Just in case you didn't know!
I love rainbow colours; either the authentic seven, in the right order of the spectrum, or stretched to encompass more shades and not in the right order at all, but with the same sweep and variety of colour that sings through rain-clouds and darkness, (literal or metaphorical).
Trouble is I've found that rainbow colours, as one gets older, somehow seem less easy to integrate into clothing, or home decoration without being a bit over the top, in my hands anyway. But every so often a little rainbow opportunity presents itself and when it does, it's lovely to go for it.
Wandering along the highways and byways of the Internet, (as you do when you have a tricky piece of work to write and feel that a change of screen-scene might help productivity!), I found a fabulous rainbow crocheted nightdress-case. Even better, I found a tutorial for how to make it. Have a look at Oran's post about it here on her blog, Misty Mountain. All thoughts of my tricky piece of work were immediately temporarily shelved and the pages of the tutorial were printing and a little rainbow-coloured-stash-gathering seemed suddenly and pressingly urgent before you could finish saying "crock of gold".
The original is made up in thinner yarn than I usually use, in the most fabulous colours. As luck would have it, a bit of delving around in my various bags and boxes, turned up quite a few colours in the right weight and a teensy weensy purchase was made to complete a full spectrum - sixteen colours in total. Just looking at the yarn was a treat and hooking every single row was a delight.
I followed the pattern for the front of the case pretty much as per Oran's instructions although I used a slightly different range of colours and I distributed them a bit differently. But the lovely thing with this pattern is that it invites you to do just that and of course you can adjust the sizing etc too if you want. The original size is perfect for a nightdress case but, as Oran's tutorial shows, you can easily adapt it to make a Kindle or iPad cover. The flap in Oran's original, is part of a complete circle that sits over the back and front of the case but I just made a semi-circle which I hooked into the top edge of the back panel.
A little bit tricky to work out how to anchor each row in the right place but I got there in the end (after a bit of trial and error!).
I've lined the case with some leftover, pale, blue lining fabric and, instead of flowers, I added a decorative button, which also functions to secure the flap neatly in place on the front.
There's a great tutorial for this in Mollie Makes, Issue 23.
You use any old button as the base and just crochet a cover over the top. You do need to use a really thin hook and very fine yarn, though, or the effect is a bit clumsy and clunky. And a convex button makes a better base than a flat or concave one. I used a 2mm hook and some green No 3 DMC Crochet Thread.
Once covered, you can add a little embroidery. I added a few French knots in different colours, and then a few more!
I love it - it's unusual, decorative and functional. Unique to boot, as well as giving a new lease of life to a has-been, old button that has seen better days.
I think the button, in fact, came off a 1960s raincoat belonging to my grandmother. Don't know what that black mark is but it certainly renders the button unusable in the normal way. But with a nice green crochet cover, it's a different story!
Although the rainbow range of colours is a bit different from those in my first-ever crochet blanket, somehow it works OK with it.
And, perched on my pillow, it lifts my spirits every bedtime.
I recommend this as a therapeutic project for the soul!
Had a bad day? Cat been sick? Teenage angst and pre-exam tension filling the air and whatever you do or say is "wrong" because you're a parent and parents are always wrong? Work gone pear-shaped and stressing you up to the nines, even though you should have put it down several hours ago? Feeling too tired even to bother getting into bed and you might just fall asleep on your feet? Any, or all, of the above will seem less bad with this on your pillow! Trust me! I've tried it!
So thank you so much Oran for your beautifully clear tutorial and for sharing your wonderful inspiration!
Wishing you all crocks of yarn at the foot of your own particular rainbows and happy hooking!
PS Apologies for including so many pics - I got a bit carried away, I am afraid, but I love the brightness and cheerfulness of them so much that I am leaving them in. Scroll through them quickly, if they're too much!