Thursday, 6 April 2017

#crochetkind and Stitch Tutorials


This week's YouTube video is all about

#crochetkind and Stitch Tutorials


I was over the moon when I received my subscription copy of Simply Crochet magazine last week, because I have two articles in the latest issue! Check out the happy yellow circle on the cover...



The first article is my round-up of the Unravel Festival of Yarn in Farnham. The feature article is about a topic close to my heart: crocheting for charity. 


There are so many organisations that happily and gratefully accept crocheted items, and in this article I talk about how to get started hooking for a charitable cause. 

As part of the #crochetkind movement, Simply Crochet is fundraising for Little Pricess Trust, an organisation that provides real hair wigs free of charge to children who have lost their hair during cancer treatments and other illnesses. 

This charity means a lot to me and my family, as a great friend of mine needed the charity for her daughter. My eldest daughter donated ten inches of her own hair after that. 


But you don't need to donate hair to support Little Princess Trust! Simply Crochet is auctioning off one of the seven amazing blankets from the Jenny's Blanket of Hugs project.

To participate and have a chance of winning this stunning blanket yourself, please go to the Simply Crochet Just Giving page HERE  - every donation counts!

Little Princess Trust: littleprincesses.org.uk; @officiallittleprincesstrust

What's on my hook


In other crochet news, I've made progress on this Missed Kingfisher shawl...Missed Kingfisher shawl pattern by Joanne Scrace for “The Shawl Project: Book Two”, from The Crochet Project, crocheted with Eden Cottage Yarns, Titus 4-ply in Rambling Rose and Oakworth 4-ply in Compost.

And I've completed the Chasing Rainbows mandala from the last issue of Simply Crochet. 


I'm hooking each montly mandala using linen threads from Namolio

What's in my hoop


I've been stitching like mad and uploading stitch tutorials to my YouTube channel! So far I've covered transferring a pattern to fabric, preparing your thread, back stitch, lazy daisy stitch and French knots. We'll be doing stems next...


I do hope you'll join me and try some easy sampler stitching!

Chrissie x

Thursday, 30 March 2017

Slow Crochet & a Stitch-Along | YouTube Show Notes


Greetings fellow crafters! In conjunction with my new YouTube videos, I'm going to share information on my blog that I talk about on my channel. If you haven't seen me live and in action yet, you can find my YouTube channel HERE.

Starting with the latest episode, Slow Crochet & a Stitch-Along...

What's on my hook


I'm making good progress on the Missed Kingfisher shawl by Joanne Scrace for “The Shawl Project: Book Two”, from The Crochet Project.


I am using Eden Cottage Yarns, Titus 4-ply in Rambling Rose and Oakworth 4-ply in Compost. I think it looks rather delicious! I've dubbed it the Missed Cupcake Shawl.

Also on the hook is the Peach Pocket Tunic pattern by Eline Alcocer, crocheted with King Cole Cottonsoft DK in Colour 713 Lilac.



I'm making the monthly mandalas in Simply Crochet magazine using Namolio linen threads - it gives the mandalas a completely different look to regular yarn! I usually use a 2.25mm hook or thereabouts...

So far I've finished two mandalas




And the third is underway!



New on my bookshelf is “Every Which Way Crochet Borders” by Edie Eckman. I review it in the show, it is a great addition to any crochet library!


What's in my hoop


Time to kick off the Stitch-Along! If you've never embroidered before, or if you have and just fancy an easy-peasy project, then this stitch-along is for you!


I'm using the simple Herb Embroidery design I use for teaching beginner's embroidery workshops - the design features a number of basic stitches, all used to create pretty herbs I doodled from my herb garden. You can download the pdf file in the link below:

Herbal Embroidery Pattern

I will be making short video tutorials for all the stitches we use in the design, including how to transfer a pattern to fabric, how to prepare your thread and how to do basic stitches.

All you need to get started is a 10-inch square of fabric (I'm using linen, but any fabric you can easily pull a needle and thread through will do!), an 8-inch embroidery hoop, scissors, an embroidery needle, and a selection of threads in colours you'd like to use for the flowers. I've used greens, purples, yellows and a bit of pink, Plus wee bits of white and brown...

I hope you play along, and share your creations with me! Let's hashtag them #herbembroiderySAL on social media, shall we?

Happy crafting!

Chrissie


Sunday, 13 March 2016

Shell Stitch Scarf

Handmaiden Maiden Hair yarn shimmers on a sunny Spring day!

One of the joys of teaching crochet workshops at local haberdasheries is that I get to see (and play with) the latest yarns as soon as they arrive in the shop.

When Katia came out with their Air Alpaca yarn, I wanted to hook it up right away. So soft and fluffy!


Katia had sent small samples of the yarn worked up in different knitted stitches – and one crochet stitch sample caught my eye. Rows of shells, stacked row on row, with no chain row in between, which I typically see with shell stitch patterns. The closeness of the shells made a beautiful dense fabric with a lovely texture.

But no pattern for this little sample could be found. Not on the sample's label, not on the Katia web site, and the yarn rep didn’t have any answers, either. But I was determined to make a scarf with this stitch, so I took the sample home and to figure it out myself!

The great thing with crochet is that, with some scrutiny and patience, you can ‘read’ many crocheted items. This shell stitch fabric was pretty easy, once I figured out the number of chains in the foundation row.

I’ve made a few scarves already; the original Katia Air Alpaca scarf was given to Bunny’s harp teacher for Christmas, and I’ve made another with the luxurious Handmaiden Maiden Hair delicate yarn, pictured above.

Shell Stitch Scarf

Materials

I used:
2-1/2 skeins of Katia Air Alpaca (25g/115m/126yd per skein) and a 4mm hook
or 1 skein of Handmaiden Maiden Hair (100g/300m/328yd) and a 5.5mm hook

and I’m currently making one with chunky yarn and a 6mm hook, so feel free to experiment!

Finished size: My latest version, with the Maiden Hair yarn, is 150cm/59in long, 15cm/6in wide after blocking.

Pattern:
UK terms
US terms beneath

Ch 34

Row 1: 1 dc in 2nd ch from hook; *skip 3 ch; [3tr, ch 1, 3tr] in next st; skip 3 ch; 1 dc in next st; * repeat from * to * to end of row. (4 shells)
               US: 1 sc in 2nd ch from hook; *skip 3 ch; [3dc, ch 1, 3dc] in next st; skip 3 ch; 1 sc in next st; * repeat from * to * to end of row. (4 shells)

Row 2: turn, ch 3, 2tr at the base of ch3; *dc in ch space of previous row’s shell; [3tr, ch 1, 3tr] in previous row’s dc;* repeat from * to * two more times, ending the row with 3tr above the previous row’s dc stitch. (3 shells, 2 half shells on either end of row)
                US: turn, ch 3, 2dc at the base of ch3; *sc in ch space of previous row’s shell; [3dc, ch 1, 3dc] in previous row’s sc;* repeat from * to * two more times, ending the row with 3dc above the previous row’s sc stitch. (3 shells, 2 half shells on either end of row)

Row 3: turn, ch1; *[3tr, ch 1, 3tr] in previous row’s dc; dc in ch space of previous row’s shell;* repeat from * to * three more times, with the last dc at the top of the ch 3 of the previous row. (4 shells)
                US: turn, ch1; *[3dc, ch 1, 3dc] in previous row’s sc; sc in ch space of previous row’s shell;* repeat from * to * three more times, with the last sc at the top of the ch 3 of the previous row. (4 shells)

Repeat rows 2-3 until your scarf reaches the desired length, finishing with a Row 2. Fasten off and weave in ends.


Finishing off: I experimented with hooking this pattern halfway, then working an identical piece the same length and stitching the foundation rows together – this would give two halves with the same pretty scalloped edging on the ends. However, I wasn’t happy with the join in the middle, regardless of whip stitch, double crochet join, etc. It just looked too obvious. So I’ve made a shell edging row to crochet onto the starting edge of the scarf:

Shell stitch edging worked in chunky yarn
Edging: Right side facing, attach yarn to the first chain of the row, ch 3, 2tr at the base of ch3; *1dc in the base of the shell of the first row; [3tr, ch 1, 3tr] in the base of the dc of the first row;* repeat from * to * two more times, ending the row with 3tr above the first row’s dc stitch. (3 shells, 2 half shells on either end of row)
                US: Right side facing, attach yarn to the first chain of the row, ch 3, 2dc at the base of ch3; *1sc in the base of the shell of the first row; [3dc, ch 1, 3dc] in the base of the sc of the first row;* repeat from * to * two more times, ending the row with 3dc above the first row’s sc stitch. (3 shells, 2 half shells on either end of row)

Happy crafting!

Chrissie