Turn and make a chain

I’ve said it before and i have no doubt i’ll say it again but i love just how versatile crochet is.  You can shoehorn it in anywhere.

This weekend I’m up in Yorkshire and am stopping in on some friends in Leeds on Saturday night.  I went to university there and I will use any excuse I can to visit.   My old housemate and her husband run a bar, well a couple actually because they are brilliant at it, but the one in question is called Sela, and you should all visit if you’re ever in the city.  I may be biased but it’s still an awesome bar with amazing live music and delicious pizza.  They also have a Pizza bus and an Ice-cream van cocktail bar but that is going a little off topic – you can check out their exploits on instagram @selabarleeds

When I told them I was in the area this weekend they cordially invited me to their David Bowie themed night and I can’t wait!

I have a history of fancy dress with these particular friends (we did it quite a lot as students, some of it not entirely intentional!) so I always try to make a bit of an effort.  Earlier in the year, to celebrate the bar’s birthday they had a hip hop night.  I crocheted a giant gold bling chain to go with my outfit.  I’m gutted I didn’t write down the pattern as it took a few remakes but I think it was pretty easy when I got going.  I had a few drinks and gave it away so I couldn’t recreate it either!

This is all I have left to go on!

Well I learned my lesson so decided to write down my efforts this time.

Everybody loves Bowie in one incarnation or another.  I could turn this into a tribute but there are far more informative and entertaining accounts of his life and creative contributions out there than any I could ever write.

I confess, the highlight for me, and maybe it’s my age, might be his performance in Labyrinth

“You remind me of the Babe. 

What babe?  The Babe with the power. 

What power?  The power of voodoo…”

etc.

I like all the Ziggy Stardust stuff and his lyrics were genius, but I think my favourite Bowie song is either Young Americans or Changes… I’m ok with going mainstream over the cool stuff. I have a whole other blog post rattling round in my brain based on a list of reasons I am not cool (it has illustrations and everything).

When I was thinking about a title for this post I got distracted re-writing the lyrics to Changes with crochet related rhymes…

“Turn and make a chain

Ch-ch-ch-ch-chaaaiiiiiin stitches.

Don’t wanna be a knitter, man

Turn and make a chain

Ch-ch-ch-ch-chaaaiiiiiin stitches.

Just gonna have to be a hooker, man

Yarn may change me,

But I can’t trace yarn”

That’s as far as I got.  There’s a reason I’m not a lyricist!

Okay, lets get back on track shall we.

So as an attempt to keep up with the theme, I decided to crochet the iconic Ziggy Stardust lightning bolt to sew onto a vest.  As outfits go it may not be my best but the thought is there.  Back in August I made a pledge not to buy any new clothes for a year so this hand made version was in keeping with this promise.  On a side note, the shopping ban has been surprisingly easy so far.  It is actually very liberating just not bothering to  go into clothes shops.  It’s a whole side of life I just don’t have to think about as much, freeing up brain space for other things.  Plus I do not miss trying on jeans!

Back to the pattern.  It was pretty quick to make (which was a relief as I had left it to this morning to finish) and true to my word, I wrote everything down so I could share it with you here.

Before you start, you should know…

Materials

I used a few yards of orangey peach and turquoise double knit yarn which I had in my stash with a 4mm hook.

DK yarn for Bowie flash

I also used black embroidery thread to sew it onto a vest

Stitch Abbreviations  (in US terms)

ch = chain (don’t start singing again!)

st = stitch

sl st = slip stitch

sc = single crochet

hdc = half double crochet

dc = double crochet

fsc = foundation single crochet you can find tutorials for this on my youtube channel in left handed and right handed options.

sc2tog = single crochet 2 together (insert hook into st, yo, pull up a loop, insert st into next st, yop, pull up a loop, yo, pull through 3 loops).

The pattern is worked in rows back and forth, turning at the end of each row.

The turning chains do not count as stitches.

The numbers in brackets at the end of each row are the number of stitches in that row.

The blue is worked up the left hand side of the flash, as it is facing you, in two sections, the bottom and top.

Okay, lets go

The Pattern 

Using Orange

Row 1: fsc (or ch 2, sc in first ch) (1) Ch1, turn

Row 2: 2 sc in the next st (2) Ch1, turn

Row 3: sc in the next 2 st (2) Ch1, turn

Row 4: 2sc in the next st, sc in next st (3) Ch1, turn

Row 5: sc in the next 3 st (3) Ch1, turn

Row 6: sc in the next 3 st (3) Ch1, turn

Row 7: sc in the next 2 st, 2sc in the next st (4) Ch 1, turn

Row 8: sc in the next 4 st (4) Ch1, turn

Row 9: sc in the next 4 st (4) Ch1, turn

Row 10: 2 sc in the next st, sc in the next 3 st (5) Ch1, turn

Row 11: sc in the next 5 st (5) Ch1, turn

Row 12: sc in the next 5 st (5) Ch1, turn

Row 13: sc in the next 5 st (5) Ch1, turn

Row 14: 2sc in the next st, sc in the next 4 st (6) Ch2, turn

Row 15: dc in the next 3 st, hdc in the next 3 st then work 6 fsc.  If you do not use fsc, chain 7 and start the next row in the second chain from the hook (12) Ch1, turn

Row 16: sc in the next 6 st, hdc in the next 3 st, dc in the next 3 st (12) Ch2, turn

Row 17: dc in the next 2 st, hdc in the next 2 st, sc in the next 8 st (12) Ch1, turn

Row 18: sc2tog, sc in the next 5 st, 2sc in the next st, hdc in the next 2 st, dc in the next 2 st (12) Ch2, turn

Row 19: dc, hdc in the next 3 st, sc in the next 8 st (12) Ch1, turn

Row 20: sc2tog, sc in the next 5 st, 2sc in the next st (8) Ch1, turn

Row 21: sc in the next 8 st (8) Ch1 turn

Row 22 – 33:  Repeat rows 20-21 6 times

IMG_1773

Fasten off

Adding the blue

Bottom section

Use blue

Row 1: Starting on the left (when facing you) of the bottom section, sl st up the side working 16 sl st (16) Ch2, turn

IMG_1790

Row 2: hdc in the next 5 sl st, sc in the next 5 sl st, sl st in the next 6 sl st (16)

Bowie inspired flash by doradoes.co.uk

Fasten off

Top section

Use blue

Row 1: Starting at the bottom left (when facing you) of the top section, sl st up the side, working 19 st (19) Ch2, turn

Row 2: hdc in the next 8 sl st, sc in the next 5 sl st, sl st in the next 6 sl st (19)

img_1796

Fasten off

You can either sew in the ends as I did or use them to attach the flash to whatever you may be embellishing.  I used black embroidery thread to attach mine to a black vest, working along the line between blue and orange.  My poor sewing skills made themselves known once again as I initially sewed both sides of the vest together and on the second time around I sewed it to the back, but I’m pretty sure Bowie wouldn’t object to wearing clothes backwards so I’ll style it out!

IMG_1802

I’ll post a final picture on my next blog (I don’t want to completely spoil the outfit surprise) when I tell you about what else I’m up to in Yorkshire this weekend (it’s very exciting!)

Before I go I have to share my favourite YouTube video involving Bowie.  For some unknown reason he and Mick Jagger did a hideous (imo) cover of ‘Dancing in the street’ (I loved the original) and there is this very clever person on the internet who takes music videos, removes the singing and adds helpful sound effects.

If you ever need to laugh until you cry, please watch this!

Still makes me giggle like a child!

I’m off to pack my bag now.

Happy Hooking

Dx

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