I Been Hookin’!

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Wow, I has been a while!  That’s because my hook and I have been very busy.

I poked around the web for an easy ear flap hat pattern for my friend’s teenagers, and came up with this very cool, very fast pattern. 

http://hookingalong.blogspot.com/2009/09/funky-chunky-earflap-hat.html
This fiber artist used Jiffy Thick N’ Quick yarn, I used four strands of worsted weight yarns from my stash and an M hook.

While I mostly followed the pattern, I did embellish the mohawk hat a bit.  This pattern is so fast with the heavy yarn and big hook, the hats are done in no time!

 

Finding myself unable to stop, I made a third for my son, with a matching pair of boot slippers, which were adapted from this pattern:

http://www.bevscountrycottage.com/slippers1.html

I’ve made several of these slippers over time, adding the cuff variation, but using half double crochet instead of doubles, for a somewhat thicker, somewhat puffier fabric.  This time, I used three strands of worsted yarn, an K hook, and single crochet stitching.  At the heel, I stitched up the seam, and at the toe, I added a toe box, stitching off the end of the rectangle in rounds.  The first round of the toe box was added evenly around, and joined with a slip stitch.  The second round introduced decreases every third stitch (Decrease over the first two stitches, sc in the next two stitches).  The third round was crocheted evenly.    The next round decreased every other stitch (Decrease over the first two stitches, sc in the next stitch).  The following rounds decreased every stitch, until I had no more than six stitches, which I gathered and closed tightly. Each round was joined to the first stitch in the round with a slip stitch.

The resulting fabric is very thick and soft, and feels like little pillows under foot!  (Yeah…I tried them on.)

This hat uses the same pattern as the others, with a few tweaks.  I made it a full “increase round” larger, a full round longer, and added an extra half-round at the back,  between the ear flaps, to better cover the back of Chris’s neck.  If he wants to turn the hat around, that little extra piece will make a mini brim.  The resulting hat is super thick, super soft and warm, and sized to fit a larger man’s head. 

For my sister, I made a comical Santa doll from Delicious Crochet.  That’s the guy that wanted a bazillion French Knots.  Well, he’s all finished, and I even made a toy bag and a couple of little toys to put in it!  You’ll get to see that one after Christmas.  Mary knows this is coming, saw the pattern and asked for it…but she doesn’t know what the finished toy looks like.  So…we’re all waiting for the elves.

That pattern, if you want to get into making a very comical, somewhat complicated Santa toy, can be found here:

http://www.deliciouscrochet.com/products/amigurumi/santa-claus/

For my sweet landlady, who reaches her eighty-year-old hands into the oven with a dish towel, I found this great free oven mitt pattern.  I used four strands of worsted acrylic and an M hook for this pattern, and the resulting mitt…yes, I did try it before I washed everything…held up very well when I reached into my own 350-degree oven to take out a hot pan.

I grabbed that pattern here:

http://www.favecrafts.com/Kitchen-Crochet/Easy-Oven-Mitts-Crochet-Pattern#

The hot pads were just as reliable as the mitt, and they’re HUGE!  For them, I used the same four-strand color blend, to make a set.  I just did this:

I used G-Ma Ellen’s advice, and did my starting row in the back bumps of the starting chain.  It really does give you a sweet, finished edge that looks nicer when left alone, and is a lot easier to work into when necessary than working into the “unworked” loops of the starting chain.

There’s a cool video that explains that, here:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YVmz5l3_8ts

This easy pattern uses worsted weight acrylic yarn…I used Red Heart super Saver. 

Crochet hook size, M.

Hold four strands of yarn together throughout.

Ch 12.  SC in 2nd ch from hook, and in each ch across.  Ch 1, turn.  SC in each stitch across.

I made a total of twelve rows of single crochet, to make a square, then bordered the whole thing with reverse single crochet, or “Crab Stitch.”

Here’s another instructional video…Thank The Gods of Google for You Tube!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jhSbycwfpdo

To finish, when I got to the last border stitch, I chained six, and joined the chain to the first border stitch with a slip stitch, to form a hanging ring. 

I wish I had gotten a better Crappy Cell Phone Pic for this set.  These colors are marvelous!

 

I know I posted the picture of G-Ma Ellen’s Open Shell Cowl before, but I’ll do it again.  I made mine smaller than Ellen’s pattern called for, as more of a close-fitting neck warmer than a cowl.  It’s soft, comfortable, and fits just right against the neck to close off drafts.  And, it’s so pretty, it goes with anything. 

Again, the picture doesn’t do the piece any justice.  You can check out G-Ma Ellen’s WordPress site, with a link to purchase this incredible, easy pattern, here:

http://gmaellenscraftycorner.wordpress.com/2012/10/17/open-shell-crochet-cowl-pdf-pattern-by-gmaellencrochetgifts/

Ellen also makes some of the most adorable crocheted and beaded jewelry, as well as finished crochet projects, perfect for gifts.  Do check out her Etsy page!

http://www.etsy.com/shop/GMaEllenCrochetGifts

Finally, I made a cool, easy hooded cardigan for my little grand-niece.  I got the pattern from Lion Brand, here:

http://www.lionbrand.com/patterns/L0416C.html?noImages=

and while I did not use Homespun yarn, the pattern came out swimmingly with a minor adjustment in gauge. 

I absolutely love this stitch, this griddle pattern.  It’s simple!  You simply base chain multiples of 2, adding one chain at the end for the first stitch.  SC in the second ch from the hook, DC in the next, and so on.  You’ll end each row with a double crochet, and start each row with a single crochet.  For the following rows…as long as you’re putting a single crochet into the top of a double, or a double into the top of a single, you’re good!

And now…back to that felted free form bag!  Yaaaaay!

Yes, I finally got back to the free form bag.  It is impossible to write out a pattern for something like this.  You pick up a hook and collect a bunch of colors, textures, etc. of yarn, and you start stitching.  You add, you turn, you try new stitches.  You finish a small piece, sew it in…or add to it further.  The real challenge in free form is keeping the edges straight, which I have to do  (sort of) for a bag.  So, with my LAST skein of black pure wool, I’m bordering and leveling the front of the bag….sort of.  I intend to start forming a front-to-back border here, in the back loops so it curls toward the lack of the piece, and work the back of the purse right off the border, closing it in from the outside, rather than forming it from the inside.  It should prove to be a rewarding challenge!

I still have bunches of my dyed, hand-spun yarn, and if I really feel a necessity for more black, I can get some Rit dye, spin up some more roving, and dye the yarn.  It does not have to match exactly.  It’s free form!

Here’s what I have so far…I thought that I was finished forever with French Knots after my foray into Santa sculpting, bit I find myself wanting them in this piece.  They’re popular for a reason…they’re fun!

 

More green that my niece would have wanted, but I’m trying to keep that down, reaching more for the blue and purple shades. 

 

This is a little of the detailing, with bullion stitches, and those tiny popcorn things I use for ” Feets” dolls.  For those, I treble in a stitch, and slip stitch in the same stitch.  You can go right into the next stitch with another, or break them up a bit, using single crochet stitches between them.  These stitches are always worked from the wrong side of the fabric, so that the “puff” shows up on the right side.

The little green popping thing, lower left, is called a “dome.”  for that, I made a magic ring, chained 3, and worked six double crochet stitches into the ring.  Slip stitch to the top of the beginning chain, pull the magic ring closed, and you get a cool little dome to add on to, or pop into areas that need a little filling or texture.  Alternately, if you’re not into the magic ring thing, you can chain 4, work six double crochet stitches into the fourth chain from the hook, and slip stitch into the top of the beginning chain.  With this method, you’ll get a somewhat more pronounced center hole, but that’s easy to close up. 

 

Here we have more embellishments, with…now, I know there’s a name for that stitch, but I don’t know it, so I’m calling it my “Chauncey Stitch,” surrounding the purple circle with the green Peace sign, done in French Knots.  A couple more of those cool dome things closed up some holes between motifs, and added some fun.  Upper left, is a basic zig zag pattern in single crochet.  I find myself doing a lot of stitching into front or back loops only, to add definition and even more texture. 

This piece is still all wool, as it will be felted (or fulled, as it were) when I’m finished stitching.  When I need smooth, I reach for the purchased wool I have in my stash, and when I don’t, I use my hand-spun yarns. 

I’m having a blast with this piece, and it’s finally starting to form, to fly.

Back to the hooks!  I’ll keep you posted….

 

 

 

 

 

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8 responses »

  1. Oh, no stress! I’m just making sure I have a hook in my hand whenever I have TV time. The biggest stress trigger for this felted bag is that darn black wool, which I’m having trouble finding. I can go online to Knit Picks, or I can go to the grocery store for some Rit dye and start spinning. Heck, I can use up the black that I have, and switch to the dark purple. It’s free form. It doesn’t matter. The hats are easy! All I have to do is grab four strands of whatever acrylic (also almost out of black) from my stash and go!

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