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February 2, 2018 @ 8:20 am

Episode 26 - CALathon

Welcome to The Crochet Circle Podcast and the show notes for Episode 26 – CALathon.

In this episode I cover: Quick news beats; Old dog, new tricks;  FOs; WIPs; DIPs; Feeding the habit, Review of Making Winter book; Big Up and What's good?

This episode is sponsored by

KNIT IT - HOOK IT - CRAFT IT

Thanks to everyone who tunes in to the podcast whether it is through Stitcher, Podbean, iTunes or the YouTube Channel. Your support and engagement are really appreciated and makes running a podcast very special and worthwhile.

 

1 - Quick news beats

Global Hook Up – Are you all ready to join in the first ever Global Hook Up?  Here are the joining details: 

Hi there,

Fay Dashper-Hughes is inviting you to a scheduled Zoom meeting.

Topic: 1st Global Hook Up with The Crochet Circle Podcast Group

Time: Feb 3, 2018 7:00 PM London

Join from PC, Mac, Linux, iOS or Android: https://zoom.us/j/4750475819

The meeting ID number is 475-047-5819 and you will need to join via Zoom which you can do here:  https://www.zoom.us/join

I have set it up so that everyone is on mute to begin with and then I can unmute you.  The meeting will start when I join in at 7pm (GMT) on Saturday 3rd February.  It will run for an hour and then we can take a call on whether it works and we want longer sessions.

The next session will be on 24th of February and may have a later start time so that it is more accessible from the Eastern time zones too.

You may need to bear with me whilst I get to grips with the technology.  If you are on Instagram, then please get involved by using #GlobalHookUp and following that hashtag.  That way I can see what you are all up to and comment on your projects.     

I will also release the meeting code on Instagram about an hour before it starts on Saturday night (GMT).

One Skein Wonderland CAL – By the time this podcast is out the CAL will have closed.  We will announce prizes shortly afterwards.

There have been so many great projects.  Even if you haven’t managed to join the CAL, I encourage you to look at the Finished Objects thread in the Love Charlie Podcast group on Ravelry and #OneSkeinWonderlandCAL on Instagram to see some fabulous projects.

Different Designer CAL – This will start on 1st March and run until 8th April.  The premise is that you go to the ‘Different Designer CAL’ Ravelry thread and tell everyone who your favourite designer is.  You share why you love their designs and which your favourite one is.  You then get to look through all the suggestions or come up with your own. You HAVE to try out a new designer, that’s the only rule. 

Other Crochet Circle CALs –

4th May to 30th June – Summer tops CAL

13th July – 31st August – Vintage Along (using either vintage yarn or a vintage pattern - 20+ years old) 

14th September – 26th October – Sock Along

24th December – 31st January – One Skein Wonderland CAL

Apart from the Different Designer CAL, I am going to add a new twist which is that you can enter WIPs so long as they fit the brief.

#FridayIsDyeDay – It’s great to see people taking part in this on the last Friday of every month.  There was some amazing speckled yarn by Lyndsay (andthentherewasmorgan on IG), Gemma (curlygem92 on IG) dyed up four fab bright colourways and started almost straight away to crochet a hat with one of them.  Haylie (fireweedfibres in IG) dyed up two colourways and Jo (dancing_goat_crafts on IG) dyed up some wool tops ready for spinning.   I managed to do some from my weekend accommodation.  I dyed a shop bought pair of cashmere gloves a bright turquoise and over-dyed some orange yarn that I had previously dyed and not loved.  It has already been crocheted up into a cowl which you can see in FOs. 

I also made my Mum dye up a skein which you can see below.  It’s and 80% Merino/20% silk mix and she wants me to knit her a pair of socks with it.

Ep_26_Due_day_1.jpgEp_26_Dye_day_2.jpg

Unravel Festival I am heading to Unravel on the Sunday 18th February.  If you are going to be about and fancy meeting up for a coffee, let me know. 

Knitting and Stitching Show at Olympia Eeek, I’m going to be at this show working on the Erika Knight stand!  If you are going to the show, I will be there all day on the Friday on Stand F62.  Come and say hello.  I promise to both wave at you and hug you! Both are obligatory.

 

2 - Old dog, new tricks

Google images – If you have a specific pattern in your mind that you want to make, then a really quick way of trying to see whether it exists is to use Google images as a search function.  I also use this if there is something that I want to buy, and I want to see what options there are. 

For instance, I typed ‘crocheted asymmetric shawl lace’ and it came up with hundreds of options which I can then quickly assess and click on the image to find out what the pattern is.  You may still have to do some sifting through because the occasional knitting pattern may appear, but I still think that it is a great way to see what is available beyond Ravelry.

Ep_26_Google_image_search.jpg

Instagram – I mentioned a few of the tricks of Instagram in Episode 24 and I think that it prompted a few of you to joining Instagram.  If that is the case, I really hope that you are finding it to be the positive, inspirational space that I find it to be.

 

3 - Finished Objects

Well first up must be  Cardigan of Doom really.  I used Cascade Heritage in shade Dark Plum (2632) I cannot say how happy I was to get this project off my needles and out of my life.  It has now arrived safely with Frazer (after I sent it to the wrong address!) and here is a quick pic of him in it. 

Ep_26_Cardigan_of_Doom.jpg

I learned some major lessons with this project:

1 – Never knit a 4-ply cardigan ever again.

2 – Don’t make big items for other people. 

3 – If you make an obvious mistake, frog it back and remedy it.

4 – Don’t work simultaneously on two projects that have a level of cross over.  I ended up adding two rows of moss stich rib to a K1/P1 section of the cardigan rib…

My third Criss-cross shawl for the Olann and Criss-cross CAL is finished! I used Rowan’s Alpaca Colour DK, sadly, a discontinued yarn. It was nice to work with and used 260g in total and came out at a whopping 2.8m in length.   

You can get the pattern free of charge from Olann and. It is available to download as a PDF in both UK and US terminology and there is a YouTube tutorial to help you through the slightly trickier elements, but that said, this is a pattern for competent beginners and up.  There is still time to get hooking this shawl as the CAL doesn’t finish until the 23rd February.

Ep_26_Crisscross.jpg

At the weekend I over-dyed some chunky alpaca yarn from orange to green.  I asked Becci from River Knits for some advice and she very kindly gave me three options.  I chose option three which would give me greens and browns.  I have gone from feeling totally meh about this yarn to loving it and crocheting it up straight away.  More on the pattern in the Making Winter book review below.

Ep_26_orange_yarn.jpgEp_26_FO.jpg

 

4 - Works in progress

I have been beavering away on my final set of designs for Erika Knight and remaking the patterns in five different and very awesome colourways.  This means that whilst I have been crocheting away, I haven’t got much that I can show you as I only have a couple of personal projects on the go and they are both for CALs!

Alyson and Vivian from the Keep Calm and Carry Yarn Podcast are hosting an #Ultravioletkcal based on Pantone 2018 Ultra Violet.  I can’t resist a CAL and so I am crocheting up the Inclination Wrap which is available designed by Julme Conradie and available from the Nurturing Fibres website.

Ep_26_Inclination_wrap.jpg

It is a proper sized wrap and uses linen stitch to get some nice stitch definition with the colour changes.  My yarns are Drops Alaska (03 Light Grey), a purple yarn that I hand dyed a couple of years ago (on a base from John Arbon) and want to put to good use and a skein of Life in the Long Grass aran in colourway Viola (the one with pops of yellow and burgundy). 

I have a future WIP which I am planning to start between now and the next podcast.  Claudia at the Crochet Luna vlogcast is hosting a Fortune Cookie CAL which starts on the Chinese New Year (16th February) and runs to the 31st March.  I already have my yarn selected and just need to crack open a fortune cookie which will dictate the pattern that I do.  

 

5 - Designs in Progress

My other DIP is just at the very beginning stages.  I’m not really a fan of granny squares and the granny stitch.  Is that something you can say when you have a crochet podcast?  Are you going to disown me?  Rosina from the Zeens & Roger vlogcast is hosting a granny along.  It started on 1st February and I figured that it isn’t really acceptable to broad-brush say I don’t like something, so I am determined to create a granny something in colours I like and hopefully a pattern I like too.  The yarn is Álafoss Lopi in shades Dark Grey (0005), Mid Grey (0058) and Light Grey (0054).  These are leftovers that I had from my version of the Phasian Blanket from Take Two.  

Ep_26_Granny.jpg

Watch this space to see whether I can be converted. Or not.

6 - Feeding the habit 

When I did the interlocking crochet workshop at Black sheep wools, I was in great company.  One of the other participants was the lovely Kathryn from Crafternoon Treats Podcast.  We did some podcast goodies swapping and I have a lot of very lovely things to give away from Kathryn’s Crafternoon Treats Etsy store.  Even better the prizes were chosen by Katherine and Lyndsay when we met up for a coffee before the workshop started at Black Sheep Wools. 

If you haven’t looked at Kathryn’s store yet, you really should.  She dyes up some beautiful colourways and specifically works with British breeds.  So, you will see some of these goodies going out as podcast prizes for the 2018 CALs.

Ep_26_Crafternoon_Treats.jpg 

She also gave me some lovely yarn to design with and some great single breed hanks which I can use for my version of Wool Exploration throughout the year.  I am a very luck lady!

I spent the last weekend in Wales.  Do you remember tales of me supposedly walking back down Snowdon having taken the train up there?  Well, because we had moved the dates of our trip, it was out of season for the train.  I took one look at the torrent of rain and decided that even a little walk was not for me.  Instead I went shopping with my Mum and got some crafting time in. That was after I managed to photograph our feral goat visitors.

Ep_26_Snowdon.jpgEp_26_Snowdon_goat.jpg

En route I had to pop into Abakhan (a haberdashery chain based in the NW of England and Wales).  They had a nice selection of Rico cotton which I bought because ready for the Vintage Along in July.  I want to use a pattern from a very old book and it up to date with soft modern colours of cotton. 

Ep_26_Vintage_along.jpg

 

7 – Book Review ‘Making Winter’ by Emma Mitchell

I bought this book from Loop London the day after it was launched in the same shop.  I bought it for a couple of reasons. 

Firstly, it is a multi-craft book with crochet patterns in it and I feel that this needed supporting.  All too often the woollen craft part of these types of publications is knitting so it’s refreshing to have crochet in there instead.

Secondly, the other crafts feel very natural and environmentally friendly.  The author, Emma Mitchell is very much inspired by nature and this is oh so apparent if you follow her in Instagram.  This is the kind of crafting that I like.  Taking my inspiration and raw materials from nature whenever possible.

I have pulled together a full book review which you can read over at my blog.

Ep_26_Makiing_Winter_2.jpgEp_26_Making_Winter_1.jpg

 

8 – Big Up

It has been a little while since I did a Big Up and new crochet podcasts are popping up!

Here are some of them for you to look at:

Micky Midge Crochet PodcastMichelle has been podcasting for a few months and has a weekly podcast.  She’s based in the UK, is a working Mum and is starting to be drawn into the rabbit hole that is hand dyed yarn!  Michelle is about to start a SprintimeCAL which is due to start on 14th February and ends at Easter.  The idea is that you crochet something that is Spring themed.  

Talia Louise CrochetNatalie has a couple pf podcasts out so far.  She’s based in Australia and works on a range of projects with lots of different yarns.  I think that Natalie is aiming for a monthly podcast. 

Earl Grey Crochet – Elizabeth has been podcasting for about seven months now and crochets all sorts of things.  She makes A LOT of amigurumi.  She is great fun, based in Australia and full of enthusiasm.  Elizabeth is also running a Blurre Shawl CAL starting on the 31st March.  Of course I will be participating in that!

Samsqueak Craftcast - Sam has a couple of podcasts out and is based just outside Chicago.  She loves to crochet and do all sorts of other crafting too.

 

9 - What's Good

I had a thoroughly lovely day at Black Sheep Wools.  The morning was spent drinking coffee and eating cake with lovely friends Katherine, Lyndsay and Kathryn.  Charlie and Katie popped their heads in for five minutes too!

Ep_26_Interlocking_crochet.jpg

The workshop that some of us did in the afternoon was interesting and it taught me a new technique – interlocking crochet.  The tutor was Graeme Knowles-Miller and he was great fun and very informative.  It’s so nice to be able to sit and chat with fellow crafters, so roll on Global Hook Up! 

Fay x

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January 12, 2018 @ 10:30 am

Episode 25 - Clarity

This isn't a standard episode because instead of all the normal stuff I reflect on the year that was 2017 and what I want to achieve in 2018 with the podcast, my company KNIT IT - HOOK IT - CRAFT IT and with my designing under Fay Dashper-Hughes Designs.

I have kept the show notes to a minimum and provided all of the links from the bits and bobs that I talked about in the episode. 

 

Clarity

I have never done a 'word of the year' before, in part because that isn't something that usually motivates me. 

On New Year's Day, Matthew and I headed off to have our annual review - we are very business focussed in our household. This involves pitching up at the Yourkshire Sculpture Park with our laptops, eating good local food and going for a walk around the grounds and deciding what we want more and less of in the following year.

In the weeks leading to the end of the year, I did A LOT of work on what I want to get out of the the podcast, my business and designing in 2018.  A couple of days before we headed to Yorkshire, one word was popping up everywhere - CLARITY.

So, who am I to ignore something that keeps on presenting itself to me?  Clarity is my word for 2018.

To me it means the following:

1 - Being clear about what I want from the three elements of my business.

2 - Spending my time wisely/  More doing, less faffing.

3 - Planning what I think is acheivable in a year - 12 podcasts, 12 designs, more of my own manufacturing.

4 - Being better at communicating with the crafting community.

5 - Improving my photography skills.

6 - Being creative for the sake of being creative and not always for the end goal of creating patterns or products.

7- Having a colour palette that is attractive to me and works across all three areas of my working life (podcast, online shop and designing) bringing clarity and consistency.  This is a massive step forward for me and helps me to understand that not liking rainbows, unicorns and pastels is actually acceptable. You would not believe the hours spent wondering why rainbows and unicorns leave me cold and even irritated at times.  

By writing all of these things down and talking about them in Episode 25 I feel like I have kicked of the process of approaching 2018 with clarity.  I have told you what I am up to and now I feel accountable.  That would scare some people, but I am self employed and work from home, I have no other way of making myself accountable.  You are my team.

So, to highlight the colour palette things, here are a couple of photos.  The first shows a lot of the yarn that I will be designing with this year.  The second shows the same yarn with the Autumn colour palette on top.  I bought/ received all of these yarns well in advance of gaining any understanding of the colour psychology seasons.  Hmmm, I seem to really like the Autumn colour palette...

Ep_25_DEsign_yarns.jpg 

Ep_25_design_yarns_2.jpg

 

Links to information

So, here is what I have been reading, listening to, possibly even taking in through osmosis.

Things that have helped me get focussed for 2018 and beyond:

1 - Sara Tasker from 'Me & Orla' has a beautiful instagram account, is a Social Media Influencer and I really like her down to earth approach. 

2 - Sara also does the Hashtag Authentic podcast which has been invaluable to me so far and will continue to be this year.

3 - There are a few guests that Sara has had on that have really hit home for me, starting with Fiona Humberstone from The Brand Stylist.  The podcast that I linked in number 2 will take you to that interview.  Here's the page on the Psychology of Colour.  There is just enough detail here to get your teeth into and you can buy Fiona's book if you need to know more.  I am an Autumn person.  I knew thsi already but reading this information and looking at the colour palette really helped to cement this for me.

4 - Tara Swiger, is very au fait with the yarn community and helps crafting and other businesses to move to the next level.  I haven't delved into lots of Tara's information yet, but I will be.

5 - Jen Carrington also did a great interview on 'The Glorification of Being Busy' which is worth a listen too.

6 - Photography course with Shaw Academy - I am currently doing the free introduction to photography which is online.  I have also previously done the online course from Making Light and they currently have a free tatser course running.

Here are most of my finished objects from 2017.  I crocheted and knitted just over 10kg of yarn, most of which was crocheted. 

Ep_25_FOs.jpg

 

I think that is enough for now.

In February you will get my normal podcast and less talk of clarity and focus.

Fay x

 

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Instagram: Faydhdesigns

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January 5, 2018 @ 9:38 am

Episode 24 - Giddy Kipper

Welcome to The Crochet Circle Podcast and the show notes for Episode 24 – Giddy Kipper.

In this episode I cover: Quick news beats; Old dog, new tricks; FOs; WIPs;  Feeding the habit, Designs in progress and What's good?

This episode is sponsored by

KNIT IT - HOOK IT - CRAFT IT

Thanks to everyone who tunes in to the podcast whether it is through Stitcher, Podbean, iTunes or the YouTube Channel. Your support and engagement are really appreciated and makes running a podcast very special and worthwhile.

 

1 - Quick news beats

Global Hook Up – I am aiming for 3rd of February for our first proper Global Hook Up. Details will be up on the Ravelry thread nearer the time.

One Skein Wonderland CAL – There are so many lovely projects in the Ravelry thread and on #oneskeinwonderlandcal on Instagram. The CAL runs until 31st January, so there is still plenty of time to get cracking with a project or two! Winners will be announced on Ravelry and Instagram.

 

2 - Old dog, new tricks

Over-dyeing - A while ago, I bought a bargainous cashmere cowl from TK Maxx that was from memory reduced from £50 to £10. The only problem was that it was light blue, which really doesn’t suit me. 

It took a while for the old cogs to turn before I hade the light bulb flicker that I could just dye it to a colour that I liked. So, with an overnight soak, followed by plonking it in a dye bath of the soaking water, 100ml of vinegar and 3g of Wilton’s Teal icing colourant, I have a lovely teal cashmere cowl that I now use a lot.

Ep_24_dye_1.jpgEp_24_dye_2.jpgEp_24_dye_3.jpg

         Before dyeing                   During dyeing                       After dyeing

You may have a jumper hiding at the back o your wardrobe or a shawl that you just don’t like the colour of. Why not just simply over-dye it? The same applies to skeins of yarn. Icing colourants only work on animal fibres, but here is a blog post that I pulled together on dyeing with acid, natural and icing colourants if you need some pointers: Dabbling with dyeing.

Instagram – I think that some people are put off Instagram because it’s yet another social media channel or they don’t think their photography skills are up to scratch. 

Instagram is for everyone. You don’t have to post photos, you don’t even have to engage, you can just use it to see what others are up to. I think that it is a really welcoming, engaging and positive space.

What really makes a difference now is that you can follow a # as well as an individual. There are lots of crochet related hashtags on Instagram, so it’s now even easier to find crochet content and be inspired by others.   

If we all start using and following #crochetcirclepodcast then we have an even better way of connecting our community on this platform.

As for your photographic skills? Practice is what makes you better at it.   

This also makes the potential for seeing what we are all up to during #globalhookup even greater…

 

3 - Finished Objects

Given the amount of time spent on The Cardigan of Doom (see WIPs section), I haven’t been able to do much other crafting.   That said, I still have a couple of FOs.

First up is the Calm Cowl by Suzana Davidovik. The pattern is very popular and is on Ravelry as a free download. I have already uploaded a project page to Ravelry called Ice Flow Calm Cowl so that you can see my final notes and changes to the pattern.

I used every last scrap of my Fjord Fibres Trollfjord sock yarn in the colourway Ice Flow. Check out those pops of turquoise and jade – I love it!

Calm_cowl_1.jpg Calm_cowl_2.jpg

My second FO is a pair of knitted socks, also in Fjord Fibres Trollfjord sock yarn but in Gilly’s Moroccan Tagine colourway. These socks are dense. I fully expect these to be the warmest socks I have ever made.

Ep_24_FOs.jpg

Given that I have now crocheted and knitted with Gilly’s Trollfjord sock yarn, I want to do a full review on them. Before I can do that, both things need to be properly road tested. The socks and cowl will be used on my upcoming Snowdon descent, so I’ll let you know how I get on after that.

 

4 - Works in progress

The Cardigan of Doom isn’t finished, despite my best efforts. I actually hate it. I have never hated a project before, but I hate this one. If it wasn’t for a friend, I would honestly frog it. The pattern is fine, the yarn is nice, it is just taking FOREVER! Moving on to more positive things…

I am working on my third version of the Criss-cross shawl. The CAL started on 1st January and runs until 23rd February, so you have plenty of time to join in. If you check the hashtags #olannandcrisscrosscal #faydhdesigns and #crisscross you will see lots of lovely versions being crocheted up and shown on Instagram.

There is also a lot of chatter in the CAL thread over in the Olann and group on Ravelry. I am in there on a daily basis checking in on progress. 

This version is Rowan’s Alpaca Colour DK, sadly, a discontinued yarn. I am using the Emerald colourway which is appropriate given that Olann and is Irealnd’s Fibre and Craft Magazine.

Ep_24_criss_cross.jpg

You can get the pattern free of charge from Olann and. It is available to download as a PDF in both UK and US terminology and there is a YouTube tutorial to help you through the slightly trickier elements, but that said, this is a pattern for competent beginners and up.

 

5 - Feeding the habit 

Christmas means yarny goodness. Christmas means a Christmas Eve hook on. Christmas means I have set a new rule called ‘Fay must get a skein of yarn from Matthew every year for Christmas’. I like my new rule!

Aside of the Fjord Fibres skein, I snuck in a set of mini skeins from RiverKnits. They were part of a festive charity, raising £5 from every set for Medecins Sans Frontieres. My colourway choice was Mouse King and so far I have made one sock with the set.

Mini_Mania_Striped_socks.jpg

I also bought a set of mini skeins from my visit to The Little Grey Sheep’s farm near Basingstoke. The colourway is ‘Back on the Map’ and is a really lovely blend of Gotland, Shetland and Merino, all from their own farm.  Gorgeous, soft wool.

Ep_24Feeding_habit.jpg

Ep_24_feeding_habit_2.jpg

And here's the lovely yarn and bag from Gilly at Fjord Fibres.  In a future CAL I will have a skein of her yarn and a variation of this bag to giveaway.  Gilly has been spoiling us all. 

 

6 – Designs in progress

The Mouse King colour way socks (see above) are going to be developed into a pattern called ‘Mini Mania Striped Socks’. Quite a bit of technical thinking went into making these socks and so I figured I may as well write up the pattern and make it available on Ravelry.

Some months ago I showed a cowl and hat set that I designed using colour work crochet and was inspired by the Jon jumper by Istex. In December I finally got around to emailing to ask whether they minded me releasing the patterns that I had created, given that their pattern was my inspiration point. They emailed back immediately and said it was no problem but they would like to see the designs in Lopi wool.

Jon.jpg

Istex photo taken from Ravelry

So, here is where I am up to. There will be separate patterns for the cowl, hat and mittens (same pattern will cover open and closed mittens) and each pattern will give different stitch numbers for DK and 4 ply versions. The pattern is about to head off to Lisa and Jo for test crocheting and I hope to release the pattern in February. Again, I will be road testing these items up Snowdon, so will be able to give you frank feedback on how the wool and patterns performed in harsh climates.

Borgarnes.jpg

 

6 - What's Good

I used just under 10kg of yarn in 2017! That is a huge amount. I crocheted 6.74kg and knitted 2.62kg.

I have also spent a fair bit of time in the last few weeks, preparing for the beginning of a new year. I know it’s just another day, but I think the 1st day of a new year is a good opportunity to press the reset button, assess what you want to do more of, what you want to do less of, and what you want start.

2018 is going to be a good year. We are going to have fun together!  

Fay x

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December 1, 2017 @ 9:12 am

Episode 23 - I blinked and it was December

Welcome to The Crochet Circle Podcast and the show notes for Episode 23 - I blinked and it was December.

In this episode I cover: Quick news beats; Old dog, new tricks; FOs; WIPs; Feeding the habit and What's good?

This episode is sponsored by

KNIT IT - HOOK IT - CRAFT IT

Thanks to everyone who tunes in to the podcast whether it is through Stitcher, Podbean, iTunes or the YouTube Channel. Your support and engagement are really appreciated and makes running a podcast very special and worthwhile.

 

1 - Quick news beats

#Fridayisdyeday - It was great to see people dyeing on #Fridayisdyeday.  If you are interested in having a go, take a look at the blog post that I pulled together.  #Fridayisdyeday takes place over on Instagram on the last Friday of every month.  

If you fancy having a go, it would be great to have you on board.  You don't need to dye, you can simply show off what you are making with indie dyed yarn - it's all about celebrating hand dyed.

We even have a theme tune.  Lyndsey's husband Alan thought he would be cheeky and sing a song all about it and Lyndsey's love of wool.  I have added the video to the end of the podcast.

Global Hook Up - a quick update on this one.  The platform that I was hoping to use was Google Hangouts but it isn't fit for purpose.  I need to find a platform whereby there can be a certain level of interaction and as many people as want to can join in and see what is going on.

I'm not quite back to the drawing board on this one because we (Matthew has been in his office doing test calls to me on my laptop in the dining room) have looked at so many platforms.  Some are clunky, some don't do what they promise and some simply can’t offer what they are advertising.  We are now looking at an app called Zoom.  Whilst you do have to download it, it's pretty user friendly and Grace from Babbles travelling yarn podcast is using it for Virtual Knit Nights.

My plan is to work this up over the festive period and when I am ready to do a test session, I will pop a thread up in Ravelry giving you all the details for those that want to help with that session.

My sincerest apologies for those of you that were waiting in YouTube for a live broadcast on Saturday 25th November.  I had cancelled it but YouTube had other ideas.  

CALs for 2018 - Thank you for all the fab ideas so far.  Keep them coming in.  In the January podcast I will announce what the CALs will be for 2018. 

Christmas Eve CAL - Charlie from Love Charlie podcast and I are teaming up together to host the One Skein Wonderland CAL.  You can hook on at 00.01 on the 24th December.  The idea is to look out that special skein of yarn (100g) or maybe you have one coming as a present on the 25th? I have mine already and I am allowed it on the 24th! Woohoo.  Feel free to make a project up with mini skeins if that is what you want to do.  We aren't going to be really strict.  It's more about having a special skein to work from and a quick project that you can fly through during the holidays.

There is a thread on Ravelry so that you can suggest one skein projects.  Thank you for all the suggestions so far.  If you go to The Crochet Circle Group (not forum) in Ravelry, you will see bundles on the right-hand side.  I have added a load of others too, from hats and shawls to toys and market bags.  Any new suggestions to the thread will also be added to the bundle.

We have three prizes for this CAL.  A lovely project bag from Emya handmade, The Accessories Project Book One (signed by Kat and Joanne) and an icing dye kit from Charlie.

Special Skein Competition - I have a quick turnaround competition for you this month.  Gilly from Fjord Fibres has kindly donated a skein of her Norwegian wool blend yarn - it's lush.   The deadline for the competition is going to be Friday 8th December at 12pm, so that I can get the prize into the post early the next week and hopefully the recipient has it for the Christmas Eve hook on.

To enter you must do one of two things but feel free to go for a double entry and do both:

1 - Go to Ravelry and in the thread, say which of Gilly's colourways you would most like to work with and why.

2 - Go to Instagram search for my post on the competition (it will be published at some point on the Friday), make sure you are following GillyCharlie and me and comment on what you would make with the skein that is up for grabs.  

I will draw a winner through random number generation on Saturday 9th December.  Good luck.

Gilly is also offereing readers a 20% discount code in her Etsy store, you just type in CCP20 at check out.

Ep_23_Fjord.jpg

 

Festive Shoutouts Episode - I hear from a lot of listeners and watchers that the people they live with, be it friends, parents, partners, they have to put up with your love of podcasts. 

To give something back, I want to do an extra podcast that will go live on Christmas Eve where I give shoutouts with your messages.  I have run this past a couple of people already and the answer was that this would be well received and a bit of fun.

If you would like me to read something (it can be funny - nicknames are 100% encouraged) out to someone special in your life then go to the Ravelry thread.  I will then record the messages in advance and press publish on Christmas Eve. 

I will not be wearing a Christmas outfit, but may have a Christmas decoration up, a mince pie in one handy and a cheeky Amaretto in the other.

 

2 - Old dog, new tricks

I have a couple of quickies for you this month.

The first may be known by some of you but I happened across it when I was scrolling through Ravelry the other day.  Quite a while ago Ravelry started asking whether your pattern was in US or UK terminology when you uploaded a new one.  The first time this happened I emailed Ravelry and asked whether they planned to start filtering projects out on terminology.  They said they may do at some point but there were no plans in the near future.

Now, if you start using the filters down the left-hand side when you are searching for patterns, there is a filter quite far down for Crochet Terminology and it is split into UK, US and unknown.  I know that many people struggle with knowing which terminology a pattern is in.  I'm not saying this is fail-safe, but it may help some of you. 

The second is all about socks again - I may be obsessed!  I have a load of shop bought wool and silk blend socks.  They are threadbare on the soles, toes and back of the heel but the calf and top of the foot is fine.  I hate throwing things out that still have some life in them through a bit of reuse and creative thinking.  I am the kind of girl that will eat a previously unopened yoghurt even if it's a month out of date.  If it smells alright, eat it!

I currently have eight pairs of socks that have worn through and I'm not willing to just pop them in my compost bin.  Instead I have turned them inside-out and machine sewn them across the bottom of the calf area.  I then cut below the sew line (make sure you cut towards the heel and not towards the cuff).  Turn the sock back out.  Et voila you have a perfect sized pouch for a 100g cake of yarn.  If you do a centre pull cake, you will have a lovely little protective pouch around your yarn that saves it from being dragged along the floor, picking up dust, getting tangled...   

It takes just a few minutes to make these up and they are amazing for yarn management and storage in your project bag.  I'll come back to you next month with whatever scheme I dreamt up for the remaining part of my socks.  Now where's that yoghurt? 

 

3 - Finished Objects 

I was vending at Nottingham Yarn Expo in November and the preparation and aftermath of that has really impacted on my crafting times.  I have still managed to whip through some bits and pieces though.

The biggie is my Homebody Sweater designed by Megan Shaimes.  I have added project notes giving all of my measurements, row and stitch counts.  Just go to my projects (MaDashper) and you will see it in there).  I am so chuffed with this jumper.  I fiddled around with the yarn, using 4 ply rather than bulky and came down to a 4.5mm instead of a 6.5mm hook so that I could get a tighter fitted jumper.  I love the way my hand dyed wool turned out.  I was aiming for a proper 80s stone washed denim affect and am really pleased with the outcome.  The jumper only took 281g so I have 210g left over and plan to make a big squishy cowl with it because the Bluefaced Leicester (BFL)/Masham mix is light, airy and oh so warm. 

Next up was a very quick make.  Off the back of finishing a jumper and having a deadline cardigan to knit, I wanted a project that I could tackle in a morning.  This mini hot water bottle cover was featured in Issue 21 of Crochet Now and was designed by my friend Helen Eccles. I crocheted it using a beautiful skein of The Little Grey Sheep's Hampshire DK.  It's lovely wool, quite full for a DK and the tonal shifts in the skein are beautiful.  You think it's a solid colour and then you see a little patch of seaweed greeny/brown. All in, this took me about 4 hours to make and it required about 47g of DK using a 4mm hook.

Ep_23_hot_water.jpg

The final bits I have been working on are hand embroidery.  I have started selling embroidery bag kits in the shop which means that I have to make some up to show off.  I really loved choosing which colours would go where.  For me, I got the relaxation of adult colouring with a useful project bag at the end of it.  

Ep_23_bear_bag.jpgEp_23_skull_bag.jpg

 

4 - Works in progress

I have one major WIP on the go at the moment - a knitted cardigan.  I've not got much further than the rib and I have to have it finished for Christmas Day...

...hmmmm.  I have worked out that I need to be averaging about 10 rows a day throughout December to hit the deadline.  A knit row take about 10 minutes and a purl is 15.  On the upside, the sleeves can be started now rather than when I am at the end of the body parts, so I can at least break up the monotony of purl rows with more knit rows.  I sincerely hope my friend Frazer appreciates this.  He is one of less than a handful of people I would make this much effort for and it is the only one he is ever going to receive from me.

Ep_23_WIP.jpg

5 - Feeding the habit 

So, it looks like a lot, but I only bought one skein - I promise.

Glacier and Moroccan Tagine - both by Fjord Fibres (Glacier is my Christmas skein from Matthew and Gilly sent me Moroccan Tagine as a treat - I am very lucky).

Bear in Sheep’s Clothing - Killadoon. Bernie and I did swapsies at Nottingham Yarn Expo.  She got a bear bag embroidery kit (of course) and I got wool (of course).  

North Ronaldsay Wool - I didn't buy this from Brit Yarn for a specific design but there is a design purpose behind it.  I want to get to know our British breeds a little better and Louise at Knit British is running  something called Wool exploration in 2018 with a new breed being reviewed and discussed each month.  First up is North Ronaldsay, then it's Gotland, Ryeland and Jacob (all of which I already have in my stash).  My plan is to report back each month and let you know how I get on and build up something - possibly a blanket, but mainly my knowledge of how British breeds handle and which are best suited to the types of crochet I design.

Ep_23_Habit.jpg

As for these goodies, my pin was a gift from the ever-lovely Claudia at Crochet Luna podcast.  I tried to buy one and I wasn't allowed! 

The crochet hooks are rather special too.  I commissioned them from Hayley of Fireweed Fibres.  Not only does she dye yarn, she also goes stick foraging.  These amazingly ergonomic and tactile crochet hooks are individually chosen as a branch by Hayley before prep, whittling, sanding, varnishing and pyrography.  I cannot tell you how lovely these are as things of beauty and as crafting tools. If you would like something similar, just drop Hayley a line, she is very lovely. 

Ep_23_hooks.jpg

My Dad was on a trip to Iceland and this little lot turned up this morning.  It's a new to me yarn from from a new Icelandic producer, Einrum and is an 80:20 mix of Icelandic wool and Mulberry Silk from Thailand.  I have a design in mind for this, I just need the time to get my hook out!

Ep_23_habit_2.jpg

 

6 - What's Good

My brain is starting to filter through what I want 2018 to look like. At the beginning of every new year we sit down and write a list of all the things we want to achieve in the following 12 months.  It can be silly stuff or major goals to be achieved.

As part of the January podcast I want to review my 2017 craft goals, set new ones for 2018 and give you a bit of a run down for what I want to achieve personally, professionally and with the podcast.  Not wishing to get all business like, but this way of thinking gives me clarity and means that I deliver an interesting (hopefully) podcast every month.   

  

Until 2018 - I cannot believe that I have just typed that.

Fay x

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November 3, 2017 @ 8:34 am

Episode 22 - The Secret’s Out…

Welcome to The Crochet Circle Podcast and the show notes for Episode 22 - The Secret's Out...

In this episode I cover: Quick news beats; Old dog, new tricks; FOs; WIPs; DIPs; Feeding the habit; Setting up a craft group; Big up and What's good?

This episode is sponsored by

KNIT IT - HOOK IT - CRAFT IT

Thanks to everyone who tunes in to the podcast whether it is through Stitcher, Podbean, iTunes or the YouTube Channel. Your support and engagement is really appreciated and makes running a podcast very special and worthwhile.

 

1 - Quick news beats

#Fridayisdyeday - On the 27th October I hosted the first #Fridayisdyeday, showing how different yarns can be dyed using professional (acid), icing colourant and natural dyes.  If you are interested in having a go, take a look at the blog post that I pulled together.  The plan is to do a #Fridayisdyeday over on Instagram on the last Friday of every month.  I might be dyeing again, showing what I am making with my own hand dyed yarns or highlighting what I am making with some of those special hand dyed skeins that are residing in the Stash Palace!  

If you fancy having a go, it would be great to have you on board.  The blog post has lots of links to further information on dyeing yarn and here are my results from Friday:

Ep_22_dyed_yarn.jpg

 

Ravelry moderators - the keen eyed amongst you will have noticed that I have added three more moderators to the group.  Anna, Jo and Lisa are always in there welcoming people in and responding and generally being a bunch of lovelies and making our Rav group a lovely sharing place to be.  They agreed to be moderators for us all.  We have never had to kick anybody out or edit what is in the group which is amazing and the job of moedrating is more about welcoming people to the group and keeping the chat going.  Tamara and Helen were already in there as moderators and I am hoping that they will stay on even after the #BackToSchoolSweaterCAL.

 

Global Hook Up - A wee while ago (... quite a few months ago) I mentioned that I wanted to start hosting Global Crafting gatherings online.  You then heard nothing more on the subject but in the background I have been researching the best way to bring this to you. 

The sessions are going to be on a Saturday night (GMT) so that as many people as possible can join in.  A handful of people will be able to interact on an audio and visual basis and as many people as want (I believe) can join in by seeing what is going on.  You can also use #GlobalHookUp on Instagram to track what is going on with the session and interact and show off your crafting.

The initial test Global Hook Up is going to be on Saturday 25th November.  The exact time is to be anounced and the details will be added to a Ravelry thread and on Instagram. The idea is to use the first hook up to see how it works for everyone and iron out any niggles, ready for the next one in December

CALs for 2018 - Over the next couple of months I would like to ask you to tell me what CALs you would like me to run in 2018.  I have a few ideas but would like to get you involved in the process.  I have opened a thread on Ravelry so please do let me know what ideas you have.

Christmas Eve CAL - We had so much fun with last year's Christmas Eve CAL, that it's going ahead this year too.  Charlie from Love Charlie podcast and I are teaming up together to host the One Skein Wonderland CAL.  You can hook on at 00.01 on the 24th December.  More details to follow on this but the idea is to look out that special skein of yarn (100g) or maybe you have one coming as a present on the 25th?   

There is a thread on Ravelry so that you can suggest one skein projects that I can add to a bundle for everyone to see. 

 

2 - Old dog, new tricks

This month it's all about upping the odds of winning at yarn chicken (that game you play when you really, really hope you have enough yarn to finish off a row or round).  

I tested out three different yarn weights (4 ply, DK and chunky) to see if there was any real difference in the amount of yarn needed.  

After a couple of rows of dc to settle my tension on each swatch I then crocheted three rows of dc, three of half treble and three rows of treble crochet.  This allowed me to take an average length of yarn required over three rows. 

Ep_22_yarn_chicken.jpg

 

Here are the results:

4 ply (400m per 100g)

dc requires 9 times the length of your row/round

htr requires 11 times the length of your row/round

tr requires 14 times the length of your row/round

 

Double Knitting (DK - 200m per 100g)

dc requires 9 x the length of your row/round

htr requires 12 x times the length of your row/round

tr requires 14 x the length of your row/round

 

Chunky (100m per 100g)

dc requires 9 x the length of your row/round

htr requires 12 x the length of your row/round

tr requires 14 x the length of your row/round

I have since tested this on the Homebody Sweater that I am crocheting.  It's in rows of htr and I am using a 4ply yarn and a 4.5mm hook, so very different from what I tested above.  Guess what?  Yup, it took just under 12 x the length of the row.  My final nugget of yarn had 10 lengths and so I managed to save myself some time and just started a new ball instead.

 

3 - Finished Objects 

I didn't think I had much to show this month but it turns out I do. 

First up is my Sicily jumper which is a free of charge Rowan pattern.  Although it calls for 4ply cotton, I used a 4 ply wool blend instead (Shilasdair luxury 4 ply in shade Hawthorn).  The wool has a lot more stretch than the cotton and the sample on the model seemed quite bulky so I opted to make the smallest size and it is my best fitting handmade garment to date.  

It has been really lovely to be part of the Back To School Sweater CAL with Helen and Tamara.  So much so that I have started a second jumper.

As part of another along, I took part in the Fibre Friends Podcast North Bound Knitting Along which meant knitting any of Lisa Mutch's patterns.  I chose to do Auspice using up the 100g skein of skinny Merino that I had hand dyed with blackberries.  The yarn has faded from a soft purple colour to a silver grey and I really like it.

I also had a day out in London with four lovely friends (Flic, Corrine, Helen and Charlie) and we made our way to i Knit and Loop.  Whilst in Loop I purchased a hot off the press copy of Making Winter by Emma Mitchell (Silverpebble2 on IG).  It has some lovely crochet patterns in it as well as recipes and lots of other crafty makes.  I suspect that this is going to be a firm favourite with lots of people and I know that it is already on a few Christmas lists. 

Ep_22_FOs.jpg

I have made the Hawthorn mittens and although I could have stuck to the one colour version in the book, I had to fiddle and add some of my Hawthorn inspired Shilasdair yarn for the actual hawthorn berries and some brown wool that I did a test icing colour dye on in advance of #Fridayisdyeday 

It is so cold in my office that I have had these on all day! 

You can also see a scrap yarn garland that I have made ready to be part of my exhibition stand.  This is a free pattern from Little Conkers. 

My final FO is a pair of socks.  I have been trying a different heel construction this time and I have to say I really like working the after thought heel and am in love with the colour.  You can see the sock/yarn blank in the photo and the subsequent socks. 

Ep_22_socks_nov.jpg

4 - Works in progress

I only have a couple of WIPs on the go at the moment. 

The first is my second version of Criss-cross using Gym Nut from Green Elephant Yarns.  This is a CAL with Olann and which will start in January (it was going to be November but we are now going for January).  If you fancy joining in, you need a 2 x 100g of 4ply with at least 350m per 100g.  More details will follow on Ravelry and Instagram.

Progress is fairly slow on this one becasue I am recording a tutorial for the pattern as I crochet along.

Wiltonicing_colourant_violet_1_.jpg 

The second is a new jumper using some Bluefaced Leicester (BFL) and Masham blend (4 ply and using a 4mm hook) which is really light and airy but oh so warm.  The pattern is Homebody Sweater by Megan Shaimes and it is available as a free download.  I liked the idea of having a slouchy, kick around the house crocheted jumper and had already dyed up the wool during #Fridayisdyeday knowing that I wanted a stone-washed denim look.  

 

5 - Designs in Progress

Thank you to everyone that responded to my call for test croheters and product reviewers.  My plan is to keep with this segment whenever I have something to say.

This month I have something massive to tell you! 

The reason I have been quiet of Ravelry and IG is because I have been designing crocheted items for Erika Knight.  

That's it, the secret really is out now.  I have been sitting on this information for just over two months and have a series of four shawls that I have designed in Erika's fab new British Blue 100 range (8 shades in gorgeous 100% British BFL).  There are some other designs as well, one finished and some in the pipeline. 

Ep_22_EK.jpg

I have been working with Erika and Bella to design a set of four shawls that increase in complexity as you move from one to the next.  All four are based on the same basic pattern repeat and shape but a change of stitch or addition of lace rows leads to four very different shawls.

When I started crocheting and knitting three years ago, I naturally gravitated towards Erika's patterns and yarns because I am always drawn to elegant simplicity.  If you haven't already, please check her out - there are 10 pages of patterns on Ravelry to look at and a massive back catalogue of books too (I think I own almost all of them).

In the Stash Palace I have two shelves that are dedicted to specific yarn brands.  One is Erika Knight and the other is John Arbon Textiles.  I think you all know what that means.  The love is strong.

I still keep on having to pinch myself because I cannot quite believe that this has happened.  I have the upmost respect for what Erika and Bella achieve - they are incredibly hard working, lovely people.

The patterns will be released next year and I will of course shout about it from the roof tops and show them off to you when I can.  

I am so, so happy! :-)

And the this arrived through the post and that's my Doppio Colosseum on the front!

Ep_22_JA.jpg

 

6 - Feeding the habit

Ep_22_rabbit.jpg

Bags from EMYA Handmade (AKA the very lovely Emmie and Yael).  Not only did they send me these bags as a surprise (one of which is going to become a podcast prize) but they are also offering a 20% discount code on their shop www.emyahandmade.com you just need to use the code EMYA20.  They have a great range of items, including reusable make up remover pads and panty liners (one of my biggest concerns of non biodegradeable waste).

Making Winter from Emma Mitchell is priced at £14.99

Indigo dyed yarn and natural undyed yarn from Border Tart.

 

7 - Setting up a craft group

I promised to go through how I set up Woolgethering Sandbach and it turned out to be quite lengthy so it became a blog post as well as the detail that I gave in the podcast.

 

 

8 - Big up

I'm going a little left field this month with an audio book(ish) and a film podcast:

I love listening to audiobooks, especially since I started working from home on my own.  It's very easy to feel like your brain is turning to mush and there is a lack of intellectual content because you are missing out on office situations where dialogue and debates occur everyday.   

Audiobooks mean that I continue to learn really interesting stuff as I design or crochet or catch up on emails.  My latest is a series of lectures called The Great Courses and I chose to listen to the lectures on The Vikings.  It is extremely indepth and brilliantly delivered by Prof. Harl - not at all dry and boring.  It was just one credit on Audible and I had 18 hours of amazing content.  There are many subjects to choose from in The Great Courses and they're well worth taking a look at.

Every Friday night Matthew and I sit down to listen to the Empire Podcast.  We love watching films and really enjoy this film review podast.  It's silly, quite sweary and great Friday night entertainment.

 

9 - What's Good

2018 is shaping up to be a pretty good year.  I feel like I set the standard for what I want to achieve in 2017 and feel ready to take 2018 on as a crochet designer and podcaster.  Watch out world!

  

Until December.

Fay x

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October 6, 2017 @ 9:09 am

Episode 21 - For the love of socks!

Hello my lovelies!

Welcome to The Crochet Circle Podcast and the show notes from Episode 21 - For the love of socks.

In this episode I cover: Old dog, new tricks; FOs; WIPs; DIPs; Review of Step Into Crochet; Feeding the habit; Big up and What's good?

This episode is sponsored by:

KNIT IT - HOOK IT - CRAFT IT

Thanks to everyone who tunes in to the podcast whether it is through Stitcher, Podbean, iTunes or the YouTube Channel. Your support and engagement is really appreciated and makes running a podcast very special.

 

1 - Quick news beats

Crochet Cakes - I am very pleased and relieved to say the Clarisabeth and Caroline (and family) are well.  They live in Puerto Rico which was hard hit by Hurricane Maria. The news came via Alyson from the Keep Calm and Carry Yarn podcast.

I have just donated money to the Alianza Somos fund because they are concentrating on areas such as power and communications, two things that will help to get infrastructure back up which should make general aid relief easier.

It may be some time before we hear from Clarisabeth again, and it is just great to know that they are well.

Logging your projects - I am often asked how I log my designs and projects and at long last I have pulled together a 'How I log my designs, WIPs and FOs' blog in case you are interested too.

Setting up a craft group - I asked the good folk of Instagram if they were interested in finding out how I set up and run Woolgathering Sandbach.  The answer was yes, so in the November podcast I will go through how I went about getting it of the ground, how it has evolved and how much time it takes me to manage the group.

Vicki Brown giveaway - I finally got to meet Vicki face to face at Yarndale and she passed me a lucky bag for a lucky listener.  It has a temporary tattoo, gauge, wool needle, mini skein and 10% discount code.  If you want to win, head to the Ravelry thread 'Vicki Brown giveaway' and let me know what your favourite colourway is from her range.

#FridayisDyeDay - if you fancy getting involved on Instagram, a few of us are going to have a Dye Day on Friday 27th October.  Either use the # or follow it to see what dye creations have been made across the globe.  I am going to do some natural dyeling using conker husks/ shells and probably some professional acid dyeing too.  Claudia (Crochet Luna podcast) is going to use acid dyes, Charlie (Love Charlie podcast) is doing natural dyeling with avocado stones and skins.  You can even use food colourants, so you really don't have to go out and buy specialist equipment.  If you don't have undyed yarn, you can over dye exisiting yarn that you aren't that fond of.  

A quick internet search will give you lots of ideas and thoughts on how to dye your yarn.  I will also be pulling together a blog post in advance to give details on how you can get involved.

natural_dyed_yarns.jpgdyeing_equipment.jpg

2 - Old dog, new tricks

It's amazing where you can glean information on crochet techniques from.  This month's Old Dog New Tricks is all about a little trick that I picked up from a pass away comment somebody made on Instagram. 

It's a neat little way of increasing stitches without it being as obvious.  It doesn't make a huge amount of difference to your finished object but I do think it is a little less obvious. Instead of crocheting two stitches into one, crochet one on the front loop only and the second in the back loop only.

Give it a try and let me know what you think. 

 

3 - Finished Objects 

The sock theme has continued well into September as I pull together the review of 'Step Into Crochet' by Rohn Strong. I would love to say that I now have three pairs of finished socks but actually I have one pair and three singles.  The book review explains why... 

I have been working on lots of other design projects that I am hoping to share with you shortly.

In the meantime, this is my other FO for September.  This gorgeous little cardi is called Crumpet and was designed by Erika Knight.  This is my new go-to baby cardigan; it's really quick to work up and the 6-12 month version took just over 100g of DK yarn.  

There were two purposes to this cardigan.  The first was to have a crocheted item to send to Knit for Peace with the card to explain what Crochet Circlers had been up to during the summer with Festival of Finishing and helping me to raise funds.  The second was to show the journey of recording, washing, blocking, sewing seams and choosing trims as part of my Blog Hop for the Back to School Sweater CAL.  

Crumpet_cardi.jpg

Last month I had made a start on my Basket Weave Cushion Cover by Jo Janes (AKA Jojotwinkletoes) and now it is an FO!  I was doing more stash diving and using up odds and sods.  This is Aurancania Milidon (no longer available) and was actually a shawl that I never wore and so frogged to reuse the yarn.  I really love the final effect and Autumnal feel of the cushion. It's going to be used outside when I am sitting crocheting and need extra squish and back support.  Thanks for a great pattern Jo, I definitely feel like I now have a good understanding of front and back post trebles!

IMG_5725.jpg

4 - Works in progress

I have one WIP on the go this month and it is a whopper!  It's my #BackToSchoolSweaterCAL.  I went all round the houses with this project - incapable of deciding what I was going to make.  I finally decided on the Aberdeen Castle Cable Sweater and after about seven rows I realised that I just wasn't enjoying the cabling process. 

Back to the drawing board and a pattern that I have had queued up for a long time - Sicily.  It's a free pattern by Rowan and can be downloaded straight from Ravelry.  Although the pattern calls for a 4 ply cotton, I am using Shilasdair 4ply (lambswool, angora, cashmere) and it is working up very nicely.  It is light, warm and by the end of the jumper I suspect that I will have only used 350g of yarn.  

Sicily.jpg

Future WIP is going to be my second version of Criss-cross using Gym Nut from Green Elephant Yarns.  This is a CAL with Olann and which will start in November.  If you fancy joining in, you need a 2 x 100g of 4ply with at least 375m per 100g.  More details will follow on Ravelry and Instagram.

CRiss_Cros_Gym_Nut.jpg

 

5 - Designs in Progress

There are designs that I can't show you yet because they are for yarn brands and then there are ones that I put out for myself under Fay Dashper-Hughes Designs.  

Whilst I always aim within the podcast not to bombard you with KNIT IT - HOOK IT - CRAFT IT shop updates, it occurs to me that you may actually be interested in the design process and how it moves on from one month to the next. 

So, this month I am going to show you a design in progress and you can let me know whether this is something that interests you or not.   

This design came to me at Yarndale when I bought the yarn from River Knits Yarns.  Their colours are just fabulous and instantly knew how I was going to use the colours in a cowl, mittens and possibly hat too.  I had put the puff stitch into a shawl that I was designing and it just wasn't right, so it got logged away for a couple of weeks, waiting for the right yarn/stitch combo to pop up.  

Barley.jpg

I love how this pattern is working up.  It's going to be called 'Barley' and should be out later this year if all goes well.

 

6 - Review of Step Into Crochet and £5 discount code

I am loving the fact that crocheted socks are getting more air time with more people making them and appreciating the warmth of crocheted socks on their feet. 

I received Step Into Crochet as a gift from Claudia of the Crochetluna podcast.  She is a lovely!

So, here are a few caveats before I get into the review proper:

  1. I have long, thin, pointy feet and thin ankles.  This makes hand crocheted and knitted sock fitting a bit harder.  Standard patterns don't fit me as well and I usually have to make changes to get something that fits well.
  2. I have an aversion to using anything below a 3mm hook.
  3. If you are starting a new crocheted or knitted sock pattern, be prepared to have a sacrificial first sock that is either going to be wonky or frogged.

The three points given above have to be taken into account when you read the review because they are issues that I have to work around when making socks.

The book is very deatiled - which I love.  There are sections on understanding sock construction, the differences in sock yarn and working out your foot measurements.  This information is incredibly helpful, especially if you have never crocheted or knitted socks before.  

There are 16 sock patterns in the book and two of those have been provided as cuff-down and toe-up options, so really there 18 patterns in total.  These patterns build up really nicely from plain one colour patterns through to cables, lace, stripes etc.  What I particulalry liked was that different toe, heel and cuff patterns were given too, so you could learn different techniques and see what works best for your feet.  If you have a high instep for instance, you may need to swap out for a different heel type that gives more stitches.  

If you want to get to the point of having really good fitting handmade socks, it usually takes a few pairs and some chopping and changing of costruction before you get there and that needs to be taken into account when you are working from sock pattern books.

I chose to work up three separate patterns from the book so that I could review it well and test out different sock yarns at the same time.   

Gorman Toe-up was worked up over three socks and two different yarns.  On each occassion I used a 3mm hook and because of that I had to rework the pattern over 40 sts rather than the smallest size provided which was 44 sts.  This wasn't a difficult task.  

Things I loved about the book:

  • The detail given on construction, sizing etc.
  • The stitch guide for each pattern is given at the top of each pattern so you don't have to flick to a glossary at the back.
  • The designs fit really well and are easy to adapt to your preferred length of cuff etc.
  • Good photography which helps to understand the construction of the socks.
  • Lots of ankle socks so you get patterns that can take you through more seasons.  

 Issues I had with the book:

  • At times, small parts of the pattern were missing.  In Mordecai, the stitch guide for foundation double chain crochet (US) is incomplete.  If you didn't know that, you would struggle to get the sock started.  In the Azalea pattern the written instructions are incorrect.  It says to repeat rnd 6 to complete rnd 7 but that is incorrect and I only know that because I read the accompanying chart.  These aren't big issues because I have used these techniques enough times but a first timer coming to these patterns with less confidence may struggle. 
  • It feels like a more thorogh tech edit was required to check and double check the patterns and provide better instructions in some areas.  Again, I managed work arounds and could understand where the problems were but only because I have knitted and crocheted quite a few pairs of socks now.  

Gorman_socks_yeah.jpgGorman_regia.jpg

Azalea.jpgMordecai_.jpg

 

Would I recommend this book to others?  Even with the issues that I have outlined above, I would still recommend the book.  I would just encourage people to read through the pattern thoroughly, be prepared to frog or have an initial wonky sock until the perfect length, stitch count etc is reached.  It may also be worth heading to project pages on Ravelry where people like me have put up notes explaining changes and pattern work arounds.  

There are currently no errata links for this book on Interweave's website or Ravelry.

In the UK the book retails for £16.99 and I think this is good value for money.  Eighteen patterns, loads of upfront information before you even start and loads of techniques to learm.  You just have to have the confidence to know when something probably isn't quite right and be able to work around that.

In the UK the book retails for £16.99 and I think this is good value for money. Eighteen patterns, loads of upfront information before you even start and loads of techniques to learn. You just have to have the confidence to know when something probably isn't quite right and be able to work.

FW Media have offered people in the UK a £5 discount code and free P&P, bringing the cost down to £11.99. All you have to do is call 01206 255777 and use code KHC117. The discount is available until the 15th December 2017.

 

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7 - Feeding the habit

Here are some of the things that I aquired at Yarndale:

 

habit.jpg

1 - Yarn from Black Horse Yarns

2 - Dorset Button kit from Tania at TJ Frog

3 - Amazing yarnyness from RiverKnits

4 - More buttons from Textile Garden

5 - Vintage scissors from Eliza Conway

6 - Some paper yarn to play with.

 

That RiverKnits yarn in the middle is called Indian Giant Squirrel - just look at it unskeined and the the actual beast below!

Indian_Giant_Squirrel.jpgSquirrel_t_yarn.jpg

And here is my amazing prize from Vivian and Alyson from the Keep Calm and Carry Yarn podcast.  This is an exceptionally well made bag form Vivian via her Pearl and Plum shop. 

 

8 - Big up

I have a couple of podcasts for you to take a look at. Both are on YouTube.

Deanne from Addydae Designs is very well known for her crochet designs such as the Blurre shawl, but she has a podcast too.  She lives in Australia which gives it a different twist for me and is very open about her design process and sharing with the audience. 

The second is the Thread the Love podcast on YouTube.  Amber has a couple of episodes out so far.  She is a crochet designer and so far her episodes are both under 30 minutes.

 

9 - What's Good

Clarisabeth and Caroline are well - it is worth reiterating that this is very good news.  I am loving that Charlie from the Love Charlie podcast is local to me.  It is really nice to have a podcaster just down the road.     

I have just interviewed Becci and Markus from RiverKnits.  I really enjoyed doing the interview with them and it reminded me how much I enjoy the process, so I need to get out ont he road and get interviewing people again!  You can hear the interview or watch it.

Riverknits_interview.jpg

 

See you all in November.

Fay x

Instagram: Crochet_Circle_Podcast 

Instagram: Knitithookit

YouTube: The Crochet Circle Podcast

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October 5, 2017 @ 1:05 pm

Interview with RiverKnits

Whist visiting Yarndale 2017 (Yorkshire based yarn show), I was ushered towards RiverKnits by my friend Bec.  I was instantly in awe of their yarns, colours and dyeing techniques.

I discovered that they live and dye (see what I did there!) on a narrow boat that was moored up less than a mile from my house.  It was such a golden opportunity to interview a dyeing duo on their boat that I coudln't pass it up.

What you will hear is an interview that was conducted as we sat outside on the narrow boat.  There are knocks and bangs and engines noises.  I deliberately wanted this as part of the interview so that you got a feel for life on the boat.  At the end there are soem lovely tunes played by Becci and Markus, so keep on listening.

The interview is also available as a video file on YouTube.  Unfortunately, the footage is over exposed (my baf for not sorting out hte wite balance better) but I felt it was still okay to put out and the interview is just so nice that I coudln't not be seen.

Rather than write lots about the interview, I just want to show you some photos below that punctaute the interview.  

You can buy RiverKnits yarns from www.riverknits.co.uk and follow them on Instagram and Facebook.  They also have a Facebook page for their folk band Das Boaty McBoatface.

 

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 Some RiverKnits colourways

 

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The most amazing 'Indian Giant Squirrel' colourway

 

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The actual Indian Giant Squirrel.

 

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My latest design 'Barley', which uses 100g of Splenidferous Sock in 'Stoke' and 5 x mini skeins of your choice.

 

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One of Becci's favourite dyers is Victoria from Eden Cottage - you can see why!

 

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Some examples of colourways inspired by life on the canal.

 

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Goregous leather project bags made by Nu Shearman.  Nu uses British leather and has an Etsy shop.

 

 

Thanks for listening and thanks to Becci and Markus for letting me come and interview them.

Fay x

Instagram: Crochet_Circle_Podcast 

Instagram: Knitithookit

YouTube: The Crochet Circle Podcast

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September 1, 2017 @ 9:17 am

Episode 20 - Flappy Socks

Hello my lovelies!

Welcome to The Crochet Circle Podcast and the show notes from Episode Twenty - Flappy Socks.

In this episode I cover: Old dog, new tricks; FOs; WIPs; Festival of Finishing CrAL; #BackToSchoolSweaterCAL; Feeding the habit; Big up and What's good?

 

This episode is sponsored by:

KNIT IT - HOOK IT - CRAFT IT

 

Thanks to everyone who tunes in to the podcast whether it is through Stitcher, Podbean, iTunes or the YouTube Channel. Your support and engagement is really appreciated and makes running a podcast veryspecial.

 

1 - Old dog, new tricks

Having heard lots of radio adverts for the magazine app 'Readly' I was intrigued to see what it was all about.  This was also hot on the heals of me learning from Alyson at the Keep Calm and Carry Yarn Podcast that her local library (Edinburgh) has free subscriptions to libraries through a different app (I have looked into this and very few UK libraries actually offer this service).

Already a subscriber to Spotify, I figured that Readly woulld work in the same way - it doesn't!  You can sign up five more friends or family members to the service and they don't appear to need to live at the same address.  I have offered this out around Woolgathering and my friend Jenny also has one of my five subscription spots.

CAVEAT - Having recorded the podcast I went to downlaod the latest Simply Crochet magazine and it wasn't there.  Nor was Mollie Makes...

 

I emailed Readly and they say that those publications are no longer available but that they have lots of other craft titles.  They seem to have started doing Crochet Now instead which is good news but still means that what has gone out in the podcast is a) inaccurate and b) annoying.  I will still subscribe to this because there are so many titles to download, especially if you enable lots of different countries as you can then get magazines form there too.

 

2 - Finished Objects 

There is a bit of a sock theme this month.  Had you noticed?  I have really enjoyed making the Socks Yeah! (shade is 102 Ammolite) version of the Gorman Street Toe Up Socks from Step Into Crochet.  I can't say the same for the Regia version which is why I have only made one of them.  This yarn split with almost every stitch.  I liek the end prodct, the sock is squishy and warm but the process very frustrating.  I have previously knitted and crocheted socks with a different Regia 4 ply yarn and didn't have these problems.  Tonight I was at Wollgathering sandbach (the crafting group that I run) and Sam had just finished knitting a pair using Regia 4 ply and had the same issues.

 

Flappy_socks.jpgRegia.jpg

 

In advance of a full book review on Step Into Crochet next month, I wanted to set out the rib changes that I made:

Larger ankles - stick to the pattern and keep a turning chain at the top of the rib - this is what I did with the Regia sock on the left and you can see that it is 'flappy'

Medium ankles - try only doing the turing chain on every other rib at teh top.  This leads to a tighter rib with good elasticity (see the middle sock) but it was still too loose for me.

Thin ankles - don't do a turning chain at the top of the rib at all.  This is how I got a good fit at the top of my socks (see third sock).

I also finshed off my Rambling Friends Socks from my Fibre Friends Podcast kit.  The yarn was dyed by Adrienne (Old Oak Yarns), the pattern was craeted by Louise (Louise Patterson on Ravelry) and I kept it all in my Evertote bag made by Caroline and Kathy.  THese were lovely to work on - the yarn was squishy and vibrant, the pattern was great (I loved the simple lace detail at the back) and my project bag had mustard and teal birds on it, a winning combination.

Rambling_Friends.jpg

My final FO is a crocheted shawl of my own design.  It's called Basalt and is 100% inspired by the hexagonal geological features taht you get throughout the world.  This version is crocheted with John Arbon Textiles Knit By Numbers 4 ply (2 x 100g skeins and one mini skein).  The pattern is on Ravelry now and if you use the cde TCC50% between 1st and 30th September 2017 you will get 50% off making it £1.75.  

The pattern covers crocheting this both bottom up and top down and has a private YouTube tutorial that is only available to those that have purchased the pattern.

Basalt.jpg

 

3 - Works in progress

I only have one WIP this month.  I have been pattern testing a cushion cover for Jo jo Twinkletoes.  I haven't previously tried the basket weave stitch and this was the perfect project for it.  The pattern will be free of charge and go live on Jo's blog the second weekend of September and I should be able to show it off as an FO in the next episode.

 

WIP.jpg

 

I also talked about the future WIPs that I will be workingon in the coming month.  More socks, in the form of the Mordecai Socks from Step Into Crochet but this time using West Yorjshire Spinners Signature 4 Ply and Lang Yarns Jawoll (with the reinforcement thread because the socks won't last very long without it).   

Future_WIPs.jpg4Reinforoeement.jpg

4 - Festival of Finishing

The response to the CrAL has been fabtastic.  As I type out these notes it is 00:19 on the 1st September and I know that we reached the target of 150 FOs about an hour ago and there are more FOs to be added to the Ravelry thread.  I am so proud of the fact that between us all we have rasied a load of money for Knit for Peace.  I will be able to gve you a total number of projects and £ raised inthe next podcast.Thank you. x

I finally finished my Uncia shawl, knitted in John Arbon's Harvest Hues in colourway Blue Spruce.  It was a bit of an effort to get this finished but the sheepy smell of the wool kept me going.  I have just washed and blocked this and it is beautiful and still smells sheepy - lush.

 

Uncia.jpg

  

 

5 - Back to School Sweater CAL

We have lift off on the CAL.  

Sweater_CAL.jpg

I have finally decided on the garment that I am going to start with.  It's the Aberdeen Castle Cable Sweater by Noelle Stiles and I am using Shilasdair Luxury 4 ply for it which has been naturally dyed with Hawthorn berries.

Aberdeen_Castle.jpg

 

6 - Feeding the habit

I have very little for you this month, just some 4 ply from Green Elephant in colourway Gym Nut.  I love this yarn from Fiona and will be using it in a second version of the Criss-cross shawl which will be a CAL with Olann and magazine later in the year.

 Green_elephant.jpg

7 - Big up

I have a couple of new podcasts for you to take a look at.  Both are on YouTube.

Charlie has a blog and a new crochet podcast.  She's a designer and seems to be pretty much yarn obsessed with a stash that looks like it could start to rival mine...

The second is Grace from Babbles Travelling Yarn Podcast.  She is great fun to watch even if you aren't a knitter - one of those dafties that can always cheer you up.

8 - What's Good

At the beginning of the month I was vending at Yarnfolk Festival in Whitehead, Northern Ireland.  What a day!  I was up very early in the morning to catch the ferry from close to my Mum and Dad's house in Scotland and talked crochet and crafting all day long with the friendliest people.

I didn't manage to take a single photo while I was there but luckily Lora from Olann and magazine has created a really good vlog of the day showing off the exhibitors.

 

See you all in October.

Fay x

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YouTube: The Crochet Circle Podcast

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August 4, 2017 @ 9:05 am

Episode 19 - Sweaters, socks & woolly wool

Hello my lovelies!

Welcome to The Crochet Circle Podcast and the show notes from Episode Nineteen - Sweater, socks & woolly wool.

In this episode I cover: Old dog, new tricks; FOs; WIPs; Review of The Crochet Sock Collection; Festival of Finishing CrAL; #BackToSchoolSweaterCAL; Feeding the habit; Big up and What's good?

 

This episode is sponsored by:

KNIT IT - HOOK IT - CRAFT IT

 

Thanks to everyone who tunes in to the podcast whether it is through Stitcher, Podbean, iTunes or the YouTube Channel. Your support and engagement is really appreciated and makes running a podcast veryspecial.

 

1 - Old dog, new tricks

I know that you should really swatch for each project, but if the meterage to weight ratio is the same or only slightly different then I tend not to and that's a mistake.

I have now made the Hove Beach Bag in two different yarns. The first is Erika Knight's Gossypium Cotton which is 100% cotton and 50g/ 100m.  The second is Yarn and Colours Charming which is 68% cotton/ 32% acrylic and 50g/ 102.5m.

On face value, they are very similar yarns but when crocheted into a fabric, they are very different.  The Gossypium Cotton has very little give to it and so doesn't really condense down when crocheted.  In contrast, the cotton/ acrylic mix does and this makes for a denser fabric and therefore, smaller finished object.  

The 100% cotton had 18.5 sts and 21 rows over 10cm whereas the cotton/ acrylic mix was 21 sts and 24 rows over 10cm.  

From now on in I vow to look at the make-up of my yarn as well as the weight/ meterage ratio, particularly if one of the substitute yarns is a blend.

Hoves.jpg

 

2 - Finished Objects 

I have a handful of large-ish FOs this month. 

I showed the beginnings of my Fronds Shawl by Joanne Scrace using Touch Yarns Possum/ Silk / Merino in last month's podcast and I worked on it furiousy on the journey back from our holiday, finishing it off as we were driving down the side of Loch Lomond.

 

Fronds.jpg

The pattern is easy to memorise and grows very quickly. Whilst the yarn was lovely to work with - it is very, very soft - the colours just aren't for me and so my friend Jenny will be the recipient of this shawl.  This also marks bag five of six of my Stash Bingo project, so I am very happy that I am using up some of my older stash in projects.

I also managed to finally finish of some things for the Festival of Finishing!  The TARDIS cross stitch was finished just before we went away and then I made it up into a cushion when we got back.  I learned a few new skills in making the cushion (mitred corners and piping) and was using YouTube videos for tutorials.

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The TARDIS cross stitch is by StellarSpaceCraft on Etsy and I used DMC thread 311.  

I was encouraged by Crochet Cavalier to rescue my dog tapestries from the charity shop pile and do something with them.  After an hour or so of pondering, I finally fell on the idea of making pin cushions.   I cut up two tapestries to make five pin cushions that will be sent out to lovely freinds that will put them to good use.  

 

3 - Works in progress

Last month I talked about doing a yarn comparison on the Evesham socks because I have already crocheted one pair. What I have discovered is that my tension has changed since I made my initial pair and so I have frogged the little that I had done.  

Instead, I am going to make four pairs from Step into Crochet by Rohn Strong.  The four pairs will come from two separate patterns, one toe up and one cuff down and they will all compare yarns to see whether there is a difference. This will also allow me to give you a decent review of Rohn's book in a couple of months and assess the yarns that I have used.

WIP.jpg

 So far, I have a sombrero for a very small teddy bear!

 

4 - Book Review - The Sock Collection by Vicki Brown

Two very lovely listeners, Anna and Hayley have become a little sock obsessed.  They have both independently crocheted every one of the six patterns in The Sock Collection book by Vicki Brown.

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Here's a quick run down of what they had to say about the collection and you can read their full reviews in the Crochet Book Reviews thread for this podcast group on Ravelry.  

Both gave the book an overall 5/5, and 5/5 for value for money and would recommend to friends.

They loved that each pair had a different construction and that no two socks were the same!  

Here are Hayley and Anna's six pairs of socks:

1.jpg 2.jpg3.jpg4.jpg6.jpg5_socks.jpg

  

 

5 - Festival of Finishing CrAL

The ongoing response to this CrAL is fantastic!  I wanted to point you towards somebody that has been vlogging their Festival of Finishing journey.  His name is David and he has been putting vlogs up on his Boy Who Knits YouTube channel, coming to you from Brisbane, Australia.

David has a lovely sunny nature and is a crocheter and knitter.  When I was watching his videos earlier, I was shattered and had just managed to delete the initial version of these show notes.  Tears nearly happened!  I watched David and was reenergised and happier.  Thanks David for unknowingly cheering me up!   

I would love you to get involved with the CrAL and share what you are up to within the Ravelry thread in The Crochet Circle Podcast Group or by using #FestivalOfFinishing on Instagram.

 

As an additional element, via my company KNIT IT - HOOK IT - CRAFT IT , Claudia at Crochet Luna podcast and Carloine (also fo the Fibre Friends Podcast) and Kathy at Evertote, each FO you have under the Festival Of Finisihng is now worth about £2.37. TheThe charity that will benefit from the money is Knit for Peace.  

 

5 - #BackToSchoolSweaterCAL

Here are the latest details on the swaeter CAL. Helen and Tamara are doing a great job pulling all of this together and you can check out the CAL through vtheir blogs and the thread within the Crochet Circle Podcast group on Ravelry:

Sweater_CAL.jpg

 

Feeding the habit

Hmmm, 'nuff said.

 FOs_feed.jpg

1 - Border Leicester keyring from Imogen Louise

2 - DK wool from The Little Grey Sheep

3 - Naturally dyed yarn from Shilasdair

4 - Storm Grey and Peaty Brown from The Birlinn Yarn Company

5 - Harris Tweed buttons bought at the Kildonan Musuem on South Uist

6 - Hebridean and Gansey wool from Yasin at Island on the Edge

 

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My lovely goodies from Fibre Friends Podcast folk.

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Destined to become part of a jumper or two - my haul from Uist Wool.

 

6 - Big up

Caroline from Fibre Friends Podcast is now also doing a solo podcast all about her cross-stitch projects.  I love Caroline and her energy, so go and check her out at Off The Grid Needlearts.

I also came across a new magazine called Reloved.  It's a UK based publication and costs £4.99.  I initially picked it up because there was information on doing modern macrame, which is easily going to become a new obsession. Having now had a better flick through the magazine, I really like lots of the projects and the ideas for upcycling through crafting. There are great photo tutorials throughout the magazine and the projects are stylish not frumpy!

 

7 - What's Good

I have been on holiday in the Outer Hebrides off the West coast of Scotland.  It was AMAZING!  I clearly bought lots of wool, walked on the beach and generally had a great time chilling out. The house we were staying in looked straight out to sea and I loved sitting crocheting watching the tide roll in and out.  It really was bliss. 

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See you all in September.

Fay x

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YouTube: The Crochet Circle Podcast

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July 7, 2017 @ 6:00 am

Episode 18 - Shear Joy

Hola Crochet Circlers!

Welcome to The Crochet Circle Podcast and the show notes from Episode Eighteen - Shear Joy.

In this episode I cover: Old dog, new tricks; FOs; WIPs; Festival of Finishing CrAL; Feeding the habit; Big up and What's good?

 

This episode is sponsored by:

KNIT IT - HOOK IT - CRAFT IT

 

Thanks to everyone who tunes in to the podcast whether it is through Stitcher, Podbean, iTunes or the YouTube Channel. Your support and engagement is really appreciated and makes running a podcast really special.

 

1 - Old dog, new tricks

I have spent the last two and a half years winding cakes of yarn wrongly because I didn't read the instructions or the wording on my ball winder. That would be nearly three years  of rubbish yarns cakes giving me yarn barf.  Well, no longer.  I now wind my yarn anti-clockwise and get beautiful cakes to make up for my inability to read instructions!

Try it - you may also have been winding yarn the wrong way...

Ball_Winder_loose.jpg

Loose is clockwise and actually gives a tight cake of yarn(!).

Ball_winder_fasten.jpg

Fasten is anti-clockwise and gives a squidgy but structured cake of yarn.

 

2 - Finished Objects 

I have a few finished objects thsi month, even though the squares below don't look like FOs, they definitely are. 

Yael_squares.jpg

These squares and rectangles are heading off to Yael for the Blanket of Love and Hope

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It was a very cactus based episode!  Cynthia was a free kit in Simply Crochet Issue 59.

Kipper.jpg

Kipper socks from Pom Pom Quarterly Issue 1 re-release using Life in the Long Grass sock yarn in club colourway Chlorophyl.

Hove_Purse_1.jpgIMG_4595.jpg

Netherton_1.jpg

Hove Purse by me (Fay Dashper-Hughes Designs) which is a free pattern to help you test out your intarsia crochet skills, crocheted in Erika Knight Gossypium Cotton (Mouse, Iced Gem and Pretty) & Netherton Pullover also from Pom Pom Quarterly Issue 1 re-release using Artesano SW Merino DK (no longer available).

The Hove Beach Bag will be released on the 10th July and available as free of charge pattern from the 10th - 31st July to celebrate my 40th birthday!  Just search for Hove Beach Bag on Ravelry. 

 

3 - Works in progress

I have a few WIPs on the go but am mainly concentrating on my Festival of Finishing cross sticth and starting off soem easy 'in the car' type crochet projects for our epic road trip to the Outer Hebrides. 

TARDIS.jpg Sock_WIP.jpg

The TARDIS cross stitch is by StellarSpaceCraft on Etsy and I used DMC thread 311 & Evesham Socks by Joanne Scrace using Regia 4 Colour.

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Fronds Shawl by Joanne Scrace using Touch Yarns Possum/ Silk / Merino and the wet felting that Jenny and I did at the Fleece to Felt Day by Good Day Out.

 

4 - Festival of Finishing CrAL

The response to this CrAL has been fantastic!  I love that so many of you have been ruthlessly going through your craftung cupboards and using this as an opportunity to frog, donate, salvage and finish. Some of you didn't think you had any long-term WIPs and still foudn projects to finish off! 

 

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 If you are just hearing about #FestivalOfFinishing for the first time I suggest that you start by takinf a look at this blog post 'Why you don't finish projects and what you can do about it'.

 

I would love you to get involved with the CrAL and share what you are up to within the Ravelry thread in The Crochet Circle Podcast Group or by using #FestivalOfFinishing on Instagram.

A pile each for: finish, frog, salvage or donate will really help you to work out what you could do with each project.  

As an additional element, via my company KNIT IT - HOOK IT - CRAFT IT , Claudia at Crochet Luna podcast and Carloine (also fo the Fibre Friends Podcast) and Kathy at Evertote, each FO you have under the Festival Of Finisihng is now worth about £2.37. TheThe charity that will benefit from the money is Knit for Peace.  

 

5 - Feeding the habit

See the sewing bobbins bag with Fronds shawl photo in WIPs.  This is by Sarah Hazell - she is also an amazing crochet designer.

 

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1 - Various woven fabrics from Jan Beadle at Thw Wool Clip

2 - Lovely prints of textile pictures from Bright Seed Textiles

3 - Procion Dyes and a sock blank from DT Crafts

4 - Second hand book called Finishing Techniques for Crochet by Pauline Turner

5 - My gorgeous silver crochet hook by Lyn Roberts Designs with it's leather case

6 - Vintage glass and plastic pineapple buttons bought from Brimstone Buttons and Buckles (no website, you just need to try to find them at a wool festival).

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I was the very lucky recipient of this gorgeous haul thanks to Claudia from Crochet Luna podcast!  Needless to say, the socks went on straight away, I have picked out the first pair of socks that I am going to crochet and the amazing Amercian yarn is going to become something very special.  The soap bar has a goats milk base which helps to repel midges, so that has already been packed for our holiday in Scotland!

The yarns are from Anzula Luxury Fibres and Trendsetter Yarns - I am a very lucky lady.

6 - Big up

Rosina has the Zeens and Roger podcast on YouTube and also a blog.  She has a lovely relaxed style and is good fun!

Two of my favourite ladies, Helen from Making at Number 14 Blog and Tamara from Craftyescapism blog have come together to create the Back to School Sweater CAL.  Here is what Helen and Tamara are up to:

  • A blog hop and CAL to celebrate crochet garment making and encourage lots of people to get making their own garments.
  • We will be launching details on our blogs and in a thread on the Crochet Circle Podcast Rav group on 29 July.
  • The blog hop will start on 26th August featuring posts from a range of bloggers looking at different elements of crochet garment construction.
  • The CAL will run from 16th Sept to 17th Nov 2017.
  • There will be prizes and discounts. If anyone wants to offer prizes please can they get in touch!
  • Tamara is planning a physical CAL at her local yarn store in Houston, Texas!

It would be great to have you all join in.  The blog hop has lots of great contributors in it and I may have aready chosen my garment  - I like to get ahead of the game and be well prepared! ;-)

 

7 - What's Good

I seem to have been here, there and everywhere since I last recorded.  I love being busy and learning new things.  In the last five weeks I have been to the John Arbon Mill Open Weekend, helped out at Winkie's school fete in Lancing, visited Woolfest in Cumbria, done a raku ceramics day at my pottery (amazing fun), seen Elbow (one of my all time favourite bands) play at Delamere Forest in Cheshire (I have never seen so many pots of hummus and camping chairs at a gig) and learned how to shear sheep.  

That is quite a diverse collection of things to do and long may it continue! 

2.jpg 

The Good Day Out Fleece to Fibre experience of shearing Welsh Mountain ewes was fantastic.

See you all in August.

Fay x

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