Save those fingers!

Your hands will be cosy even if it looks like this outside..

Your hands will be cosy even if it looks like this outside..

Brrr! It’s cold out there. When the chilly weather hit last week it occurred to me that I don’t actually have a pair of gloves to keep my hands toasty warm. I immediately set about searching for the perfect pattern. With so many talented knitters out there I wasn’t disappointed and I thought it was only fair to share a few of my favourites with you.

Mittens and fingerless gloves make for simple projects which are ideal for beginners, or more experienced knitters who fancy something speedy and satisfying. Besides, as brilliant a hand warmer as your favourite cup of tea is, you’re going to have to venture outside at some point…

Picture by Tanis Fiber Arts

Picture by Tanis Fiber Arts

I instantly fell in love with these beauties  from Tanis Fiber Arts  and it’s not hard to see why. This simple pattern is knitted in the round and is a brilliant way of using up any odd bits of wool you might have lying around. There’s even a pattern for a matching hat if you fancy a bigger project. You can find the pattern here

 

 

 

 

These fingerless mitts  by Fringe Association are a lovely little project for beginners as they’re so simple. You’ll just need to know your basic knit and purl. They’re knitted in the round and the straightforward design gives you the freedom to use your choice of yarn.

 

Picture by Martha Stewart

Picture by Martha Stewart

If you need your hands warming up pronto, this easy pattern  from Martha Stewart  is just the ticket. All you need is your basic knit stitch and the clear instructions are helpful if you’re new to knitting in the round.

New Year’s Resolu-tea-ans

Happy New Year readers! Well, happy sort-of-New-Year at least. Can you believe we’re now already half way through January? The post-holiday slump and cold temperatures can bring on a classic case of January Blues. Be sure to try one of our green teas or fruity infusions for an instant pick-me-up and a very nice addition to that January diet. If you’re not sure which one to choose (and with so many delicious options we don’t blame you) then fear not. With a tea for every resolution you’ve got one more reason to keep yours this year.

Resolu0443 Cosy Jasmine Green Box OUTLINED_FIR_AWtion: Become a super zen yoga guru

Tea: Jasmine Green

We’ve paired fragrant jasmine with Chunmee green tea for this delicately flavoured brew. Jasmine has been reported to help reduce stress levels, just the ticket when you’re attempting your downward dog.*

 

Resolution: Transform yourself into the high flying Cosy Lemon Green Box OUTLINED_FIR_AWathlete you always knew you were

Tea: Lemon Green

It’s long been reported that both green tea and lemon can boost your metabolism and help with fat burning. It makes sense that a good tea like Cosy Lemon Green would be a great partner for your new exercise regime. It’s super refreshing cold too, so why not try it after a workout for an invigorating boost?

ResoCosy Peppermint Box OUTLINED_FIR_AWlution: Eat more healthily than your pet rabbit

Tea: Peppermint

Peppermint has been used for centuries as a remedy for digestive problems, and peppermint tea can help with bloating – a useful addition to that healthy new diet of yours. Try having a cup of organic Cosy Peppermint after meals to give your digestive system a helping hand.

 

Resolution: Cut down on caffeine0438 Cosy Decaf Box_FIR_AW

Tea: Decaf

As lovely as tea is, we know that it is possible to have too much of a good thing. The caffeine in your regular tea can cause problems like headaches, restlessness and loss of sleep. Enter Cosy Decaf, all the great flavour and comforting qualities of your usual cuppa with none of the caffeine. Win win.

 

Resolution0439 Cosy Chamomile Box OUTLINED_FIR_AW: Get more sleep without counting sheep

Tea: Chamomile

Chamomile is thought to have anti-anxiety properties, helpful when you’ve got a million thoughts racing through your mind when you’re trying to nod off. Our Chamomile tea is flavoured with a hint of liquorice for sweetness – oh and it’s organic too. Try swapping your evening cocoa for a cup of Cosy Chamomile at bedtime for a soothing sleep inducing treat.

Resolution: Step away from those 3pm biscuits0440 Cosy Blueberry Box OUTLINED_FIR_AW

Tea: Blueberry

If you find yourself craving something sugary and sweet in that grey area between lunch and home time then Cosy Blueberry is the brew for you. With ingredients like Echinacea, Hibiscus and Rosehips it’s positively bursting with fruitiness and will pick you up in no time – no sugary snacks required.

 

 

 

*we do not recommend drinking tea at the same time as attempting a downward dog.

It’s the most wonderful time of the year!

Merry Christmas tea lovers! It’s finally the big day and if you’re anything like me you’ll be slumped on the sofa, full to bursting with chocolate, turkey, mince pies and all manner of delicious festive treats. With all the presents, food, and family Christmas day can often feel more than a little bit hectic. There’s wrapping paper all over the floor, you’re not sure if the turkey was fully defrosted before it went in the oven, and your little brother has already broken his new remote controlled car. You’re ready to go and have a sneaky lie down somewhere quiet when Uncle Alan insists everyone join in on a family game of charades. This is the perfect moment to slip away and brew yourself a cup of this Spiced Holiday Tea. This hot, spicy and soothing brew will pick you up in no time.

Christmas cookie optional but preferred

Christmas cookie optional but preferred

This recipe makes enough for 4 people, so round up some stressed looking adults, sit them all down and stick a cup of this in their hands.

You will need:
– 3 x Cosy English Breakfast teabags
– 4 x star anise
– 1 x cinnamon stick
– 3 x tbsp. honey
– 2 x tbsp. lemon juice
– 2 x cloves

All a simmer

All a simmer

To make this festive treat, put a pan on to boil with enough water to make four mugs of tea. Once the water is boiling pop in the teabags, star anise, cinnamon stick and cloves and simmer for 3-5 minutes. When the time’s up, stir in the lemon juice and honey and pour into mugs. Sweeten to taste with more honey if required.

Find a quiet spot and sip this one slowly. You’ll be rejuvenated and ready for that game of charades in no time.

Christmas Jumper Day

The festive season is in full swing over at Cosy HQ. The tree is up, the decorations are out and we are taking the chance to eat as many mince pies as we possibly can (is there anything better than nice cup of tea and a mince pie at Christmas?) Be that as it may, with all that Christmas cheer it’s easy to forget that it has got really cold outside. Luckily, there’s nothing we love better here at Cosy than keeping ourselves cosy. Snuggly knits and a cup of our favourite Cosy tea to warm our hands on are all we need to make us happy.

The perfect accompaniment to a knitting session

The perfect accompaniment to a knitting session

 

Given all this, you won’t be surprise to hear that Christmas Jumper Day is basically our idea of heaven. We wouldn’t go as far as to say it beats Christmas itself, but it’s pretty close. In case you didn’t know, in the UK Christmas Jumper Day is next Friday 18th December. It’s usually organised by Save the Children (click here to find out how you can get involved in their appeal) but there’s nothing stopping you from throwing a Christmas Jumper Day of your own at work or home, either just for fun or raising money for a charity of your choice. Plus, who doesn’t love an excuse to get together with your friends for a good old cup of tea?

Picture from The Yarn Loop

Picture from The Yarn Loop

There are some brilliant jumpers in the shops right now – ranging from the cute to the classy to the erm…not so classy but I know you would much rather knit your own. With only a week to go you’ll have to get a wriggle on but this lovely pattern from The Yarn Loop  will see you right through the festive season. The design includes a couple of Winter favourites, a snowman and a robin, so there’s no reason why you can’t carry on wearing it until Spring if you fancy holding on to that yuletide cheer. The pattern makes a large size, which is perfect for snuggling up in. The ridiculously adorable snowman and robin designs are family friendly, so for a cuteness overload (and very cheesy Christmas day photo) why not knit one for the whole gang?! Think of this as the perfect Winter weekend activity. Pop the kettle on, get out those knitting needles and cosy up.

Oh, and don’t forget to Tweet us your Christmas Jumper Day pictures!

3 ways with…Cosy Rooibos with Vanilla

3 ways with… is a series exploring different ways of brewing and sipping our favourite drink. I’ll be picking out some of my favourite Cosy flavours and showing you a few different ways to enjoy them. Click here to see previous posts from the series.

Ah Rooibos, it’s a funny old tea. It’s the kind of tea you might find at the back of a weird aunt’s cupboard and you’re quite sure how to pronounce (that’s roy-bosh). If you haven’t given it a go before then I’m here to convert you and let you in on a little secret – Rooibos is delicious. Especially Cosy Rooibos, which we’ve paired with vanilla for a unique and creamy flavour.

Rooibos plants in the Cederberg Mountains

Rooibos plants in the Cederberg Mountains

Rooibos, or ‘red bush’ as it translates from Afrikaans, originates from the Cederberg Mountains in its native South Africa. The needle-like plants are harvested and left to ferment and dry before being ground into a tea. The tea’s popularity grew after early Dutch settlers started drinking it as a cheap alternative to black tea, which was much less affordable than it is today. Although in the UK it has maintained its status as the indie band of the tea world, Rooibos has grown in popularity since those heady early days and has a loyal following, especially in South Africa where it makes up a whopping 40% of the hot drinks market. Drinkers have associated it with a number of health benefits, everything from allergies and headaches…to curing eczema and halting premature aging.

In previous ‘3 ways with…’ posts I’ve shared some pretty adventurous recipes. Cosy Rooibos with Vanilla is such a unique flavour that it really doesn’t need much embellishment. If you’re new to Rooibos then consider this your initiation. Here we are folks, my top 3 ways to drink Cosy Rooibos with Vanilla…

With lots of milk and sugarIMG_4744

This is the traditional way, brewed much like we brew good old English Breakfast. Sometimes only a pot will do and this is one of them. Simply pop in a teabag or two, steep with boiling water and leave to brew for 3-5 minutes. Serve with lashings of milk and sugar to taste. A wonderfully comforting and sweet take on an old favourite – be sure to crack this one out at your next tea party.

 

Straight up

IMG_4739The lovely thing about Cosy Rooibos is that the added vanilla means it’s a perfect drink all by itself. Black tea can be bitter when drunk without milk. Rooibos contains around 50% less of the bitter tannins you find in teas like English Breakfast and Earl Grey, so if you’re avoiding dairy this is a delicious alternative to your regular brew. Simply pour boiling water over a teabag in your favourite mug and you’re just a couple of minutes’ brewing time away from perfection.

Cold, with lemon and honey

If you’re a fan of iced green tea, IMG_4755then think of this as its darker, more grown up cousin. This is a deliciously refreshing treat for any time of the day, but is especially good in the evening as an alternative to an alcoholic tipple. Brew your tea as usual and once you’ve removed the teabag, stir in a teaspoon of honey and leave until completely cool. You can even make ahead of time and keep it in the fridge until you’re ready to drink it. Come teatime, simply add a slice of lemon and you’re good to go. Just promise me you’ll take a second to admire that beautiful red hue before you take a sip.

So what do you think readers, are you converted? Let us know in the comments or over on Twitter!

 

Unlucky for some..

This morning I managed to forget my umbrella during a rain shower, trip up the stairs, and get an ink stain on my favourite shirt. All within the space of an hour. It wasn’t until I’d dried myself off, rubbed my bruised shin and dabbed the ink out my top before I realised the date. Friday 13th. Now I’m not superstitious I swear *cough* but given my morning of misfortune, I thought it couldn’t hurt to arm myself with a few lucky charms. Y’know, just in case.

Whether you’re superstitious or not, maybe these will stop you from facing the same fate as me (and my favourite shirt). Extra lucky for you is that I’ve already tracked down the best charms around, so you’ll be sorted for Friday 13th May 2016. If a black cat crosses your path then you’re on your own.

Four-Leaf Clovers

Pattern by Crochet Spot

Pattern by Crochet Spot

The four-leaf clover is probably the most universal sign of luck around thanks to its association with St Patrick’s Day. Druids traditionally carried a three-leaf clover, or shamrock, to help them see evil spirits. Four-leaf clovers were extra special as they offered magical protection. Don’t worry about them being tricky to find though – because I’ve tracked down this handy crochet pattern for you folks to knit your own. Phew! It’s super simple and easy to make, so whip one up and pop it in your bag, your pocket, or pin it to your coat and you’ll be lucky all day long.

Horseshoes

Horseshoes have long been considered a lucky charm and used to ward of evil spirits. There’s a legend which tells the tale of the Devil and St Dunstan, a blacksmith. The Devil asked for Dunstan to shoe his horse, but the crafty saint nailed the shoe to the Devil’s foot instead, which was understandably fairly painful. Dunstan only agreed to remove the shoe if the Devil agreed he would never enter a house with one nailed outside.

Horse jumper by Marks & Spencer

Horse jumper by Marks & Spencer

If you don’t fancy sourcing an actual horseshoe and nailing it to your front door, then this horse jumper is a good alternative. It’ll also ward off those evil spirits when you leave your house, a handy bonus.

Mint Cosy Peppermint Box OUTLINED_FIR_AW

This one may be lesser known than some of its mainstream cousins, but mint is no less of a lucky charm. Traditionally used to attract good spirits and bring good fortune to the person carrying it, folks of yesteryear would attach a sprig to their coat for luck. For a less pungent (and more refreshing) alternative, why not relax with a nice cup of Cosy Peppermint instead? Let’s face it, you’ll need it after the day you’ve had.

It’s the spookiest time of year…

Perhaps you’ve noticed a certain…spooky atmosphere over the past few days. A glowing pumpkin peeking out of a darkened window, a tendency to be a tad…jumpier than usual, or maybe even a chill in the air. All these eerie signs can only mean, it’s Halloween again folks!

jackolantern
For most people, Halloween is a time of year to dress up, carve pumpkins and go out trick or treating and to parties. Not me! I’m a cold weather loving girl who’s always been a tiny bit afraid of the dark. I like to see Halloween as the start of a few months of cosy nights in by the fire with a blanket, a good book, and of course, a big mug of tea.

 

skull-kerchief_small2

Just the right level of scary…picture by Knitty or Nice

If like me the prospect of leaving your house this Halloween doesn’t leave you feeling especially enthused, then this lovely knitted scarf pattern by Knitty or Nice is for you. It’s cosy enough to keep you warm until Spring and is scary enough that you won’t feel *too* bad about staying in and knitting while everyone else runs around frightening the pants off each other.

If you haven’t had quite enough scary knitting for one year, then check out this fab pumpkin pattern we posted last year, or this creepy cosy.

Psst..just a reminder that you can always get in touch via our Twitter. Let us know how you like to spend your Halloween, we’d love to hear from you!