Posted on

Yorkshire Lavender, New Designs and books

Hello,

 

The Weather Report

After a few miserable days today looks a little brighter. I do not think that it will be much sunnier though, that is typical when the school holidays have just started.

 

Yorkshire Lavender

Yesterday we visited Yorkshire Lavender which is near Castle Howard. The lavender was out in flower and the scent was beautiful, if you like lavender. The views are wonderful from the lavender field because it is sited on the side of a hill. The cafe was lovely, nice sandwiches and super cakes, mmmm.

 

Last weeks workshop

Here are some more pictures from the workshop.

Lots of progress made last week.

 

New WIP

I am currently working on a new blanket, I am hoping to work 42 different squares for this one, which is going to be an epic undertaking for me to get the patterns written.

I made one many years ago and although I can use some of those squares patterns again I want to modernise the colours and use colours that I don’t normally use. This is going to be darker colours as well. I also need to use more variations of stitches.

The progress so far…


Lovely Stitch Books

I have a lot of crochet books, here are a few more of my favourites,

Crochet Techniques by Renate Kirkpatrick published by Milner

This is a beautifully made book with lots of super stitches. It has colourful pictures and uses American terminology. There are also instructions for a beautiful hexagonal sampler and traditional square sampler.

It also includes Jacquard crochet which is a fasination techniqiue to try.

Annies Crochet

101 crochet stitch patterns

Another good book with 101 stitches. Once again this one uses American terminology good row by row instructions and usung normal easy ones and some unusual ones as well.

The third one is

Mosaic Magic Afghans made easy by Lily M. Chin

Leisure Arts

This book is full of beautiful afghans in many different stich variations

This book took me some time to find because it is no longer in print.

 

Posted on

Stylecraft visit

Good Morning

and it is a good morning the sun is shining   (for now that is because rain has been forecast for later today)

What a Week

I hate to say it but it has been a busy week, I had classes Wednesday and Thursday, a workshop on Friday, our youngest grandson stayed the night, Saturday was all the family for lunch and Sunday and Monday trips out.

Workshops

Anne was knitting socks  using the new colour Stylecraft Head over Heels yarn Ben Nevis it is really beautiful knitted.

Sunday trip out

Louise and I were invited to go to a Stylecraft show at their Mill in Slathwaite, near Huddersfield.

What a super morning we had there, first we were taken on a tour of the packing department I thought I had died and gone to heaven, it was floor to ceiling boxes of yarn.

Then we met the lady who designs the collections for the next new yarns and Seasons, we loved her design room with all her mood boards, I wish we had wall space in our work room to add some to our walls for inspiration. We did not realise how much work goes into the process of selling yarns before it arrives on our shelves, it is rigorously tested, knitted up and washed many times before being sold to the retailers.

We were treated to a special viewing of new designs and colours for the Winter season and then had lunch. What a super day..

Monday trip out

Phil and I went out for a ride on Monday morning we went to Rievaulx Abbey where Phil took lots of photographs, while I sat and worked on crochet. We drove back home a different way via Osmotherly, Phil stopped to take photos of bog weed or something !!!! Guess what I stopped in the car to crochet.

Rievaulx
Rievaulx

Now to sort out all the yarn and stocktake again…

 

Talk to to again next week

Ali xxx

 

Posted on

British Wool Show and Scarecrows

Weather Report

Sunshine and rain this morning it is supposed to get out this afternoon, if you believe the weather reports…

 

British Wool Show

What a lovely weekend we had at Thirsk.

It did not start too well we were given a long and narrow stand. I could not work out how to set it up, and had to stand looking at it for some time, we normally stand behind a table but this time we opened it out so that everyone could come inside and touch everything, it worked but we had nowhere to leave the money tin, so spent the weekend using plastic bags to hold the change not very professional you would think we had never done a show before.

Our stand always looks like a jumble sale I think I need help in designing a stand. I may have too much stuff…

Its is not far to go for us from Stockton but we decided to stop at The Carpenters Arms at Felixkirk, this was a nice little village just outside of Thirsk. Lovely puddings.

My pudding A taste of Strawberries

 

Some of the lovely cottages had scarecrows in their gardens.

Outside The Carpenters Arms

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We would like to say thank you to all of our customers, we were very busy both days, lots of chatting and selling. It was great to talk to you all, I am sorry if I had to break off from a conversation with anyone to serve someone else.

It gives me such a boost to know that people like my designs and I have arrived back home full of enthusiasm for making lots of new patterns.

I woke up yesterday at 4.30 and got up because my head was so full of stitches…. Phil would say wool….

I seem to have a brain that only thinks about one thing — crochet!!!!

I just wish that I could work them faster, I have more ideas than I could possibly have time to make.

We tried to do a quick stock count yesterday but I don’t think that my system has worked very well, so we will have to do a full stocktake next week oh joy.

It needs to be done though I would hate to think that anyone ordered lots of wool and our count was wrong.

 

 

Phil liked the tree outside our room, it was a single tree standing tall on a hill.

 

 

 

 

Thank you everyone for making our weekend great.

Alison, Phil and Louise

xxx

Posted on

British Wool Show

Hello,

Weather Report
Rain today yet more rain, it has been a very mixed week of weather, lots of rain and bits of sunshine..

British Wool Show

I have had a very productive week this week preparing for the British Wool Show at Thirsk this weekend.  Plenty of printing, folding, bagging and pricing of new designs for this year. I have quite a few patterns that have not been to a show yet.. So it is their first outing…

Rainbow Doll
This week I have finished making a rainbow doll.  Pattern coming very soon…

Bridesmaid Posey Bag

Posey Bag
Posey Bag

Caron Cake Squares 

Pollenca Blanket – Pattern

Jeanie Blanket – pattern

Jeanie Blanket
Jeanie Blanket

Emily – Pattern

Emily Doll
Emily Doll

And lots more please pop along to our stand to say hello. Don’t forget you can pick a free printed pattern for Lockton Squares.

Ali x

 

Posted on

Busy Busy and day out

Hello,

Sorry the blog is late today, we have had a busy day adding new stock to Wool to your door, Louise and Phil have been busy taking photos of it all as well as lots of new pattern pictures and redoing some older designs which badly needed updating.

 

New Stock

The new Stock which arrived yesterday is Stylecraft Special DK Candy Swirl

150gram ball for £6.80

Super new cakes of colour I can’t wait to try them.

There are 8 colours and they have the same feel as Special dk.

candy 4
candy 4

Day Out

Phil and I had a day out yesterday in the super weather, Phil loves to take photographs and takes a long time to set up and take a shot, so I quickly take a photo and settle down somewhere close to crochet, so both of us are happy..

 

Aysgarth Falls
Aysgarth Falls

We went to the Yorkshire Dales, visiting Askrigg, Thwaite, Keld, and finally finishing up at Aysgarth Falls, it was lovely sitting in the quiet with the sun starting to go down, listening the the water and crocheting, very peaceful… Sorry about these pictures they were taken on my phone. The proper ones need changing to jpeg and it may take some time to get processed.

 

NewPatterns

Lots of new designs in the pipeline, lots of typing up to do, a show to prepare for and dinner to cook, busy, busy, busy. I feel the need to go and crochet so dinner may be late, oops.

 

Off to crochet and cook dinner, maybe…. a bit later

Talk to you all again next week

Bye for now

Ali xxxx

 

Posted on

Book review – 101 Crochet Stitch Patterns & Edgings

Hello,

Weather report
The weather today is a bit cloudy and a lot cooler than it was over the weekend.

Book Review
I thought I would do something a little different this week.  I have been crocheting for many years and I am a big lover of books.  This has meant I have collected many many craft books over the years, mainly crochet books. A small section my book shelves…

Book shelves
Book shelves

 

The book I have chosen to look at is called, 101 Crochet Stitch Patterns & Edgings: Patterns to Create Everything from Doilies to Afghans (Annies Attic Crochet), written and edited by Connie Ellison. My version is lovely, colourful paperback book published in 2012.  

101 Crochet Stitch Patterns & Edgings
101 Crochet Stitch Patterns & Edgings

The book includes patterns for swatches and edges plus two examples of how they can be made up into a blankets.  There is a section at the end of the book which covers crochet basics and helpful lessons.

The patterns in this book use US terminology. The print and layout is very clear, and each pattern has a clear photograph.

Short break

I have been busy trying to do a few new patterns this week, Phil and I have had a long weekend away to celebrate his 65th birthday, so I packed lots of lovely cotton yarns (who needs clothes) to experiment with on the plane and sunbed, news on them soon. What I really would like to know is how we manage to get a lovely warm place to go for his birthday and for mine we went to Geneva, snow and freezing there in December…..

 

British Wool Weekend
I will be at the British Wool Weekend again this year, selling my patterns, yarn and yarn packs.

  • Saturday the 8th of July 10am-5pm
  • Sunday the 9th of July 10am-4pm
  • Thirsk Rural Business Centre
    Blakey Lane, Thirsk
    North Yorkshire
    YO7 3AB

It would lovely to see you, if you are going pop along, stop at our stand and say hello.

Don’t forget to subscribe and share this blog please.

Happy Crocheting,

Ali x

Posted on

Meet Emily

Good Morning

Lovely start to the day, I hope that I can get the washing outside when it is done.

We had a busy weekend, I had asked an electrician to come and put a new light outside our back door and some sockets in the garage, unfortunately that meant that he had to go up in the garage loft…. the biggest nightmare ever, it took 2 carloads of stuff removing to the tip just to make a small space to get him a path through. Next job on my list which seems to get longer by the hour is to get it cleared, I think it has everything up there including a kitchen sink which was my fathers.

 

Whitby

Yesterday we had a lovely trip out to Whitby and Falling Foss

We like to park up at the Abbey and walk down into Whitby, I went to find a post office while Phil and our son in law Mark went to take photographs, this can be a long process so I found something else to do, shopping !!!!!

We picked Mark up at 7am and were hungry by 10am  so we had brunch in Harrys bar, lovely bacon and eggs…..

They went to take more pictures while I shopped again and then went back to the car to crochet unfortunately they found me asleep, oops.

After more picture taking, a trip to the beach further along the coast and a walk to Falling Foss we were ready for a drink and cake at Midge Hall.

A fitting end to a trip out.

 

Emily

My new doll pattern is ready for sale, Emily is a sitting doll with floppy legs, she is approx, 28cms tall. I have used Stylecraft Special dk yarn in 5 colours

Emily crochet pattern

 

 

 

 

 

Sophie’s Universe

I have been working a few more rows my Sophies Universe blanket, I downloaded and printed lots of the instructions a couple of years ago, but I could not resist buying the book.

I love this book by Dedri Uys it is such a lovely quality book.

It is a challenging blanket and one I have to concentrate on, I have just finished round 50 I think it will take many more years for me to get it finished.

 

Stylecraft new CAL

Stylecraft’s new crochet along starts in July

Ross Blanket designed by Catherine Bligh

She has used beautiful colours which she has taken from the series Poldark from the costumes worn by the cast.

We have a pack available on Wool to your door

Ross Blanket Yarn Pack

 

Yet another busy day ahead

Off to have my hair trimmed this morning, shorten some trousers, put the washing out, iron a few that I washed the other day, pick my Grandson up from school, still have more book keeping to finish and last but not least I have some wool to sort out.

Happy days

Ali xxx

Posted on

Rain, Parcels and Progress

Hi

Weather report

Miserable again, it is raining and very dull, not too warm either……

I have been in the garage this morning trying to make some space for an electrician to come and put up a light and add some new plugs. It really is a mess, it looks like the local charity shops will be having lots of new stock this week….

 

New yarn supplier

I am very excited today.

I have just received a large box with 2 huge files and 5 balls of yarn from a new supplier. We have been looking for some different yarns for a while and this is the first one to send us some samples. We will take a look tomorrow, make a choice and let you know in a few weeks when we have received the new stock.

 

 

This weeks progress report

I have had a good week this week, finishing off a few things and starting some more, will I ever get all the WIPs finished!!!!

Noooo I don’t think so because I love starting new things.. in the pipeline a new doll not too sure about her yet, there may need to be a few tweaks, a new Flower Frenzy book, some stash buster shapes and finally almost finished another new doll.

I have also finished another panel from Louises Art of Crochet monthly squares blanket. I don’t know how much longer it is going to go on for because I never seem to catch up with the deliveries.

 

New Dolls

 

 

 

My design of Higgledy Piggledy Blanket seems to be very popular, don’t forget we have the pattern on sale here, as well as the yarn packs over on Wool to Your Door.

We also have a printed pattern for it as well on Wool to your door

It also looks lovely in these colours chosen by Carol

 

 

We have not been too busy here this week, so I have managed to get a bit of paperwork done I need to finish the books for last year, I am nearly there. I really must do them each month to make it easier ~

 

I was wondering if it would be useful to add a hint or tip to this blog, so this weeks is going to be a guide to hook sizes and stitch variations between USA and UK

 

Crochet Notes

Ok all done now with the link working I hope, I accidentally closed everything down instead of just going back and had to start all over again.

 

Happy days

Carry on crocheting

Ali xxx

Posted on

Retro colours and old books

Good Morning,

Lets get the weather report out of the way first, we have had the hottest days last week, then on Bank holiday when most people are off we get gloomy and wet,  a typical English summer day. Today is cloudy and not so gloomy, let us hope that it will improve.

I used to find it hard to think of things to say when I started blogging, I found it difficult to write and now I seem to love talking about anything and everything. I hope that you enjoy this weeks look into my life.

 

Old Books

I have lots and lots of crafting books collected over the years I was looking for a few to talk about and found this one The Blue Peter Make, Cook and Look book it was printed in 1978 and is full of recipes, things to make and places to see. It was a time when John Noakes was working on the program and I heard yesterday that he had died, so sad. It makes me realise that we are all getting older and I still remember him when they had Shep on the program, he really loved that dog.

Blue Peter
Blue Peter

Some of my books go back to the 1970s, 1980s and 1990s here are just a few knitting , embroidery and mixed craft books. I really think that I should start parting with some of these, they have not been used for years. I find it so difficult to part with books, they all have a story to tell, wether it was bought on a holiday or for something inside that I wanted to make, I never bought a book that didn’t have anything in that I wanted to make. So I must have found something in each of these that I found interesting. What it was I have no idea.

Craft books
Craft books

The cross stitch book is very Scandinavian with lots of decorations.

From cones for sweets to hang on the tree and cloths, to covered match boxes !!!! very strange.

The patterns though are lovely if you like to work cross stitches.

***

The Kids knits and Crochet has not much crochet and many colourful knitted jumpers and cardigans. I can’t find a date on this one.

 

The Creative Needlecraft is mostly embroidery techniques from Canvas work to Patchwork

Nice book with a page of  background history to each technique and instructions of how to work the stitches

 

Crochet catch up

I have finally caught up with the knitted squares so I can now concentrate on my crochet work, hmmm what to make next I don’t really have a set idea, but I do have lots to finish off, and lots to type up as well, I think that that is where I will start this week. I have a scarf to put live and a blanket to type up.

 

Wool to your door

My daughter Louise has taken over the blog on Wool to your door and is doing a super job of telling everyone about our new stock, this week we have been adding new packs of yarn using rainbow colours. She is also making my Higgledy Piggledy blanket and showing her progress, she is working this in Retro colours I love the muted tones that she has used.

These are available in the shop as well as other yarn packs. The packs are proving to be a popular seller, do you like to have the colours chosen for you or to choose your own colours? when you buy a pack do you have a project in mind or break them up to use for different things?

 

I am going to the post office now with the next batch of parcels, I look forward to next weeks blog.. to keep up with any news on both our sites don’t forget to fill in the notification form on the right hand side….

Alison xx

 

 

Posted on

Washing, weather and WIPs

Hello

Super day for crochet ; )

Weather Report

What a beautiful start to the day today, the sun was shining early, I have managed to get a full line of washing out for the first time.

I have had a busy morning, popped down to the doctors early for a blood test, came back home, popped out again to the post office to send a letter and a parcel of yarn away, then on to the Halifax and to Barclays and finally food shopping…

 

And now for the blog

This week I am afraid to say I am still trying to catch up with the knitted squares, they seem to be taking a bit longer because there have not been many plain squares, I don’t know how I have managed to get so far behind I was being really good and doing the 4 each month when they arrived. Somehow I had 12 to do..

Business cards

Our new business cards have arrived from Moo this week along with bags and bags of Stylecraft Special DK, I have still not found a home for it all, I really don’t think that I will, there is not an inch of space left in the wardrobes. We are stocking more because the sales on Wool to your door have been picking up over the last few weeks, I think that this is because my daughter Louise has been going on Instagram and Facebook.

Moo cards
Moo cards

 

Harris Holiday

Here is one of pictures that we took while we were away I am going to use them for colour inspiration I can now see where all the colours come from for the Harris tweed. It is very easy to do choose your picture and select the most prominent colours. You can also add a contrast to this as well.

I have chosen white, graphite, silver, stone, duck egg and vintage peach as colours from this picture.

 

Patterns

There are lots of crochet patterns here on Ali Crafts Designs these are PDF for you to print out yourself, I am in the process of adding printed versions on Wool to your door for anyone who is unable to print out their own at home. If you have seen one here on Ali Crafts Designs and you would like a printed version and it is not there yet, please email me on  info@wooltoyourdoor.com then I can add it as soon as I am able to get it done.

We now have a box on the right hand side panel on both sites for you to sign up for blog updates if you want to be notified when we have written any blogs on both sites. You will need to sign up on both, because unfortunately we can’t join the 2 sites at the moment.

 

WIP

This week I have been experimenting with stash buster ideas and have enjoyed not making a whole blanket or project, I don’t know about you but we always seem to have 2 large bags of wool left over from designing new patterns, this is because I like to be able to tell you how much yarn is needed for each project and I start with new balls most times.

This simple little flower only takes approx. 5 metres. as you can see it is still a work in progress, I have not darned the ends in yet. Sorry Anne I promise I will darn them in before Wednesdays class.

No name yet

Stash buster number 4

  1. 5ch., ss. to join in 1st ch.
  2. 1ch., 8dc. into circle, ss. to join in 1st dc.
  3. Pull up a loop about 1cm ( half an inch )  yarn round hook, pull another loop up through same stitch, rep. from * yarn over hook and pull through all loops on hook, 3ch., rep from * working in next st.  ( 8 petals )

I have joined them together when working the 2nd round instead of working  3ch. between petals, work 1 ch., ss. into loop on the other flower, 1ch., work next petal on 2nd flower. I joined each flower to 2 of the 3ch. spaces on the last flower.

You are going to be testers again I am afraid, I hope that you enjoy this one. If you can think of a name please email me, many thanks.

 

Busy day

Must add more patterns to Wool to your door now

Oh and I nearly forgot I have a trip to the dentists this afternoon and a pile of ironing to do, I don’t like ironing, that may need to wait until tomorrow.

 

Happy days

Alison xxx