Yarn Review | Patons Tahiti


Disclaimer: I received a free sample of this yarn however 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.

Tahiti-Review

Whilst Paton’s Tahiti range isn’t exactly a ‘new’ yarn on the market it was a yarn that was new to me. I have to say that fingering yarn is not something I have worked with very much – mainly because I feel slightly intimidated by tiny hooks! That said I’m always excited to try some new yarn play so I was most excited when I was sent a sample of Tahiti ‘Wildfire (Shade 7623’) by the lovely folks at laughinghens.com.

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I wanted to create something just out of this one ball and so I got out my hook and waited for that inspiration. And you know what, I discovered that actually using a small hook made a refreshing change…but more about that shortly. Let’s check out the yarn’s vital statistics first shall we: 

  • Weight:  3 Ply / Fingering
  • Blend: 99% Cotton, 1% Polyester
  • Yarn Ball Weight: 50g ball
  • Yarn Ball Length: 280m / 306yds
  • Wash instructions: Machine wash 40°
  • Price: £5.50 (at the time of this post)

So now we know a bit more about what we are dealing with I’ll tell you a bit more about the yarn. Paton’s Tahiti comes in eight different shades all inspired by elements and nature. With names like ‘cyclone’, ‘peach beach’ and ‘jungle’ it’s perhaps not surprising that the tonal range is vibrant and the colour transitions are long and smooth. As you know I love working with any style of variegated yarn; I find it such fun to watch the colours reveal themselves turning any project, as if by magic, into something special! As a designer I also love how anything that you crochet with yarns like this will look totally different dependant on the size of your project and stitches used – sooooo many possibilities!

The touch of polyester gives the yarn a slight stretchiness which would work well for lightweight garments as it creates a light, flexible fabric which returns back to shape when worn. This cotton doesn’t have a firmness about it that some cottons have, so it wouldn’t work for something like a hat – unless you were looking for something a little more floppy.

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The recommended hook size for the yarn is a tichy (eek!) 2mm-3mm (US size 2/0 or C/2) however even though, for my design, I was working with a tiny 2mm I found the yarn really nice and easy to work with. 

You know what I decided would be a great design for the hot weather of summer – a lightweight skinny scarf! The scarf pattern will be ready for you next week! But because I love you I’ll let you have a little sneaky peep at it…

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I have to say I really enjoyed working on this design, it was great for hooking on the go – that lady hooking on the bus to work; yes that was me!

I’m also muchly in love with the rich colours of this yarn and the contrast between the purples and orange on the final scarf well I just adore them…but you’ll have to wait till next week for my reveal!

In summary if you are looking to make some lightweight accessories like shawls, baby wear, fine knits, or something I really want to have a go at some point, socks then you should give Paton’s Tahiti a go! If you are interested in owning some of this yarn for your very own then it is currently available for purchase via laughinghens.com

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

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Pattern Release | Pembroke Seascape Shawl


For 2017 year’s edition of Indie June LoveCrochet.com wanted to do something special so they invited a group of designers to create a collection of knitted and crocheted garments featuring The Yarn Collective yarn (which I blogged about here). The result is the Coastal Adventures Anthology – featuring eight beautiful patterns with inspiration from Scandinavian summers on the coast.

I’m really excited to now reveal what I designed with The Yarn Collective’s Pembroke Worsted Yarn.  May I introduce to you my new Pembroke Seascape Shawl!

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The rectangular Pembroke Seascape Shawl, made from the softest hand dyed merino wool, is as light as a sea breeze!

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It’s just perfect for covering up on a chilly summer evening or on an adventurous stroll around a coastal path.

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I always think shawls are fun to crochet when I’m making them (I really should make more!).  I’ve had such fun with this one adding different stitch patterns which beginner and advanced crocheters should enjoy.  The shawl’s sinuous ripples and texture, combined with the cool grey and blue variegated colours, are inspired by marbled ocean waves lapping at a pebbly beach.

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Although the pattern may look complex it is very straightforward and will be readily picked up by beginners.

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Click on the following link to purchase the pattern and add to your 💗 Favourites on lovecrochet.com or Ravelry.

Exclusive Giveaway 🎉

For your chance to win a copy of my new design simply head on over to Ravelry or LoveCrochet and add it to your favourites or show it some love by commenting below this post with your Ravelry username / or email address. 

Bonus Entry: Re-pin any of the pins above, copy & paste the URL of your re-pin in the comments below. 

Winners will be randomly chosen on Friday 23 June 2017 around 7pm GMT

And…

Enter any coastal inspired projects in the LoveCrochet Community and enter the #IndieJune2017 competition for a chance to win £100 to spend at LoveCrochet!!! So exciting!!! Can’t wait to see your finished projects.

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

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Yarn Review | The Yarn Collective Pembroke Worsted


Disclaimer: I received a free sample of this yarn however 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.

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Luxury yarn – sometimes you just have to splurge and get that hand-dyed loveliness that you’ve got your eye right!? Or does it seem a bit scary?

I like to think of luxury yarn as my ‘special’ occasion yarn…it’s something I’ll use when I want to make something for a ‘special’ someone – especially if it’s anything that is going to worn a lot. Anything that you want to last and perhaps become an heirloom well that’s where luxury yarn comes in. Whether you are making something as a treat for someone else or because you are going to put a lot of work into a beautiful pattern, I’ve learnt that it often pays to choose a luxury yarn.  

I recently had the pleasure of designing with some of The Yarn Collective Pembroke Worsted yarn which just oozes luxuriousness from every fibre!  

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Oh so lovely and squishy!

From that first squish when I got it out the packaging I just knew it was going to be a pleasure to crochet with…and it really was! But more about that in a moment, the first thing we need to establish, to be all proper and yarn reviewy, are the vital statistics of the yarn which are: 

  • Weight:  Worsted | 10ply
  • Blend: 100% Merino Wool
  • Yarn Ball Weight: 3.5 oz/100 g
  • Yarn Ball Length: 200m / 219yds
  • Wash instructions: Hand-wash
  • Price: £16.90 (at the time of this post)

Pembroke Worsted yarn comes in 10 different shades designed by Bristol Ivy, an influential American knitwear designer, all inspired by the rich, pure tones of gems and minerals.  It’s hand painted in small batches using a combination of solid shades and close tonal colours to create perfectly blended varicoloured skeins.

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Honestly this yarn was a dream to work with! It’s a lighter worsted yarn with a recommended hook size of 4.50mm (US size 7) – though I found it’s very adaptable dependent on the design.

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I have designed a brand new pattern with the stunning icy grey-greens of ‘Tellurium’ (shade 308). I love working with variegated yarns – it really keeps things interesting as you work and the colour changes in the Pembroke Worsted are pleasingly regular and add a lovely dimension to a pattern. You’ll have to wait a bit longer for my big reveal but I can give you a little sneaky peep…

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So if you are looking for a versatile worsted weight luxury yarn that will create beautifully soft, yet durable projects then I would definitely recommend The Yarn Collective Pembroke Worsted yarn.

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If you are interested in having some of this beautiful yarn for your very own it is currently available for purchase via loveknitting.com 

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

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Wool@Jct13 Yarn Festival


It’s not everyday that a wool show happens pretty much on your doorstep so when I heard about the Wool@Jct13, the new wool show for the Midlands, I knew I’d got to check it out.  The festival is held on a family run farm in the pretty market town of Penkridge, South Staffordshire and the very first show was this weekend (13 & 14 May). I pre-brought tickets for the whole family which were very reasonably priced at £6.50pp on the day or £12pp for the full weekend. Getting advanced tickets I got a further 15% discount and the other great thing was that under 16’s and parking for the day were both free.

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So what is Wool@Jct13 all about? Well the festival is described as a celebration of all things woolly for anyone with an interest in wool – whether it be spinning, knitting, crochet, weaving or felting. Over the two days you could expect to find food, drink and live music (we very much enjoyed The Haywood Sisters) alongside demonstrations, competitions and wool craft workshops – and of course lots yarn themed shopping opportunities!

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Outside the large tent full of stalls was a fab singer (John) who recited a little ditty of his own creation for their stand the Wool Zone. Little G had a whale of a time dancing to the tunes…John’s song however has since turned into a ear-worm for the whole family as we are all still singing ‘come on into the wool zone!’ 

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There was plenty for children to do, Little G was fascinated by the spinning wheel over by The Woolly Roadshow Griffith Mill and was delighted and then thoroughly absorbed with the task of spinning when she was kindly allowed to have a go herself.  

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She also got to feed a lamb some milk and we all enjoyed watching the sheep shearing demonstration. I couldn’t believe how chilled out the sheep were when they were getting their fleeces removed…

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And inside the the tent…oh my! There were a plethora of stalls for all interests…

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And so much lovely yarn as pictured here at the Bellica Yarns stall – and they actually invited me to squish it! What an invitation!

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Everyone I met was so friendly! I had a wonderful time chatting to the owners and helpers of Crafts from the Dungeon, Fig Tree Yarns, Luxuryyarns.co.uk, Ewe and Ply, Thread of Life, The Woolly Roadshow Griffith Mill and Cotswold Alpacas – this isn’t a full list of all the exhibitors just the ones I happened to speak to on the day; the full list of folks around on the day can be found here.

I was quite reserved in my purchases as I really need to finish off some WIPs before I start anything else. That didn’t stop me from buying a couple of goodies though, I bought a sheepy braiding disc kit from Crafts from the Dungeon which is a tool to make cord with. I also brought a lovely wooden drop spindle kit from Cotswold Alpacas which came with some lovely alpaca fluff for spinning into yarn yourself. I’ve always wanted to give it a try and was very grateful for the mini demonstration and discussion I had about how you can hand spin yarn.

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All in all we had a really great day – I can’t wait until next years show! To find out about future events you can sign up to the Wool@Jct13 newsletter, at the bottom of the page, on their website here and they also have a Facebook page here.

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

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LGC Knitting & Crochet Magazine | Speedy the Sloth


Love sloths? Well I hope you’ll love my new Speedy Sloth design out now in Issue 90 of LGC Knitting & Crochet Magazine! Make sure you don’t ‘hang around’ and pick up your copy today!

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I always love the styling that the magazine do with my designs – just look how cute Speedy looks hanging around in the bamboo!

Speedy’s arms and legs pop open with snap fasteners so he can flit between trees or simply take a seat somewhere comfy.  

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. Deputy Editor Jessica talks you through the latest issue in a great little video below.

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.

And the very exciting news I have to share with you is that you can get Speedy the Sloth for FREE over on topcrochetpatterns.com or why not save him to your 💗 Favourites and Ravelry Queue here to hook up later.

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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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.