Saturday, August 11, 2007

Ridged and Waffle Dishcloths

I love making dishcloths. They make for short and satisfying projects that have a purpose at home or make a great gift. I'm putting these two dishcloths in the same post because the patterns were together on the Bernat web site, and you can find the file here.

This is the ridged dishcloth:

And here's a close-up of the stitches:

Now for the waffle dishcloth:

And the close-up of the stitches:

Both were very easy to make. I found that to get the right gauge I had to switch to a smaller hook for the waffle dishcloth.

  • "G" hook for the ridged dishcloth, "F" hook for the waffle dishcloth
  • worsted weight cotton, I used Bernat Handicrafter Cotton Ultrasoft in Summerset

Thursday, August 09, 2007

Egg Coaster

Here is a project I did sometime last year. It's a crocheted egg coaster. The pattern is from the Crochet Pattern-a-Day 2006 Calendar.

This was another fun and really quick project. I think it's really cute, but I'm still trying to decide if anyone would want a set of them as a gift. Any thoughts?

  • Size "G" crochet hook
  • White worsted weight acrylic yarn, I used Phentex
  • Yellow worsted weight acrylic yarn, I used Bernat Super Value

Cupcake Pincushion

I was in desperate need of a pincushion, so imagine my delight when I came across this pattern for a crocheted cupcake pincushion (I know, I need to get out more). Unfortunately, I can't figure out how to get a good picture of it so I've got two shots to highlight different things.

This first one shows the colours that were used and gives a good shot of the "paper" base:

This second one shows the shape of the "icing" top better:

It was a really quick and fun project. Aside from being a nice pin cushion, I think it would make a great birthday gift. The pattern calls for sport weight yarn and a size "E" hook, but I just used some worsted weight yarn and a size "G" or "F" hook, I can't remember which I used. My cupcake is 3.5" tall.

  • "G" or "F" crochet hook
  • Purple worsted weight acrylic yarn, I used Bernat Super Value
  • White worsted weight acrylic yarn, I used Phentex
  • Red bead for the "cherry" topper
  • Fibre fill

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Love Bug

This is something I made for Valentine's Day 2007 and gave to my Sweetie:

I adapted it from a pattern from I thought the original pattern was rather over the top so I simplified it. I think it turned out to be a really cute little doll.

I gave him a rose that I got in a huge bag of buttons from Michael's craft store.

And this is what my Sweetie gave me:

  • G size crochet hook
  • Red worsted weight acrylic yarn (I used Bernat Super Value)
  • White worsted weight acrylic yarn (I used Phentex)
  • Two google eyes
  • Little plastic flower

Sleeves when you need 'em

I often get chilly in the summer, sometimes from the air conditioning and sometimes from the cooler evenings. A sweater is just too heavy. A long sleeved shirt isn't right for throwing over a short-sleeved shirt or a tank top. What to do? Turn a long-sleeved shirt into a bolero of course!

Inspired by two bolero projects I found online, I made this bolero from an old long-sleeved jersey knit shirt. The shirt sat too short for my liking, so why not cut it off more? I chopped the bottom off to sit just below the bosom, be sure to leave more than you'd think necessary as it does tend to ride up. I cut it right down the centre of the front and made the V from the top of the bosom to the collar. I cut the collar off. I then hemmed all the cut edges, by hand since I find jersey-knit difficult to work with using my sewing machine. Finally I added the button and button-hole. I must admit that the button-hole could use some work. I did it by hand and had no idea what I was doing. It works but just don't look at it closely. If anyone can point me to the proper way to do a button-hole, please do! The button-hole is horizontal to avoid problems with the side getting pulled out of shape.

I must say that I'm very happy with the final result.

  • old jersey-knit long-sleeved shirt
  • needle and thread
  • button

Saturday, August 04, 2007


This is a project from March 2007. I thought this pattern was really cute so I grabbed some scraps of yarn and got crocheting. Here's what happened:

I ran out of green yarn shortly into the project and finished off with some scrap verigated yarn. It didn't turn out as cute for me as it did for the original creator. So there was only one thing to do:

Give it to Mokey! It actually turned out to be a great toy for her. She usually tears plush toys apart but Steggie is still around and aside from being goobered on and dirty he's none the worse for wear. There are no seams to split like with fabric plush toys and when she chews him, her teeth slide through the stitches so they don't create holes for her to exploit. She absolutely loves chewing on him and despite all the chewing and pulling, Steggie hasn't come apart. So for all you dog owners out there, if you want a great toy, crochet one!

Hook size:

  • Worsted weight yarn, I ended up using a dark green from Red Heart and a verigated from Bernat Super Value
  • Fibre fill

Monday, July 23, 2007

Sleeper of a Bag

This project is from Martha Stewart and while I don't know if I'd say "it's a good thing" I would certainly say "it's not too bad at all." I did have a lonely pillow cases around, so I can't think of anything better than to make a bag with it.

I got this project done in one evening with no seam ripping and no frustration. Yay! The one thing I wasn't too sure about was what to do with the diagonal edges of the pillow case that are inside of the bag. I debated about whether they should be sewed up too but in the end decided for less work and left them open. This leaves a couple of pockets (large and flimsy pockets, mind you) inside the bag and there's no harm in that.

  • lonely pillow case
  • sewing machine
  • thread
  • straight pins
  • ruler
  • chalk

Saturday, July 21, 2007

Travel Tissue Cover

I've found a new and fantastic source of patterns! It's a blog called Craft Leftovers and it's got lots of great ideas for what to do with scraps of things you might have in your craft stash. Aside from the wonderful patterns, great ideas, and being based on a premise of using whatever happens to be laying around, the projects are fairly small and quick to do.

Here is my first finished project from a Craft Leftovers pattern (okay, it's actually the second, but the first was done as a pattern tester for the site so I won't reveal it until the pattern is posted):

They're Travel Tissue Covers! I made one for a friend and one for me. Now I must say, they look like a very simple sewing project, but for a novice sewer like me, there was plenty of frustration that went along with this project, not the least of which was the machine coming partially unthreaded without telling me causing the seams not to sew up properly and me having no clue why. That of course ended with a lot of ripped stitches, swearing, and all sorts of other untoward behaviour. But in the end I got them done and I think they'll work just fine. Making the second one went a lot smoother but still involved ripping out stitches.

The first one I made required some hand stitching in the final side seams where the folded over sections meet. It was just too tough for the needle I had to get through the fabric. But fortunately, some miracle happened with the second one and the needle slid through that section with no problem.

One thing that the pattern doesn't mention is that in the end, after making the final side seams, the whole thing gets flipped inside out. This is very important to know so that the fabric you want on the outside actually ends up being on the outside

I've found that the bottom lip of the opening puckers a little, nothing too serious, but enough to annoy my perfectionism when I was making the first one. I accepted this fact by the time I go to the second one.

  • 2 pieces of 9" x 6.5" fabric (I used gold satin for the linings, red crepe satin for one and some shimmery stiff purple for the other)
  • Sewing machine (though you could hand sew)
  • Thread

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Bernat Tulip Dishcloth

After the "Feather and Fan" fiasco, I gave the tulip dishcloth pattern on the same Bernat label a go. It turned out much better. It is a good size for a dishcloth and actually feels really good. There was an error in the pattern with the stitch count in one row, but because of the symmetrical pattern, it was easy to spot and fix. Thank goodness, because I would have been really ticked if neither of the knit patterns on that darn label worked out!

Here's a close-up of the tulip detail:

Needle Size:
5 mm


Bernat Crochet Cotton

Sunday, June 03, 2007

Feather and Fan dishcloth

This is my first completed knitting project. The first project I started is a bag, but I'm still working on that. Hopefully I'll be finished and posting about it in the not too distant future.

This is from the Feather and Fan pattern from Bernat. It came on the label of the yarn. I must say that I suspect the pattern has a glaring errors. This cloth is very small and would be of little use for dishes because of it. The picture on the Bernat label shows a wider cloth with more feather and fan sections. I was not impressed with this one. But it is working out well as a TV screen duster.

Needle Size:
5 mm

Materials Used:
Bernat Crochet Cotton

Saturday, March 24, 2007

I can knit!

Thanks to the Knotty Hooker a.k.a. Emily RugBurn , I can now knit (well, this was actually a few months ago, but you get the idea). She showed me the basics and then introduced me to, which is a great how-to resource site, complete with super clear video instructions.

Being a crocheter first, I was having a hard time knitting with the yarn in my right hand. That's the way Em does it. I tried for a bit to do it this way but found it incredibly awkward and unnatural which made me the world's slowest knitter. It also made me tense up my hands so they would become sore and stiff very quickly. Luckily there's the Continental knitting method, which involves holding the yarn in your left hand. I switched to that and away I went!

Here's the first bit of knitting I did:

I followed the free Cable Scarf pattern (#60053) from Lion Brand (you need to sign up for a free account to view the patterns).

I didn't finish the scarf, since I was using a yarn that I wouldn't ordinarily use for a scarf and I didn't really want a cable scarf. This was just for practice, to get my knits and purls down!