The most recent crochet design to feature in Inside Crochet Magazine as part of the Spirit of Flora CAL is called 'Double Carnations'. It is another motif to feature two flowers sitting at opposite corners of the square motifs and it has been great to see them popping up 'out in the wild' over the last week or so. It amazes me how quickly some of you get them made!
As you know, this project was inspired by the Arts and Crafts Movement and the work of ceramicist William De Morgan in particular. Botanical symbolism was widely adopted by members of the movement in their art work, and plants were often used as metaphors for virtue and vice. William used the carnation flower frequently in his designs and it was often depicted as a symbol of love.
Spirit of Flora is drawing to a close now with the final block due to be released in December. It doesn't seem possible! The project was a HUGE undertaking - 13 individual block designs, 3 blanket layouts, a bag and shawl pattern, as well as 2 cushion design options and 3 borders - this was never going to be a small undertaking!
From the outset we wanted the CAL to be a project where crocheters forged their own paths, either by making the motifs using yarns from their stashes, or by choosing completely different colour palettes. We also hoped that some of you would choose to make things other than a blanket and so have shown a bag design, a shawl, and most recently a pair of cushions.
The team at Inside Crochet always create such lovely images of my projects and we have come to expect a really high level of styling and photography from the dream team who are Claire Montgomerie and Leanne Jade. When I first saw the images of the cushions this week they really blew me away, so I am sharing a few here as they are just so stunning!
This month's Inside Crochet Magazine also features a supplement pattern for my beaded Glitzy Festive Stockings shown below:
When we were children my brother and I would place hessian sacks at the end of our beds for Father Christmas to fill with gifts overnight. The sacks felt huge back then and I remember how we would drag them into our parent’s room, probably at some ridiculously early hour, on Christmas Day to rummage through them, always finding satsumas and nuts at the bottom.
These decorative crochet stockings are not large enough to hold lots of presents, but they would make the perfect addition to the fireplace none the less and are definitely large enough to fit a few small gifts in or would make a lovely gift in themselves. The sight of a festive stocking hanging ready by the fireplace for Santa to fill epitomises all things festive don’t you think? To me they symbolise the expectation of gifts and people arriving to celebrate with us, as well as creating a lovely decoration.
Don't forget that we now have kits for a new version of my Bohemian Blooms
Crochet Along Style project. The original pattern is written for yarns from the Rowan range, but as 3 of the shades are now discontinued we decided it was time to give the project a revamp. Our new kits include yarns from the Stylecraft range and we have chosen shades that almost exactly match those used in the original project.
The tension of the new yarn palette crochets up the same as the original, but we decided that the new version would not include beads so that crocheters can see what it looks like without them and have the choice of whether or not they want to add them - not everyone is a fan of bling like me!
We have created a quick video that shows the two versions of the blanket and you can find over on our Instagram feed. We have made a yarn substitution document, which also suggests alternative yarns for the discontinued yarns in the Rowan version should you wish to source yarns from their range. You can find it by following this link.
With a multitude of cut-price offers bombarding our in-boxes care of Black Friday this week, it is good to know that a growing number of consumers are opting to support smaller retailers over the big discounts and the start of the heavily promotional Christmas season, which can appear all consuming. At Janie Crow we are rarely able to offer bargain prices on our kits, but instead choose to do offers on patterns from time to time. This week however, we do have a sale offer for you in the shape of the Crimson Dreams yarn kits, which are discounted by 20%.
We only have limited stock available in our 'Crimson Friday' deal, so you might need to be quick! Kits are reduced from £74.50 to £59.60 - they will not be restocked at this price once our current stock has sold through.
This blanket project was originally designed in a blue colourway and you can find more information by following this link.
I am really excited to reveal that I have been nominated in two different categories in the Yarn Industry awards for 2023. I am really proud that my name appears in the 'Best Independent Designer' section and within the 'Best Online Personality' category. I am up against some true giants of the yarn world, many of them with many more followers than me, so I am flattered simply to have been nominated, but if you do want to vote for me, or any of the other fabulous nominees, please follow this link.
I love projects that use up left overs or small amounts of yarn and I really adore adding beads to crochet stitches, so I am really excited that the pattern for the beaded pouches are available for all you eager crocheters who love stash busting projects and a bit of bling too - they would make a particularly nice accessory for a festive outfit!
You can find the patterns available as downloads on Etsy and Ravelry and as paper copies (UK terms only for this one I'm afraid) by following this link to the Janie Crow store.
If you fancy a bit of stash-busting in the lead up to Christmas, and also want to make something to decorate your home, why not take a look at our festive patterns. We have mini stockings, bunting and hanging decorations.
Here at Janie Crow we all love the Mystical Lanterns pelmet/bunting that I first saw at Folklore Yarns in Belfast. It’s a lovely way to interpret the pattern and add mirrors to the centre of the motifs to add some extra sparkle!
I am really looking forward to taking part in the Wool in Garden City event in January. I will be taking part in a 'meet the designer' session on Saturday 20th and will also be at the Preview Evening event on Friday 19th. Both These events are ticketed -the preview tickets are £10 and are available now. A full list of workshops and events will be published soon. Click here for more information.
If you are looking for some little gifts that are perfect for popping in Advent Calendars or giving to a yarny friend as a Secret Santa present, how about checking out our Janie Crow & Emma Ball Collection.
The little tins, stitch markers and notebooks are incredibly popular and make ideal small gifts. For the festive season we have bauble cards that feature images of my crochet designs. The baubles detach from the cards and can be hung on the tree.
We also have jigsaws and there are still some calendars left in stock if you want to get organised for 2024. You can find a little reel I made yesterday of the bauble cards and the jigsaws on our Instagram account.
This is a 'ta dah' moment as I want to show you the two self-seeded butternut squash that we have harvested from the garden. Aren't they fabulous! And utterly free! We will definitely be growing them again in 2024 and next time we will let them all grow rather than mistaking them for courgettes and eating them far too early!!!
Despite being big butternut squash fans, we haven't cooked either of the homegrown pair yet, but last week I did buy another squash and make the soup recipe that Emma found a few weeks ago. It was totally delicious so I really recommend it. I popped all the veg in to roast while I was cooking something else in the oven at the same time and even managed to make some focaccia bread to go with it. My pics don't do it justice as it was really yummy! You can find the recipe by following this link.
We are in Bournemouth this weekend for our Festive Inspired Minds workshop. The hotel is beautifully decorated for Christmas already and Debbie and I have designed a festive project for our workshop group to make over the weekend - I will reveal the design on my social media platforms next week.
The weather forecast is good for the whole weekend so we are hoping to squeeze in some beach walks while we are away and maybe a little bit of Christmas shopping. I hope that you are also looking forward to a nice couple of days whatever you have planned.
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Welcome to my blog. Here you will find my email newsletter archive alongside any other general musings or information about events or new pattern releases that I wish to share with you!