Monday, October 29, 2012

Pom pom yarn

I have walked past this pom pom yarn in many stores before and have always wondered what in the world would I make with that. I finally decided to try it out, and I'm pretty glad I did.
This stuff may look intimidating but don't let it fool you. Stitches are worked between the pom poms. For me each single crochet stitch contained two pom poms: one when I pulled a loop up through a stitch and another when I yarned over to complete the stitch.
Originally, I was thinking that all the pom poms would be on one side, leaving the other a rough side of stitches. I was pleasantly surprised to see that this was not the case at all. Each side if my scarf ended up being very plush. The yarn created fun ridges and my colors created an interesting striped look.
I highly recommend trying it out!

The side view of the scarf. Notice the ridges?

From this angle you can see the striped effect. 

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Wire Crochet

Recently, I've had some requests for teaching classes about wire crochet. I haven't done much crocheting with wire yet, so I've started experimenting. Here are just a couple of the things I've made so far.

I look forward to making additional designs with wire! 

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Updated Calendar of Crochet Classes for Central Illinois

Hi everyone!
I've updated the calendar for crochet classes in central Illinois! Please check it out. To register contact the stores for details.
Each class is $25 plus the cost of supplies (if you need them).  As an added bonus, when you register you should get a coupon code for 10% off your class supplies! This code is good from the time you register until the end of the class.

Also, I've been working on designing classes about crocheting with wire and Red Heart's new Sashay yarn. (If you've seen it in the store, you'll know why there is a need for a class about it.) It's not so much a yarn as it is more of a mesh that produces lots of ruffles when you work with it.

Very fun stuff! Keep an eye on the class calendar for these new classes. :)

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Super Mario Brothers Toad crochet hat

I have been thinking for a bit about Halloween, so I made this hat for my son. It's a little big, but I'm sure it will last him through winter if I don't make another. The pattern should be posted soon. I have also been planning on making Toad's blue vest to complete the outfit. :)

The pattern has been listed on my Ravelry store: download now

Saturday, October 6, 2012

New Pattern Available: World of Warcraft Banner Pattern

I've finally written up the pattern for my World of Warcraft banner. It can be found as a free download in my Ravelry store. download now

I tried to explain the dowel rod assembly as best I could. To hang the dowel rods I would probably use something like these command hooks. They are inexpensive and should easily hold the banner up.

If you have any problems, please don't hesitate to ask and let me know so I can try to clarify.

Stitch Combination: Grit Stitch

Here is a stitch that is very similar to what some people know as the V stitch. Instead of using tall stitches like the V stitch, this stitch is created with two single crochet stitches in a stitch. Each group of two single crochet stitches are separated by a chain stitch.

To make this stitch begin by chaining a multiple of two stitches. Here's a chart to make this stitch.

 While this stitch might look dense, it is actually very flexible and lighter than single crochet stitches. This stitch combination could also be done with taller stitches (hdc, dc, tr or taller), but remember to modify your turning chain to accommodate the additional height.

Friday, October 5, 2012

Crochet Classes for Central Illinois

 I will soon be teaching crochet classes at two of the Michaels in my area. Peoria and Normal, IL. 

My crochet class schedule has more information on when the classes are and this link, Crochet Classes, has more information about the classes.

The classes will be held in two locations: 
200 Greenbriar Dr, Ste A
NORMAL, IL 61761-6282
(309) 268-4007


5212 N Big Hollow Rd
PEORIA, IL 61615-3404
(309) 692-3275

Each class will be two and a half hours long and cost $25. Class size is limited to 10 so register early to save your spot.

Stitch Combination: Shallow Stitch

This is one stitch that will challenge those that like to crochet by the "rules." For the most part, crochet stitches are worked under the V (as you look at it from the top) and above the horizontal bar (when seen from the side). For the Shallow Stitch stitches are worked *under* that horizontal bar of each stitch.

Here is a look at what this stitch looks like.
This stitch creates very strong horizontal lines as it gathers the three strands from the previous row together. To make this stitch, chain any number of stitches but make your chain loosely to accommodate for the stitches worked in spaces. 
The image above shows the shallow stitch swatch next to a double crochet swatch. Notice that the shallow stitch has much cleaner (in my opinion) horizontal lines. With a bulkier yarn I think this might make for a fun scarf. 

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Stitch Combination: Seed Stitch

This stitch combination creates an interesting look with a little texture. This is similar to the open stitch combination, except that it uses single crochet stitches. I.e. It is created by alternating single crochet and chain stitches.
There is one major difference between the two combinations. In the open stitch combination, the double crochet stitches are worked into the previous row's double crochet stitches. In the seed stitch, single crochet stitches are worked in the previous row's chain stitches.

To make it, chain a multiple of two plus one.
One thing that I wasn't a fan of when trying this stitch out was that one side of the pattern creates a zig zagged edge. Perhaps a slip stitch at the end of row 2 (to attach it to row 1) in the pattern diagrm above would help solve this. 

This stitch could also be done by changing the single crochet stitch for a taller stitch, like the double or treble crochet stitches.
What are your thoughts about this stitch? Have you seen it used in any patterns you've worked on?

Stitch Combination: Open Stitch

 The open stitch pattern is similar to a mesh stitch. It results in a series of open boxes and a light density. This might make for a very pretty shawl or light scarf. To start, chain a multiple of two plus one. It's created by alternating between double crochet and chain stitches, and rows end with a double crochet.

Monday, October 1, 2012

Stitch Variations: Popcorn Stitch

Popcorn stitches all use the same process to create, regardless of what kind of basic stitch you're working with. They can be created with any stitch except the single crochet, but the double crochet stitch is most commonly used.

To create a popcorn stitch: work a group of 3 or more stitches, we'll say double crochet stitches for this example, into one stitch or space. Remove the hook from the working loop you've been using and insert it into the first double crochet in the group. Pull the working loop (that you dropped before) through where you now have your hook. Your popcorn should pop to the front. Secure it into place with a chain stitch.

Tip:  When working on the wrong side, you can insert your hook from the back to get your popcorn to pop to the correct side.

This technique creates a 3D effect and can be used to create numerous designs and patterns. In my photo, I made a diamond.

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