Monday, 26 January 2015

Knitted blackbird

I've decided to make a limited number of knitted birds for sale on Etsy, in the run-up to my Knitted Birds book being published by Search Press in September. So here's the first one who is currently available for adoption on Etsy - a handsome male knitted blackbird.

He's approximately 20cm long from tip of the tail to tip of the felt beak. If you'd like to knit one of your own, he will be one of the patterns in my Knitted Birds book!

Wednesday, 21 January 2015

Home made bird food

The birds in my garden love coconut suet feeders, so much so that I ended up with a pile of empty coconut shells. I wondered if it was possible to reuse these shells and fill them with your own suet mix. There were plenty of recipes online varying from the expensive and complicated, to the rather dubious (full of flour and filler). I wanted to make something simple, cheap and nutritious!

I ended up adapting a recipe I found on the Birds and Blooms website. It was very easy to make, worked out cheaper than buying new coconut feeders, and the birds loved it.

If you would like to make a treat for the birds in your garden, here is the recipe to make enough to fill 2 coconut shells. If you want to make more, it's easy to multiply the ingedients.

You will need:
125g lard
200g unsalted peanuts
50g bird seed mix

Melt the lard (either in a saucepan or in a baking tin in a low oven). While it is melting, blitz your peanuts in a food processor until it they are well chopped. You don't want a powder, just lots of nubbly small pieces. When the lard has melted, stir in your peanut pieces and bird seed mix, mix well, and press into your coconut shells. Leave in a cool place to set and then hang out for the birds!

This basic recipe is very adaptable - you could add raisins, or sunflower seeds. Experiment and see what your birds prefer!

Tuesday, 13 January 2015


It's been a really busy new year so far - I've been proofreading all the bird patterns for my new book and working on the final few birds who will make it into the pages. This little knitted kingfisher is one of them!