Celebrate America’s Birthday!

American Flag

Happy Independence Day everyone!  I’m sure you’re all getting ready for a long weekend of bar-be-ques, water fun, and fireworks.  Maybe camping is on your list, or it’s hanging out by the pool.  Here at home, I’m looking into what’s planned in our little Ohio town.  This will be our first, and possibly only, 4th of July here before it’s time to move again, and it’s always interesting to see what the local communities have going on.

It just so happens that Independence Day is my favorite holiday.  I know, there are other holidays that are pretty great; in fact, my local Hobby Lobby is already stocking their shelves with ornaments, garland and more for one such holiday.  But, I truly LOVE celebrating the 4th of July. It could be because I majored in American History back in college, or possibly because I am really proud to be an American.  My parents would argue that, as a kid, I loved this holiday because it marks one week before my birthday…and they might be right!  No matter what the reason, I look forward to celebrating every year.

This week, I’ve worked up a couple of simple patterns that are easy to do while relaxing at home or away, and, with the right yarn choices, can help brighten the festivities.  I hope you enjoy these three free patterns!  You’ll find the link to each on the pattern title, or you can go to my Patterns page.

Reusable, Earth-Friendly Water Balloons

I love the idea of these super fun, eco-friendly water balloons!  They are made from super soft Bernat Blanket yarn, which is also super absorbent.  It’s a great combination for the perfect water balloon fight.  Whip these up in the same amount of time it takes to fill and tie regular water balloons, soak them in a bucket of water, and you’re ready to go!  You can get 2-3 tosses from each balloon before needing to re-soak.  And care is super easy…just wash on cold and lay flat to dry.

For the yarn, I chose Bernat Blanket Brights in these colors:

There are several good patterns for crocheted water balloons, and after trying a couple, I decided to create my own.  I wanted a product that would be small enough for the hands of little ones while still offering enough “splat”.  This size is great, and let me tell you, my Golden Retriever loves them!  You can find my free pattern here.


Reusable, Earth-Friendly Water "Balloons"
Violet Balloon Pic
Waffle Stitch Wash Cloths

Waffle Stitch Wash Cloths

Are you heading out to visit family or friends this Independence Day? These cotton wash cloths are a quick and easy project that would make a great host gift.  They would also add some color and texture to your own kitchen, or even function as trivets for your 4th of July table.  I’ve crocheted numerous blankets using this modified waffle stitch.  What I love most is that with this pattern there is no right or wrong side to the project. There is equal “waffle” on both sides!

I used Premier Yarns Premier Home Cotton in AmericaCranberry, Navy, and White. This yarn was a pleasure to work with, and it holds up well. Mine will be on display for our afternoon bar-be-que!

Pretty Patriotic Shawl

I’ll be the first to admit, I have a hard time with boucle yarns.  Don’t get me wrong…I love them, really I do.  I easily have at least 2-3 blankets worth of boucle yarn in my stash.  Their soft, fluffy texture makes my hands happy.  But, I often lose stitches in the “boucle-ness”, so it’s easy for me to give up or choose a different yarn.  I do have a really great Infinity Cowl pattern (look for that in a future post) that is open and airy, and I really like using the lightweight Buttercream Rainbow Boucle for that.  One day, while I was was walking around the yarn section of my local Joann store, I saw and fell in love with the America colorway.  I just knew I had to find a way to make it work.

Once I was home, I sat down at my then current WIP, a corner to corner R2D2 blanket, and it hit me!  I’d read somewhere about a variation on the C2C that made it a bit more “lacy”, and I knew that I could make a nice patriotic shawl to wear while watching the fireworks.  It was my very first shawl, and I really love it!  I hope you enjoy making it, too.

Americana Shawl 1

I hope you’ll have a chance to try one, two, or even all three of these fun patterns while you are relaxing this holiday weekend.  Please let me know what you think and how your own project works out.  And don’t forget to sign up for my email newsletter…there’s plenty of excitement in store!  Happy birthday, America!

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