Forget the Valentine’s Day commercialism and let’s get back to what it’s really all about: a celebration of love
It feels to me like 2017 has only just started, but in fact Valentine’s Day will be here before you know it! Now before you groan (and I understand, not only did I hate Valentine’s Day when I was single, but I’ve grown rather weary of the commercialism of it all now that I’m married, too), let me tell you a bit about why we celebrate Valentine’s Day.
Several legends circulate around the real St. Valentine. The most common one, and the one most tend to recognize, states that St. Valentine lived in the time of Emperor Claudius II of Rome. Rome was involved in many hard and bloody wars at this time, and Emperor Claudius II found it difficult to recruit young men into his army because they did not want to leave their wives, afraid of what would happen to them if they were killed. So he decided to prohibit all marriage.
St. Valentine, apparently a real romantic at heart, defied this order and secretly married young men and women. Sadly, his ruse was discovered, and he was beaten and then executed. The Roman Catholic Church honored his martyrdom with sainthood.
So rather than think of Valentine’s Day as just another chance for the card, chocolate, and flower companies to get richer, let’s think of it as it was really intended: to represent the power of love.
In that spirit, I thought I’d offer a bunch of fun knitting patterns featuring hearts. Since February 14 isn’t far away, I decided to stick with some quick knits. Here you’ll find coasters, bookmarks, hotpads and trivets, and sachets. I think somewhere in here, you’ll find the perfect knitting pattern to celebrate love!
Free Knitting Patterns for Valentine’s Day – Bookmarks
Book Lover Valentine: The easiest of the bunch, these adorable bookmarks feature long “stems” and a small, sweet heart at the top.
Chain of Hearts Bookmark: This pattern creates a lacy bookmark with hearts chained down the center. This bookmark is a great use of leftover sock or lace yarn.
Heart Bookmark/Lesezeichen mit Herz: As you might be able to tell, you can download this pattern in either English or German. Another great use of fingering or laceweight yarn, this bookmark uses double-knitting to create a two-color and completely reversible bookmark.
Free Knitting Patterns for Valentine’s Day – Coasters
Knitted Heart: It doesn’t get any easier than this super-simple knitting pattern for a sweet little heart that is just the right size for a coaster. You can use it in other ways, too; check out the photo of the knitter who used a heart as an applique for a scarf!
Cute Heart Mug Rug: I love this darling little coaster in the shape of a little Oriental rug. It’s fringed, just like such a rug, and it features a textured heart in the center.
Sweet Somethings: These hearts have a similar shape to the preceding Knitted Heart, but they use a stitch design that creates a gentle wavy texture. The result is squishy enough to have many uses, including miniature washcloths.
Free Knitting Patterns for Valentine’s Day: Hot Pads
Heart Double Knit Hot Pad and Double Knit Potholder: These two patterns are quite similar; they’re both double knitted, and they both feature hearts. The main difference is that the first has just a single heart, while the second features 4 hearts. Both are lovely; choose the one that most appeals to you.
True Love Trivet: As the name implies, the designer intended this as a trivet, but you can use it as a potholder as well. To create this trivet/potholder, you’ll knit several cords and then weave them together. It’s a fun way to combine knitting and weaving!
Free Valentine’s Day Knitting Patterns: Sachets
Heart Sachet: This adorable pattern is just a tiny bag featuring a heart emblazoned on one side. Fill it with something heavenly-scented, then tie it with a bow.
Lavender Hearts: These are simple heart-shaped sachets meant to be knitted with wool yarn so they can be felted. Alternately, you could knit these in whatever kind of yarn you wish and just go down a needle size or two to create a very dense fabric. The pattern also offers instructions for creating a twisted cord from which you can hang the heart. You can choose to crochet a border around the heart and/or embroider it, as the designer did, or you can simply sew it up and leave out the embroidery.
Toasties: These adorable hearts have several uses. First, they make great first colorwork projects. Second, you can use them as sachets. Finally, you could use them the way the designer intended (imagine that!) and fill them with rice so they can be warmed and used as hand and feet warmers.
One thing I love about these patterns is that in addition to making great gifts, they make great charity projects too.
Imagine giving a bunch of these to a homeless or domestic violence shelter, or popping them into boxes to go to soldiers overseas. What a lovely way to let others feel love, comfort and support.
Can you think of a better way to celebrate Valentine’s Day?