I joined this little knitting group autumn/winter 2016.
All the ladies are super welcoming and oh so helpful. We sit and chat for two hours on a Sunday afternoon whilst drinking tea (they do), eating cake and either knitting or crocheting.
The Exchange staff always have our sign ready for us.
Everyone has different levels of experience and different projects on the go. I’ve found this little group super helpful of when I have knitting related questions. Oracles! I often use this time to explore new techniques and this is where I sat and completed my first ever cable swatch.
Want to join?
If there are any Leicester Locals who want to come along the group meets every Sunday at 2pm-4pm at The Exchange Leicester. Street Parking is free and The Exchange cake is pretty amazing.
Every week Christine puts a post on the FaceBook page and we all comment whether we can make it or not. With wintery days coming back around I am looking forward to these cosy hours.
We are into September and the weather has changed.
I have a mid December birthday but I love the sunshine, long days, freedom and warmth. Winter means being cold, long dark nights and generally a sad me. I am, however, looking forward to cosy evenings, hot drinks, snuggly toes, and lots of reading time all in big warm jumpers and blankets (hopefully made by me).
My 2017 winter WIPS are simple additions to create the basic staples for a hand knit and hand crochet wardrobe. I currently have two crocheted scarves so I am eager to add to this and begin branching out into more challenging garments. Inspiration for having a handmade wardrobe definitely comes from all the great podcasts i’ve been watching and wanting to be able to have my own to show off and share. Knitting your own clothes no longer means you are going to be dressed like a 60 year old. Handmade equals style.
Oversized Knit Jumper
For the Oversized Knit Jumper I have stash yarn in mind, bamboo aran gifted by my mom which I intend to hold double, gauge willing. The pattern is free and I will need needles, 9mm 80cm circulars, which I intend to buy when I put an order in for yarn for a commissioned blanket I have accepted.
Chunky Knit Scarf
I also have some burnt orange, almost copper, aran for the Chunky Knit Scarf, the pattern is free and is worked on straight 4.5mm/5mm needles which I already have.
Traveler Big Knit Infinity Cowl
For the Traveler Big Knit Infinity Cowl I would like to try the grey chunky acrylic yarn I spotted in Poundworld on my last visit, which is £1 for 100g and the pattern calls for five skeins. Again I will need new circulars, 8mm in 24 or 30 inch which I will get with the blanket yarn order.
The order they are listed is likely the order they will be made. BUT, I could start on the Chunky Knit Sweater like, now…
Miners Cowl Vest
The Miners Cowl Vest will be greatly needed and appreciated at work for when I am sat under the freeeeeeezing cold air con, every damn day. And it’s a crochet project, yippee. I also have stash yarn in mind for this project. About four years back I went to the John Lewis sale and got myself some Debbie Bliss Como in Navy, enough to make a really generous scarf. I cast on a simple stocking stitch pattern and had to STOP. The yarn is just too nice. I couldn’t make a simple scarf out of it. So I kept to for best. It is the nicest feeling squishiest, warmest yarn I’ve ever felt let alone had the privilege to own. But now it really is time I just used it already. Any others keep yarn for best!? Again I need a hook and I need the paid for pattern for this one.
6ply Boot Sock Pattern
I have already cast on my first sock using this free pattern using DK Rose Blush from Poundworld on 3mm 60cm circulars. At £2 for 150g of acrylic yarn thats enough for a pair of socks ( I have diddy size 4 feet). Cheap and pretty. Great for practice and the purse.
This is a completely new method of sock construction for me as it is cuff down using the long tail cast on and had me pick up stitches. I have only knit two pairs of two at a time toe up socks before now. It’s been a nice little easy going challenge whilst I fought of tonsillitis and ‘rested’. I am glad I didn’t cast on two socks as picking up the stitches and shaping the gusset twice over at the same time would have spelt game over. But happily I’ve cracked on and I have almost reached the toe in a weekend. Thank you YouTube.
My only gripe over sock knitting is the uneven stitches I seem to make around the start of each round and how slow it goes. Having said that, I am still amazed at how little yarn is used and how stretchy the fabric is. Crochet really is a yarn hungry sport in comparison!
If I see the second sock completed, which I REALLY hope I do (discipline Heather), then I may try cast on a pair next time. I keep eyeing up all my glitter yarns and thinking how nice it would be to have all the glitters in socks. I may cast on a red glitter pair so that I can enter them in the Festive Sock-Along hosted by Amy of Stranded Dyeworks and start my christmas sock collection. I’ve never joined a kal/cal before either. I will keep you posted on that. Is anyone else joining in?
Knitting vs Crochet
There seems to be a lot of knitted items on my list which might prove to be a bad choice as its super slow going for me. But hey, at least I am about to get loads of tension practice so hopefully my next batch of socks will be pretty much perfection. There are, of course, so many more projects I could add in. If and when I complete this little lot I shall set out the next batch. So until then. Let’s get making.
And yes, I am rather late on the Game of Thrones bandwagon. I have just watched episode four of season two. But socks and GOT are my jam right now.
Hey Tribe, Insta followers (my wonderful tribe) will have seen my posts about my latest crochet obsession. Stash busting scrap yarn blankets.
Why stash busting scrap yarn blankets?
Basically because, well – adulting.
I touched upon my new crochet habits in my first blog post HGDesignsCrochet – A Crochet Blog. Since moving into my own little place I haven’t had as much spare dolla to splash on yarn (sigh) and in actually having to pack up my stash I rudely realised how MUCH yarn I own. Like so, so much yarn. More adulting realisations, my place is tiny cute, so storage is sacred. There are not so many hiding places for yarn. I had an entire wall of built in wardrobes at the folks and trust me you could cram that solid!
And, I confess, I want to buy lots of new squishy yarn to start a few (hundred) colour co-ordinating blankets so I need the space for the said new yarn. It would be amazing to purchase said squishy new yarn because its actually needed and would be guilt free because i’ve depleted my stash. Imagine that. Wow. So new adulting miss independently living me became a stash busting scrap yarn boss. Yeah hashtag that.
I admit (begrudgingly) that I have a lot of yarn and I don’t need to buy more to make a million blankets (my project of choice always). How to work in all those scraps? With the #HGDCScrapBallChallenge.
Here is a mini pictutorial on how to make the #ScrapYarnBalls to take part in #HGDCScrapBallChallenge.
I collected together all my leftovers, scrap yarn, rejected abandoned half used balls, test swatches, and yarn barf. Yarn barf is the yarn that tangles in the bottom of your project bags. You all have yarn barf issues.Then I made scrap yarn balls.
Take two ends and knot together
Begin winding on your fingers to start a mini skein
Knot each end, as you reach, it to another scrap
Until you have your very own scrap yarn balls
Make a million of them
Start making your stash busting scrap yarn blankets. Just like mine.
You can follow its growth on insta with hashtag #HGDC_Scraptastic
Ready? Get set, GO!
Ready? Raid those yarn stashes and get making scrap yarn balls. Tag your pretties with #HGDCScrapYarnBallChallenge so I can shower your Insta and Twitter with love and so I can show you off in my #SaturdayShoutOuts. A special thank you to @nai_nai_makes for starting the challenge hashtag. I told you I have a wonderful tribe didn’t I.
Be sure to visit soon. In next weeks post I am showing off my first finished stash busting scrap yarn blanket, Scraptastic. Plus I will be show casing some of the tribes’ #HGDCScrapYarnBallChallenge blankets too.
Hey Tribe, HGDesignsCrochet just levelled up with a blog.
The ‘HG’ comes from my name.
The ‘Crochet’ was a non-brainer.
The ‘Designs’ is a one day hopeful/semi-reality.
I started my Instagram page in June 2016 as a way to share my crochet adventures with fellow yarn lovers. The type who squeal over new yarn, stroke blankets and use all the emojis when you post a progress picture of the next row because its exciting and it makes my soul happy, and obvs the colour change is must see (LOL). I didn’t even dream of how amazing the Instagram #CrochetCommunity would be. Now I have even more to share and a blog is born.
Really this post is an expanded about me and HGDesignsCrochet’s upbringing. So. Hi, I’m Heather, 27, living in Leicestershire, UK with Darcy, my lurcher boy.
By day I am a trainee Legal Executive in Private Client (my views here do not represent my employer). I am gym obsessed (#GirlsWhoLift), avid reader, journal keeper, with an addiction to all things craft but CROCHET will always be my number one love.
Crochet is my happy place. A way to be creative. A way to let my soul be true. A way to keep my mind busy. I crochet when I need to think something through. I crochet to switch off. Creative individuals seem to struggle with more mental nasties then others, something which I have experienced, so through my blog I also want to touch upon that and help anyone I can. Connect. Support. Empower. IG followers know all to well I love a good quote and some inspirational affirmations.
How it all began
My grandmother taught me how to crochet after I fractured my wrist as ‘physio’. My wrist set wonky but my crochet skills are unprecedented. That was about six years ago. My first ever project was some naff looking granny squares in an awful colour scheme that are hidden a box never to be seen again. Then the crochet bug hit hard. I had to have all the yarn, try all the patterns, all the stitches and have every magazine to start every single project in the world now, now, now.
I have pretty much only ever made crochet blankets. They are my thing. Making something pretty but functional appeals to me. Making something pretty and warm is the one. I love, love, love when the blanket hits that stage where it is big enough to snuggle under whilst you work on it. This is also the stage where I tend to get that itch to start yet another new blanket, which I justify as needing a travel size project. Out of the six or seven crochet blankets I still own, maybe two are finished. They all get used though! Totally negates the unfinished state…
Here is a gallery of sorts of all the blankets I still have the pleasure of owning.
Now I tend to use solely DK and I am showing almost championship self discipline skills by using up my stash and scrap yarn. Best believe it. I decided it was time to use up the ridiculously sized stash that was stuffed in every bag, gap, hole, crevice, in my house to eventually make way for new yarn because I want to be able to buy more yarn guilt free and actually make a pre-planned colour co-ordinating blanket. Imagine that. So stash busting has commenced so far in these two blankets;
My next post will be dedicated to my stash busting scrap yarn blankets.