Archive | July, 2012

A Scarf for Every Budget

27 Jul

With this recession and all I’ve been thinking a lot about material costs lately and trying to keep mine as low as possible.   I’ve avoided more expensive and luxurious wools like malabrigo merino and instead headed for acrylics, polyester and wool/acrylic blends.  (I’d like to add that I also use these yarns because I think the end result looks fab and they seem to be popular!) 

Red Tango Ribbon Scarf

I also look out for good deals and cheaper places to source my yarns so that I can keep my prices at a reasonable level.  For example I’ve just managed to source my ribbon yarn for a cheaper price than before and as a result my Tango Ribbon Scarves are now more than 10% cheaper !

Although we’ve all been hit financially in some way or another, I’ve also realised that there must still be plenty of people out there who would happily pay a bit more for a good quality, luxuriously thick woollen scarf.  Afterall, a lot of hours goes into knitting a full length wool scarf so not only are you paying for the more expensive material, but for the labour as well.

Purple Malabrigo Merino Cable Scarf

My aim for this year and next is to focus on creating a wide range of good quality, hand knitted scarves made from a variety of materials in order to suit all budgets.  From the cheaper, fluffy polyester scarves right up to the more expensive malabrigo merino wool numbers, each scarf would be knitted with love. 

In recent times I’ve been hesitant to invest in the luxurious brands of wool for fear that the finished scarves will be deemed too expensive and sit unwanted in the back of my shop.  In the meantime I have been using a merino wool/acrylic blend which is 70% merino wool and 30% acrylic.

Red Merino/Acrylic Blend Ribbed Scarf

My question for you is this – how much would you be willing to spend on a scarf that was hand knitted with luxurious, top quality wool?  I’m just looking for ball park figures here , but would be so grateful if you would leave a comment below!

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Treasury – A Scottish Tribute

25 Jul

‘A Scottish Tribute’ by TheCandyTree125

This is a tribute to Scotland – my beautiful home!  Please click on the pictures to be taken to the relevant Etsy shops for full details.


The Elizabeth of Glamis Life…

$95.00

Beach Pottery, Cream, Base R…

$9.99

Silver Squares and Sea Glass…

$25.00

Hand Turned Wooden Scottish …

$24.00

Hand Painted Scottish Celtic…

$16.00

Harris Tweed Kindle eBook S…

$32.00

Scottish Highland Landscape …

$35.00

My Bonnie Dearie – Little S…

$36.00

Letterpress Scottish Terrier…

$3.20

Fabric Buttons – Scottish Ta…

$3.50

Bellhaven Bay Scotland Origi…

$7.50

Scottish Seascape, Findhorn …

$25.00

100% Scottish Pure New Wool …

$6.00

Scottish sea pottery necklac…

$9.00

Leslie Tartan Scotland

$60.00

Scottish tartan used by Vivi…

$95.00

Treasury tool supported by the dog house

Tutorial – Blocking a Knitted Scarf

19 Jul

My first tutorial!

Last year I finished knitting a cable scarf which had a bumpy look to it and curled at the edges.  At first I wasn’t sure how to fix this but after a bit of Googling I discovered ‘blocking’!  I read a few tutorials but they all seemed rather complicated so I have simplified things a little.  As the end result was pretty successful I thought it might be helpful to share it.  I have used this method on merino wool and blends of 70% merino wool and 30% acrylic.

Blocking – The Steam Method

You will need:

A bed
Towels
A lot of dress making pins
An iron with a good steam function

1. Lie the towels on the bed to protect the sheets from any excess water and lie the scarf on top.

2. Uncurl the edges as you go and pin the scarf to the towel.  Secure the scarf with as many pins as it takes for it to hold the desired shape – ensure that the wool is taught but not overly stretched.  Depending on the length of your scarf and the size of your bed you can pin half the scarf, go through the rest of the steps and then start again with the other half.

This is a really long scarf so I’m only pinning half at a time.

3. Turn the iron up to its highest setting and whilst holding it roughly 1″ away from the scarf, start to steam.  Work your way slowly up the length of the scarf, steaming as you go.  Be careful not to touch the scarf with the iron or your hands as it will get very hot.

Be careful with that steam!

4. Repeat step 3 a couple of times before leaving the scarf to cool and dry.

The edges will probably require extra pins.

5. After an hour or so you can begin to unpin the scarf.  If it still curls slightly at the edges then you can repeat steps 3 and 4 again, although I haven’t had to do this yet.  It will depend on the style of the scarf whether you want it to be completely flat or not.  If you are happy with the result, the scarf can be unpinned completely.

The end result – I didn’t want this scarf to be completely flat as I love the subtle waves of the cable design, however the blocking has definitely improved the shape.

If you have any questions or comments please feel free to share them below.  This malabrigo merino wool scarf is available to purchase in my Etsy shop –

If you prefer to knit your own scarf you can also buy the pattern from The Fibre Friend on Etsy.

Blog Feature (and Giveaway!)

14 Jul

The lovely people of Nashpop are featuring The Candy Tree on their blog this week where readers will also have the opportunity to win 2 (yes that’s right, 2!) of my Fabric Button Rings.  Better yet, the winner can choose which 2 rings they would like to receive from my current collection!

This is just a small selection of my rings – click on the picture to see the full range!

Click here to read the feature and enter the giveaway!

I’d just like to say a big thank you to Evey and Sara of Nashpop for their fabulous feature!

Treasury – Black & White Beauties

10 Jul

‘Black & White Beauties’ by thecandytree125

There is nothing more striking and classic looking than black and white – especially in the form of glass. Please click on an item to be taken to the full listing on Etsy for more details.

 


glass bowl of black , white …

$280.00

Cufflinks Black Tartan Glass…

$45.00

Black White Earrings, Lampwo…

$31.00

Black and white lampwork bra…

$35.00

White swirls on ebony sea po…

$24.00

LARGER Stained Glass Art Dec…

$85.00

Glass Cufflinks : fusing, ha…

$20.00

Flat Cut Beads – Czech Fire…

$1.70

Tree Art Pendant, Gothic Cro…

$9.50

Luccicare Lampwork Bead – Li…

$30.00

Grey and black necklace / br…

$32.50

black bib necklace, black ne…

$39.50

SALE SALE SALE GlassMe…

$6.00

Handmade Lampwork Glass Ring…

$20.00

Black and white european lam…

$9.99

Unique Glass and Silver Earr…

$26.00

Treasury tool supported by the dog house