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!

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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happy holiday hat pattern

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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.

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

my butterfly brooch

 

I had so much fun making this! A cute little butterfly brooch…..

It has two sides. The fun speckled yarn side……..

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….and another side with flowers

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the collection yarns

I used an arty speckled yarn from one of a kind yarns, black vinnis nikkim to crochet the two sides together and to crochet the middle of the butterfly’s body and to embroider 2 small flowers.

The other side of the butterfly was crocheted with some delicious natural merino dk yarn, and cowgirlblues merino lace was used for the little french knots and flowers.

If you would like to see it in action on my jersey you can pop over to my instagram account. Winter is here and its time for jerseys, sweaters, scarves, beanies and mittens…and of course, my cute little butterfly brooch!

Have a lovely weekend

love from Elsbeth

ps: this is the pattern that I used.

Crochet Olympics 2016

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This was our fourth Crochet adventure in St Frances (or as we like to call it the Crochet Olympics). It’s a time we all cherish! It’s here that we get to cook wonderful creative meals while sipping on bubbles and wine. We crochet (Liesel embroiders) and talk about our daily lives, we discover new topics such as square foot gardening, the joys and benefits of eating only organic and everything about permaculture and so much more…

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It really is a time to restore one’s soul and reflect on the exciting adventures we all have ahead of us. Each year we go back home feeling fulfilled and blessed in the knowledge that life is so much better when its filled with happiness, creativity and the many exciting ventures that lay ahead.

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Cornel has the most beautiful home in St Frances and this year our weather was amazing, Melanie and I went for a walk on the beach every morning. It’s during these walks that we re-discovered the beauty of St Frances.

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Each one of us got a turn to dish up something delectable. Most of the time it’s a group effort with Liezel (our official food photographer) snapping away at every morsel created. What made this year so special is the fact that all our food was organic, sourced from a local supplier. We all agreed that the food was soulful, colorful and so much more sumptuous as a result.

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Of course our visit would not have been complete without a trip to the wonderful Nomvulas. We tend to spend all our money in this store (without any regrets). It’s filled with the most beautiful yarn and we find ourselves spending hours just exploring. Liesel even bought a ball of yarn this year and Cornel made her some awesome mittens for the Winter.

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Cornel, Elsbeth and I are busy working on our crochet book, which is scary, exciting and rewarding all at the same time. We can’t share too many photos of what we crochet on our trip. But I can tell you that we are working with some of the most fantastic South African yarns available. For a sneak peak in the months ahead you should follow us on Instagram. Anisa, Cornel, Elsbeth

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The poem below sums up how the Crochet Olympics team feel about our life passion… crochet, food, conversations and a happy ever after.

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have a fantastic fun filled weekend!

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tierlantynkies and the african flower motif

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As you know Elsbeth and I have a small business called Empty Nest.

Well, between 27 April and 3 May this year our nest was CERTAINLY not empty!

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We held crochet workshops at the Tierlantynkies Market in Pretoria,

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And on the side we sold some lovely yarn from I Love Yarn

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and Moya Yarn.

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From the very young

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to the more mature ladies discovered the magic of crochet in our beginners workshops.

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And for everyone else who just wanted to spend 2 hours crocheting something new,

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spending time with friends,

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drinking wine, laughing and relaxing, we introduced them to these 3 motifs…

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The humble Granny Square, the popular Rustic Lace Square and

THE AFRICAN FLOWER.

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Needless to say, I got a little carried away…

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Over the course of 7 days I progressed from one

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to more

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and more

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to many.

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Until I had a small ‘roll’

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of African Flowers,

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And ultimately this half-finished beautiful blanket made with left-over “kakriel” yarns.

But acrylic blankets last forever and who wouldn’t want to play with so many colours at the same time.

As you might have noticed our blog posts have been few and far between.

I can explain. This is also the reason why I have to move my Happy African Blanket to the side (sad face emoji).

Anisa, Elsbeth and I am working on a wonderful, packed-to-the-brim crochet book with something in it for everyone.

And there’s only 3 months left.

Elsbeth and I have even postponed all our crochet classes (The Gentle Art of Crochet) until November 2016 by which time we hope the  ‘crochet dust’ will have settled.

Please join me on MY INSTAGRAM to keep up with happenings.

Although I can’t show you exactly what I’m making for our book, you’ll get glimpses of the beautiful yarns I’m working with.

We have THE MOST amazing yarn sponsors!

Thank you for following our blog.

Have a wonderful week!

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Bell Sleeve Revival

I loved wearing vintage clothing in my teens. I used to scour the local vintage stores and visit Rocky Street in Johannesburg to find the most beautiful vintage items. My favorite was any item that had either bell bottoms or bell sleeves. So it was to my absolute delight that I discovered that the bell sleeve is experiencing a revival. From Victoria Beckham to Rosetta Getty – two of the worlds renowned designers have included the bell sleeve in their collections.

Victoria Beckham always a trend setter, launched her version of the bell sleeve jersey in 2015.

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Take a look at Rosetta Getty’s  fall 2016 collection where she showcases her beautiful knitted bell sleeve jersey.

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And just because I could not resist, take a look at some of Rosetta Getty’s beautiful crochet items

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Gigi Hadid looks super chic in one of Rosetta’s designs

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Here are a few Emma Bell designs to inspire you

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There are some interesting bell sleeve knitting and crochet patterns to be found on etsy.com.

 Have a fabulous weekend creating something spectacular!

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