Thursday, 20 July 2017

Warm Fuzzies KAL

Hello there lovelies!

Today I want to let you know about something really exciting...I'm co-hosting my first knit-along/make-along!

Myself and the lovely Jenn Sheelen of jennsheelen.com are hosting the Warm Fuzzies KAL, which is a make-along where you can knit/crochet/weave/spin something that gives you warm fuzzies...in other words something that makes you happy.

KAL Details:
  •  The KAL runs from July 15th - 30th September 2017.
  • Double/multi dipping allowed, projects must be started July 15th or later to qualify for prizes.
  • You must be a subscriber of the JennSheelen Podcast, and also be a member of both the JennSheelen and CosyCuteKnits groups on Ravelry.
  • The chatter thread is in the CosyCuteKnits group, & the finished objects thread is in Jenn's. We will be drawing prizes from BOTH threads so make sure you join in on the chatter & post your finished objects! 
You can gain extra entries for prizes if you:
  1. Use one of my patterns (Naomi Buchanan Designs)
  2. Use one of my project bags (CosyCuteKnits Etsy)
  3. Use one of Jenn's patterns (Jenn Sheelen Designs)
  4. Use Jenn's hand-dyed yarn (jennsheelen.com)
That's 4 extra entries up for grabs!
To celebrate the beginning of our KAL, Jenn & I have also got a 15% discount code for Jenn's Ravelry store, and her website jennsheelen.com, & also my Ravelry store and the CosyCuteKnits etsy shop.  Discount code is valid until July 31st 2017, so make sure you check it out! 

I hope you will come and join in with us!

Happy crafting,
Naomi x

Sunday, 16 July 2017

I Have Never by Camilla Isley Book Review


Title: I Have Never
Author: Camilla Isley
Release Date: July 13th, 2017
Genre: Chick Lit

This book is a laugh out loud, perfect summer read. I read the novel in its entirety in one day, that's how good it is! The characters, especially Blair and Richard, are fantastic, their personalities & depth of character really come across well, and I found myself cheering for Blair throughout the entire book. 

Camilla Isley has a fantastic way of drawing you in when it comes to her writing. I was hooked from the beginning, and you will be too! I highly recommend I Have Never, it will have you laughing and smiling from beginning to end. 

5 stars from me! 

Till next time,
Naomi x


Twenty-nine-year-old Blair Walker is a girl with a plan, or more a girl with a list. A list of dos and don’ts to live the perfect life, land a dream career, and marry Mr. Right.

When Blair loses her job and gets dumped by her boyfriend all in one day, she starts to wonder if she’s had it all wrong. And what better way to find out than experience everything the list forbade?

With hilarious consequences, Blair will discover some items are trickier to tick off than she’d thought…

A laugh out loud romantic comedy perfect for fans of Lindsey Kelk, Sophie Kinsella, and Mhairi McFarlane. First Comes Love is a series of interconnected romantic novels. However, each book in the series can be read as a standalone novel.



 | Apple



Camilla is an engineer turned writer after she quit her job to follow her husband in an adventure abroad.
She’s a cat lover, coffee addict, and shoe hoarder. Besides writing, she loves reading—duh!—cooking, watching bad TV, and going to the movies—popcorn, please. She’s a bit of a foodie, nothing too serious. A keen traveler, Camilla knows mosquitoes play a role in the ecosystem, and she doesn’t want to starve all those frog princes out there, but she could really live without them.




Check out the full tour-


July 13th


A Beautiful Book Blog - Book Review
Writing Pearls - Book Review
With Love For Books - Book Review

July 14th


Kristin's Novel Cafe - Book Excerpt
JenaBooks - Book Review
He Said Books or Me - Author Guest Post

July 15th


Chrissi Reads - Book Review
Books and Photographs - Book Review
Rebecca Book Review - Book Excerpt
Monique McDonell-Author  - Book Excerpt

July 16th


One Book At A Time - Spotlight Post
CosyCuteKnits - Book Review
The Writing Garnet - Book Review

July 17th


The Belgian Reviewer - Book Excerpt
Girl vs Books - Book Review
kraftireader - Book Review


July 18th




THE CHLOE DOUGLAS BLOG - Book Review

July 19th


Kristin's Novel Café - Book Excerpt
Simona's Corner of Dreams - Author Guest Post
Bookish - Book Review

July 20th


TheBlossomTwins - Book Review
Grass Monster - Book Review
Chick Lit Central - Author Q&A
Living Life with Joy - Author Guest Post

July 21st

Rae Reads - Book Review
Novelgossip  - Book Review
Whispering Stories - Book Review
Steamy Book Momma - Book Excerpt

July 22nd


BookLoverWorm - Book Review
Book Lover in Florida - Book Excerpt

Sunday, 18 June 2017

Alone with Nostalgia 


Hello my lovelies,
This week's post is a bit different and more...raw and from the heart than I usually post. However it's something real, a part of my life that I can't deny. I apologise if this isn't something you want to read, but I will be back to posting crafty & book related posts next week.
...
As I sit here after spending the evening on my own, my thoughts begin to cross & scramble, reminding me of the danger of loneliness.

Now don't get me wrong, I do like spending time on my own, but not when I have no choice. With the majority of my family away, my solitary life screams and makes itself painfully known.
I used to have friends, or at least I thought I did. But it is on nights like this when I realise just how alone and friendless I am.

Unfortunately my 'friends' disappeared after I finished university, when I got sick, and after I had to leave my last job. No one wants a friend who can't go out to bars etc, or someone that is limited in their social life due to chronic illness, especially invisible illnesses they don't understand.



I normally rely on social media, especially Instagram, for my "social interaction", but a phone is not enough all the time. I quite literally have no one around me that I can meet up with for a coffee, or go to the cinema. I spend my time on my own, in my room, crafting and reading. Compared to 90% of people I lead a very, very boring life.

When I started to get sick, I not only lost my friends, I lost myself too.
I used to find it somewhat easy to make friends, to find a connection. Now, I don't know what to talk about, I don't have anything exciting to share.

I also find it hard, because personally I don't see why someone would want to be my friend or anything else. I drift through each day, waiting until I can go to sleep and try to start again the next day.

I found myself looking through old photos tonight, photos of a time when I knew who I was, my dreams and ambitions still possible. Surrounded by close friends, people I could chat to, spend time with, and feel happy around.

Sadly those days are gone, and try as I might I feel stuck, lost in nostalgia & wishing I could have dear friends around me again. But life is constantly throwing curveballs, knocking me over & making life just that bit harder.

With anxiety & depression my mind flits from one thing to another, worry is my constant companion, with the ever-present feeling of 'I'm not good enough' staying close by my side. I know that some people would say 'I'm sure that's not true', but as I sit on my own, seeing posts on social media about going here and there, surrounded by friends, it is rather hard to deny.


Life isn't bad, and I have a loving family that care, but sometimes I wish I could be like others, a normal 25 year old with friends around her, not just books & crafts.
Until next time,
Naomi x

Sunday, 4 June 2017

Silent heroes

Hi lovelies,

I had originally a different plan for this weeks post, but in light of recent events I feel that there is a more pressing topic for today.

Last night I watched the news in horror at the latest terrorist attack in London. A balmy summers evening turned into a horrific night once more, this time on the London Bridge, Borough Market & Vauxhall in London. This morning I woke to news of 7 fatalities & 48 injured. This past fortnight has be ridden with fear and grief following the Manchester bomb attack & last night's incident, and my heart and prayers go out to all affected by these horrifying events.

Today I would like to send my wishes and prayers to the silent heroes, the first aiders, paramedics, hospital staff, police & all those who have done their best to care and protect those harmed and affected by these tragic and evil incidents. Their kindness and devotion has been recognised by all those who have not only been affected by the events in Manchester & London, but also all over the UK and indeed worldwide, as their kindness shines like a candle in the midst of darkness.

All over the internet messages of kindness and solidarity are shared, and it is inspiring and uplifting, especially for those affected as it lets them know they are not alone.

Shine bright and stay strong,
Naomi x

Sunday, 28 May 2017

Happy Scrappy Gorgeousness!

Hey lovelies,
This week I decided to share the two scrappy crochet projects that I am seriously loving right now.

Last year I decided to make my own interpretation of the cosy memories blanket, which as I'm sure you all know is a knitted mitred square blanket. I didn't want to knit a blanket, but loved the idea of a "cosy memories" blanket, and thus my cosy reflection blanket was born!

This blanket is made using crochet hexagons, and I'm following the instructions for the Weekender Blanket by Sandra Paul of cherryheart.co.uk.

I am also being very thoughtful with regards to the order and way I am making this blanket, and I am keeping a reflection diary detailing each hexagon, the yarn used, and who the yarn was from if I was a mini I was sent. My aim is to make this blanket 25 hexies by 25, which will be the perfect throw size for my bed.

As if one scrappy project was not enough, I also fell down the crochet rabbithole that is the granny stripe blanket. This is a craze that has took the fiber IG world by storm, and I was totally sucked in! Like many I'm following the granny stripe blanket pattern by Lucy of Attic24. Unlike my cosy reflection blanket there is no rhyme nor reason to the order of the yarns in this one, and I love it's scrappy gorgeousness!! I basically just make a huge magic cake from my scraps & odds and ends and work them into this blanket. Isn't it just beautiful?!

Scrappy projects are taking Ravelry & Instagram by storm, and for good reason! They are the perfect way to use up leftovers, mini skeins & little odds and ends.  I have seen scrappy blankets, shawls, and even socks!

Are you making any scrappy projects at the moment? I would love to hear about them if you are!

Till next time,
Naomi x

Sunday, 21 May 2017

Book Review - Look Behind You by Sibel Hodge

Hey lovelies!
Through my work I run a Book Club, were we read a book from a collection of best sellers, that I pick from using random.org.
Our book for May is Look Behind You by Sibel Hodge.  I sat down last Tuesday in my garden to enjoy the sunshine & start reading...well I finished this book that afternoon.

"Chloe Benson wakes up kidnapped and bound in an underground tomb with no memory of how she got there.  She escapes through deserted woods with her life, but no one believes her story.
When she begins to suspect her husband is lying to her, Chloe is forced to retrace her past, following in her own footsteps to find the truth and stay alive.

But who is following Chloe?

Look Behind You. You never know who’s out there."

From the first page I was hooked.  Hodge has a way of captivating her audience, drawing them in with her fantastic plotlines, intriguing characters, and enthralling them with her wit and writing.  

I was on the edge of my seat, unwilling to put down my kindle, desperate to see what happened next.  If you love mystery, crime & suspense novels, I highly recommend this book!

Till next time,
Naomi x

Sunday, 14 May 2017

My Vanilla Sock Recipe

Hello there my lovely readers!
I seem to begin a lot of my posts with an apology don't I? Once again I apologise for the unintended hiatus recently. It's not that I haven't wanted to write, but rather that I have had a case of writer's block. Inspiration has been hiding on me recently, however I am back and I have a few posts scheduled for the coming weeks so yay!

This week I thought I would share my vanilla sock recipe.  As you know I am taking part in the Box O' Sox KAL run by Kristin of Voolenvine Yarns & the Yarngasm Podcast.  When I want something mindless & easy I automatically turn to vanilla socks, & this is my own recipe I follow in case you are interested!


Now being petite I only wear a UK size 3-4, which is a EU 36-37 & a US size 6-6.5. For my socks I cast on 52sts on 2.5mm needles, however you can use your regular stitch count in this recipe.
Also I prefer to use the Fish Lips Kiss Heel pattern by SoxTherapist which you can find on Ravelry.  Alternatively you can just knit your preferred heel.

My Vanilla Sock Recipe

Cast on 52sts on 2.5mm needles. Join in the round.

Cuff:
*k1, p1* for 16 rounds.

Leg:
Knit for 60 rounds.

Heel:
My heel of preference is the Fish Lips Kiss Heel, however you can substitute this for your favourite heel style & pattern.

Instep:
Knit until you reach the point where you will begin the toe decreases. This is usually 2 - 2 1/2 inches or to the base of your little toe.  For my socks I knit 45 rounds.

Toe:
My preferred toe is a slightly rounded toe, and the one I use I actually got from the Hermione's Everyday Socks pattern by Erica Leuder.  It is as follows:

Decrease rounds - *k1, ssk, k to last 3sts, k2tog, k1* on both the top and bottom of the sock (both needles when knitting magic loop).

1) Decrease
2&3) Knit
4) Decrease
5&6) Knit
7) Decrease
8&9) Knit
10) Decrease
11) Knit
12) Decrease
13) Knit
14) Decrease
15) Knit
16) Decrease
17) Decrease
18) Decrease
19) Decrease

Once you have knit the toe, use the Kitchener Stitch Method to close it. Here is a handy tutorial demonstrating how to Kitchener: http://blog.loveknitting.com/how-to-do-kitchener-stitch-with-or-without-a-darning-needle/

And that's all there is to it folks. A simple vanilla sock recipe that I hope will be useful for you!

Until next week,
Naomi x