Lilly Pond CAL – Clue 2

Cal clue 2This morning saw the release of the second clue for Stylecraft Yarns Lilly Pond Blanket Crochet Along.  I’m not sure how those of you taking part are fairing?  My tension as I’ve mentioned previously is off and by quite a bit 😳

tiny lillyThe block this time is called Tiny Lilly and doesn’t look too difficult (phew).  Having glanced over the pattern quickly though, I have spotted the words sew/sewn  😒 Since when did I sign up for a sew along?

I jest 😉 😉 😉

Having said that this is serious business apparently, if you’ve joined the Lilly Pond Facebook Page you’ll have no doubt seen just how ‘seriously’ some people are taking it 😱 It’s not a race to see who can complete the blocks first and it most certainly shouldn’t be a competition about whose block is better (only my opinion).  Sadly, I’ve noticed several posts from members saying the forum just wasn’t for them and they’ve left because of it.  I’d like to think this will make people think twice before posting anything unbecoming, but I doubt it.  What I do think they should note is that other companies and individuals could be put off of hosting their own CAL/KAL because of it.

Enough chatter, back to the CAL

table 2For the Tiny Lilly blocks you’ll need the shades in the chart above.  Stylecraft Life DK on the left and Stylecraft Special DK substitutions on the right.  Note the Plum and the Fondant shades are only used for the sewing this time.

The next block Lilly Bud will be released on May 5th.

Happy crochet!

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Merry Go Round

merry go

You might recall I’d bought a couple of shades of Merry Go Round Double Knit from Stylecraft Yarns, in order to see what it was like and gauge customer interest.  The one on the left is appropriately named Rainbow and the one on the left is called Peacock.

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The reaction has been great, with the inital stock selling out in the Rainbow almost immediately.  I myself, think it’s rather lovely for baby and children knits and the 100g ball seems to be never ending with a whopping 321yds/294m.  So I’ve decided to add a few more shades to the range, top left it’s Starburst, top right is Candy Crush, bottom left is Blue Denim and lastly on the bottom right it’s Strawberry.

merry go 2

There are some lovely little patterns for the Merry Go Round yarn, but as it’s a standard double knit weight it will work as a great substitute with most dk patterns.  I’m rather smitten with these crochet soft toys from pattern 9161, but I’m not convince my crochet skills are sufficient.

Talking of crochet….

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I finally managed to get one of the blocks made for the Stylecraft Lilly Pond CAL, but I still have to sew in the ends (so many ends) and make a further three of these too.  The next clue, for the second block is due to be released on Tuesday 21st April, so I’ll be way behind, but it’s meant to be fun isn’t it?

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The eagle eyed amongst you will have spotted that my piece measures approximately 53cm, a whole 8.5cm’s longer than the recommended length of 44.5cm

It’s also a centimetre taller, but after talking to friends that are taking part and reading through the posts on the Facebook Group Page, it seems like most people are coming in around this size too.  So I’m keeping my fingers crossed and hoping everything comes together without too much extra work 🙂

Happy Crochet!

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It’s Here!

Stripes

Today is the 7th of April, which is the birthday of Billie Holiday and Russell Crowe, it’s also the day that Liam Gallagher and Patsy Kensit got married on too.  April 7th (1985) is when Wham became the first western act to play China and strangely enough, it’s also the day that George Michael was arrested in a public restroom in Beverly Hills for lewd conduct (1998) 😳

More importantly though, April 7th, sees the release of the first clue for Stylecraft Yarns and Jane Crowfoot’s Lilly Pond Blanket Crochet Along, you can find it on the Stylecraft website to download here

Stripes2

The first block is called Stripes and Waves which, as the title suggests, represents the ripples of water in the lily pond and you’ll need to make 4 of these in total.  This will be my first time attempting something like this in crochet and I don’t mind admitting that I’m a little worried my crochet skills will fall short.  However, having had a quick look over the first clue, I’m happy to report that there are lots of photographs, to help 🙂

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Life Dk on the left, Special Dk on the right

If you’re using the Special Dk rather than the Life DK you’ll have to substitute the colours in the column on the right hand side for the ones they refer to in the clue.

The next clue will be released in a fortnight on April 21st, remember though, there’s no pressure to have your 4 blocks completed by then.  The CAL is meant to be an enjoyable experience, so be sure to take your time, I know I will 😉

Remember to pop up photos of how you’re getting on on the Facebook Page if you get a chance.

Happy Crochet!

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The Lilly Pond Blanket CAL – Are You Ready?

Cal start1

It’s officially April now and hopefully, all the fun and games of April’s Fool should be well and truly over by now.  As it was the 1st yesterday, the countdown can officially begin for the launch of Stylecraft and Jane Crowfoot’s’ Lilly Pond Blanket CAL, which begins with the launch of the first pattern on the Tuesday 7th.

The Special DK delivery of CAL colours has arrived, but despite all of the assurances there were still 3 shades necessary to complete the blanket missing 😩 Happily, I had 2 of these shades in stock however my supply of the shade Petrol was minimal – 3 balls to be exact.

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Teal on the left and Petrol on the right

Drama and more drama.  After I’d finished banging my head against the wall of the stock cupboard, I realised I had 2 packs of a very similar colour sitting on the shelves. I think the Teal makes a pretty good alternative?  In real life it’s slightly greener than the Petrol, but the difference is minimal.

cal start

Due to the ongoing issues surrounding stock of the suggested colours that I mentioned in my previous post here Stylecraft have released a list of necessary shades to complete the first clue, to try and help everyone participating.  You can see from the chart above that Petrol is amongst the first 6 shades so there’s no avoiding it 🙈

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Now lets talk tension and I’m not referring to the type caused by → missing colours ←.  If you’ve downloaded the original leaflet from the Stylecraft website you’ll know that you’ll be using 3 different sized hooks to complete the blanket, 3.5mm, 4mm and 4.5mm.

As you can see the required tension for your double crochet is 4 stitches x 5.5 rows on a 4mm hook and for the trebles it should be 5 stitches x 2.5 rows with a 3.5mm hook.

Cut to my swatches now 🎬

2015-04-01 13.42.29

Oops, they’re the wrong way round, sorry 😳 Even more embarrassing are the rather wonky edges.  I did promise to post up my attempts, warts and all and my crochet is not the greatest.  It got better as it went on though 🙂

My tension though, is pretty much bang on 🎯

It would be great to hear how you’re getting on with your tension test squares too.

Happy Crochet!

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The Lilly Pond Blanket CAL

CAL 2

By now I’m assuming a good few of you will have seen something about the crochet along that Jane Crowfoot has designed in association with Stylecraft Yarns?  If you’re not sure what I’m referring too, pop along to either Jane’s blog here, Facebook Page here or the Stylecraft Facebook Page here.

Life dk

If you have spotted it, chances are you might have also noticed all the chatter about the yarn for it being difficult to get?  The blanket has been designed using Stylecraft’s Life DK range which is a blend of 25% wool/75% acrylic and has a beautiful handle to it.

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The interest in the CAL has been tremendous, much more than Stylecraft had anticipated and as a result a couple of shades needed for the CAL have sold out completely in the Life DK.  Unfortunately, to make matters worse, the missing shades are unlikely to be back until mid to late May and the CAL is due to begin on April 7th.

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Undeterred, Stylecraft and Jane have put together a replacement palette using the Special DK range instead and despite having already sold out of some of these colours too, the team at Stylecraft have worked round the clock with their manufacturers to secure stock in all shades for this week.

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To Crochet the Lily Pond Blanket in Special DK you will need: 1 x 1061 Plum, 1023 Raspberry, 1241 Fondant, 1080 Pale Rose, 1005 Cream, 1081 Saffron, 1034 Sherbet, 1068 Turquoise balls and 2 x 1065 Meadow, 1708 Petrol and 1027 Khaki balls.  I have pre-booked the 11 shades required to complete the blanket and am expecting delivery by the end of this week.

CAL5

Stylecraft have released an introduction to the CAL here which contains lots of helpful information including a valuable section on tension to ensure your blanket is a success.

The patterns will be published fortnightly and there’s a total of 8, which will be free to download on the Stylecraft web site from the 7th of April. The stitches used to complete the blanket are chain, slip stitch, double crochet, half treble crochet, treble crochet, and double treble crochet.

If you’re wondering about the level of crochet ability the CAL is aimed at?  In her blog Jane says “I have tried to design the pieces so that they get progressively harder and hopefully this means that crocheters can use the CAL as a learning tool. The patterns will focus on one motif or block every fortnight and you will need to complete an average of 4 motifs/blocks per set. Most of the blocks are 15cm square, although others are slightly bigger”

CAL1

There is an official Facebook CAL Group here where you’ll be able to keep in touch with other taking part and watch everyone’s progress.  I’m hoping to have a go myself, although my crochet skills don’t really stretch past my granny shawls 😁 I’ll be sure to document my attempts (and I do mean attempts) here for all to see.  I’m guessing I’ll be utilising the Facebook Group lots and I’m even more pleased to know that the patterns will include step-by-step images to help guide us (I mean me), through the making process ✌️

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Anyone interested in joining in too?

As soon as the delivery arrives I’ll be sorting the yarn out into CAL packs ready to go out straight away, so you can be ready for the 7th.  The 14 ball pack will set you back €40 and I’d recommend reserving one if you’re going to give it a go as it’s likely stocks will run short again.

Happy Knitting!

That should probably be crochet I guess?

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