Saturday, 16 February 2019

2019 Craft Fair Season - Craft fair idea #1

Hello friends, I have an announcement to make.  This year I will be taking part in a number of craft fairs and little T will be joining me.  He is really showing an interest in making things and loves to help me out whenever he can.  Also it's a great way for him to earn a little pocket money.

I thought that this would be a nice opportunity for a blog series to document all the things we will be making and maybe you might like to try some of them out too.  We will be making a variety of items mostly small inexpensive things suitable for school fairs.  Things that children will love...

Craft Fair Idea #1

Splashtime Washcloths

My first craft fair idea is these cute cotton washcloths.  They are super fast and easy to make and are really colourful.  I think they will brighten up any craft table.  Of course Little T cannot crochet but he can help with the packaging, printing off labels, cutting them out and adding the little belly bands to each cloth.  

These would also make a great Mother's Day gift...

If you would like to make these yourself you can find  the free pattern here...

Make sure to head back next week for more craft fair ideas...

See you soon
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Sunday, 3 February 2019

Great Ideas for Mother's Day - Free Crochet Patterns

For those of us in the UK Mother's Day is not far off so I have compiled some of my favorite crochet gift ideas.  Most of them are small projects that will only take an hour or two to make.  Mums always love a handmade gift and really appreciate the time and love that goes into them...

Try these gift ideas for Mother's Day, 7 free patterns...

The first pattern I have selected is for a very cute applique design by The Curio Crafts Room which may be turned into these gorgeous crochet earrings...

Peacock Feather Earrings

What mum wouldn't love to receive this stunning shawl?  Pattern by Mijo Crochet.  A slightly longer project but still plenty of time to make it...

Lost in Time Shawl

Lost In Time Shawl Crochet Free Pattern - Trendy Women #Shawl; Free #Crochet; Patterns

Keep your mum cosy with these gorgeously colourful stripy mitts by Sandra Paul, perfect for the chilly weather...

Stripy Mitts

Make these pretty flower coasters in no time at all.  Pattern by Daisy Cottage Designs.

Japanese Flower Coaster

Use this free crochet pattern to make a set of crochet coasters that will look adorable sitting on your coffee table. These also make a wonderful gift.

If you have a gadget savvy mum then this is the perfect gift this Mother's Day.  Gadget Cosy pattern by Sarah Shrimpton.

Gadget Cosy

Gadget cosy

Another super quick project is these pretty washcloths.  Add together with your mums favourite smellies and create a home spa gift, or simply to do the dishes.  Pattern by Erica Dietz.

Crochet Washcloths

How to crochet washcloths tutorial

For my final selection let's help mum out with the shopping and make this delightful market bag.  Bin the plastic and opt for cute, cotton, crochet, loveliness instead.  Pattern by TL Yarn Crafts.

Fresh Market Tote

Make the Fresh Market Tote, a fun and FREE crochet market bag pattern from TL Yarn Crafts. Combine cotton and acrylic yarn for a sturdy and beautiful bag. Includes full FREE pattern and video tutorial. Perfect for Mother's Day, teacher gifts, and housewarming gifts.

I'm sure there is something here that your mum will love.  Happy hooking and see you all again soon...

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Monday, 28 January 2019

Free Pattern - Crochet Washcloths, Spar Cloths, Face Cloths, Dishcloths

You know I never saw why there was so much interest in making dishcloths until I made these.  I must say I am now thoroughly addicted, I just can't stop making them.  I just love the simplicity of such a simple project and they are so fast to make.  Being able to finish something in only 30 mins really feeds my need for instant gratification and these cloths are just so versatile.  You can use them to gently exfoliate your skin, bath time for the kids or simply to do the dishes.  

Now who out there doesn't need some gorgeous, colourful, crochet goodness to brighten up their life?  So I thought I must write up the pattern, so you too may share in the scrummy, yummy. squishy, crochet loveliness...

Splashtime Crochet Washcloths

2 balls Drops Safran or any other cotton 4ply (makes 3 washcloths)
Darning needle

5mm (H) hook

20 x 20 cm (8 inches)

Abbreviations / Terms
US Terms used throughout (UK Terms)
hdc - half double crochet (htc - half treble crochet)
ch - chain
st(s) - stitch(s)

Notes:  Yarn is held double throughout to create the marbled effect.  If you would like a single colour you may use 1 strand aran (worstead) yarn instead...

With 2 strands and 5mm (H) hook ch 25

Foundation row hdc in 2nd ch from hook and in every ch.  Turn, 24 hdc.

Row 1 ch 1 (does not count as st) hdc in 1st st and in every st.  Turn

Row 2 repeat row 1 until piece measures 20 cm (8 inches).

Fasten off and weave in ends.

I hope you enjoyed this free pattern.  Don't you think they would make a lovely Mother's Day gift?  I have had a number of requests for a knitted version so watch this space...

This pattern is available in PDF format in my Pattern Store, which also includes a free copy of the printable belly bands.  If you would like to purchase the belly band PDF on it's own you can do this in my Etsy Shop.

Thank you so much for stopping by and see you all again soon...

Helpful Links
Personalised gift labels

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Wednesday, 23 January 2019

Mandalas for Mum - Pretty Crochet Coaster Pattern.

Scroll down for free pattern link...

It was my mum's birthday this week and I wanted to make her something small to send with her birthday card.  I remembered seeing a lovely coaster pattern in a book that Little T had got me for Christmas.   He had paid for it with his own money, it was a bargain for only £2 from The Works. The book is called "Vintage Style Crochet Projects" and is by Agnieszka Strycharska.

I chose some colours I thought Mum would like.  I used Drops Muskat which is a really pretty 100% cotton DK yarn and a 4mm hook.

The coasters worked up really quickly and I was tempted to make lots more but Sadly I didn't have much DK left.  I guess I will just have to go yarn shopping!  These coasters would make a great last minute gift for someone...

I'm sure lots of you would love to try out this pattern so I will leave a link to the book.  I have also found a free pattern that is almost identical, this one has a pretty round of shells to finish it off.  The pattern is in Dutch but Google can translate it for you and the step by step photos are great, you can see exactly what to do without even reading the pattern.  You can find the free pattern here...

I will be back soon with more crochet loveliness...

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Friday, 18 January 2019

Shetland Lace Slouchie - Free Knitting Pattern

In this frosty weather we all need a hat to keep our heads cosy and warm and why not add a splash of colour to your outfit too, by using brightly coloured wool?

Create this gorgeous colour block beanie, knitted in Caron Cakes yarn...

The Shetland Lace Slouchie is worked in the round on either double pointed needles or on a circular needle using the magic loop method.  It is comprised of a variation of the Old Shale stitch.  The lace is created by simple increases and decreases on a 4-row repeat, making this a perfect introduction to lace knitting.  An adventurous beginner could easily master this pattern.  The yarn cake creates a lovely colour block effect, with no need to keep changing colours.  The yarn does all the work for you.

Shetland Lace Slouchie

Materials:  1 ball Caron Cakes or similar yarn, darning needle, stitch marker, Clover pom pom maker (optional).

Needles:  5mm (8 US) & 4mm (6 US) dpn's or curcular needle (using magic loop method).

Ability:  Intermediate

Size:  Teen [adult] / 50-56 cm [56-61 cm] / 20-22 inches [22-24 inches]

Gauge:  10 x 10 cm = 18st's x 24 rows in stocking stitch (knit every row) on 5mm needles.

Special stitches:  2 x 2 rib - [k2, p2] repeat across

k - knit
k2tog - knit 2 together
k3tog - knit 3 together
yo - yarn over
st(s) - stitch(s)

Other notes:  If using circular needles without magic loop method change to dpn's when necessary...

Begin knitting...
With 4mm needles cast on 92 [100] sts and join in the round placing a stitch marker to denote the beginning of the round.

Round 1-14 2x2 rib.

Change to 5mm needles and on the next round increase 16 [8] sts evenly by knitting into front and back of the st.

Round 15 k.  108 sts.
Round 16 k.
Round 17 [k2tog] 3 times, *[yo, k1] 6 times, [k2tog] 6 times * repeat from *to* 5 times, [yo, k1] 6 times, [k2tog] 3 times.
Rounds 18-20 k
Rounds 21-28 repeat rounds 17-20 twice.
Round 29 [k2tog] 3 times, *k1 [yo, k1] 4 times, k1, [k2tog] 6 times* repeat from *to* 5 times, k1 [yo, k1] 4 times, k1 [k2tog] 3 times.  96 sts.
Rounds 30-32 k.
Round 33 [k2tog] twice, *k2 [yo, k1] 4 times, k2, [k2tog] 4 times* repeat from *to* 5 times, k2 [yo, k1] 4 times, k2, [k2tog] twice.
Rounds 34-36 k
Rounds 37-40 repeat rounds 33-36 once.
Round 41 [k2tog] 3 times, *[yo, k1] 4 times, [k2tog] 6 times* repeat from *to* 5 times, [yo, k1] 4 times, [k2tog] 3 times.  84 sts.
Rounds 42-44 k.
Round 45 [k2tog] twice, *k1, [yo, k1] 4 times, k1, [k2tog] 4 times* repeat from * to * 5 times, k1, [yo, k1] 4 times, k1, [k2tog] twice.
Rounds 46-48 k.
Round 49 k2tog, k3tog *[yo, k1] 4 times, k3tog, [k2tog] twice, k3tog* repeat from *to* 5 times, [yo, k1] 4 times, k3tog, k2tog.  72 sts.
Rounds 50-52 k.
Round 53 [k2tog] twice, *[yo, k1] 4 times, [k2tog] 4 times* repeat from *to* 5 times, [yo, k1] 4 times, [k2tog] twice.
Rounds 54-56 k.
Round 57 [k2tog] twice, *k1, [yo, k1] twice, k1 [k2tog] 4 times* repeat from *to* 5 times, k1, [yo, k1] twice, k1, [k2tog] twice.  60 sts.
Rounds 58-60 k.
Round 61 k2tog, *k2, [yo, k1] twice, k2, [k2tog] twice* repeat from *to* 5 times, k2, [yo, k1] twice, k2, k2tog.
Rounds 62-64 k.
Rounds 65-66 k2tog around.

Cut yarn and thread onto darning needle, thread through remaining stitches and pull tight, secure and weave in ends.

Pom Pom (optional)
Using the largest size Clover pom pom maker, make pom pom and sew to top of hat.

  A printable version of this pattern is available in my Pattern Store along with a matching scarf...


Helpful Links
Ravelry pattern page

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Sunday, 6 January 2019

Stash Busting - The Ron Weasley Blanket

Over the Christmas holidays we always binge watch the Harry Potter Movies.  Whilst watching Prisoner of Azkaban I happened to notice a gorgeous, scrappy, hand knitted blanket on Ron Weasley's bed (Molly Weasley I do so love all your makes).  I instantly knew this would make an awesome stash busting project and I had to start straight away.

A quick search found a brilliant guide by Jackie Wierzbick on her blog Penguineer's Purls and you can find the pattern page here...  She has painstakingly collected lots of photos of the blanket and produced them into a layout grid and a guide for each knitted block.  The squares are all knitted in garter stitch (which I love especially for "TV" knitting).  There is also a crochet version which you can find here...

So off I went to rummage through my stash.  I have a great deal of those huge 400g balls of aran yarn I bought "cos it's cheap" that never got used (because it wasn't soft enough for baby blankets).  I thought these would be ideal and I have so many other odds and ends that I am sure I can find something to match most of the colours.  I'm not too worried though as the blanket is meant to look scrappy, so if the colours aren't an exact match I will just use the closest yarn I can find.

Now anyone who knows me will know that I am not very keen on sewing. The thought of all those squares to sew together at the end appalled me.  I have made knitted shawls previously that had knitted on edges so thought there must be a way to knit the squares together as I went along.  With a bit of experimentation I have managed it (almost), the diagonal squares proved to be more of a conundrum than my non mathematical brain could handle, so I am knitting those squares separately and then stitching them on.  At lease there is not many of those to do, so this means that I will be able to join most of the squares as I go along.  I think I will write up a guide of how to do this if anyone is interested?

You can see the knitted together join here (nice and tidy)...

I can't tell you how enjoyable it is sitting watching Harry Potter movies with Little T and knitting along happily with my scrappy squares.  I can't wait to see the blanket progress and I am really pleased so far with how the join as you go approach is working.  I don't think my sewing would look anywhere near as neat.

As you can see the stitched join here (not so tidy).

I have almost 2 full rows of squares finished and am running out of Harry Potter movies to watch.

I will post again soon as the blanket progresses.  Do you have piles of stash languishing in boxes begging to be knitted or crocheted with?  Why not make a stash busting blanket yourself, I would love to see your photos...

See you soon

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Friday, 4 January 2019

Valentines Crochet Round Up - 10 Free Patterns

No sooner than we have taken down all our Christmas decorations, Valentines Day is knocking at the door.  I have selected my 10 favourite free patterns.  There is plenty to choose from, gifts for family and friends and maybe something to treat yourself...

What Valentines Day would be complete without a delicious box of chocolates and with the added bonus of zero calories.  Pattern by Michele Wilcox.

Learn a new stitch pattern to create a gorgeous heart blanket or just use the pattern to add a cute trim to other makes.  Designed by Mypicot.

Keep cosy in this lush cowl with adorable heart detail.  
Pattern by Crafts by Amanda.

Decorate your home for the season with this cute wall hanging by Creative Jewish Mom.

Add a crochet edging to these paper hearts and turn them into a gorgeous garland.  Decorate your home or give them as a gift.  Designed by Big A Little a.

Gorgeous daisy grannies joined to make this super cute heart decoration.  Designed by Bauta Witch.

You cannot have valentines day without a pink amigurumi owl!  This cutie is designed by Holly's Hobbies.

Another make to keep you cosy this winter.  A stunning scarlet cowl.  Created by Fiber Flux.

Why not crochet this cosy throw designed by Red Heart.

...and finally this gorgeous hot water bottle will ward off even the chilliest of days.  Designed by Sandra Paul.

I hope you have found something here to make someone you love happy this Valentines...

Happy hooking

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