}); Projects Archives - A Little Bit Of Lou

Projects

Cat Mats and Blankets.

We have two rescue cats, Oscar and George.

They were brought for me by Geoff for my 30th birthday in an attempt to distract me from the big 0.  They came to live with us at fourteen weeks old.  The two little bundles of fluff who were raised in the house of the lady who ran our local Cats Protection shelter.

Absolutely bomb proof and totally daft, they fitted in straight away.

From the tiny kittens they once were they grew and grew and grew!!  It soon became apparent that they were Maine Coon cross breeds.

Oscar is big but George is a huge!  Weighing in at a whopping 6.6kg and tall enough to reach our kitchen surfaces with his back paws still on the ground, he really is our gentle giant.  He’s a total whimp, he growl at the postman and refuses to go outside unless one of us is with him.

Oscar is a proper cat.  A brilliant mouser who loves to be outside except when its cold, then you’ll find him snuggled up in front of the fire or happily purring away on one of the boys laps.

With giant cats comes loads of fur.

I’m constantly doing battle with the cumps of black fur that litter themselves around the house especially in the cats favourite sleeping spots.

George has a heart condition which he seems to use as an excuse to sleep anywhere and everywhere.

Apart from the occasional “Maine Coon” crazy few minutes, sleeping and eating are pretty much all that he does.  He has numerous resting places, all of which have their fair share of fur deposited on them.  No matter how often I pick it up there are always blobs of black scattered all over the place.  By the time Oscar has come back inside from a night on the town. His fur full of adventure, scattering twigs and leaves wherever he sleeps. I’m on constant pick up duty. It’s a good job I love them. 😉

My friend Shelly popped over for a cuppa the other day.  She mentioned how fantastic crochet blankets are for dogs because they are hard wearing and quick to dry but how difficult it is to find small blankets.  She also mentioned how nice it would be to have blankets that match your home decor rather than having to go with whatever colour you find that is the right size.

This got me thinking.

It hadn’t occurred to me to pop blankets down to protect the furniture from hair, dirt and claws.  This could save me so much hassle.  I would crochet small blankets or mats that I could change out regularly and pop in the wash.  Whilst I was at it I decided to add a whole new section to my Etsy store where my customers can buy or custom order cat mats, dog mats and blankets.

As you already know I have a considerable addiction to James C Brett yarn.  My stash is full of James Brett Marble Chunky. I absolutely love using it, it’s super soft, hard wearing, washes up really well and comes in a fabulous range of colours.  What’s not to love? 😀

Crochet cat mats corner to corner blanket

I grabbed a ball from my stash, reached for a crochet hook and got stuck in.

I use Knit Pro crochet hooks their handles are lovely and soft to hold.  I find that having a slightly wider handle means that my hands don’t ache when I’m on a crochet mission.

Below is a link to the set that I just can’t live without.  I’ve added to it over the years to make a complete set running all the way up to a 12mm hook

As with my twiddle muffs crochet cat mats are perfect for trying out new stitches and textures without taking up loads of your time.  They’re the perfect size for getting a quick crochet fix.

Here are a few of my creations so far, modelled by Oscar. George loves his blankets but he is so massive that he makes them look tiny.

How to make a crochet cat mat or dog blanket.

There is no right or wrong way.  Just get stuck in. 

As you can see above, I’ve used lots of different stitches.  So far I’ve made
blankets using UK treble crochet, Corner to corner, traditional granny square, puff stitch and solid granny squares.  I’d avoid anything too fancy if I was you.  

My cat mats measure about 40cm x 40cm but this changes according to how much yarn I have and how much fun I’m having making it.

When I’m using Marble Chunky yarn I tend to use either a 7mm or an 8mm crochet hook. 

Have some fun and see what happens.  If your cats are anything like mine they’ll be trying to snuggle up on their blankets long before they are finished. 

If you’re looking to make a blanket for your dog marble chunky should be fine but if you have a feisty little terrier or any other breed that likes to have a good old pull on its blanket that maybe consider using aran wool to be sure that it is as hard wearing as it is up to the job. 

Cat mat crochet furniture protector blanket

I hope that you have enjoyed reading about my furry friends and their new blankets.

If you’re making pet blankets of your own I’d love to hear about them.  Please pop a comment down below to let me know how you get on.  I’d love to see your photos and hear all about your pets.

As with all of my other posts all images and content are my own intellectual property please don’t copy, reproduce or use them in any way without my prior permission.

All product links on this or any of my other pages are affiliate links, which means that if you choose to make a purchase using them I get paid a small commission to help me to fund my crochet addiction and keep my patterns free.  If you would like to use my links I would be very grateful but, if not, no big deal, i hope you enjoy my site any way. 

Many thanks and cheers for now

Lou 🙂

Chunky Rib Blanket – Free Crochet Blanket Pattern.

A few days ago I was pottering about on Facebook when I noticed a post from a fellow crochet addict saying that Aldi supermarket was running a needle craft promotion for the next week.  She posted a photo of loads of lovely squishy yarn.  I grabbed my coat and was out of the door in a flash.  

For some time now I have wanted to make a heavy blanket for our bed.  Both of our boys have chunky blankets that they snuggle underneath on a cold winters night but Geoff and I only have a light weight stash busting scrap blanket.  

I decided to create something for us for once.  I filled my basket and raced home. 

super chunky yarn.

For the first time ever I decided to make a swatch so that I could plan my stitches.  It’s a good job that I did because I found that my 10mm hook wasn’t big enough.  It produced quite a rigid fabric.  It looked amazing but wasn’t ideal for a snuggly blanket. 

I reached for my 12mm hook and started again. 

Simple crochet blanket free pattern

I wanted to create something that was simple, heavy and plain in colour with lots of textured.  I love all the different textures that can be created through crochet and in this blanket I really wanted to show that off while also creating something that would whip up quickly.

If you follow my blog you will know that my last two projects were quite fiddly and time consuming. They were beautiful but I couldn’t wait to get back to what I know and love (quick fix chunky makes).

There’s not much of a pattern to this one but you are very welcome to have it.

As I mentioned before, the yarn I used was on promotion in Aldi and, as they like to say, “when it’s gone it’s gone”, so I’m afraid that I can’t give you a link to the exact yarn that I used but Deramores stock a wide selection on chunky and super chunky yarns, pop over and check them out, I’m sure you’ll be able to find something that you like. 

Chunky Crochet Blanket, Free Pattern.

Chunky Rib Blanket, Free Crochet Pattern.

Materials

Chunky/super chunky yarn – 

Warning!! This pattern is a yarn eater.  I used 1,410 metres of yarn because that was all that I had. The finished blanket isn’t big enough to cover a single bed tell about a double so poor ol’ Geoff is out in the cold. 🙁 . Ideally I could have done with buying just over twice the amount of yarn but when I went back to Aldi it was all gone. 🙁

12mm Crochet Hook

Scissors

Tapestry Needle

Stitches

Ch – Chain Stitch

Tr – UK treble crochet (US double crochet) Stitch.

Frtr – UK front raised treble 

Brtr – UK back raised treble

Dc – UK double crochet stitch (US Single crochet stitch)

How To Frtr and Brtr...

Frtr - Wrap your yarn around your hook as you would with a normal UK treble crochet stitch. Insert your hook from the front around the post of the stitch from the previous row. Yarn over, then complete the stitch in the normal way. A Brtr is done in the same way but, instead of inserting your hook from the front of the stitch you insert it from the back and over the post .

This is a very simple pattern, it’s ideal for beginners.  I’m over the moon with how it turned out. I love to run my hands over it, the texture is amazing! 😀

Here goes… Blink and you’ll miss it.

Foundation chain.

Chain an even amount of stitches.

As I mentioned before, I ran out of yarn.  I didn’t have enough to make a full sized blanket so I haven’t mentioned my chain length here. Make your chain slightly longer than the final width you require, the stitches will pull in a little as the texture is created. 

Row 1.

Tr into the 4th chain from your hook. Tr to the end of the row. Turn.

Row 2.

Ch 2 (counts as tr throughout) miss the stitch at the base of the chain. *Frtr around the post of the next stitch, brtr around the post of the next stitch**. repeat form * to ** until you reach the turning chain from the previous round. Tr into the top of the turning ch. Turn.

Ignoring the ch2 and final tr stitches, your row should start and end with a frtr, this will insure an even finish when you add the boarder. 

Row 3.

Ch 2, *brtr around the post of the frtr from the previous round. Brtr around the next stitch** repeat form * to ** until you reach the turning chain from the previous row. Tr into the top of the turning chain. Turn.

As you look at your work, you should see solid lines of raised and relief stitches working their way up your blanket.  

Quick easy free crochet blanket pattern

Repeat rows 2 and 3 until your blanket reaches the required length.

Don’t fasten your yarn off, we will go straight into the boarder (anything to avoid weaving in ends 😉 ).

That’s the main body done.

Boarder.

As with the main body, I have kept the boarder simple.

Round 1.
Side 1.

Working towards the corner. Ch 2, dc into the same space. 2dc into the next stitch to form the corner. Work 1 dc around each treble or turning ch along the side of your work keeping the tension loose. (you will be tempted to add more stitches but, believe me, I’ve tried, they will cause your boarder to ripple). 

When you reach the corner work 2 dc’s around the last tr then 2 dc’s into the first stitch on along the foundation chain of your blanket.  

Side 2.

Dc into each stitch of the foundation chain until you come to the end of your row. 2dc into the last stitch and 2 dc around the chain that starts the next side. 

Side 3.

Repeat side 1.

Side 4.

Dc along the top of your blanket. Join the round with a slip stitch into the ch2 from the start of your round.

Round 2.

Ch2 dc into each stitch of the previous round. Dc 2 into the 2 stitches at each corner. Join with a slip stitch. Fasten off and weave in the ends. 

This is where I finished my blanket.  In an ideal world (where I brought enough yarn) this boarder would have continued for another 2 rows.

Maybe I’ll make another one some time so that poor Geoff gets to snuggle underneath it too.  But, at the moment there it is. My super snuggly chunky blanket.  I hope you enjoy making it as much as i’m enjoying using it.

Let me know how you get on.  I’m new to pattern writing so, please feel free to point out and mistakes.  

I’m always happy to hear from you.  Pop a comment down below to let me know what you think of my blog so far or just say “Hi”.  I love a chat :-D.

As per normal, all images and other content on this page are my own property.  Please don’t copy, reproduce or distribute them in any way without my prior permission.

The links on this page are affiliate links, which means that if you make a purchase using them I get paid a small commission to help me to fund my crochet addiction and keep my patterns free.  If you would like to use them that would be great, I’d really appreciate it but if not, that’s okay. I hope you enjoy my blog anyway.

Cheers for now,

Lou 🙂

Sherbet Rainbow Shawl – Free Crochet Shawl Pattern

Who doesn’t love a cake?? Be it the yummy sugary edible kind or the super squishy yarny kind, I must admit I have a weakness for both.

If you’ve found yourself on my blog because you love my shawls and you’d like to own one click on this link to go to my shop.

If you’d like to make a shawl of your own or you’d just like to know what I’ve been up to lately then please read on….

Over the past year I have seen my insagram feed fill up with wonderful stripy creations from all over the world.

First, knitters and crochet addicts alike went mad for Caron Cakes then one by one more and more different variations on the wonderful yarn cake began to spring up.  I was spoiled for choice.  I struggle to make decisions about the simplest of things so although I knew I loved them all, some how I had to decide which cake to try.

I paid regular visits to to Caron cakes section of my local Hobycraft yet somehow failed to commit.

One day I was scrolling through my Instagram feed marvelling at all of the wonderful creations when my eye was drawn to a stunning shawl.

Here it is.

If you don’t already follow the lovely Kerry over at @hookerycrochet go and check her feed out, give her a quick follow and say “Hi”.

(Kerry also has her own online store so if you’d like to check out her other items follow this link.) 

This is not the first time that Kerry has been a source if inspiration for me and I highly doubt that it will be the last.  

As soon as I saw Kerry’s beautiful shawl I knew that I had found the cake for me, I had to give it a go.  I asked her about her choice of yarn, she said it was a Scheepjes Whirl.  Not only did she tell me what it was but she also pointed me in the direction of a brilliant little online store that so happened to have it discounted for that month!!

Here she is.

 

A post shared by Helen (@artisanalleyuk) on


This shop (soon to be a real life bricks and mortar store) belongs to Helen.  She is super helpful, knowledgeable and she’s a crochet addict too!! 🙂 .  If you’re in the UK please follow this link to pick up some super squishy yarn .

If you’re in the US Here’s a link to Deramores who stock the full range of Scheepjes Whirls.

Here are some of the amazing colour ways that you can buy!! 😀

If you’re anything like me you’ll take a look at the price tag and freak out but don’t worry, check out the meterage.  You get a whole 1000 metres in just one whirl. You can make a whole shawl out of one cake…..bargain. 😀

I had awful trouble making a decision with so many beautiful colour ways to choose from but eventually I opted for Lemon Cassis Cream. 

Scheepjes whirl shawl pattern
Scheepjes Whirl - Lemon Cassis Cream.

Delivery was super swift.  Before I knew it I was squishing my very own Scheepjes whirl!! I was in yarn addicts heaven. 

For several days my brand new cake sat looking pretty and having the occasional squish.  I wanted to find a pattern that would do it justice.  

I eventually opted for a shawl pattern that I found in Simple Crochet Magazine. 

I reached for my hook and off I went. I’d love to tell you that a couple of days later I had created an exact replica of the pattern in the magazine but I’m afraid that was not the case. 

I am a super speedy, chunky yarn, big hook, no need to count, watch the telly kinda gal.  The pattern required concentration and counting, the yarn (though incredibly beautiful) was fine and the hook small. I ripped it back more often than I’d like to admit but the amazing colour changes kept me going. 

Aren’t they stunning?

On I went, working my way through the pattern.  

I deliberately chose a shawl pattern that would use all 1000 metres of my whirl so that I would be able to show off all the colour changes.  What I didn’t account for was that I would loose track (while watching Game of Thrones) and add a stitch or twenty!! 

As I came to my last few rows it became apparent that I was going to run out of yarn!!  Disaster!!!  What on earth was I going to do?? 

I took to Instagram and put out an appeal.  Helen shared my plight with her customers, we crossed our fingers and hoped for the best.

A few moments later a message popped into my inbox.  It was Kerry!!  Not only did she have a spare bit of purple whirl in her stash but she also lives in the same town as me and could pop it through my door the very next day!! 😀

Disaster averted, we were back on track.

Here is the finished shawl.

Right there and then I made the decision to write a simple pattern so that next time I could sit back and enjoy the wonderful colour changes of my whirl stress free. 

Having already ordered a second whirl (because of my yarn addiction I’m always planning at least 3 projects ahead. This time I opted for Sherbet Rainbow) I decided that I would create a simple shawl pattern that required minimal stitch counting so that I could watch the rest of Game of Thrones in peace.

I totally underestimated quite how much frogging would be involved in planning a shawl from scratch.

Yarn cakes aren’t the easiest things to rip back.  If there is anyone reading this who can tell me how to rip them back without creating a tangled mess please, please comment below and put me out of my misery. 

Anyway…… I finally decided on a pattern that I am happy with.  As per normal you’ll have to bear with me and let me know if it doesn’t make sense.

Here we go. Here’s my simple stress free crochet shawl pattern. 

Sherbet Rainbow Shawl – Free Crochet Pattern

You Will Need;

1x 4mm US G/6 crochet hook

1x Sherbet Rainbow Sheepjies Whirl 

Scissors 

Darning needle 

Blocking mats 

Blocking pins 

Stitches and abbreviations;

Ch – Chain

St- Stitch

Dc – UK double crochet (US single crochet)

Tr – UK treble crochet (US double crochet)

Dtr – UK Double treble crochet (US treble crochet)

Ps – Puff stitch 

Htr – UK half treble crochet stitch (US half double)

Ss – Slip stitch

Sk st – Skip a stitch

Rpt – Repeat 

Foundation.

Ch 5, join with a ss. 

Row 1.

Ch 4 (counts as dtr), 4 dtr into foundation loop, ch 3, 5 dtr into loop. Turn.

Row 2.

Ch 4, 2 dtr into the stitch at the base of the chain, dtr into each stitch until you reach the ch3 space, 2dtr ch3 2dtr into the ch 3 space, dtr into each stitch until you reach the end of the row, 3dtr into the top of the turning ch from the previous row. Turn.

Row 3.

Ch 4, 2 dtr into the stitch at the base of the chain, dtr in each stitch until you reach the ch3 (11 dtrs including ch), 2dtr ch3 2dtr into the ch 3 space, dtr to the end of the row, 3 dtr in the top of the turning chain from the previous row. (26dtr) Turn,

Rows 4 & 5.

Repeat row 3 (40dtr)

Row 6.

Ch 5 (counts as dtr ch1) dtr ch1 dtr into the stitch at the base of the ch5, sk 1 st, dtr ch1 sk1 until you reach the ch3 space of the previous row, dtr ch1 dtr ch3 dtr ch1 dtr into the ch3 space, ch1 skip a stitch dtr until you reach the final stitch of the previous row, ch1 dtr ch1 dtr ch1 dtr into the top of the turning ch from the previous row. 

Row 7.

Ch3, 2tr into the stitch at the base of the chain, tr into each stitch until you reach the ch3 sp. 2tr ch3 2tr into the ch3 sp. Tr to the end of the row, 3tr into the top of the ch from the previous row. Turn.

Row 8.

Ch2 2dc into the stitch at the base of the chain, dc into each stitch until you reach the ch3 sp, 2dc ch3 2dc into the ch 3 sp from the previous round, dc in each stitch to the end or the row, 3dc into the top of the turning ch from the previous row. Turn.

Row 9.

Ch 3, 2tr into the stitch at the base of the chain, tr in each stitch until you reach the ch3 sp, 2tr ch 3 2tr into the ch 3 space, tr in each stitch until you reach the end of the row. 3tr into the top of the turning ch from the previous row. Turn

Row 10.

Ch2, 2 dc into the stitch at the base of the ch2, dc in each stitch until you reach the ch3 sp from the previous row, 2dc ch3 2dc into the ch3 sp, dc to the end of the row, 3dc into the top of the turning chain from the previous row. Turn.

Row 11.

Ch4, 2dtr into the stitch at the base of the ch4, dtr into each stitch until you reach the ch3 sp, 2dtr ch3 2dtr into the ch3 sp, dtr to the end of the row, 3dtr into the top of the turning ch from the previous row. Turn.

Row 12.

Repeat row 6

Row 13.

Ch3, 2tr into the stitch at the base of the ch3, tr in each stitch until you reach the ch3 sp. 2tr ch3 2th into the ch3 sp, tr to the end of the row, 3tr into the top of the turning ch from the previous row. Turn.

Row 14.

Ch2, 2dc into the stitch at the base of the ch2, dc into each st until you reach the ch3 sp. 2dc ch2 2dc into the ch 3 sp, dc to the end of the row, 3dc in the to of the turning ch. 

Row 15.

Ch3, 2tr into the stitch at the base of the ch3, tr in each stitch until you reach the ch3 sp, 2tr ch3 2tr in the ch3 sp, tr to the end or the row, 3tr into the top or the turning ch form the previous row.  Turn.

Row 16 & 17.

Repeat row 14

Row 18.

Repeat row 15

Row 19.

Repeat row 15

Row 20.

Ch4, 2dtr into the stitch at the base of the ch4, dtr into each stitch until you reach the ch3 sp. 2dtr ch3 2dtr into the ch3 sp. Dtr into each stitch until you reach the end of the row. 3dtr into the top of the turning ch from the previous row. Turn.

Row 21.

Repeat row 6.

Rows 22 to 54.

Repeat rows 13 to 21 four times. 

 

Row 55.

Ch 3, ps ch1 ps in the stitch at the bottom of the ch3. Work 1ps ch 1 in ch1 space from the previous row until you reach the ch3 space. Ps ch1 ps ch3 ps ch1 ps in the ch3 space. Ps ch1 in each of the chain 1 spaces until you reach the end of the row. Ps ch1 ps tr into the top of the turning chain from the previous row. Turn.

How To Work a Puff Stitch.

Insert your hook , yarn over, pull the loop through, yarn over. Do this 4 times. You will have 8 loops on your hook. Yarn over one more time, pull the yarn through all of the loops on the hook. Ch1 to secure.

Free shawl pattern - crochet puff stitch
Row 56

Ch3, 2tr into the stitch at the base of the ch3, tr into each puff stitch and each chain space until you reach the ch3 sp. 2tr ch3 2tr into the ch3 sp. Tr into each puff and each ch1 sp until you reach the end of the row. 3tr into the top of the turning ch from the previous row. Turn.

Rows 57 & 58

Repeat row 14

Row 59

Repeat row 15

Rows 60 & 61.

Repeat row 14

Row 62

Repeat row 15

Row 63

Repeat row 14

Row 64

Repeat row 11

Rows 65

Repeat row 14

Rows 66 

Ch2, 2htr into the stitch at the base of the ch2, htr into each stitch until you reach the ch3 sp, 2htr ch3 2htr into the ch2 sp, htr in each stitch until you reach the end of the row, 3htr. Turn.

Row 67

Repeat row 65 then fasten off and weave in the ends. 

So, there you have it, your finished shawl.

All you need to do now is pin it out and give it a quick steam with your iron or steam cleaner. 

Let it dry and you’re all done. 😀

I hope that you’re still with me and that I haven’t lost you along the way.

As per usual, you are my pattern testers. Please let me know if you spot a mistake of you’re having trouble understanding anything. 

I am very new to writing patterns so i apologise if you find tricky to follow. This blog is a work in progress, please be kind. 
Sherbet rainbow free pattern

Massive Thanks.

I like to say a huge thank you to Kerry @hookerycrochet and Helen @Artisanalley for allowing me to use their photos in this post.  

As with all of my other posts please don’t copy, distribute or do anything else with the images or any of my other blog contents without my prior permission. They have been created for you to enjoy for free so please don’t abuse that.

By all means share, share, share on social media and maybe pop a comment or two down below.  I’d love to hear what you think of my blog.

While you’re at it, make sure you pop over and follow me on Instagram where you can keep up to date on all of my yarn related shenanigans.

As with my other blog posts any product links (apart from those to Helen and Kerrie) are affiliate links. This means that if you make a purchase using them I get paid a small commission to help me fund my crochet addiction.  If you would like to use them that would be great, I’d really appreciate it.  If not, that’s okay, just Google whatever you need and enjoy my blog anyway. 

Cheers for now,

Lou 🙂

Rainbow Star Baby Blanket.

If you have read my “20 things about me” post, you will know that I have an Etsy shop which was set up to give me the perfect excuse to make whatever I like without having to stress about who I am making it for.

 This lovely little hobby shop also pushes me to try new things and helps me out of crochet slumps.  Although I am totally addicted to crochet, I do occasionally struggle for ideas as to what to do next.  

A couple of weeks ago I was going through one of these slumps when a message popped up from my store asking me to make a custom order.  

The message was from an expectant Grandma who had fallen in love with a rainbow pixie hat but she couldn’t find one for sale anywhere.  Having trawled the internet she stumbled upon one of my creations and was wondering if I could tweak it in order to create something similar to the image that she had found.

Always up for a crochet challenge, of course I accepted. 

It occurred to me as I costed up her pixie hat that, in order to create a rainbow I was going to have to buy seven balls of yarn.  This was not going to be very cost effective.  I decided to suggest that I create a blanket to match in order to use up some of the left over yarn.

She jumped at the chance so this is where my rainbow journey began.

I asked my customer to pick her favourite form the crochet baby blankets in my shop and this it the one she chose. 

Crochet star blanket

She had chosen my absolute favourite.  I couldn’t wait to get stuck in.  Crochet slump Fixed!! 😀

Off I went to Truro Wool (my local yarn shop) in search of the perfect colours. After several minutes of squishing and sorting and with a second opinion from a very helpful and patient member of staff, here is what we came up with. 

Stylecraft rainbow yarn

As the blanket is for a newborn baby girl we decided to go for a softer approach rather than opting for the traditional bright rainbow.  I think it works really well.  

Stylecraft have such a wonderful pallet of colours available I could have created so many different rainbows.  It’s a good job there was someone there to keep me focused on the task in hand. I opted for the double knit acrylic yarn so that both the blanket and the pixie hat can be machine washed and headed off home ready to hook up a storm!!

I’m going to leap ahead now. 

For those of you who would like the pattern for the pixie hat, I promise that I will do it but this post is about the star blanket, so here we go.

I wasn’t sure wether or not to share this pattern because it takes some steaming into place and the border was made up in a hurry as I went along so I shared it in a Facebook group that I follow (called “Crochet Friends with Creativity”. Hi guys 🙂 ) to see what they thought and the resounding response was Yes, please share it.

So here it is…

Rainbow Star Baby Blanket – Free pattern.

Hook size, 4mm, US G

Yarn, Stylecraft Double Knit

Colours;

Pomegranate

Shrimp

Saffron

Aspen

Sherbet

Lavender

Violet

One ball of each.

Stitches and Abbreviations. 

Ch – Chain stitch

Dc – Double crochet (US Single crochet)

Tr – Treble crochet (US double crochet)

Ss – Slip stitch

Ch Sp – Chain space 

Pattern Advice.

Because this star curves rather than inverting in defined points it will appear rippled when you are making it. It will look like you have too many stitches but,  as you can see form the pictures it will block out into the correct shape. (My advice to its new owner will be to reshape it whilst it is damp.) The more consistent you are with your tension the easier it will be to shape. 

Star Blanket. Granny star body.

Foundation.

Using pomegranate yarn Ch6, join with a slip stitch.

Round 1.

Ch3, 17 Tr into the foundation loop. Ss into the 3rd ch to form a circle.

Round 2.

Ch1 1dc at the base of the ch1, ch5, miss 2tr, *dc into the next tr, ch5, miss 2 tr* repeat from * to * 5 times. Ss into the first ch st to join round.

Round 3.

Ch3 (counts as tr throughout), tr3 ch3 tr3 into each of the next 5 chain spaces, tr3 ch3 tr2 into the last space, join with a slip stitch into the 3rd ch of the ch3 to complete the round.

Round 4. 

Ss into the space between the ch3 and tr of the last round, ch3 tr2 into the same space, tr3 ch3 tr3 in the next ch3 space, skip the next 3 tc’s, tr3 into the space between the two sets of tr’s. (As shown in the image below.)

Star Crochet blanket free pattern

*Tr3 in the space between the next groups of trs, tr3 ch3 tr3 in the next ch3 sp* repeat from * to * until the round is complete, join with a ss into the top of the starting ch3. 

Round 5

Ch3, tr3 in to the next space between trs, tr3 ch3 tr3 in the ch3 sp. continue with 3trs into the spaces and tr3 ch3 tr3 in the ch3 spaces until you reach the final space, 2tr into the space and ss into the top of the starting ch3 to join. 

Round 6

Ss into the next space between the tr3 groups. Ch3 tr2 into the same space. Continue with 3tr into each between tr space and tr3 ch3 tr3 into each ch3 sp. Join the round with a ss into the top of the starting ch3. 

The rest of the main star pattern is created by repeating rows 5 and 6.

To recreate my exact star pattern do;

The foundation loop and 6 rows of Pomegranate

3 rows of Shrimp

4 rows of Saffron

3 rows of Aspen

4 rows of Sherbet

3 rows of Lavender 

and 4 rows of Violet.

crochet star blanket pattern

 

So there you have it, that’s the basic pattern for my crochet rainbow star blanket.  

I hope that you are still with me and that it has made sense so far.

Here comes the border…

I puzzled my boarder out as I went along.  I didn’t photograph it because it was in a hurry to get it to my customer in time for her trip to her daughters house so there aren’t any tutorial photos (at some point I hope to make another blanket to rectify this) but I am more than happy to tell you what I did and hopefully it will work for you. 

Rainbow Border.

I started again using the pomegranate yarn and worked my way through the rainbow, in order, with a different colour for each row. 

Rainbow crochet pattern border

Round 1

Attach your yarn in to a tr from the previous round, ch2, dc, dc, 2dc into the trs of the precious round, 6dc into each corner. Join with a ss into the top of the starting ch. Change colour. 

Round 2

Ch 2, *dc in to every stitch until you reach the corner, dc2, dc, dc2, dc, dc2 around the corner then continue with a dc into every stitch until you reach the next corner*. Repeat from * to * until the round is complete. Join with a ss and change colour. 

Round 3

Ch 2, dc in every stitch along the edge of your star. When you reach the corner 2dc, dc, dc, dc 3 times then continue along the next edge with a dc into every stitch. Join the round with a ss and change colours.

Round 4 

Ch 2, dc in esch stitch until you reach beginning of the corner. 2dc, dc, dc, dc 3 times then dc until the next corner. repeat until the round is complete. Ss to join, change colour. 

Double crochet rainbow border.

Round 5
At this point the edging of my star started to ripple slightly so, in order to stop this problem i didn’t add any stitches to this round.   If you have the same problem as me then dc into each stitch and join with a slip stitch at the end of your round.  
If you don’t have any rippling, dc into each stitch until the corner,  2dc, dc, dc, dc, dc, 3 times then continue in the same manner until the end of your round. 
If your border is folding over on itself, you will need to add a few more stitches so that it lies flat.  Play around with it. Don’t be afraid to rip it back, adding and taking away stitches until you are happy that it is right. 
Round 6

Ch 2, dc into every stitch from the previous round until you reach the corner. Dc, dc2, dc, dc2 dc, dc2 into the central 6 stitches of the corner. Continue to doing a dc into each stitch until you reach the central 6 stitches of the next corner and repeat. Join with a ss into the starting ch, change colours.

Round 7

Ch 2, dc into each stitch from the previous round. Join with a ss into the beginning chain. fasten off

Weave in ends.

Done 😀

Now It’s Time To Block.

If your blanket looks anything like mine did then it will need some serious blocking to get it into shape. 

When I block my work I use children’s foam play mats to pin it out on and an iron to steam (whatever you do, don’t touch the iron to the yarn, you’ll squish your lovely stitches, I learned that the hard way).  Different people have different techniques but getting down on my hands and knees with a pot of pins and a steaming hot iron seams to work for me.  Pin your blanket into place and give it a good blast.  Leave it to dry and there you have it.  All done. 

There was a lot of pinning, repining, smoothing and adjusting involved but it was worth every minute. I hope you agree. 😀

Free crochet star blanket pattern 

If you have read any of my other posts you will know that I am new to pattern writing so please be kind and bear with me.  If you have any problems, questions or if you just want to say “Hi” please pop a comment in the box below and I will do my best to get back to you ASAP.

This pattern is free for you to use to make your own wonderful creations, I would be very grateful for a share or two over social media but please, please don’t copy, recreate or do anything else with it or my photos without my prior permission. 

Any product links in this or any of my other posts are affiliate links, which means that if you chose to purchase anything through them I will get paid a small commission in order to help me fund my crochet addiction.  If you chose to use my links I would be really grateful but, if not, that’s okay.  Feel free to enjoy my site anyway. You are very welcome. 

Cheers for now

Lou 

How To Make A Mini Twiddle Muff/ Twiddle Cuff.

Today I thought I’d share the pattern for my mini twiddle muff, twiddle cuff.  I haven’t quite decided what to call it. Perhaps it’s a twiddle mitt? I’m not sure.

When I first designed my twiddle muff pattern I couldn’t help thinking about the people that lived in the residential home where I used to work.  There was one lady in particular that I remember with great fondness.  She was a lovely lady who had lived a very full life as a midwife.  She remained very active and busy whilst living at the home.

I couldn’t help but think that twiddle muffs, twiddle cushions and twiddle blankets are all very good but what about the dementia patients who like to move around and stay busy?

I decided to come up with a more mobile fidget item that they could take with them that they don’t need to remember to pick up.

I had seen various posts about fidget aprons but I wanted to make something that was more discreet and that could be used by either a lady or a gentleman.  I also wanted them to be quick and easy to make so that I could avoid having to reach for the sewing machine (thus saving my poor family members from foul moods and bad language).

This is what I came up with. 

Fidget mitt, twiddlemuffs, twiddle cuff.

Actually the picture above is the third mini twiddle muff that I made.  The blue twiddle cuff In the gallery at the top of this post was the very first one that I made. I can’t find any decent pictures of it though 🙁 .

Here’s the crochet pattern for the twiddle cuff base.

As you can see.  All of my twiddle cuffs are made using James C Brett yarn as the base.  I’m heavily addicted to James Brett yarns so this was the obvious choice for me.  Not only is it super soft and really nice to work with but (because of my addiction) I always have loads in my stash just screaming out to be used up (so that I can go and buy more 😉 ).

The twiddle cuff pattern is really simple.

Yarn – James Brett marble chunky.

Hook – 5mm

Stitches

Ch – Chain Stitch

Dc – Double Crochet Stitch

Ss – Slip Stitch

Foundation.

Ch 24. Join with a ss to form a loop.

Row 1.

Ch 2 (counts as dc), skip the stitch at the base of the chain, dc in every stitch to end. (24 dc stitches).

Row 2 to end.

Place a stitch marker in the ch2 from the previous round to help you keep track. working in a spiral dc in each stitch until you are happy that your cuff is long enough.

As you can see from my photos, the length of my twiddle cuffs tends to faire according to what I would like to put on them.  As a guide, the one that I am working on at the moment (pictured below) is 9cm long without it’s edging.

James c brett Wrist warmers

Edging.

I chose 24 stitches for my twiddle cuffs because it gives me lots of options for edging.  I tend to use stitches that I can attach twiddles to.  I have used shell stitches and chain stitches.  In the twiddle cuff pictured above I have used a chain and picot stitch.

Ch 5, ss into the third ch form hook, ch 2 skip a stitch then ss into the next dc. Rpt to end. 

Now all you need to do is add your twiddles. 

As I mentioned before, I like to attach twiddles to the edge of my twiddle cuffs.  

Holding a small item in your hand or fiddling with the ends of strings of ribbons can help to ease anxiety, not only for people with dementia but for anyone dealing with stress or in need of comfort. I thought it was important to have twiddles that are long enough to hold.  Apart from that the twiddles used are the same as I use for my twiddle muffs, cushions and blankets.

If you’re in need of some inspiration here’s a link to my twiddles galore post. 

Twiddles fidgets for muffs or blankets

I hope you have found this pattern helpful. If you have any questions, requests, or you just want to say ‘Hi” pop  a comment in the box below and I’ll get back to you ASAP.

By all means feel free to use my pattern to help you to create your own twiddlemuffs.  Feel free to share it with your friends and fellow crochet addicts but please please don’t reproduce this pattern, my pictures or any part of my blog without my permission.

As always, any product links found on this page or anywhere else on my blog are affiliate links.  This means that, if you purchase a product by using my link I get paid a small commission to help me to fund my crochet addiction.  If you would like to use my links I’d be very grateful but if not, no big deal.  I hope you enjoy reading my post anyway.

Cheers for now,

Lou 😀 

 

Schoodie?? What’s That? – How To Make A Scoodie.

I’m afraid that photos have some what given it away.

Neither scarf nor a hoodie. A little bit scarf and a little bit hoodie.  It’s a schoodie, scoody or scoodie (I’m not sure which one is correct).  

One day last week I was pottering about on Pinterest looking for colour inspiration.  I’m not the best with colour combinations but I’m working on it.  I find Pinterest really helpful.  It is full of so many beautiful photographs.  I save them to a board and use them as inspiration for colour palettes.

Anyway, I digress.  There I was, getting distracted by free crochet patterns (as you do) when, tucked away between the usual crochet related search suggestions was “scoodie”. Having never come across such a word I tentatively popped it into Google and up came a load of lovely images of scarves with hoods.  Finally the penny dropped….. scarf…..hood…..hoodie…..Scoodie 😀 . 

A modern twist on a cowl, these hooded scarves are fantastic. I’ve often found myself shivering next to an athletics track with my scarf on, wishing that I could wrap it around my head…… Now I can :-D.

I had brief nose around Pinterest looking for a free crochet scoodie pattern that I liked and had no luck.  There were several paid patterns about but, although I love buying crochet books, I don’t like to pay for individual patterns if I can avoid it.  

In my head I could see exactly what I wanted my scoodie to look like so decided to rise to the challenge and see what I could whip up.

Once again I took to my yarn stash. 

I have a very practical brain. I love to solve a puzzle.  How hard could it be?  

In my stash I found a couple of balls of WI Soft and Chunky yarn.

I normally use this yarn to make my fingerless wrist warmers.  It’s super soft and snuggly so it was ideal for a spot of scoodie creation.

I set to work making a prototype hood.  I already know how to make scarves but I was uncertain about my hood creating abilities.  It turns out they’re pretty good. 🙂

 

I was so pleased with my first attempt that I didn’t need to change it at all!! That never happens.  It was a gooood crochet day.

For the final free scoodie pattern I’ve made the scarf longer and wider.  Which, in turn, makes the hood a bit bigger.

My lovely family tell me that I have a “pea head”!  My head is so small that I can wear children’s sunglasses and hats!! Hopefully the hood in the pattern will fit all. I’ve had to roll the front back to account for my “pea head” but I think that looks quite nice. 

I hope you enjoy my crochet scoodie pattern.  As with all of my patterns please bear in mind that I am new to pattern creation.  If you come across something that doesn’t make sense pop a comment down below and I’ll do my best to fix any problem areas.

Pom Pom Scoodie Pattern.

 
You Will Need:

Yarn – 3 x balls of  WI Soft and Chunky  yarn in teal.  (At the time that I wrote this pattern WI yarn was on 3 for the price of 2 at Hobbycraft…..bonus ;-))

9mm Crochet Hook

Yarn Needle

Scissors

8.8cm Pom Pom Maker  

If you don’t have a pompom maker the highlighted link above will take you to the set that I own.

Here’s the link to my How To Use A Pom Pom Maker photo tutorial.  Alternatively the “old School” method of making pom poms using cut out cardboard circles will work fine, or you could just leave them out.  The scarf still looks lovely without pom poms. 

 

Stitches.

Ch – Chain stitch

Dc – Double crochet (US Single crochet)

Tr – Treble crochet (US double crochet)

Dtr – Double treble crochet (US treble crochet)

 

The hood of my scoodie is sewn together using the flat seam method.  I have tried to capture it in pictures 11 and 12.  Any joining method will be fine because you’re going to turn it inside out anyway.

 

 

Free Pom Pom Scoodie Hooded Scarf Pattern…enjoy. 

Foundation Chain

Ch 120 + 2 for turning ch.

Row 1.

Dc in second chain from hook.  Dc to end of row. Turn. (120 dcs)

Photo no.1

Row 2.

Ch 3 (counts as tr) , Tr to end of row finishing with the final tr into the ch 2 of the previous row. Turn (120 tr stitches)

Photo no.2

Row 3.

Ch 3 (counts as tr), tr to end of row with the last tr going into the top of the ch 3 from the previous row. Turn. (120 tr stitches)

Row 4.

Ch 3 (counts as tr) tr to end of row. Turn. (120 tr stitches)

Rows 5 and 6.

Repeat rows 3 and 4

Row 7.

Repeat row 3

Row 8.

Ch 2 (counts as dc), dc in the next 34 trs (35 dc stitches). Tr in the next 50 stitches placing a stitch marker at the base of the first and last tr stitch. Turn

Photo no. 3

Row 9.

You are now working the hood so you will be working on the middle 50 stitches only.

Ch 3 (counts as tr). Tr in the next 49 stitches (to your stitch marker). Turn (50 tr stitches)

Row 10.

Ch 3 (counts as tr). tr in the next 48 stitches, tr in the top of the turning chain from the previous row. Turn. (50 tr stitches)

Photo no. 4

Row 11.

Repeat row 9.

Row 12.

Ch 2 (counts as dc), 8 dc, 32 tr, 9dc, turn. (50 stitches)

Row 13.

Ch 2 (counts as dc) 8dc, 32 tr, 8 dc, dc into turning chain from previous row. Turn. (50 stitches)

Photo nos. 5 & 6

Rows 14 and 15.

Repeat rows 12 and 13.

Row 16.

Ch 2, 8dc, 7 tr, 18 dtr, 7 tr, 8 dc, dc into the top of the turning chain from the previous round. Fasten off. 

Photo nos. 7 & 8

Row 17.

Reattach your yard at your second stitch marker. Dc to the end of the row, fasten off. (35 dc stitches).

Sew Together.

Fold your scarf in half so that the edges of you hood meet (photos 11 and 12).  

With a yarn needle, sew the two edges together. I used a flat seem stitch which involves pulling your yarn up through the stitch then reinserting it under the stitch on the opposite side.  Pulling it up over that stitch then inserting it under the next stitch. (That probably didn’t make much sense but hopefully, if you pair it with pictures 13 and 14 you’ll understand.)

That’s it, you’re done.  Just weave in the ends, turn your work inside out and make a couple of super squishy pom poms, attach them to the ends of your hooded scarf and you’re ready to take on the world (well a bit of cold weather anyway).

pom pom scoodie

 

I hope that you have enjoyed reading and using my crochet scoodie pattern.  

I apologise for the photos of me.  I loath having my photo taken, I’d much rather be behind the camera but needs must so I had to man up and get on with it.  I’d like to thank my eldest son Oli for being cameraman extraordinaire and doing his best Austin Powers impressions to get the best out of his rather reluctant model.  

THANKS OL XXX 

As with all of the contents on my blog, all images and patterns are my own personal property.  

Please, by all means use my patterns to make your own fabulous creations and share, share, share this blog with your friends but please DO NOT recreate or duplicate this pattern, my photos or this blog post without my permission.  

Any product links are affiliate links, which means that if you make a purchase using them I get a small commission to help me to fund my crochet addiction. If you’d like to use my links, that would be great, I’d really appreciate it but if you don’t want to use them, thats fine, just google the product and enjoy my articles anyway.

Cheers for now.

Lou 🙂

How To Use A Pom Pom Maker – A Photo Tutorial.

I love a pom pom.

Who doesn’t? They’re happy fluffy yarny loveliness. Adding a bit of fun to everything you use them on.

When my sister in law and I took a trip to our local Hobbycraft a few months ago, she picked herself up a couple of pom pom makers.  I thought, don’t be so daft, it’s just a passing gimmick that will soon pass and we’ll back to our cardboard circles in no time.  I’ll save myself a few pounds here and not bother.

We returned to mine with our crafty haul and broke out the pom pom makers.  I soon understood what all the fuss was about.  Its so much quicker and less fiddly.  

I could picture myself squishing my toes up on a cotton pompom bath matt already.  I had to have some…….. I whipped out my trusty Amazon app and placed an order for a set of not 2 but 4 pom pom makers.  

Our youngest son Isaac and I have been happily pom pom making ever since. 

There’s no need for left over yarn ever again, it soon gets whipped up into pom poms, attached to twiddle muffs, hats, scarves, key chains of popped into my Etsy store. 

I recently used a couple of lovely big pom poms in my scoodie pattern so I thought I’d pop a quick tutorial up explaining how to use a pom pom maker. 

 

The photos are pretty self explanatory but I will guide you through it step by step.

  • Your pom pom maker will come to you in one piece.  If you take them out of the box and have a look at it you will see that it is, in fact two halves that open up and come apart in the middle. Photos 1 and 2.
  • With your pompom maker in one hand. Take your yarn in the other and wrap it around and around one pair of the coloured arches. Photo 3.
  • Keep wrapping your yarn around until the arch is completely covered. 
  • Fold the competed arch back into the pom pom maker. Photo 5
  • Repeat the previous steps with the other arch making sure that both arches of your pom pom maker are well covered. Photos 6 and 7. 
  • Holding your pom pom maker tightly in one hand, cut around the middle channel between the two coloured arches. Photo 8.
  • Making sure that the two halves of your pom pom maker don’t come apart, tie some spare yarn very tightly around the middle of your pompom. Photos 9 and 10
  • Pull the two halves of your pom pom maker apart to reveal a rather scruffy looking pom pom. Photo 11.
  • With some scissors, trim your pom pom (fluffing it up as you go) until you are happy that it is nice and round.

So, there you have it.  That’s how use a pom pom maker.

I’ve still not gotten around to making my bath mat but rest assured, I’ll pop a tutorial up when I do.

I hope that you have enjoyed this tutorial and that you have found it easy to understand.

Please pop any questions or moments in the box down below. Or maybe just say “Hi”.  I’d love to hear from you. “I do like a chat.” 

As with all of my posts, feel free to share, share, share this or any of my other posts with your friends and family but please don’t copy or duplicate them in any way without my prior permission.  My photos and patterns remain my own intellectual property I work hard to get them just right. 

Any links on this post of the rest of my blog are affiliate links.  This means that if you purchase any of the products I will be given a small commission to help me fund my crochet addiction.  If you would like to use my links I would be really grateful but if not, no big deal, just google it and feel free to enjoy my posts anyway. 

Thanks for taking the time to read all the way down here to the bottom of the page. 🙂

Cheers for now

Lou 😀

Red pom poms

How To Make Crochet Bunting – Free Mini Bunting Pattern.

Crochet Bunting FlagsI love bunting, it brightens any room and adds a spot of fun to any gathering.

Making bunting is a brilliant way to use up those odd bits and bobs of yarn that we all have hanging around in our secret stashes or the perfect excuse to rush out and buy more (not that I ever need an excuse 😉 ).

It makes a brilliant gift for a new babies nursery, child’s room or whip some up in red and green for a fabulous Christmas pressie.

Quick and easy to make, with endless variations in colour and style. Here’s a quick free tutorial on how to make bunting.

Mini Crochet Bunting.

Crochet bunting flags

You Will Need.

UK 5mm Crochet hook

Double knit yarn.  Stylecraft is usually a good choice.

Scissors

Wool needle

Stitches.

DC – UK double crochet, US single crochet

Ch – Chain

SS- Slip stitch

DC2Tog- Double crochet 2 stitches together.

 

Make 9 flags

Ch 20

Row 1

Double crochet (dc) in each stitch to the end and turn your work.

Double crochet into chain

 

Row 2

Ch 1, double the first 2 stitches together (dc2tog) then dc to the end of the row and turn.

How To DC2Tog

  • Insert your hoop into first stitch, draw up loop, 2 loops on hook
  • Insert your hook into the second stitch, draw up loop (3 loops on hook).
  • Wrap yarn over your hook and draw it through all 3 loops.

WooHoo! You’ve done your first DC2TOG. 😀

Row 3 to end

Repeat row 2 until to you have just 2 stitches left.

Final Row

DC2TOG. Tie off yarn and weave in ends.

Trim Your Flags.
  • Attach your chosen yarn to one of the top two corners.
  • Slip stitch along the bottom 2 edges.
  • Tie off your yarn at the other top corner.
  • Weave in ends.
String Your Flags Together.
  • Ch 80 in the same colour as your trim.
  • Insert your hook into the first stitch on the top left hand corner of your first flag and pull your yarn through to make a slip stitch.
  • Repeat across the top of your flag.
  • Chain 10.
  • Insert your hook into the top left hand corner of your second flag.
  • Repeat chaining 10 and ss across your flags until all of your flags are attached to your string.
  • Chain 80 to create your final string.
  • Tie off your yarn and knot both ends.

You’re all done. Time to go and hang it up!

 

Hopefully you have found my bunting tutorial quick and easy to understand.  I’m just starting out in the blogging/pattern writing world so please pop a comment in the box below to let me know how you got on or just to say “hi” and tell me what you like best about my blog so far. 😀

 

I hope that you have enjoyed reading and using my crochet bunting pattern.

As with all of the contents on my blog, all images and patterns are my own personal property.

Please, by all means use my patterns to make your own fabulous creations and share, share, share this blog with your friends but please DO NOT recreate of duplicate this pattern, my photos or this blog post without my permission.

Any product links are affiliate links, which means that if you make a purchase using them I get a small commission to help me to fund my crochet addiction. If you’d like to use my links, that would be great, I’d really appreciate it but if you don’t want to use them, thats fine, just google the product and enjoy my articles anyway.

Cheers for now.

Lou 🙂

Mandala Magic – How To Make A Crochet Dream Catcher.

A week or so ago a friend of mine sent me a link to some gorgeous mandala crochet dream catchers and suggested that I give them a go.  I decided to rise to the challenge with the final goal of creating my own pattern for my very own crochet mandala wall hanging.

I started off by taking to pinterest and doing a search for free mandala patterns.

To my great surprise the very first link that I discovered belonged to a fabulously bright and cheery blogger that I have followed on Instagram for several years, the lovely Miki at @sfmgs (which stands for Set Free My Gypsy Sole)!  If you don’t already follow her, go and check her out, her posts are so bright and cheery and her colour combinations are a real feast for the eyes.  Miki has a whole section on her blog full for lovely mandala patterns. Here is the link if you’d like to check them out.

The pattern that I used to create my first mandala (the one that is pictured below) is Miki’s Bright Colourful Rainbow Mae Mandala.

Embroidery hoop mandala

I finished it off 2 rounds before the end so that it would fit in my hoop.  As you can see, it fitted perfectly inside my 9 inch embroidery hoop.

I was so pleased with the result that I whizzed up the road to hobby craft in search of more embroidery hoops, only to be told that I’d purchased their last one the day before!  Undeterred I fired up my Amazon app, ordered a set of four embroidery hoops (with Amazon Prime next day delivery, of course 😉 ) and started thinking about my own pattern.

I decided that I wanted my design to be more open and “dream catcher” like than my first mandala wall hanging, I also thought it would be quite nice to include a flower in the centre.  This in itself presented a bit of a problem in that I wanted the flower to stand out in a 3D design, so I apologise now for the “front loop, back loop stuff” but I think it works well.

So here it is.  This is my first attempt at a pattern it’s quite tricky and I’m new to pattern writing so please bear with me and feel free to point out any mistakes in the comments below.   I’ve filled it with lots of photos to guide you through.  I’ll see you on the other side. 😀

 

 

Boho flower dream catching mandala.

You Will Need:

4mm crochet hook,

8 or 9 inch Embroidery hoop,

Scissors,

Wool needle.

For the mandala pictured to the left I used stylecraft classique yarn  in the colours; (working from the inside out) sunflower, hot pink, white, sky blue and shrimp.

Abbreviations.

Ch – Chain Stitch

Ss – Slip stitch

Dc – Double Crochet, US Single Crochet

Tr- Treble Crochet, US Double Crochet

Dtr – Double treble crochet, US Treble Crochet

DtrCl – Double treble crochet cluster (in this case the cluster includes 5 double treble stitches). US Treble cluster.

Sk – Skip/miss

St – Stitch

Ch Sp – Chain space

F.O – Fasten off

Foundation Ring.

Ch 4, ss into the first ch st to join loop.

Round 1.

Ch 2 (counts as Tr), Tr 10 into loop, ss into the top of the ch 2 to complete the round. F.O

Pics 1, 2 and 3

Round 2.

Join yarn in the front loop of one of the trebles from the previous round. Ch 1,in the front loop of the next stitch htr, tr, dtr, tr, htr, ch1. *Sk the next stitch htr, tr, dtr, tr, htr, ch1* repeat 5 times. Secure with a ss into the first front loop. F.O.

Pics 4, 5 and 6.

Round 3.

Join new yarn in the back loop of a round 1 tr that was skipped in the previous round. Ch 6 (counts as dc ch5), working in the back loops, *sk one st, dc in the next st ch5 * repeat from * to * 5 times. Finish round with a ss into the second ch of the starting ch.

Pics 7, 8 and 9

Round 4.

*Ss into the first 2 ch stitches, 2 dc into the ch sp, ch6* repeat form * to * 5 times. join the round with a ss into the first dc.

Pic 10

Round 5.

Ss into the dc, ss into the first 2 ch stitches, *3 dc into ch sp, ch 7* repeat from * to * 5 times. join with ss into the first dc. F.O.

Pic 10

Round 6.

Join new yarn in a ch sp. Ch 1 ( counts as dc ) htr, 2 tr, 3 dtr, 2tr, htr, dc in the same ch sp. dc in the next 3 dc’s. * dc, htr, 2 tr, 3 dtr, 2 tr, htr, dc in the next ch sp* repeat 5 times. join with a ss into the starting ch. F.O.

Pic 11

Round 7.

Join new yarn in the middle dc of the previous round. Ch 3 ( counts as dtr ) work a 5 dtrCl using the ch 3 as your 5th dtr. Ch 7, dc in the second dtr form the previous round, ch 7, *DtrCl in the second dc of the previous round, ch 7, dc in the second dc, ch 7* repeat from * to * 5 times. Join round with a ss into the top of the first DtrCl. F.O.

Pics 12, 13, 14, 15 and 16.

Round 8

Join yarn in the top of a DtrCl , ch1 (counts as dc), 2 hrt, 2 tr, 3 dtr, 2 tr, 2 hrt in the ch sp. dc in the dc from the previous round. *2 htr, 2 tr, 3 dtr, 2 tr, 2 htr in the ch sp. Dc in DtrCl. 2 htr, 2 tr, 3 dtr, 2 tr, 2 htr. Dc in next stitch* Repeat 5 times, ss into ch to finish round. F.O and weave in ends. 

Pic 17

Thats the mandala done, now all you need to do is wrap your hoop and attach your finished mandala.

 
Wrapping hoop for dream catcher
Wrapping dream catcher hoop
Attaching mandala to embroidery hoop
Making a dream catcher keep your knots hidden

Remove the inner ring from your embroidery hoop.  For the example above I used a 9 inch embroidery hoop.  This gives my final mandala a dream catcher effect with the blue yarn creating the webbing of a dream catcher.  The completed mandala fits perfectly inside a 8 inch hoop if you are looking for a more solid look.

Once you’ve removed your ring, pick a colour (and its hammer time 😀 ……. get it?? It’s time to get rapping 😀 ).

I’ve used the hot pink here but any combination will work.

 Securing the end of your yarn with one hand wrap it around your ring making sure that it doesn’t overlap and that you don’t have any gaps. Work you way around your ring until the whole hoop is covered.  Knot the end of your yarn together on the outside of your ring. The knot will be hidden when you replace the outer embroidery hoop. 

We’ve reached the final stage. Now its time to attach your mandala to your embroidery hoop.

Cut yourself a length of yarn about 60cm should do.  Using a crochet hook, pull your yarn through the middle dtr stitch on your mandala. Pass your yarn over the back of your hoop then pull it through the middle dtr on the next petal.  Continue wrapping your yarn through your mandala until you are back at the beginning.  

Holding your yarn ends in one hand spread the petals of your mandala out until you are happy that they are evenly spaced.  Knot the ends together keeping the knot on the outside of your embroidery ring.

Place your dream catcher mandala in to the outside ring or your embroidery hoop, ensuring that the knots and their ends are covered.  Tighten the screw on your embroider hoop and you’re done.  😀 😀

Mandala dream catchers
Three finished fabulous mandala wall hangings.

I hope that you have enjoyed reading and using my mandala pattern.  As with all of the contents on my blog, all images and patterns are my own personal property.  Please, by all means use my patterns to make your own fabulous creations and share share share this blog with your friends but please DO NOT recreate of duplicate this pattern, my photos or this blog post without my permission.  

Any product links are affiliate links, which means that if you make a purchase using them I get a small commission to help me to fund my crochet addiction. If you’d like to use my links, that would be great, I’d really appreciate it but if you don’t want to use them, thats fine, just google the product and enjoy my articles anyway.

My Twiddle Muff Journey – How To Make A Twiddle Muff.

A few months ago my wonderful sister in law asked us if we’d do her a favour.  She works as a for a Cornish care charity and was adding another string to her bow.

 She had become a dementia champion, she had volunteered to deliver  an information session for The Alzheimer’s Society and needed some practice before she stepped out into the big wide world delivering her information to the greater public.

Of course we said yes, so here is where my journey began.

Emma (my sister in law) popped round one evening and spoke to us about dementia, she helped us to better understand what a person with dementia is going through and how we can better support them within our community.  

People are so quick to judge, poke fun at and even film complete strangers in the street, making a snap decision that they are just weird and that putting a photo or video of them on social media is the way to deal with their unusual behaviour.  They don’t stop for one second to consider that the person they are laughing at might need help instead of ridicule.  

It makes me sad to think that this has become an acceptable way to behave.

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How To Become A Dementia Friend

The Dementia friends course that Em delivered is designed to give people an understanding of dementia and the small things that could make a difference to people living in their community.

Emma explained a little bit about what it’s like to live with dementia, we then agreed to turn our new found understanding into action by agreeing to become dementia friends and help raise awareness within our community.

At the end of the course we all made a pledge to do just one little thing to help raise awareness.  

We have little Dementia Friend pins to show our commitment to being more understanding and proactive.  

Anyone of any age can become a Dementia Friend, our youngest son does his bit by wearing his pin to school every day along side his school council badge, he has used his new knowledge to discuss dementia with his friends and school teachers.  

I decided that I would use my new found knowledge of dementia, the unrest and anxiety that it can cause to help me design twiddle muffs and blankets to keep restless hands warm and entertained.

I put my thinking cap on, grabbed my crochet hook and dived in to my yarn stash.  

This is what I came up with.

Garden Twiddle Muff

 

My first attempt was made with a garden loving lady in mind.  

I created grass and flowers and added raffia and string that could have been used to tie back saplings when pottering about in the garden on a warm spring afternoon.  I then added plats, a ruff and a button with its own loop to help keep restless hands busy.  

I finished my twiddle muff of with a fleece lining for extra comfort ad to cover up the ends and knots from where I attached the various twiddles.

Each prototype I make is donated to Cornwall Care who pass them on to their residents.  

I have photographed each muff and popped the pictures up in my Etsy store as a guide to anyone who would like to place an order for their loved ones.

Here is the basic twiddle muff pattern.

The main body of the twiddle muff is made using a James C Brett, marble chunky yarn and a UK 5mm US H hook.

I found that by using a UK double crochet the material produced was strong and durable and the gaps between stitches were perfect for treading ribbon and yarn through.

To make the main body all you need to do is;

Chain 52

Row 1

Double (US single) crochet into the second chain from your hook then double crochet along the rest of your chain to the end.

Row 2

Turn your work and chain 2, miss the first stitch then double crochet to the end.

Repeat row 2 until you have completed 50 rows.

Fasten off leaving a long tail. This tail will be used to sew the two edges together to complete your muff.

Twiddlemuff base cloth and ribbons

 

 That’s the main body done, now its time for the fun bit

There is no right of wrong way to make a twiddle muff.

Making a twiddle muff is a the perfect excuse to let yourself go wild and dive into that stash of yarn that is safely hidden away from your other half so that they don’t know about your addiction 😉

Here are a few of the twiddles that I’ve whipped up over the last few months.

 

Grass

To make the grass in the photo above take 2 different shades of green acrylic double knit yard and cut several strands of approximately 15cm in length.

Using a 4mm/G hook to help pull the yarn through the gaps between the stitches so that it is half way through.

Secure each strand with a knot then turn your work over.

Using your hook, pull the strands of yarn back through the material, leaving the knots on the other side. Make sure you pull the yarn through different holes so that it spreads into a nice clump of grass.

Keep going until you are happy with the effect then give your grass a trim.

 

Ribbons, Bows, Buttons, Beads and String.

 I don’t know about you but my craft related hoarding is not limited to yarn alone.

 Every time I buy something with a lovely tag, piece of ribbon or spare buttons they get squirrelled away for a rainy day craft project that never quite seems to happen.

As a result of this I have a substantial collection of bits and bobs that are perfect for twiddle muffs and twiddle blankets.  

Once I have finished the main body of my twiddle muff I raid my stash and see what I can rustle up. As long as they are securely attached anything goes.

 I find that it helps to have a theme in order to stay on track.

I love talking to the family members of the alzheimer’s patient and hearing all about their loved ones life and loves.  I use this precious information to help me create a bespoke item that is just for them.

 

A Simple Flower

I use acrylic double knit yarn for the majority of my twiddles.  It is bright, cheery, hard wearing and machine washable, which makes it perfect for twiddle muffs.

For this flower you will need a 4mm/G hook and a couple of different colours of yarn.

Chain 4 and join the ends with a slip stitch.

Round 1 

Chain 2 , 9 double (US single) crochets into the loop joining with a slip stitch into the second of the ch2. 10 stitches.

Round 2

Chain 2, double crochet into the same stitch, 2 double crochets into each stitch, join with a slip stitch. 20 stitches. Change colours.

Round 3

(Chain 3, dtr 2 tog (US tr2tog) over the next 2 stitches, ch 3, slips stitch into the next stitch, slipstitch into the next stitch) repeat 5 times ending with 1 slip stitch into the first stitch.

Fasten off. leaving a long tail so that you have plenty of yarn to attach it to the main body of your twiddle muff with.

I also make twiddle cuffs.  They are designed with more active people in mind. Here is a link to my twiddle cuff tutorial. 

Here are a few pictures to give you some ideas of other twiddles.  

I tend to place all of my twiddles in the middle third on my base material so that they are all on the one side when the edges are sewn together but lots of people place pockets ribbons and other twiddles on the back even inside their twiddle muffs.

If you’d like to know how to make any of the twiddles in the pictures pop a comment at the bottom of the page and I’ll add it to my next blog post.
 

Once I am happy with the over all appearance of the twiddle muff I secure the twiddles firmly, keeping all knots on the back of my fabric.  I then line the with fleece.

 I am no seamstress.  Each year I sit down and watch The Great British Sewing Bee and manage to convince myself that somewhere buried deep inside me is an awesome seamstress who is dying to break out but alas, she is yet to make an appearance.

So with massive apologies to my more accomplished friends, here’s how I fleece line my twiddle muffs.  

Step 1

Lay the fleece out with the main twiddle muff material on top.

Step 2

Cut around the muff material leaving an additional 1.5cm on each edge. You should now have a piece of fleece that is 3cm longer and wider than your twiddle muff base.

Step 3

Fold over the 1.5cm allowance on the top and bottom edges and pin into place.

Step 4

Using a straight stitch on your sewing machine stitch along the top and bottom hems.

Step 5

Place your 2 pieces of material back to back, lining up the top and bottom edges and pin them into place.

Step 6

Being careful not to catch any of your twiddles in your machine, stitch along the top and bottom edges starting 0.5cm in from the edge and finishing 0.5 cm from the end.

Step 7

Sew the last two edges of the fleece together

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Step 8

Using the long tail that you left when you made your base material sew the two sides together to complete your twiddle muff.

Work in any loose ends and you’re done. 🙂

The next time you’re stash busting give a twiddle muff a go they’re the perfect gifts for people with dementia.  If you don’t know a alzheimer’s patient yourself, make one anyway and donate it to your local hospital or nursing home and brighten someones day.

If you would like to become a dementia friend click the link below the Dementia friends badge and it will take you through to some more information.

All pictures designs and patterns are my personal property.  Please ask permission if you would like to feature them. 

Many Thanks

Lou