Just a quick pic of my snowflakes all ready to take to the charity shop to be sold. Twelve snowflakes made: three of each design.
Just a quick pic of my snowflakes all ready to take to the charity shop to be sold. Twelve snowflakes made: three of each design.
The patterns for all my real snowflakes should be available on Ravelry in a few weeks time. (Edited 9th June 2017)
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.At 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.
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 encouragementand 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. And here is a comparison with the original photograph. You can see that even with my crochet not being 100% even it is still more symmetrical than the original!
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.
It does benefit from a bit of blocking!Here is a photograph of the snowflake suspended. As you can see the points really do stay stiff!
This is a very special project that has been on my mind since the early days of my blog.
Once I was comfortable with crochet, I knew that I wanted to make something to go on my dining table. The early thoughts were actually fairly monochrome but one day I saw this rug – http://vi.sualize.us/pdf_pattern_hexagon_rug_available_in_english_and_spanish_yo-yo_spiral_crochet_stripe_picture_C1BQ.html – and I was inspired.
What could be better than something made up of hexagons that was also a spiral!
One thing that has always fascinated me is the fact that the rainbow that is essentially linear – longer to shorter wavelengths – is paralleled by the colour CIRCLE which goes round and round!
Here was a chance to use that since hexagons meant a six colour spiral and I have always considered the indigo to be a bit redundant.
And if the hexagon motifs were actually snowflakes! what could be better.
When I shared my new snowflake motif and my Snowflake bookmark pattern in January 2014 what I was planning was this cloth but I didn’t want to share the whole idea yet as I didn’t know when I would fit it in.
I had mentioned it earlier here – https://rainbowjunkiecorner.wordpress.com/2013/12/12/a-new-snowflake/
The size was largely determined by how many motifs I could get out of one ball of yarn.This is the yarn I bought last October. Including one ball each of red, orange, yellow, green, blue and violet and two balls of dark blue for the edge. I was going to make the central motif in white but I had that already.
I didn’t find time to start it till this February and it might have been finished before Easter if I hadn’t got distracted by other things!
Because I can and because I am so happy I will show you various stages in it’s developement.
I wasn’t sure which way to put it on the table.orNow recently the cloth I have had on the table has been this:which was the teatime cloth my mother made that was used when I was a child. (Just a bit of nostalgia!)
Everyone in my Friday craft group seem to just love this and there is a women in the craft group who wants to make a bolero for her daughter using these motifs (though all in the same colour). So in due course I was intending to supplement the bookmark pattern with further instructions on joining the motifs in case anyone else would also like to use them.
Yarn was Rico Essentials Cotton (DK) 50g balls. One each of: Red (02), Pumpkin (87), Banana (63), Grass-Green (66), Turquoise (33) and Purple (18) and two of Cobalt Blue (32), with small amount of white.
Size 4mm crochet hook.
21 motifs for each coloured spiral. 42 motifs for edge. Total of 169 including one white central one.
Finished size from side to side is about 30 inches (75cm) and 35 inches (87cm) corner to corner.
Time taken in the region of 50-60 hours including sewing in the ends. (Spread over about six weeks).
Apart from my waistcoat and socks I am working on a couple of Christmassy ideas which involve making snowflakes.
But this year, having made a couple more out of the book and not having liked them especially.
I decided that maybe I shouldn’t try to make all of them but just make the ones I liked best. YES! I now understand why the second one wouldn’t lie flat! It is not a snowflake at all! It has seven points! Woops!
So that is what I have done.
I have made them in some of my rainbow colours crochet cotton and also silver and gold.
They haven’t been ironed or stiffened, except the smaller silver and gold ones. I stiffened the smaller silver one with PVA glue and it is stiff as a board. For the smaller gold one I used spray starch and I preferred the feel of that one.
I have also been crochetting some more baubles.
Now all I have to do is finish them off and work them into my special Christmas projects.
My aim is to pin out the snowflakes when I stiffen them. Like I did using the template below.
But I want to make more templates and I have still to find my geometry set!
There was frost on the roofs this morning so maybe I should change to my winter background.
This pattern is now available for sale on Ravelry – http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/four-snowflake-bookmark
This is a very easy bookmark pattern that can suitably be made in either #10 or #20 crochet cotton. Individual snowflakes could also be made in any yarn for decoration.
The pattern is available in either UK or US terms.
A little silver in the tassel can add a little sparkle.
Before Christmas is totally forgotten, I thought I would post this.
On Twelfth night I tidied away all the Christmas decorations except for my snowflake tree and the LED snowflake lights. The tree is intended to be something to mark the different seasons and I thought the lights would add a bit of colour in the evening till the days get longer.
But something that I received before Christmas but only opened with my other presents came from Pretty Little Things in a Box.
I knew she was sending me a pin cushion as part of her mega November Giveaway – http://prettylittlethingsinabox.wordpress.com/2013/11/15/a-little-christmas-spirit-winners-announced/
But when I opened it I found that there were other goodies.
I have been wanting to try some cross stitch since so many other people seem to be doing it. (It will have to be quick, easy cross stitch mind you.) So I have added the threads to my embroidery thread collection which gives me an even better range of colours. And all I need to do now is to decide what to do and fit it into my already crowded list of projects to do this year.
I did love the pin cushion and it will be very useful and stop me getting pins all over the floor when I am sewing!
Not sure where to fit in the buttons and star shaped beads but I will put them in my bead and button drawer for now.
Now as you know I love giveaways and, although I am not ready to do another one, I decided that I would like to respond by sending something in return.
I decided to send a bookmark and something special in the embroidery line.
Since, from the little snowflake charm on the pincushion and the cut-out on the accompanying card, it looked like she liked snowflakes I decided to make a new snowflake bookmark.
I used my new snowflake design and joined four of them together with slip stitches where they touched and added a tassel.
I found some gold and silver embroidery thread in John Lewis
and sent that as well.
I hope she likes them. I posted them off a couple of weeks ago so hopefully they should come soon.
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. 🙂
There are gel snowflakes on the glass of the patio door,
a chain of snowflakes across the fireplace,
my snowflake wreath that I made last year,
a couple of snowflake decorations for the Christmas tree
and (this that was a bit of an impulse buy)
LED colour changing snowflakes.
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.
And I have even found some snowflake tinsel that I have threaded between the banisters.
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.
The other day I had an idea for a new project! Yes I know I don’t really need another project to add to my list. 🙂
But this one has been in the back of my mind for a long time. It is to make a crochet cloth for my pine dining table. I have collected various ideas along the way but never really fixed on any of them. Then I had the idea, since I like hexagons patterns and snowflakes are six sided, to make a cloth based on snowflakes. However I felt that I needed a snowflake pattern that was lacy, quick and easy to make and had the classic trefoil snowflake points.
I couldn’t find quite what I wanted in my ‘100 snowflakes’ book, so I ended by working up a pattern based on the second of my ‘Easy Real Snowflakes’
About the time I devised the pattern I was travelling to Aylesbury to see my daughter and granddaughter performing in a pantomime, so I practiced joining the snowflakes together on the train.
I took the fine cotton because it was easy to transport.
After this I tried using a couple of scraps of my DK cotton yarn to make a bigger one. (Probably the size I will use) – that is the one at the top.
And yesterday I tried making a few for a garland in the Stylecraft ‘Special DK’ yarn while on the bus to Romsey.
As you can see: I can’t quite decide the best way to join the snowflakes. Whether to join opposite points or ones just two away from each other. The trouble with using opposite points is that since the centre of gravity is on the joining line rather than below they are in danger of flopping forward.
Making them while on the train or bus makes me feel that they aren’t taking my attention from more urgent things like Christmas presents and the CAL blanket.
The trip to Romsey was to buy one more ball of the Stylecraft yarn to finish the border of the CAL blanket since the final edging I had devised was rather yarn hungry and I had almost run out when only half way round.
Now I’ve worked up a few snowflake patterns myself but there is no way I would have time to create 100 different ones.
The snowflakes in this book are all proper snowflakes with six sides and they are not excessively lacey like some I’ve seen which would make them too far from real snowflakes.
So of course I just had to buy the book.
Last Christmas I showed some of my snowflakes on my display tree.
But this year I wanted to make many, many snowflakes in crochet cotton. I had some variegated blue and white #10 crochet cotton so I decided to start with that.
So far I have made three from my patterns for ‘easy real snowflakes’
And four from the book
I had intended originally to start at the beginning but I decided to take the cotton with me to make some while I was in Spain and photocopied a few pages.
But as I hadn’t wanted to press the book down too hard some patterns were easier to read than others, so I will have to start back at the beginning now I am home.
As they are made from cotton and some of the ones from the book are harder to shape than mine, I made a template to help me pin them out ready to spray with starch and iron.
Annoyingly I couldn’t find my geometry set but I think this is good enough.
I think maybe I could have done better with the shaping but as I have noted before, real snowflakes are not perfectly symmetrical.
Unfortunately this is going to have to be a fill-in project to be done on the bus and in odd moments as I am trying to finish the border on my spectrum granny ripple blanket so I can use it.
and have just started to join the CAL squares.
Sneak preview –
No! I am not blocking them. I will give it a careful iron when I have finished,
Before we get on to the bed socks – here is what greeted me out of the bedroom window when I got up this morning. And although you can’t see it, the snow was still falling but very finely.
Definitely bed sock weather! But now for my tale.
Maybe as much as ten years ago, or even more, a friend gave me a pair of bed socks. I have always suffered with cold feet, so have always needed bed socks for at least some nights in the winter and these replaced some my mother had knitted me years before that were past their best. But this winter when I went to look for them, all I could find was one sock.
So I have been wearing this sock plus an old slipper sock with a hole in!
But a few weeks ago I suddenly had a bright idea and I looked to see if I could get some of the really short circular needles in a size suitable for DK yarn and was pleased to find that I could. So I bought some.
When I devised the pattern for the Balloon mobile for one of my ‘Crafty Coffee’ friends, I had bought a ball of variegated blue yarn to make a sample balloon but that still left me with almost 100gm of DK yarn.
I realised that this ought to be enough to make a pair of bed socks.
At first I looked for bed sock patterns but the only one I found that I almost liked was one by Jennifer A. Meyers but in the end I used her basic texture pattern and suggestion for how many stitches were needed but otherwise used the basic toe-up sock pattern I had used before.
I had thought to try a toe-up pattern that didn’t need wraps but got in a muddle with it. Maybe another time?
This texture was very easy to knit as it was K2P2 for the first two rows and just Knit for the next two. It had the added advantage over just using stocking stitch that it made it easy to count the rows and thus make both socks the same.
I decided to put in a twisted cord to tie round the ankle and a picot edge and thus I made these:-
I may end up shortening the cords but I decided that it was better to start with them longer rather than shorter.
Now I had thought that these might have made a second entry for the ‘Monthly Challenge’ but Maryanne expressed a desire for some ‘Easter’ entries, so I am going to see if I can make some crochet Easter Eggs and with an eye to displaying them I decided to buy a ‘tree’ from John Lewis.
I would have preferred to use a real branch but since I had not had much luck in finding anything useful at Christmas time to use with my snowflakes, I decided that if I didn’t buy something I might wait for ever. So here it is with some snowflakes for now.