Sugar and Spice, and All Things Nice!
If you, like me, are mad for crochet, the thought of colour is never very far away! Inspiration can strike at any moment, which is what happened to me last week, in an old fashioned sweetie shop….
Surrounded by sherbert lemons, cherry drops, sugared almonds and rock candy – I suddenly longed to make a blanket in sweetie colours! The rainbow of this colour palette takes me flying back to my childhood; zingy fruit drops, lemonade crystals, bobbly licorice and jars of humbugs, aniseed balls and pineapple chunks!
1. Vintage Sweet Shop
Muted pastel pinks, lemons, leaf greens and deep cherry reds are what is called for in a vintage sweetie palette. Rooster Yarns are particularly good at these retro shades, and Rooster Almerino Aran has perfect vintage colours that paint rainbows of nostalgia!
Rooster Almerino Aran is a 50/50 blend of merino wool and alpaca, a super soft, hardwearing yarn that will crochet into something fabulously vintage like a granny blanket or V-stitch cushion. I love all 24 shades, but I’ve chosen (clockwise) Smoothie (324), Custard (305), Gooseberry (306), Cherry (313) and Sandcastle (322). These colours will send you spinning into a world of Agatha Christie and Hercule Poirot – crochet a blanket that you can curl up with in the garden, or fold lovingly at the end of a bed.
2. Neon crazy!
If you have a more modern candy craving, you’ll be bouncing up and down with neon brights!
To recreate this jazzy colour scheme, I’m heading straight for Stylecraft Special DK! With over 60 shades to choose from, this is the kind of palette that works fantastically well as a V-stitch, granny or half treble stripe. Not for the faint-hearted, I chose (clockwise), Fiesta (1257), Bright Green (1259), Aspen (1422), Sunshine (1114), Jaffa (1256) and Magenta (1084). A simple grey like Silver (1203) makes a border that would bring the colours popping out – or if you look at the candy stick at the bottom of the photo above, a deep purple does the job too!
3. Sugared pastels
Perhaps my favourite – sugared pastels are the gentlest sweetie colour theme of all. Sugared almonds are often given as wedding favours – from the age old Italian tradition of giving the happy couple five almonds for fertility, longevity, wealth, health and happiness. These days you can find them in any shade under the sun, including gloriously shiny gold and silver – but purists stick to pastels!
Where better to look for a selection of pastels than the fabulous Debbie Bliss Cashmerino Aran collection. It’s a best selling yarn for good reason – a blend of wool, cashmere and acrylic, it has luscious softness, a gorgeous weight and drape and it’s perfect for any aran weight project. I love the thought of dreamy ripple blankets for babies in this delicious yarn – who could resist sleep tucked up in those colours?
Above clockwise, Silver (202), Ecru (101), Baby Pink (603), Willow (076), Heather (046) and Primrose (074). These stunning pastels cry out for something more decorative than a stripe – Cashmerino Aran has gorgeous stitch definition, so think granny squares with puff stitch flower centres, or something more textural, using bobbles, trellis or popcorn stitches.
I have to confess – I had a moment of unfaithfulness when choosing those beautiful pastels, when I fell in love with this quartet of loveliness from crochet goddess Erika Knight. Erika Knight Vintage Wool is an aran weight 100% British wool yarn, spun in Yorkshire. Not quite pastels but muted jewels – perhaps a more grown up sugared almond blanket palette? These are (from left to right), Flax (002), Iced Gem (041), Pretty (042) and Wisteria (011). How could anyone resist the sultry sleepiness of these fathomless shades?
4. Citrus burst
Now that I’ve lulled you into a pastel dream, I’m going to shake you awake with some citrus brights! Who loves Sherbert Lemons? A very classic English sweet, the Sherbert Lemon is an eye wateringly sharp lemon boiled sweet with a sherbert centre. Delicious!
But where do we go from there? I thought perhaps an ombré from super sharp lemon to that fizzy white sherbert? This is quite difficult to find all in one yarn, but I’ve managed it! The fabulous Cascade 220 is an aran weight, 100% Peruvian Highland wool yarn, perfect for long lasting heirloom crochet projects. Cascade are famous for their signature palette, and you could choose any colour to ombré, and find three or four shades of that colour to work with. Here I’ve chosen (from left to right) Goldenrod (7827), Lemon Yellow (4147), Butter (8687) and Natural (8010).
Either create ombré squares or circles, or intertwine for hints of lemon and sherbert throughout a striped sequence – the choice is yours but it’ll certainly be a fantastic finished blanket or cushion!
What are your favourite sweets or candies? Why not are create a new colour theme around them!
We’d love to see your results in our brand new Projects section, where you can inspire other crochet fans, and share your ideas!