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July 1, 2016 @ 10:14 am

Episode Five - Practically Perfect

Welcome to The Crochet Circle Podcast. Here are the Show Notes from Episode Five.

In this episode we continue with our crochet journeys, including helpful hints on how to get through the next stages of working on a garment; Yay Crochet or Nay Crochet; World Knit in Public Day; WIP Wall and FOs along with our usual Magazine round-up, our competition winners so far, our new regular feature called "Feeding the Rabbit" and we finish with What's Good.

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1. Yay Crochet or Nay Crochet

It's a Nay Crochet from Lynne this month, as she lost her favourite crochet hook:

My favourite hook is an Addi Swing Crochet Hook, size 3.5mm which I use all the time – it’s an ergonomic hook so it's really comfortable and sits in your hand perfectly, so I was quite annoyed at myself for losing it. The question is – do I just buy another one as a replacement? Do I try a different make, do I buy just one or a set? They're quite expensive individually and even more expensive for a set so these would have to be a Birthday/Christmas gift. I can’t decide what to do, so I’m having a think and will have a mooch around Woolfest or go to Black Sheep Wools. If anyone uses any other good ergonomic hooks and has a favourite - do let me know – it might help me decide.

I bought my lost hook from Laughing Hens:

It's a big Yay Crochet from Fay on her Liala Top by Designer Marie Wallin:

I love my top and the way that it looks. It is easy to wear as summer chic or dressed down with jeans or over a dress with tights for some winter colour. The yarn I used has unfortunately been discontinued (Jeanette Sloan 4 ply alpaca/silk) but it was lovely to work with and produced a very soft garment with clear stitch definition. 


Link to Jeanette Sloan:

Link to Marie Wallin:

Fay also sneaked in a Knitting Nay for picot cast off:

I've knitted a lovely shawl for a friend which involves a picot edge bind-off which is a new technique for me. It involves knitting lots of stitches before actually casting off, making it a long-winded process. I gave up after about an hour and a half and seemingly getting nowhere, so I will choose a different method to cast off with. 

2. Magazine Round-up

We've have added Pom Pom Quarterly into our list of magazines because they generally feature a couple of crochet patterns in each issue.  As the title would suggest, it comes out quarterly so you will hear about Pom Pom every third episode.

Inside Crochet – issue 79 - Seaside Theme

Website Link:

Lynne's favourite: Greta Stole designed by Claire Montgomerie using Coopknits Socks Yeah – I really love the colour combination and you could use up your oddments of sock yarn to create your own colour combination (pg 54).

Fay's favourite: Friendship Quilt, designed by Mica York, using Debbie Bliss Cashmerino Aran (pg 80).

There’s also a great interview with Betsan Corkhill, who is a Wellbeing Coach who focusses on the therapeutic benefits of knitting and how it can help improve your health and mindfulness. It’s not just about enjoying knitting and crochet, it links to meditation, to calmness, to stress relieving and to helping you improve your mood by working with calming colours – it’s fascinating and I'd recommend going along to one of Betsan’s workshops if there’s one near you.

Betsan's Website:

Simply Crochet – issue 46 - Nautical theme

Ravelry link:

Website Link:

Announces a Crochet-A-Long for subscribers, for a blanket using different crochet squares.

Lynne's favourite: I LOVE the cute little Beach Babe Piggy by designer Illaria Caliri – he/she’s so cute and even has a life ring, bucket, spade and beach towel, using DMC Natura Just Cotton (4-ply) (pg 42).

Fay's favourite: Claude the Octopus by designer Kate E. Hancock (Fay is slowly being brought round to the fun side of crochet), using Drops Paris 100% cotton (pg 24).

Kat Goldin also talks about her local yarn shop and how it provides a sense of community and a place of creativity (pg 34).

Crochet Now - issue 3

Website link:

Lynne's favourite: Amigurumi Guard and Bus designed by Editor Hugh Metcalf.

Fay's favourite: Infinity Cowl designed by Vicki Brown.

Let’s Get Crafting – issue 82

Ravelry Link:

Website Link:

Features The Crochet Circle Podcast on page 6 – thank you.

Lynne’s favourite: The Wildlife Rescue Nets by Kath Webber, which link to a charity knitting project for animal rescue centres who are looking for knitting donations (pg 28).

Fay's favourite: Baby Slippers - Summer Espadrilles designed by Jackie Carreira (pg 40).

Woman's Weekly Knitting & Crochet July Issue

Website Link:

Lynne's favourite: Teal Appeal - Vintage Cardigan knitted in mohair (Rowan Kidsilk Haze) (pg 24).

Fay's favourite: Hi-Ho Silver - Cotton shrug, crocheted in DMC Petra Cotton 3 (pg 50).

Pom Pom Quarterley

Website Link:

Ravelry Link:

Lynne and Fay's favourite: Altair by designer Joanne Scrace.

Love to Knit and Crochet - issue 3

Website Link:

Lynne's favourite: Crochet Stool Cover - Too Cool for Stool (pg 57).

Fay's favourite: Feeling Tubby - crochet bowls (pg 56).

3. Our Crochet Journey - Next Steps and issues we've faced

Lynne's progress with her Lisa Sweater:

I had to rip back a couple of times due to losing stitches - in the end I gave up ripping out and just added a couple of stitches along the row instead. Now that I'm in the flow of the pattern I've stopped dropping a stitch at the end. It isn't noticeable where I've added the extra stitches.

I had to buy 4 extra balls of Rowan Purelife Revive which are a different dye lot than my original 5 balls. Luckily, the yarn is mottled so the slight difference in the shades is not noticeable. I will alternate the balls used, but will do the same on each half of the jumper so that any difference will appear as if it's intentional as both halves will be identical. Fingers crossed they will blend nicely or look like gradient yarn.


For those new to crochet or knitting, on the ball band of every ball of yarn is essential information on the yarn itself – what it’s made from, what needle size to use, the tension and the weight. Also you will find the shade number or reference and (like a tin of paint), the dye lot or dye batch that has been used. Like paint, a different dye lot will potentially produce a slightly different shade, so when buying yarn for a project, you need to make sure that all the ball bands have the same dye lot on them.

I found 2 balls of yellow Rico cotton in The Woolnest to show you how different the dye lots can be and therefore how important it is to use the same batch of yarn – you can see the difference below:


Fay's progress with her Liala Top:

I had to rip back due to an error in the pattern, which I didn't realise until I'd ripped it back about 5 times. I also re-jigged the hook size and change the pattern a little to make it into a wearable top because of my body shape. I'm really happy with my crocheted top and will be making more. Full notes of my changes are on my Ravelry project page.

Link to Ravelry:

It's fantastic to see the different garments that people are working on, over on our Ravelry forum.  Helen is motoring on with her Aberfoyle Cardigan and Jo is working on a wrap around top from issue 41 of Simply Crochet which I love and I'm now making my own version using Rowan Finest.


After seeing Helen's Aberfoyle, Lynne has mooched in The Woolnest and found enough balls of Garthernor Organic 4-ply to make her own. Garthernor produce sustainable, organic yarn in and ecological way. They started out in the 1990s with their own sheep and now buy raw fleeces from other UK farmers, so all their wool is fully traceable and fully certified organic.  At Wonderwool  this year Lynne had a lovely chat with the owner and they had some beautifully knitted samples on show and once washed, the yarn is really soft and much softer than it is on the ball.

Link to Aberfoyle Cardigan by Joanne Scrace:

So our next patterns are Aberfoyle and Simple Wrapover.  We have been inspired by the folk in the Crochet Circle podcast to make the same items that they are making - so thank you. Feel free to join in with our Stylish Crochet CAL and don't forget to wear your garment at Yarndale.

Link to our Stylish Crochet Ravelry forum:

4. Woolfest

We're off to Woolfest in the morning.  Whilst we are there, Tamara, one of the listeners to the podcast will be at a yarn festival in Houston, Texas.  Tamara lives over there now but we've noticed that lots of people seem to be traveling much further afield to go to yarn festivals.  At Edinburgh yarn festival, people had come from all over Europe. TNNA (The National Needle Arts Association) was on in America a couple of weeks ago and lots of folk were there from the UK.

So, given that Tamara is going to be at a yarn festival at the same time as we are we thought we would share notes.  We have the same set of questions to answer and photos will be taken from both sides of the pond and added to the Pinterest board for Episode 5. 

5. World Knit in Public Day

This was held on Saturday 18th June.


Fay experienced the East London Yarn Triangle, Hackney made up of 3 shops - Fabrications, Wild and Woolly and Knit With Attitude. They offered 10% off if you posted 3 photos with their hashtag on Instagram, and they also had refreshments. The yarn shops are within walking distance and maps were provided which highlighted the photo locations and I bought lots of wool and concluded that you can indeed crochet on a swing.


6. Finished Objects

Fay: Liala top by Marie Wallin, Cowl for The Crochet Circle book using Erika Knight British Blue and Shawl for the book using Whistlebare's Yeavering Bell (Mohair/Wensleydale blend).

Fay also has an answer on whether a sock from an unfinished pair is an FO or a WIP.  It’s a HO (half object).

Lynne's FO's are mainly secret commissions but she finished her Cowl for The Crochet Circle book, using Baa Baa Brighouse yarn called Baa Baa Brew.


7. WIP Wall

Fay: I'm currently at 8 and many are the same as last time.  A new one on the list is the Wrapover Shawl from Simply Crochet issue 41, and I don’t have much to report yet other than I have done a yarn and hook substitute to change the finished fabric a little.

Lynne: I’m at 11 – I frogged a pair of socks as the yarn wasn’t showing off the lace pattern properly, in fact it was barely visible. I finished the secret project for our book and I haven’t really started the Studio Linen Shawl so it doesn’t really count. With my Lisa Sweater I'm back up to 12 and my next book project will take me up to 13 WIPs.

8. Feeding the Rabbit (aka feeding the habit)

Fay's purchases: I bought quite a lot of yarn during my visit to London on World Knit in Public Day, including:

From Fabrications - Recycled Fibre (in lovely creams, whites and denim blue from UK); 100% Bluefaced Leicester Roving yarn (brown) and 100% Bluefaced Leicester Roving yarn (cream), both from West Yorkshire Spinners, suitable for hand-dying and felting.

From Wild and Woolly - Rowan felted tweed and Erika Knight British Blue Wool from the Stash Depot (buying another person’s stash); Kalinka linen from Sweden in colour cyan  (Fibre: 100% linen Yardage: 320m per 100g skein Gauge: 28 stitches per 10 cm, recommended needle size: 3-4 mm needles)

From Knit with Attitude - Hedgehog Fibres in colourway Dragonfly  (DK weight yarn, 100% merino wool, superwash. 115g/200m); Socks Yeah! – in colourway 110 Malachite -(75% superwash merino, 25% nylon, 50g/212m/231 yds). Mirasol – Kingfisher 14 (4-ply, 60% merino wool, 20% Alpaca, 20% Silk, 250m/274yds, 50g).

I also sneaked a visit to Ewe and Ply in Shrewsbury - and still resisted the spinning wheel. Ewe and Ply have a great selection of British wools and is well worth a visit.

I bought some Eden Cottage yarn, and one of the natural roving yarns from West Yorkshire Spinners.


Link to Ewe and Ply, Shrewsbury:

Lynne's purchases: I bought a gorgeous skein of yarn from I Knit (London) – I had a spare few hours a couple of weeks  ago when in London, so I jumped on the tube to Waterloo and found the shop quite easily. I’ve wanted the yarn ever since seeing it - mainly because it’s called Starman – one of my favourite songs by my favourite artist, David Bowie, so I just had to buy it. I’m going to try my crochet cowl from the book and see how it works with the hand-dyed yarn.


Link to I Knit London:

9. What’s Good               

For Lynne: About a year ago I was commissioned by Search Press to write a book for their "20 To Make" series. I had great fun designing the Mandalas for the book and have also designed a few more for commissions. I’m definitely hooked by Mandalas – they’re meditative and you can make them your own by using your favourite colours and favourite yarns. They’re useful for all sorts of things, like placemats, wall hangings and you can even sew them together to make a throw. The Search Press book is out in October and you can pre-order it on Amazon at the moment.

Link to pre-order on Amazon:

For Fay there are 2 things:

Firstly, I was contacted recently by Knitting magazine who would like to review and feature my stash tags, so I'm delighted and excited. It came out of the blue and it was because of Erika Knight and Emma Knitted!

Link to Stash Tags KNIT IT - HOOK IT - CRAFT IT:

Knitting magazine:

Erika Knight:

Emma Knitted:      

Secondly, we were sent Daughter of a Shepherd mini-skeins by Rachel Atkinson to test for crochet. We love how they smell and can't wait to try them out. Rachel is manufacturing Hebridean wool from sheep her father breeds in the UK.

Link to Daughter of a Shepherd:

As we both smelled the sheepiness of the yarn we realised that we were both sporting Hebridean moustaches.

Other things we've mentioned:

Winners Round-up - Who's won what so far:

200g DMC Natura Medium and DMC hook – Kerryd19 from Australia

Arne & Carlos Sock yarn (with signed Stash Tag)  - Curlylou – UK

Lynne Rowe's Once Upon a Time in Crochet (signed copy) - JojoTwinkletoes

Erika Knight’s Simple Colour Knitting (signed copy) – DianeB

2 x 50g Erika Knight’s Studio Linen – Emma from Woolgathering Sandbach

Happy listening and crocheting,

Lynne and Fay x

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