Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Intarsia Knitting Tutorial on craftzine.com

Woo hoo!  Check out my Intarsia 101 tutorial on CRAFT Magazine's site.

Thursday, May 05, 2011

Tutorial: Cloth Napkins

Things in our home sometimes get names that make no sense.  It's a part of our language shorthand that we understand, but when you think about it, is unexplainable.  That weird place is where the name "face cloths" comes from.

These small squares of fabric were made to be used in place of paper towels for most of the things we use paper towels for.  I suspect the name "face cloths" refers to their use as dinner napkins, but I'm just guessing.

They are made from a queen-sized sheet I got at Urban Outfitters years ago during a 50% off sale.  I thought I'd use it as a purse linings, then I thought I'd use it as an actual sheet, but I never ended up using it for anything at all.  I've been saving it to become face cloths, it seems.

Here's the quick and dirty tutorial:

1. Cut cotton fabric into 12" squares.  I used my cutting mat, rotary cutter, and clear ruler.  So fast and easy to cut square with those tools.

2. Trim all 4 corners.  I cut them so the deepest part of the cut was about 1/4" from the corner.

3. Fold over 3/8", then 3/8" again to hide the raw edge.  I just eyeballed this step.

4. Sew a 1/4" hem on all four sides.  I used my fancy 1/4" seam foot for the first time on this project.

We do use them as dinner napkins.  We will also pile unwashed or washed vegetables on them during dinner preparation, or use them as spoon rests, and they are great for wiping all the cauliflower crumbles off the cutting board so you can cut other food without coating them in cauliflower crumbles.

I bought a small $1.50 trash can at Daiso (the Japanese one yen store in town) and put it next to the dirty clothes basket to hold the dirty face cloths.  They don't really get that dirty, though.  Anything supergross that needs to be done still gets done by a paper towel that I can throw away.

They fit in the same washer load as all the towels, so they don't make me do any extra loads of laundry.  So far, I'm really happy with them.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

The Hex Tote Video Crochet-A-Long - Episode 6



Episode 6 - Finishing touches: three rows of single crochet at the top of the bag and attaching the granny straps.

Here are tutorials for some of the techniques mentioned in this post:

That's everything.  Let me know if you need any help!  And definitely send me pix if you make a Hex Tote.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

The Hex Tote Video Crochet-A-Long - Episode 5



Episode 5 - Row 4 of a half hex motif when you join it to the tote.

See chart below.


Monday, March 28, 2011

The Hex Tote Video Crochet-A-Long - Episode 4



Episode 4 - The first three rows of a half hex motif.  Make 4 half hexes.  

Visit planetjune.com for a magic circle tutorial (for right and left handers).

See the chart below.


Wednesday, March 09, 2011

The Hex Tote Video Crochet-A-Long - Episode 3



Episode 3 - How to join a corner hex.

The two corner hexes are 3 and 17 in the chart below.


Friday, February 25, 2011

The Hex Tote Video Crochet-A-Long - Episode 2



Episode 2 - How to crochet row 4 of a hex motif and how to join as you go.

Here's the chart for Row 4.  You definitely need to watch the video if you aren't familiar with joining as you go.

This is the tricky part - making a 3-D object assembly chart.  Here is the clean chart so if someone has questions, I can direct them to a numbered hex.

Black numbers are full hexes.  Red numbers are half-hexes.  Half-hexes will be covered in a later episode.

You don't have to attach your hexes in this order.  Connect them up however you'd like.  I do suggest that you lay your hexes on the floor and arrange them before you start assembling your tote.

Be sure to move one edge's hexes to the other edge before you settle on the final placement (meaning, move 24, 25, & 26 over to the left edge -- and 7 & 14 to the other side's bottom edge) to make sure there are no color conflicts.

Or, you can just put them in a pile and connect them one at a time by pulling the next one out.  It 's a granny hex tote, not brain surgery.  You don't have to over-think it. :)

Here is the ridiculously overly-noted chart. :)

Red lines are the side and bottom folds.  

The colored painted lines are where hexes match up.  The colors don't mean anything in particular.  I used different colors so you could see what matches up where: pink to pink - blue to blue - green to green - and gold to gold.

The blue stars under Hex 3 and Hex 17 are where the bottom corners are.  I will cover this in the next episode, but for those of you that want to attempt this ...

Hex 3 and Hex 17 are folded in half and the bottom edge is not attached to anything when you crochet Row 4 (as you can see since there is no colored painted line along the bottom edge).

I had trouble attaching the corner hexes, so don't feel bad if you have to wait for the video to get it.  It's tricky.

Friday, February 18, 2011

The Hex Tote Video Crochet-A-Long - Episode 1



Episode 1 - The first three rows of a hex motif. Make 26 to start The Hex Tote.

After all the wonderful name suggestions (OMG, Bagasaurus Hex?!  So amazing), I settled on a simple "The Hex" as the name.  And since it's a tote ... The Hex Tote.

Here are tutorials for some of the techniques mentioned in this post:


For my bag, I used Lily brand Sugar 'n Cream worsted weight cotton yarn.  I used what I had on hand, which is why the colors aren't used equally.  I'm not sure how much yarn it takes, but the nice thing about granny motifs is that if you have to pick up more yarn later, the dye lot doesn't matter since the same color is never touching itself.

I used a 3.75mm hook so the stitches would be super dense.  I didn't want a lot of the lining peeking through my motifs.

You can make this bag with any size/type yarn and any size hook you'd like, there are no rules.  Let me know if you have any more initial questions.

Saturday, January 01, 2011

How To Make Granny Straps

These are the straps I designed for the secret hex bag.  Below are charts, written instructions, and a video.  Plus a bonus alternate two-row version.  Yay!

My suggestion is that you look at the chart, watch the video, and go for it.  If you absolutely must, read the written directions, but they are super-wordy even though the straps are pretty simple to make.




Granny Strap Written Directions
Row 1: Make an odd number of foundation single crochet (fsc)  stitches.  

Stop making that face ... it's easy!  If you don't believe me, click through to my tutorial and read all the comments that say how happy everyone is that they finally learned to do fsc.  You can do it.  Trust me!!!  My tutorial has a video and step-by-step photos.  And, you can ALWAYS email me.  I bet you'll have it mastered in 10 minutes, tops.

Row 2: Make two single crochet (sc) stitches in the top of the third fsc, chain 1, * skip 1 fsc, 2 sc in next fsc , chain 1 repeat from *  until you get to the last fsc.  In the last fsc make 2 sc (in the top of the fsc), chain 2, 2 sc (in the side/end of the fsc), chain 2, 2 sc (in the bottom of the fsc making sure to catch center bar of fsc so there is no yarn between the 2 sc in the top of the fsc and the 2 sc in the bottom of the fsc), chain 1. Along the bottom of the fsc row * skip 1 fsc, 2 sc in next fsc , chain 1 repeat from *  until you get to the last fsc. In the last fsc make 2 sc, chain 2, 2 sc, chain 2, 2 sc, chain 1. Skip an fsc, 2sc in next fsc, slip stitch to top of first sc of Row 2, pull a loop through the last stitch, cut yarn and pull end through, and tie a square knot on the back of the strap with the beginning and ending yarn ends.

Row 3: In the chain space to the left of the start of row 2, make 2 sc, chain 1, * skip 1 fsc, 2 sc in next fsc , chain 1 repeat from *  until you get to the 2 chain corner.  In the 2 chain corner make 4 sc, chain 1, in the next 2 chain corner, make 4 sc, chain 1. Along the bottom edge * skip 1 fsc, 2 sc in next fsc , chain 1 repeat from *  until you get to the 2 chain corner.  In the 2 chain corner make 4 sc, chain 1, in the next 2 chain corner, make 4 sc, chain 1.  Make 2 sc over the slip stitch that completed Row2 trying to hide the knot, if you can, slip stitch to top of first sc of Row 3, pull a loop through the last stitch, cut yarn and pull end through, and tie a square knot on the back of the strap with the beginning and ending yarn ends.

Finishing: Weave in yarn ends.




ALTERNATE TWO-ROW VERSION OF GRANNY STRAP

Here is a two-row version I used on the phone cozy I made.




Row 1: Make an odd number of foundation single crochet (fsc)  stitches.

Row 2: Start with top of third fsc, make one *single crochet, chain one, skip an fsc, repeat from * until you get to then last fsc.  In the last fsc, sc, chain 1, sc, chain 1, 1 sc to work around the end of the fsc row.  Along the bottom of the sc (be sure to catch the center piece of yarn) chain 1, skip one fsc, *single crochet, chain one, skip an fsc, repeat from * until you get to then last fsc. In the last fsc, sc, chain 1, sc, chain 1, 1 sc to work around the end of the fsc row.  Slip stitch to the first sc.

Feedback welcome and encouraged!
Let me know if you have any questions or anything is confusing.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Starling Handbag Video Crochet-A-Long - Episode 5



Episode 5 covers handles of the Starling Handbag.

Here are all of the Starling Crochet-A-Long videos.

Here is the foundation single crochet bridge tutorial.

This is the last video!  Big thanks to karin @ madebyk for telling me about the video software (Movie Maker.  Free!) that I used to edit together and add titles and music to this video.  See what I mean about the sparkles in my theme song?

I also learned how to better make videos now that I can edit parts together and add transitions between bits so you can see fsc 1,2,3 (nice fade) 23,24, 25.  The actual recording time for this one was MUCH shorter.  The software was super easy to use and made putting the whole thing together so fast.

Now I just need a camera that doesn't make me sound like I lisp.  :)

When you're done I have a tutorial for sewing a fabric lining and sewing that lining into your bag.