Crochet Squares – March

Finally, between teething fussiness and the inability to do things that require two hands, I’ve been able to catch up with my February and March crochet squares for the 2017 Block-a-Month Crochet-Along on Ravelry. I’ve actually finished these, like the previous ones, over a period of a few weeks, but actually weaving in the ends and getting the photographs were a whole different story.  Regardless, I feel like I’m catching up on so many things that I’ve been meaning to create.  Having a baby around again is an amazing feeling, and things are so different than they were when I first became a mother ten years ago!  And I’ve been so fortunate and lucky that Clara is a great sleeper and a generally all-around happy baby.  My elder boys were much more high-needs, so I’ve been thoroughly enjoying this wonderful time with my little love. 

Clara just loved playing with all the yarn while I made these crochet squares.  I leave the skein next to her while I’m using it, and she delights in the colors and texture.  She’s always supervised because – well, it’s yarn – but I hope she may one day love to work with fiber the way that I do. 

Crochet Squares - March - mellieblossom.com
Marigold Mandala Crochet Square

Moving on to the actual crochet squares though.  These are the February and March squares (minus one that still hasn’t made it to the photograph phase).  I’m pretty sure I mentioned the colors before, but I still love them as much now as I did when I first assembled them, and that’s a good sign (not like last year, which saw me changing the whole scheme halfway through the year, and leaving me with a huge amount of work that still needs to be done).   The Marigold Mandala Crochet Square by Dorianna Rivelli was the filler (as voted on by Ravellers), and I can understand why – it’s simply a gorgeous square.  I love everything about this square, and there is a detailed tutorial of the free pattern that can be found on The Lavender Chair by following this link here

Crochet Squares - March - mellieblossom.com
Window Box Granny Crochet Square

The Window Box Granny Crochet Square pattern by Lisa Mauser was the 6″ option for February.  I made four of them in each of the colors I’m using and used the off-white as the focal point.  I usually get a little lazy with the 6″ squares, because repeating four of the same squares over and over can be kind of tedious, but I ended up really enjoying this square and ended up whipping it up in no time flat.  This is available as a free Ravelry download here. 

Crochet Squares - March - mellieblossom.com
Picture Frame Crochet Square

Picture Frame Crochet Square by Lisa Naskrent is a square that I made once before in the Sprouting Hues swap, but I enjoyed making it again. I had purchased the pattern back then, but now it’s available as one of the several published crochet squares in the Chain Reaction Afghan Project, and the entire ebook is available for free here, with the Ravelry link here.  This really is a gorgeous square, with all the leafy corners and the textured, center motif.  And I like this version even better than the other one I made. 

Crochet Squares - March - mellieblossom.com
That One Sister Crochet Square

That One Sister Crochet Square by Melinda Miller has a touching story about its creation which you can read about on the download link page.  I’m a big fan of Melinda Miller’s patterns, because they are very lovely squares that look complicated but are simple to make, especially with her very clear instructions.  This one was so much fun, even if I ended up sewing my flowers on instead of leaving holes (you have to actually read the directions to follow them, oops!)  I had briefly looked over the pattern before taking my kids to a play place, and by the time I got home, so much of the square was already finished that I decided to just use it as it was.  My crochet time is sparse these days.  I do what I can.  The pattern is available as a free Ravelry download here

Crochet Squares - March - mellieblossom.com
Popcorn Puff Square

Last but not least, the Popcorn Puff Square by Ruth C. Roy was the 6″ crochet square selected for March.  Like the Window Box Granny above, I usually make four versions of the 6″ square, but by the time I had finished the center motifs of the squares, I decided that these would look really nice stitched together without any further rounds added on.  I like the way the block turned out with the four motifs, and since I used a G hook, it turned out to be a 9″ square (like my other squares have been this year).  Using a sport weight yarn (Caron Simply Soft) and the smaller hook lets me top these patterns out at a smaller size, which, as a multiple of 12 for the final blanket, works out perfectly. The pattern is available as a free Ravelry download here, and can also be accessed on 365 Grannies here

I’m so excited to have actually accomplished something from start to finish that I have three projects sitting right in front of me that I want to just dive right into.  Happy crocheting to you and happy Monday!

~Mellie

Recent Crochet Pattern Purchases – March

Every month or so, I go through my cart on Ravelry and purchase a few of the crochet patterns that I’ve been wanting. I used to try to stick with free patterns, but over the years I’ve realized how much time and effort goes into writing out, testing, refining and creating a well thought out and cohesive crochet pattern.  Usually the designer has put hours and hours of work into the patterns, and just as most people appreciate being compensated for hard work and effort, the few dollars they ask in exchange for their patterns is (to me), fair, and worth it. 

I like to go through the new and “hot right now” patterns on Ravelry every so often, and as I come across patterns that I like, I add them to my cart.  Then every month or two when I have a bit of extra money, I’ll go through and purchase a few of them that I still am in love with, and then print them out.  I have many, many more patterns than hours left in my lifetime that I could actually make all of the items, but I comfort myself in knowing that if the zombie apocalypse ever happened, that I would still have plenty to crochet.  Also (and more realistically), there have been patterns that I love that have gone offline and that I’ve been unable to find again.  After experiencing that a couple of times, I do my best to buy, save, and print out those crochet patterns that I love.

Anyway, I thought I’d share some of these paid patterns.  And no, I am not getting compensated in any shape or way for these – they’re all personal preference. The prices are current at the time of this post, but they may go up or down as the designer wishes in the future, and while I’ll do my best to keep things current, you may find a different price than what I have posted.  All of these are Ravelry downloads, which means you need a Ravelry account (which is free) in order to purchase them.

 

Cat Baby Cocoon Hat & Bootie Set
Cat Baby Cocoon Hat & Bootie Set by Chi Krneta

Are you a cat person?  My first pet was a beautiful, blue point Siamese that I found (yes, found!) outside my apartment door and that I took in, waiting for someone to come and claim him.  No one ever did, and he was my little buddy for years and years.  He was truly the most affectionate and loyal cat, and he turned me into a true cat person (love to you wherever you are in the clouds, little one!)  This little cat sack is just adorable, isn’t it?  I think this would make just the cutest little photo prop for Clara one day – a kitty sleep sack with a matching hat.  Even though she’s growing so quickly that she’d definitely need the next size up.  Still, it’s not an overly complicated pattern and doesn’t seem like it would take too long to make.  The pattern can be found here for $3.99.

 

Doctor Who Dalek Hanging Towel
Doctor Who Dalek Hanging Towel by Critical Stitch

Okay, I’ll be honest.  I have enough Whovians in my life that the list of those who would be thrilled to get something like this for Christmas is loooooong (mental note – make a bunch of these for the holidays!)  And if you’re not a Dr. Who fan, these are Dalek dishtowels, made to look like a certain mutant race on the show.  I just love these, and I couldn’t not buy the pattern.  And while they’re adorable and recognizable, they don’t look to be a very over-complicated pattern either!  This pattern can be purchased following this link on Ravelry for $2.99.

 

Baby Bot Britches
Baby Bot Britches by Amanda Chapman

Part of the joy of new babies is making them cute little things to wear (plus, when they’re that young, they really can’t complain about all the cutesy things all the family members put them in!).  I find these little robot pants so cute.  And if I made them from a wool yarn, they could double as soakers even.  There are so many knit patterns for these kinds of wearables, so it’s awesome to see a just as well made crochet version.  I could just picture that cute little robot face over a big baby tush.  Definitely going in the queue.  These cute pants can be purchased alone for C$ 4.50 or as a part of a 30-pattern e-book of several crochet patterns for babies and children for C$ 20.  Either option can be found on this Ravelry link.  Discount codes for buying some (but not all) the patterns are also found at that address as well.

 

Fiorella Baby
Fiorella Baby by Deanne Ramsay

More baby stuff, to be sure.  I’m in love with this cute little sundress, and it will be perfect for Miss Clara come the summertime when she’s outdoors every day and learning to walk at the same time.  I like the variety that the colors in this dress lend themselves to, and I already have color schemes going in my head of which one I’d want to make first.  Clara is indeed going to have an enviable handmade wardrobe!  This is another pattern can be purchased on its own for $6, or as part of a 5-pattern e-book for $14.  Either can be purchased here.

Valentine Wreath
Valentine Wreath by Marjolein Flick

And moving on from all the baby stuff is this absolutely gorgeous Valentine Wreath.  And while Valentine’s Day is over, I think this could very easily be modified into beautiful springtime wreath that could hang on my back door, where the Christmas Wreath still needs to be taken down (ha).  I could see several versions of this through the seasons – warm golds and oranges for a fall wreath, bluebirds and budding flowers for spring; even a red and white holiday version. The pattern is available on Ravelry for €6.50 following this link.

 

Free Spirit Knee High Slipper Socks
Free Spirit Knee High Slipper Socks by Clarissa Paige Dove

Okay, and how could I not just love these?  They’re so completely my style, and practical on top of being cute (my wooden floors get chilly through the winter).  How cute would it be to make a matching mother and baby set for Clara and me?  Oh, the possibilities are endless.  The $3.50 pattern can be found on this Ravelry link here

 

Crossbow Square Afghan Block
Crossbow Square Afghan Block by The Perfect Knot – Michelle Kovach

And finally – I crochet granny squares more than I crochet anything else, so I’m always sure to add a square or two to my cart and purchases.  Making squares really has been the best way for me to hone my crochet skills, try new stitches and play with color, so they’re worth their weight in gold to me.  The two granny square crochet patterns that I purchased this month are these two, the Crossbow Square (above) and the Leaf Stitch Granny Square (below)

Leaf Stitch Granny Square
Leaf Stitch Granny Square by Jyneffer Dill

I love the cross stitch motif in the center of the former, and how easily it glides into a standard granny.  For the latter, I really like the extended stitches that give it so much texture and uniqueness (it kind of reminds me of the Presine a Fiori Square that I made for the Pink Lemonade swap a few years back.  The Crossbow Square is a $1.00 Ravelry download, found here, and the Leaf Stitch Granny Square can be found here, for $2.50 .

As I was linking all the patterns to this blog post, I found several more patterns that I’m falling in love with, so I’m off to go spend some time browsing all the gorgeous designs until the little one wakes up, hungry and looking for mama.  Have a great Thursday, and happy crocheting!

~ Mellie

Crochet Penguin

Crochet Penguin - mellieblossom.com

It was a long week with my two older boys suffering from a stomach bug.  These are the joys of motherhood.  I have so much to catch up on: laundry and cleaning and homeschool and errands.  But I was able to whip up this adorable little crochet penguin with a Valentine scarf for Clara and her new incoming teeth.  Free pattern is here. 

Have a healthy, happy Monday!

~mellie

2017 Crochet Along

Get ready for the 2017 crochet along!  (and yes, I realize I’m a bit behind on this!)

Is it really almost Febraury?  I keep forgetting how much time taking care of a newborn actually takes up.  But we’re finally out of that fourth trimester and yes, she is actually sleeping through the night, and that has given me (a little bit of) time to catch up on some of the many projects that have been waiting for me.  And if you’re one of those who left me a comment or sent me an email, please hang in there.  I’m slowly making my way back through my inbox that still has unread mail from September!

The first thing I wanted to start up on was the 2017 Block-a-Month Crochet Along.  And if you’re looking to join in a CAL, January and February, the beginning of the year, are great times to do it  The new group for the year is here: 2017 Block-A-Month Crochet-Along, and even though I’m only sharing my squares now, I actually did make them toward the beginning of the month. 

2017 Crochet Along - Moody Blues Crochet Square - mellieblossom.com
Moody Blues Crochet Square

The main square for the first of the crochet-along is Moody Blues by Helen Shrimpton, and can be found free on her website.  Link to the Ravelry project page is here.  This square is full of interesting textures and stitches, so it was a lot of fun to make.  This was made exclusively for the bamcal, and that’s exciting.  There’s so much inspiration to be found when a bunch of creative types come together for all sorts of variations on one pattern, and it’s so much fun to see what each person comes up with. 

2017 Crochet Along - Kaleidoscope Square - mellieblossom.com
Kaleidoscope Crochet Square

The filler square is the one that is voted on by the crocheters, and the winner for the first month of 2017 is the Kaleidoscope Crochet Square by Julie King of Gleeful Things.  The pattern is free and comes with very detailed instructions and photos for new crocheters, and it can be found by clicking on this link here. If you want to add the project to your Ravelry queue, the link for the pattern page is here. I had fun making this one.  I love the green yarn that I’m working with for this year’s 2017 crochet along.  It’s chartreuse from Caron’s Simply Soft line.  It’s one of my favorite colors.  They don’t seem to sell it in stores around here, so when I put in my last order for Joann’s online, I threw in a couple of CSS colors that I don’t see often locally.  And then I fell in love with it!  The same goes for the yellow color, which is actually gold.  And the addition of the orange in the color scheme really made it pop.  I’m enjoying working with this set of colors. 

2017 Crochet Along - Efflorescent Window - mellieblossom.com
Efflorescent Window Square

Finally, the Efflorescent Window crochet square by Delphis is another square that I made a long while back.  But it was fun to make it again years later with different colors and (dare I say it), more and better knowledge of what I’m doing crochet-wise. The pattern can be found as a free Ravelry download by clicking here. This was a block in the 2013 Block-a-Month crochet along (which was my second year doing this – wow, can’t believe I’m going on 5 years of bamcals!).  I never finished that bamcal, but I recently pulled out all those old blocks and printed up the patterns, so it definitely is a goal in the next year or so to get that one together.  I so love the color scheme on that one.  And funny enough, there are a couple of colors in there that I’m using for this year too, such as the off-white, and the brown.  The yellow is a bit lighter, but still the same tone.  I suppose I know what colors I like using!  That was the year that I went a little crazy with borders.  No regrets, it was a great learning experience, but wow did it ever take a lot of time.  My version below has the petal looking border repeating with some extending rows beyond that.  Pretty!  But lately I’ve been enjoying more simplicity in patterns, and I think that shows in the 2017 crochet along. 

2017 Crochet Along - Efflorescent Window - mellieblossom.com
Efflorescent Window – 2013 version

In the meantime, stop by the bamcal 2017 crochet along group on Wednesday to see what the crochet square selections are going to be for February (they’re usually heart and Valentine related!).  I certainly will be!

~ mellie