I’ve been working on a cushion front from the Hip Crochet book I won in a giveaway last week. It’s been quite funny because it was impossible to keep the balls of yarn organised. It all begins well, then of course you turn the piece at the end of rows and the balls are on the wrong side and you’re gradually wrapped up like a fly in a spider’s web. I’ve missed a couple of ‘phone calls over the last week trying to untangle myself!
This is a jacquard pattern, unlike intarsia where you have separate bobbins or small balls of colours for each section, you strand the yarn across. I like this method. You have to be careful with your tension, leave too little yarn stranded across and you’d have a very scrunched flag.
This needs to be blocked, there’s plenty of give in the strands so I’m not worried. I haven’t blocked a thing yet, to be honest it’s going to be more like ‘stretch gently as I crochet the front and back together.’ Acrylic doesn’t wet block well I’ve read as the fibres just go back to the way they were before. Maybe steam and tugging would be the way to go, if I was going to….?
The colour chart pattern is easy enough to follow though the technique of changing multiple colours (and not choking yourself in a ‘death by yarn wrapping’ manner) is probably middling to boffin level of crochet. I used a post it note stuck above the row I was currently working on to keep my place in the pattern. A Pony row counter ensured I was on track too. Like others, who’ve reviewed the book, I feel the omission of a skill indicator required for each project is a shame and would be a useful guide for newer crocheters.
Next I need to make the stripey back cover which is worked in two parts that button together. It’s a little disappointing that there’s two pages showing the front of the cushion, but no photo of the back. However you’ll have nothing to compare mine to, so it might be in my favour!
I like Natalie’s notes at the end of the pattern: ‘The Union Jack is not a symmetrical pattern, the bottom corners are the reverse of the top opposite corners. Purists will point out that this flag is upside down. Popular culture in the 1960s saw the motif used as clothing and even on the mini car.’ No purists here.
Have you tried the intarsia or jacquard technique?
The cushion looks great! I always block my acrylic, with water, and it works fab. Only for squares & blankets though, I wouldn’t bother with a cushion, like you, I’d just pull it into shape when making the back!
Spray and pin on a towel method?
That is really really lovely, jolly well done. I have never tried intarsia and, frankly, do not ever plan to. It’s just not my thing. But I do admire the result, it’s very lovely. Anything else particularly hip from that book that you have your beady eye on?
There’s a heart patterned hot water bottle cover. I don’t have or use one but like the design! (Not sure that I’d use the term ‘hip’ for it!)
funnily enough, my right hip is precisely where I use my hot water bottle! so would be perfect for me. Just saying. I have an electric one now but am still keen on the original one. In our house the new one is called Elektra and the old one is Walter. After Walter Hottle Bottle.
Electric?!?! The technology!
Love it! It looks terribly difficult, so well done!
It really came out nicely! I bet is was difficult with all those balls of yarn – great job!
Lol! I would be totally wrapped up like the spiders dinner too. Steam and a tug works quite well on the Stylecraft I’m using for the CAL blocks. Your cushion looks great. You could do a series of them in different color schemes!
Oh wow, this looks fantastic! I love the colours! I haven’t tried either of the techniques before…I may have to do some homework!
That looks fantastic! Very well done!
This is great, I want one!
Hi, just spotted this and the lovely review. Thank you. If you want you can use little balls/spools of yarn to make it easier, or if you are stringing the colour changes across the back then if you catch the loose thread into a stitch every 4/5 stitches it helps ease the tension. It is lovely to see my projects being made and I love the feedback. And I too am sorry that the back of the cushion was not featured in the book. I will try to do my own photo of the back of the cushion and put it on my Ravelry page. Great blog by the way – I have joined. Natalie Clegg.
Thanks very much Natalie. :-)
Lovely cushion cover, and what a lovely comment from Natalie above!
What a cute little cushion! I love everything that has a union jack on it. =)
Steam blocking works extremely well on acrylic yarns. What I love most about it is that you block and go.. no drying time. And the piece stays intact. Very nice piece you have there.
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