If you have read my previous posts you will know we are awaiting the birth of a precious niece any day soon. Little did we plan the birth of someone so longed for and precious in the middle of a global pandemic and a national lockdown!
However, the rainbows that adorn the windows of homes all across the country and that have become the symbol of communities united and a sign of thanks and of hope over the last 8 weeks or so, have inspired me to hook something for babies born in lockdown.
You probably could have guessed it would be a bonnet…they have become my favourite things to make!
What do you think?
These are available to buy in my shop…just click the picture and you will be magically transported there. Or if you fancy hooking your own, you can purchase the pattern from my shop too…the pattern is for the basic bonnet so you would just have to change your yarn to the rainbow colours in the last 6 rows (the last row been the main colour of the bonnet). The ears are optional! Of course if your not sure just pop me a message.
I have had a lot of love for these and have just sold one to a lovely Mama who is expecting a rainbow baby (a baby born after pregnancy or child loss) and one to a Mama to be who wants to use it as part of her pregnancy announcement.
I really do feel so privileged to make bonnets and hats and to help create special memories for parents and carers.
Hi, I just wanted to drop by to share with you this fabulous and free crochet sampler rainbow pattern by the amazing Sharon from The Stitch Foundary
It’s a quick make and looks fabulous hung up in the window to show support to all of our key workers at this unbelievable time and to add some cheer and unite in community spirit.
From a crochet point of view, the pattern is free, easy to follow and has several different stitches which give the rainbow some lovely textures. There is no gauge to worry about and you can make it from scraps…what’s not to love!
I did alter mine slightly…sorry Sharon!
I used 5 stitches to complete my popcorns in the orange row, instead of the recommended 3 stitches…just because it made my popcorns fatter and I like nice fat popcorns! Then on the last row of red I chained 5 and missed a stitch, instead of chain 3 between each stitch…just because it made the row less ruffled and more arched and I preferred the more simple finish.
Anyway, it’s a fabulous pattern and will make you smile if you hook it!
I don’t know where it came from, my urge to dye yarn. It is not something I have ever thought of doing until about eight weeks ago; when the thought entered my head and I literally became obsessed with wanting to dye yarn. Before I knew where I was, I had become the clueless owner of 2 beautiful hanks of bare merino/nylon sock yarn.
Of course I couldn’t wait for dyes or my preferred mordant of citric acid to be delivered, so I watched a few youtube tutorials which dyed yarn with food colourings and used white vinegar as a mordant and off I went to raid my kitchen cupboards. I was very disappointed with the resulting consequence, the colours did set, but they were insipid and uninspiring and the white vinegar made everything smell just horrid…for ages!
So, I had to wait for my order of acid dye and citric acid to be delivered. Oh the excitement when the delivery guy knocked that door! I tore open the parcel and oohed and aahed at my little bottle of brilliant blue Jacquard acid dye and then went to watch a lot more tutorials, which got me quite confused. Each tutorial recommended different amounts of mordant and they contradict each other greatly. I summarised there was no one way to dye yarn and so I decided to just go for it! I wore a safety mask as you must when dealing with acid dyes…that youtube did agree on! and I carefully noted down everything that I did, to include times and measurements and then I began to dip dye my yarn. I chose to dip dye as I wanted to play with the colour a little and because this seemed the simplest technique aside from just dumping the hank into the pot to get a solid colour.
I enjoyed the whole process immensely, (apologies for the lack of photo’s but it is quite hard to take photo’s when you are dealing with dyes and heat sources, whilst wearing gloves, trying to write the process down and not quite knowing what you are actually doing!) I just love that you don’t quite know how the dye is going to take to the yarn and how the yarn will look when it’s finished. There is a definite amount of science to it, but there is a whole lot of artistry and magic involved too!
I was thrilled with the end result too, a beautiful gradient skein of lovliness, in pastel blues. Some of the bare yarn just peeped through on the paler end, which I really liked…that was the magic bit! What I was not prepared for was the sheer joy of twisting it into a skein…oh my word, that twist is a beautiful thing!
I added a label and printed some sock patterns out and gifted it to my Mama for her birthday.
Now I can’t wait to dye some more yarn and try some different techniques. I have certainly found a new yarn addiction! It’s really great to try something new isn’t it?
If you have any yarn dyeing tricks and tips please let me know in the comments thread below…I would love to hear them and jot them down in my yarn dyeing journal.
Here it is, my beautiful grey and white heart baby blanket…
I love this pattern, thanks to the very talented @emmacartercrochet for sharing this fabulous pattern which is called ‘The Ombre Heart C2C Blanket’ and which is also free!!! How generous to share such a brilliant pattern.
It is a corner to corner construction and therefore works up quite quickly. The version in Emma’s pattern has 5 colours which fade into each other, but I opted for a solid grey heart this time. I say this time, because this pattern is addictive and I already want to make more.
I opted to add a simple double crochet (single crochet) border in grey, and added one of my natural sustainably sourced cork labels as the finishing touch.
I just love the soft texture of this baby blanket…
I think the heart would look amazing in a swirl or gradient yarn, but I have chosen to make a rainbow blanket next, so the swirl may have to wait! After working on these calming grey and whites this is what I’m going to be using next…
Thank you so much for all the messages of support for my new Etsy Shop, whether it was over on Insta or in the comments thread here, I have been so encouraged by your wishes.
I have stopped by today though to show you a finished project…yes I know it’s been a while! Do you remember this…
The post is just here, if you want to read in more detail…but in a nut shell, I named this project my ‘Make do’ blanket, because I used the yarn from my stash and just made do with what I had. I honestly thought it would look rubbish…but, I actually really LOVE it.
The random colours coupled with the granny stitch give it a real vintage vibe.
I finished it off with this beautiful sustainably sourced cork label which I have recently had custom made. Check this shop out if you’d like labels like this (no affiliate link…I just love this shop!).
I bordered it in red, as this yarn was what I had the most of, I only just had enough to add one round of granny stitches…I really would have liked to have added several more rows to make a wider band around the blanket, but this is my ‘make do’ blanket, so one round it was.
All in all, I am thrilled with this make, it’s busted some stash, become something beautiful and was quite quick to make. I now have a corner to corner on my hook, if you follow me on insta then you may have seen some sneak peeks, but if not, I will put a post up all about that really soon…It’s an awesome pattern.
What have you got on the go at the moment? I would love to know.
As 2018 draws to a close and 2019 peeps over the horizon, it is that time of year when bloggers from all around the world post their obligatory review of the year.
Yes, this is that type of post…however, I have kept it simple and I have decided to choose just one photo from each month…yarn related of course.
Suffice just to say, 2018 has had it’s ups and downs, as I am sure it has for you; but crochet has, as always been my constant therapy! 2018 was all about busting my stash, finishing Projects Half Done (PHD’s) and learning to knit…I have also released the following FREE patterns this year which I hope you have enjoyed.
Being part of an amazing crafty community means so much to me and I just want to say a MASSIVE thank you to you, whether you are a first time reader or if you are a regular here at the nest. Your support and encouragement is treasured.
February, revolved around guilt free crochet as I ended up on crutches and had to take a month out of work. Luckily, for me I found the beautiful Seaside Stashbusting Blanket CAL hosted by the very talented Coastal Crochet It was the perfect project to bust some of my stash…every cloud eh!
This is my favourite photo from March. My Seaside Stash Busting Blanket was starting to look more blanket like and by now I was enjoying the random colour selection from my stash.
On a personal level April was profoundly traumatic and sad here at the nest, but on a yarny level I released the pattern for this beauty. I just love this blanket so, so much and it proved to be a welcome shower of cheer which burst forth amongst the grief. This also fulfilled the remit of completing a PHD!
2018 saw the beginning of my learning to knit adventure…this is as far as I got. I started really well and perhaps got a little ambitious…which became my downfall. Here are my posts to prove it here,just here and here
I haven’t returned to this project yet as I can’t work out where I am in the pattern! I do really want to finish this off…a New Year Challenge perhaps?
We had an unusually hot summer here in the UK, so hooking al fresco was great now that my Seaside Stash Busting Blanket had grown in size. We had a beautiful sunny weekend glamping and those soft pink and grey shells will forever remind me of that recharging break away with Mr R and the Robins. You can read about those glamping adventures just here.
The stash busting continued throughout July and inspired me to hook this cheeky dude. I had some black, white and grey Paintbox cottons just sitting in my stash and the most apparent thing to make was a zebra of course.
Having never made amigurumi before I am now completely smitten with all things amigurumi, which came as a total surprise to me! I made so many mistakes with this pattern, but learnt lots about the process of amigurumi along the way…if you want the full details of the mistakes I made take a look here.
This was a joy to hook and also busted some more stash. I made this Vintage Market Tote for my Mama…and she loved it
The end was in sight for the now glorious Seaside Stash Busting Blanket…and just in time for the change of seasons as Autumn crept in.
A real …tadaaa… moment. This beautiful unicorn was made with a lot of love in my heart and no mistakes…well none that I know of! A real gem of a pattern that was easy to follow and so well written. It was an absolute joy to send her to her forever home and I am looking forward to hearing what she has been named. The pattern details are just here.
My two favourite things to do when I’m on my own are to crochet and drink coffee and if I can do both whilst watching the world go by then that is near perfect for me.
This is another stash busting win for me also…a super soft and pretty baby blanket using up left over yarn from my Sunday Shawl.
This photo is from January…a PHD fail. I have added some more rows over the course of the year…honest I have. I don’t know why I haven’t finished it. The pattern is simple and it is very handsome… and it is not really that far from being finished; but the pretty things call me more loudly.
All in all 2018 has been quite yarny, maybe not as yarny as some, but yarny nonetheless. I have met some amazing crafty friends along the way, busted through a lot of my stash and finished a PHD or two.
Life seems to be on fast forward at the moment…It is nearly December already…how can that be?
I have been hooking, but a lot of what I am doing is
Secret Santa type of top secret and the like. I can show you this, however
A pretty linen stitch baby blanket, using up my leftovers from my Sunday Shawl…this yarn has to be my absolute favourite at the moment. It is Scheepjes Merino dk and it is so, so soft…I mean really soft and plump and squishy. I started this blanket on a whim and then couldn’t put it down, so it actually hooked up quite quickly. I hooked it in the car,
In the café whilst the boys were mountain biking,
but, mostly I hooked it in Sherwood Forest, whilst away for a few precious days…hence the name ‘Sheraby’.
You might be thinking what about all those pesky ends? Well, I just crocheted over them as I went, so there were no pesky ends at all.
It is only a small little blanket…car seat size, but I am so pleased with it. This years hooking seems to be about busting my stash and I am really enjoying the challenge of that. I really do like the ‘knitted’ look that linen stitch produces to. It’s a lovely closed fabric effect and is very simple to do.
It’s done! I have made the last stitch and woven in the last end of my beautiful #seassidestashbusting blanket.
It’s huge and I simply love it!
Oh! what a journey this blanket has been…a beautiful, stitchy, vibrant and meandering journey of colour, crochet and community…not to mention stash busting too!
Thank you so much to Eleanora over at Coastal Crochet for hosting such a marvellous and well organised CAL (crochet-a-long) and to all the lovely people I have met a long the way; who have encouraged and inspired me with kind words or blankets of their own. I have really enjoyed scrolling through the IG feed #seasidestashbustingblanket and seeing so many wonderfully unique contributions.
I am keeping this blanket for myself because honestly, I just can’t bear to be parted from it. I have hooked in so many memories of my year…like the sunny glamping rows, the foot surgery rows, the world cup rows, the too hot to crochet rows and the snowy day bobbles and I can relate each memory to the specific rows. I will leave you with my photographic journey…
Love, love, love this blanket.
I’m not sure what I’m going to do without the weekly rows…
I thought you might like another little update on the slow CAL (crochet a long) I’m participating in which is being hosted by the lovely Eleanora over at coastal crochet. You can also find lots of other amazing blankets and makers participating in this CAL across social media by searching #seasidestashbustingblanket.
I can’t believe that this blanket has been on my hook and in my life for four months. It is getting large enough now for me to throw it over my lap in the evenings and I thought you might like another photo update on my progress.
well it was basket weave and if you are a long time reader you may remember my last foray with basket weave…It looks great but I do not like hooking this stitch you can read why just here.
So it came as a very welcome relief to find out that the next stitches were the relaxing long wave stitches after the stressful basket weave!
If you want to find out more about this delightful slow CAL (crochet a long) which is being hosted by the lovely Eleanora hop over to her beautiful blog… Coastal Crochet. You can also find lots of other amazing blankets and makers participating in this CAL across social media by searching #seasidestashbustingblanket.
I‘m off to do another couple of rows now. I will be back soon to show you what else has been on my hook of late and I will also write an update about my yarny knitting adventure.