Monday, 29 August 2016

A new Pokemon phenomenon - #CrochetGo

For the past couple of weeks I've been busy crocheting something different - pocket monsters, better known as Pokemon!  I was a huge fan when Pokemon came out, I watched the adventures of Ash and Pikachu on the TV show and I even bought a Pikachu backpack.

Now I'm a mum and my kids have seriously become addicted to Pokemon Go, spending every waking minute searching the streets for new Pokemon to catch, looking for Pokestops and battling in gyms around town.

I came across some crochet patterns for Pokemon on Ravelry and learned that a lady called Nichole from Texas, USA, had started something called #CrochetGo.  She was posting free crochet patterns for Pokemon and encouraging people to make them and leave them at Pokestops in their home towns for Pokemon Go players to find.

Each Pokemon had a tag asking the finder to post a photograph on social media with the hashtag #CrochetGo so the maker could keep track of which Pokemon had been found.  I thought it was an excellent idea so I dived into my stash and started crocheting!



I left my Pokemon at Pokestops and game shops in Worksop, Nottinghamshire, UK and I've had some wonderful messages on Twitter from people who have found my gifts.   It's such a rewarding thing to do, especially when you see happy faces of the children who found a real life Pokemon.



 If you want to take part in #Crochet Go check out the following Facebook groups:


Gotta catch 'em all!

Friday, 12 August 2016

Meet Roberta, my spinning saviour!

A few years ago a good friend of mine, Babylonglegs, got me into spinning.  I tried out her Louet S10 and loved it so I bought my own Louet S15.  It was so therapeutic turning the fluffy clouds of wool fibre into squishy multicoloured yarns but one thing was holding me back - pain.  I didn't know it at the time but I had Ehlers Danlos Syndrome, a connective tissue disorder which causes hypermobile joints and pain (along with lots of other unpleasant symptoms).

I found it difficult treadling with my right knee and the pain almost made me quit spinning but I don't give up that easily.  I traded my S15 in for a very pretty Louet S51 DT, hoping that using both legs on the double treadle would ease my pain.  Sadly for me it didn't and my lovely spinning wheel and my stash of fluffy fibre have sat unloved for the past few years.

I really missed spinning and I was determined to find a way to continue my hobby.  I researched electric spinning wheels (no treadling required!) but they were all very expensive, ranging from £430 for an Ashford E Spinner to over £1000 for a Hansen Mini Spinner.  They were all out of my price range so I scoured buy and sell groups and checked eBay every day for months until this one electronic wheel appeared.  An Ertoel Roberta.

The seller didn't seem to know much about spinning, the wheel looked in really bad shape but from the photographs it looked like all the important bits were there.  The starting bid was £20, which is incredibly low considering they sell new in America for $1,095.  I watched the auction until the very last few minutes and I put in my bid.  I didn't think I was going to win, I was convinced someone was going to outbid me and I prepared myself for disappointment but when the countdown ended I was the highest bidder at £129.77!

I did my happy dance and then patiently waited for my parcel to arrive.  And this is what I got.

After doing some research I discovered she's about 30 years old and made in Australia.  Cosmetically she needs a little TLC.  The lacquer is peeling off the woodwork and the orifice hook holder is broken but there is nothing that can't be fixed.

The flyer is a little rusty and slightly bent so that will need replacing with a modern jumbo flyer, one of the bobbins rattles a little and the leather bearings have seen better days but everything else is in good working order.

I'm back spinning and I couldn't be happier :)

Sunday, 1 May 2016

Mrs Flowerpot's new shop!

Hi!

I'd like to invite you over to my new shop, Mrs Flowerpot's.  I've set up on Etsy selling my crochet shawls and other trinkets and accessories.


Mrs Flowerpot's


As some of you may know I started Flowerpot Tots 12 years ago selling wool longies and cloth nappies. My children are growing up fast and my nappy days are long behind me so I thought I'd put my talents to good use making something a little more grown up.

I have always loved to crochet, I caught the bug when I was 15 and I've never stopped.  I've made everything from granny square blankets to intricate doilies using crochet hooks so small you can barely see them.

Recently I've been making a lot of shawls in sock and lace weight yarns.  I've posted pictures on social media and people started asking if I was selling them, so I thought it would be a good idea to set up shop.

At the moment I only have shawls in stock but I hope to be adding some Japanese knot bag very soon. They make excellent project bags for your knitting of crochet.

So please pop by the shop and if you like what you see add me to your favourites so you won't miss out on the latest updates.

See you soon!



Monday, 20 April 2015

Magenta Tartan Granny Square Blanket

I love making granny square blankets but sometimes they look a bit old fashioned.  I'd seen other people do tartan and plaid style blankets so I thought I'd give it a go myself.

To make it look like tartan the trick is to use two main colours that produce another shade where the lines meet.  For my blanket I chose magenta and teal with purple cross over squares on a neutral grey background.

Materials:

Stylecraft Special DK 100g

4 x silver
2 x magenta
2 x petrol
1 x emperor

4mm crochet hook.

Finished blanket was 14 x 14 squares and measured approximately 110cm (43") square.  It's easy to make a larger blanket by repeating the pattern.

I made basic crochet granny squares, working three rounds before fastning off.  I followed the pattern below and joined the squares together as I went along but if you're joining them later you need to make the following number of squares in each colour:

100 x silver
40 x magenta
40 x petrol
16 x emperor

My granny square pattern (UK crochet terms)

Make 5 chains and join in a circle with a slip stitch.

Round 1: Make 3ch to count as first treble, into the circle work 2tr, 2ch.  (3tr, 2ch) three times.  Join with a slip stitch to the top of the first 3ch.

Rounds 2: Slip stitch into the next 2tr and 2ch loop.  Make 3ch, 2tr, 2ch 3tr into the 2ch loop, 1ch.  *3tr, 2 ch, 3tr into the next 2ch loop, 1ch.  Repeat from * two more times.  Join with a slip stitch to the top of the first 3ch.

Round 3: Slip stitch into the next 2tr and 2ch loop.  Make 3ch, 2tr, 2ch, 3tr into the 2ch loop, 1ch.  *3tr in the next 1ch space, 1ch.  (3tr, 2 ch, 3tr) into the next 2ch loop, 1ch.  Repeat from * twice more.  3tr in the next 1ch space, 1ch.  Join with a slip stitch to the top of the first 3ch and fasten off.

Join the squares in the following pattern.





S - silver (grey)
M - magenta (pink)
P - petrol (blue)
E - emperor (purple)

I finished the blanket off with three rounds of double chains (US single chains) in emperor to give it a neat edge.  I worked 3dc into each corner, one dc into the top of each tr, 1dc into each 1ch space and 2dc together where the squares join (1dc into each corner 2ch space, worked together).

The pattern is adaptable to any number of colour combinations but I think it looks best if you stick to colours that blend to form another colour, for example yellow and red crossing over to make orange, or blue and yellow crossing over to make green.

You can make the blanket any size you like by simply working as many pattern repeats as required. Each square measures approximately 7cm (3")

Happy crocheting!

Friday, 17 October 2014

The Big Knit - Mrs Flowerpot's Crochet Hat Pattern

For the past few years I've donated cute little hats for Innocent Smoothies The Big Knit  For each little hat sold they make a donation to Age UK to help

I enjoy knitting but my first love is crochet so I made up my own crochet pattern for hats and I thought I'd share it with you.




The Big Knit - Crochet Hat Pattern

(UK crochet terms)

You will need:
Double knit yarn              
4mm crochet hook
Scissors
Darning needle

Round 1:  Start with a magic loop, make 6dc into the loop.  Pull it closed and join with a slip stitch into the first dc. 

Round 2:  1ch.  Work 2dc into each dc (starting in the same dc as the slip stitch).  Join to first dc with a slip stitch.  12dc.

Round 3:  1ch.  Work 1dc into same dc as slip stitch, 2dc into next stitch,  *1dc, 2dc into next stitch.  Repeat from * to end.  Join with a slip stitch.  18dc.

Rounds 4-10:  1ch.  Work 1dc into each dc.  Join with a slip stitch.  18dc.

Fasten off.  Weave in ends.  Make a bobble to go on the top, if you like.

Variations

Stripes:
Work 4 rounds colour A.
Work 2 rounds colour B.
Work 2 rounds colour A.
Work 2 rounds colour B.

Fez:
Using red yarn work as for main pattern for first three rounds.  Round four, work 1dc into the back loop only of each dc.  Follow rest of main pattern.  This will give the hat a flat top.  Decorate top of fez with a black tassle.



That's the basics.  Use your imagination and get crocheting!










Friday, 28 September 2012

Another Perfect Angel - Out Now!


Hi!

It's been a lot of hard work, there have been tears, laughter (mostly at my stupid typos) but finally it's finished!

I'm pleased to announce that Another Perfect Another is now available to purchase from Amazon and Smashwords.  It's the sequel to my debut novel, Heaven Knows This Time, and it continues the story of Angel and Miles as they embark on their relationship together.

Nothing ever seems to go to plan in Angel's life.  She discovers that Miles has been hiding a secret from his past and she struggles with the physical and emotional challenges when she discovers she is unexpectedly pregnant with his child.

It's another emotional roller coaster of a book, with an ex trying to stir things up for them and a stranger who is trying to steal Angel's inheritance.  Is their love strong enough to carry them through?

I hope you enjoy the book and I'd really love to know what you think.  Post a message here or better still write a review.  Your comments are very much appreciated.

Cheers!

Clair

Sunday, 6 May 2012

Now Available to Purchase from Amazon!


I'm very pleased to announce that Heaven Knows This Time has now been published and is available to buy from Amazon's Kindle store:


Heaven Knows This Time by Clair Louise Coult


When the shy and quiet, 15 year old Angela Blackman is sent to the head teacher's office she doesn't expect to find live in the form of the 17 year old eccentric millionaire, Simon Wetherall.  Upon discovering a shared love for the post punk band Joy Division, Simon sweeps Angela off her feet and they embark on a rather unusual affair, but the course of true love runs anything but smoothly.  Angela discovers a whole new circle of friends within the alternative music scene but she finds herself having to grow up fast to deal with the trials and tragedies that fate brings her.


Contains adult themes, strong language and scenes of a sexual nature.

It's been an exciting and nerve wracking journey to get this far and I'm very grateful for the help and support of my friends and family for encouraging me to persue my dream of publishing my own book. Special thanks to my husband Trevor for taking the time to proof read the book for me.  So if you find any typos it's his fault :P


I hope you enjoy the story.  I'd love to hear your feedback, please feel free to leave your comments or email me at clair@clairlouisecoult.com

Clair