More Celtic Coasters

I don’t seem to be able to throw off my obsession with all things Celtic. But then why should I!

Lately I have been designing some more coasters but this time because of how the interwoven part looks when complete I have added a border.

Here you can see some of the first ones I made. Two different sizes of two new coaster designs

I made the larger ones with a 4mm hook and the smaller ones with a 3.5mm hook. I am still not sure which I prefer.

Here you can see why this design needs a border. Coaster without a borderAnd here are a few more I have made, playing around with different colour combinations. Latest new coastersAnd these are two of my original coasters that I made as a gift but more of that on Thursday. Two original coastersFor the observant among you: the reason there is no green in the first four coasters is because I had run out. I then bought four more balls in green, pink, blue and lilac as in the right hand coaster above.

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Celtic Coasters

The Pattern for this is now available to buy on Ravelry – http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/celtic-coasters

These coasters are made by interleaving four rectangular crochet strips. You only need a small amount of of yarn. Ideally made with four or at least two colours as you will see from the photographs.

They should come out about 4 inches / 10cm square.

NOTE

Although this is a very straighforward pattern I do not consider it to be suitable for beginners.

More about devising these coaters

You may remember my “I have a new obsession” post. Well since then I have been working on more celtic designs, in particular I have continued thinking about how to make a coaster.

I had given up the crochet cotton coaster because my hands were hurting but it occured to me that it might be possible to make one in DK weight yarn if I gave up the idea of combining five pieces, so I tried with three and my standard method of working out how many chains were needed.3 part coasterI realised that although this worked well for my celtic bookmark that the gaps in the resulting coaster would be better eliminated, so I reduced the number of trebles (US-dcs) for a crossing point from four to three and tried again.

I had realised that using less trebles per crossing, I could increase the number of pieces from three to four.

So this is what I did and here is the result.4 part coasterI then got out the oddments of my Rico essentials cotton yarn and made another one.Coaster from cotton oddmentsI thought it worked it even better in cotton.

Now, I had shown you how I messed around with a drawing program to see how different colours could be used. I had a play and chose to make a couple more coasters like this from my regular stash.Red to green coasterandGreen to purple coasterI then thought it might be fun to use just two colours arranged so as to get a chequer pattern in the centre.

This is what you get.Black and cream coaster

I would love to make some more but my coffee table is getting Coffee tablea bit crowded.

I have a new obsession!

Celtic knotwork or plaitwork. (And I haven’t forgotten about the orchids.)

I few weeks ago I showed you the bookmark I had made. Well since then I have been busy drawing and planning and thinking up ideas.

For further ideas I turned to my book on Celtic knotwork.BookHere are some of my early drawings. Early drawingsThe one with colour comes from in the book but done my way.

The ones lower left are just plaitwork squares and the one at the top is my idea for a celtic knot cross bookmark.

This is it done on the computer.Knot crossI have a silver celtic cross and I also wondered if that could be turned into a crochet pattern.

Silver cross designThe curves make this trickier to work out.

Having decided that the plaitwork was the simplest, I played around with a few colours

I decided that using my computer drawing program would make that easier.Complete plaitPutting each colour on a different layer e.g.First layer

made it easier to try different combinations.

Different colourwaysMaybe you might like to try on squared paper or the computer.

The only shapes you need are these.Needed shapesor the mirror equivalent. I have used both.

It’s best to start in the middle like this.Start

Turning this into a pattern is easy.

Draw round the curve to represent the chain you will start with, as in this pattern for my bookmark.Drawing for bookmarkYou will make a long chain the right length (or a little longer and undo any excess chains). Working into the back of the chains gives the best finish.

Each crossover point means 4 chains (ignore the squares between crossovers). Each 90 deg turn means either 1 chain or 5 chains if the chain is on the outside of the curve.

Each 180 deg curve is similarly either 3 chain or 11 chain.

You work 1 tr (US-dc) into each chain except for corners and turns.

A corner 90 deg turn is made by working 5tr (US-dc) into 1 chain or else doing 5trtog.

A 180 deg turn is made by working 5tr into first chain, then 1 tr into next, then 5 tr into next, or else 5trtog, 1 ch, 5trtog.

I liked to start in the middle of a crossover point.

This works for any design not just the bookmark.

I realised that if I made the smaller plaitwork design in DK (US-worsted weight) yarn it would be too big for a drink mat so I thought I would try with some #10 cotton.Halfway finishedUnfortunately I had to stop at this point.

I have had pains in my wrists for the past few months and although making my rainbow spiral cloth was fine, working into the back of the chain for these hurt too much.

I thought it was something that would get better if I just rested my hands and didn’t do things that hurt but now I have been told that it is osteoarthritis. The doctor didn’t seem to think I needed any more information as it was enough to know that it was “nothing scary”.

I am still hoping to finish this one day and try my bookmark ideas. Just need to find out a bit more about living with osteoarthritis and whether if it hurts it’s doing damage.

My hands work fine and the pain is not as bad as it was; just don’t want it to get worse.

It’s thicker than the others but I love using my celtic bookmark.

Celtic knot bookmark

Christmas Coasters

I hope you all had a Happy Christmas and are now looking forward to the New Year.

So while we wait here is something I couldn’t show you before.

These I days I give my children money for Christmas and birthdays with maybe a little something to open. Last year I made my daughters and their husbands crochet key rings. This year however I only made one Christmas present: a joint one for my eldest and her husband.

Some Christmas coasters.

Finished coasters

The gold shape in the centre was not part of the present I just put it there to add to the picture.

I took the patterns out of my 100 snowflake book.

Snowflake book

I started my making no. 100 in silver because it seemed a good size and shape for a coaster. I then made no. 98 in gold, didn’t like it very much because the holes were to big and made no. 97 instead. The snowflakes at the end of the book are larger than those at the beginning.

I chose no.97 because it looked as much like a star as a snowflake. So I saw the present as comprising six stars and six snowflakes.

Finished snowflakes

[Having experimented with stiffening this sort if thread with PVA glue and spray starch. I decided the glue made them just too stiff and used the starch.]

So now I had my coasters but I realised that as they were they were neither very heat proof or drip proof I had to do something to remedy this.

In the end my solution was to buy some felt and embroidery thread and make a hexagonal pad to attach them to.

Scraps from making hexagons

Here you can see the scraps that were left from two pieces of felt 9″ x 12″ in red and green plus the template I cut from an old birthday card.

I found some lovely shiny rayon embroidery thread in matching colours.

Red and green thread

I cut out two hexagons for each coaster, sewed the snowflake shape on one with invisible thread (Just to be sure it wouldn’t show) and then joined a second hexagon to the first with blanket stitch round the edge.

As you may have realised I am not very good at sewing but I was pleasantly surprised that the sewing wasn’t too bad.

Stitching on coaster

here is a closer view of the two designs.

A pair of coasters

My daughter was delighted with them.

 

The Giveaway Winner is………………………..

This time I really did put the names in a hat.

An old winter imitation fur hat that is actually too small for me.

0181-hat
Tossed them around with my fingers many times before drawing out…………………..

A winner who will receive this lovely cotton yarn in seven rainbow colours

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and one of the following coasters

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or

0173-purple
or one like this.
0163-coaster

Had to keep you waiting! 🙂

And the Winner is

0181-winner

I have sent her an email to tell her that she has won and asking which coaster she would like.

*****     *****     *****     *****     *****

Thank you to everyone who entered it was lovely to hear from you all.

At Last! The Giveaway

This Giveaway is for the 200+ email followers that I know about. I explained before that I was a little tired in July when I reached that magic number – 200 and now I am well on the way to 250!

When you see what I have decided for the giveaway you will understand why I had to wait this late into August.

The giveaway will have a yarn part and a created by me part.

The yarn is these seven balls of Rico Essentials cotton in standard rainbow colours. The ‘indigo’ in an actual rainbow is not really as dark as the name indigo would suggest so these are my take on suitable (and available) colours.

0174-rainbowyarn

All to spread a little rainbow love. 🙂

But as well, as I have been busy with making coasters lately out of this same yarn, I will be giving away copies of the patterns I created for both sorts of coasters and will make one coaster of the winner’s choice.

Either a rainbow one like this

0173-redor a rainbow one like this

0173-purple

or a plain one like this in any of the rainbow colours.

0163-coaster

To enter – Just post a comment below saying that you are an email follower and want to enter – I will chose a winner in a couple of weeks time on 7th September, all ready to be announced on the Monday.

Rainbow coasters

I couldn’t show you these before as I made them as a little something for part of my daughter’s birthday present.

0173-six

People seemed to like the idea of rainbow coasters when I showed you the ones I made in June but they only had five rows.

0163-rainbowcoaster

So I decided to make some coasters about the same size but with exactly seven rows. I had intended to give my daughter rainbow coasters for her last birthday but hadn’t got round to it so this killed two birds with one stone as it were.

I decided it would be fun to do the colours in standard rainbow order: red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo, violet, both from edge to inside and from inside to edge.

Here is a close-up of the first one

0173-red

and the other

0173-purple

I think they are really jolly and my daughter likes them so that is good.

Which colourway do you prefer?

July Montage

In July – I shared with you the rest of my holiday in Criccieth and my son’s new flat.

I showed you a recipe for a different sort of banana bread.

The only crochet I shared was the bunting and coasters I made while I was away. This is mainly because of helping my son cope with all that is involved in moving from one flat to another but I did manage to fit in a bunting tutorial.

I took some photographs of the recent rhino invasion of Southampton and a lot more photographs of our final? visit to Portsmouth Historic Dockyard and the Mary Rose.

montage1307

A special commision with extras

This wasn’t the sort of commision that those of you that sell stuff get, no this was my daughter asking me if I could make some bunting for their friend/lodger, James, whose birthday was early in July.

Since she asked me only a few days before I went to Criccieth, I decided that I would have to try and make it while I was away. I made a few sample bunting triangles, showed her the alternatives and ordered some Rico Essentials Cotton in the required colours, which were turquoise, grey, red and cream.

We decided that one colour triangles would be best and I said that granny triangles would be the best choice as time was short.

So here is the finished bunting.

0163-bunting

I made the triangles on the train going to Criccieth and in the evenings watching TV in my room.

Back home I looked at the triangles and thought the the corners were a bit rounded and felt that I ought to do something about it.

0163-finishedtriangles

However being a cautious sort of person, I first made a small triangle in grey pinned it out and sprayed the reverse with spray starch and ironed it.

0163-sample

I decided that it looked good and so I pinned the triangles (one colour set at a time) to a block of polystyrene under my ironing board cover and spray and ironed them.

0163-pinnedout

I then took the grey and cream crochet cottons and crocheted a long chain slipstitching it to the triangles as I went along.

0163-partbunting

And here is the finished bunting in James’ room. I am told that the final position has not been decided on but you can see how it fits with the general colour scheme.

0163-insitu

While on holiday, however I had finished the triangles in good time, and not being able to proceed any further I decided to try and make some coasters in the same colours to add to the present.

Now while I was making squares for the CAL, I had thought that the centre of this one might be useful for other things.

0153-173

I couldn’t remember the pattern but I could remember the general look and so I made this.

0163-coaster

As you can see it is not exactly the same but I was very pleased with it and thought it looked almost professional!

I made one in each colour.

0163-coasters

When I was back home I made an almost rainbow one

0163-rainbowcoaster

But I was inclined to think that I preferred the single colour ones.

What do you think?

Here is another photograph of the coaster with two slate coasters that I bought in Blaenau Ffestiniog.

0163-withslatecoasters