Thursday, 27 November 2014

Yarn Shade Pegs

The first thing that comes to mind most mornings is "Where do I start?".

Always so many things to deal with...

My dresser hasn't been dusted for quite a while
This past week has been about dealing with 'home admin'. Dull and uninspiring but completely necessary. It's distracted me from my blog and the list of new posts from the blogs I follow. It makes me sad and I've missed it. I feel strangely out of touch.

But things need sorting right now and I've only got one pair of hands. (I sound like my Mother)

I've tackled the cupboard under the stairs and feel quite satisfied with it's now orderly contents. It still isn't a pretty site with the step ladder, carpet cleaner, wellies and picnic cool bags fighting for space but it is sorted so thats good. 

Two days spent sorting, cleaning, filing and searching for relevant paperwork is all very well but a girl needs some play time. I got rather giddy with excitement after seeing Lucy's ingenious idea to wind the entire Stylecraft Special colour range onto individual pegs, so that she can choose the colour order for her beautiful blankets. It reminded me of getting a brand new pack of felt-tip pens when I was little and loving the colour order the pens were lined up in in their plastic wallet.

I could not resist making my own 'yarn shade pegs'

I remember making little Christmas angels with pegs like these as a child
 24 pegs wasn't enough for all the colours of yarn I have (and the several more I purchased for this purpose) so I had to get more pegs :o)

I have honestly had so much fun playing with my colours and arranging them in little sets of the combinations I like. I'm no expert at colour theory and those colour wheel things mystify me, but this way I'm able to give more thought to the way I choose colours for my projects and put them together, especially now there are some great new colours in the range. (Although I wish they would include the Duck Egg (3680) they have in the Stylecraft Weekender yarn)
Thanks Lucy for this nifty idea!

And may I just take a moment to remember my Mum who passed away over 15years ago. It would've been her 81st birthday today. When I came across this photo the other day I couldn't help but smile at the crochet granny blanket over the back of the sofa - just like my house! Seeing this picture of my parents feels like I could just pop round to visit them, and the years they have gone just melt away (my Dad passed away in 2010) Their familiar faces that I grew up with bring me joy and comfort, but sadness too as I can't pop round and see them at all. It's the finality that is hard to take, isn't it?

WARNING: Please do not be alarmed at the very scary doll in the rocking chair and the lurid yellow walls - what were they thinking?....

'till next time....

Sunday, 16 November 2014

Petal Patch Joining & Border Tutorial

Hi everyone, firstly can I thank you all for the positive response to my petal patch blanket and all the wonderful comments you leave, they are so very much appreciated!
Here is my photo tutorial for how I joined my petal patch squares and also how I made the border. This joining method is based on the 'five chain, flat braid continuous join' method, but I have made changes to suit my project. Basically the difference is that I have used 3 chains and didn't go around the outer edge which means it's not quite continuous. So I guess you could call it the 'three chain, flat braid not quite continuous joining method' :o)
Although this isn't a difficult joining method to do I think it will be a tad difficult to explain in writing so I have included loads and loads of photos to illustrate the method better. If you are planning on trying this method out and are unfamiliar with it I recommend you watch the original youtube videos by Bethinx1, as these are brilliant and give you clear instructions of how it works.
Part 1 - here
Part 2 - here


I'm starting off with 9 petal patch squares I've made for this tutorial, laid out in the order I would like them to be for the finished project.

Starting on the top right square join your joining yarn at the top left corner of the square (I do this by pulling a loop of yarn through the 2ch corner space and making a chain stitch) Then do one double crochet (dc).

Chain 3 and make a dc in-between the 2 half trebles made in the last round of the square. Continue with ch3, 1dc (in-between the 2 half trebles made in the last round of the square) along the edge and when you get to the corner, chain 3 and do another 1dc in the same corner to make a 'skinny' loop, and then continue along the bottom edge. I hope you can see this clearly from the photo above. Make 1dc in the bottom right corner 2ch space and then ch3.

Picking up the next square which sits below the first one worked make 1dc in the top right 2ch corner space and ch1 (as above)

Take your hook out of the loop and insert hook from front to back into the last 3ch space made on the edge of the square you are joining to. Then pick up the yarn loop with your hook again and pull through. 


1dc in-between the 2half trebles, and ch1 - see photo above. Take out your hook and once again insert it, from front to back in the next ch3 space on the edge of the square you are joining to, pick up the yarn loop with your hook and pull through, and make 2ch and 1dc in next gap between 2htr. Work like this all along the edge.

At the corner make 1dc in the 2ch corner space (of the square you are working on) and ch1, take out hook from your loop and insert it, from front to back, into the 'skinny' loop made in the corner of the square you are joining to, pick up the yarn loop with your hook again then 2ch and 1dc into the same corner space (picture below is a close up so hopefully you can see better)

Continue in the same manor of ch3, 1dc along the vertical side of your square, remembering to make the 'skinny' loop in the corner.

As described above work along the bottom edge of the square and repeat the process to join in the third square. (Obviously if you are making a blanket you would continue down all your squares needed to complete this first column for your blanket, however many that may be).

When you reach the bottom make 1dc in the last corner space and then chain 3. You then need to pick up the square that is to the left of the one you have been working on, in this case it's the one with the green edge and burgundy as row 3.

make 1dc in the corner space of your next square and ch1. Take out hook from loop and insert it into the last ch3 space made on the square you are now going to join to and pick up the yarn loop again and pull through and ch2. Continue up the vertical edge of the square as before.

When you get to the corner, work the 1dc in the corner space and join it to the adjacent corner 'skinny' loop and make sure you do another dc in the corner space. (All the internal corner spaces must have 1dc, ch3, 1dc)

Then you need to work along the horizontal top edge of the square as in the above photo, ending with 1dc in the corner space and ch3. (The second dc that belongs to that corner space is made later)

You then need to work back along the edge you have just worked joining the next square which is the centre square of the nine I'm using.

Now when you get to this corner you need to insert your hook, (after you have dropped the loop off it) into the corner skinny loop of the square to the side AND also the square below. In the photo the 2 squares I'm referring to both have green last rounds, as it happens! You don't join to the diagonal placed squares.

Pick up the yarn loop again, ch2 and work 1dc into the corner space.

Continue up the vertical edge of the square, and then along the top horizontal edge, as you did for the square before.

Remember to do the second dc in your corner space to get the 'skinny' loop.

When you reach the top again, make the dc in the last corner space and chain 3.

Flip the work over so you are looking at the wrong side and slip stitch into the very first dc made so that the 3ch is joined. This matches the bottom of the column.

Fasten off.

Join your yarn again at the top left corner of the top centre square. 1dc into the corner chain space and ch3. Work along the left vertical side as before. Basically you are now working all the way down this left edge to the bottom, without joining in anymore squares.

When you get to the bit where the joining part of the crochet is, work 1dc into the square corner space, 1dc into the 3ch loop of the joining stitches (the cream part) and 1dc into the next squares corner space - as above photo.

At the bottom of this column work your 3chain and then pick up the square to the left of the one you are at (mine is the one with the pink edge) and continue to join as before.

Work up the right vertical side of the square, along the top edge, back along the top edge whilst joining in the square above and then up the right vertical side of that square.

Finish of at the top of the column by flipping over to the wrong side of the work to slip stitch join the 3chain to the starting dc. Fasten off again.

Phew! I do hope I have explained this ok for you!


Okay, so for the border join your yarn in anywhere along the edge and work 1dc into each stitch with 3dc in the corner chain space, as above...

...and 2dc in the 3chain loop of the joining part. You can also see from the above photo I have made 1dc in each of the corner spaces that belong to the squares

The second round of the border is also 1dc in each stitch all the way round, making 2dc in the centre stitch of the 3dc made in the corners on the previous round.

So you should have 2 rounds of dc stitches all around the edge.

Round 3 of the border is the frill. Ch3 and work 2 trebles into the back loop of the first stitch. Then 3 trebles worked in the back loop of each stitch around.
(in the photo above I have just worked the first treble and pulled it up a tad to try and show you that I have worked it into the back loop...

...maybe it's a bit clearer here, you can see the little ridge of the front loops sitting in front of the frill)

So there you are, the frill all around looking quite cute!!

I found these bits in my stash that co-ordinate well and decided to make my 'tutorial sample' into a cushion :o)


back... (I think the buttons came free with a magazine)

If you have followed this tutorial I hope it's clear for you and you have joined your squares without any problems.
Do let me know if you spot any mistakes, as I said it's much easier to actually do than explain!

Here is the link for my tutorial on how to make the petal patch motif
And here is the link to my finished petal patch blanket

Happy hooking my friends!

'till next time...

Thursday, 13 November 2014

Petal Patch Blanket

Yesterday I finished my petal patch blanket...

I weaved in the few ends that were left from the joining and the border, and Oh Joy! my blanket was done!

It all started with the colours. The colours I had in my minds eye. 

And I found them in the most beautiful yarn, so soft and lovely.

I played around with the pattern, at first I was going to make hexagons, but then my little petal patch square was born and I love her very much...

130 squares later, I joined them together with a method based on the 'five chain flat braid joining method', adapted slightly to fit my project.

This took me a while. And used up a lot of yarn. (200g to be precise. just to join the squares!)

The border is 2 rounds of double crochet in blue, and then the cream frilly edge is 3 trebles in the back loop of each stitch. The idea for the border was given to me by this generous blogger here. Thanks Kate!

 This is a very indulgent blanket. The soft and beautiful yarn is not the cheapest, but the quality is obvious and makes this very special. The size is not as big as I wanted, but it's big enough.

I wanted the layered effect with my quilt on my bed so I'm very happy with this!

It is an understatement to say that I love this blanket - I adore it! The pattern has worked out so very pleasing for me and the yarn - again - I can't help but love this yarn, it is so very beautiful...

I have started on a photo tutorial for the joining method that I have used, and I hope to get this online next week. The pattern for the petal patch square can be found here.

Yarn info: Knit by numbers Merino dk in shades KBN22 (coral), KBN18 (peach), KBN54 (yellow), KBN55 (off white)
and the blue is Sublime extra fine merino dk in shade 0307
This is just for your info, it's not a sponsored post (unfortunately)

Take care my friends, and I hope to be with you all again soon...

'till next time...