Crazy cool potholders

I found this pattern on Pinterest. I really loved the idea of alternating colors within a cool pattern to get something like this, but this pattern was crazy hard. Well, it wasn’t really hard, at least technically, but it was hard on my hands. Holding that many stitches together to make a cluster really did a number on my joints. But it was good fun. I made a set for my brother-in-law as a wedding present, which I forgot to take a picture of. And then I made this set, which I think I’ll put on etsy, because I have plenty of pot holders. I was considering making a bunch of sets to sell, but the pattern is so painful that I think this will be the only one, unless people start clamoring for them.

The original pattern is meant to be continued to make an afghan, but I liked the idea of keeping it smaller, plus my hands couldn’t have taken much more. The ones I made for my brother-in-law were without any alterations to the original pattern, but it creates holes, which add fun texture but really only make them useful as trivets. For this set I decided to make a backing to cover the holes so that they can be used to touch hot things.

My pot holders, after doing three different colors, ended up being about 5.75 inches square. I used an F hook and I Love This Cotton yarn. For the backing I did a foundation chain of 20 stitches and then alternated between a row of double crochet and a row of single crochet until it was about square. Then I left a long tail and sewed it onto the back of the potholder. It turned out pretty well and gives the potholder a more hefty feel, which I like to have when taking hot things out of an oven 🙂

 

 

Crazy cool potholders

 

Happy crocheting!

Kristen

 

 

Crochet legacy

ImageThese are my grandmas, the two on the left are mine and the one on the right is Travis’. I think these are wonderful ladies! The Grandma who is right next to me (me being the girl in white) is my grandma Hopper and she is a very talented crocheter. 

Want proof?

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She crocheted this afghan for us for our wedding and we proudly display it on our couch for everyone who walks into our apartment. We use it everyday because it is a gorgeous work of art that we want everyone to enjoy.

As you can see, I have a lot to live up to. I’m just lucky to have such a wonderful lady to strive to be like. That goes for all my grandmas.

-Nicole

 

Being silly can be interesting

Can I tell you guys a secret? Sometimes I’m very oblivious.

OK, let me back up. In my sushi scarf post I talked about how I had tried and failed to learn to crochet. Lots of people tried to teach me but almost as soon as the lesson was over, I would pick up the hook and have absolutely no idea what this alien object was or how to use it. Eventually I learned how to do a simple chain but i still had no idea how to build off of it. This was back when I was in elementary school and I used this new found knowledge of chaining to make key chains. For some reason, nobody wanted them…anyway I think I was in high school when I finally learned how to single crochet into a chain. I promised my dad a home made pot holder for Christmas but it was more of a small square rag. In retrospect, I don’t think a pot holder was a good Christmas gift for my dad but he seemed like he really wanted it at the time. That’s my dad for you, the sweetest man you’ll ever meet.

I think that was the point where I gave up ever figuring it out. I was looking at my grandmother who is a master crocheter, my mother who makes these really cute and sought for baby blankets and my sister who was crocheting an afghan as her first project. I wasn’t depressed about it I just figured it wasn’t for me, whatever I’ll move on to something I don’t suck so bad at.

Fast forward to last summer. I had just gotten married, we had moved into a new apartment, I was taking summer classes and trying to find a job. We were visiting with some friends, another married couple, and she had a hook out with some yarn teaching another friend how to crochet a pot holder. She asked if I wanted to learn to. So I did and amazingly enough it stuck. It wasn’t a foreign object the minute we left their house, I could still do the stuff she taught me.

Doors suddenly opened. I could do the cool fancy thing all the other women in my family could do but I could do it my way. I could make that cute My Neighbor Totoro bag I saw a picture of, I could make that Amigurumi Link from the Legend of Zelda, I could do anything! Except I couldn’t I was biting off way more than I was prepared to chew. However, I had time, energy, I was ready to learn and I discovered something magical.

Google

Yes Google, or really any search engine. Now you may ask why Google is so magical. Its so part of our everyday lives, why are you just now discovering it. Again, I’m a little oblivious sometimes and it never even occurred to me that the internet might have tutorials for different stitches and techniques. Heck, Kristen and I sometimes do Google hangouts and she shows me how to do things. If it wasn’t for Google I wouldn’t have made that scarf or any of my other projects. In short, the internet taught me how to crochet and that is not a bad thing. The internet is all about sharing information and ideas with others, so why can’t I teach myself a new skill using this tool?

Yes yes Nicole we get it, the internet is great. Whats your point.

The project I’m working on told me to do something I didn’t know how to do. So I Googled it.

-Nicole

(Next week I will actually talk about that project instead of rambling on about my life.)

Who doesn’t love Calvin and Hobbes?

I grew up with the Calvin and Hobbes comics. My family had a bunch of the books and I always read it in the paper, and I was heartbroken when Bill Watterson decided to end it. I want my kids to enjoy it as much as I did, and I figured I’d give them an early start. I found the pattern for a crocheted Hobbes, and I plan to give it to my daughter when she’s born.

I haven’t finished it yet. I’m taking it slow, since I still have some time to get it done. But it’s really fun to see it come to life. Those of you who are familiar with amigurumi might be able to figure out how to make this, if you’re interested in figuring it out on your own (if I knew anything about amigurumi, I know I would enjoy the challenge), but, if not, sukigirl has graciously offered her pattern to give the perfect dimensions for an adorable little Hobbes doll.

I’ve finished the two legs and the tail so far.

Hobbes piecesI can’t wait to show you the finished product.

In honor of Calvin and Hobbes and Bill Watterson, sukigirl has asked that her pattern only be used to make items that will be given away, no selling allowed. I think she has an excellent point. Watterson never commercialized his comic. The most he allowed was for it to be printed in books, and I think that is exactly how it should stay. You will not see this on our etsy store, but always feel free to make one yourself, or ask your favorite crocheter to make one for you 🙂

Happy crocheting!

Kristen

Crochet spiral hat

I know its not the right season for warm fuzzy hats but I really wanted to share this one with you. I came across the pattern on Pinterest and when I noticed that my black hat was getting to be done, I decided to make this hat.

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I made a trial version of the hat following this exact pattern over Christmas while I was visiting my in-laws. I gave that hat to my sister in law because it still wasn’t quite what I wanted. When I made the hat for myself I changed the brim because I wasn’t to fond of the way the front and back post double crochets looked. For that I just did single crochets. I think it made it look cleaner.
ImageThe pattern itself was very simple and they have a baby version available on the same page. I think this would be an adorable hat for Kristens new baby, yes? That way, she and her Auntie could have matching hats! ^_^
 
-Nicole

Sushi scarf!!

This was my first real crochet project. When I was younger people kept trying to teach me how to crochet and it just didn’t stick until a little while ago when a friend encouraged me to try again. I’ve crocheted many a pot holder (and by pot holder I mean a slightly wonky square of single crochet stitches) with varying degrees of success. This scarf was a slightly wonky long rectangle of single crochet stitches but it turned out all right.

ImageI made some mistakes with this. I didn’t realize that crocheting in the back loops was different than just normal crocheting so the entire scarf was ribbed. I also had to figure out how to change color so the changes aren’t the prettiest. I was also crocheting really tight so I had to do a lot of redos. It was a very good learning experience.

Melanie wearing the scarfI gave the scarf to my awesome cousin for Christmas (pictured above). I got the idea from seeing pictures of other people who have done similar things. I started with the meat (pink and then as I was crocheting I rolled it to see where I was and when I needed to change color. It was a fun project and it kept me interested in crocheting.

-Nicole

Crocheted Coasters

I have some exciting news! We’re having a girl!!! I’m super excited to start making girly things, and we couldn’t be happier to be welcoming a little girl into our family. Okay, that’s my big news. On to the crocheting 🙂


Crochet coasters

I found this pretty little pattern a while back and decided to make a bunch of sets for family and friends. I adjusted the pattern a little bit to make it look a bit cleaner. Instead of chaining six to start I only chained five. This made the center a little tighter. I also only chained two at the start of each round instead of three. When I chained three to start it created too much space between the height chain and the first double crochet.

If you would like to make some for yourself, you can find the pattern at http://crochet.about.com/od/vintage/ss/aa052606.htm. Or if you’d like to buy one of the sets pictured, you can purchase them from our Etsy shop.

Crochet coasters

Crochet coasters

Happy crocheting!

Kristen

Chevron bangle

So, when I want to find a new pattern, I’ll Google image “Free crochet patterns” and see what comes up. That’s how I found this cute little pattern. Image

I had some really pretty blue yarn I’ve been wanting to use so I followed the example in the pattern and made this blue and tan one.Image

Then I thought “this was so much fun I should make another!” so I used the same blue but instead of tan I used a dark green as the second color. I think it turned out even better than the first one.Image

If you would like to have one then feel free to go to the original site! It was a very easy and quick pattern. If you are unable or unwilling to make one though then I’ll be making some for our Etsy shop! There will be more color variety than what I’ve shown here though I promise.

-Nicole

Hook reminders

Hook reminders

Happy Monday Everyone!

My week is off to an interesting start. Our dog got into some ant poison this morning (which was totally my fault and I feel awful about it) and is currently with the vet being treated. We don’t think she ate very much and she should be fine.

Today’s post isn’t so much about crochet patterns as it is about crochet tools…sorta. I’m always starting new projects before finishing older ones and when I come back to a project that’s been sitting around for a while, I’ve always forgotten which hook I was using. This is mostly because I hardly ever use the recommended hook size, because I generally crochet pretty tight, and I can’t get the right gauge with the hook the pattern says to use. I had an idea similar to this a while back but instead of using the necklace clasps, I was going to just use safety pins with a few decorative beads and a letter bead. Then, I found a fancier version here and just had to make some for myself. Now I can keep all my crochet hooks in their holder when I’m not using them and I never have to worry about misplacing one again. Best thing ever? I think so.

These beautiful little things not only keep your project from unraveling but they remind you what hook you were using for that project.

Hook reminders

The set of letter beads I bought didn’t have a J in it, which is why that one is missing.

We will be selling sets of these beauties in our Etsy shop in the near future. We’re still getting that set up and are hoping we’ll have some wonderful things for sale very soon.

Happy crocheting!

Kristen

Men’s winter hat with bill

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A few years ago my husband lost a winter hat with a bill that he loved to wear. He hasn’t been able to find one to replace it, so he asked that I make him a hat. Unfortunately, I procrastinated this project during the winter and now in the middle of April he won’t have many opportunities to wear it. Today, though, there’s a high of 49 with wind, so he was happy to put it on and wear it to school. I found a pattern that I liked from The Green Dragonfly. Since I altered it quite a bit I’ll repost it here with my changes. I don’t know if my yarn was a smaller size or if my husband just has a huge head, but I had to do several more rounds to increase the circumference of the hat.

I used Vanna’s Choice brand size 4 acrylic yarn in Navy and a G hook. One 3.5 oz skein of this yarn was plenty for this hat.

Hat

Make a magic circle and ch1, 5 sc into the ring (6sc).

Use a stitch marker at the start of each round, do not join

Round 2: Work 2 sc in each stitch around (12)

Round 3: 2 sc in next stitch, sc in next st, repeat around (18)

Round 4: 2 sc in next stitch, sc in next 2 stitches, repeat around (24)

Round 5: 2 sc in next stitch, sc in next 3 stitches, repeat around (30)

Round 6: 2 sc in next stitch, sc in next 4 stitches, repeat around (36)

Round 7: 2 sc in next stitch, sc in next 5 stitches, repeat around (42)

Round 8: 2 sc in next stitch, sc in next 6 stitches, repeat around (48)

Continue in this pattern until you’ve completed 15 rounds with a total of 90 stitches around the edge of the hat. This is the amount I needed for my husband’s head with the yarn and hook size I used.

Rounds 16 – 30: Sc in each stitch around. Fasten off.

Bill

Top Side: Using a couple of stitch markers, mark out 22 stitches on front center of hat.

Row 1: With right side facing, join yarn in first marked st, working in front loops only, sc in each of the 22 stitches.

Row 2: Ch 1, turn, sc in each stitch across, sc in back loops in next 2 stitches on the hat (24)

Row 3: Ch 1, turn, sc in each stitch across, sc in front loops in next 2 stitches on the hat (26)

Row 4: Ch 1, turn, sc in each stitch across, sc in back loop in next 2 stitches on the hat (28)

Row 5: Ch 1, turn, sc in each stitch across, sc in front loop in next 2 stitches on the hat (30)

Row 6: Ch 1, turn, sc in each stitch across, sc in back loop in next 2 stitches on the hat (32)

Row 7: Ch 1, turn, sc in each stitch across, sc in front loop in next stitch on the hat (33)

Row 8: Ch 1, turn, sc in each stitch across, sc in back loop in next stitch on the hat (34)

Fasten off.

Bottom Side

Row 1: With wrong side facing, join yarn on wrong side of Row 1 of brim, sc in back loops of first 22 stitches.

Row 2: Ch 1, turn, sc in each stitch across, sc in front loops in next 2 stitches on the hat (24)

Row 3: Ch 1, turn, sc in each stitch across, sc in back loops in next 2 stitches on the hat (26)

Row 4: Ch 1, turn, sc in each stitch across, sc in front loop in next 2 stitches on the hat (28)

Row 5: Ch 1, turn, sc in each stitch across, sc in back loop in next 2 stitches on the hat (30)

Row 6: Ch 1, turn, sc in each stitch across, sc in front loop in next 2 stitches on the hat (32)

Row 7: Ch 1, turn, sc in each stitch across, sc in back loop in next stitch on the hat (33)

Row 8: Ch 1, turn, sc in each stitch across, sc in front loop in next stitch on the hat (34)

Row 6: Ch 1, turn, sc in each stitch across, sc in back loop in next stitch on the hat (33)

Fasten off.

I cut down the bill from an old ball cap to create stability in the bill. Any heavy plastic cut into the right shape should work well. Using a whip stitch sew in the bill into the two pieces.

Weave in all ends, and Viola!

Have fun!

Kristen

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