Deborah’s Diamond Square

Thank you for joining me for my Moogly CAL Square! As a time of year of giving thanks, I am very thankful to be invited to participate in the project, and I hope you enjoy my contribution as the last square for the year.

If you are unfamiliar with The Moogly Yearly Afghan CAL, you can learn more about this project, learning a new 12″ square every 2 weeks, here at Mooglyblog.com.

I tend to like a little different angle in my squares, hence to rotation to create a diamond in the center. This square changes colors every round, but you can create it in many different color configurations. As for the name of this square, Deborah is a long time student, and supporter of my crochet career. She makes a point of sharing her love of baking with all the other students at the weekly crochet classes I teach at my local yarn store, and is always encouraging to everyone. So the name is another sign of thanks.

Deborah’s Diamond Square   by: Linda Dean

Small Shells create a center diamond that is framed in color, having a modern feel with classic charm.

Finished Size: 12”x 12”

Materials List:

  • J/10/6.00mm size crochet hook
  • Lion Brand Vanna’s Choice medium weight 100% Acrylic yarn (3.5oz/100g/170yds): 1 skein each color: (A) #123 Beige, (B) #134 Terracotta, (C) #133 Brick, (D) #172 Kelly Green
  • Tapestry needle

Abbreviations:

ch: chain

dc: double crochet

hdc: half double crochet

sk: skip

sp(s): space(s)

st(s): stitch(es)

YO: yarn over

Rnd 1: With color A, ch 4, sl st to first ch forming a ring, ch 2 (counts as hdc), 2 dc in ring, hdc in ring, [hdc, 2 dc, hdc] in ring three times, sl st to join, fasten off. -8 hdc, 8 dc

Rnd 2: With color B join to last st of Round 1, ch 3 (counts as dc) 5 dc in same st as join, sk 1 st, sc in next dc, sk 1 st, [6 dc in next hdc, sk 1 st, sc in next dc] three times, sl st to join, fasten off. – 4 sc, 24 dc

Rnd 3: With color C, join to any sc, ch 3 (counts as dc), 10 dc in the same st, sk 2 dc, sc in next 2 dc sts, sk next 2 dc, [11 dc in next sc, sk 2 dc, sc in next 2 dc, sk next 2 dc] three times, sl st to join, fasten off. -8 sc, 44 dc

Rnd 4: With color D, join to last st of Round 3, ch 3 (counts as dc), 5 dc in same st as ch, 6 dc in next sc, sk 4 sts, sc in next st, ch 1, sk 1 st, sc in next st, [6 dc in next 2 sc, sk 4 sts, sc in next st, ch 1, sk 1 st, sc in next st] three times, sl st to second to the last st join, fasten off. -8sc, 48 dc

Rnd 5: With color A join in any ch-1 sp, ch 1, sc in same sp, sc in next 6 sts, [hdc in next st, ch 1, hdc in next st, sc in next 13 sts] three times, hdc in next st, ch 1, hdc in next st, sc in remaining 6 sts, sl st to join, fasten off. – 52 sc, 8 hdc

Rnd 6: With color B, join in any ch-1 sp, ch 3 (counts as hdc and ch 1), hdc in same sp, sc in each st across to ch-1 sp, [(hdc, ch 1, hdc) in next ch-1 sp, sc in each st across] three times, sl st to join, fasten off. –60 sc, 8 hdc

Rnd 7: With color C, join in any ch-1 sp, ch 3 (counts as hdc and ch 1), hdc in same sp, sc in each st across to ch-1 sp, [(hdc, ch 1, hdc) in next ch-1 sp, sc in each st across] three times, sl st to join, fasten off. –68 sc, 8 hdc

Rnd 8: With color D, join in any ch-1 sp, ch 3 (counts as hdc and ch 1), hdc in same sp, sc in each st across to ch-1 sp, [(hdc, ch 1, hdc) in next ch-1 sp, sc in each st across] three times, sl st to join, fasten off. –76 sc, 8 hdc

Rnd 9: With color A, join to any ch-1 sp, (sc, ch 1, sc) in same sp, sk hdc, [sk 1 st, 3 dc in next st, sk 1 st, sc in next st] five times, *(sc, ch 1, sc) in ch-1 sp, sk hdc, [sk 1 st, 3 dc in next st, sk 1 st, sc in next st] five times; rep from * around, sl st to join, fasten off. – 28 sc, 60 dc

Rnd 10: With color B, join to any ch-1 sp, ch 3 (counts as hdc and ch 1), hdc in same sp, sk sc and 1 dc, sc in next dc, 3 dc in next sc, [sk 1 dc, sc in next dc, 3 dc in next sc] across to ch-1 sp, *(hdc, ch 1, hdc) in ch-1 sp, sk sc and 1 dc, sc in next dc, 3 dc in next sc, [ sk 1 dc, sc in next dc, 3 dc in next sc] across to ch-1 sp; rep from * around, sl st to join, fasten off. -8 hdc, 28 sc, 60 dc

Rnd 11: With color C, join to any ch-1 sp, ch 4 (counts as dc and ch 1), dc in same sp, hdc in next hdc, [3 dc in next sc, sk 1 dc, sc in next dc] across, hdc in hdc *(dc, ch 1, dc) in ch-1 sp, hdc in next hdc, [3 dc in next sc, sk 1 dc, sc in next dc] across, hdc in hdc; rep from * around, sl st to join, fasten off. -8 hdc, 20 sc, 68 dc

Rnd 12: With color D, join to any ch-1 sp,  ch 4 (counts as dc and ch 1) dc in same sp, hdc in next dc, hdc in next hdc, [sk 1 dc, sc in next dc, 3 dc in next sc] across, hdc in next hdc, hdc in next dc, *(dc, ch 1, dc) in ch-1 sp, hdc in next dc, hdc in next hdc, [sk 1 dc, sc in next dc, 3 dc in next sc] across, hdc in next hdc, hdc in next dc; rep from * around, sl st to join, fasten off. – 16 hdc, 20 sc, 68 dc

Rnd 13: With Color A, join to any ch-1 sp, ch 3 (counts as hdc and ch 1), hdc in same sp, sc in each st across, *(hdc, ch 1, hdc) in ch-1 sp, sc in each st across; rep from * around, sl st to join, fasten off. – 8 hdc, 104 sc

Rnd 14: With Color B, join ot any ch-1 sp, ch 3 (counts as hdc and ch 1) sc in each st across, *(hdc, ch 1, hdc) in ch-1 sp, sc in each st across; rep from * around, sl st to join, fasten off. -8 hdc, 112 sc

Weave in ends, block if desired.

Astral Flowers Throw with Humble Beginnings

ScannedImageI fell in love with the Astral Flowers Square the moment it came from my hook, and still enjoy It as a throw in the October 2016 issue of Crochet World MagazineAs with much of my design style I happened upon this by playing and a little bit of a challenge, however the story of its beginning is not a happy one.

M01232_15_medium

Astral Flowers Throw Photo courtesy of Annie’s

A friend and fellow designer lost her daughter last year, and as a way of letting her know that she was the hearts and minds of vast community a fellow friend organized a formation of a friendship afghan. She asked for six inch squares in various colors that had significance to members of the suffering family. She selected a certain type of yarn, so that everything would work together nicely, and agreed to sew all the squares together. When all was said and done enough squares were created by various crochet designers, and others in the industry, that in the end there were at least 3 afghans created, the Astral Flower Square is among them.

I originally sat down with the three colors and just began putting them together without thinking of the stitches themselves, but the difficult time my friend was going through. I created a total of 6 squares, no sense in having partially used skeins when more squares could be created. In this methodical challenge of working squares I worked one with post stitches, this grew into this square.

133005_small2I will admit that I was a bit taken aback by the way the color can be so deceptive and making the square appear to have more going on than it really does. At one moment I can see a star in another I can see a flower, there seems to be depth and volume in the work, yet it really is just a couple of rounds. The only magic that happens is that the post stitches create an illusion of the color being worked in other ways.

The other thing that I find striking with this square is that the sides are not actually straight. The corners are slightly higher then than the center of each side, creating a little “key hole” type effect. I really like how this shape works at bringing a little something extra to the throw overall, and seaming the squares in the back loops only of the stitches creates a simple framed edge. The one drawback to the square, used in the fashion that I have, is that it really does need to be hand sewn together, no join as you go…but maybe if I play with a different edging…no, I think I like it the way it is.

There is More then One Way to Join a Motif Together

ScannedImageWhen the average non-crocheter thinks of crochet, often one of the first thoughts is the classic granny square. This motif has become a historic staple, however working any motifs worked in crochet can have a fun, stunning, and classic appeal. The draw back? Stitching them together.

IMG_7319.1

Remove hook from working loop, insert hook into stitch to be joined to and re-insert into working loop.

I have stated it before, but I am a crocheter, not a seamstress. So join-as-you-go has been a savior of sorts for me. It has allowed be to work various motifs without having to stitch them together, but simply work a stitch into the adjoining motif and they are now connected.

IMG_7320.1

Pull working loop through stitch

IMG_7323.1

Complete the stitch, and continue.

There are various applications that can be used in join-as-you-go, but one that I have been enjoying recently, has a finish that looks like I’ve spent time whip stitching the pieces together, without ever picking up a needle and thread (or yarn). To work this Joined Whip Stitch, or Braided Join, is actually pretty easy. When you are ready to join to the adjacent motif you simply remove your hook from your working loop, insert your hook through the stitch you wish to join to, re-insert into the working loop and pull it through the stitch, then begin and complete the stitch you wish on the motif you are working on. Essentially you are bringing the loop through another fabric and then completing your work, there is nothing fancy, nothing difficult, just a simple way to weave the fabrics together.

IMG_7325.1

The finished look of the Joined Whip Stitch or Braided Join

The look that this technique creates has a hand sewn appearance to some, and a braided effect to others. It is a little slow, and only a little, as removing your hook and getting it placed and then reworking the stitch can take a little time, not to mention a little fear of the working loop being pulled out. However the technique is simple and can be worked with any motif pattern without having to change the stitch structure. So give this method a try next time you have a motif to put together, you may find that it makes your project a little more enjoyable, with no needles required.