Angel bookmark/decoration Pattern

Three angelsThis pattern in UK & US terms is now available to buy on Ravelry – http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/angel-bookmark-decoration

If made in #10 crochet cotton angel is about four inches high. In goldfingering it is about six inches high. It can be used as a bookmark, perhaps with a cord and tassel or else as a tree decoration or even made into bunting.

I made it as a bookmark to give as a Christmas card.  I made them in all sorts of colours.

Even in #20 thread

NOTE

The pattern includes bothe UK and US versions.

Snowflakes everywhere!

My house seems to be full of snowflake decorations this year.

There is my snowflake tree. I think it would take more snowflakes and I may have more by next year. 🙂

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There are gel snowflakes on the glass of the patio door,

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a chain of snowflakes across the fireplace,

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my snowflake wreath that I made last year,

Snowflake wreath on door

a couple of snowflake decorations for the Christmas tree

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and (this that was a bit of an impulse buy)

LED colour changing snowflakes.

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The great thing about these is that by hanging them against this internal window I can also see some of them when I am in the kitchen.

0213-inkitchen(Yes ! that is me in my apron taking the photo.)

And I have even found some snowflake tinsel that I have threaded between the banisters.

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I must admit that although a little sprinkling of the real thing would be lovely; these days I am less happy when I have days of slip-sliding on ice afterwards.

Extra eggy ideas

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Originally I had thought that I wouldn’t be making any more eggs this year but then I got all sorts of ideas for new types of eggs and had to try them out. A bit of an obsession perhaps, like the snowflakes. 🙂

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I have added the final version of my ‘Basic Crochet egg pattern’ in the ‘My Patterns’ section of the Top Menu.

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For a more interesting texture you could use htrs (US hdcs) for the egg after the initial six dcs (US scs). This does however mean that you can see the stuffing if you look closely. I rather like the way the surface is made up of lots of little inverted triangles.

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Stopping at 18 stitches for a round will give a medium size egg.

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If you have variegated yarn left over from making some bed socks perhaps 🙂 0125-bedsocks you could make a naturally patterned egg. I found that my variegated yarn seemed a little thicker than some and the egg, although a 24 stitch -medium egg, was actually closer in size to the large ones.

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Crochet Christmas cards
Then again if you have some gold thread left over from making stars for Christmas cards you might have enough to make a golden egg. It was a very close run thing though. I was afraid I would run out before the end.

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Here a 30 stitch egg is still only small.

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And you could use the silver thread left from making the silver stars for the same cards, together with some deep blue cotton DK yarn and make a sparkly midnight sky egg. 18 stitches and a 4.5mm hook gave me a medium egg.

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You can even use #10 crochet cotton for a little dainty looking egg. I used 36 stitches here increasing the number of middle rows accordingly.

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Or #20 for a rainbow coloured egg. I decided to increase to 42 stitches this time and the egg came out a similar size to the creamy one.

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This last egg also made me decide that although the original pattern works well enough with acrylic yarn, that is very forgiving, that it would probaly give a better egg shape if at the end one went straight from 12 sts to the last 6 by doing 2dctog for the last row.

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And using DK yarn of any sort, the right size hook, the right number of stitches and rows, if you stop just over half-way through making the egg and then make the bottom half of the egg by increasing three times a row instead of decreasing and then the right number of straight rows you can make a little case to hold a creme egg or other goodies.

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There’s still time to make a few before Easter! 🙂

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I also made one of Janette’s rabbits in #20 cotton, as that is the only one I have in multiple colours, to add to my Easter Tree.

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And here is a picture of the Easter tree with the extra eggs, the crosses I didn’t use for Easter cards and the rabbit.

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A Dozen Eggs!

Since Maryanne suggested that it would be a good idea to have some Easter related entries for the ‘Made It’ monthly challenge, I decided to try my hand at crochet eggs.

I have realised that it is being impatient and lazy that leads me to write my own patterns.

I start out due to this laziness and impatience looking for other people’s patterns because I think that is the quicker and easier option but then if I discover that the patterns are not all the same, so I don’t know which will be best or else I find them hard to understand, I decide that actually the quickest and easiest thing to do will be to get some yarn and a hook and work up my own.

And so it was with crochet eggs.

I know lots of people would have created a beautiful co-ordinating set but my collection, I am afraid, is more eclectic.

I gathered together

1.

The scraps of yarn left from my hexagon blanket. Blanket on bed

2.

Finished clothThe cotton yarn left from my ‘flower cloth’. I especially liked using these as they gave a smooth finish with a slight sheen.

3.

AnAll my coloursd the ends of balls I am using for the CAL. I found these colours seemed more suitable than the ones for the blanket.

First of all I made this one.

Not too big so I could finish it quickly.

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Then another couple with more of an effort to consider what the pattern was.

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They were even smaller but I thought rather sweet.

Next I decided to try to incorporate the ‘Linen’ stitch that I used for my phone cover.

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The purple one came out a bit miss-shapen, so I added a little flower to detract from the shape.

I tried stripey ones in different sizes. By now I had a definite pattern that could be worked in three sizes (or more).

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I liked these as there was no need to keep joining in new yarn. It could just be alternated.

And of course I had to make some rainbow ones.

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Only six! colours but then a rainbow is probably only said to have seven colours because people were obsessed with sevens at the time and thought of it as the ‘perfect’ number; although when mathematicians talk of ‘perfect’ numbers they mean something different.

So now I had

Five small ones,

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Four medium ones

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and

Three egg sized ones.

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The first eggs I made and those using the linen stitch came out slightly different sizes but

The pattern is basically:

6dc (US sc) into a magic loop. [6dcs ]

Next row: 2dcs into each dc. [12dcs]

Continue increasing six times each row until you get to 18dcs (small), 24dcs (medium) or 30 (large=UK medium/large egg size with DK yarn and 3.5mm hook).

Then work 5 rows small, 6 rows medium or 7 rows large before decreasing. I hope you can see the pattern here if you want to make even bigger ones!

Decrease three times every row (eg. {7dc, 2dctog, 1dc} x3, for first decrease for large.) until only 6dc are left.

Start stuffing about halfway through the decreases. I found I normally pushed a last bit of stuffing through the final hole with the end of my crochet hook.

Draw remaining thread through stitches and fasten off.

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Whether you work in rounds or a spiral I found to be a mootish point as I couldn’t make the joins for the rows invisible, so I moved onto doing them in a spiral as they both gave a sense of discontinuity when working in more than one colour but the spiral was neater.

I did work in rounds for the linen stitch ones as there I could hide the join more successfully.

And here is my Easter Tree.

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I have added a few flowers and as Easter is the major Christian festival, the crosses but more of those next week.

Maybe in time (like next year) I may make more things to add.

What did I do over Christmas?

Well not as much as I might have hoped as I have been suffering from a cold. “The cold that thinks it’s flu” as I have dubbed it.

It started with a cough! Now what cold STARTS with a cough?

Moved onto fever and then when the fever broke and you felt much better and felt maybe you were going to get better quicker than normal, and with all of Christmas ahead, the cold really starts – streaming nose, productive cough, the lot.

Nine days after it started, you are feeling wobbly walking round the sitting room and wondering if you will ever get better!

Well my son helped by putting up the Christmas tree but I had to add the decorations I had shared with you.

My son comes to stay over Christmas as the buses are so bad and normally we play games but this year all we did was watch TV and do the Radio Times cryptic crossword, which, much to my delight, we managed to finish between us.

Of course my son also caught the cold and was feeling pretty bad by the time he left on Saturday.

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And I put the cards on the bookcase but didn’t try to cover up what lay behind! The one of the candle was made by a creative friend and it is the third year she has made her cards using a special paper folding system.

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My granddaughter and family came on the Monday for a present swop and a meal of which I ate only a tiny, tiny portion but they did insist on doing the washing up which helped, and I made sure the crib was up. Again in a bookcase.

My son insisted that two of the kings should be having a chat.

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Snowflakes on coffee tableNo streamers, no tinsel, and I spread my snowflakes on the coffee table since I wasn’t up to turning them into a garland. These were moved to the mantle piece on Christmas day as my grandsons, daughter and son-in-law came to lunch. They had all had the cold before me and Alfred, the younger, was suffering from Chicken Pox that he had caught from his brother, so we were a sick household and no one ate as much as they might have done.

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Kitchen snowflakesBut the gel snowflakes on the kitchen windows

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Snowflake wreath on doorand the wreath on the inside of the front door kept my spirits up.

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I didn’t feel up to starting on the outstanding CAL squares but did manage some more of my granny ripple blanket.0094-blanket

CAL 43-45 Lost in action!

The action I mean is making things for Christmas.

I have not made any more squares this week because I have been wanting to get on with other things.

I have been making these that I showed you on Monday – HERE

Samples

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PRESENTS

No picture for these 🙂

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Some of my real snowflakes in silver but I need more

Silver snowflakes

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And this crochet angel

Crochet angel

I found the pattern for this HERE but I found what seemed on my reading to be a couple of mistakes.

When making the body you do need to make five picots to be the fingers. The pattern seemed to be written only for four. (And yeh! I have worked out how to make acceptable picots).

When making the wings there should be two dcs (US teminology) (UK = trebles) into the same stitch at each end of the rows even where on one row it only mentions one.

The angel in the pattern is made on #10 crochet cotton but I only had #20 cotton and anyway I wanted it fairly small so that is what I used.

Next Monday I hope to be able to show you what I needed the snowflakes and the angel for.

Decorations children can make, favourites and some ideas.

When my children were at school someone came home with this as an idea for making Christmas decorations for the tree. They were really easy to make so I thought I would share them with you.

Now if you are older and a bit more dexterous and love snowflakes and hexagons and all six-fold things as my elder daughter does, since she shares many of my enthusiasms, then you decide to make them like this.

These are all left from the ones we made years ago.

You can maybe see how to make them but I will include some instructions anyway.

All you need are cocktails sticks and some spare yarn. It’s a good way to use up those tiny oddments that are too small to do anything with.

You cross the two (or three) cocktail sticks together, tie the yarn to one of them near the crossing point then wind round and round going over and under each of the arms in turn and keeping the yarn taut but not so much that it distorts the shape. When you want to change colour, just tie on a new piece and pull the knot to the back so it gets hidden.

I hope this shows how to wind the yarn round.

And how it looks on the reverse. I have wound round the initial tail and then cut off what shows.

Tie the yarn through itself round one of the arms to finish. Tying it twice probably makes it more secure.

If you have some gold yarn left from making stars for Christmas cards 🙂 you can include that.

And this is the reverse before the ends have been trimmed.

I made this fairly quickly. With a little more time it can be even neater. It is easier if you cut off the ends as you go.

And here are a few more samples. I think the rainbow one is a bit irregular because I undid some bits I had crocheted to use the thread.

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I thought I would also share with you some of my favourite tree decorations.

There are these that my eldest daughter bought me at different times.

As you can see the one on the left is larger than the normal tree ornament. It is an imitation snowball covered with down and is getting a little past its best but I love it.

The other is a tiny glass angel. and I decided to give you a closer look as it doesn’t show up very well in the other photograph.

Here are some wooden decorations. The one on the left was a present from a friend but the others were carefully chosen by me. The middle two come from a Christmas Market in Aachen, Germany and the one on the right from Bethlehem.

I am also very fond of these.

The ball I have had a long time and I think it came from John Lewis in London, and I love it for the rainbow colours that shimmer inside but don’t show very well in the photograph. The other I bought in Southampton a year or two ago from a stall in the precinct. They had lots and lots of similar ones and I bought this one because blue is my favourite colour.

Now we move on to some that I think have creative possibilities.

0090-craftpossibilities

These are both made from wire but offer possibilities for being copied. The one on the right could maybe be made with a wire star shape and yarn wound round it with added beads or buttons. I might try something next year.

And these I bought on Saturday in Paperchase for £6.

I thought I could use them to work out some suitable crochet patterns and make some for next year.