Tag Archives | Crochet Bouquet

Fifty Thousand Copies Sold

Crochet Bouquet, a book of crocheted flower motifs by Suzann Thompson.  Fifty thousand copies sold!

Thank you to all the crocheters and people who love them who have bought my book, Crochet Bouquet! As of June 30, 2017, over 50,000 copies of Crochet Bouquet have been sold since its publication in 2008. I am honored by your support.

The book started with a trip to the mall in 2006. While my husband shopped at the big and tall store, our daughters and I sashayed in and out of clothing shops. It turns out, you can sashay with a three-year-old in a stroller. We studied the fashions and gave our wise and considered opinions to each other.

Quite a few clothes had crochet flower appliques. I thought that was so cool! It was inspiring to consider that a crocheter could customize clothing and accessories by adding a crocheted flower.

But after seeing slight variations of one basic flower over and over, I became sadly disillusioned. “I could do better than that,” I told myself. For one thing, I reasoned, not all flowers are round. Furthermore there are flowers other than the admittedly popular crocheted Irish rose.

Crochet Bouquet, a book of crocheted flower motifs by Suzann Thompson.  Fifty thousand copies sold!

Back at home, I searched the internet for crocheted flower patterns. At the time, there were some pattern leaflets, a couple of German and French crochet flower books, and quite a few single patterns. There was no book of crocheted floral motifs. This was before Nicky Epstein’s crochet flower book was published.

The absence of a flower motif book for crocheters was so glaring, even I couldn’t miss it!

I designed and crocheted some flowers and leaves, photographed them, and sent them out to a publisher. The proposal was rejected, so off it went to the next publisher on the list. That was Lark Crafts, and they accepted the proposal in the summer of 2006.

Designing, crocheting, and writing instructions for the flowers, leaves, and projects for Crochet Bouquet took about ten months.

Crochet Bouquet, a book of crocheted flower motifs by Suzann Thompson.  Fifty thousand copies sold!

Halfway through the process, we had some drama. Sterling Publishing, the parent company of Lark Crafts, was publishing another crochet flower book with one of their other subsidiaries. It was Nicky Epstein’s book that I mentioned earlier. She was (and is) such a well-known and loved designer, it seemed silly to publish a competing book by a mostly unknown author.

Luckily, we were able to convince those in charge that the books would have very little overlap. In fact, we thought the books would be different enough that customers might buy both of them. Thank goodness we were allowed to continue with the project.

In May 2008, the book hit the bookstores, and has been selling steadily ever since. The book has also been translated into Spanish and Russian. Very exciting!

Thank you very much for your part in the success of Crochet Bouquet!

Crochet Bouquet, a book of crocheted flower motifs by Suzann Thompson.  Fifty thousand copies sold!

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No. 10 Crochet Cotton Flowers are Perfect Quilt Embellishment

Evolution of Minimalism, by Suzann Thompson, detail

I wondered and planned and fretted about how to strongly stabilize a quilt so it would hold up a bunch of crocheted flowers.

As it often happens, my projects change as I work on them and begin to understand how they are developing. So instead of my original plan of crocheting flowers with yarn, I decided to crochet with No. 10 crochet cotton. The flowers turned out to be so light, the quilt didn’t need extra stabilizing. Yay!

My collection of Aunt Lydia’s No. 10 crochet cotton had the perfect colors to make the “Five Point” flower from Crochet Bouquet (above), and “Forget Me Nots” from Crochet Garden (below).

Evolution of Minimalism, by Suzann Thompson, detail

You can use crocheted flowers to embellish bed quilts, too. To attach them, use sewing thread to sew all around the flower’s edge. Tack down the flower center. Use your judgement whether you need to add more stitching between the center and the edges of the flower.

Most of the time, sewing thread disappears between the loops of crochet, but use a sewing thread that closely matches the color of your crochet thread or yarn, just in case.

The wall hanging is called Evolution of Minimalism. You can read more about it at here and here.

Evolution of Minimalism, by Suzann Thompson, detail

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Three Stories, Three Stories

TextileFusion wall hanging, Three Stories

This wall hanging is called Three Stories, and I also have three stories to share with you in this post.

First Story

I’m putting together an exhibit called “Celebrate Doilies!” which will run from July through September 2017. The exhibit will feature photos of doilies and stories about their makers.

For the next several months, I will be collecting photos of doilies and stories about them and the people who made them for the exhibit, which will be at the Cross Timbers Fine Arts Council, River North Gallery, in Stephenville, Texas.

This means that if you have family doilies hidden away in drawers or proudly displayed in your home, I would love to hear from you. This blog post has lots more information.

To learn even more about how you can join in this project, visit www.textilefusion.com/doily-heritage-project and click here to see a sample doily story.

TextileFusion wall hanging, Three Stories

Second Story

The three stories of the wall hanging called Three Stories are the stories of the filet crochet house, the vintage quilt top, and the doily that I cut into quarters to embellish the corners.

I picked up the cute filet crochet house from Ebay. It may be a placemat, a table mat, or a chair back cover. Whenever I find vintage crochet for sale, I consider it having been released from its previous story. My job is to give it a new story.

Same with the vintage quilt top—I found it at an estate sale. The piecing and stitching are far from perfect, but the overall effect is charming.

The white doily in the corners is also from Ebay. The thread is small and the stitches are firm and well-made.

We don’t know anything about the people who made these things or what their lives were like. It’s fun to imagine the history of the doilies and the quilt top.

Three Stories and other wall hangings that feature doilies will also be part of my exhibit next year.

Third Story

Three Stories seemed a little plain to me, so I decided to fancy it up.

How? With crocheted flowers! And buttons!

A couple of crochet flower books I know came in handy. I crocheted “Sweetheart Rose” from Crochet Bouquet, and “Twirl Center Rose” and “Paired Leaf Frond” from Crochet Garden.

I arranged them in an old-fashioned garland-y way and appliqued them to the quilt during last Sunday’s Dallas Cowboys football game. The Cowboys won and Three Stories is finished.

Next, I’m looking forward to hearing your doily stories—one, three, or however many you have!

TextileFusion wall hanging, Three Stories with Twirl Center Rose

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Another Wall Hanging with Crocheted Flowers

Five Point crochet flower from Crochet Bouquet

The Five Point flower from pages 85–86 of Crochet Bouquet was perfect to embellish my latest wall hanging. The Five Points in the photo are made with Aunt Lydia’s No. 10 crochet cotton. They are really small and cute.

I’m making the wall hanging to enter in a juried show with an evolution theme.

You can crochet three different sizes of flowers from the Five Point pattern, one size growing out of the previous one. To me, that is a visual way to show how something might develop over time.

The quilt design also goes from plain to fancy, another sort of visual evolution. Here’s a peek at one of the steps in this wall hanging’s evolution.

Another TextileFusion wall hanging in the works

Find step-by-step photos and hints for crocheting the Five Point flower here.

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Crocheting Flowers for Puzzling Pinks

Suzann Thompson's Puzzling Pink quilt at the Cross Timbers Fine Arts Council

Crocheted flowers for Suzann Thompson's Puzzling Pink quilt

Pink! It’s my most favorite color. It’s a good thing too, because the Puzzling Pink wall hanging is covered with dozens of pink flowers and I crocheted them all. And appliqued them.

Crocheted flowers for Suzann Thompson's Puzzling Pink quilt

These softly variegated flowers, made with Prism’s Kid Slique, are adapted from the Russian Picot Daisy pattern in Crochet Garden. Such luscious yarn!

Also from Crochet Garden, I made Anemones in Aunt Lydia’s No. 10 crochet cotton, Begonias in a Spud & Chloe yarn, and Tabby Ovals in a long discontinued yarn.

Crocheted flowers for Suzann Thompson's Puzzling Pink quilt

Crocheted flowers for Suzann Thompson's Puzzling Pink quilt

The long-stemmed buds are from the Valentine Roses pattern in Cute Crochet World.

Crocheted flowers for Suzann Thompson's Puzzling Pink quilt

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A Crochet Charm Lace Project in Noro Knitting Magazine!

Look for this lovely scarf pattern in the Spring/Summer 2014 issue of Noro Knitting Magazine! Crocheting flowers is even more fun as you watch the yarn changing gradually from one lovely color to the next. Whenever you get to a green section, crochet leaves!


Credit: Noro Knitting Magazine Spring/Summer 2014, photo by Paul Amato for LVARepresents.com

Here is the scarf in progress:


Flowers and leaves drying after blocking.


Arranging flowers and leaves on the scarf template.

The flowers and leaves were adapted from patterns in Crochet Bouquet: Easy Designs for Dozens of Flowers.

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Five Point Tutorial

A friend on Ravelry has been experimenting with Five Point, a flower design in Crochet Bouquet. She inspired me to re-crochet this cute flower and take some step-by-step photos. I hope this will encourage you to give “Five Point” a try.

The entire flower is worked in the round from the front only. Some of the photos show what the back looks like, but again, all rounds are worked from the front.

Crocheted Five Point flower tutorial

Rnd 1 is pairs of dc separated by ch-spaces.

Crocheted Five Point flower tutorial

Rnd 2 is worked in the ch-spaces of Rnd 1. The stitches are really packed in to make a densely packed petal.

Crocheted Five Point flower tutorial

Rnd 3 is worked into the original ch-ring, but behind the petals of Rnd 2. Fold the petal toward you. Insert hook into the original ring from the front as you normally would. The instructions tell you exactly how to begin the round with a tr into the ring.

Crocheted Five Point flower tutorial

This is how Rnd 3 looks as you progress around the flower, creating tr sts separated by ch-spaces.

Crocheted Five Point flower tutorial

When Rnd 3 is finished, it looks like this from the front and from the back. Because of the way Rnd 3 is positioned, the points of Rnd 2 should be more-or-less between the arches of Rnd 4.

Crocheted Five Point flower tutorial

The stitches of Rnd 4 are worked into the ch-spaces of Rnd 3. Again, a lot of stitches are packed into those ch-spaces. The points of Rnd 2 should be between the arches of Rnd 4. The yellow arrow shows where to insert your hook in Rnd 5, after you fold forward the petals of Rnd 4.

Crocheted Five Point flower tutorial

Fold the petals of Rnd 4 toward you, insert hook between the petals of Rnd 2 (see the yellow arrow in the photo above). This round locks the petals into their correct alignment.

Crocheted Five Point flower tutorial

This is how Rnd 5 looks from the back—sl sts between the petals of Rnd 2, separated by ch-spaces.

Crocheted Five Point flower tutorial

Rnd 6 is worked into the ch-spaces of Rnd 5. Here are a couple of petals of Rnd 6, as viewed from the back side.

Crocheted Five Point flower tutorial

Rnd 6 is finished, and we’re ready for one more round.

Crocheted Five Point flower tutorial

The Five Point is finished! The colors remind me of Valentine’s Day. It will be here before we know it!

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Sunflower Earring Organizer

Crocheted Sunflower Earring Organizer

What could I make with the little sunflower I crocheted for the October Crochet Along? Another earring organizer! (See an earring organizer made with crocheted pansies here.)

My daughter likes green, which is convenient, because her school colors are green and yellow (okay, gold, but it usually takes the form of yellow).

I simply appliqued the sunflower on the corner of a sheet of kelly green plastic canvas.

Here are details:

Materials:

  • 1 sheet of plastic canvas
  • 1 spool of Wrights cording to coordinate with plastic canvas
  • Embroidery floss
  • The Sunflower from Crochet Bouquet (pages 71-72), made with Aunt Lydia’s No. 10 crochet cotton
  • Fray-stopping adhesive

crocheted sunflower appliqued to plastic canvas
Instructions:

Start at the lower edge of the plastic canvas, about 3” from the right-hand corner. Leave a few inches of the cording hanging at the end, then use embroidery floss to whip stitch the cording around the outside edge of the plastic canvas. Tie on more embroidery floss as needed, leaving long ends.

Once you have sewn the cording all the way around, tie the beginning and ending ends of the cording in a square knot. Tack it at the back with embroidery floss. Tie off the embroidery floss, leaving long ends.

close up of cording knot on sunflower earring organizer

About 3 to 4” from the knot, make a coat of fray-checking adhesive about 1/2” long around on both ends of the cording. Let dry. Cut the cording through the 1/2” dried coat of adhesive. This will protect all the cut ends. If desired knot each end. You can see the adhesive at the ends of the cording in the picture. It slightly darkens the cording.

Weave the embroidery floss through stitches at the back of the piece. Dab a little fray-checking adhesive at each end. Let dry and then trim away excess embroidery floss.

Applique sunflower to the plastic canvas, placing it in the corner above the cording knot. Stitch each petal just inside the tip, so the tips will bend a little for a natural look.

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Last Minute Sunflower CAL for October

Crochet Bouquet Sunflower

After record-breaking heat and draught this summer, our part of Texas welcomed about 5 inches of rain last month. The flowers wasted no time putting on an autumn show of color: yellow cow-pen daisies, magenta four-o’clocks, red and blue sage, and multicolor lantana.

Then, two nights ago, we came perilously close to freezing temperatures. Bloom while you can, dear flowers!

Crochet Bouquet Sunflower in two pieces

We crocheters should flower, too, whether in the last few moments before the winter here in the Northern Hemisphere, or because it’s spring in the Southern Hemisphere. So for our last-minute October CAL, let’s make the Sunflower from pages 71-72 of Crochet Bouquet. Its center is Loopy, on pages 57-58.

This flower looks lush and complicated, but it isn’t! Well, it is lush, but it is not complicated. You make it in two easy pieces and sew them together.

The yellow flower begins with a double-crochet circle. Around the outside you crochet one simple petal over and over. It takes a while to crochet, but the crochet is easy.

Crochet Bouquet Sunflower with some petals uncurled

When you’re done, the petals will probably curl. We don’t want that.

To uncurl them, hold each petal at its base, then pull the point out. Don’t be shy! They won’t break. Then grasp each petal on both sides at its widest point. Pull again.

Crochet Bouquet Sunflower after wet-blocking

My Sunflower is crocheted with Aunt Lydia’s No. 10 cotton thread. Here it is, above, with some of the petals pulled out by hand. Still, it needed more. I made it wet, squeezed it out, uncurled and pulled out all the petals by hand, and laid it out to dry (right).

You may want to steam block your sunflower, depending on the yarn you’re using. If the petals are curling stubbornly, pin them out, like Judith did here.

Center Loopy on top of the Sunflower and sew them together.

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Oval Center Rose Tutorial

(This was originally published at Suzann’s Textilefusion, back when Curious and Crafty Readers was having technical difficulties. It really belongs here, so here it is!)

Oval Center Rose from Crochet Bouquet

My cousin Phyllis was paging through Crochet Bouquet, when she saw the Oval Center Rose on pages 28-29. “Is this photographed at an angle, or does it really look like that?” she asked.

Yes, it does! It is photographed straight-on, and it really is oval, like so many of the stylized roses I see on china, tin boxes, and other decorative objects.

crocheted Oval Center Rose

The Oval Center Rose is our crochet along project for May. It starts with a round of single crochet (Photo 1). The lovely pink yarn is Universal Yarns Cotton Supreme.

crocheted Oval Center Rose

The Rose starts going oval in Round 2 (Photo2), with graduated stitch heights. To give the flower a lighter appearance, this round has ch-spaces between the stitches.

crocheted Oval Center Rose

Photo 3 shows the last round of the oval center. The graduated stitch heights make the oval even longer.

crocheted Oval Center Rose

Round 4 (Photo 4) sets up the petals of Round 5. The sc-sts between the ch-loops serve as anchor sts for Round 6.

 crocheted Oval Center Rose

In Photo 5, you see Round 5 finished, except for the final joining ch-st. It is worked around the first sc of Rnd 4 (an anchor st). To do this, take the hook behind your work, insert it under the petal you just finished. Now take the hook in front of the anchor sc, and back to the back under the next petal. Yarn over and draw the loop around the stitch and through the original loop on your hook.

Round 6 is where you add the final ruffly finish, worked in the back loops only. That’s what creates the subtle outline around the stitches of Rnd 5. The first petal is different than the others, so check the instructions.

 crocheted Oval Center Rose

To keep the petals from melding together on this last round, you ch 2, sl st around the anchor stitch, ch 2, between the petals. Sometimes it’s easier to fold the flower at the anchor stitch, and sl st around it from the back, as in Photo 6. The plum circle surrounds the 2nd petal, and the hook is under the anchor stitch, to which the yellow arrow points.

 crocheted Oval Center Rose

At the end of Rnd 6, turn the flower to the back. Find the very first anchor stitch with the sl st around it. Insert your hook under the loops of this sl st, yoh, and complete another sl st. In Photo 7, you’re looking at the back of the rose, and the hook is under the loops of the sl st around the first anchor st. All that’s left to do is finish the final sl st, end off, and weave in the ends.

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