Oliver’s Dinosaur Hat

It’s funny how some things you work hard on don’t do nearly as well as the spur of the moment projects.  Oliver’s Dinosaur hat is one of those spur of the moment projects.  I’d made the mother and daughter hats for Lily and myself and Oliver obviously didn’t want to feel left out, so he asked me to make him a dinosaur hat in blue and green.   Not having the necessary colours in the right weight in my wool stash, we went to the wool shop a couple of days later.   They actually didn’t have any green and we came out with 2 different blues in Hayfield Bonus Chunky Wool.

A couple of days later I set out to make his hat.  I initially experimented with working it in tapestry crochet,  but I just couldn’t get the dinosaur to look how I wanted it to.  Having a very impatient 4 year old waiting for is hat, meant I didn’t really have all the time in the world to experiment with either.   He seems to think Mummy should be able to produce his hat in a matter of seconds not days!

Blue Dino Hat
Blue Dino Hat

So as a result I worked up a quick and simple beanie style hat with a rib banding of front and back post stitches.  The actual hat, once I worked out the size needed really didn’t take more than an hour.   I then went on to work out a dinosaur motif to attach to the front in the contrast colour.   It took a couple of attempts to get the shape right before I was able to attach it to the hat but the time (even if it was too much according to Oliver) was obvious well spent as he loves his hat.

I scribbled down what I did as I made it, but didn’t really intend to release it as a pattern.  I often scribble down freehanded projects but then think they are not all the great and they are just left there.   However, after requests on social media for the pattern I spent a couple of hours at the weekend filming a tutorial for the hat.  I am so glad I did that.   The pattern for the hat I wrote down was fine, but I have no idea what I meant for the dinosaur at all.  No matter how many attempts, I couldn’t replicate what I wrote down, it made no sense to me at all.   Therefore I reworked and rewrote my dinosaur pattern and then made him a few times to make sure I fully understood what I meant!

Dino Motif
Dino Motif

This pattern hasn’t been tested, I hadn’t really intended to do anything with it, but I have made it a few times now so I’m pretty certain its all good.  However, if you want to try it and run into any problems, please get in touch and I’ll be happy to help.   I still need to edit the video tutorial I made at the weekend before its ready to be uploaded, but that should be done by next wednesday.  Until then if you want to create your own dino hat, you can find the pattern here.

A little warning about the yarn, the Hayfield seems to be thicker than other chunky yarns I have used and this is the yarn used to design the hat.  If you use a different chunky yarn be sure to work up a swatch and compare it to the gauge in the pattern.  In my video tutorial, I used Paintbox chunky and the hat worked up a size smaller.   This is ok for me as it fits Lily perfectly, but you may need to make some adjustments to your hooks size or work a slightly larger pattern.

Green dino hat
Green dino hat

Anyway, I hope that you have enjoyed this week’s blog post, and do let me see your finished Dinosaur hat if you make one.  Join me in 2 weeks for my next blog post releasing the first pattern in my new crochet series.

Vicky x

 

Mother & Daughter Crochet Hats

This week I would like to share with you my Mother & Daughter Crochet Hats.   I didn’t specifically set out to make matching hats for Lily and myself, it just sort of happened.   I was actually trying out different stitches for a hat for myself using the 2 purple balls of chunky wool I had in my stash.   In fact the initial ideas I had are nothing like the finished product but I am very pleased with these hats.

They are mostly worked in single crochet with a ribbed band at the bottom and 2 decorative stitch bands spread across the hat.   I recently learnt puff stitch and thought this would go great in a hat, plus I love the wintery effect the star stitch adds to the hat.   Then to finish it off they have a double layer flower attached, which due to the continuous design of the hat can be changed to the left or right sides depending on what you feel like wearing that day.

Mother & Daughter Hats
Mother & Daughter Hats

The chunky wool makes the hat super warm and having the same design as Lily means she is actually more likely to wear a hat if it is the same as Mummy’s!  Of course, having made us both a hat Oliver decided he needed one too, and set me the challenge of a dinosaur hat, but I shall share that with you another time.

If you want to make your own Mother & Daughter Crochet hats, then you can find the pattern by clicking on the link.   You will need 100g of chunky wool per hat you make and they come in 3 different sizes, adult, child and toddler.   The hats shown are in the adult and toddler sizes.   The link is to the written pattern, however I will be uploading the video tutorial on my You Tube channel next Wednesday so be sure to check that out.

Unfortunately due to the huge amount of rain we have had here, I have been unable to get a good picture of us both wearing our hats outside, however, this one should give you an idea of what it looks like.

Mother and Daughter Hats
Mother and Daughter Hats

I hope you like the Mother & Daughter Crochet Hats as much as I have, see you in 2 weeks for more crochet fun.

Vicky x

Scrap Rugs

It seems quite fitting that this weeks blog post should be similar to my very first blog post last year, all about scrap wool.   I have had a lot more scraps this year, probably as I have completed far more projects in this last year than I have before.   I also managed to organise them a bit better too.  Since learning how to join wool strands with a strong knot, I have been able to ball up my scraps into several large balls which makes working with them much easier.

This year, rather than simply working several multi coloured granny squares into a blanket with my scraps, I wanted to make some thick and comfy rugs for the kids play areas.   They have a large area under our stairs which stores most of the kids toys, but they have never played there due to

the carpets being rough and uncomfortable.  Therefore, it seemed like a great idea to put all my scraps, whatever their weight together with a chunky hook and make a really thick rug.

scrap rugs
scrap rugs

I ended up working with anything up to 12 strands of wool at any one time, although this varied greatly depending on the weight of the wool.   For thinner wools like 4ply, it worked better to make balls of several strands together to bring them up to a similar thickness to aran/worsted weight.   Then I simply held the strands together and worked HDC in the back loops using a 12mm hook.    I then continued to work in this way until they reached a big enough size to cover the carpets.   When a ball ended, I simply attached another ball using the knot join and as they were all picked at random, the colour changes within the rugs are really random, which I really like.

I’m not quite sure how much wool I have used in the end, I went through all of my scraps as well as some balls which were odd or I had no plans for.    However, despite the amount of wool used, I am really pleased with how they have come out.   They are really thick and squishy and are so soft to sit and play on.   Using the HDC in back loops has given them a bit of texture and the random colour changes really brighten up their play spaces.   The kids love them too and have been watching their progress, desperately waiting for them to be finished.

scrap rugs
scrap rugs

In total I have made 3 scrap rugs, 1 for the under stairs play area and 1 for underneath each of their beds (they are both cabin style beds with a play space underneath.)  Since they are so thick they work up quickly and definitely kept me warm the bigger they got!   In fact, I love these so much I will probably save up my scraps again this year and make some more for other areas of the house.

Now you have seen how I have used my scraps this year, what have you done with your scraps?   Please feel free to share your projects on my social media channels.

See you next time,

Vicky x

 

Cosy Crochet – End of year 1!

I hope you all had a very Merry Christmas and a fantastic new year.   We had a quiet new year, put the kids to bed as normal and then watched a couple of films before heading up to bed shortly after the new year began.   This week also marks the end of the first year of Cosy Crochet’s blog and I am very excited to have reached here and to have started to build up a regular following.   In this post I want to take some time to review the past year, in particular what has been most successful, as well as to share with your my goals and hopes as I enter my second year blogging.

I have taken some time to review all my blog and social media and I have come up with my top 9 most successful crochet items; toy hammocks, toddler rainbow granny dress, dinosaur comforter, my crochet dinosaurs and playmats, animal ponchos (not my design), toddler lacey jacket and toddler gloves.

2017 top 9

I am very excited that 8 out of 9 of these items are my own designs and I feel like this therefore confirms that I can design my own crochet patterns  and is therefore something I am going to continue to develop this coming year.   I also notice they are all child/toddler related too and therefore this is the area I am going to concentrate on too, which brings me to my goals for Cosy Crochet in 2018.

I really enjoyed making the playmats and toys and this is definitely something I have plans to continue to develop this year.   In fact I have 3 ideas for different toy series I want to do this year, I won’t spoil the surprises, but I am very excited to share them with you when they are finished.  I also plan to make some more children’s clothing, and possibly some adult clothing too, but my main focus this year is defiantly going to be on the toys.

Another goal I have decided for this year focuses around my own patterns.   I have, after much thinking, decided that ALL of my patterns will be available for FREE on my blog.   They will of course, not be suitable for printing and will have advertising on them, so if you prefer to have a downloadable ad free, version you can print, then they will be available in my etsy store for a small fee.   By offering everything for free I am hoping to direct more traffic to my blog, so be sure to share with your friends so they can also share these patterns.   I hope to have all my existing patterns on my blog by the end of January.

I have had a few requests over the last year from people who struggle to read a pattern and would like a video option.   I therefore plan to try and make as many videos as I can for my patterns this year.  I will work on improving the quality of my videos (I am aware my last was hard to  view at times) and will be upload these to my youtube channel.  To enable me the time to work on these videos and patterns, I have decided to reduce the amount of blog posts from weekly to biweekly.  I hope by doing this to be able to provide you with a free written pattern and a video tutorial every 2 weeks.

Finally as a part of my designing process, I would also like to have a bank of crochet testers available to help when I have finished my designs.  If you are a confident crocheter, who has access to mostly worsted/aran weight wool and can confidently read American crochet terms I would be interested in hearing from you.   Ideally I would like you to be able to test each item within a maximum of 2 weeks, so you would need to be able to work fairly quickly and not have a ton of other commitments.   You would need to be contactable (preferably via Facebook messenger) and understand that as I am based in the UK timezone may mean you will not get an instant reply to questions.   If this sounds like something you would like to do then I am looking for around 10-15 people to go on a list to help throughout the year.  In return you will obviously get to keep the completed patterns you test.

Above are my 2018 goals for Cosy Crochet and I hope that you will agree with them.   As with all my usual posts I would appreciate any feedback you have.   If there is something you would like to see, or prefer I did not do, then please let me know either by email or via facebook messenger and I will do my best to try and incorporate it into my plan for this year.

All that remains for this final post of my first year as a crochet blogger is to thank everyone for supporting me on my journey, through reading my blog, trying out my patterns and liking or sharing my content on my social media channels.   Thank you so much for everything and please continue with me on my journey into my second year and don’t forget to get in touch if you have any ideas or would love to be on my testing bank.

See you next week for my first post of year 2, using up my scrap wool from the past year.

Vicky x

Crochet Blankets & Jumpers

I hope that everyone had a fantastic Christmas, I know we did.   Oliver and Lily were old enough to really enjoy and understand what was happening.   Since Christmas has now been and gone and everyone has their presents, I can now share the projects I have been working on since September – my families Christmas presents.

Mostly I made blankets for my family members, although also a couple of jumpers too.  Some are patterns that are free, some paid and some are my own designs.   This week I am basically going to have a gallery of the presents I made my family without too much text.  I’ll add a little information for the patterns I used so you can find them too, but mostly I just want the images to do the talking for me.

Jumpers & scarf

In the above picture, on the left is the jumper I made for my Dad in the Navy Blue aran wool from Aldi – the midwestern warmth men’s cabled pullover.   I really enjoyed making this and learnt a lot from the pattern about cables, its a paid pattern but definitely worth it.   Top right is the dragonfly triangle scarf, a free pattern made in bamboo cotton in turquoise double knit.   As its a smaller thread I did add a few extra rounds to make it a little largers.   This is a quick pattern to work up and I really enjoyed making it.   Finally on the bottom right in the cream aran from Aldi is the vertical RIB sweater, although I actually worked it in both loops rather than the back loops and added a smaller alternating back and front post HDC around all the edges to finish it.   This is a paid pattern and was something new for me, I have never worked clothing vertically before.

Dragon & Navajo

Top left is a Chinese dragon blanket made in Paintbox Simple aran (becoming one of my favourite yarns to work with).   I made the graph using Stitch Fiddle and is worked in basic Tunisian crochet stitch with a popcorn border.   On the right is a chunky aldi yarn blanket worked in the Navajo Diamond Stitch, in Navy, sky blue and platinum colours.   This is a really thick blanket which only took a few days to work up, plus the bonus is no ends to sew in!

Hexagons & Map

On the right is a Hexagon sunset colour blanket, with 8 hexagons made in 10 different sunset colours, finished off with a pompom border at both of the short ends.  It was designed for my sister to match her living room colours (plus she also likes hexagons!)   On the right is a map blanket completed in Tunisian Simple stitch.   The map was designed by my brother and sister for a book they are writing so seemed like the perfect Christmas present for him.   Both blankets above were completed in Paintbox Simply aran.   The graph was made using Stitch Fiddle.

Deer & Destiny

On the left is a c2c crochet blanket with the image of a deer, completed in Aldi aran in red and brown (with a little cream).   The border is an adaptation of a Celtic border pattern from the book of the Kells, possible the most challenging of all the Christmas presents I made this year!   On the left fan of the video game Destiny may recognise the design as some of the banners from the game.   This blanket was made in Paintbox simply aran and is completed in Tunisian crochet again.

Princess and waves

The final two blankets are above.   On the left is the leaping Stripes stitch, made in the baby wool from Aldi in pink, yellow, blue and white.   On the right is my nieces princess blanket.   In the middle is her knitted baby blanket and around the edge I have used the Princess and Villians graphs to add some of her favourite Disney Princesses, finished off with a puff stitch border.   The blanket is completed in two colours of pink double knit with the princesses being made mostly using scraps I had left over from other projects.   She hasn’t received this yet as its for her 3rd birthday next month, but I don’t think she will be looking on here yet!

I hope that you have enjoyed looking at the Christmas presents I made this in the final blog post of the year.    Join me next week for my round up of my first year blogging at Cosy Crochet.

Finally I hope everyone has a fantastic New Year, however you are celebrating.

Vicky x