Wednesday, 10 May 2017

A Box of Crochet Vegetables



This has, without a doubt, been one of my favourite crochet projects ever. After two quite repetitive, long term crochet projects - the blanket and the cardigan - I really enjoyed the variety of colour and pattern these vegetables offered, and the fact that you could start and finish one in an evening or two.


I enjoyed every part of it: choosing the patterns, deciding which shade or colour yarn would work best, the crocheting, watching the vegetable take shape when stuffed, adding the leaves. 


And then, as each one was finished, arranging one of my creations with the real thing and taking a photo. So much fun. (Also - visits to our local greengrocer and our consumption vegetables increased too, both of which are good things.)


I made these for the Year R* class in the school I work in. I've always wanted to crochet some food but Bella and Angus are too old for toys like play food now, so there seemed little point. But after a chat with my teacher friends, I realised I could find a good reason to crochet a radish and use up some of my huge bag of cotton yarn scraps. Win-win. These vegetables now live in the Home Corner, where they will no doubt be soon be covered in snot, paint and grubby fingerprints, as they rightly should be, but the cotton yarn and acrylic stuffing should make them easy to clean. 


I made eight in total, enough to fill a box but not too many. I could've gone on and on - pumpkins, courgettes, corn-on-the-cob - but restrained myself. I tried to stick to vegetables that the children would be familiar with and recognise immediately, like carrots, onions, potatoes and tomatoes, whereas the radish and beetroot just pleased me immensely with all their frilly leaves. 


For about a week after I finished them I arranged them on the shelf in the dining room and just enjoyed looking at them every day. They are so tactile and wonderful to handle, and I love the colours. I will definitely make some more for myself, just to have around the house, to use as decoration.


I don't think there always needs to be a reason to crochet something like this. When I think how much pleasure I got from working on this, how much fun it was just to play with the colours and textures, I think that's reason enough.

*


The patterns are all from a brilliant American e-book I found on Amazon called Crochet Food. 35 Crochet Patterns of Fruits and Vegetables.

All yarn is cotton DK - mercerised and unmercerised- in various brands I've collected over the years, crocheted on a 3mm hook.

I did amend a few patterns in places, adding or removing rows or changing colours to make the vegetable more like what we'd see in a British supermarket.


* Year R, or "Reception", is the first year in the British school system. Children start the September after their fourth birthday. It is more similar to what other countries might call Kindergarten than the kind of education that starts when they enter Year One. 

25 comments:

CJ said...

I particularly love the potato, it's the dimpliness of it I think. And the radish, the radish is very good. Don't hold back, do them all, they really are brilliant. CJ xx

VeggieMummy said...

I definitely think that another set is in order. I'm amazed at how realistic they all are. Well done you; I'm sure the children will have hours of fun with them. xx

Mac n' Janet said...

Love them, so I went to Amazon to get the book. I have no little kids at home and I don't teach anymore, but I have to make these.

Jennifer Hays said...

So cute! They came out really well. You're such a sweetheart to make them for the children, who will love playing with them.

connie said...

I'm just loving these vegetables...

Gracie Saylor said...

I love your project and your presentation of it, Gillian! Thanks for sharing. xx

mrsrobinson said...

These veg are so sweet and colourful! Love the photographs...

Katie said...

Oh do keep doing, I'd love to see sweetcorn! The are just fabulous. I can't help but wonder if you have a favourite?! x

Anonymous said...

I've loved seeing these appear on Instagram. They're so fabulous! And your photos are guaranteed to make people smile. I'm sure the year R kiddies will love them. Sam x

Life With The Crew said...

It is really sweet of you Gillian to donate those veggies (and all of your time that it took) to the school - even if it sounds like it was an enjoyable experience. I'm sure the kids will love them!

Attic24 said...

These are utterly captivating and have been shared countless times in my Coopers creative group (we've been following your progress via IG!)! xxxxxxx

Attic24 said...

I meant to say - sometimes just making things for the pure joy of colour and creativity is a thrill in itself and should be done more often (I tend to make mandalas to fill this need) - fabulous in every way xx

Kate Wheatley said...

the beet is my favourite:)

Lisa said...

They are gorgeous! I might have to make some for my nursery class. But I might cry if I find them in the water tray out buried in the sand pit...

Joy Davis said...

These are so glorious and so love the way you have presented them...can you do fruit next? (I know Tomato is a fruit :) )

Anonymous said...

I love all of these, but I think the potato is my favorite. The "eyes" are such a fun detail!

Louise said...

These are brilliant! You've done a great job and I bet they look wonderful in the role play corner!

HooksandNeedles said...

I love them all, but I think the aubergine looks particularly brilliant. They seem to be in short supply in the shops. Having helped and worked in Reception as a student (mature - OU student), I know they'll love them. Sweetcorn would be great I think. We used sweetcorn once in the EYFS curriculum as it covered so much, the language to described taste - sweet etc and the varieties eg tinned, dried kernals, pop corn - I took in my popcorn maker which went down well. Memmories. Cathy x

Anonymous said...

Hi Gillian - just had to comment on how lovely your vegetables are - my favourites are the radish, beetroot and tomato - you must have had a great deal of fun doing these if I could crotchet I would be tempted to have a go.

Susan Smith said...

Wow, some are very close to the original & except for their texture could be mistaken for the real thing. Well done & hope the children entering the school get a lot of enjoyment from them. Take care.

galant said...

They are delightful, Gillian! As you say, a fun thing to do and there's nothing wrong with having some fun! The colours stand out against your dark grey wall, I think they make a lovely and unusual arrangement. I love the beetroot the best of all!
Margaret P
www.margaretpowling.com

Clicky Needles said...

Your pleasure will carry on when two small children discuss the vegetables when they are playing shops, and then they'll drop them on the floor and stand on them! Quite right too. I love the aubergine, the colour is stunning. CN x

Curvywitch said...

Fabulous! They look wonderful. Now off to Amazon to track down that book.

Jo said...

A very kind donation of your special skill. Jo x

Liana said...

Such a wonderful harvest!