Results tagged “crochet” from Fabric.com Blog
1 skein of embroidery floss is a coordinating color (I used green for show but try to use a color to match your yarn)
Enough yarn to complete your edging (to be determined by the stitch pattern)
Project to be embellished.
With your embroidery floss using a backstitch or running stitch to work the edge where the trim is desired (I used a running stitch along the edge of the cuff for the stocking). Use a running stitch if your yarn is worsted or thicker and using a backstitch if your yarn is thinner than worsted. The running stitch will have spaces incorporated that work well for thick yarns. Also, let the size of your yarn determine your stitch size; a bigger yarn needs a bigger stitch to work into and smaller yarns need a smaller stitch. Don't work a thin yarn into a big stitch it will look sloppy.
Secure the end of the embroidery floss with a good knot. Using your crochet hook (size determined by your yarn gauge) work a single crochet into each stitch of embroidery floss. Use this first row to create as many stitches as needed for your pattern. Start your pattern on the second row. This first row should be all single crochets and will help hide your embroidery floss.
To recreate my scallop pattern use Martha Stewart's Merino Yarn in Peacock and *SC, DC, DC, TC, DC, DC, SC into one stitch, chain 3, repeat from *
SC: Single Crochet
DC: Double Crochet
TC: Triple Crochet
I am really picking up crochet and with it my appetite increases for projects. I can't remember how I stumbled upon Olivia's Butterfly crochet hat pattern by Valerie Whitten but am I glad I did. I thought I loved knitting hats but crocheting them is right up there. I am still fascinated by the difference in construction between knitting and crochet that each project is even more fun than the previous. This hat was simple but with a detail that really sets it apart. The effortless butterfly detail placed as it is right above the final row takes this hat from basic to amazing. I love how the chains coupled with a single SC add a visual and textural facet that makes this hat just the thing for a precious little girl. It was quick to make as well as fun.
I used a smaller yarn and hook than recommended in the pattern. I have been jonesing to work with our Lion Brand Superwash Merino Cashmere (72% Superwash Merino Wool, 15% Nylon, 13% Cashmere). This yarn was a dream. It was just as soft worked up as it was in the skein (this is not always the case with soft yarns). It did not irritate my fingers while working it up either (something else I have noticed with some blends, they are not so soft when rubbing your skin). The texture and stitch definition were excellent with just a bit of fuzz so you can see how soft it is. The color, Green Tea, is just right for my little one. It was light enough to allow the hat design to be the main focus, not the color, and will compliment many of her jackets since it is not loud. She has been wearing it all weekend and I haven't noticed any itching or irritation from the wool. She really loves it. With the pattern written as it, the hat can fit an adult just by adding more rows. But to fit a child smaller then 2-3, you will want to reduce the increases and rows and reduce the chains in the butterfly too if the child is very small. Since the hat is worked from the top down it is easy to see how big it is and adjust as you go instead of ripping back. This hat will make great gifts for your own children, friends and friends' children. It is a great pattern that can be worked up with ease and speed.
Of the MANY, MANY techniques we are sure to cover here on the blog, none may be more important than changing colors (or joining in a new ball). Color work, simple or complicated is a key part of truly having fun with crochet. Stripes, chevrons or swirls, changing colors can take your work to the next level in style without changing your stitch. Adding colors can give an ordinary project just the right 'something' to make it shine. Or it can make a boring project interesting. Changing color (or adding a new ball) is simple but knowing the techniques can ease the learning.
I prefer to control my color changes, at the beginning of a row or round, or at the beginning of a repeat in your stitch count. This makes the join less obvious and more professional. Once you are at a good color change spot, drop your working yarn (A) and make a large loop with your new yarn (B), leaving a tail of 6-8 inches (enough to weave in later). Slip this loop onto your crochet hook (before if you are starting a DC, HDC or TC or after inserting your hook into a stitch for a SC). Continue holding the tail with B for 2-3 stitches (until you feel comfortable that the tail is snug) then drop the tail and continuing on with your pattern. When you come around to the color change again (either in the next row or round) be careful with the last stitch of A, it is loose and might pull. Snug it up as needed and continue on or you can weave in the tail of A right now so as not to worry about it.
You can change colors again as often as need be being sure to weave in the tails to the stitches of the same color. This technique also works for adding new balls of yarn of the same color except you do not need to be as careful where you start the yarn. Do take the stitch into consideration since the first and last stitches can be loose until you weave them in. You don't want the middle of a lace pattern to be loose so unless you are crocheting in SC, start a new ball at the beginning or end of a row or round to be safe.
Check out my Rosewood Crochet Hook Review here
Last week, I set aside some time to sit down with one of our Rosewood Crochet Hooks so I could review it. But then I forgot and sat daydreaming for a few hours. It was only later when I looked down and saw that instead of relaxing and day dreaming (which I quite contentedly thought I was doing) I had actually been crocheting. My Rosewood Hook was that soft and warm in my hand that I was able to forget it for a little while, and at the same time, forget about everything else for a time as well. Since then I have consciously used the Rosewood Crochet Hook and it is just as fun, soft, smooth and warm as my previous Zen experience.
I would start off, first, by recommended it to advanced beginners for several reasons. 1) The wood is soft so the hard tension that beginners can adopt may snap the beautiful hook. 2) It is more slick and faster than the Aluminum and Soft Touch hooks which might be frustrating for a beginner. 3) The price while not a show stopper is something to consider if you are not sure crochet is for you. However, if Crochet is for you than so are the Rosewood Hooks. They are gorgeous to the point that I spent as much time looking at my hands as I did my work (I even gave myself a manicure because my hands were shaming the hook). A few hooks or even a full set would make a dream gift for the crocheter on your list. Even just one tucked in with a few balls of alpaca or cashmere would be a thoughtful and endearing gift. I love my one Rosewood hook but you can rest assured it will not be lonely for long.
Crochet is my new obsession but it has been a rocky road. First I had to overcome holding my yarn with the "wrong" hand (any sane person holds it in the right, I used to tell myself). Now I am comfortable with both hands and no longer feel intimidated and thus my snobbishness towards continental yarn holders has evaporated (sorry about that, I was just jealous). Then it was my tension. I was concentrating so much on holding the yarn in a new hand, only holding one stick and counting stitches that I would grasp the hook as though it were my last salvation. This has also been rectified by practice and learning new techniques that keep me interested and thus, practicing.
My last huddle in crochet has been the hook itself. I have a slight nickel allergy so my beloved aluminum hooks can only be used for short periods of time before my bones start to ache. I do alternate with acrylic but I prefer the shape of the aluminum hook better and feel it is faster for me when working with my favorite fiber: wool. But now this too has been fixed. The Clover Soft Touch hooks are aluminum with a soft, cushy ergonomic handle that provides a comfy grip with no aluminum exposure. I have been able to crochet for twice as long as previously without the aches and with less muscle fatigue as with the acrylic hooks. I used my Clover Soft Touch hook to whip up my 2 scarf ends for my HotPatterns Fringe Fest Top on Monday. Working during naptime, I was able to get most of one done and start on the second (that is record time for me considering my being new to the game). I was amazed at how much more comfortable it was. It was akin to when I discovered Bamboo Knitting Needles after using the aluminum to begin with. I am putting a whole set on my holiday wish list and can't wait to fill in my hook stash!
See my Susan Bates Crystallite Hook Review here
Check out all our Crochet Blog Posts here
Follow me on Twitter for sneak peeks of all my projects here
Not only was I totally pumped to have a go at the new HotPatterns Download before it hits the net but I was also pumped because I love knit tops. I am not a big ironing fan (though I do love a good pressed seam), so wrinkle free and knit tops are big populators of my wardrobe. After I saw how many pieces it took to create a Fringe Festival top I was even more excited. But that was all a candle flame compared to the sun of my excitement once I finally tried on my top! I don't know if it is the fit of HotPatterns or the style or an equal combination of both but few pattern makers final pieces make me feel as satisfied at HotPatterns once the project is complete. The Fringe Festival is no different.
This top was quick and easy and coupled with the grey Tencel Jersey Knit that I used the fit was easy but sexy. The fabric drapes nicely and the cut is perfectly shaped to cling (slightly) in all the right places and gently bunch right at the hips. One of the bonuses I noticed concerning the hip bunching is that when I bent over, kneeled or squatted down, I did not feel exposed. Even with the lowest jeans, the extra long hem line gives you coverage when you need it and the ruching hides any tummy troubles when standing.
I decided to modify it with a dupioni scarf and crochet trim. I wanted to braid the scarf in the knit fabric but given my deadline I couldn't make it work to satisfy me so I practiced my crochet skills instead. I used the given pattern piece to make the dupioni scarf and used a simple crochet decorative edge that I found in one of my stitch books. The crochet edging is working in Berroco Vintage in Pumpkin which really stands out against the teal silk and neutral grey of the top. With the casual sexiness of the cut of the top coupled with the elegant silk and lace edging this top is perfect of a date night, pair with a cropped tuxedo jacket for a cocktail party or worn with grey wool pants for office wear.
I have been compiling my Christmas Knitting list this past week and given my blog schedule, my family and getting ready to move, I have had one thought and one thought only when it concerns my knitting: make it fast. Faithful readers will know that this is nothing new for me. I love instant gratification and in terms of knitting that means within a week or two. I am not a devoted sweater knitter. Give me a good hat any day! It is with this determination and central idea that I dedicate this blog posting to Chunky Yarn and it's delightful possibilities.
When my new Interweave Knits (IK) arrived this week, I was ready for my general dislike of half the projects and only real desire to knit one or two. Imagine my surprise when I discovered that I wanted to knit 90% of the projects. Upon closer investigation I realized that this is because of the use of chunky yarns. Chunky yarns are awesome. Not only do they knit up fast but you generally need fewer balls to complete a project. I know it would seem the opposite because the yardage in each ball is scaled down as well but because each stitch goes further you need less. Typically you need about half the number of balls for a chunky sweater than a worsted weight. In the end the yarn costs are about the same but you really win when you finish in half the time. And Chunky yarn is not limited to sweaters. One of my most coveted projects from IK Fall 2011 is the Chunky weight lace shawl. It is gorgeous and no doubt a fast knit. Rugs, Afghans, scarves, hats and slippers are just a few of the many projects that shine in Chunky Yarn. I have found the desire to knit sweater renewed in me (something dead for at least 3-4 years now) and have not been this excited to knit since I first learned and held marathon knitting sessions on the weekends and dreamed of yarn while compiling spread sheets (I was in accounting before I ventured into writing). I feel excited to knit. I can feel that small ball of excitement in my belly much like a 5 yr. old on Christmas morning when I start filling my cart with Chunky yarn: "it will be so fast and so pretty. I could have my whole list done in 3 weeks and that leaves plenty of time to knit for ME!" So take a look at your list and see where you could add some Chunky yarn and save some time!
Yarns Pictured above: Gedifa Highland Alpaca, Lion Brand Wool Ease Thick N Quick, Rowan Big Wool
Scarf pictured above: Lion Brand Crochet Lacy Scarf in Wool Ease Thick N Quick
My previous Yarn Subbing post dealt with yarn weights and how to double or triple your yarn to match weight. This post will deal with another aspect, picking the right fiber. Once you have the weight squared away you need to be sure that you are swapping the right fiber to compliment your project. To do this you need to keep in mind three rules: Drape, Texture and Style.
Drape: When substituting one fiber for another it is necessary to consider the drape of the recommend yarn and the drape of your yarn. Is the recommended yarn (RY) light and airy or thick and stout? Does it clingy or fall straight. If it is a light mohair or silk blend, you want to stick with other yarns that will mimic their draping tendencies like light alpaca or angora. If your RY is thick ply cotton and you want to change it up to wool for warmth, pick wool with poly blend for density. You can judge a yarn somewhat by sight or use Ravelry to see other projects made from your chosen yarn. If it looks light and fuzzy, sleek and clingy or, tight and stout, stick with other yarns that share these draping characteristics.
Texture: Will your project feature loads of texture- neat cables or stunning bobbles- then choose a yarn that will let these features stand out. If your project will be all about color and less texture, then feel free to go with a novelty or lofty yarn (Think Ribbon or Mohair). Try to balance your texture with your yarn, the more textural detail you have going on the more toned down your yarn should be. The less texture going on, the opposite: go crazy with your yarn choice.
Style: You want to match the style of your pattern with your yarn. If you are making a really luxe looking car coat, you don't want a cheap looking yarn. If you are just whipping up a t-shirt, you don't need cashmere (unless you REALLY want it). The same goes for everything in between. Match your personal style to your yarn choice as well. If you aren't going to wear camel colored cashmere, don't get it because it is recommended or will sub well. Branch out a little but stay in your comfort zone. You know what you like and stick with it. I am not a mohair person, though I really want to be. I know deep down in my heart I am not and am not likely to wear it so I don't buy it or use it. If a pattern calls for it, I reach for baby alpaca, cashmere or llama instead. All have the delightful softness and fuzziness but I enjoy them so much better than mohair. Subbing is worth the work to find the right fiber for you!
When you are in need of an excellent seamless cast on, you can't go wrong with the Crochet Cast On. The Crochet Cast On is a flawless cast on perfect for joins, grafting and decorative bind offs. You can use it when knitting identical halves of scarf or shawls, for sock toes or when matching your cast on to your bind off. You don't need to know to know how to crochet to complete the crochet cast on, but having a feel for the hook is helpful in learning this new technique. It is a great foundation for pick up stitches later on and is easy to pull out later.
All you need is your working yarn, some waste yarn in a contrasting color, your needle and a crochet hook. It is a terrific alternative to the Provisional Cast On, if you are short on cable needles or just prefer this method. It is always good to have a few tricks up your sleeve and more than one way to get the end result, if the end result you are looking for is a seamless join or graft!