The "Samantha" Block - Mother's Garden Afghan - new crochet pattern

I used to avoid granny squares like they were the plague. I could not imagine why anyone would want to weave in all those color changes, or hand stitch all those blocks together. Then one day, I found myself with an abundance of random yarn and a sweet request from the Mr. to please use what I had before I tried to hide anymore skeins in the cupboards.


The resulting granny square afghan made me giddy, and the color changes and weaving of ends wasn't nearly as tedious as I had always believed. It inspired me to design my own granny square type blanket! The Mother's Garden Afghan would look amazing in a single color, or multi-colored (both planned colorway or scrappy).


I'm only releasing the pattern one block at a time, I won't even share pictures! Each block is named after one of my children. Four kids equals 8 blocks. There's more to the afghan but I don't want to give away the surprise!


Feel free to use the pattern directly from the blog, or you can purchase a downloadable, printable pdf directly from our shop.


It's my first pattern! So please be gentle!


My pattern testers let me know, that even though this pattern is pretty easy, the placement of the stitches is tricky to explain using just words, so I worked up a video tutorial to go with the pattern.




The “Samantha” Block

This pattern uses US terminology.

Stitches used:

SC – single crochet

HDC – half-double crochet

DC – double crochet

TC – treble crochet

SL ST – slip stitch

PUFF – 4 HDC’s in same stitch. ( YO insert hook, YO and pull up loop. Repeat 3 more times. You should have 9 loops on your hook. YO and pull through all 9 loops.)

Closing the Puff – YO and pull through loop to securely pull all loops together. Does NOT count as a chain.

Materials:

For the images in this pattern, I used an Aran (size 4) weight yarn with a Size K, 6.5 mm, hook. Since this is a “granny” type square, you can work this up in any size yarn with the appropriate sized hook provided you maintain that weight and hook throughout the entire project.

Row 1: ch 2, * create one puff in ring, close the puff *, then chain 1. Repeat pattern, placing one chain in between each, until you have 6 puffsand 5 chains. Do not make the last chain. At this point your row should have puff, close, chain, puff, close, chain, puff, close, chain, puff, close, chain, puff, close, chain, puff, close. Normally, you would chain one and then slip stitch to close off the row. YOu need the beginning of our next row to be in the middle of a chain space. You will accomplish this by making a single crochet into the “close the puff” stitch on your first puff. (Insert your hook into the “close the puff” stitch, yo and draw up a loop, yo and pull through both loops) You are now ready to start row 2!


Row 2: ch 3, slip stitch into the space between the first and second puff. Continue to * ch 3, slip into next space * until you have 6 ch 3 “loops”. NOTE: your final slip stitch will be made into the sc stitch from the end of row 1.

Each space between the puffs, has now been split into two halves, one on each side of the slip stitch. In the next row, you will be folding the chain 3 loops to the front (and out of the way) and placing stitches in the spaces on either side of the slip stitches.

Row 3:For this row, you will be putting 3DC’s in every “half-space”. Begin by chaining 2, this counts as your first DC, put 2 more DC’s into the space before the puff. In the next space (after the next puff, and before the slip stitch) you’ll place 3 more DC’s. The next set of 3DC’s goes after the slip stitch and before the next puff. Continue in this way until you have placed 3DC’s in the space after the last puff and before the starting slip stitch. You should have a total of 36 DC’s. Close this row by putting a sl st in the top of the ch 2 “DC”.




Row 4:ch2 (this does not count as a stitch, it’s merely moving you up to the next row). Place a Puff stitch in the same stitch as your chain. Close puff. *Ch1, skip next stitch, puff in the next stitch, close puff. * Repeat until there is one stitch left. Close the row as you did in Row 1, by placing a SC in the stitch that closed your first puff. (Remember, this is to place your starting loop in the middle of the space rather than over your first puff.) You should have 18 puffs.

I have separated the next row into three parts, A, B, and C. Row 5A creates the loops to build your petals upon. Row 5B creates the petals. Row 5C builds the square up behind the petals and lays the foundation for Row 6.

Row 5A: ch4, sl st into the next space (between puffs as you did in Row 1). Continue around and close the row by putting your last sl st into the sc that ended the previous row. (18 ch4 loops)


Row 5B: In the first loop, work the following pattern * SC, HDC, 3DC, HDC, DC * , sl st into the sl st from 5A. Repeat for each loop creating 18 petals.



Row 5C: This row will be worked similarly to Row 3, in that we will be ignoring the petals and working in the “half spaces” between the puff stitches and the slip stitches. Ch2 (does not count as a DC). Work 2DC in space between the start of the petal (the slip stitch) and the first puff. Work 2DC’s into the space after the puff, but before the end of the petal. Repeat around and sl st into the top of the first DC to close the row. (72 DCS)




Row 6: This row turns your circle into a square. Ch 1, SC in same stitch, 2SC, 3HDC, 2DC, 2TC in same stitch, * ch 2, 2TC in same stitch, 2 DC, 3HDC, 6SC, 3HDC, 2DC, 2TC in the same stitch. * Repeat pattern in ** two more times. Ch2, 2TC in the same stitch, 2DC, 3HDC, 3SC, sl st to top of first SC to close the row.




Row 7: You will be beginning the last two rows in the middle of one side of your square. Ch1, HDC in each stitch (including the one with the ch1), place the following pattern in each ch2 corner space

* 2HDC, ch2, 2HDC *. Close row with a sl st into the top of the first HDC. (Total of 8 chains – 2 per corner – and 96 HDC’s, 24 on each side).




Row 8: Repeat Row 7. You will have a total of 8 ch stitches (2 in each corner) and 112 HDC’s, 28 on each side. Close row with a sl st into the top of your first HDC. Cut yarn and tie off in your preferred manner.



The Samantha Block will need to be gently blocked before assembling them into a project. Block method will depend greatly on fiber content of your yarn.


While testing the pattern, I worked the block up in multiple colors and in a variegated yarn.



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