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Holiday and Harris Tweed

Good Morning

Raining this morning, we have not had lots of rain for a while, you would think that the weather knew that I had been away last week and have lots of washing to do..

 

Holiday

Phil and I have been away with our friend last week for a photography trip, we stayed first in Portree on Skye where we had an amazing few days, the weather was beautiful and the places that we visited were lovely.

Portree
Portree

We then went by ferry across to the Outer Hebrides where we stayed on Harris, again we had fairly good weather only one very cold and windy day. There are not many straight roads on Harris, the one our cottage was on was 14 miles long with many twists and turns, very narrow with passing places, very scary, especially when we met a car coming the other way.

I loved the Harris Tweed shops and the beautiful beaches.

Harris Tweed
Harris Tweed

I did not realise that there were so many different ones this is just a small sample. There was a super book in an art gallery we visited called From the Land comes the Cloth: Harris Tweed by Ian Lawson, this was photographs all from Harris and some of the Tweed so that you could see where the colours all came from. It also had pictures of the sheep farmers and the weavers. To be able to add a Harris Tweed mark the weavers have to weave the cloth in their own homes. I found the colours and the history fascinating.

 

Harris
Harris

This was Luskentyre Beach it looked like it could have been in somewhere very exotic the colours were beautiful.

 

WIPs

I managed to crochet some things while I was away I have finished a C2C blanket ( corner to corner ) which I stared on another holiday.

Made a scarf and started a new doll.  Pictures and more information next week.

Sorry I am a bit late today the computer froze on me and I had to wait for it to start again.

More news next week

Alison xx

 

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A quiet week

Hello,

Weather report

Another dull grey Tuesday morning here but the sun is supposed to be out later 🙂

Quiet week

I have had a quiet week this week, sorting out paperwork, website and orders.  It is amazing how little jobs can take longer than expected.  I have also been helping Louise with a few jobs and school runs with her husband having a broken arm.

Louise’s Blanket

Louise has finished her version of the Louise’s Blanket pattern.  She has finished the blanket off with a simple border in Stylecraft Special DK Lipstick.  It is such a colourful blanket I think the simple block of colour around the edge finishes the blanket off really well.

Louise's Blanket
Louise’s Blanket

Daphne’s Diary

I have been reading the magazine, Daphne’s Diary this week.  It is a lovely magazine with lots of ideas and inspiration. It is not crochet related but has lots of beautiful illustrations and photographs on a number of different subjects.

Daphne Diary
Daphne Diary

Take care,

Alison

x

Posted on

Lockton, Hygge and more

Hello,

 

Weather Report

Not a good outlook this morning, it looks very damp and misty. Not a good start to the day, it has made me feel gloomy already.

Now the sun looks like it is trying to come out….. hurrah…..

 

Lockton Squares Blanket

See the free pattern for the squares on last weeks blog. Click here

Update on the Lockton Squares Blanket I have finished mine this week and managed to make a border with the remaining yarn, I have worked 63 squares and placed them 7 across x 9 tall, Joining them diagonally using dc.

lockton
lockton

The border is 4 rounds of trebles with 5 tr. in each corner on the 1st round and 3tr. in the centre st. of the corners in the following rounds. Finally I made a loopy edge with 1dc., 3ch., miss 1tr., 1dc. in next st. I was pleased with the final result.

lockton
lockton

Schjeepes CAL 2017

Hygge

Since finishing the Lockton Blanket I have done a little more of the CAL. I bought the kit to crochet along alas I have been too busy with other things, I was only on week 2, I have now finished weeks 2 and 3. I still have many weeks to catch up though because it is on week 11. I had not realised that there was going to be lots of surface cross stitching to do and it put me off a little, but the brighter our nights are getting I am able to see better to work them. So I really enjoyed working the last panel. The cross stitching for each panel has not taken as long to do as I thought.

Hygge
Hygge

Caron Cakes 

I am still trying to get another idea for using the beautiful Caron Cakes we now have in stock, on our Wool to your Door website. I have worked a granny type blanket and want to do something else so that it will show off the shading more than the blanket did. I loved the yarn though, it is soft and easy to crochet.

Caron Cakes
Caron Cakes

Lots of work to do today and I am picking my Grandson up from school this afternoon ” note to self do not forget” I must add a reminder to my phone. All done 🙂

 

I am trying to decide what colours to use for my next piece of work do I use the green and bright pink ( Fiesta ) or green and bright orange ( Jaffa )

Oh the decisions I have to make…..

If only life were that easy and that was the only thing we all had to decide.

 

I hope you all have a good week

Alison

xx

 

 

 

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Holidays, blankets and patterns

Good Morning,

 

Weather Report

Not too bad a start today, sunny for once I hope that it stays for a while. Snow was forecast but it looks pretty good out there.

 

Update on blankets

The Caron Cakes blanket is finished, pattern still in progress and the Stylecraft new colours one, is almost done.

Lockton Squares
Lockton Squares

I thought that I had not done a free pattern for some time so here are the instructions for the square that I used for the Lockton blanket. There are not instructions for borders or the blanket just how to make the squares.  I hope you like this one..

If you would like to use the same colours for this one I will be making a pack available on Wool to your Door.

It has not been tested so you will all be my testers,

Pdf download from here Lockton Squares if you have any problems please message me and I will try to help.

 

Holiday

We had a week away last week staying in a cottage in Lockton, a village not far from Whitby. We had an eventful week, our son in law broke his arm on Easter Monday and we had a terrible journey to take him to hospital in Scarborough. Then we needed to bring his car home and our second car back so that we could get everyone home on the Friday. We all still had a nice time and our grandsons managed to fit in trips on the miniature railway and the Sea Life centre in Scarborough. We also visited some gardens at a house near Pickering. As you can see Louise and I planned to crochet while we were away.

 

Wool to your Door

I am starting to add printed patterns to the shop, which I will send out in the post, this is because I just realised that not everyone has a printer. I am afraid that they will cost more than the PDF downloads. Printed pattern are here.

The PDF downloads will still be available here on Ali Crafts Designs as well.

 

Naming Patterns

I have great difficulty in naming my designs sometimes it can take a while  for something to pop into my head and for others the name can come first even before I have worked a stitch.

As you will see from the latest pattern name I usually name blankets from some of the places that I have visited. Dolls and scarves have girls names unfortunately there are not many boy names that I have used, apart from Fred Bear and his family of bears and Milo with his sister Millie. Even the groom does not have a name he is just Groom !!!! :}  Crochet is not really a medium that is suited to boys and men apart from scarves, baby jackets  and some toys. Although when I was looking online the other day I found a pair of mens shorts……… noooooo……… that should not be done in my crochet world.

 

Thank you for reading my blog,

Talk again next week

p.s. Don’t forget to like us on Facebook to keep updated on all new products offers… https://www.facebook.com/alicraftsdesigns/

Ali xxx

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My Work Day

Hello

Weather report

Hope you have all had a good Easter weekend. We have had a mixed weather week some sunshine and cold winds as well as rain.

Even though I work from home I still have to work out how to fit everything into my day, housework, washing, ironing, designing, computer work, packing parcels and going to the post office to post them. Here is how it sometimes works, 6.50am get up and showered, fill dishwasher and washing machine, answer any messages received overnight, put rubbish in the bin, bit of computer then breakfast about 8.30 or 9.00, after that its computer  for a while longer and cleaning.

After lunch I usually crochet and make the meal for when Phil comes home.

Progress

This weeks work has been finishing off a Caron Cakes blanket and starting a new one using the new colours from Stylecraft, Buttermilk, Vintage Peach and Mushroom and adding Cream and Mocha.

 

 

Just sitting enjoying the sunshine, and think I might continue working on some more squares for another blanket

 

Alison xxx

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My Crochet Week

Good morning,

I hope that you are all well

Sorry about the mix up last week I hope that you found the blog on Wool to your Door.

As you can tell I am easily confused when it comes to computer work.

We have 2 websites one is for the wool sales and the other for the patterns, Wool to your door and Ali Crafts Designs. We are still trying to get everything on the same site. It is the downloads that are the problem.

 

Weather report

Cloudy again, it was bright when I got up and now its miserable again, what has happened to the super weather we had over the weekend.

 

Wool Stocks

This week has been good we received some of our new yarns, Caron Cakes, they are lovely, the only trouble is they sent the same order twice so we still only have 5 colours. Every time I hear a car or van outside I think that it is here……..

 

Jeanie Blanket

I have finished the blanket that I was making with the Stylecraft new Jeanie, it is Aran yarn with cotton, lovely mmmmm.

It was really nice to use and I like the finished blanket. Pattern won’t be too long, I just need to add the pictures. It is good for beginners and is mostly worked in double crochet stitches (sc.) I used 1 ball of each colour and it is not a bad size.

 

 

Flower Squares

I was working yesterday on a new blanket using the Caron Cakes, I love this yarn as well, I seem to have gone silly with aran yarns, I don’t usually sell Aran.

I am using 3 different cakes and mixing them up. Here it is so far.

 

Patterns

Don’t forget all our patterns are here and we do have some yarn packs which include the patterns on Wool to your Door.

I spent most of yesterday trying to find a home for all the yarn that has arrived over the last 2 weeks it was piling up in the spare room. I took all my other crafting stuff out of the wardrobe and have stacked the wool in there. Now I have another problem where to put all the beading and scrapbooking items I took out. 🙁

 

Happy Day

I have a friend coming today to have a crochet day, I can’t wait, lots of chat and putting the world into shape, lots of crochet, coffee,  and chocolate biscuits…. just what I need.

 

Breakfast is waiting, then the ironing,

talk again next week.

Happy Easter

Alison xx

 

 

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Mothers Day, Quilting and Frogging my crochet

Morning everyone,

I hope that you are all well this morning.

Weather Report

I think the best thing is to get this over with, it is not a great start to the day today.

I can’t see across to the hills from our bedroom, it is misty…..  and cloudy….. and dark…..

WIPs

On a much brighter note I have almost finished the knitted shawl only another 30 rows to go.

 

 

Quilting

I have also started a machine quilt top using a Jelly Roll.

These are pre-cut 2 inch strips of fabric. I bought the roll in January and have not had time to start.

I had my machine out yesterday to make a tablecloth smaller, so thought I would watch a few you tube videos on how to use the roll. I picked a simple ” just sew them together in approx. 45 mins.”  I think that that is wishful thinking, unless the lady I watched has a Ferrari machine and I only have a steam roller.

I think my class ladies would say that I always say something is easy and quick, when it really does take more time when I do something that is not my specialist topic. I have to take more care, perhaps all teachers are the same 🙂

Here is a picture of my effort so far, it just looks like a jumble to me.

Crochet

Frogging, the art of pulling out your work

I started a new design and got quite a long way with it, but I have decided to pull it out and start again I think that the beginning is too complicated and I need to simplify the instructions.

It was more complicated because I have used 12 colours all at the same time…….. so really the design needs to be easy to understand, too difficult in colour use and difficult instructions will be a disaster in the making.

My motto years ago was ” If it is wrong pull it out ” so I will take my own advice and pull it out.

 

Mothers Day

Last Sunday was Mothers Day here in the UK.

I had a lovely day, I received beautiful flowers and plant as well as new hooks and a crochet book from my daughters, Sarah and Louise.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

New Yarn

I have ordered some new yarn for Wool to your door, I have had a letter to say that some will be coming this week. I can’t wait, although I love the variety of colours that I stock in Stylecraft Special for my doll and toy patterns, we don’t seem to sell lots of it, I suppose that that is because it is available in so many places. We are going to try some Caron yarns, we have ordered just a few to see what they are like and will order more when I have tried them. They are new to me so I will need to test drive them, Hurrah !!!

Come on delivery man which day are you coming?

Update

As soon as I posted this blog, there was a van outside and……

The parcel has arrived.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Woo hoo how lucky was that.

 

Right, on with the jelly roll first, then play with the new yarn..

Talk to you again next week

Ali xxx

 

Posted on

Knitting and WIP

Good Morning,

Very busy day for me today, I have a check up at the dentists and do a bit of shopping, home for lunch and then later back out again to go to the hairdressers for a colour and a trim. Not much time left for computer work today, because I like to crochet or do crafts in the afternoons.

This week I have been finishing some more of the WIPs ( work in progress ) from the cupboard under the stairs. I finished a shawl which only needed the border to be designed. I will post a picture next week because it is a yarn that requires washing to remove some of the dye, my fingers and hook turned blue while I was working the stitches.

Found a knitted shawl that I started a long time ago. I bought the yarns with the instructions from a lovely shop in Whitby, which is no longer there, sadly. It is a feather and fan pattern which I am enjoying knitting in these beautiful yarns. I am still finding it much faster to knit using the Continental method, I don’t feel so fingers and thumbs working this way.

 

All these projects are shelved at one time or another, because a crochet idea pops into my head that I just have to design and everything has to stop. I suppose that I am a bit like a writer when I have an idea I have to get it worked out straight away. That can sometimes mean that I work quite late or start early in the morning.

I love doing all kinds of crafts, my cupboards are full. Lots of lovely new ones to start and many more to finish. I found sewing and embroidery and tatting projects.  Hmmm maybe I should take some of these away next time we have a trip.

I just wish that I could work faster. There are not enough hours in the day, or is there something stealing a few minutes out of each hour, or could it be that as you get older the time seems to pass so much quicker.

 

Pattern news

My friend has taken 2 more patterns to test so it should not be long before we have some new patterns ready.

 

Weather report

I seem to always mention the weather so here is todays, looking out of the window and popping out to the bin, no fancy gadgets to record the temerature or wind chill here.

It is another bright start to the day today, with a cold wind, I hope that it won’t change before I get home.

What a joy to know that the first official starting day to Spring was here this week.

Have a lovely week

Ali xxx

 

 

 

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America, Flowers and Blankets

Hello again hello,

For those of you of a certain age you will probably remember the song those words are from. I have just been watching the Jazz Singer staring Neil Diamond, there are a few lovely songs in the film. It is really dated now, the hairstyles were awful in the 80s. I do like the song America though, so it was worth watching. I am playing it now while doing this blog. Good job that I am on my own, singing along and I can’t sing.


I have had a productive week this week making a baby jacket for my daughter’s friend’s baby and remaking the flowers from my design ‘ To Felt or not to Felt ‘ this pattern was a follow up book from Flower Frenzy, giving the maker a choice in wether to work them in double knitting yarn or in a  double knitting wool. When choosing the wool you are able to put them in the washing machine to felt the fibres and make the flowers a more solid fabric. I am just adding the finishing touches to the pattern and it will be available in the shop when it is ready. There are 12 flowers in the pattern which you can put together as layers or leave to stand alone.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I am nearing the completion of a blanket called

Higgledy Piggledy Blanket the pattern is all typed up and ready for testing.

This was a fun one to make because I really didn’t know how big it was going the be or what I was going to do, I have made 6 different panels using different squares and patterns. I have used 16 colours which will be available as a pack with the pattern in  Wool to Your Door soon.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I thought that this week I would talk about one of the books I got for Christmas.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Crochetterie by Molla Mills

At first flick through I thought that it was a little too funky for me, but in really studying the book it has some lovely useful patterns to make for yourself or to give as gifts. The instructions come with super charts to follow for geometric patterns, there are bags, jumpers, mittens and rugs and lots more inside.

I really found the making of a crochet hook interesting as well.


 

Today I am finishing the last one of the knitted squares from last month before the next packet arrives. I am enjoying the challenges that knitting throws at me, todays square has crossed stitches and bobbles. This one may need a lot of concentration so that I don’t have to pull it out and start again. I am all fingers and thumbs balancing 2 needles and a cable needle at the same time. I am getting better at knitting, I will never be as good as my Mother, she was always knitting, I find it slow progress for me because I can crochet so fast and things are made much quicker in crochet.

Then I need to catch up with the Scheepjes CAL 2017 I am 3 weeks behind, oops…..

Maybe not today, I might have to leave it for a project while we are away sometime.

Have a good week

Ali xxxx