Sunday, March 22, 2015

Beach Bag

Hey guys, today I'm going to just show you something that I made.  I admit to being a little stupid when it comes to fashion, bags, and shoes, but I've seen a lot of really cute crochet bags lately, so I thought I'd try to make one myself.  I had some hexagon shaped granny squares all made up for an afghan, but I never got around to putting them together. I never made enough to finish it anyway, so I decided to use them to make a bag.  How hard could it be?

HA!  Silly question! Did you know that hexagons are tricky little buggers?  I do now!  First of all, I was only going to make a small bag, about three hexagons wide and 2 or 3 tall just to start.  I didn't plan out how to put this thing together because I thought I'd just make the bottom and form the rest as I went.  It would just kinda...come together.  (Doesn't everything?)  Well this sucker ended up beach bag sized!

Also, I found that one side of this bag ended up higher than the other side, even with the same number of hexagons on both sides.  Why did that happen when hexagons are such a nice geometric shape?  (For real, how did this happen?!  If anyone knows, feel free to drop me a line or leave a message in the comments.)  I was using the ends of yarn up from old projects, so not all of the yarn was exactly the same density.  As a result, some of the hexagons ended up larger or smaller than others, but even then, if they're distributed evenly they should all kinda even out, right?

Once I got both sides a size I was relatively happy with, there was still something off.  I realized that for some reason on one side only, I had two hexagons sewn in with 3 sides up on the top instead of just two.  It was kind of weird.  I couldn't figure out how to make them fit in right, and if I tried to do without them, the bag would have some pieces carved out of the top.  This just wasn't working out the way I wanted.  :(

I eventually made two pentagon shaped pieces to fix the geometry problem.  I don't think they're too obvious.  I think it would have looked cooler if I had used colored yarn to join all my pieces.  Ah well, I still think the bag is kind of neat.  I'll attempt to make a smaller bag with some more hexagons I have left over.

Saturday, March 14, 2015

Sarah's Scoodie

Here is the scoodie I made for my sister for Christmas.  I just finished it.


I need to get a better model.

Regardless of how early or late it is, I am really happy with how it turned out, so I'm going to show you how I made it!

I made this like a really, really long scarf, then I folded and sewed it up into a scoodie with pockets.

I used 5 skeins of Caron Simply Soft yarn in Iris, two buttons, and a size I/9 5.50mm hook.

ch: chain
dc: double crochet
sk: skip
fpdc: front-post double crochet
bpdc: back-post double crochet
st: stitch

To begin, Ch 40.

Row 1: Dc in 4th chain from hook, and all the way across. Ch 2 and turn.

Row 2: Sk first dc, then *fpdc in the next 4 st. Bpdc in the following 4 st.* Repeat from * to * to the end of the row. Dc in final st, ch 2, and turn.

Row 3: Sk first dc, then *bpdc in the next 4 st. Fpdc in the following 4 st.* Repeat from * to * to the end of the row. DC in final st, ch 2, and turn.

Rows 4- 5: Repeat rows 2 and 3.

Row 6: Sk first dc, then *bpdc in the next 4 st. Fpdc in the following 4 st.* Repeat from * to * to the end of the row. DC in final st, ch 2, and turn.

Row 7: Sk first dc, then *fpdc in the next 4 st. Bpdc in the following 4 st.* Repeat from * to * to the end of the row. Dc in final st, ch 2, and turn.

Rows 8-9: Repeat rows 6-7.

Rows 10 - ?: Repeat rows 2 - 9 until you reach your desired length. Your scoodie should reach from fingertip to fingertip while draped over the head. THEN add 12 rows of basket weave (48 single rows). I am 5'8", and my scarf reached 99" long. Fasten off once you reach your desired length.

Lay your scarf on a flat surface, then fold the ends of your scarf up to the desired depth of your pockets.  I liked 6 basket weave rows deep on each side. Then I took a contrasting yarn color and tied the sides together in 4 places on each side. Use bow or knot that comes out easily.

Border rows:

Row 1: Once the sides are tied, starting at the bottom of one side and with the pockets facing you, start crocheting up the side of the scarf to crochet the pockets together and start making a border. Start with a ch 2, and then dc all the way to the end.  I found that 2 dc in each dc, and one in between dcs filled in the sides nicely. Ch 2, turn. 

Row 2: Alternate fpdc and bpdc all the way to the end. Ch 2, turn.

Row 3: Alternate fpdc with bpdc all the way across, making sure you match fpdc with fpdc and bpdc with bpdc. Fasten off. 

Turn your scarf and make the border rows 1 - 3 on the other side. On the third row, on only one side I decided to prep the center part for a hood. Instead of alternating fpdc and bpdc in the middle 16", I made all fpdc in this area. This gave me a point of reference and it also made sure that all the stitches matched up properly.

To create your hood:

Fold your scoodie directly in half with the pockets facing out. Whip stitch the side you prepped for the hood.  You should have a hood that measures about 8 inches. Fasten off and sew all your ends into your scoodie.


I added a 7/8" button to the pockets so they could be closed if needed.  I placed a button in the top middle of each pocket, then I created a loop by attaching the yarn to one of the double crochets directly above the button. Ch 8, and attach the other end to the double crochet right next to it. I tied the ends together with a knot and sewed the ends in.

Your scoodie is now complete!  Enjoy!

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Basic Cable Crochet Cuff Bracelet

Today I have a new pattern that I wrote for a cuff bracelet.  This bracelet had several incarnations before I settled on this style.  My 10-year-old daughter is a bit more flamboyant than I am, I had made one for her with double cables and a ruffled edge.  I liked the double cable well enough, but couldn't get into the ruffles (and, truth be told, it was VERY wide).  I made a single cable cuff bracelet all in one color with a contrasting edge, but decided to try to make a cabled cuff with a different colored cabling,  I decided I liked the look of that one, so here's how I did it:

You will want two different colored yarns. I used Caron Simply Soft in blue mint and Loops and Threads in citrus, and a size H/8 5.00mm hook.  I keep a very tight tension, so you may need to adjust your hook size to compensate.  Also, this pattern uses front post treble crochet (fptc), and front post double treble crochet (fpdt). For front post treble crochet, follow instructions for making a front post double crochet, but yarn over twice before inserting the hook behind the post instead of only once. For a front post double treble, yarn over three times.  Finally, when you switch between colors, you will end up with some strands of yarn going back and forth on the back of the cuff.  I haven't figured out a better way to work them into the weave.  Here's what the back of mine looks like:

The pattern:

Chain 12. Turn.

Row 1:  SC in third ch from hook and sc all the way across. (10) (Rows should shape up to measure 2.25")

Rows 2-3: SC all the way across. Ch 1 and turn. (On fourth row, ch 2 and turn.) (10)

Rows 4-5:  Hdc all the way across. Ch 2 and turn. (10)

Row 6:  HDC in next 2 hdc. Change color, skip down to the row below your current row and fptc in the next four spaces. move back up, change color back and complete 3 hdc. Ch 2 and turn. (10)

Row 7: Hdc all the way across, ch 2 and turn. (10)

Row 8:  Hdc in next two hdc. Change color. Sk next two hdc. Fpdt in next two fptc.  Go back four spaces to the two skipped spaces and fpdt in the two skipped fptc. Change colors back, and hdc in the last three hdc. Ch 2 and turn. (10)

Row 9:  HDC across. Ch 2, turn. (10)

Row 10 - 18:  Repeat rows 7 - 10, ending on row 7.

Row 19 - 23:  SC all the way across, ch 2, turn. On last row, do not ch 2, just fasten off.

Once I fastened off on my cuff, for some reason it was a little crooked, so I blocked mine so that it was even all the way around. Click here for more information on blocking.

To finish, hold your bracelet facing you, Using your accent color and starting at the top right-hand corner, Single crochet to the bottom right edge.  Once you get the the bottom, fold your bracelet in half, right-side out. Single crochet across, stitching through both layers so that the ends are crocheted together. once you reach the end, single crochet around the left-hand side of the bracelet, fastening off once you have reached the end.

This project is pretty versatile. You can make it in one or more colors, try a couple of different kinds of edging, or add buttons to make it more interesting,