Sunday, March 26, 2017

Pattern Preview: A New Mandala

Hello there!

I've only just realized, that my last post - the pattern for the Easter Bunny ornaments - was my 400th post on this blog! Wow... 
The most popular of all my posts - with almost 600.000 visits - is still my Little Spring Mandala. So, to celebrate 400 posts and the fact that you're still here with me, I thought I'd design another Mandala to share with you:


I thought about "Little Spring Mandala 2.0" for a name, but didn't really like it. So - because the one round in the middle is kind of "bubbly" and because it's spring again - I thought I'd call it "Spring Bubbles Mandala"


What you see in the pictures above and in the next one below was my prototype, and I have to say, I like the colors a lot :)


The next picture is the mandala I've made for the picture tutorial. I'll be posting the pattern at the end of this week, and I hope you all gonna like my Spring Bubbles Mandala as much as you liked the Little Spring Mandala!


Thank you all for hanging in there with me, and have a great week! :)


Friday, March 17, 2017

Easter Bunny Ornaments




Pattern: Made in K-Town by Barbara

This pattern is inspired by a picture I’ve seen on Pinterest.
Unfortunately there was no pattern or source attached to the Pin,
so I’ve designed this pattern myself, based on what I saw on the picture.
If you happen to be the original designer, please let me know,
so I can give you credit for the idea.


Material:
For this pattern I’ve worked with small amounts of cotton yarn (Rico essentials cotton dk) and a slightly thinner hook than it is suggested for the yarn (suggestion is 3-4, I've worked with a 2.5mm hook). I highly recommend that you use cotton yarn as well, so that the ornaments – and mainly the ears – keep their shape. You’ll also need a ring (crochet ring or key ring). Mine measures 36 mm (1,4”) in diameter, but the pattern is easy to adjust to any other kind of yarn or ring-size.

Stitches:
For this pattern I use US crochet terms. We’ll need the following stitches: chain stitch (ch), slip stitch (slst), single crochet (sc), and half double crochet (hdc).

First, let’s start with

The Ring:


1st Round
Attach yarn with a slst to your ring, ch-1, 1 sc into the ring, ch-20, slst in the first ch to form a big loop. 3 sc into the ring, ch-20, slst in the first ch to make the second ear. 30 sc into the ring, close the round with a slst to where you started.
2nd Round
Slst in the first sc, slst in every back bump of each of the next 20 ch, slst in the next 3 sc, slst in every back bump of each of the next 20 ch, slst in the next 30 sc. Close the round with a slst to the first slst of this round.
Cut thread, fasten off, and weave in the ends.

Try to work the 20ch-loops a littler looser than you normally would, that makes it easier to work into the back bumps later! Depending on the yarn you use and the size of your ring, you might want to adjust the number of chains worked for the ears and the number of stitches you have to work into the ring: The ring should have enough stitches to be covered (i.e. "invisible") completely, but not too many so it doesn't ruffle. For the ears, adjust the number of chains according to the desired size of the bunny ears.

Next, we’re gonna make

The Bow:


For the bow, start with a magic ring and a longer tail than usual (about the length you want for the hanger), ch1, 3 hdc, ch1, slst into the ring. Then once again: ch1, 3 hdc, ch1, slst into the ring. Cut the thread (about as long as the other end) and fasten off. Wrap the two ends (in two different directions) tightly around the middle of the bow once or twice, and secure with a knot on the back.

If you want to make a bigger bow, you can also work 2x *ch2, 3dc, ch2, slst into the ring*

And now, we’re gonna bring it all together:


Position the bow (I like to cover the beginning, which is sometimes not that neat), and - using a tapestry needle - pull the ends to the backside of your work, using the spaces left and right to the according stitch (what I want to say is: don't use the same gap for both ends). Make a knot to hold the bow in place. With the tapestry needle pull the two ends behind the stitches up to the middle sc between the ears. Tie the ends together at the desired length of your hanger.

And that's it! :)


I hope you've enjoyed making this quick and easy ornament. If you've got any questions or find errors in this pattern, please let me know! You can also share your easter bunnies in the Project Gallery on Ravelry!



Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Pattern Preview: Easter Bunny Ornaments

Hi there!

Have you noticed? It's less than five weeks until Easter, so I've been working on some cute little Easter decorations, and this is what I've made:


Actually this is not a new pattern. In fact, I had already posted a picture of these on my Facebook page in April 2014, and that was the last post there until February this year.


This pattern wasn't my own idea, but is inspired by a picture I’ve seen on Pinterest. Unfortunately there was no pattern or source attached to the Pin (otherwise I'd give credit), so I’ve designed this pattern myself, based on what I saw on the picture.


So, what do you think? Do you want to make some of those cute little fellas, too? I hope so, because I've already written down the pattern and prepared the next blog post :) Just check back in a few days for the free tutorial. You can also follow me on Facebook, so that you'll never miss a new post! In the meantime, you might want to get some key- or crochet-rings (if you don't have any), because we're going to need them for the ornaments. Mine measure 36mm (1.4"), but the pattern is easy adjustable to any other size, too.


Have a great day everyone! :)

Sunday, March 12, 2017

A Tale of Five Blankets - Chapter 5

Welcome to the last (but not final) chapter of my Tale of Five Blankets!

As I've already mentioned in my last post, the last blanket in this series is one that I've made just a few weeks ago.


I've also mentioned earlier, that I've sold most of my yarn on Ebay a while ago. And while the auction was still on, I was shopping with John (yeah, he's still around, too *gg*) and my Mom at a big grocery store and saw this color gradient acrylic yarn and thought right away that this would be perfect for a baby blanket. My Mom liked it, too, but I told her that I definitely won't buy any more yarn, when I've just managed to finally get rid of most of my stash. But of course the yarn kept sitting and nagging in the back of my mind.


So, just a few days later I gave in, drove back to the grocery store, bought four balls with two different color gradients, and started this blanket right away. Four days later it was finished :)


I've used my favorite double-ended crochet pattern again, and the final size is 81 x 71cm. For the border, I've worked a round of sc's, followed by a round of 2dc's in every second sc, followed by a final round of a front-post dc / regular sc combination, that I had already used for the previous blanket in this series.


The yarn for the front side is Calista Color acrylic yarn by Schachenmayr, but either it's a brandnew yarn or completely outdated, because Google hasn't found a single (correct) entry to this! Thank god I've found it at the grocery store!
For the back I've used Stylecraft Special DK in cream, because it's the same quality and yarn-weight as Calista.


So that was it - the fifth chapter of my Tale of Five Blankets. But the whole story isn't told yet...


I'm so glad that I've found my way back to crochet and I'm really back in "the flow" right now. While I was posting these five blankets here, I've managed to
- finish three (!) more baby blankets
- make some cute little easter ornaments
- design a brand-new mandala pattern
- design another brand-new mandala with matching coasters
and
- (accidently) design a new square pattern.

So, there's a lot to look forward to. Just hope I don't lose my mojo again :)

Have a great Sunday,


Thursday, March 9, 2017

A Tale of Five Blankets - Chapter 4

Hey girls!

I'm back today with Chapter 4 of my Tale of Five Blankets. Today it's another (classic) Granny Square Blanket.


It's been a while since I've made it, but I think I had seen a picture on Pinterest of a crochet blanket with a grey background and thought I'd like to try this, too.


I really like the way the colors "pop" on this background, don't you?


Once more, I've used the fabulous Stylecraft Special DK acrylic yarn, and although I haven't written down the colors, meanwhile I'm able to recognize them by heart: Clematis, Sherbet, Saffron, Shrimp, Apricot, and Aspen. The tiny squares are framed with one round in Cream, and then joined with the continuous join-as-you-go method in Graphite (okay, I had to look that one up *gg*)


For the border I've used the block stitch pattern again, and finished it off with border no. 120 from Edie Eckman's book "Around The Corner - Crochet Borders", it's a front-post dc/regular sc combination. The final blanket measures 78x78 cm.


I'm also happy to say that this is the first blanket I've actually sold. My sister-in-law wanted something special to give to her friend who recently had her first baby, and this blanket was the one she picked from my pile of the five blankets that I'm showing you in this series.


The first four blankets you've seen now have one thing in common: I've made them all before or during my long blog break. The last one in the series is a brand-new one, that I've made just a few weeks ago. Turned out I still know how to hold a hook and where to place my stitches! :)


See you all next time for the final chapter of my Tale of Five Blankets!


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