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Bags for Life

By Amy Sosbe Today

There's no excuse for single use shopping bags. With our own pledge to reduce plastic waste by using only eco-friendly, plastic-free and recyclable packaging, we've gathered together some of our favourite re-usable bag patterns to try at home.

Not only do these bags for life make a nice little project, but they are pretty, practical and good for our beautiful planet. What's not to like?!

Who doesn’t love a granny square! They are super easy to crochet, but look so colourful and in this case, can be joined together to make an attractive and handy bag.

Another quick and easy crochet project is this beach bag. Crocheted in Super Chunky yarn, it can be made in a range of colour combinations.

A traditional style crochet bag, this market bag can be handily folded up and kept in your handbag ready at a moments notice.

We love this simple and stylish beach bag by Rico Design. Knitted in a cotton DK it is super durable and practical.

This bright and colourful striped shopper is so pretty! It’s also a great size for a trip into town.

A floral take on the classic string shopping bag, this crocheted style in Stylecraft Batik DK can be worked up in a beautiful selection of subtle shades.

With it’s wide strap and button fastening, this bag is lovely and comfortable for those long shopping days and is easily opened and closed.

For casual on-the-go style, this bag fits the bill! Crocheted in Rico Creative Cotton Aran, there’s a great range of shades to choose from.

For more inspiration that celebrates our lovely planet, have a read of our Chelsea Flower show blog post.

Chelsea Flower Show Inspired Patterns

By Amy Sosbe 5 days ago

The world-renowned Chelsea Flower Show begins on Tuesday 21st May for 5 wonderful days! In celebration of this quintessentially British event, we’ve found some of our loveliest patterns inspired by nature and all things floral.

The Royal Horticultural Society was founded in 1808 and the very first Chelsea Flower Show held at the Royal Hospital Chelsea, London was in 1913, an amazing 106 years ago!

Did you know that the Great Pavilion at RHS Chelsea is roughly 11,775 square metres, enough room to park 500 London buses?! The show is also attended by 157,000 visitors each year!

Of these visitors, includes members of the British Royal Family and this year, HRH The Duchess of Cambridge, has co-designed The RHS Back to Nature Garden, along with the award-winning landscape architects Andree Davies and Adam White. The garden is based in a woodland setting as a space for families and communities to come together and connect with nature.

The patterns we’ve found encapsulate our beautiful natural world, from floral cushions to knitted vegetables!

This super fun children’s jumper is as fun to knit as it is to wear! Knitted in the lovely King Cole Cottonsoft DK yarn.

Hours of fun can be had with these crocheted garden vegetables.

This sweet little ladybird pattern uses Stylecraft Special DK yarn and would make a lovely gift for any nature-loving child.

These knitted baby birds would make a lovely seasonal decoration, with a length of yarn attached to them in a loop, they can be hung up to add a touch of nature to your home.

Dress your garden up with this pretty summery polka dot and striped knitted bunting.

For a crochet version, this flowery bunting would look beautiful indoors or out.

This beautiful floral cushion is made by attaching the delicate crochet flowers to a plain cushion cover. Try different colour combinations with the Stylecraft Classique Cotton 4 Ply yarn, to suite your style

Add a splash of colour and sunshine to your home with this brilliant crochet sunflower cushion pad. Knitted in cotton DK yarn it’s soft, but durable.

Bring the outdoors in and display your blooms in these pretty crochet vases.

For ever-lasting blooms, why not make these sweet crochet daffodils and daisies. Create your own flowers by experimenting with different shades.

This flower brooch will bring a touch of nature to any outfit. They are also super easy and quick to knit!

We love this pretty floral top. Knitted in cooling cotton yarn and in a lovely shade of pastel yellow, with flower detail, it is the perfect top for those warm summer days.

If we’ve inspired you to get knitting, have a look at our ‘Make Your Own Mother’s Day Flowers’ blog post for more floral inspiration.

What's On Heather's Hook - Mandalas

By Amy Sosbe 8 days ago

The wonderful Heather from The Patchwork Heart, has been busy crocheting beautiful mandalas. She has used our Mandala Cushion Crochet Pattern; giving it a new twist with bright colours and different uses in the home. We love it!

In common use, 'mandala' is the term used for a chart, diagram or geometric pattern that represents the cosmos metaphysically. But mandalas can be found in Buddhist art from as early as the 14th and 15th centuries. A circular figure representing the universe, they are spiritual and ritual symbols in the Indian religions of Hinduism and Buddhism.

We think that crochet mandalas are also spiritual and good for the soul. With the joy that the different colours bring and the mix of crochet techniques to keep your mind focused, they are a great way of helping you relax and unwind.

Using a delicious mix of shades from the Stylecraft Classique Cotton DK range, including some of the new shades recently added, Heather has created a gorgeous palette.

The shades Heather has used work really well together, but mandalas are a great way of experimenting with colour. Try your own combinations and let your creative juices flow.

This is the first side of the cushion cover. Heather used different yarn to the pattern, but the size came out perfectly to fit an 18 inch cushion pad.

The finished cushion is beautiful! Heather used the same shades for both sides of the cushion, but in different colour orders to give this lovely and effective ‘mis-match’ look.

Heather has also been busy making a large mandala table centerpiece using the same pattern. So the mandala lays flat, she used some blocking magic. Pinning it out and then spraying with cold water, it was then left to dry for 24 hours. Children's foam play mats make great blocking boards. They interlock and can be stacked when out of use for easy storage.

The finished mandala is so pretty! It will look prefect on a summery dining table and will equally brighten up the dullest of days. As the table centerpiece and cushion cover are crocheted in cotton, they are super practical and durable. We love them!

For more inspiring ideas for the home, take a look at our Nautical Style to Knit & Crochet blog post, or check out Heather's Rose Bouquets. Happy hooking!

Nautical Style to Knit & Crochet

By Amy Sosbe 14 days ago

We love the seaside and all things nautical! There’s something about being by the sea that blows away the cobwebs and worries and makes life seem simpler. It’s also a great playground for the little ones to burn off their never-ending energy, giving you time to sit back and relax and enjoy the sounds of the sea.

We’ve found some of our favourite nautical patterns, some practical makes for a day out and some to bring the wonderful seaside to your home! From beach hut tea-cosies to stripy jumpers.

We hope that you enjoy our selection!

Who doesn’t love bunting?! This nautical themed bunting will certainly add some fresh beach style to any space.

This sweet knitted beach hut has the added benefit of keeping your very important pot of tea just at the right temperature!

A sign everyone needs to have! Especially as the evenings get longer. Knitted here in Stylecraft Classique Cotton 4 Ply.

Beautifully simple, this anchor cushion cover pattern is knitted in Rowan Handknit Cotton so is extra durable. It’s perfect for bringing some home comforts to those long days at the beach, or to bring a bit of the beach to your home!

These brilliant knitted fish and shells would look great in a bathroom. We love the beaded details and the textures the different stitches add.

This pattern includes a cosy hat and 2 lovely jumper designs, one with a simple striped design and the other with rows of cable. Great for keeping warm when the weather isn’t at it’s best, but the beach still calls!

Another classic stripy knit, we love the hint of colour added by the stripes of red. Knitted in Wendy Guernsey 5 ply yarn, this is a classic yarn for making jumpers that will last for years to come.

This textured jumper pattern is knitted in Rico Creative Cotton Aran. An easy care yarn, it's fully machine washable, which is ideal for busy little explorers on beach adventures!

This gorgeous nautical inspired dress is knitted in stocking stitch, so is really simple. With its bow detail and matching bag, it makes a perfect outfit and can be knitted from age 3 up to age 7.

We can’t leave out the little ones! This pattern comes compete with striped jumper, hat, shoes and a blanket! Everything you need to get them ready for a day at the seaside!

For more hand-made inspiration, have a look at the wonderful Rainbow Blanket Tutorial by Heather Leal. It’s beautiful, bight and summery and can be cuddled up in to keep you warm or equally would make the perfect picnic blanket for a delicious seaside spread!