Crochet for the sake of Crochet?

I have found that there are two moods of crochet… crochet focused on the final product and crochet enjoying the process without concern for the outcome.

Sometimes, I like to crochet simply for the sake of crocheting. Maybe a pretty ball of yarn has come to the surface of a stash bin and it just begs to be something. Freeform crochet without a plan, is the way to go!

Do you ever feel this way? What’s your go-to stitch when you just want to fiddle with crochet without a pattern or plan?

maura 2

Turn your creativity on it’s head and try crocheting without a plan!

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Marta Shawlette

Marta Shawlette

By Darla Fanton

Marta Shawlette

Darla is a long-time designer and teacher. If you attend the Knit & Crochet Show in Manchester, NH in July, stop by and say, ‘hello’ or take one of her inspiring classes. Darla writes:

I started designing in 1984.  My early designs were what I think of as classic crochet, but in 1997 my sister asked me to design a project for her using a double ended hook.  The day I picked up that hook I fell in love with long crochet hooks.  The result was The Needlecraft Shop’s popular Crochet on the Double(TM) program released in 2000. 

When the company needed somebody to teach the technique at Crochet Renaissance in 2001, I discovered another passion – teaching.  I thoroughly enjoy sharing my love of crochet with students at national conferences and at my local yarn store, the Knitting Bee, in Portland, OR.  

These days I spend my time designing projects featuring all aspects of crochet, from Broomstick Lace to Tunisian and everything in between for magazines, yarn companies, and my classes.

 My most recent book, 50 Tunisian Stitches, was published by Annie’s in 2013.  

50 Tunisian stitches cover

Thanks Darla!  You can see more of Darla’s designs on Ravelry:  www.ravelry.com/designers/darla-j-fanton

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CAL : Marvelous Crochet Motifs

Thank you for visiting! Today I’m sharing with you one of the 48 motif patterns from my newest Annie’s book, Marvelous Crochet Motifs.

1798241309_16_Motif16_FullThis motif is called the ‘Blossom Hexagon’.

I love how easy it is to make a complex-looking project. Layers and colors create eye-popping results without adding too much difficulty.

16_Motif16_Full

Here are the links to your FREE downloadable pattern:

HERE is the link to the written text instructions for the Blossom Hexagon Motif: Blossom motif for CAL

HERE is the link to the Stitch Diagram Key for the Blossom Hexagon Motif:   1798241309_16_BlssmHx_Key

HERE is the link to the Stitch Diagram for the Blossom Hexagon Motif:1798241309_16_BlssmHx_Motif

As you are stitching your motif, think about what it wants to be when it “grows up”. In the book, there are 4 projects. They are there to inspire you to think about how you want to use the motifs. With just one motif in cotton or wool, you might have a coaster or hot pad, depending on the gauge. You can use thread and make an exquisite piece of jewelry or Christmas ornament. Make it in just one color or many.  Make a few to several motifs for a scarf or cowl and more motifs for a baby blanket or throw.  It’s really the building block for your creativity.

Would you like to talk about the motif and the process with me and other crocheters? Visit the free thread on Ravelry to discuss and post your photos. Here’s the Ravelry thread.

If your friends and acquaintances want to join us, please send them to this blog page so they can get the pattern too!

If you don’t want to click on the downloadable link above, you can read the pattern here:

 

Blossom Hexagon

SKILL LEVEL

FINISHED MEASUREMENTS

Motif: 6 inches across

Half Motif: 6 inches wide x 3 inches tall

MATERIALS

■ Plymouth Encore Worsted medium

(worsted) weight acrylic/wool yarn

(31/2 oz/200 yds/100g per ball):

5 yds #1308 beach berry (A)

3 yds #1606 purple bell (B)

1 yd #470 French vanilla (C)

■ Size J/10/6mm crochet hook or size

needed to obtain gauge

■ Tapestry needle

GAUGE

Motif = 6 inches across (blocked)

Take time to check gauge.

PATTERN NOTES

Weave in ends as work progresses.

Join with slip stitch as indicated unless

otherwise stated.

Chain-3 at beginning of round or row counts as a

double crochet unless otherwise stated.

Chain-5 at beginning of row counts as a

double crochet and chain-2 space unless otherwise

MOTIF

Rnd 1 (RS): With C, ch 4, join (see Pattern Notes)

in first ch to form ring, ch 3 (see Pattern Notes),

11 dc in ring, join in 3rd ch of beg ch-3. Fasten

off. (12 dc)

Rnd 2: Join A with sc in any st, fpdc (see Stitch

Guide) around post of same st, [sc in next dc,

fpdc around post of same st] 11 times, join in

first sc. (12 fpdc, 12 sc)

Rnd 3: Ch 1, sc in same st as beg ch-1, ch 5, sk

next st, *sc in next st, ch 5, sk next st, rep from *

around, join in first sc. Fasten off. (12 sc,

12 ch-5 sps)

Rnd 4: Working behind ch-5 sps, join B with tr

in any fpdc on rnd 2, 2 tr in same st, ch 1, *3 tr

in next fpdc, ch 1, rep from * around, join in

first tr. Fasten off. (36 tr, 12 ch-1 sps)

Rnd 5: Join A with sc in any ch-1 sp, *sc in next

tr, sc through next ch-5 sp on rnd 3 and next tr

on working rnd at same time, sc in next tr**, sc

in next ch-1 sp, rep from * around, ending last

rep at **, join in first sc. (48 sc)

Rnd 6: Sl st in each of next 2 sts, ch 3, 4 dc in

same st as last sl st made, *ch 1, sk next 3 sts,

(dc, ch 5, dc) in next st, ch 1, sk next 3 sts**,

5 dc in next st, rep from * around, ending last

rep at ** , join in 3rd ch of beg ch-3. Fasten off.

(30 dc, 6 ch-5 sp, 12 ch-1 sps)

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Carmine Cropped Cardi

Carmine Cropped Cardi

By Robyn Chachula

Carmine Cropped Cardi

I talked to Robyn about her inspiration for this lovely motif sweater, she writes:

Carmine was inspired by my love of getting to re-invent my wardrobe and my love of motifs. 

I don’t think there is anything more fun than taking a dress or top I haven’t worn for a while and re-inventing it in a totally new outfit by changing something its paired with. Carmine I imagined as a short cardigan that I could slip over sun dresses so that I could start wearing my summer wardrobe in the still chilly spring.  I also envisioned it as a great sweater to wear over some favorite tunics that have seen better days.  The cardigan has so much personality that the tops would take second seat. 

My love of motifs is rampant at this point.  I love taking lacy motifs and combining them together to see what the resulting lace fabric will look like.  I swear each time is a total surprise and a thrill to crochet.  Motifs are one of my favorite construction methods for garments.  I love the building block nature of them and with just a switch of hook sizes I can customize the sweater to my measurements.  I also love that I can play with the layout just by moving blocks around.

Thanks Robyn!

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Crochet! Autumn issue

Have you ever had something so much on your mind for months that you assume everyone else is “in on it” too?  I have been happily consumed with the Autumn issue of Crochet! since October of 2013 that I almost forgot to tell you about it. After all these months, it’s HERE!  Over the next few weeks on the blog I’ll bring you behind the scenes quotes and highlights from the designers. But first… the cover!

Cover Autumn 2014 cover

We had 3 contenders for the cover photo. Our cover artist “mocked” them all up and we laid them out side by side. This is the stunning winner because of the “wow” factor of Kristen Stoltzfus’ Ivy Brambles Stole. It’s a combination of Broomstick and traditional stitching and those beads! It is stitched in Tahki Stacy Charles Filatura Di Crosa Cenolavaggi Super Fine. Gorgeous.

 

 

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Jennifer Ryan’s Clare Beauty Inspiration

Inspiration for Clare Beauty in the Autumn 2014 issue of Crochet!

 

Clare Beauty photo back on front

By Jennifer E Ryan

As I was planning to enter a design in the annual CGOA competition, I wanted to make a garment that had several Celtic Knots in it. And unlike my previous award-winning piece, I planned to have at least one knot also on the front.  I love the color blue, especially a lapis blue, and remembered all of the beautiful bodies of water in Ireland surrounded by the lush greenery it is famous for.  I also love flowers and the joy it brings to your spirit to spend time in a garden.

So, I found this flower-like knot design and thought it to be perfect to work into a garment combining my love of blue, Celtic Knots and Ireland.

I crocheted some of this original design near a lake in NH wishing I was able to work by a lake in Ireland.  :)

As the sweater took shape I made some changes along the way (at first I planned to have it be a cardigan!) and enjoyed the challenge of framing each knot and twist so that each piece fit together to make a unique top with bell-sleeves.

Visit Jennifer at CelticKnotCrochet.blogspot.com

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Tiny points of hope

I was visiting a loved one in the hospital the other day and pinned in the corner of the bulletin board was this little 2″ gem:

prayer cloth

It made me smile!  I didn’t put it there, perhaps one of you generous readers did. Every gesture of warmth from the crochet community is important. Thank you to all the volunteer and charity crocheters out there!  Keep doing what you are doing. It matters.

 

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Save the date!

Would you like a free motif pattern from my new crochet book Marvelous Crochet Motifs? The book is out now and has 48 motifs and 4 projects.

Come back here on July 1 for details on the start of the CAL

Marvelous cover

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Motifs in Minutes

Have you noticed a new feature in Crochet! magazine? ‘Motifs in Minutes’ is the new companion to the ‘In Stitches’ feature. I have loved granny squares and motifs of all shapes since I first learned to crochet when I was 8. Small portable scrap-happy units are perfect pieces for learning, playing with color, and building larger projects. So now you get TWO motif designs with every issue along with TWO In Stitches row patterns.

Here’s a sneak peek of some upcoming motifs. My couch-cat, Minnie, found them when I removed them from the blocking board…

Minnie motif sneak peek

 

 

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Knit and Crochet Now

Are you familiar with the Knit and Crochet Now tv show?  In my email inbox I just received the lastest Knit and Crochet Now newsletter and in it was a nice surprise!

My Falling Stars Scarf is a FREE pattern from the show in the newsletter this time!  Sign up and see the asymmetrical join-as-you-go motif pattern.

FallingStar

I just love this little pattern!  Thanks for letting me share. Check out the other cool information, knit patterns, tips, and featured notions in this month’s newsletter.

 

 

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