Recipes and Patterns

 Recipes and Patterns

I don’t know about you but I always seem to find that both recipes and patterns are a guide rather than a set rule.  For instance, the first time I cook something I may follow the recipe slavishly.  Then again if I don’t have a particular ingredient I will substitute something else.  For instance, years ago I was making some pate and the recipe called for bacon. I did not have any so put in oranges instead, I know, this sounds daft.  This made sense to me though as it also listed brandy and I planned to use Triple Sec, an orange liqueur, instead.  It turned out beautifully and has become a staple of my recipe book ever since.

It is the same with crochet patterns, when I first started I would follow the pattern to the letter, and frequently find something did not fit at the end of it.  These days I sometimes follow patterns. Other times make things up as I go along, once I know the general shape.  Or I find a pattern  like and will do various permutations on it.  Rarely do I have the yarn specified in a pattern (I think it has happened once). This is as I tend to buy yarn I like and then work out what to do with it.  One of my favourites at the moment is Sirdar Ophelia which sadly has been discontinued.  It is a lovely fluffy yarn with just a hint of glitter.  Like all garments made with these fluffy yarns, I find that if it is gently hand-washed instead of using a machine the fluffiness lasts much longer.  As usual I am rambling away from my initial subject so had better return to it.

Campfire or Fireside Cardigan

One of my favourite patterns at the moment is one I came across a few months ago but only decided to start on it this year as I thought it would be a really long-term project.  It may well have been but my back is bad at the moment so I am not as active as I would wish but do like to keep busy.  This makes crochet an ideal occupation – and means I can buy more yarn!

Starting hexagon in shades of brown.


Based on a hexagon it this pattern is a clever idea and makes a great jacket. In the pattern the author gives a note that to prevent the arm holes getting too big you should add extra rows to the back.  This made sense but what makes more sense – as often the chest is a similar width to the back, is to keep going around everywhere except the arm holes. This was my first adaptation apart from making it self coloured.

I do not yet know how large this new one in shades of brown is going to be as it will dependent on the limited amount of yarn I have. Hopefully big enough for me 🙂  If not some other lucky person will get it.  This one I have reduced the hook size to just big enough to hook this chunky yarn.

Soft Grey Version

As I mentioned above, the original pattern is in multi-coloured stripes but the first one I made was all in a soft grey and self coloured. The pegs show where I stopped going around all six edges and continued

round the back, front and bottom.   These stopped the arm-hole and sleeves from being really wide.  I wanted to be able to wear it under a coat if necessary and oversized arms would have prevented this.

I also had to stop a few rows short on the hood as it was getting too big. Did add an extra row of single crochet (sc) around hood and went into the same stitches as the first row of sc as this gives a more solid feel and a slight ridge. Added two extra rows of sc all the way around the edge to help keep its shape.  The only other changes to this version were to add a pocket and instead of leaving the front open I added ties which I love as you can thread them back and forth though a few of the holes as shown in this picture.

Changes for Multi-Coloured

The second cardigan I crocheted was the multi-coloured one at the top of this article. Using four colours, in the same style of yarn as the grey one it looks very different.  I omitted the hood, made it shorter and did a few extra rows of sc around the edge again so they could act as button holes as I wanted buttons on this one.  Found some lovely sparkly pink and purple buttons to match the sparkle in the yarn and alternated them down the front – also make a scrunchie in the same colours.

Toddler Version

Do you like my Teddy model? This one was a little more difficult as I had to adapt the arms to fit a small child. Started reducing the stitches after the first few rounds and added extra sc at wrist, but it worked out well I think.  Again I omitted the hood. Added four pretty buttons and it is finished.  This one is for sale if you are interested?   I do not like using human models as feel that new items should be new to the buyer.  Thus this very obliging teddy is standing in.  Teddy wanted to keep the cardigan but I have taken it off him and put it away safely.

If you would like one of these please let me know via my contact form.  Size, colours and yarn type are all “choose-able”