I have a plain, white tea pot that I never use, so I thought a colourful tea cosy for it might encourage me to use it more. I also wanted to see how long it would take to make as I’m looking for quick crochet projects to work on and potentially sell much later down the line.
The pattern for the tea cosy is incredibly easy to follow – it is mostly just the puff cluster stitch, until the end where you do a round of double crochet. Once you reach the sections for the spout and handle gaps, there is a lot of cutting the yarn and beginning again, which means a lot of ends to sew in at the end. However this also means it is easy to switch colours and have a striped cosy. I chose these colours simply because I had a lot of yellow and a little blue, but next time I’ll try out a multicoloured one and use up lots of scraps of yarn.
The pompon is a bit rubbish as I made it quickly and without a pompom maker; I think a super-fluffy, multicoloured one would be perfect for a stripy tea cosy.
I’ve had a tutorial for the tulip stitch blanket pinned for some time, but never got round to trying it out; then a suggestion popped up on my Pinterest feed for a child’s headband using the tulip stitch which prompted me to give it a go.
I used the Bella Coco (who else?!) video tutorial for the blanket, rather than the written instructions for the headband, as I still can’t read them very well and I find the videos so much easier to follow. The tulip stitch is made up of double crochet, the v-stitch and the puff stitch, and it’s fairly easy once you get the hang of it. I simply did one ‘row’ of tulips measured to the size of my daughter’s head.
Whilst it was quite simple, my first attempt is not very neat. It didn’t help that I used different thicknesses of yarn for the edges and the flowers, whoops! The ends didn’t match up neatly either, so I came up with a somewhat creative (i.e. lazy) alternative to sewing the ends together – I gathered all the ends of yarn and tied them in a knot. Not the best solution, but it works. I’ll try and be neater next time… when I have three yarns of equal weight! I’ll update when I’ve had the chance to have another go.
A new crochet tutorial from Bella Coco (yes, her again, but her tutorials are excellent!) came up on my Pinterest feed and it looked too cute not to try out – a crochet elf hat for babies, just in time for Christmas.
The pattern starts off a bit complicated for a crochet novice like me and I had to undo the stitches and begin again a few times. You start with the headband which is a line of stitches which you join together, and then the rest works in rounds of treble crochet.
Once the initial headband is completed, the rest of the hat progresses quickly and easily. The tutorial is to make a hat for a 6-9 month old, but I was making one for my newborn, so I adjusted the number of stitches to what I thought would work and estimated its size. It doesn’t look too messy though.
The tutorial includes a pompom on the end, but I couldn’t find my pompom maker, so I just gathered in the end of the hat to make a point. It fits my baby perfectly and was quick to make during her nap times; I’m delighted with it overall and so is Elise! Link here: http://pin.it/5uIMgKh
With a newborn around it’s been difficult (i.e. impossible) to do any of my Pinterest projects, but I decided to give a bit of crochet a go. I thought that it would be something easy and relaxing to pick up any time the baby was sleeping and I couldn’t snooze. I wanted to make a gift for someone as all the crochet projects I had made previously I kept for myself! So, who better to make a special Christmas crochet gift for than my lovely mum?
I had saved a Pin for a Bella Coco tutorial for an infinity scarf which seemed like a good place to start. I chose a 7mm hook and the chunkiest yarn I could find in my stash. It was a simple pattern to follow: a V stitch, and it was easy to put down and pick up whenever the baby was napping.
As the scarf was so straightforward, I decided to pimp it up a bit with some pretty crochet flowers – cue another Bella Coco tutorial!
I also gathered the scarf at the join for a bit more detail (also, I didn’t have enough yarn to do a separate ‘loop’) and to hide the join. I think it looks quite effective.
You may have read my previous posts about making crochet willow squares and blocking them; the next jobs were to join the squares and put a border on the whole blanket.
There are lots of ways to join crochet squares and most of the methods I found were for joining granny squares. The individual granny squares tend to have a triple crochet outer round whereas the willow squares have two rounds of double crochet, so I struggled to work out the conversion (I am a crochet novice!) to join them together. I then found someone who simply ‘sewed’ the squares together with a darning needle and yarn so I tried that, and it worked.
I joined the squares into rows first and then rows to rows. Since I am a novice, not all my squares had the same amount of stitches on each side so I had to double up some of the stitches but it is subtle and doesn’t ruin the final product.
I decided on a ‘scallop’ border as it’s a simple design which I thought wouldn’t take away from the pretty detail of the willow square. It also helped that it is a simple pattern to follow. Overall, I’m really rather chuffed with myself and the first baby blanket I’ve made.
I began this blanket at New Year after seeing a Bella Coco video tutorial pop up on my Pinterest feed, and made great progress initially – the short sides of the star meant it built up quickly. But then the progress slowed down. A lot. The miserable dark winter nights, a kitchen renovation and the early stages of pregnancy led to a lazy me who put the blanket aside and left it for several months.
Along came summer, renewed energy levels and a finished baby blanket (see previous willow square posts) and so more motivation to get the star blanket completed. It was slow-going, with much longer sides to complete but I got there in the end. I toyed with the idea of making it my biggest blanket yet by adding one more round of each colour, but my lazy side, and lack of yarn, stepped in and stopped that idea!
I did struggle with the curling corners of the star, and I added an extra round of double crochet (the rest is all triple) to try and flatten it out, but with only minor success. I would try blocking it, but I don’t actually have enough floor space to lay it flat, so for now I’ll live with the curled corners.
Having a growing pile of willow squares (see previous post), I decided it was time to start blocking them ready for joining. I looked at several Pinterest pins for how to block, having never done it before, and found this to be the simplest looking method.
It requires a foam pad, bamboo skewers and a water spray bottle. I used some additional blocking pins I’d bought on Amazon too. I sprayed the squares lightly with water before pinning them to the board with the bamboo skewers in each corner. I used the blocking pins to straighten each edge. The foam pad I used is one especially for crochet blocking with grid lines printed on it to help keep edges straight, but it could be easily duplicated with a cheap piece of plain foam with hand-drawn lines.
I blocked the squares in sets of four and each set took about 24 hours to dry out – so a long process!
Once removed from the board I then stored the squares under a heavy book and paperweights to keep them flat.
An easy but long process (unless I buy more foam pads) to block crochet squares. Now the next job is to work out how to join the squares and add a border!