Garden in May

In absolutely no particular order (because there are just too many – soz!), here are some recent pics of the garden. It’s been just over a month since I last shared what was going on in the garden and it has been a very productive few weeks. I can’t believe the difference from these photos to the ones in the last blog post! The garden has gone bonkers!

We had the bonfire that I said I wanted to have, took stuff to the dump, sorted out all the pots and got planting. There’s still lots more to do as I’ve not done all the lettucey type things and there are baby runner beans and purple french ones to go out.

A sunny May day is the garden at its best before there’s the weird June/July lull. I’m curious to see what the pots will look like later on in the year; the kids have persuaded me to change colour scheme. They’ve chosen lots of garish, clashy things. I hope I like it! I’m also desperate to get my hands on home grown veg. It’s all late because my early stuff got bitten by the frost and I had to start again. But, hey, it’s only May!

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Eleven Days Later…

Alchemilla Mollis. Poppin up all over the shop. Keep or pull?

(Not steel) magnolias

I said all I had to say about the latest garden exploits eleven days ago so I’m not going to say much more. It’d pretty much be repeating myself. But I couldn’t ignore the fact that just a few days has made such a huge difference to the garden (to my eyes at least). And I always ramp up the garden posts in spring/summer anyway.

No bonfire yet but guess what? I emptied all my pots! A full on sense of achievement was experienced that day, I can tell you. Expect to see a better garden blog post in a couple of weeks or so.

Cheers. X

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Hostas awakening!

Such cute babies. More hostas.

Thought this was dead

Some sort of peony

Kerria Japonica. Tiddly om pompom

  ;p

Zeens & Roger Crochet Podcast/Vlogcast Episode 26

Happy March!! We’re supposed to be thinking about spring but it’s most definitely winter outside!! Brrrr, maybe keep warm whilst watching episode 26 of my crochet podcast!? As usual, click on the pic above to go to the episode or go to my YouTube channel HERE. Ta very much.

Here’s some links to stuff I talk about, I wasn’t concentrating so I hope I have it all. If not please give me a shout and I’ll give you extra info.

March Meet the Maker – A month long Instagram challenge

#hookedonyarn2018 Another month long IG challenge.

My Easter Eggs. HERE is the link to the blog post about the latest additions to the family.

Blacker Yarns. This is lovely yarn that I’m going to get more of. I used Tamar Lustre Blend. A real woolly wool from just across the border in Cornwall.

Inside Crochet magazine

Simply Crochet magazine

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Another Granny Chevron Cowl! Pattern & Tutorial.

Fancy a very quick and easy crochet project? Last summer I designed and made a fluffy chevron cowl (see pic below). Yesterday I made a smaller, non fluffy version. I made it when I was thinking about all things granny (I couldn’t wait for the Granny CAL! I just couldn’t!). This morning I filmed a short tutorial too. It’s now up on YouTube if you want to go and have a look!

You can find the original pattern Here. I made the new one a bit smaller as I was restricted by the amount of yarn I had: 200 grams of chunky alpaca/mulberry silk stuff I found for £8 a skein from EYF last year. The (impulsively bought) yarn had been sat waiting for nearly a year and I had no real idea about what to do with it for ages. Funny how something can jump out at you after all that time.

Righty, some details.

  • I used a 6mm hook for my chunky yarn.
  • The yarn I used was only 92 metres per 100g. I think other chunky yarns are usually a bit more than that. I used almost every bit so if you don’t have at least 184 meters of chunky then you might not make it to the end.
  • It measures approx 32×32 cm (12.5×12.5 inches). That’s a circumference of 64cm.
  • I chained 47 to begin, this gives you a total of 14 clusters per row
  • To make it bigger or smaller, add or subtract 6. That’s enough for a cluster for each side.
  • The pattern is written in UK terms. The video uses both UK and US terms but essentially all you need to know is that a UK treble is a US double.
  • 3tr = cluster.

Pattern:

Chain 47.

Row 1: 3tr in 7th from hook, (miss 2 st, 3tr in next) six times, ch2, 3tr in next st, (miss 2 st, 3tr) six times, miss 2 st, 1 tr in last st. Turn.

Row 2: Ch3, (3tr in space between clusters) six times, (3tr, ch2, 3tr) in 2 chain space, (3tr in space between clusters) six times, 1tr in last st of row. Turn

Row 3 – 29: Rep row 2, changing colour every five rows.

Row 30: As row 2 but slip stitch to join to Row 1 between each cluster. Fasten off and sew in ends.

I hope you like it. I promise it’s super easy to make and can be made in a couple of hours (maybe less, I didn’t time it).

Jeepers, I’m not wearing make up on me peepers. Again!

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Episode 22. Crochet Vlog

Happy New Year!! Hope you had a good one. So this is the first crochet podcast episode of the year (above pic is the link but also HERE). Not many links to share but there are photographs to look at:

Geo Rainbow c2c blanket is now on Ravelry

Granny inspo on Pinterest is Here. Beginning date for the Granny CAL is Feb 1st! More info to come soon.

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And I forgot to mention that my sister sent me a photo of herself in her colour block jumper! Here she is on the beach (fully clothed)…

Some pics of my Christmas presents… x

Episode 21. Crochet Catch Up.

I am in a good place for this time of year. I hope you are too. I feel like I’ve played catch up and won. This episode is about showing off the latest finished objects (note that I have not said anything about WIPS!). I also chat about old pals and how I feel about progression in my work. Don’t forget to click on the picture above which will take you to YouTube.

Oh, and something else I mention is this: Would you be interested in some kind of Granny-a-long? Embrace all things Granny? I am thinking of hosting a CAL (that’s Crochet-a-long) in the new year focusing on the humble granny square/stitch. Let me know what you think!

Here are the links for everything I have talked about in this crochet podcast. And please do scroll beyond for all the crafty things…

Colour Block Jumper

C2C Rainbow blanket. The blog post is here. The pattern is now available to buy on Ravelry Here

Crochet Granny Christmas hat

Granny Stripe Scarf pattern

One Skein Wonderland CAL

Photography Mittens by Carmen Jacob on Ravelry

The Wool Kitchen. I’ve got Nebula in aran.

Infinity Triangle Scarf

Plant pot hangy doodah by Vickie Howell.

Cheers and Merry Christmas. xxx

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Last Minute Pattern: Crochet Granny Christmas Hats

Oh, how I wish I’d thought of these designs a wee bit earlier. There is literally just one week to go before Christmas Day for goodness’ sake! Better late than never I suppose and now they’re here, they’re here forever!

It was this big boy that popped into my head first (a couple of days ago). I didn’t like my other crochet Christmas hat very much as I’d not made much of an effort in the design stakes (see me talk about that disaster Here). Instead of fiddly fine fluffy mohair (yeah, that’s the other hat) I decided to go for a rush job and choose the chunkiest yarn my LYS had. In the last two days I’ve made three versions to get the result I’m really happy with (the first two I was quite chilled about frogging; this hat takes no time to work up!). Yesterday we had a lovely Christmassy lunch at a pub with friends and I sat there and worked on the mini versions!

The big hat uses just over one ball of the red and left me with about half a ball of cream. I felt bad at abandoning all those leftovers and mild to moderate guilt resulted in this collection of mini jobs. They are pretty cute in my opinion and perhaps, deserving of being called “modern” (although, does that make me sound old and clueless? Hope not).

Regarding the biggun, one size fits all. We tested it on our after-lunch walk yesterday. It fits beautifully on all heads, in different kinds of ways. The boy has it so that it is slightly oversize-in-a-good-way, it fits me like a normal hat, and it perches snuggly on a giant nut, like the one my mate’s got (cheers Paul!).

The minis can be tree decs or a garland thingy. I love both (which surprises me as I’m not a bunting person), so versatile!! Today I’ve typed up the patterns for both hat sizes as a 2 for 1 thing. The pdf is available as a download from Ravelry. More technical talk is over there so do please pop over and whilst you’re there, maybe you’ll be tempted to buy a copy! There is still time, honest!

Anyway, I hope to see you here at least one more time before Christmas as I’m hoping to record a vlogcast on Thursday (see YouTube Here). I didn’t think I’d have anything to talk about but actually, it turns out that I do. Fancy that!

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HoHoHo? X

 

Crochet Granny Stripe Scarf. Free Pattern

Here it is, a super simple yet surprisingly effective granny stripe scarf (I’m all over crochet colour block stuff at the moment). My arm doesn’t stretch far enough to allow all the scarf to get in on the action I’m afraid but I do show it off a bit more in Episode 20 of my crochet podcast. I shan’t dilly dally, it’s the pattern you’re after isn’t it?! Here goes…

You will need around 350g dk yarn, a 4mm hook and marginal approximations of brain power. I used Drops Lima: 2x dark grey mix, 2x powder pink, 3x dark blue. I’m not sure it’s the best idea to use something that’s not machine washable, maybe I should have gone for the super wash merino…

If you wanted to, you could go down a hook size for the ribbing, I did (you can see the effect in the above photo). However, it isn’t necessary and I sort of wish I hadn’t.

  • Multiples of three are what’s needed. Chain as many as you like, I chained 54.
  • OK, this is the (sort of) tricky bit but it is important. It will make one teeny little difference depending on whether you have an even or odd number of multiples, it will determine whether you land on a Front Post st or a Back Post st on the second to last stitch of the row. It really doesn’t matter but it will change what you work first on the next row. All you have to remember is to work a BP in an FP and an FP in a BP. That’s what creates the rib effect.
  • UK terms are used here but I use both in the video. A UK treble is a US double.
  • I changed colour after I ran out of each ball.  I counted to double check that the end mirrored the beginning (you never know, your tension might change a bit).
  • Go here to check out the YouTube tutorial

Row 1. 1 tr in 4th ch from hook, 1tr along, turn. For neatness, work in the back bumps of the chain.

Row 2: Chain 3 (counts a first stitch), *1BP, 1FP; rep from * to second to last st. 1 tr in last st, turn (please read notes about  BP & FP).

Row 3-8: Rep row 2 making BPs & FPs accordingly, turn

Row 9: (1dc, 1ch, 1tr) in first st, *miss 2st, 3tr in next st; rep from * finishing with 2tr in the end st, turn.

Row 10: (1dc, 1ch) in first st, *3tr in next space between clusters; rep from * to end, finish with 1tr in last st, turn.

Row 11: (1dc, 1ch, 1tr) in first st, *3tr between each cluster; rep from * to end, finish with two tr in last st, turn.

Repeat rows 10 & 11 until you’re happy with the length. End on Row 11.

Row 12. Chain 3, 1tr in each st along to end, turn.

Row 13-19. Rep row 2 (remember what I said in the notes!!). Fasten off and sew in ends.

Check out the quick tutorial to see exactly where those BP and FP stitches go! Thanks ever so much.

Tell me when you’ve made one. Here I am on Instagram.  #grannystripescarf  #zeensandroger or add it to Ravelry!

This scarf was inspired by the colour block jumper by cleck heaton, which I love! My scarf is a free pattern, you’re welcome to make as many as you like but please let people know where you got the pattern from. No, you can’t reproduce the pattern, or sell it. Nor can you pretend it is yours. It stings when people claim your things as their own. And it ain’t legal!

Don’t forget to come and say hi!! x

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Crochet Christmas

It’s December already!! How did that happen?! Fear not, there is still plenty of time to sort out a crochet Christmas if that’s what you want to do. In the past I’ve bust a gut trying to make something for everyone and to be perfectly honest, this year I just can’t be bothered! I’m still going to have a crochet Christmas though. ‘Course I am!!

First of all I’ve signed up to a couple of Secret Santa thingummies. One is for bloggy crafters (Stitching Santa) and the other is over on Instagram. Part of the deal for signing up is that you make handmade stuff.  The great thing is, is that I know that the participants will be as enthusiastic as me about handmade (whereas, who knows what friends and family think when I’m palming off handmade stuff on them?!).

Sooo first up I thought I’d make some wrist warmers. Quick, easy and very wearable. This year I’ve made a pair for myself and I’m making a pair each for my secret Santa peeps (the pair in the above pic are destined to be sent out). I used my own design from the Vintage Autumn set that I’ve got on Ravelry. I made the larger size as I want them to fit and whilst the small size fits me, I do have wrists like twigs. [In my last vlogcast I might have mentioned that wearing two lots of crochet at the same time was a bit like doing double denim, ie don’t do it! Therefore, the above picture amuses me as I manage three items whilst sitting on a crochet blanket!].

If making crochet presents is too stressy then you can always dec your halls instead. I’ve talked about these crochet baubles on the blog already and they have a post of their own Here. A brilliant use of scraps!

Some of my other favourite crochet decorations are some gorgeous Xmas puds from Planet June (you must check out all the other free patterns, including some more festive makes). I also found a toadstool decoration, I can’t remember if this is the pattern I’ve used but it looks like a good one. Toadstools look lovely on my tree!

I’m also doing a swap. I’m swapping some of my old makes with someone else’s, which is a brilliant way of getting something new and exciting for Christmas. Er, what else?… Well, there’s shopping! Tomorrow is Small Business Saturday. Find someone/something on Etsy, Folksy or check out local craft fairs to find independent makes that other people have worked so hard to create. I’m endeavouring to do a bit more of this this year. So far I’ve only managed to buy things  for myself though…

What are you doing for your crafty Christmas? Have you been super organised, or have you left it to the last minute like me?!

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Episode 18 of the Zeens & Roger Crochet Vlogcast

Hallooo! Episode 18 felt very chatty to me, it’s probably just the same as usual, you know, me chatting about crochet stuff. But that is what a crochet podcast / vlogcast is all about. There’s yarn, projects, patterns, all the things I love to witter on about. Click on the pic above. Thanks ever so much.

Episode 18 covers the following things:

StitchFest SouthWest: a lovely yarn festival in Totnes, Devon.

My yarn purchases at the fest were from Bellica yarns, Devon Sun Yarns, Unbelievawool, Handdyed by Kate. Plus, Made by Jude had lovely stuff too.

The Tar Barrels: Ottery St Mary’s crazy, age old tradition flaming tradition!

Crochet Luna’s crochet pins on Etsy

Christmas present Giveaway!! You can comment on either YouTube or Ravelry or both. What do you reeaallly want for Christmas? Can you think  of the best present ever?! I’ll pick winners on Thursday 23rd November.

Pattern Testers thread on Ravelry. If you’re interested please contact me over there. I would be super grateful.

Etsy discount on my store. The code is ZEENS and the last day is Thursday 16th November.

I think that’s it! Thank you so much. Happy viewing and all that. I’d love to hear from you, let me know if you like watching podcasts, vlogs, general chats etc. X

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