Posts Tagged ‘National Crochet Month’

Celebrate Crochet! Luxury

Wednesday, March 20th, 2013
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It’s National Crochet Month and we’re excited to share some of our favorite crochet techniques and trends happening in 2013. This week we’re focusing on crocheting with luxury fibers.

Being able to work with luxury fibers is something every crocheter looks forward to. Thankfully you don’t have to win the lottery to indulge in a little high-end crochet. One skein and a simple project can keep the cost down but allow you to add a little something to your wardrobe to makes you feel extra special. And when everyone ask you about it you get to say it’s silk or cashmere or even mink!

Start with a nice small project like this simple Crochet Necklace by Creativeyarn but go luxury by using Artyarns Beaded Pearl and Sequins yarn.

  

Try something a little larger like the Julie Cuff from Robyn Chachula‘s wonderful book Blueprint Crochet but work it in a skein of Mimi by Lotus Yarns which is 100% Mink!

 

If you’re ready for a slightly bigger project why not go for Julia Vaconsin‘s gorgeous Phoenix Mitts and work them up in the luminous Ensemble Light from Artyarns, an amazing blend of silk and cashmere!

  

When you’re ready for a bigger project with lots of impact visually, but not on your wallet, try a scarf or wrap like our Crocus Lace Stole. A single skein of the Silk Cashmere from Jade Sapphire would feel amazing around your shoulders and neck, and since this is an easy 1 row pattern you can just keep working till you run out of yarn.

Have you worked with any luxury fibers? What’s been your favorite?

Tuesday’s Crochet Tip – Adding a Crochet Border to Knitting

Tuesday, March 19th, 2013
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Not all knitters crochet, and not all crocheters knit, but both compliment each other beautifully in projects. Adding a crochet border to your knitting is a fantastic way to incorporate both mediums. I find crochet borders much easier to work than picking up and knitting around a project. Around the Corner Crochet Borders is filled with great ideas on embellishing your project with a beautiful border.

To pick up stitches to crochet on a garter stitch project:

1. Insert your hook in the space between the ridges.

2. Yarn over and pull your stitch through, making sure your hook is only going under two strands of yarn.

3. Your stitches will sit in between the garter ridges. On the next round, the gap will be hidden by the stitch above.

To pick up stitches to crochet around a stockinette stitch project:

1. Locate the edging stitches. They’re going to look like v’s going up along the side of your project.

2. Insert your hook into this edge stitch only. Make sure you are only going under two strands of yarn.

 

Do you like to mix things up by incorporating both knitting and crochet into your project?

Celebrate Crochet! Amigurumi

Wednesday, March 13th, 2013
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It’s National Crochet Month and we’re excited to share some of our favorite crochet techniques and trends happening in 2013. This week we’re focusing on Amigurumi, or small crocheted animals.

With Spring only a week away and Easter at the end of the month you have just enough time to create some great little gifts for the children in your life.

Amigurumi Cosy by Lan-Ahn Bui and Josephine Wan has some wonderful seasonal animals from bunnies to sheep and even an adorable snail.

Amigurumi World by Ana Paula Rimoli is one of my favorites! I’ve made tons of the Happy Eggs and the tiny duckling is adorable.

We have our own versions of these little stuffed animals, try the free Valley Yarns patterns for a bunny, lamb, robin and chickens!

Valley Yarns Valley Superwash and Valley Superwash DK are the perfect yarn for projects like these, they’ll be soft and washable and you have a great range of colors to choose from.

Have you crocheted any stuffed animals? What’s your favorite?

Tuesday’s Crochet Tip – Weaving in Ends

Tuesday, March 12th, 2013
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We’re celebrating National Crochet Month with some handy crochet tips! This week’s tip shows us the proper way to weave in your ends.

Weaving in ends is one of the most tedious aspects of knitting and crocheting for me. I have heard of some people who enjoy it, but I’m definitely not one of them. It’s time consuming, especially if you have a beautiful colorwork project. Most advice says to weave in your ends as you go along. That plan always sounds so appealing in the beginning, but never seems to work out!

After all that work you put into your project, weaving in your ends properly is essential. You don’t want them to slip out and poke through. Everyone has their own opinion on the best way to weave in ends. This way seems to please almost everyone.

Step 1. Thread your tapestry hook and insert it vertically down into the stitch closest to the base of the yarn. I like to go down about 1/2″, but adjust this based on the project itself. If it’s very open work, I may only go down a couple stitches at a time.

Step 2. Insert your needle horizontally into the stitches next to it. Again, I like to do about 1/2″, but less if that helps keep the end hidden.

Step 3. Now insert your needle vertically again, this time going up. This weaving in and out will keep your thread secure. If you can only go a couple stitches vertically at a time, try repeating these steps another one or two times to make sure it’s really secure.

Now this is where opinions differ. Some of us like to leave a long tail when you’re done weaving in the ends, then block the project. Once it’s done blocking, then you can cut the tail. The logic is that the tail may wiggle out a bit when the project is blocking. Personally I just snip the tail when I’m done weaving, but the other way seems much more thorough!

 

Do you have a technique for weaving in your ends? Do you enjoy weaving in all those ends or find it a tedious chore?

Celebrate Crochet! Tunisian

Wednesday, March 6th, 2013
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It’s National Crochet Month and we’re excited to share some of our favorite crochet techniques and trends happening in 2013.

This week we’re focusing on Tunisian Crochet which is experiencing a resurgence as more and more crocheters begin to explore the potential of their craft.

Interweave Crochet’s Fall 2011 issue had a focus on specialty crochet techniques and features some really modern and wearable designs in Tunisian including Betty’s Tunisian Tee by Tram Nguyen.

Dora Orenstein’s latest book, The New Tunisian Crochet, is an fantastic combination of history, stitch dictionary and pattern book. You can pick up the book with no knowledge of Tunisian and work your way through smaller, skill building projects, including a gorgeous sampler afghan, and end up making a cozy and stylish cardigan.

If you’re local, we also run a series of Tunisian Classes each winter here at our Store in Northampton. Our Tunisian Basics class has already wrapped up for the season but if you have a bit of knowledge under your belt and would like to see what else Tunisian can offer try our Exploring Tunisian Class which begins this Friday, there are still a few open seats!

Whether you’re new to Tunisan Crochet or a seasoned pro our Knitters Pride Dreamz Tunisian crochet hooks are the perfect tool. You can jump right in with the full set of hooks or start slower, one hook at a time and choose the cable length you want to start with.

Have you tried Tunisian? What’s been your favorite project?

 

Tuesday’s Crochet Tip – Creating a Neater and More Elastic Edge

Tuesday, March 5th, 2013
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It’s National Crochet Month! We’re celebrating by sharing some handy crochet tips to help refine your crochet skills or get you started. This week, we’re putting a new spin on your foundation chain.

Starting your crochet project is probably almost everyone’s least favorite part. Chaining all those stitches, then fiddling your hook into that starting chain can be tedious and time consuming. For me, it never ends up looking quite right either.

Most of us were taught to start your first row by crocheting into the front of your starting chain. Instead, try inserting your hook into the bump on the back of your chain. Surprisingly, this actually creates a much neater and smoother edge.

This technique also creates a much more elastic edge and will even mirror your final row perfectly. Since crocheting into that back bump creates a mirror stitch to your last row, it makes seaming and adding a crocheting edging much easier!