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Ways to use up your yarn scraps

How to use up yarn scraps: projects and tips So the thing is that since I organised my yarn and saved it from moth infestation I realised I had lots and lots of scraps. If you been crafting for many years, than you will understand it’s never a good idea to let your small amounts of yarn just keep piling up. It takes up a lot of space and then you may worry about moths possibly attacking it again. No, thanks! So what do you do with all those little bits of yarn that are leftover after your knitting and crocheting projects? I thought of few ways...

1. Small projects, first comes to my mind. With winter coming over I have been knitting socks and hoping to knit some gloves and maybe hats. These are fit to become Christmas gift too!How to use up yarn scraps: projects and tips While there are plenty of small projects out there I find knitting socks is my favourite item to knit (that magical heal turn gets me every time!).  If you feel the same then click here for basic kids socks. Or if you prefer to knit this pretty baby hat then the tutorial for it hides here :D.How to use up yarn scraps: projects and tipsIf you are after for a very teeny weeny project then you should check out this crochet triangle pattern tutorial. It makes a very cute garland for Christmas tree perhaps??!How to use up yarn scraps: projects and tips 2. Making big multicolour rugs or blankets is another good way to use up yarn scraps. Few years ago I started making this never ending, upcycled crochet rug that sadly did not continue (because it did not fit our new home style). But the point I am trying to make here, this is very good project to do to use up all those itsy bitsy bits of yarn. How to use up yarn scraps: projects and tipsOr this giant blanket, very popular way to use up all that scrap yarn. I know, I know, I made it in one plain colour, but trust me, it looks good in multi colours too!How to use up yarn scraps: projects and tips3. Using up scrap yarn can mean using it in patterns or trims. Here is one example, but there are plenty projects out there with pretty patterns ;-).

How to use up yarn scraps: projects and tips 4. Did you know that you can use leftover yarn for embroidery and cross stitch? Here is my laptop cover that I made few years ago. It is still one of my favourite items that I made :).How to use up yarn scraps: projects and tips Finally, here are the socks I recently made for Lukas. I could not be more proud :).How to use up yarn scraps: projects and tips How to use up yarn scraps: projects and tipsHope you got inspired ;-)

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How I saved my yarn stash from a moth infestation

How I saved my yarn stash from a moth infestationSo as you may know for me this year was all about organising. Because there are lots to tidy up after doing (still doing) so much DIY! Few months ago I started working on my craft supplies and sadly I came across a horrifying moth infestation which made things a little bit more complicated... arghhhh!  Not only did I have to untangle my very messy yarn I also had to get rid of these unwanted creatures... yuck! This is how my yarn basket looked like when I discovered the sad reality...How I saved my yarn stash from a moth infestationFirst I googled if it was really moths I was dealing with. Pictures online matched with mine which confirmed that it was indeed what I feared most.  I realised I had to just get on with it, quick! So I read and I read about different methods how to kill the moths, larvae and it's eggs (this article was my favourite), but the only one that seemed practical to me was to freeze all my yarn. Hmm... that will need lot's of freezer space! So I did it in batches which caused some problems with the yarn that was waiting in the queue. You see these evil moths are very quick to breed! I started with eggs and one moth and after just a day it turned into more eggs, moth and larvae...arghhhh!!! I ended up freeing up as much space as I can (that meant using up some of the frozen food) so I can stuff leftover yarn into freezer. Luckily we were going on holidays so I could just leave it there and forget it for a bit and deal with it later... phew!How I saved my yarn stash from a moth infestationHow I saved my yarn stash from a moth infestationOnce I was back from holiday (all relaxed and all) I went back to sorting out my precious yarn. I cleaned the basket where I store my yarn with vinegar. I ordered some moth cedar and distributed it around the house. I organised the yarn and I think is so far so good. I think I won!  How I saved my yarn stash from a moth infestationHow I saved my yarn stash from a moth infestationHope you found my story comforting if your yarn got infested (to be honest I just hope it does not happen to you).

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Crochet your own giant bed blanket

Crochet your own giant bed blanket If you are wondering what to crochet during Christmas, then this project is a good one to start with. It is uncomplicated, however be warned it may take a while to get it into decent size. I took over a year to finish it (shocking I know!)!!!

In case you wondered how much yarn I used up to crochet this blanket, It was about 80 of these Seriously Chunky wool balls. Sounds quite a lot right?! Well I used 7mm crochet hook instead of recommended 10-12mm which used up more yarn than it could have with larger hook. However in return it made a heavier and denser crochet which is what I wanted, it's your choice of course! Also, you don't have to use one colour. In fact you could use up all the yarn you already have! This is the most common way to crochet this type of blanket. Click here for a tutorial if you have not already checked it out ;-).Crochet your own giant bed blanket Crochet your own giant bed blanket Crochet your own giant bed blanket Crochet your own giant bed blanketHappy crocheting!

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Crochet this lacy crop top

lacy crochet crop top, click here to find the patternI finally finished crocheting this lacy crop top that I originally was making for spring. The weather wise it's perfect! June this year feels more like April :-D. However this top doesn't fit me any longer (hence my new bump)...

So last weekend I met up with my sister in London, she was more than happy to model my new creation. Here is how it looks on non-pregnant woman :-). If you are interested to make one yourself the pattern is herelacy crochet crop top, click here to find the pattern lacy crochet crop top, click here to find the pattern lacy crochet crop top, click here to find the pattern lacy crochet crop top, click here to find the patternThanks for letting me share ;-)

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Never ending, upcycled crochet rug (made of socks!)

Upcycled crochet rug made of socks DIYHi there and here are my olds socks! You are probably wondering why I am showing my colourful collection of socks that I no longer wear. Well... I kept them for very very long for the day like this when I finally go ahead and do the upcycling project that I had thought of ages ago. To be honest what really prompted me to do it is finding out that my friend is also on the same idea and well ahead of me ( I am quite competitive and everything tend to be a race for me even if the other person have no idea that I am racing with them), I went ahead and did it.

So today I will share how it all went. I essentially made a mini rug (still in process to get bigger and bigger) out of socks that are too worn to wear but too pretty to throw away. Upcycled crochet rug made of socks DIYTo make the 'yarn' I have cut the sock in spiral direction,Upcycled crochet rug made of socks DIYthen joined it with other socks by tying the knot.Upcycled crochet rug made of socks DIYI ended up with a 'yarn' ball that was big enough to start crochet. I started with the chain stitch!Upcycled crochet rug made of socks DIYThen formed a circle. For the tutorial video click here!Upcycled crochet rug made of socks DIY Upcycled crochet rug made of socks DIYWhen the 'yarn' ball is finished you can always attach another sock to it. It can be never ending, always expanding circle rug!Upcycled crochet rug made of socks DIYHide all the knots on the wrong side (that side that faces the floor, which is not visible).Upcycled crochet rug made of socks DIYMy rug is tiny at this moment, but don't you worry it will soon expand when I add all Joni's old socks in it :-D.Upcycled crochet rug made of socks DIY Upcycled crochet rug made of socks DIYI hope you found this inspiring!

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Crafty afternoons in Bedford (you are welcome to join us)

Crafty afternoons in Bedford (join our social group)Hey guys, I got some wonderful news! Our crafty social meets are back and are better than ever :). The improvements include:

  • Unlimited space (almost), so no RSVP needed
  • Super comfortable sofas at the ground floor cafe in Kings House
  • Convenient location (if only you live in Bedford)
  • Any type of crafts are welcome (before we were only knitting)

Interested to join? Visit our events page for more info.King's House ground floor cafe, BedfordCrafty afternoons in Bedford (join our social group)Hopefully see you soon!

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How to organise your knitting/crochet stuff (in little spaces)

How to organise knitting/crochet stuffIn the beginning of this year someone have asked me "How to keep all your knitting gear organised, needles, thread etc etc etc?". Ha ha, you got me there! The pic above is exactly how my yarn looked like yesterday before I tidied it up for this post. Although I am proud to say that my needles and crochet hooks are organised nicely (at least current method is working for me for now). 

The thing is when you live in a small rented flat it is difficult to keep your yarn and needles organised. Like every crafter I dream about one day when I do have an actual craft room or a study at least! But for know small space is the reality and here are my few tips to keep organised in situations like this.

1. Make it as part of your deco! I don't know about you, but I don't like a minimal looking home that looks clinically pristine (unless this represents your personality). So if you are someone who knits/crochets why hide it? Yarn and needles can compliment your home!

I store my needles and crochet hooks in upcycled jars that are placed on the shelves. These go well with other jars stuffed with dried branches and other pretty stuff I find outdoors. If you have a large selection of needles and stuff then you can split them into jars according to their types and sizes and label them. I don't have a large selection of needles so I sometimes just wrap my jars with wrapping paper and some ribbon. But when I do have lots and lots of needles then probably I am going to crochet around those jars and label them like this! I have seen some people storing their needles in rolls or pouches. I guess if you are constantly crafting on the move then this is great. But for me that would not work. I like to take only one project at the time when traveling so I only need one size needle/hook and some yarn that I just stuff in my handbag.

When it comes to yarn I keep it low (see the next tip). I only have one big basket that also sits there in the open (ok, not so open, because we have a very curious cat in the house). Because colourful yarn looks sooo pretty! I have a dream one day when I do actually open my dream cafe I will have a wall full of yarn! If you (unlike me) would like to keep your organised yarn stash in secret then here is a solution for you...You could sooo keep that in your secret closet!How to organise knitting/crochet stuff2. Keep it low, I mean your yarn stash! I never saw a point of keeping a large amount of yarn in the house. If I buy a yarn, I always try to think of what I am going to make with it. And even if I think of what to make I try to consider to giving unused yarn a chance!  3. Prioritise your yarn stash. Go through once in the while (it took me 15ming to reorganise my basket yesterday). See which yarns you are going to use one day (usually itsy-bitsy stuff) and separate that from the yarn you are working with now. Place those unused yarn balls at the bottom while leaving the "current" wool on top! 4. Keep records of your yarn stash! This is if you have lots of yarn and keeping them in many separate baskets, crates or boxes. In this case I would try recoding in a notebook or folder with little samples of yarn. I would record their name, colour, size, location (where it is stored) and how much of it you have left. If you prefer a more virtual organising system then you should definitely have a go with Ravelry! I did sign up but never used. But I heard good rumours that it lets you to take pics of your yarn and record it in same way as you would with the folder I mentioned here. I hope this has been useful!

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Sister hats!

Sister hats, knit and crochet pattern includedI was so super happy to get a sister last year! When you're the only girl in your family getting a sister is a big deal. Sister hats, knit and crochet pattern includedSo when it came to deciding on what gift to give to Nicola a little lightbulb lit up and I started making these cute  pom-pom hats so that we would both have something matching(not identical though! That would be a bit weird..). I needed a good hat as my old one had had its days and Joni's hats... well... they did not quite make a fashion statement. Sister hats, knit and crochet pattern includedUnfortunately we did  not have a chance to take a pic of us together with these hats, but we did spend a day shopping and while we shopped these hats were very useful for spotting each other in the crowd! Sister hats, knit and crochet pattern includedI hope you like these hats as much as we did. You can find the pattern and instructions for them here. Just so you are aware, you will need knitting, crochet and pom-pom making (real easy!) skills to complete this project.Sister hats, knit and crochet pattern includedGood Luck!

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Instructions for Christmas craft kits!

Make your own hanging birdie decorationMissed your chance to order Christmas craft kits? Well here is your chance to make your own hanging decorations with the materials you have. We have updated the original instructions and now they are exactly the same as you would have found in the Friendly Nettle craft kits. If you fancy making hanging birdie deco then click here or if you prefer to crochet then hanging star may be your thing ;-).make your own crochet star hanging decoAlternatively if you learn this triangle crochet pattern, you could make these super cute mini buntings!crochet your own mini buntingHappy Christmas waiting!

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Friendly Nettle shop is re-open! Yey!

New in Friendly Nettle Shop: Crochet Star kitHey dear friends! I have a very good news. The Friendly Nettle shop is re-opened and updated as it should be! There is always room for improvement, but I am really happy with the progress!New in Friendly Nettle Shop: Hanging birdie kitWith this store relaunch we are happy to add craft kits to our range. These include everything you need to make a thoughtful gift for a friend or a loved ones as well as some biscuits to enjoy while you do.New in Friendly Nettle Shop: Crochet Star kit New in Friendly Nettle Shop: Hanging birdie kitIf you are not a maker type then you can gift this to someone who like crafting themselves. The kits come nicely packaged, so you don't need to do a thing! Maybe just add a gift tag or a simple wrap and that's done!New in Friendly Nettle Shop: Hanging birdie kitEnjoy Christmas shopping!

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Quick to make no sew crochet edge scarf

Lace edge scarf DIY with crochet trim chardAutumn is ending and soon we will be entering winter season... brrr, hopefully it won't be so cold this year! Because this scarf might not be the most perfect one to wear when is chilli outside. On the other hand it's really pretty and it's so easy to make (that is if you know your way round lace crocheting).

Last weekend we took Leia (our beloved cat) to the vets and this scarf was just enough to accessorise my otherwise plain top. In case you are wondering... our kitty had an infection after spaying, but she recovered really quickly. Her stitches came out last weekend and today we are removing her cone of shame (as Joni calls it). Yey!auntumnAnyways, if you fancy making this scarf, here is the place to click for crochet chart and more ;-)Lace edge scarf DIY with crochet trim chard Lace edge scarf DIY with crochet trim chard Lace edge scarf DIY with crochet trim chard Lace edge scarf DIY with crochet trim chardEnjoy your last weeks of autumn :-)

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Make your own custom crocheted and cross stitched laptop cover

Crocheted and cross stitched laptop cover, DIY instructions incudedIt's been almost a year since my old laptop got stolen (never mind, I am fully recovered now). Although I was very lucky to get a new one as a (last) christmas gift, the old laptop cover did not quite fit my new laptop. I like the type of laptop covers that are not a bag by itself, but the slip on ones that can fit in a handbag of your choice. So you can imagine, I have been planning to make a new laptop cover for quite a while! Up until now I have been traveling with the laptop in a plastic bag (not so classy) or a backpack (thanks to my new mum for it!). OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAI don't exactly remember the time when I came up with the idea to cross stitch on the crocheted laptop cover, but I did love all the ideas of cross stitch going anywhere random such as wall, fences and so on (thanks to Pinterest for the inspiration!). A crocheted surface makes a perfect canvas for cross stitch! I sourced different kind of yarns for this project, mainly because I wanted to use up some of my scrap yarn stash, but also because I like this rustic type of look that it created. Anyway... ready to make one of your own?OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAHere you can access the full DIY instructions. I hope you will enjoy it as much as I did! You can of course pick a different cross stitch design for your laptop cover to make it custom. I personally picked the rose design on the black background because it reminds me of the Russian scarfs that my grandma wears. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAI hope this project helps your laptop to stay organised within your handbag ;-)

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Upcycled crochet stars

Upcycled star garlandI always have lots of yarn stash to knit with. This project is perfect to use up small amounts that are hiding in your basket. To crochet these stars I have used a string that I have been collecting from Abel&Cole veg boxes. So that makes them upcycled too! Click here for a full DIY instructions.

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Gift Packaging!

crocheted flower gift packaging

I know I know, this might be too early for some of you, but I have already started gift wrapping my gifts for Christmas! I am being really organised this year ;). Here is how I packaged a scarf that I knitted for my mum. The idea is really simple, unless you still need to learn how to crochet mini doilies. In this case you need to learn the basics in crocheting and following simple doily diagrams on Pinterest should be easy. So if you up and ready for this, click here for instructions on how to package your gift using two crocheted mini doilies, button and the cord (or thin ribbon).

Crocheted flower gift packaging

Have a nice week!

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