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

 

 

 

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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

Posted on

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

Posted on

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

 

 

Posted on

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

 

Posted on

Is it Spring?

Good Morning,

Is it Spring? my Grandson asked last weekend, I had to say not quite but it won’t be long.

Its only 8.30 here and the ironing is done, the next jobs are blog and some serious typing to catch up with pattern instructions. My youngest daughter is a slave driver, “lets do this Mam” and “you need to get this done” more emphasis on the latter comment…


I have been up early this morning because Phil and Mark our son in law have been away on a photography trip.

I went to stay with our eldest daughter. She gets up for work at 6.00 so I did as well and I came home before she left for work. As she only lives about 10 minutes away, I think I may have been home before the birds woke this morning.

It is another bright start to the day which always makes me feel like getting on with things, on miserable days I just want to sit and crochet…

I love the designing bit of my work but really have to push myself to type up the instructions.

Seasons Blankets
Seasons Blankets

I think that because it looks like Spring outside I should talk about the designs I have that relate to Spring.

The blankets shown above are my Seasons blanket collection, Spring is the top blanket, I chose the colours to represent bright blue skies and crocus flowers. All the colour ways shown and 2 sizes of blanket measurements are included in the instructions.

Anna
Anna

This is Anna, the doll I made for Spring, the instructions include her little bag and a slightly bigger one to put her in to carry round.

 

Finally Springtime in Paris

The colours were chosen from a photograph I took in Paris.

Paris
Paris

Choosing the colours from the picture, I don’t know how you feel, I love choosing the colours for a new project, but don’t enjoy finishing.. For me its the typing up of the instructions, if only I had a magic wand……

Springtime in Paris
Springtime in Paris

 


Finally upcoming news

If you are worried about trying to make a doll, I am going to be working on a new CAL which will be how to make a doll… I always try to make the patterns easy to understand and not too difficult to follow.

I will also be doing videos to help beginners through the process of this CAL.

I am not sure just yet which one I will do or if I should design a new one, Watch this space…….


I used to find it hard to write this blog but now I find it difficult to stop, I hope that its not too boring, I seem to blather on like I do when I talk but I must go, the typing up of instructions awaits, so I must finish here,

I hope you are all well

Ali xxx

 

Posted on

Easy Easter Chick

Hello,

I thought I would repost this free pattern that was on my old blog two years ago.  It is a simple crochet pattern for an Easter Chick. You will need oddments of double knitting yarn and a 4.00 hook.

Easter Chick
Easter Chick
  •          Using only oddments of double knitting yarn in yellow and orange
  •          Black embroidery thread for eyes
  •          4.00 hook
  •          Small amount of stuffing

Body

Starting with yellow yarn and 4.00 hook

  1. Ch2., 6dc. into 2nd ch. from hook, ss. to join in 1st dc.
  2. 1ch., work 2dc. in each st., ss. to join in 1st dc. (12sts)
  3. 1ch., *1dc. in next dc., 2dc. in next st., rep from * to end ss. to join in 1st dc.

(18sts)

  1. 1ch., *1dc. in next 2dc., 2dc. in next dc. rep. from * from* ending ss. to join in 1st. dc.

(24sts)

  1. 1ch., * 1dc. in next st. rep from * ending ss. to join in 1st dc.
  2. to 8. As round 5
  3. and 10. 1ch., * 1dc. in next 2dc., miss 1dc., rep from * ending ss. to join in 1st dc.

Leaving a long end fasten off.

Stuff the chicken and gather up the opening

Easter Chick
Easter Chick

Wings

Make 2 in yellow

4ch., 2tr. in 4th ch. from hook, 3ch. ss. to join in 4th ch. where tr. were worked (starting ch.) Fasten

off

Feet

Make 2 in orange

  1. 3ch., 2tr. in 3rd ch. from hook
  2. 1ch., turn, 1ss. and 1tr., in 1st st., (ss. into next st., 1tr. in same place,) rep. ( ) once more working in top of 3ch. ss. to join in same place. Fasten off

Beak in orange

ch.2, 5dc. in 2nd ch. from hook ss. to join in 1st dc. Fasten off

Free PDF version of this pattern Easy Easter Chick.

 
Abbreviations
ch. = Chain
dc. = Double Crochet
rep. = Repeat
ss. = Slip Stitch
st. = Stitches
tr. = Treble

©Ali Crafts Designs

February 2014

This pattern is the property of A. Walker and an original design

Please do not copy or publish without permission

Posted on

Crochet Bag

Hello

I have been asked by one of my ladies if I had a pattern for the crochet bag that I made for my Grandson’s Stickman Toys, I did not have one so have just quickly made one up this morning. I have not had time to test it so I am sorry if there are any typing errors. Please let me know if you find one….

Crochet Bag
Crochet Bag

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

If you prefer to read the pattern here, here it is

Crochet Bag Pattern

Materials Required

Oddments of Double Knitting yarn

5.50 hook

Using the yarn double and changing colour after a few rows

  1. Ch.4, work 11tr. into 4th ch. from hook, ss. to join in 3rd ch.  (12 sts)
  2. 3ch., 1tr. in same place as ss., 2tr. in each tr. to end.  (24 sts)
  3. 3ch., 1tr. in same place as ss., * 1tr. in next tr., 2tr. in next tr. rep. from * to end.  ( 36 sts)
  4. 3ch., 1tr. in same place as ss., * 1tr. in next 2tr., 2tr. in next tr. rep. from * to end.   ( 48 sts)
  5. 3ch., 1tr. in same place as ss., * 1tr. in next 3tr., 2tr. in next tr. rep. from * to end.  ( 60 sts)
  6. 3ch., 1tr. in same place as ss., * 1tr. in next 4tr., 2tr. in next tr. rep. from * to end.  ( 72 sts)
  7. 3ch., 1tr. in same place as ss., * 1tr. in next 5tr., 2tr. in next tr. rep. from * to end.  ( 84 sts)
  8. 3ch., 1tr. in same place as ss., * 1tr. in next 6tr., 2tr. in next tr. rep. from * to end.  ( 96 sts)
  9. 3ch., work 1tr. in each tr., ending ss. to join in 3rd ch.
  10. 3ch., 1tr. in each tr. ending ss. to join in 3rd ch.
  11. to 25. 3ch., 1tr. in each tr. ending ss. to join in 3rd ch.
  12. Work 1 round of ss. into each stitch to finish the top, Fasten off.

Make 2 lengths of chain approx. 120cms each fold your bag in half and weave one chain through the last row of tr. starting at the right hand side all the way round weaving from front to back round the stitches, tie ends together and trim. The second one needs to be woven from the left hand side all the way round weaving in and out round the stitches from back to front so that they lie the other side of the stitches from the 1st length of chain. Tie the ends together and trim.
Please check out my new website for Yarns.

wooltoyourdoor.com


©Ali Crafts Designs
March 2017

This pattern is the property of A Walker and is an original design

Please do not copy the patterns for friends, or use for teaching or post on any website on the internet, this infringes copyright laws. Thank you. You may link to my site via alicraftsdesigns.co.uk

 

Good Luck

Ali xxx