Genesis of a Pattern

The last few weeks and ongoing I have had a dental discomfort problem. I won’t bore you with the details but it has left me distracted, weary and distraught, hence the simple blanket making and colouring. Not that doing both these things haven’t made my wrist start hurting so I am having a bit of a break.

However more recently I felt that a little pattern creativity would occupy my time and my mind in a restful way.

Since it is Easter time my mind turned to the idea of making a Tree of Life Cross Bookmark.

My original bookmark is very popularoriginal bookmark and I have lots of purchases on Ravelry.

I know that this different cross bookmark will be less popular but I have always liked the idea of seeing the cross as a Tree of Life.

The photograph above of the original bookmark is of one made in #20 cotton, although you can’t tell the difference as for the larger cross the thread will be thicker and so look about the same. However some people have found the above bookmark in #10 cotton is larger than they would like and so shorten the arms.

I therefore decided to make this new bookmark in #10 cotton but about the size of the #20 cotton original bookmark.

I had a large ball of #10 cotton in a neutral colour that I had bought cheaply when it was being sold off so I decided to use it to experiment.

Here you can see my evolving attemps three trialsFor the first one (on the left) I was using trebles (US-dcs) but decided the structure was too loose. So I tried a quick top and arm in dcs (US-scs).

Feeling that that worked I then tried a tree with just the one arm and adding a leafy edging. For this I put a curve in the trunk of the tree. I decided the curve made the tree a bit lopsided and started to draw out ideas on paper, partly just to document the pattern as it was evolving.

Here you can see a couple of sheets.

sketchesI started with squares to represent the stitches and on the left you can see the black outline for the twisted tree and one in green for a more symmetrical version.

I then started making a chart, although I decided that a chart was not more useful that simple written instructions for the final pattern.

On both sheets I tried to work out what sort of shape would work best for the arms and how many leaves to add.

I made a few decisions and on the basis of them I made this cross. first attempt

I had decided that I would not introduce an exaggerated curve for the trunk.

I showed this to a few of my friends at church and I didn’t get much feedback, except from one person who questioned why I had made the top of the cross shorter than the arms at the side and said she thought it would be better if all three were the same length.

I didn’t know exactly why I had made the cross that shape and so I decided I would try to write out a pattern for the cross but one where the top part was as long as the arms and then work from the pattern to check it and to see if I liked the result.

I realised when I compared the new cross to the old that the trunk part in the pattern had a couple of extra rows and I didn’t like that as much but that I did like the longer top and so I rewrote the pattern and tried again.

Here – from left to right – you can see my thee attempts. all three versionsHere is the final cross. Final cross and tasselI have put the pattern for sale on Ravelry –

Though I don’t know if anyone will be interested.

8 thoughts on “Genesis of a Pattern

  1. Sorry you have a dental issue, I hope it is resolved soon and you feel much brighter.

    It passed me by that you’ve been selling patterns on Ravelry, I’ve just had a look and well Jane! 94 projects for your original cross pattern.. I’m really impressed, well done you.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I understood 40 yrs ago when I first learned to crochet and the cross bookmark was one of the first projects given me… that the open shell represented the empty tomb.
    Not sure what your tree of life stands for, but the tree of life that is used in baby blankets, etc… when I delved into the story – came from the welts on slaves backs. (I’ve not since used that pattern for anything!) Only made the first blanket from that pattern.
    But I’m super glad that working out the pattern created a distraction til you could get the pain taken care of.
    Love to hear/read you blog.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The idea of the cross as a Tree of Life is that because of the resurrection of Christ the cross which was made of wood and thus was originally a tree has become a source of life for Christians. So it is encapsulating the idea of Jesus death on the cross and the resurrection.


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