Friday, 10 May 2013

Meandering in May

Hello there!
In May in France we have several national holidays, well at least three. This year, two of them came together on 8th and 9th and I've taken today off too, so that means a very, very long weekend of five days!

We'd planned to do some furniture shopping and assembling. But the car is in bad need of repair and can't be used, so we've had to put the new furniture off for another day. Instead, I've been doing a little bit of crochet, some cooking and tidying up, but the best thing is that the weather has been sunny (at least for part of the time). So we went off for a wander.

I so love to see these bright yellow fields, they look so gorgeous against the blue sky.

A bit further down the path and the view changes. Can you see there's still some snow on the mountains?

I love the contrast of the thick ridged bark and the delicate leaves and dandelions. 

And these new leaves were calling out for me to take their picture. Rebirth. 

I took this one by accident as I was walking along. I like it.

And last of all, the green carpet of leaves and flowers. We had a lovely time. Pity it's raining again today. 

Thursday, 2 May 2013

May Day cushion

Hello everyone!

I hope you had a great Labour Day yesterday. Here in France it is a national holiday so I didn't go to work, but I did finish off some crochet work. And here's the result, my May Day cushion! (scroll down for the pattern).

Isn't it just lovely? It was one of those things - I bought the yarn in a sale, then saw a similar cushion on one of the blogs I read, and realised I just HAD to make a cushion with that yarn!

I didn't follow exactly the same pattern as Heather on Pink Milk, who joined her rounds with a slipstitch. I just made two simple hdc circles and crocheted them together with a shell border. Like Heather, I did use the lovely May rose from Attic24 to decorate my cushion.  My cushion is also quite big, so the central rose does look a bit small. But I love it anyway. We needed  new cushion and I think it looks particularly nice on my armchair.

Here's how I made it:

1. Start with a magic circle and 6 sc.
2. 2 hdc in each stitch.
3. *1 hdc in next st, 2 hdc in next st, rep from * to end. (it's a good idea to use a stitch marker on the first stitch throughout)
4. * 1 hdc in next 2 sts, 2 hdc in next st, rep from * to end.
5. * 1 hdc in next 3 sts, 2 hdc in next st, rep from * to end.
6. * 1 hdc in next 4 sts, 2 hdc in next st, rep from * to end.

Continue the pattern, increasing the number of single hdc in between each set of 2 hdc until you reach the required diameter for your cushion.

Then make a May rose from the cute and easy pattern by Lucy at Attic24, and sew it to the centre of one of the circles.

You can use a cushion pad you have bought or upcycled, or you could make your own. I made mine from an old sheet and filled it with polyfil. It's 40 cm across and the final row of my crochet circle has 20 hdc in between each 2 hdc. Make sure your cushion pad is washable, as the cover isn't removeable.

For the border, I did the following:

* slip stitch in first st, 5 dc in next st, slip stitch in next stitch, repeat from * to end.

Remember to put your cushion pad in place while you still have room for it! If you have a very fat cushion pad as I did, you'll have to do quite an amount of the border with the pad in situ.

To finish, sew in the ends and you're done!