Mikey’s Mystery Crochet Along: Clue #3

The next set of clues are out and surprise, surprise, they weren’t the body. But even so, I still think this little guy is going to be a giraffe. This week we created 12 spots and a tail. There’s also details to finish embroidering the face but I’m waiting until I finish putting this toy together to complete the face.

12 spots and a tail

Spots and a Tail

One more week to go and I can finish this bad boy!

Happy Crocheting,

Ashley

Mikey’s Mystery Crochet Along: Clue #2

I was really hoping that clue #2 would be the body so that I can really dig my heels in and call this ruminant a giraffe. But now I’m not so sure. Clue #2 were the legs and the ears.

Legs and ears for a yet to be determined ruminant

Legs and ears for a yet to be determined ruminant

I’m trying my hardest not to search every corner of the web to figure out what this could possibly be. I’ve even been avoiding any comments sections on the Red Heart Crochet Along web page. I don’t want any spoilers!

The only thing I did search for was were types of ruminants. Because who can remember what they were? Clearly I wasn’t paying attention during the animal unit in science class! So thanks google for the refresher!

So these are my completed pieces. Doesn’t the head remind you of a bad guy? You know the one where he has a mask over his mouth and tiny little eyes? I can’t for the life of me remember who I’m thinking about but I know it will come to me at a very inappropriate time (as always).

Completed Pieces

Completed Pieces

I think I’ll stick with a giraffe until I’m told otherwise. How’s he looking so far?

See you next week for what I hope are the directions for the body!!

Happy Crocheting,

Ashley

Mikey’s Mystery Crochet Along

Mikey's Mystery Crochet Along with Red Heat

Mikey’s Mystery Crochet Along with Red Heat

I’ve always wanted to take part in a crochet or knit along and this past weekend when I spotted one from Mikey with Red Heart, I couldn’t pass it up. Every Tuesday for the month of April they’ll be releasing a section of the pattern to crochet. So you won’t know what it’ll be until the final week of April. Of course they gave us a clue; it’s a ruminant. This means it can be cattle, sheep, antelopes, deer, giraffes or their relatives. So far we’ve created the head.

Profile of the mystery animals head.

Profile of the mystery animals head.

The head of a mystery animal.

The head of a mystery animal.

I’m really hoping that we’re creating a giraffe although I really have no idea with this head. I watched Mickey’s YouTube video for the head and his looks 100% better than mine. My tension looks much looser. And the eyes, ugh the eyes. I should have bought the safety eyes. They look cuter on crochet animals than using black yarn.

I’m using Red Heart Super Saver yarn. I had the most in pale blue in my stash so that’s what I’m using. I’m not sure yet which colours I’ll use for the 2 accents. Most likely it’ll be whichever colour I have closest to me at the time.

Red Heart yarn and the mystery animal head.

Red Heart yarn and the mystery animal head.

We get our next set of clues/part of the pattern tomorrow. I’ll post later on in the week the second part of the mystery animal.

What type of ruminant do you think it’ll be?

Happy Crocheting,

Ashley

WIP Wednesdays

It’s been a while since I’ve had an update on my current projects and in all honesty there aren’t that many. There are many projects I want to knit and crochet but when I’m crocheting I feel like I should be knitting and when I’m knitting I want to be crocheting. This leads to progress being very slow. But there are still a few items.

First I found a crochet pattern for a basket (it can be found here). They’re great instructions. I’m still (what I consider to be) a newbie crocheter and these instructions are easy to follow and understand. I was hoping for a larger basket, but this smaller one will be great for my first basket project. It’ll also be pretty easy to make it larger by adding extra rounds to the base and extra rounds to the side. I’ve been adding (by accident) extra HDC in each round so it’s slightly lopsided. I’ll probably unravel it and restart.

Navy Blue Crocheted Basket

Navy Blue Crocheted Basket

I also started crocheting a baby blanket. It’s made with double crochets as the body and a single crochet border. I only have the border left to finish and I want it to be about 3″-5″ wide. I chose a white and teal because that’s what I had in my stash. But next time I’d like to use at least 3 different colours. And the best part is that it crochets up a heck of a lot faster than any knit baby blanket.

Crocheted Baby Blanket

Crocheted Baby Blanket

Finally, I’ve been slowly working on some knitted Easter eggs. I purchased the Palette Spring Sampler from KnitPicks. The colours are perfect for the eggs and I have 20 colours to choose from. I’ve create a few simple ones (only using a few colours as stripes) and I’ve started a few using an intarsia design in the centre. Hopefully I can have this pattern along with a handful of designs available soon.

Knitted Easter Eggs

Knitted Easter Eggs

What’s on your needles (or hook)?

Happy Knitting,

Ashley

Crocheted Border

Now that I can finally crochet, I’ve been wanting to add edges to my knit items. A nice scalloped edge to my baby blankets to begin and then when I learn new techniques I can add more intricate borders. But before I can add any borders, I need to see what it would look like on a smaller scale. Because what if I don’t like the way it looks. So I made a few samples so that I don’t ruin a finished blanket.

I started with one garter stitch and one stockinette stitch swatch. I made sure to use a a selvedge stitch at the end of each row so it’s clear and easy where I need to make the single crochet.

To achieve the selvedge stitch edge on the garter swatch, I slipped the first stitch then knit to the last stitch and slipped the last stitch. The next row I purled the first stitch, knit to the last stitch and purled the last stitch. I repeated these two rows for my swatch.

Selvedge Edge on garter stitch swatch.

Selvedge Edge on garter stitch swatch.

To achieve the selvedge stitch edge on the stockinette swatch, I slipped the first stitch then knit to the last stitch and slipped the last stitch. I purled the entire next rows. I repeated these two rows for my swatch.

Selvedge Edge on stockinette swatch (I'm showing the reverse side because of the roll)

Selvedge Edge on stockinette swatch (I’m showing the reverse side because of the roll)

To start the border, I selected one of the middle cast on stitches (I found this easier than choosing a corner). From here I did a single crochet into each stitch around the entire swatch. For the garter stitch swatch, I repeated this round twice. Note that when I reached the end of the first round, I slipped a stitch and chained one then continued with the single crochet for the round.  Again, when I reached the end of the round I slipped a stitch to join the rounds. DON’T CHAIN! Skip the first stitch in the row and do 5 double crochets into the next stitch. Skip a stitch and slip stitch into the next stitch. Skip a stitch and do 5 double crochets into the next stitch. Repeat this for the scalloped edge.

Finished scalloped border on both the garter and the stockinette swatches.

Finished scalloped border on both the garter and the stockinette swatches.

For the stockinette swatch I only did one round of single crochets. So when I reached the end of the round, I slipped a stitch to join them. I then proceeded with the scalloped edge instructions. You can tell in the photo above that there is a bigger gap between the scalloped edge and the garter stitch than with the stockinette and that’s because of the extra single crochet round that I did.

All in all I like the look of the knitted swatch and crocheted border. But I think I would do at least 5-7 rounds of the single crochet before the scalloped edge. Especially since the blankets are much larger than these swatches. And, the selvedge edge was supposed to give a clean looking edge to attach to crochet section. But it looks weird. There’s too much stretch in that selvedge stitch on the garter swatch and it looks sloppy on the stockinette swatch. The more I look at it (in the photo and in my hand), the more it’s driving me crazy! I will definitely need to find an alternative to the selvedge edge.

What kind of borders do you like adding to your knitted work?

Happy knitting,

Ashley

Crocheted Granny Squares

I love granny squares. I’m completely obsessed right now. I have a handful of knitting projects on the go and yet all I want to do is crochet granny squares. Squares that have no particular purpose or no project which they are meant for. I just want to have a stack of granny squares.

My first ever granny square. And yup I haven't weaved in those ends yet!

My first ever granny square and yup I still haven’t weaved in those ends yet!

Let me explain. Last week I took a crochet class on Craftsy that was taught by Vickie Howell. She was great, even though she breezed through some of the lessons rather quickly.  I just replayed those parts over and over until I finally got it (And ps now I have those lessons forever if I ever need a refresh!). So now I know how to do a chain, the foundation row, single crochet, half double crochet and the double crochet oh and the slip knot. In her last lesson she gave us and taught us the pattern for the traditional (at least I think it’s the traditional) granny square. And that’s when I was hooked (pun intended!)

My stack of granny squares.

My stack of granny squares.

I haven’t used those skills in any other project. Mostly because you can make pretty much anything out of granny squares. Blankets, pillows, hats, sweaters, anything you can think of can be made out of different size granny squares. And I don’t believe there’s a knitting equivalent to granny squares (please correct me if I’m wrong).

I tried some with a grey border. I like it better with the white.

I tried some with a grey border. I like it better with the white.

Colourful granny squares - pink, purple, blue, green and grey.

Colourful granny squares – pink, purple, blue, green and grey.

I’m not 100% sure what my first real crochet project will be. I’d love to say a baby blanket but I have too many ideas in my head to start just one. So it might just be a pillow made out of granny squares. But should I make it out of the leftover Christmas yarn I have, or a bunch of different coloured yarn, or just stick with one colour and a white border or should I use granny squares for the front and then knit the back or wait, maybe I’ll make coasters. Ahhh, too many ideas and I want to make them all!!!

What was your first granny square project?

Happy Crocheting,

Ashley

p.s. Now that I really think of it, I still don’t know how to properly seam these squares together. I think that’ll have to be first on my list before any major project.

and p.p.s. I still need to block them so they’re actually square.

Day 14: 14 Days of Valentine’s Crafts

Stuffed Knitted Hearts

Stuffed Knitted Hearts

You will need:

Yarn

2 DPNs (the size that corresponds with the yarn chosen)

Tapestry Needle

Scissors

A tiny bit of Fiberfill

Instructions:

Cast on 2 sts. (Make 2 of these)

1: KF&B twice (4 sts)

2: Purl

3: K1, KF&B, KF&B, K1 (6 sts)

4: Purl

5: K1, KF&B, K2, KF&B, K1 (8 sts)

6: Purl

7: K1, KF&B, K4, KF&B, K1 (10 sts)

Continue in this manner until there are 26 sts on your needles and ending with a purl row. Note: You can make these hearts smaller or larger by simply repeating these rows until there are less sts or more sts than 26.

K10, K2TOG, K1 turn your work (leaving the other 13 sts on the needle) (12 sts)

P9, P2TOG TBL, P1(11 sts)

K8, K2TOG, K1 (10 sts)

P7, P2TOG TBL, P1 (9 sts)

K6, K2TOG, K1 (8 sts)

P5, P2TOG TBL, P1 (7 sts)

K4, K2TOG, K1 (6 sts)

Bind off these 6 sts.

Reattach yarn to remaining 13 sts.

K1, K2TOG TBL, K10 (12 sts)

P1, P2TOG, P9 (11 sts)

K1, K2TOG TBL, K8 (10 sts)

P1, P2TOG, P7 (9 sts)

K1, K2TOG TBL, K6 (8 sts)

P1, P2TOG, P5 (7 sts)

K1, K2TOG TBL, K4 (6 sts)

Bind off remaining 6 sts.

Stack both knitted hearts with reverse stockinette facing each other. Sew edges together leaving approximately 1″ open. Stuff slighty with fiberfill. Sew the remaining 1″ closed.

Repeat for as many hearts as you desire.

Three Stuffed Knitted Hearts

Three Stuffed Knitted Hearts

 Happy Valentine’s Day to Everyone!

Ashley

Day 13: 14 Days of Valentine’s Crafts

Knitted Rose

Knitted Rose

You will need:

Yarn (choose any colour that you want your rose and stem to be – the rose is colour A and the stem is colour B)

Two DPNs (the size that corresponds with the yarn selected)

Scissors

Darning Needle

Finished Size:

Approximately 3.75″ (9.5 cm) long x 1.25″ (3cm) wide

Instructions:

With colour A (for the rose) cast on 4 sts.

1 & 3: KF&B, k to end

2 & 4: P to last 2 sts, PF&B, P1

5 & 7: Knit row

6 & 8: Purl row

9: K1, K2TOG, K to end

10: P to last 3 sts, P2TOG, P1 (6 sts)

Repeat rows 1 -10 once. (8 sts)

Repeat rows 1-10 once more. (10 sts)

Bind off.

With colour B (stem) cast on 4 sts.

1: Purl

2: Cast on 3 stitches (use this knitted cast on method). Bind off 3 sts, K3 (4 sts)

3: Purl

4: Knit

Repeat rows 1-4, 4 more times.

Bind off.

With colour B and the right side of the stem facing up, pick up and knit 12 stitches along straight edge.

1: Purl 1 row

2: K2TOG 6 times (6 sts)

3: Purl

4: K2TOG 3 times (3 sts).

With the remaining 3 sts , knit an i-cord (tutorial) that is approximately 1.5″ (4cm) long.

Putting it together:

With the reverse stockinette facing up, roll the rose from the bound off edge to the cast on edge. Gather along the straight edge and stitch in place. Join the side seam of the stem to make a cup. Sew the straight edge (the one you just stitched) of the rose to the inside of the cup from the stem.

jk

Finished Rose

rtyjk

Rose

Happy Knitting,

Ashley

Day 12: 14 Days of Valentine’s Crafts

Supplies needed

Supplies needed

You will need:

Cupcakes (I made vanilla ones and bake them in cute Valentine’s Day cups)

Icing (I chose pink but red or white would work too)

Lollipop Sticks

Red hearts (cut out of card stock)

Cupcake gift boxes (I found these ones at the dollar store)

Cellophane bags (big enough to fit the box)

Red twist ties

Instructions:

1. Bake cupcakes. I chose this Martha Stewart recipe, but boxed cake mix would have also done the job.

2. Once baked, let cool completely (you don’t want the icing to melt off the cupcakes).

3. While the cupcakes are baking, make the icing. I chose to buy the pre-made one because I never seem to make it right.

4. Once the cupcakes are cooled, begin icing them. Start at the outer edge and work your way to the centre of the cupcake in a circular fashion. NOTE: I forgot to take the cupcakes out of the pan before I iced them, this is NOT recommended. I ruined a bunch of them trying not to touch the icing!

Step 4: Ice the cupcakes.

Step 4: Ice the cupcakes.

Step 4: One fully iced cupcake.

Step 4: One fully iced cupcake.

5. Tape a paper heart to the lollipop stick.

Step 5: Tape paper heart to the lollipop stick.

Step 5: Tape paper heart to the lollipop stick.

6. Write the name of the recipient on the front of the heart.

7. Place the stick in the centre of the cupcake.

Step 7: Insert lollipop stick into the centre of the cupcake.

Step 7: Insert lollipop stick into the centre of the cupcake.

8. Gently place the cupcake in the gift box and then gently place the box in the cellophane bag. Attach twist tie and secure, making sure that the name is clearly seen.

8. Place the cupcake in the box.

Step 8: Place the cupcake in the box.

Step 8: Place bo and cupcake in the cellophane box. Attach twist tie.

Step 8: Place box and cupcake in the cellophane box. Attach twist tie.

Give the sweet treat to your Valentine!

Happy Crafting,

Ashley

Day 11: 14 Days of Valentine’s Crafts

Supplies needed

Supplies needed

You will need:

3 Rolo packs

Scissors

Small amount of tin foil

Red scrapbook paper

Double sided tape

Instructions:

1. Cut scrapbook paper so that you can roll it around one Rolo pack.

Step 1: Cut paper.

Step 1: Cut paper.

2. Place double sided tape on one edge of the paper. Starting at the other end roll the paper around the Rolo pack and secure with the double sided tape.

Step 2: Place double sided tape on one edge of the paper.

Step 2: Place double sided tape on one edge of the paper.

Step 2. Roll the paper around the Rolo pack.

Step 2. Roll the paper around the Rolo pack.

3. Repeat for all the Rolo packs.

4. Stick two Rolo packs together (seam to seam) using the double sided tape.

Step 4: Using double sided tape, stick 2 of the Rolo packs together.

Step 4: Using double sided tape, stick 2 of the Rolo packs together.

5. Repeat for the last Rolo pack.

Step

Step 5: Attach all three Rolo’s together.

6. Roll up the tin foil.

Step 6: Roll up the tin foil.

Step 6: Roll up the tin foil.

7. Insert the tin foil between all three of the Rolo packs.

Step 7: Insert tin foil between the 3 Rolo packs.

Step 7: Insert tin foil between the 3 Rolo packs.

8. Attach a tag that says “You’re the Bomb!”

Step 8: Attach tag.

Step 8: Attach tag.

Give the bomb to your Valentine!

Happy Crafting,

Ashley