Monday, July 27, 2015

7 Common Crochet Mistakes

Even the most experienced of crocheters can run into problems with crochet. I've compiled a list of 7 common crochet mistakes and some advice/resources that hopefully can help you overcome them!


1. Miscounting stitches. This is a common mistake among crochet newbies and veterans! Being off one little stitch can result in a yarny catastrophe! Having the wrong amount of stitches is frustrating, so I highly recommend making a habit out of double checking counting. (And yes, I'm still working on making this a habit myself!) Stitch markers can be a big help with this!

2. Uneven, too tight or too loose tension. Again, this is a common beginner mistake. I remember when I was young and first learning to crochet this was my biggest problem! My stitching was always way too tight. Really, the only remedy for tension problems is practice, practice and more practice!

3. Using the wrong yarn. You cannot using worsted weight yarn for a pattern than calls for baby weight and expect it to come out the way the pattern says it will! Sometimes figuring out the type of yarn you need is confusing. This standard yarn weight chart is very helpful when trying to determine what kind of yarn you can use for a pattern.

4. Crocheting in the wrong loops or loop. Unless otherwise stated in the pattern, you typically insert your crochet hook into the front and back loops of each stitch. If you find yourself confused about where to insert your hook, check out this post on crocheting in front, back or both loops.

5. Not asking/looking for help. If you know someone who understands crochet better than you, ask for help! (I can't tell you how many times I begged my mom to help me with projects!) Even if you don't know somebody who crochets and can help you with a new stitch or complicated pattern, you still have resources! Google has a wealth of picture and video tutorials. Asking or looking for help can save a lot of time and frustration. 

6. Not learning to read patterns. I remember when I was first learning to crochet I was overwhelmed by the most basic of patterns. I wanted my mom to just dictate to me what to do. Sometimes she would try to help me understand the pattern, other times she left me to my own devices. It took a long time for me to feel confidant in pattern reading, but I'm glad my mom taught me! If you are new and are still confused by patterns, you can find a helpful video here: Learn to Read a Crochet Pattern

7. Giving up. Even as an experienced crocheter, I sometimes find myself in the middle of a difficult pattern and want to give up! Giving up never made anyone get better at something. It never taught anyone a new skill. As tempting as it sometimes is, don't give up! Sometimes, putting the frustrating projects away for a few days can help clear your head. Sometimes, you just have to unravel the whole thing and start over. (BLECH! I know.) Sometimes you have to swallow your pride and get help. (See #5!) But if you don't give up, you'll be rewarded with pride in your finished product! There are few things more satisfying than creating something you thought you never could.

What common crochet mistakes do you struggle with?? 

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Monday, June 15, 2015

LDS Manti Temple Free Stitchery Pattern

One of my many sisters is serving an LDS mission in Germany. I wanted to send her a package, but couldn't think of what to send her! I wanted something small enough that it would be easy for her to pack with her when she transferred, something lightweight because international shipping can get pricy and something that I knew she would love. I finally had the idea to send her a towel with an embroidered LDS Manti Temple on it! 


I first embroidered the design onto some scrap white fabric. When I was finished, I ironed it, cut off the excess fabric and sewed it onto a purple tea towel with ric rac. 

You can find the design here: LDS Manti Temple Free Stitchery Pattern

The pattern includes an inscription above the temple that says, "Holiness to the Lord." I ultimately decided to leave that off, because without the words above the temple this would have fit well in a little 5x5 frame that I was considering putting it in for my sister. However, I decided the frame was too heavy to ship so I chose the towel idea instead. But I left the words on the pattern in case anyone else would want to stitch them!

I think my sister is going to love it! 

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Monday, June 8, 2015

Infant Lacy Knit Bonnet Free Pattern

Seriously, knitting for my daughter has been so much fun! She looked so cute in this little 6 month size bonnet several months ago!



Materials:
  • Fingering weight yarn
  • Size 4 knitting needles
Notes:
  • Size 6 month
  • You are welcome to make and sell products from this pattern but please link back to this post. Please do not copy this pattern and claim it as your own. Please do not republish any of my photos as your own.
Pattern:

CO 90
Row 1: *Sl1, k2, psso, k3* repeat from * to * around
Row 2: *P4, yo, p1* repeat from * to * around
Row 3: *K3, sl1, k2, psso* repeat from * to * around
Row 4: *P1, yo, p4* repeat from * to * around
Repeat rows 1-4 until peice measures 5 ish inches from beginning, being sure to end on row 4. 
Crown shaping:
Row 1: K2tog twice, k3, *Sl1, k2, psso, k3* repeat from * to * until 4 remaining, k2tog twice
Row 2: P2tog, p1, yo, *P4, yo, p1* repeat from * to * until 2 remaining, P2tog
Rows 3-4: Repeat rows 1-2
Row 5: *K2, k2tog* repeat from * to * 4 more times, K40, *k2tog, k2* repeat from * to * 4 more times. 
Row 6: P across
Row 7: K4, *k2tog, K4*  repeat from * to * across
Row 8: P across
Row 9: K3tog, *K5, k2tog* repeat  from * to * across
Row 10: P across
Row 11: K4, *k2tog, k3* repeat  from * to * across
Row 12: P across
Row 13: K1, *k2tog, k1* repeat  from * to * across
Row 14: P across 
Row 15: K2tog across until 1 remaining, K1


Finishing:
Break off yarn, sew through remaining stitches, pull tight. Make and attach braids for ties! Block lightly if desired.


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