Friday, September 3, 2021

Frog or Finish?

 A colleague of mine told me that in January every year she goes through her project basket and decides if she loves a project enough to finish it, she'll continue working on it, otherwise it'll get frogged and the yarn reused. This means she doesn't have anything too old sitting around or filling up space, and more importantly, gets projects finished! 

For those unsure - 'frog' means to undo. Because we often say 'Rip it out,' and rip it sounds a lot like ribbit.. a frog! Yes, crocheters and knitters often speak another language!

This may sound harsh, especially if you've put a lot of work into something, but I'm a fan of this way of thinking! I'm not sure that I've mentioned it on the blog before, but I also don't like to keep a huge stash of yarn at home either. Of course, I have no problem with those that do! I have found over time, what works for me, and it's just a few tubs of yarn. 

It was very common, just a generation or two ago, for sweaters to be undone and re knitted as children grew out of them when wool was harder to source. 

I've written about knitting from a sock blank, which is almost the same as knitting straight off a finished piece, but if you don't like the kinked texture (it looks like ramen noodles) you can soak and dry the yarn in hanks. The Spruce Crafts has this great tutorial on how to make a hank. 

But, back to your pile of unfinished projects, will you finish them or frog them? Remember there is no right or wrong answer - if you have the space and fully intend to finish everything, then please keep them! If the stack of unfinished projects is starting to overwhelm you, then making the decision to frog, or even donate, can be very refreshing. 

Thanks for reading, let me know your thoughts


Monday, August 2, 2021

Joshua Bonnet - free pattern - Pixie Bonnet

I first designed the Joshua Bonnet for my newborn son - Joshua! I love the look of bonnets on babies and wanted something that could be equally lovely for girls and boys. Joshua and the Joshua Bonnet are now over five years old, so time for a refresh of the pattern!

The pixie bonnet features some detailing along the front to frame the face.

Sizes: Newborn (Head circumference) 14 inches/35.5cm (3-6 month 16 inches/40.5 cm, 6-9 month 18/46 cm, 9-12 month 19 inches/ 48 cm, 2-5 years 20 inches/ 51 cm, 5-8 years 22 inches/ 56 cm.)

Yarn: 8ply/DK weight, 100g/3.53oz (283 m/309 yards) 52 m/56 yards (MC), 26m/23 yards A and B
Hook: US I (5.50mm) and US G (4.0mm)
Notions: Scissors, Yarn needle.
Gauge: 12 sts and 8 rows = 4" (10 cm) in hdc. 

Abbreviations: (US terms used) 

ch = chain

sc = single crochet

hdc = half double crochet

st(s) = stitch(es)

sl st = slip stitch

rep = repeat 

Pattern Notes: Turning chains do not count as a stitch.

The hat is worked flat in rows, and seamed along the back.

Using MC and 5.5 mm hook:

Chain 39. (41, 48, 51, 54, 59)

Row 1: Skip 1st ch, 38 (40, 47, 50, 53, 58) sc, turn.

Row 2: Ch 2, 38 (40, 47, 50, 53, 58) hdc, fasten off, turn.

Row 3: Using A, ch 1, 38 (40, 47, 50, 53, 58) sc, fasten off, turn.

Rows 4 - 8: Alternate rows 2 and 3

Rows 9 - 19 (20, 22, 24, 26, 28): in MC, As Row 2

Fasten off and weave in ends. 

Surface Crochet:

Using B and 4.0mm hook, RS facing out, surface slip stitch along Row 4, and repeat on Row 6.
Repeat with MC along the foundation chain.


Insert hook through space between first two stitches, front to back; keeping working yarn on
WS. Pull up a loop, insert hook into next sp (between stitches) pull up loop through space, and loop on
hook (one loop remains on hook). Continue to final st, cut or break yarn, bring remaining yarn through loop, and back to WS to secure the final loop.

Weave in ends.


Fold bonnet in half lengthways, so point a meets point b (above image) with WS together seam this edge together using your preferred joining method. This seam will be the back of the bonnet. Fasten off and weave in ends. 

Chin Tie:

Chin tie is worked in a continuous piece without cutting the yarn. Starting with one tie, then continuing around the base of the bonnet (back of the neck), and then continuing with the second tie.

Using MC, and 5.5 mm hook

Ch: 25 (29, 33, 37, 41, 46)

Skip 1st ch, sc across. Join to the left front corner of the bonnet with a sl st, sc across base of the bonnet, working one sc into the side of each row. Ch: 25 (29, 33, 37, 41, 46) Skip 1st ch, sc across, sl st to the bonnet.

Fasten off and weave in ends. 

 Happy Crocheting!

Let me know in the comments if you would like a tutorial on surface crochet, or on something else that's come up in the pattern.

Emma xx

Saturday, July 3, 2021

Textured Clutch "Amelia Clutch" Free Pattern

The Amelia Clutch is a chunky textured clutch that can be used to transport your crochet hooks and small projects, or maybe your phone and keys! Made with ‘ribbon tape’ using recycled textiles, it works up in no time at all. This clutch is also lined with fabric (which is optional) 

Above, shown in a tape yarn.

Above, shown in a 'rope' yarn

This pattern featured in the Get the Summer Vibes Blog Hop

Pattern Notes:

Clutch is made flat and sewn together. Due to the thick nature of the yarn, it is recommended to use cotton thread to seam the sides. Use leftover yarn to create a tassel or other embellishment.

Like this pattern? You might also like the Moss Stitch Pouch!

Finished Measurements:

Width: 19 cm

Height: 10 cm


Yarn: Hoooked Ribbon XL (80% Cotton, 20% Other; 72yrds/125g) 0.5 x ball used.

Hook: 12 mm

Notions: cotton thread to sew side seams in MC, sewing needle

To line: 20 x 20 cm of fabric, cotton thread, sewing needle, (sewing machine can be used) 

Optional: zipper (18 cm), beads to trim.

Gauge: 9 sts and 12 rows = 4" (10cm) in bag pattern.  

Chain 18.

Row 1: Sl st in 2nd ch from hook, *hdc in next ch, sl st in next ch; rep from * across, turn. (17 sts)

Row 2:  Ch 1, *hdc in first sl st, sl st in next hdc, rep from * across, turn.

Row 3: Ch 1, *sl st in first hdc, hdc in next sl st, rep from * across, turn.

Row 4- 16: Repeat alternating Rows 2 and 3.

Row 17: sl st into each st across.

Fasten Off.


Fold in half, lengthways, sew side seams with cotton thread. 

Example of tape yarn. 

To line:

Fold the fabric in half lengthwise, (RS together) Hem top edges by folding over 0.5 cm to WS, and pin in place, and sew (with either sewing machine, or hand sew)

Pin side seams and sew on WS.

Pin zipper and lining in place in the clutch, zipper between ling and outer, and sew in place along the top hem. 

Abbreviations (US terminology):

ch = chain

sl st = slip stitch

hdc = half double crochet

st(s) = stitch(es)

rep = repeat

RS = right side

WS = wrong side

Amelia Clutch is also featured in the digital magazine 'I Like Crochet' 

Happy Crocheting


Wednesday, June 30, 2021

Homespun - Crochet: Beginners and Beyond Magazine

 Just wanted to update you and let you know that one of my patterns is currently on the shelves in Australian newsagents and grocery stores: Homespun Crochet: Beginners and Beyond. 

My pattern fits into the beginner's category - Bias Blocks. A great introduction to the C2C technique and colour changes. 

Some other patterns included are: Textured Face washers by Elizabeth Castle.

Chesna's Hope infinity cowl by Tegan Howes

Snuggle Slouch Beanie by Sharyn Brock

Charli Cardi by Kate Polizzi

There are also some very useful articles on swatching, blocking, yarn weights as well as extremely handy US/UK conversion tables. 

If you are an Australian crocheter - try and grab a copy!


Friday, June 18, 2021

Sock Knitting - an Update

 If you read my newsletter (if you don't - sign up here) then you'll know I took the last month off designing and also blogging. 

I didn't stop crafting though! I do find I need some no-stress, no-pressure projects now and then - even though I do love a deadline! 

In my 'break' I have been knitting socks! I started learning to knit them last year, and also dyed my own yarn - you can read those posts here - part of my blog series on Sock Blanks.

I did finish my first sock made from the sock blank (top of this blog post) - but instead of starting another one, I wanted to try going down to a smaller needle, so I started on a self-patterning yarn - Pairfect by Regia. This ball will make a perfect pair, as the yarn colours are repeated. This yarn also happens to be designed by Arne and Carlos. 

I do have some method to my madness - I want to experiment with the different methods and see what I like best. So far I'm liking cuff-down socks, with a 25cm circular needle, and then using a second circular the same size for the heel turn. For the record, I tried magic loop with an 80cm cord, which I didn't hate, I just found the constant adjusting a little much - but if you only want to start with one set of needles - then it's a good way to go. 

I have tried the Turkish cast-on for toe-up socks, and think it's pretty amazing - but haven't got past the toe section to decide if I want to fully switch over, but I will try that technique next! 

As for patterns - I'm still mostly following the Rye Light socks by Tin Can Knits, but doing the whole sock in stocking stitch, and a 2x2 rib for the cuff! It's a free pattern online, and goes into a lot of depth for sock beginners! The other sock pattern I've tried is the Easy Peasy Socks for first-timers (On Ravelry) 

The main reason for my post today is that I found sock knitting really daunting, and didn't know where to start. You really just need to be able to knit and purl, work in the round, and decrease in two ways - k2tog and ssk, and the two patterns I've linked are written for beginners, so I hope this will hope someone make that first step! 

That's all from me today, in the meantime

Happy Crafting


Monday, April 26, 2021

Unity Remixes and an Update

If you've been reading my blog for a while, you'll know about the Unity CAL that started in February.

The 2021 Unity CAL was created by 10 Australian designers and was sponsored by the Australian Crochet Community and KoKonki - Motki Ombre.

Here is my blanket, completed to part 4, and below - my finished blanket on display at the Sydney Royal Easter Show - I won the blue ribbon! 

The CAL has now finished but, like Harmony,  the 2019 ACC CAL, there is a Unity Remix & Extension.

Unity CAL remixes can be made by using:

  • The released parts in a different order
  • Blocks of the different parts to make a block afghan
  • Blocks or parts to make different products altogether.

The blocks are now available on Ravelry, as stand-alone patterns, that can be combined in any way you choose- make a simple 3x3 square blanket, or make multiples of the squares like Jane Rawnsley-Kinney did for her test of the patterns, or if there is one square that you just love, why not make a whole blanket of just that! 

This link will take you to Ravelry to view all the patterns in the series.

This link also includes the original CAL sections!

 Need help with the stitches from my block? you can find the tutorial for extended front post stitches here, and a tutorial for the hdc join here. 

As always, Happy Crocheting,


Tuesday, April 20, 2021

And, that's a Wrap! Friendship CAL Links

 If you've been following along with the Friendship Blanket CAL, you'll know that 28 crochet designers from all over the world, put together 41 different squares to be 'pick and mixed' to make unique blankets. 41 allows for some spares, in case there is a square that doesn't quite grab you. 

Today's post is a lot of information that has been previously made public, but I wanted to put all the links here, in one post, for convenience.  

The CAL is hosted by Sunflower Crochet Cottage, and you can see their original blog post, which contains links to ALL the patterns here, If you are unsure what a CAL is, this post also explains it all! 

You can also find the Zig Zag slip stitch method to join the squares as a photo and video tutorial here. This is just one option, of course, if you have a favourite joining method, you can use that! 

I'm also going to be keeping my list of all the squares up, and you can find them here. At this point, I still need to catch up with the last few squares! 

Helen, from Sunflower Crochet Cottage, has also included a border option, and that can be found here. This is also a photo and video tutorial. 

During the Crochet A Long, I was also interviewed by Helen, and you can find 'Hooking with Emma Wilkinson' here! 

And finally, if you do want the option of purchasing all squares in one go, there is a bundle available (affiliate link)

I really hope you have enjoyed participating in this CAL, or maybe you are just starting out! The choice is yours in how many squares you make!

Happy Crocheting - Emma!