Earlier this year, at the start of the first school term, my daughter was very nervous going back to school after the long summer holiday break. (Poor kid takes after her anxious mum!) So we put a tiny toy bear in the pocket of her uniform for her to squeeze whenever she felt anxious. Sadly the little bear was lost in the first week. Not surprising of course, but I really wished I’d given her a little crochet heart to take instead, which I could easily replace.
The French word for heart is cœur. In Latin it was cor. It’s where our word courage comes from. In Old French and Middle English corage meant both ‘courage’ and ‘heart’. Apparently encourage is from the Old French encoragier : ‘en‘ (to make or put in) + ‘corage‘ (courage or heart). So to encourage is to make courage, to put courage into, to put in heart or give heart to. To hearten.
I think we could all probably do with a bit of heartening at the moment.
I’m seeing a lot of scared and worried people right now. So many have lost their livelihoods, or are anxious that they might. I never thought I’d see the day where we’d have shortages in the supermarkets (let alone fights over toilet paper!), lines around the block to apply for welfare, and checkpoints at our state borders. Not here in Australia, one of the safest places on the planet. But here we are thanks to Covid-19. It’s all very surreal. Like a futuristic dystopian disaster movie. Or a flash back to the past, a repeat of the Spanish Flu and great depression of 100 years ago perhaps.
My boss very wisely decided to implement social distancing for our workplace a couple of weeks ago, and our school has done likewise, so we’ve been working and schooling remotely. My little person had already been home sick for a couple of days beforehand, so we’ve been getting a bit of cabin fever! We’re very fortunate to have a big backyard and even moreso that my job is one I can do from home – in between guiding Little Miss through the school lessons her teachers have been emailing to us. We’re used to seeing my parents only via video chat as they live on the other side of the country, but it’s strange not seeing our family who do live nearby, especially as they’re so close and we usually visit a couple of times each week. My little person is missing her Nanny and Papa, and missing her friends.
We hope this is not the new normal. But it may be for a few months I guess.
Social distancing is the wrong term to use though I think. Physical distancing is needed (at least 1.5m people!) but we can still connect.
And connection is what we need right now. Connection and encouragement.
So I’ve made some little hearts. I don’t know how else I can help at the moment (apart from staying home!) but I think many of us could do with some heartening and a virtual hug.
I’m sharing the pattern as my little effort to give heart to you and your loved ones in these uncertain times. So anyone who wants can have a soft heart to squeeze when they feel the need, a little piece of love to share with another, or to encourage others with.
Perhaps they can be of some encouragement to you or somebody you know? Maybe you’d like to send a little heart to a friend or family member you can’t hug for a little while, or post it with a note to a colleague you’re missing. Perhaps put it on display in your window to send love to your neighbours, or leave it somewhere for a stranger to find to brighten their day.
We can all do with a bit of extra heart right now. So here’s a little piece from me. 💜
Amigurumi hearts pattern
I’ve made two hearts, one slightly smaller than the other, and provided both patterns here. The rainbow heart is slightly larger at 7cm tall. The pink heart is more pocket-sized, measuring 6cm from top to bottom.
I used 8ply yarn from my existing stash (no popping to the shops at the moment!) but I’m pretty sure these are:
Rainbow yarn – 4 Seasons Marvel Printed, Jewel Colour
Pink yarn – 4 Seasons Stallion, Pink
Of course you could make them in any colour you like. They don’t use a huge amount of yarn so you can use whatever you have in your stash.
The hearts are made from the top down, starting with the two bumps and then decreasing to form the v-shape. The pattern is made by creating one half-sphere or cup shape, then repeating that section to make a second small cup before joining them together and continuing on as one piece.
8 ply yarn
3.5mm crochet hook
long tapestry needle
Crochet terms used:
This pattern uses U.S. crochet terminology.
Ch = chain
Sc = single crochet
St = stitch
Inc = increase by 2sc into same stitch
Dec = decrease by sc2together
7cm rainbow crochet heart pattern
1 Ch 6 into magic circle (6)
2 Inc in each st around (12)
3 (sc, inc) around (18)
4-6 sc in each st around (18)
Cut yarn but don’t tie off.
Repeat rounds 1-6 to make second piece. Do not tie off. Leave your hook in the last loop to continue on.
We now join the two pieces together.
7 With your hook still in the last loop of second piece, sc into last st of first piece.
Sc17 around first piece. Continue to sc18 around second piece. (36)
8 sc in each st around (36)
9 (dec, sc10) x3 (33)
10 (dec, sc9) x3 (30)
11 (dec, sc8) x3 (27)
12 (dec, sc7) x3 (24)
13 (dec, sc6) x3 (21)
14 (dec, sc5) x3 (18)
15 (dec, sc4) x3 (15)
Stuff the heart firmly now.
16 (dec, sc3) x3 (12)
17 (dec, sc 2) x3 (9)
18 (dec, sc) x3 (6)
Finish stuffing and tie off leaving a long tail. Using a long tapestry needle, feed the tail up inside the heart to the top middle (the valley between the bumps) and sew any gaps closed. Knot the yarn and hide end inside.
Alternatively, use any remaining tail to make a little loop or handle to hang it on something if you wish.
6cm pink crochet heart pattern
EDIT (Jan 2021): After revisiting this pattern I’ve realised my maths was a little off for the decreasing so I’ve corrected these instructions from R6 onwards.
1 Ch 5 into magic circle (5)
2 Inc in each st around (10)
3 (Inc, sc) around (15)
4-5 sc in each st around (15)
Cut yarn but don’t tie off.
Repeat rounds 1-5 to make second piece. Do not tie off. Leave your hook in the last loop to continue on.
We now join the two pieces together.
6 Leaving hook in last loop of second piece, sc into last st of first piece. Sc15 around first piece. Sc15 around second piece. (30)
7 sc in each st around (30)
8 (dec, sc8) x3 (27)
9 (dec, sc7) x3 (24)
10 (dec, sc6) x3 (21)
11 (dec, sc5) x3 (18)
12 (dec, sc4) x3 (15)
Place stuffing inside now, packing it in firmly.
13 (dec, sc3) x3 (12)
14 (dec, sc2) x3 (9)
15 (dec, sc1) x3 (6)
Finish stuffing the heart then tie off leaving a long tail. Using a long tapestry needle, feed the tail up inside the heart to the top middle (the valley between the bumps) and sew any gaps closed. Knot the yarn and hide end inside.
Now you have your own little heart softie!
For an even smaller pocket heart
You can make them even smaller if you’d prefer a tiny hug-in-the-hand. Heaven knows pockets in women’s clothing are never big enough (if they exist at all!).
To scale it down, follow the pattern the same but just use a smaller size yarn and hook, for example try 4ply cotton with a 2.5mm hook.
If you make one of these I’d love to see it! Leave a pic in the comments below.
What will you do with yours?