Universal-Islands-of-Adventure-Harry-Potter-Castle-9182-1

Master has given Dobby a scarf!

Greetings, fellow Muggles (and wizards, if you’re reading this!)

I saw this post on Inner Child Crochet and knew, of course, that I had to have my own Gryffindor scarf. (In case you weren’t aware, I’m a HUGE Harry Potter fan.) I’ve never crocheted with self-striping yarn before – it’s great because I hate weaving in ends, but I love stripes!

There was a small problem, though – it was going to take me forever to knit a scarf, and I didn’t have the right size knitting needles, and I don’t really enjoy knitting. So, I knew I had to find a crochet pattern. I saw a pattern that used Tunisian knit stitch, which I had been contemplating, but I was worried it would be too tight and therefore curl a lot. The solution – use a really big hook!

Here’s my finished scarf (and the worst photoshop job known to Muggle-kind). I’m planning on taking better pictures soon, but I couldn’t resist:

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I’m going to write down the modifications I did, for my own future reference – and yours, if you feel like it. This pattern isn’t anything new in the world of Harry Potter scarves, but what are blogs for if you can’t leave a note to your future self? :)

Materials

  • 1.5 skeins of Red Heart Team Spirit in burgundy/gold
  • L (8.00 MM) crochet hook

Modified Pattern

Row 1: Chain 15, pull up a loop in the 2nd ch and in each ch across. Do the return pass.

Row 2: Tunisian knit stitch in each st across.

Repeat this row over…and over…and over…until your scarf is as long as you want. Mine can wrap around my neck twice and still hang down to my waist (not counting the fringe.) With my gauge, each different-colored section of yarn got about 10 rows. When you’re joining the second skein just be careful the stripes match up! My scarf has 27 blocks of color. So that’s about 270 rows…and 3,780 stitches. Sirius-ly! (Sorry, that was a terrible pun.)

Fringe

I wrapped the yarn around a hardcover book a bunch of times and then cut one end. I hooked 3 strands at a time through the stitches, alternating colors – one gold tassel/fringe, one burgundy, etc.

Now I want to make the third-year-and-up version of the scarf – with large stripes of burgundy and smaller rows of gold! There’s always more to crochet as I watch more HP movies. :)

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Cinderella’s Wedding Dress ~ Free Crochet Pattern

After I posted Ella’s pink dress, Astri from Apple Blossom Dreams suggested that I crochet the wedding dress from ‘Cinderella’. I had actually already crocheted the dress, so I just needed to take some pictures and post it. Thanks, Astri! :)

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This dress took forever to design (because of the train), but it shouldn’t be too hard to crochet. You could make it without the flowers, which would be a lot faster, and then it would be a traditional Barbie wedding dress! I really like how it came out – it’s as close to the movie dress as I could get it. I hope you like it too. Next up is Lady Tremaine’s dress, as Fillie Fanatic suggested. So much to crochet! <3

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On a different topic, I absolutely love my Mattel Ella doll – isn’t she lovely? She came in her blue ball gown, which of course I adore:

I wonder how I could crochet this dress!

I wonder how I could crochet this dress!

Materials

  • 1 skein of worsted-weight yarn (I used Red Heart Super Saver in “White”) – but I actually think a DK weight would work better and give it more drape. I used worsted because that’s what I had.)
  • H (5.00 MM) crochet hook
  • Embroidery floss in the colors you want for flowers. I used yellow, pink, and blue, and about 1 hank of each…but I didn’t do a ton of flowers.
  • 2.1 MM crochet hook to make the flowers

Bodice

Row 1: Ch 7, sc in back bump of 2nd ch from hk and in each ch across.

From now on, you will be working through the front loops only, except on the last stitch of the row – work this one through both loops.

Row 2: Ch 1, turn, 2 sc in the first st, sc across.

Row 3-6: Ch 1, turn, sc across.

Row 7: Ch 1, turn, 2 sc in the first st, sc across.

Row 8: Ch 1, turn, sc across to the last st, 2 sc in the last st.

Row 9: Ch 1, turn, sc2tog, sc across.

Row 10: Ch 1, turn, sc across to last 2 sts, sc2tog.

Row 11-14: Ch 1, turn, sc across.

Row 15: Ch 1, turn, sc across to last 2 sts, sc2tog.

Fasten off and weave in ends.

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Skirt

Join the yarn to the bottom of the bodice (the side with the pointed half.) There are 15 spaces for you to work into on the first row.

Foundation Round: (Sc in next space, 2 sc in next space) 7 times, then sc in last space. Sl st to first sc.

Now we will be working in rows to make the length of the skirt, but to save sewing, we’ll join it to the foundation round as we go.

Row 1: Ch 24, dc in 3rd ch from hk and in next 9 ch, hdc in next 10 ch, sc in last ch, sl st in first 2 sts from the Foundation Round.

Row 2: Turn, sc in first st, hdc in next 10 sts, dc in next 10 sts.

Repeat rows 1 & 2 until you have used up all of the Foundation Round stitches. You should end up at the bottom of the skirt. Now we’ll do some short-rows to make the train.

Row 1: Ch 3, turn, dc in each st until there are 4 sts left, hdc 2, sc 1, sl st in last st.

Row 2: Turn, skip sl st, sc, hdc in next 2 sts, hdc in the rest of the stitches across the row.

Repeat Rows 1 and 2 until you have just the half-double crochets.

Hold the foundation ch-24 and the side of the short rows together. Carefully single crochet through both layers to join them. Sl st in the last st, fasten off and weave in ends.

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Train

Turn the dress inside out so the seam is not as prominent. Join the yarn 6 rows to the right of the single crochet seam.

Rnd 1: Ch 3, 2 dc in same side-space, 2 dc in each side-space around. You’ll be working around the posts of the double crochets and into your turning chains from the skirt. Sl st to first st.

Row 2: Ch 3, 2 tr in same st, tr in next st. *2 tr in next st, tr in next st* around, leaving last 22 sts unworked.

Row 3-4: Ch 1, turn, skip first st, sl st in next 3 sts. Ch 3, tr in same st and in each st across, leaving last 3 sts unworked.

Row 5: Ch 1, turn, skip first st, sl st in next 3 sts. Ch 3, tr in same st and in next 2 sts, 2 tr in next st, tr in next 3 sts, *2 tr in next st, tr in next 3 sts* across, leaving last 3 sts unworked.

Row 6-8: Repeat Row 3.

Row 9: Ch 1, turn, skip first st, sl st in next 3 sts. Ch 1, sc in same st, *ch 3, sc in next st* across, leaving last 3 sts unworked. Fasten off and weave in ends.

Flowers (make lots!)

Knotless ch 4, sl st to first ch to form a ring.

Rnd 1: Sc in ring without chaining first, ch 4, *sc in ring, ch 4* 5x, sl st into ring. Fasten off but don’t weave in ends.

Make lots of these flowers – I did 1 embroidery floss hank’s worth in blue, yellow, and pink. To attach, pull the loose ends to the back of the dress and triple-knot. Then trim off the ends. The inside will look funny, but the outside will look pretty and flowery! Eventually I got sick of making flowers, so I just did some on the top of the bodice and a couple columns up the front of the skirt. Ella’s wedding dress has a lot more…but you can do however many you want, or leave it plain for a normal Barbie wedding dress!

Are there any other dresses from Cinderella that you think I should crochet? I’m always happy to take suggestions. :) Now to figure out Lady Tremaine’s dress…

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Knit-Look Crochet Tutorial: How to do Third-Loop HDC in Rows

If that title sent you running, come back! It’s not rocket-science, although it can be hard to explain in words…which is why this post will be chock-full of pictures!

But first I want to mention what I’ll be using in this tutorial. Recently I went shopping with my lovely aunt and uncle, and they got me a pulchritudinous wooden hand-carved crochet hook. *cue squealing* I will be posting a “review” (really just me fangirling about this hook) soon, but all I can say is I’m absolutely in LOVE and I never want to crochet with anything else again. Thank you, Great and Auntie T.! 

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I’m sure some of you have heard of the magical third-loop half-double crochet (half-treble crochet for my UK friends). If you haven’t, check out this Moogly tutorial before you proceed. Basically, by working hdc into the “hidden” loop, you get a squishy, knit-look ribbing that looks like this:

Third-Loop HDC in rows

Third-Loop HDC in rows (these first 2 pictures have NOT been rotated – iPhoto didn’t want to cooperate)

I’ve seen this used in a lot of patterns, and I absolutely love it. But one thing always bothered me: the “ribs” are really far apart. Since you’re turning your work, every other row is facing away from the right side (RS). If you work in rounds, you can avoid this, but not every project is done in the round.

Third-Loop HDC in rounds

Third-Loop HDC in rounds

For ages I’ve wanted to figure out a way to do the 3rd Loop HDC in rows, and still have it look like the above picture. But since all my experiments failed, I stopped trying.

Until last Friday night, when I was aimlessly crocheting. I was double-crocheting and accidentally dropped the loop from my hook. It was far from the first time I’ve messed up while crocheting, but I still studied it for a minute.

A loop on the hook, a loop coming out of the next stitch, and a strand of yarn connecting them.

A loop on the hook, a loop coming out of the next stitch, and a strand of yarn connecting them.

If we’re looking at the Anatomy of a Half-Double Crochet, that connecting strand is what forms the third loop. It wraps over the hook like this:

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And then we put the hook into the stitch and pull up a loop (that pull-up-a-loop is the one sticking out in this picture):

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Then, to finish the hdc, we yarn over and pull through all 3 loops:

Hdc complete! You can see the third-loop in this picture.

Hdc complete! You can see the third-loop in this picture.

And another shot after I got carried away editing that picture:

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This is where my epiphany occurred. The third loop appears at the back of the stitch because that’s how we wrapped that “connecting” yarn around the hook. So if we wrapped it a different way, the third loop could end up at the front, without changing anything else about the stitch.

We’d have a fabric that looked like THIS:

Third-loop HDC in rows, alternating YO and YU

Third-loop HDC in rows, alternating YO and YU

Exciting, isn’t it? It opens up a whole new world of crochet st –

Wait, I see an opportunity…

Sorry! I cannot resist an opportunity to quote Disney movies!

Anyway, have I drawn this out long enough? Do you want me to stop monologuing and show you how to do the stitch? Very well, your wish is my command. :)

How to do Third-Loop HDC in Rows

I’d suggest starting with a row of Foundation HDC, because it makes the first row look a lot better. But if you really don’t want to do that, then chain the # of stitches you want for your project, then add 2. I’d try 12 for making a swatch. Then hdc in the 3rd ch from your hook and in each ch across.

Whichever method you choose, this will be the RIGHT SIDE of your work. Mark it with a safety pin/stitch marker/random scrap of yarn you found on the floor if that makes it easier.

Wrong-Side Rows: Chain 2 and turn, then yarn-under hdc across in the third loop of the previous hdc. Don’t panic, here are some step-by-step pictures:

At the end of the first row (I did 10 foundation half double crochets.)

At the end of the first row (I did 10 foundation half double crochets.)

You're going to be sticking your hook under the third-loop of that last HDC (marked by the helpful purple paperclip.)

You’re going to be sticking your hook under the third-loop of that last HDC (marked by the helpful purple paperclip.)

But first we need to Yarn Under (hereinafter referred to as

But first we need to Yarn Under (hereinafter referred to as “YU”.) So pull the yarn up and over the hook as shown.

Then stick your hook into the indicated stitch.

Then stick your hook into the indicated stitch.

This next step is kind of odd, but basically, you'll be yarning OVER - except since you just yarn UNDERed, it will look a bit strange. Just make sure it looks like this picture, and you'll be good.

This next step is kind of odd, but basically, you’ll be yarning OVER – except since you just yarn UNDERed, it will look a bit strange. Just make sure it looks like this picture, and you’ll be good.

Then pull up a loop. This and the next picture are some in-progress shots.

Then pull up a loop. This and the next picture are some in-progress shots.

Another in-progress picture.

Another in-progress picture.

Finished with three loops on the hook. In a normal hdc, the middle loop will be slanted from back to front, but see how it's going from front to back? That's how you can tell it's a YU hdc.

Finished with three loops on the hook. In a normal hdc, the middle loop will be slanted from back to front, but see how it’s going from front to back? That’s how you can tell it’s a YU hdc. To finish the stitch, yarn over and pull through ALL THREE LOOPS.

So do YU HDCs all the way to the end of the row. But the last stitch will be a little different because you want to put the hook under two loops, so it doesn’t stretch out. I took a picture of this, but the picture mysteriously disappeared, so I hope this makes sense. You can use a random loop from the front of the hdc – it’s fairly intuitive if you’re doing it. If you can’t figure out the two-loop thing, don’t worry about it…there might be some bigger spaces along the side, but nothing life-threatening. (I don’t think crochet is life-threatening anyway, unless you’re allergic to yarn – or if you’re crocheting while you walk and fall off a cliff or something. But I digress.)

Now for the Right-Side Rows: Chain 2, turn, hdc in the third loop across, making last stitch as described above.

Chain 2, turn, yarn over and put your hook into the indicated stitch (thank you, purple paperclip!)

Chain 2, turn, yarn over and put your hook into the indicated stitch (thank you, purple paperclip!)

Here's a picture showing the two loops you should use at the end of the row. :)

Here’s a picture showing the two loops you should use at the end of the row. :)

After three rows, the ribs are already forming!

After three rows, here’s what it looks like for me. I love Lucy yarn! :)

Just keep repeating these two rows for as long as you want…and that’s it!

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I hope this all made sense, and I didn’t bore you with my ramblings – I just wanted to share my accidental discovery with you all. :) Now I’m off to work on some blog-related things…hope you have a wonderful day filled with yarn and chocolate!

Photo on 6-12-15 at 2.42 PM #3

June Headband ~ Free Crochet Pattern

Hello, fellow crocheters! It’s time for a new free pattern, but this time it’s NOT for Barbies, guinea pigs, or trees. That’s right – it’s something a human could wear. Or anything with a roundish head, like busts of Beethoven. But more on that in a minute.

I was looking for the Perfect Headband Pattern. I had several things I was looking for…

  • It had to use worsted weight yarn,
  • be easily embellish-able (that’s a word, right?),
  • use the linen stitch,
  • have ties in the back (because I hate having buttons get stuck on my hair!),
  • be easily adjustable,
  • and be super simple.

I decided to make my own pattern, which I present to you here. I’m awful at naming stuff, but it just so happens that I love the name June, and it is June! Problem solved.

Photo on 6-12-15 at 2.42 PM #3

Materials

  • Small amount of worsted weight yarn (I’m bad at estimating yardage, but definitely less than 50 yards)
  • J (6.00 MM) crochet hook
  • If you want to make some embellishments, I used a G (4.00 MM) crochet hook and some random worsted weight yarn

Note: This headband can be made with any hook/yarn combination because it’s easy to add or subtract rows to get your desired length. A couple of suggestions are if you’re using DK weight yarn, a H hook would probably work well, and if you wanted to try bulky yarn, maybe an 8 or 10 MM? Those are just starting points, though. I wanted my stitches to be looser so I used a larger hook.

Remember when I was talking about busts of Beethoven?…

Beethoven looks really pleased with me, doesn't he? ;)

Beethoven looks really pleased with me, doesn’t he? ;)

First tie

Chain 40 —

Picture from

Picture from “Frozen”.

Sorry, how did that happen? ;) Okay, let’s try this for real:

First tie

Make a chain as long as you want the tie to be. (I chained 40.)

Row 1: Make 2 sc in the second chain from the hook. (2 stitches)

Row 2: Chain 1, turn. Make 2 sc in both stitches. (4 stitches)

Row 3: Chain 1, turn. Make 2 sc in the first st. Sc in the middle two stitches. Make 2 sc in the last stitch. (6 stitches)

Row 4: Chain 2, turn. Skip the first stitch and sc in the next stitch. *Chain 1, skip next stitch, sc in next st* two times.

Main part of headband

Row 5 and onward: Chain 2, turn. Skip the first stitch and sc in the next chain space. *Chain 1, sc in next chain space* two times.

Repeat Row 5 until the headband is about 2 inches shorter than the length you want. Make sure you stretch it out before you measure.

Second tie

Row 1: Chain 1, turn. *Sc in the first stitch, sc in the next chain space.* Repeat from * to * two times. (6 stitches)

Row 2: Chain 1, turn. Skip the first stitch. Sc in the next two stitches. Skip the next stitch and sc in the last stitch. (4 stitches)

Row 3: Chain 1, turn. Skip the first stitch. Sc in the next stitch. Skip the next stitch and sc in the last stitch. (2 stitches)

Row 4: Chain 1, turn. Skip the first stitch and sc in the last stitch.

Make a chain as long as the first tie you made (I chained 40.) Fasten off.

If you make sure the final knot is very tight, you don’t have to weave in the ends. Just trim them off about 1/2 inch away from the knot.

Photo on 6-12-15 at 3.04 PM

Embellishments

I did the coiled rose from Pink Milk – one big version in orange and one small version in red. Then I used the “Medium Fat Bottomed Leaf”, again copying Pink Milk. :) You could keep it plain for an everyday headband or cover it in flowers for a flower crown. I think a granny rose would look great on one of these – especially since it’s flatter! (And is there ever a time that wouldn’t be made better with crochet roses?)

Download the PDF

Click that link ^^^ to get a PDF copy of this pattern. I think it might be written a little differently because it was my first draft, but it will still work!

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I hope you’re having a wonderful June day!

Queen Levana

Mirror, mirror on the wall…

Warning: shameless book promotion and monologuing ahead! (And, of course, crochet.)

I’m a huge fan of the Lunar Chronicles series by Marissa Meyer. I was first drawn to the series because the third book, Cress, is a Rapunzel retelling, and I love all things Rapunzel. In any case, there was a fanart contest to celebrate the release of the fourth book, Fairest, and the prize was a ticket to the launch party. The trouble was, I’m no artist, but I really really wanted that prize.

*whispers* This contest took place back in December, I think, but I’m just now posting about it!

Spoiler alert: I didn’t win. But I did have a lot of fun with my entry, which I’ll present to you in a bit.

The prompt was to create a portrait of what you think Queen Levana looks like. A slight bit of background for you non-Lunartics: All of the books are based on fairy tales, and Queen Levana is the evil queen (think Snow White). Nobody knows what she looks like, because she can “glamour” herself into looking gorgeous. A lot of the time she wears a veil over her face. This was quite the challenge, but I eventually decided to make an amigurumi version of her.

And here she is!

Queen Levana

For the basic doll, I used my Katniss Amigurumi pattern, but I used fingering weight yarn and a 2.1 MM crochet hook. The dress was made with Aunt Lydia’s Crochet Thread, and the veil was some of my hand-spun yarn in a love knot pattern. I’m especially pleased with the hair, because it looks rather hair-like, I think. I used this tutorial, which took forever, but it was worth it!

I figured Queen Levana wasn’t ugly, but that she wasn’t gorgeous either, so that’s what I was going for. I’m not going to spoil anything, but if you read Fairest, you’ll see whether or not I was right! This series has my most enthusiastic recommendations, in case you couldn’t tell. :)

That’s all for today – now I’m off to work on a new crochet pattern!

Photo on 6-4-15 at 2.46 PM

8 Reasons Why I Love Lion Brand Bonbons

I went to Joann Fabrics today, and Lion Brand Bonbons were on clearance for $4. Normally they’re $8! So I couldn’t pass up this opportunity to get some cute little tiny skeins of yarn.

I was thinking about why I love this yarn so much and realized there are a lot of reasons. So just for fun, here are 8 reasons why I love Bonbons (8 reasons because there are 8 skeins of yarn in each package!)

This isn’t a sponsored post – I genuinely love this yarn and want to share it with the world. (The love, not the yarn. I’m not sharing the yarn. :) )

Photo on 6-4-15 at 2.46 PM

1. They’re adorable!

Honestly, that’s probably everyone’s first thought when they see them in stores, right? “Look at the baby skeins of yarn!” Nothing’s quite as cute as itty bitty skeins of yarn. You definitely have the cute factor wherever you put them, whether it’s in the package, in a glass bowl, or in your hands.

2. You get 8 colors in a package.

I like this because you can do a project that requires a lot of colors but not a lot of yardage. Usually I veer away from colorful projects because you have to buy a lot of yarn – try buying 10 skeins of yarn and using only a tiny bit of each! Bonbons are perfect for colorful, small projects.

3. The colors go well together.

This is a big one because I love colors, but I’m really bad at creating good color combinations! Take Lucy of Attic24’s beautiful afghans, for example – I could never put those colors together on my own, that’s why she sells yarn packs with the exact colors she used. In a pack of Bonbons, the colors were picked to go well with each other – and they have lots of different palettes. I saw some sparkly holiday-colored yarn and a spring-like pack just on my short trip today.

4. They come in different weights.

My first pack of Bonbons was sport weight, and the one I just got is worsted. So you can pick the weight you’re in the mood for!

5. They come in different fibers.

I’m generally an acrylic kind of person (wool sensitivities really narrow the yarn selection), but I know Bonbons also come in cotton, so that would be good for dishcloths and the like.

6. It’s a pretty good deal!

Think about it – 8 mini skeins for about $8 is a dollar a mini skein. If you get them on discount, even better! Sometimes you really only need a few yards of each color, so it would be cost-prohibitive to buy a regular-size skein. I firmly believe it’s worth every penny just to see the adorable skeins of yarn in person. ;)

7. There are lots of patterns available.

Well, maybe not a ton, but I can think of several patterns off the top of my head that specifically call for Lion Brand Bonbons. I did a little research and found a bunch more, too! I’m thinking about making some rings or maybe a necklace. Also, I think these bangles would be adorable…

8. They make a good gift.

I actually received two packs of Bonbons as a gift, not at the same time. I can tell you firsthand that it completely made my day, so if you know a yarn crafter, this would be a fantastic present for them. Also, this would be cool for a crochet class, if you were teaching people how to change colors.

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We haven’t had a poll here in a while, so how about this?

I hope you’re all having a wonderful, yarn-filled day. I know this post was kind of random, but it was fun! I hope to be back soon with more patterns. :)

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What do you call an octopus who likes to take pictures of itself?

A selfie-pod!

Hehe.

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Do you ever have one of those ideas that takes hold of your entire being and won’t let you rest until you’ve fulfilled it? Yesterday evening I was seized with the urge to crochet a giant cephalopod. Some ideas are like a lightbulb, this one was more like a cannon blast from outer space.

So I grabbed three skeins of worsted-weight yarn, a giant 10 MM hook, and my favorite cephalopod pattern, and set to work. I had to take a few breaks because my wrist was paining me (it’s hard work crocheting on that large of a scale!) but this was still a pretty quick project. I stuffed it with some spare fleece to save stuffing.

For the eyes, I did a variation on dragonsashes’s Toothless eye pattern. I did the same thing as in this post, which you can view for my exact modifications, if you’re so inclined. Then I let the cephalopod take over the camera, and this is what happened!

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I’ve always wanted to make an up-sized amigurumi, so I’m glad I finally did it.

Now I need to name it – any name suggestions? :)

I hope you’re having a wonderful, cephalopod-filled day! (Yarn cephalopods, that is. It would be terrifying if the sky started pouring down squids…)

P.S. You can check out some more cephalopods I made from this pattern {here} (and think about making your own #amiselfie!)

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DIY Guinea Pig Top Hat!

We’ve all seen those adorable-animal pictures circulating the internet…you know, the ones with bunnies in sweaters, or dogs in little hats? I’ve even taken some myself (each of those is a link.) But it hadn’t occurred to me to put the Calico Critter Top Hat on a guinea pig…and I’m so glad I did!

Olive in her stylish new top hat

“Don’t I look stylish in my new hat?”

You can check out the original pattern here. Since I’ve made a few adjustments to the pattern, and now it’s being modeled on a guinea pig! – I made a tutorial so you, too, can make a top hat for your guinea pig (or rabbit…or hamster*…or whatever!) I’ve also included more information on selecting yarn, in case that’s helpful. *For the hamster top hat, use a 3 MM crochet hook and follow the same pattern, but do double crochets in the bow instead of triples. It’s hard to crochet so tightly, but the sizing is more accurate.

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Materials

  • Red Heart Soft yarn. You can try using other kinds of worsted-weight too, but if you’re making several of these hats, it’s best to use the same brand so you have the same gauge. Some Unknown-3worsted-weight yarns seem to be a lot thicker than others (for example, Caron Simply Soft is on the thinner side while Red Heart Super Saver and I Love This Yarn are on the thicker. Red Heart Soft seems to be in the middle.) There are two kinds of Red Heart Soft, the normal type and then “Red Heart Baby Soft.” I used mostly Baby Soft for the color palette (pastels.) You need the hat color and then white for the bow (or whatever color you like, but I find white is nice and clean-looking.)
  • F (3.75 MM) crochet hook
  • Stitch marker (yarn scrap, paper clip, safety pin…)
  • Yarn needle (if you have a sharper one rather than a dull tapestry needle, it makes the sewing easier)
  • Guinea pig! (optional)

Stitches Used

I use US crochet terms in all of my patterns. Here are the stitches used in this pattern with their abbreviations. Chain (ch) = Chain Slip Stitch (sl st) US Single Crochet (sc) = UK Double Crochet US Double Crochet (dc) = UK Treble Crochet US Triple/Treble Crochet (tr) = UK Double-Treble Crochet I also used an Invisible Join at the end of the top hat, to keep things neater. I learned it from Mrs. Micawber’s excellent tutorial, which you should definitely check out!

Top Hat

IMG_3117 Make a Magic Ring, ch 1. (If you’d prefer to not use a Magic Ring, then you can ch 2 and make 7 sc in the 2nd ch from the hook, but I like magic rings because they leave no center hole.) IMG_3118 Make 7 sc into the ring, do not join. We’ll be working in a spiral, so put a stitch marker on the loop on your hook and keep moving it at the end of each round. Rnd 2: 2 sc in each st around (12 sts.) IMG_3120 Rnd 3: *Sc in next st, 2 sc in next st.* Repeat around (18 stitches.) You’re going to slip stitch to the next stitch, indicated in the above picture. IMG_3121 Then chain 1. The purpose of this is so the back-loop ridge will appear in a straight line, rather than staggered because of the spiral. So the next round will be single crochet in the back loops, starting in the next stitch, then we’ll continue in the spiral (until the brim.)

Single crochet in the back loop

Single crochet in the back loop

Rnd 4: Sc around in the back loops only. Rnd 5-8: Sc around in both loops. IMG_3124 Rnd 9: *Sc in next st, sc2tog* around. (12 sts) Slip stitch into the next stitch, indicated by the helpful arrow above… IMG_3125 …and pull the slip stitch tight. Just yank the yarn until the sl st disappears, which will make it invisible (or nearly.) IMG_3126 Rnd 10: Ch 2. Starting in the same st, 2 dc in each st around, through front loops only. IMG_3127 When you get back to the beginning, we’ll be working in a spiral again, so skip the ch-2 and start in the first double crochet, which is indicated by the arrow – I can’t even draw a straight arrow! :) IMG_3128 Rnd 11: Don’t join or chain or anything; just do *sc in next st, 2 sc in next st* (so increasing in every other stitch around.) Then use an invisible join, skipping over the next stitch and joining to the following one. That keeps the stitch count even. IMG_3129 Thanks, Mrs. Micawber, for your fabulous Invisible Join tutorials! :) IMG_3130 Then you just need to weave in the final end, if you crocheted over the first one as you went. I weave mine through the base of the dc row, for about half of the hat. If you turn it around and weave back the other way it makes it sturdier. Realistically, though, you don’t have to make it too secure – it’s a guinea pig top hat! (Unless you have a sumo-wrestling or super-hero guinea pig that needs a really sturdy hat.)

The Bow (because bows make everything better!)

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Using the same size hook and yarn, make a magic ring and ch 4. Make 3 triple crochets into the ring, ch 3 and sl st into the ring. Ch 3, make 3 triple crochets into the ring, ch 3, sl st into the ring. Ch 1 and fasten off, leaving a 2-foot-ish tail. IMG_3132 Then wrap the ends around the center about 5-6 times. I tie them in a double-knot at the back and then weave one of them in, leaving the other one to sew the bow to the top hat. IMG_3133 Then you’ve made your own guinea pig top hat! Yay! The last thing I do is to cut a 9-ish-inch piece of round elastic and tie it to the hat. It’s easy if you use the spare loops you created while making the brim. I fold it in half so the bow’s at the front so I can easily see where to attach it. Just a single knot will do the trick; then it’s adjustable too. IMG_3268 My next mission is to write a pattern for these guinea pig bunny ears! Congratulations if you made it to the end of this very long post. Are there any other tutorials that you’d like to see? Happy crocheting!

Pour mes suiveurs français (For my French followers)

Hi! WordPress is being weird; I tried to post this a minute ago but it showed up as being posted on April 21! Sorry if you got two email notifications for this post. 

Bonjour tout le monde ! Dans ma classe de français, j’ai dû faire un guide pratique en français. J’ai choisi d’écrire au sujet de « laine-bombarder. » Je présente le livre ici, si vous parlez français et voudriez faire un pull-over pour vos arbres.  Je suis un peu nerveuse à propos de poster ça ; mon français n’est pas parfait, mais j’éspère que vous pouvez me comprendre !

Hi everyone! In my French class, I had an assignment to write a how-to book in French. I decided to write about yarn-bombing. I’m uploading the book here, in case you speak French and want to make a sweater for your trees. I’m a little nervous about posting this; my French isn’t perfect but I hope it’s understandable! Click here for the tutorial in English.

Cliquez ici pour voir le livre (click hère to see it):

COMMENT LAINE-BOMBARDER UN ARBRE

J’éspère que vous l’aimez! (Hope you like it!) Ditez-moi si vous voulez encore de postes en français.  :)

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Granny Rose CAL Part 1 & 2 💐

You may remember me posting about Apple Blossom Dreams’ crochet-a-long before, here – that was for the “Rockman Afghan” CAL, but prior to that, I followed along with her Granny Rose CAL and made a pillow. Well, suffice it to say that I am over-the-moon excited about the SECOND Granny Rose CAL! *throws granny rose confetti*

The first post was about gathering supplies, and Astri said she used Stylecraft Special DK. For once I had the same yarn; I had received the Lucy yarn pack for my birthday and was looking for the perfect project to make with it. Here’s a picture of my yarn – aren’t the colors amazing? I’m terrible at choosing colors, so I was glad that Lucy did the color-choosing for me. :D

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I remembered the granny rose pattern from the first CAL, so I set to work. I’m using all of the colors except the dark green in the bottom row – that will be for the leaves. (Fingers crossed I have enough! It’s on back-order at Wool Warehouse and I just have this one skein.) I’m doing the different-colored center, and Astri has some great tips in her blog post here.

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I’m doing a few things differently, though:

  • I decided to do knotless ch 4, sl st to form a ring, instead of a magic ring. After the afghan unraveling disaster, I figured this would be more secure (especially since I’m kind of terrible at weaving in ends securely!)
  • After I made the center and did the chain-loop round with the contrasting color, I crocheted over all 3 ends so I wouldn’t have to weave them in later. (In case you hadn’t gathered, I detest weaving in ends and will go to great lengths to avoid it.) I think it will be sturdy enough since I’m crocheting over them for the entire round.
  • I’m also making the centers mostly all in one go, then doing the outer petals. Sometimes I get too excited and make a few complete flowers, though. ;)

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If you’ve never done a crochet-a-long before, it’s super fun, and Astri is wonderful – you should totally join in if you can! :) Now I’m off to make some more granny roses… 🌹

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