Lynne's Knitted Notions. But at least all the tricky technical stuff is done now.

I'll be blogging about my (hopeful) success on my new blog here and posting some free patterns too along the way.

I'd love some followers on my new site, and at some point I hope to create a monthly newsletter that you can sign up to.

Friday, 9 April 2010

Dancing Folksy Friday

My daughter is away at the moment on a 3 day Dance Workshop with the British Ballet Organisation at the prestigious Elmhust School for Dance in Birmingham. She was really excited as she wants to train professionally as a dancer, so this is a great opportunity for her.  She's 15 at the moment, so she may change her mind, but she's always danced and is really good. I can't wait to go and watch the performance on Saturday.

My folksy friday this week is dancing, hope you like it.....

From top left, clockwise, these dancing folksters are

1. Annabella designs
2. All beauteous things
3. Jay designs
4. LJG Art & Illustrations

For more gorgeous folksy friday showcases, click here

Wednesday, 7 April 2010

Destash#2 - Rowan Cotton Rope

The instructions for the first part of my preemie baby blanket are here. Now for the second part. Because my blanket isn't big enough (only 33cm square) I need to edge it with a complimentary chunky yarn. I've chosen some white Cotton Rope from my stash, as I have just over two 50g balls.

Rowan Cotton Rope is a softly twisted rope like yarn, which knits up quickly. It's a combination of cotton (55%) and acrylic (45%).

Good points: Nice and soft - lovely to crochet with. Firm texture.
Bad points: None that I can find.

Edging instructions:
Take a 5.5 or 6mm crochet hook and make a sl st onto your hook. Join with a double crochet (dc) to any side of the blanket. Working around the blanket, dc into the space between every row. When you get to a corner make 3dc into the corner space. Work around all 4 sides and join to the first dc with a sl st.

Next row: Make 3ch (counts as first treble crochet (tr)). Work 1 tr into every st of the previous round. When you get to a corner, work 5 tr into the middle st of the 3 corner sts. Join to 3rd ch of first tr.

Repeat this row until you are happy with the size of your blanket (don't forget to work 5 tr in the middle st of every corner group of 5 sts). Cut yarn and pull through st on hook. Darn all yarn ends into the blanket and trim.

Here's my finished blanket. I'm not overjoyed with it. The creamy white colour in the sirdar spree just looks like dirty white and the knitted middle is very loose. I hope it's OK as a preemie blanket. The good thing is that it's nice and soft and the cotton mix should be great for delicate skin.

Friday, 2 April 2010

Destash #1 - Sirdar Spree Chunky

My first destash project uses Sirdar Spree Chunky, a cotton mix of candy colours (60% cotton 40% acrylic).  I have made a preemie baby blanket.

Here's my review of the yarn, after knitting with it for the first time:
Good points: Lovely and soft when knitted up. Colours look pretty too when knitted up, nicer than I expected, although he creamy white colour just looks a little like a dirty white.  Cheap (69p)
Bad points: Splits like crazy. It's a little heavy and loose when knitted up - I wouldn't like to make a jumper in it, I imagine it would hang pretty badly and fall out of shape. I'm dreading washing my little blanket in case it loses it's shape.

Initially, I wasn't sure what to make with this. I searched Ravelry for pattern ideas, but absolutely nothing grabbed me. So, I decided to knit a preemie blanket. 100g isn't quite enough I don't think, so I will have to edge it to make it bigger, maybe with some white yarn from my stash (two balls in one project can't be bad eh?).

First, I started to crochet the blanket, but it splits terribly and I got really frustrated. So I frogged it and started to knit instead. It still splits with knitting, but not as much. I decided to knit a blanket starting at one corner and increasing on every alternate row and until I'd used approx half the ball (I kept weighing it until there were 50g left). Then I decreased on every alternate row. Here's the instructions for anyone who wants to knit a really quick and simple preemie blanket. It took me about 3 hours, and because it using only garter st, I was able to watch TV too.

Using the needle size recommended on your ball band.Cast on 2 sts.
Row 1: kfb in each st
Row 2: sl 1, k to end
Row 3: sl 1, kfb, kfb, k1
Row 4: sl 1, k to end
Row 5: sl 1, kfb, k to last 2 sts, kfb, k1
Row 6: sl 1, k to end
Repeat Rows 5 and 6 until half the yarn has been used (use scales to weigh your ball of yarn) finishing on a Row 6
Next Row: sl 1, k2tog, k to last 3 sts, k2tog, k1
Next Row: s1 1, k to end
Repeat last two Rows until 4 sts remain
Next Row: k2tog, k2tog, pass 1st st over 2nd st. Pull yarn end though the st and tie off.

With this 100g ball of chunky yarn, I made a square of approx 33cm, which isn't big enough for a preemie blanket. So in my next blog post I will show you how to crochet an edge around the blanket to make it bigger. Here's a photo of this first stage, with a crocheted double crochet border - to be explained in my next post.

Knitted Folksy Friday

A happy Easter to you all. My theme this week is knitted - one of my favourite crafts. It also coincides with the launch of my latest project - Project De-stash. I will start my blog today and you can follow me as I work my way through my huge yarn stash. Hopefully raising some funds for charity as well as knitting for charity on the way.

Here are my knitted folksy favourites this week

From top left clockwise
1. Sara Carr
2. Handmade
3. Claire Crompton
4. Knit Happens

For more great folksy fridays, click here