The Little Yellow Duck Project


Back in February 2015 I blogged about The Little Yellow Duck Project which I had just learnt about.  If you haven’t heard about the project before it involves people around the world handcrafting little yellow duck gifts as random acts of kindness that are then left in public places for others to find. A special tag on each one of the ducks invites the finder to take their gift home to brighten their day and to visit the  The Little Yellow Duck Project website to register where they found their gift. The Little Yellow Duck Project is a global initiative highlighting the life-saving donation of blood, bone marrow, and organ and tissue. 

Little-Yellow-DuckI made ten little ducks to support the project and hid them all over everywhere – even taking some with me to hide when I went away for a couple of weekends so that they would be spread out far and wide.  You can see all the ducks I made in my original post here.

Excitingly a couple of months later someone posted a photo to say that they had found one of my ducks which had prompted them to fill in an application form to be a blood donor! What an amazing feeling that was! And so nice to find out what had happened to a duck that had been hidden.

After I had finished making and hiding my pledge of little ducks I offered my services as a designer to The Little Yellow Duck Project to create a new free duckling crochet pattern which they could use…and not long after Doodle the Duckling was born! 

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Well one of the lovely people at the project contacted me this week to say that the pattern had never gone live on their website (although they thought it had). Needless to say they were mortified – but I know only too well how technology can be a fickle mistress (as I find out ever time I schedule a post when I’m on holiday…every. single. time!).  All is now fixed however and you can now find Doodle the Duckling under the Crochet Pattern section of their website. If you want to add Doodle the Duckling to your Ravelry queue or favourite him so you can make him later then use this link here

I hope you do check out The Little Yellow Duck Project when you get a moment – as well as crochet patterns they have knitting, sewing and machine embroidery patterns you use to support them if you fancy a different craft.

And just to finish off I’ll end with a photo of Little G from a year or so ago when she got to meet some real life little yellow ducklings…because too cute right! 

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Until next time, happy hooking and keep calm and crochet on my friends xx

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Happily Hooked Magazine | Parchment Meadow Pillow


So you guys have heard me talk about Happily Hooked Magazine before right? Well if you haven’t heard of it it’s a monthly online US magazine for crocheters filled with patterns, articles, interviews and more PATTERNS!

Issue 36 of Happily Hooked has now hit the e-newstands with 10+ pretty and practical home decor projects, and I’m really thrilled to have a brand spanking new cushion design exclusive to this months magazine. 

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The Parchment Meadow Cushion is a large 40.5cm x 40.5cm (16 x 16 inch) square cushion patterned with soft, pretty coloured meadow flowers on a plain natural coloured background. 

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Decorate your bed or couch with this chunky pillow with contrasting crocheted and embroidered motifs. Perfect to mix and match with plain cushions.

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I had great fun with this design incorporating 3-D meadow flowers on the textured parchment – and did I say how much I LOVE the texture of this pillow (so did my testers!). 

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What is very exciting, since the last time I worked with Happily Hooked Magazine, is that they now offer a print + digital version of the magazine where each month you get a printed copy, with patterns from the previous 2 issues! 

Check out the Happily Hooked Magazine website for more details about the magazine and how you can subscribe and you can add the pillow pattern to your 💗 Favourites and Ravelry Queue here.

Well until next time, happy hooking and keep calm and crochet on my friends xx

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I Like Crochet Magazine | Jelly Bean Bunny


Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links, when you make a purchase through these links I do receive a small commission – thank you so much for supporting my blog! 💗

The April 2017 issue of I Like Crochet magazine is now available for your reading and crochet pleasure…and it’s chock-a-block full with over 27 lovely Spring patterns for you…including one designed by me!

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If you haven’t heard of I Like Crochet magazine before it’s a US bi-monthly digital magazine which is published by the creators of AllFreeCrochet.com.

Can’t wait to get ready for Easter? For this months issue I have designed a sweet little Jelly Bean Bunny amigurumi which you can personalise in your favourite spring colours and add a yummy sweet snack in its arms. It’s a fab little stash buster for any odds and ends that you have lying around – you can make up a load of bunnies in no time!  

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This month’s features:

  • 27+ spectacular spring projects
  • Easter Sweets
  • Fairy Tale Shawls
  • Birds of a Feather
  • Crochet Classics
  • Make it for Mom

There are patterns for Easter, mum, and just for you!

SUBSCRIBE TODAY to get your own copy of my new pattern plus more straight to your desktop or iPad.

Well until next time, happy hooking and keep calm and crochet on my friends xx

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LGC Knitting & Crochet Magazine | Lucky the Loveable Lamb


Issue 89 of LGC Knitting & Crochet Magazine is out now and I am thrilled to share that my Lucky the Loveable Lamb amigurumi is not only inside the latest issue – it’s on the cover! Designed with the Daisy colour pack Lucky just loves to gamble and play in the March sunshine.

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I’ve also designed, in the lovely springtime shades, the final four square patterns for LGC’s granny square series.

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Oh my goodness I was so excited that Lucky was going to be the cover star for this months edition and I just adore the styling the magazine did for my little lamb – have you seen those broccoli trees!! 

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Sometimes a design just flows off your hook and that was the case with Lucky – I had such fun designing her!

If you are not familiar with LGC Knitting & Crochet Magazine it comes as an exclusive pack containing six balls of yarn, a pair of needles and a hook so that you can get started straight away. Aimed at both beginners and experienced crafters, each issue is packed with projects, tips, inspiration and shopping guides, plus all the latest news.

This month’s features:

  • Six Daisy Yarns
  • 3mm hook and bamboo needles
  • 31 exclusive patterns 
  • Plus…your 68 page magazine

LGC Knitting & Crochet Magazine can be found in major supermarkets and stores across the UK. So pop down the shop and get your copy now or you can find out about more about the magazine over on their website here.

Well until next time, happy hooking and keep calm and crochet on my friends xx

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Nuts About Squares CAL by It’s All in A Nutshell


Oooo you know me! I’m a sucker for a good blanket and there is nothing like a crochet-along for being able to make something bigger than perhaps you would usually make for you or someone special. That’s why I’m really excited to tell you about the new crochet-along, Nuts about Squares, by Esther from It’s all in a Nutshell to make the beautiful afghan (pictured below).  

Photo: Hans Mossel

If you are not familiar with It’s All in A Nutshell you NEED to go and check out her blog and her Youtube channel. Not only does she have many free patterns of her own (available in English and Dutch) but she has also has made several videos,with permission, of well known crochet-along patterns like Sophie’s Universe by Dedri Uys or Mandala Madness by Helen Shrimpton.

So back to the CAL! Myself and eleven other crochet designers have contributed block designs to Esther’s very first CAL. I was very excited to be part of something with so many other fabulous designers – so big thanks to Esther for thinking of me! ❤︎  Contributing designers include Dedri Uys, Helen Shrimpton, Polly Plum, Sigrun Hugoey, Melissa GreenJulie Yeager, Margaret MacInnis, Susan Stevens/Mellie Blossom, Aurora Suominen, and Tatsiana Kupryianchyk.

For this crochet-along Esther has collaborated with Scheepjes Yarn to create three stunning colourway packs, with the theme of either Earth, Sea and Sky, which are available from Wool Warehouse, Deramores and Caro’s Atelier (NL).

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The CAL will last 15 weeks and starts March 31, 2017 so make sure you hop on over and subscribe to the It’s All in a Nutshell blog so you don’t miss any of the details. 

Until next time; keep calm and crochet on my friends xx

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Free Pattern | Renaissance Pouch Bag


So recently I had the opportunity to play with some lovely yarn from Medieval Colours (which I blogged about here) and I promised you a lovely new free pattern didn’t I…So without further ado let me introduce the exceptionally versatile Renaissance Pouch Bag!

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Everyone loves a bag right! Inspired by Medieval designs the Renaissance Pouch Bag provides a fuss free, hands free answer to carrying your essentials with you when you are out and about. This small cross body bag has enough room to fit in your keys, phone and money which makes it a perfect addition to any occasion from festivals, to brunch, to date night.

Matching the bag to your outfit can now be a breeze! The Renaissance Pouch bag is a real wear-with-everything piece. Experiment with a plain style for that easy minimalist look or add pops of colours to create a more striking design. Make it for you or make it for a little one by just altering the strap length. 

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The bag does not require advance skills to make so it perfect for a beginner – advanced crocheters can enjoy an easy to make pattern with a fun texture!

Add the Renaissance Pouch Bag to your 💗 Favourites and Ravelry Queue where you can also get an no-ad PDF version of just the pattern for only £1.00 / $1.25  or for a print friendly version of this page please scroll to the bottom of this post and click on the Print & PDF button. 

Pattern:

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Yarn: 

  • 60g of (Worsted) Weight Yarn / Weight #4

Hook: 5 mm / US size H

Size: 

  • 16.5cm long x 12.7cm wide
  • (6.5” long x 5” wide)
  • 76.2cm (30”) long including handle

Establishing the correct gauge is not critical to this pattern. Pattern will work in other yarns though gauge/size will be different.

You will also need:

  • 2.5cm (1”) button
  • Yarn needle

Abbreviations: 

  • st(s) = stitch(es)
  • sp = space
  • sl st = slip stitch
  • ch(s) = chain  
  • dc/sc = UK double / US single crochet
  • htr/hdc = UK half treble / US half double crochet
  • htr/hdc2tog = UK half treble / US half   double crochet 2 sts together
  • Alt htr / Alt hdc = UK Alternating half treble / US Alternating half double crochet – see special stitches note

Stitch Guidance:

  • Slip Stitch (sl st): Insert hook in st indicated, yarn over and pull through all loops.
  • UK Double Crochet/US Single Crochet (dc/sc): Insert hook in st indicated and pull up a loop (two loops on hook), yarn over, pull through both loops on hook.
  • UK Half Double Treble / US Half Double  Crochet (htr/hdc): Yarn over, insert hook in next st and pull up a loop (three loops on hook), yarn over, pull through all three loops on hook.
  • UK Half Double Treble / US Half Double  Crochet (htr/hdc2tog): Yarn over, insert hook into st, pull up a loop (three loops on hook), yarn over, insert hook into next st, pull up a loop, (five loops on hook), yarn over, pull through all five loops on hook.

Special Stitch:

Alternating Half Double Treble / Alternating Half Double Crochet (Alt htr/Alt hdc): This stitch is worked exactly like a normal htr/hdc but you work the stitches in the back and front loops; alternating from one to the other as you work.

Pattern:

Note: The ch 1 at the start of each rnd does not count as a st

Rnd 1: Either make a magic ring (adjustable ring) to start or ch 3 and sl st to the first ch to form a ring, ch1 then crochet 10 htr/ Alt hdc into the ring, sl st to the top of the first st to join; use tail yarn to tighten centre ring closed if necessary (10 sts).

Rnd 2: Ch1, then crochet 2 Alt htr/ Alt hdc into each st around, sl st to the top of the first st to join (20 sts).

Rnd 3: Ch1, then crochet * 1 Alt htr/ Alt hdc in the next st, 2 Alt htr/ Alt hdc into the next st *, repeat from * to * in each st around until the end, sl st to the top of the first st to join (30 sts).

Rnd 4: Ch1, then crochet * 1 Alt htr/ Alt hdc in the next 2 sts, 2 Alt htr/ Alt hdc into the next st*, repeat from * to * in each st around until the end, sl st to the top of the first st to join (40 sts).

Rnd 5 –17: Ch1, then crochet 1 Alt htr/ Alt hdc in each st around until the end, sl st to the top of the first st to join on each rnd. Do not finish off, go straight to making the flap (40 sts).

Making the flap:

Note: From this point onwards you will be  working back and forth in rows.

Row 1-3: Ch 1, then crochet 1 Alt htr/ Alt hdc into the next 20 sts, turn (20 sts)

Row 4: Ch 1, htr/hdc2tog, then crochet 1 Alt htr/ Alt hdc into the next 16 sts, htr/hdc2tog in the last 2 sts, turn (18 sts)

Row 5: Ch 1, htr/hdc2tog, then crochet 1 Alt htr/ Alt hdc into the next 14 sts, htr/hdc2tog in the last 2 sts, turn (16 sts)

Row 6: Ch 1, htr/hdc2tog, then crochet 1 Alt htr/ Alt hdc into the next 12 sts, htr/hdc2tog in the last 2 sts, turn (14 sts)

Row 7: Ch 1, htr/hdc2tog, then crochet 1 Alt htr/ Alt hdc into the next 10 sts, htr/hdc2tog in the last 2 sts, turn. Do not finish off, go straight to making the button hole (12 sts)

Button Hole:

Sl st in the front loop in the next 5 sts, sl st in both loops in the next st, ch 6, sl st in both loops in the next st, sl st in the front loop in the next 5 sts.

Next single crochet neatly down the edge of the flap and around the whole pouch opening; when you come to the top of row 7 you should sl st in each st. End with a sl st to your first sl st to fasten off and weave in any ends.

Handle:

Note: The bag is designed to be worn diagonally across your body but you can make the handle any size you want just by adjust the number of chs you make for the handle length.

  • For a child size bag make three lengths of 150 chs, finish off and weave in ends.
  • For a adult size bag make three lengths of 200 chs, finish off and weave in ends.

Taking the three lengths of chain plait / braid them together to form a sturdy handle;

  • To plait / braid the handle cross the right section over the top of the middle section, now it should look like the right section is the middle section and the middle section is the right section.
  • Next, cross the left section over the new middle section. They should now be switched, as they were with the previous section.
  • Cross the right and left sections over the centre, repeating these steps to make the plait / braid.

Secure each end of your handle to each side of your bag using a yarn needle and some of your yarn. 

Close the flap to gauge where to position your  button, once you are happy with were it should be sew your button into place.

And that’s it!

08textThank you to Medieval Colours for providing the yarn for this pattern

I can’t wait to see the beautiful bags you create! Make sure you link me your finished projects on your favourite social media sites: Ravelry, Facebook page or Facebook group, Twitter,  Pinterest and Instagram

Until next time; keep calm and crochet on my friends xx

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Medieval Colours Yarn Review


A few weeks ago I received a fabulous email from the owner of Medieval Colours to see if I’d like to have a play with some of their yarn (I know! I LOVE my crochet job!).

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Medieval Colours are a unique sort of yarn shop inspired by heritage and history – especially Medieval history. Just imagine gloves in the same colour as a Viking tunic or maybe a scarf made from yarn dyed from a plant which was used by monks to make ink. As a bit of a history fan I was very excited and intrigued by the concept!

They dye 100% cheviot sheep wool from plants that have been traditionally used for dying for centuries.  It’s an ecology friendly way of dying as yarn, with no added chemicals, as the only dyes that are used are from plants and minerals  bought from gardeners or hand picked in the meadows and forests of the United Kingdom.  

Do not adjust your filters!! The dyed colours of this yarn really pops! I got some of the gorgeous orangy red madder dyed yarn in Aran (Worsted Weight) to play with – but more about that in a moment…

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This yarn is a strong durable yarn ideal for outerwear or for home accessories.  If crocheted with small stitches it produces a nice firm fabric, almost like a woven cloth, which holds its shape really well. As the yarn is 100% wool it could also be used for felting (have you tried my free mini felted heart pattern yet?).  

I got a lovely catalogue with my yarn which contained shade details. I couldn’t believe how vibrant all the colours were!

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The beautiful range of natural colours available are:

  • Blue (Woad)
  • Bright Red (Madder)
  • Bright Yellow (Weld)
  • Dark Red (Madder)
  • Green (Woad and Weld)
  • Intense Red (Madder)
  • Light Brown (Oak Bark)
  • Olive (Weld)
  • Orange (Madder)
  • Pale Yellow (Weld)
  • Pinky Brown (Madder)
  • Yellow (Tansy)

You can see all the colours on the Medieval Colours website.

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Medieval Colours yarn is available directly via order on the website and comes in 50g or 100g balls. As well as yarn for knitting and crocheting Medieval Colours also supply embroidery threads and offer a dyeing for order service.

So what did I make…do you want a sneak peep… 

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Make sure you check back next week for your copy of the FREE Renaissance Pouch Bag pattern!

Until next time; keep calm and crochet on my friends xx

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Disclaimer:  I received a sample of yarn to write this review. 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.