Tuesday, October 26, 2010

How to do Trinity Stitch

I was reviewing my instructions for crochet trinity stitch and thought it would be so much better if I could show it ... and then remembered that my (very) old compact camera has a video mode, so it has no audio but at least I can show what I am doing.

This is my first attempt at making a crochet video ... so sorry the quality isn't exactly brilliant.  Hopefully its good enough for you to see what is happening.

A trinity stitch is (oddly enough) made over 3 stitches.  It can be made over any number of odd stitches (+1 for your turning chain).   Start your work with the base chain as follows.

Using US Notation.

SC into the second CH from hook

Then working into this same chain, insert your hook and draw up a loop, keep the loop on your hook and work into the next 2 chains in the same manner, inserting your hook & drawing up a loop - you will have 4 loops on your hook when you finish.  You have worked into 1 previously worked chain and 2 new ones.  Then yarn over and draw through all 4 loops. 

Chain 1.

Then repeat this across your work until the last chain.  When you have worked your last trinity, do not chain this time, but work another SC into the last chain of the trinity.

The little video that follows shows how you continue to work.

The movie should be viewed in conjunction with these written instructions.   

On your second and subsequent rows you start with a turning chain. 

Then working into the last SC from the previous row work 1 SC 

Working into the SC just worked, insert hook and draw up a loop, insert your hook into the next stitch and draw up a loop, and again for the third stitch.  You now have 4 loops on your hook, yarn over and pull through all 4 loops.  (You worked into 1 previously worked stitch and 2 unworked stitches.)


Continue across the work in this manner, creating 1 trinity stitch followed by a CH until you get to the last trinity.

With the last trinity you will see that you have 2 unworked stitches to reach the end of your row plus the already worked last stitch of the previous trinity.  So working as before.

Insert the hook into the last worked stitch and draw up a loop, insert the hook into the next 2 stitches drawing up loops.  4 loops on your hook, yarn over and draw through all 4 loops.

This time do not make another chain, but work 1 SC into the last stitch of the last trinity.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Bet you thought I'd forgotten about you

I know, I know ... its been too long since I wrote in this blog.  I blame the summer (which I know is long gone) because I don't crochet so much in the summer ... I've got a few half finished projects that I just couldn't sum up the "bothered" to finish.

My shape sorter stalled at three sides !! Not much of a shape sorter really, I think I need to revisit the circle side anyway - it didn't turn out so circular in the end ... So I guess the shape sorter is really two sides and a experiement went wrong.  I'll need to get back to that one again at some point.

Crochet shape sorter

The giant rose project stalled as well - I have the giant rose and decided to make it into a tie-together Alice band .  So I have the rose and half (if that) an Alice band ... then this one was abandoned as well.

Crochet Irish Rose

Now I've had a request for a pattern for my Red Cowl

Crochet cowl

I should have thought of writing it down at the time - I usually do, but not this time.  So I need to make another so that I can get the pattern right ....

So that will leave me one 1/3 finished shape sorter, one 3/4 finished Alice band and another project on the go .... Plus a holiday (Hoooooo-ray) coming up next week - I see this ending in a third half finished project, well at least I am starting to think about picking up my hook again, I suppose that is progress of a sort.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

What to do with a large Irish Rose??

I got this absolutely beautiful silk & mohair blend yarn, and decided to make another rose.  I wanted to make a larger one this time which is why I chose this yarn.  I used Rowan Silk Twist.
Crochet Irish Rose

The photographs don't really capture how luxurious this yarn is.

Crochet Irish Rose

So as you can see the flower worked out at around 7" across, so quite large really. Now I am struggling for what to do with it.

Typically I make these as embellishments for bags or as brooches. But this one is a bit large for a brooch and it’s just too nice to be an embellishment.

My thought was perhaps to make a long headband and attach this? What do you think?

Monday, August 9, 2010

I got a commission!!

I am generally wary of comissions, I've had a few where I have put in an awful lot of effort even going as far as purchasing yarn and the whole thing falls though without as much as a single penny coming my way.

Anyhow, I was contacted at the end of last week by a lovely Etsy buyer.  She saw my bluebells crochet pattern but doesn't know how to crochet herself, so she asked if I wouldn't mind making some for her.

So I did :)

Crochet bluebells

These are made using 100% cotton 4ply yarn

Crochet Bluebells

When I've made them before I put a brooch pin at the back, but this time they are for a 1 year old, so (for safety) I have left them just as they are.

As I always do, I have attached one of my little Walnut Baby tags on a piece of yarn.  In this case I used that to hang my bluebells for one of the photos.
Crochet, handmade, bluebells, flower

And finally I boxed them up for their trip to their new home.

Crochet bluebells

Its nice to get out one of my patterns and try it out again.  I was trying to think what else I could do with them if/when I make them again, other than make a brooch - but what else?

Thursday, July 29, 2010

The Pattern for my Crochet Irish Rose

I mentioned before that although I love making Irish Roses and they feature not only on many of my handmade items but also in my shop banner & on my avatar I have never got round to actually creating a pattern for it.

Well I have now.  After getting an email asking if I had a pattern for sale I thought I really need to write this down.

When I make them, no two are the same.  I usually have another idea of making frilly edges or adding beading.  Even the number and densitiy of the petals can change.

I love to mix colours, use multi-coloured yarns or even use different yarn weights & textures when making them.  I think, like in nature, my roses should be individual.

Have a look in Walnut Baby to see some of my little rosy creations and the pattern is there for you too

I love the rose I created for this pattern


I made it using DMC multi-coloured embroidery thread.  The silkiness of the thread gives this particular rose a lovely sheen and the feel is so soft.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Shape sorter - side 3 completed

Sorry I've been away so long ... no excuses, just havn't been doing a lot of crochet recently.  I think that the hot weather makes me just want to spend time in my garden reading rather than crocheting (see Stuff and things)

Anyway I managed to organise myself to complete side 3 of the shape sorter (finally!!)

This time its a circle.

Crochet shape sorter side

So now I have a triangle, circle and an offset square

Crochet shape sorter

So far I am happy with how it is turning out, I particularly like the bright colours.  Time to raid the yarn stash again and find the next colour.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Sorry its been a while, more on Irish Roses ....

There is something about this lovely weather that we've been having that makes me not want to crochet.... so unfortunately my shape sorter has not progressed much in the last couple of weeks. 

I do have 3/4 of the circle side done, it would only take me an hour to finish it - so why don't I??? 

In the mean time I was contacted about my Irish Roses
Irish Rose

I make them in all sizes and designs, some with the little ball in the center & the ruffled edges  & some a more classic design

Irish rose and leaves crochet necklace

And others decorated with beads, or crochet using embroidery thread

Crochet Irish Rose Brooch

I guess they are my signature piece :)

So when I was contacted about them and asked if I had a pattern, I was embarrassed to say "No".  Now I am writing up the pattern(s), I have my first draft that I need to try out to check that it works as expected & I'll need to do the photos ... so watch this space, hopefully I'll have a new pattern for Walnut Baby very soon.

Friday, June 25, 2010

Shape sorter Triangle side

Since the weather wasn't as good yesterday evening I managed to get my triangle side finished.
Shape sorter

I'm still wondering if I've gone too large on the holes but, I am committed now and will keep on going and see how things turn out.

Shape sorter

Two sides down four more to go :) Maybe I'll do circle next ?

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Shape sorter Part 2

I confess that progress is slow, mainly because the weather is nice and I am choosing to sit in the garden reading rather than get on with my crocheting ... but I am happy to sacrifice a bit of progress for some good weather - it comes soooo infrequently!

Anyway, I decided to make the triangle side next.  Its is a bright, almost electric blue colour.
Shape sorter side

The second part of the side is currently underway and looking at the weather today, I should finish it to night :)

Friday, June 18, 2010

Shape sorter Part 2

I have started making my shape sorter.  I decided to start with the offset square (parallelogram) side.

In order to give the toy some structure I need to make two if each side

Then they need to be sewed together creating a sandwich.

And then the sandwich is stuffed with toy stuffing

The final result has some substance and can hold its shape.

I am having some doubts right now, I'm thinking maybe the hole is too big .... I think I'll create the next side and see how things are looking then.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Crochet Shape sorter

I think I'll give the shape sorter a try ... in the spirit of if you don't try you'll never know :)

I'm going to keep it pretty simple.  One sorter hole per side, that way I only have to create 6 shapes :)

I'm thinking of the following shapes

Offset Square

I had thought of creating a moon shape, but I just can't get my head around how I would create that successfully.

I think that creating the Star hole will be the most difficult to create, so I think I'll save that one up and do it later.  I don't want to put myself off the whole idea before I even start.

I'll start with the holes, I think I'll have more scope to adjust the sizes of the shapes rather than trying to adjust the sizes of the holes.

So, first thing I need to do is start to design the sides & figure out what size the holes need to be.

Keep checking back for progress.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Ideas time again

I still really need to use up some of this stash of yarn I have.  So I need to think up some ideas.  I spent a bit of time before my holiday just making things for me so perhaps its time to make something new for the shop.

I have an idea for a shape sorter toy, it needs a bit more thought and planning though. 

I am thinking of something even simpler than the one in this picture, with just one sorter hold in each side.  I'm just not sure if a completely soft shape sorter would work ... perhaps an experiment worth trying?

Or perhaps I could make another mobile, they seem to be popular ...

Every time I've made one of these little bird mobiles they sell quite quickly.

I have an idea for a little boy one, with cars and trains etc.  It would need much smaller versions of some of the toys I've made so far

I'm just trying to work out if I have the patients to start into this one!!

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Crochet iPad cover

My lovely DH bought me an iPad for my birthday & I finally took delivery of it last Thursday - I don't care what anyone says its a great little gadget.  We have barely put it down since I got it.

Rather than get one of those dull, shop bought, commercial, everyone has one, covers I thought I'd just make my own :)  What's the point of being able to make things if I don't make myself something now and again?

Crochet iPad Cover

Being every so slightly ironic I decided to go retro on the colours and use brown and yellow.  The front is a yellow apple on a brown background and the back is reversed.  I made up the pattern to create the apple image, so its not quite 100% but I guess its close enough.

Crochet iPad Cover

Its closed over with a little tab and button.  The cover is made with 100% cotton DK yarn, so its not scratchy and its pretty thick without being bulky.

Crochet iPad Cover

This particular one is to keep my personal iPad cozy & protected.  I plan to come up with other designs to make some more.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Finished coin purse

As expected the coin purse came out sized somewhere between a small handbag and a coin purse, its large enough to store money, mobile phone and of course the mandatory lipstick :)

Crochet Coin purse

Crochet coin purse

Crochet coin purse

Crochet Coin Purse

What do you think?  I plan to take it on holiday with me, just need to go and get a little strap for it.

Friday, May 28, 2010

Crochet coin purse with purse frame

This is a project that I have been planning to start for a while, I kept putting it off because I wasn't really sure where to start but then I decided - I'll just give it a go.

First off I purchased my frame, It's not the smallest frame so the end result is likely to be a bit of a cross between a small handbag and a large coin purse.

Then the next thing to do is to crochet the bottom.  I've chosen to use 100% cotton 4Ply yarn in green and  ecru and a 3mm hook.
Crochet Coin purse

I decided to create an ellipse for the bottom.  To crochet an ellipse just follow these simple rules. (I am using single crochet)

start with the chain length you need, the longer the more elliptical the shorter the more circular your finished crochet will be.

How to create a crochet ellipse:
  1. On the foundation chain, 2SC into second CH from hook, SC in each chain to the last, 3SC in last CH
  2. DO NOT TURN but continue to crochet into the back of the foundation chain, SC into each CH to end and 1 more SC into first CH. Then Join with a Slip Stitch.
  3. Now you have the basis for your ellipse.  To continue simply increase by 3 on each end on every row.  This means you are increasing by 6SC every ellipse row.  The increases should be done visually to keep the curves even.  Remember your turning chains and to close every row with a slip stitch.
  4. Try to not increase in the same stitch every row as this will tend to lead to curling.

For my purse I have created the ellipse so that it is as wide as the widest part of my purse frame.

The next stage is to create the sides of the purse.  To start this process I have done a single row where I crochet into the back loop only, then continue rows working into both loops until the purse is as long as I want it.

To explain further, When you look at an SC stitch from above it is a < shape, one half of the < is the front loop and the other half is the back loop.  The back loop is the one furthest away from you.

Have a look on the Craft and Yarn Council website for more details.  Figure 8 on the "Crochet Patterns - How to read" section shows the front and back loops in a diagram.

Crochet Coin purse

At this stage I need to start to decrease the width, so I am crocheting each side individually.  I am decreasing a single stitch at the end of each row.

Crochet Coin purse

When I have done both sides I will then sew the purse into the frame.  Fingers crossed it turns out OK.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Crochet Document Holder Part II

I mentioned in my last post that I wanted to complete my document holder by adding a pocket for passports, driving license etc.
Crochet document holder

Fortunately when the holder is folded in 3 there is just enough space on the back to create a little pocket big enough to hold a few small documents.

Crochet Document Holder

I added a little tab to button over the pocket opening to make sure that the passport etc don't fall out.  I did a single row of SC round the tab to finish off the edges - it was a little rough looking before doing that.

Crochet Document Holder

I fasten the pocket with another of the coconut buttons that I've used to close the main document holder.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Crochet document holder

We always have a mess of documents to take on holiday with us, the flight confirmations, hire car confirmations and sometimes even hotel booking information etc etc etc

Usually they are just folded up and bunged into our hand luggage somewhere.  Which inevitably causes some panic at some point when we are trying to locate the right document.

So I thought I'd put my yarn stash and hook to good use and make a document holder for our travel documents.
Crochet document holder

First things first ... Pick a suitable yarn - so I chose this vibrant cotton, multicoloured DK yarn.  Its got a really holiday feel about it.  This particular yarn is Anchor Magicline Blocks in 1440 (Yellow) it also comes in Green & Orange shades.

Crochet Document Holder

I made this holder using simple Double Crochet (SC for my American readers) all the way.  Then crochet an additional piece for the "flap" at the top.
Crochet document holder

I also crochet a length of chain and pulled it through under the flap.  Making sure the distance between the entry points matched the distance between the holes on a standard hole-punch.

Punched holes in the top of my paperwork and threaded it onto the chain & tied in a bow.

The document holder folds in 3 and is closed with 2 pretty coconut buttons

Coconut button

I am planning to add on a passport & driving license pocket to the back so that we can keep all of our documents together.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Crocheting Toys

I love making crochet toys, they can be quite fiddly and difficult to create because they often have many and multiple parts - but the end result is usually very satisfying.

I have a few guidelines I try to follow when creating new toys, I like to use cotton yarn if I can.  I find that cotton is more durable than wool for something that will be played with - some early toys I've made with wool have needed some surgery after some playing.  The seams don't hold together as well and they generally don't wear so well.

I prefer to use DK cotton yarn for larger items, although if I want a finer look I'll use 4Ply.
Also, I like to avoid buttons or hard eyes if I can.  I prefer to sew on eyes and other "decoration".  That way you don't need to worry about letting little hands play with the toy afterwards.

My happy car is a good example. everything is made with yarn or embroidery cotton.  There is nothing on this toy that is sharp or hard.

Where possible I like to use several colours, in many instances the more the better :)  This train pattern I created is just an example of how you can combine many colours into a single toy.

All in all, creating toys should be just as much fun as the end result will be to play with.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Coffee cup cuff / cozy

Having become thoroughly weary of burning my hands on the coffee cups at work I thought I'd put my crochet skills to good use and create myself a coffee cup cuff or cozy.

Crochet coffee cuff

It is made with Rowan cotton glace, its weight is between DK & 4ply.  I used a 3.5mm hook.

I used shade 833, Ochre for this one.

I have also added a couple of buttons, these are decoration only but also serve as a good gripping mechanism for the cup.  These are are 20mm black wood carved buttons.

Coffee cuff button

 I am now trying to figure out if I should make more to see on my Etsy shop.  What is your opinion?

Friday, May 14, 2010

Crochet kiddy Rucksack

I made this one a while ago, but its been packed away until now.   This is made with 100% cotton yarn and I don't mind saying it was quite some work to get this one done.

The front is made up of individual squares made of 3 different coloured yarns, an ecru, denim & darker blue.  they are then individually crochet together to make the front panel - trying to make sure that the same colours aren't together!.

Crochet rucksack

The back is made up of stripes of various sizes, again using all 3 colours of yarn.  Same for the straps which are attached into the seam at the bottom & buttoned at tht top.

Crochet rucksack

Then the closure is a simple crochet chain & I've added a couple of chunky beads to the ends.