Friday, December 27, 2013

Bobble Edge Tutorial

This make the cutest edging ever!  After completing a round of half double crochet for a base, I added the bobble edge.  If you are changing colors, slip stitch the new yarn in place.  The bobble is basically made by crocheting two clusters of DCs together into a little ball.  Each cluster makes half the bobble. Chains create the V shape.

Chain 5, then chain 3.  The 3 create the first DC in your cluster.
Cluster - chain 3 (already done) plus 3 DC together. This is basically doing the first part of a DC, and not finishing it, but going on and making all the first halves, until all your DCs are on the hook, waiting for the final half of the DC, which pulls them together into one cluster stitch.  (I hope that made sense!)

Anyway, here are instructions for the  DC together:  yarn over (yo), insert the hook back into the chain, yo, draw the yarn through the stitch, yo, draw the yarn through 2 loops on the hook.

Repeat the DC together stitch until you have 4 loops on your hook. Yo, pull through all the loops. Cluster completed!

Repeat the cluster - 3 DC, 3 DC together.  Now you have two clusters next to each other. Slip stitch into the top of the first cluster, pulling the two halves into a little ball.

Chain 5. Slip stitch into your project.  I like to make mine 4 stitches apart.

Repeat from the beginning - chain 5, chain 3, cluster, chain 3, cluster, slip stitch the clusters together, chain 5 slip stitch to the project.

I find this time consuming - but very gratifying! Hope the directions made sense to you, and you give it a try!


Ponchos are Cool!

I've been thinking about making ponchos for little girls for ages.  My Pinterest boards prove it - lots of pictures of cute little ponchos pinned - waiting and providing inspiration.  Took me a while to decide whether I'd go the stripe route, or with squares. I chose to make it from squares - but then how many?  Since I just finished the big blanket of little squares, I was ready to make a few large ones and be done.  These ponchos are made with just 4 squares each, plus borders.  I intentionally made each square different.  Pictures show both sides.  

About the edging...  when looking for inspiration, I saw a lot of fringe.  Fringe is good - but not the way I wanted to go.  I had visions of girls playing with it and accidentally pulling it apart.  Bobble edging seemed like the answer - and I LOVE the results!  

These are going to twin 5 year old girls.  I wanted similar but different.  One loves pink, the other loves purple, so there you go! 

Each square has 11 rounds of color... then one round of white.  I used a modified Join As You Go method to connect them.  Instead of connecting in each of the DC stitches, I simply used a slip stitch between each of the granny clusters.   I love the clean edge this gives.  

The neckline has one round of half double crochets to finish it off.  The bottom edge includes: one round of granny clusters in white, a round in the color, a round of half double crochet in color, and then the bobble stitch.  I will be posting instructions and pictures of the bobble edging soon.  It's definitely become one of my favorite ways to finish off a project and was quite simple.  Just chains and dc clusters. 

Saturday, December 21, 2013

Monday, December 16, 2013

Little Squares = a Big Blanket!

I'm surprised by the size of this blanket! I thought using up bits of yarn, it would end up being smaller, more like a throw instead of a full-fledged blanket.  Now, I don't think I'm capable of making them small!

Final count = 396 small squares - and more than 34 different shades of Stylecraft DK yarn.  Squares are arranged 18X22, with "planned" randomness.  I tried to make sure squares with the same outer color are not next to each other, and that the color distribution is balanced.  Otherwise, they aren't in any order. 

I decided the blanket needed a substantial border, with a little color to pull in the squares, and a really fun edge.  How about this? The bobbles are slow and time consuming - but I think they are totally worth it! Makes me happy to look at it!  I hope to finish this up and post final pictures in a few days.  

A few pattern notes:  this is a modified granny square using sets of 4 double crochet instead of 3. Corners have 2 chains. 

Bobble edge: chain 8, dc 3 together in the 5th chain, chain 4 dc 3 together in the 1st chain. This gives 2 halves of the bobble, which have to be connected with a slip stitch (or 2) by going back into the chain where you did the first dc3 together.  Chain 5, sc into your project to connect it.  Keep repeating.  I'll try to get pictures as I continue working and post them later.  Really simply - and super cute!