These crochet bonding squares are a thoughtful gift for any mom who has a tiny baby in a neo-natal unit. The simple squares are easy to crochet, and at just 5″ x 5″ they work up very quickly.
What are bonding squares?
Bonding squares are simple knit or crochet squares, measuring about 5″ x 5″ / 12.5cm x 12.5cm. They are knitted or crocheted in pairs. One is placed with a premature baby and the other stays with mom. After 12 or so hours, the squares are swapped, so that baby is comforted by mom’s scent even though she can’t be with her little baby all the time.
I only recently learned about the concept of bonding squares, as part of the Preemie Crochet Challenge organized by Sunflower Cottage Crochet. It is such a lovely idea, and as a mom myself, I can only imagine how it hard it must be for new parents who have a tiny baby who they can’t pick up and cuddle.
Yarn for Preemie crochet projects
As with any item intended for tiny babies, you will want to choose a very soft yarn for these bonding squares. Acrylic yarn, or other non-wool blend, are good choices. You will want to make sure that the yarn is machine washable!
In terms of yarn weight, #2/Fine or #3/Lightweight yarns are a good choice as heavier yarns could cause little babies to overheat.
I used Stylecraft Special for Babies DK for my bonding squares. Other great choices would be Paintbox Yarns Baby DK, which comes in a great selection of colors (and not just pastels!), or Lion Brand Babysoft.
These little bonding squares are really simple to crochet – if you know how to sc (single crochet) and dc (double crochet), you’ll have crocheted a pair before you know it. I decided to add a simple single crochet border to give the squares a more finished look.
More Crochet Patterns
If you like these crochet bonding squares, you might also enjoy these other crochet patterns for baby:
- This bonding square is crocheted in one piece, with a simple sc border.
- Ch 3 at the start of a row count as 1 dc.
- Stitch count is given in [ ] at the end of each row.
- As this bonding square is intended for a premature baby, you will want to choose a very soft yarn. Acrylic yarn is a good choice as it is soft, does not cause any allergy issues, and is washable.
- In terms of yarn weight, #2/Fine or #3/Lightweight yarns are a good choice as thicker yarns could cause tiny babies to overheat.
Approx 5” x 5” / 12.5cm x 12.5cm
14 sts x 12 rows = 4” x 4” / 10cm x 10cm measured over patt.
Note: It is not essential to match gauge for this project.
4mm / G-6
Any #3 / Lightweight / DK yarn.
The amount given here is for Stylecraft Special for Babies DK (275m/301yds per 100g skein; #3/Lightweight; 100% Acrylic)
One bonding square: 41 yds / 37m (15g)
- Yarn needle.
Written Pattern (Us Terms)
ch = chain
st = stitch
sl st = slip stitch
sc = single crochet
dc = double crochet
tch = turning chain
Row 1: 1 sc in 4th ch from hook (first 3 ch count as 1 dc), *dc in next ch, sc in next ch; repeat from *, turn. 
Row 2: Ch 3 (count as 1 dc, here and throughout), sk first sc, *1 sc in next dc, 1 dc in next sc; repeat from * ending with 1 sc in top of tch-3, turn. 
Repeat Row 2 until your piece is a square.
Border: sc evenly around your work, working 2 ch to turn each corner, sl st to join to first st. Cut yarn and fasten off.
Weave in ends and block bonding square if you wish. All done!
If you wish, you can purchase an inexpensive, ad-free, pdf version of this pattern through Ravelry
I hope you have enjoyed this pattern, if you have questions at all, please don't hesitate to contact me. And be sure to tag your finished project on Instagram or Facebook using @nedandmimi or #nedandmimi!