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Just when you thought the Last Dance on the Beach Crochet-along was completely finished, there is one more surprise for you! Scheepjes asked Jellina from Jellina Creations (designer of the Week 8 Waffle Stitch motif) to come up with a little pattern that would use up any leftovers from the different yarn packs and she designed something cute and squishy and, well, just perfect... 


As you can see, it uses the button which was included in the CAL packs (and which may have seemed a bit random for a blanket!) The front and back are made separately using double crochet stitches and then joined to a central section constructed from the camel stitch I used for my own (Week 10) motif - I know some of you will love that. For everyone else, maybe it's another opportunity for you to come to love it too. Jellina used this stitch as it was one of Wink's favourites. 


I had the pleasure of squishing the samples on my last visit to Scheepjes HQ and they are absolutely gorgeous. If you'd like to make your own you can download the free PDF pattern from the official CAL Facebook group hereEDIT: If you haven't joined the group already, you can find it here. Happy hooking!

LDOTB: Bonus (free) Crochet Cushion Pattern

Just when you thought the Last Dance on the Beach Crochet-along was completely finished, there is one more surprise for you! Scheepjes asked Jellina from Jellina Creations (designer of the Week 8 Waffle Stitch motif) to come up with a little pattern that would use up any leftovers from the different yarn packs and she designed something cute and squishy and, well, just perfect... 


As you can see, it uses the button which was included in the CAL packs (and which may have seemed a bit random for a blanket!) The front and back are made separately using double crochet stitches and then joined to a central section constructed from the camel stitch I used for my own (Week 10) motif - I know some of you will love that. For everyone else, maybe it's another opportunity for you to come to love it too. Jellina used this stitch as it was one of Wink's favourites. 


I had the pleasure of squishing the samples on my last visit to Scheepjes HQ and they are absolutely gorgeous. If you'd like to make your own you can download the free PDF pattern from the official CAL Facebook group hereEDIT: If you haven't joined the group already, you can find it here. Happy hooking!
This morning I waved the kids off for the final day of term with mixed emotions. In September, My Boy, who excitedly celebrated his "double-digit birthday" just a few days ago, will be going back into Year 6 - his final year at Primary School, and for Little Miss - my baby - this is the last day of Key Stage 1 (the 'Infants'). I'm not sure how that all happened. When they get home, it will be the start of six weeks holiday. Six long weeks of their cheeky faces, incessant chatter and enthusiasm (for causing chaos). Of meeting up with friends, little outings and a family break. But also six weeks of working out what to feed them (three times a day, plus snacks), refereeing their squabbles, and attempting to strike a balance between boredom (which is good for them) and keeping them entertained. It's a real juggling act, and I don't always feel I'm a 'natural' at this aspect of the job. 

For this reason, I already have a few things tucked up my sleeve. In fact, throughout the rest of July and August, I'll be posting a series of Summer Activities - things that we will be doing, and which might help if you're running out of ideas yourself. The first (in fact, it's my already-always-fallback for wet weekends and "I'm boooooooored" moments) is Creativebug*. 


There are a huge number of different projects which your children can do with your supervision, or on their own (depending on their individual age/ability, of course) ranging from building a no-sew TeePee to dying with Kool-Aid, making collages and wall art, watercolour painting, creative doodling, making puppet theatres and costumes. There are also some lovely origami and colouring classes which my children enjoyed. 

Like me, Little Miss is a Lisa Congdon fan! 
If you're a subscriber, login to your account, and you'll see that the kid-friendly activities are already grouped into an easy-to-find collection and new classes have been added. If you don't subscribe, you can get a free one month trial (that's most of the holidays, folks!) using this link and the code SUMMERFUN.  As well as access to all of the Creativebug content during that time, you can choose one free class to keep - and there are lots of lovely things for you too... when you get some time to yourself - maybe the Sailor Top or Dopp Bag that I enjoyed so much, or one of the knitting or crochet classes! 


Stay tuned here and on Instagram for other 'Summer Activities' posts and ideas. I'll be using the tag #cftcsummerfun - feel free to join in if you would like to share some of the fun things you're doing too. 

*I'm a huge Creativebug fan and have written about various classes on other occasions, which you can find here. I'm also an Affiliate, which you can read about here. Affiliate links are included in this post. 

Summer Activities: Art & Craft Classes (free for a month)

This morning I waved the kids off for the final day of term with mixed emotions. In September, My Boy, who excitedly celebrated his "double-digit birthday" just a few days ago, will be going back into Year 6 - his final year at Primary School, and for Little Miss - my baby - this is the last day of Key Stage 1 (the 'Infants'). I'm not sure how that all happened. When they get home, it will be the start of six weeks holiday. Six long weeks of their cheeky faces, incessant chatter and enthusiasm (for causing chaos). Of meeting up with friends, little outings and a family break. But also six weeks of working out what to feed them (three times a day, plus snacks), refereeing their squabbles, and attempting to strike a balance between boredom (which is good for them) and keeping them entertained. It's a real juggling act, and I don't always feel I'm a 'natural' at this aspect of the job. 

For this reason, I already have a few things tucked up my sleeve. In fact, throughout the rest of July and August, I'll be posting a series of Summer Activities - things that we will be doing, and which might help if you're running out of ideas yourself. The first (in fact, it's my already-always-fallback for wet weekends and "I'm boooooooored" moments) is Creativebug*. 


There are a huge number of different projects which your children can do with your supervision, or on their own (depending on their individual age/ability, of course) ranging from building a no-sew TeePee to dying with Kool-Aid, making collages and wall art, watercolour painting, creative doodling, making puppet theatres and costumes. There are also some lovely origami and colouring classes which my children enjoyed. 

Like me, Little Miss is a Lisa Congdon fan! 
If you're a subscriber, login to your account, and you'll see that the kid-friendly activities are already grouped into an easy-to-find collection and new classes have been added. If you don't subscribe, you can get a free one month trial (that's most of the holidays, folks!) using this link and the code SUMMERFUN.  As well as access to all of the Creativebug content during that time, you can choose one free class to keep - and there are lots of lovely things for you too... when you get some time to yourself - maybe the Sailor Top or Dopp Bag that I enjoyed so much, or one of the knitting or crochet classes! 


Stay tuned here and on Instagram for other 'Summer Activities' posts and ideas. I'll be using the tag #cftcsummerfun - feel free to join in if you would like to share some of the fun things you're doing too. 

*I'm a huge Creativebug fan and have written about various classes on other occasions, which you can find here. I'm also an Affiliate, which you can read about here. Affiliate links are included in this post. 
Today sees the release of the final part of Last Dance on the Beach Crochet-along. The pattern for the edging is available here and the video support is here.  I've been writing about the CAL since March and it is strange to think this is the last week, although I still haven't finished making my squares, so my own project will live on a little while longer, and I'm happy with that.

Even without finishing it, the whole thing has been quite an experience, in a number of different ways. I'm taking a lot from it, including new friendships and vastly improved crochet skills and 'crochet confidence'. So what next? For me, a few things - as I write this post, my first 'proper' crochet pattern is with a tech editor and will be released once final tweaks are made - stay tuned for that. I'm also finishing up a number of other designs and will be enjoying six weeks of fun (hopefully) with my family.

What about you? Does the end of the CAL leave you with a void? Are you going to be at a loss without weekly pattern instalments? If so, I might have just the thing for you.  Tatsiana of Lilla Bjorn Crochet (read my interview with her here) is launching the most beautiful 'Peacock Tail Bag CAL'. Take a look...

(C) Lilla Bjorn Crochet - used with permission
This is an 'intermediate' overlay crochet project (using front post stitches) which may challenge your skills and attention if you are an adventurous beginner, but the result is totally worth it! The bag is fully lined and has a magnetic fastening as well as lovely handles, all of which come in a kit in two different colourways - Deep (above) and Pastel (below).

(C) Lilla Bjorn Crochet - used with permission
The CAL will start on Tatsiana's blog on Wednesday 17th August - the pattern will be free and available in Dutch, German, Swedish, Finnish, Danish, French and Hebrew. There will be video support from Esther/It's all in a Nutshell, who made the videos for Last Dance on the Beach. (You can already add the project to your Ravelry queue here.)

If you'd like to join in, you can source the materials directly, or get them in a convenient kit from Wool Warehouse* for £32.99 - ordering opens at the end of this week, and you will find the 'Deep' kit here, and the 'Pastel' kit here. Hopefully that will fill the crochet void just perfectly, and by the time you've finished the bag you may be turning thoughts to gift-making, but it's too early to think about that for now.

*Wool Warehouse Affiliate links are included. 

Crochet-along: The End (of LDOTB) & a New Beginning

Today sees the release of the final part of Last Dance on the Beach Crochet-along. The pattern for the edging is available here and the video support is here.  I've been writing about the CAL since March and it is strange to think this is the last week, although I still haven't finished making my squares, so my own project will live on a little while longer, and I'm happy with that.

Even without finishing it, the whole thing has been quite an experience, in a number of different ways. I'm taking a lot from it, including new friendships and vastly improved crochet skills and 'crochet confidence'. So what next? For me, a few things - as I write this post, my first 'proper' crochet pattern is with a tech editor and will be released once final tweaks are made - stay tuned for that. I'm also finishing up a number of other designs and will be enjoying six weeks of fun (hopefully) with my family.

What about you? Does the end of the CAL leave you with a void? Are you going to be at a loss without weekly pattern instalments? If so, I might have just the thing for you.  Tatsiana of Lilla Bjorn Crochet (read my interview with her here) is launching the most beautiful 'Peacock Tail Bag CAL'. Take a look...

(C) Lilla Bjorn Crochet - used with permission
This is an 'intermediate' overlay crochet project (using front post stitches) which may challenge your skills and attention if you are an adventurous beginner, but the result is totally worth it! The bag is fully lined and has a magnetic fastening as well as lovely handles, all of which come in a kit in two different colourways - Deep (above) and Pastel (below).

(C) Lilla Bjorn Crochet - used with permission
The CAL will start on Tatsiana's blog on Wednesday 17th August - the pattern will be free and available in Dutch, German, Swedish, Finnish, Danish, French and Hebrew. There will be video support from Esther/It's all in a Nutshell, who made the videos for Last Dance on the Beach. (You can already add the project to your Ravelry queue here.)

If you'd like to join in, you can source the materials directly, or get them in a convenient kit from Wool Warehouse* for £32.99 - ordering opens at the end of this week, and you will find the 'Deep' kit here, and the 'Pastel' kit here. Hopefully that will fill the crochet void just perfectly, and by the time you've finished the bag you may be turning thoughts to gift-making, but it's too early to think about that for now.

*Wool Warehouse Affiliate links are included. 
Have you ever wanted to design something, but you just didn't know where to start? Or maybe you have been working on a few ideas and are not sure what to do next? Perhaps you're too scared to put your ideas "out there", or maybe, like me, you are so busy doing other things that your own projects constantly get pushed to the back of the queue. If so, Designer Bootcamp might be just what you need!



Designer Bootcamp is a 12-week email series hosted by Joeli of Joeli Creates. Weekly emails will guide you from the initial idea to publishing your pattern, taking you through all of the stages from yarn selection to pattern promotion. In addition there will be weekly Q&A sessions and more in-depth trainings on various topics related to a successful pattern launch. (The content is aimed at knitting design, but crochet designers joined last year's camp and also launched their patterns successfully.)

You can join in with Designer Bootcamp for free (register here) and there is also an optional Workbook (ebook format) which you can purchase for more detailed coverage without waiting for the instalments, worksheets and access to an exclusive Facebook group so you can chat with other participants and get additional support, as well as keeping yourself accountable. 

I've already published a small number of 'indie' patterns, but as my time is increasingly spent working on blog content and commissioned designs, it seems the vast stack of ideas in my design journal (pictured above) continues to grow without many being turned into published patterns. You'd probably be shocked if you could see how many designs are at the point where I could cast them on (swatches are done, sketches and calculations finished, design decisions made) but something else always seems to take priority. So I'll be using the Bootcamp as a way of keeping me accountable and on track to launch a new pattern ready for Autumn, although I'm not sure what it will be yet! 

If you'd like more information on taking part, check out Joeli's short video below and then head on over to Joeli's website to see the list of weekly topics and to sign up if it's something you think you'd like. Maybe I'll see you there. 


Designer Bootcamp starts TODAY!

Have you ever wanted to design something, but you just didn't know where to start? Or maybe you have been working on a few ideas and are not sure what to do next? Perhaps you're too scared to put your ideas "out there", or maybe, like me, you are so busy doing other things that your own projects constantly get pushed to the back of the queue. If so, Designer Bootcamp might be just what you need!



Designer Bootcamp is a 12-week email series hosted by Joeli of Joeli Creates. Weekly emails will guide you from the initial idea to publishing your pattern, taking you through all of the stages from yarn selection to pattern promotion. In addition there will be weekly Q&A sessions and more in-depth trainings on various topics related to a successful pattern launch. (The content is aimed at knitting design, but crochet designers joined last year's camp and also launched their patterns successfully.)

You can join in with Designer Bootcamp for free (register here) and there is also an optional Workbook (ebook format) which you can purchase for more detailed coverage without waiting for the instalments, worksheets and access to an exclusive Facebook group so you can chat with other participants and get additional support, as well as keeping yourself accountable. 

I've already published a small number of 'indie' patterns, but as my time is increasingly spent working on blog content and commissioned designs, it seems the vast stack of ideas in my design journal (pictured above) continues to grow without many being turned into published patterns. You'd probably be shocked if you could see how many designs are at the point where I could cast them on (swatches are done, sketches and calculations finished, design decisions made) but something else always seems to take priority. So I'll be using the Bootcamp as a way of keeping me accountable and on track to launch a new pattern ready for Autumn, although I'm not sure what it will be yet! 

If you'd like more information on taking part, check out Joeli's short video below and then head on over to Joeli's website to see the list of weekly topics and to sign up if it's something you think you'd like. Maybe I'll see you there. 


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