Thursday, November 7, 2013

Free Pattern: Angel Decoration

  I needed a quick holiday gift for someone, and that's how these angels got their wings. With an inexpensive pack of ornament hooks and a very small amount of yarn per piece, they will quickly become a new addition to holiday decorations around the house.



  Welcome to another one of my variable designs. First, you may want to use your project for something other than ornaments. Using your own imagination, who knows what you could create? This design could even be worked as a motif for something like a doily or table runner. In addition, there are notes and options given throughout the pattern to show you how to change your own project to suit your needs.


Skill Level:
Easy

Materials:
Worsted weight acrylic yarn, color of your choice
  +/- 5 yards per piece: I will update this as soon as possible. Sorry, but after making all of them and the examples, I never counted the length of material.
Crochet hook size F/5 (3.75mm) or size needed to obtain gauge
Tapestry needle or smaller hook for weaving in ends
Starch, optional
Ornament hangers, pliers, and a large crochet hook or knitting needle (for halo)


Gauge:
1" x 1" (2.5cm x 2.5 cm) = 1 row, 5 triple crochet
 or 3 rows, 5 single crochet

Finished Size:
White: 4 1/4" (10.8 cm) wide, 4 1/2" (11.5 cm) tall



Yellow: 4 1/2" (11.5 cm) wide, 4 1/2" (11.5 cm) tall



Blue: 3 3/4" (9.5 cm) wide, 4" (10.2 cm) tall



Stitches:
Slip stitch (sl st)
Chain (ch)
Single crochet (sc)
Double crochet (dc)
Triple crochet (tr)
Triple crochet cluster (tr-cl): *Yarn over twice, insert hook, pull up a loop. {Yarn over, pull through 2 loops} twice.* Repeat from * to * two more times. (5 loops on hook) Yarn over, pull through all 5 loops.

Note:
There's more than one way to make this pattern, but the stitches stay the same. Stitches are worked into the front or back loops for a different appearance.

Directions:
To begin, ch 9, join to beg-ch with a sl st.

Round 1:
Ch 3, sk 1, sl st. {Sl st into next st, ch 3, sk 1, sl st} twice.

Round 2:
blue: back loops only )
*Sl st into next sl st, ch 3. 1 dc in first available ch. (1 dc, ch 1, 1 dc) in next ch, 1 dc in following ch. Ch 3, sl st into first available sl st. * Sl st into following sl st. Ch 4, 1 tr in first ch, 2 tr in next, 1 tr in following ch. Ch 4, sl st into first available sl st. Repeat from * to *.

Round 3:
( blue: back loops only)
Sl st into first available sl st and into following 3 chs. Ch 1, 1 sc in each of next 2 dc, ch 1, 1 sc in ch, ch 1, 1 sc in each of next 2 dc. Ch 1, sl st in each of next 3 chs, sl st in each of next 2 sl sts, sl st in each of next 3 chs. Ch 1, 1 sc in last available ch. Ch 2, (1 tr, ch 1) in each of next 3 tr, 1 tr in last available tr. Ch 2, 1 sc in first available ch. Ch 1, sl st in each of next 2 chs, next 2 sl sts, and following 3 chs (7 sl sts). Ch 1, 1 sc in each of next 2 dc. Ch 1, 1 sc in ch-sp, ch 1, 1 sc in each of following 2 dc. Ch 1, sl st into each of next 3 chs and into following sl st.

Round 4:
( blue: back loops only)
( yellow: back loops only)
Sl st into first available sl st, (ch 4, tr-cl, ch 4, sl st) in same st. Sl st in each of next 3 sl sts and into ch-sp. Ch 1, 1 sc, ch 1, 1 dc, ch 1, 1 tr, ch 3, {1 sc, ch 1} twice. Sl st in each of next 10 sts. Ch 1, sl st, ch 1, 1 sc in each of next 3 sts. (1 sc, ch 2) in each of next 7 sts. 1 sc in each of next 4 sts. Ch 1, sl st, ch 1. Sl st in each of next 11 sts. {Ch 1, 1 sc} twice, ch 3, 1 tr, ch 1, 1 dc, ch 1, 1 sc, ch 1, sl st in each of next 3 sts. Join with a sl st to beg sl st, bind off, weave in ends.

Belt: (optional)
Sl st around top 2 beg chs on right side. Ch 8, turn your work, sl st around bottom beg ch, ch 8, turn, sl st to beg sl st. Bind off, weave in ends.

Halo: (optional)
Insert an ornament hanger into the top of project, bend loop closed. Make a right angle bend close to the loop. I used a size N/9.00mm crochet hook to make the circle for the halo. A pen, marker, or anything with a small diameter would work.

To make the bend, a pair of pliers may help. Here's a view of the finished loop from the top:

Bend the rest of the hook at a right angle again so that the hook is in line with the original piece.


With crochet hook size F/5-3.75mm, Join with a sl st around loop for halo, ch 1.

Sl st, ch 1 until loop is completely covered. Mine only took 7 repeats to be finished, yours may vary depending on the size of the loop you make. When halo is covered, join with a sl st to beg sl st, bind off, weave in ends.

Bend the remaining hook closed and twist so it is parallel to the body of your work. If you don't make this bend, you ornament will hang sideways when you insert the final hook.

The original pattern (white) is designed to have a ruffled effect. By placing the stitches of Round 4 in the back loops only (yellow), it allows for some extra space and results in a slightly less ruffled project. Working into the back loops only for all rounds (blue) actually tightens the material and creates the most flat design with tighter stitches.
Maybe you might chose to try working one in the front loops only to see the results. I think it would produce an even lacier effect, maybe without the ruffles. You could even work a few with different hook sizes for varying sized angels. I'm interested to know what everyone else creates. The choice is up to you, so have fun!

Monday, November 4, 2013

Free Pattern: Unbroken Hearts Bookmark


  This romantic bookmark would make a great gift for a special book lover in your life. This 4-round pattern works up quickly enough to make one for everyone in the book club, or stuff some stockings this upcoming holiday season.

Skill Level:
Intermediate

Materials:
Steel crochet hook size 4*
Size 3 crochet thread, pink, or color desired


 *note: Here is where I need your help...My mother gave this hook to me, and I believe it belonged to either my great-grandma or my great-great-grandma. I'm not sure if hook sizes have changed since then, but it does say "made in England", so I'm pretty sure its UK size, which would make it a US size 7, if I'm correct. I couldn't find any information about this brand, so can anybody help me out?



Gauge:
One heart = 1" x 1" (2.5cm x 2.5cm)
Ch-6 = 1" (2.5cm)

Stitches:
Chain (ch)
Single crochet (sc)
Half-double crochet (hdc)
Double crochet (dc)
Triple crochet (tr)

Directions:
Round 1:
*Ch 4 (counts as 1 dc, ch-1), (2 hdc, ch 1, 1 dc, ch 1, 2 tr, ch 2, 2 sc, ch 2, 2 tr, ch 1, 1 dc, ch 1, 2 hdc, ch 1) in farthest chain from hook. Join with a sl st to beg ch-3.
Ch 6*. Repeat from * to * 4 more times. Do not ch 6 at the end of last heart. Do not bind off.

Border:
Make sure the wrong side faces you and none of the chains between hearts are twisted.

Round 2:
Sl st in each of next 2 sts. Ch 6 (counts as 1 1 tr, ch-2), sk 1, 1 tr. Ch 2, sk 1, 1 sc in ch-sp after dc. {Ch 9, 1 sc in ch-sp after dc of next heart.} 4 times. {Ch 2, 1 tr in next st} twice. Working around: Ch 3, 1 tr in ch-2, ch 2, 1 tr in 1st tr, ch 2, 1 sc in 2nd tr. {Ch 9, 1 sc in 2nd tr of next heart} 4 times. Ch 2, sk 1, 1 tr, ch 2, sk 1, 1 tr, ch 3, join with a sl st to beg ch-4.

Round 3:
Ch 1 (counts as 1 sc), 2 sc in same st. Ch 2, sk 1, 3 sc. Ch 1, sk 1, 3 sc, [Ch 1, sk 3, 3 sc. {Ch 1, sk 2, 3 sc} 2 times.] 4 times. Ch 1, sk 2, 3 sc. Ch 1, sk 1, 3 sc, ch 2, sk 1, 3 sc. {Ch 1, 1 sc in each of next 2 sts} twice, ch 1, 3 sc, ch 2, sk 1, 3 sc. Ch 1, sk 1, 3 sc. Ch 1, sk 3, [ {3 sc, ch 1, sk 2} twice. 3 sc, ch 1, sk 3] 4 times, 3 sc. Ch 1, sk 1, 3 sc, ch 2, sk 1, 3 sc, ch 1. {1 sc in each of next 2, ch 1} twice. Join with a sl st to beg ch-1.

Round 4:
Sl st in each of next 2 sts, ch 1 ( counts as 1 sc), 2 sc in same st. Ch 2, 3 sc in next st. {Ch 1, sk 3, 3 sc} 16 times. Ch 2, 3 sc in next st. Ch 1, sk 3, {2 sc, ch 1, sk 2} twice, 2 sc, ch 1, sk 3, 3 sc, ch 2, 3 sc in next st. {Ch 1, sk 3, 3 sc} 16 times. Ch 2, 3 sc  in next st. Ch 1, sk 3, {2 sc, ch 1, sk 2} 3 times. Join with a sl st to beg ch-1. Bind off, weave in ends. Block and starch if desired.

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Free Pattern: Autumn Acorn Accessories


  Living in a mild climate, we pretty much get two summers and two fall seasons; There isn't much of a spring or winter. In fact, I've yet to see snow in my lifetime. I don't mind though, because I love the fall and I don't love to be cold. The oak trees on my property have been inspiring me to design something lately, and as usual, something with plenty of versatility came to mind. Also as usual, the troll has been up to no good  stealing my stuff. Originally I had planned on just a cute pair of earrings, which is what you can make with your acorns if you don't live with a mischievous troll. Mine became a brooch, because apparently trolls like jewelry findings.
  Make some for a necklace and earring set, make a brooch like I was forced to, or create a refrigerator magnet, zipper pulls (ooooo, cute on boots!), even decorate a gift! The choice is up to you; I provide the pattern and some inspiration, you can create something totally your own. The pattern works up unbelievably fast, so you'll be done in no time, (hopefully) enjoying the Autumn weather again. The best part is how little material it takes. This project would be a great way to use up fall-colored scraps because each piece only uses about 12 inches (30.5 cm) of worsted weight yarn.

Skill Level:
Easy
*Although I don't recommend this project for beginners, there is almost a step-by-step photo tutorial along with the pattern which makes it easier to follow along for the newbies. Click on the links at the end of this pattern if you need any help with stitches.

Materials:
Worsted weight acrylic yarn
  A: Coffee
  B: Sunflower
  C: SH Browns
  D: Sunflower
  E: Green
  - These are the colors I had in my scraps. I don't even know if they are available anymore. Anything with a similar color would work.
Crochet hook size F/5 (3.75mm)
Tapestry needle
Whatever you will need to complete your accessories, such as jewelry findings or magnets, glue, needle and thread, etc.

Gauge:
6 dc in no more than 2 inches (5 cm)

Finished size:
About 1 inch (2.5 cm)

Note:
For the more advanced crocheter - Piece A is simply a 6 dc cluster, or, dc6tog from the foundation chain, then bind off.
For any beginners who just said "What??", its explained step by step, don't worry, take a look at the pictures provided.

Directions:

Piece A:
With color A or B, ch 8 (counts as ch-5 + 1 dc). Starting in 3rd ch from hook, (y/o, pull up a loop, y/o, pull through 2 loops) in next 5 ch (6 loops on hook).

 Y/o, pull through all 6 loops.

Bind off, use tails to sew sides together.


Piece B:

With color C, ch 2 (counts as 1 sc + foundation loop), 5 sc in farthest loop from hook. Join with a sl st to beg ch-2. Bind off, weave in ends.

Stem:
Sl st through foundation loop of Piece B, between sc directly opposite from each other. Example shows a ch of 3; Make as many chains long as you wish.

Attach Piece A to Piece B:
  Stuffing isn't necessary, however, I simply used the tails leftover after binding off and securing them. Stuff with fiber filling, scraps of yarn, or don't stuff them at all; Its your choice.

With right sides out, match outer sts of Piece B with beg chains of Piece A. Sl st through both sts, ch 1 (counts as 1 sc), 1 sc in same st.

2 sc through both pieces in each of next 5 sts. Join with a sl st to beg ch-1. Bind off, weave in ends.
  This is a perfect example of how easily you can change the look of your own acorns. The yellow acorn (right) has less stuffing and was made following the directions as written. For the brown acorn (left), begin by inserting the hook first through Piece A, then into Piece B when attaching.

Leaf:
  The example leaves were made with all colors listed, plus some green that didn't have a label, so I couldn't name it. Use whatever colors are available to you and assemble with which combinations are pleasing to your own eyes.
Using any color you would like:
Ch 4 (counts as ch-3 + foundation loop), (sl st, ch 2, sl st, ch 4, sl st, ch 2, sl st, ch 3, sl st) in farthest loop from hook. Bind off, weave in ends or secure and leave for assembly.

Abbreviations used:
Dc - double crochet
Dc6tog - double crochet 6 together
Ch - chain
Y/o - yarn over or wool over
Sc - single crochet
Sl st - slip stitch
Sts - stitches
Beg - beginning

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