Tuesday, 28 June 2016

Frida's Flowers CAL - Block 7 - Frida's Bouquet

The Seventh Instalment of the Frida's Flowers Blanket Crochet-Along, designed by Jane Crowfoot and hosted by Stylecraft Yarns has just been posted, and is available to download NOW from the Stylecraft website, in English (US and UK), German and Dutch.


The Ravelry pattern page can be found here: http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/fridas-flowers-blanket 

We are working the CAL along with you all (in the Classique Cotton, provided by the wonderful Stylecraft team), and will post our tips and tricks for each part at the same time as the pattern is published over at the Stylecraft website. If you have any questions or need help, there are Facebook groups (English: https://www.facebook.com/groups/1555519964767343/ , German: https://www.facebook.com/groups/1039765272753087/ and Dutch:https://www.facebook.com/groups/145851979128898/ ),
and you are always welcome to leave a comment here or ask us on Facebook.
 

As you know, Anne is doing the German translations for the CAL, so ask away in German too!

So, Block 7 - Frida's Bouquet:


Front
Back
You'll need to make 5 hexagons.

Yarn usage:
22g Sunflower (41m)
7g Plum (13m)
11g Poppy (20m)

9g Shrimp (17m)
14g Teal (26m)
22g Leaf (41m)

29g Ivory (53m)
40g Black (74m)
2g Greek Blue (4m)

Remember: We are using the Classique Cotton, so use the meterage above if you are making Frida in another DK yarn.

Here's a little spreadsheet tool that Michelle is using to track yarn usage - just enter your start and finish weights for your yarns, and then the weight and meterage used will be automatically calculated! 



A little note on yarn usage - for the border, you will need almost a full ball of Black, half a ball of Poppy and half a ball of Shrimp. If you haven't joined your hexagons yet, keep in mind that you can use other colours to join and create a gorgeous design on the back of your Frida as well! 

Our Top Tips for the Frida's Bouquet block:

1. In Row 5, when you need to work 1sc, 5ch, 1sc into the turning chain at the tip of the leaf, just work into the front loop! It's much easier, and looks the same in the end.


2. In Row 6, the central sc of the 3sc group that you need to work into is the one between the leaves.


3. Bullion stitches again! I wrapped the yarn around my hook 4 times instead of 5 for these smaller bullions that are closer together. 

See last week's photo tutorial if you need a bit of help with these stitches! 

http://crochetbetweentwoworlds.blogspot.com/2016/06/fridas-flowers-cal-block-6-ring-of-roses.html



You should be able to hide the ends fairly neatly underneath Row 1 :)  


For our tips from previous weeks, visit:




We're nearly there! Next time we will be finishing any joining not done yet (I left mine until the very end), and then the gorgeously simple border.  

Happy hooking! Don't hesitate to comment, visit a Facebook group or ask Anne or Michelle on Facebook if you need any help :D

Tuesday, 14 June 2016

Frida's Flowers CAL - Block 6 - Ring of Roses

The Sixth Instalment of the Frida's Flowers Blanket Crochet-Along, designed by Jane Crowfoot and hosted by Stylecraft Yarns has just been posted, and is available to download NOW from the Stylecraft website, in English (US and UK), German and Dutch.

If you haven't set up a Ravelry project yet, the pattern page can be found here: http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/fridas-flowers-blanket 

We are working the CAL along with you all (in the Classique Cotton, provided by the wonderful Stylecraft team), and will post our tips and tricks for each part at the same time as the pattern is published over at the Stylecraft website. If you have any questions or need help, there are Facebook groups (English: https://www.facebook.com/groups/1555519964767343/ , German: https://www.facebook.com/groups/1039765272753087/ and Dutch:https://www.facebook.com/groups/145851979128898/ ),
and you are always welcome to leave a comment here or ask us on Facebook.
 

As you know, Anne is doing the German translations for the CAL, so ask away in German too!

So, Block 6 - Ring of Roses:


Front
Back

You'll need to make 6 hexagons.

Yarn usage:
17g Sunflower (32m)
15g Plum (28m)
24g Poppy (44m)

22g Shrimp (41m)
19g Teal (35m)
24g Leaf (44m)

22g Ivory (41m)
58g Black (107m)

Remember: We are using the Classique Cotton, so use the meterage above if you are making Frida in another DK yarn.

Here's a little spreadsheet tool that Michelle is using to track yarn usage - just enter your start and finish weights for your yarns, and then the weight and meterage used will be automatically calculated! 




Our Top Tips for the Ring of Roses block:

We are starting to get some repetition in stitch sequences and techniques, so make sure you check out our tips for previous blocks too! (links are below this week's tips)

1. I felt like I was going super slow this week - remember you need to make 6 hexagons so it'll take 50% longer!! 

Be kind to yourself! You're making more pieces, and the patterns are getting increasingly complicated too!

2. Use standing stitches to start rows instead of joining your yarn and chaining.

I know I know, I'm a broken record on this - but standing stitches instead of chains has made my crochet work much neater! 

Tutorial for Standing Double Crochet:
http://www.mooglyblog.com/standing-double-crochet-joining/

Tutorial for Standing Single Crochet: http://mrsmicawber.blogspot.com.au/2012/09/knotless-standing-single-crochet.html 

3. In Row 5, we need to fpdc into some of the sc of Row 2, to outline the petals. The easiest way to figure out which stitch to work around is to find the single sc that lies below the edge of the petal, and then fpdc around every second one. 

In the picture below, I have marked the alternating 1sc and 2sc pattern of Row 2 - you can see how the fpdc is worked around every second 1sc :) You can totally use the stitch markers like it says in the pattern, but this was just as simple for me!


4. The Bullion Stitches (*dramatic music*)

I am not an embroiderer. It took me so long (and much unpicking and curse words) to figure this one out, including reading the pattern a million times and googling for bullion stitch tutorials on youtube. So, here is a step by step photo and word tutorial of how I did it! I hope it helps you if you are not an experienced embroiderer either :)

Step 1: Stick your needle in from the back to the front of your work, leaving a good sized tail to weave in later. Then, wrap the yarn around your hook 5 times close to where it pops out of your work. 


Step 2: Insert the pointy end of your needle under the next stitch and back out to the front again.


Step 3: Veeeeerrry gently, pull your needle through. You might need to ease the wrapped loops off with your fingers to keep them neat while allowing the eye of the needle to pass through. Ta dah! Bullion stitch done :D


Repeat steps 1 to 3 until you get to the end of the round - you'll have a bullion stitch sitting on top of every second dc of Row 1! It looks best if you do it exactly the same way each time. 

Weave your ends in very carefully and securely - I found I could hide the yellow fairly easily in the sc of Row 2. 

5.  In Round 11, the 3sc corner goes into first dc of the second 5dc group (i.e. immediately after central white petal of round 9). The stitch you skip after the sc into the tip of your leaf is the first dc of the second 4dc group.




Happy hooking! Don't hesitate to comment, visit a Facebook group or ask Anne or Michelle on Facebook if you need any help :D

Tuesday, 31 May 2016

Frida's Flowers CAL - Block 5 - Heart Rose

The Fifth Instalment of the Frida's Flowers Blanket Crochet-Along, designed by Jane Crowfoot and hosted by Stylecraft Yarns has just been posted, and is available to download NOW from the Stylecraft website, in English (US and UK), German and Dutch.


If you haven't set up a Ravelry project yet, the pattern page can be found here: http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/fridas-flowers-blanket 

We are working the CAL along with you all (in the Classique Cotton, provided by the wonderful Stylecraft team), and will post our tips and tricks for each part at the same time as the pattern is published over at the Stylecraft website. If you have any questions or need help, there are Facebook groups (English: https://www.facebook.com/groups/1555519964767343/ , German: https://www.facebook.com/groups/1039765272753087/ and Dutch:https://www.facebook.com/groups/145851979128898/ ),
and you are always welcome to leave a comment here or ask us on Facebook.
 

As you know, Anne is doing the German translations for the CAL, so ask away in German too!


So, Block 5 - Heart Rose:



Front
Back
You'll need to make 4 hexagons.

Yarn usage:
11g Sunflower (21m)
8g Plum (15m)
22g Poppy (41m)

9g Shrimp (17m)
8g Teal (15m)
18g Leaf (33m)

8g Mauve (15m)
15g Ivory (28m)
39g Black (72m)

Remember: We are using the Classique Cotton, so use the meterage above if you are making Frida in another DK yarn.

Here's a little spreadsheet tool that Michelle is using to track yarn usage - just enter your start and finish weights for your yarns, and then the weight and meterage used will be automatically calculated! 





Our Top Tips for the Heart Rose Block:


1. In Round 3, starting with either 2ch or a standing hdc can be tricky! 


I recommend that you start in the next stitch with a standing dc, dc in same stitch, continuing according to the pattern around. Don't forget to finish with an hdc in 2nd dc (the one the pattern says to do at the start!), and join to standing dc to finish the round.




2. In Round 5, instead of trying to work into the top of the sc (which is kind of behind where you're working), work into the left two legs of the sc (like in the stacked standing dc).






3. In Round 6, try finishing the picot by slipstitching into the side of the last dc rather than back into the first chain. I find this looks neater and gives me a less twisted looking picot!




4. In Round 11, note that the 3sc corner goes into first dc of the second 5dc group (i.e. immediately after central white petal of round 9). The stitch you skip after the hdc into the picot of Round 6 is the first dc of the second 4dc group (i.e. over the sc stitches of Rounds 7, 8 and 9.





For our tips from previous weeks, visit:

Block 1: http://crochetbetweentwoworlds.blogspot.com.au/2016/04/fridas-flowers-cal-block-1-white-cosmos.html

Block 2: http://crochetbetweentwoworlds.blogspot.com.au/2016/04/fridas-flowers-cal-block-2-dahlia-bud.html


Block 3: http://crochetbetweentwoworlds.blogspot.com.au/2016/05/fridas-flowers-cal-block-3-bird-of.html


Block 4: http://crochetbetweentwoworlds.blogspot.com/2016/05/fridas-flowers-cal-block-4-rosa.html


Happy hooking! Don't hesitate to comment, visit a Facebook group or ask Anne or Michelle on Facebook if you need any help :D

Thursday, 26 May 2016

Ghost Times!

Hi!

How are you doing these days? Life is busy for me but I try to embrace this fact. Fortunately I can squeeze some crochet time in - not as much as I want but some! New to the usual life, a new rowing machine is "stealing" my crochet time. My husband and I are trying to get fitter and thus a water rower moved into our flat. The rowing is good fun and the swishing sound of the water is so soothing! 



I am crocheting for fundraising again. Some of our readers might remember the Villigst Blanket I made two years ago. This time I am making little ghost which people can "buy" for a donation to non-material support (= such as summer schools or study abroad). They can be "bought" for 25 € and 100% of this money will be donated - I am donating my crochet time and the craft materials. 


The current and former scholarship holders often talk about the "Villigster Geist" / "Villigster Ghost or Spirit" which connects them and thus I crocheted a ghost for a prize for a fundraiser at the annual Pentecost meeting. Some people asked if I could crochet a ghost for them as well and here I am making more amigurumi ghosts! The adventures of the ghosts can be followed under the hashtag #geistreichmitvilligst on Instagram. The hashtag plays with the German word for witty (geistreich). In a literal translation witty means "full of ghost/spirit". :D


The pattern is from Crafteando and easy to follow. :) I hate sewing on the arms and thus I am thinking about crocheting them on in future ghosts. I also changed the little bow and made it bigger. :) 


I love how each little ghost turns out a little different and thus special!! Fingers crossed many more of  these ghosts will be ordered!


What are you crafting these days?

Take care
Anne

Tuesday, 17 May 2016

Frida's Flowers CAL - Block 4 - Rosa

Hi!

Can you believe we are already in week four of the CAL? Time is certainly flying by! :)


The Fourth Instalment of the Frida's Flowers Blanket Crochet-Along, designed by Jane Crowfoot and hosted by Stylecraft Yarns has just been posted, and is available to download NOW from the Stylecraft website, in English (US and UK), German and Dutch.




If you haven't set up a Ravelry project yet, the pattern page can be found here: http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/fridas-flowers-blanket 
We are working the CAL along with you all (in the Classique Cotton, provided by the wonderful Stylecraft team), and will post our tips and tricks for each part at the same time as the pattern is published over at the Stylecraft website. If you have any questions or need help, there are Facebook groups (English: https://www.facebook.com/groups/1555519964767343/ , German: https://www.facebook.com/groups/1039765272753087/ and Dutch:https://www.facebook.com/groups/145851979128898/ ),

and you are always welcome to leave a comment here or ask us on Facebook. As you know, Anne is doing the German translations for the CAL, so ask away in German too!


So, Block 4 - Rosa:



Front
Back
You'll need to make 4 hexagons.

Yarn usage:
11g Sunflower (21m)
7g Plum (13m)
12g Poppy (22m)

5g Shrimp (10m)
13g Greek Blue (24m)
7g Nocturne (13m)
6g Toffee (11m)
47g Black (87m)
19g Ivory (35m)

Remember: We are using the Classique Cotton, so use the meterage above if you are making Frida in another DK yarn.

Here's a little spreadsheet tool that Michelle is using to track yarn usage - just enter your start and finish weights for your yarns, and then the weight and meterage used will be automatically calculated! 





Our Top Tips for the Rosa Block:


1) Jane suggests in the Get Ready Document that is clever to work on all four parts at once, that is you do each row/round on each of the four flowers before moving onto the next row. We highly recommend this way of crocheting the squares as well. They work up far more even this way, as it is highly likely you will crochet the rows with the same tension.

2) Sew in the ends after finishing off a colour. Block 4 has - just like block 3 - a whole lots of colour changes and thus many, many ends to sew in.


Just about everyone hates sewing in ends but doing it straight away has two advantages: 


a. you won't have lots and lots of ends to sew in after finishing the block. If you are like me, you might be put off by all the ends and won't finish the block or lose the joy in making the square. By doing the sewing in bit by bit, you don't have a massive pile up. 

b. You will crochet over your sewn in ends and thus they will be stitched in even safer.

3) Round 3 can be a bit tricky! 


Into each group of 5sc in Round 2, you do:

1st sc - sc
2nd sc - hdc
3rd sc - 2dc
4th sc - 2dc
5th sc - hdc  



I think the pattern wants us to sc into the stitch you skipped at the beginning when you get back around to the start :) If you're lazy like me, just do the first sc into the same stitch as the ch1, and follow the pattern from there! 

4) Start Round 4 with a standing sc instead of a ch1 pretending to be a spike stitch! Your work will be neater and easier to join into when you get back to the beginning of the round. You can find a tutorial for the knotless standing sc here: http://mrsmicawber.blogspot.com.au/2012/04/crochet-turning-chain-alternatives.html



For our tips from previous weeks, visit:

Block 1: http://crochetbetweentwoworlds.blogspot.com.au/2016/04/fridas-flowers-cal-block-1-white-cosmos.html

Block 2: http://crochetbetweentwoworlds.blogspot.com.au/2016/04/fridas-flowers-cal-block-2-dahlia-bud.html


Block 3: http://crochetbetweentwoworlds.blogspot.com.au/2016/05/fridas-flowers-cal-block-3-bird-of.html

Happy hooking! Don't hesitate to comment, visit a Facebook group or ask Anne or Michelle on Facebook if you need any help :D

Tuesday, 3 May 2016

Frida's Flowers CAL - Block 3 - Bird of Paradise

The Third Instalment of the Frida's Flowers Blanket Crochet-Along, designed by Jane Crowfoot and hosted by Stylecraft Yarns has just been posted, and is available to download NOW from the Stylecraft website, in English (US and UK), German and Dutch.

If you haven't set up a Ravelry project yet, the pattern page can be found here:http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/fridas-flowers-blanket 
I am working the CAL along with you all (in the Classique Cotton, provided by the wonderful Stylecraft team), and I'll post my tips and tricks for each part at the same time as the pattern is published over at the Stylecraft website. If you have any questions or need help, there are Facebook groups (English: https://www.facebook.com/groups/1555519964767343/ , German: https://www.facebook.com/groups/1039765272753087/ and Dutch:https://www.facebook.com/groups/145851979128898/ ),

and you are always welcome to leave a comment here or ask us on Facebook. As you know, Anne is doing the German translations for the CAL, so ask away in German too!


So, Block 3 - the Bird of Paradise.

Front
Back
You'll need to make 4 hexagons.

Yarn usage:
11g Sunflower (21m)
9g Plum (17m)
4g Poppy (8m)
9g Leaf (17m)
10g Greek Blue (19m)
7g Nocturne (13m)
7g Toffee (13m)
50g Black (92m)
18g Ivory (33m)

Remember: I'm using the Classique Cotton, so use the meterage above if you are making Frida in another DK yarn.

Here's a little spreadsheet tool that I am using to track yarn usage - just enter your start and finish weights for your yarns, and then the weight and meterage used will be automatically calculated! 


My top tips for the Bird of Paradise Block:

1. The pattern gets more complex this week. Make sure you take the time to read the instructions properly!! 

I can't emphasise this enough - the few issues I had with this block came from me not reading the instructions closely enough.

2. When you're starting a new colour with a stitch taller than an sc (e.g. hdc, dc, tr, etc), consider using standing stitches rather than chains.

Moogly has some great tutorials for standing stitches - I thoroughly recommend them! 

http://www.mooglyblog.com/standing-double-crochet-joining/



You can of course use the Stacked Standing DC we talked about last week, but I find that most suitable for when you're continuing with the same colour. 

3. In Round 7, make sure you work dc3tog in FRONT of the last few rows, not over them.



If you work over the rows, encasing them in the stitch, your hexagon will be scrunched up in strange places. Keep it flat, work in front :)

4. In Round 9 with the white dc3tog petals, try using Moogly's standing dc to make a true dc3tog to start! 

Do the standing dc up to the last yoh and pull through 2 loops, and continue as you would for a normal dc3tog. It'll look neater and more consistent with the other petals! 



5. I recommend reviewing the tips from Blocks 1 and 2 - some of that information is still relevant to this more complex block! You can find those posts here:

Block 1: http://crochetbetweentwoworlds.blogspot.com.au/2016/04/fridas-flowers-cal-block-1-white-cosmos.html

Block 2: http://crochetbetweentwoworlds.blogspot.com.au/2016/04/fridas-flowers-cal-block-2-dahlia-bud.html

Happy hooking! Don't hesitate to comment, visit a Facebook group or ask Anne or Michelle on Facebook if you need any help :D

Friday, 29 April 2016

Ta-dah! Rainbow Cozy Stripes Blanket

Hello everyone!

Finally a new blog post from me. Somehow I have troubles getting back into a good blogging habit this year. I shall try to do better from now on (as I love blogging)!


You might remember I have been working on the blanket which shall be a wedding present for my honoary aunt for quite a few weeks now. I think I started in February and guess what - it is finally finished!


The finished blanket is about 170 cm x 190 cm and weights over 2kg. I used 24 colours and tried (...) to use them in the same order all the time. It worked out more or less but in the end the skipped colors don't matter much. The yarn is Stylecraft Special DK - man, I am in love with this yarn! So soft and great to work with! Instead of buying new yarn, I used yarn from my stash - I wasn't aware I had that much (and there is more in the stash!).

Altogether the blanket is huge! And just right for some people to cuddle under :) As the blanket is so big, I wasn't able to take a picture of the whole blanket yet. I hope to be able to spread it on grass outside sometime the next week but at the moment it is too rainy outside. 



The pattern is from Lucy from Attic24 which I followed for the blanket body but not the border. The border is a linen-stitch-repreat with all the colors I used for the body (except one as I ran out of yarn). I adore the border so much! Next time I would go up a hook size for the border though as it is a bit to tight for the blanket to lay flat.

I am in love with this blanket! It was a pleasure to have in the living room while I was working on it because it was so rainbow-ish! I hope the new owners will love it as much as I do! It will be a wedding present. 
  



What are you working on at the moment? Now that I have finished the cozy stripes blanket, I will start on the Stylecraft CAL. :)

Take care
Anne