Friday, May 5, 2017

Crochet Charity Toy Drive - Square Bear Luvie FREE Pattern

Have you been following along with the Crochet Charity Drive Forum group on Facebook?  If you have, you now have a ton of patterns at your disposal to make and donate to the charities of your choice.  If you are just tuning in and haven't heard of Crochet Charity Drive, you can hop over to the group on Facebook and see all that you've missed.  A big THANK YOU to Sonya over at Blackstone Designs for organizing these events.

The last event was a Crochet Charity Scarf Drive, and I designed this Partially Plush Scarf to make and donate to the homeless community in our area.  You can read more about that in the blog post here.

Right now, the Crochet Charity Drive is focused on toys.  There have been toys of all kinds designed specifically for this event, and there are just a couple weeks left of this event, so be sure to join the group so you don't miss out!  The next design headed your way will be from Sincerely, Pam.  You'll find it on her blog next Friday.  I can't wait to see what she comes up with!  And, did you see this SUPER cute Stuffed Crust Pizza Amigurumi (in Pepperoni and Veggi versions, of course!) from Amber at Devine Debris???

This week, I've got a super soft luvie for you made out of plush blanket yarn.  Square Bear works up super quick (thank you super bulky Bernat Blanket Yarn), so you'll be able to easily work up several over the weekend and deliver them to the charity of your choice.  These would be great for the pediatric unit of your local hospital or your local nursing home.

You can purchase a PDF version of the pattern for $1.00 on Ravelry or follow along below.  Below is just the luvie using Blanket yarn.  The PDF also includes instructions for using any yarn you choose as well as making a playmat/blanket version of the Square Bear.

Before we get to the pattern, let's take care of a little housekeeping.  ***This pattern and the photos within it are property of Little Luvies Shop.  Do not copy or share any portion of the pattern.  If you'd like to share this pattern, please share the link to this blog post or the link to the Ravelry pattern.*** that we have that out of the way, let's get to the good stuff.  :)

For this pattern, you will need:
-Approx. 150 yards (about 1 1/2 5.3oz skeins) of Bernat Blanket yarn or similar #6 Super Bulky weight yarn
-M/9.00MM Crochet Hook
-yarn needle with an eye big enough to thread the plush yarn through
-embellishments as desired

A few notes:
-Stuffing bears with polyfil is not suggested.  The filling will come out between the stitches and become a choking hazard for little ones.  If you wish to stuff your bear, make a fabric casing the same size as the finished bear and stuff that.  Insert it between the layers during the joining process.
-If facial features are desired, stitch or embroider them on the bear before joining.  Do not use buttons or other objects that could fall off and become choking hazards.

If you've ever made a granny square in your life, you should have no problem making this bear.  It's really as easy as making a bunch of squares and stitching them together.  If you've never made a granny square, now is the time to learn, and this is the perfect pattern to practice on.

We are going to make 12 squares.  In my sample above, I used Vintage White to make 4 of my squares and Light Teal to make the other 8 squares (and the ears).  You can use all one color or make each square a different color if you'd like.

So, put your chosen color of yarn on your hook and let's make some squares!

Abbreviations used:
ch - chain
st(s) - stitch(es)
sp(s) - space(s)
sl st - slip stitch
dc - double crochet
sc - single crochet

R1: ch 4 (counts as a dc and ch), dc 2 in the 4th ch from hook (this is where all of your dc will be worked for this round), ch 1.
  *dc 3, ch 1*
  repeat from * to * two more times
  join with sl st to the top of the beginning ch4 (12 dc - 3 on each side)

R2: ch 3 (counts as a dc), dc in each of the next two dc
  *[dc 2, ch 1, dc 2] in the next ch1 sp*,
  dc in each remaining dc around and work * to * in each corner ch1 sp (28 dc - 7 on each side)
  fasten off, weave in ends, set square aside

Repeat R1 and R2 until all 12 squares are complete.

Every bear needs ears, right?  And, since you are technically making two bears and joining them together, you'll need four ears.

R1: ch 4 (counts as a dc and ch), dc 7 in 4th ch from hook, turn (8 dc)

R2: ch 3 (counts as a dc), dc in same st as ch, dc 2 in each remaining dc - including beginning ch3 (16 dc)
  fasten off, weave in ends, set aside

Repeat R1 and R2 until all 4 ear pieces are complete.

Joining the pieces is probably the hardest part, and it's fairly simple.  And, to make it even easier, I've included step-by-step photos for you.  Pardon my yarn tails...I opted to save the weaving for last in this sample.

Remember how I told you I made four squares in one color and the other 8 a different color?  Well, looking at my finished sample bear, you can see that the belly and head of the bear are one color and the legs and arms are the other.  Because I have no way of knowing how you've chosen to do your bear, to eliminate confusion on the joining process, the head and belly pieces are going to be called CB and the arms and legs pieces are going to be called CA.

Step 1:  Hold a CB and CA square together so that the right sides are touching.  The CB square should be facing you and the CA square should be facing away from you.

Step 2:  With yarn on your hook, and being sure to go through the stitches of both squares, sl st across one side edge starting in the corner ch1 sp and ending in the next corner ch1 sp.  DO NOT fasten off.

Step 3:  Hold the same CB square and a new CA square together and sl st across the next side edge, starting in the same corner ch1 sp you ended on in Step 2 and ending in the next corner ch1 sp.  DO NOT fasten off.

Step 4:  Repeat Step 3 two more times.  If done properly, you should have something that looks like a + symbol.  Fasten off, weave in ends.  This is your bears belly, arms and legs.

Step 5: Join a CB square between two CA squares to add the head.  Start at the outer most corner where the head and arm meet working toward the center where both arms and belly are all connected and then to the other outer most corner where the head and other arm meet.  DO NOT fasten off.

Step 6:  Continuing around the CB head square, join the ears by sl st.  There are no stitches to work in on the flat edge of the ears, so make sure you are working across them evenly so that they are secure and not in danger of coming loose from the bear while being played with, chewed on and cuddled with.  Fasten off, weave in ends.

Step 7:  Repeat steps 1-6 with remaining squares.

Step 8:  With wrong sides facing, stack your bears one on top of the other.  With yarn on your hook, sc evenly around the entire bear, being sure to work through both layers, to create one plush bear luvie suitable for even the tiniest of babies or the oldest of adults.

Step 9 (optional):  Add any desired embellishments...crocheted bows between the ears for girl bears or at the chin for boy bears, or baby's initial, a paci clip, or wooden or plastic rings for sensory play and chewing...your imagination is the limit.  Just be mindful of the age of the child the bear is being donated to.

If you've made it this far, I have a little treat for you.  Now through May 13, 2017, save 50% when you spend $10 or more in my Ravelry store when you use coupon code BLOGGER5 at checkout.  Just add $10 worth (or more) of my patterns to your cart, at checkout, use this coupon code and 50% will be taken off of your balance due.  Use the code as many times as you want until 5/13.

When you've finished, you should have something similar to one of these:

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