Tag: Easy

The finished Child’s Cardigan!



Well, I finally finished the last sleeve on the little cardigan I have been working on crocheting for my 5 year old niece. Now that I’ve had the time to weave in all those irritating yarn ends, I was able to make time for a few photographs of the finished product, too!

I did end up adding some ruffle touches to the sleeves. I am a sucker for ruffles, so it wasn’t easy to contain myself and leave it to the sleeves and front edges only. Otherwise, the entire thing would be nothing but frills! Believe me, it wasn’t easy not to do that.
Bug's Cardi. 2

Bug's Cardi. 3

Bug's Cardi

Bug's Cardi 4

Bug's Cardi 5

Bug's Cardi 6
I feel like this was a pretty rewarding project, but will be even more so when I get to witness my niece actually wearing it, and liking it.

I’m definitely glad that I decided to go ahead and use the Caron One pound of yarn, although it surprised me that this cardigan actually took up the entire pound almost! A tiny little cardigan! I thought for sure I’d have about half the yarn roll left over. I like the rose-color and figured the gray and white made for the perfect color combo, as it always does. But the reason I’m happy with the pink Caron yarn is because I didn’t realize how snugly soft this stuff was compared to other acrylic yarns like Red Heart until I actually began using this soft stuff. Compared to the other popular acrylic yarns on the market, this stuff is perfectly soft, and others are terribly scratchy, which I hate.

I want to make note that not all Red Heart yarn is scratchy. In fat, the Made With Love is some of my favorite, soft-wise. It’s bouncy and soft, and fluffy, but you don’t get much in those rolls, so I try to get it on sale when I’m using it.

Unfortunately, during my rushing around today, I left my flat iron on near the cardigan and apparently, part of the straighteners plate was touching the cardigan. The result:

Here you can see where my hair straightener had touched the cardigan. Odd that it turned yellow, but I am just glad it didn't damage the yarn itself!
Here you can see where my hair straightener had touched the cardigan. Odd that it turned yellow, but I am just glad it didn’t damage the yarn itself!

Back and mistake

Imagine how horrified I was to have just finished this sweater only to realize that as I was getting ready and doing my hair today, I mus have sat the flat iron a bit too close to the cardigan and it burned the yarn… yellow! How odd! It’s almost as if it striped the pink dye from it, and the original yarn color was this ugly yellow color! I kicked myself all day for doing this, but have thought up a couple solutions, although not perfect ones. 1. a technique where you simply cover the posts/stitches that are damaged and mis-matched in color with thread of matching color (pink.) By simply wrapping some thread, or the matching yarn around the stitches that are damaged, and tying off in the back, it should cover it. Thread will do the trick without creating a thicker (which extra yarn will create) spot where the mistake was.

Solution number 2: Simply turn the cardi inside out. Since it’s virtually identical on both sides, this could work. The only problem I have with using this easy out is that the decorative bubble stitching around the neck is more noticeable on the original “right side out” and by having to turn it inside out to hide the mistake from my flat iron, those pretty stitches won’t have the same “sticking-out” appearance. 🙁
Bug's Cardi 9

Bug's Cardi 10

Bug's Cardi 11
Still, I believe the only option other than a total re-do, which is out, is to turn it inside out where the ugly mistake is on the inside, not the out.

What about you guys? What are some of the last-minute fixes you’ve had to wing? Any ideas on a way to fix mine?



Crochet Lace Blouse Video & Written Tutorial


For those of you who are participating in the crochet along for this lacey blouse, I’ve provided the written instructions below. You can watch the video above to keep up, and to get a better understanding of what’s going on. To understand every detail better, you’ll probably find it easier to watch the video series before trying to go by the written instructions. This was a rather difficult project to explain in written text only. It was also my very first tutorial/pattern, so I hope you’ll be easy on me!

Written Pattern for Bust:
NOTE: All rows are started with a CH3 & end with a Slip Stitch into the 3rd CH of beginning CH3.

1. Go back to the very first row we made (the ch2, skip 1 chain & double crochet into the next. The square-like row. We’re going to go into one of the chains of any double crochet we made in that first row with new yarn. Once you’re in, start with a CH3 & DC.

Then, CH2, skip one chain/stitch & DC. Repeat that all around: *Ch2, skip one chain/stitch and double crochet into the next.*

Row 2: CH 3 & DC. *DC in every stitch, all around.
NOTE: If the bust feels too loose on you, now’s a good time to begin adding some random decreases. To do this, simply skip a couple of stitches all around.

For instance, I skipped about 12 stitches and did them at random. The blouse will begin to be just a tad tighter in that area. Don’t go too tight though!

Row 3: Double Crochet Cross-Over Stitch, all around. *CH3, skip one ST & DC into the next. Double crochet into the skipped stitch.* Note: This stitch is shown in my video, and also in a video tutorial
I made on this stitch alone. You can find it under “Double Crochet Cross Over Stitch Tutorial.”

Row 4: Repeat the DC Cross-Over Stitch.
Row 5: Repeat the DC Cross-Over Stitch.

Now you have 3 rows of DC Cross-Over.

Row 6: CH3, DC. *DC in each stitch, all around. To end, slip stitch into the 3 CH of your beginning CH3.

Row 7: CH3, skip one stitch & DC into the next. *CH 2, skip one stitch & double crochet in the next one.* All around. End with a SL ST into the 3rd chain of beginning CH3.

Row8: Repeat *DC Cross-Over Stitch* all around.

Row 9: CH3, DC. *DC all around. End with SL ST into the 3rd CH of your beginning CH3.

Row 10: DC. Repeat DC Cross-Over ST all around.

Try it on. If you’re happy with where the upper-back of the top lands, finish off now.

If you want the back to come up even more, continue working the pattern in the same way. I finished off at Row10.

Now we’ll begin working on the front only! As shown in the video, you’ll lay your piece down, the front side facing up. Find what will be the edges of each side (at bust/top portion).

Mark each side. I just eyeballed mine. I didn’t count the stitches to make sure it was folded exactly on count. I simply laid mine out, found the edges by looking at it & got to work! It may require you to try it on after this next row we work (front only row), to make sure that’s where you’ll want the sides of the top to be. This is easy, though.

Now that you’ve marked the sides, join with yarn into one of your stitches on either side. Now, we’ll crochet in the same pattern we’ve done for the bust, but we’ll only be going straight across the front, not all around.

FRONT ONLY: (from marker to marker, where you placed markers on the sides. Don’t continue to the back. Just from the side to side.)

Row 1 & Row 2: DC Cross-Over Stitch.

Row 3: DC in each stitch across

Row 4: DC Cross-Over Stitch.

Repeat Rows 1-4 until you’ve reached the length you want for the front bust area. Try it on after about row 4 and see if you need to continue going further. If not, finish off & begin the straps!

Straps:
To get an idea of how long you’ll need your straps to be, make a chain using your best guesstimate of how long it’ll need to be, then you can attach strap(s) with safety pin and try the top on. See if the length of the straps is right. Chain more or less to fit. If you have another tank top or camisole that fits well, just chain to the length of the straps on it.

Row1: Now that you have a foundation chain for the strap make 1 more chain on the chain you’ve just made. So, whatever your chain length was plus 1. Now, single crochet in each chain.

Row 2: *Chain 2, skip 2 chains and double crochet into the next*. Do this to the end. Simple & fast, huh?

*** I hope this was overly-easy to follow! I went ahead and included this written version for folks like me who can’t keep going back & watching video patterns several times a day. This pattern is just for the bust & straps of the top since that’s the part of this that I designed personally. The bottom half of this blouse has its own written photo-tutorial, which again, was created and posted for free by Girlie’s Crochet! She’s so kind! It’s been a pleasure to get to use her pattern in my own blouse. She’s been very helpful to me, so I want to give her a special thank-you. Head over to her blog to see the skirt she made with the pattern we used in this blouse! It’s outstanding!

Back to what I was saying, I realize the video plus this written part is probably a lot. Hope I haven’t overwhelmed anybody. I often find myself struggling with patterns that aren’t super-detailed, so that’s why I wanted to give as much information as possible on this blouse pattern. I want even the most beginner level crochet-er to be able to enjoy crocheting a nice blouse like this. So, let me know if y’all run into any problems or need help. I’m happy to help you through it!

I hope this has been as fun for you as it has me. I truly enjoy these “crochet-alongs!”

I hope to do more in the future, and hopefully, Girly from Girlie’s Crochet & I will get together and perhaps create some awesome something in the future! What do you think? Would y’all like to see more projects like this? Is the video + written part helpful or just confusing to you? What do you folks prefer? I have to ask because I need to know if I should continue this sort of thing in the future. If the information I provide is over-kill, don’t hesitate to let me know that either.

7 Adorable Free Crochet Patterns to Make Before Christmas

1. Scoodies
Tutorial: How to Crochet A Hooded Neckwarmer (or “Scoodie”) by I’mAfricanCrab
https://youtu.be/xd_GVBvy85k

I’mAfricanCrab shows you how to crochet her stylish “Scoodie,” which is a scarf/hoodie that’s so cute and functional you’ll want to join her in crocheting it right away. Her video tutorial is so easy to follow and understand that a beginner will be able to follow along and complete the scoodie with ease.

2. Boot cuffs!
All (okay, most) boot-wearing gals will really love a pair of adorable boot cuffs, and they can be knitted or crocheted in a jiffy. Best thing about them:

Source: Seven-Alive
Source: Seven-Alive
They’re small items, so they work really fast.
Quick Crochet Boot Cuffs by Seven-Alive

Bow Boot Cuffs by Loops of Lavender (these are my faves because the bow!)

Source: Loops of Lavendar
Source: Loops of Lavendar

(Crafting On a Dime) DIY Crochet Boot Cuff by Vanessa at See Vanessa Craft

Source: See Vanessa Craft
Source: See Vanessa Craft

These are absolutely darling! I’ve had them on my to-do list since I started crocheting last year! I can’t wait to get around to making these babies.

Crochet Boot Cuffs Free Pattern
by Penelope Rae
Source: Penelope Rae
Source: Penelope Rae

Since boot cuffs or boot “toppers” as some call them are so small, it’s pretty easy and quick to crochet a pair. There are several different free patterns available online for crocheted boot cuffs, so if you aren’t particularly fond of these here, you’ll likely be able to find another style you like somewhere online.

3. Scarves!
These are pretty much a given. Scarves are a pretty basic accessory and make a common gift. But… Hand crochet (or knit!) a scarf with your own hands & it’s suddenly extra spectacular. There are so many gorgeous scarf patterns available that I’d never be able to list them all (I feel a scarf post coming on), but I will list a few favorites of my own.
Crochet Ribbed Cowl
by The Purl Bee
(okay, it’s not a scarf, but same thing, right?)

I love this cowl’s awesome, unique texture and how cozy it looks.

Rib Cowl

Another totally snuggle worthy cowl is the Chunky Ribbed Cowl by Little Monkeys Crochet

Source: Little Monkeys Crochet
Source: Little Monkeys Crochet


Mosaic Infinity
by Lanas Hilos
Source: Arteen Hilo
Source: Arteen Hilo

Chevron Lace Wrap by <a href="https://www.mooglyblog.com/" target="_blSource: Mooglyank”>Moogly

This gorgeous Chevron Lace Wrap is lightweight and oh, so perfectly lacy looking. I can just imagine every single outfit in my wardrobe combined with the beauty of this — lovely overload.

4. Washcloth Scrubbies

Source: My Sweet Somethings
Source: My Sweet Somethings


Reusable Crochet Cotton Facial Scrubbies
by My Sweet Somethings

5. Jewelry

Source: Craftaholics Anonymous
Source: Craftaholics Anonymous

Easy Crochet Bracelet Tutorial by Craftaholics Anonymous

Finger Knit Bracelet
found on DIY Cozy Home
Okay, this one isn’t crochet, but it’s too perfect to not add to this fantastically purr-fect gift list, right? It’s finger-knitted, so I figure if you can crochet, you can definitely pick up finger knitting with ease.
Source: DIY Cozy Home
Source: DIY Cozy Home

The very first yarn craft I ever engaged in was finger knitting, in fact! You guys didn’t know that did you? It’s what got me hooked on yarn crafts and caused me to immediately begin exploring the world of knitting and crochet! Finger knitting is also an amazingly cool method for kids. Like crocheting and knitting with out needles and hooks, finger-knitting is also incredibly therapeutic, so I’d recommend trying it just for that very reason alone, even if knitting something wasn’t of big interest to you. I’d almost guarantee you’ll fall in love, though.

6. Cupcakes…
Seriously. You can crochet cupcakes. And these are actually cute.

Source: Bitter Sweet Blog
Source: Bitter Sweet Blog

Bake me A Cake pattern by Bittersweet Blog

8. Cupcakes are all the rage right now. It’s like these delicious yet cute little desserts have their very own trend going. I have seen cupcakes on everything from T-shirts in the little girls department to cupcake charms dangling from necklaces and bracelets… And now probably even our Christmas trees! Just chain a little loop on the top of these little crocheted cupcakes and you have yourself a Christmas tree ornament.

Source: Lulu Loves
Source: Lulu Loves

If you know someone who loves the cupcake trend (probably a tween girl, if I had my guess), then this might be something to consider as stocking stuffers for them, or to add a little something as a gift topper? Who knows, but apparently, they’re a big hit.

7. And to top off your gifts, or as a hair accessory, go ahead and crochet a few of these uber adorable chunky bobble crochet bows by Lulu Loves.

Seriously, I almost stopped what I was doing just to crochet one myself, but had enough discipline tonight to wait until work was finished… Mark my word, though, I will have crocheted a few (hundred, maybe!) of these cuties before Christmas. My niece is going to give me one more reason to thank Lulu Loves for such awesome tutorials!

10 Perfectly Beginner-Friendly Blankets to Knit for Christmas (Free Patterns)

As promised, here is 10 beginner friendly, gorgeous blankets to knit (or simply get inspiration from) for Christmas gifting! We’ve already covered the crochet version, and in that post, I promised a knitters version to come soon & I’ve managed to compile a list of those for you all. I hope this comes as a useful ‘series’ of inspirational gift-giving posts to some of you.

I’ve chosen to focus on beginner friendly patterns to feature here since this will allow beginners to check out some patterns that will fit their skill levels, too. Had I focused on more advanced patterns, I feel like I’d have limited the amount of folks that could participate in knitting the many different patterns out there available. This way, both beginners and advanced knitters can get in on the fun.

Another thing I’d wanted to accomplish with this and the crochet version of this post was to spark some confidence or inspiration in those of you who might not have been feeling confident enough in their skills to take on a gift project. Or for those of you who have been too afraid to take up the daunting task of trying your hand at something as big as a blanket. For that reason, I’ve tried to include as many quick and fast working projects as possible.

So, now that you feel motivated (and you do feel motivated, right? Right?), I hope you’ll try knitting up a blanket or two, or five!

P.S. To see my crocheters version of this post, go here.

1. Fuzzy Fluff Blanket Project from Craft Warehouse
*Update: It appears the owner of the website has removed this pattern & link. My apologies.

Source: Craft Warehouse
Source: Craft Warehouse

This fluffy, stylish blanket is knitted with specific yarn, to create the pom “pon” effect. However, you can whip up an equally beautiful blanket using the yarn of your own choice and following the pattern. The only difference is, well, for one, it’ll be much easier and for two, you won’t have to work with tiny “pom pons” on your yarn, which the pattern calls for. This is an easy to knit blanket otherwise.

2. Quickie Blanket by Big Box Detox

This blanket is not only simple and stunning, but it’s so easy to make! Nobody will ever know you whi

Source: Big Box Detox
Source: Big Box Detox
pped this blanket up with little to no mental work. The color block look is modern, stylish and fun! Plus, this knitted beauty is so age-versatile you can knit a colorful one for a child to snuggle with for the rest of their lives, or an adult who’ll appreciate it forever.

3. Super Easy Baby Blanket (Pattern Tweaked by Time for Dinner)

Source: Time for Dinner
Source: Time for Dinner

A simple baby blanket, originally found on the Purl Bee, which uses the garter stitch has been tweaked into unique perfection by Time for Dinner. She simply used knit 1 stitch, then purl the next and repeated that all throughout to create this awesome color block blanket! I love the results, and I think you will too.

4. Knitted Stripe Baby Blanket by Tiffany from Sweet Peonies

Source: Tiffany from Sweet Peonies
Source: Tiffany from Sweet Peonies

Stripes are a classic, and this pattern uses a combo of 3 different colors, although you can totally change it up or just use one. Or you could even knit each row in a new color if you really wanted! Virtually every human will love to receive a blanket with such simple beauty.

5. Quick Knit Blanket by Red Heart

Source: Red Heart
Source: Red Heart

This quick knit blanket has a lovely, feminine, lacy appearance, making it a beautiful gift. The skill level is do-able for most knitters, even many beginners. You will need a pair of circular needles (US size 13), though.

6. Chevron Baby Blanket by Espace Tricot

Source: Espace Tricot
Source: Espace Tricot

Let me just take a second to express my love and adoration for Espace Tricot. Ahh. Total knitters bliss, that blogger! The patterns are gorgeous. Stunning. To. Die. For! And so many of the beauties are offered for free, which definitely earns &** a huge shout out from me.

This chevron blanket features bold colors that are just irresistible. In fact, this pattern is already saved in my Ravelry queue for when I have time to knit it later. The pattern is also available in PDF format. Just follow the link provided and scroll down the page until you see the blanket. *There’s no link directed for the blanket pattern specifically, so you will have to scroll down the page to find it. The page is simply one full of Espace Tricot’s gorgeous, amazing free patterns, so if you’re like me, you’ll probably be clicking on every one on the list before you even make it to the blanket!

7. Arrowhead Lace Throw by Red Heart

Source: Red Heart
Source: Red Heart

This lightweight, lacy throw features an intricate-looking stitch design, although it’s actually rated as an easy pattern to follow.

The Arrowhead Lace Throw is beautiful enough — and really complicated looking, although it’s not so don’t even fret! — that it’s sure to earn you some respect as a knitter when you give one as a gift (or just show it off and keep it yourself!)

8. 6 Hour Afghan by Lion Brand

Source: Lion Brand
Source: Lion Brand

This super fast afghan is knitted with 4 strands of yarn held together. With 4 strands, expect a thick, chunky blanket. This is a beginner level project and the result looks so cozy it’ll be hard to pass up. Oh, and that fringe! Fringe is always in. Note: If you want to save $ you’ll spend on your knitting projects (and I understand because this craft can be extremely expensive, despite what many non-yarn-crafters think, so if you’re looking to cut costs, simple ditch the last 3 strands and simply use one. Or 2, if budget allows. Remember to use a smaller needle size if you use less yarn strands, though!)

9. F343 Coffee Beenz Textured Throw by Plymouth Yarn Design Studio

Source: Plymouth Yarns
Source: Plymouth Yarns

If knitting is your thing, but you’re ready to incorporate a little bit of texture into your handiwork, then perhaps this Textured Throw will be exactly the challenge you’ve been needing. This throw is knitted using 2 strands of yarn held together as you go. Remember, you can adjust how many yarn strands you use, if needed. Just use a smaller set of needles than a pattern calls for when you do this.

With a simple design though, this throw pattern will allow you to tweak to add multiple colors, if you like.

10. Weekend TV Lapghan by Lion brand

Source: Lion Brand
Source: Lion Brand

Can’t you just imagine how nice this would look on any couch?
This loose, light-weight throw is a fast piece of work and yet another gem that looks like it required serious work on your part, but it’s surprisingly simple to work.

This pattern requires a crochet hook (size P-15 or 10mm), but don’t worry. You don’t have to have extensive crochet skills in order to create this lovely blanket. The crochet hook is just for making the fringe border.

What do ya’ll think? Are any of these lovely enough to inspire you to try knitting a blanket (if you haven’t ever done so already) to give as a gift this year? If so, I’d love to know which you choose to knit!

If not a blanket, do any of you plan to crochet or knit any gifts for Christmas this year?

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