Saturday, 10 November 2012

Granny Square Hot Water Bottle Cover

Hello!  I made this simply because I needed a cover for my hot water bottle and fancied crocheting instead of knitting for a change.  I really enjoyed it, and I thought I'd write the pattern out for others to use.  It's very simple, and if you can make a simple granny square you can make this cover with no difficulty at all.  It fits a standard size hot water bottle.

The entire cover is made from granny squares attached to each other.  Personally, I like to join as I go, and really recommend this technique to everyone else as well.  It saves so much time, and if you hate sewing as much as I do, it's a godsend!  There is an excellent tutorial here that walks you through the technique.  If you prefer to join your squares up after you have made them all, simply do that instead, by sewing or crocheting them together in the arrangement needed for the cover.

I used a 3.5mm hook and DK yarn.

First you need to make 2 granny squares, of 8 rounds each (tutorial here for granny square beginners).  For mine I used 3 shades of grey, one light, one dark, and one variegated, and made stripes of one round's width.  You can, of course, use whatever colours you like, do either one round or wider stripes, or keep it all a solid colour, as you wish.

When making your second square, when you get to the last round, work one edge, and then work the last three edges attaching them as you go to the first square, ensuring that the right sides of your work are facing outwards.  Alternatively, finish the square as normal, and then sew or crochet three sides of it to the first square.

You now have a nice granny square 'pocket' into which your hot water bottle should fit, although it will not yet be long enough to cover it.

Now you need to make 2 squares of 4 rounds, and 8 squares of 2 rounds.  You can join these as you go to the top of the pocket arranged like this:  One large square across one half of the top of the front of the pocket, and 4 small squares arranged into a larger square at the side of it.  Do the same for back of the cover.   You now have a pocket that is long enough to cover your hot water bottle.

Make 2 more 4 round squares and attach them to the centre of the opening of the cover on either side.  The width of one will go to half way across the 4 round square below and cover one of the smaller 2 round squares.  Only attach the side that meets the cover, do not attach these 2 squares together.  Now your cover has a neck.

So that the cover will be removable for cleaning, all we need to do now is thread through some spare yarn, or nice ribbon, so that we can gather up the top but we will still be able to get the hot water bottle out when we want to.

Thread your yarn or ribbon onto a darning needle, and starting at the outer top edge of one of the squares that forms the neck, pass it in and out through the holes in the granny squares, down the side of the neck, along the 'shoulder', back along the other side of the shoulder, and up the neck the other side.  Leave long ends dangling.  Do the same the other side.  Now you can pull up gently on the ends, and tie a bow each side to keep the cover secure.

Enjoy keeping warm with your lovely new hot water bottle cover.

Deb :) x

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Saturday, 4 August 2012

Half Cable Shawl Pattern

Hello, little blog, sorry I've neglected you for so long!

I have some exciting news though, I have just listed my first ever knitting pattern for sale on Ravelry!  It's a shawl that I came up with, through trial and error, called the Half Cable Shawl, and here it is
Here is the link to the pattern.   I hope you like it!

Deb x

Saturday, 26 May 2012

WIP: Bigger on the Inside

I am quite a big fan of Doctor Who, so when I found this pattern I knew I absolutely had to have a go at it, especially as I'm currently obsessed with making shawls too.

I started on my latest project about a week ago, and have now completed the Time Vortex lace part of the shawl, which is the bit that goes around your shoulders.  I picked up the 311 stitches along the curved edge last night, and started on the first few rows of the Tardis pattern.

Unfortunately I got in a bit of a pickle, with new stitches I'm not used to, and let the stitch count get completely out of hand.  I'm not even sure how I ended up with 14 (!) more stitches than I should have had on one row, but by the time I'd got to the end of row 8 of the pattern, I decided it was time to cut my losses and rip the work back.

So today I have taken it all the way back to the lace part, picked up the 311 stitches again, and started the Tardis chart, going veeeeeery slowly and counting veeeeery carefully!  I'm on row 5 now, so a little way to go, but so far so good.   My project page for this on Ravelry is here.

Saturday, 19 May 2012

Kuura Shawl

I'd been looking for a shawl that I would be able to make, as a beginner to this sort of thing, but that wouldn't be too boring so I never finished it.  Kuura looked perfect, and, indeed, it was!  It's a completely gorgeous design, and I really enjoyed making it.  As I'm quite tall, and not exactly thin, I wanted to make it a little larger than the written pattern, and it was easy to do more pattern repeats in the main body of the shawl to make it bigger.  It's the perfect size for me, and I'm thrilled to bits with how it's come out.  This was also my first time following a lace chart, but the pattern makes everything very clear and I soon got used to it.

Here it is in progress...

Being blocked...

being worn and enjoyed...

I am absolutely in love with it :-)

Friday, 18 May 2012

Himalayan Hiking Hats

Just a quick post to share this fabulous link with you all.  Louisa Harding has set up a site for her fundraising efforts for Macmillan Cancer Support, and has provided some new hat patterns for people to make, in exchange for a donation to the cause.  The link is here

I think it's the perfect excuse for me to have my first ever go at knitting a hat, and knitting in the round!  I'm going to try to make the green cabled one for my sister.  Do pop over and have a look, the designs are truly gorgeous, and it's for a very good cause. xxx

Saturday, 5 May 2012

I'm back!!!

and I've given the blog a little makeover to celebrate - hope you like it :-)

Our computer problems are still not solved, believe it or not, but we have managed to get the computer place to lend us a decent, modern computer while they make a hash of mending ours. 

I've been so busy on the knitting front, please feel free to browse through my projects on Ravelry to see what I've been up to.   I think my favourite of recent weeks is the cushion that I made with some of the squares from my Leap Year Blanket efforts.  I've more or less given up trying to keep up with the Leap Year Blanket it thing, but I did end up with a nice cushion cover, and with enough squares to make another one too...
and here's the back...

On a slighly less successful note, I recently finished this cardigan, from a book I got out of the library called Big Knitting by Sophie Britten.  It's come out very very big indeed, and the sleeves would be great for an orangutan, but not so good for me unfortunately!  I've been using it as an extra blanket on the bed while the nights are still quite cool, but I don't think I'll be able to wear it much, there's just far too much of it...

Also not entirely successful was my first attempt at a lacy shawl.   I chose this beautiful design but didn't make a very good job of it.  It still looks nice though, despite being absolutely riddled with mistakes!

And this is what I ended up doing with the blanket I was making for a friend - yep, another cushion cover - she likes it though, and that's what really matters.

At the moment I only have one thing on the go, which is very unusual for me, it's this gorgeous thing, which is my first ever attempt at following a lace knitting chart. It's going okay at the moment, and I have some lovely grey/bluish sock yarn to make it with. I'll show you in the next post. I was very daunted by the knitting charts I keep seeing everywhere, but I was searching on Ravelry for a lacy shawl to make and I must have looked at about 25 patterns, and out of those only one had the actual written instructions, all the rest were charts. So, I thought, Well I'll have to learn how to read charts, won't I? I'm really enjoying it now, though. :-)

It's nice to be back, see you soon! xx

Saturday, 18 February 2012

Computer Problems

Sorry for the lack of posting this week, we are having severe computer problems, which meant for a while we had no computer at all, and now we are using our very old, very noisy, very slow computer just to do basic stuff online.  We will have either a mended or new computer in a week or so's time, I hope, but until then the computer we're using now can't be used for editing photos, and so I can't share with you all the knitting I've been doing! 

So, I'll just have to tease you a bit by telling you that so far I have a triple spiral design knitted square, my first attempt at cabling, and a square that looks like a field full of sheep.  :-)

Deb x