My students sometimes give me homework. I know that it should be the other way around. I should be the one giving out assignments. I’ll need to work on that.
One of my assignments this week (yes I had more than one, lol) was to figure out how recreate this:
Its a little crochet butterfly. There are lots of ways to make crochet butterflies. But this one is made in the round as a big ruffle thing.
Then its folded into the butterfly shape. Pretty neat right?
A student of mine, who has been learning to knit, made this many years ago. She can’t remember how she did it. She says an old lady showed her how. And by ‘showed’ I mean the old lady sat right next to her and said ” now chain x….now do x many double crochets….” So of course years later she has no idea how to make another one.
That was my assignment, take the ruffle thing and figure out how it was made so I can teach it to her. My students know I can’t resist a challenge. They also know I love to rescue old patterns. They take advantage of me and my weaknesses and manipulate me into spending all my free time playing with yarn. My life is hard I tell ya.
The piece, the ruffle/butterfly, has no weaved in ends. The ends are just knotted. I couldn’t rip out because it could never be remade. I had to copy what I could see. The stitches themselves were easy to work out but the joins between rounds and the number of chains to make the loops and spaces… well for that I had to make some guesses.
The first attempt did not go well. You don’t get to see that. Suffice it to say that I fail at counting. I used to think I was pretty good at counting; I distinctly remember a first grade teacher complementing me on my ability. But when I have a crochet hook in my hand I loose all ability to count. Its like a medical condition or something.
The second attempt went better. But the joins were rough and my loop/chain spaces were too big. The bugger wouldn’t lay flat.
By this time in the reverse engineering process it was getting late in the evening and I’ll admit to feeling a little frustrated. There are about two zillion ways to make crochet butterflies and I know at least three of them. I don’t need to figure out ruffle butterflies. I really don’t. Yet a challenge is a challenge and I think all crafters have a tough time walking away from them.
So I grabbed some purple yarn to put me in a better mood (I love purple) and set at it again. Attempt number three went better.
Its not perfect but I think the basic structure is there. Here is how I made mine:
The Ruffle Butterfly
Yarn: about 10 g (25 yds) of any worsted weight yarn
Hook: size F (3.75 mm)
Ch 8. Join with Sl st to from a ring
Rnd 1: ch 3 (counts as a dc), 2dc, ch 3, *3dc, ch3* 7 more times. Join with a Sl st in the top of the first ch3 made this rnd (should have 8 ch3 spaces)
Rnd 2: into each ch3 space from Rnd 1 do this: 3dc, ch5, 3dc. Join with Sl st to top of first dc made this rnd (should have 8 ch5 spaces)
Rnd 3: ch1 (counts as a sc), ch1, *put 9 dc in the ch5 space, ch1, sc in the 4th dc from the hook, ch 1* 8 times. Join with Sl st to first ch1 made this rnd.
Cut and weave in ends
Maybe someone out there will recognize it? The pattern or the method? I’m also curious if there are other shapes that can be made this way (with big awkward ruffles that magically fold into something cute). If you can shed any light, please feel free to leave a comment.
And if not, at least I know that the world now has two zillion and one ways to make crochet butterflies. I do love rescuing old patterns and putting them back into circulation.