Saturday, 29 November 2014

Little Sunburst Square :: A Photo Tutorial

Hello Lovelies,
it's a happy, happy tutorial day....yipee. I love to record and share my designs here and I do hope you enjoy trying out my latest pattern, with the help of loads of detailed instructions and photos of course.


I'll start by talking a bit about how I came up with this neat little "circle in a square" pattern, shall I? You can skip over this bit and dive straight into the tutorial if you prefer :0)



Don't you just love this sort if motif. I've used the gorgeous centre circle MANY times over the years HERE and HERE and HERE, and yet I never get tired of it, the variations are endless......

I don't know when the name "sunburst square" was first used, but it's a great description of this design don't you think.

If you google it you can see there are MANY variations on the sunburst pattern.

Back in 2010 I made a blanket...my biggest one to date. ...using THIS wonderful pattern. "Flowers in the snow" is another great name for a project and it's hard to resist those gorgeous pops of colour on a bright white background. This is my version........



I still love it but sadly it does have a few flaws.....my fault, nothing to do with the pattern. Firstly It's made using a motley assortment of budget acrylic yarns, so it doesn't feel the nicest. The white Patons FAB I used to join the squares is particularly scratchy.   Secondly it's gone very gappy where the squares join and worst....the ends were not securely sewn in, just crocheted over, and they tend to pop out. I'm afraid it will all unravel one day.

So, four years later I'm making a new sunburst blanket and trying to address all the problems I had with the first.

THIS TIME....
The yarn is all stylecraft....much nicer.
The ends are being securely sewn in as I work.
And crucially, I've tried to make the square a much more solid affair.....mainly because that's the sort we like to snuggle under.....no draughty gaps :0)


My pattern ( and I'm not claiming total originality here, I'm sure somebody, somewhere will have come up with the same idea) is made using no chains beween the clusters of stitches in the circle. And no U.S. treble ( U.K. double treble) stitches in the final round.

Here I've worked one of the squares I've designed for this blanket and one of the squares from the pattern I used for my previous sunburst circle blanket, so you can easily see the difference..........


As you can see, it's a lot smaller! .....quiet petite in comparison.

That does make more work, but it also creates a lovely solid motif that grows into a robust blanket with real weight. Perfect to stand up to everyday use...and keep the family warm on winter mornings.

So, fancy trying out this pattern yourself? It's no harder than a standard granny square and only uses two different stitches. I've taken LOTS of step by step photos so even the newest crocheter should be able to manage it.
For those of you who don't need as much direction, there's a simple written pattern at the end ( in both U.S. and U.K. terms )

Here's the tutorial :-

The tutorial is written in my usual format.....U.S. terms.
 Here is a list of the abbreviations used and a handy  conversion guide for U.K. terms..........


hdc = half double crochet..................U.K. half treble crochet
dc = double crochet................................U.K. treble crochet

To begin with chain 4........



make a ring by slip stitching into first chain...........


chain 3 ( counts as first d.c.).........


Round 1
work 11 d.c. into ring. I've marked the hole you need to work stitches into here........


NOTE to allow the centre of this round to be pulled closed it's best to crochet over the starting tail of yarn. Do this for ALL the stitches in this round.

here's the first d.c. made.........

you can see how I'm working through the ring and including the tail of yarn


and here's all 12 stitches made ( 11 plus the initial chain 3 )...........


To close the circle insert your hook into the third chain of the initial 3 chain .........


yarn over,pull through both loops on hook, pull up a large loop,, snip your yarn, pass through loop and fasten off............


I leave longish tails ( 5 or 6 inch) on my crochet to make securely sewing in the ends easier.


But don't sew in the ends till your three round circle is complete.

Round 2
attach a new colour of yarn to your hook


and insert it BETWEEN any of the stitches in round 1. I'm showing the correct position with my needle here.........


Yarn over hook and pull through the circle and the loop on your hook...........


You have joined a new colour :0)............


Chain 3 ( counts as 1 dc).............


make a second stitch ( dc) in the same space...............


continue around the circle making 2 dc in between each stitch of round 1.
 You should have 24 stitches by the end of this round.
Fasten off by inserting your hook into the third chain of the initial three chain ( in the same way you fastened off round 1).............


Your circle should look like this............


Round 3
Round three is made in much the same way as round two, but this time you make 3 dc stitches in between each two dc cluster of round 2.

So, to start attach a new colour and chain 3..............


then work two dc into the same space, and three dc into each subsequent space..............


Once you have made all 36 stitches in this round fasten off in the same way as the previous two rounds.
You circle should now look like this...........


Here's the reverse.
It's at this stage that I pull on the starting tail ( the one I crocheted over in round one).
It closes up the hole in the centre of the circle nicely.

Here's before.............


and here's after............

Of course if you prefer the look of the centre hole you can skip that bit, but I find the circle lies flat better with the centre hole closed.

Now to sew in the 6 ends.

 I sew in about half of the length with a sharp, large eyed needle like the sharp needle HERE I weave the needle back and forth for extra security, then snip off the remainder...........


and here's my finished circle......I hope yours looks the same...............


Don'y you just love colourful crochet circles........They really are so easy and satisfying to make.


Next we get to turn  them into  squares :0)

Round 4
Between any three dc cluster attach a new colour of yarn and chain 3............


work 2 more dc into the same space.............


Then chain 2 and make 3 more dc into the same space..........these 6 stitches will make the first corner of your square...........


next make 1 dc into the following space..............


and into the same space make 2 hdc ( i.e. yarn over hook, insert hook, pull through [3 loops on hook] yarn over and pull through all three loops)..............


here I've just made the first hdc................


and here I've made two.............


In the next space make two hdc, followed by 1 dc.......


Then it's on to making the second corner.
so in the fourth space make 3dc 2 chain and 3 dc...........

 Hopefully you can see how making the shorter stitches in the middle helps create a nice flat side for your square.


Subsequent sides are made in the same way.

Here I've just completed the second side and third corner............


here I've completed all four sides and I'm fastening off in the same way I did in previous rounds..........


and here is the completed square, prior to weaving in the ends.............



THE PATTERN U.S. Terms

ch4, sl st to form ring, ch 3 (counts as 1 dc)
Round 1 : work 11 dc into ring, sl st into third ch of initial ch3, fasten off.

Round 2 : worked between the stitches of round 1. Join new colour in any space, ch 3( counts as first dc) , work 1 dc in same space. Work 2 dc into each following space around ( 24 stitches ) . slip stitch into 3rd ch of initial ch 3. Fasten off.

Round 3 : worked between the 2dc clusters  of round 2. Join a new colour in any space, ch 3 ( counts as first dc), work 2dc in same space. Work 3 dc in each following space around. ( 36 stitches). Slip stitch into 3rd chain of initial ch3. Fasten off.

Round 4 : worked between the 3dc clusters of round 3. Join your border colour in any space and
chain 3 ( counts as first dc), work 2dc, ch 2, 3dc in same space ( first corner made). *In next space around make 1dc and 2 hdc, in next space make 2 hdc and 1 dc, in next space make 3dc, ch2, 3dc ( second corner made,) continue around from * till you have completed the round. Slip stitch into ch 3 of initial chain 3 and fasten off.

THE PATTERN U.K. Terms

ch4, sl st to form ring, ch 3 (counts as 1 tc)
Round 1 : work 11 tc into ring, sl st into third ch of initial ch3, fasten off.

Round 2 : worked between the stitches of round 1. Join new colour in any space, ch 3( counts as first tc) , work 1 tc in same space. Work 2 tc into each following space around ( 24 stitches ) . slip stitch into 3rd ch of initial ch 3. Fasten off.

Round 3 : worked between the 2tc clusters  of round 2. Join a new colour in any space, ch 3 ( counts as first tc), work 2tc in same space. Work 3 tc in each following space around. ( 36 stitches)

Round 4 : worked between the 3tc clusters of round 3. Join your border colour in any space and chain 3 ( counts as first tc), work 2tc, ch 2, 3tc in same space ( first corner made). *In next space around make 1tc and 2 htc, in next space make 2 htc and 1 tc. In next space make 3tc, ch2, 3tc ( second corner made,) continue around from * till you have completed the round. Sl st into ch 3 of initial chain 3 and fasten off.


These really are versatile little motifs that can be used for numerous different types of crochet project.
They can also be joined in many different ways. Sewn or crocheted together. Or maybe..... as I'm doing for my latest blanket,....... "joined-as-you-go"

If you want to try this technique you need to make all the circles first. Here are just a few of the 220 I've made for this latest blanket..............



Then make one of your circles into a square. The rest will have the fourth round added as the squares are joined.
You can find Lucy's clear explanation of the join-as-you-go method HERE


I just love this way of working and I'm happily playing with the spring  colours that this blanket was inspired by.

I'm almost half way with the joining now and I'm off to do a bit more.....I'd really like to finish this blanket of many colours before the end of the year :0)


As always please let me know if you have trouble understanding any of this tutorial and I will try to help.

ENJOY

Jacquie x

27 comments:

  1. This blanket is gorgeous! I love the colours, and the lack of large gaps (I've had this problem in the past with granny square blankets too). Thank you for sharing your pattern :)
    Cathy x

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  2. I love your pattern with the circles in the square and I love your choice of colours too where the pinks come into their own! What is that lovely dark pink? I don't recognize it from the Stylecraft yarns. Well done for all those lovely squares and thank you for the tutorial!

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    1. Hi Sandra, it's Raspberry...a favourite colour of mine....it's gorgeous.
      Thank you for your kind comment.
      Jacquie x

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  3. Jacquie, what a nice tutorial! It's very clear, and the result is really wonderful! I'd love to make a granny blanket someday, wish I had the patience... ; )
    Have a lovely weekend! xx

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  4. Thanks so much for your tutorial! I am inspired to make a blanket with these - but I must finish my WIPs first!!

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  5. Thank you for this tutorial! I am a huge fan of sunburst granny squares. :)

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  6. I really like the less gappy circles, like you I prefer a more solid blanket. I've been trying granny squares recently, they're new to me, and I'm happy to say I completely understand your explanation now! I found it beautifully clear, and the photographs are excellent and really helpful. Thank you for all of the effort you've put into this Jacquie. CJ xx

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  7. I think I might give this a try. I am new to crochet and this looks just the right project to start with!

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  8. Your blanket is looking amazing and your tutorial is very clear I think even I might be able to follow it. Can I ask how much yarn you need to make a blanket say for a single bed, I would hate to run out part way through. Thank you
    Jackie x

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  9. This is wonderful! I am so excited to try this after all my Christmas crocheting is done. Your pictures are perfect! This is the first tutorial I have found that I can follow. Thank you so much for taking the time to take the step by step pictures and write out the directions for us. Yippee:)

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  10. That's lovely, i made a cushion with similar squares and i've just shared yours for anyone that might want to try it out on my fb page, tfs :) @Ivys-Attic

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  11. I love both of your blankets, but I really love that you learned from the first and improved it so much. I like the tighter, sturdier design. One day I will make one.. your eye for color is second to none. You went to a LOT of work to share with us.. you are so generous and lovely. ((hugs)), Teresa :-)

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  12. Such a lovely, quick and easy little square, I also love the Sunburst square in all its guises and forms!

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  13. Very sweet little squares, I love the colours and design. Fabulous tutorial too.
    Helen

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  14. Thank you for the tutorial, it's a beautiful blanket! I've always wanted a blanket similar in style & by luck have just ordered four balls of cream Stylecraft. I'm going to dig through my stash now & get started on those circles.

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  15. Gorgeous blanket! And fabulous tutorial..thank you! X

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  16. Great tutorial and lovely blanket now on my growing to do list.

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  17. A beautiful project to be working on now with so many grey days. I certainly know what you mean by past projects not "living" up to expectations. I have a crochet hexi king size blanket with some of the same issues. I find over time the ones that are joined as you go stands the test of time better than other methods, and a long tail sewn in works best at not unraveling. Thanks for sharing! I like your version better, less holes for sure. I'm currently working with crochet thread (shades of blue and white) and hooking up some of Lucy's Christmas decorations for our tree. Have a great day!

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  18. Love it! Must have a go at this it's gorgeous.

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  19. My Lucy pack of Stylecraft yarn is still for the most part in two baskets on top of one of my bookcases. I had a wonky mitered corner pattern that I had saved from years ago. The 8 squares I tried were even wonkier than the pattern because I did not follow/understand the pattern. I have never done a true granny square. I do not like the holes in granny squares, but I love the color combinations. I really like this smaller tighter square and I think I understand your tutorial. You have answered so many of my specific questions [that I did not know how to ask :) ] Thanks so much, Jacquie. In the not too distant future I want to start making sunburst squares! Are mitered corner squares a type of granny square? Have you used them to make anything? xx

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    1. Hi Gracie,
      mitred corner squares are tricky! I remember trying and failing to make one from a pattern in the popular Jan Eaton Book.....200 crochet squares.
      Granny squares and sunburst squares are much easier as it's more obvious where your stitches go.
      Jaquie x

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  20. Gorgeous. I love a good solid square for blanket making.

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  21. It's so good to revisit your site and see the patterns I learned from (your hexagon pattern was one of the hexagon designs used in my first shawl! , and your heart pattern, with the sunburst center, my favorite heart pattern and new to me color scheme that initially inspired me to take up crochet again. I was only familiar with ripple stitch and chevron pattern afghans. And granny squares? There was one granny afghan I'd seen over the years, a black bordered, colorful traditional granny afghan with big gaps in between clusters that left me freezing to death! I am so grateful to designers like yourself that showed me crochet could be different than I remembered. It can be an artistic expression! And the sky's the limit where color usage is concerned! I love your new blanket! And the way you are joining them creates a cool raised ridge all around! I just love it! Thank you for the free tutorials!!! And.. I now need to go find out what a mitered squre corner is... LOL! It's good to see you still active, with your blog up! I'm going to try hexagons from your circles! I THINK it adds up correctly! Happy new year, and all the best in 2015 for yourself and your loved ones!

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  22. Thank you for the tutorial, very nice and clear. How many colors have you used in total?

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  23. I love this pattern and thank you for a great tutorial.

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  24. Just looking up one of your older patterns! This one is so pretty! I've made lots of your hearts too to give as presents!

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