PBT: Wrap-Up

PBTCover

This post is part of a series of tutorials on how to create your own unique crochet pixie pocket belt – to read more about this series visit the Intro page.

Maybe it’s just because I worked on the tutorial for this so much, but this newest pixie pocket belt may be my favorite ever. To be fair though, I do say that almost every time I make a new one of these.

PBTCollage1

 

That’s because every one of them turns out to be totally unique – I start out with a pile of scrap materials, and then let it be what it becomes along the way. This one became “Maple” named of course after the tree. I hope you have enjoyed this tutorial series – I certainly did – and I’d love to see what is being made from this guide!

Maple10

 

This pattern tutorial series is now listed on Ravelry – hook up your projects so I can see what you made, or look through other projects for inspiration  😉

And now for more pictures and ramblings.

Maple3Maple5Maple6

I especially love these to dance in, since the fabric fringe catches movement so well!

Maple8

Fun side story – the flower headpiece I am wearing in this photo is one I made years ago, a long strand of curlicues (just like the ones talked about earlier in the tutorial series) with scrap yarn flowers that made as I was traveling across the U.S.

Maple9

Of course, the utility belt function of this project is super handy if you are the festival-going type, since these pixie belts are not only cute and go over anything, but also hold your necessaries!

Maple7

I’m pretty happy with how the faux-bustle back came out – its not something I’d ever really tried before. That’s another thing I love about these projects – pure experimentation is necessary, not just encouraged.

Maple15

I’m a little sad to be closing out the pixie belt tutorial actually, so I’ve had a thought – perhaps more pocket patterns in the future? What do you think?

As always, don’t hesitate to ask any questions or leave any comments! I love hearing from you ❤

Maple13

-MF

 

 

 

Advertisements

PBT: Fabric Fringe Skirt

This post is part of a series of tutorials on how to create your own unique crochet pixie pocket belt – to read more about this series visit the Intro page.

DSC_1650

Okay, we’re all done with the crochet process now, so it’s time to move on to one of the most *satisfying* portions of the process: the ragtag fabric scrap fringe skirt! Why is it so satisfying? Well, because you get to rip stuff up. Rip rip rip.

DSC_1625

Here I have the fabrics I selected during the process of selecting my materials – a couple of thrift store silk shirts and some soft rayon jersey knit that formed the lining of one of the shirts. I use my scissors to separate large chunks of fabric away from the bulky seams, then once I have a piece isolated, I start ripping!

DSC_1626

Using my fabric scissors, I cut out small tabs on the edge of the piece of fabric. Then…

DSC_1627

….I grab a tab and rip straight across to get a strip of fabric. RIIIIIIP!

DSC_1628

That’s all there is to it, really. I keep ripping until I have a nice little pile of strips. Beware, there will be a lot of stray threads involved in the ripping process. This is normal.

DSC_1629

So here I have a nice pile from this silk piece. They are different sizes, because I’m using upcycled clothing, so the pieces I’m ripping from are not uniform in size or shape. I’ll sort it out later.

DSC_1630

I’ve also decided to use the jersey knit lining from the same upcycled shirt. Since you can’t rip knit, (or stretch velvet, another favorite fabric of mine to use in these projects) I just use a rotary blade to open up the shirt and cut long strips.

DSC_1631

Add ’em to the pile!

DSC_1632

I also discovered this gold colored silk button-down in my stash at some point and added it to my material pile – I thought it would be good to add depth to the color scheme. Rip rip rip!

DSC_1633

Okay, that’s a pretty good sized pile. It’s not all of my material, but I can always cut more if I need to. Time to apply them to the belt. First, though, one side of my belt doesn’t have a tie – so I am going to use the netted ribbon yarn for that. One good long length doubled over, then looped through the end of the belt, makes a nice tie. Additionally, the netted nature of the ribbon yarn can easily hook over any buttons placed on the belt, giving you more options for how to secure it around the waist.

DSC_1634

DSC_1635

Now, the fringe! I lay out all of my strips – since I am making a bustle-style back for this belt, I want to utilize my longest strips in the back middle, and put the shorter ones toward the front edges. So I organize my strips into piles according to size – long, medium, short. Then, take each strip and double it over.

DSC_1636

Using a large-ish hook, draw the loop at the end of the double strip through a chain-loop opening on the edge of the belt. You can also draw these directly through the stitches, or really wherever you want. FrEeForM!!

DSC_1638

DSC_1639

Draw the ends through the loop and tighten to create the fringe. Do this all across the belt, or anwhere you want your fabric fringe to be. I go through and add this layer of fabric on just the edge loops, going according to size as I mentioned earlier.

DSC_1641

DSC_1642

Once all of the loops on the very bottom have been fringed, I flip the belt over and work from the back side for a bit, hooking fringe into the middle layer of loops.

DSC_1645

DSC_1646

Again, there’s really not a wrong way to do this. You can fringe all from the front, or all from the back, or just do one layer, or do so many layers you can’t even see the mesh portion. That last one is what I’m aiming for.

DSC_1647

So I attach my strips just about anywhere they will fit.

DSC_1648

Then, flip it back over, and attach on the top portion of the mesh on the right side!

DSC_1649

Hm, needs just one final touch I think – so I attach just a few strands of a small ball of silky eyelash yarn I have in my materials pile.

DSC_1650

That’s the stuff. And now, I’m seriously done! I am so thrilled about the way this turned out, and also being able to share this creative process here on the blog 🙂 But I do have one more post in this series: the Wrap-Up! Check it out and don’t forget to show me what you’ve made!

Meanwhile, here’s more examples of fringe skirts from other belts I’ve done:

Mulberry5.jpg

“Mulberry” used strips of cut stretch velveteen. It also featured a mushroom pouch on it’s own loop, which can be worn around the neck as well. I didn’t include that type of pocket in this tutorial because I already have a mushroom pouch free pattern available!

ShepherdsPurse7.jpg

“Shepherd’s Purse” used only ripped cotton weave fabrics, like gauze and muslin.

Nightshade5.jpg

Instead of ripped fabric, the skirt for “Nightshade” is that netted ribbon yarn, all stretched out to make a frilly fringe.

-MF

 

PBT: Attaching the Pockets

This post is part of a series of tutorials on how to create your own unique crochet pixie pocket belt – to read more about this series visit the Intro page.

DSC_1621

So far we’ve covered basic shapes in the form of pockets such as circles, squares & rectangles, triangles, and cones – now it’s time to take all the pockets and attach them to the belt base using slip stitch crochet. Like the rest of this project, there is no strictly “right” way to do this, but I’ve included lots of process photos to show how I manage this part.

I prefer the look of pockets mounted directly onto the belt, with the backs up against the belt itself. I also always double-mount my pockets, using two lines of slip stitching, one at the top and one in the middle, to attach the pockets to the belt base. This is not absolutely necessary if you want to skip the second mount (the middle mount is the trickiest part of this) but it does make them really sturdy.  I have seen my festival friends put these things through the wringer with use – and they hold up!

If you need more inspiration on the ways you can assemble the belt, remember to check out my Pinterest board featuring crochet utility belts!

Attaching the Pockets to the Belt

DSC_1560

To begin the final stage of crochet for the pocket belt, lay out your belt base and grab all of your completed pockets. Decide how to place the pockets, arranging them along the belt base in whatever manner strikes your fancy – I like the pockets to sit near the ends, but sometimes they are all over the place. Here, because I’m featuring a bustle back, I keep them corralled near the ends so as not to cover the back of the skirt.

DSC_1561

The first step is to get a yarn and start slip stitching across the top of the belt base. I am using a really textured yarn for this part, just to add a little extra crazy.

DSC_1564

Here, I’m just slip stitching across the top of the belt until I get to a place where I’d like to put a pocket. Keep slip stitching, but now work through two layers – the top edge of the pocket (the back part only, since you don’t want to stitch the pocket closed) and the top edge of the belt base.

DSC_1568

DSC_1571

DSC_1572

DSC_1573

DSC_1577

This is the first attachment. Keep slip stitching until you want to place another pocket.

DSC_1581

Then, slip stitch across the pocket and belt simultaneously again.

DSC_1584

DSC_1585

For drawstring pockets like this one, make sure you leave enough pocket unattached for it to be able to close nicely.

DSC_1587

Keep slip stitching and attaching pockets until you reach the opposite end of the belt.

DSC_1588

DSC_1594

For the envelope-style pocket, I decide to make the slip stitch attaching underneath the top flap – so I open it up and stitch through the pocket layer and the belt layer underneath.

DSC_1595

DSC_1596

DSC_1597

DSC_1599

At the end, I rotate and work one row of the side of the belt base, then rotate again and start to slip stitch across the middle of the belt, placing my stitches in between the double crochets that make up the middle row.

DSC_1600

Attaching in the middle can require some really creative maneuvering on the part of the hook-wielder. In fact, this part is more like guerilla fiber-punk yarn wrestling. So be prepared for that! 😀

DSC_1601

To work the second row of attaching, slip stitch until you reach a pocket. With the back of the pocket facing you, insert your hook into the stitching and back out on the other side of a single stitch, catching the post of the stitch with your hook.

DSC_1602

Then, insert the hook through the middle of the belt. Yarn over and draw this loop through the belt, the post of the pocket stitching, and the loop on your hook, making one slip stitch through two layers.

DSC_1603

DSC_1606

 

Continue this process for at least part of the back of the pocket. When you’ve attached enough of the back of the pocket, keep slip stitching through just the belt layer as normal until you reach the next pocket, then work through both layers in the same manner again.

DSC_1608

DSC_1609

DSC_1610

DSC_1612

Here you can see the back of the slip stitching of the second row on the inside of a pocket – just enough to hold them down and make sure they are extra secure.

DSC_1615

DSC_1613

The pockets are now attached!

DSC_1614

After working the second round of attaching, I like to do one more row of slip stitching into the same stitches across the top of the belt, just for extra firmness (to reduce yarn stretching on the belt base) and to add more color and depth. Here I’ll change colors, then just work a simple line of slip stitching all the way across, right next to the first line of slip stitches (or wherever… FREEFORM!!)

DSC_1618

DSC_1623

After this last finishing touch, I’m DONE with the crochet portion of the belt! Time to weave in my ends, then tackle the final step: the fabric fringe skirt. After that post, I’ll do a final reveal and wrap-up – I can’t wait to show the final product 🙂

DSC_1621

-MF

PBT: Pointed Pouch

This post is part of a series of tutorials on how to create your own unique crochet pixie pocket belt – to read more about this series visit the Intro page.

Shaping Circular Crochet

The following is a basic overview of the geometry of shaping circular crochet, which I’ll use in the next section to create this fun pixie pouch!

DSC_1547

In circular crochet, your increases represent building “outward” to add to the circumference of the object, while your stitches represent building “upward” to add to the diameter/radius of the circle. If you don’t increase at the same rate as you add rows of stitches, your circle will start to tighten inward because you don’t have enough circumference to allow it to keep building outward. This is used to our advantage to make fun shapes – adding rows where you don’t increase periodically will change the way your piece is shaped, and you can make fun points and spheres and all sorts of things.

On the other hand, adding too many increases per round will make your circumference too full, and your piece will start to ruffle at the edges on the same principle as making we saw making ruffles and curlicues.

Additionally, the HEIGHT of your stitch will change the required rate of increase – so if you want to start a flat circle in double crochet instead of single crochet, you can’t start with the same number as you would with sc, because you are starting with a greater height so it requires a greater circumference – I generally use 12 dc to start a flat circle, and add 12 inc every round to keep it flat. On the same principle, if I want to start a pointed conical piece in dc, starting with 6 dc is ideal because it begins with a nice taper.

Manipulated circles is how I make many of my utility belt pockets, including the one here! So, let’s get started.

Pointed Pixie Pouch

Notes: I’m using a 3.5 mm hook and some handspun yarn I’ve had forever, and doing non-continuous circular crochet, which means I’m using a chain-3 length to begin (not counting as first dc) and using slip stitch in the first dc to end each round. I have left the beginning and end instructions off the shorthand pattern because they are the same for each round.

MR (Magic Ring – covered in PBT: Circle Pocket Part 1)

  1. 6 dc into the ring. Tighten ring. – 6 dc

DSC_1008

DSC_1010

I want this pouch to be pretty pointy at the bottom, so I’ll add another row of dc without increasing.
2. Dc even – 6 dc

DSC_1011.1

Next, I want to start increasing as I move upward to make the pouch big enough to put things into, but at this point I have a pretty tight round of dc. If I increase at the same rate that I started (adding 6 stitches for the next round, or increasing in ea stitch) I will end up with an abrupt change in circumference.

DSC_1012.1

If you like the bulbous look, no problem, but I want to make my change smoother and more gradual, so I will be increasing at half the rate here – or adding 3 stitches for every increase round.
3. Inc on 2 – 9 dc

DSC_1017.1

To continue the gradual lengthening, I add another non-increasing round.
4. Dc even – 9 dc

DSC_1019

Then another 3 stitch increase round.
5. Inc on 3 – 12 dc

DSC_1020

Then even again.
6. Dc even – 12 dc

DSC_1022

Now, I’m going to prepare to fatten this puppy up. That means I’m going to do two rounds in a row that each increase by three, creating  a less gradual change in circumference – that will bring me up to 18 dc..
7. Inc on 4 – 15 dc
8. Inc on 5 – 18 dc

DSC_1023

…18 dc is divisible by 6, so I can now start increasing by 6 on each increase round to make a bulbous shape and a bigger part of the pouch. Since 18 divided by 6 is three, I will go back to increasing every 3 stitches to make a total of 6 stitches added to this round.

9. Inc on 3 – 24 dc.
10. Inc on 4 – 30 dc.
11. Inc on 5 – 36 dc.
12. Inc on 6 – 42 dc.
13. Dc even – 42 dc.
14. Dc even – 42 dc.
15. Dec (decrease, or dc2tog) on 6 – 36 dc
16. Ch 3 (counts as first hdc + ch 1), sk next st, *hdc in the next st, ch 1, sk next st* around.
17. 2 sc in ea sp around

 

DSC_1485.1

Cut yarn and tie off. I left a row full of chain-1 spaces at the top of the pouch so that I’d have some place to string the little drawstring through. To make the drawstring, just chain a length and tie off, then weave it through the spaces. I like to finish mine with little simple tassels to hide the yarn tails.

DSC_1544

I also attached a bead by using a tapestry needle and a spare length of yarn and simply sewing it onto the pouch for a little extra decoration.

DSC_1545DSC_1547

There you have the third and final pocket I will be completing for this particular belt!  In the next post of this series, I’ll be demonstrating how to finally attach these pockets to the belt base.

The drawstring pouch style pockets are super useful and can also be a great place to feature a special yarn or texture. Here are some other examples of pouches I’ve made in this style:

Mulberry4.jpg

“Mulberry” features a few little bells sewn on to the point and the drawstring ties

Titania4.jpg

A simple rounded pouch starts out with a flat circle for the bottom 

ShepherdsCollage.jpg

The drawstring pouch for this belt uses yarn scraps and a leather cord for the tie

Kelp4.jpg

Extra-fancy pouches went into making “Kelp” – A conical pouch forms the base onto which I added surface textures to create a shell shape. The rounded pouch features a common freeform technique called bullion stitch!