Hello, Crochet workshop in Bloemfontein!

Happy and exciting times are ahead as our book is about to hit the shelves!

!!!WHOOP- WHOOP!!!

We were invited to the Vrystaat Kunstefees, in Bloemfontein, to give a crochet workshop as part of the Literature Festival.

We have something VERY special planned.

Together, the three of us, will show you all the tips and tricks involved in reading the shawl crochet pattern and chart from our book….and even sign your book if you want to.

The shawl pattern was interpreted in 4 different ways in our book, contemporary, artistic, romantic and bohemian…

The same pattern , but look how different just because different yarns and inspiration were used!

 

 

 

 

Its an easy/medium crochet pattern, and extremely satisfying to make!

You will receive an amazing yarn goodie bag with the pattern and a crochet hook, all for just R20 per person!

 

You can go here to book your place, as space is limited.

Hope to see you there!

love from Elsbeth

 

my special moments in the karoo- elsbeth

Those of you who has followed our blog for a while, will be familiar with our yearly crochet-getaway. If you have missed out on our previous getaways, you can go here and here to see what we were up to.

 

I spent my Karoo days knitting and crocheting.

 

 Sitting in Colesberg at a quaint coffe shop, knitting a beany for myself with cowgirlblues aran. I didnt follow a pattern and loved the result! I will share a final photo on my instagram sometime. ( It was done, pom pom and all, but my dog got hold of the beany when I got home and played with the pom-pom, and im sure you get the picture…. need to add another pom pom….)

 

At Richmond Rooms and Cafe, I had the cutest little stoep in front of my room, and fell in love with the embroidered tablecloth!

Every room had so many beautiful little corners and this was one of my favourites!

I also crocheted  hot water bottles covers and embroidered a little something on them to make them extra special.

Its a perfect project for beginners- just make a ch that is the same length as the bottom of the hot water bottle. You will then work  trs in all the chs until you get to the first ch made, turn your work and then tr in the other side of all the chs- this way the cover is all ready closed at the bottom.  Ss into the first tr you made, and then continue working in the round. When the cover is long enough you can bind off. Add a cute border and make a string to close the cover around the spout.

 

I also started knitting the marled magic shawl from Stephen West.

Thank goodness Anisa was there to guide me through this pattern- she made one a few months ago- otherwise I would not be smiling on this photo and the horns would be really sprouting from my head!

 

…dear Liesl just being her cute self.

 

This lovely Karoo break was amazing and spending time with my dearest friends just made it unforgettable, and we are all ready dreaming about where our next adventure will take us!

 

 

Have a lovely week making pretty things with yarn, plants and people,

love from Elsbeth

the Karoo and us



….and this year we did it again, but a little bit different.

Our 2017 crochet getaway* took place in the beautiful Karoo, specifically in Richmond, and to pin point our exact location…the lovely charming Richmond Cafe and Rooms

I cannot describe in words how absolutely beautiful and special the experience was.

Our hosts, Klaradyn, Nicol and their whole team, made us feel so welcome and the saying ”being spoiled” is an understatement.

We will be sharing some of our favourite moments over the next few weeks with you,

like where we sat on this couch a lot……

 

 

Cornel worked on her gorgeous African flower blanket,

 

Anisa started knitting a fun shawl pattern from Hedgehogfibers and…

 

…and I started Stephen West’s Marled magic shawl.

 

…and Liesel (who doesn’t crochet, but cheer us on from the sidelines), sitting here with her needlepoint project.

 In the coming weeks we will share what we made over the glorious 5 days and all the links to the patterns.

Wishing you a lovely day

love from Elsbeth

 

PS: Visit our instagram accounts for more of the Karoo and us

Richmond Cafe and Rooms

Cornel, Anisa, Elsbeth and Liesel

PSS: *we did a lot of knitting too!

Elephants in a Row

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Cornel Elsbeth and I are in the final phase of writing our crochet book – it’s been a long road but an exciting one.  We are looking forward to the launch towards the middle of this year.  In between writing patterns, making each item and checking each individual pattern, I took some time out in December and I knitted a few items (I needed a rest from the hook) – just to break the monotony of only crocheting non-stop for a full year.

The break from crochet did not last long, a friend asked me in January if I would crochet a baby blanket for someone special.  Her brief was as follows: please use cream, brown and vintage blue and the theme is elephants.  So, having just designed patterns for our book I was all out of fresh ideas.  That’s when I consulted my Pinterest boards and found the cutest elephant projects.

I chose three patterns to make up this glorious baby blanket.  Using one of my favourite South African Yarns – MoYa Yarn (100% Cotton), I used the beautiful Crochet Starburst pattern  as the basis for the blanket.  With one exception, I made stripes part of my design.  The elephant motif is a design by Greta Tulner and its available to purchase on Etsy. 

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The elephant border I found on Pinterest but the original video tutorial is in Spanish.  I watched the video quite a few times then wrote the pattern and tested it.    I hope you enjoyed making this crochet edging as much as I did.

Pattern Notes:  start your first row just after a corner on the completed blanket.  This pattern makes use of British crochet terminology.

Abbreviations:  slst = slip stitch, ch = chain, sc = single crochet, tr = treble

Row 1:   join your yarn with a slst, sc 5, ch 2, tr 3, ch 3, skip 2 stitches, tr 4, turn

Row 2:   ch 1 (is your 1st tr) tr 3, tr 3 in 3 ch space, tr 3 (10 tr in total), ch 7 and slst in 1st sc from Row 1, turn

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Row 3:   sc 7 in 7 ch space, sc in 1st tr from row 2, tr 9, turn work so that the tail section is facing downward.  You will now be working on the edge of rows 1, 2 and 3.

Row 4:   ch 5, slst in top of last tr in row 1, turn work (tail will be on your left)

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Row 5;   ch 3, tr 7 in last tr of row 3, sc in same stitch,

Row 6:  ch 3, tr 8 in the 5 ch space you made in row 4, ch 3, slst in last tr of 8 tr, ch 3, skip 3 stitches on base row and slst in 4th stitch.

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Continue with your second elephant starting with the sc 5 from row 1 above.  Have fun! Is so cool to see how the elephants come alive as you go along.

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I completed this project while away on our annual Valentines breakaway.  This year we went to the beautiful Umngazi River Bungalows and Spa, at the wild coast.  It’s truly an adventure for the senses, as the tastes, sights and sounds of this wonderful land touch your soul.  This is a place of real experiences that leaves a lasting impression.  In short, we’ll be back.

 

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Oh, and before I forget some exciting news!  My favourite magazine will be back on the racks in March – the amazing team from Ideas Magazine have adopted the publication as their own baby and will be re-launching.  Isn’t that just amazing!!! And Cornel, Elsbeth and I have specially designed a few patterns for the launch issue.  I know for sure that paging through the Ideas Magazine once again will be a highlight for me.

Have a happy weekend everyone!

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fearless crochet at de montfort university, leicester, uk

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De Montfort University’s graduate ready-to-wear collection Spring/Summer 2015 as featured by vogue.co.uk.

These crocheted creations can be described as ‘fearless” and “adventurous”.

It pushes the boundaries of “what-to-wear” and “what-not-to-wear”

and just shows how versatile and visually extravagant dc’s, trebles, bobble stitches and loopy crochet stitches can be.

I am definitely left inspired after seeing this,

although I would tone down the colour palette if I had to make something similar for myself.

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Catwalk Inspiration

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Co-authoring a crochet book with my friends Cornel and Elsbeth is an experience in every sense of the word. It’s scary, challenging, exciting and exhilarating all at the same time. There are days of sheer frustration. Days when I question why I ever agreed to do this. But ultimately, when I stand back and reflect, I know that this experience is cementing friendships, creating proof of a craft we all love dearly, building character and stretching our dreams.

This process has taught me to seek inspiration in everything around me.

The three of us have created secret boards on Pinterest which reflects our own individual style.   We refer to these boards on a daily basis while creating and crafting new patters for our book.

The catwalk has been a source of great inspiration, from Valentino, to Chanel, Tommy Hilfiger, Chanel, Francis Montesinos to name but a few.

I know the designs below will inspire you to create your own yarn magic!  Have fun while exploring…

Frances Montesino

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Looking forward to sharing our really interesting crochet designs that will be published in our book early in 2017.

For more inspiration follow me on Instagram!

Have a fabulous week

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it was the year 1886

Writing a crochet book is not for the fainthearted let me tell you.

Cornel told Anisa and myself that writing a crochet book is A LOT OF WORK, but I must confess I didn’t really believe her…..crochet, work? How is that even possible.

*Cornel has written a crochet book for Ideas Magazine a while ago (so she knows what she is talking about and we have all loved making some of the special patterns in it.) By the way….. if you subscribe for the electronic Ideas Magazine/ Idees Tydskrif  you can get the crochet book for free!!!! )

So, after a few months of working on the book I agree…. it is A LOT OF WORK!

It is also such an interesting experience…I am loving the creative side of looking at the amazing yarn our sponsors donated, thinking of lovely things to crochet, letting my imagination go wild, starting 20 times, frogging 21 times to get something right while writing everything down too!!!!

I really admire all the knitting and crochet designers out there for creating wonderful patterns for all of us to make. The small amount of money that we pay for a well written pattern that was tested is really not that much and I applaud the ladies who support designers by buying patterns and not just copying them from friends……

I have been going through many of my old crochet and knitting files and found this adorable book. I only have the scans of these pages and maybe someone knows where it can be found online?

It was edited by Jenny June in 1886 and I want to share the introduction with you. It made me feel so close to these lovely ancient ladies who made things, lovely and practical, with their hands.

(Thanks to my dear daughter Amber, who kindly typed the Introduction so that it can be read easily)

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whole intro

 

 

Have a lovely weekend making lovely things!

love from Elsbeth

happy holiday hat pattern

happy holiday hat cover

I wrote this pattern in December 2010 and it’s still one of my favourites to make up if I need a handmade gift for a friend.

Click HERE for the edited version of this pattern in PDF.

It’s written in English crochet terms.

CORNEL SIGNATURE

PS THIS was my original blog post on I Love Pom-poms

on-the-go in handmade style

On a recent vintage shopping spree at Provance Vintage fair, I found this lovely basket….. perfect for my on-the-go crochet and knitting projects.

FullSizeRender (6)I love the wooden beaded handles, but I had some plans for the boring grey lining and knew that I will find something in my fabric stash that I can use to take the inside from boring to fab!.

This floral fabric is also from a secondhand shop and I really like how this very busy floral fabric blends in with the natural  basket colour.

The crochet butterfly pin cushion on the fabric was my first attempt at making a butterfly brooch. I crocheted a bit too loose so the butterfly is really far too big for a brooch, but makes a lovely pin cushion. Here is my butterfly brooch if you are curious.

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The fabric was cut to follow the shape of the basket. After sewing it together I stitched it into the basket and voila….

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A little fabric pocket for scissors and notions make it very practical.

The first project to enjoy this cosy new basket is the Maddermade Cardigan.

I am busy knitting one for my husband in the most glorious Alpaca yarn from Quenti Alpacas. I highly recommend this pattern if you want to knit a cardigan. The best part is that you can decide how long, fitted or straight the cardigan should be, so you design the pattern with the help of Carrie’s clear instructions. I am not an experienced knitter by the way, so trust me on this!

 

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I am so please with this little project.

Wishing you a creative weekend full of possibilities

love from Elsbeth