Tag Archives: design

How to make a BonBon

Hello. Long time no me. Crummy time management skills, I know.

So, as I was saying before I was so rudely interrupted, I want to share with you how Eunice has taught me to make the BonBons.

But first –  please be advised : this is not a pattern for the faint-hearted or those who need instant gratification! This is a pattern for those of you who like to throw a bit of caution to the wind, to be adventurous, who do not stress over the exact number of stitches or any precise dimensions, and who can spend more than two evenings working on it.  This is a wing-it kind of a thing (exactly how I make lasagne, come to think of it!) It’s not a problem for me that no two are exactly the same because I sell them, so there is always someone who wants one slightly bigger, slightly smaller, slightly rounder, slightly longer, with a pompom, without a pompom, whatever.

caramel bonbon

The caramel one above was made by Eunice, using Elle Pure Gold DK (acrylic) and a 4mm hook.
The green one below was made by me with the same yarn and hook, but my tension is much looser than Eunice’s.  I also had more stitches so I have a fatter hat with less shaping at the brim.

bonbon4

I’ve just started one using Elle Cotton On DK and a 4.5mm hook. There’s a lot less stretch with cotton, so I’m working more stitches in the round so that I don’t end up with a long, narrow hat that would only fit a long, narrow gnome. It looks like this so far:

cotton bonbon

The first section is the circle for the crown. (I’m using British terminology).

Ch 5. Sl st to make a circle. Ch 2 (does not count as tr), 13 tr into circle. Join to top of first tr.

Row 2:  Ch 2, 2 tr into same st, and in each st all round = 26 tr. Join with a sl st.

Row 3:  Ch 2, tr into same st, 1 tr into next, 2 tr into next, continue all round. Join with a sl st  (39 tr). That is your flat crown part.

NOTE: At this point, it would be useful to count the number of sts, so that if you want to make another BonBon the same, or smaller, or bigger, this will be your guide. (Eunice says she never counts, she just seems to know by instinct when it’s right.)

The second part is the main textured section. This is much much easier than it sounds. Basically, it’s all worked in front post trebles and back post trebles**  so that you get a lovely up-and-down texture.

Row 4:  Ch 2, 1 bptr (back post treble) into same st, 2 fptr (front post treble) into the next st.  Continue with the 1 bptr and 2 fptr all the way round, join with a sl st.

Row 5 – 8: Same as Row 4, but  work the bptr into the bptr of the previous row, and the 2 fptr into the second fptr of the previous row. Continue with the bptr and 2 fptr all the way round, join with a sl st.

Row 9:  Same as Row 8 but you need to do a bit of increasing here: to increase, work your 1 bptr as usual, then work 2 fptr into the first of the fptr of the previous row; work 1 bptr into the second of the fptr of the previous row, then work 2 fptr into the same stitch.  This will give you an increase that looks like this:

bonbon2

Eunice makes about 6 increases evenly spaced around this row.

Now you just carry on crocheting merrily away until your BonBon is about the size you want it to be from crown to brim, excluding the brim (which you may want to wear flipped over anyway).

Note:  I did a couple more increases in about Row 11 of the cotton one pictured above because, as I said, I wanted to accommodate the lack of stretch.  It all depends on the yarn you’re using and how big you want the hat to be.

When you’re not increasing, and you’re just going round and round, you’ll start to see the dome shape form.

Work until the hat measures about 22cm in length from the very top (or less, or more, up to you).

Brim:

Eunice’s brim is simply 5 or 6cm of front post trebles all around. With my green BonBon, I felt the brim looked like it was going to be too wide, so I first worked two rows of double crochet decreasing six times evenly in each row.  Then I did 5 rows of fptr.  End off and weave your ends in.

When you fold the brim over, you get a lovely contrast with the direction of the stitches.

I sold a lot of BonBons on Sunday at the Kirstenbosch Craft Market. Some girls wore a deep brim, some a narrow one, some had no brim.  It’s a pretty versatile hat.  One very stylish and charming lady of 72 has ordered one in dark brown that she is going to wear in a totally different way, that I had never thought of before.  I’ll show you that next time :)

Now, if these instructions really stink, please let me know – I’ve gone over and over them, but I may have made an error or overlooked something.  Fingers crossed not…

** front post and back post trebles

Back (sometime) soon x

BonBon update

I have a market at Kirstenbosch this Sunday, so Eunice delivered five fresh BonBons just in time this week.  (At my last market, the green and the caramel BonBons were the first items purchased, one with and one without a pompom). She’s done another sterling job, but this time I lured her into spending the afternoon with me (I think it was the custard danishes that did the trick) and teaching me how to make a BonBon myself.

bonbons

eunice 3

eunice 1

eunice 2

She needed a lot of patience with me. Luckily, she has enough and some to spare.  I got about an eighth of the way through a BonBon before realising that this particular stitch used in this particular design is too much for me. It takes TOO LONG. I will lose interest less than halfway into the making of it, and then there will be half-finished BonBons all over the place.  So, I’m going to stick to being the PomPomist and Eunice the BonBonist.

She is also now officially Jam Tart #2, whether she likes it or not — but I think she does. On Saturday night, around 11.30, just as I was drifting off to sleep, an sms came beeping in: “Jill, how’s your crocheting going? did you finish the pink hat?“.  Blimey, just what I need –  a slave driver…

caramel bonbon

The texture of these hats is really soft and squwooshy. Squoochy? Skwooshy? I don’t know, none of those look right, but you know what I mean.  FYI one hat (plus medium pompom) weighs 156 g, and we’re using the Pure Gold Double Knit and a 4mm hook.

bonbon cream

Want to make your own BonBon? It’s dead easy and I’m busy writing up Eunice’s instructions for you, will post a bit later.

Back soon x

 

 

I’m just a girl who can’t say No…

Okay, I’ll admit it, I have definitely overbooked myself: I have eight markets between now and Christmas, one of which extends over three weeks, and that isn’t including the one-month stint at the Waterfront (I have been given November, no swapping allowed). While I’m thinking there won’t be much room for blogging, at the same time blogging helps me to focus on one thing at a time. Also, very luckily, I have a wonderful support network – Alex, Rob, Anne, Doreen, Karen…

For the Cape Gift Market in Sea Point, I have undertaken to make 30 owl cushions and 30 cat cushions. The owl design is sorted but I’m still working on the cat. This is what I’ve come up with so far:

cat cushion 1  cat 2

I want it to be similar in style to the owl, but couldn’t figure out how to work any shweshwe fabric in. I tried it on the ears but it didn’t look right. Paws, maybe? I tried a nose as well, also didn’t work. I like a streamlined look, not fussy, and not cute.  Comments are welcome, especially constructive ones :-)

And just to illustrate my natural ability to prioritise things, I have just agreed to make 6 pairs of mitts for the UK family of a friend who is going over for Christmas.

Beautiful spring day in Cape Town today, I’m off to run some errands – maybe I can get in a bit of crocheting when the traffic lights are red hahahahaha

Back soon x

in a/the land down under – free headband pattern

I can’t get that bloody song by Men at Work out of my head, every time I think of Sharon in Melbourne and my headbands! I’m only really sure about three of the words and the order they’re in  — “land”, “down” and “under” — the rest I make up on an ad hoc basis.

headbands 208

So, with great thanks to Sharon down under, this pattern is good to go.  It’s going to feature in a kit (watch this space) but I also want to share it on my blog. The original stitch pattern is called Palm Leaves, and I’ve used it for blankets and scarves and other things, it’s very versatile. I’ve made these bands with Vinni’s Nikkim cotton and a 4mm hook.  The red violet is a new addition to Vinni’s colour range, and it’s divine.

I made this to fit an average adult woman’s head (e.g. mine! I hope you don’t think I have a big head!) but I’ve included an adjustment to the number of beginning chains if you need it smaller or bigger.

Note: I’m using British crochet terms here. 

Ch 73 (small),  76 (medium) or  79 (large).

Row 1   1ch, miss 1, *1dc in next st, 2ch, miss 2 sts*, repeat from * to * to end, 1dc in last st. Turn.

Row 2   3ch, 1tr in 1st dc, then 3tr in every following dc, and 2tr in last dc. Turn.

Row 3   1ch, 1dc in first tr, *2ch, 1dc in central tr of group*, repeat from * to *, 2ch 1dc in 3ch. Turn.

Repeat Rows 2 and 3 twice.  Fasten off, leaving a long end.  With the yarn needle, use the long end of cotton to stitch the short sides of the band together. Weave the other end in neatly.

Sharon has her own blog, too, called Gentle Stitches She’s big on amigurumi (pun alert, get it?!!!) and does a lot of teaching, something I’ll never be good at, haha. She’s also a pretty fine tester :-)

Back soon x

 

bags of progress

This is the fifth bag I’ve made now, which perhaps is significant (5 bags / pentagon = 5 sides, you know) and I’m finally happy with the pattern.

kit pics 069

I’m liking this colour combination, too – baby yellow, sunshine, burnt orange and brick red. I got some nice bricky red felt at Fabric City today, which will be perfect for the lining. The one pictured here is brown, but you can see what the shape is and get an idea of the magnetic clasp. (Both will be included in the kit, when it’s finally a “product”).

kit pics 067

So, Laura in the south of England put her hand up to test this one – thank you, Laura, I’m very grateful to you. And here’s a link to Laura’s lovely blog, Cute as a Button. She seems to be one of those people who manages to fit a greater variety of crafty stuff into her days than most people, and you know what they say – if you need something doing, give it to a busy person!

Bye for now, from a grey wintry wet windy Cape Town.

pentagons and awards

Some sort of horrible energy-sucking bug or virus has had me in its grip the last couple of days, today I have been almost totally inert. I feel like one of those lantern-jawed sea monsters that lives 72 million feet under the deepest ocean and conserves energy by never moving a whisker. It’s 5.55pm here, I’ve been under the covers most of the day, but I’ve just managed to make myself coffee and am also going to force this post (most of it done two days ago, when I felt more human).

When is a hexagon not a hexagon? Why, when you can’t count properly and you end up with five sides instead of six.
But it’s okay, I like it better this way. And it works out perfectly for my bag idea.

kit pics 042 kit pics 016kit pics 047

hexagon multi

These girls are going to be bags, with a felt lining and magnetic clasp and long strap. Laura over in the mother country (= UK, haha) has volunteered to make one up following my pattern and using the Vinni’s cotton I send. When she’s given me the thumbs up, the kits will follow. A blue one, a turquoise one, a pink one, and a mixed one (because I was dying to use the new Brick Red that arrived this week).  I was also thinking greens. And maybe neutrals.

Kathryn in Colarado has been working on the mitts pattern, and has come up with some incredibly useful suggestions and a great new lay-out (far and above the ‘call of duty’).  She chose to make hers in Sunshine yellow, and here’s the first one she finished. Kathryn also writes a blog. I like reading what she writes.

left_mitt (1)

Two very thoughtful ladies have included me in their nominations recently, for which I am happy and appreciative, and I promise promise to fulfill my acceptance conditions (eg. answering some questions and nominating other blogs) as soon as the blood starts flowing to my brain again.  In the meantime, thank you both very much, Alice and Jane: Knit n Run 4 sanity and Rainbow Junkie Corner.

Phew, exhausted now. Back to the bottom of the ocean. x