Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Crochet Balloon Variation 1


Balloon pictured on right for this pattern

Crochet Balloon Variation 1

Written by Teresa Richardson

This is an oblong shape balloon

Round 1:
Chain 6, 3 SC in the first chain. 1 SC in ea of the next 3 chains. 3 SC in the next CH. 1 SC in ea of the next 3 CH. Join in beg SC.

Round 2: CH 1, 2 HDC in the same ST. 3 SC in the next ST. 2 HDC in next ST, 1 HDC in next ST, 2 HDC in next ST, 1 HDC in next ST, 2 HDC in next ST. 3 SC in next ST. 2 HDC in next ST, 1 HDC in next ST, 2 HDC in next ST, 1 HDC in next ST. Join.

Balloon Knot: SL ST in ea of the next 4 STS. CH 1, 3 HDC. Cut yarn, secure and leave a length of tail for sewing.


Balloon String: Crochet a length of chain. Slip stitch in each chain to the end.

Sew the balloon/s in place on your project with the left over yarn tail. Sew the balloon string in place on your project making sure the ends are hidden under the balloon.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Crochet Adult Slippers


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This is a good example of how the same project, made by the same person, with the same hook and same brand yarn(different color) can create a different size. Both slippers were made with 4-ply Redheart yarn. The only difference is the color. The gray slipper turned out to be larger than the white slipper.

Crochet Adult Slippers

Written by Teresa Richardson

Video Tutorial: Crochet Adult Slippers

Abbreviations:
SC = Single Crochet
EA = Each
SL ST = Slip Stitch
FSC = Foundation Single Crochet
ST = Stitch
DEC = Decrease

Materials:
Size “H” Crochet Hook
4-Ply Worsted Weight Yarn - 300 yards 
3 yarn markers – Contrasting scrap yarn is all that is needed for this.

Gauge: 14 Stitches = 4” , 17 =Rows 4”
If your 14 stitches are less than 4”, then you crochet tighter than I do. You will need to adjust your hook size to a larger hook or more stitches per 4” to adjust the total stitch outcome, or your slipper may be to tight. If your stitches are more than 4” then you crochet looser than I do. You may need to adjust to a smaller hook or less stitches per 4”. Try it on after about 6 rows or so. You will have a good idea if you need to make it larger or smaller for your foot size. You will not have a lot of rows invested so ripping out will not be as painful.

Slipper Foundation
I am providing two ways to start the slipper. I have found that I like the foundation stitches as opposed to the chain which leaves gaps and holes. I know some of you are more comfortable with the chain so I have included instructions for both starting methods. This is not meant to confuse anyone. It is meant to offer two methods to start the slipper.

Starting Foundation 1: 8 Foundation Single Crochet
OR
Starting Foundation 2: Chain 9, 8 SC in chain.

The first row will be worked around both sides of the foundation.

Round 1: CH 1, 3 SC in the same SC, 1 SC in each of the next 6, 3 SC in the next SC, 1 SC in ea of the next 6 SC, join with SL ST to beg SC. (18 SC total in this row)

Round 2: CH 1, *2 SC in same st, 1 SC in next ST, 2 SC in next ST, 1 SC in ea of the next 6 ST’s, do two times total from *, join with SL ST in beg SC. (22 SC total in this round)

Round 3-17: 1 SC in each stitch around. We will be working in a continual round so get a yarn marker to mark your first stitch. When you complete round 3, you will crochet in the top of the first single crochet instead of joining. This creates the continual round. (22 SC total)
Note: If you find that you need a longer or shorter slipper, this is the first place where length can be adjusted in the slipper. You can do additional rows or less rows to fit your foot.

Round 18: Continue working in the continual round; *2 SC, 1 SC, 6 times total from *. This is forming the top section across the top of the foot. 1 SC in ea of the next 10 SC. (28 SC total)

Round 19-24: Continue working in the continual round; SC in ea SC around. (28 SC total for each round)

Heel Bottom and Sides: This section will be worked in rows. Leave the top 9 SC open. Mark the stitches that should remain open with a yarn marker.

Row 25: From the marker, SC over 19 SC to the other marker. Turn. I am turning and doing the single crochet without the chain 1 for the remaining rows of this project. Turn. (19 SC total)

Row 26-35: SC in each stitch across. Turn. (19 SC total)
Note: If you find that you need a longer or shorter slipper, this is the second place where length can be adjusted in the slipper. You can do additional rows or less rows to fit your foot.

Row 36: 1 SC in ea of the next 5 SC, * 1 single crochet decrease over the next 2 stitches, 4 times total from *. You are turning 8 stitches in to 4 stitches. 1 SC in each of the next 6. Even though the last set of single crochet is 1 stitch more, it will still turn out even.

Row 37: 1 SC in ea of the next 4 SC, * 1 single crochet decrease over the next 2 stitches, 3 times total from *. You are turning 8 stitches in to 4 stitches. 1 SC in each of the next 5. Even though the last set of single crochet is 1 stitch more, it will still turn out even.
From the inside of the slipper, slip stitch the remaining stitches together, closing the heel end of the slipper.

Slipper Opening: Do 2 rounds of single crochet round the opening. Cut yarn and sew in tail.

Cuff
The cuff is created with the Tunisian Knit Stitch in the video tutorial. You can use another cuff for your slipper.

Chain 40 – Adjust the length for a larger or smaller cuff. The cuff is eased on when sewn to the slipper so a few more or less stitches will not make that big of a difference.

Rows 1-8: Do 8 rows of the knit stitch. Secure and cut off about an 18” tail.

Sew the back of the cuff together. Turn the cuff inside out and place it over and outside of the opening edge of the slipper. Sew the cuff to the opening. Turn the remaining edge of the cuff to the inside of the slipper and sew it shut.

Yarn Markers- Recycle Your Tails - Crochet Tip 15

You have all heard me talk about using yarn markers when working in a continual round. This is so you have an idea where the first stitch is located, in creating a balanced cap or amigurumi project. It may be difficult to see the first single crochet when working in a standard round, so you may need to mark the stitch so you don't crochet right over it. You may need a yarn marker for reference in telling what stitches to crochet in and what stitches should be left alone. I have found yarn markers useful in shaping necklines and armholes of sweaters.

At any time we may need a yarn marker. Don't waste your money purchasing a yarn marker from the store. You make plenty of your own yarn markers every time you crochet
. Your tails are perfect yarn markers, both yarn and thread.

In this slipper example below, I have used a yarn marker at the top of the slipper so I would know what part of it was the top. That section was created prior to the heel. The marker to the left was used to mark stitches that were to remain open with no crochet stitches across that section. From that point on I was working in rows so the yarn marker was telling me where to crochet and where to stop.

.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Crochet Hooks - New vs Old- Recycling - Crochet Tip 14

I started out with the blue Boye "I" hook you will see in a lot of tutorials. It is marked $.55 cents. That was the hook I used for yarn projects. My other hook was a steel size "7" for thread. Those were the only two hooks I had for a long time. I think I was supposed to give my steel size "7" hook back to my former mother-in-law after she bought it for me. OOoooppppssss........... I must give credit where credit is due, she did help me learn a lot of crochet stitches.

I have found that I prefer Boye hooks because of the rounded hook on the end. Susan Bates has a flatter hook that kept hanging up in my yarn. I have seen some interesting hooks lately from ligh
t up hooks to clay grips. I am thinking about experimenting with the clay grip.


$7.60 $11.05

It does not have to cost a lot to get started to crochet. This image is a good example of that. Both sets are recent purchases that I have made from E-bay. The first purchase was the lot of 54 hooks on the right. My winning bid was $11.05 for hooks. The next winning bid was 35 hooks on the left for $7.60. You may pay a couple dollars for 1 new hook up to $6.50 for 5 or 6 new hooks. Crochet hooks last a long time so if you can get a good deal like the two I got, you will save yourself a lot of money. Once you get your hooks, you can gently wash them with hot soapy water, dry them off thoroughly and they will be as good as new. If E-bay is not your cup of tea, you can try yard sales or estate sales. Keep in mind that old saying, "One person's junk is another person's treasure."

You never know what else you might find in your hooks. One of the wooden hooks has Boye stamped on the end of it. I have never seen a wooden hook for sale ever. The two steel hooks look really old. It would be interesting to know who made the two steel hooks and approximately how old both sets of hooks are.


For anyone with extra hooks, don't throw them away. You can sell them on E-bay, donate them to a local women's shelter, girl scout troop, community center or as a last resort, send them to me. I know I can find a good home for them.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Tunisian Crochet Knit Stitch



Video Tutorial: Tunisian Knit Crochet Stitch

It takes two passes to create one row of Tunisian Crochet. The chain and first two passes (row 1) are created the same as the Tunisian Simple Stitch. The remaining first pass of each row, throughout the project are completed a little different. The hook is inserted behind the front chain, to the back of the work, loop the yarn over and pull through. Once that row is complete, the loops are taken off the same way as the Tunisian Simple Stitch.




Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Crochet Symbols- Brackets, Parenthesis, Asterisk

Crochet symbols and abbreviations are a big part of crochet. Symbols and abbreviations can make it confusing if you don't know and learn the crochet language. When you purchase a book, abbreviations and symbols should be somewhere towards the beginning of the book. Sometimes they may be at the end in the form of a glossary. This will be a guide as to how the symbols are used and related to the instructions, in the book you have purchased. Many will be the same as what you have seen and some will be different and new.

Here are some basic repeat symbols that you will see used in crochet. Some symbols used for repeats, are used more frequently that others. Back in the day, when I was first learning to crochet, parenthesis were used for repeating instructions. I have noticed a change in the use of parenthesis today and they are used more as a summation for the specific row or round being worked on.
Detail is import with written instructions. Following the repeat set of instructions, you should find a phrase telling you how many times to repeat the set of instructions.

  • [ ] = work instructions between brackets as many times as instructed

  • ( ) = work instructions between parenthesis as many times as instructed

  • * = repeat the instructions following the single asterisk as instructed

Sometimes it may be confusing figuring out how many times you are supposed to be repeating. There are a lot of people, including myself, who write instructions based off a style, when they were learning to crochet. What makes sense to one person, will come across confusing to someone else. Detail is key. There are a few ways to tackle a confusing row or round.

  1. You can look at the image and see if you can find the row you are on in the image. I have found this very helpful in the past and have been able to resolve my confusion from a picture.
  2. There are many message forums related to crochet and usually someone with knowledge is willing to answer a question.
  3. The other thing you can do is write to the author. I realize that publications go out of business so they may be hard to reach but in most cases the author is just an e-mail away.

Crochet Pansy Variation 2


Pansy Variation 2

Video Tutorial:
Crochet Pansy - Variation 2


4-Ply Worsted Weight Yarn

G Crochet Hook

Pattern by Teresa Richardson

Magic Circle or Chain 3, join.

Round 1: Ch 2,HDC, CH 3, *2 HDC, CH 3 repeat from * 4 times total. Join with SL ST in beg CH 2. (5 sets of 2 HDC CH 3)

Round 2: Attach new color in ch 3 sp. CH 2, 9 TC in same space. CH 2, SL ST in same space. SL ST over to next CH 3 space.Ch 2, 9 TC in loop, CH 2, sl st in same loop. * SL ST to next sp, CH 2, 9 DC, CH 2 SL ST in same loop. Continue around from * 3 times total. ( 2 Triple Crochet Petals, 3 Double Crochet Petals)

Edging:
CH 2 to get up to the top of the petal. This will be the reverse single crochet. Do a single crochet working to the right, CH 2, SC in the next stitch to the right. Continue across top of petal. When finished across petal, CH 2, SL ST between flower petals, CH 2, and continue on with edging on next petal.

Crochet Oldies - Some of my first Projects

I finally found some pictures of some of my first crochet projects from the early to mid 1980's. I didn't save any of my mistakes. If I had a doily that I messed up on to much, I would throw it away and then start over from scratch. I am not so sure what my thought process was on that one at the time.

This was my first filet crochet project that I ever made. This would have been 1984. I had been actively crocheting for about 9 months. I entered the horse in a local community festival and got second place. My daughter was keeping deeply entertained by that pillow. She liked to pick at things, trying to get at it. That window pane pillow kept her busy.




This is another from 1984, my daughter and a doily. She loved to take them and wear them on her head. If I had a doily missing, I always knew were to find it. They were usually on her head or in her room.




This was a baby gift for a gal I was babysitting for at the time. (1985) It is the stitch known as Catherine's Wheel.




This would be around 1987. I made an afghan for my sister and two little round, thread wall hangings.


Monday, September 22, 2008

Crochet Applique Pumpkin




Crochet Applique Pumpkin

Abbreviations:
SL ST = Slip Stitch
Ch = Chain
SC - Single Crochet
HDC = Half Double Crochet
BEG = Beginning
SC DEC = Single Crochet Decrease
EA = Each
ST/S = Stitch/es

Pattern by Teresa Richardson

Magic Circle or Chain 4, join

Round 1: SL ST through the loop or chain and complete all stitches through the center of the loop or chain, Ch 1, 3 SC, 3 HDC, 3 SC, 3 HDC, join in beg. SC. You will have a total of 12 stitches.

Round 2: CH 1, Single Crochet Decrease through the first and third single crochet, skipping the second SC. 3 HDC in each of the next 3 stitches (9 HDC total). Single Crochet Decrease through the first and third single crochet, skipping the second SC. 3 HDC in each of the next 3 stitches (9 HDC total). Join in beginning SC DEC.

Round 3: CH 1, 1 SC in ea of the next 9 STS. CH 1, SL ST in decrease of previous row. CH 1, 1 SC in ea of the next 9 STS. CH 1, SL ST in decrease of previous row. Cut yarn, secure and sew in tail.

Stem: Join new color to the center in the decrease, CH 4, SL ST back down the CH 4 times. Secure, cut tail and sew in tail.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Crochet Rectangle Motif



Crochet Rectangle Motif

Written by Teresa Richardson

Crochet Abbreviations
EA = Each
SP = Space
DC = Double Crochet
CH = Chain
BEG = Beginning
LP = Loop
SC = Single Crochet

Round 1: CH 3, DC in CH, CH 2, 8 DC in CH lp, CH 2, 2 DC in CH, 8 DC in CH lp, CH 1, SC in beg CH 3. ( When complete you will have, 2 Sets of 2 DC, 2 Sets of 8 DC)

Round 2: CH 3, DC in same sp. 1 DC in ea of the next 2 DC. 2 DC, CH 2, 2 DC in next CH 2 SP(this forms the corner and increases each round in size). 1 DC in ea of the next 8 DC, 2 DC, CH 2, 2 DC in next CH 2 SP. 1 DC in ea of the next 2 DC, 2 DC, CH 2, 2 DC in next CH 2 sp. 1 DC in ea of next 8 DC. CH 1, SC in beg CH 3 to join.

Round 3: CH 3, DC in same sp. 1 DC in ea of the next 6 DC. 2 DC, CH 2, 2 DC in next CH 2 SP. 1 DC in ea of the next 12 DC, 2 DC, CH 2, 2 DC in next CH 2 SP. 1 DC in ea of the next 6 DC, 2 DC, CH 2, 2 DC in next CH 2 sp. 1 DC in ea of next 12 DC. CH 1, SC in beg CH 3 to join.

Round 4: CH 3, DC in same sp. 1 DC in ea of the next 10 DC. 2 DC, CH 2, 2 DC in next CH 2 SP. 1 DC in ea of the next 16 DC, 2 DC, CH 2, 2 DC in next CH 2 SP. 1 DC in ea of the next 10 DC, 2 DC, CH 2, 2 DC in next CH 2 sp. 1 DC in ea of next 16 DC. CH 1, SC in beg CH 3 to join.

*Learning Point: This is the largest that I have gone with the project. From experience on similar projects, I know that it will go larger but you may need to make some adjustments at the corner increases. If it should start pulling or puckering, that means you don't have enough stitches in corner increases so you will need to adjust by adding 2 or 4 stitches to each corner increase. Right now the corner is at 2 DC, CH 2, 2 DC. If you wanted the corner larger, you may choose 3 DC, CH 2, 3 DC or 4 DC, CH 2, 4 DC. When you get that many stitches in the corner, you may want to do a chain 3 instead of a chain 2. This is how you can adjust any project with 4 sides that is not coming out how you think it should. What worked perfect for the creator of the pattern may not work for you. Two different people, two different crochet styles, tension and techniques. You are making the crochet piece, you can alter the end result to work for you.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Hexagon Crochet 3 Sided Motif - Complete



Back in May I did a written tutorial on Join As you go Motifs . I included a three sided motif that I was working on at the time. I want to share the results of the piece upon completion. It is 62" long and 38" wide. The instructions can be found in Magic Crochet #41. A great source for finding old Magic Crochet magazines is E-bay.

Video Tutorial:
Join As You Go - Thread Examples

Friday, September 19, 2008

Dye Lot - Crochet Tip 13

Purchase enough yarn to finish your project. Even though you purchase the same color again, in a separate purchase, the possibility is great that you will by getting a color that does not match. This holds true for white along with colors. I have purchased the same brand color and thought I thought was getting the same color. As I progressed along in my work, there was a big difference in coloration. It is better to have to much thread/yarn, than not enough. Besides, us crocheters love lots of extra thread and yarn. We can always find a use for it. :)

Crochet Butterfly - Variation B


Crochet Butterfly Variation B

Pattern by Teresa Richardson

Video Tutorial:

Crochet Abbreviations

CH = Chain
DC = Double Crochet
ST = Stitch
Beg = Beginning
SL ST = Slip Stitch

Picot: This is a chain 3, join in the first chain. It forms a tiny, decorative loop.

Size 10 Crochet Cotton Thread

Steel Crochet Hook Size 2

Magic Circle or Chain 4 and join.

Round 1: CH 3, 4 DC, CH 1, *5 DC, CH 1,
Do the section from* 3 times total, SL ST in beg CH 3 to join. (8 Sets of 5 Double Crochet)

Round 2: SL ST over to 3rd DC. CH 3, 4 DC in same DC. CH 1, *5 DC in next CH 1 SP. CH 1, 5 DC in the center(3rd DC over), CH 1,
Do the section from * 3 times total. 5 DC in next CH 1 SP, CH 1, SL ST in beg CH 3.

Round 3: SL ST over to 3rd DC. CH 3, 4 DC in same DC. *CH 3, 5 DC, in 3rd DC of the next set of stitches.
Do the section from * 7 times total. CH 3, join in beg CH 3.

Round 4: SL ST over to 3rd DC. CH 3, 2 DC in same ST, CH, SL ST in 1st CH,(picot), 3 DC in same ST. *CH 2, DC dropping below around row 2, CH 1 SP, CH 2, 3DC,PICOT, 3DC in 3rd DC. Do the section from * 7 times total. CH 2, DC dropping below around row 2, CH 1 SP, CH 2, SL ST in beg CH 3.

When the motif is complete, fold in half and secure together to form the butterfly shape. Knot and sew in all the tails.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Recycle Edgings - Crochet Tip 12

I know I have not talked much about edgings so this is something to keep in mind when creating edgings for garments, hankies, towels or pillow cases. I would make edgings for my daughters dresses when she was a little girl. If you are using thread to make an edging, a lot of time and work will go into it. Make your edging separate from the fabric. Hand sew the edging on so it can easily be removed later. That way if your child wears out their clothing, you can use the edging again. This will hold true for the edging of table linens or pillow cases. The fabric will wear out long before the crochet lace. Even if there is a little wear in crochet lace, it can be repaired.



This is my daughter in a dress I made for her back in 1985. I used to sew a lot back then too. It is accented with a crochet edging. Since the edgings were sewn on separately, they could be removed and recycled to use on another dress or used in another project. Hopefully some other little girl got some good kid use out of it since I know my girly little daughter did not wear out the dress.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Crochet Count - Exact or Not Exact - Crochet Tip 11

Sometimes it is necessary to be exact in crochet count. Other times being off a stitch or two will not matter. I can remember being caught up in numbers so much that I spent hour after hour, ripping my work out trying to get the exact number. As we have discussed previously it could be an error in the written pattern so that is always something to keep in the back of your mind.

You will want an exact count when you are making the following projects.
  • Afghan -You want the width and length to be as even as possible with your afghan. A ripple afghan relies heavily on exact count or you may wind up with steep peeks, mixed in with waves and bumps. 
  • Sweater-  You especially want your sweater to fit after you have spent days shaping and crocheting your garment.  
  • Doily - Most doily's are very intricate and detailed.  It is easy to get off track with a doily so attention and count is very iportant here. 
I have been off with count on everything that I mentioned.  Sometimes I have had to rip out lots of rows.  Other times I was able to recover by adding in an extra stitch.  Some projects require paying very close attention to the count and detail.

There are times that it may not be necessary to have an exact count.  
  • When you are making a hat all in the same color and in a continual round.  I have found myself off on occasion to be off by 2 or 3 stitches.  You can add an extra stitch or just continue on if the cap is fitting correctly. It is not going to make a big difference in the outcome and will not be noticed.
  • If you are making an amigurumi shape and happen to be off a few stitch numbers.
  • Working in rounds.  You can easliy add in an extra stitch if you feel it is necessary.
I can remember making oval eyes for a stuffed toy.  My shapes were off by 2 stitches.  I would make another shape, driving myself nuts, trying to get them exact.  I won't do that anymore because it won't even be noticed.  When ever you can, save yourself some frustration. Exact count may not be so important.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Filet Crochet - Space Limitations

I have been asked if it is possible to make filet crochet yarn charts 6" or 7". When you make a filet crochet chart smaller, you will have distortion of your original image. They can be done but you will have the basic of basic shapes with not much detail. For example, you can fit a heart, diamond, letter, number or circle in a small square. What will not fit is an image of a George Washington. With larger squares, you will be able to create images that may allow for more detail. You could create a square 10"x10" if you wanted to do a more detailed, motif type of afghan. You could also make your whole afghan out of one chart. Charts can be altered down in size but keep in mind the possibility of distortion. If you have an idea that was generated from a crochet chart, give it a try.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Bullion Stitch Crochet Flower - International Crochet Day

Today is International Crochet Day, which is a day to promote the art of crochet. I am participating by dedicating the Bullion Stitch Crochet Flower project to International Crochet Day. I will continue to promote the art of crochet through technology and Youtube. Thank you to everyone who has taken an interest in learning the art of crochet.



Bullion Stitch Crochet Flower

Video Tutorial:
Crochet Bullion Flower - International Crochet Day 12-SEP-08

Pattern by Teresa Richardson

H Crochet Hook

F Crochet Hook

Chain 5, join

Round 1: Ch 1, *SC in loop, CH 5, continue around, 5 times total, join in beg SC.

Round 2: Ch 3, 6 Bullion stitch in loop, CH 3, SL ST in previous single crochet between, contine with each ch 5 loop.

Edging-Round 3: CH 3, SL ST in CH 3 loop, *CH 3, SL ST in 3rd CH from Hook, SL ST in next SP, repeat from *6 times between each bullion, CH 2 sl st in sc, CH 2, continue around for each petal.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Crochet Bullion or Roll Stitch


I have wanted to master the bullion stitch for years. It was difficult for me to achieve anything but a big twisted yarn mess. I could not find instructions other than wrapping the yarn around the hook several times and then pulling it through the hook. A few weeks ago, a member of my Video Crochet group on Ravelry asked if I knew how to do the Bullion stitch. I told her I knew how it should be done, but I was not successful. After that I got to thinking again on how I could be successful with this stitch. That led me to come up with two techniques that both have a high success rate. To begin with, you should never worry about how slow or how fast you are crocheting, especially with this stitch it is better to focus on slow, accurate and you will have great success!



This Flower is an example of what can be made with the bullion stitch

The bullion stitch can be used just about anywhere. If you are doing a row of double crochet, replace one double crochet with the bullion stitch instead. If you are making a hat, you could accent the edge with the bullion stitch. It can be used in flowers, granny squares, afghans, tote bags or just about anywhere you would want to use it. There will be a bullion stitch flower video tutorial in the future.
The purpose of the plastic tubing and tapestry needle, is to keep the roll of yarn away from the hook so it will pass through the roll of yarn without getting caught and tangled.

The tapestry needle is about 2" in length, size 16. There are many sizes of tapestry needles. I would not recommend a needle smaller than 2", the longer the better. When I first started experimenting with the tapestry needle, I just used a good old rubberband to keep it in place near the flat wide section of the crochet hook. The rubberband worked pretty well. There are a couple of options for using keeping the tapestry needle in place. The tapestry needle-hook combo is my favorite way to make the bullion stitch. It can be made fairly quick and slides right off the needle and hook combination. An additional tip to keep in mind is to wrap the roll of yarn loosely. It is not necessary for it to be tight. Being loose will let it pass freely.


You can purchase your plastic tubing from any home improvement store. Automotive stores will have tubing and rubber hoses but they might cost a little but more if they are heat and chemical resistant. I wound up purchasing the rolls of 10' and 20'. I paid about $5.00 for both rolls. It was much cheaper than the little package with the weedeater tube.

Plastic Tubing Sizes:

1/4" x .170 -Used with the "F" hook to hold the tapestry needle. Also used with the "F" hook to form bullion over the plastic tubing.

3/8" x 1/4" - Used with the "I" hook to hold the tapestry needle.

Cable Plastic Tubing- I would not recommend tearing up your cable TV tubing that you are currently using. Only i f you have some old cable around the house. It does have metal inside and is hard to cut. All you need is the plastic from the cable. You will want to scrub any residue off of your cable. Mine was sticky so the yarn stuck to it somewhat but it did work better than the results I was getting from the hook alone.




Crochet Geek 2 YouTube - http://www.youtube.com/user/crochet

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Crochet Decreasing

I have put together three links to video tutorials that focus on decreasing. Decreasing is like abbreviating a word, only we are abbreviating a stitch to get to the next point in our project. Decreasing can be reducing part of a stitch or leaving it out all together.




Crochet Geek 2 YouTube - http://www.youtube.com/user/crochet

Crochet Baby Booty Toe Decrease - Slow Motion

Crochet Shell Decrease

Crochet - Double Crochet Increase - Decrease

Decreasing is common in shaping with apparel and the valley's for a ripple afghan.

The images below (Crochet Triangle) demonstrate decreasing by eliminating a stitch and joining a stitch. Each time I turn, I skip the first single crochet and continue to crochet in each stitch across. When I get to the end of the row, I join two single crochet together, eliminating a single crochet. This is just turning 2 single crochet, in to 1 single crochet.


Original Post: Crochet Triangle

Monday, September 8, 2008

Crochet Pattern Stitches - Make Your Own Pattern

A question I get asked often is, "Will you show how to crochet a scarf or afghan?" I will show swatches for a stitch or pattern stitch and usually include a multiple. Sometimes I forget to include a multiple. Thankfully someone reminds me when I do forget. If you have a favorite baby layette or adult size sweater, you can replace the main stitch with another pattern stitch. Someone else has already figured out the shaping for you. Patterns are just a guide. You are the one making the pattern. Be creative and alter the pattern how ever you want to. It is easy to spruce up a favorite pattern you have worked with for a while.

The fact is, you have everything you need to create your own project. You know how long or wide you want your afghan to be when it is complete. I can remember purchasing a pattern for a baby afghan when my son was newborn 24 years ago. It was the simple shell stitch afghan. It was not simple for me at the time. I struggled through those written instructions and started off with a chain that was very loose. I continued to create a three color-shell afghan, with uneven edges, that was much wider at the top than at the bottom. My infant son did not know the difference. It was not very big at all but it probably took me about two weeks to finish. Not long after that I was introduced to books with hundreds of crochet pattern stitches in the book, multiples included. I started learning that I did not need a pattern to make an afghan.

There are a couple of factors to understand when creating a project from a crochet pattern stitch; multiples and gauge.
You will also need to understand decreasing if you are creating a project that will get smaller or larger.
Crochet Multiples

Crochet Gauge

Crochet - Double Crochet Increase - Decrease


Never let not having a pattern stop you from making an afghan, scarf, shawl or whatever you want to make. You have everything you need right at your fingertips.




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Friday, September 5, 2008

Crochet Broomstick Lace


Crochet Broomstick Lace

Video Tutorial: Crochet Broomstick Lace

You will need a large knitting needle or PVC pipe to to loop your stitches over. You can choose any size crochet hook or yarn. I used a size "I" hook and some scrap 4-ply worsted weight in my example.

I have taken the original broomstick video down to revise it a little bit. I started off showing how to do the stitch alone. I did not include how I hold the knitting needle or pipe. I do all the crocheting and video recording myself so certain angles are difficult. After some thought, I was able to incorporate how I achieve the final broomstick lace in an easier method than the original tutorial portrayed.

Ch 16

Row 1: Knitting needle row. Turn the chain and loop the first chain over the knitting needle. Put your hook through the next chain and pull the loop through the chain and over the knitting needle. Continue across until you have 16 loops on your knitting needle. Turn.

Row 2: Pull 4 loops off of your knitting needle. Put your crochet hook through the 4 loops pulling the yarn through, chain 1, then do 4 single crochet through the 4 loops. pull 4 more loops from the knitting needle, do 4 more single crochet. Turn. Continue across your row. (you can do 3 loops or 5 loops. I just used 4 in this example)

Row 3:
Knitting needle row. Pull up the first loop and put it over the knitting needle. Pull the yarn through the back loop only of the single crochet, then loop over the knitting needle. Continue across until you have 16 loops on your knitting needle.

You will continue with row 2 and 3 until you complete the length of your project.


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Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Crochet Star Stitch Hat Cap




Crochet Star Stitch Hat

StarStitch Video Tutorial






Crochet Abbreviations:

CH = Chain
HDC = Half=Double Crochet
SL ST = Slip Stitch
LP= Loop
BEG = Beginning
INC = Increase
EA = Each

Pattern by Teresa Richardson




Crochet Geek 2 YouTube - http://www.youtube.com/user/crochet

Video Tutorial: Crochet Star Stitch Hat
Size "I" Crochet Hook

4-Ply Worsted Weight Yarn - I used Red Heart for this tutorial. There are many types of yarn brands that will work with this pattern.

Cap can be created in stripes or a solid color.

NOTE*: All half double crochet stitches will be done in the center joining loop of the stitch in the previous row.

Chain 5, join.

Round 1: Ch 1, 20 HDC in LP, join.

Round 2: CH 3, 10 Star Stitches, join in beg ch 3. (10 StarStitches total)

Round 3:SL ST to the center joining loop of the first stitch in the previous row ,CH 1, 4 HDC in same joining space, 4 HDC in each joining space around. 10 increases (40 Half Double Crochet total)

Round 4: Attach new color. CH 3, 20 StarStitches around, join in beg ch 3. SL ST over to the joining loop of the first starstitch. (20 Starstitches total)

Round 5:SL ST to the center joining loop of the first stitch in the previous row, CH 1, 2 HDC, *4 HDC, 2 HDC, Repeat around from *. (60 Half Double
Crochet total )

Round 6: Attach new color. CH 3, 30 StarStitches around, join in beg CH 3. (30 StarStitches total)

Round 7: SL ST to the center joining loop of the first stitch in the previous row, CH 1, 2 HDC in ea of the next 4 joining loops, *4 HDC in the next for an increase, 2 HDC in ea of the next 4 joining loops. Repeat around from *. There will be a total of 6 increases for this round. (72 Half Double Crochet total)

Round 8: Attach new color. CH 3, continue on around for 36 starstitches. (36 StarStitches total)

Round 9: SL ST to the center joining loop of the first stitch in the previous row. CH 1, HDC, * 2 HDC in ea joining loop around. Repeat around from *. Join in beg st. (72 Half Double Crochet total)

Round 10-19: Repeat rounds 8 and 9.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Crochet Yarn Tails - Sewing and Hiding



Video Tutorial: Crochet Yarn Tails - Sewing and Hiding

Sewing in yarn tails in going to be a similar technique for granny squares, afghans, hats, sweaters, mittens, and slippers to name a few projects.

  1. Make sure you create a secure knot, especially if you used the magic circle instead of a chain. Even if you use a chain, you should still securely knot the tail to be on the safe side.
  2. When you have a backside or an inside to your project, you can weave your yarn to the hidden side.
  3. Another tip for securing tails is to use a waterproof fabric glue. You only want to use a tiny dab of glue and make sure it is hidden on the backside or between the stitches. As great as it is to have a secure tail, I know from experience that a clear glue dab will be visible if it is not well hidden.

Crochet Geek YouTube -http://www.youtube.com/user/tjw1963


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Monday, September 1, 2008

Crochet Multiple- Defining the Meaning

I had an older post trying to explain multiples. I have tried to freshen this one up a bit. There is also a video tutorial to go along with a written description. I am hoping that between the two, it will make sense.

Video Tutorials:
Crochet Multiple- Defining the Meaning

You have probably seen the term multiple used in your project instructions and wondered what it meant. There are a series of numbers given to figure how long your chain will be. There are hundreds of crochet pattern stitch variations. It will take so many chains to complete each pattern stitch. Some pattern stitches might require only 2 chains to complete each stitch, where others might need 20 chains. The starstitch only requires 2 chains to complete a stitch, where a ripple pattern stitch may need 15 or 20 chains depending on the ripple pattern you choose. The +plus amounts are used once with the first pattern stitch. For example: You will need to chain 4 to complete 1 double crochet. The multiple for a double crochet will be 1+3. Lets say you want 20 double crochet in your project. You will need to chain 19 + 3. It will take a chain of 22 to complete 20 double crochet. Remember, the beginning chain 3 counts as a double crochet. Each multiple gives you the unique information to create a project as large or as small as you want to make your project.






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Tapestry Needles


I found some tapestry needles as I was searching through my dwindling supply of yarn yesterday. I decided to take a picture, to give a visual to those of you who ask what kind of needles I use to sew in my yarn tails. These are tapestry needles size 16, about 2" long. They work well for yarn. I will be using them in an upcoming tutorial for a crochet stitch. I like the big eye, which makes it easy to put the yarn through. There are different size tapestry needles to choose from. I just purchase something that looks like the yarn will fit through the eye and never really looked at or thought about the size until today. As long as Wal-mart continues to carry yarn supplies, you will be able to purchase tapestry needles at Wal-mart. You can also purchase them from Michaels, AC Moore, Hobby Lobby, Joann Fabric and Crafts as well as stores online.




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Beginner Crochet Stitches and Techniques

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