Tuesday, 30 June 2015

Crochet Sunflowers - Tutorial and Pattern

I showed you my crochet wreath updated with some sunflowers at the start of the month, and now we are at the end of the month I have finally finished my pattern and tutorial and my sunflower garland.  The garland will not be revealed just yet, I will show it to you in my July Mantel post with a bit of a ta dah!

Today though I have the sunflowers to share with you. 

You can find the post about the wreath here and you can see how to make the cover for the wreath form and my original idea here.

The pattern and all the technical details are at the end of the post.  You can see that I made them in different colours.  The two sunflowers above and the one below show the different shades of yellow that I used.  The middles are raised, just as the middles of sunflowers really are.

I hope that you enjoy making lots of sunflowers!  As always, please feel free to make some, but please credit me with the pattern.  I worked this out for myself so it is my work!

Start off by making a CH (chain) of four stitches and then SL (slip stitch) into the first CH to make a ring.

Then CH two stitches and from there you will be working into the middle of the ring - where the silver needle is pointing.

You then make a TR (treble) stitch into the ring.

Keep making TR into the ring.  When you have the right number you need to SL into the second chain that you made after forming the ring.  Where the silver needle is pointing.

You will then have a small flat circle that looks like this.

Now, for the next round of stitches my pattern writing experience lets me down a little, but you need to CH two stitches first of all.  Then you will be working into the space between the TR in the previous round.  You are not working into the stitch, but the space between them.  As shown by the silver needle.

Make TR into the first gap between the TR of the previous round.

After that chain one and then work TR2tog (two trebles together) into the space between the stitches of the previous round.

Continue doing this, working your way around the circle.  You can see a little better in this picture how it should look.

To finish the ring SL into the second CH that you made at the start of this round.  Again, shown by the needle.

Voila, one sunflower middle.  You will see how it curves round naturally.  You don't need to do anything else to it.

You will then start to work on the petals.  You cannot have a sunflower without petals can you!  Again, you will be working into the space between the TR2tog in the previous round.

Start by putting the hook through the space.

Yarn round hook and pull through the loop on the hook.  You are then joined on and in effect have a DC.  You can see what I mean in the next two pictures.

CH two and then DC into the next space between the TR two together from the previous round.  As you work you will see that it starts to look like this.

When you get back to the start you need to SL into the first stitch - where the needle points.

Then CH 6 stiches.  Work into the second stitch from the hook.  Continue working into the CH stitches back towards the middle of the flower.

You will work a DC, a HTR (half treble), a TR a DTR (double treble) and then two TR into the last chain - they are two separate TR stitches, not TR2tog.

You can see how the petal is formed.

Then skip the two CH stitches and DC into the DC.

The first petal is completed.

Continue around the middle working petals as you go.

Then when you get all the way around SL into the base of the CH of the first petal.

Voila, one finished flower!!  You then need to sew in the ends and you can use your flowers as you wish.

I will update this in a few days with a picture of the garland and other details so that you can follow those along.

OK, on with the details and the pattern!


Sunflower Pattern - by Amy of Love Made My Home

You may use, but please credit me with this pattern as it is my own.

All instructions are following UK Terms.
4mm Hook
Yarn in two colours, brown for the centres and your choice(s) of yellow for the petals.
I used Rico Creative Cotton Aran


CH - chain
SL - slip stitch
DC - double crochet
HTR - half treble crochet
TR - treble crochet
DTR - double treble crochet
TR2tog - treble two stitches together

The pattern.

Centres of flowers - use brown yarn

Round One
CH4, SL into first stitch in CH
CH2 (counts as first TR), work 9 more TR into ring, SL into second stitch of CH that is counting as TR

Round Two
CH2 (counts as first TR), TR into space between next two TR of previous round.  Work into space between stitches.  CH 1
*TR2tog into next space between two TR of previous round.  CH1.*  Repeat from * to * 8 times, SL into second stitch of CH that is counting as TR.  Tie off work

Petals of flowers - use yellow yarn

Round One
*DC into a CH space between TR2tog of round two of centre.
CH 2.*  Repeat from * to * 9 times, SL into first DC.  Do not tie off work.

Working back towards centre of flower, DC into second CH from hook
HTR into next CH
TR into next CH
DTR into next CH
TR into next CH twice - separate TR's, not TR2tog
Skip 2 chains of previous round, DC into next DC.*  Repeat from * to * 9 times.  Tie off work.

Sew in all ends.

Wreath - make as many as you wish and pin to wreath.  Hang and enjoy!

Garland - make 9 flowers, three each in three different shades of yellow.  To join into garland, use green yarn, CH20, DC into top of one petal.  CH15.  DC into top of next petal and so on.  After joining last flower CH20.  You can make starting or ending CH longer as you need.  Hang and enjoy!

I hope that you enjoy making lots of lovely flowers!


Monday, 29 June 2015

What I did at the weekend

The lovely Karen at Pumpkin Sunrise offers us the chance to share what we did with our weekends, and I never yet managed to join in.  Today though, finally!, I am!!!  Yay!!  Thank you Karen for the prompt and for encouraging us to join you in celebrating the weekends.

On Saturday we got up late, I watched the last episode of this series of The Good Wife - I wonder where the next series will be taking us!

Then I moved out to the garden.  I set up camp at the table and spent some time blogging and enjoying a cold drink.  Hubby set up the hammock for me to use later on.

The honeysuckle has flowered amazingly.  I think that this is the best that I have ever seen it.  Combined with the hypericum - still remembering the name! - it looks fantastic.  They make a good combination I think.

Hubby got on with some work, a little light hedge trimming and cutting back some of the excess branches on this laurel.  It is too early in the year to prune hedges back, but you can take off some of the long bits around the edges here and there as long as you take care not to disturb any nesting birds.  There are no birds nesting in this laurel, the squirrels would have taken care of them sadly, but I am sure that the birds have found other more sensible places to nest!

The lavender has now come out in spectacular fashion!!  I am so happy to see it again.  You know that I worry about all of my garden plants, so I am always happy when they reappear or flower again each year.

Today I am planning to go out and cut a big handful to bring into the house to dry so that I can enjoy it all year long.  I only just got rid of last years bunch as it no longer had any scent and was rather dusty.  So the lavender has flowered at the perfect time!

There was a light breeze, just enough to make the hammock wave around and to keep me nice and cool, but that was all.  The hammock will blow about in the slightest breeze!

Of course I did enjoy looking at some of the other plants as well!

Looking at the hammock made me realise that I could - finally! - show you my ripple blanket actually on the hammock!!  It was made to go on the hammock and this weekend was the first time that I could use it for the purpose that it was made for.  I have of course been using the blanket ever since I made it.  Just not outside!

You can read about the blanket here and the cushion that I also made here.

While I was wandering around I took a look at how the plants in the pots were doing.  Aren't they just beautiful!!

Hubby and I then had a lay on the hammock - me - and a sit in the comfy chair - hubby.  It was time to do some relaxing!!!

There was eating outside, sitting and doing not a lot.  Reading, blogging, and just staring into space.  Not a bad way to spend the day at all!!

I finished colouring in my giraffes!  No idea what I am going to do with these, but I enjoyed the process.

I might have also flicked through this magazine which came with the new Simply Crochet magazine.  There are six blankets showcased, and of course I want to make them all!!!  The one on the front cover attracted hubby's attention and I really like the way that it is very graphic in design so perhaps that will one day be in my future.

There was also some reading as I mentioned and having finished my May read, I really cracked on with June's book.

You can see that I am already over a third of the way through!  I am loving it!!!!!

On Sunday I had to return to "the real world".  No sitting in the garden all day for me.  It was rainy on and off and cloudy though so I didn't mind.

The day started leisurely again and then hubby and I headed off in opposite directions on our various duties.  Hubby went to visit Man - another unsuccessful visit sadly.  I went to a meeting at Basildon Park and then headed down the motorway - freeway - to do my own visits.

I will tell you about those in a moment, but I have to share this first!  It occurred to me recently that there is another way to get on with my reading.  By listening to my books.  The ones that I have on the kindle.  I find it hard to read kindle books, something about the weight of holding it and the lack of pages.  However it is great for travelling and in the past I have used it to play audio books when travelling.  I have never used it for that at home though.

So recently I started to listen to this book on the kindle.  It isn't downloaded as an audio book, so you just get the rather monotone voice of the kindle speaking to you, but it means that I can listen when doing things around the house like cleaning.  It is a bit of company and means that I am getting through this book fairly well.

The breakthrough though was when I realised that while I am spending all of this time heading up and down the motorway, clocking up hundreds of miles, I could be listening to the book in the car too!

Yesterday I did just that.  It worked really well.  I turned the book on before I set off, rested the kindle in my open handbag which was seatbelted to the seat and listened away.

Again it was great company and I am now apparently 68% of the way through this book!  Yay!

The visits were fine.  I saw Lady for the second time this week, she was in fine fettle.  I then did my other visit which was much less pleasant.  I am never a fan of hospitals and it occurred to me that when I was giving total strangers in the car park advice about where to park, go, pay for their tickets etc that I really have been spending a lot of time there.  Especially considering that it isn't even my local hospital.  Oh well.  There is no new news and the news is in fact not encouraging at all.  I made my visit though and am doing the little that I can.

Having been inspired by reading about blankets on Saturday I thought that I really must get on with some of my own crochet.  So while hubby cooked me dinner - salad, so not much cooking, but delicious nonetheless! - I finished my crochet garland for July which I will show you in a few days.  Then after dinner I worked a little more on my current blanket project.  This doesn't have a name yet.  I might call it my New England blanket as I bought the yarn in New England last year.  We will see.

So that was my weekend!   Good, bad and indifferent, but that is life isn't it.

Today is another thrilling day, housework, ironing, meal planning and some list making.  I am not complaining though and I will keep listening to my book to keep me company!

I hope that you had a great weekend and will have a good week too.  If you want to see what others got up to this weekend go and visit Karen!