Tag Archives: Chain ‘n’ Chatter

Summer Holiday crochet

I am really excited to be back blogging, I have restarted the 30 day business blogging challenge, along with a few others on Facebook, and I am relishing the new start ,  I got to day 25 last time, and I am determined to complete it this time!

I don’t have an actual summer holiday booked, but I am looking forward to teaching a learn to crochet course over three days at Missenden Abbey.  I have heard from others recently that it is a great place to stay, and to learn.

I am also working on a project for Women’s Weekly (knitting and crochet special) some other projects – especially a blanket or two, or three, along with the other wip’s (Work In Progress) I have around…

Also during the summer I want to re-start the International Diploma in Crochet, there, I have said it out loud, now need to follow up!

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After working full-time in school for eight weeks, I can focus on the business again, I have had three more patterns published, two in Woman’s Weekly, and one for DMC in their recently published Tiny Tatty Teddy range.  I have also just completed another pattern for DMC to be put in their Christmas range published in September.

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I have also been able to go back to the stitching groups on Fridays, starting with Love 13 where they had probably the best Lemon Meringue Pie that I have ever had! And then on to Maximas where there were 13 of us crocheting and knitting in the sunshine.

Crochet and friends – nothing better for the summer holiday!

13 Brilliant Crochet Blankets

As I am about to go to see the lovely ladies for our Monday night stitch group, I thought it would be a great time to share their crochet blanket projects, over recent months there has been a bit of a blanket obsession going on (ok, Annes cable blanket was started 2 years ago, but she has been doing other projects inbetween!) – and while I have put some of these in my newsletter, I may have missed some, so here they are – starting with granny squares and their variations…

1 Irene big granny square blanketIrene’s Big Granny square baby blanket

1 Trish granny square blanketTrishes enormous Granny square blanket which inspired us as a group to make a blanket for Jean…

1 Group granny blanket for Jean

Variations using one colour granny squares..

1 trish mario granny blanket  1 Wendy granny blanket

Mario by trish, and a quilt pattern by Wendy,

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A groovyghan by me, starting with granny squares, and morphing into other things…

1 Wendy baby blanket 1 Wndy basket weave

Two baby blankets by Wendy – a two colour combo stitch and a basket weave in post stitches…

1 Denise Teddy blanket   1 Densie crochet lions1 Denise knit with crochet owls  1 densise crochet owl

Three by Denise for her Grandchildren, Teddy bears, and lions based on motif squares, and a knitted blanket with some really cute crochet owls..

1 Anne Lily pad closer1 Anne lily pad blanket 1 Anne Cable blanket close1 anne cable blanket

And finally Annes amazing two blankets, a 3D flower, in Aran yarn, with large and small motifs, and the Cable blanket, every square is a different cable pattern, and there are 63 of them!

Al these ladies I taught to crochet, and they have been doing it for less than 4 years, so some really impressive work by everyone!

I hope you like these crochet blankets and are inspired to make your own, I would love to see what you have made!




Getting Started: From Zero to (Crochet) blogger

I have been procrastinating… I have not been as focused as I should be around my blog, so here is my challenge – blog every day for 30 days… I was going to start on May 1st, but since I had made the decision to do it why wait!

I have the feeling that this is not going to be easy, in fact I have been warned as much, but here we go.

One of the first things to get inspirations for posts is to think about what questions people ask most frequently,   If you have any crochet or knitted related questions then please do ask, if I don’t know the answer I can look around the web and find someone who can – which is exactly what I would do in the shop when I had it!

I know that one question often asked by beginners is:

Does it matter how I hold my hook and yarn?

My answer is simple – NO!

There are two main ways to hold a hook – top row of piccys are knife hold, bottom row pencil hold, left and right handed.

knife left knife right pencil left pencil right

and there are as many ways to hold yarn as there are crocheters.  I was teaching on Friday at a Women’s Weekly workshop and as long as the yarn is in one hand and hook in the other you can get started!

To help illustrate this I took some videos at a group that I go to, many of whom I have taught to crochet.  I have recorded in slow motion and as short clips.

As long as you can maintain an even tension ( and that only comes with practice, patience my newbies…) you can hold however you like, personally I discourage using a knitting type hold, with the yarn and hook in the same hand, but if you really can’t mange any other way, then try that way until you are confident with stitches, and then see if you can change.  If you are likely to be crocheting for long stretches at a time, it is also helpful to be able to change hold – even just slightly to reduce the chance of injury…

I will be publishing some learn to crochet posts soon, but I look forward to your crochet and yarn questions…till tomorrow!

Crochet Quickie!

Had our stitch night on Monday and just wanted to share – one of our ladies, who I taught to crochet a few months ago, has made this lovely blanket.  She is sooo sensible, I do recommend that when you are learning to crochet, it is best to keep to simple projects at first, so that you can really get used to using the crochet hook, and work on getting your tension even, this time gives you some great projects – cushions, blankets (a bit of a favourite) and scarves are all great projects.  Back to Trish, she took a basic pattern, and made granny squares, in different colours, do you know what it is?


2014-08-11 20.29.55Super Mario!   Well done Trish!!!



Chain ‘n’ Chatter – plus!

I have been looking forward to today, a whole day crocheting, with visits to two different groups…

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I finally made it to Love 13, in Bush Hill Park, Lovely group of ladies fabulous coffee and two special friends.  I have not been able to visit since I had the shop, now I am not working the 9-5 Or 10-4 for the shop, I am able to do this in the name of research!   We had lovely coffee and a deeeliscious choc chip shortbread.  You can see in the pic what I had hoped to work on which is a commission from Yarn Garden, I am practising in 4ply yarn because the actual pattern is to be in cobweb yarn – finer even than laceweight!

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Well it didn’t go too well on the designing front, I ended up frogging everything I tried, probably not best to design and chat at the same time! After Love 13, I went back to Waltham Abbey, and what used to be the Chain ‘n’ Chatter at The Crochet Chain, now meeting in Maximas Coffee Shop, we have now meeting here for about a month, and enjoying both the inside and outside space, outside today and we had a doggy visitor – Ronnie who was really well behaved!

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Change of project, a scarf made from a silk lace yarn, which was much, much easier to do while chatting!  It was a nice day so we were able to sit outside in the garden with the shade that we needed. I always love to sit with other knitters and crocheters, it is  so inspirational to see what they are doing, and as also to help each other along when we are finding a pattern tricky, and that you grow to be such good friends. <><