Caterpillar Cocoon

I was asked to make a Caterpillar Cocoon months ago and searched high and low for a (free) pattern that would work with the chunky yarn (stylecraft special) I had bought and had the ridges of a cocoon rather than just straight edges. I bit the bullet and set about designing my own pattern. Eek! It took a few goes to get the increase and decrease rows right so they could be seen but weren’t going to be tight or uncomfortable for a baby. I so wish I had made these for my own babies as I think they would have been so useful for cuddling them in and then transferring them to a moses basket, like a ready made swaddle. I used chunky yarn but two strands of contrasting DK would look good too. This cocoon fits newborn to three months.

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The pattern is in US terms.

Ch2 at the start of a row does not count as a stitch. Start round in the same stitch as the ch2, not the next one.

You need:

6mm hook, chunky yarn.

Magic ring, ch 2, 8 dc in ring, sl st into first DC to join. (8)

Row 2: Ch2, 2 dc in each stitch around (16)

Row 3: Ch2, *2 DC in first stitch, DC in next*. Repeat ** around. (24)

Row 4: Ch2, *2 DC in first stitch, DC in next 2*. Repeat ** around. (32)

Row 5: Ch2, *2 DC in first stitch, DC in next 3*. Repeat ** around. (40)

Row 6: Ch2, *2 DC in first stitch, DC in next 4*. Repeat ** around. (48)

Row 7: Ch2, *2 DC in first stitch, DC in next 5*. Repeat ** around. (56)

Row 8: Ch2, *2 DC in first stitch, DC in next 6*. Repeat ** around. (64)

Row 9: Ch2, DC in each stitch around (64)

Row 10: Ch2, *DC2tog, DC in next 6*. Repeat ** around. (56) Fasten off this colour and join new colour with a slip stitch.

Row 11: Ch2, *2 DC in first stitch, DC in next 6*. Repeat ** around. (64)

Row 12: Ch2, *2 DC in first stitch, DC in next 7*. Repeat ** around. (72)

Row 13: Ch2, DC in each stitch around (72)

Row 14: Ch2, *DC2tog, DC in next 7*. Repeat ** around. (64)

Row 15: Ch2, *DC2tog, DC in next 6*. Repeat ** around. (56).

Fasten off this colour. Join new colour with sl st. Repeat rows 11-15 twice more, alternating the colours used.

Finish off after a dec to 56 row and sc two rows, either in constrasting chunky yarn or in 2 x strands of dk. Hope you like it. Please let me know if there are any issues with the pattern!

Happy hooking x

PS the hat is a very cute pattern from Hand Me Down Hobby.

ETA Regarding the hat…

The second time I made this hat in newborn size I used stylecraft chunky and a 6mm hook. I started with 10 and increased 10 stitches each time until 30 stitches then increased in every 5th stitch to get 36 stitches in total. I did 8 rows altogether and then two rows of the rib edging.

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These are a few of my favourite patterns!

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Fingerless mitts – such a simple pattern which works up beautifully. The pattern is for aran (worsted) weight yarn and a 5mm hook but it’s easily adaptable. I’ve made it with DK using a 4mm hook and just repeating the cuff until it fits around the wrist.

Itty bitty bow beanie – very cute and lovely texture to this pattern. Wish it was available in bigger sizes as my brain can’t work out how the increases would work!

Attic24 granny stripe blanket – makes a stunning blanket and is one of my favourite patterns as I can watch TV while hooking it up!

Corner to corner blanket – a thicker texture than the granny stripe and I love the diagonal pattern. Need to make more of these!

Owl hat – one of the first hats I made and Sarah from Repeat Crafter Me taught me so much about crochet. All her patterns are great and her explanations very clear.

Road trip scarf – I love making these. I’ve made three so far in king cole riot but have so far not photographed any of them! Think I will have one in every colour combo before long.

fingerless gloves

Fingerless mitts

bright scarf

Minecraft creeper inspired hat pattern

I have a Minecraft obsessed 9 year old boy who requested I make him a creeper hat so this is what I came up with: IMG_20140806_071725_wm In order to get the different green tones, I used two strands of stylecraft special dk in different shades of green. For these hats it was “Lime” and “Green”. I’m planning on using “meadow” and “khaki” next :-). Alternatively you could use a chunky green yarn. You need:

  • DK yarn in two shades of green (Approx 35g of each)
  • Black chunky yarn
  • 5mm hook (for face)
  • 6mm hook (for hat)
  • 5.5mm hook (for hat edge)

I use US crochet terms.

Magic ring, chain 2, DC 10 in magic ring, join to first DC, ch 2
Round 2: ch 2, 2 DC in each around, join (20 DC)
Round 3: ch 2, 2 DC in first stitch, DC in next, around, join (30 DC)
Round 4: ch 2, 2 DC in first stitch, DC in next two, join (40 DC)
Round 5: ch 2, 2 DC in first stitch, DC in next three, join (50 DC)
Round 6: ch 2, 2 DC in first stitch, DC in next 9, join (55 DC)
Round 7-14: ch 2, DC in each stitch around, join (55 DC)
Round 15-16 change to 5.5mm hook: ch1, SC in each stitch around, join, ch 1 (55 SC)
This pattern was adapted from Repeat Crafter Me’s polar bear hat with some changes to make it a beanie rather than an earflap hat.
Finish off.
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Creeper face

I came up with the creeper face myself! This is the first time I have written my own instructions so any feedback would be appreciated.

Use chunky black yarn and a 5mm hook. Turn at the end of each row. The Ch 1 at the start of each row is your turning chain and is not included in stitch counts.

Creeper eyes (make two):

Ch7

Row 1: sc in 2nd chain from hook and in each chain across, ch1 turn (6 sc).

Rows 2-5: sc in each stitch across, ch1, turn (6 sc)

Row 6: sc across, finish off (6 sc)

Creeper mouth:

Ch 8 Row 1: sc in 2nd ch from hook and in next 6, ch1, turn (7 sc)

Row 2-3 : sc in each stitch across, ch1, turn (7 sc)

Row 4: sc in 7 stitches, ch4, turn (7sc, 4ch)

Row 5: sc in 2nd ch from hook and in next two chains. Sc across the next 4 stitches, ch1, turn (7 sc)

Row 6-7: sc across, ch1, turn (7 sc)

Row 8: ch1, sc in 7 stitches then ch4, turn (7 sc, 4 ch)

Row 9: sc in 2nd ch from hook and in next 2 chains, Sc in next 4 stitches, ch1, turn (7 sc)

Row 10-12 : sc across (7 sc) Finish off.

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This is what you should have at the end of row 4.

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This is the end of row 8.

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When you’ve turned your work and completed row 9, this is what you should have.

I pinned the pieces into place and sewed on with a needle and thread. IMAG2656_1 IMG_20140806_071725_wm Hope you enjoyed making your creeper hat!

My one year crochet-versary!

According to my timehop app, it’s about a year since I took a hook, a ball of wool and attempted the art of crochet for the umpteenth time!

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I was about 34 weeks pregnant and it must have been my nesting instinct kicking in as it was about the only thing I did that could be considered nesting! For some reason, this time, all it took was a few YouTube videos and I very quickly got the hang of it. It suddenly made so much sense! 

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This was my first creation. I was so chuffed with it!

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This hat was for the baby in my belly

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Hello Kitty for my daughter…I was on a roll!

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And Jake from Adventure Time for the hubby. I was 36 weeks here!

I’m still perplexed by what happened to my brain and my creative abilities at this point. I had grown up knowing how to knit from a very young age. My Mam taught me when I was probably about 7, I got the hang of it and was making those lovely Jean Greenhowe dolls for presents when I was a teen. I wasn’t very good at making wearable garments though and only managed one mitten for my precious first born. Luckily my Mam made lots of lovely cardis and bonnets. 

I remember my daughter receiving some beautiful cardigans when she was born and I assumed they were knitted. My Mam pointed out that they were crocheted and crochet was really hard and she had never got the hang of it. I think this is probably where my mental block originated! 

I had tried a few times after visiting my local yarn store for some advice. The lady sold me a 2.5mm hook (!) and a leaflet with some diagrams of what to do. I could not for the life of me decipher what those pictures were trying to tell me and I ended up with lots of knots and tangled wool. 

So last year, I discovered YouTube was my friend and has a wealth of videos teaching crochet. This series was my favourite to start with. I also found Repeat Crafter Me which was so inspiring in my early days as a crochet addict. I have since discovered communities both sides of the Atlantic which are full of lovely, inspiring and supportive people. 

I haven’t knitted since I started crochet. I was beginning to think I may never knit again (because of I how much I love to crochet) until I picked up a knitting needle the other day to clear a blockage from the hoover tube and I remembered how much I loved knitting too! If only there were more hours in the day!

This week’s WIPs

This week I’ve been busy finishing off two lovely, bright corner to corner blankets. The colours look amazing, so vibrant and happy. I was in a bit of a quandary as to what to do for the border. This pattern doesn’t necessarily need a border, but those ends needed somewhere to hide! I’ve previously done a scalloped edge but these required a simpler stitch. Borders are a bit tricky on this type of blanket as the edges are a bit uneven depending on what type of stitch ended the row. So for the first border row I did a single crochet between each row end and chained 2. The on the next row I did 3x double crochet in each ch2 space.

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The single crochet followed by two chains

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The finished blankets, one needs blocking to straighten up the edges.

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Freshly washed!

The other items I’ve been busy with include the granny stripe blanket, some bunting and a ripple blanket.

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The granny stripe is nearly done now, just the border to do. I’m currently part way through the first row, I’m doing a granny stitch in white and them I’m going to do all the colours of the rainbow in half double crochet I think.

I just started the ripple to see how I liked the pattern. It’s pretty simple and easy to do but it’s not as mindless as the granny stripe, I have to keep counting or I go wrong! I loved the granny as I could do it without looking, the ripple requires a bit more attention. Still, it’s a pretty pattern. Simple but very effective. I’ve used Caron simply soft, gorgeous yarn, in strawberry, pistachio and white. I love this yarn, I need more of it in my life.

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I wanted to make some bunting for my little boy’s playhouse and loved the simplicity of this pattern from Pink Milk Jewels . To satisfy my rainbow obsession it had to be ROYGBIV although some shades are different to those used in the rainbow blanket. The little triangles are so neat! They needed blocking though as the edges went really curly. I added a white border round all sides of the triangle and then added a rainbow appliqué (pattern from repeat crafter me).

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Blocking the flags

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IMAG2382 This has to be the cutest rainbow ever!

 

I’m struggling to keep up with my blog at the minute. I’m typing one-handed while bribing the baby with raisins to keep him still! I think I’ll have to do little and often and maybe just stick to one project at a time….yeah right!

 

My latest projects

I’ve been a bit busy lately so struggled to fit in writing blog posts. With going back to work next week (well, officially three days ago but it’s half term so a week off for me!), posts will probably be less regular. Over the last couple of weeks we have had a hospital stay for Miss S due to her fairly severe asthma and the husband has been in a play for the last week. This hasn’t left me with much free time for crafting or blogging! Hopefully I’ll catch up with myself this week.

I finished the poncho, which I loved making. It worked up fairly quickly, think it was about 7 hours in total and I enjoyed making the granny stripes. It’s a good pattern for watching TV to as doesn’t require much concentration. Here is the finished article:

The colour was chosen by the lady who ordered it for her toddler. I think it is a fab choice and the colours look so lovely together. I really love colourful crochet!

With the leftover yarn, I finally got round to making the unicorn. Once I got going I enjoyed it and couldn’t wait to complete it. I find working with a small hook (3mm) and having to focus on tiny stitches quite tiring though, so it took me a good 7-8 hours. I’m not so keen on the putting together stage either. I’ve had a few requests to order the unicorn but I’m not sure I’ll make amigurumi to sell. I’m not sure I would enjoy it and there are issues regarding safety certificates when selling toys.

Some pics…the first few rows took me forever. Then I found this youtube video which made doing the inital magic ring a bit easier.

I followed the pattern in the order it was written, so legs first, then body.

I posted this picture on my facebook page and got some funny suggestions as to what I might be making…toes, clangers, and russian dolls!

I expect once the head was made it might have been more obvious…

Here she is, all finished. I think she is so incredibly cute! My daughter nabbed her and my 8 year old son wants a “storm” unicorn. I have no idea what one of those is! Very satisfying when amigurumi is complete but hard work and patience to get to that point!

Can’t remember if I shared a photo of the slouchy hat in my last post…

My daughter requested it and loves it. I made it from the lovely Caron simply soft yarn. The only place I have found that stocks it is Wool Warehouse, who I have now ordered from a number of times! Their delivery is pretty quick and their prices very competitive.

Once all those items were finished I was daydreaming about creating a beautiful rainbow blanket for baby S. I have been lusting over an Attic24 pack of yarn for ages so bit the bullet and invested in one. It’s good value with the yarn costing slightly less than buying individual skeins. Think it works out that one skein is free.

Isn’t it beautiful! I bought a couple of additional skeins, the bright orange and bright yellow which are next to each other aren’t part of the Lucy pack.

With my daughter’s input, I decided to make a granny stripe blanket with a ROYGBIV rainbow colour scheme and with alternate white stripes.

These were the colours we selected, they look even more gorgeous in real life! I made a foundation chain of 120 in red and set off making the blanket. It took me about two hours to get going and hook 10 rows of granny stripes plus the foundation chain and a starting single crochet row. Each row is taking on average 10 minutes.

Can’t wait to crack on with the other colours and see it grow but it will have to take a back seat to my Betty’s Bells orders and my proper job!

Busy Bank Holiday!

I’ve managed to complete a few items on my to do list over the Easter weekend. First the Moogly cardigan! I hooked this up using Robin baby aran yarn. It’s 100% acrylic so will wash well, essential with a small baby!

If I make this again I will probably use a double knitting weight yarn so the cardi is a bit softer and more pliable. This will look lovely with the pixie bonnet I finished a few days again. I’m a cruel mummy and made my baby boy model it. I think he looks very cute and I must look out a pixie bonnet pattern that’s not quite so girly.

Shell stitch pixie bonnet by Cre8tion Crochet

I have also finished a pair of Mary Jane style baby shoes. This is actually the first time I have used a youtube video to follow a pattern. Initially I was a bit annoyed that I couldn’t read the pattern anywhere as I like to skim read them so I know what to expect. Anyway, I just followed the video and I’m really pleased I did. I learnt that I have been joining my rows in the wrong place all this time, oops! If there’s a ch2 at the start, I had been joining in the first stitch rather than the actual chain of the ch2. They looked okay before I feel better for knowing I’m now doing it right! It was good to follow the video, it was reassuring. 

I love this photo of the shoes. I’ve been reading about how to improve my photography skills when taking promotional photos and this is the first time I’ve felt the photo does the item justice.
Lastly, I started a “blessing day bonnet” the other day and got it finished last night. I really love this mercerised cotton yarn. It’s the first time I’ve used it. It gives a lovely finish to an item and is nice and soft but non shedding. I’m struggling to get a good photo of this hat though. It needs to be on something head shaped to show off the shape and the design on the back. I think I’m going to have to try it on the baby! He is quite difficult to get a photo of these days though, he’s just started crawling! Here’s my effort at photographing it so far…
So, all in all, a productive weekend. What shall I make next?!