Archives for the month of: December, 2016

A summary of my designs in 2016, few words but plenty of photos!

5 blankets:

picmonkey-collage1

Some mandalas and tableware:

picmonkey-collage2

Bags and a purse…………………………scarves, cowls and shawl:

picmonkey-collage4picmonkey-collage3

And the Advent CAL decorations:

picmonkey-collage5

Phew, what a year!

Happy crocheting xx

The topic for the last Crochet Club of 2016 was ‘Last Minute Christmas’ and I provided several patterns of little items to make quickly as last minute gifts. One of the popular makes was a quick purse pattern or ‘recipe’ which I thought I’d share with you.

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This can be made in a couple of hours if a small purse, or you could use the same methodology to make a bigger purse or bag which would take longer.

The materials we used were:
8cm (3¼”) wide curved purse frames with a ‘kiss’ fastener and holes for sewing the fabric to (I sourced them from ebay)
Double knit yarn (only a small amount needed – 25g should be ample)
4mm (US G/6) crochet hook
Tapestry needle for sewing in ends.
Large eyed sharp sewing needle and thinner yarn or sewing thread

Your tension should be quite firm to create a strong fabric with no holes, so you may need to use a slightly smaller hook to get the fabric firm.  The advantage of making a firm fabric is that the purse will not need lining!

Abbreviations
English crochet terms used
St(s) = stitch(es)
Ch = chain
Ss = slip stitch
Dc = double crochet.
You also need to know how to make a magic ring

Recipe
The purse starts with a circle and increases in a similar way to a mandala, you are aiming to get the circle the right diameter to fit the frame for sewing to.  So start with a magic ring (or 4ch joined with a ss), work in a continuous spiral with 6dc for the first round, 12dc for the second round, 18dc for the third round etc until your circle is the correct size for the frame.

Find the correct diameter by folding the circle and hold against the closed frame, you need to ensure part of the circle creates a gusset at the sides of the frame.

Once you have the correct diameter work rounds with no increases for about 6cm (2½”), break yarn, fasten off and weave in ends.

Finally sew the purse to the frame.  I used cotton dk yarn which I was able to split to make a finer thread to sew the purse to the frame, but you could use matching sewing thread.

For my purse I did 9 rounds of increases (to a circle of 54 sts around) then 13 straight rounds, but some people in the group used more sts and rounds as their tension was a little tighter than mine.

If you make one of these as a gift, you could pop some ‘universal gift vouchers’ inside!

Happy crocheting xxx

There’s lots of news on CALs this week.

First the Advent CAL is now up to pattern 9:

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And here are patterns 1 to 8:

The Ravelry group is very active – over 100 photos have already been shared of various Advent CAL decorations and many people are doing more than one of each.  Some are using just one colour, but others are using up to 3.   There are some sparkly yarns and many embellishments,  and even a lovely set of felted decorations.   Do have a look on the finished objects thread on Ravelry here.

There are still another 3 patterns to be published.  Pattern 9 is one of my favourites from the set of 12, but my most favourite is number 12; I’m saving the best til last!

Second CAL news – Over the festive period I am running a Christmas Mandala CAL.  This will start on 26th December 2016 and each day from then until 1st January 2017 a round or 2 of the pattern will be published.

The sample for the design uses cotton dk yarn in 5 colours, but it can be made in any yarn weight and any number of colours provided you use a suitable hook size. The mandala in dk cotton yarn on a 4mm hook measures 17½cm (7”) across.

Here’s where you can find the pattern:  link; only the introduction is available at the moment, from 26th December the pattern will be updated as each new round is published. There is a discount code on Ravelry, available until midnight on 26th December (GMT), giving a 50% discount on the price of the pattern – details on the Ravelry group.

Finally starting in January I will run a hexagon blanket CAL.   This will run for several weeks.  There are 4 designs of hexagon and they are join as you go (although you could join in a different way if you like).  I’m using aran weight yarn and my blanket is well advanced.  More details will be available after Christmas.

CALs are great fun and I would love you to join in one!

 

Happy crocheting xx

I haven’t reviewed my pattern prices for a long time.  When VAT on digital downloads was introduced (and hence my digital pattern sales on various websites became subject to VAT) I decided to absorb the VAT rather than have people around the world pay different prices.  At that time I intended to review my prices after the whole VAT situation settled down, but I never did.  So I am long overdue a review.

Pricing is very hard, but the one thing I do know is that I should not undervalue my work.   So I have done a thorough review and the result is that I will increase most of my prices from 1st January 2017.  This may not happen instantly on that date as it takes time to update all the individual patterns on the websites I use, but within the first few days of January each pattern will have been reviewed and the price updated.  In general the pricing structure changes for the 3 main types of designs will be:

Shawls and scarves are currently priced between £3 and £3.50  – they will rise to between £4 and £5

Cowls are currently priced between £1 and £3 – they will rise to between £3 and £4

Blankets are currently priced between £3 and £3.50 – they will rise to between £4 and £5

All prices are inclusive of VAT, so everyone pays the same (apart from the effect of currency fluctuations that I cannot control).

I do hope you appreciate the need for this review and update.

Today I published the 4th pattern in the Advent CAL collection of 12.  You can find it here.

These are the first 4:

picmonkey-collage1to4d

There are lots of variations of these appearing on Ravelry, well none of number 4 yet as it was published only this morning but there are more than 50 photos of numbers 1 to 3!

Have you joined the CAL yet?   There’s lots of fun to be had……and prizes!

picmonkey-collage1to4a

Happy crocheting xxxx

Pattern 2 has now been added to the Advent CAL.  You can find it here.

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Don’t forget you can still get a discount until midnight GMT tonight, details on the Ravelry group here.

Happy crocheting xxx

 

 

Did I mention there are prizes?

Oooops…..I forgot.  If you go onto the Ravelry group check out this post which tells you about the prizes and eligibility.

The top prize is this:

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So join the CAL and get hooking!

Happy crocheting xxx

PS tomorrow morning part 2 will be published, and the discount code will still be available until midnight GMT tomorrow.

 

 

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