Snowflake fun

As promised here is a separate blog post about the snowflake fun I have been having.

It started in a strange way, all at once three sets of people I am involved with starting talking about doing crochet snowflakes for different projects this year.

Not have the biggest budget in the world I went onto the internet for some inspiration and came across some amazing resources, wonderful crochet designers willing to share their patterns with the world.

I love Snowcatcher her patterns are amazing, she posts them for free but does ask for donations for her MS fundraising which is worth every penny.

I also love Sally V. Georges Patterns, again beautifully written and easy to crochet snowflakes on a smaller scale.

Ira Rott also has a lovely little collection too.

But my absolute favourite is this one from Rainbow Gallery, it produces the most beautiful sturdy snowflake that blocks and stiffens really well.

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When they are first crocheted they don’t look much, the magic happens after they are blocked, you can get lots of hints and tips here I especially found the free printable snowflake blocking diagram useful.

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There are several stiffeners you can use, I have used watered down PVA before and found it really messy and left the wool looking very plasticy. So I decided to experiment with Epsom Salts, I had read about it on a few tatters forums but was a bit concerned as I have been working these snowflakes in DK acrylic so are quite large that it wouldn’t be strong enough but as I didn’t fancy starching and ironing acrylic I thought I had nothing to lose.

There were a difference of opinions on the quantities to use so I went with equal quantities salt to Boiling water, I put them into a jam jar so I could shake the mixture and store it easily.

The first snowflake I tried I dipped the snowflake in the mixture and pinned it out, it came out ok but not quite as stiff as I would have liked so the next one I put into soak in the mixture for about an hour which definitely seemed to help.

I also found the drying time a bit deceptive as on some forums said that the snowflakes were drying quicker than they could pin them out, I can honestly say in the UK winter this is not the case, they take a few hours, and you have to make sure that they are completely dry as the underside can still be damp if the top is dry. I did manage on a couple to slide a few snowflakes flat onto the table as they were holding their blocked shape but still a little damp. so I could use the blocking boards more quickly.

I love the finished results, in fact I love them so much I have run out of white twinkly yarn and am having to do a few in pale green/turquoise.

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