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We had a great response to my email last week when I told you that we finally had some kits in stock. We have been able to update our stocks again this week and now have Eastern Jewels, Sunshine & Showers, Fruit Garden Night & Dusk and Red House and Lily Pond ready for sale.
We have now sold out of all our Fiori kits, but Lucia still has some on her site. You can find them by following this link.
I feel so incredibly honoured when people post pictures of their Janie Crow projects. I love seeing different colour ways and interpretations of my designs and I adore hearing about the joy that crochet brings to the lives of people across the world. I was so touched yesterday when my friend Lita posted the image below of her crochet group in Indonesia alongside their Fruit Garden blanket projects. Honestly this image moved me to tears and I am so proud to see my designs made by such a fantastic and talented group.
Here is a pic of another beautiful version of The Fruit Garden blanket that was sent to me by Vicky Neale - isn't it fabulous - I love Vicky's choice of colours!
I really enjoy seeing my projects out in the wild, so please get in touch if you want to share some of your makes with myself and the Janie Crow team. We all love seeing them.
A huge thank you to all of you who voted for me in the recent Knitting & Crochet Awards. I am really proud to have been presented with the Highly Commended Award in the Crochet Designer category. It means so much to have made it to the top of the list alongside my fellow Blogstars Lucy of Attic 24 and Helen Shrimpton.
Our daughter Summer has a real skill for gift wrapping. It is a job I dislike, but Sum always embraces it as part of her festive preparations. She is always conscious about the environmental impact of what she does, so this year she opted to wrap her gifts in brown paper and add a simple wired bow to some of them.
Upon reflection she felt that her gifts looked a little plain, so she has spent the last week or so decorating them all and giving them a wonderful personal touch. She used felt tipped pens to create her lovely designs.
I haven't started my wrapping yet and still have a few things left to get, so I am pretty sure I won't be hand decorating any presents this year, but I thought I would have a rummage through my oddments of crochet as I am pretty sure I have lots of handmade flowers and bits and bobs that I could attach to some gifts instead of bows and ribbons, which often have a plastic content. I think I might have some brooch backs somewhere so that they could be used as corsages too.
I found this fabulous pattern on Etsy, for little crochet gifts which I think would look so lovely either on a present or hung from the tree.
A few weeks ago Summer and I travelled down to Hampshire to the HQ of The Grey Sheep Co to attend their open day. We had a really great time watching shepherdess Susie Parish give a sheep dog display and chat about how she trains her dogs. It was also really interesting to hear about how the company are cross breeding sheep in order to achieve great knitting yarns.
Company owner Emma Boyles also gave a talk about the new machinery they have to produce their gorgeous yarns in house and we were given a chance to see them in action.
Summer and I had such a nice time chatting to other knitters and crocheters and browsing through the gorgeous yarns that Emma produces on her farm. You can find more information about The Grey Sheep Co (who you may have already seen featured on Country File) by following this link to their website.
The last second class postage date to guarantee delivery before Christmas is tomorrow 18th December and the last first class date is Tuesday 21st. You can find more information by following this link to the Royal Mail website.
For the first time in years we are going to have a proper break over the Christmas and New Year holidays. We will not be working from Thursday 23rd December through to Tuesday 4th January.
The Janie Crow website will be open and orders can be placed within this period, but items will not be dispatched until the New Year.
If you would like to purchase a pattern and want to start work on it over the holidays, the quickest way to access it will be to get a download copy via either our Ravelry or Etsy stores.
Yesterday I sat and wrote out my list in preparation for our food shopping next week. With Christmas plans pared right back this year we are not planning huge feasts and so I am thinking of doing lots of easy meals that we can rustle up in the evenings and hearty soups we can have at lunch time.
I love cooking, but I am not fond of too much faffing and so I like recipes that give scrummy results with minimum effort. This year we have decided to do Tiramisu as our Christmas desert.
Andy will be in charge of making this super simple but gorgeously tasty pud as he loves this recipe from BBC Good Food and has made it many times before. He adds grated chocolate between the layers and uses a little less sugar. It is always tastier when it is a few days old and the flavours have been given a chance to blend a little, so it is the perfect dessert to prepare beforehand.
We have cancelled some of our plans for this weekend and will not be heading out too much. Instead we are hoping to finish off some of the jobs around the house and paint the garage doors - so long as the weather will allow. Living the high life as usual!!!
I am hoping that I will get some time (as always) to sit with my knitting in front of the TV and so will need to make some time to wind off some of the skeins of yarn I purchased at The Grey Sheep Co a few weeks ago.
Last week I completed my hand knit tank top that I have made using Stylecraft's ReCreate yarn. I am really chuffed with it and have worn it pretty much everyday since I finished it. I made it in the shade Cherry and am quite tempted to make another in Charcoal. I used this pattern but left out the cable.
The sweater project I have chosen to work on over Christmas and into the New Year is called Oslo and it is by Petite Knit - you can find the Ravelry store by following this link. All the patterns on there are fabulous!
Earlier on this week I attended a beginners mosaic class and made a heart plaque. I really enjoyed the class and think this might be the start of a new obsession. I really like the thought of giving old chipped ceramics a new lease of life and really enjoyed the process of cutting and glueing the fragments of pottery into place. My first attempt at this technique is in no way a masterpiece but I am very proud of it.
I came across the work of mosaic artist Amanda Anderson (a piece of her work is shown above) a few years ago when I saw some of her pieces on display in a Bournemouth gallery. I adore her work, which you can find on her website here or on Instagram here. I have a long way to go to get close to this kind of skill. Isn't it amazing!
My friend Jan sent me this picture last Christmas as it reminded her of the Fruit Garden blanket - I love the pic, although I do hope the lady in the pic didn't also remind her of me, so I thought I would share it with you as we head into the festive period.
I will be back with a quick update in a couple of weeks time on New Year's eve. I hope that wherever you are you are safe and well and that you have a good holiday whatever you have planned...
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