I have to start by saying that I can’t unreservedly recommend the Crocheted Succulents book that I bought, especially for beginners.
The author is obviously imaginative, creative and accomplished, and the patterns come out well, but there are far too many errors in the book.
For the first two patterns I tried, I found an error in each of them. With the first, the pattern instructed me to “make 6”. However having made one it looked to me to be the whole thing. There were a few completed projects on Ravelry but no Project Notes. I tried to contact the author through Ravelry but had not had a reply. So tried Google.
Here I found a page with a whole ream of errors, not including the ones I had found. There was even one pattern where two lines of the pattern had been omitted.
(This is the Errata page – https://www.gmcbooks.com/gmc-craft-book-errata/crocheted-succulents-2/)
Now I hate writing in books, especially new, pristine, ones so I think I will have to copy the errors onto sticky notes and add them in to the related pattern pages. I may also have to be prepared for further errors.
The first pattern I tried was called “Red Frills”.
Here already attached to some crochet compost!
I was quite prepared for the idea that I had to repeat the pattern six times as the original plant consists of several leaves with frilly edges. However when I had completed it, I could not see how I could combine six of the same together and the finished item, when held up to the photograph in the book that said that it showed the actual size, matched perfectly.
The next pattern I attempted was “String of Pearls”.
Again, already attached to some crochet compost!
I had not bought the expensive yarn specified in the pattern, as I did not think that it was necessary, and photographs of the plant on-line seemed to suggest a different colour. I decided to use some of the Stylecraft.
The error I found here was that in the instructions for making the ‘pearls’ the term ‘htr’ is used meaning not “a half-treble” but “half a treble”. Also the accompanying drawing shows five loops where the written instructions, correctly, tell you to draw the yarn through four loops.
The method of making the pearls however is very clever and effective.
I am enjoying making these as the crochet is actually fairly simple and so relaxing, though a certain concentration can be necessary, as with the Red Frills, where I had to make sure that I was getting the rapidly increasing number of stitches correct. Though I have to admit for the last three rounds I didn’t bother to check on the grounds that “nature is never perfect”, so the odd error would not matter.
I will be notifying GMC about the errors that I found in the book.
My third make is “Old Lady Cactus”.
This was a bit trickier as it meant using two yarns held together and one of them was an eyelash yarn. I had a bit of difficulty counting the number of stitches at first because they were hard to see but I got there in the end.
I had decided that I would make some soil to attach the plants to, to fit in the pot I had in mind.
I had bought this a long time ago and had even planted it up but soon realised that this was always going to be tricky because the holes are relatively small and plants grow. It was never long, even with cacti, before the chosen plants needed re-potting.
Now the book gives instructions for adding soil but it consists in making a round ball which I do not think looks very natural, though I expect it holds the item well in the pot, as I always have the earth fairly level, so I decided to make a ‘perfect circle’ as in my pattern and then extend down a little round the edges to make as it were the top of a cylinder so I could pad out the pot, then tuck in the edges of the ‘soil’ round it.
Here is another view of the pot.
I knew that I would have to fill up the inside of the pot, so I could rest my little ‘compost’ circles on top. Normally I would have thought toilet paper or tissues but decided that was not a good idea at the moment, as I might need all I have.
However I remembered that I had had to remove the filling from this cushion. when it became very lumpy and had tucked it away in a bag in case I could find a use for it.
So I tore off chunks and filled the pot holes.
So now to make some brown circles, using my perfect circle pattern (https://rainbowjunkiecorner.wordpress.com/2016/04/18/how-to-crochet-a-perfect-circle/).
When I had made the African Violets, the crochet circles had just been to have something to allow me to position the leaves and to mean that if anything peeped through it would look like earth. Here I had decided that, as the earth would be more visible, it would be a good idea to create an edge to tuck down the sides, so I added another row just into the back loops only then another two equal rows to give depth. Two of the holes were round but the other one was more oval so I amended the pattern slightly. This hole in the pot also has a bit of an overhang so that will help keep things in place.
I have not used florists wire to keep the succulents in place, although I have some, instead I have sewn the plants to the brown circles in such a way that I can remove them later if necessary.
And here you can see the finished arrangement on my kitchen window sill as planned.
A not very good photograph of the whole window sill.
I have a couple of other pretty pots that may join the others when I have made some more.