Celtic Knot Bookmark Pattern

There is a diagram to help with interleaving the ribbon together to make the bookmarks at the bottom. This is probably the hardest part!

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I would suggest using #10 crochet cotton and a 1.25mm hook for starting chain, then 1.25mm or 1mm hook for working stitches or whatever size produces a firm but not impossibly tight result. I crochet fairly tightly and I think I used a 1.25 hook throughout. Using a larger hook for the starting chain can make it easier to crochet into.

***The stitches need to be worked into the loop at the back of the starting chain. This is method 4 in my tutorial on four ways to work into a chain.***

Slip stitches or Edge should be worked in a contrasting colour to main strip.

I am writing these patterns in similar way to how I wrote the Celtic Cross pattern.

A number means to work that many stitches, one into each chain. The V and A represent using multiple stitches as described below.

These are in UK terms. [US equivalent is in brackets and italics where needed.]

Bookmark to have edge added

Bookmark with edge

V = 5trs into one chain. [V = 5dcs into one chain.]

A= 5trs tog. A= [5dcs tog.]

Outer turn = V 1 V

Inner turn = A 1 A

Making main ribbon

Start with at least 395 chain. (Having a few extra will allow for miscounting or missing a stitch by mistake, or my calculation being wrong!)

Start by working tr into 4th ch from hook – equals first two trs. [Start by working dc into 4th ch from hook – equals first two dcs.]

12 (outer turn) 10 V 15 A 15 V 15 A 15 V 10

(outer turn) 15 A 15 V 15 A 15 V 15

(inner turn) 10 A 15 V 15 A 15 V 15 A 10

(inner turn) 15 V 15 A 15 V 15 A 3

Edge

Work along both sides.

Can work 3 or 4ch or just extend thread so as not to need to cut thread when reversing direction at end of strip as these will be hidden by join.

Start at beginning of strip.

Instructions:

1ch, then dc into each tr, except for inner and outer turns. These as below.

Outer turn: into first 5tr work dc, dc, htr, tr, dtr, Then trtr into central stitch, then reverse into next five: dtr, tr, htr, dc, dc.

Inner turn: miss out stitch either side of central stitch. That is a dc as before and after.

US – Instructions:

[1ch, then sc into each dc, except for inner and outer turns. These as below.

Outer turn: into first 5dc work sc, sc, hdc, dc, tr, Then dtr into central stitch, then reverse into next five: tr, dc, hdc, sc, sc.

Inner turn: miss out stitch either side of central stitch.That is a sc as before and after.]

This bookmark came out approximately 7 inches by 1.5 inches when I made it. (18cm x 4cm). It is the largest as you can see in this photograph. Bookmark comparison

Although the bookmark above was the most popular, for completeness, I have continued with instruction for the bookmark with a slip stitch embellishment but included options for either having my original rounded ends or pointed ends, as these seemed popular.

Bookmark to have slip stitches added

V = 5trs into one chain. [V = 5dcs into one chain.]

A= 5trs tog. A= [5dcs tog.]

For pointed ends Bookmark with slip stitches and pointed ends

Outer turn = (tr, tr, tr, dtr, trtr) into first ch, then quadtr into next, (trtr, dtr, tr, tr, tr) into third ch

Inner turn = worked over 3ch but working 5 sts tog as above for first and third and a quadtr in the middle.

For rounded ends Bookmark with slip stitches and round ends

Outer turn = V 1 V

Inner Turn = A 1 A

Making main ribbon

Start with at least 333 chain. (Having a few extra will allow for miscounting or missing a stitch by mistake, or my calculation being wrong!)

Start by working tr into 4th ch from hook – equals first two trs.

10 (outer turn) 8 V 12 A 12 V 12 A 12 V 8

(outer turn) 12 A 12 V 12 A 12 V 12

(inner turn) 8 A 12 V 12 A 12 V 12 A 8

(inner turn) 12 V 12 A 12 V 12 A 2

Adding slip stitches

Work a slip stitch into each stitch along top of trebles (including other stitches used for turns  where applicable) then 2ch or extend thread for a turn and work slip stitches into the stitch equivalents of the starting chain.

This bookmark with rounded ends came out approximately 5.5 inches by 1 inch when I made it. (14cm x 3cm). And with pointed ends was 6.25 inches by 1 inch. (16cm x 3cm)

Interleaving the Ribbon to make the Bookmark

Interleaving diagramUsing the above diagram as a guide find the turn that is around the middle of the ribbon. This is the one in the bottom left hand corner of the diagram.

Follow the green and orange coloured parts that extend from this turn and interleave them as shown.

Then fold in the green/red turn and the orange/blue turn.

I then turn it so the these turns are at the top and fold in the remaining lengths.

There is an asterisk showing where the final join is.

Join neatly so it doesn’t show outside the overlap.

Pull into shape, this may take a while, and then stiffen if you want to, although they will be fairly stiff anyway if you have made the ribbon firm enough.

What about a Celtic Coaster style Placemat?

This does include a universal pattern at the bottom as long as you don’t mind a bit of Maths!

Having had a few people interested in the possibility of a placemat in similar style to my Celtic Coaster, being the person I am, I wasn’t able to stop considering it.

My first thought was that it would be a lot of work and very fiddly. However……….

Imagining a placemat made in a similar way to the coaster as being made of similar width strips. I wondered how many that would need to be and in the end decided that about sixteen would equal a foot. (Not sure I am right here but it was a good place to start.)

Now the number of separate strips needed for a piece of Celtic plaitwork depends on the whether, on counting the number of bumps on each side (including the corners), the two numbers have a common factor.

No common factor: one piece (as in my odd numbered Celtic bookmarks.)

If there is a common factor that determines how many separate strips there are.

Two examples of plaitwork
four and six have a common factor of two whereas three and five have no common factor except one.

For a square, both sides are the same so you need that number of strips. Hence the style of my coasters.

I tend to think of placemats as being rectangular so having decided on sixteen colours for one foot (30cm). I chose to draw out one that was 16 x 32 bumps.

Now to be similar to my coasters each colour must be different. Sixteen was about the number of colours I used for my spectrum blanket so I coloured each strip in similar colours and produced this. 32 x 16, 16 colour arrangementNow one of the things I wanted with my coasters was for no adjacent overlaps to be the same colour.

I think, if you look closely, you will see that this breaks this rule in a vertical strip down the centre.

Of course a square placemat would not. square 16 colour arrangement(Each strip of the 16 x 32 placemat would need about 360 chains and there would be sixteen of them to weave together. That is a similar number of chains to those needed for each of my bookmarks.)

Now one person had asked about a matching coaster and obviously this could not match with all those colours so I looked to see what would happen if you repeated the colours of my first (non rainbow) coaster original coaster(As represented in my drawing programme) computer version of coasterand got this. 32 x 16, 4 coloursEven more matching adjacent overlaps.

Even if it was square. 16 x 16 square 4 coloursSome people might like the patterns it gives rise to but it wasn’t really what I wanted.

So I decided to work out how to make a bigger version of my coaster with the same shape strips but just wider.

As it was just a trial effort, I used some of my acrylic yarn that I had no specific plans for, as the cotton yarn is more expensive and I wasn’t sure I had enough anyway. Acrylic is much stretchier though and so needs more TLC to get it into shape. However I hope it will give you the general idea of what is possible.

For symmetry I decided to just make the strips three times wider and see how large it ended up. This would mean nine trebles (US-dcs) for each cross-over and over one hundred chains for each strip.

The thing that surprised me was to find that when adding further rows it takes two added rows to equal the width of one row on its own. So I ended up with five rows and not three! (And 114 starting chains see formula below.) Placemat and coasterSince each strip is approximately the same size you should need something less than 25g of each colour. As the whole thing weighed just under 85g. More of course if it was cotton. I used a 4.5mm hook for the starting chain and then a 4mm hook for the stitches. I tend to crochet quite tightly.

Here it is with a plate. Placemat and coaster with plate

Although I was doing all this primarily for other people it has proved quite useful, as one of my first thoughts was to use plaitwork to make a cushion cover and now I have the tools to plan such a cover – watch this space!

Some Maths!

For a square coaster, placemat etc.

If N is the number of bumps down the side (including the corners), N is also the number of strips and so also the number of colours needed if each strip is a different colour.

As an aside: I think that N is best if it is even, as if it is odd you get a square shape in the middle which I think stands out too much.

3 colour coaster
This was the one that was too loose but I think you can get the idea

For an even number the first half of the shapes are the same as the second half and they blend together more. four colour coasterHowever the formula works for all values of N.

In all the following (US readers read ‘double crochet’ where I say ‘treble’)

Then for each strip if only one row wide:

The number of chains to start = 12(N-1) + 6. This includes the two extra chain needed for the first treble equivalent.

For thicker strips:

If m is the number of rows. I think m works best if it is odd from the point of view of symmetry. (If you chose an even numbered m you will have to adjust for any halves you get. I suggest rounding down as crochet is stretchy.)

The number of chains to start = 12[1 +(m-1)/2](N-1) + 6. This includes the two extra chain needed for the first treble equivalent.

Hope you remember your BODMAS!

I have even come up with a formula pattern for any size you might want to make.

For strips only one row wide:

Work the following, using values of ‘t’ from 1 to N.

(Following on from my remark about an even N, when N is even you can just make two each of the first N/2 shapes, which is what I did for the coaster.)

Treble into 4th chain from hook, 5tr into one chain,

Then one treble into each chain for 6(t-1) chains. (Yes this gives zero for the first ‘t’), 5trs into one chain.

Then one treble into each chain for 6(n-t) chains. 5trs into one chain.

Then one treble into each chain for 6(t-1) chains. 5trs into one chain.

Then one treble into each chain for 6(n-t)-2 chains. (This corrects for the first two trebles made at the beginning which will give a join that is underneath.)

A more general formula that will also work for thicker strips:

If N is the number of strips (colours) and m is the number of rows.

The first rows come from:-

Work the following, using values of ‘t’ from 1 to N-1. Then repeat t=1.

Treble into 4th chain from hook, Then one treble into each chain for [(m-1)/2] chains, 5tr into one chain,

Then one treble into each chain for 6(m+1)(t-1)/2 chains. (Yes this gives zero for the first ‘t’), 5trs into one chain.

Then one treble into each chain for 6(m+1)(n-t)/2 chains. 5trs into one chain.

Then one treble into each chain for 6(m+1)(t-1)/2 chains. 5trs into one chain.

Then one stitch into each chain for (6(m+1)(n-t)-(m+3))/2 chains. (This corrects for the extra trebles made at the beginning which will give a join that is underneath. If when you put the plait together the join is not underneath then you have the strip the wrong way up. I always presume that the right side is the front of the first row.)

For the rows after that work one tr into each tr except for the turns. (Remember to start with 3ch, miss the first stitch, and work the last tr into the top of the 3ch on the previous row.)

For 180deg turns, on the second row I worked into the 10 stitches of the turn as follows – (tr, tr, 2tr, 2tr, 2tr, 2tr, 2tr, 2tr, tr, tr) (16)

On the third row I worked into the central sixteen stitches of the above as follows – (tr, tr, tr, 2tr, tr, 2tr, tr, 2tr, 2tr, tr, 2tr, tr, 2tr, tr, tr, tr). (22)

Hopefully you can see a pattern here. I felt it was similar to working a circle, (or see below.)

For 90deg turns I simply worked 5trs into the central treble of the five of the previous row and one treble into all the others.

Pattern for 180deg turns continued

How the stitches increased for the fourth and fifth rows.

Over 22 stitches: (tr, tr, tr, tr, 2tr, tr, tr, 2tr, tr, tr, 2tr, 2tr, tr, tr, 2tr, tr, tr, 2tr, tr, tr, tr, tr.) (28)

Over 28 stitches: (tr, tr, tr, tr, tr, 2tr, tr, tr, tr, 2tr, tr, tr, tr, 2tr, 2tr, tr, tr, tr, 2tr, tr, tr, tr, 2tr, tr, tr, tr, tr, tr.) (34)

Caveat: Although I have checked and double checked my figures and formulae, I do make mistakes, and if anyone thinks they have found one, I am always grateful to be told so I can investigate.

 

 

 

 

 

Make you own Orchids!

There are many sorts of orchid but when researching what I could make all those months ago when I wrote my first post about it, I decided to try to create the Moth Orchid – Phalaenopsis.0551-spray-of-orchidsI wasn’t sure if anyone would be interested in how I made the spray of orchids but since someone has asked I have decided to share what I did. I am not sure whether to call it a ‘pattern’ as my patterns are normally things I feel anyone could make and I am unable in this case to tie down a rigid method, more just a description of what I did.

This is aimed at confident crafters who can make sense of what I write. (On this occasion I have written only in UK terms)

I used Ricos Essentials Cotton, DK weight, in white. The cotton has a sheen which gives the flowers a bit of a glow. You will also need a small amount of red and also green yarn for the stems.

I used a 3.5mm hook, though I crochet fairly tightly, so you may prefer a 3mm hook. Anyway since the size of the flower is not critical, use whatever size you feel most comfortable with and that gives the best result.

Did you know that when you make a slip stitch, you can either make it so that pulling the tail tightens the loop or that you have to pull the main yarn to tighten it? Surprisingly, I didn’t realise this till recently. For this pattern you need to make your slip stitch so that pulling the tail tightens the loop. I achieve this by holding the end in my right hand. (But I wouldn’t want you to think I am trying to “teach my grandmother to suck eggs” if all this is second nature to you.)

[I have added some charts at the bottom. They have been made relatively quickly and I have used my normal trick of mirroring the stitches so the diagonals on the trebles won’t all go the right way but I thought they might be of some use to some people.]

White Orchid (make 4)

Central circle and column.

Column appears to be the most common term for the nobby bit in the centre above the two side petals.

I found that making a circle of twelve htrs worked best. I used a magic loop but any other way of starting would work as well as this part should not be seen in the final flower.

At the end of the 12 htrs, slip stitch into the first st then work 4ch, and dc into second ch from hook and the two after that, then ss into start. Pull firmly and sew in ends.

This excrescence will naturally curl up

Side Petals (make 2)

Start: 2 ch

Row 1: 3dcs into second chain from hook.

Row 2: 1 ch, 2dcs into first dc, dc into dc, 2dcs into last dc.

Row 3: 3 ch, 2trs into first dc, 2trs into next dc, then tr into next, 2trs into next and 3tr into last.

Row 4: 1ch, (dc, htr, tr) into first tr of row below. The 2trs into each of next two stitches. Now you work what I call a half double treble (hdtr) into the next stitch. (See below for explanation). Then a dtr into eah of the two central stitches, a hdtr into the next, 2trs into each of the next two stitches and (tr, htr,dc) into the last stitch.

Now continue down the side of the petal working a slip stitch into the side of the end of the three rows below. Then a final ss into the starting chain.

Followed by: 2ch, tr into starting chain, 2ch, ss into starting chain.

Now work up the other side of the petal making a ss into the side of each of the three rows.

The way I finish off is how I often finish off these day which is to extend the remaining loop on the hook until it is long enough to give a good length of yarn and cut in the middle. I then thread it on a needle and pass the needle under, in this case, the first dc of row 4. I then thread the yarn back where it came from and sew it securely into the back of the petal.

This gives the appearance of an unbroken row of stitches round the edge of the petal.

0552-side-petalI leave the starting yarn to sew the petal on to the centre of the flower later but pull it to tighten the starting chain.

[Hdtr: I make a dtr in the normal way except that when there are three loops left on the hook. I pull the yarn through all three.]

Rounded Sepal at the top

(I discovered that this part is a sepal and not a petal as I originally thought of it.)

Just two rounds this time.

Start: 7ch. (Remember to make the slip knot so you can tighten it.)

You will be working into the back loops, then back up the other side into what have now become back loops if that makes sense.

Round 1: dc into second ch from hook, then dc into each of the next four chains. When you get to the starting chain, I work 2dcs before the knot then one after it, making three in all. You are now working down the other side. Work five more dcs, one into the one loop of each chain. Then a ss into the turning ch.

Round 2: ch1, then dc into first dc, htr into next, tr into each of next four dcs. Then 5trs into next dc, tr into each of next 4 dcs, htr into next, dc into last. Ss into start. Tighten starting chain and sew in end securely. Leaving a good length of the yarn at the other end to sew this sepal onto the centre later.

Pointy Sepals at the side (make 2)

Just two rounds again.

Start: 6ch. (Remember to make the slip knot so you can tighten it.)

Round 1:dc into second ch from hook, then dc into each of the next three chains. When you get to the starting chain, I work 2dcs before the knot then one after it, making three in all. You are now working down the other side. Work four more dcs, one into the one loop of each chain. Then a ss into the turning ch.

Round 2: 2ch, tr into first four dcs, (tr, dtr, tr) into next dc, then tr into each of last four dcs. 2ch, ss into turning ch of first round.

Finish off as sepal above.

Red Petal or Lip

Now using red yarn ch4, ss into third ch from hook, ch2, ss into starting ch, 3ch, tr into starting chain, 3ch, ss into starting chain, 4ch, ss into third ch from hook, 2ch, ss into starting chain.

This should give a wide central piece with two thin side pieces that should arch upwards either side. 0552-lip

 

The petals and sepals have a natural tendency to curl and I felt that when arranged they did so in an appropriate way so I did not try to stiffen them at all just adjusted them with my fingers at the end since they will not be being touched in use. However if you want to experiment with stiffening feel free.

0552-orchid-charts

Construction

The first thing I did was to attach the rounded sepal to the central circle behind the column. I then attached the two pointed sepals symmetrically at either side. They should stick out at an appropriate angle for an orchid which meant that there was an angle of about 90deg between them and one or two stitches of the edge of the circle. The sepals need to be secure.

I then took the two petals and attached them to near the centre of the circle so the narrow part was just below the column. These I sewed on with reference to pictures of orchids so they overlap both upper and lower sepals.

Finally, I threaded both ends of the red yarn of the lip into a needle, threaded the needle through the centre of the circle secured the ends either side at the back so it wouldn’t swivel then for speed and simplicity just tied the ends together in a double knot and cut off short.

I do not consider sewing things together to be one of my strong points so if you have a better method of getting the same result that is to be recommended.

Stems and attaching Orchids

When I made some knitted roses (from a book) I made a knitted I-cord for the stems and had thought to crochet something for the orchids but couldn’t quite see how. In the end the fact that I had very little green cotton yarn decided me on a simpler choice.

I had bought these flower wires 0229-flowerwirewhen I made the roses and thought I could also use them for the orchids.

Part 1 (make three)

I took my jewellery pliers and bent over the ends to make a small loop. I left it open and made a slip knot in the green yarn leaving a very long tail. I then wound the tail yarn tightly round the wire working upwards towards the loop. When I had enough I slid it round so it filled the loop closed the loop with the pliers and tied the end to the main part of the yarn the other side of the slip knot. I used what was left to sew the loop on the back of the flower. But first I continued down the wire with the main ball of yarn, winding it so the wire didn’t show, until I had enough for the curving stem behind the flower. I then cut the yarn and took a small piece of sellotape which I wrapped round yarn and wire (50/50) to hold the yarn in place.

Part 2

For the fourth orchid I did as above plus working extra to cover the gap between the stem of the end and adjacent orchid. When I came to the end I didn’t cut the yarn and used a paperclip to hold it in place.

Attaching the flowers.

I laid each wire to the back of a flower with the loop behind the centre circle and the rest of the wire pointing upwards behind the rounded sepal. I sewed the loop in place at the back of the circle (using an extra bit of white thread when I found I didn’t have enough green!)

I then bent the wires in a curve for the individual flowers stems followed by a 90deg bend for the part between the individual stems. If that makes sense. Obviously I let the yarn covered section extend just beyond the bend.

The fourth orchid was the front one (so in a sense the first!) and I took one of the other three and laid the wires against each other, so that the stems were spaced correctly and started to wind the yarn round both wires, covering the last of the green and the sellotape for the second flower. I added a third flower and then a fourth at suitable intervals then continued winding the yarn round the wires until there was no more wire left. I was not too bothered about the appearance of the stem, though I tried to make it neat, as it would be inside the vase. I think that I bent the last of the wire up and tied the yarn to stop it slipping. I am sure you can make a better job of it!

Finally

I arranged the flowers so that they overlapped each other with the end one in front as you can see in the picture. 0551-closer-view-of-orchidsI straightened the petals and sepals and pulled the wide part of the lip so it was horizontal.

It is possible that the individual stems should have been a bit shorter and that I should bend the flowers forward more so they don’t show.

I leave that to your judgement. There are plenty of photographs of orchids online.

[As always do let me know of any mistakes. I have put this together fairly quickly.]

 

 

 

 

A more symmetrical Granny Ripple

The new chart. 0525-symmetrical-granny-ripple-chartI find it very hard to make a chart for a ripple but I think this is better than the chart for the original ripple.

When I devised my original Granny Ripple pattern, I chose between three samples that I made.

Three samples

At the time I chose the middle one.

This was my favourite at the time for two main reasons I think.

  1. I knew that a Granny ripple could never be as symmetrical as this simple ripple 0220-cushionback)but I was looking for something that was as symmetrical as possible and chose to seek this on the increasing and decreasing row. 0525-symmetry-in-original
  2. The very slight assymetry of the result made the ripple seem further away from the Granny zig-zag that I didn’t want.

However

Months of looking at my spectrum blanket and musing on fact that the peaks were sharper than the troughs 0197-onbedcloserled me eventually to realise that removing the extra three treble group between the decreases could actually lead to a symmetry of the two row pair. 0525-symmetry-in-new-version(This is the top sample.) Made into a blanket it is rippley enough I now feel!

I wanted to try this out and, having really enjoyed putting together the colours for the sea-and-sand blanket I made for my daughter, Ripple blanket on setteedecided to try a not too large lap/shoulder blanket using the same colours which I could drape on my bedroom chair where the colours would really go.

There is nothing I  enjoy so much as having a blanket on the go, especially my granny ripple that is so easy to do!

I calculated that this blanket would only need about half a ball of each colour and so I collected together any balls where I had at least 50g left and supplemented this by buying these from a shop 0525-shop-yarnand these on-line where the shop didn’t have the necesary colours.0525-on-line-yarn I also indulged myself, as you can see, by buying the three sizes of hook I use most often with DK yarn of the Clover Armour hooks that I have come to really love. (Well it did mean I didn’t have to pay postage!)

Here are all the colours ready to start the blanket. 0525-all-the-yarn

And here is how far I have got. 0525-blanket-up-to-dateAnd a comparison of both ripples. 0525-both-ripples

Here is the modified pattern (UK & US versions)

PATTERN (UK version)

I am using a 5mm hook (but some people may get the same result with a 4.5mm hook) and DK yarn. I like using a 5mm hook for granny square type blankets because it produces a soft fluid result.

I also find that introducing a chain between each group of three trebles as happens in granny squares makes granny stripe type blankets too loose so I have omitted them.

My ripples come out about 6” (15 cm) between adjacent troughs (or peaks).

You need to decide how many ripples wide you want to make it.

To start you make a chain [(39 x number of ripples) + 3] long.

[However my tip is to actually make the chain about 5 chains longer than you need and then when you have finished the first row you can actually undo any excess at the start of the chain, link by link, and it all remains quite secure. This way if you make a small miscalculation you don’t have to undo the whole row.]

I don’t think that this pattern is as bad as some as you only have to work into every third chain on the foundation row!

Row 1: work 2tr into the 6th chain from the hook (I don’t count the loop on the hook itself).
Then repeat (miss 2ch 3tr into next chain) until you have [(13 x number of ripples) –1] three treble groups. Then miss 2ch and 1tr into last chain.

Row 2: 3ch = 1tr then 2tr, 1ch, 3tr, into first space. 3tr into each of next 4 spaces. Miss a space. 3tr into next space. Miss a space. 3tr into each of next 4 spaces. 3tr, 1ch 3tr into next space.

Then repeat for each ripple:-

3tr, 1ch, 3tr, into first space. 3tr into each of next 4 spaces. Miss a space. 3tr into next space. Miss a space. 3tr into each of next 4 spaces. 3tr, 1ch 3tr into next space.

Until the last ripple where the very last treble should be worked into the chain 5 chains from the first worked treble group instead of into the space. This will give a firm edge.

Row 3: 3ch = 1tr then work 3tr into each space between ‘three treble’ groups and finish with 1tr into the 3rd ch at start of the row below.

Row 4: 3ch = 1tr then 2tr, 1ch, 3tr, into first space. 3tr into each of next 4 spaces. Miss a space. 3tr into next space. Miss a space. 3tr into each of next 4 spaces. 3tr, 1ch 3tr into next space.

Then repeat for each ripple:-

3tr, 1ch, 3tr, into first space. 3tr into each of next 4 spaces. Miss a space. 3tr into next space. Miss a space. 3tr into each of next 4 spaces. 3tr, 1ch 3tr into next space.

Until the last ripple where the very last treble should be worked into the 3rd of the chains in the row below instead of into the space. This will give a firm edge.

Repeat rows 3 & 4 as many times as you like.

Another plus point about this pattern is that all the odd rows after the first one are just a matter of working 3tr into each gap except at the start and finish.

PATTERN (US version)

I am using a 8/H hook (but some people may get the same result with a 7 hook) and worsted weight yarn. I like using an H hook for granny square type blankets because it produces a soft fluid result.

I also find that introducing a chain between each group of three double crochets as happens in granny squares makes granny stripe type blankets too loose so I have omitted them.

My ripples come out about 7” (18 cm) between adjacent troughs (or peaks).

To start you need to decide how many ripples wide you want to make it.

To start you make a chain [(39 x number of ripples) + 3] long.

[However my tip is to actually make the chain about 5 chains longer than you need and then when you have finished the first row you can actually undo any excess at the start of the chain, link by link, and it all remains quite secure. This way if you make a small miscalculation you don’t have to undo the whole row.]

I think that this pattern is not as bad as some as you only have to work into every third chain on the foundation row!

Row 1: work 2dc into the 6th chain from the hook (I don’t count the loop on the hook itself).
Then repeat (miss 2ch 3dc into next chain) until you have [(13 x number of ripples) -1] three double crochet groups. Then miss 2ch and 1dc into last chain.

Row 2: 3ch = 1dc then 2dc, 1ch, 3dc, into first space. 3dc into each of next 4 spaces. Miss a space. 3dc into the next space. Miss a space. 3dc into each of next 4 spaces. 3dc, 1ch 3dc into next space.

Then repeat for each ripple:-

3dc, 1ch, 3dc, into first space. 3dc into each of next 4 spaces. Miss a space. 3dc into next space. Miss a space. 3dc into each of next 4 spaces. 3dc, 1ch 3dc into next space.

Until the last ripple where the very last double crochet should be worked into the chain 5 chains from the first worked double crochet group instead of into the space. This will give a firm edge.

Row 3: 3ch = 1dc then work 3dc into each space between ‘three double crochet’ groups and finish with 1dc into the 3rd ch at start of the row below.

Row 4: 3ch = 1dc then 2dc, 1ch, 3dc, into first space. 3dc into each of next 4 spaces. Miss a space. 3dc into next space. Miss a space. 3dc into each of next 4 spaces. 3dc, 1ch 3dc into next space.

Then repeat for each ripple:-

3dc, 1ch, 3dc, into first space. 3dc into each of next 4 spaces. Miss a space. 3dc into next space. Miss a space. 3dc into each of next 4 spaces. 3dc, 1ch 3dc into next space.

Until the last ripple where the very last double crochet should be worked into the 3rd of the chains in the row below instead of into the space. This will give a firm edge.

Repeat rows 3 & 4 as many times as you like.

Another plus point about this pattern is that all the odd rows after the first one are just a matter of working 3dc into each gap except at the start and finish.

October Montage

This last month the topics for the Photo Challenge were: Button, Mystery, Autumn, Zig-zag and Monster. I also shared photographs of two outings. One was to Seaton in Devon (actually to ride on trams) where I shared some photographs showing the evolution of a wave and the other to the Isle of Wight for a Beer and Buses Festival.montage1610For crochet: I shared a pattern of my latest ‘real snowflake’ and the ones I made to sell in a charity shop. For knitting: I showed you how the colours had gone for my temperature scarf over the summer.

A New Real Snowflake Pattern

Those of you who have been following this blog for a long time may remember when I collected a number of photographs of actual snowflakes and created crochet versions for seven of them. Patterns hereReal snowflakes to copyAt the time I decided that the snowflake in the top left of the picture would be too hard for me to make. (As an aside: I also decided that the eighth snowflake (bottom middle) was too textured to be able to do justice to it in three or four rows.)

This was for two main reasons.

  1. It would have to involve using picot type stitches and I had been unable to make satisfactory picots.
  2. I was afraid that the arms would end up floppy.

However since then I have discovered where I was going wrong and how to make picots that lie flat. I also saw some snowflakes with a similar style of points in this book: which gave me encouragement0192-bookand I have been making some snowflakes to be sold in a local charity shop using acrylic yarn and a 2.5mm hook and found that with that size hook, even acrylic snowflakes can end up very firm.

I started off using that size hook rather than a more obvious choice of 3.5mm because I had been given a Clover Armour hook of that size and was really enjoying using it , so was reluctant to use an ordinary hook. 0517-new-snowflakeAnd here is a comparison with the original photograph. 0517-comparison-with-real-snowflakeYou can see that even with my crochet not being 100% even it is still more symmetrical than the original!

For anyone who is interested in making one (or more!) here is the pattern.

Note that whereas the other snowflakes for which I created the earlier patterns all end up a similar size this one is necessarily a little larger. 0517-snowflake-comparison

Snowflake Pattern (UK terms)

I crochet fairly tightly so all I can recommend is that you chose a 2.5mm hook or even smaller, for DK (worsted weight) yarn depending on how loosely you crochet. For other weight yarn use a hook much smaller than you would normally use if you want the points to hold up under their own weight. This can mean that not all the yarn pulls through on a stitch sometimes and it has to be redone!

Start: With a magic loop or 4ch circle if you prefer (but I think that a magic loop is better as you can pull it really tight.)

Round 1: Work 6dc into the loop or circle and slip stitch closed

Round 2: 3ch (= 1sr tr) then into 1st dc work (tr, 6ch). Work 2trs followed by 6ch into each of the following 5dc of the previous round. Slip stitch into the third chain at the start of the round.

This last round creates the points and is the trickiest round. It is really a matter of making five picots but adding an extra slip stitch to hold both sides together on the last two. I think where you add the extra slip stitches is obvious as it is the hole at the bottom of the picot on the opposite side.

For anyone, who like myself, finds their picots don’t look right the answer I found was when slip stitching to use method two of my four ways to crochet into a chain.

Round 3: (The following is repeated six  times, you can omit the final slip stitch for the sixth repeat and just sew in the end.)

7ch, slip stitch into fourth chain from hook, 4ch, slip stitch into fourth chain from hook, 8ch, slip stitch into eighth chain from hook, 4ch, slip stitch into fourth chain from hook. Here you work an extra slip stitch into the same stitch as the stitch for the second of the earlier four chain picots. Then 4ch, slip stitch into fourth chain from hook, plus an extra slip stitch into the same stitch as the stitch for the first of the earlier four chain picots. 3ch and end by slip stitching into the second of the two trebles.

Then working into the 6ch loop. Dc, hdc, 2ch, dc, 2ch hdc, dc. Slip stitch into 1st tr of next pair.

Finish: Pull the centre tightly closed, if using the magic loop. Sew in the ends securely and then pull the points and loops hard until the snowflake lies flat and looks even. Or else pin out on a board and leave for a while. 0517-snowflake-pinned-on-boardAs always, I welcome any comments on the pattern, especially pointing out errors!

Here is a photograph of the snowflake suspended. As you can see the points really do stay stiff! 0517-hanging-snowflake

How to crochet a perfect circle

I thought it was about time that I gave you a crochet post on a Monday.

I had been thinking of trying out a more elaborate idea for a crochet pattern but since I was feeling pretty exhausted I ended up doing this instead. Crochet circleEver since I created my African Violet pattern I have felt that I ought to work out how to crochet a proper circle using dcs (US-scs). When I made my violets I created a brown ‘circle’ to attach the leaves and flowers to that was meant to represent the potting compost in case it peeped through. However it came out as more of an octagon because of the way I had chosen to do the increases. Being an impatient soul, I couldn’t be bothered to work out how to do a perfect circle since it didn’t matter too much because it was hardly seen.

But finally I have got round to it!

Now there may be other ways to create an ‘almost’ perfect circle (claiming perfection is maybe a bit cheeky!) but this is my way.

Maybe, before the pattern, a little discussion about why I think this method gives a good circle.

After the second round all the increase rounds involve sixteen increases and a potential sixteen sided shape is obviously closer to a circle than an octagon. Also the inbetween rounds have one stitch into each of the previous round, thus giving a smooth finish. Lastly I have offset the increases sometimes having the 2dcs into one at the beginning and sometimes at the end of the sequence.

Circle Pattern

Starting with a magic loop or 4 chain circle and working in a spiral the rounds go like this for a circle with a diameter of about five inches or 13cm when working with DK yarn and a 4.5mm hook (that is probably 4mm for most people).

I marked the first stitch of each round after the first couple with a bit of thread, just to make it easier to see when the round was complete.

  1. ch1, 8dcs into circle. (8)
  2. 2dcs into each stitch. (16)
  3. 1dc into each stitch. (16)
  4. 2dcs into each stitch. (32)
  5. 1dc into each stitch. (32)
  6. 1dc into each stitch. (32)
  7. (2dcs into first stitch, 1dc into next) x 16. (48)
  8. 1dc into each stitch. (48)
  9. (1dc into each of first two stitches, 2dcs into third stitch) x 16. (64)
  10. 1dc into each stitch. (64)
  11. (2dcs into first stitch, 1dc into each of next three stitches) x 16. (80)
  12. 1dc into each stitch. (80)

To finish slip stitch into the next but one stitch or even better finish off as shown at the end of the post. (Next but one stitch, not next stitch, because this is a spiral not a joined round.)

To increase beyond this I would suggest keeping an eye on whether the circle is remaining flat. (If it ripples work an extra round of just single dcs) and mix up where the 2dc increases come in the sequence. I think just alternating between the start and end (as above) should be enough. Ending on a round with just single dcs should be best.

You can see what a good circle you get. (I drew round a bowl.)

Circle with round markers

For anyone who has come here from my African Violet pattern – the number of rounds necessary to fill the top of a 9cm pot, which is what the pattern was designed for, is eight. This leaves you with 48 dcs on the last round. Circle in 9cm pot

Now a little tip when completing your circle.

The neatest way to finish off is to pull the yarn that is left on the hook into a big loop and cut so as to leave enough to sew in. Cut yarnThread the end into a needle and insert under the second stitch from the end. (Second stitch not next stitch for reason given above).Thread yarn under stitchPull through then thread the yarn back where it came out. Thread yarn where it came fromand finish off at the back.

This gives a perfect looking edge. The needle is in under the loop we just made.See stitch is same as others!I find this a good way to finish of the final round of any crochet project I am making. (Of course if it was a joined round then I would work into the adjacent stitch.)

 

 

Celtic Napkin Ring pattern

The light has been very bad lately, with the odd bits of brightness at inconvenient moments, or I would have shown you my blanket at the half way point. So finding a little bit of better light I quickly took the photographs for this tutorial.

I used DK (US worsted weight) cotton and a 3.5mm hook. If you crochet loosely you may need a smaller one.

You need to crochet all stitches into the back loop of the the chain so both edges look the same on the right side. (One such loop is shown in black below).Back loop of chain

To start make 50 chain and then make the first treble (US – dc) into the back of the fourth chain from the hook.

After the 50 chain the pattern is

4 tr, 5tr tog, 9tr, 5tr into 1ch, 9tr, 5tr tog, 9tr, 5tr into 1ch, 4tr.

US version

4 dc, 5dc tog, 9dc, 5dc into 1ch, 9dc, 5dc tog, 9dc, 5dc into 1ch, 4dc.

Make four pieces as above in four different colours. Four strips For the tutorial part of this post I used the same colours as I used originally. If you want to use different colours you might find it helpful to copy what I have written and replace my colour names with yours.

The first thing to do is to join the red piece in a ring. Red strip joined All the joins will be hidden but it is only 3 trs (US-dcs) that will be hidden so it is best if you finish the ends up and down the trs (US-dcs) rather than along the edges.

I hope it will be possible for me only use the term treble from now on and for US readers to understand that to them it means the dcs.

Now you thread the blue piece through. You need to secure this in place at each overlap or underlap, as you go, unless you are very deft with your hands.

I have found small safety pins work better that dressmaking pins though if you didn’t have a lot of safety pins you could stitch each overlap with a piece of contrasting thread that you remove later.

The blue starts by overlapping the red just to the right of one of the upper points. This overlap consists of the three trs next to the corner 5tr into 1ch. Pin or secure this overlap. First blue overlap Now align the blue strip along the side of the red one passing under the red this time just next to the corner and secure. First blue underlap Continue along the side of red strip going over the next time then under the final time and securing each overlap.

Unless you are very unsure this is a good time to join the ends of the blue strip together. If you were being very cautious you should still join the two ends together maybe just with a knotted loop of contrasting thread at each edge.

When I made it the first time I distributed the joins around the circle but here you can see the joins in the red and blue strips as neat as I could make them. Joins will only show on the inside. Red and blue joins Now you add the green strip. Again you start by overlapping the strip after an upper point – the blue one this time – You need only secure the outer overlaps this time.

Again you will go over and under and align the strip against the previous = blue one.

However you will go over blue and then over red, followed by under blue and under red, then over blue and over red, followed by under blue and under red. Green overs and unders Join or secure the ends of the green strip at the back. This time the join will be hidden under the red strip. Green ends join Now thread through the yellow strip. (No need to secure except at the start at the back of the blue strip.)

Start, as before, to the right of one of the upper green points. Secure in place tucking the end treble under the blue strip and pinning at the back. Starting yellow This time you have only to go alternately under and over as you work your way round in a similar manner to before. No more securing needed till the end.

Turn the ring inside out and secure the two yellow ends with the safety pin you started with. Yellow ends secure Now remove all the other pins (or securing threads) before joining the ends of the yellow strip (and any other ends you didn’t connect before).

Now you can make sure that all the interweaving is even and you are done.Finished napkin ringMaking one of these takes me a couple of hours.

Celtic Coasters pattern update.

When I first published this pattern someone asked for my guidance on fitting the parts together.

At the time I was a bit busy having just returned from my holiday but I have now done some more diagrams to show how to fit each of the parts together progressively. Fitting parts together diagramI have used the colours as in one of my coasters.

The stars represent the joins. The black ones show when they are visible and the arrows show where they are when hidden under other layers.

As the original diagram showed the two thinner shapes are the ones to interleave first. They must go under and over exactly as shown. Join the ends.

Then you add one of the other two going under or over as shown. This will hide one of the joins.

When you add the last shape all the joins will be hidden. This time every under will be followed by an over.

I have updated the pattern in the original post.

Celtic Cross crochet pattern

This is a new improved version of the pattern. I find it easiest to work from an abbreviated pattern so that is what I give below with an explanation of the abbreviations. I hope it is easy to understand.

My original cross.Crochet celtic crossWhen I used #10 crochet cotton and a 1.25mm hook (Blue cross) it came out about 4 inches high and three inches wide. (10 x 7.5 cm) However using a smaller hook will give a firmer though slightly smaller bookmark. (Red cross)You could also try multi-coloured thread. For this I used a 1.25mm for the starting chain and a 1mm hook for the rest. I also increased the picot stitches from two to three.This is what I think of as the improved pattern.

Celtic Cross Bookmark

Start with at least 158 chain. Ideally make a few more to allow for missing the odd one or miss-counting. Excess chains can be undone at the end.

You need to crochet into the loop at the back of the chain. (Method 4 in my tutorial.)

The starting chain should not be too tight or you will not be able to find the loops, especially the ones after working the corners. I found using a 1.25mm hook for the starting chain and then a 1mm hook for the rest of the cross worked best but you should maybe experiment to see what works best with your crochet style. I know I work a little more firmly than some.

I find it easiest to work with an abbreviated pattern, so here are the abbreviations.

UK

Corner = (2tr, dtr, trtr) into first ch, 3ch ss into 3rd ch from hook, (trtr, dtr, 2tr) into next ch.

V = 2tr into ch.

N  eg 12 = 1tr into each of next 12 ch.

First V = tr into 3rd ch from hook.

US

Corner = (2dc, tr, dtr) into first ch, 2ch ss into 2nd ch from hook, (dtr, tr, 2dc) into next ch.

V = 2dc into ch.

N  eg 12 = 1dc into each of next 12 ch.

First V = dc into 3rd ch from hook.

Pattern

(V 4 V 1 V 1 V Corner V 1 V 1 V Corner V 1 V 1 V 4 V V 4 V) x 3

then

V 12 V 1 V 1 V Corner V 1 V 1 V Corner V 1 V 1 V 12 V V 4 V

Tie trefoil knots first then interweave centre and sew ends together. Join should be underneath circle when cross is complete.

Here are a few diagrams to help you see how the different parts go but the crochet fits more tightly.Fitting cross diagrams

Then make circle.

Ch 24,

(V 1 1) x 8.

Interweave round centre of cross and position so join is underneath.

Adding circle diagram

For a bookmark you could add a cord at the top or bottom as I describe at the bottom of these patterns – https://rainbowjunkiecorner.wordpress.com/cross-bookmark-pattern/

To use as a bookmark this definitely needs to be stiffened though I think some spray starch is enough. It is necessary to pull the corners firmly and pull the strands into exactly the right place before stiffening.