I do enjoy the Amigurumipatterns.net design contests – you may remember that I entered their ‘fantasy’ competition last year (read about it here) and weirdly when I saw this years ‘theme’ I was actually making a dinosaur! Call that serendipity or fate – I dunno but I thought it definitely seemed that I should enter my project.
If you follow me on Instagram then you’ve probably seen my gradual progress of Stefan the baby Stegosaurus from my initial sketched design…
Until he was all put together and ready for a cuddle!
And now the voting to the competition is OPEN! If you happen to like Stefan the Baby Stegosaurus could you please spare me a few moments to go vote for him. Your vote counts, and that’s why there’s three special Voters Prizes up for grabs! By voting you take part in the raffle to win 3 x 100 colors Must-Have Minis by Yarn and Colors!
Disclaimer: I received a free sample of this yarn however I have not been financially compensated by the supplier to write this review. All opinions expressed are my own and based on my own experiences of using the yarn.
Luxury yarn – sometimes you just have to splurge and get that hand-dyed loveliness that you’ve got your eye right!? Or does it seem a bit scary?
I like to think of luxury yarn as my ‘special’ occasion yarn…it’s something I’ll use when I want to make something for a ‘special’ someone – especially if it’s anything that is going to worn a lot. Anything that you want to last and perhaps become an heirloom well that’s where luxury yarn comes in. Whether you are making something as a treat for someone else or because you are going to put a lot of work into a beautiful pattern, I’ve learnt that it often pays to choose a luxury yarn.
I recently had the pleasure of designing with some of The Yarn Collective Pembroke Worsted yarn which just oozes luxuriousness from every fibre!
Oh so lovely and squishy!
From that first squish when I got it out the packaging I just knew it was going to be a pleasure to crochet with…and it really was! But more about that in a moment, the first thing we need to establish, to be all proper and yarn reviewy, are the vital statistics of the yarn which are:
Weight: Worsted | 10ply
Blend: 100% Merino Wool
Yarn Ball Weight: 3.5 oz/100 g
Yarn Ball Length: 200m / 219yds
Wash instructions: Hand-wash
Price: £16.90 (at the time of this post)
Pembroke Worsted yarn comes in 10 different shades designed by Bristol Ivy, an influential American knitwear designer, all inspired by the rich, pure tones of gems and minerals. It’s hand painted in small batches using a combination of solid shades and close tonal colours to create perfectly blended varicoloured skeins.
The Yarn Collective
Honestly this yarn was a dream to work with! It’s a lighter worsted yarn with a recommended hook size of 4.50mm (US size 7) – though I found it’s very adaptable dependent on the design.
I have designed a brand new pattern with the stunning icy grey-greens of ‘Tellurium’ (shade 308). I love working with variegated yarns – it really keeps things interesting as you work and the colour changes in the Pembroke Worsted are pleasingly regular and add a lovely dimension to a pattern. You’ll have to wait a bit longer for my big reveal but I can give you a little sneaky peep…
So if you are looking for a versatile worsted weight luxury yarn that will create beautifully soft, yet durable projects then I would definitely recommend The Yarn Collective Pembroke Worsted yarn.
If you are interested in having some of this beautiful yarn for your very own it is currently available for purchase vialoveknitting.com
Well until next time, happy hooking and keep calm and crochet on my friends xx
I thought I’d do a little review of my hooky year in pictures…
January saw the release of the biggest thing I worked on all year. It’s also the item and design which I am ultimately most proud of. The Everything Is Cool and Groovyghan 2016 Crochet-A-Long is definitely the most challenging thing I have designed and shared so far and the finished groovyghans made by other crafters have just blown me away (you lot are amazing!). Although the crochet-a-long has now finished you can still make a groovyghan of your very own by checking out the details on the blog here.
February and March I was busygrowing a humanwhich turned out to be quite hard work!So, aside from the groovyghan, there wasn’t a whole lot of crocheting going on…
Then in April my new shawl pattern, The Spring Blossom Wrap, was released in iLikeCrochet Magazine. Worked in a smooth 4ply cotton yarn and a 3.5mm hook I was really pleased with the floral look I eventually achieved on this shawl which I based on cherry blossoms.
In May and June baby had finally arrived so I got back to a little hooking by working up some quick little hats and a headband for my new arrival. I just chose some patterns on Ravelry that I liked the look of and they actually turned out to be all free patterns. The hats and tie back I made include the Sedge Stitch Newborn Beanie, the Bonnie Bell Bonnet, the TopKnot Baby Hat and the 15 Minute Tieback. The Bonnie Bell Bonnet was one of the first hats I hooked up. It’s such a cute design and as its worked in Aran (Worsted) weight yarn it’s very quick to work up.
In July I hooked up a littleAmineko catfor Little G’s summer fayre, such a fun design and super cute!
and I finally finished a work in progress which had been started a year previously! The Corner to Corner Granny Stitch Throw was a great pattern to use up loads of odds and ends of double knit in my stash…
In November and December I hooked up several Christmassy items for my girls including some cute Elfin baby boots and some fabulous elf hats. I also hooked up a fab little mouse baby hat for a Micky fan – unfortunately this particular pattern is no longer available, there are plenty of alternatives out there though if you are looking for this style.
I also hooked up my special animals from my TOFT yarn and some awesome little Princesses for some gorgeous little girls; but I’m going to blog about those later so I’ll save those ta-dah moments for 2017!
Wow, I enjoyed that stroll down memory lane! I find when it’s all written down like this that I have accomplished more than I realised! Crochet is such a big part of my life that sometimes I forget what I have been up to in the year as I’m concentrating on the next design or project. The most fantastic thing about crochet is that it continually brings me happiness, fun challenges, surprises, satisfaction at a job completed and most of all relaxation.
So what can you look forward to in 2017 from me?
I have so many plans for 2017! I’m extremely excited to be working with several crochet magazines this year on new designs, I’ve also got various exciting collaborations coming up, I’m going to be catching up with patterns that I didn’t finish due to being pregnant (and ill) and then having a newborn (for those waiting for Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds – this is at the top of the list!) AND we’ve got a brand new crochet-a-long to look forward to (starting in March) which is also in development behind the scenes as we speak.
Finally I’d like to say a mahoosive thank you to everyone who has followed me on the blog or on social media in 2016…
My thanks is to everyone who may have brought and/or made any of my patterns, who have read my musings following me here on the blog and for those who have offered / or continued to offer their hands in friendship. I cannot tell you how much I appreciate your support, enthusiasm and your camaraderie and how much I love to see your finished work!
Well until next time, happy hooking and keep calm and crochet on my friends xx
I’m feeling pleased with myself this week; I’ve finally finished one of my WIPs (work in progress) that I mentioned here that I have had hanging around for ages!
Back in December 2014 I was going through a tough time personally and decided I wanted to hook myself a rainbow to try to help cheer myself up. I think there is nothing quite like a crochet hook, a repetitive pattern and immersing yourself in colour as a type of therapy!
I decided to make a scrap blanket using bits of double-knit (8ply) that I’d got lying around which would work with a particular pattern I’d had my eye on for a while. The pattern in question is the lovely Corner-to-Corner Granny Stitch Throw by Kimberlie Goodnough. It’s a fun variation of granny stitch and C2C (corner to corner) styles that works great with bits and pieces of left over yarn. The pattern contains details on how to create a throw in any size you like. You can also use any yarn and any hook you want for bigger / smaller blankets.
I wanted something big enough for me and Little G (and now Little Miss) to snuggle under and so decided to make it quite large. My end blanket ended up roughly about 1.4 x 1.3 metres (4 ft 5″ x 4 ft 2″) so big enough to wrap us all in.
So without further ado let me show you it in all its finished loveliness!!
I lost track of how many colours I actually used up in the project but I have to say it’s been so pleasing hooking up a rainbow. After a lot of deliberation with border colour I finally decided to go with white (which I hadn’t included in the main rainbow) and which I think finished off the blanket really well. My husband has been ecstatic about the fact that I’ve used up some of my oddments of yarn that I’ve had lying around.
As I had hooked it over time with different tensions I did have to amend the border slightly from the one in the pattern (though not much) and I added crab stitch (reverse crochet) all around to finish it off because it’s just my most favourite ever edging and because this blanket is all mine!!
The worse bit about the project for me was my own fault…it was the weaving in of the billion ends! I tried to do it as I went but sometimes forgot so there was still a lot to weave in the end – someone seriously needs to invent a weaving in machine.
It now sits on the back of my chair ready for me to pull over us whilst watching TV of an evening or anytime my girls want to snuggle with me.
This was always going to be a long-term project but I must confess I didn’t think it would take me nearly 2 years to complete! I think it was worth the wait though, I’m so pleased with how it turned out in the end and I know it will get lots of use.
Until next time; keep calm and crochet on my friends xx
Cue Abba’sSlipping Through my Fingerand me hiding my tears;Little G started BIG school last week! This is a humongous deal for both of us! Though I’m sure that Little G will take everything in her stride – she’s a happy, sociable child who loves to learn so I’m pretty sure she is going to adore everything about school.
How I feel about it all is a bit different…I’m happy for her, for this next part of her life, she is excited about it and I want her to keep that feeling rather than her dread going each day. However, she’s only four and a half which I know is a normal age but it just seems so young – she looks so tiny in her proper uniform! I gaze around me in bewilderment at times alarmed at the accelerated manner in which we seem to have got to this point. I look at her beautiful little face and see her as a baby; blink my eyes and there she is; long limbed and bouncing around like a colt ready to explore the meadow. As she is my one and only it also feels to me like this is the official end of her ‘baby’ years, the end of Mummy days together on a Friday – the end of an era!! I can’t help but be sad about that – but remaining positive I’ll now have about 5 hours on a Friday to catch up on all things crochet.
The nursery that she’s attended since she was 10 months old has been such a big part of our lives for the last 4 years. It’s been a brilliant place for all of us and Little G has loved every minute that she’s attended there. So I wanted to gift something special; I knew that I wanted it to be fun and, as there’s nothing better than a handmade gift in my eyes, I knew I wanted it to be something I made for them. In the end I decided on a cushion for the Pre-School story corner, Little G loves to read books so it seemed appropriate.
So if you follow on my blog then you will have seen my post here which is my pledge to finishing up some un-finished works in progress (WIPs) that are lying around my house.
Well I finally finished up this beautiful poncho for Little G recently and was really pleased with how it turned out. The pattern is Butterfly Breeze Poncho by Sincerely Pam chosen because it’s a stunning design and because it’s for Little G who loves butterflies at the moment.
As it’s hard to get my hands of Red Heart Yarns (which is the yarn suggested for the pattern) I choose Stylecraft Special Aran and Stylecraft Special Double Knit in Magenta to make it out of because it’s so swishily soft!
Purple is Little G’s favourite colour and the Stylecraft Magenta shade is just such a yummy rich but bright purple.
I added tassels all round the outer edge of my poncho because they are such a fun embellishment.
Little G’s verdict was that she loves her ‘swishy top’ and has been wearing it around the house – that’s the best sort of endorsement I could wish for!
So yay! I can tick one of my WIPs off the list, 1 down, 9 more to go…
So I saw a fabulous post by Marianne on marrose-ccc.com (who was in turn inspired by Janneke on JipbyJan) which is about listing current works in progress (WIPS) in the bid to getting organised and getting them all done!
I thought this was a wonderful idea and so am hereby naming and shaming all my WIPS (well all the ones in my near vicinity that I’m sure my husband would like me to finish). This list also includes future WIPS that I’ve brought the materials for but not made yet…I’m not counting orders, the CAL or Doodle animals in the list as they will be made first.
So lets have a little look at my list shall we!
1. Blanket 1: Corner-to-Corner Granny Stitch Throw by Kimberlie Goodnough | started December 2014 | This was always going to be a long term project to use up bits of scrap yarn from my stash. Hooked up in a beautiful rainbow scheme I’m loving it and am so glad to be keeping it for my very own when it’s finished! Although there are a bazillion ends to weave in and I still need to decide on what colour to edge it in – any ideas?
2. Blanket 2: Special Afghan by various | Started January 2015 | I can’t say too much about this one as that person might be looking! But it’s going to be a 24 x 12 inch block afghan and I think I’ve made 2 blocks so far. But I’ve got until December, that’s ages right!?!
3. Blanket 3: Superbly Simple Blanket by me| Started May 2015 | I started this other long term in-between projects blanket when I hadn’t got any colours to hook the corner to corner granny blanket (above). Once I’ve finished off this one I’m going to add it as a free pattern here on the blog. I think you’ll love it as much as I do!
4. Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds Large Motif by me | Started March 2015 | My own personal deadline is to get at least the mandala part of this motif written up is for the end of August. I’ve started the photo tutorials to accompany the pattern but as I’m making a brand new copy of Lucy in the process it’s going to take a bit of time!
5.Butterfly Breeze Poncho by Sincerely Pam | Started June 2015 | Annoyingly I ran out of yarn for the tassels for this one but it’s arrived today (yay) so in all likelihood I should be able to finish this off for Little G fairly quickly. I want to take it on our holidays in August so there’s my deadline right there!
6.“Nautical Knots” Beach / Yarn / Tote Bag by Jennifer Pionk | To be started | And here’s another thing I want to try and get hooked up before my August hols. I’ve got all the yarn and materials to make it! I just need the time to actually make it!
7.Bountiful Butterflies by Marken of The Hat & I| To be started | I’ve got everything I need to make this beautiful mobile for Little G’s new butterfly themed bedroom I just need the time to get on and make it! I’m looking forward to making this one!
8.Creating A Crochainting by Patricia Stuart | To be started | Again I’ve got everything I need to make this. We’ve just had our house decorated and I want to make this to go in my bedroom above our bed in neutral browns.
9.Special Cushion 1 by Sincerely Pam | To be started | I can’t say too much about this one in case the wrong person sees it but it’s got to be finished by September!
9. Special Cushion 2 by me | To be started | It’s all about cushions and blankets pretty much isn’t it!! Well this one is for my little brother who has just moved house as a moving in gift. I’ve got the design in my head (and the materials to make it) – just need to get on and do it!
11. Create A Cloche by JoAnne Grimm Thompson | To be started | I made one of these recently for Little G for our holiday and it was awesome! I’ve just brought some more cotton to make another which I can hopefully get finished before our August hols also!
12. New Hat by me | To be started | Unfortunately I really don’t look very good in hats! However I brought a straw sort of one on holiday in France last year that looked kind of okay but it now has a hole in the top! I want to try and recreate some thing similar in crochet. I’ve got an idea of how it can be done…but it might be a challenge getting there! P.S. it doesn’t look like the picture below!
Eeek! I think I had better leave it there don’t you! That’s more than enough to keep me going! What an interesting (and enjoyable) hooky journey I will have to get this list finished! As Marianne says in her post,
“I’m just going to work my way through it, one step (or should I say stitch) at a time, hoping for some cheering on from you lovely people”