I mentioned on my last podcast that I had plans to put together a little crochet basket kit… Well with the help of two lovely friends who helped me design the packaging and put the kits together, I have.
I have dyed up some more of the 100% wool chunky yarn at the heart of the kits but I now need to put some more together as they sold out! Hopefully I will have some in the Etsy shop by mid August at the latest. Updates are every Thursday at 7pm and I hope to have these ready for Thursday 10th August.
About the wool yarn in the kit
I’ll show you all of the components in the kit in a little bit but first I want to talk about the main star of the show – the yarn. This is a 100% wool, woollen spun yarn from my local mill. Its spun with a very high twist from a blend of all of the pure British wool that is left over after carding and preparing orders. Some of the carded fibre is left in the machine while the start and end of the spinning process creates ‘endy-bits’ that are usually just discarded. But the spinner at the mill hates wasting good wool, so he uses these ‘endy-bits’ and left-overs and blends them all together once there is enough.
He then waits for a quiet day and puts it through the spinning machines and plies a chunky yarn with that very high twist. The result has been used by the Yorkshire Wildlife Trust as biodegradable string! Its strong, its tough and its hardwearing. When I saw there were a couple of cones available at the end of last year, I decided to see if it took up acid dyes. And I was amazed at the colours that I got.
If you remember, I dyed up some balls and made a version of the Flower Power blanket with it just before Christmas.
I did think about doing blanket kits with it but the trouble is, each batch is very different in terms of which wool is in there. All of the wool is from British sheep but the proportion and content changes the way the yarn takes up dye. So I couldn’t reproduce the colours well enough to make blanket kits. Instead I came up with the idea of crochet baskets as this tough yarn is perfect. Its also much gentler on your fingers when you are using it compared to real string or twine.
So what’s in the crochet basket kit?
I’ve made the larger one just a little bit bigger than an average 100g yarn cake so that its perfect for use as a travelling yarn bowl. When I go to knit and natter/crochet and chat groups in pubs or cafes, its all too common for my ball of yarn to end up on the floor, rolling around. Having a wool yarn bowl keeps it clean and tidy and on the table but it also doesn’t matter if someone knocks the basket off – its completely unbreakable. You will have enough yarn to also make a smaller basket that can be used for all your notions and bits – crochet hooks, stitch markers and scissors.
I thought it would be fun to add little accessories to the yarn so that you have everything you need apart from a crochet hook.
So the kit also has some handy lengths of aran weight cotton thread in six different colours and a large plastic blunt darning needle.
I’ve included a 75cm length of crochet lace to add as extra decoration to one or both baskets and a little label saying Hand made with love, in case you want to give it as a gift. The pattern calls for three stitch markers, so these are in the kit too.
The pattern for both baskets in the crochet basket kit is available on the reverse side of the card and you can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org for a digital copy as well if you like. The basket pattern allows your cross stitch to be vertical, not off at a slant like the plain dc stitch, so if you want to do lettering, it doesn’t look like its leaning.
The ball of yarn makes the big basket plus the little notions basket.
I’m hoping to do some more crochet basket kit fun for Yarndale in September and as my trail of doing a skein of the yarn in a variegated colourway went down quite well, I may do some more dyeing too as I have a few skeins of yarn still waiting for the dye pots.
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