What’s in a Name?


I am a sucker for a new magazine, even when I haven’t got the time to read them.  Once upon a time, rather too long ago for comfort, it was perfectly normal to have women’s magazines with knitting and crochet patterns, and even pull-out paper patterns for dress making.  Suddenly though, we were all supposed to be out in the market place, cutting and thrusting our way up through glass ceilings, or finding our way into the world of fame and riches and the idea of knitting a cardi belonged to a different era.  So the magazines quietly dropped the handicraft element in favour of beauty tips and fashion , celebrity interviews and gossip, and we all went out to Primark to buy cheap and dispensible clothing. Supposedly.

So I really love the fact that gradually things are turning a full circle and it’s suddenly ok  to come out of the closet with your knitting needles or crochet hooks and look cool rather than be labeled an old fogey.  And a whole new generation is now getting into print, either on line or in magazines to share their creativity.

Now I have to admit to a certain prejudice when I first heard about the new mag on the block so I didn’t beat a path to W H Smith’s to buy the first issue as I usually do.  I only heard the name, Mollie Makes, and I’m afraid it  sounded just a bit cutesy, a bit ‘apple pie’, the sort of thing I’ve grown out of.  But gradually I realised that so many people were saying good things about it, maybe I’d better take a look, and found I just couldn’t get a copy. I even heard of one changing hands on Ebay for £30.00!

Anyway, having trawled around for a couple of days being told, “Never ‘eard of it!” (Great customer relations there…) and “I’m really sorry, we’ve sold out” , I eventually bought the last copy on the shelf in the Norwich Hobbycraft.


Well, dear reader, how wrong I was!  It’s fab, I love it, I have already signed up for my three issues for £5.00!  It’s as much about lifestyle and homestyle as it is a craft manual, and really falls into a neat little niche of it’s own.  And it arrived just at the point where I was digging out my yarns again and thinking I neeeeed to get the crochet hook out again, what can I make?

After I made my big blanket , and I had reduced the yarn stash from this…

to this…

by making all these cushions…

I had a sudden rush of blood to the head and went out and bought all the colours, all over again, plus few more!  And it was this
I had heaved out of the cupboard in search a new project.  And there, in Mollie Makes, it was..

Another blanket! And…AND…from a new book from Jane Brocket, who has already delighted me with The Gentle Art of Domesticity and the The Gentle Art of Quilting, so I had to buy it, didn’t I, to complete the set…

It’s actually made in Aran weight yarn, but it really doesn’t matter when using leftovers in crochet.

It looks so cosy…

And all I have to do is buy a few balls of the creamy colour for the background …

…and I have a lovely project to keep me going in the evenings, and give my hands a break from the felting needle!

And there are one or two other little projects to keep for the future…

So that’s the evenings sorted, would you like to see what’s been going on during the day?

I’ll tell you later!

See you soon x

P.S. I’ve just found this, and it’s so jolly I just had to share it!

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About penny

I live in Norfolk, England in a cottage on the edge of the Norfolk Broads where it can be peaceful and beautiful, or wet and muddy, or occasionally wild and windswept. With me is husband Tim, Henry the elderly and opinionated tabby cat, and Higgins, the miniature dachshund with a massive personality. You’ll find me chattering on about wool and textiles, knitting and crochet, recipes, books and patterns, exhibitions and shopping and of course, the adventures of a small dog! Planet Penny has a Facebook Page, you can find me on UK Handmade and I am featured on Channel4/4Homes Favourite Craft Blog List.

15 thoughts on “What’s in a Name?

  1. Toffeeapple

    I used to collect knitting patterns from magazines too, I had so many that I would never have had the time to make anything. I even had a designer coat crochet pattern that I never got around to doing. I still have quite a few of the sweaters that I made though and I have a feeling that they will be coming out for next winter. I shall have a look at the magazine in my Library but doubt that I shall be swayed into buying it.

    Have you managed to relax since the Open Studio?

  2. Toffeeapple

    I forgot to say how much I like the design of the old Good Housekeeping magazine and that I always had to be the ‘skein holder’ for my Ma.

  3. Sandra

    Keep hearing people mention Molly Makes and, like you, had thought it sounded a bit twee but you might have just sparked my interest enough for me to go and have a flick through…if I can find it! Love the starburst circles – gorgeous colours.

  4. Penelope

    Hi Penny, perfectly captured about craft/knitting/crochet magazines. I felt the same but then when I saw both Vanessa’s from Do you mind if I knit and Coco Rose Diaries blogs rave about it I thought ah ha it must be a winner and I bought the first now second editions. Right up creative bloggers street I think :0) As for the Jane Brocket book, oh boy i was in London last saturday and went to Loop in Camden passage and came away with my own copy. I’ts the first knitting book I hav ever bought and I LOVE it very dearly. I love the words and passages written by Jane and then the patterns of course. I admire and stroke it a lot! Sad hey! Your blanket will be gorgeous no doubt and I look forward to seeing your handywork in making this blanket. It’s a defnite one for my ‘to do’ list xox Penelope

  5. Carol

    It is indeed a great little magazine, I was lucky enough to find issues 1 & 2 (thank you Morrisons). I learned to crochet less than 2 years ago and I don’t think I have stopped hooking since.
    Love your colourful cushions, especially the fair isle ones.
    Carol xx

  6. Colette

    I love your cushions. You can still get issue one (the one with the apple cover but only as a digital download. if that is any help. I only managed to get issue 2 like you but my friend downloaded issue one and it is fab!!

  7. Geraldine

    Magazine looks pretty ! I’m not sure I’ll ever make an apple cosy , though .
    So the stash busting cushions will be getting a matching blanket ? How perfect .
    I always visit your blog for a colour boost and this time you’ve really made the afternoon sing !

  8. Linda

    That looks like a nice magazine. I love the colours, unfortunately, I’m not very practical with things like that.

  9. Scrapiana

    Hello there! I feel a bit bogus here as a non-crocheter (though seeing what Mollie Makes is up to has tempted me) but I felt compelled to comment as I’m the maker of the strawberries featured on the cover there: it’s still a thrill each time I set eyes on the cover with my handiwork!

    I agree with so much you’ve said here about the plight of women’s magazines, Penny, and the problem of political correctness and where it has tended to place crafting. I do feel it’s acquired a new legitimacy, which is fantastic.

    Anyway, I’m glad you’re enjoying the magazine in spite of the name (not what I’d have chosen either, frankly, but there you go…). x

  10. Cathy at PotterJotter

    Wow! Didn’t realise you were quite so multi-talented Penny! Those knitted cushions are deeply gorgeous. The magazine looks inspirational – lots of people have been talking about it – but slightly ‘off-putting’ name, as you say.

  11. Crochet with Raymond

    Hello Penny!

    I loved this post, and the last one too! All of your cushions all together, such a colourful treat, the new squares look fantastic too, we don’t get Mollie Makes here, but I bought the gentle art of knitting and love it, I may need to try the square pattern for a cushion or two, it has been a while and your lovely colours have got me a bit excited!
    Your markets look incredible, I got a major case of “I want to be there” seeing the photos, I hope you all do well and can carry it on for a long time!
    Have a lovely week, kisses to Higgins from Raymond! XXXXX

  12. Magic Cochin

    I heard Emma talking about Mollie Makes and must admit the title is a total turn off for me… though a few of the patterns inside might be of interest and I’m curious to see what trends are afoot.

    It looks like the photo-styling inside is very good so I might pick one up if I see one. (I could always put it on ebay!)


  13. Chris Gill

    How I agree about magazines. I too thought “Mollie makes” sounded so twee but have had to eat my words and sign up for the £5 deal. Your cushions are lovely – all those gorgeous colour mixtures.


  14. Otilia

    Oh this is so lovely! i would really like to be able to knit like you do!! I want to learn but i think i always had to left hands. Do you think that can change with time??? I do hope so!

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