Festiva pattern and a creative challenge

festiva_header

Hi there

As promised last week, I’m back with a creative challenge and a ‘pattern of sorts’, or as I prefer to think of it, a ‘recipe’.  I’m calling it a recipe rather than a new pattern as it’s nothing new, just a standard solid granny square to which I’ve added other elements (also nothing new) to give it a little twist.

festiva_wip_watermark

Here’s where the creative challenge comes in; I’ve written out the instructions for just the square but I want to encourage you to then make it your own by adding your own special touches.

Let your imagination run wild with this.  Use up all your scraps, play with colours, make it a riot of colour or monochromatic, make it smaller or bigger, try out a new border, use your favourite joining method to make a blanket, a bag, a cushion, a coat or even a thingy-ma-jig.

This is not a competition but a fun exercise to get your creative juices flowing.  Let go of all expectations, try something you normally wouldn’t and see where it takes you.  Sometimes the most pleasant surprises come from not overthinking a project, not worrying about using exactly the same yarn as the designer or not fussing about colour placement.

Festiva_fin_watermark

I’ve deliberately not thought too much about mine and the whole point of starting my project was to use up all my scrappy bits of yarn (didn’t work btw – I seem to have just as many, if not more now :).  I didn’t worry about colours going together but just used whatever I happened to pick up next. Admittedly, I’m not fond of some of the colour combo’s but in the whole scheme of things it all just works so I’m letting go of my usual fussiness here.

Ok, let’s get started!

festiva1_watermark

What you’ll need (for one square) :   

  • Small amounts of yarn in 4-5 different colours.  It doesn’t matter what type of yarn you use as long as it’s all the same weight.  I’ve used 8ply/Dk for mine
  • Yarn for main colour.  I’ve used off-white
  • 4mm hook (or size suitable for your yarn)

Abbreviations – US Terms Used (UK/AUS terms in brackets)

ch:          Chain

dc (tr):  Double crochet (treble crochet)

sc (dc):  Single crochet (double crochet)

sl st:       Slip stitch

sp:          Space

Instructions:

Start:        Using Colour 1, make a magic circle or ch 3 and join with a sl st to form a circle

Round 1:  Ch 5 (counts as first dc (tr) + 2 ch throughout).  [3 dc (tr) into ring, ch 2] 3 times.  2 dc (tr) into ring, join with a sl st into 3rd ch of starting ch.  Break off yarn.

Round 2:    Join Colour 2 into any corner sp with a sl st.  Ch 5, 2 dc (tr) into same sp.  *Dc (tr) into next 3 sts, [2 dc (tr), ch 2, 2 dc (tr)] into corner sp. Repeat from * twice, dc (tr) into next 3 sts, 1 dc (tr) into first sp.  Join with a sl st into 3rd ch of starting ch.  Break off yarn.

Round 3:   Join Colour 3 into any corner sp with a sl st.  Ch 5, 2 dc (tr) into same sp.  *Dc (tr) into next 7 sts, [2 dc (tr), ch 2, 2 dc (tr)] into corner sp. Repeat from * twice, dc (tr) into next 7 sts, 1 dc (tr) into first sp.  Join with a sl st into 3rd ch of starting ch.  Break off yarn.

Round 4:   Join Colour 4 into any corner sp with a sl st  Ch 5, 2 dc (tr) into same sp.  *Dc  (tr) into next 11 sts, [2 dc (tr), ch 2, 2 dc (tr)] into corner sp. Repeat from * twice, dc (tr) into next 11 sts, 1 dc(tr) into first sp.  Join with a sl st into 3rd ch of starting ch.  Break off yarn.

Round 5:  Join new colour (can be a new colour or one already used ) into any corner sp.  [1 sc (dc), ch 3, 1 sc (dc)] into same space, *ch 2, skip one st, sc (dc) into next st.  Repeat from * to next corner sp, [1 sc (dc), ch 3, 1 sc (dc)] into corner sp.  Repeat this sequence to end.  Join with a sl st into top of first sc (dc).  Break off yarn.

Round 6:  Join Main colour into any corner loop, Ch 5, 2 dc (tr) into same sp * 2 dc (tr) into each loop space up to next corner, [2 dc (tr), ch 2, 2 dc (tr)] into corner sp. Repeat from * twice, 2 dc (tr) into each loop space up to starting corner (first sp), 1 dc (tr) into first sp.  Join with a sl st into 3rd ch of starting ch.  Break off yarn.

** On a side note, although they are perfectly fine for this square, I don’t use Ch3 as my first st or sl st at the end, but replace these with a faux st or invisible join.  I’ll be back soon with a tute for both of these techniques.

Now let the fun times roll, here’s where you get to put your special touch to this square.  Use your favourite joining method and border to make it your own.

I’ve joined mine with the join-as-you-go method for my blanket but I’m making some more squares for a cushion and will be joining them with different coloured rows of sc (dc).

festiva_join

and carried on the block st pattern (rounds 5 & 6) in the border and added a picot edge.  I’m very tempted to add pom poms too!

festiva_border

and because it’s impossible to take a good photo on this dark and dreary day today, here’s a crap photo of my finished Festiva blanket trying to look casually styled on the couch …

festiva_fin1

 

I hope you enjoy making Festiva.   I’d love to see your fab creations so be sure to tag them with #festivasquare on instagram or pop a pic up in my Ravelry group if you prefer. I’d love to see them!

Until next time

Michelle x

 

and the winner is …

winnercallout

 

…. drumroll please …. the lucky winner of Kate Bruning’s fab book; Let’s Go Camping is ….

Anthea

Congratulations Anthea I’m sure you will love this book as much as I do!  Drop me an email at poppyandbliss@gmail.com with your postal address and I’ll pop it in the post for you.

Thank you all so much for entering this giveaway.  I’m sorry if you missed out this time, I really wish everyone could be a winner.

I’ll be back in a couple of days with a free pattern of sorts and a creative challenge.  Here’s a little clue to get your mind ticking …

festival blanket_oilpainting

Talk soon

Michelle x

Book Review and a giveaway: Let’s Go Camping – Crochet Your Own Adventure

Hello friends

Today I have a book review and a giveaway for you but first up, my disclosure:

I received a preview copy of this book but was under no obligation to write a review nor did I receive any financial compensation to do so. All opinions are my own experience and which I hope will inspire you. I have purchased an extra copy of this book for the giveaway in support of a fellow designer and because I think you will love this book as much as I do.

Now we’ve got the business end out of the way let’s look at a delightful book I’ve just had the pleasure of looking through and be sure to read right down to the end for details of how to win your own copy.

1a

I’ve long been a fan of Kate from Greedy for Colour.   Kate’s quirky sense of fun shows up in all her work and you can’t help but get caught up in her joyful enthusiasm in everything she does.  Kate’s new book Let’s Go Camping!: Crochet Your Own Adventure is absolutely delightful and filled with mix and match projects ranging from vintage caravans and ice cream trucks to tents and teepees with all the camping paraphernalia of sleeping bags, backpacks and a log fire, as well as mountain and forest scenery to create your own wonderful, magical outdoor world.

2

9

Oh how I would have loved to have this collection to play with when I was a kid!

4

I want to make all the projects in the book just to re-live my childhood but thinking what a wonderful present it would make for a little one to have their very own little camping wonderland to inspire their imaginations.

A couple of things to note here though is that the patterns are written in UK terms which may cause confusion for US folk but nothing a handy conversion chart can’t solve. Also, gremlins being gremlins, there is an errata page on Kate’s blog  so be sure to download this before starting any projects.

8

One of my  very favourite projects in the book is the vintage ice cream van. How cute is this! It even includes a chest freezer full of teeny tiny little ice-creams ! I couldn’t help myself and dropped everything else I’m doing and started to make one of my very own to remind me of happy summer days chasing Mr Whippy down the road.

6

And I’ll definitely be making the Vintage Caravan complete with kitchen sink to commemorate our upcoming caravan adventure around Australia (more on that another day)

5

Or maybe cruising down the river is more your style …

10

If you’d like a chance to win a copy of this delightful book leave a comment and I will pick a random name on 14th of October  * edit:  (*entries are now closed.  Thank you to everyone who entered)  Or, if you simply can’t wait/take the chance and would like to purchase a copy a list of the Aussie retailers can be found here  or via Amazon for international readers (no affiliation to either of these)

Until next time

Michelle x

Crochet Workshops

Hello friends

Exciting busy times around here in Poppy & Bliss land at the moment.  I’ve got lots on the go and lots to share over the coming months now that I’ve got my mojo back.

One of the more exciting things (for me anyway) is that I’ve decided to start teaching again.  I love teaching others and sharing my knowledge.  Nothing is more satisfying than watching a student bloom as they gain confidence in their new skill.  It’s heartwarming I tell ya 🙂

So, now that I’ve got my home reno’s done I have opened up my house (or my dining room table at least) and inviting you in to do a crochet or Tunisian crochet workshop with me.  To kick the workshop schedule off, I’ll be running workshops in Tunisian Crochet  and Crochet Joining Techniques all throughout September and more fun topics will be added soon.   Pop over here to find out all the details.

Tunisian Workshop by Poppy & Bliss

I held the first Tunisian Crochet workshop last Tuesday.  We had so much fun, sitting around chatting, learning and eating cupcakes.  Everyone walked away confident in their new found skills and inspired with new ideas.

Tunisian Crochet Swatches by Poppy & Bliss

Before the workshop I was busy making up some swatches for everyone to see how beautiful and versatile Tunisian Crochet can be.

Tunisian Moss Stitch sample

I was also busy joining some of my WIPs for the Crochet Joining Techniques Workshop

mini granny squares

Gradient Hexies by Poppy & Bliss

Sunburst Blanket by Poppy & Bliss

So that’s what I’ve been up to lately.  I hope you will come and join me for a workshop if you’re in Melbourne.

Until next time

Michelle x

I’m back and with a new pattern

Well hello there my blog buddies.   It’s been a long while since I’ve been here hasn’t it!  I’ve been up to my elbows in paint and plaster for the last 3 months renovating and ‘jooshing’ up our home.  So not much time was had for crochet but happily life has gone back to normal now and I’m back in my cosy little crochet zone.

Now that my house is finally spruced up I’m attacking my very (very) long ‘Poppy & Bliss To-Do’ list.  Top of the list was getting the pattern written for this Tunisian Triangles cushion which, according to my Instagram feed, first made an appearance some 82 weeks ago …. ahem … nothing like the present moment hey 😉

TunisianTriangles_Fuschia by Poppy and BlissThe original is long gone to a new home so I dug deep into my huge WIP pile and finished off another two that I’d started in different colour-ways and had been patiently waiting for some love and attention.

TunisianTriangles2 by Poppy and Bliss

Fuelled with lots of coffee, I finally sat down and got the pattern onto paper and hopefully for you to enjoy.  I hate to get all ‘buy my stuff’ but if you’d like to buy the pattern then you can find it either in my Etsy or Ravelry stores.

TunisianTriangles_frontpage by Poppy and Bliss

This is not a difficult pattern, using only Tunisian Simple Stitch (TSS) but some patience and concentration may be required for the colour changes at first.  Once you get going though you will be powering along, excited to get to the next set of colours.  If you’re comfortable with the basics of Tunisian crochet then you will be able to do this easily.
Charts are included for two different colour-ways plus pictures of even more to inspire your own creation.
I hope you like it!

Until next time

Michelle x

Crochet Basket DIY

crochet basket pattern by poppyandbliss.com

Hello friends

It’s been awhile since I was last here … once again, life and work have got in the way of all my good blogging intentions.

A few weeks ago my yarn basket snuck into a few of my pics over on instagram and fb and requests for the pattern were made.  I nearly didn’t post this as there are so many fab crochet basket patterns out there already but here is my version. Enjoy!

halfbasket

What you’ll need:

Hook:  5mm

Yarn:   Worsted weight cotton – 2 strands held together

I’ve used one ball each of Drops Paris:  Medium Pink, Shocking Pink, Light Mint Green, Opal Green, Light Purple, Medium Purple, Light Turquoise, Dark Turquoise, Orange

And 2 balls of Strong Yellow which was also used for the base

Size:     20 cm diameter  x 26cm height

(You can make this basket any size you want by stopping when you are happy with the size then continuing on to the next set of directions and adjusting the stitch count to suit)

Abbreviations:

US Terms used (if you prefer UK/AUS terms just replace the sc with a dc throughout)

blo                   back loop only

ch                   chain

pm                  place marker

sc (dc)            single crochet (double crochet)

ss                    slip stitch

st/s                 stitch/es

Special techniques and stitches:

  • Standing sc (tutorial can be found in my post over here )
  • Invisible join
  • Crab st
  • Crochet ends in

crochet invisible join tutorial

1.  Cut yarn and pull through last stitch

2.  Insert your hook front to back under both loops of next st (first st of round), tail end over hook and pull through st

3. Working from back to front, insert hook through the centre of the previous stitch (last st of round),

4. tail end over hook and pull through st

To secure the join, crochet the tail end in working in the opposite direction you have just been.  Your tail end will be locked in after you have woven them in this way and then crochet over them in the next round.

crochet ends in tutorial

Okey dokey, now we’ve got all that sorted let’s start making!

Base:

Worked in a spiral i.e. don’t join with a ss at end of each row, but continue on with a sc into next st and place a marker in this st

Note: to keep your circle nice and round, the increases are staggered in alternate rows

Base Round: Using 2 strands of Strong Yellow, make a magic circle (or ch 3 and join with a ss)

Round 1:        6 sc into ring.

Round 2:        2 sc  into each st to end (12 sc)

Round 3:        *1 sc, 2 sc into next st. Repeat from * to end (18 sc)

Round 4:        1 sc, * 2 sc into next st, 2 sc. Repeat from * to last st, 1 sc (24 sc)

Round 5:        *3 sc, 2 sc into next st.. Repeat from * to end (30 sc)

Round 6:        2 sc, * 2 sc into next st, 4 sc. Repeat from * to last 2 sts, 2 sc   (36 sc)

Round 7:        *5 sc, 2 sc into next st.. Repeat from * to end (42 sc)

Round 8:        3 sc, * 2 sc into next st, 6 sc. Repeat from * to last 3 sts, 3 sc (48 sc)

Round 9:        *7 sc, 2 sc into next st.. Repeat from * to end (54 sc)

Round 10:      4 sc, * 2 sc into next st, 8 sc. Repeat from * to last 4 sts, 4 sc (60 sc)

Round 11:      *9 sc, 2 sc into next st.. Repeat from * to end (66 sc)

Round 12:      5 sc, * 2 sc into next st, 10 sc. Repeat from * to last 5 sts, 5 sc (72 sc)

Round 13:     *11 sc, 2 sc into next st.. Repeat from * to end (78 sc)

Round 14:      6 sc, * 2 sc into next st, 12 sc. Repeat from * to last 6 sts, 6 sc (84 sc)

Round 15:      *13 sc, 2 sc into next st.. Repeat from * to end (90 sc). Finish with invisible join. Fasten off.

Sides:

Note: All colour change rounds are worked into the back loop only (blo) and the second row of the same colour is worked into both loops as normal.

I’ve used the following colour sequence (bottom to top):

crochet basket colour sequence

Once you’ve used all your colours, repeat the sequence (almost) once again … I’ve stopped at Dark Turquoise the second time around and continued on in this colour to complete the handles

Round 1:             Join Medium Pink with a standing sc , working into the blo, sc 90

Round 2:            PM in first st, sc 90. Cut yarn, finish with invisible join and crochet ends in.

Rounds 3–36:  Repeat Rounds 1 & 2, changing colour every 3rd round.

Round 37:          PM in first st, sc 15, ch 15, skip next 15 sts, sc 30, ch 15, skip next 15 sts, sc 15

Round 38:         PM in first st, sc 15, sc 15 over chain handles, sc 30, sc 15 over chain handles, sc 15

Round 39:         PM sc 90. Cut yarn, join with invisible join and weave ends in.

Round 40:       Using only one strand, rejoin yarn in either the same colour or a contrast colour if you prefer.  Work in Crab Stitch to end (see below for instructions)

How to: Crab Stitch (Reverse Single Crochet)

This stitch is worked the same as a single crochet but is worked from left to right instead.

  • Chain 1 for the start of the row
  • Insert hook in first stitch on the right
  • Yarn over hook
  • Pull through stitch (2 loops on hook)
  • Yarn over and pull through both loops
  • Insert hook in next stitch on the right and continue from step 3 onwards
crochet basket by poppyandbliss

My original version of the basket. This one is shorter and wider than the above pattern. It was also made using only one strand of yarn so it’s floppier than the new and improved version.

Until next time, happy hooking!

Michelle x

New pattern – Illusion

illusion_titlepage_US

Hello again lovely friends.  How are you today?

I’ve been busy this past week finishing off a new pattern.  Boy oh boy these things take longer than planned!  Anyhoo, let me introduce you to Illusion.  An easy mitered square pattern that is joined-as-you-go.  Hooray!  No sewing lots of little squares together!

IMG_0050

And how about that 3D effect!

Coming up with a name for this one had me stumped so I put a call out on instagram and had such a fantastic response.  With over 200 responses there were so many great suggestions I just couldn’t choose but finally settled on Illusion as it was suggested several times and it does in fact fit the design quite nicely.  So Illusion it is.

I’ve just popped the pattern up over at etsy and ravelry if you’d like to make one for yourself.  Oh and there is a US version or UK version for you to choose from too.

16/3/2014:  Update

Just popping in with a quick update.

I’ve just recently started another version of Illusion, this time using Scheepjeswol Stone Washed yarn which I’m finding is working perfectly for this pattern (no affiliation, just my personal opinion). It’s so lovely and soft and the mottled colours add a whole other dimension to the design.

Look how lush ….

Illusion in stone washed by poppyandbliss

The details:

  • 4.5mm hook
  • Colours:  Smokey Quartz – 11 balls, 1 ball each of Lemon Quartz, Coral, Yellow Jasper, Corundum Ruby,  Canada Jade, Red Jasper, Deep Amethyst, Amazonite and Blue Apatite, 2 balls Green Agate (which I will also use for the border).

I will have lots of leftovers of the contrast colours so another project with this snugly soft yarn is sure to happen!

Until next time

Michelle x