Crochet an easy winter hat

beginners easy crochet hat

Since learning how to crochet a few months ago I have become hooked! (Cheesy pun intended). I’ve made bralettes, scarfs, infinity scarfs and amigurumi toys.

I found this super easy pattern to crochet a winter hat and wanted to share it with you all. It’s a Lion brand yarn pattern which can be found here. I actually chained 47 to start as I copied the height of one of my favourites Abercrombie and Fitch hats.

I used:

  • a 5mm (H) crochet hook
  • yarn needle
  • worsted weight yarn from love
  • cardboard to make a pom poms

Some useful videos:

My hat in pictures 


This was after about 30 rows – I kept wrapping the fabric around my head to ensure it would fit. I made about 60-70ish rows in total


The ribbed pattern



This is after I weaved yarn through the longer length of the hat. Once threaded I pulled the yarn together and tied a couple knots to secure it. At this point it looked how it does in the above picture however there was still a small hole so I sowed it together.


Here I’m sowing the side together with a yarn needle


I’ve got enough left to make a pom pom!


Pom pom making


Watching pom pom making on YouTube




The final product!


This hat took me a few hours over two days. Single crochets seem to take  FOREVER to grow especially after my last project was made with treble crochets – but stick with it and you’ll have a lovely homemade crochet hat!

JG x






Thank you and Happy New Year!

Happy New Year from Jade Gabriell

Wow! It’s 2016. I just wanted to take this time to say thank you and Happy New Year to the thousands of people that have visited both this blog and in 2015. As my other blog is focussed on my journey to publication, I started this blog in April as a way to share all of my other passions and interests, and I’ve been blown away by the amount of support that I’ve received. It really makes me happy seeing my stats, reading comments and talking to so many followers and other bloggers that I’ve spoken to as a result of this blog!

My top five posts in 2015 were: 

  1. A review of the Bridea Box: A must have for the UK Bride-to-be
  2. The perfect Autumnal (Fall) hobby that you need to start
  3. Transformation Tuesday with a Freedom Makeup London Haul
  4. Kiss Ever-EZ Lashes in Number 11: A review
  5. Septum piercing: Yes or No? 

Get ready for more beauty, hair, crochet and wedding posts in 2016! 

Be sure to like, follow or comment on my blog – I love connecting with other bloggers and readers!

JG x


The perfect autumnal (fall) hobby that you need to start

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Think crochet is just for grannies? Think again. 

homemade crochet bralette

My homemade crochet bralette

Homemade crochet bralette

I taught myself how to crochet in an evening and within a week I had made a sexy bralette! If you don’t crochet already I highly recommend starting this Autumn (Fall).

Baby Monsters – basic amigurumi 

baby monsters amigurumi

Bob Aspen and Rosie Spice
Amigurumi crochet

I started by making these super cute baby monsters. I’d never crocheted before but found the mixture of written instructions and the youtube video to be the perfect combination to learn these basic and essential stitches. I found it so fiddly to start with and almost gave up but I’m really glad I stuck with it, even if it took me two evenings to make one monster at first. The next monster (the orange one) I made it in half the time using the same pattern but a smaller hook. By the way amigurumi is a Japanese style of crocheting stuffed toys.

With this project I learned:

  • magic ring
  • single stitches
  • crochet counting (it sounds silly but you have to count the stitches and it takes a while to get used to…maybe thats just me though lol)
  • how to fasten off

I used:

stylecraft aran yarn

Top: Aspen
Left to right: Spice, Fondant and Lipstick
Stylecraft special aran yarn

Bralette with a diamond mesh stitch 

crochet bralette

crochet bralette

diamond mesh (fishnet) stitching

crochet bralette

This was my third crochet project and I’m pleased to say that it turned out really well! I used this video to learn how the make the bralette and then another video to learn how to do the diamond mesh (fishnet) stitching. There were written instructions for a similar bralette but as a novice I found it easier to watch the technique in the video from Aqua Hannah. I tweaked the pattern slightly too as I didn’t think that a chain stitched strap would be strong enough for me and my DD’s – so I single stitched them too.

With this project I learned:

  • slip knot
  • slip stitches
  • chain stitches
  • double stitches

I used:

stylecraft yarn

My leftovers after making the bralette (enough to make a monster!)

What’s next? 

I still have a lot to learn about crochet. I need to learn how to read patterns and master even more stitches. This week, someone was telling me about a broomstick stitch and I can’t wait to give it a go and make a shawl with it. Crochet is seriously addictive!

JG x

Ideas for a bookish wedding

Bookish literary wedding ideas

If you are getting married and you, like me, love books then this post is for you. Although I won’t be wearing a wedding dress made from the pages of my favourite books, I think there are some lovely subtle ways to have a bookish theme on your big day. Here are some ideas:

Book Confetti 

alice-in-wonderland-book-confettiAlice in Wonderland Confetti by Literary Emporium – £3.50 

This Alice in Wonderland confetti might be a bit quirky for some weddings but why not use a romance novel instead? It’s a fantastic DIY project and so much more interesting than standard confetti.

Literary Bridesmaid Gifts

Catt charm necklace inspired by Hemingway

Ernest Hemingway Cat Lover Necklace by Literary Emporium – £11.60

One of my bridesmaids is mad about cats and this is a cute gift which she would absolutely love.

Literary Table Names

Literary table names

I absolutely love how the author name has been combined with a quote to create a cute table name.

The Book Arch 

Wedding Book Arch

If you and your future husband or wife are both mad about books then why not? Who needs flowers anyway?

Literary Cufflinks

Jane Austen Cufflinks

Jane Austen Cufflinks by Jezebel Charms (on Etsy) – £10.26

What a perfect gift for ushers, a best man or even a husband-to-be on the day of the wedding. There are plenty of options on Etsy so you are sure to find a pair to suit.

Library Card Wedding Guest Book

library card wedding guestbook

library card wedding guest book

Library Card Wedding Guest Book from bindingbee (on etsy) – over £100 

This is such a unique idea. It’s a handmade item on Etsy so it is a bit of a splurge. On the other hand, it could made a great DIY wedding project!

A Bookish Wedding Cake 


Why not talk to your cake maker about making you a bookish cake? I love the second one in the picture above, it would be lovely to have romantic verses on it.

Library Card Catalogue 

Library Card catalogue

Such a lovely idea unfortunately I’m unsure where it is sold however I’m sure that it could be replicated by a crafty bride or groom to be!

The Save the Date Bookmark

Save the date bookmarkFor pricing visit: 

A save the date card that doubles up as a bookmark. What a lovely idea!

The Book Ring-Holder

Harry Potter ring holder

Yes, this is Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince! Why have a wedding pillow when you could have your favourite book?

Flowers Made of Book Pages 

Literary Bookish wedding flowers

Feeling crafty? Then why not get your bridesmaids together and create these quirky bookish wedding flowers.

That’s it for now folks. Do you have any other ideas for a bookish wedding?

Happy wedding planning!

JG x

12 reasons why you should try pole dancing (or pole fitness) this summer

butterfly move pole dancing pole fitness

Working on my ‘butterfly’

I have been pole dancing or doing ‘pole fitness’ on and off for about four years now. I absolutely love it – so here are 12 reasons why you should seek out your nearest class and give it a go this summer!

  1. It will increase your upper body strength – trust me you may not be able to lift your own body weight now but in just a few weeks you’ll be doing moves that will surprise you.
  2. It’s a fun way to get fit – give me a pole over the treadmill any day.
  3. You’ll lose your inhibitions and get body confident – I turned up to my first class wearing a baggy t-shirt and and the longest shorts I could find, now give me booty shorts and a sports bra and I’m ready.
  4. You’ll amaze yourself – I’ve never done gymnastics in my life, yeah I did handstands and cartwheels whilst playing outside as a child but that was it. Now, I can climb a pole and hang upside down with only one leg holding on.
  5. You’ll increase your flexibility – I still can’t do the splits, but my body feels so much more open than it used to.
  6. It will make you feel sexier – I’ve been to many different classes, some where the focus was on pole dance and sensuality and others where the focus is pole fitness and simply getting a specific move, like in a gymnastics class. The dance element certainly makes me feel sexier and the fact that I can accomplish all of these new moves also makes me more confident in myself – and confidence is sexy!
  7. If you are ever in a club that has a pole you will impress everyone – when I was in Mexico I climbed the pole and did a simple move – I impressed the crowd so much that I got a bunch of free tequila shots that night….good times.
  8. It will impress your other half – my man loves that I know a few moves on the pole.
  9. You’ll transform your body – my core strength is so much stronger and I have the flatter stomach to prove it. The conditioning and strength exercises will help tone your entire body.
  10. You’ll be proud of your bruises – now this sounds like a strange one but a bruise in the pole world is a sign that you have attempted a new pole move. Yeah you hit the pole but so what, you’ll soon master that nemesis move!
  11. You’ll be more up for trying other daring exercises – since doing pole I’ve found a love for all aerial exercise. Aerial silks is another one of my favourites and makes me feel like I’m in the circus – in a good way, not an American Horror Story Freak Show kind of way.
  12. There is a whole aerial network out there that you can be part of – pole dancing advocates are everywhere, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and it’s great to connect with them. I’ve lived in NYC and the UK and I’ve made friends with so many people all because of our love of aerial sports.

So – what do you think? Will you give pole a go this summer?

Superman pole move pole dancing pole fitness


hanging upside down pole dance pole fitness

Literally one of the most relaxing poses…

JG x

Here’s why I’m making my own wedding veil and you should too

Beautiful wedding veil

The average cost of a wedding in the UK in 2014 was £20,983 according a survey conducted by You and Your Wedding. That just blows my mind, don’t get me wrong, I like to spend money and treat myself to the finer things, but spending almost £21,000 on one day makes me feel a little sick. I’d much rather put that towards a deposit on a house so that my fiancé and I can start our life together.

Before I started shopping for anything wedding related I thought a veil would cost me £50 at most, after all it is just a bit of tulle hung over your head. Wrong! I fell in love with a cathedral veil when I tried on my wedding dress only to be told by the sales assistant that she would do me a good deal and knock the price down to £200. What? £200, that’s a good deal for a bit of tulle! :O At this point I realised that if you put the word wedding in front of anything the price will automatically sky rocket! So I thought to myself, I’m going to make a veil myself, seriously how hard can it be!

Here is a handy guide that shows the different lengths of veils:

Bridal veil length

I’m lucky in that I come from a family of seamstresses, so when I hatched this crazy idea to make my own veil, it was met with support – which is good because the last thing I sewed was a U-part wig and that doesn’t require much sewing skills!

I’ve since fallen in love with a veil by a very famous designer, I don’t want to post it as I don’t want to give anything away before my wedding. Making the veil myself means that I’ll be able to do it cheaper than what it’s being sold for and I’ll have something with a real personal touch for my big day. And if I ever have a daughter and pass it on to her, it would mean a lot to know that she is wearing not only the veil that I wore, but also the veil that I made.

Anyway, here is the pattern that I’m going to use, as you can see it comes with a variety of styles to choose from. I found the pattern on eBay for £7.

Butterick pattern B4487 make your own wedding veil
I’ve started to source the tulle and edging that I need to create my veil. I’ll let you know how its coming along in the next few months. Planning a wedding can be busy and stressful but taking the time to do a crafty project like this will not only be fun but it also helps to save the pennies so that you can put them towards something else. So, what do you think? Would you give making your own veil a go?

Look out for a post about choosing the right veil for you and your dress, coming very soon.

JG x

Review of the Bridea Box: A must have for the UK bride-to-be

Bridea Box Review

The Bridea Box

I was ridiculously excited this week when my Bridea Box arrived in the post. What is a Bridea Box you ask? Well think of it as a giant graze box that is packed with fantastic wedding ideas and savings from favours to bridesmaid dresses instead of healthy snacks.

Bridea Box Review

I first sampled one of these boxes a few months ago when they had a special deal on where I only had to pay for postage and packaging. A few days later this super cute pink packet arrived in the post with money off vouchers, natural flower confetti and much more wedding planning goodies. The Bridea Box that arrived this week was like that first packet on steroids. It cost £15.95 (including p&p) and is definitely worth every penny.

Wedding planning is fun but let’s face it, spending hours on Pinterest and trawling through wedding fairs can also be a little bit tiring. The Bridea Box saves you time, effort and those annoying sales conversations at fairs and instead sends you fabulous ideas for your wedding straight to your door.

Bridea box goodies review

The Bridea goodies laid out on my bed

The box contains over 20 wedding samples! The highlight of this month’s box were definitely the white wedding flip flops in the sparkly organza bag. My fiancé and I are still trying to decide whether we want a traditional or beach wedding and these may have just slightly swayed me. Also included were some delicious artisan du chocolat favour boxes filled with yummy flavours such as milk chocolate filled with passion fruit, dark chocolate praline and milk chocolate pistachio. There were also forget-me-not seed packets, customised tea bags and wine labels, save the date balloons, I Do stickers for bridal shoes, a Team Bride photo booth prop and so many flyers with great savings on everything from wedding lingerie to hair accessories.

Artisan chocolates from the bridea box

Yummy artisan chocolates that are perfect as favours!

There is so much to go through in these Bridea Boxes and best of all I can do it whilst enjoying a cuppa and relaxing on the sofa. I’m not sure how long it will be until the next box is available but I absolutely cannot wait to see what goodies the Bridea ladies will include.

Inside the Bridea Box

Inside the Bridea Box

JG x