This is a lovely little make! After you’ve made 4 or 5 of them, the pattern will be imprinted on your brain and you’ll be making holly leaves in your sleep. But for first couple, I found it helpful to use a couple of our gorgeous stitch markers so I could see where to place my first stitches after prickles 1 and 5 were worked.

So, in Round 1, when I worked that very first dc into the chain, I popped in a stitch marker. I popped a second stitch marker into the 1st dc as you crochet back up the chain. Like you can see here:

When I worked back up the chain, I worked over the tail end so that I could just snip it off. We’ve got 15 more of these to go so I’m going to save myself some serious sewing-in ends time that way!

When working up the other side of the chain, you only need to work 11 stitches not 12 as on the other side. Once the first prickle is made, you work a dc into the stitch where the first marker was placed. See:

The prickle spans the top of the leaf now.

Paying attention to where stitches are skipped and slip stiches placed, as I work around, means the prickles lay flat and ensures that prickle number 5 sits at the other end of my leaf where it rightfully belongs. My second stitch marker showed where to hook that “next stitch” dc and meant I didn’t hook into the ch1of the previous round.

Working back down the other side of the leaf, is straightforward and I soon have my finished holly leaf. Before long, I’m a holly leaf making factory and I’m churning ‘em out.

Nyree, earlier today.

I notice that I have curly prickles (oh, the things you find yourself saying when talking about crochet!!!): Kate recommends blocking these holly leaves and I guess this curling is why. I may leave some of mine a little bit curly though. Real holly leaves have that curl and I kind of like it.  I spray them with water and pin them to my yoga mat (the most action my yoga mat has seen for quite some time…) to dry. I’m going to use spray starch as per Kate’s suggestion for all my wreath elements but I think I’m going to wait until I’m ready to start adding elements to the wreath.

Before and after blocking

HOLLY BERRIES

The berries are beautifully simple. Remembering not to complete the last ‘yarn over-pull through’ of each treble, I end up with five loops on my hook, yarn over and pull through them all 5.

5 loops on my hook.

Popping my hook back through that stitch from back to front, before yarn-over and pull through:

I pull both ends tight and knot them – tada! – I have a berry. Some of my berries needed a little squish and roll but I like most of them just as they are. I used the ends to attach them to my holly leaves.