Happily Hooked Magazine | Back to School Bear


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The summer holidays will be over before we know it and then it’s back to school time! Why not make the start of the new school year even more exciting for your little ones by hooking up some of the projects from issue 41 of Happily Hooked Magazine (out now).

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The new edition of the online US magazine is filled with patterns, articles and interviews and I’m very excited to tell you that I’ve got an exclusive pattern for this Back to School issue! I’m just tickled pink that my Back to School Bear (who I nicknamed Bernard) made the front cover; he’s dressed and ready to go and start learning!

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The back pack is completely detachable and opens and closes with a simple button fastening. Don’t you think his little back pack would be a great place to add a little note or a joke for your little one to find! 

As well as my Back to School Bear pattern in this months edition you will find projects for kids of all ages; from tote bags to pencil cases, cardigans and scarfs and cute alphabet baby blocks. There are also some great articles including one on how to teach your children to crochet and another about the healing properties of crochet. I also especially enjoyed the one by the Yarnpreneur Society about grouping tasks!

Check out the Happily Hooked Magazine website for more details about the magazine and how you can subscribe and I do hope you’ll add the Back to School Bear pattern to your 💗 Favourites and Ravelry Queue here.

I hope you will share your finished Back to School Bears on your favourite social media sites: RavelryLoveCrochet.comFacebook page or Facebook groupTwitter,  Pinterest and Instagram as I love to see your finished work! And if you are featured in my newsletter, as the customer spotlight, you could win a pattern of your choice!

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

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Amigurumi Tin Can | FREE Crochet Pattern


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Last Friday my husband and I celebrated our 10th wedding anniversary (Yay us!). Ten years in my book is a bit of a big achievement so as a gift I splashed out and bought us both a pampering spa day with afternoon tea to look forward to later in the year (and I’m soooo looking forward to that already!) However usually on our anniversary I like to try and find something based on the traditional wedding anniversary gift list. 

Ten years is ‘tin’ and I looked around but I couldn’t find anything I thought was right. Then I had an idea! And so the following pattern was thus designed as a quirky and unique little gift to play on the ‘tin’ theme. 

My husband has a good sense of humour so he thought it was funny and I thought some of you might enjoy it too so I’ve written it up as a free pattern.

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As well as well as having the potential to become a tin full of love this amigurumi would make fun play food item for little ones – I can’t wait to see what variations you come up with!

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Add the Amigurumi Tin Can Pattern to your 💗 Favourites and Ravelry Queue  or your LoveCrochet.com projects 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. 

Amigurumi Tin Can:

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Yarn: Small amounts of the following Drops Cotton Light used in photos:

  • YARN A – Pearl Grey (Shade 31)
  • YARN B – Turquoise (Shade 14)
  • YARN C – Black (Shade 20)
  • YARN D – Yellow (28)
  • YARN E – White (Shade 02)

Hook: 3 mm (or 3.25mm)  / US size D

Materials:

Stitch markers, yarn needle, polyester toy stuffing, 2 x circles of cardboard or polythene (7cm diameter), embroidery thread (optional), heart button (optional)

Size: 12cm high / 4.7 inches

Gauge: 4dc/sc = 2.5cm / 1inch

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

Abbreviations: 

  • st(s) = stitch(es)
  • sp = space
  • sl st = slip stitch
  • ch(s) = chain  
  • dc/sc= UK double / US single crochet
  • FLO – Front Loop Only
  • BLO – Back Loop Only

Stitch Guidance:

  • Slip Stitch (sl st): Insert hook in st indicated, yarn over and pull through all loops.
  • Double Crochet/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.
  • Front Loop Only (FLO): Insert your hook underneath the front loop of the stitch only and make the stitch as indicated.
  • Back Loop Only (BLO): Insert your hook underneath the back loop of the stitch only and make the stitch as indicated.

Pattern:

Tin Lid (Make 2):

One will make the top of the tin, one will form the bottom;

Rnd 1: With YARN A make a magic ring, work 6dc/sc into ring. 6sts

Rnd 2: (2dc/sc) to last st. 12sts

Rnd 3: (1dc/sc, 2dc/sc) to last st. 18sts

Rnd 4: (1dc/sc in next 2sts, 2dc/sc) to last st. 24sts

Rnd 5: (1dc/sc in next 3sts, 2dc/sc) to last st. 30sts

Rnd 6: (1dc/sc in next 4sts, 2dc/sc) to last st. 36sts

Rnd 7: (1dc/sc in next 5sts, 2dc/sc) to last st. 42sts

On the first lid fasten off and weave in ends, on the second lid DO NOT fasten off, continue to Tin Body.

Cut out two circles of cardboard/polythene the same size as the tin lid ready for the tin body.

Tin Body:

Working from the bottom of the tin upwards;

Rnd 8: FLO; 1dc/sc to last st. 42sts

Fasten off and weave in ends.

Rnd 9: Attach YARN B to any st, 1dc/sc to last st

Rnd 10-29: 1dc/sc to last st

Fasten off and weave in ends.

Rnd 30: Attach YARN A to any st, 1dc/sc to last st. 42sts

Fasten off and weave in ends.

Place one of your circles (either cardboard or  polythene) in the bottom of the can to help keep the can lid flat / level.

Tin Label:

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

Row 1: With YARN C; 9ch, 1dc/sc in second ch from hook, turn. 8sts

Row 2: 1ch, 2dc/sc in the same ch as the 1ch,

1dc/sc in the next 6sts, 2dc/sc in the last st. turn, 10sts

Row 3 – 4: 1ch, 1dc/sc to last st

Row 5: 1ch, 2dc/sc in the same ch as the 1ch, 1dc/sc in the next 8sts, 2dc/sc in the last st. turn, 12sts

Row 6 – 7: 1ch, 1dc/sc to last st

Row 8: 1ch, 2dc/sc in the same ch as the 1ch, 1dc/sc in the next 10sts, 2dc/sc in the last st. turn, 14sts

Row 9 – 10: 1ch, 1dc/sc to last st

Row 11: 1ch, 2dc/sc in the same ch as the 1ch, 1dc/sc in the next 12sts, 2dc/sc in the last st. turn, 16sts

Row 9 – 10: 1ch, 1dc/sc to last st

Fasten off and weave in ends

Rnd 15: Miss the first 4sts; re-attach YARN C in the next st, 1ch, 1dc/sc in the same st as beginning 1ch and in the next 5sts, turn. 6sts

Rnd 16: 1ch, 2dc/sc in the same ch as the 1ch, 1dc/sc in the next 5sts, 2dc/sc in the last st. turn, 9sts

Row 17 – 18: 1ch, 1dc/sc to last st

Fasten off and weave in ends

Label Edging:

Rnd 1: Attach YARN D in any st, loosely sl st around the whole of the label, work 2 extra ch’s to help turn around corners. Sl st to first st to join.

Fasten off and weave in ends.

Rnd 2: Attach YARN E in the BLO of any st, then loosely sl st around the whole of the label, work 2 extra ch’s to help turn around corners. Sl st to first st to join.

Fasten off and weave in ends.

Making up:

  • Embroider the front of the can with a message or food details and add button           detailing (optional)
  • Using the BLO of Rnd 2 Label Edging attach the label to the tin body
  • Stuff the tin body with toy filler
  • Add your other (cardboard / polythene) circle onto the top of the toy filler
  • Sew the top of the tin to the top of the tin body; using the BLO of the tin lid and the FLO of the tin body. Fasten off and weave in any ends

And that’s it!

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Make sure you link me your finished projects on your favourite social media sites: Ravelry, LoveCrochet.comFacebook page or Facebook groupTwitter,  Pinterest and Instagram and if you are featured in my newsletter you could win a pattern of your choice!

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

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Toy Hammock | Pattern Special Offer


If your house is anything like mine after Christmas well it was a bit of a jumble…the culprits – a vast influx of more toys! Now with stuffies for two girls  pretty much taking over our house I decided it was high time to remake one of my old designs, a toy hammock. 

The one that I originally made for Little G was still fine (and that’s after 3 years and several washes!) so I moved that into the nursery ready for the emerging soft toy collection of Little Miss…

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and then I made a supersized hammock for Little G – because SO many toys!

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Are toys taking over your little one’s room? Then a sturdy toy hammock is just what you need to keep all those teddies off the floor or the bed. This pattern really is ideal for the bedroom or nursery to display and keep collections of soft toys tidy. You could also use the hammock for organising lots of other things around the house such as gloves & scarves or sports equipment.

And now the special offer! To help in your tidying endeavours from now until 31 January 2017 you can get my toy hammock pattern for just £1 / $1.21 over in my Ravelry store. No coupon code needed – just add the basket to your cart and you should see the discount appear. After the sale the pattern will go back up to full price so get your copy now and don’t forget to share this deal with your friends!

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

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2016 in a Nutshell


I thought I’d do a little review of my hooky year in pictures…

January saw the release of the biggest thing I worked on all year. It’s also the item and design which I am ultimately most proud of. The Everything Is Cool and Groovyghan 2016 Crochet-A-Long is definitely the most challenging thing I have designed and shared so far and the finished groovyghans made by other crafters have just blown me away (you lot are amazing!). Although the crochet-a-long has now finished you can still make a groovyghan of your very own by checking out the details on the blog here.

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February and March I was busy growing a human which turned out to be quite hard work! So, aside from the groovyghan, there wasn’t a whole lot of crocheting going on…

Then in April my new shawl pattern, The Spring Blossom Wrap, was released in iLikeCrochet Magazine. Worked in a smooth 4ply cotton yarn and a 3.5mm hook I was really pleased with the floral look I eventually achieved on this shawl which I based on cherry blossoms.

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In May and June baby had finally arrived so I got back to a little hooking by working up some quick little hats and a headband for my new arrival. I just chose some patterns on Ravelry that I liked the look of and they actually turned out to be all free patterns. The hats and tie back I made include the Sedge Stitch Newborn Beanie, the Bonnie Bell Bonnet, the TopKnot Baby Hat and the 15 Minute Tieback.  The Bonnie Bell Bonnet was one of the first hats I hooked up. It’s such a cute design and as its worked in Aran (Worsted) weight yarn it’s very quick to work up.

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In July I hooked up a little Amineko cat for Little G’s summer fayre, such a fun design and super cute!

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In August and September I was working on some exciting patterns for October (more on that later) but I still found time to hook up a little Pumpkin hat for the baby and Baabara for this years Yarndale charity project

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and I finally finished a work in progress which had been started a year previously! The Corner to Corner Granny Stitch Throw  was a great pattern to use up loads of odds and ends of double knit in my stash…

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So October was a busy and exciting month; my RainBOW Clip Organiser was released in Issue 31 of Happily Hooked Magazine…and I was completely delighted to be asked to take part in the Stylecraft Blog Tour for 2016 for which I designed the Harmonious Hexagon Blanket (free pattern here).

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In November and December I hooked up several Christmassy items for my girls including some cute Elfin baby boots and some fabulous elf hats. I also hooked up a fab little mouse baby hat for a Micky fan – unfortunately this particular pattern is no longer available, there are plenty of alternatives out there though if you are looking for this style.  

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I also hooked up my special animals from my TOFT yarn and some awesome little Princesses for some gorgeous little girls; but I’m going to blog about those later so I’ll save those ta-dah moments for 2017!

Wow, I enjoyed that stroll down memory lane! I find when it’s all written down like this that I have accomplished more than I realised! Crochet is such a big part of my life that sometimes I forget what I have been up to in the year as I’m concentrating on the next design or project.  The most fantastic thing about crochet is that it continually brings me happiness, fun challenges, surprises, satisfaction at a job completed and most of all relaxation. 

So what can you look forward to in 2017 from me?

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I have so many plans for 2017! I’m extremely excited to be working with several crochet magazines this year on new designs, I’ve also got various exciting collaborations coming up, I’m going to be catching up with patterns that I didn’t finish due to being pregnant (and ill) and then having a newborn (for those waiting for Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds – this is at the top of the list!) AND we’ve got a brand new crochet-a-long to look forward to (starting in March) which is also in development behind the scenes as we speak.

Finally I’d like to say a mahoosive thank you to everyone who has followed me on the blog or on social media in 2016…

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My thanks is to everyone who may have brought and/or made any of my patterns, who have read my musings following me here on the blog and for those who have offered / or continued to offer their hands in friendship. I cannot tell you how much I appreciate your support, enthusiasm and your camaraderie and how much I love to see your finished work!

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

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It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas…


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Only 4 more sleeps until Chrisssstttttmmaaassss!!!! I’m totally writing this post listening to Christmas carols, eating turkey, wrapping presents, baking mince-pies, sipping Baileys, trimming a tree all with a Santa hat on – well the carols are playing at least.  I do so love, love, love Christmas -it’s definitely my most favourite time of year. I love how decorations appear everywhere and twinkly lights adorn everything, (my inner magpie is totally satisfied), and as always I am looking forward to spending time with family and friends.

So as far as Christmas and crochet goes I’ve been busy making some presents, which I can’t share details of yet, and I found the most amazing wrapping paper to wrap my gifts in…

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Love this fabulous knitted Santa wrapping paper!   

I have also hooked up a few seasonal items for my gorgeous girls. I had in my head that I wanted to do a photo shoot with the girls for family Christmas cards; plus they were a couple of Christmas parties scheduled where I knew they would need dressing up outfits.

Little G chose the theme of Santa and his elf; she was to be a lady Santa and Little Miss was to be her helper.  We found some costumes but they needed some accessories – cue Mummy with her magic hook 😉

First off I made the Elfin Baby Booties by DIY Maven for Little Miss. The booties are a super cute free pattern for sizes 0-6 month made in Aran (worsted) weight yarn which are really quick to hook up.  As Little Miss is a beautiful big baby I did go up from a 4mm to a 5.5mm hook size to accommodate her tootsies, which meant the booties then fit perfectly, other than that the pattern is very easy to follow and the result is a fab set of booties perfect for any pixie babe.  

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The yarn I used for the booties was the new Paintbox Yarn which, if you are a yarn addict like myself, you have probably seen photos and reviews of floating about on the web and social media. 

The yarns come in acrylic DK, aran, chunky and cotton yarns and are exclusive to LoveKnitting.com and LoveCrochet.com and comes in 60 fabulous colours. 

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I have been waiting for the right project to give this yarn a try and I have to say it’s super lovely yarn to work with. The ‘Grass Green’ was the perfect shade, I thought, for my little elfin booties.

Next they both needed hats; a Santa hat for Little G and an elf hat for Little Miss. I’d had the free Crochet Elf Hat by Repeat Crafter Me saved for ages as I thought they were really cute and oh my goodness they were so awesome when they were finished and looked fabulous – just how I wanted the hats to look with a nice long tail and chunky pom pom! I used the Aran (Worsted Weight) Paintbox Yarn again (in ‘Paper White’ and ‘Pillar Red’ along with the ‘Grass Green’)

And the finished result…well after many outtakes we managed to get the most lovely photo, I was so pleased with how they turned out.

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Well I think all that’s left for me to do is wish you all a very Merry Christmas!

I’ve got lots planned for 2017, including a new exciting crochet-along to start Feb/Mar 2017, but I’ve still got one more post next week before the New Year kicks in.  You can read it in your pyjamas if you want – I’m hoping I’ll be writing the post in mine!  

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

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Free Pattern | Superbly Simple Baby Blanket


What’s a crochet designer to do when they are having a baby – design a new blanket pattern of course! So without further ado I’d like to introduce my new free pattern to you; the Superbly Simple Baby Blanket. The great thing about this blanket is that it works up quickly and looks more complicated than it actually is!  This baby blanket is a great for beginning crocheters to use for their very first crocheted afghans.

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Worked in double knit this lightweight blanket is easy to memorise making it a perfect pattern for relaxing hooky time! However you may use any yarn type and hook size of your choice with this pattern (it’s that simple) so no need to worry about meeting a specific gauge.

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Make it a baby sized blanket, as shown, or go as big as you like by simply adding more rounds! The addition of a simple border finishes off the blanket nicely.  

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For my blanket I used Stylecraft Special DK from my stash, which is lovely and soft, in white, lemon and grey – great unisex colours when you aren’t sure if it’s a boy or girl (which we didn’t). There are so many options for how you could arrange colours on this blanket and it would also make a fab stash buster for using up odds and ends. 

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This pattern is definitely my new favourite go-to blanket for new babies or a last minute baby shower gift. 

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Little Miss certainly loves her blanket.

Click the following link to add the Superbly Simple Baby Blanket to your 💗 Favourites and Ravelry Queue or keep scrolling for the pattern.  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: Weight #3; 4 x 100 g / 1200 m / 1300 yards 

Hook: 4 mm / US size G

Gauge:  6 tr/dc sts or 2 clusters = 1.5 inches / 3.8 cm

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

Size: 36 x 36 inches / 91.4 x 91.4 cm

Make it a baby  sized blanket, as shown, or go as big as you like by simply adding more rounds!

Abbreviations:

  • st(s) = stitch(es)
  • sp = space
  • sl st = slip stitch
  • ch(s) = chain  
  • dc/sc = UK double crochet / US single            crochet
  • tr/dc = UK treble / US double crochet
  • Cl = 3 tr/dc
  • V-St= 1 tr/dc, ch 1, 1 tr/dc
  • [ ] = work pattern in brackets into 1 st

Stitch Guidance:

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

Pattern:

Rnd 1: With YARN A, Ch 4, sl st to form a ring, sl st into the ring, ch 3 (counts as first tr/dc), 2 tr/dc into the ring, ch 3, * 3 tr/dc into the ring, ch 3*, repeat from * to * twice more, sl st to top of ch 3 to join, then sl st to the nearest ch 3 corner (12 sts + 4 x 3 ch sps)

Rnd 2:  [1 dc/sc in to the ch 3 sp, ch 3, 1 dc/sc into the same sp], * ch 3, [1dc/sc, ch 3, 1 dc/sc] into the next ch 3 sp * repeat from * to * twice, ch 3, sl st to top of beginning dc/sc to join, sl st to the next ch 3 sp (8 sts, + 8 x 3 ch sps)

Rnd 3: [Ch 4 (counts as first tr/dc + ch), 1 tr/dc ch 3, 1 V-St into the ch 3 sp], * 1 V-St, in the next ch 3 sp [1 V-St, ch 3, 1 V St] into the next ch 3 sp * repeat from * to * twice, 1 V-St in the last ch sp, sl st to the 3rd ch of the beginning ch 4 to join, sl st to the next ch 3 sp  (12 V-Sts + 4 x 3 ch sps)

Rnd 4: [Ch 3 (counts as first tr/dc), 2 tr/dc , ch 3, 1 Cl into the ch 3 sp], * 1 Cl between each of the 2 V-Sts of row 3 (there should be TWO Cl in-between each corner), [1 Cl, ch 3, 1 Cl] on the next ch 3 sp * repeat from * to * twice, 1 Cl between each of the 2 V-Sts of row 3, sl st to top of ch 3 to join, then sl st to the nearest ch 3 corner (16 Cls + 4 x 3 ch sps)

Rnd 5: [1 dc/sc in to the ch 3 sp, ch 3, 1 dc/sc into the same sp], * ch 3, 1 dc/sc between each of the 2 Cl’s of row 4 (there should be THREE ch 3 + dc/sc in-between each corner), [1 dc/sc, ch 3, 1 dc/sc] on the next ch 3 sp * repeat from * to * twice, 1 dc/sc between each of the 2 Cl’s of row 4, sl st to top of the first dc/sc to join, then sl st into the ch 3 sp (20 dc/sc + 20 x 3 ch sps)

Note: Rnds 3 – 5 make up the repeats of this  pattern. You will just increase either the number of V-Sts (rnd 3) or Cl (rnd 4), chs (rnd 5) in-between each corner.

Continue working rows until you have worked 47 rows in total.

For the blanket shown in the photos I worked the following colour change repeats; YARN A: 9 rows, YARN B: 9 rows, YARN C: 6 rows

Edging:

Begin edging in any sp between Cls; * [dc/sc, ch 3, 2 tr/dc] into same sp * repeat from * to * in each sp around the edge and in each corner.

Free Pattern | Easy Cuff Mitts


The weather is just cold enough for a new hand warming crochet project don’t you think! Fingerless gloves are fantastic for keeping you cosy whilst still allowing you the important use of your digits. That’s where my new free pattern comes in…introducing the Easy Cuff Mitts! These mitts are a quick and simple pattern that you can make with less than 1 ball (100g / 295m / 322yds) of Aran (Worsted) weight yarn.

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It’s also super easy to create a custom fit, make as long or as short as you wish just working in multiples of 2.  You can create the mitts in minutes and use up some of your scrap yarn stash at the same time. Beginners…this is a great project for you!

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Make chic looking mitts by using block colours and simple buttons or have some fun using  variegated yarn and contrasting buttons to create something special and unique. The colour combinations are virtually endless – I can’t wait to see what you come up with!

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Click here to add this pattern to your Ravelry Queue and Favourites.  Why not whip up a pair for you or a friend today!

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

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