It has been a fortnight of pretty much incessant rain here in North London. I have to admit that I have found the transition from summer to autumn to winter a bit tricky this year so I am particularly pleased to have my crochet to focus on now the clocks have changed and I can settle down on the settee in the evenings for a bit of 'me' time.
I have a few things to tell you about this week so I hope you can spare 5 minutes to catch up with all things Janie Crow...
Last Friday I spent the evening with Gemma at a charity fundraising event where I gave a talk about my design history and process. I think many of the audience members were surprised to hear just how many stages a design goes through and how long winded the process can be. As we near the end of the Spirit of Flora CAL in Inside Crochet magazine I thought you might also be interested to read about my process and see some 'behind the scenes' images so, with help from my fabulous assistant Emma, I have published a post about it on my blog. You can find it here.
I want to remind you about our new yarn kits for the Bohemian Blooms blanket project which I showcased a few weeks ago. The Stylecraft yarn shades in the new kits are almost identical in colour to the original Rowan branded yarns, but they come in at a more affordable retail price. The patterns are written in a crochet along style in UK terms and feature in the dedicated pattern book. You can find more information by following this link.
Mary Maxim have recently released a yam pack for my Summer Palace blanket in the Blue/Pink colourway. The pack includes their Mellowspun yarn and is particularly cost effective for those of you in the US and Canada. You can find more information here.
Many people probably feel that it is still too early to start using the word 'Festive' or any others linked to Christmas, but it is fair to say that us yarny folk need to start planning our holiday makes relatively early. I am hoping to create an Advent calendar using my Mini Festive Stockings pattern. I had planned to make a stocking pretty much every day for the duration of November, but so far I have only to managed to finish one, despite the fact that I have already bought all the chocolate treats to pop inside! At this rate I will be crocheting them right up until Christmas day!
Perhaps you can be more organised than me and have yours ready for December 1st? I am using a palette of mint, yellow and green shades to match our living room and would love to see them in more colourways, so do share your makes using #Janiecrow on social media platforms.
I have cut right back on teaching commitments for next year, in order to concentrate on my design work, but I am really looking forward to the Arena Travel, Stitchtopia trip to Peru in July. Textile expert Karin Hellaby is currently accompanying a group on a similar tour there, so if you're interested in seeing her images of the trip, which include pics of some super cute alpacas and some lovely squishy yarn, then head over to her Facebook page. There are still some spaces left on this incredible textile holiday, so if you are interested in finding out more take a look at The Arena Travel website here.
I will be participating in the Wool in Garden City Festival which will take place in January. The event is a week long pop-up yarn show in Welwyn Garden City. A few exhibitors, including myself have already been revealed and there will be workshops and other yarn related events you can attend. The pop up is free to visit, but if you would like to come to the preview evening on Friday 19th January, you can purchase a ticket for £10. You can find more information by following this link.
I launched my first crochet along project in 2011 after I was inspired by Debbie Abrahams's Mystery Blanket Club which she has been running for well over a decade. Debbie was instrumental in encouraging my crochet designs and she has been an incredible support to me over the years. Debbie has recently started the application process for her 2024 (knitted) Mystery Blanket Club and it has already nearly sold out. If you're interested in Debbie's club follow this link for more information.
Have you visited the Janie Crow YouTube channel lately? We are regularly adding new videos to help with basic techniques through to videos to support you with specific projects, such as Sunshine & Showers and Indigo Dreams.
You can see some examples below. Click on any of the images to be taken through to the video on the YouTube channel and if you subscribe to the channel you'll be notified when new videos are added.
If you're struggling with a particular section of any of our projects please let us know. If lots of you are finding the same thing tricky we will add it to our list of topics for future videos.
Over on Facebook we reminded our followers of three crochet along projects for which the patterns remain free to download from the Stylecraft Yarns website here. Those projects are Lily Pond, Frida's Flowers and, of course, The Fruit Garden. Some of you shared photos of your projects with us:
Here's Betsy Fruhling with her Lily Pond blanket:
Carol Baker also made Lily Pond but in the Cherry Blossom colourway - we don't see this one so often so it's lovely to see such a beautiful example.
Here's Joanna Whymark's Frida's Flowers in the Primavera colourway. Just gorgeous!
Thanks, as always, for sharing. We love a good show and tell!
Have you ever tried making pesto using parsley? Faced with a large bunch in the grocery box this week Gemma decided to give it a try and was pleasantly surprised with the results. It has a fresher, lighter taste than pesto made with basil, but was equally delicious stirred through a bowl of gnocchi!
There are plenty of recipes available, but you can find the one Gemma used by clicking on the image above.
Alzheimer's Research UK are currently running a fundraiser in which they are challenging those taking part to knit, sew or crochet every day in November to raise £100 for vital dementia research. If this is something you would be interested in taking part in you can find out more by clicking on this link or on the image below:
In the village of Stanley Common in Derbyshire a local crafter, Jilly Crofts, known locally as the 'Crochet Queen', has spent over 200 hours crocheting a life size World War 1 soldier to be ready in time for Remembrance Day. Isn't it incredible? You can read more about why Jilly decided to make the soldier here.
We have a quiet weekend planned after meeting some friends in London today for a walking tour. The forecast is for rain again, so I am sure to be snuggled on the sofa with my crochet hook at some point. I am still working on my granny hexagon cardigan and it is shaping up really nicely!
I have been sent a book called 'The Lost Flock', by Jane Cooper and hope to find some time to start reading it over the next few days. It's described as a 'windswept love letter to Scotland's heritage sheep and to the Orkney farming community too!' and is all about the authors life as she cares for the UK's last remaining flock of Boreray sheep. If you would like to read it after me, reply to this email, quoting your address (UK only I'm afraid) and I will pick one of you to send it to - so long as you promise to pass it along to another reader once you're done. With big thanks to Chelsea Green Publishing for sending me the book.
I will be back in your inbox in a fortnight's time with the November Newsletter. Don't forget that we love hearing from you and seeing your makes out in the wild, so do get in touch or tag us on social media so that we can see what you're up to.
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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!