Book: 200 Crochet Blocks

200-Crochet-Blocks-1Having learned to crochet a couple of years ago, I’ve recently got back into the swing of it, by making an amigarumi pusheen and by making a present for someone, which is now pretty much 2 months over due, but basically finished! I have made a cushion cover using a crochet block pattern and I’m thinking that I would like to make a blanket out of blocks too, so luckily a friend of mine bought me this book a year or two ago.  I’m having the same thoughts about making a quilt – I’m yearning to make our flat nicer to live in I think, but without the ability to decorate properly as we rent.

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This book is really great and tells you how to mix colours and the block designs to make lovely (if slightly dated-looking) blankets.

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And then, of course, come the block designs themselves. I like the ones that are symmetrical and not too complicated looking. I like the openwork square below.

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I really like the Waterlily block, below. I’m not sure how many of these I would like in a blanket – maybe just one in the middle, but I’d like to be able to make one!

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There’s also a page of Christmassy blocks! I really don’t think I make things quickly enough to make something just for Christmas, but I like the tree and the snowflake!

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I like all the blocks below, except possibly the steps square – not sure why.

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I like all the blocks below too, and more so because they’re more in my colours (though I can see the pattern as separate from the colours used in the book, I’m still attracted to blues and greens!).

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I like all of these ones too – I’m not sure how I’m ever going to be able to make a decision on which one(s) to make!

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The book also shows you alternate colourways for some of the blocks, to help you design your blanket in whatever colours you like.

200-Crochet-Blocks-10For blanket inspiration, I think I’ll look to my sister. She has been crocheting a lot longer than me and even released her own amigarumi patterns for a while. She has made loads of blankets!

This one is some lovely earthy colours, which matched her living room in a previous house.

Phoebe's earthy colours blanketThis is a gigantic granny square, with a lovely bright cushion – I really like the idea of bright colours, joined together with bright white. It looks really fresh and modern. I love the gigantic granny square too, it’s a classic!

Phoebe's giant granny square

I love the colours she used here – the bright pink is particularly excellent! I’m not sure I would have had the eye to put these all together, but they look great. And there’s bright white in there too.

Phoebe's pink blanket

I think this all white blanket/ bed spread is a fairly recent one. I love the combo of the different sizes, and different designs of block but all tied together with the colour. I’m thinking of something monochrome and maybe with a pop of a bright colour, like yellow or pink.

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How lovely and clean does this look?

Phoebe's white blanketMy friend Farn, who I learned to crochet with is also excellent at making lovely things:

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Do you crochet? How do you decide on the designs and colours? I’m hoping that being able to make small things and have the small wins of finishing each square, that I will enjoy making a crocheted blanket and not lose interest and stop half way through as I have done too many times before with larger projects!

I learned to crochet!

Yesterday I spent a very enjoyable day hanging out with my 2 best friends. And I got to learn to crochet at the same time! My sister tried to teach me to crochet a couple of years ago – she is amazing at it, having made us this blanket:

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The squares look like this close up:

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I still have the granny square she taught me to make but this was the sum total of my crocheting career:

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I think this might be the same as the squares she made, but I’m not 100% sure – any crochet experts tell me for sure?

Anyway, back to yesterday. We did a course run by Crafty Baba, a group of people based in Suffolk who teach knitting, sewing and crochet. Our teacher was the lovely Cybèle De Jong, who knows one of my friends so it felt really relaxed and friendly, just sitting in her living room eating cake, drinking tea and chatting. Oh, and learning to crochet.

We started off with the basics – a chain, double stitches, triple stitches, then a fancy box thing stitch, and then my personal favourite, the shell stitch. It took me a while to get the hang of how to hold the work and the wool and the hook and stuff (so I kept laughing at myself for being so rubbish!), but I made this:

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I think you’ll agree, this is pretty amazing…….or not. But it was just to practise all the stitches and things, so it doesn’t have to look pretty.

My friend Fran, who organised for us to do this course, already knows how to crochet so when we went back to her house for lunch and more tea, she taught us how to do a granny square and I made this:

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You can’t really tell here, but I changed wools and everything! (The middle bit is a multicoloured crafting cotton with white in and the outside bit is a plain white cotton).

Then when I got home, I found that my sister had written down the instructions to make the square she taught me, so I made one of those (to make sure I could still remember all the stitches after a whole day!):

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I haven’t done the last step, so I think this looks a bit different from the yellow one at the top. My sister gave me the spare wool from the blanket and since all of my cushion covers I made 10 years ago are totally falling apart, I fancy crocheting some granny squares to make cushion covers to match the blanket, which lives on our sofa. I might try to find other simple granny squares so it’s not all too matchy-matchy. I can safely say I’m hooked (I had to – sorry, not sorry) on crochet!