Tonight sees the closing ceremony of the London 2012 Olympics (at 11pm here, unfortunately), and in celebration of the Olympics being held in my favorite city, I spent some time over the last two weeks knitting a mini Union Jack from Debbie Bliss' book, The Knitter's Year. It was my first experiment with intarsia, which is when every separate block of color in a knitting project gets its own string of yarn -- it wasn't hard, but it was definitely messy.
But before embarking on this craft, I'd searched the interwebs for my options on Union Jack crafts. Surprisingly, there's a relative dearth when compared, to say, amigurumi anything, though on the plus side, a lot of the cute patterns I saw online are free.
Clockwise, from left: Double Fat Jack, free tutorial; Union Jack cushion, free tutorial; Mini Stamp PDF chart for cross-stitch, £5; Rowan Union Jack cushion, free pattern. In fact, all of the websites (except for the second one) have other patterns that are just as nice.
I have plans to make my own Union Jack wall hanging, like the one to the left -- I thought it could be a good introduction to quilt-making, which I have been wanting to try. I already have the fabrics -- I stuck with the traditional blue, white and red, though I picked some patterns -- but at the moment, I don't have a sewing machine. Alas.
But this isn't my first go-around with the Union Jack. Last summer, I made a Union Jack clutch using a plastic canvas "frame" from Darice, though I still need to put in a lining. All in all, it was pretty easy. I ended up creating my own pattern -- I counted out the number of squares both vertically and horizontally on both the back and the front, and created a graph (30x37 squares) from one of those online sites (just google graph paper). I also found a picture of a Union Jack online, and I overlaid the graph on top of the Union Jack in the paint application, which gave me a basic pattern to follow.