Perhaps a couple of days later than I had intended, here is episode 103 of the Zeens and Roger Crochet Podcast. In this episode it’s all about my works in progress (WIPs!). Some are a little closer to finished objects, it’s true, but I have some tweaks that mean they’re not quite ready as patterns.
Hop across to my YouTube channel to take a further look. You’ll find loads more episodes and crochet tutorials. Or you can go straight to the episode by clicking on the picture above.
Yarny Things in the Crochet Chat
Firstly, as we’re talking about WIPs in this episode, some of these patterns aren’t going to be linked because they don’t exist yet! I will be sure to let you know when they are ready.
The first thing I can link is a little bit of knitting! I’m knitting the Sophie shawl! Who isn’t?! Well, I suppose most other people have finished now but I’m still making mine. Very slowly! You can find the pattern on Ravelry.
I chatted a little bit about my old Hotchpotch granny purses. Whilst I have adapted the original design slightly, you can use my first granny stripe bag pattern as a guide. With the video tutorial and blog post, you can make either the big or small colourful, crochet purses.
After many, many years I have finally gotten round to making a large granny square blanket like the one I made for my sister twelve or thirteen years ago. It will be a mixture of large and small granny squares. This time I am using an acrylic/wool blend of yarn: Paintbox Yarns wool blend DKin thirteen shades. The original granny square blanket is pictured below.
And not linked or added here are ALL of my WIPS. I have quite a few! I talk about a crochet cowl collection, another mini granny square cowl, a crochet cardigan crochet along and a new corner to corner sweater design. And I’m sure there’s more but that will do for now!
What WIPS for 2024?
As 2023 draws to a close, I know which works in progress I’d like to see finished first. What about you? What would you like to see most of all? Not just my WIPS but yours too?
PS. This post contains an affiliate link for the Paintbox yarn. If you happened to click on the link and buy some yarn, it means I would receive a percentage of the cost. 🙂
I was recently sent a naked, undyed skein of King Cole merino yarn. (Disclosure: I am a King Cole ambassador; I got the yarn for free but this is not a sponsored post). Receiving the yarn was all the persuasion I needed to have a brief dalliance with yarn dyeing. And I do mean brief. My first time was dyeing with avocado skins a few weeks ago, which I found interesting but getting the right colour was tricky. The second time was with little pots of powdery acid dyes (thanks Sherrie of Ollie & Bella for recommending the dyes). Acid dyeing yarn is a messy affair and I don’t suggest you try it unless you’re willing to destroy your kitchen, clothes, and anything else within a fifteen foot radius. My kitchen is old and tatty, therefore I don’t care about the fact that it now has a rainbow of colours forever tainting my work tops. Bit dodgy for food prep though.
What I’ve done is put together a couple of videos for YouTube. The first was published a couple of weeks ago. You can watch it HERE. It’s the dyeing yarn with avocado video, not “dying”, which is what I’ve accidentally titled the episode. It’s actually a relatively safe process. I pretended it was homeschooling science and got the kids involved. Well, the youngest one helped, the eldest just came into the kitchen in search of the Flap Jacks that were being baked in the oven whilst we did the dyeing. Apart from using high temperatures in the dyeing process, it’s a pretty good project for getting the kids involved.
Recently uploaded is the acid dyeing vid, HERE. It’s a bit longer as the first section of the video is a “show and tell” of the yarn colours that were created. Then the shoddy demo of my attempts follows after. This one is not be so great for the kids (although one of mine watched from a reasonable distance).
The colours that you can achieve with the acid dyes are far more intense. I have a distinct lack of knowledge about the chemistry of colour work and it shows. I didn’t try to experiment with mixing or diluting, just jumped straight into bright primary-ish shades. The results aren’t too bad. They’re not exactly “my” colours but that’s OK. The dye is Landscapes Dyes from Wingham Wool Work, a great recommendation from Sherrie. I wasn’t scared of using it but hard core professionals use loads of safety gear during dye sessions. Gloves and breathing apparatus are strongly recommended. Please do be careful! The particles of the powders can get inside your lungs and the powders also contain other elements that you don’t want to end up in your dinner.
After a quick shout out for advice on my crochet podcast, Becca from Totnes Yarns got in touch and offered some invaluable advice, thank you so much Becca! She Recommended using an old pot for dyeing the yarn, don’t use your best pans. Some of the acid dyes contain chemicals you don’t want to consume. But also, Becca pointed me in the direction of ChemKnits on YouTube. This is a rabbit hole I do not want to go down. This is just a quick fling, not a new hobby!! But if you did want to commit, check it out.
Research was a quick glance at Google, finding blog posts about avocado experiments. For more information about dyeing with avocado I found Woods and Woolto be really thorough. And also Thoresby Cottage. Deffo worth a look. I didn’t google much about acid dyes, I had the advice from Becca, and the Landscapes dyes came with a leaflet full of excellent instructions for both simmering on the hob or blasting in a microwave. You can download guidance on safety from Wingham Wool Work too.
Michelle from Dora Explored also has a blog post about dyeing with every day household stuff. Lots of helpful explanations about processes in that blog post, including info on why you might need to give your wool a bath in vinegar before you dye, and what a mordant is. But I confess to only skim reading certain bits so missed where it said to heat the yarn again after I added speckles onto the already dyed yarn. Might be why I didn’t end up with as many speckles as I hoped. I do realize that the heat is how the yarn fixes the colour, it was just a brief moment of stupidity. The fact that I have no patience is also a reason why the speckles washed out, which you’ll see from the finished results.
Wool yarn will take on dyes really well. Different fibres react in different ways, which is worth bearing in mind. As well as having theKing Cole merino dk to play with, I decided to purchase a few skeins of Regia 4ply merino, another yarn specifically for hand dyeing. It worked a treat with the microwave acid dyeing. I also went digging through my own stash and came up with a mystery mini skein of a sheepy wool, and two silky looking skeins of Teeswater/Wensleydale yarn that were purchased on a holiday in Lancashire a few years ago. Please do read the blog post about that, it’s HERE. It was really quite a treat for a fan of yarn. On a personal level, reading about that holiday demonstrates that I know much more about yarn now than I did then. But judging by my tinkerings with the dyes, I’ve got a long way to go! Still very much an amateur…
Anyway, that’s it really. It’s a vast subject and this experience is barely a toe dipped in avocado blush waters. So much to explore. Have you tried yarn dyeing? What do you think? I bet you’re better at it than me!
Hello, how are you?! I’m fine. Just squeezing it all and getting in a flap as usual. Episode 60! Sixty episodes of my daft crochet podcast! Who would have thought it?! I am still loving every minute of it though and I hope you enjoy it too! Thank you so much for hanging out with me.
All my vids (both podcasts and tutorials) are HERE on YouTube. Links and pics to things I chat about in this episode are below.
Hello! I hope you’re well!? I really enjoyed putting this episode together, I hope you enjoy watching 😀
As usual, click on the image above to go to Episode 59 of the latest crochet chat, or if you fancy going back to previous episodes or checking out some crochet tutorials, go HERE to my YouTube channel. Ta very much!
In this episode I reveal the name of last episode’s Giveaway and there’s a new Giveaway too!!
If you would like to support me further then ways you can do that are: spreading the word (tell others I’m here!), buying a pattern/s for one of my designs or, if you’re hardcore, signing up to Patreon!
Links and pictures for all things Episode 59 are below…
I have rewritten my old owl pattern because it’s terribly done. I’ll write a blog post for the new version soon but I’ll be keeping the old one available HERE. Go forth and be embarrassed on my behalf!
Long time no see! How’s it going? I hope you’ve been doing lots of crochet… Lots to talk about in this latest crochet podcast. Please click on the picture above to go to the episode or go to my YouTube Channel HERE. Don’t forget to leave a comment and Like and Subscribe!! Cheers! x
As you know I often provide free patterns and tutorials as well as the regular podcast. If you would like to support my work further then you can do so by signing up to Patreon. Even a couple of quid would mean the world. Thank you. x
Welcome to Episode 55! I’m pleased to say that I’ve been enjoying my crochet over the last couple of weeks. I do hope you like the episode. As well as WIPs and FOs, I talk about Ravelry and their new policy. Cripes, it was tricky to talk about without getting passionate! I hope I was careful with my words; it really isn’t my area of expertise. I believe it’s important that it’s discussed though, so there was no way I was going to ignore the current issues.
Please go HERE to YouTubefor all my videos or click on the pic above to go directly to the episode.
It has been such chaos this week but I really wanted to stop by to say hello. It’s a shorty and I feel like a stuck record but I hope you enjoy it nevertheless. Click on the image above to go directly to the episode or to my YouTube channel HERE. Cheers. x
Not many links this time…
If you would like to support me via Patreon (HERE) then I will love you forever. No tiers or no rewards at the moment because I don’t want to break promises I can’t keep. After I get the current commissions out of the way I can focus more on other patterns and YouTube tutorials for you.
Off I go the the Crochet Sanctuary next week. I plan on reporting back so watch this space!
I’m slowly making progress on Hannah’s Frost shawl. I love it so much. Wish I hadn’t made mistakes on it but I love it regardless.
And I talk a bit about The Fibre Co. In a few months I’ll be able to show you what I make!
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Thanks so much. See you again in a couple of weeks. xxx
Hi! How’s it going? This is a bit of a funny episode in that I don’t show any wips or finished objects! But it’s proof that I can talk for half an hour about crochet related things without showing you anything at all…
As always, click on the pic above to go to the episode or go to YouTube HERE for all the vids.