snowy field image

snowy field image

Sunday, March 27, 2016

Crochet Rose Applique


I don't normally buy crochet patterns.  Half the fun is figuring out how to make what I want.  Once in a while, though, I find something really pretty that someone has put a lot of time and effort into.  I found some really beautiful and intricate flower patterns on etsy a few weeks ago and I've been making tons of little rose appliques.  I was really impressed by how realistic her flower patterns are.  They call for very fine thread (size 20 crochet thread) which helps get that shaping.  Here's a link to the pattern that I bought:

The shop is Happy Patty Crochet and she has tons of amazing flower patterns.

While the pattern is easily accessible, size 20 crochet thread can be hard to find for a good price in the colors you want.  I've ended up trying out a few alternatives.  Embroidery floss and thread for friendship bracelets have turned out to be some pretty good options.  The main benefit of course is the color availability.  Easily hundreds of colors in solids, variegated, metallics, etc, but in order to get the correct size for a 1mm hook, you need to work with just 2 strands held together, so there's a lot of thread separating to do.  For the friendship thread, you need to separate the two strands that are twisted together, which weakens the thread and can cause it to break if you're not really careful.

The rose in the photo above is made with three colors of friendship thread.  In the last picture is the thread before separating the two strands.  Once separated, the strands have a fuzzy soft quality that squishes the stitches together.  I really like how the final piece comes out, but the thread does break a lot so it's a pain to work with.

I love making really small projects and this finished flower is about 1 1/2 inches across.  Really fun!

Sunday, March 13, 2016

How to Crochet Garter Stitch

Like many crocheters, I'm fascinated by crochet stitches that look knitted.  There are plenty of patterns for recreating stockinette but I've never seen one for garter.  I had a happy little accident today and figured out one way to do it.

This is worked in tunisian crochet and is very simple to do.  Chain any number you like and then pick up stitches in the chain back across.  I like to pick up stitches in the bump of the chain.  Work back pulling through 2 loops at a time like you normally would. When you go to pick up stitches in the next row, I pick up the stitches through the back bump loops on top instead of the vertical bars.  This is what creates the look of the garter stitch.  You're always working on the backside of the piece, so you'll need to turn it over to see how it's going.

Here's the crochet swatch next to one that is actually knitted:

Crochet on the left, knitting on the right.
Not exactly sure why I find this so exciting considering I know how to knit as well, but it was fun to play around with.