Martin Storey KAL2 :: Stage 2&3

Stage 2:   
   

Stage 2 of the KAL features a fabulous slipped stitch Nordic square. I found this square a lot of fun to knit and very straight forward. The squares seemed to fly along.  I took one square on a day trip to Burton Bradstock in Dorset. Check out the fabulous Hive Beach Cafe if you’re in the area! We celebrated my husbands birthday with lunch there. It’s situated right on the beach itself and is even dog friendly selling healthy treats for your dog as well as some scrummy cakes.

Here’s my progress with stages 1 and 2 together:

  

Next up is the Stage 3 Textured Tree Square in light denim:

  
This square required a little more concentration but the chart provided by Rowan really helped and the tree pattern is really effective.

   
This square went with me for a spot of cafe knitting at the Garden Cafe in the Somerset town of Frome. Check out the lovely independent shops on the cobbled Catherines Hill if you get chance including the gorgeous florists Bramble and Wild where I bought some lovely Mothers Day blooms and the fabulous Marmalade Yarns

    
   
Pattern downloads for Stage 2 square

and Stage 3 square 

The next square for stage 4 will be released on Thursday 10th March marking the half way point in the KAL!

How are you getting on? Have you joined in with the KAL? If so, hope you are enjoying it:)

Claire xx 

Martin Storey KAL 2 :: Week 1 Squares

square 1

Knitting the week 1 square has been really fun.  I loved the moss stitch heart pattern and once I’d knitted the first square it was relatively easy to memorise the pattern with the help of the chart supplied by Rowan.  I did occasionally forget to knit the garter stitch border in a couple of places and if this happens to you, remember that you can easily rectify this by simply undoing the stitches directly above the errant stitch and correcting them with a crochet hook, rather than having to undo several rows of knitting to get back to the place where you went wrong.

square 1 b

I’m hoping to stay on top of the blocking this time (rather than leave it all to the last minute like I did with the last KAL!!).  I’ve tried out some new blocking wires which make things easy and give a nice straight edge to the squares.

square 1 blocking mat

square 1 blocking

Have you seen Martin Storey’s KAL You Tube Interview?  Its really helpful and nice to see the blanket in its entirety so you can get a picture of how yours will turn out.  I also liked the idea mentioned that you could just use a small number of squares to make a cushion or pillow cover, if you didn’t fancy knitting the whole blanket.  The moss stich heart pattern would make a perfect valentines cushion don’t you think?

square 1 unblocked

Its been really great to see everyone’s progress over on Instagram where people have been using the hashtag #MartinStoreyKAL2 to share photos.  Pop over and take a look and don’t forget to visit the Rowan Facebook page for progress updates and shares too.

Planning ahead, Rowan are going to run a KAL competition which will be announced towards the end of the KAL and run from 26th May – 29th June and also for Stage 7 of the KAL you might wish to note that there is a beaded square option which you will need to purchase 180 size 6 Debbie Abrahams beads of your colour choice, if you would like to try your hand at beading.

Excited to get the second square pattern which will be released by Rowan tomorrow!

More details and tutorials for the KAL and the first square here: Stage 1

Happy KAL knitting! xx

Martin Storey Knit-a-Long 2

Exciting news! – the new Martin Storey Knit-a-Long 2 launches tomorrow, with motifs, textures and colours based on Northern European knitting traditions including the knitted textures and fairisle patterns of the Shetland Isles; the Faeroe Isles; Norway, Denmark, Sweden and Iceland.  More details here:

Martin Storey KAL 2

I’ve chosen the blue colourway for my blanket, which uses the following Pure Wool Superwash Worsted yarn: Light Navy 153 x1 ball; Breton 147 x3 balls; Light Denim 154 x 5 balls; Electric 143 x3 balls; Lovat 161 x2 balls; Ocean 145 x3 balls; Mallard 144 x2 balls; Topaz 160 x2 balls.

knit a long 2

You might have guessed from previous projects that blue is one of my favourite colours and I’m really looking forwards to knitting with all of these fantastic shades.  In addition to blue, there are three other classic tonal palettes that you can choose: soft and natural; fresh evergreen or zingy spice to suit your mood and home.

knit a long 3

There will be eight square release stages in total, with a square being released each fortnight (48 squares in total) and a final and ninth release on 12th May 2016 featuring the edging design.

You can also listen to Martin talk about the KAL on You Tube here: Martin Storey KAL 2 You Tube Interview  I’m looking forward to seeing everyone’s progress and I hope to share some more photos on my blog and facebook page too.  Needles ready!

Claire x

Merry Christmas

Hello friends, just popping by to wish you a merry Christmas and a very happy and healthy 2016.  2015 hasn’t been the easiest of years with family health issues to deal with so I’ve had less knitting time than usual.  I’ve just been finishing off a few projects including Trent which I’ve knitted for my husband in Rowan Yarns Brushed Fleece, just in time for Christmas despite having to knit three sleeves! The first sleeve disappeared and I have no idea where it went so I had to buy more yarn and start again… luckily it was a quick and easy knit ;)  Here it is unblocked, but you get the general idea and it was the perfect cosy garment to wear whilst walking the dogs in the woods today.

IMG_9842

IMG_9871IMG_9863

IMG_8156

IMG_9845

If you haven’t knitted with Brushed Fleece before, I’d definitely recommend it.  Its a very light and super soft blend of extra fine merino wool and baby alpaca with a soft marl colour effect.  The colour my husband chose for Trent is called Peat 262.  You can view the Brushed Fleece collection on Rowan’s website which includes 16 knits for men and women including wraps, shrugs, capes, sweater dresses and cardigans designed by Martin Storey.

Hope to be back soon with some more ‘finished knits’ and I’m also going to sign up for the second Martin Storey Knit-a-Long starting on 28th January; details here:   http://www.knitrowan.com/news/martin-storey-knit-along-2-%E2%80%93-official-announcement-image  What are everyone’s knitting plans for next year?

Merry Christmas and see you in 2016! xx

 

Easter Crochet ~ Rowan CAL Scarf ~ Weeks 1 & 2

 IMG_3695

Happy Easter to everyone!  Its the school holidays here in the UK and I’m looking forward to spending a long weekend with my family.  Hope the weather cheers up – its a little rainy and grey here in the south west at the moment and I would love the Spring sunshine to come back.  This week the less than Spring-like weather has been cheered up by my girls doing a spot of Easter baking.  I’ve been making green smoothies to try and counteract any chocolate over indulgence! The pup has been snoozing, whilst I’ve been crocheting my CAL hexagons and we have been watching Harry Potter films, crafting, drawing and reading whilst the wind blows outside.  If he’s not snoozing, the pup has a habit of trying to snatch my lovely summerlite yarn and would probably eat my crochet if my back was turned, so I need to make sure its in a safe place when I’m not working on it!

Has anyone joined in the CAL?  I’m really enjoying it so far – the ‘vibrant’ colourway is fab and I’m loving seeing my stack of hexagons starting to grow… The free pattern download for week 1 is here if you are interested: Rowan CAL week 1  To download your week 1 pattern you just need to register for free or log in and click on the ‘Download PDF’ button at the bottom of the Rowan website’s page. The free pattern PDF has also been translated into French, German and Dutch and beginner crocheters can also find helpful links on techniques including covering the basics such as how to hold your yarn and hook.  You can also check out my friend Violetta’s blog “A Knitting Bakery” for a Spanish translation and some fab charts to help alongside Rowan’s patterns.

UPDATE: Rowan has released the pattern for WEEK 2 today as an early Easter present and it is available to download now: Rowan CAL week 2

Here’s my first attempt at the week 2 hexagon.  They’re super quick to whip up and a very portable project.

Rowan CAL Week 2 Hexagon

Happy Easter!  Back soon with more CAL updates:)

Claire xx

Rowan Spring Crochet-Along

IMG_3236
This Spring sees the launch of a new Crochet-Along from Rowan Yarns using the new Summerlite 4 ply 100% cotton yarn.

The CAL features 4 different projects designed by fab Rowan Designer Lisa Richardson – including a baby blanket, a wrap, a cushion and a scarf – a great range of projects with something to suit everyone including those of you that are new to crochet and fancy giving it a go.

You can view the shopping list on Rowan’s website now and the first pattern/motif will be released on March 25th.

There are 3 colourways to choose from – pastel, vibrant & blues. I’m opting for the vibrant colourway and I’m going to be making a scarf. I hope you will join me:)

Here’s a link to Lisa’s You Tube video for Rowan, introducing the CAL:

http://youtu.be/hCSsg_qCPNs

The designs will be made up from seven different motifs and each pattern stage will include approximately ten motifs for the blanket and shawl, and four to six for the cushion and scarf, with eight stages in total.

Finish Sizes
Completed Baby Blanket measures approx 101 cm (40 in) wide by 107 cm (42 in) long, including trim.
Completed Ladies Wrap measures approx 46 cm (18 in) from centre back neck to base of wrap and 90 cm (35½ in) across shoulders.
Completed Cushion measures 46 cm (18 in) from centre of one side to centre of opposite side. 
Completed Scarf measures approx 23.5 cm (9½ in) wide by 149 cm (58½ in).

Dates To Remember
25/03/2015 – 1st Pattern Release
03/04/2015 – 2nd Pattern Release
15/04/2015 – 3rd Pattern Release
24/04/2015 – 4th Pattern Release
06/05/2015 – 5th Pattern Release
15/05/2015 – 6th Pattern Release
27/05/2015 – 7th Pattern Release
05/06/2015 – 8th Pattern Release

At the end of the crochet along Rowan will be launching a competition in June 2015, with some fantastic prizes!



Happy Valentines Day from Shaun the Sheep // competition

IMG_3017-0
IMG_3019-0
IMG_2949
IMG_2983-0
IMG_1800
Last weekend Rowan Yarns teamed up with the Telegraph Magazine with a special offer to get some free Rowan wool to knit Shaun the Sheep in celebration of the opening of the new Shaun the Sheep Movie. If you fancy knitting your own Shaun, you can download the pattern for free by visiting the Rowan Yarns website knitrowan.com or by clicking here. You will need 25g of black yarn DK and 25g of cream/white DK.

Rowan currently has a competition to win £100 of lovely Rowan yarn – you just need to photograph your finished Shaun in an unusual location and post it on Rowan’s Facebook page before 24th February.

It was great fun knitting Shaun this week – he has now been adopted by my little girl, but the pup has also taken a fancy to the little sheep too (must think it looks like one of his dog toys) although he does seem to have taken a fancy to snatching yarn in general looking at the ‘caught in the act’ photo above!!!
Hope you’re enjoying Valentine’s Day today, however you are spending it with the knitting, people or pets that you love.
Claire xx

COMPETITION!!!!:

I’m running a little competition to win some Rowan Yarn to knit your own Shaun. Answer the following Question if you’d like to enter:

Which was the name of the film that Shaun the Sheep first appeared in? Leave your answer here or on my Facebook page with an email address or Ravelry details so that I can easily contact you. Deadline is 5pm sunday 22nd February. UK only please. Good luck:)

IMG_3059

EDITED TO ADD: COMPETITION WINNER!

Thank you to everyone who popped by to enter the competition. I had 30 entries in total and chose the winner using random.org. My competition winner was Carol Hesketh – congratulations Carol! I’ve since discovered that Carol has her own Knitting page on Facebook called Fred Knits. Do pop by & say hello:)

IMG_3158