I had a bowl of hot soup for lunch on Wednesday. It was "Moreish Mexican Chilli Bean" soup and was delicious, mmmmm. I would like to tell you that it's a terrific homemade recipe that I knocked up, but I would be fibbing. I don't really do homemade soups, I just cannot face all that chopping and prepping. So I go with the Opening The Carton approach.
There. Hot soup that taste's (almost) like homemade in a couple of minutes flat. After lunch whilst I was in the kitchen tidying away, I was hit with an idea. It came visually flying into my mind, whoooosh (which is happening a lot these days, love love loving all the Creative Vibes I'm getting!)
So instead of flattening the carton and slinging it in the bin, I rinsed it out, measured it, double checked the measurements, then set to work hooking up a jacket to wrap around it. I used exactly the same method as I did for the tuna tins, only of course I made many more stripes. I had a huge amount of fun playing with the colours, working the stripes through a sort of earth~grass~sky~clouds type of idea.
But as lovely and delicious as the stripes were, I had something else to add.
A flower. A simple circle, with a stem and two leaves. A few buttons for extra detail.
I stitched the shapes to the stripes using ordinary sewing cotton and tiny stitches so that they were invisible. I stitched the stem first, then the leaves, then the flower on top. Afterwards, when everything was attached in place, I used the Rowan cotton yarn and a darning needle to add a bit of chunky decorative stitching on top. Little straight stitches radiating out from the flower, and a line of backstitch running up the centre of each leaf.
I love decorative stitching. Whenever I do it, I always tell myself I should do more of it (I thought this when I stitched my Jolly Festive bunting letters)
There you go, there it is with all the stitching finished.
So. Can you see where this is going?
You know this is a wrap for my empty soup carton. And you know if you took note of the post title that this is going to have something to do with herbs, right?
Fresh Parsley to be precise. I'd love to hear how you buy fresh herbs in other parts of the world? Here in the UK, we have a choice. We can either buy a pre-packed cut bunch of them, or we can buy fresh living herbs growing in a pot, like the parsley in the picture above.
I like the idea of living herbs, but truthfully they are very flopsy, leggy little plantlets in an insubstantial plastic square pot. They flop and droop and look all sad if you take the plastic wrapper off. So my idea was to make a pretty container for them to stand in. Something tall enough to hide and support the thin leggy stems.
And the soup carton happened to be the perfect size and shape. Absolutely perrrrrfect.
Before I could slip the parsely pot inside it's new home, I took some scissors and trimmed the rim of the pot off. It was just a smidge too big to fit with the rim left on. It was easy to cut as the plastic is very thin indeed. I was all prepared to do battle with the scissors, but no need.
So shall we have a little ta-dah moment now?
Here it comes...............
One crochet herb pot. Complete with insect life. Aww I couldn't resist adding the little bee button, I've had him sat in my button box for such a long time with no real hope for his future. The bee came as part of a mixed pack of small insect buttons which I bought (along with quite a few others) many years ago. They're called "Dress It Up" buttons and there are hundreds of designs to choose from. Easy to find them online if you like this sort of thing (which I really do)....see here for bees and other critters.
I'm really, really happy with my herb pot. Like ridiculously happy with it.
I love it cos it turned out just the way I had in mind, and it does the job so beautifully. And I love it cos it's sparked off yet another idea............
........I'm thinking about a long, rectangular stripy cushion with a whole row of appliqué crochet flowers. Kind of like Caroline's paper flowers but in crochet form. A flower garden cushion. Oooooooooo how exciting!!!
Buzz buzz buzz. So many ideas buzzing in! Where on earth are they coming from? I could really do with a bit of a let up now so that I can settle back down with my ripple.
ps :: about the soup carton. You don't have to use a soup carton. It could be any sort of carton with the right dimensions. In the UK, we have almost identical sized cartons for many of our liquid products including fresh fruit juice and long life milk. I know this cos I went round the supermarket with Little Man's animal ruler to measure all the cartons I could find. Yeah I know.
Edit to add :: the yarn I used here is Rowan Handknit Cotton dk. It's a lovely, soft cotton yarn in beautiful colours, and I love it for decorative projects because it holds it's shape so well. It produces a soft but slightly stiff material, unlike the Rico Creative cotton which produces a soft but floppy material, if that makes sense. I've also gone down to a 3.5mm hook instead of the usual 4mm to make the stitches nice and tight. Rowan yarn is quite expensive at around £3.60 for a 50g ball. But I adore working with it and will always have a basket of it in my cupboard. I sometimes look on ebay to buy up odd balls of discontinued colours which are often much cheaper. I would be interested to know what cotton yarns are available in the US which might compare? x