Saturday, 23 April 2016

The Very Lazy Ombré Blanket

I love a crocheted blanket.

Made with love and received with joy, they really are the loveliest gift for a friend/relative's new baby/ puppy/ house.

Number of blankets pinned/coveted/added to my 'must-make list'?
A bazillion.
Number of blankets actually made by me?
Yep. Two.

And both were projects for my books. One is actually still with the publisher for promotional stuff.

But I have great intentions.... You may remember I started the Crochet Mood Blanket; one motif a day throughout the year 2014:



So without further ado, let me introduce you to my next unfinished blanket:
The Very Lazy Ombré Blanket:

Look, I haven't even joined the squares... good so far, eh?

This time, I used some great yarn I was sent by Woolly and Warmy to try. 

Again, I chose a yarn which changes colour so that I don't have to deal with all the ends. It's acrylic, so will wash and wear well and is cheap as chips, too. I've got 10 balls of 100g each, which I think will be plenty for a single bed-sized blanket for the boy. My idea is to make all the squares and then order them ombré stylee, from dark to light. I think I might join and border them with plain white, but I'll wait until I get to that stage to decide (don't hold your breath...)

To make the blanket warm, I wanted a solid-ish square motif and fancied a circle in the middle.
Here's the pattern: UK first, US below.
UK Terms
Papatya Batik in colour 10
4mm hook
At the beginning of each round, make a 3ch for your first treble. At the end of each round, join with a slip stitch to the top of your ch-3.

Round 1: 2ch, 10tr in 2nd ch from hook (10 sts)
Round 2: 2tr in each st around (20)
Round 3: 2tr in each st around (40)
Round 4: (2tr, 2ch, 2tr) in first st, *1tr, 2htr, 3dc, 2htr, 1tr, (2tr, 2ch, 2tr) in next st* repeat from * to * around.
Fasten off

US terms
Papatya Batik in colour 10
4mm hook
At the beginning of each round, make a 3ch for your first double crochet. At the end of each round, join with a slip stitch to the top of your ch-3.

Round 1: 2ch, 10dc in 2nd ch from hook (10 sts)
Round 2: 2dc in each st around (20)
Round 3: 2dc in each st around (40)
Round 4: (2dc, 2ch, 2dc) in first st, *1dc, 2hdc, 3sc, 2hdc, 1dc, (2dc, 2ch, 2dc) in next st* repeat from * to * around.
Fasten off

To join the squares, try double crocheting (US single crochet) them together.

The boy asked if his blanket would be ready for his birthday.

Oh, how I laughed....

Sarah x

Saturday, 27 February 2016

Crochet Bag-a-long

You may remember my Sunny Days Beach bag from a while back.

It was a pattern I developed for Black Sheep Wools and is now going to be a featured bag-a-long by the very talented Kathryn from Crafternoon Treats. Super-exciting!!

Kathryn happens to be a bit of a nifty bag-a-long-lady. In fact, she has an amazing Facebook group with thousands of like-minded crochet-bag-loving group members.

Kathryn has designed a version of the pattern for the bagalong:

If you'd like to join in with the bagalong, then you can order the yarn packs from the lovely gals at Black Sheep Wools in the original colour-way (click on the picture to take you directly there):

Or beachy tones:

 Each yarn pack contains enough supplies to make the bag, the sunglasses case and tablet cosy. All of these are available as free patterns from here.

To join the Facebook group, then pop along here.
To read more about the bag-a-long and find out more about the pattern, then visit Kathryn's blog here.

Wowsers! I hope to see you over at the Facebook group and cannot wait to see how you get on with your very own Sunny Days beach bag.
Sarah xx

Saturday, 30 January 2016

Thick, Quick Reversible Cowl

Oh yes, indeedy.

The front

This pattern features two of my favourite words when it comes to crochet projects. I may add reversible to that list, too after making this.
I've been trying out lots of things with this lovely, squishy yarn lately. This project just happened to be a happy accident.

The reverse side with ridges

It couldn't be simpler. 

I used about 3 balls of Drops Polaris in white and a 15mm hook. You could use any hook and yarn you fancy. If you have thinner yarn, then simply increase the number of chains in your foundation row (your cowl should measure around 12 inches/30cms wide) and add more rows until the desired height is reached.

Chain 37. Join with a sl st to the first ch.
Round 1: ch3, 1 treble stitch (US double crochet) in each stitch around. Join with a sl st to the top of the ch3.
Rounds 2 - 9: ch2, 1 front post treble stitch (US FP dc) in each stitch around. Join with a sl st to the top of the ch2.

Never made a front post stitch before? Don't worry. It's super-easy.
Yarn over hook, as you would for a normal UK treble (US dc)

Rather than working into the top of the stitch, insert your hook around the post of the stitch below, from the front to the back and to the front again.

Now finish off your stitch as usual (yarn over, pull a loop through, yarn over, pull yarn through all loops).

Enjoy making and don't forget to share your makes with me- I love to see what you do. You can find me at all the regular social media haunts. Just tap on the links to the side of the page.

Have a great weekend,

Sarah xx

Saturday, 16 January 2016

Little Box of Crochet

Have you heard of the Little Box of Crochet?

It's the brilliant brain-child of Amanda Bloom. A monthly subscription of crochet loveliness; you receive an exclusive pattern, along with all the goodies required to complete the project, contained within a beautiful box and delivered right to your door.

Previous talented designers include Kate from Greedy For Colourwho designed these wonderful fungi...

These gorgeous hand-warmers by Heather from Pink Milk...

The cutest bobbly head-warmer from Kate from Just Pootling...

And I am very proud to be Little Box of Crochet's February designer!
I hope you all enjoy my sweet little design for the month of love! Here's a sneaky peek...
Want to know more? Here's Amanda's amazing story:

My name is Amanda Bloom, lover of all things creative and cute. I live in Cheshire with my beautiful daughter Jenny.
In 2013 Jenny was diagnosed with an aggressive brain tumour. She was 15 at the time. I closed my hairdressing salon and focused on caring for my darling girl.
I had always loved making things and had a blog called Amanda Makes where I shared my creative life with many other fabulous makers around the world. When Jenny got sick, creativity became our comfort blanket and therapy. The thing I enjoyed most was crochet. What had been a pleasant hobby became a passion.
One day, whilst on holiday with Jenny, I came across the website of a Subscription Beauty Box. I had never heard of the concept of monthly subscription boxes. ( I must have been asleep because there are LOADS of them!) I loved the idea of receiving a sweet box of surprises every month! A wee gift to yourself! Not being big on beauty products, I started searching for a company doing creative boxes. I couldn’t find a crochet one that I liked so I decided that there was a gap and pressing need for a delicious monthly box of crochet. I knew that I’d stumbled across my ‘thing’.
I hope from the bottom of my heart that you will have the same enjoyment from the moment your Little Box of Crochet arrives each month. I would love to hear from you and see your makes. You can use the hashtag #littleboxofcrochet on Instagram; follow our page @littleboxofcrochetor like our page on Facebook …Little Box of Crochet.
Big hugs to all of you!
Amanda x
For more information about LBC, including details of how to subscribe (worldwide shipping available) please visit the website.
Wishing you all a wonderful week,
Sarah xx

Thursday, 31 December 2015

EXTREME crochet

I've only gone and done it again.
Not satisfied with writing one book this year, I decided to do another...

And not just any old crochet book, either. 
EXTREME crochet.

But what on earth can you do with EXTREME crochet*, I bet you're wondering...?

My answer, dear reader is this: Imagine the biggest hooks, the chunkiest yarns and some stuff that's not even yarn at all and you're on the right track. Choose chunky, high-loft woollen yarns, or fabric and T-shirt yarns, string, rope, washing line or even make your own. If it's long and cord-like, then you can probably crochet with it. So what can you do with extreme crochet? Anything you like! It's perfect for maxing out the classics; want a cushion? Super-size it with big yarn. A blanket? Whip up one in a day with mega wool. A necklace? Walk on the wild side with funky T-shirt yarn. Extreme crochet doesn't have to mean that everything you make is massive, just that everything you make is awesome. 

*apologies to some of my friends who had hoped that Extreme crochet meant crocheting whilst abseiling down a cliff, or strapped to the roof of a tank. That will be another book, I promise.

And so my book is a collection of 8 simple patterns, from homewares to accessories and is available (to date) from here.


Sarah xx