Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Crocheting Clothes Kids Love- a Sneak Peek!

In my last post about the book, I showed you the original sketches for designs that are on the cover. Today, I wanted to show you a design from inside the book. The publisher hasn't given us official photos to share yet, so I am showing you the design as I presented it to the editor. 

This is one of the boys designs from the book, although by changing the colors it could easily become a lovely girls scarf. I had the most fun choosing the colors for this project. If you haven't had a look at Cascade Yarns Superwash 220's 132 stunning colors, you should. If you can't find the color you are looking for in this yarn, it may not even exist! This was the first time I have used a yarn by Cascade, and it will definitely not be the last. It is really wonderful yarn to work with, and it is so soft you will forget it is wool! 

I wanted to design something colorful, fun, and that would look great with jeans. The asymmetrical arrangement of color blocks and stripes, looks especially good when it is tied. The personality of the scarf could change completely, depending on the colors you use. If you make the scarf a little longer, it could also be worn by a teen or adult. I used an unconventional hook placement with a simple crochet stitch to create a bold texture. I am looking forward to showing you actual photos of the scarf so you can see the texture and how well the colors play together!

Friday, October 25, 2013

How to Tie the Bows on the Tinker's Toolbelt

One of the key details on the Tinker's Toolbelt is the way the bows are tied. I experimented with many ways to tie them, and this method makes the bows lay just right.

1. Tie the top two ties in a half hitch, crossing the right tie over the left tie and wrapping the right tie around the left tie (like you are beginning to tie a shoe), and pull the ties tight.

2. Tie the bottom two ties in a half hitch, crossing the left tie over the right tie and wrapping the left tie around the right tie (like you are beginning to tie a shoe), and pull the ties tight.

3. Take the two ties on the left and make a loop and hold onto that with your left hand. Take the two ties on the right and wrap them around the loop made from the ties on the left, making sure that you begin wrapping from the bottom.

4. Bring the right ties through the loop just created, between the left side loops and the beginning of the right side wrapping.

5. Pull the bow tight and separate the loops.

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Tinker's ToolBelt for Interweave Crochet Accessories

It my favorite time of year...time for the Interweave Crochet Accessories Issue! This year, I have a fun belt featured in the issue.

This is a great “on the go” project, because it stays in small pieces until the end when you tie all of the motifs together to make the belt. Two motifs are crocheted together to make each medallion. This gives the belt stability and makes a bolder statement. Make an extra set of motifs in case you want to wear the belt over layers of clothes, so you have the option to make it larger. This pattern could also have a home d├ęcor use as an interesting curtain tie-back.

The Valley Yarns Valley Cotton thread used for the sample, comes in 1260 yd cones. In case you would like to know the exact yardage to make the belt to fit a 24” waist, it is: 60 yd [55 m] Madder Brown (A), 96 [88 m] yd Sponge (B), 42 yd [38 m] Amber Gold (C). Each set of joined motifs with ties, requires 10 yd [9 m] (A), 16 yd [15 m] (B), 7 yd [6 m] (C).

Next week I will post a tutorial on how to tie the bows. I tied them in a special way, so they lay straight. I think it is important to show you how I did it, so your belt will look its best. Also, stay tuned for a post about how to use this pattern to make a necklace!

Here is a blog post on how to use this pattern to make a necklace. The Interweave store now has this pattern available for purchase and download.

Friday, October 11, 2013

Inspiration for Yarn Storage

Today is I love yarn day, and it has me thinking that I need to show my yarn more respect. Not that my Ikea storage boxes aren't working, but I think I need to decorate my studio with the same energy I put into my crochet designs. I was so inspired by Raising Up Rubies studio. She really demonstrates what I am talking about, and everything she puts in her studio has personality. I have a studio, but for some reason, I usually work at the dining room table! I think if I had a studio as amazing as Raising Up Rubies, I might never leave it! 

I want everything in my studio to be something I love. Antique treasures I have found, or  clever uses for things I already have. I have decided the first thing I want to collect are vintage candy/ cookie jars to store yarn in. They would be especially great for my collection of yarns for freeform crochet. I think they look wonderful sorted by color like this:

Dottie Angel repurposed a pair of clogs to use as a needle holder. I love the idea of making a souvenir into something useful!

This old library card catalog was converted into a sewing and yarn storage unit by bitsandbobbins. So charming!

Now I have a good excuse to go antique shopping again. I feel truly inspired today!

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

News About Tangled Webzine

Yesterday, I got an email from Tangled webzine. They told me that they will no longer exist, and their website will only be available until the end of October. It is sad news, as it really was a great publication filled with innovative and stylish knit and crochet patterns.

I designed two free patterns for them, the Helleborus Gloves, and the Cirque Du Crochet Bean Bags. I will be moving these patterns to Ravelry, so they can be downloaded from there. I am not sure if all of the designers will make their patterns available elsewhere. If you are interested, now is the time to go to their website and download any patterns you may want, before they disappear or become difficult to find!

Cirque Du Crochet Bean Bags
Helleborus Gloves