Archive for the ‘Crochet’ Category

The Winner!!

November 16, 2009

As I said, the might Google defeated me and the answer is, as so many of you said, The Sign of Four. The “Rebellion of ’57” came from that book, and when examining Watson’s poketwatch as a test of his skills of observation, Holmes spoke about the habits of pawnbrokers in England. Here’s the sneak preview of the colorway:

 

 

 

 

 

The winner is: Sara

Congratulations! For those who didn’t win, don’t worry, this is going to be an ongoing giveaway, though there will be 2 changes. First, that the clues will be a little less obvious, and hopefully a lot more fun, and secondly that since this will be a monthy contest (running from the 1st to the 15th of each month) the giveaways will only be for 1 month of the subscription.

Web of Yarn Wednesday: Pepperberry Crochet

November 11, 2009

Okay, so after Planet Purl this morning, I wanted to showcase a more crochet-oriented blog, and this site is certainly that!

Pepperberry Crochet is a blog written by a great crochet designer and enthusiast. She is also creating her own list of Crochet blogs at the moment, and this one is there! Yay!

So, if you care to, go help her out and suggest some other lovely crochet blogs for her to list. While you’re there remember to check out her adorable amigurumi projects.

Tuesday Tip: Great Gift Ideas & Free Patterns

November 10, 2009

Okay, so while racking my brain to come up with some good tips to share today, I decided that, like me, some of you will be planning on good gifts to make for the holidays. Since I have been doing some definite research on that subject recently, please let me show you some of my finds:

I only found this blog on sunday but its great! Rachel Klein of One Pretty Thing creates “roundups” of craft projects that she finds online. She also has a Handmade Gift Guide. There are both knitting and crochet projects, but this site tempted me to try different crafts in a way that hasn’t been done it years.

The Crochet Pattern Directory, not only has its own huge list of free patterns, but it also has a Christmas section with Angels, Snowflakes, Ornaments and even a Miscellaneous Christmas sub-topic.

The Knitting Pattern Directory has its own Christmas section, with some real gems.

Knitting Daily has a beautiful Poinsettia Ornament, a Snowflake, and a Cabled Globe.

I also found this great independent site with a huge list of Crochet Christmas Ornaments.

Monday Evening Magazine Review: Crochet Uncut

November 9, 2009

Going with the e-zine theme, I wanted to go over my favorite online crochet magazine, Crochet Uncut.

**Quick note about this morning’s post, apparently the current issue of Knotions is also the last issue. Thank you Sunset Cat!**

Honestly, I found Knotions after I went looking for the equivalent of Crochet Uncut- a fun, fairly small zine with a great sense of style.

So the Fall 09 issue of Crochet Uncut features…..

puppy

an adorable puppy!

And a turtle toy, but what toy can compete with that face?

Even more than the patterns, (which I do love) what I really love about this zine are the articles. There is one about, of all things, neck pain! Personally, I have definitely known some major neck issues after a marathon crochet session, so I read this carefully.

There is also a great review on Bijou Basin Ranch yarn. It’s made extra special because of an element often missing from product reivews- price! It is not a cheap yarn, but I agree with the writer that sometimes the splurge is so worth it.

Okay, I won’t go through the articles one by one, but these are just a few of the good ones, you have to go to Crochet Uncut’s site to check them all out.

In the patterns I found a lot of neckwear from very elegant, to a self-proclaimed “wacky” scarf. (If wacky=seriously cute, then I agree.) I’m a big fan of crocheted neckwear, but what really caught my eye was a cotton lunch tote and a pair of mittens.

lunch thingmittens

Here are the lunch tote and mittens, respectively (in case you were confused!)

The lunch tote is made to fit a specific tupperware type container and is made out of basic cotton. Doesn’t it look so much more fun than your basic brown bag? Better for the environment too! Though if you pack your lunch in there, make sure you bring enough to share, because everyone’s going to want to see what you have.

The mittens are designed by Darlisa Riggs, out of Bijou Basin Ranch yarn! Darlisa also wrote the review of the yarn. (Perfect proof that she knows what she’s talking about!)

The mittens are a really clever design with little “snow” stitches on them, and they would be a great christmas/holiday gift!

My rating:5-BOYWell, really. Did you expect anything different?

New Giveaway-Play Detective

November 5, 2009

And now another giveaway!!

Yes, yes, I know I just finished one, but it was so much fun, that I had to do another right away. Speaking of that giveaway, I have heard from both Diane and Darcy, and their winnings should be in the mail tomorrow. 

Anyways, this new giveaway goes hand-in-hand with the updates I just made to my etsy shop. I just posted the Sherlock Holmes Clubs. There is the knitting not-just-sock club, the crochet not-just-sock club, the knitting sample club and the crochet sample club.

I love sock clubs and yarn clubs, but I noticed a few general problems:

1. They get really expensive; so I came up with a sample club. Big enough to enjoy new yarn each month, and create a small project out of it, but it won’t break the bank.

2. I like to make socks, but not only socks; so I made my clubs not-just-sock clubs, with projects made from sock yarn so if you choose you can create only socks, but there are options.

3. I haven’t seen a crochet sock club. Not to say that they don’t exist (I do not claim omniscience – if you know of one please, please, please let me know!!) So along with my knitting not-just-sock, and sample clubs, I have crochet clubs at the same price with the same theme, and same yarn. Only difference is the pattern, (and there may be a few less socks in the general scheme of things.)

The giveaway rules:

Play Detective!

December’s Shipment is based on a particular Holmes story, and I will drop hints here and there throughout the next week or so, and you, my fine readers can guess which story this month will be based on.

If you’re not a Holmes fanatic like myself, don’t worry. This works off of participation, not accuracy. Hazard a guess on which Holmes story it is, and your name will be in the drawing to win a 3 month subscription of the club of your choice. (I’m thinking one of the not-just-sock clubs, but if you would rather a sample club, that’s fine with me.)  The hints will also go from very vague to more concrete each time.

Hint #1- This story featured the “Rebellion of ’57”

Edit: Thank you Ikkinlala! Yep, please leave your guess comments on this post, though commenting on any post with a guess is valid.

Friday: Fiber History

October 30, 2009

First let me thank everyone who has commented with a suggestion about a fiber artist so far. My first few e-mails will be going out today.

Because I want to kick start the Friday Fiber Artist collectively, today will be dedicated to Fiber History. (Because, well, why not?)

I have been knee deep in Victorian historical research for the past week. In that vein I wanted to give you a couple of Victorian patterns that I have come across (and admired.)

First the Princess Crocheted Workbag. Not only is it gorgeous, but Mary Schlueter also provided translation, making the pattern workable from a modern day American perspective.

princess crochet bag

Doesn’t it look incredibly intricate? The instructions aren’t terribly complicated, and now I have a serious case of bag-envy. That seems to be a natural state for me though.

Second, from the same site: Infant’s Knitted Bootee . Unfortunately there is no gauge or yarn or needle size but hey, that just adds to the adventure!

Looking at them though, I wonder if it wasn’t done with sewing thread, because these look like terribly intricate booties to fit on a infant foot. Hmmm. Betcha if you use worsted weight and sz 5’s you could make an “Adult’s Knitted Bootee”

knitted_bootee_small

Thursday Twitter

October 29, 2009

SisterDiane I like this method for joining granny squares. Pretty! http://is.gd/4Ekgg (via Carina’s Craftblog)

I have to agree with sister Diane…and I do believe a granny square afghan is on my “to do for christmas” list

carina

P.S. Raise your hand if you love the colors!! I know my hand is up.

Another addition to the daily blog route. Okay, I’m making a blog page for easy access to links. Now I just have to find out how Lars  has the “last updated” on his blogroll…

Crochet Lesson 1

August 12, 2009

Welcome to Crochet Lesson 1: Anatomy of a chain stitch, crocheting into a chain stitch, and turning a row. The project for this lesson is a single crochet face cloth/ dishcloth.

Materials needed: Size H (5 mm) crochet hook and 1 skein of Lily’s Sugar ‘n Cream Yarn.

Step 1: Make a slip knot. Yes, if you’re a knitter, you already know how to do this, so feel free to skip ahead to Step 2.

Slip knots are fairly easy once you know how to do it. Just wrap the yarn around the first two fingers of your right hand, then pull a loop of yarn from back to front. Here it is in pictures:

pic 1

Wrap the yarn around your first two fingers of your right hand, and pull the loop through.

pic 3

Put the yarn on the crochet hook and pull on both the loop and the tails.

Ta-da!

Step 2: Make your first chain stitch.

If you found the slip knot easy, this will be a piece of cake. To make one chain stitch you:

pic 4

Wrap the yarn around the crochet hook from back to front.

pic 4b

Then pull it through the loop already on the hook. This is most easily done by twisting the hook a bit, and make sure to hold the non-working tail.

Congratulations, you’ve just made a chain stitch. That’s it, no fuss, no muss. The only warning I have is to keep them fairly loose, this will help you in step 4.

Step 3: Continue making chain stitches until you have 26. How do you count? There are 2 ways, and both require a quick lesson in chain stitch anatomy.

Your chain stitch should look something like this:

pic 5

It might look like this pic 6 or thispic 7, both of these are fine, not everyone creates the same thing.

If you look carefully, you will see one side has ‘v’ shapes and one side has bumps.

pic 5

This is the v side

pic 8 copy

This is the bump side. (Kind of like a knit stitch vs a purl stich when you think about it!)

Step 4: Turn the work and single crochet into the 2nd chain from hook.

This is because the first chain is the ‘turning chain.’ Basically this gives you room to turn the work and height to start the next row.

Now you have a choice, you can crochet into the 2 loops of the v or the one loop that makes the bump. Normally I wouldn’t suggest crocheting into just one of the chain loops, but it is done in certain situations, and if it feels right to you, go ahead. There is no wrong way!

Whichever way you choose though, just stick to it all the way across.

To single crochet:

pic 9

1.)Insert hook through loop (or loops) from front to back)

pic 10

2.)Wrap yarn over hook. (I find it easiest to wrap from front to back)

pic 11

3.)Pull yarn through loop.

pic 12

4.)Wrap yarn over hook. (I wrap from back to front this time!)

pic 13

5.)Pull the yarn though both loops on hook.

That’s it, you’ve done a single crochet! Now repeat steps 1-5 and continue to single crochet into each chain stitch.

Now’s the time to go back and count. The top of all the stitches look like ‘v’s just like on the chain stitch. Count the v’s, there should be 25.

If you don’t have 25, just take note of how many you have, then continue on.

pic 14

Step 5: Chain 1 (this is the turning chain again) and turn the work.

pic 15

Step 6: Single crochet into the first stitch (I am not having you skip the first stitch, I prefer it that way with single crochet.) The only difference from the single crochet above is that here you will be working into the 2 loops that form the v at the top of each stitch.

Continue single crocheting across the row, then chain 1, and create a new row. Keep this going until there are 20 rows, or until the face cloth is the right size (roughly square.)

When you get to (or decide you are at) your last row, make a chain stitch as usual, but pull the loop really big, and cut the loop in half. This is called “breaking the yarn” and you can then pull the end attached to your project really tight. That’s it, you have made yourself a face cloth! Go, make lots of face cloths, have a wonderful time, and in 2 weeks, we’ll make a dishtowel.

I am working on a video of this lesson, and I hope to post it tomorrow, but as this will be my first video post, I want it done right, so this may take a bit more doing than I first thought.

Do you like this lesson? Hate it? Did you follow the lesson? Please, if so post a picture of your finished project. (If you have any questions, please comment, I’ll reply quickly!)

Happy Stitching!

Monday Magazine Review: Crochet Today

August 10, 2009

crochet cover

Crochet Today September/October 2009

Women’s: upcycled tee (collar embellishments), 1 tunic, 1 capelet, 1 beret,

Household/ Decor: 2 can covers, acorn boxes, 3 dish cloths, an eco tote, 3 river rock decorative covers, 2 afghans,

Back to school: 1 amigurumi clock (on cover), 1 large triangle scarf (otherwise called a shawl), kids cardigan, kids vest, pencil case

Halloween: Ghoul candy bag (by Monster Crochet’s LadyLinoleum!), 1 mask and 2 mustaches, 1 halloween baby blanket. 2 halloween kids hats

Total count: 26

That’s a pretty good count from a cover that only says “20+” 

There were a few articles as well, actually, there were 4. As always I would have preferred more, especially as total article page count is 5 minus the ad space. They were all quality articles however. My favorite is “It’s Easy Being Green: Learn how to be kind to our environment, one crochet stitch at a time!” There are a bunch of neat tips in this article.

My rating:5-BOYThe combination of quantity and quality make this issue superb!

Happy Stitching!

Monday Magazine Review: Crochet Uncut

August 3, 2009

Okay, I found out two things yesterday. 1- There are no new crochet print magazines out right now and 2- Bookstores don’t like it when you rifle through their magazine section looking for something that isn’t there.

Don’t worry though! All is not lost. I was very disappointed that there were not print magazines out, but I didn’t discount e-zines! So this is my first e-zine review. (Drum-roll please)

crcohet uncut

Crochet Uncut, Summer 2009

I have to say that I do love the Crochet Liberation Front (CLF on ravelry), and I found that I really like their zine.

One of the things that I like most about this zine is the articles. There are 8 articles, and each of them is enjoyable. The ‘how-to’ create a row counter bracelet is incredibly useful not just for crocheters, but also knitters. (Oh and knitters, if you like the olive-martini bag on the cover pic, there’s a knit pattern for you too!)

The pattern breakdown is:

Accessories: 1 headband, 1 scarf, 1 (absolutely gorgeous!) stole, and 2 olive-martini bags (one of which is knit)

Other: amigurumi bumblebees, hook (and dpn for the bi-stitchual) case, and water/baby bottle holder(I do like the carabiner, but worry that it will pull your pants down

Total Count: 8 patterns

My rating: 5-BOYThis magazine is small in comparison to the major magazines out there but let’s remember that 1- it’s not one of the major magazines and 2- that its free. I loved that there were as many articles as patterns (I am an article fiend, and it made me smile to see 8 and 8). I also was a big fan of the pattern pictures.

I know just how hard it is to get a good picture of a finished object, and though some of the photos were obviously amateur, none of the photos detracted from the appeal of the patterns. Hooray for the magazine and hooray for the designers.