Category Archives: Crochet

Sequins, Sparkle and Shimmer

Do you remember the photo I took of some Rowan Kidsilk Haze Glamour on my Rowan Beach Shoot back in the Spring?  You can see it below in the colour ‘smoke’ alongside some lovely blue Soft Knit Cotton and the All Seasons Chunky in the colour ‘pebble’.

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Kidsilk Haze Glamour is a fine yarn made from a blend of super kid mohair and silk, and added a thread of sequins. Ideal for lace stitch accessories this yarn is lightweight and glamourous, the sequins give a unique and random pattern to the finished knitted fabric, making it ideal for evening wear or just that little bit of added sparkle.

There are some gorgeous knitting patterns using KSH Glamour, many of them free, on Rowan’s website, but the urge to crochet struck me and with only one skein to play with, I found myself searching the internet for a suitable pattern.  I came across the lovely Churchmouse Yarns and decided to make Kelly’s Frothy Crocheted Scarf:

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It’s a fab pattern, using simple single (or double crochet if you are in the UK) which gives the impression of  delicate lace stitch and it satisfyingly zips along once you get used to using a size 10mm (pattern suggests 11.5mm) crochet hook.  I did actually end up buying an extra skein to get the length required and to crochet the edging.

KSH Glamour

I have to admit that I took a while to complete it as I’ve been working on other projects, but I took the scarf on a trip to Dorset recently and it was the perfect holiday project.  I finished it really quickly and I’m glad that I did because its the perfect weight scarf for late summer into early autumn, or an evening out or special occasion.  And I do love the sparkles – the sequins definitely add an extra something to this lovely yarn which comes in a gorgeous range of colours.  When you buy the pattern from Churchmouse Yarns, you also get the instructions to make a wrap, which uses 3 skeins of Kidsilk Haze.

It was quite hard to capture the sparkle on a camera – I took a few shots out in the garden of our holiday cottage – partly because the setting was so lovely – but I hope you get the general idea.

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Kidsilk Haze Glamour could easily be substituted for any of your favourite patterns using Kidsilk Haze or similar yarns.  Although very slightly thicker, it would add a lovely sparkle!

Here are some pictures of a couple of my favourite free knitting patterns using KSH Glamour, available on the Rowan website.  Click here for a pattern link for the Stellar Wrap, designed by Alison Crowther-Smith with a ribbed design, finished with a frill edging.

Stellar Wrap     Gypsy Shawl

The Gypsy Shawl, designed by Sarah Hatton, would be perfect for evening wear: (click here for a pattern link).

You can also check out the Kidsilk Haze Glamour Collection, published by Rowan and featuring 14 designs to support this yarn:

The Glamour Collection

If you like sparkle and shimmer too, you may be interested in the recently launched Rowan Kidsilk Haze Eclipse, which adds extra sparkle by adding a shimmering metallic thread to some of Rowan’s most popular Kidsilk Haze colours.  Check out the gorgeous Aries & Pisces colours below :

Kidsilk Haze Eclipse

Accompanying the yarn is this beautiful Kidsilk Haze Eclipse Mini Collection:

KSH Eclipse Collection

Further sparkle and shimmer can also be found in the Parisian Nights Collection, which was launched last year and features 12 elegant designs taking you from daywear into eveningwear and using Kidsilk Haze and Anchor Artiste Metallic. Check it out here.

Parisian Nights

Let me know if you try any of these yarns or patterns – I would love to hear from you.  Or let me know if you have any sparkly recommendations to share of your own?

Claire xx

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Quick Crafty Make: Holiday Crochet Twirling Stick

Inspired by the fun crepe paper streamers on sticks that I made with some friends children for the Craft Tent at a recent camping trip:

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We decide to make some holiday crochet twirlers:

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Just half treble a strip of yarn in the colours of your choice, attach securely to a garden cane:

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And have fun twirling in the garden!

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Enjoy! xx

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Postcards from Dorset

Our holiday home for the week in the little village of Loders in West Dorset:

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Gorgeous hydrangeas in the village – I couldn’t resist taking some photos of these!:

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Relaxing morning walks with our dogs along the nearby disused railway track:

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Dorset Sheep:

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Wildflowers:

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Making crocheted pebble cosies (see some tips and a link to a great tutorial at the end of this post):

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The perfect beach day at Burton Bradstock (my fave beach and home of the wonderful Hive Beach Café):

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Beach crochet in Rowan’s handknit cotton’s best seaside colours (a square from the Made with Loops Homely Blanket Quest):

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Paddling and having fun in the waves:

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Beach windmills at the Hive Beach Ice Cream Parlour:

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An awesome evening trip to Eggardon Hill Iron Age Hill Fort:

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Amazing 360 degree view of the county:

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Gorgeous views of the countryside in the evening light:

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Walking back along the footpath from Eggardon Hill:

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Finishing my crocheted scarf made using Rowan Kidsilk Haze Glamour and a pattern from Churchmouse Yarns (more about this in another post):

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Driving though the village of Wool (great name for a yarn addict!) on the way to Lulworth Cove:

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Purbeck Ice creams at beautiful Lulworth Cove:

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Looking down at the famous Durdle Door from the cliff tops:

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Admiring the jaunty boats at West Bay:

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Super scrummy wood-fired pizza at the amazing Watch House Café:

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A spot of evening mackerel fishing:

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Beautiful evening light down at West Bay:

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Dorset Cream Tea at Mangerton Water Mill:

Dorset Cream Tea

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Sweet little ducklings discovered by the lake at the water mill:

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And free range hens:

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A trip to West Dorset wouldn’t be complete without a visit to the wonderful Bridport Yarn, where some small purchases were made (more about this in a later post)!

Bridport Yarn

A little bit of knitting with a morning coffee in the garden:

morning knitting

Something sweet for the journey home!

Emily's Seaside Sweets

Goodbye Dorset, we’ll visit you again soon!

If you’re interested in making your own pebble cosies, there is a great tutorial here.  Alternatively you can just crochet your own motif, measure it against the pebble to ensure that it is roughly the same size using increases to adjust the fit, place the pebble inside, then decrease in, gathering the cosy around your pebble.

Happy Holidays! x

pebble cosies

Pebbles

Rowan Little Star

Little Star Cover

I LOVE to knit children’s knitwear, so I was thrilled to receive a copy of the new Little Star brochure to review from Rowan featuring 21 designs for children in the age range 3 to 10 years.  This new collection for Autumn/Winter 2013 has been designed by Rowan’s Head Designer Marie Wallin – each design being enticingly named after traditional puddings and desserts!!

The Little Star Collection is inspired by the trend for vintage, heritage style childrenswear using Rowan’s Wool Cotton, Wool Cotton 4ply, Pure Wool DK, Pure Wool 4ply and showcasing Rowan’s new yarn Angora Haze.

The cover shot above is of the Charlotte cardigan, named after Apple Charlotte pudding and knitted in the new gorgeous Angora Haze.

I was super excited to receive some of this new yarn to try out from Rowan, in the pretty colours ‘Hug’ and ‘Embrace’ which lent themselves perfectly to making this gorgeous crocheted Roly Poly Hair Band:

RolyPolyHairband

Here is a photo of the Roly Poly Hairband that I crocheted with my sample yarn:

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So sweet for a little girl, or a not so little girl!  These gorgeous flowers would make a brilliant corsage don’t you think?  Angora Haze is super soft and luxurious to knit or crochet with.  I noticed a little shedding from the yarn, as would be expected with angora, but it wouldn’t be a problem for an accessory such as this.

On my (very large) wish list to make for my daughter:

Meringue Tam & Muffler: (any excuse to play with some more angora haze!)

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Brulee Capelet:

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Bread and Butter: I am so in love with the combination of crochet and knitting used here!

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The Trifle Snood crocheted in Pure Wool 4 ply is pretty awesome too (an adult version too please Marie!):

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Custard (using Angora Haze with hand embroidery):

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Sorbet knitted in Wool Cotton: I think this would be perfect for my little girl’s ballet lessons!

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Souffle:

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And Jelly:

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There are also some gorgeous designs for boys.  This sweater in Pure Wool DK is called Christmas (there is a girls version too):

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Eton Mess:

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I love Plum Duff, knitted in Pure Wool DK:

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Treacle:

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Figgy Dowdy:

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You can take a look at all of the designs in Little Star on the Rowan website by clicking here.

You might also like to read the designer Marie Wallin’s own review, where she tells us more about the fashion shoot and some of her personal favourites: http://www.mariewallin.com/blog/?p=350

I hope you find something special to knit for any little stars in your life!

Claire xx

Rowan Magazine 54 Competition : Winner

THANK YOU so much to everyone that entered my Rowan Magazine 54 Giveaway.  I have loved reading all of the competition  entries!

rowan mag 54

I asked which design was your favourite in the new magazine, and the Romancing Collection proved to be extremely popular with all of you – the Berenice Wrap (as featured on the magazine cover above) and Salome received the most votes.  Alcina and Vivaldi were also popular designs.  All of these stunning designs use Rowan’s Kidsilk Haze yarn.

Salome:

Salome

Following very closely behind Berenice in the voting was the beautiful Anatolia from the Folk Collection, knitted with Rowan Felted Tweed:

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The gorgeous Soumak Scarf Wrap also received some votes.

Sharon, the Wendy Wrap and Crystal were also mentioned as favourites from the Essentials Collection.

I would so love to send everyone of you a copy of the new Magazine but of course there can be only one winner….

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Drum roll…..

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And the winner, as randomly picked by my three year old assistant is….

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VALERIE SMITH, who chose the gorgeous Berenice Wrap as her favourite design.  Valerie told me that she loved the Berenice Wrap because “because the colours are rich and it represents a feeling of abundance and opulence.”  Great choice Valerie!

Congratulations Valerie Smith!  Please contact me with your address and I will post the Magazine off to you asap!  Hope you enjoy reading it!  Happy knitting!

Claire xx

On my blog today : Emily Platt of Lost in Knit

Featured on my blog today is the talented up and coming designer Emily Platt of Lost in Knit, who has just launched her first unique Summer Knitwear Collection.

I first met Emily on Facebook when I launched my own Facebook page Knit and Purl Garden earlier this year, and having admired her work and immediately spotted that Emily loves knitting with Rowan yarns, I have been following Lost In Knit ever since!

I always love to hear how people first became interested in knitting and crochet and Emily tells me that like me, she has always loved to make things.  She started cross stitching when she was very little and learnt to knit when she was about 10 – she has loved it ever since:

I always bought the Rowan books that came out each year and have knitted so many things from them.  Then when I went to university I decided that I wanted to focus on knitwear and hand knitted my entire final collection.

Lost In Knit was created in Emily’s final year at university when she decided to create a brand to enable her to share her knitwear designs with the public.  Emily shared her final collection using Facebook and then created her fabulous blog to show more details of her design process and showcase knitwear trends.

You can click on the link and check out Emily’s Twisted Traditions album on Facebook here.

Intrigued as to where the name ‘Lost in Knit’ came from, I received the reply that Emily felt that every knitter would love to get lost in knit so she thought it would be a good name to useI can certainly agree with that Emily!

The Lost in Knit Brand is all about creating up to date designs that people want to wear but making them in the traditional way.  Emily loves to experiment in colour and Fair Isles and likes to create fun Fair Isle designs.

This Zebra top really caught my eye.  Its knitted using Rowan Siena.

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You can find more details of Emily’s design process on her blog.

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Emily describes her new collection as having a fun festival vive for the laid back hippy in all of us.  There is a mix of bright colours and toned down shades used so that it appeals to both the party lover and the chilled out folk.

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Emily’s fabulous Palm Tree Knitted top uses Rowan Panama, chosen for its drape and because it is a lightweight yarn, making it ideal for a summer garment.  The palm tree motif uses Rowan Cotton Glace which is available in some gorgeous colours and is perfect for summer stitch texture.

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In the photo below you can see the lace stitch on the back of the top, which has been knitted in two parts to overlap.

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The next top in the Summer Collection features an amazing neon pink and orange yarn from Bettaknit, an Italian Company with an interesting Be Kind philosophy.

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I was keen to discover where Emily gets her inspiration from when she starts to design something new and she told me that she does a lot of trend research by looking at what is in the shops and also what will be in the shops next year.  Emily likes to see what people are currently wearing  and looks at a lot of street style blogs – looking at colours is really important to her when first designing to make sure that she gets the right feel for the collection.  The yarn also needs to fit into the trends that are coming through on the catwalk and high street.  You can check out Emily’s regular Knit of the Day posts on her blog where she regularly shares her inspiration with her readers.

I asked Emily which was her favourite piece that she had designed:

I think that my favourite piece is a top that I designed for my final collection at university.  It is a Fair Isle top with a women knitted on the front.  I loved developing the top and working with the yarn and how it came about.

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Having noticed straight away how much Emily loves Rowan Yarns, I asked her what it was that she particularly liked about Rowan, and which was her favourite yarn and why.

I love working with Rowan yarns as the yarns are always the highest quality and there is such a range of different yarns and colours to work and experiment with.  Each season Rowan brings out an exciting range which wants me to start designing straight away.  I’m really excited to start working with the new Thick ‘n’ Thin yarn this season.

I’m a big fan of Rowan’s new Thick ‘n’ Thin yarn and you can read Knit and Purl Gardens review here if you are interested.

Emily considers her favourite Rowan Yarn to be Drift.  She loves the different colours in the range and the different tones that each yarn has.  When knitted, its really warm and the best thing to wear on a cold night.

Emily hopes to continue creating her own designs and build her Folksy shop.  She is planning to start exhibiting at Fairs next Spring and in the future she would love to have her designs published.

Do check out Emily’s Lost in Knit Facebook page.

You can find Emily’s Summer Collection in her Folksy Shop  http://folksy.com/shops/LostinKnit
where you can purchase one of her amazing one of a kind knits.
If you are interested to find out more you can also read this fabulous review from Konrad:
Good luck Emily,  I can’t wait to see your autumn/winter collection!

It’s competition time! – Rowan Magazine 54 Giveaway

rowan mag 54

It’s COMPETITION TIME at Knit and Purl Garden!  To celebrate the official launch today of the NEW Rowan Autumn / Winter season 2013, I’m giving away my brand new sample copy of the latest Rowan Knitting and Crochet Magazine 54.   It maybe be gloriously sunny outside but you won’t want to miss the chance to win this  – its stunning!  As we knitters know, you need to plan ahead 🙂

Get your needles ready for some truly gorgeous designs this autumn!

Knitwear is currently sitting centre stage in the fashion world and many of the catwalk designers have drawn inspiration for their collections from historic references such as the Baroque. Fashion is also looking to the handicraft textiles of Eastern Europe  and the nomadic lifestyle.  The Rowan designers have taken these strong trends and worked the different key looks into three distinctive stories in Magazine 54:

Romancing – A beautiful collection of romantic lace and patterned knits photographed in the historic setting of Haddon Hall, Derbyshire.

Romancing  Salome

Folk – The patterned folk textiles of nomadic eastern cultures inspires this colourful collection of women’s and men’s knits.

Anatolia  soumak

Essentials – A collection of the key shapes and textures on trend, designed into simple, easy to wear styles that compliment the season’s essential looks.

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There are also 2 online collections available in this magazine with 6 exclusive free patterns in each of them!  Click on the following links below to view these collections.

Rowan Knitting & Crochet Magazine 54 – Web Exclusives

Rowan Design Awards 2013

We’re really spoilt for choice this season.  Look out for these gorgeous Rowan brochures also in the shops on July 15th:

You can also check out the designs on the Rowan website NOW: http://www.knitrowan.com/designs-and-patterns

Angora Haze Brochure  Little Star Cover

Autumn Knits_Layout 1  Pioneer Brochure

Thick&Thin Brochure  Warm & Toasty Cover

Alpaca Colour Brochure

Rowan has also just launched some gorgeous new yarns this season as well as some old favourites in new colours – here are some samples that I will be trying out and reporting back on: (you can click on the links to find out more info)

Angora Haze:

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Thick ‘n’ Thin:

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Kidsilk Haze Eclipse:

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Alpaca Colour:

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So if you’d like to try and win a copy of Rowan Magazine 54, all you need to do is become a follower of my blog or  my Facebook page  and leave me a comment telling me which design from the magazine you like best and why.  I’ll pick a random winner at the end of the day on Sunday 28th July.  You can check out the designs from Magazine 54 on Rowan’s website: http://www.knitrowan.com/designs-and-patterns/magazines/rowan-knitting-crochet-magazine-54  I would love to hear which is your favourite!

You can also like my Facebook page for regular updates on everything Rowan & other snippets of knitting and crochet news.

Good luck xx

EDITED TO ADD: you can also enter the competition if you are already a follower of my blog or Facebook Page 🙂