Zooty Owl's Crafty Blog


Tuesday, 16 May 2017


Hello lovely crocheters and welcome (at long last!) to the Kick Off of our Rainbows After the Rain (RAR) CAL, which I will be hosting along with Andrea of KOKOPELLI DESIGN! If you have already been following along you can launch right in to this post.    If you are new to the CAL please read my INTRODUCTION POST first.

For Part 1 of the CAL (Poncho & Blanket) we will be making TRADITIONAL GRANNY SQUARES.

There was a picture in my head of the gorgeous photos I would take for this post........ and then it started raining and raining and raining (for close onto a week now!) ...... and no rainbow in sight!    So we will just have to make do with the not-so-great photos previously taken.

Pinks and Greens are an all-time favourite combination of mine, and the neon(y) shades available in the Charity Chunky were perfect for the bright and cheerful "Neonmelon" Blanket

Some Woodstock photos doing the rounds on the internet really inspired me to achieve a sort of "hippie rainbow" look with the blanket and poncho.   I loved tie-dying (just about every) t-shirts and cloths when I had a big outdoor craft space and a much stronger back and hands!.    I also did a lot of Batik work and so the colours and design for the circular parts were a bit of a swirl of ideas from cloths and wall hangings made in my really colourful younger years! 
To get the tie-dye look is just a little trick of alternating lights, brights and neutrals.    Think of the neutrals as the part of the cloth that are tied or waxed so they do not pick up on the dyes.
Also your outer layers of the "scrunch" pick up a heavier dose of dye, and the inner "scrunch" gets a much lighter dose.

The name for the CAL "Rainbows After the Rain" was not chosen lightly.   Grief is not something we "decide" to switch off one day, to suddenly become silly happy again.   I chatted to fellow Blogstar Phil of  THE TWISTED YARN about my apprehension that this title would give the impression that grief should somehow be measured and dealt with.    This was not just an idle "bloggy" conversation as Phil is actually Dr Phil Saul, an NHS clinical psychologist.   Phil kindly offered to put my intentions into words for me (she has a way with words and I knew she would be able to get this across way better than I would!)

This is what she wrote:

"If you’ve been reading here a while, then you’ll remember a previous crochet-a-long (CAL), ‘Wade’s Blanket’, which was named to honour a little boy who fought – and, tragically, lost – a hard battle against childhood leukaemia. That was two years ago. Wade’s family and Zelna’s family are close, and those were dark days, compounded by the loss of Zelna’s mother to motor neurone disease soon afterwards. For Zelna, crochet provided some small comfort through the worst of her grief. Those of you who have lost dear ones will probably be able to relate to the raw agony and rage and confusion of those days.

But what happens next? What happens after the early stages of grief – however long they last – have been endured? What happens when you’re ready to move beyond just putting one foot in front of the other, and you begin to lift your eyes from the ground, to look cautiously ahead?

That’s what this new CAL is about.

Nobody’s saying that grief magically goes away: of course it doesn’t. People often refer instead to making a space in their hearts to accommodate the pain, whilst carrying on. Because ultimately, we do have to carry on.

Rainbow After The Rain is about rediscovering hope. It’s about accepting the feeling of the sun’s warmth on one’s skin again, as gaps begin to appear between the rainclouds. It’s about daring to believe that there may be joy and growth ahead. And it’s about giving oneself permission to seek that joy and growth. It’s about finding peace and comfort, and about rediscovering the beauty of the world.

What on earth could possibly symbolise all of that better than a rainbow?

Each component of this CAL will offer a meditation on healing, with titles such as "Wheel of Time", "Ribbons of Hope" and "Somedays are Diamonds".

How does a Traditional Granny Square fit the theme?   There is nothing "uncertain" about a granny square - and the simple reassurance that the square WILL work out no matter what, is a great comfort!    The traditional granny square is timeless, like the words of a favourite poem by e.e.cummings:

"- how fortunate are you and I, whose home is timelessness:   we who have wandered down from fragrant mountains of eternal now

to frolic in such mysteries as birth
and death a day (or maybe even less)"


To avoid confusion the Poncho and Blanket layouts will be published separately.    In addition some of the Poncho and Blanket Patterns will be published separately, as there are small variations in the squares. 

All new and previous links can be found in the ZOOTY OWL CROCHET-A-LONG GROUP FILES









  1. This is lovely, I'm making Wade's blanket at the moment and I love it. I will be trying this one too once I'm finished, thank you for sharing your lovely patterns. :) x

  2. Both of these are beautiful. I could see them working up in so many color combos, and I'm so excited to get started. Thank you so much for sharing this with us.
    Lisa in Alabama, USA