Episode 8 – All the stuff you need to know.

Oh jeez, I wish I’d noticed the lipstick!! I’m such a lipstick numpty, I look like the flipping Joker!! Please click on the pic above to travel (in swift fashion) to Episode 8 of the latest crochet podcast vlog. I hope you can ignore my face and simply enjoy the waffle. X

I have plans to write separate blog posts about both my beautiful Blurre shawl, and the colourful granny square blanket (a border colour and pattern have been chosen!).

Here are the links to all the info in this episode….

Pixie Day     There’s a YouTube video here too from a few years ago, to get more of a gist.

Blooming Marvellous

Addydae Designs. Deanne also has a podcast you should check out ~ Here.

Circles in Squares Stylecraft Blanket

Take Two crochet pattern book

Yarns: Dandelion Yarns.    Made By Jude.   The Wool Kitchen.    Viking Hand Dyed.   Undercover Otter.

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Crochet Catch up on Episode 7!

Wait! Don’t go, there are more pictures down below! You can still see what crochet I’ve been up to even if you don’t fancy sitting through the crochet vlog. However, you’d completely miss out on a woolly GIVEAWAY and some totally unexpected “live” cat on bird action. Click on the pic to go to YouTube!

The links for Episode 7 are…

My Ravelry gubbins – Come and join me.

My little holiday to Saleres, Spain.

Geo Rainbow Blanket info

Tina Tape Yarn by Wool and the Gang.

The Blurre shawl by Addydae Designs – I forgot to mention that Deanna is doing a Blurre CAL, so get your skates on if you fancy joining in! It ends 30th June.

Caron Cakes Beach Bag

The Crochet Circle – Fay’s informative and awesome crochet podcast.

Summer Romance CAL – I didn’t mention my couple!! I’m sticking with the Dr & Rose.

Crafting is My Therapy.

I hope that’s everything. Please let me know if I’ve missed something or whatevs. Give me a shout. Cheers. X

“I’m not a girly pink person” And then later….. “pink is more my colour” Wha?!

Thanks guys. X

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Geo Rainbow C2C Crochet Blanket

Helloo!! How’s it going? It’s all crazy here at the minute, I have many “things to do” lists strewn about the place! One thing I can tick off the list is: stop worrying about the Geo Rainbow blanket pattern. It’s out now! This month’s Inside Crochet (issue 90) is in the shops. There are loads of great patterns in there but when I opened it’s pages, I went straight for my colourful crochet blanket.

I made the front cover! Excuse me for getting excited; it’s very novel. I’m mega proud of what I’ve achieved over the last few months and I’m taking time to shirk off the modesty and say “yay me!”. I absolutely believe everyone should do this from time to time. Just stop and tell yourself how great you are, because it’s true! Stop worrying about others and concentrate on yourself for a while.

The idea popped in my head around October/November and the first stitch was made at the end of December. It was born from a crochet cushion I made last August, this one….

It’s funny where ideas take you.  I liked the geometric pattern but there was no way I wanted to make a whole blanket out of such small stitches (even though I have since done exactly that, with a chevron blanket!). The best way of getting the look I wanted was to go C2C.

Not only do I have a published pattern in this issue but there is also have an article about how to do the corner to corner stitch. I submitted the finished blanket in February; in May I was asked if I fancied having a go at writing a “mini masterclass”. I said yes because you can’t say no, can you?!

For the article I made a swatch, with each stage photographed so I could show how to do all the important bits of c2c.  Breaking it down was fascinating. It makes you realise just how much work goes into all the crochet that we do. Think of all those twiddly twists made with hook, yarn and fingers!

Lots of yarn is used at the same time. It’s so much fun to see it all jumbled together. I was (surprisingly) pretty fastidious about keeping it well organised. There’s no way you want this lot to get in proper tangle.

The people behind the magazine would like to take my blanket to Yarndale this year! How fab is that?! I do hope I can make it up to Skipton for September. I don’t relish driving for 5+ hours on my own but I’d love to go…dilemma.

Corner to corner is really popular at the moment. What do you think? Is it something you’d like to try? Have you made a a graphgan before? I’d love to hear. Do let me know.  Cheers. X

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How to Crochet a Beach Bag. Free pattern

At the very beginning of April I had an email from Hobbycraft asking if I’d be interested in designing a crochet project for them. It was really exciting to be asked and really exciting to learn that I could pick any materials from stuff they sold in their stores! Caron Cakes took my fancy, it’s self striping so no colour changes!! The brief was “summer” and what’s more summery than a bag for the beach?! The pattern pretty much uses two entire “cakes” including plenty for pompoms. Honestly, it’s a super easy crochet pattern and pretty fast to work up too.

Hobbycraft have an Instagram account and blog page especially for knitters and crocheters. The bag pattern is up and ready to grab over on Hobbycraft (see below). The best thing of all is that it’s totally free!! They’re asking lots of IGers to come up with patterns. It’s a lovely idea to include crafters who are already connecting in a virtual community. There are some fabulous patterns available and they’ve all been designed by us!

Go here for Crochet Beach Bag awesomeness!!

And if you spot my error, please keep schtum!! 😀  It was very late at night, I was tired and mistakes happen. I kicked myself for not noticing until it was beyond changing. What a silly sausage. Ah, you’re gonna seek it out now. Psshh.

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The Crochet Elephant Ripple Blanket

Hello! Happy May! Love May, May makes me happy. Proper spring you see, it’s magic! Plus it’s my birthday in a couple of days and that always gets me giddy (I can’t believe I still get excited about my birthday). It’s been a while since I wrote a post about crochet. They’ve all been videos haven’t they?! I’m starting to see a divide between blogging and vlogging, that I had no idea about. It’s not a problem but I’d like to not neglect anyone.

Anyway… blanket. At the beginning of April a friend got in touch with me and asked very nicely if I would make a baby blanket for her friend. I liked the ideas she had and fancied having a go at something different. It was nice that I could do a brainless ripple but there was also going to be something interesting in the mix as well.

I know that the baby in question is having a safari themed nursery and because grey was to feature in the blanket’s colour palette, it was elephants that sprang to mind. I did a quick search online and came up with these cuties. The pattern is from Repeat Crafter Me and it’s exactly the sort of thing I wanted.

I like how the secret elephants are hidden inside when it’s folded up. You might think it’s a boring blanket. But tumble it open and the cuteness is revealed!

They had to go trunk to tail, that’s something I definitely wanted. I hadn’t thought much about how they’d be attached. I’m glad it dawned on me not to merrily stitch through to the other side. I paid lots of attention to making the stitches only on one side. I had to forgo safety eyes for the same reason (they’d poke right through to the other side). I forgot to take pics of the other side to prove that there’s nothing on show. Watch my latest vlog, the evidence is there!

I used Stylecraft Special dk as it’s perfect for baby blankets. I ordered the yarn at the same time as the release of the new shades so I knew Buttermilk had to be part of it. It’s like someone has added mayonnaise to the Mustard. They go very nicely together. Also in the mix are Teal, Sage and Grey. It looks quite nice on my fabulous(ly cheap) sofa too!

And let’s not forget the ubiquitous Neat Ripple! I have no idea how many times I’ve made Attic 24’s Neat Ripple! So many! I did 8 pattern repeats and 64 rows before adding the grey. At each end I added a ripply row of grey and then a straightening row. You can straighten it off by following this useful guide from Little Tin Bird. Then it was just a case of making a couple of rounds of UK trebles before going back to Attic24 for the edging, which was pilfered from Lucy’s original Granny Stripe. Phew! What do you think? I like it! Anything with grey and mustard floats my boat though. Grellow they call it.

Anyway, I’m late for an evening walk that I must do. I’ve been very lazy recently and done no proper exercise. And I need to go to the shop for bread and milk…

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How to Crochet a Purse and add Zip and Lining

Hi guys! How is everyone?! I’ve finally made another tutorial for YouTube! Phew. This one is for a cute little crochet purse. I wanted to show how to sew in a zip and then at the last minute I decided to go all the way and whack in a demo for the fabric lining too! The response from the crochet Easter egg (my first tutorial) was amazing, absolutely amazing! Thank you so so much. It has definitely spurred me on to make more video tutorials.

Anyway, if you crochet but have always wondered how to attach a zip to your project or want to know how to go about lining it too, this is the tutorial for you.

Things you’ll need:

-Cotton aran yarn (or another yarn of your choice). I used Drops Paris.

-4.5mm hook.

-Zip in the length of the purse you want.

-Fabric for lining.

-Needle for darning in end.

-Needle and threads for sewing zip and lining.

-Scissors!

Here are a few pics of the starting process… Don’t forget, you can chain as many as you like. Make sure your foundation chain is a couple of stitches longer than the actual zip. The work shrinks down slightly smaller than the foundation chain. The piece is worked from the bottom up and in the round. To get the full how to, please hop over to YouTube. Cheers.

Please do let me know how you get on. If you make a purse I’d love to see, you can #zeensandroger and I’ll see it on Instagram or Ravelry it! Or just come and say hi!

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How to Make a Granny Square Bag. Free Crochet Pattern

I had no idea that I was going to make a bag last week, no idea at all! I was dashing off somewhere and felt I could do with taking a little crochet project with me. Hurriedly, random balls of yarn were grabbed and off out I went. Thus, a granny square bag was made! Yay!

I’ve had a few new friends come and join in the fun here recently, so I thought it’d be nice to share the pattern with you guys as a thank you. Thank you!

I didn’t have enough yarn to make a blanket, which made me wonder what else I could turn the squares into. I considered making a cushion, but what got me really excited was the idea of a bag! It’s a tricky thing to take a picture of, the bright colours were shouting loudly. I used leftover Paintbox aran and joined as I went (I’m fairly sure I used the Attic 24 method)

If you’d like to make a crochet granny bag you will need the following:

-Colourful yarn (I used aran weight but any yarn is fine)

-4.5mm hook

-Bag handles (search”bag handles” on ebay to find some, that’s what I did!)

-Lining fabric (something measuring a couple of inches bigger than your finished crochet piece)

-Sewing needle for yarn, pins, sewing needle and thread.

The main body of the bag is a bog standard gang of grannies; super quick and easy to do! Rounds of three, joined together in 8 rows of 5 (you’ll either need more rows or more rounds for each square if you’re using DK yarn). Every now and again all you need to do is check to see that the spread of colour is even! My piece measured 15.5×27″ (40x68cm)

Once the main body is complete,  the handles need to be shaped. It’s not as tricky as it looks and luckily, accuracy is not paramount. I don’t mind a project that needs a bit of bodging and crochet is usually very forgiving when it comes to bodging! Not that you need to bodge it, I’m just saying!!

UK terms are used (a treble is a US dc)

  1. At one end of the main body, (right side facing) make a strip of granny clusters starting with a ch3 and 1tr in the first st and ending with 2tr on the last stitch of the row. Straddle the square joins with 1tr, 2trtgr, 1tr.  You can see what I’ve done on the picture above.
  2. Turn the work. Ch2,  1htr in each st along to the end. Turn.
  3. Ch1, slip stitch along approximately 10 stitches (you want the narrow section to be the same width as the handle slot). Ch2, 1htr in each stitch along, missing the last (approx) 10st. Turn
  4. Ch2, 1htr in each st of last row. To widen the work again, ch13, Turn.
  5. 1htr in 3rd ch from hk. 1 htr in each st along to the end. Continue by adding 10 more stitches using a chainless foundation half double stitch. This is actually easy, I promise. I’ve found a good video that shows you how:  The half double chainless stitch. Skip the first minute of the video, the informative bit starts just after! Turn.
  6. Ch2, htr all the way along. Turn
  7. Repeat row 6. Fasten off. Repeat 1-7 on the other end of the bag.

Next, with right side facing, evenly stitch dc’s (sc’s) all the way down the edge of both lengths. Don’t fasten off yet…

Fold the bag in half and using the yarn still on the hook, slip stitch the sides together. Repeat on the other side.

Tuck the handle bits through the bag handles, fold down to the inside and pin ready for sewing closed.

The stitches don’t have to be neat, if you use matching yarn, you won’t see if you’re making a dog’s dinner of it! Try not to come through to the right side though, or if you do, make the stitches small so they’re not staring at you. Don’t forget the top bits at the ends.

Next you need to add the lining. It’s not 100% necessary but I think it looks better and you won’t have your stuff escaping through granny holes! Fold your length of fabric in half, right sides together. Place the bag on top and mark/draw where you need to sew. Also mark where you want the fold of your top hem to go. Sew down both sides to make the bag cavity. Next, iron the seams nice and flat, at the same time fold down the top hem and press. I went back to the sewing machine and top stitched the hem.

Tuck the lining into you bag, pin it in place and hand sew the top of the lining to the top of the crochet!

I think I need a course in how to photograph bright colours!!

I would absolutely love to hear if you make one of my designs, please do give me a shout. I’d love it if you said Hi! Don’t forget that I’m on Ravelry, so your makes can be added there. Oh, and I almost forgot Instagram! #zeensandroger

Thank you. X

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Episode 3 of a Crochet Podcast

Hello everyone! I hope you can come and watch Episode 3 of my crochet podcast (or is it a vlog?!). It would mean so much if you spent a little time with me, I’d love to hear what you think. The best thing is, is that you can judge me for bad hair and gurning (I seem very proficent in gurning and having bad hair…and fiddling/flipping said hair- apologies for that, it’s something I need to work on). And you can also get on with crafting at the same time as watching!!

Click on the image above to take you to YouTube!!

Stuff I went on about:

The Wool Kitchen

The Crochet Project -the Humbug Scarf (and I was calling it a shawl!)

Ravelry Group

And below are some pictures of pretty much everything I spoke of in the episode! I hope I haven’t left anytthing out. Does the Pink pop yarn remind you of sweeties?! I went out and bought sweeties especially!

Thank you so much! Now off to play with wool! XX

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Episode 2 of the Zeens & Roger Crochet Vlog!!

Hey! Another episode!! (Please click on the above picture to go to YouTube). I was on a bit of a high after Episode one and desperate to record another vlog immediately. I made myself wait and then the doubt crept in… Keen not to let it fully infiltrate, I pretended those thoughts weren’t there and dived in again. I keep forgetting to say stuff! I had a format I was going to follow but I just ended up chatting away. Anyway, below are a few links about the stuff I spoke of, followed by some pictures…Please do let me know what you think. Love to hear your thoughts. Cheers. X

My Ravelry patterns are here (including the Spiral T-shirt yarn bag)

My Easter Egg Tutorial

More info about the triangle cowls/infinity scarf pattern is here

Rowan Stone Washed Yarn info

Rhapsodye Yarns on Etsy

The Wool Kitchen on Etsy

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Crafty Crochet Catch Up for Spring.

giant-crochet-granny-squareHello!! How is everyone today? I feel a bit funny. I think I’m slightly overwhelmed. Thank you soo much for being so very kind about my first foray into vlogging. It was absolutely awesome to hear from all of you. I go from being all casual about it, to feeling extreme nervousness. I think it mostly went well. I’m looking forward to filming another one next week and I am wavering ever so slightly about filming a crochet tutorial this afternoon [edit: I tried, ugh, it was bad: tech issues, focus issues, brain issues. I will try again]. If you didn’t see my last post, please check out the crochet vlog here. Anyway, this is a crafty catch up so let’s get moving…

mini-crochet-circlesI still had lots of  Stylecraft Special dk left from my Crazy Chevron blanket so, on Sunday I made 48 little circles. I was thinking baby blanket. I was also thinking of doing a continuous-join-as-you-go. I can’t do one of those though. My guess is that I’d need a minimum of 4 balls of the same colour for that. This is part of an on-going stash busting  endeavour and I’m trying to avoid bringing in more yarn. I kind of did buy two extra balls for this already and I’m going to run out of the blue (lobelia) soon. Oh, it’s an instant fail.

colourful-crochet-circlesAll 48 circles now have three rounds. I could square them up to join-as-I-go and use different colours but would it be more interesting to try something new? Eeh, I don’t know, there’s no rush is there? I think I’m going to go for more too. Apart from the lobelia there looks like there’s enough for another 48 circles. Any joining suggestions?

rowan-stone-washedAt the beginning of last week I got a lovely surprise when Posty brought a parcel to my door. I wasn’t expecting it but I knew instantly who it was from because of the massive label greeting me on the box. This Rowan Stonewashed yarn was a gift from my friends (I can call them that now can’t I?) at Wool and The Gang. I’ve been lucky enough to have been sent their yarns before. If you fancy checking them out you can read about my mohair experience here. And my gargantuan (yet super warm) scarf here.

rowan-stonewashIf I’m being totally honest, the stonewashed is not what I’d normally go for. But they asked me to play with it and that’s what I’ve done. I like it and I’ve enjoyed being coaxed out of my comfort zone.  I’m always up for a yarny challenge!

The yarn is a collaboration with Rowan Yarns, which I class as high-end yarn. There are free patterns on the Rowan website for garments and shawls using this yarn.  I couldn’t put my finger on what it reminded me of for ages. It’s marble! It reminds me of marble! There’s kind of an Art Deco quality to it, whether or not that was what was intended!

mini-crochet-purseI’ve made three little purses out of the two balls they sent me and I’ve made some snazzy tassels too. I’ve not put the zips on yet so I’ll come back with pictures when they’re done.

simple-t_shirt-yarn-bag cute-little-bag-using-t-shirt-yarnNext up is this cute little bag I put together. In half term the boys and I went on the bus to Exeter to visit the dentist (living the high life) and happened to fall into Tiger (I didn’t realise until yesterday that it’s actually called Flying Tiger!). I came out with two balls of t-shirt yarn and I won’t mention the bagful of other random stuff. I’ve briefly shown on Instagram and the vlog the spiral I started. The spiral turned into a bag and the bag has turned into a written pattern! Just like that! Well, not just like that. At this point I say a massive Thank You to my IG friends (including my fellow WordPress pals Eleonora of Coastal Crochet and Teresa of Shirley Rainbow) who tested the pattern for me. Majorly helpful, without you, the pattern would have been a mess , so thank you very much indeed!! Please go to Ravelry where the pattern is now live!! Wahoo!

stashbusting-crochet-granny-blanketI’m now going to bombared you with pictures of a giant granny blanket….

simple-granny-borderThis has been another stashbuster. I’m so happy to have finished it. I didn’t know it at the time but it was destined to become a birthday present for someone in the family. Stylecraft Spesh again. All the colours that had nowhere else to be but with each other. I rather like it. A proper Granny blanket, don’t you reckon?!

granny-blanket giant-granny-square crochet-in-the-homeSuch is my commitment to getting this to its destination, I managed to drag myself to the post office even after I’d fallen over and torn a hole in Brand New Jeans!! A week later and Youngest boy is still asking why I fell over. Because I did. It was slippery, it was down a steep slope and I was wearing New Clothes. That’s why! There’s nothing quite like holding back your own tears whilst a boy of nearly four cries for cuddles with Daddy… because Mummy fell over.

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