One of my closest friends is about to get married, so I really wanted to crochet her one of those bridal arm charm thingies. I still don’t know exactly what they are called, but they are usually in the shape of a horse shoe. I decided to make a heart shaped crocheted bridal arm charm for her.
I quickly went into research mode and found these YouTube clips which teach you how to make this heart “doily”:
I used very pale blue embroidery cotton and a 1.50mm (No 2) crochet hook. The instructions on YouTube are in three parts. There is a man explaining how it is done which really threw me at first. I have never been taught to crochet by a man before and it took me a little while to accept that he might actually know what he is doing! But this guy knows his stuff. He is very calm and monotone and sometimes a bit too quick, but the beauty of YouTube is that I could press pause and replay the bits where he mumbles quickly until I have caught on.
After my “mini doily” was complete, I needed to finetune it so that it would become my crocheted bridal arm charm. Firstly I wanted to stiffen it slightly so that when it hung from my friend’s arm it wouldn’t look like an old hanky. Again, I did bit of internet research and came up with using PVA glue to stiffen the doily. The best website I found is over here.
I only wanted my doily stiffened slightly, I didn’t want it to feel like a hard piece of plastic, so I rinsed it in a solution of 1 Tbsp PVA glue and 2 Tbsp water. This worked really well and the doily sits out straight when it’s held up, yet it still feels soft and woven and still has lots of give in it.
Here’s where things went wrong
Just went it was all working out so well, things went a bit wrong! In the instructions on the website for stiffening the doily, she stresses that when pinning the doily onto cardboard so that it dries in the right position, you must use stainless steel pins. This prevents rust marks on the doily. I knew my pins weren’t stainless steel, but I thought “Oh, it will be okay. I’ll just leave mine in position with the pins until it starts to set, then I’ll quickly take them out before they have time to rust.” Hhmmmm. They rusted almost instantly! Within about an hour of it starting to dry, the pins had already left rust marks on the doily.
The rust wouldn’t come off, so I decided to sew pearls in those spots! I probably would have done this anyway because they make it look a bit more special than a plain doily.
To finish it off, I threaded a ribbon through the crochet holes to hang on the bride’s arm, and added a bow. I already had this ribbon that matched the pale blue thread of the heart, so I was very happy about that. 🙂
Something special for my friend on her happy day.
If you love to crochet, give this a go. It’s not super simple to make but people who crochet a lot will not struggle with it. It’s a beautiful piece and makes a very special gift for someone.