Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Today is Hump day and I've been "Hookin".  In fact I am combining "Hookin on Hump Day" and the 52 week crochet challenge.  this week's challenge is to take a work(s) in progress and either finish it, work on it or rip it.  Since I am the queen of WIPs I have plenty to choose from.  I have finished a drawstring bag that I have been working on.  You may have seen some of my posts on Interlocking crochet.  This purse is Interlocking crochet in the round.  It is my first one, no pattern yet but I really like it.  I had two small balls of novelty yarn, not enough for anything big but plenty for this design. I started with a standard circle increase with one yarn.  Then, using both the red and the gold I built up the sides.  I finished off the top working the two colors together and then added the casing and shell border in the gold.  The drawstrings are just a chain stitch.








Interlocking Crochet in the round



These are my other WIPs that I am hoping to finish this week.  I have been making amulet bags and these two are my own designs.  The gold one has a clear glass "worry stone" with a spiral sun design on it which is encased in beaded crochet and then the flat background is worked around it, like a beaded cabochon.  The long oval bag will be hung from a small, sort of dumbbell shaped bead that I got at a trunk show in California several years back.  Supposedly it is from Afghanistan.  Both need to be assembled and have straps added.  The back of the gold bag needs to be finished.  The gold bag also will have a fringe.  I promise to post the finished bags when they are done.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Thumb down fingerless mitts

I love fingerless mitts, especially the ones with a thumb gusset.  So when my sister (the knitter) showed me a pattern for knitted mitts that started at the THUMB! I had to figure out a way to crochet them. For you knitters, the original knitter is http://knitting-and-so-on.blogspot.com/ but I do not see the original circular mitts, however, her other patterns are glorious.  Anyway, I just jumped in and started on my own. 


Starting at the thumb and increasing the circle
 
I started with a ribbing on the thumb, her pattern called for ribbing all of the way down the thumb, I only did 3 rows (just because) and then increasing evenly to enlarge the circle.  I used a standard circle increase.  Keep going on the circle until it fits around the palm of your hand.  Then I joined the outer edges and used short rows to fill in by the pinky and the wrist.  I finished off with ribbing at the top and the wrist.  They look different because I played around with different methods of short rows and decreasing..

I used sock yarn (Lang Jawoll Magic superwash) and a size G hook.  When I flew to NJ my sister picked me up at the airport and we went to a yarn shop (of course, yeeaaahhh) that she likes, The Stitching Bee in NJ a very nice shop with a wonderful sale bin.  I am working on a pattern for the mitts.


Here it is on my hand, I may make the thumb a little shorter but they are nice and toasty and I love the way they showcase the yarn.
 
 


Saturday, April 5, 2014

Interlocking Crochet by pcooper

Another process I have been working with is Interlocking Crochet.  The stitch patterns are in Interlocking Crochet by Tanis Galik.  The book has a lot of stitch patterns and some projects to use those stitches.  There are a few mistakes in the version I have, but the project directions seem to be accurate.  The process provides a dense complex fabric.  I have used the process with several different weights of yarn and thread and I love the results.

A small "spirit bag" using #10 cotton crochet thread.  Some of the stitches display different designs on opposite sides of the fabric.  You can see that above where the flap is open to show the alternate pattern.  The strap is a crocheted beaded strap with size 11 beads

Using #10 light and dark gold metallic crochet thread, again the designs are different on opposite sides of the fabric. 

The project in the book is similar but it uses nylon cording and the finished project is bigger.  These bags are about 3 inches square.  I still need to work on a strap for this one.


This is a cowl crocheted with a combination of dark brown lace weight mohair and camel colored alpaca.  I love the combination it is very light but very warm.  I wore it in NJ this March (we had some 20 degree days) and I was toasty.  This pattern has the same design on both sides.  I plan to do more projects with this technique and I am currently working on a drawstring bag done "in the round" with this technique.  No directions, I am making this up as I go along.  I will post it when it is finished.

Monday, March 24, 2014

Overlay Crochet

Hi, Pat checking in here.  Nice post on blocking Marie, I have to block some pieces and yours are an inspiration.  I have been playing around with what is, for me, a new crochet technique, Overlay crochet and making some pieces from Crochet overlay jewelry by Melody MacDuffee.  She works with a size 14 needle and sewing thread, way to small for me so I moved up to a size 10 steel hook and size 8 cotton crochet thread.  The pieces are very dense and textural and I love the process.
 
Above is a little purse, the strap is all the colors crocheted together.  The fringe is from the Beaded Edge by Midori Nishida with coral drops. The closure is a vintage flower and a loop. It is about 3 1/2 inches square without the fringe.

 
 This is the front and back of a little bag that is about 3 inches square.  It too has a crocheted beaded fringe (with sandstone), vintage buttons and a small wrist strap.  The wrist strap is beaded and I am working on a longer necklace length so that the straps can be interchangeable. The back is just a square design with no overlay.
 

 
 
This is my favorite so far, it is the back and front of a potential bag that has not yet been assembled.  I have some great orange beads and grey beads that I am hoping to use, it reminds me of fire.
Melody also does cabochons, I adapted the idea to encompass rocks.  these were a couple I had picked up in Terra Lingua TX (outside of Big Bend).  The samples below I bought while shopping with a friend and browsing in a rock shop.


Overlay is fun but I can only do it for a few hours in the morning while I am awake and alert enough to figure it out.  Now I have to work on creating some of my own patterns, I want to do some mandalas. 
 

Saturday, March 22, 2014

I took an on-line Craftsy course in knitting lace that included instructions for blocking.  I found this part incredibly fascinating and therefore am posting photos of the process from my second lace scarf.
This first photo is the unblocked scarf with kitchen twine laced around the perimeter.  This is used for stabilizing the yarn when it is stretched.

The four corners are stretched and pinned...


Then each section is bisected to smaller and smaller sections...

Until it is completely pinned.  Then you let it dry

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

I purchased a Craftsy web-based class on lace knitting.  A swatch of the final project was knitted using a multicolor yarn and the knitted lace end was photographed in process to show how the lace edge is added by incorporating it while binding off the end.  The lace edging grows perpendicular to the body of the scarf.

Using Manos del Uruguay FINO yarn in Amethyst Earring and size 4 needles the provisional cast on was performed using blue cotton yarn in one instance and a circular needle in another instance.  I love the idea of using the circular needle so that the provisional cast on stitches are ready to be knit without taking any additional steps.


After  blocking, by soaking the completed scarf and pinning it to stretch it out, and weaving in the ends after blocking (so that the woven ends don't impede stretching of the scarf), behold the final product!

Friday, November 1, 2013

Knitted Mittens - First Try

Knitted my first pair of mittens using Filatura Lanarota Kaleidoscope 100% extra fine Merino Wool (50 grams = 65 meters; color 009) on US size 8 needles.   In the last photo, the top mitten was just completed and the bottom mitten had been soaked in cold water to full the fibers.  The water soaking seemed to stretch the mitten out.  They may need some light felting but they feel oh so nice!