Monday, December 6, 2010

Artsy Crochet Bag for Your Little Girl (Free Pattern)



This design won't require you to be a crochet genius but will definitely put that precious curve on your little girl's face. It works up really fast and can be added to your last minute gift ideas for this Christmas. Pattern uses Worsted weight yarn and Hooks I (5.5 mm) and G ( 4mm). An easy to work shape and simple embellishments give it that midas touch. Cute patterns don't have to be hard at all, do they? It has a flower on one side and a bow tie on the other. Experiment with colors and make it your own. Changing the type of flower or adding a couple of leaves can also give it a new look.




Click here for Pattern: Artsy Crochet Bag Pattern.



Friday, November 26, 2010

Weaving in the Tails in Crochet

Whether your crochet pattern asks you to weave in the tails or not, it is obvious that you have to do it. Weaving in the tails, no matter how boring it seems, is vital to add that key finishing touch to your precious crochet project. Doing it the right way just doesn't add aesthetic value but ensures that your crochet project doesn't unravel with use and make all your effort go down the drain. You might get tails when you start a crochet project, when you add a new skein of yarn and when you change colors.

Things to keep in mind here are:

1. When you leave tails make sure it is at least 6 inches long. This will make it easier for you to thread the yarn needle for weaving in and give you enough length to work with.
2. Weaving in is always done on the wrong side of your work and into the part of your work which is the same color as your tail.
3.Yarn needle is a needle with a big eye and a blunt tip. The best way to thread a yarn is snip a bit of the end to remove any frayed edges and wet it. Some people fold the yarn tip and then thread it. Choose what suits you best.

There are a few ways you can weave in the tails.

1.You can opt to weave in the tails as you crochet by carrying the tails on top of your work and crocheting around it. You will have to do this for almost 1 1/2 to 2 inches and cut the yarn close to your work after giving it a nice tug to straighten it out. This method will reduce your work to a large extent as you are getting your weaving in done as you crochet. Again, if you do this when you change colors there is a possibility that the color of the yarn you just fastened off shows through the new color. This happens mostly if the new color you just added is much lighter than the previous color.




Crochet around the tails to weave them in.

2. After you finish your work you can weave in the tails using a yarn needle into the wrong side of your work. You have to weave in for almost 2 inches and then skip a few of the stitches you weaved into and go backwards for an inch or so. Then cut the yarn close to your work. Just take care to weave into the same color.
Step 1

Step 2
3. If you are making stripes and change colors say every two rows you can opt to carry the yarn on the side of your work. In this method, when you change colors you will just drop the previous color without cutting it and start working with the new color. Then you can pick up the dropped yarn later as shown below. This will work only for projects like sweaters where the the carried yarns will be hidden in the seams or in afghans or scarfs that will have an edging that will conceal it. Again, if you don't change colors frequently and your color pattern calls for wider stripes, then carrying it on the wrong side might increase its chances of getting tugged.


Friday, September 3, 2010

All In One Crochet Hook Case (Free Pattern)




This is a pattern for a case that will hold all your crochet hooks and more. No more searching under the sofa and between the cushions! Just make one for yourself in a single color or in any two colors you choose and never lose your hooks again. It has 10 narrow pockets to hold the hooks and one broad one to hold your measuring tape and stitch markers. When I started to make this I hadn't envisioned the pocket for holding the measuring tape and stitch markers. It was an afterthought and so I had to sew down the bottom of it. But in the pattern here I have added it in such a way that the slip stitch around the crochet case will close all the pockets at once. If unlike me who uses just pieces of scrap yarn as stitch markers, you use the ready made ones then it can be hooked anywhere on to the inside of the crochet case and don't have to be put in the pocket. Keep your yarn needle pinned onto the tape measure pocket and you have your all in one crochet kit. It closes like a book and is secured by a snap button flap.


 PATTERN

Overview

It is worked using Hooks I and H and worsted weight yarn. I used Red heart super saver. The case is worked in two layers, one inner layer with the hook pockets and one outer layer to add thickness. The inner layer is worked in the back loops and front loops (to see working into front loops or back loops click here) alternately to leave one loop of each stitch free. You will be working the hook pockets into these free loops.

Inner layer


Inner layer worked to make rows of free loops.


Using Hook I , ch 25 or chain as long as the chain measures about an inch more than your tallest crochet hook.


Monday, August 30, 2010

How I Organize My Crochet Stuff



All we crocheters love our crochet supplies and love hoarding them for future use. But too much of it and things go out of control. You don't know how to organize them and they are all over the place. I finally decided to take some time to add some method to my madness and share it with all of you. I made a hook case to keep my hooks in. Finally, a well deserving abode for my hooks which do all the work. The hook case has ten hook pockets to hold hooks from sizes B to K. You can even add a pocket for your tape measure and stitch markers. Free pattern for this case will be coming up soon.





I had always kept my yarn bundled up in plastic bags. What an uncreative way of keeping such a beautiful craft supply! So one fine day I decided to shop for a big plastic box that would hold all my yarn. That is when I chanced upon this three tier plastic box with wheels. These are readily available in any Walmart or Target stores. Now, I store all my yarn in these and can conveniently wheel them around wherever I want to sit and crochet. You can also consider using one of the tiers for keeping your tape measure, buttons, sewing needles and thread etc.



Time and again, after starting to use a skein of yarn I end up loosing or misplacing the wrappers around the yarn. The result, I don't know which color or brand I am using to mention it in my patterns. Looking up the color names in the internet left me confused and I had to wait for my next visit to the craft store to confirm it. So I came up with this idea to cut out the name part and the color part of each yarn label and staple them with a bit of the yarn for future reference.

If any of you have more ideas please let me know and I would like to add it here.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Chunky Bangles (Free Pattern)









This is an extension of my recycled bag handle idea. This time I used a smaller plastic lid like that from Pringles to make this trendy bangle. Make them in any color combo to jazz up your summer outfits. I used a size H crochet hook (5mm) and worsted weight yarn. For one bangle I used colors grass and grape, both from Loops and Threads impeccable and color Aran from Red Heart. For the other I used Magenta from Vanna's choice and Terracotta from Loops and Threads again. 



Here is how to make it :
1. keep your size bangle on the plastic lid and using a marker draw along the inner circle of the bangle and cut it out. This will ensure that your bangle is a correct fit.
2. Slip stitch around the plastic circle you cut out and do 7 sc around it with grass colored yarn. ( Refer back to my Recycled bag handle to see how to do this.). Do not fasten off.


















3. Now with one grass color loop on the hook insert the hook into the circle and yarn over the grape color yarn and complete one single crochet all the while taking care to carry the grass color yarn on top along the rim of the circle as shown. This will automatically weave it in .Do 6 more sc with this color.


















4. Now drop the grape color and yarn over the grass and do total 7 sc. Repeat these steps alternating colors till you cover the entire bangle. In the end you will have only 1 tail to weave in. Using a yarn needle, weave it in along the same colored sc stitches on the bangle and cut off the excess.

















5. Now cut out some aran colored yarn, around 150 inches of it from the skein and roll it up in a small ball so that you can easily pass it in through the bangle. Sl st it onto any sc and chain 8, insert the hook into the circle backwards.

















6. Bring the working yarn under the circle and sl st again into the 5th stitch from the previous sl st made.
(You might have to bring the wound yarn in through the circle to untangle it.) This will make a slanted winding around the bangle. Ch 8 again and repeat as before till you cover the entire bangle. Sl St to the 1st sl st made and fasten off . Weave in the tail along the chain itself.

For the other bangle I embellished using some sequins I had. You can sew them on or use glue. You can try using jewels available in any craft stores too. Use your imagination and make it your own. If you make it please do post a pic on my facebook page here. Again, what do you think of this idea? What other color combinations can you come up with? What color dress can you carry these off with? Let me know.......

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Tips for Making Baby Booties

1. It is always difficult for a beginner to get both the booties in the same size. Do not get disappointed, there are lots of others in the same boat as you. The first step is to make sure you do both the soles together and of the same size. If you do both the booties side by side, u can avoid changes to a large extent before it's too late. If you are making it for your baby, it's a good idea to try it on before weaving in the ends. A slight variation in size may go unnoticed when worn as crochet projects are stretchy and will take the shape of the feet.


2. Work into the back loops only means instead of inserting your hook under both the loops of a stitch, insert it into one of the loops only ( back as seen in pic) which will leave one loop of each stitch free. It helps to turn your work , like to turn the sides up from the sole.

3. Sole is worked in the round, or shall I say oval, around the foundation chain without turning your work at all. You work into all of the foundation chains and then go around to work in the back of the same foundation chain again. Making the sole involves a lot of counting. What you have to keep in mind is that the sole is made of two identical halves , one left half and one right half . So whatever increases you make will be symmetrical on both sides as seen in pic below. If your counting goes wrong then your sole will look like its turning to one side or have an extra bulge on one side. So make sure to count your stitches after each round. Use your hook to count your stitches and not your fingers. For beginners increases means doing more than one half double crochet or single crochet etc. into the same stitch. There are cases where the pattern requires the sole to have a sharper curve on one of the sides, but that is rarely required for baby booties. Each round in the sole is made using a mix of half double crochet, single crochet etc. This is to make the sole wider at toe side and narrower at the ankle side by making the longer stitches on the toe side alone. So watch out for the changes in the stitches in each round, do not end up doing sc where your pattern calls for hdc or vice versa. I hope these tips help you in clearing some of the confusions involved in making  baby booties.

4. Again, last but not the least when the pattern gives different sizes, circle all the variations for the size you choose before starting to work on it. All the best with your baby booties!

Friday, July 23, 2010

Recycled Crochet Bag Handle (Free Pattern)

This post will show you how to make a circular bag handle with things found in every home and some yarn. There are lots of crochet patterns that ask for circular bamboo handles and this could be a good alternative. Take a plastic lid from any throw away container.

Use a sharp knife to make a slit near the edge of the circle . Insert your scissors through the slit and cut in a neat circle. My yogurt container had a line on it that I could use as a guide. But if your lid doesn't have it, use a marker and a smaller circular object to draw a circle on your lid first. You can see your handle take shape now.

Using your yarn and hook, I used a size H hook, work around the lid. Insert hook into the circle and put a slip knot on the hook from behind, pull up the slip knot and slip st around the handle as shown in pic 3 below. You can tighten it by pulling the tail. Now you have to start doing single crochet stitches around the handle. Insert the hook into the circle, yarn over and pull the loop up to the level of the outer circle , yarn over and pull through both loops on hook- single crochet made! See pic 4 below. Keep doing single crochet till the full circle is covered making sure to move the stitches close together after every few stitches to get a smooth finish. Fasten off and weave in the ends using a yarn needle. You have your very own handmade handle for your next crochet bag!



1. Cut out the inner circle


2. Your handle takes shape


3. Slip stitch around the handle


4. Make single crochet around the the handle


5. Completed handle




Thursday, July 8, 2010

Boy's Slippons Crochet Booties (free Pattern) in 4 sizes






This is the first pattern I actually wrote. I started this as a girl's pattern and realized that just with a few changes, it can be adapted for a boy. There is a lace under the toe flap which helps in making the booties snug on tiny feet.

This was worked using worsted weight yarn and hooks H and F to fit ages 0-3 and 3-6 months. To make bigger sizes you will have to use a hook I too. Pattern is written for sizes 0-3, 3-6, 6-9 and 9-12 months. Picture of every step is included in the pdf in a way even beginners can understand. I was using the leftover yarn I had and I think the purple should have been a tad brighter. The black one looks lovely but the picture fails to capture its real beauty. Place a big button in place of the bow to give it an added edge. Use your imagination and make it your own.




Click here for free pattern: Slippons Pattern.


Sunday, July 4, 2010

Copyright Notice

All my work is copyrighted. You do not have permission to resell or redistribute any of my patterns . If you sell any products made from my patterns please give credit to my blog URL : http://www.crochetdreamz.blogspot.com/

Here are the basic guidelines for using crochet patterns in this site:

1. You cannot resell or distribute the patterns in this blog. Even if it is a free pattern please do not email a pattern you have downloaded, direct your friends to my blog so that they can get their own .

2. Do not distribute photocopies of the patterns in this blog. You can instead direct them to my blog.

3. You do not have permission to post the contents of this blog elsewhere without linking directly to my blog.

4. You do not have permission to use my pictures to sell the itmes you make. Please use your own photographs.

4. You have permission to sell the finished items made from my patterns. But do not mass produce commercially. It should be handmade by you. Make a reference to http://www.crochetdreamz.blogspot.com/ when you sell items made from my pattern.

5. Last but not the least, if you are not sure mail me at mycrochetdreamz@gmail.com

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