Little crochet trees


Time for another Chrismassy make.

I have designed these little trees for one of my classes at John Lewis Oxford Street. They are a great little project to try out tapestry crochet, which is very addictive.

Not only are they fun but also very quick to make, once you get into swing of things you will be able to make one in 45 minutes.

They make fantastic decorations for your tree and around the house. You can also make them into cat toys, just omit the stick, start with magic loop and include catnip in stuffing.  

The tutorial on how to work in tapestry crochet is below. I have written the instruction for the colour changes instead of a chart as the project is quite small so it’s not too overwhelming to follow the written instructions. 

Pattern notes 
  • Pattern is written using UK terminology with US conversion given in abbreviation list.

  • The pattern is worked in continues spiral, which means you will not ss to join round or ch 1 at the beginning of rnd, place marker to denote the beginning of rnd. 
  • From rnd 4 you will work in back loop of every st on every rnd. 
 

Materials

Small amounts of 2 colours of DK yarns: colour A – pine, colour B – white

I have used Ricorumi in Fir Green 050 (A) and Cream 002 (B)

3mm crochet hook

Toy stuffing

Piece of garden twig approximately 9 cm in length

1 x lockable marker

Finished size

One finished tree measures approximately 7 cm in height and 12.5 cm around the biggest part.

Tension

5 st and 5 rnds to 2.5 cm square measured over dc worked in back loop of every st.

Abbreviations

Ch – chain

Dc (US sc) – double crochet (US single crochet)

Dc2tog (US sc2tog) – double crochet two stitches together

Rnd(s) – round(s)

RS – right side

Ss – slip stitch

St(s) – stitch(es)

WS – wrong side

Snowy chevron and plain colour

With colour A make 4 ch, ss to first ch to form a ring.

Rnd 1: ch 1, 8 dc in ring, ss to first dc.

Rnd 2: ch 1, 2 dc in every st to end, ss to first dc. (16 sts)

Rnd 3: ch 1, * 2 dc in next st, 1 dc in next st, rep from * to end, ss to first dc. (24 sts)

You will now work in spiral and in the back loop of every stitch only.

Rnds 4 to 6: 1 dc in every st to end.

Rnd 7: [dc2tog, 1 dc in next 3 sts] 4 times, 1 dc in next 4 sts. (20 sts)

Rnd 8: 1 dc in every st to end.

Now you will work using the tapestry technique, join yarn B at the beg of next rnd and carry it with you all the way through a rnd using when needed.

If you are making a one colour tree just work the next two rnds: 1 dc in every st to end.

Rnd 9: with A – 1 dc in next 2 sts, [with B – 1 dc in next st, with A – 1 dc in next 3 sts] 4 times, with B – 1 dc in next st, with A – 1 dc in last st.

Rnd 10: [with A – 1 dc in next st, with B – 1 dc in next 3 sts] 5 times.

Brake off yarn A and continue only in yarn B.

Rnd 11: [dc2tog, 1 dc in next 2 sts] 5 times. (15 sts)

Rnd 12 and 13: 1 dc in every st to end.

Insert the garden stick in the middle of foundation ring (see below), start stuffing the tree around the stick, making sure that the shape is nicely rounded.

Rnd 14: [dc2tog, 1 dc in next st] 5 times. (10 sts)

Stuff the tree a little more, but do not overstuff.

Rnd 15: [dc2tog] 5 times. (5 sts)

Break off yarn, leaving approximately 10 cm tail, using tapestry needle feed the yarn through the stitches of opening, pull tight to close opening.

Weave in all end.

Deep snow

Work as given for snowy chevron to rnd 5.

Rnd 6: [with A – 1 dc in next 11 sts, with B – 1 dc in next st] twice.

Rnd 7: with A – dc2tog, 1 dc in next 3 sts, dc2tog, 1 dc in next 3 sts, with B – dc2 tog, 1 dc in next st, with A – 1 dc in next 2 sts, dc2tog, 1 dc in next 5 sts, with B – 1 dc in next 2 sts. (20 sts)

Rnd 8: with B – 1 dc in next st, with A – 1 dc in next 6 sts, with B – 1 dc in next 4 sts, with A – 1 dc in next 6 sts, with B – 1 dc in next 3 sts.

Rnd 9: with B – 1 dc in next 2 sts, with A – 1 dc in next 4 sts, with B – 1 dc in next 6 sts, with A – 1 dc in next 4 sts, with B – 1 dc in next 4 sts.

Rnd 10: with B – 1 dc in next 3 sts, with A – 1 dc in next 2 sts, with B – 1 dc in next 8 sts, with A – 1 dc in next 2 sts, with B – 1 dc in next 5 sts.

Brake off colour A and continue only in colour B.

Starting with rnd 11, work the rest of rnds as given for snowy chevron. 

Techniques

  • To get a neat colour change we need to change colours one stitch before: For example; if the third stitch needs to be a different colour, change yarns on the second stitch. Work to one stitch before colour change, stop when you have two loops on hook.

  • Drop colour A and finish the stitch with colour B.

  • We need to work one st in colour B and the following sts are in A – work next st in colour B but stop when you have two loops on hook, drop colour B and finish the stitch with colour A.

Continue changing colour as described in the last 3 steps.

Tip – To avoid yarns twisting, make sure you keep your colour B to your right and colour A to your left.

Carrying yarns

Usually when working in tapestry crochet you carry the yarn not in in between the stitch, however when working in the round I prefer to carry it inside the work and catch the yarn every third stitch when not in use.

  • When inserting hook to work dc make sure that the yarn to be stranded is placed on top of the hook at the back of work.

  • Work dc as normal, enclosing the strand in the stitch. Continue repeating the last 2 steps, enclosing the yarn not in use every third stitch.

Stuffing the tree

Insert the garden stick through the foundation ring and stuff the tree around the stick, that way the tree will have a nice rounded shape. 
Happy Crocheting, 

Anna x

Pompom Christmas pudding

Last Monday my lovely friend Karen showed me how to make pompom Christmas puddings and I have been addiceted to making them. They are super simple to make, fun and look great as a garland, gift tags or just hanging on your tree. 
I’ve added a little holly leaves to the top just for added charm but it is not necessary so don’t worry if you can’t crochet, just a pompom pudding will look great. 

To make your pudding, you will need:

  • Pompom maker – I’m using one by Clover which produces 4.5 cm pompom in diamteter. If you do not have a pompom maker just cut one out of cardboard, for tutorial follow the link – https://www.redtedart.com/how-to-make-a-yarn-pom-pom-with-cardboard-discs/
  • Oddments of yarn in cream or light grey or white and burgundy or brown – I’m using Rowan Alpaca Cotton DK as it’s lovely and fluffy and I had remaines of balls left, not enough to make anything else.  
  • Sharp little scissors 
  • Tapestry needle 

For holly leaf:

  • 3 mm crochet hook
  • Oddments of green DK yarn 

Let’s make a pudding

  • Open up one half of the pompom maker and wind the burgundy yarn around, when the half is full, cut off the yarn.
  • Close the half of pompom maker and open up the empty half.
  • Wind the grey yarn around it so that 2/3 of it are filled, cut off the yarn and finish filling up the second half with burgundy yarn, that way the icing of the pudding will cover just the top and not form a full half of the pudding.
  • When filled, cut off yarn and close the second half. 
  • Using scissors cut aroud the wound yarn.
  • Cut approximately 50 cm of yarn and fold in half, tie this length of yarn around the pompom maker, in the ridge, making sure that the knot is in the middle of the icing part, so that the pudding hangs in the right position.
  • Seperate the pompom maker to reveal a gorgeous pompom. 
  • Trim around so it looks neat and even, but DO NOT cut off the lengths of yarn used to tie the pompom together. 
  • Knot the two ends of yarn together to form a loop. 


Leaf 

Please note the pattern is written using UK terminology, US conversions are given in brackets in abbreviation list.

Abbreviations:
dc (US sc) – double crochet (US single crochet)
ch – chain
htr (US hdc) – half treble (US hald double crochet)
picot – ch 2, sl st to first of these ch. 
sl st – slip stitch
st(s) – stitch(es)

Using green yarn make 5 ch. 
Round 1: 1 dc in second ch from hook, [1 htr, picot] all in next st, 1 dc in next st, [2 htr, picot, 1 htr] all in next st, working on the other side of foundation ch, 1 dc in next st, [1 htr, picot] all in next st, 1 dc in last st, sl st to first dc. 
Fasten off, leafing a tail off 15 cm 

  • Join two leaves together by sewing. Weave in the begining tails. 
  • Thread the long end tails of both leaves through the centre of the pompom.
  • Tie them together to secure the leaves in place. 

If you are making just one leaf to go on your pudding, make sure you leave the beginning tail long as well, feed both ends through the centre of pompom and tie to secure.  



 

Voilà!! Your gorgeous pompom pudding is ready. 

I made so many of them to gift on a present and to make into a graland. 
The garland one looks very effective on my shelf. 
To make one – just crochet a long length of chains using the burgundy yarn used for the pudding and 3 mm hook. Feed as many puddings through their loops as you like and hang wherever you wish. 

Happy making, 

Anna xx

Christmas baubles

I have been completely obsessed with embroidery lately, and have been trying out different stitches. Of course, the first thing I wanted to try is to embroider onto crochet fabric, which gave me an excuse to play with Scheepjes Catona. The cotton yarn is now available in the cutest 10g balls in a huge range of colours and at 55p each, who could blame me! I decided to create something festive and the result are these charming Christmas baubles. 
 

They are pretty quick to make, it takes me around 1.5 hours

to completely finish one, so still time to make few before
Christmas.
Hope you enjoy making them as much as I have.

Materials 

Scheepjes Catona – 100% Mercerised Cotton – 10g –
25m/27yrd
Colours used: 130 Old Lace, 173 Bluebell, 192 Scarlet, 205 Kiwi, 241 Parrot Green, 251 Garden Rose, 391 Deep Ocean Green, 411 Sweet Orange, 513 Apple Green, 514 Jade, 518 Marshmallow.
3.00mm crochet hook
Lockable stitch marker
Tapestry needle
Toy stuffing
Pencil or tailor’s chalk (optional)

Finished size 
The completed bauble measures approximately 9cm (3.5”) in
height and 14cm (5.5”) in circumference around the biggest
part.

Abbreviations

Ch – chain 
Dc (US sc) – double crochet (US single crochet)
Dc2tog (US sc2tog) – double crochet two stitches together (US single crochet two stitches together)
Ss – slip stitch 
St(s) – stitch(es) 
Rd(s) – round(s) 
Rep – repeat 
Magic Loop – You will find tutorial on how to make Magic Loop on my website: http://moochka.co.uk/pages/support 

Pattern note – Please note that pattern is written using UK terminology with US conversion given in abbreviation list.


Baubles 

Using chosen colour make a Magic Loop. 
Rd 1: ch 1, 8 dc into Magic Loop, pull tight on the tail to close up opening, ss to first dc.
From now on you will work in continuous spiral, which means you will not ch 1 at the beginning of round and slip stitch to close round. Placing a marker on the first stitch of round is vital to denote the beginning of round. Move the marker up on every row. 
Rd 2: * 2 dc into next st, 1 dc into next st, rep from * to end. (12 dc) 
Rd 3: 1 dc into every st to end. 
Rds 4 & 5: as rds 2 & 3. (18 dc) 
Rd 6: * 2 dc into next st, 1 dc into each of next 2 sts, rep from * to end. (24 dc) 
Rds 7 to 10: 1 dc into every st to end. 
Rd 11: * 2 dc into next st, 1 dc into each of next 3 sts, rep from * to end. (30 dc) 
Rds 12 to 16: 1 dc into every st to end. 
Rd 17: * dc2tog, 1 dc into each of next 2 sts, rep from * to last 2 sts, dc2tog. (22 dc)
Begin stuffing the bauble. 
Rd 18: * dc2tog, 1 dc into next st, rep from * to last st, 1 dc into last st. (15 dc) 
Rd 19: * dc2tog, 1 dc into next st, rep from * to end. (10 dc)
Change to contrasting colour. 
Rds 20 to 23: 1 dc into every st to end.
Insert more toy stuffing into top of bauble. 
Rd 24: *dc2tog, rep from * to end. (5 dc)
Cut yarn leaving 10cm (4’’) long length for weaving in.
Following the picture tutorial below, work as follows: 
1 & 2: Using tapestry needle, weave in yarn around the opening, I have used contrasting colour so you can see
better. 
3: Pull tight on the yarn to close up the opening. 
4, 5 & 6: Hide the tail of your yarn in the top of bauble by
inserting your needle downwards through the top of bauble,
then back again the same way you took your needle out, to
trap the yarn. Cut off excess tail.

 

Embroidery 

I have used only three types of stitches on the baubles: a
combination of back and straight stitch, running stitch and
chain stitch. I’m not an expert in embroidery (not even close!)
I just try out things and see what the finished product is like. I
think embroidery gives you lot of freedom as you really don’t
have to follow the rules, no need for structure, try it, if you
don’t like, then undo. The wonderful result of embroidering
onto crochet is that the finished result looks rather clumsy (in
a good way), which to me means handmade.   
Crochet fabric does not produce perfectly straight lines so
working embroidery onto it gives you the perfectly rustic
look. 
 

Below is little tutorial on how I worked some of the stitches.
These are just guide lines that worked for me, if you find a
way of working them better, then that’s fantastic. This is the
first time I have tried to explain how to work embroidery
stitches, I hope my instructions will be clear.
Please check out thespruce.com website, I have found it very
helpful for explanation on how to make some of the stitches.
For the snowflake bauble, I have drawn a template, then
traced it onto the side of the bauble using tailor’s chalk as it
dusts off easily. If you do not have a tailor’s chalk use a
pencil or just try embroidering free hand. 

Snowflake
For the snowflake, I have used a combination of back and
straight stitch. 
1 & 2: Thread your yarn through a tapestry needle and inset
it from the back to front, where the centre of the snowflake will be.
3 & 4: The long spikes of the snowflake stretches over 4 rows and the short ones over 2. The long ones are made using back stitch and the short ones using straight stitch. Insert your needle two rows above the centre and out again 2 rows above that. Pull the yarn through, being careful not to pull all of it out. 
5 & 6: Insert the needle back into the same place as the end of first half of the spike (this creates the long spike of the snowflake) and at the same time pull the tip up 2 stitches to the left (this will create the short spikes). 
7: Insert the needle back into the centre (short spike made) and pull the tip up through 2 stitches to the left (this is the first half of second long spike). 
8 & 9: Insert the needle back into the centre and pull the tip up 4 stitches to the left, in the same line as the first half of the long spike. 
10 & 11: Insert the needle back into the same place as the end of first half of the spike and at the same time pull the tip up 2 rows below (this will create the short spikes).
Continue repeating steps 8 to 11 until the full snowflake is made.

Embroider the little branches of the spikes using the straight
stitch, just going 1 stitch to each side of the spikes.
The dots above the short spikes are made using the running
stitch (see below for instructions)
When you finish the star, hide the yarn by feeding it through
the bauble twice, so it gets trapped in the stuffing, cut the
excess tail.
 
Running stitch 
I have used this stitch at the bottom, around the decrease
part and the tops of the snowflake bauble.
Starting at the back 
1 & 2: Insert the needle in and bring the tip up 1 stitch apart. 
Pull yarn through. 
3 & 4: Repeat the last steps with 1 stitch apart all around the
bauble.
Feed the yarn through the bauble to trap it. 

Chain stitch 
I used this stitch on the firework bauble. It looks beautiful
when done in different colours.
I have worked this stitch over one double crochet stitch going
up, down and sideways. 
1: Bring the needle up through back to front. This is your
starting point. 
2: Insert the needle again at the starting point and bring the
tip up 1 stitch away. 
3: Place the yarn behind the needle and pull the needle through the loop. 
4: Insert the needle back into the same stitch you just came
out from, but making sure the loop is secured in-between the
two strands of yarn. This will trap it and you can move on to
the next chain stitch. 

Straight stitch
This stitch was used to create the stars and crosses on the
top of the firework and star baubles.
The stars are worked as described in the snowflake but all
the spikes are made with single thread and over one or two
stitches. The crosses on tops of the baubles are made the
following way:
Starting from the back and around 2 rows up from colour
change. 
1: Insert the needle in and bring the tip up 2 stitches apart.
Pull yarn through. 
2 & 3: Insert the needle from top, 2 rows up and 2 stitches
apart, going downwards, bring the tip up 2 rows below, this
should be in line with the starting point. Pull yarn through.
This is the first leg of the cross. 
4 & 5: insert the needle in the same place as starting point,
pull the tip up through the same point as end of last step. Pull
yarn through. The second leg of cross made. 
6 & 7: Insert the needle, 2 rows down and 2 stitches apart,
going upwards, bring the tip up 2 rows above, this should be
in line with the end of last step. Pull yarn through. This is the
first leg of second cross. 
8 & 9: Insert the needle in the bottom corner of previous
cross, pull the tip up through the starting point of last step.
Pull yarn through. Second cross completed.
Continue repeating steps 2 to 9, working around the bauble.
Feed the yarn through the bauble to trap it.

 

I would like to take this opportunity to wish you all a very Merry Christmas


Anna xx 

One last thing; Please excuse the rather wonky wreath, it’s the first time I actually properly shaped one (apart from the ones for the wedding, but they were in ivy, far easier). Quite a good fun though, and costs nothing, I used branches from my garden and local park.