Friday, April 29, 2011

Crochet Friday Series 4: Double Crochet

Crochet Friday Series #4 presents Mr Double Crochet

So this is the 4th week I've been doing the series for beginners and I had planned to have a crochet-along project that required only the basic stitches seen so far (at the Crochet Friday Series) but, unfortunately, I got sick in the middle of the week and had a hard time even getting to the computer. So I decided that instead of doing that project, I'd showcase another stitch and then, on coming Friday, I'll come with an actual project that requires the stitch we learn today: the Mr Double Crochet.

This stitch is very traditional, you'll see it in a lot in patterns all around the world. There is a crazy and wide variety of stitches based on the Double Crochet, so learning how to work it it's a GREAT investment. Usually there's another stitch that is taught before the DC, that's the Half Double Crochet, it's not easier it's just different. I wanted to skip that one and leave it for later because the project I have in mind needs the DC. Later we'll see what do we need the Half DC for.

Can't wait for coming week. I have a little secret to share with the world ♥

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Hello Kitty Patches

Hello Kitty Crocheted Patches Pattern in American English

Hello to everyone! This is a project I started as a gift idea I had in mind. I'm not even a fan of Hello Kitty, but the person who's getting these patches is, big time. This was a way for me to say ♥ Thank You ♥ to Karina, a cute talented girl I just met during my last trip to Mexico and who gave me a free tattoo, a beautiful home made job. 

This is Karina at her office
First thing I thought about giving something to someone who's not really crazy about crochet was, it has to be a fun accessory. So I made it a set of patches that she will be able to sew anywhere she wants. The patches are 4x5" and I attached a nice fabric to the back to hide all the knots. 

I never did anything like this before and I have never tried Amigurumis so I had a very vague idea of how to work it. I got some help on this pattern online but I noticed a few mistakes and I couldn't take the confusion so I started over and did it myself. (Enlarged that paragraph for those who denounced I stole the pattern from Petrakot, maybe you want to read what I wrote again, and again).

Materials: you're going to need white (or off white) yarn, black for eyes and whiskers, pale pink for the nose and two more colors of your preference.


Ch - Chain
SlSt - Slip Stitch
SC - Single Crochet
HDC - Half Double Crochet
DC - Double Crochet
Tr - Treble Crochet
St - Stitch

Note: This pattern is worked in rounds, that means we make a foundation chain and we stitch all around in circles. AND, I didn't realize until now but first 2 photos are rotated 180° to the left, so don't let it confuse you. 

R1: Ch10, 8SC starting on 2nd Ch from hook, 3SC in the same stitch, keep working around the foundation Ch 8SC and end with 1SlSt to join work.

R2: Ch1, 2SC in same St, 7SC, 2SC in same St, 1SC, 2SC in same St, 7SC, 2SC in same St, 1SC, Join with SlSt into top of first Ch. (See photo below).

R3: Ch1, 1SC, 2SC in same St, 7SC, 2SC in same St, 3SC, 2SC in same St, 8SC, 2SC in same St, 1SC, Join with SlSt into top of first Ch.

R4: Ch1, 2SC, 2SC in same St, 8SC, 2SC in same St, 4SC, 2SC in same St, 8SC, 2SC in same St, 1SC, join with SlSt into top of first Ch.

R5: Ch1, 2SC, 2SC in same St, 9SC, 2SC in same St, 4SC, 2SC in same St, 9SC, 2SC in same St, 2SC, join with SlSt into top of first Ch. (See photo below).

R6: Ch1, 2SC, 1HDC, 1DC, 6Tr in same St, 1DC, 1HDC, 4SC, 1HDC, 1DC, 6Tr in same St, 1DC, 1HDC, 5SC, 2SC in same St, 11SC, 2SC in same St, 2SC... (See photo below).

Now just join Color B with SlSt into top of first Ch.

R7: Ch1, work 1SC in each St around and join with a SlSt into top of first Ch. Fasten Off. (I used a lighter weight yarn for this outlining detail but that's really up to you). (See photo below).

The Bow:

In another color: Ch7. Starting on 2nd Ch from hook, work a SC in the next 5St, 3SC in same St, 4SC (working in rounds again), 2SC in same St, Join with a SlSt into top of 1st Ch. SlSt in the next 3Sts, 1SlSt across the center of the bow (see photo below)...

... Keep SlipStitchn' into next 7Sts and fasten off. Wrap the loose ends around the waist of the bow to cinch it, and then pull them through the kitty face so you can knot them from the back. (See photo below).

Nose and eyes:

For the eyes, I used a (aprox) 4" long yarn strip for each eye, in black color. I pulled both ends from the back to the front and tied a double knot, then pulled them again to the back and tied them again to secure. For the nose I didn't make any knots in the front, only pulled them through from back to front a few times to give it the bulky effect and tie them in the back to secure. (See photo below).


To save time and yarn I didn't cut a piece of yarn for each whisker. Using only 1 long strip of yarn I pulled from back to front and front to back. (See photo below).

Last thing I did was to attach a piece of fabric to the back. Why? Cause if I'm making a patch that will be sewn to another surface, I gotta make sure the loose ends will not be messing around. So I tied them all up AND sew a piece of fabric of my preference, by hand, pulling the needle through the back loops of every SC of the outline. (I have a photo of a different patch for this but take a look).

And that's it! 

Attribution CC BY
Creative Commons License
You can SHARE and TWEAK this work,
but you MUST NOT use the photos used for this pattern.
If you want to share this pattern, a simple link to this post will work. 
Or you can always write your own.
I want to keep my patterns free of charge, but if you feel like giving something back, it's greatly appreciated!

Friday, April 22, 2011

Crochet Friday Series 3: Slip Slitch

Slip Stitch! I love everything about the Slip Stitch. Starting with the name, I mean, it sounds like a dance step, Do the Slip Stitch! Now do the Twist! :P What else do I love about it? It's very discrete, almost like a ghost that fixes your work here and there going unnoticed. Yeah, you can't make a sweater slip stitching but you wouldn't be able to easily attach pieces of that cardigan without it!

Uses for the SLST: 

This is a starting ring for a Granny
Square. It's 6 Chains, a SlSt in the
very 1st Chain, and continued
with 3 extra chains.
You need this stitch for turning a chain into a ring. What for? So you can start stitching inside the ring and work in circles. Like what? Like the beginning point of making a pair of slippers, or the starting circle of a granny square. What else? When you finish your last stitch in the middle of a row but you must continue starting by the corner, well, you will "walk down the street" slip stitching. Why? Cause it's almost invisible!

So I'm bringing today a tutorial on how to work the Slip Stitch. Sure, Boring. Wait for the next Crochet Friday Series and with the stitch I will be showcasing, you'll have completed almost a full set of basic stitches AND you will be able to work on a little project, along with me. Oh yeah. But you must know how to Slip Stitch so get that hook going.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Slippers for Guys

I know some of you were waiting for this pattern to be posted in your language, ever since I published the Spanish version. I finally found some time, but I decided that making it into a PDF would have taken me ages, specially right now that I'm working in five hundred and a half projects. But here it is.  Crochet Pattern for Beginners, designed by Anhelo Escalante.

Slippers for guys, American English version.

Shoe size: 9USA / 27MX / 42.5EUR / 8.5UK

This is a photo tutorial with written instructions. Before starting please read all the details about the item to be worked: materials, abbreviations, etc. Photos in this pattern are copyrighted, you are NOT allowed under ANY circumstances to use them for ANY purpouse. Although, this pattern is public domain, you can share it with the world, sell your items made with help of it, but please keep in mind that if you decide to share it with your world, you must link to my blog. So, DO NOT copy-paste. I don't have to explain why.


Bulky weight yarn #5 (Aprox 150 yds/ 138 m). I used Comfort Chunky by Berroco (50/50 Nylon Super fine Acrylic). This yarn usually recommends to use a hook size 6mm, but I used a 4.5 to tighten the gauge.

Stitches you'll work
It's necessary for you to know how to work these stitches: Chain, Slip Stitch, Single Crochet and Double Crochet. You will need to start the project with a Magic Circle (or Magic Ring) so I'm posting a video tutorial in case you have trouble understanding.

Ch Chain
St Stitch
SlSt Slip Stitch
SC Single Crochet
DC Double Crochet
R Round (half of this pattern is worked in rounds) or Row.

Start with a Magic Loop
Ch2 (are not equivalent of a DC here and throughout)
R1: 8DC in the loop. Cinch it and join with a SlSt into top of first DC. Ch2

R2: Work 2DC in same St and every St around, joining with a SlSt into top of the first DC. Total Stitches: 16. Ch2:

R3: *1DC, 2DC in same St*. Repeat from * to * all around. Join with a SlSt into top of first DC. Total Stitches: 24. Ch2.

R4: *2DC, 2DC in same St*. Repeat from * to * all around. Join with a SlSt into top of first DC. Total Stitches: 32. Ch2.

R5-R6: 1DC in each St around, join with a SlSt into top of first DC. Total Stitches: 32. Ch2.

This photo shows how it's supposed to look after working R5. I suggest you that, from now on, measure that your work covers the toes of the person you're working this for (if it's possible).

Note: Here's where you can add one or two more rounds to come with a bigger shoe size. Doing this only makes the work longer from tip of toe to heel. If you want to make it wider, in Round 6 work 16DC, 2DC in same St, 15DC, 2DC in same St. This change should get you a total of 34 stitches.

R7: (First decrease) 14DC, 2DC together (*see tutorial for decreasing below), 14DC, 2DC together. Join with a SlSt into top of first DC. Total of Stitches: 30 (or 32 if you increased for size, please remember that if you did this, you must always count your stitches ahead). Ch2.

R8: 1DC in each St around, join with SlSt into top of first DC. Same amount of total stitches.

R9: (Second decrease) 13DC, 2DC together, 13DC, 2DC together. Join with SlSt into top of first DC. Total Stitches (-2) 28. Ch2.

R10, 11, 12: 1DC in each St around, join with SlSt into top of first DC. Same amount of total stitches. Ch2.

Note: From now on, we no longer work in rounds but rows, meaning that at the end of each row we turn our work.

R13: 20DC, Ch2, turn.

R14 to 18: Repeat R13.

R19: 8DC, (decrease) 2DC together, 2DC together again, 8DC.

Seam up the heel by putting the right sides together and SlSt from the top down to the bottom of the heel. 

Your work should look like this:

Now we need to cinch the slippers a little bit around the foot. We'll work in SC. Starting to the left, from the back center of the heel.

R20: Ch1, work 1SC in the next (aprox) 12 St (we are working in spaces, they're not very defined stitches but hey, that's what we have). The last space, the 13th, is the one that connects the corner. There we will work a decrease: 3SC together.

In the first picture I show you the last space that connects with the corner. The second picture shows how to do the 3SC in one = together. 

1. Hook thru the loop, yarn over and pull it through, you have two loops.
2. Hook thru next loop, yarn over and pull it through that loop only, you have three loops.
3. Hook thru next loop, yarn over and pull it through that loop only, you have four loops.
4. Yarn over and pull it through the 4 loops.

Should look like this:

Work 5SC. Now you get to the next corner, work a decrease again, 3SC together. Keep working SC all around until you get to the back center of the heel and join with a SlSt into top of first SC. Ch1.

R21: Decrease by working 2SC together, 1SC into each St all the way to the corner again, where you work again 3SC together, work 3SC, 3SC together in corner, 9SC, 2SC together, join with SlSt into top of first SC. Should loook like this:

If desirable add an extra row with a different color:
Ch1, work 1SC all around and finish joining with a SlSt and faten off. Wave in loose ends.

Note: for color B I used a hook 1/2 mm smaller, and a thinner yarn, but this is certainly up to you.

Finished work:

Wasn't that easy?

I want to keep my patterns free of charge, but if you feel like giving something back, it's greatly appreciated!

Friday, April 15, 2011

3 Granny Squares Patterns!

3 Granny Square Patterns compiled and redesigned by Anhelo Escalante.

This is a written (in American English) AND graphic pattern that comes as an electronic file (PDF) that opens in your computer. Has been designed with meticulous detail and includes 3 different types of Granny Squares:
  • Circle to Square
  • Right Angled
  • Mexican Flower

Requires knowledge of basic stitches (Chain, Slip Stitch, Single Crochet, Half Double Crochet, Double Crochet), but it includes a visual glossary in case you need extra help understanding the stitches, as well as a symbol equivalence, written instructions, photos, list of materials, and abbreviations.

Crochet Friday Series 2: Single Crochet Stitch

And the Single Crochet Stitch has its own  showcase on Gatuxedo's Crochet Friday Series!

I'm not quite sure anyone's following these series but hopefully any lost in the web beginner will find this on a google search sometime before I die. Or after, it doesn't really matter... As long as it's helpful. Anyways I am going to keep posting this because when I decided to learn to Crochet, all I found was dozens of Utube videos with horrible audio and out of focus and etceteras. It took me some time to find the best tutorials that made my crocheting successful. So I am very confident that other curious minds will feel the same way after watching the good stuff I share with y'all here, today.

The Single Crochet is not the mother of all stitches, that's the Chain Stitch, but the SC (that's how it's abbreviated) is the beginning of an actual project. The stitch you will need to work the most basic garments like a scarf, a headband, a hat, or these beautiful ear flaps I made for my niece (pattern to this to come soon!):

If you already know how to Crochet but you know of someone that has been trying to learn, pass it on! Again I'm posting a video by Teresa Richardson, cause she's got the best tutorials EVER. Now, go practice your stitches!

And practice how to work in circles too!

Happy Stitching and Happy Weekend!

Wednesday, April 13, 2011


Picture on the left: Oh my! This is one of the most beautiful pieces I've seen in my life. It came straight from dreamland. Keri Joy Colestock makes them, you have to run to her online shop and look!

I found her pieces by looking to Puzzles on ETSY, and I couldn't resist to have her in my latest treasury I'm Puzzled!

I love puzzles. One of the best gifts I once got from a dear dear friend was one single piece of a puzzle! It means the world to me. It's the key to a thinker.

I know that, for a lot of people, looking at shops for hours represents getting anxious for buying. Luckily this doesn't happen to me anymore, I can just look for hours just admiring the handmade pieces that a lot of people create and that, thanks to ETSY, we get to see page by page with full descriptions. It just makes me feel connected to other artists, more than making me want to posses every single listed item. Some times when I get lost at thrift stores with the Husband, he gets nervous about me wanting to keep compulsively shopping, but I always tell him "I am just looking, I just want to look", and it's true. I love being able to look and admire without having the hunger of making things mine, or maybe I do have the hunger, but it pleases me to tame that beast in me?

Friday, April 8, 2011

Crochet Friday Series 1: Chain Stitch

Crochet Friday Series #1: Chain Stitch

Want to learn to Crochet but magazines and websites are too intimidating? Welcome to the Crochet Friday Series!

Yes, I decided to blog every Friday about HOW TO Crochet; and I am personally picking the best videos (best explanation, best audio, best resolution, best tone of voice - yeah! tone of voice has always made a big difference in me paying attention to teachers in school).

First episode is for the mother of all stitches, The Chain. Without Chain there's no Crochet, there's no doilies, no scarves, no bags, no nothing. 

Of course, beginning it's supposed to be discouraging and annoying, specially with a hook and a piece of yarn that you obviously don't even know how to handle with your two hands. 

First time I tried Crochet I felt like an idiot myself; I mean, all those years in school and at home learning how to use my hands and fingers and after so many years I can't hold a hook and make some yarn go through a loop? - But it is also so mechanical that once you practice for, let's say, ten minutes, your hands get set on automatic. If you practice this super simple stitch enough to do it without having to put your four eyes on it all the time, it will be so easy to learn the next basic stitches; and the next basic stitches will get very interesting, let me tell you. Now, no one has the patience, OK? We all exercise it in different ways, call it listening to your family's complaints, or call it making your own accessories with a hook. I pick the second without a doubt. I suck at being patient. BIG TIME.

I chose Teresa Richardson from the Art of Crochet. Voted for many many many users as best tutorial maker for Crochet. I actually learned, and keep learning, stitches and tips from her videos. So, here. Practice for a week and see you next Friday!

Monday, April 4, 2011

I had Rainbow Dreams

Rainbow Dreams I had this morning. When I woke up it was pouring outside. It seldom rains in Central Texas. Rainbow Dreams I had.

My latest ETSY Treasury is here: