Hello and welcome to Patchwork House . . . . .
my little corner of the world in England, where you will find me addicted to colour and playing with yarn!

23 October 2015

Willow block help

I have made many willow blankets over the past few years
 and they never fail to delight !

There is something very special about this beautiful block
with its intricate lace detail and crisp corners

but sadly every time I post pictures
 I get flooded with requests for help
 and cries of despair from frustrated hooksters !

200 Crochet Blocks by Jan Eaton

The willow block is by Jan Eaton
 and is pattern 189 in the book 200 Crochet Blocks
It is a fabulous book with written patterns for 200 blocks
 that you can mix and match to make blankets
and I highly recommend it!
(this book is written in UK crochet terms)

I have chosen to make my squares in 1 colour only
 as I think it enhances the pattern.
 I have adapted the pattern
 and just keep working in 1 colour until finished.

So now to help the many of you who say they can't master
 round 4 ! Please note this is how I make my blocks. 
Other people may have interpreted the pattern differently, 
but this works for me !

This pattern is from a book
 so I will not post pattern details here just my hints and tips.
If you buy the book it is clearly written
 and with these extra photos I hope you will manage!

Rounds 1 2 & 3 
Check you have 48 trebles in round 3.
This is important!
48 divided by 4 = 12 stitches for each side

ready to start round 4 with 1 dc in 1st stitch

5 chain
now put your hook into the bottom chain
 and make a slip stitch
this forms a little 'ear'
make a slip stitch in 1st chain
Now this is where it may start to go wrong.
We are going to make the circle into a square.
So I find it helps to calculate how many stitches will be for each side.
48 divided by 4 = 12 stitches for each side of the square

slip stitch in 1st chain complete
next you must MISS 2 STITCHES
make 2 chain
then 1dc where the needle is

miss 2 stitches 
it will look like this

miss next 2 stitches chain 2 then dc where needle is
again miss 2 stitches chain 2
then 1dc

miss 2 stitches chain 3
then 1dc

miss 2 stitches chain 2
then 1dc

(each time we miss 2 stitches)

this completes 1 side of the square
you have used 13 stitches

1 side of the square
now you will repeat that little sequence
for the next 3 sides of the square

chain 5 then slip stitch into bottom chain
when all 4 sides are done
you will have 4 'ears' 
equally spaced in the corners

4 sides complete
now for round 5
slip stitch into next 5 chain space
this will be the first corner
continue from the book

slip stitch into 1st ear

If making in 1 colour
I begin round 6 where round 5 ends
to save breaking off the yarn.
I start with 7 chain
 (2 to replace a treble then 5 for the chains)
then 1dc 3 chain 1dc in the corner etc

willow square complete

Finally I add an extra round of dc
 to each square in my joining colour
making 3 dc in each corner stitch.

When calculating my squares
 I try to make an equal amount of each shade
to ensure an even balance
 but you don't need to be too fussy about this!

I lay them out like a Sudoku puzzle
 in a random arrangement but trying to get
 only 1 of each colour in any row or column!
This is great fun!

My favourite method of joining for these squares
is crocheting the squares together from the front
using UK dc through both loops.
This creates a really strong join
 with the ridge on the front.

First I join all the rows in 1 direction.
Then in the opposite direction.
You will find a detailed picture tutorial

My blankets are made in
It is my favourite blanket making yarn
as it is soft and snuggly, very affordable,
 can be machine washed and tumble dried
 and comes in over 80 wonderful shades.

Crochet Borders
Finally to complete a blanket you need a border.
It is like a frame around a picture and sets it off !

My border comes from the book
I added 1 round of trebles first to add depth
then used border 93.
(do note this book is written using US crochet terms)

So there you are !
Easy when you know how ?!
I do hope this has helped the many of you who have written to me.

It is my pleasure
 as a teacher and crochet artist to share and encourage others.
However blogging takes much time when I am not making orders.

If you have been helped or inspired by my work
please consider a small donation to support my crochet journey.
You can do this by using the Paypal donation button on the sidebar.

Many thanks
and happy hookin!




Sharon - creativity and family said...

I have the book but have never done this square, I shall remember this post for if I ever do, it certainly is a pretty block. x

aline said...

This is why you are a teacher. x

Joan said...

Beautiful blanket! Love the colours! Thank you for sharing the links.

Nanda said...

Thank you so much for the great picture tutorial. I bought the book a few months ago just for this square. Later I saw your blankets and they are inspiring. I have already stylecraft special DK in house in creme and red and for the join dark grey. I think I would buy the book with the borders too. Thank you for the inspiration.

Janice said...

Hi, your blog is so inspirational !!!. i am a self taught crocheter, and would love to take on a project like this. Thanks for the info on the two books. well worth having a look for. Beautiful colour combinations too. Janice x

Francis Paul said...

I love your blankets! Very inspired to make one myself. And the best part is; my LYS carries Stylecraft :-)

debbie said...

I am new to your blog and I love it! Your projects are inspiring. I'm in the process of reading your blog from the start. Beautiful and creative projects.

Gillian said...

I love the willow block and used it to make myself a poncho. I didn't have an trouble with the pattern, thankfully.

memorial garden benches said...

Lovely colors! Thank you for sharing! Very inspiring.

Unknown said...

This was really helpful! The pattern for round 4 in the book completely threw me, and this tutorial saved me! The photos were really helpful too. Thanks Heather x

Colourful Cottage said...

I love this square, I am making up a few in Deramores Studio, not sure what I will make with them yet! I hope you are feeling better as I saw you weren't doing to well xxx

Linda said...

I love your creative talent!

The Quirky Seabird said...

I struggled with the Willow pattern for hours. I decided to google for help with it and your blog popped up. Thankyou so very much!
It has help me understand how to read a crochet pattern and I feel more confident to tackle other projects now.

Best wishes,
Karen x

Dawn said...

I struggled with this for hours. Found this post and wow!! THANK YOU!!!!

Squirrel x said...

Another Round 4 victim here, I had 5 corners at one point! All solved now and first square completed. Thank you.

Carolyne said...

Lol! I have a very pretty pentagonal “square” from the first time I used this pattern also:)

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