January Crochet Along Squares

January Crochet Along Squares- mellieblossom.com

So the entire month of January has come and gone and I’ve barely done any crochet.  This isn’t typical for me; usually I spend my January curled up in a warm blanket and basket full of yarn, and crochet the month away.  But this month ended up being so busy – and so unseasonably warm – that I barely spent any time at all doing any crafting. But now, outside my window, there’s a light snow falling.  The sky is cold and gray, and this year, February can take the place of the still, silent Januaries that beg for crafters to work away in the warm indoors.

January Crochet Along Squares- mellieblossom.com
Circle Granny Square

I’m just now finishing up the Block-a-Month Crochet-Along squares from January, and making my way through February as well.  I had so many problems with the main square for January!  I don’t know whether my attention was off or I wasn’t properly following the pattern, but each of the three times I attempted to make it, it either puckered or turned out lopsided.  And because my crochet motivation was so off for the month, I decided to choose another square (this one off the filler nomination list) instead.  So this isn’t technically a bamcal square for 2016 (yet?) but it will be part of mine. 

January Crochet Along Squares- mellieblossom.com
Puff Wheat Afghan Block

This is the Puff Wheat Afghan Block by Margaret MacInnis (from the wonderful Muggins Magic Hang-out group on Ravelry).  She makes absolutely beautiful patterns, and this one was no exception.  I think I would have used a larger hook than the G hook that I used, but it still came out pretty.  I carried the yarn through the create the white flowers against the golden grain, and I like how the effect looks. 

January Crochet Along Squares- mellieblossom.com
Circle Granny Squares

The 6″ blocks from January are these simply but pretty Circled Granny Squares.  The 6″ squares chosen for the group are usually always a delight to make – easy, fun, and beautiful.  I love arranging the colors in ways that complement the other colors and the other squares as well.  So these were a breeze to make. 

January Crochet Along Squares- mellieblossom.com
Larksfoot Crochet Square

The filler square for January, which is nominated by the group, was this gorgeous crochet block called Larksfoot Inspired Granny Square.  For me, this was one of those squares that just seemed to work itself up, with an easy repeatable pattern and stunning results.  The pattern is by From Home Crochet, who also has a Facebook page that posts patterns and other interesting crochet bits.  (While you’re at it, come over and like my Facebook page as well!)

January Crochet Along Squares- mellieblossom.com
Grandma’s Heart Square

Finally, I started on February’s square, simply because the pattern is so beautiful, and one that I’ve enjoyed making before, both as an addition to my 2014 bamcal afghan, and to the Pink Lemonade swap I did at the beginning of that year.  Grandma’s Heart Square is what I’d call a Ravelry classic.  There are so many gorgeous interpretations of this pattern, it almost made me want to leave my color scheme behind and make a whole bunch up in a variety of different color combinations.  But I restrained myself, and stuck to the task at hand.  Still, it’s fun to look up my old versions of this square, especially since both are far away in their new homes. 

January Crochet Along Squares- mellieblossom.com
Grandma’s Heart Square – Pink Lemonade Version

It’s been so nice to spend the last few days catching up on some of these projects, and I have a stack of printed patterns just ready for me in a basket filled with yarn to make while watching the snow fall.  I’ll take this late winter to hibernate with my crochet!

~Mellie ★

Happy New Year! 2016 Crochet Alongs

Happy new year to all!  I love new years, and new beginnings in general.  So when the new year brings with it more new crochet alongs, then what’s not to love?  Here are a few of 2016 crochet alongs that I hope to be joining in, and you may want to as well!  Pick your colors (you can see I’m still experimenting with mine) and choose your hooks.  Crochet alongs are one of the best ways to improve your skills by trying out new stitches and squares and patterns that you may have never tried otherwise. 

2016 Crochet Alongs

2016 Crochet Alongs:

  • First is the 2016 Block-a-Month Crochet Along on Ravelry.  This is one of my favorites, and one that I’ve participated in for many years.  If you’re looking for a group that is very helpful, positive and flexible, this is a great group to join.
  • The Vanna’s Choice Fan Club on Ravelry is having a crochet along that includes two blocks each month, on the 1st and 16th.
  • The Red Heart Lovers Group on Ravelry is doing Frank O’Randle’s Tides of Change
  • The I Love Crochet Afghans Group on Ravelry is doing something a little bit different for a crochet-along.  Instead of choosing a single item to make together, they’re selecting general themes, which you can then find your own pattern and make alongside others:
    • Their stained-glass theme includes links to several different patterns with a stained-glass look to it.
    • The triangle/diamond theme will definitely include a lot of eye-catching items.
    • The round theme includes all sorts of different blankets both  made in the round or including a pattern with round motifs.
  • The Red Heart Lovers Group is also doing a 2016 crochet along with a theme of cowls if you’ve been thinking of making something that’s a little less labor intensive than an entire blanket.

2016 Crochet Alongs

Do you know of any other 2016 crochet alongs?  Feel free to add them in the comments so we can all join in!  And happy crocheting to all for the upcoming year!

~Mellie ★

Crochet Dog Sweater

Crochet Dog Sweater - mellieblossom.com

December has been insanely mild this year here in the Midwest.  Whereas we usually have had a foot or two of snowfall already, the past few months have rarely dropped below freezing and in some cases have actually been warm enough to go out without a jacket (this is madness for here!).  Luckily for me, it’s given me a little bit of extra time to make up a crochet dog sweater for one of the newest members of our family:

Crochet Dog Sweater - mellieblossom.com

This is Baine, our sweet little min-pin/Havanese.  His coat is pretty light, and on the few chilly days we’ve had I noticed him shivering outside.  So I figured what better way to keep this little guy warm than to crochet up a coat for him. And so after the holiday craziness died down a bit, I made Baine a brand new sweater to keep him warm.  He loves wearing it, and I think it turned out adorable. 

Crochet Dog Sweater - mellieblossom.com

The pattern for the crochet dog sweater is from Bernat and is a free pattern, although I modified the pattern a bit in order to accommodate and better fit Baine.  For example, I added a two stitch opening on the back of his sweater to allow the harness loop to come through.  I also added buttons and made a front closure and tailored the back of the coat to fit to his body.  I added button loops of 8 chains along the border and placed the buttons at the point on his body that best fits him.  If he gains weight in the future, I can always relocate the buttons, as I left a good inch or two to work with. 

Crochet Dog Sweater - mellieblossom.com

Overall, I’m really happy with how the crochet dog sweater turned out, and by the end of the winter, Baine might just have himself a little crocheted wardrobe.  He certainly was patient enough to model for me in order to take these photos!

~Mellie ★

 

Crochet Minions Blanket

I have a confession – I’ve never seen any of the Minion movies.  I’m sort of in the movie dark ages; there are so many classic movies that pretty much everyone has seen but me (Harry Potter, any James Bond, even Goonies).  I have a few people in my life who were horrified to hear that and are working on remedying that problem, though!   But back to the Minion movies, Despicable Me and its sequels – even though I’ve never actually seen the movie, it’s impossible to not know Minions.  I see them everywhere, and my kids even have a pair of Minion shoes each!

Crochet Minions Blanket - mellieblossom.com

Anyway, I’d seen a few interpretations of a beautiful crochet minions blanket on Pinterest and Ravelry, and admired them.  But it wasn’t until a friend contacted me about making a couple of minion baby blankets for her that I actually had to look up a few of who these guys are!  She sent me a photo of the style she wanted, and I searched around the internet and couldn’t find a pattern.  So I made it up as I went along.  Halfway through my project, I did eventually come upon the exact pattern on Ravelry that I had originally been looking for, but by then I was mostly done with the blanket.  The pattern is for sale on Ravelry here

Crochet Minions Blanket - mellieblossom.com

My variation differed somewhat, but I enjoyed the flexibility of the pattern and the relatively simple piecework (rectangles, circles, and sewing squares together).  It was a good project to work on during the down times of my vacation while being placed in front of a television set with another classic movie that I had yet to see.  And by the time the pattern came fully together, I was happy with the way it turned out. 

Crochet Minions Blanket - mellieblossom.com

And the blankets were also well received.  I’d call that a happy ending, wouldn’t you?

~Mellie ★