Granny Square Crochet

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I’m not the best at crochet, in fact I can’t actually hold my hook and tension my yarn correctly, instead I choose to knit my crochet.  This means I hold the hook and the yarn in my right hand and work as if I’m knitting with one pin.  It achieves pretty much the same results, although apparently a crochet professional can tell the difference?

Anyway, undeterred it is my goal in life to cover everything in glorious multicolour granny  crochet, trebles to the initiated.  This book was made for just that and much to my delight Granny Square Crochet by Catherine Hirst has come in with May’s samples from The Book People.  Even better their selling copies of it for just €8 at the moment.

Ok, so there is a ‘Useful Information’ chapter at the back of the book, full of stitches, abbreviations and pictures of how to hold your hook (gulp!).  Can you hear this section being closed as I go straight back to the pretty pictures?

35 projects are in this book, yes I did say 35 – lets look at some of my favourites.

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I love the Granny Round Cushion Cover to pieces and can see a beautiful round table cloth in the making.  Actually, more of a centrepiece thingy to be precise.

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What’s not to like about the Stripes lampshade Cover?  Great way to transform those cheapy lamps from Dunnes and Heatons and make them more personalised.  I’m sure I picked up a job lot in the Dunnes Sale for €2 each and they’d make a great gift for friends.


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I could definitely be persuaded to use a teapot more often if it looked as pretty as this, what about you?


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The Colourful Granny Stripes Scarf is beautiful and if you made it a little wider and slightly longer it would make a great summer evening shawl to wrap round your shoulders.  Or perhaps you have a friend in hospital that would love the cheery colours and welcome the extra warmth?


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The riot of colour in the Granny Square Cushion Cover is created using 7 complimentary colours and would be a great way of using up your ends although I”m duty bound to mention that knitting a few Knit Happens stockings is another great way too (cheeky!)

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Lastly and only because I want to leave a little mystery, look at these beautiful little shoes.  The Mini Granny Square Booties are so adorable I’d happily use them as a decoration in my house just so I could look at them.

In case you haven’t noticed, I’m rather in love with this book – power project finishing here I come because it wouldn’t do to start yet another project would it…..?

Happy Crochet!


Lap Blankets For Armenia

As our collection of winter woolies for Chernobyl draws to an end we are happy to announce our next charity project.

GMI logo jpegGlobal Missions Ireland (Charity No: CHY13718) is a Cork based charity that undertakes in missions both at home and around the world. Locally they run feeding programs to reach the people in the City of Cork.

On foreign missions they work with the local church to reach out to the most vulnerable and marginalised in society. The charity’s main aim is to run mission trips, which provide people with an avenue to work abroad or help a community, which they feel, are in need.  They send people from the medical field, construction industry, teachers, housewives any sector that they find will help in the country that they are working in.

This year  Global Missions have got a team going to the ‘House of Hope’ retirement home in Vanadzor, Armenia. Here there are 80 men and women taken out of deplorable conditions to live in safety and comfort. It was set up to house the elderly community who had been living in derelict buildings and containers since the earthquakes in 1988.
The team will be running feeding programs, giving bread made in the ‘ House of Hope’ bread factory to those in the community that are in need. They will also visit with social workers other in the locality that are in need of help to try and rehabilitate and rehouse them into better conditions.
These elderly people need our help as they have very little and Global Missions has specifically asked if we’d be interested in making lap blankets.  These will help to keep the residents that little bit warmer whilst at the same time giving them a gift of kindness they can cherish.
Calling all of you that knit and/or crochet for your help.  We’d also welcome those of you that sew or can be a little creative with felting old jumpers.
What we’re after?
  • As we’re making lap blankets these can be either the complete, finished article or 20cm/8″ squares which we will sew together to make blankets 100cm x 120cms/40″ by 48″
  • Squares can be made using any yarn however, please remember these blankets will need to be washable and warm.  Chunky yarn will knit up quicker and remember that you can always use more than one strand of yarn together.  Two strands of double knit worked together is the same as using a chunky yarn.
  • Squares can be in any pattern/design of your choosing and we have no colour preference.  knit, crochet or as I mentioned before sewn or felted it really doesn’t matter.  Take this opportunity to use up your leftovers.
  • Spread the word – we’d love to hand over as many blankets as possible.  Tell other knitting groups, schools & colleges, residential homes, church groups, etc.
  • The closing date for our collection is Saturday 3rd August.  It would helps us enormously if you are making squares if you could send them in sooner if possible to allow time to sew them up.  Even if it means giving them in in batches.

There are absolutely loads of lap blankets available on

There are also loads of patterns available for 20cm/8″ squares out there in cyberspace, just type ‘knit a square’ into your web browser.

The Knitter/Simply knitting Magazine ran a campaign for Refuge last year in which they asked for squares the same size to be donated.  You may well have a copy of the magazines neatly filed on a shelf.  Crocheting a square should be simple enough as you just stop when you’ve reached the right size.

I intend to pop up a few square patterns when I’ve knitted some examples but I wanted to get the collection underway.

Technically speaking if your tension is correct, casting on 28sts (loosley) with chunky yarn on 6.5mm needles will give you 20cms horizontally.  Knit in stocking stitch until square is 20cms vertically and cast off loosley.

Hint: I’m terrible for casting on/off too tight so I use a needle at least one size larger

If you want to have a closer look at what the charity does checkout their Facebook page