Posts Tagged ‘yarn’

how to crochet: selecting yarn // a little hippie girl tutorial

February 12, 2012

i’ve been wanting to do crochet tutorials for a while, but it seemed that it would be a bigger undertaking than i was capable of.  i’ve written some tutorials on quazen, but i really don’t like how much advertising they put on their pages.  so this is my humble attempt at providing you, the general public, with a free crochet class via internet.

you can crochet with any yarn-like substance, from plastic bags to t-shirt scraps, but when selecting commercial yarns, a few basic tips will go a long way. yarns are classified by weight, and weight is determined by gauge- or how many stitches it takes to make a square inch of crocheted fabric.

weights range from lace, the finest, to super bulky, the heaviest. if you’ve ever seen a crocheted doily, then you’ve seen a good example of lace weight crochet thread. baby items and socks are made from super fine (also called sock or fingering) weight yarn, or the next weight up: fine, also called sport or baby weight yarn. many crocheted clothing items and accessories are made with DK and worsted (also called aran or medium) weight yarns. very thick items can be made from bulky and super bulky weight yarns- most rug yarn is also bulky weight.

various yarn weights

crochet is done with a single hook, and for each yarn weight there is a corresponding range of hooks to be used to get the gauge you need. hook sizes can vary if you want a looser or tighter stitch. a small hook with a heavy yarn will produce very tight, solid stitches, and a large hook with a lighter yarn will produce loose stitches. the best way to know which hook is recommended for the yarn you’d like to use is to read the label.

yarn label with various indications highlighted

many patterns will provide the yarn weight and hook you need to use for the project. others are more open to interpretation, and most will suggest that you crochet a small swatch to make sure that what you make is the correct size.

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setting off

November 23, 2011


friends, i am about to embark upon a cross-country journey to take photographs and write about our beautiful land currently encased in ice and fog.  there will be a pattern up before i go for fingerless gloves knit flat; otherwise you are welcome to keep up with my photoblog rubbertramping in addition to this lovely one!  cheers, and i hope everyone is having a great fall.

fall

November 6, 2011

fall is here.  well, not really here in arizona, but in the rest of the world that has seasons, yes.  a time to don hats and scarves, and start making gifts for relatives (which in my case means making hats to sell or for charity while procrastinating on christmas items.)  it’s a very pensive time of year for me.  fall has always been my favorite season, and having lived back and forth from arizona to other places it’s very difficult for me to be here when the rest of the world is curling into autumn’s long slow sleep.  all the poems i have been writing lately have been about fall not coming to arizona.  it was in the 60s today for the first time this year, and the entire desert did not know how to take it.

i am going hiking tomorrow to reconnect with the nature of the desert and hopefully remember that there can be beautiful things here, even if it is not my ideal living place.  i will sit and absorb the vibration that our mother earth gives no matter what the surface environment.

bulky single-crochet tam

October 16, 2011

bringing more patterns over from their old home on quazen!

for this pattern, you will need bulky weight yarn and a K hook.  it’s worked in rows instead of in a spiral, but if you’re more comfortable with a spiral method, please use it; just make sure you mark the beginnings of your rows (i tend to get lost using the spiral method.)

Row 1 – From the beginning stitch, ch 2 (counts as first sc- throughout the pattern the first ch-2 will always count as the first sc).  Sc 5 more times in beginning st, and connect to first sc with a sl st.  You should now have 6 sc in a loop.

Row 2 – Ch 2.  Sc in same stitch.  2 sc in each st around.

Row 3 – Ch 2.  Sc in same stitch.  *Sc in next st, 2 sc in next st.  Repeat from * around.

Row 4 – Ch 2.  Sc in same stitch.  *Sc in next 2 st, 2 sc in next st.  Repeat from * around.

Row 5 – Ch 2.  Sc in same stitch.  *Sc in next 3 st, 2 sc in next st.  Repeat from * around.

Row 6 – Ch 2.  Sc in same stitch.  *Sc in next 4 st, 2 sc in next st.  Repeat from * around.

Row 7 – Ch 2.  Sc in same stitch.  *Sc in next 5 st, 2 sc in next st.  Repeat from * around.

Row 8 – Ch 2.  Sc in same stitch.  *Sc in next 6 st, 2 sc in next st.  Repeat from * around.

Row 9 – Ch 2.  Sc in same stitch.  *Sc in next 7 st, 2 sc in next st.  Repeat from * around.

Row 10 – Ch 2.  Sc in same stitch.  *Sc in next 8 st, 2 sc in next st.  Repeat from * around.

Row 11 – Ch 2.  Sc in same stitch.  *Sc in next 9 st, 2 sc in next st.  Repeat from * around.

Row 12 – Ch 2.  Sc in same stitch.  *Sc in next 10 st, 2 sc in next st.  Repeat from * around.

Row 13 – Ch 2.  Sc in same stitch.  *Sc in next 11 st, 2 sc in next st.  Repeat from * around.

Row 14 – Ch 2.  Sc in same stitch.  *Sc in next 12 st, 2 sc in next st.  Repeat from * around.

Row 15 – Ch 2.  Sc in same stitch.  *Sc in next 13 st, 2 sc in next st.  Repeat from * around.

Row 16 – Ch 2.  Sc in each st.

Repeat row 16 ten more times.

Row 27 – Ch 2.  *Sc dec over next two stitches.  Repeat from * around.  If you don’t know how to do a sc dec or sc2tog, here’s a great video.

Row 28 – Ch 3.  Dc in each st around.

Row 29 – Ch 3.  *Fpdc in next st, bpdc in next st.  Repeat from * around.  The links provided will give you a tutorial if you don’t know these stitches.

Row 30 – Ch 3.  Fpdc in each fpdc and bpdc in each bpdc around.

Row 31 – Repeat row 30.

You can continue row 30 for as long as you need to to make a longer brim, but I’ve found that with bulky yarn, 2-3 rows of fpdc/bpdc ribbing works great.

peace and love!

groovy hat-in-a-flash – free pattern!

August 25, 2011

a hat you can make in (almost) minutes!  this yarn requires super bulky weight yarn and an L hook (or an N hook if you want it a little bigger!)  i used lion brand hometown USA and the hat took just less than 80 yards.

the pattern is very simple, using only single and double crochet stitches.

row 1: ch 3 (counts as first dc).  [sc in first ch, dc in first ch] twice.  sc in first ch.  connect to first dc with a sl st (so you should have 3 dc, 3 sc.)

row 2: ch 1 (counts as first sc).  dc in same st.  *sc, dc in next st.  repeat from * around.

row 3: ch 2 (counts as first dc).  sc in same st.  *dc in next st, [sc, dc] in next st, sc in next st, [dc, sc] in next st.  repeat from * around.

row 4: ch 1 (counts as first sc).  dc in same st.  *sc in next st, dc in next st, [sc, dc] in next st.   repeat from * around.

you can keep increasing in this manner until the hat is as wide as you need, following the increase pattern in sc, dc.  so if you wanted to keep making the hat bigger, the next row would be: ch 2 (counts as first dc).  *sc in next st, dc in next st, sc in next st, [dc, sc] in next st; dc in next st, sc in next st, dc in next st, [sc, dc] in next st.

once the hat is as wide as you would like, continue as follows:

row 5: ch 2 (counts as first dc).  *sc in next st, dc in next st.  repeat from * around.

row 6: ch 1 (counts as first sc).  *dc in next st, sc in next st.  repeat from * around.

repeat rows 5 and 6 until your hat is the desired length!

nevada hat pattern – translation

June 23, 2011

i came across veruska‘s nevada hat on ravelry and really wanted to translate the pattern because it looks great!  the yarn she’s using is an italian yarn made by lanar that is a wool/acrylic blend and that i’m super jealous of.  oh italy and your beautiful yarns, why must you be so far away?  anyhow, here is the pattern.  veruska, i hope you like it 🙂


from what i can gather all stitches are worked in the back loop of the stitch.

yarn weight: medium to bulky (the lanar website doesn’t specify so i’m going by the look of it)

hook size: 5.5 (I)

TRANSLATION
after having reviewed some handspun Nevada by Lanar, we present here the finished pattern of a slouchy hat with the handspun yarn.  the hat can be completed in an evening, and is a fast and easy pattern, but not boring.

gauge: 15 stitches by 7 rows, worked around the back post one line sc, one dc, one tc, unstretched: 10×10 cm

INSTRUCTIONS
start: leaving a tail of at least 15 cm, ch 2.
first row: in first ch from hook, work 9 sc.  join with a sl st. (9 sts + 1 sl st)
second row: ch 2 (counts as first dc).  work 1 dc in same st.  *work 2 dc in back loop of next st.  repeat from * around; join with a sl st (18 sts + 1 sl st)
third row: ch 3 (counts as first tc).  work 1 tc in same st, *2 tc in next st, 1 tc in next st.  repeat from * around; join with a sl st (27 sts + 1 sl st)
fourth row: ch 1 (counts as first sc). work 1 sc in same st, *1 sc in next 2 sts, 2 sc in next st.  repeat from * around; join with a sl st (36 sts + 1 sl st)
fifth row: ch 2 (counts as first dc).  work 1 dc in same st, *1 dc in next 3 sts, 2 dc in next st.  repeat from * around; join with a sl st (45 sts + 1 sl st)
sixth row: ch 3 (counts as first tc).  work 1 tc in same st, *1 tc in next 4 sts, 2 tc in next st.  repeat from * around; join with a sl st (54 sts + 1 sl st)
seventh row: ch 1 (counts as first sc).  work 1 sc in same st, *1 sc in next 5 sts, 2 sc in next st.  repeat from * around; join with a sl st (63 sts + 1 sl st)
eighth row: ch 2 (counts as first dc).  work 1 dc in same st, *1 dc in next 6 sts, 2 dc in next st.  repeat from * around, join with a sl st (72 sts + 1 sl st)
ninth row: ch 3 (counts as first tc).  tc in each st around.  join with a sl st (72 sts + 1 sl st)
tenth row: ch 1 (counts as first sc).  sc in each st around.  join with a sl st (72 sts + 1 sl st)
eleventh row: ch 2 (counts as first dc).  dc in each st around.  join with a sl st (72 sts + 1 sl st)
rows 12-14: repeat rows 9-11.
row 15: repeat row 9.
row 16: ch 1 (counts as first sc).  sc in next st.  *sc2tog, sc in next 2 sts.  repeat from * around, join with a sl st (54 sts + 1 sl st)
row 17: ch 1 (counts as first sc).  sc in each st around.  join with a sl st (54 sts + 1 sl st)
rows 18-25: repeat row 17.

cut yarn.  weave in ends.  if you like you can add a pom pom to the hat.

peace and love.

knitting as meditation

June 16, 2011

i took to knitting very late in life.  my neighbor taught me to crochet when i was 9, but knitting was something i could never wrap my mind around.  my mother tried no less than 7 times to teach me, and it finally stuck when i was 23 and ready to boost my image as an indie kid.  after that i attended several knitting meetups in various locations, jealously working my slow stockinette as the other girls showed off their socks, scarves and sweaters.  i loved knitting because it seemed so smooth, so refined- but the fact that it took me three weeks to finish a hat, as opposed to three hours with crochet, was a huge turnoff.  i considered myself one of those closet knitters who could keep a project in the basket to work on in spare moments, like the afghan you start and plan on finishing in twenty years.

another turnoff was the stress of it.  knitting to relax?  what a joke!  aside from the frustration of my slow hands, dropped stitches never failed to send me into a tizzy, and, once i learned to properly “frog” (which i just recently learned is the term for tearing something apart) the problem was then how to attempt projects with written patterns.  it’s one thing to slip into a zen coma while performing the same stitch in a circle for hours, but reading a pattern where things are constantly changing required a level of attention i did not find relaxing in the slightest.

but a recent turnaround occurred when i actually finished a project from a pattern, and then another.  i realized that maybe i could knit a little faster than i had originally thought.  and then tonight, counting two by two as i worked a rib pattern, i was startled out of my counting by the obnoxious sound of a taco john’s ad.  it took me a minute to realize that i had been so into my knitting that i had zoned out completely- and it had felt pretty damn peaceful.

maybe there’s a potential for knitting as meditation after all.  i’ll try to find out this weekend at the love your mother earth festival and report back for your reading pleasure.

peace and love.