Introducing the Lucky Wristlet!
This is the photo tutorial for making a Ribbon Strap for the Lucky Wristlet.
This is the photo tutorial for crocheting my Lucky Wristlet pattern.
You've seen me making this purse along the way, so there's not much to say now except ... hooray! We had an unbelievably nice day last Sunday when I took these photos. I felt like I was getting sunburned! It was 75 degrees out. Insanity for around here.
... and then it was time to steek the real sweater!
I wanted to steek the front edges of my sweater to allow me to cut off the myriad of ends the stripes left. I was a little worried though, so I swatched the whole thing. As hilarious as it sounds, at times like this, I feel like a master painter making a detail practice painting ... it's the same kind of thing, right? Practice makes perfect. ;)
You may have already seen this over on CRAFT Magazine's site, but just in case you didn't, I designed a crochet pattern for them ... this cute crochet heart scarf
I have a little progress to report on Perrin's Starling ... and a little is better than nothing. Baby steps, baby steps.
Now that I'm done with the Fennec Fox, I've picked my new featured craft project, Perrin's Starling Handbag. I got to know Perrin through my site. Instantly, I could tell she was the kind of direct, open, and passionate person that I get along with. I just love Perrin. :)
The peacock sweater is finally done done done!
Get ready to learn more information about the construction of a mini clown sweater than any one human should know.
Episode 6 - Finishing touches: three rows of single crochet at the top of the bag and attaching the granny straps. Click through to the post to get more info and links to helpful tutorials.
Episode 5 - Row 4 of a half hex motif when you join it to the tote. Click through to the post to get more info and a crochet chart.
Episode 4 - The first three rows of a half hex motif. Click through to the post to get more info and a crochet chart.
Episode 3 - How to join a corner hex. Click through to the post to get more info and a crochet chart.
There were some great questions in the comments of yesterday's post, so I thought I'd give you all some more info about the decreases and some close ups.
I reworked the Peacock Sweater bust decreases. Again.
Episode 2 - How to crochet row 4 of a hex motif and how to join as you go. Click through to the post to get more info and some crochet charts.
Oh, man. I just checked and I haven't worked on the Peacock Sweater since last September. And if you knew the whole truth about how many times I've made and remade and remade this sweater, you wouldn't blame me one bit.
Episode 1 - The first three rows of a hex motif. Make 26 to start The Hex Tote. Click through to the post to get more info and a crochet chart.
My train ride to Korallin's house was an hour each way, which was awesome for crocheting. I finished up the purse body for my tunisian purse.
I've been teasing you with photos of this secret project forever-and-a-day, and now it can finally be revealed ...
When I saw the photo of the color stripes in my first post about the knitted chair covers
, I noticed something that really got under my skin: accidental red-white-blue.
These crochet handles are for a secret project, so I can't say much about them except, "Scrumptous!"
When I bought this yarn, I was in love with the color, and I told myself that it was no big deal that it was hand wash only.
So I dialed down the puffy sleeves by starting with fewer motifs at the top of the shoulder and increasing as I work subsequent rows.
I've been feeling super focused and sort of hermit-y the last couple of weeks. I've restarted the peacock sweater several times since the last post.
Not really a micro-mini sweater (nor a micro mini kilt
... of plaid). Peacock Sweater 2.0 is looking rad.
I've completely frogged the peacock sweater and started all over again. Meaning, for the five-bazillionth time. And somehow, I'm as excited as I was the first time.
Episode 3 covers the bottom row3 and beyond of the Starling Handbag. Be thankful I hadn't lined up any jokes for this one. ;)
... and knows how to crochet? I have a sweet reader that has a question about the Starling Handbag pattern. Let me know if you can help. :)
Now that I have more time to craft, I've got thread crochet on the brain. Friday night as I was falling asleep I got a novel idea for overskirt construction. I was unbelievably comfortable and it was unbelievably late, but I *still* got up and made a note because I didn't want to forget!
In the War between Blogging and Crafting, Crafting has been kicking Blogging's ass.
When I posed Adventures in Neckdom
, I asked if anyone knew a standard way to join an fsc chain to another piece of crochet because my connector row was just sorta floating out there.
Most of the time, I want to be a nurturing, encouraging craft blogger. I want to present things in a way that demystifies the process. I want you to think that you can do any of the things that I do here (and you can! really!). I hope this comes across here, on my blog. I hope you see I'm a person, just like you.
Except for the next few moments ...
I decided to use the 4.5mm hook for the peacock sweater. That's also the size I use to make my Starling Handbags. It seems I have a preference for the 4.5mm hook. Maybe it's my lucky hook?
There are a million-and-one crafty things I want to be doing RIGHT THIS MINUTE, but I haven't been able to stop thinking about, planning, and starting another project: the Peacock Sweater.
Here's my little lion from Super-Cute Crochet
. Amigurumi is so quick and fun. An easy way to use tiny amounts of yarn.
When I was first learning foundation single crochet (fsc), I found that I made the chain part of the stitch very tightly. This is because I wasn't pushing my hook through the loops all the way; I was just using the tip. When the chain part is tight, your fsc row will start to curve in on itself.
This is a supplement to the original foundation single crochet tutorial
. Here I show you how to make a foundation single crochet bridge in the middle of your work. I first used this when making the Icelandic Turtleneck for the arm holes. I also use it to make the handles on my handbags.
I'm so excited that you are so excited about the pattern! I have 114 un-replied-to comments waiting patiently in my inbox. I have the best of intentions to reply to them ... although I'm not sure I'll get to it soon. You guys have the best ideas and the best suggestions!
I've been wanting to add a closure of some sort to my flower bag because when I set it down, it opens up wide.
The response has been overwhelming. I'll be starting with the handbag pattern. I've already started on the pattern testing, as some details need to be worked out before I can start writing the pattern. One of those details is the name of the handbag.
What should I name the handbag pattern?
This foundation single crochet tutorial is broken down by each teeny-tiny step. When I first attempted to learn this technique from a magazine, I had pretty good illustrations to go by, but I was still totally confused by the whole thing. It took me 3 or 4 tries over a couple of months to even feel confident that I was doing this correctly.
I'm preparing to write a foundation single crochet tutorial for the blog. For those of you who are unfamiliar with foundation single crochet, it's the act of creating a row of chain and single crochet all at once to use as a foundation for more rows. It replaces the initial chain that starts most projects.
About the joined-motif projects in the book.
Some of the ugly, goofy, and easily-make-funnable projects in the book.
Handbags handbags handbags!
I couldn't resist whipping up one of the peacock-like squares I mentioned in last post
. Front on the left, back on the right.
I highlight some little-used techniques that I found in the book.
found this Japanese craft book (or maybe it's a magazine?) from 1966. She gave it to Diane
when she was in Portland. Mimi told Diane that she thought that either Diane or I would really love it. Diane sent it to me.
This installment talks about the front and back cover and the diagrams.
I've been sorta avoiding this post ... because I just don't know what to say. Well I guess there's one thing to say ...
The part that had me worried in regard to the purse lining were the pleats. As I showed you in my test pleat post
, putting all the slack in one big pleat really constricts the opening. Using what I learned from the test pleats, I decided to do four sets of sort-of-evenly-spaced pleats.
I've been avoiding the lining because I didn't feel like I was ready to tackle it. Yesterday I decided to just jump in and I got so much done that I'm going to have to split it up into several posts this week. I'm getting close to finishing it, but there's still much to do.
This way to do seamless single crochet is way-better than my original single crochet tutorial
, especially if you're doing color changes. Why? Because it's simpler, the color changes are cleaner looking, and there are no complicated stitch depths involved. I posted a comparison of the two techniques
if you'd like to see the differences. Even a newbie will be able to follow this tutorial.
I've been playing around with the lining. The fabric I'm going to be using is patterned, so I'm going to need a cream outer layer and the patterned inner layer. I don't want the patterns showing through in between the flowers. For messing around, I've made a test lining from a crappy old sheet that I keep around just for this purpose.
I was *this close* to "finishing up the folding over and sewing of the handles" and something started bothering me. The cord was making the right and left edge bow out more than I liked. See it on the left? I didn't want my purse to gape open like that. I want it to lay closed more flatly, like on the right.
OK, I'm to the part in this project where I normally set it aside and never finish it. Not because I don't want to, or I'm bored of it, but because the tasks ahead require thoughtfulness and chunks of time for execution. The crochet part is easy because I can fit that in 3 minutes at a time. But finishing the handles and sewing the lining is a whole other story.
I probably should have just tacked this onto yesterdays post ... which is why I'm calling it update 9.5. I was just being a little lazy. ;)
The first part of the handles that are crocheted are the bit across the long sides of the purse rectangle. Those 9 flowers' petals get gathered as you single crochet through multiple petals at a time.
I am done weaving in ends! Thank goodness that they can look like crap on the inside (because the bag will be lined) because that took a lot of the pressure off.
Still just weaving in the bazillion ends. I've been resisting the urge to calculate how many ends there are. I think it's best that I don't know. Ever.
We've got handles! We don't, however, have sunlight, so the picture is kinda crap.
OK, even though this post is late (meaning, not on Saturday) the pictures were actually taken on Saturday. So, look at the photo ... yes, you see that right ... I'm all done with the flowers and connectors! Yay!!!!
This week didn't offer much craft time, but I did manage to fix my little misalignment
. I also finished up all the flower motifs.
As I was spreading out the flowers to take this picture, I noticed that they weren't lining up correctly at the bottom right ... and then I noticed the bottom left ... oh, no ...
No mere case of gigantism
is going to dissuade me from making worlds most adorable purse.
I've started the flower purse from this book
. I'm using the smallest hook I dare with the worsted weight cotton, and it appears that the purse is going to be GIANT sized. Since there's no people in the pictures in the book, I just made up in my head that the purse was smallish. FAIL.
The Japanese crochet book I posted about
has just about everyone flipping out to get it. And you really should, because it's awesome!
So, I scrapped the peacock cardigan
and dived back into the Icelandic Turtleneck. The pattern has me all excited again. I guess I just needed a little break from it.
OK, so I thought I could make a rectangle and put a button or something where my hand is and have the front just sort of hang open, but that totally won't work and these pictures show you why. In the side view, you can see that the front points of the rectangle point down and look stretched out . The vertical lines of the pattern bend around from the back in an unflattering way: along my back, they curve from top to bottom (looks good), but in the front they point down and back as if being wrapped around a bulging barrel (not so good).
I got curious about crocheting the peacock pattern
seamlessly. It was actually much easier than I thought it would be. I kept going and going and it kept being easy. And now ... I have a fancy beginning for a water bottle holder. Ha!
I'm so excited to tell you about the article I wrote for Interweave Crochet's Summer Issue! They have a reoccurring column called "Crochet Around Town" that focuses on the crafty/crochet/fun spots in a certain city. In the last issue the illustrious Vickie Howell
wrote a great piece about Austin. I almost exploded when Interweave emailed me and asked me to write a tour of crafty Philadelphia.
In the space between putting on my shoes and leaving to see a movie this flower
got attached to this bag.
I was really excited that a crochet project of mine was included in the Anticraft book
. I designed this lined crochet tote bag so it would be a canvas on which you could add your own personalized design. I submitted two designs for the book.
The "I [Skull] Trouble Tote" is actually mentioned in the promotional blurb, which totally set me on fire when I noticed. I included a chart for the whole alphabet with this design so that the saying could be personalized, Everyone has something important to say on their tote, right? :)
The second design is the Apothecary Tote. I was inspired by Victorian apothecary medicine bottles. When I was adding this design to the tote using my graph paper chart, I miscounted the spaces and had to redo it 4 or 5 times. It was driving me nuts! But I really loved how it turned out.
While writing up the crochet instructions for the tote, I realized how hard it is to actually explain in words how I do the seamless crochet technique. Supplementing this pattern is a lot of the reason I put my seamless crochet tutorial on the web.
I also plan on posting a tutorial showing how I hand sew my linings into my crochet bags. Several people have asked about it, and it would be a good supplement for the book, as well.
I'm compelled to write tutorials because I HATE it when I get the instructions for a project and they blithely say things like "sew the lining into the tote." HOW?! It seriously drives me nuts when they give no hint or clue about the techniques they actually used to do it. I don't want to be a part of THAT problem. :)
This easy-to-crochet bracelet is perfect for summer fun. The cotton thread is washable so you can wear it through all your outdoor adventures.
I've decided to embrace my inner cheapskate and add to my paper clip stitch marker stash. For all you thrifty chicks who want some inexpensive, colorful stitch markers, here's how I make them ...
The tiny bird bag is all grown up. I've been crocheting up a storm. The large bag is 13" across at the top, 7.5" high to the bottom of the handles, and 3.5" deep across the flat bottom. The medium bag is 11.5" across at the top, 6" high to the bottom of the handles, and 3" deep across the flat bottom. I'm working on a small version right now. They'll be like a set of Russian nesting dolls.