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Little Hot Air Balloon Applique/Bunting

To make a Hot Air Balloon you will need:

Any small amount of yarn for the balloon and an even smaller amount of a contrasting colour for the basket.
I used Rico Creative cotton, which is an aran weight yarn.

Each finished balloon measures approximately 6cm x 3.5cm however your finished balloon may be bigger or smaller depending on the yarn you use.

I used my battered old 4mm hook, but use the correct one for the weight of yarn you are using.

You will also need a darning needle.

This pattern is written using UK crochet terms.

To begin make a magic ring. There are lots of tutorials for this on youtube however I make mine as follows:

With my left hand palm up, I drape the yarn so the tail end is hanging down my palm, wrap the  yarn over my index and middle finger like this:

I then put my hook under the first loop wrapped around my fingers, and pull the second loop through the first loop and slide it off my fingers, chain 1:

Then crochet 8 Double Crochet stitches into the ring:
 Pull the tail end of the magic ring so that the stitches all gather up into a neat circle:
To close the round join with a slip stitch into the first Double Crochet:
Chain 3 and then crochet 1 Treble into the very base of the chains, where my needle is showing in the picture below:
Now make 2 Trebles into each stitch around...

...until you have 16 stitches in total. Join the round with a slip stitch into the top of the chain 3 that you made at the begining of the round, where my needle is showing in the picture below:

 Chain 2:

Now I think this next stitch is a Half-Treble Crochet Decrease, or I may have just made it up. Worry not! I am going to explain it, so stay with me.

Wrap the yarn over your hook as you normally would for a Half-Treble or Treble stitch. Put your hook in the next stitch, yarn over and pull back through (so far all the same as a Half-Treble or Treble):
You should have 3 loops on your hook. Yarn over and pull it through the first two loops on your hook (you should still have two loops on your hook at this point):

Now yarn over again (3 loops on hook) and put your hook in the next stitch, yarn over again and pull it back through to the front of your work (4 loops on hook):
Now yarn over again and pull it through all 4 loops leaving you with this:
Got it? Hope that made sense.

Now make one Half-Treble into the next stitch:

Chain 1, turn your work:

Double Crochet the next 2 stitches together, starting where my needle is showing in the picture below, like this:
Put your hook in that stitch, yarn over, pull it back through (2 loops on hook), put your hook in the next stitch, yarn over and back through (3 loops on hook):
Yarn over again and pull through all 3 loops:

Fasten off your yarn leaving enough of a tail to sew in.

Nearly there, just the basket to go!

Before we crack on with the basket we need to sort out those tail ends from the balloon. First of all sew in the tail end from the magic ring by making a couple of stitches into the back of the balloon:
 For the other tail end, thread your darning needle and sew straight down into the middle of the last DC decrease stitch that you made like this:

Try not to pull it too tight or it will distort the shape of the balloon. Secure it with another little stitch to hold it in place and snip off the excess yarn.

With the wrong side facing you, thread your darning needle with your contrasting basket colour and thread it through the very end loops of your balloon like this:

This bit is quite fiddly but we are nearly finished now! Tie a knot in the yarn close enough to the balloon that the basket will be positioned nicely but big enough to crochet a few stitches out of. It doesn't mater if it takes a few attempts, you can soon snip the basket off and try it again:
 Now when you have this loop, turn your work back over put your hook through the loop, yarn over and pull back through to the front of your work:
 Chain 2 and then crochet 2 Half-Trebles out of the loop:
 Fasten off and secure the tail end by making a couple of small neat stitches in the back of the basket. If you need to secure the other tail end from the knot, do so in the same way although if you managed to crochet the last 2 Half-Trebles over it, it might be secure enough:

Ta-dah! One Hot Air Balloon made!
It might need a bit of a light press with the iron, and a little bit of tweaking to get it into a nice shape.

To make the balloons into bunting I took another contrasting colour (blue) and chained 20 then made a slip stitch into the back loop of the very top stitch on the balloon:

Then chain another 20 and attach the next balloon and so on until they are all attached.

All done! I hope you have enjoyed making your own Hot Air Balloons, please do let me know if you have in the comment section below, I would love to hear from you :)

© abijamtastic 2014. Please respect my copyright and do not resell, publish, or distribute this pattern.  However, you are free to use the final items you make from the pattern for charity, gifting, or selling in limited numbers. A link back to my webpage is greatly appreciated :) 

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