happy creative new year

dear diary,

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Out with the old and in with the new…a new year heralds a new beginning, and I am looking forward to lots more creatively colourful adventures in 2014. I hope you will join me!

Having been away over Christmas, there was a lot of catching up to do when I got home. You know…the boring stuff like washing and housework etc. On top of that my back has been playing up a little and this hampered the sprint to the finishing line for my ‘homely blanket’. I have not been able to crochet it all together, and the great ‘ta-dah’ moment will have to wait a little while longer…keep watching this space.

I managed to lay it all out roughly the way I think it will look when finished…

31 Dec 2013

 

…as you can see I will have to crochet some ‘fillers’ to make it even all around and I have still not decided on the border. I am however really happy with the way it is looking so far and in no particular rush to get it finished as ‘my girl’ is not leaving home for a while yet 🙂

So, that’s the old…how about the new!!!

Sometime in December one of my friends on Instagram had a great idea for a new crochet along. As my diary is already full with commissions, translations, workshop preparation, travel to venues, pattern creation and much more, I thought it would be lovely to join someone else’s idea for a change. The crochet along can be found on IG by #crochetmoodblanket2014, and so far there are some 470 people from about 25 plus countries taking part, there is even a FB page dedicated to it.

As I kept looking at everyone’s colour vis. mood selection photo’s popping up, I thought I’d better get myself organised. I made rough notes on colours and the moods they meant to me and here is the result…

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Image from Google Images

I want my blanket to be 120cm x 200cm when finished, so I have decided to make 20cm x 20cm squares = 60 squares in total, roughly one square a week and some extra during the holidays. The centre of each square is one of the designs from my ‘homely blanket’ which I extend with extra rounds. My aim is to crochet together as I go, but I haven’t yet decided which colour I will use for this. My new year’s resolution is not to buy any yarn, unless it is for workshops or specific designs. This means I am using a mixture of yarns for this blanket, but mostly it will be Stylecraft Dk, as my stash of this is pretty large.

Today I made my first square…

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…grey/aqua/jade – calm and serene!

Why not join in with this crochet along…such fun and not too ambitious even for the most novice of crocheter’s 🙂

Wishing you all a healthy and happy 2014, full of inspiration and colour! x

a christmas wish

A big thank you to all of you who have supported me this year, have left lovely comments (I love reading them), purchased my patterns (watch out for many more), joined me in my ‘homely blanket quest’ (I hope you have loved it as much as I have) and generally made my inspirational journey more fun.

Baubles

Sing hey! Sing hey!
For Christmas Day;
Twine mistletoe and holly,
For friendship glows
In winter snows,
And so let’s all be jolly.

–Traditional

Christmas Wish

I hope you visit and share more inspirational colour, knitting and crochet with me in 2014!

x

festive inspiration

dear diary,

Sometimes we can all get stuck for some great colour combination inspiration, and sometimes we just don’t feel brave enough to explore and step out of our comfort zone. There are times when we simply need a little help, and here is where I go to get fresh colour ideas…

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www.design-seeds.com

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Created in 2009 by Jessica Colaluca, the concept of Design Seeds is a unique approach to design blogging through her passion for colour.

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Jessica began creating colour palettes at art school, collecting her ideas in journals, and Design Seeds are an interpretation of her original colour journals.

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I subscribe to Jessica’s daily inspirational design seeds mail, consisting of two ideas. The ones that particularly catch my eye and imagination I pin to my Colour Board on Pinterest, so that I can refer back to them at any time.

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To find out more and subscribe, visit design-seeds and never suffer from colour block again. x

christmas preparations

dear diary,

Dried Oranges

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas…

The festive preparations are well under way around here at Made with Loops, and I am loving every minute of it. To me there is nothing more exciting than Christmas time…getting all the decorations down from the loft…

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…and lovingly waking them from their long sleep. Finding them perfect places around the house, so that they can shine and sparkle in all their finery, whilst all the while Michael Buble is singing in the background. What could possibly be better?!?

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I have almost finished all my handmade gifts, that’s a first for sure, just a few ends to sew in on this Nordic Shawl…

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…a gift for a vsp (very special person). After that I am done and can start thinking of ‘me’ knitting or crochet…Yay!!!

We won’t have a tree this year as we are not going to be here. I am so excited, as in…

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…days we are going to Germany to spend Christmas with my family. So so soooo looking forward to staying with my ‘little’ sister, chatting, knitting, drinking tea, crocheting and more chatting…what could possibly be better. The whole family will be together on Christmas eve to celebrate the traditional German festivities and to me there is nothing better than that.

I can almost smell and taste all the delicious festive treats already…

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Are you enjoying your festive season as much as I am mine?, I hope you are x

nordic shawl – a journey

dear diary,

Today is one of those special Ta-Dahhhh moments… you know the ones I mean!!! The ones that make a lot of hours spent working on a project worthwhile.

As you know, I almost never use a pattern for my work unless I see something that jumps right at me and looks extra special. The Nordic Shawl is one of those extra special designs, and today I want to share it with you.

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Earlier this summer I discovered the wonderful world of Annette’s blog called my rosevalley, and was immediately hooked. A native Swedish girl, married to an American and living in Switzerland, Annette’s blog is vivaciously full of life and beautiful photography. She shares her passions for crochet, sewing and general crafting by inviting us to join her in her colourful journey. As well as making some beautiful patterns available, she sells the most delicious of yarns. Tilda Yarn from Sweden is wonderful to work with and has a huge colour range, I strongly suggest you give it a try.

So there I was, totally hooked and looking at photograph’s of Annette wearing a beautiful crochet shawl for which she promised to write up the pattern, and what an extra special pattern it is. I could not resist and started work on my version of the Nordic Shawl almost immediately, as I had the perfect yarn in my stash.

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For the main colour I used Dibadu’s Funnies, a 100% Merino yarn in a colour called Teerose, for the contrast colours left-over yarn from some of my own shawl designs was used.

I worked mostly following Annette’s pattern, apart from making some increases to create a wavy edge for a slightly softer drape. I couldn’t work my shawl quite as large as the pattern, as I ran out of the main colour yarn, but I am totally chuffed with the result 🙂

What do you think?

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If you want to see more versions of the Nordic Shawl go and look on Instagram #nordicshawl, I have a feeling there will be quite a few beautiful examples on show before too long, and why not visit myrosevalley today and download the pattern to make your very own colourfully cosy version of this beautiful shawl.

Thank you Annette for sharing your Nordic Shawl with us. x

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