If the long-awaited arrival of a pair of twins to two good friends isn’t an occasion for celebration, I don’t know what is. I choose to celebrate by publishing my first ever crochet pattern; a crochet booties pattern. I have made many booties over the years but was never 100% happy with any one pattern. So, with a nod of thanks to Suzanne Lesaul for the wonderful sole, I present Butaisí, booties for a newborn, or two.
A super cute pair of booties to fit a newborn baby. Perfect to keep their little toes warm in the winter. Or more likely to give them something to chew on.
Can be made with 4 ply acrylic or cotton double knit although the lighter the latter the better. The picture here shows the booties in a lovely sunny yellow which I rustled up from Crelando Spring which I picked up in Lidl last Easter.
BLO Back Loop Only. Do the stitch in the back part of the stitch. Looking at the top of the stitch, it looks like a sideways V. Hook the stitch into the part of the V farthest from you.
FPSC Front Post Single Crochet. Look at your crochet stitch. We have our sideways V on top. Below this V is the POST of the stitch. Hook around this post to create your stitch. It gives a great effect!
FPDC Front Post Double Crochet. Same as above but DOUBLE crochet.
Foundation chain: With 3.5mm hook, chain 12, leaving slip knot loose. Slip stitch in 2nd chain from hook.
This first section, sole and shoe sides, crochet in the round.
Row 1. Sl st 6 stitches. 5 sc. 3 sc in loose slip knot. Tighten slip knot. Working on opposite side of initial chain 5 sc, 6 sl st. Sl st to join. Ch 2
Row 2. Sc in base of 2ch. 2 sc in next stitch 10 sc. 2 sc in each of next 3 sc. 10 sc. 2 sc in next st. Sl st to join. (31 st)
Row 3. Ch 2. Sc in base of 2ch. 2 sc in next 2 stitches. 8 sc 2 hdc. 2 hdc in each of next 2 st. 2 sc. 2 hdc in each of next 2 sc. 2 hdc. 8 sc. 2 sc in each of next 2sc. Sl st to join.
Row 4. Ch 2. 1 sc. 2 sc in each of next 3 stitches. 12 sc. 2 sc in each of 3 st. 2 sc. 2 sc in each of next 3 st. 12 sc. 2 sc in each of next 3st. ss to join. (52 st) Sole of bootie complete.
Switch to 2.5mm hook. Crochet in the round. You are now creating the sides of the booties.
Row 5. FPSC around.
Row 6. FPSC around.
Row 7. Sc BLO around
Row 8. Sc BLO around.
Switch to 3.5 mm hook.
With toe facing you place a marker at centre stitch then count 7 stitches to left. Place marker. Count seven stitches to right. Place marker.
Row 9. Starting at marker at left of toe attach yarn and, working FPDC for both row 9 and 10, Ch 2, DC, 2(DC 2 TOG), DC3TOG, 3(DC2TOG)
Row 10. Ch 2. DC7TOG. Fasten off.
Switch to 2.5mm hook for 1 row only.
Row 11. Join yarn to stitch on side closest to toe cap and sl st to side of shoe i.e. into one of the BLOs made in row 8. 9 sc across cap. 2 sl st along side of shoe i.e. into two of the BLOs made in row 8 on opposite side of shoe. This would be a turning chain in a flat piece of crochet.
Switch to 3.5mm hook again.
Row 12. Ch 1 SC Repeat 3 times across toe cap. 1 sc. 2 sl st to join to side of shoe i.e. into one of the BLOs made in row 8. Turn.
Row 13 Sc Ch 1 Repeat 3 times across toe cap. 1 sc. 2 sl st to join to side of shoe i.e. into one of the BLOs made in row 8. Turn.
Row 14 – 19 Repeat rows 12 & 13 3 times. However on row 19 continue ch1 SC onto shoe side and continue around. Row 20: 14(Ch1 SC) Row 21 Continue (Sc Ch1) until row 31.
Row 32 Crab stitch all around to finish i.e. insert hook to RIGHT and sc to right all around. Sl st to join.
Repeat for 2nd bootie.
Weave in ends. Pop on the nearest tiny wee foot. Be chuffed and try not to faint with cuteness overload.
A bilingual blog post so skim on through if you have no Irish as there is more for the Anglophile below. There will be a touch more Irish on this site in future as my gig with Beo.ie has fallen by the wayside due to the loss of their funding. I need somewhere to keep it going! In this post I muse on the burgeoning pride in making and on how the Internet allows us to take pride and share the creative process.
Bhí mé ag súil nach mbeadh anseo ach blagmhír scioptha faoi rudaí a chríochnaigh mé le déanaí. Ach tá mé díreach tagtha ar ais ó pháirt a ghlacadh ar an gclár cainte Róisín ar TG4 agus cuir an ábhar cainte ag smaoineamh mé. Ní bhíonn am a dhóthain ar teilifís nó ar raidió ceisteanna móra an lae a phlé in iomlán. Nílim ag cur an milleán ar an dteilifís ach sin mar atá an foirmeád. Is iomaí uair a shéan mé ábhar dom’ phíosa ar Splanc Newstalk toisc go raibh sé ró-chasta nó fealsúnach in ionad ceann le níos mó siamsaíocht ag baint leis.
Mar sin is ar éigean go raibh an triúir againn ar an gclár abalta leath den mhéad a bhí againn le rá a chlúdach ar an gcéad clár den tsraith úr. I ndáiríre is dócha go raibh an triúir againn ar an leathanach céanna faoi síneadh scileanna tís ó ghlúin go glúin. Tá ghá leis agus gheobhaidh roinnt páistí na scileanna sa bhaile, roinnt ar scoil agus roinnt ó leabhair agus ar ndóigh ón Idirlíon mar a dúirt mé ar an gclár. I ndáiríre is meascán de na foinsí a mbeidh i gceist: d’fhoghlaim mise conas crochet ó leabhar agus ansin thug aintín liom nodanna breise dom. D’fhoghlaim mé conas fúáil ó mo mháthair agus anois faighim nodanna breise ó leabhair nó blaganna pearsanta.
“A woman’s work is never done.
Maybe that’s why they are paid less.”
– Seán Lock, comedian.
I laughed when I heard Lock throwing out this one-liner in a repeat of an ancient Live at the Apollo that he was hosting. Yes, I know some might take offence at this but I see it more along the lines of so-funny-because-it’s-true. I got to thinking about finding worth in the unpaid work of making a home, be it for yourself, your and a partner or for a family whatever shape that might take. If this work is unpaid how else can it be given value? Kudos, appreciation, applause, feedback can go a long way to making a person feel like they have acheived something. This doesn’t even have to come from outside: I’ve noticed online a few folk talking about journals where they plan what they hope to achieve each week, month, year and then review accordingly. Patting yourself on the back isn’t only physically difficult, yoga babes excepted.
Ach an rud a rith liom is mé ag teacht abhaile ná gur tháinig meath ar luach na scileanna seo mar ní raibh aon stádas ag baint leo i sochaí caiptlíoch. Ní raibh aon brabus i mbacáil cáca nó dearnáil poll i ngeansaí. Fiú ba chur amú ama a leithéid nuair a bhítear inann cáca i measc na ceadta a cheannach sa siopa nó nuair a bhí sé níos saoire geansaí nua a cheannach.
Ach píosa ar píosa, le leathnú an Idirlíne, tá athrú ag tarlúint. Dar liom is athrú tábhachtach é i sochaí. Tá borradh mór tagtha ar an mbród a léiríonn déantóirí as an obair atá á dhéanamh acu. Don chuid is mó is obair gan phá atá i gceist: caitheamh aimsire nó obair tí. Tugann lucht na fógraíochta “mummy bloggers” ar roinnt dóibh, i mbealach dímheasúil, “makers” ar chuid eile dóibh. Aithnítear, i réimse na fógraíochta, go bhfuil cumhacht ar leith ag baint leis na mummy bloggers: nuair a mholann na blagadóirí is ráthúla ina measc tairge ar leith, bíonn tóir air. Ach rud a rith liom ná go bhfuil níos mó i gceist anseo ná mioneolas don earnáil fógraíochta. Tá neart de na blagadóirí seo atá ag séanadh fógraíocht nó formhuiniú tairge. Cinnte, b’fhéidir go bhfuil siad ag iarraidh a dtairgí féin a chur chun cinn ach táthar ann nach bhfuil “agenda” ar bith acu seachas eolas a roinnt.
Ach sé mo thuairim féin ná go bhfuil snáithe amháin fite fuaite tríd na suíomhanna seo ar fad. Is é sin an bród. Nílim ag caint ar mórtas ná ar mórchúiseacht ach an píosín beag bród a bhraitheann tú ionat féin nuair atá rud curtha i gcrích agat agus jab maith déanta agat. Bhraithim sin óna blagadóirí seo mar tá siad sásta, don chuid is mó, a sprioc, a gníomh agus an toradh a roinnt linn. Muna roinneoidh ach an toradh ní bheadh deas againne, na léitheoirí, an saibhreas céanna a chur lenár saol féin.
Lena chois sin seo cúpla rud a chur mé féin i gcrích thar an tsamhraidh. Gheobhaidh sibh naisc chuig na hoideas is na patrún fite tríd, ó blagadóirí is gnólachtaí beaga a bhí bródúil as a gcuid oibre agus sásta ligint dúinn ar fad cuid den bród céanna a bhraith.
Nuair a bhí mé níos óige ba mhinic a rinne mé éadaí dom féin, go háirithe fá choinne ócáidí speisialta. Táim beag agus cé go glacaim leis le gnáth éadaí laethúla b’fhearr i bhfad liom go luífeadh gúna liom d’ocáid speisialta. Mar sin rinne mé (le cabhair agus treoir mo mháthair foighdeach) mo ghúna féin do mo “Debs”, don Trinity Ball ach faraor ní raibh an muinín agam mo ghúna bainise féin a dhéanamh. Is dócha go ndéarfadh mo mháthair go dtagann ciall le haois! An uair dheireanach a rinne mé iarracht gúna a dhéanamh fá choinne ócáid speisialta rinne mé praiseach iomlán de (agus b’éigean dom mo ghúna bainise a chaitheamh ina áit – an-aisteach ar fad). Ó shin i leith ba bheag ní a fúáil mé.
But after lining a few crochet bags and purses earlier this year and rustling up a few small things on the machine my confidence began to return and I decided to make Nipper 3.0 a dress. That was in July. I finished it early September. I used the Sally Dress Pattern from VeryShannon.com, a cute Russian Doll Cotton Print by Rose & Hubble that I picked up in Murphy Sheehy in town one day.
I can’t begin to describe the little sparkles of joy I get in seeing Nipper 3.0 wearing the finished dress. There were 2 false starts, mainly down to Americans’ ridiculous use of non-standard paper sizes (shakes fist) but I have requested some Letter sized paper to be brought home from Yankland to avoid this problem in future.
I finished this little blanket below for my latest grandniece. If I have rabbited on before that I am great aunt to five, forgive me. But also believe me: it deserves this level of rabbiting on as it is a perennial shock to me.
This is my own pattern and I hope to post it soon. I can’t say that it was quick to hook but it required that extra time to ensure it was safe for a baby. It is soft and light but tight enough to avoid entangling tiny baby fingers.
As to food we have tried some new and interesting things. I love this tomato salsa recipe from Smitten Kitchen and I far prefer her photos. I’m going for the photo-realism look here. A great recipe to use up your glut of tomatoes and I would definitely recommend adding the lime juice that she wavers on in her blog post. Fingers crossed next year I will be using my own tomatoes in this recipe!
Another big hit at home and at a few other family events this summer were campfire cones. Here you can see Himself looking very summery, enjoying one hot off the barbeque at home. As I synthesised a few recipes to make the most of Irish ingredients I will shortly post this recipe here so keep your eyes peeled. I can’t believe it’s still warm enough on the eve of October to think that some of you might be able to try these still! Otherwise file (Pin it!) for next summer.
A new BBQ favourite that I have made successfully under the grill are these delicious salmon skewers which I found on Epicurious.com. In this pic they are on our barbeque with just the marinade and thinly slice lemon wedges. However the second time I made them I added courgette and red pepper and mixed these three ingredients in the marinade, rather then trying to coat skewers once, eh, skewered. Consider adding chunks of feta because Feta and Salmon are just fabulous together.
I’ve also designed a new pair of crochet baby booties after much trial and error. I think they are a really cute and unique present to give on the arrival of a newborn but I was not happy with all of any of the patterns that I tried so I decided to design my own. I will post this pattern soon. It will get cold soon and you will be glad of it! I am also working on a pair of fingerless mittens which I hope to share soon too, once I’ve gotten over my bootie obsession.
There wasn’t much demand for my crochet and handsewn homewares at the recent CCMA Craft fair which was very disappointing for me after all the work I put in since January, especially with everything else that has been going on. (We moved! Same area, much more house to keep!) However my motivation for taking a stall wasn’t purely profit: the centre is just down the road and I thought it was a good way to get involved in the community. I was really impressed with the number and variety of craftspeople based in the area. It was also a challenge for me to push my creations out into the world. I even created a pattern which I will post anon – it’s kind of an Ikea hack too! I’m also considering setting up an Etsy shop or taking a stall at another market. So onwards and upwards.
The only thing that sold like hot cakes were my vintage knitting patterns. I have a large collection thanks to my godmother and great aunt (below, on her wedding day 🙂 but as I don’t knit myself I’m willling to part with them.
Some of the pieces I crocheted for have been repurposed as gifts and I’ve been delighted to see them in use! My mum (one of the three people who bought something) has been using the coin purse she bought: the bright yellow zip makes it easy to find in the dark recesses of her handbag. We all know that feeling!
I think the bunting above will likely make an appearance at the school family fun day too!
So it’s official: I can no longer use our recent house move as an excuse. With the housewarming well and truly over we are settled in and then some into our fabulous new home.
Those of you who follow me on Instagram/ Facebook may have seen me posting that I was feeling all Maria Von Trapp after taking down all the curtains in our house. (This was after the installation of our new blinds from Square Blinds on the Long Mile who I am very happy to recommend.)
So even though those curtains were no longer needed to dress my window I did feel a mega pang of guilt about the concept of chucking all that polycotton in a bin, even a recycling one. One curtain was immediately put to use as floor protection as I painted the kitchen. Like a complete amateur I forgot to do a before and after so I won’t be regaling you with carefully styled interior shots.
Then I remembered this tutorial on UCreate for making fabric baskets and I thought, “It’s not curtains for these curtains after all.” I had visions of converting all that curtain into basket, forgetting it was neither today nor yesterday that I sat at my machine. Bits of three days later (I had to do a LOT of practising, particularly the curvy bits) I am quite proud of the finished article (as long as I don’t look at the cut-out handles. At all. So I learnt something too, right?
Part of my motivation for making this was that I needed some way to display my wares at the upcoming St. Agnes CCMA Craft Fair on May 15th at which I will have a stall. My first craft fair! It popped up in my Facebook feed back in January while we were waiting to get our keys for the house and I figured I might have time. The centre is just down the road from the new gaff so I thought it might be a way to meet some folk too. It is being run by a very interesting local organisation. They are most famous for their initiative for creating a community orchestra where both children and parents learn instruments from scratch at the same time. So if you are anywhere in the neighbourhood between 12 and 5 on Thursday 15th May pop in and have a gander. In the box above you can see a sample of my Granny square coaster and my Granny Bunting but I (will!!) have lots more bits and bobs on the day.
Granby Park, is an urban, ‘pop-up’ park in a currently vacant site in Dublin’s inner city. It is made from up-cycled, recycled, donated and found material and features some of the city’s most talented artists, architects, performers, planners etc. It will have an outdoor cinema, a theatre made by kids from palettes, an education zone, exhibitions, a play area, a café, art installations, and lots, lots more!
Situated just off busy, commercial Parnell St. it is in a prime city centre location surrounded by some of some of Dublin’s iconic Georgian houses, social housing from the 50sish and swish new apartments which should make it a very attractive place to live, full of diversity. But with this enormous hole right in the middle of the community I imagine it’s a little difficult. So somehow or other the local community has commandeered this wasteland and turned it into a wonderland.
I was really happy to be able to donate some of the motif’s I found in my godmother’s house when we were clearing it out last year and I think she would be pleased they found an amusing end. I’m only sorry I didn’t donate more. Maybe I’ll pop over and bomb some more onto the railings! I would highly recommend a visit: it’s open from 8am til 7pm Monday to Friday and 10am to 7pm weekends until September 22nd 2013. Word to the wise: the coffee shop hadn’t opened by the time I left at 10am last Monday. Below are some shots I grabbed of the Nippers enjoying the various installations and areas in the park. There is also a library – maybe bring a book to donate!