Saturday, April 21, 2018

Pi & Pippi the Octopi - Free Crochet Pattern

Before I get started, can I share my Super Crafty Sunday Link Up #4? I have been sharing it in my newsletters, but if you haven't visited, please stop by. See what our most clicked projects were from last month, enter the giveaway for some Cotton Fair Yarn (open worldwide, sponsored by Helena of Crochet n Crafts), and share what you've been working on - AND you don't have to be a blogger to share in the link up!

Last week I received a custom order in my EyeLoveKnots Etsy shop for a small Octopus plush. The order included a basic photo of one that she already had at home, and a few basic measurements. I pulled some yarn out of my stash, and got to work on Pi, the dusty blue octopus. I was so excited with how well this cute little octopus came out, especially the tight tentacles, which I managed to evenly get 8 on the first try. Yes! 

I sent pictures of Pi to my guest, and she sent back that she wanted looser tentacles, and longer eyes. I grabbed a different color out of my stash, and got to work on Pippi, the bright blue octopus. 

Originally, I figured I would just post instructions for the first octopus I made, but then I started thinking that maybe you guys would like to have the other instructions too, in case you preferred one or the other differences, and so I got the idea to add a bow to what seems like the smaller octopus (just because the tentacles are softer), and make this a his and her duo. Such a cute little set!

And aside from a plush, you could attach a string around the top of the head, and the make the octopus into an ornament for an under the sea/nautical themed party or Christmas tree.


*If you would like a PDF version of this post, you may get one through my EyeLoveKnots Etsy Shop or EyeLoveKnots Craftsy Shop for a small fee. This fee is to compensate for the view/s lost once you no longer need to return to the blog for the information, as you will have your own copy. Plus! It helps fund supplies for new projects to share with you!

Materials:
     - 40 Yards of Worsted Weight Yarn - I used Red Heart's Super Saver in Turqua and Country Blue found at my local JoAnn's
     - Small Amount of Black for Eyes - I also used Red Heart's Super Saver
     - Bow: Small Amount of #10 Crochet Cotton Thread - I used Artiste's #10 Crochet Thread in the Country Rose colorway from my local Hobby Lobby
     - H8/5mm Crochet Hook
     - Bow: 2mm Crochet Hook
     - Tapestry Needle 
     - Small Amount of PolyFil

Material Notes:
     Yarn Alternatives: Caron's One Pound, Bernat's Super Value, Crafter's Secret Yarn from Hobby Lobby

Time Spent:
     I was able to work up one in about an hour.

Measurements:
     3" Wide by 3" Tall. 4" if Standing on Tentacles (Pi). Legs extend out 1.5"

Gauge:
      With H8/5mm and Red Heart Super Saver: 20 SC by 14 Rows = 6 1/8" wide by 3 7/8" tall

Abbreviations:
     HDC - Half Double Crochet
     HDC2tog - Half Double Crochet Decrease Over Two Stitches
     SC - Single Crochet

Pattern Notes:
     You will be working in a continuous round, meaning, no joining after rounds. To help with the gap at the end of Round 1, there is a decrease worked as the first stitch of the next round.

In the title image, you may notice the black strand in between the eyes of my bright blue, Pippi. This was because I left the strand loose inside. To ensure you don't end up with a visible strand, you can weave in under some stitches over to the other spot, and begin the second eye.

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Pattern:
     Chain 4. Join ring. 8 HDC into the ring. Yarn over, insert hook into the ring, yarn over, pull through (3 loops on hook)... (8 HDC)

R2: ...insert hook into the first stitch, yarn over, pull through, yarn over, pull through all four loops (counts as first stitch of the round), HDC into the same first stitch, 2 HDC into each of the next 7 HDCs. (16 HDC)

R3: (2 HDC into the next HDC, HDC into the next HDC) 8x. (24 HDC)

*Weave in initial tail.

R4 - 8: HDC into each HDC around. (24 HDC)

R9: (HDC2tog, HDC into the next HDC) 8x. (16 HDC)

Eyes: There are two options for the eyes, Pi has small, 0.38" long eyes, while Pippa has 1" long eyes.

Shorter eyes are worked out of Round 6 and into Round 7, while the longer eyes are worked out of Round 5 and into Round 8. From the wrong side, weave in and out nearby the entry point three times to secure, then bring the needle out of the middle of the indicated stitch (middle to secure), and repeat to thicken eye. Measure six stitch to the right (or 1.75"), and repeat the process, keeping in mind that the stitches for the second eye will not be exactly directly across because the octopi is worked in a spiral.

*Stuff body.

R10: (HDC2tog) 8x. (8 HDC) Fasten Off with a Long Tail.

*Stuff again if necessary. 

Close Bottom: Pull out last loop, and thread needle. Weave in and out of stitches along the last round. Pull tight, and weave in to secure.
Tentacles: These are worked into the stitches of Round 10. Essentially, I worked into the actual stitches as if I were working around posts. After slip stitching, I skipped a "post". Pi has tighter tentacles, while Pippa has looser ones. Pi's instructions are in parenthesis.

Attach yarn into a stitch of Round 10. [Chain 9 (12). Work 2 (3) SC into the 2nd chain, and each of the next 7 (10) chains. Slip stitch into the next stitch of Round 10.] 8x for 8 tentacles
Fasten Off, and Weave in Remaining Ends.
Pippi's Bow: Use a 2mm Crochet Hook and Crochet Thread

Chain 4. Join to form ring. [Chain 4. 4 TR into the ring, chain 4, slip stitch into the ring] 2x. Fasten Off with long tail for wrapping and sewing.

Pull initial tail tight to close up the hole from the beginning chain 4, and sew closed like you would on a beanie. On end tail, pull loop all the way out. Begin wrapping the tail around the center of the bow until desired look is achieved. Thread tapestry needle, take thread to wrong side, and weave in and out of center wrapping. Place bow - I did so at an angle just above eye. Weave in thread behind bow so not visible. Fasten Off.
Please feel free to make and sell your own Pi or Pippi Octopi using this pattern, but please DO NOT claim this pattern as your own nor should you sell my pattern, and DO NOT re-publish my photos as your own. DO NOT copy and paste my pattern anywhere, link to it instead.

Join the EyeLoveKnots Crafting Community to share your creations, and see what other's are up to! 

Share your version of this project on Ravelry - Pi & Pippi the Octopi. Check out the EyeLoveKnots Ravelry page to keep track of all your EyeLoveKnots favorites in your que, and share your WIPS and finished projects!

Don't miss out on new crochet patterns, reviews, jewelry tutorials and more! Subscribe to EyeLoveKnots by using the box on the right side toolbar, or follow me via Bloglovin! You can also find me sharing on the EyeLoveKnots Facebook page, and @EyeLoveKnots on Twitter!


Don't Crochet but Interested in Purchasing an Octopi?
     Visit the EyeLoveKnots Etsy Shop to see what I have available! Use the search box to type in what you have in mind, or feel free to send me a message with your custom request. I am happy to make in any custom size and/or color. View color options here: Super Saver.

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Saturday, April 14, 2018

Lakeshore Tank Top - Crochet Pattern Review - A Crocheted Simplicity

Last week, I received a notification on Facebook from A Crocheted Simplicity linked to the Lakeshore Tank Top, and I was hooked. I have been looking for something to do with the three skeins of Modern Cotton yarn that I've had sitting in my stash, and being that this top was made of worsted weight yarn, I knew it'd be perfect. 

Materials:
     - 450 Yards of Worsted Weight Yarn - I used two and some skeins of Berroco's Modern Cotton from my local yarn shop (linked)
     - K10.5/6.5mm Crochet Hook (larger than recommended)
     - Tapestry Needle for Weaving in Ends, and Sewing Straps
     - Lakeshore Tank Top, Paid Crochet Pattern from A Crocheted Simplicity

Material Notes:
     Hobby Lobby's I Love This Cotton used in original. Caron's Simply Soft recommended by designer as an alternative. My personal thoughts... I Love This Cotton is 100% cotton, and Simply Soft is 100% acrylic. The best option is a yarn that is a cotton/acrylic or cotton/rayon blend. Cotton yarn by itself has no bounce back - it will stretch, and not stretch back, and will continue to "grow". Acrylic yarn does not absorb moisture well, so if you are planning on wearing this as a warm weather top, you want something that won't irritate your skin, and help keep you cool, and the way to get that, is by a getting a blend. 
Berroco's Modern Cotton Review:
     This yarn has been sitting in my stash for about a year now. I purchased it a while back with intentions of working up a little girl's dress, but the pattern did not work out for me. This yarn is 60% pima cotton, and 40% modal rayon. It is very soft, with a good stretch. My only complaint is that the yarn splits very easily, especially if you rip back. I did wash this top, and the yarn washes up beautifully! Care instructions are to machine wash in cold water on the delicate cycle, and lay flat to dry. I laid my top out on top of the washer afterwards, shaped a bit, and left to dry. No shrinkage experienced.

Time Spent:
     I worked this top up in a few settings, for a total of just over six and a half hours.

Size/s:
     Sizes Small through 3X included in pattern. I worked up the size Medium. See my Pattern Notes for more details. 

Gauge:
     Pattern Gauge: 5" by 2"
     In Pattern, with J Hook: 4.5" Wide by 2" Tall
     In Pattern, with K Hook: 4.75" Wide by 2 1/8" Tall

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Pattern Notes:
     
I wear a size large, and have a 39" bust. The measurements provided in the pattern are a size large - the medium is actually sized to fit like a large. This was so the top would fit comfortably over a cami, and for the banded version, you would want a top that is oversized anyway to puff out a little. My take on the medium size was that it was made to fit a 40" bust (to take other clothes into consideration), but would actually measure 42" around (or 21" wide) when finished. 

I went up to a K10.5/6.5mm crochet hook to try and meet gauge, but even so, I was a little short, I did not want to go up to an L11/8mm hook though. I figured I would still be alright being a little short...

Originally, I wanted to make the version of the tank top that has the band at the bottom. I have a tank top made similarly that I wear alll the time, and I was looking forward to having another. They are great to hide the unwanted love handles. 

I was 17 rows in when I decided to measure the width of my top, which came to be 17.25". I put it up to myself, and noticed that it would still fit me just fine, just wouldn't be oversized like I wanted, so that meant, no band. Sad face. I had already come so far though, so I just continued on. 

In the end, the top fit comfortably. The yarn had a very nice stretch to it, the top fit over a cami, and still had more give to it, however... it hugged my love handles. So, this top will be going to a new home, but! I did realize that as is, the top I made would fit a medium or large.
The pattern was so easy to follow, and created such a pretty lacy pattern, that I haven't used before, but I really like it. The pattern took a little to memorize with the four pattern repeat, but once I got the hang of it, I just sat back in my recliner, and worked away while watching TV.
I really love the idea of braided chain strips for the sleeves. It came out prettier than I thought it would, and strong with little stretch. It's a great option that I will definitely be keeping in mind for future designs.
To attach the straps, I whipstitched them into the stitch just under the slip stitch from the previous round. The finished three strand braid ended up measuring 1" wide. Personally, I prefer wider straps, so if I worked up another top, I would go with a wider braid.
The one thing I realized too late was the foundation. I don't know why I didn't think of the foundation chain when I first started, but what it needs is a foundation single crochet. Foundation stitches add flexibility when needed - perfect for tops, pants, cowls, hats, etc. After I worked the final round, and put the top on, I realized how tight the last round was. I tried a bunch of ways to work this round - 1) as written with smaller hook size; 2) as written with same hook size; 3) as written into chain spaces, instead of actual chains; 4) in half double crochet with three stitches per chain space. After I finished working in half double crochet, I settled. It is still tight, but unfortunately, there is nothing I can do without redoing the foundation, which is a no. 
Even though this top did not fit the way I wanted, I really enjoyed working it up. It was so nice to work a new stitch combination, work up a garment, and get to use the Modern Cotton that's been sitting in my stash. The pattern is written so well, and I look forward to working up another.
Join the EyeLoveKnots Crafting Community to share your creations, and see what other's are up to!

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Friday, April 6, 2018

Ila's Table Runner - Free Crochet Pattern

This table runner was a fun challenge. I will say that my favorite part is the web-like center. I am feeling inspired by it, and the wheels are turning on what else I could make similar to this. If you have any ideas, share them with me below!
Two weeks ago, one of my cousins sent me this picture she received from a family member, and asked if I could make it to gift to said family member. The color request was "to match the dining room set", and I received a few more pictures of the table, and chair cushions.

I pulled out some yarn I had in my stash, and worked a bit. Once I established the design, I went to my local JoAnn's and Hobby Lobby, in search of colors to match the table set. I really wanted a solid olive green, but I couldn't find one in either store. Other colors of the set included light yellow, cranberry, brown and dark purple. 

The closest I got was at Hobby Lobby with Yellow, and Olive Branch. Olive Branch is a variegated yarn to include olive green, light brown, light yellow, and copper.


*If you would like a PDF version of this post, you may get one through my EyeLoveKnots Etsy Shop or EyeLoveKnots Craftsy Shop for a small fee. This fee is to compensate for the view/s lost once you no longer need to return to the blog for the information, as you will have your own copy. Plus! It helps fund supplies for new projects to share with you!


Materials:
     - 550 Yards of Worsted Weight Cotton Yarn - I used Crafter's Secret Yarn. 5 Skeins in the Olive Branch colorway, and about half of one skein of the Yellow colorway
     - I9/5.5mm Crochet Hook
     - Tapestry Needle for Weaving in Ends

Material Notes:
     You could use Lily Sugar n Cream in place of Crafter's Secret Yarn, but use with an H8/5mm crochet hook.

Really, you can use any yarn to create this runner. Only thing I will stress is the purpose of your runner. As decoration, any yarn will work just fine. If you will be using this on a table that you will be eating and drinking on too, I recommend cotton or wool with no synthetic yarn (acrylic, polyamide, nylon...) within it. Why? Synthetic's could melt if something hot were placed on top of, and don't hold up as well to moisture.

Time Spent:
     I worked this runner is a few seatings, but in total, just under five hours.

Measurements:
     Measured as photographed, 40.75" tall by 32" wide across the center

Gauge:
     15 DC by 7 Rows = 4" by 3.75"

Abbreviations:
     HDC - Half Double Crochet
     DC - Double Crochet

Pattern Notes:
     Join to the beginning chain.

Brackets will show what the beginning chain counts as.

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Pattern:
     Chain 5. Join to form a ring. Chain 1. Work 10 HDC into the ring. Join.

R2: Chain 5 [counts as a DC + chain 2]. (DC into the next HDC, chain 2) 9x. Join. (10 DC)

R3: Chain 5 [DC + chain 2]. (2 DC into the next DC, chain 2) 9x, DC into the 1st stitch. Join. (20 DC)

R4: Chain 6 [DC + chain 3]. (DC into each of the next 2 DC, chain 3) 9x, DC into the next DC. Join. (20 DC)

R5: Chain 8 [DC + chain 5]. (DC into each of the next 2 DC, chain 5) 9x, DC into the next DC. Join. (20 DC)

R6: Chain 9 [DC + chain 6]. (DC into each of the next 2 DC, chain 6) 9x, DC into the next DC. Join. (20 DC)

R7: Chain 10 [DC + chain 7]. (DC into each of the next 2 DC, chain 7) 9x, DC into the next DC. Join. (20 DC)

R8: Chain 12 [DC + chain 9]. (DC into each of the next 2 DC, chain 9) 9x, DC into the next DC. Join. (20 DC)

R9: Chain 13 [DC + chain 10]. (DC into each of the next 2 DC, chain 10) 9x, DC into the next DC. Join. (20 DC)

R10: Chain 14 [DC + chain 11]. (DC into each of the next 2 DC, chain 11) 9x, DC into the next DC. Join. (20 DC)
R11: Chain 2 (counts as a DC here, and throughout), turn. 12 DC into the next chain space, (DC into each of the next 2 DC, 12 DC into the next chain space) 11x, DC into the next DC. Join. (168 DC)

R12, 1: Chain 2, turn. DC into the next DC, 2 DC into the next DC, (chain 2, skip the next 2 DC, DC into each of the next 2 DC, 2 DC into the next DC) 13x. (56 DC)

R13: Chain 2, turn. DC into the next 3 DC, (2 DC into the next chain space, DC into the next 4 DC) 12x. (76 DC)

R14: Chain 2, turn. DC into the next 2 DC, 2 DC into the next DC, (chain 2, skip the next 2 DC, DC into each of the next 3 DC, 2 DC into the next DC) 12x. (65 DC)

R15: Chain 2, turn. DC into the next 4 DC, (2 DC into the next chain space, DC into the next 5 DC) 11x. (82 DC)


R16: Chain 2, turn. DC into the next 3 DC, 2 DC into the next DC, (chain 2, skip the next 2 DC, DC into each of the next 4 DC, 2 DC into the next DC) 11x. (72 DC)

R17: Chain 2, turn. DC into the next 5 DC, (2 DC into the next chain space, DC into the next 6 DC) 10x. (86 DC)


R18: Chain 2, turn. DC into the next 4 DC, 2 DC into the next DC, (chain 2, skip the next 2 DC, DC into each of the next 5 DC, 2 DC into the next DC) 10x. (77 DC)

R19: Chain 2, turn. DC into the next 6 DC, (2 DC into the next chain space, DC into the next 7 DC) 9x. (88 DC)


R20: Chain 2, turn. DC into the next 5 DC, 2 DC into the next DC, (chain 2, skip the next 2 DC, DC into each of the next 6 DC, 2 DC into the next DC) 9x. (80 DC)

R21: Chain 2, turn. DC into the next 7 DC, (2 DC into the next chain space, DC into the next 8 DC) 8x. (88 DC)


R22: Chain 2, turn. DC into the next 6 DC, 2 DC into the next DC, (chain 2, skip the next 2 DC, DC into each of the next 7 DC, 2 DC into the next DC) 8x. (81 DC)

R23: Chain 2, turn. DC into the next 8 DC, (2 DC into the next chain space, DC into the next 9 DC) 7x. (86 DC)


R24: Chain 2, turn. DC into the next 7 DC, 2 DC into the next DC, (chain 2, skip the next 2 DC, DC into each of the next 8 DC, 2 DC into the next DC) 7x. (80 DC)

R25: Chain 2, turn. DC into the next 9 DC, (2 DC into the next chain space, DC into the next 10 DC) 6x. (82 DC)


R26: Chain 2, turn. DC into the next 8 DC, 2 DC into the next DC, (chain 2, skip the next 2 DC, DC into each of the next 9 DC, 2 DC into the next DC) 6x. (77 DC)

R27: Chain 2, turn. DC into the next 10 DC, (2 DC into the next chain space, DC into the next 11 DC) 5x. (76 DC)


R28: Chain 2, turn. DC into the next 9 DC, 2 DC into the next DC, (chain 2, skip the next 2 DC, DC into each of the next 10 DC, 2 DC into the next DC) 5x. (71 DC)

R29: Chain 2, turn. DC into the next 11 DC, (2 DC into the next chain space, DC into the next 12 DC) 4x. (68 DC)


R30: Chain 2, turn. DC into the next 10 DC, 2 DC into the next DC, (chain 2, skip the next 2 DC, DC into each of the next 11 DC, 2 DC into the next DC) 4x. (65 DC)

R31: Chain 2, turn. DC into the next 12 DC, (2 DC into the next chain space, DC into the next 13 DC) 3x. (58 DC)


R32: Chain 2, turn. DC into the next 11 DC, 2 DC into the next DC, (chain 2, skip the next 2 DC, DC into each of the next 12 DC, 2 DC into the next DC) 3x. (56 DC)

R33: Chain 2, turn. DC into the next 13 DC, (2 DC into the next chain space, DC into the next 14 DC) 2x. (46 DC)


R34: Chain 2, turn. DC into the next 12 DC, 2 DC into the next DC, (chain 2, skip the next 2 DC, DC into each of the next 13 DC, 2 DC into the next DC) 2x. (45 DC)

R35: Chain 2, turn. DC into the next 14 DC, 2 DC into the next chain space, DC into the next 15 DC. (32 DC)


R36: Chain 2, turn. DC into the next 13 DC, 2 DC into the next DC, chain 2, skip the next 2 DC, DC into each of the next 14 DC, 2 DC into the next DC. (32 DC)

R37: Chain 2, turn. DC into the next 15 DC. (16 DC)


R38: Chain 2, turn. DC into the next 14 DC. (15 DC)

Fasten Off, and Weave in Ends.

R12, 2: From the wrong side, skip 2 DC, and join yarn to the next DC. Chain 2. DC into the next DC, 2 DC into the next DC, (chain 2, skip the next 2 DC, DC into each of the next 2 DC, 2 DC into the next DC) 13x. (56 DC)

R13 - 38: Repeat Side 1.

Fasten Off, and Weave in Remaining Ends.
Please feel free to make and sell your own Ila's Table Runner using this pattern, but please DO NOT claim this pattern as your own nor should you sell my pattern, and DO NOT re-publish my photos as your own. DO NOT copy and paste my pattern anywhere, link to it instead.


Join the EyeLoveKnots Crafting Community to share your creations, and see what other's are up to!

Share your version of these beanies on Ravelry - Ila's Table Runner. Check out the EyeLoveKnots Ravelry page to keep track of all your EyeLoveKnots favorites in your que, and share your WIPS and finished projects!

Don't miss out on new crochet patterns, reviews, jewelry tutorials and more! Subscribe to EyeLoveKnots by using the box on the right side toolbar, or follow me via Bloglovin!


Don't Crochet but Interested in Purchasing one of your own Ila's Table Runners?
     Visit the EyeLoveKnots Etsy Shop to see what I have available! Use the search box to type in what you have in mind, or feel free to send me a message with your custom request. I am happy to make in any custom size and/or color. View color options here: Crafters Secret, Lily Sugar n Cream.

Linked Up To...
Inspiration Monday - Scattered Thoughts of a Crafty Mom 
Made by you Monday - Skip to my Lou 
Tutorials & Tips Link Party {347} - Home Stories A to Z 
Creative Mondays Link Up - Claire Justine 
Handmade Monday #70 - Sum of their Stories 
Merry Monday Link Party #199 - A Wonderful Thought 
The Scoop Link Party #321 - Worthing Court 
Dagmar's Home Link Party #208 - Dagmar's Home 
The Really Crafty Link Party #114 - Keeping it Real 
418th Inspire Me Tuesday - A Stroll Thru Life 
Show and Tell Link Party - Flamingo Toes 
Fabulous Party #210 - Lou Lou Girls 
The Linky Ladies Party #130 - The Purple Poncho 

Tuesday, April 3, 2018

Super Crafty Sunday Link Up #4 - Cotton Fair Yarn Giveaway

Welcome to the 4th Super Crafty Sunday Link Up!

Since last month's party, here's what I've been up to (A LOT!):
Chicken [Butt] Coasters - Free Crochet Pattern 
Lightweight V-Stitch Preemie Beanies - Free Crochet Pattern 
Bacon, Onion & Pepper Pizza - My Favorite! 
Parisenne Beret - Crochet Pattern Review

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This Month's Most Clicked Include:
Top: Lucy Lace Shawl from Atelier Marie-Lucienne - Crochet Inspiration. This shawl is just stunning! And by the looks of the number of clicks, many of you agree with me! As stunning, and elegant as it is, I find it not to imagine cherries when I look at the lace pattern, hehe. Nonetheless, she who requested this shawl is one lucky lady!

Right: Four Leaf Clover from Julie's Creative Lifestyle - Crochet Inspiration with Link to Free Crochet Pattern. These little clovers are so cute! And a great way to add a little green to your outfit on St. Patrick's Day. They also work up very quickly, so would make a great gift idea for your friends, or co-workers so everyone can avoid getting pinched.

A Little From Helena:
Isn't this teething ring toy the cutest?! And working up so quickly and using scrap yarn, you could easily work up a ton of these to make as a gift set, or for your little one. I have a new cousin on the way, and I can't wait to share some of these!

I will caution a few things:
1. Wash your yarn in a lingerie bag before working this up, or hand wash the toy afterwards before gifting or giving to baby. You will want to make sure you get anything used to coat yarn off, plus imagine all the hands and surfaces that may have touched your yarn before and after purchasing.

2. Make sure you secure your end extra well, as you do not want the star (or similar) to come off, and pose a choking risk. You may want to weave your ends in a time or two extra, and make sure to regularly check for lose ends.

3. Use a cotton yarn - Do not use a synthetic yarn (acrylic, polyamide, nylon, etc) or animal fiber (wool, alpaca, etc).
This Month's Giveaway is sponsored by Helena of Crochet n Crafts. One winner will receive two skeins of Cotton Fair Yarn. If you haven't used this yarn before, it is a beautiful, sport weight (#2) yarn perfect for warm weather crocheting and knitting comprised of 52% cotton, and 48% acrylic. And two skeins?! They will go a long way.

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Must be 18 or older to enter. Open to all countries. Void where prohibited. Winner has 48 hours to respond to email notification, or another winner will be chosen. Helena of Crochet n Crafts is responsible for prize fulfillment.


Join the Party!!

The Super Craft Sunday Link Up is hosted by EyeLoveKnots, and Crochet n Crafts, so when you link up to one of the blogs, it will show up on both! Double the exposure!! It will go live on the first Sunday of the month, and end the Thursday prior to the next month's party starting. Post times will vary, but you will be able to link up from midnight EST through midnight EST on the indicated dates - check the top of the Rafflecopter for more details.

Please share projects, recipes, and other posts that are family friendly, and not spammy. Feel free to reshare previously shared links, and links to giveaways and other link ups. Please make sure to link to a specific post, and not your blogs home page.

*If you don't have a blog, you can still share with us several ways. You can create a free Flickr account (powered by Yahoo), and upload your projects there, and share the link with us. You can also share links from Instagram, and Twitter.

*Link ups CANNOT be to Etsy/Craftsy listings or Ravelry pages where patterns are sold. You can share a link that is directed towards it, but can't directly link to it. To be clearer though, Ravelry pages of finished projects are okay to share. Sorry for the inconvenience! That's per InLinkz guidelines. Thanks!

Features may be chosen at the discretion of each host. By linking up you give us permission to feature your item.



Saturday, March 31, 2018

Parisenne Beret - Crochet Pattern Review - Happy Yarn Mail

I received this Happy Yarn Mail package in exchange for sharing it with you. All of review is my own opinion. I earn a small commission if you purchase a subscription using my unique link for Happy Yarn Mail. Thanks for your support!
This week, I received my first package from Happy Yarn Mail! I have been feeling quite a bit uninspired and unmotivated lately, so this package couldn't have come at a better time. I was so excited to see what was in my package, I couldn't even wait to get home to open. I got back into my car from the post office, and opened it right then, and there.
Everything was package up so nice! I found two skeins of yarn - the Touch of Alpaca Yarn, and some DIYarn, a button that says, "You're Cute as a Button", a Yarn Party sticker, and the pattern printed on some glossy paper, folded like a pamphlet, and covered in a pretty floral print all wrapped up in a bright pink tissue paper. This definitely brought me lots of happiness and excitement. I came home and got right to work.


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Materials Used:
     - Less than One Skein of Lion Brand's Touch of Alpaca Yarn in the Purple Aster colorway
     - K10.5/6.5mm Crochet Hook - larger than recommended
     - Tapestry Needle for Weaving in Ends

Material Notes:
     Yarn Alternatives: Lion Brand's Vanna's Choice, Lion Brand's Wool Ease.

This was my first time using Touch of Alpaca Yarn. I have used alpaca yarn before, and sometimes, it can be itchy, but this one was soooooo soft, and a bit squishy. This yarn looks like and feels like Lion Brand's Vanna's Choice Yarn, which if you've ever worked with it, is soft and squishy, and kind of feels like wool. I worked with Vanna's Choice quite a few times in the past. The last time I used it, I washed a pair of slippers that I was so happy with, and they came out so fuzzy. I was so disappointed, and tossed the slippers after. My fear is that this yarn may do the same thing. I haven't tried washing my hat to test yet, but keep this in mind if you do wash a project, and please drop me a line with your finds if you do. 
I will say, I had to rip back my work in the body because I worked single crochets first before realizing it was supposed to be half double crochets, and in the first round to get even stitches, and with my ripping back and reworking, the yarn held up great. I attribute this to the acrylic. This yarn is comprised of 90% acrylic, and 10% alpaca, which means this yarn will have a good bounce back and stretch from both of these fibers, but it will also be more durable because of the acrylic, and feel better against the skin because of the alpaca, as long as the wearer isn't allergic.
Overall, it was a really nice yarn to work with. I have plenty left over to work up some swatches to test out in the wash for fuzz and shrinkage, and if all goes well, then I can't wait to use this yarn so more! It would be perfect for a scarf, cowl, coat, mittens or simply another hat.

Time Spent:
     Without adding the heart, I was able to work up my beret in just over two hours.

Measurements:
     This beret is designed to fit the average teen/woman.

My Gauge:
     12 HDC = 3 7/8" Wide (or 2 HDC = 5/8"), 10 Rows = 4 3/16" Tall

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Pattern Notes:
     First things, first. The pattern gauge is 3 half double crochets by 2 rows equals 1". As you can tell by my gauge above, mine is smaller than the patterns. Originally, the pattern suggests to use a J10/6mm crochet hook, but I did not meet gauge with a J hook. I tried the K hook next, and even tried an L11/8mm hook. Why I went with 12 half double crochets as my gauge base? I had to find a common multiple so that I could compare my gauge with that of the patterns. The width is very close, and that's why I picked the K hook. It's much easier to adjust the height, than the width.
To help with the gauge being a little off, I added one chain to the foundation chain of the band. At the end of the band, mine measured 17.5". Given that ribbing usually stretches about 4", I added two more rows to give me 18" long, to fit my 21.5" head. My band came out perfect, with room.

To work evenly into the band, if the rows are worked as written (66 rows), work single crochet into the first stitch, single crochet into the next stitch, skip the next stitch, and repeat the pattern around. In my case, I worked a single crochet decrease first, then continued in pattern until about half way, worked another decrease, and then finished in pattern. I also worked the next round with one single half double crochet in the first, and last stitches to be on track with the 90 stitches.
Going back to my gauge, my height was 4 3/16 after 10 rows, when it should have been 5". With a little math, I found that I would have needed to add two more rows to be closer to the 5" mark, so I added two rows to the body of my hat to better reach the height.

I also added another round after Round 17 of the crown, but of half double crochet all the way around, then I continued in pattern.
To close up the hat, you will weave your needle in and out of the last round, then pull tight, and weave in your end on the wrong side of the hat.
To add the stem, I first laid my beret flat, and positioned it so the back (joined part of the band) was on the top, then I placed the stem with the curved part towards the top, and point towards the bottom, with the base at an angle - about 10am and 4pm, if you know what I mean. I looked at the picture for some guidance, but it was a little hard to tell. You could position it any way you think is best. 
After the position was to my liking, I used my crochet hook to pull the ends down through the center round, tied the two ends in a square knot on the wrong side of the beret, then weaved in my ends.

Besides my trouble meeting gauge, this hat pattern was very straight forward, and easy to follow. There aren't any how to photos, but there is a video available if extra help is needed working up the beret.

I love that I was able to try a different yarn, one that I probably wouldn't have otherwise purchased. Even if I had tried this beret, I probably would have just used some of Hobby Lobby's I Love This Yarn out of my stash, so this was great.
This beret is so cute, and sweet. I love how it puckers from the decreases, and the fun little stem on top. This beret fits so wonderfully, and feels great against the skin. It would be an excellent gift, or make for yourself. It could easily be worked with, or without the cross stitch heart, depending on the look you are going for. I opted not to add the cross stitch heart to my beret only because I wanted to gift the beret, and I don't know how the heart would have gone over, but I knew the color was perfect!
If you do add the heart to yours, you may also like to work up a pair of my Cross Stitch Heart Earrings to match.


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