Basic Bralette Tutorial

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When dreaming up this little design, I had some specific requirements in mind: that it be a simple “base” pattern from which many variations could be made, as well as being easily customized for many sizes, and last but not least – comfortable! After a few experiments, the pattern for the Basic Bralette was born.

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I went with in-the-round triangle style cups for both the way they look and the ease of adjusting their size, plus a band through which the cross-back ties thread so that there is no pressure being put on the neck as with traditional bikini-style strap ties.

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Cross back ties are totally my jam now – check out the recently released Plus Size Mehndi Halter for more proof! In addition, I added a bit of strappy flair along the inner cups, because TRENDY. Say hello to your next cute and comfy summer crochet project!

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Now, there’s a teeny bit of math involved, fair warning. However, if you are confused about gauge and measurements, I’m here to help – or just wing it, and use the old “hold it up against yourself periodically while you work” method. πŸ™‚

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By the way, that awesome macrame necklace I am wearing is from Selinofos Art on Etsy – you should check them out!

This design is also listed on Ravelry, so if you like it, throw a girl a favorite on the project page!

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Basic Bralette Tutorial Pattern

3.50 mm hook
#4 weight cotton yarn (although you can make it with any weight yarn / hook size combo as long as you know your gauge!) 1-3 skeins depending on size made
Stitch markers
Scissors & Tapestry Needle
Measuring Tape

Measurements
Band Size (measured around the rib cage just under the bust): For example, my measurement would be 32”
Measurement A : (Band size β€œ / 4) – 2” = Length of each side of completed triangle cup ( My example would be [32 / 4] – 2 = 6”). Therefore, my Measurement A = 6″

Measurement B: Β (Measurement A) / 2 = My Measurement B would be 3”

Note that the sample in the pictures doesn’t use the same measurements as my example math above.

Gauge:

You can have differing gauges for this project, as long as you know what your gauge is in order to achieve the right measurements.

My gauge with the given hook and yarn is:
9 sts & 4 rows = 2” in dc

To find your gauge, crochet a square of double crochet stitches about 15-20 sts long and about 6 rows tall.

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Use a measuring tape to find out how many dc sts per inch/es in your gauge swatch.

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Measure vertically to find out how many rows per inch/es in your gauge swatch. My swatch has 9 sts in every 2 inches (measured by 2 inches because we don’t want to have 4.5 sts per inch because it’s not a whole number) and 4 rows for every 2 inches, so my gauge is 9 sts and 4 rows = 2″ in dc.

Instructions:

Triangle Cups (Make 2)

Make Magic Ring to begin.

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Rnd 1: Ch 2 (does not count as first st), (3 dc into the ring, ch 2) 3 times. Join with a sl st to the first dc. – 9 dc

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Rnd 2: Ch 2, 1 dc into the same st. 1 dc in ea of the next 2 dc. In the next space, work 2 dc, ch 2, 2 dc. (1 dc in ea of the next 3 dc. In the next sp work 2 dc, ch 2, 2 dc) repeat within parentheses twice. Join with a sl st to the first dc. – 21 dc

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Rnd 3: Ch 2, 1 dc in the same st. 1 dc in ea of the next 4 dc. In the next space, work 2 dc, ch 2, 2 dc. (1 dc in ea of the next 7 dc. In the next sp work 2 dc, ch 2, 2 dc) rpt within parentheses twice. 1 dc in ea of the next 2 dc. Join with a sl st to the first dc. – 33 dc

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Rnd 4: Ch 2, 1 dc in the same st. 1 dc in ea of the next 6 dc. In the next space, work 2 dc, ch 2, 2 dc. (1 dc in ea of the next 11 dc. In the next sp work 2 dc, ch 2, 2 dc) rpt within parentheses twice. 1 dc in ea of the next 4 dc. Join with a sl st to the first dc. – 45 dc

Continue working in pattern until the sides of your triangle each match yourΒ Measurement A. Remember that this piece will stretch, so you may want your sides to be just a little under this measurement to account for that.Β 

It’s also a good idea to grab the 3 corners of your triangle and stretch them out evenly as you are working, so you get a better idea of how your length is progressing!

I made this sample piece around 8”, and so wrote out the following rounds I used to get that measurement in my gauge – but you can work as many or as few rounds in pattern as you need.

Rnd 5: Ch 2, 1 dc in the same st. 1 dc in ea of the next 8 dc. In the next space, work 2 dc, ch 2, 2 dc. (1 dc in ea of the next 15 dc. In the next sp work 2 dc, ch 2, 2 dc) rpt within parentheses twice. 1 dc in ea of the next 6 dc. Join with a sl st to the first dc. – 57 dc

Rnd 6: Ch 2, 1 dc in the same st. 1 dc in ea of the next 10 dc. In the next space, work 2 dc, ch 2, 2 dc. (1 dc in ea of the next 19 dc. In the next sp work 2 dc, ch 2, 2 dc) rpt within parentheses twice. 1 dc in ea of the next 8 dc. Join with a sl st to the first dc. – 69 dc

After finishing the first triangle, cut yarn and tie off. Complete a second triangle, butΒ  leave yarn attached when finished.

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Arrange the two triangles (which we will now refer to as cups) with RS facing, your hook positioned on top, so that the two flat sides with the joins are facing β€œup”. Take a locking stitch marker and run it through each chain st on the corner where the two cups meet.

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These two ch sts will be worked together as one stitch, now referred to as the middle point. Now, count the number of dc stitches between where your hook is positioned to the middle point, counting neither the joined stitch nor the middle point stitch – I have 12 in the sample.

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Take a second marker, count out the same number of stitches on the opposite cup away from the middle point, then mark the next st (so you have a section between the middle point and the marked stitch equal to the section on the other side).

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From the point where your hook is positioned, you will work 1/3 the amount of stitches (between your hook and the middle point) in sc, 1/3 in hdc, 1/3 dc for the first section – in the example this is 4 sc, 4 hdc, 4 dc. If 1/3rd of your number is not a whole number, round down and add the extra stitches into the dc total. So, if you have 14 stitches in this section, you’d do 4 sc, 4 hdc, 6 dc (4 dc + 2 extra = 6).

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Next, 1 dc into the middle stitch, working your stitch through both ch stitches at once. In the next section, work the same quantities of stitches, except mirrored – in the example this is 4 dc, 4 hdc, 4 sc. Sl st in the next stitch (with the marker). Cut yarn and tie off. Remove all markers.

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Band:

For the band, we will add the length of stitches equal to Measurement B on either side. The Measurement B for this sample is 4”, so since my gauge is 9 sts = 2”, I will need to add 18 stitches to either side of the cups.

Row 1: Ch length of stitches needed to equal Measurement B (18 here). Dc in the 2nd ch in the corner of the cup, RS facing. Dc in ea st across to the next ch st on opposite corner, ch number same number of stitches as beginning.

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Row 2: Ch 2, turn and work 1 dc in the 4th ch from the hook (first 3 ch sts count as first dc). 1 dc in ea st across.

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Row 3: Ch 3, turn (counts as first dc). 1 dc in ea st across.

Rpt Row 3 until the band is the width that you’d like, and totals an even number of rows. Β (I did 6 total rows of dc). Do not tie off.

The next part works around the entire top to create eyelets in the back and add the straps.Β 

Round 4:Β  Rotate the piece so that you are ready to work into the row ends of the band. Ch 4 (counts as first dc + ch1). (Dc, ch 1) in the side of each dc at the row ends, across the side of the band. In the last row, work 1 dc into the very edge of the stitch, skip the chain 1.

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Rotate the piece,Β  beginning to work across the top of the band. Ch 1, hdc in the side of the dc of the eyelet row. 1 hdc in ea stitch across, stopping one st before the Row 1 dc at the bottom of the cups. Skip this stitch, the dc, and the chain space at the corner of the cup, 1 hdc in the next dc on the side of the cup (For larger cups or for tighter coverage, you may want to skip a few extra stitches to keep the cup edges tight – I skipped about 5 total stitches on mine). 1 hdc in ea dc toward the top of the cup. 1 hdc, 1 dc in the next chain space.

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Strap: Ch 200 – 300 (depending on bust size – each strap will go over the shoulder, cross the back, and then criss-cross back and forth. You may want to cross more or less, like a certain level of tightness, etc – so there is no solid rule about how many to chain here. My default is to chain more than I need, then undo part of the chain later once I’ve tried the top on and know how long I need the chain to actually be). Cut yarn and tie off.

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Rejoin yarn 6 chain stitches away from the top of the cup. Slip stitch in ea of the next 4 sts toward the top of the cup, stopping before the last ch st. Ch 1. 1 dc, 1 hdc in the chain space. 1 hdc in the next dc.

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Chain a number of stitches until you have just enough length to get the end of the chain to the middle of the two cups – typically equal to the amount of stitches you are about to skip (depending on gauge). Skip working the rest of the cup and sc in the stitch in the middle.

Note that the chain length pictured in the image directly below is too loose! I made it longer so that it would be more visible in the photograph. It should sit tightly along the edge of the cup once secured at the middle point, as pictured in the second image below.

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Repeat length of chain, skip side of next cup, 1 hdc in the dc right before the chain space. You will want your chains here to be fairly tight, to avoid floppy straps. Now is a good time to practice the “holding it up to yourself as you work” method, since each bust is different.

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1 hdc in the next ch space, 1 dc in the same space. Work a second chain strap equal in length to the first. Cut yarn, tie off, and rejoin 6 sts away from the last dc. Slip stitch in the next 4 sts, ch 1, 1 dc in the same ch space, 1 hdc in the same space.

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1 hdc in ea dc down the side of the cup. Sk next chain corner, dc, and first st at the top of the band (or as many as you skipped on the opposite side). 1 hdc in ea st across to the corner.

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Rotate piece, ch 4 (counts as first dc + ch-1). (Dc, ch 1) in ea dc at the ends of the rows of the band. In the last st, 1 dc at the very edge, sk chain.

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Rotate piece to begin working across the bottom of the band again. Ch 1, 1 hdc in the side of the last dc worked for eyelet row. 1 hdc in ea st across the bottom of the band, stopping at the ch-3 that counts as the first dc for the eyelet row. 1 sc in the next st, sl st in the next 2 sts. Cut yarn and tie off.

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Weave in all ends, except for the ends of the chain straps.

Now, put on the top and cross the chain straps at the back as shown. You can criss-cross string the straps through all the eyelets, or just some of them – though the more criss-crossing you do, the harder it is to adjust the straps to the right tightness of fit by yourself. So, I normally only cross them a couple times (see the images of the red bralette below)Β  πŸ™‚Β  Whichever way you decide, you can then see how much strap length you actually need.

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Pick out the tie-off you made, and rip out the extra chain stitches until your straps are the length that you need. Tie off again and cut off the extra yarn.

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I used my extra yarn to make little tassels, which is both cute and helps hide the yarn tail at the end of the chain so that I don’t have to weave it in πŸ™‚ Voila! Your Basic Bralette is born.

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I plan on doing some variations on this design in the future! Armed with a ton of colorful cotton yarn, this quick and easy project should be fun to mess around with some more – and I’ll try to share what I come up with of course ❀

-MF

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Plus Size Mehndi Halter Top

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Though it’s been two years since I first published the Mehndi Halter Top design, I’ve never stopped wanting to create the plus size version – like I did with the Sol Halter and the Plus Size Sol – but for some reason it just took me a while πŸ™‚ Everything in its own time, amiright? At any rate, the pattern is finally ready and available in my Ravelry Pattern Store and my Etsy Shop for 5.50 USD!

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The Mehndi Halter Top pattern draws inspiration from the thick lotus petal motifs, linework, and dot borders in traditional henna design. Made in bright #4 weight cotton yarn, this pom-pom fringed top makes a unique addition to dance costumes, festival wear, or your next beach adventure!

The Plus Size version is designed for bigger busts, utilizing a cross-back tie for adjustability and comfort. The band size is 26” at the bottom of the halter with a height of 10″ from top of cups to bottom of the halter (not including the trim). The cross-back ties are 55″ and thread through loops at the side, taking the weight off of the back of the neck as with traditional halter tops.

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As usual, detailed instructions and stitch counts are included in the written pattern, as well was lots of detailed step-by-step photos!

Materials needed:

Hobby Lobby I Love This Cotton (#4, 3.5 oz/180 yds) – 2 skeins Color A, plus 1 coordinating color
3.50 mm hook
Stitch Marker
Scissors
Tapestry Needle

All instructions written in English and in US terminology.

I really hope you love making & wearing this one! My goal was to put it out by the end of May, and I’m squeaking it in right under the line πŸ˜‰ Because I love you! πŸ™‚

-MF

Just Some Housekeeping

Between the end of the semester and my big vending event in late May, I’ve barely had any time to write in the blog! So, what I’ve got today is just a few random announcements and sneak peek, and a couple of pretty pictures of course πŸ˜‰

Gone Vending

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Just a reminder I will be AWAY from my computer from May 22 through May 28! I’ll be vending at a low-tech festival away in the woods, and so any questions or issues will be answered when I get back.Β  All of the physical items (non-patterns) will be suspended from my Etsy shop during this time, but of course my digital pattern files will all still be available.

Commissions are Closed

I’m a bit sad to announce that I will not be taking commissions at all this summer. I’ve had a few people inquire about custom work from me over the course of the semester, which I couldn’t take due to lack of time – unfortunately this is also going to be true this summer, and probably just for the rest of 2018 in general. I have another full-time semester coming up in the fall (my last one – yay!) and a TON of stuff to get done before that starts. Since custom work takes a lot of time,Β  it’s getting the axe.

On the bright side, it does mean that I have many new things planned!

Upcoming Designs

Besides preparing for vending, this month I’ve been working on completing the long-overdue Plus Size version of the Mehndi Halter Top! Having done a plus size for the Sol Halter, I had always intended to do the same for the Mehndi, but life! It gets away from you! Anyway, it is getting very close to being done.

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Additionally, I have made a few of my tattered pixie pocket belts recently – I always get asked if I have a pattern available for these, and the answer is – not yet! These are sort of my chaos therapy projects, since I do every single one freeform and always do them differently. Not to mention that I use all kinds of random scrap yarn and fabrics and things! So, it’s challenging to figure out a way to capture instructions without making them uniform.

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This one is “Garden Rose” (I name them all after plants) with a ripped silk and muslin rag skirt, featuring a big booty floral pocket and strips of red velvet.

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Also, these things are what I do when I want to get away from pattern writing, so since I tend toward being a “temperamental artist” (read: whiny) I waited a good while before setting my mind to planning a tutorial guide for them. But now, I am finally excited about it! And have a ton of ideas! πŸ™‚

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“Wild Rose” – featuring silk silk and more silk! Commercial silk yarn for the rose pocket, handspun Tussah silk for the drawstring bag on the left, and a tattered fringe of upcycled silk from garment scraps. Are you sick of reading the word silk yet? I’m sick of typing it πŸ˜‰

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I did write a pattern for a similar design last summer, called the Cecilia Skirt Belt – it doesn’t have pockets, but it’s totally cute and has instructions for child size as well!

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Also I couldn’t help but make things extra-fringey when photographing this so I added in a Blossom Vest too – it kind of looks like a scrap pile barfed on my mannequin, but in a cute way. Which is exactly how I like it.

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So far that’s only mentioning two of the upcoming designs and tutorials, whereas I have SIX planned in the “definitely” column and plenty more floating around in the ether that are just possibilities at this point.

So I guess it’s time I stop nattering and get to work! πŸ™‚

-MF

 

Window Box Sweater Pattern

Whew! The month of April – or Third February as I am calling it this year – is almost over, and I can’t say I’m too sad about it. I’ve been busily chipping away at final papers and such, but I did find enough time to complete a new (easy) crochet pattern design!

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It’s a super cute hippie-flavored crop sweater, the perfect topper for any lingering spring chill. The Window Box SweaterΒ  is designed with easy-level crocheters in mind, and is available with 3 sizes – all in one pattern for 5.50 USD through my Etsy Shop or Ravelry Pattern Store – with a special introductory SALE for $1 off running through Monday, April 30 with the coupon code “WINDOW1”.Β  Read on for more details about the pattern!

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The Window Box Sweater is an airy layering piece full of movement and attitude! The trendy cropped length and loose fit is balanced by fun flared bell sleeves and a retro square collar.

Easy, in-the-round construction means no bulky seams or complicated finishing, and tons of tutorial photos make it a cinch to follow along even for inexperienced garment makers. This sweater is a quick project featuring simple stitches and a large hook, and the cotton DK weight yarn held double creates a trendy bold texture without sacrificing drape and softness.

The Window Box Sweater has THREE sizes, all written in detailed instructions with stitch counts for every size – no guesswork or vague modifying instructions!

Sizes:
Small: 38” Bust, 14” length, 26” sleeves
Medium: 42” Bust, 14” length, 26” sleeves
Large: 46” Bust, 15” length, 27” sleeves

Materials
6.50 mm hook
4 Stitch Markers
Scissors & Tapestry Needle

Yarn
2 Strands any DK weight held together: 1100 yds (1300 yds, 1500 yds) – 4 skeins Premier Cotton Fair or Universal Yarns Bamboo Pop

Instructions are written in English, using US crochet terminology.

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Man, it was really hard to sit on this one until it was ready to release – I’m so excited its finally out! πŸ™‚Β  Now on to the next one, of course!

-MF

 

Wayfarer Ruana

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When I began drafting this post over a year ago, it was to take notes on my first attempt at some of the beautiful and colorful knit ruanas I had seen floating around online. Unfortunately for me, that first attempt (which took over a year for me to finish!) just didn’t turn out. It happens. The final product was pretty, but just too big to conceivably wear, even after several attempts at damage control. It makes an incredible blanket, however.Β  And since the point was to use up small scraps of leftover yarn, it was indeed effective.

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And yet somehow that bag of scrap yarn remained full for the entirety of the two years I’ve been developing this πŸ˜›

Maybe it wasn’t so unfortunate. After all, I had an incentive to try to do it again, and this time I had a few additional touches I was excited about trying. So, I started the NEXT one. Good thing too, because if there is one thing I love to have around, it’s a big colorful knitting project that requires zero brainpower.

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My favorite projects do tend to involve recycling and reusing stuff, and this thing has supreme scrapbusting capabilities. Especially on the two skinnier front panels, you can really use up fairly small lengths of leftover yarn with ease, because you don’t have to weave in those ends! At least, not as many ends as you’d think, as long as you change yarns at the end of the row. I mostly hit the mark on this, usually with just a yard or two to spare on whatever tiny yarn ball I was using. Occasionally I gambled on a small length and lost, and had to change mid-row.

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Since the yarn ends on the outside edges of the ruana are left knotted and then blended in with the added fringe, you save a ton of time doing that much-maligned finishing work. But you still have to weave in the ends for the grannies πŸ˜›

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I hope you enjoy the free tutorial I whipped up for this project – it’s more of a guide than a pattern, since the dimensions/materials/yardages are left somewhat variable and a lot of it is open for (and it fact demands) personal interpretation and creativity! Of course, if you have any questions about how I did mine, don’t hesitate to ask πŸ™‚ And, if you like it, throw me a favorite on the Ravelry project page.

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Oh, and this thing is COZY. Basically this wrap cocoons you in soothing waves of color and texture and mind-melds you with the universe. Basically.

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Wayfarer Ruana

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Final dimensions: Roughly 65″ x 65″ when laid flat.

Materials:

Part 1 (Knit):

8 mm (US size 11) knitting needles (24″ circular and 40″ circular)
A whole buncha yarn – I used mostly #4 and #5 weight from leftovers. If you’ve got thinner yarn you want to use up, remember you can always double it up with another strand! I used 4 skeins of a silver bulky weight (I Love This Chunky from Hobby Lobby) as my “base” yarn, using a little in the main body and 3 skeins for the trims and collar.

Part 2 (Crochet):
4.50 mm crochet hook
DK weight yarn – I used a variety of colors (20 skeins) from Drops Lima, a wool/alpaca blend, and had plenty left over.

Tapestry Needle
Scissors

Techniques:

Part 1 (Knit):
Cast on (CO)
K (knit)
P (purl)
Stretchy bind off (tutorial video here)
Standard bind off
Picking up stitches from the edge of the row (tutorial video here)
Not absolutely necessary but I found to beΒ extremely helpful: this tutorial on speed knitting by RJ Knits.

Part 2 (Crochet):
Magic Ring (MR)
Double crochet (dc)
Chain (ch)
Slip stitch (sl st)
Granny square join-as-you-go (great tutorial here)

Part 1 Instructions: The Main Body

Using spare balls of scrap yarn / orphan skeins / leftover yarns

1.CO 50 sts to the 24″ circular knitting needles
2. Turn, K every stitch across
3. Rpt Step 2, changing yarn at the end of the row whenever you think you don’t have enough for another full row (or whenever you feel like it). Tie the old yarn tail and the new yarn tail into a knot. Work until you have 130 rows. Transfer your piece to a stitch holder – this completes the first front panel, one of the two skinny halves of the front.

4. For the second front panel, repeat Steps 1-3 until you have another full 50 st x 130 row piece.

5. Switch to your 40″ circulars and knit your first rectangle onto the new circulars. Cast on 10 extra stitches, then knit your second rectangle on. You now have both of your front panels, plus 10 new stitches in between for the collar, on the 40″ circular needles.

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Close-up of the collar area

6. Turn, knit every stitch across, continuing to change & knot yarn as before. Work 130 total rows.

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5. Bind off. My favorite is the stretchy bind-off, directions for which are in this great video from Knitting with Cheryl Brunette.

Trim:

1. Using the the 40″ circular, pick up sts along the edge of the piece – I used myΒ  bulky “base” yarn and got about 180 stitches (1 stitch per 2 rows). Here’s a great videoΒ from the indomitable Purl Soho on picking up stitches from the side of garter stitch rows.

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Picking up stitches from the side of the rows, front side

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Picking up stitches from the side of the rows – view from the back. Notice the ridge formed by the side of the rows on this side – this is where we will attach the extra fringe later.

2. K for 10 rows. Bind off using the standard method – to make the Part 2 joining easier, I would not recommend stretchy bind-off here.

3. Repeat trim on the other side, making sure that you work the second edge with the same side facing, positioning all ends to the back of your work (so that the fringe will be all on the same side).

Collar:

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1.Β  With 40″ circular needles, pick up stitches on the side of the rows beginning on the inside of the front panel up to the collar, then around and down the inside of the of the opposite panel (remember only 1 stitch per 2 rows)

From this row of picked up stitches we’ll work a 4×4 rib. If you are picky about not ending up with partial ribs, you could go to the trouble to make sure the amount of stitches you pick up is divisible by four, but I didn’t – and was divisible by four anyway! Lucky me.

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2. For the 4 x 4 rib, *K 4, P 4* across the entire row. Work 8 total rows in the rib by knitting the knit stitches and purling the purl stitches in every row. Cut yarn and tie off. Weave in any ends from the main body left on this inside edge.

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PART 2 Instructions: Granny Square Trim

4.50 mm crochet hook
Assorted DK weight yarns
Gauge: 1 square = 6″

Next we’ll make TWO separate strips of 11 granny squares (about 6 inches in length each). You can definitely use scrap yarn here too, but I used a set of colors from Drops Lima yarn for a more uniform appearance.

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To begin the granny square, make a magic ring.

Round 1: Ch 3 (counts as first dc), 2 dc into the ring, ch 3. (3 dc into the ring, ch 3) 3 times. Join with a sl st to the first dc of the round. Cut yarn and tie off.

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Rnd 2: Join new yarn to any ch-3 space. Ch 3 (counts as first dc), 2 dc in the same sp, ch 3. 3 dc in the same space, ch 1. (3 dc in the next ch-3 space, ch 3, 3 dc in the same sp, ch 1) 3 times. Join with a sl st to the first dc of the round. Cut yarn and tie off.

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Rnd 3: Join new yarn in any ch-3 space. Ch 3 (counts as first dc) 2 dc in the same sp, Ch 3, 3 dc in the same space, ch 1. 3 dc in the next ch-1 space, ch 1. (3 dc in the next ch-3 space, ch 3, 3 dc in the same space, ch 1. 3 dc in the next ch-1 space, ch 1) 3 times. Join with a sl st to the first dc of the round.. Cut yarn and tie off.

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Round 4: Join new yarn in any ch-3 space. Ch 3 (counts as first dc), 2 dc in the same space, ch 3. 3 dc in the same space, ch 1. (3 dc in the next ch-1 space, ch 1) twice. [3 dc in the next ch-3 space, ch 3, 3 dc in the same space, ch 1. (3 dc in the next ch-1 space, ch 1) twice] 3 times. Join with a slip stitch to the first dc of the round. Do not cut yarn.

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Rnd 5:

If this is your first square for the strip, work as normal. If this is not your first square, connect ONE of the sides to the previous square on the strip by beginning with any chain-3 corner and ending with the next, using this join-as-you-go methodΒ from Attic 24. If you prefer, you could also make all squares individually and seam them later πŸ™‚

Sl st in the next 2 dc and in the next ch st so your hook is positioned to begin the next round at the ch-3 corner. Ch 3 (counts as first dc)Β 2 dc in the same space, ch 3. 3 dc in the same space, ch 1. (3 dc in the next ch-1 space, ch 1) 3 times. [3 dc in the next ch-3 space, ch 3, 3 dc in the same space, ch 1. (3 dc in the next ch-1 space, ch 1) 3 times] Repeat [bracketed] instructions 3 times total. Join with a sl st to the first dc of the round. Cut yarn and tie off.

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Joining Seam

Once you have your 2 strips of grannies, check to see if they are roughly the length of the sides of the ruana by laying the strip against the edge of the trim. Ballpark is fine here, you just want to make sure neither piece is overly stretched or scrunched to match. You may end up needing one more or less granny, depending on your gauge and yarn choices.

Weave in all your ends and block if desired. Lay out the main body of the ruana and settle your granny strip up against the trim, the RS of the granny facing the same side as your ridge (where the fringe will be). Thread a tapestry needle with some spare DK weight yarn and use a simple whip stitch to attach the granny squares to the trim of the ruana all the way down across. Repeat on the other side.

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Clean up any ends remaining from your joining seam.

Fringe:

Using a 6″ piece of cardboard, book, or other object to wrap yarn around, cut a bunch of lengths of yarn for your fringe. Fold each length in half, then loop through the ridges made from picking up the stitches along the edge of the main body.

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Catch the leftover ends of knotted yarn in your fringe as you go, repeating across the edges on either side of the ruana. Once you have finished, cut the fringe down to just a little longer than the garter edge trim (you don’t want it covering your pretty grannies too much).

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Hunt down any stray ends that may need weaving in, then sink into the cozy rainbow bliss.

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Kudos to model Daisey Denson for keeping that hat on her head like a champ despite the very GUSTY winds coming off the lake!

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-MF

Rambler’s Mitts

I’ve got a quick free pattern for some basic fingerless gloves today, using just one skein of bulky weight yarn! Fingerless mitts are some of my favorite projects for spare yarn skeins, and a great beginner crochet project too.

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A recent spell of pretty weather has had me thinking of the Charles Dickens quote: “It was one of those March days when the sun shines hot and the wind blows cold: when it is summer in the light, and winter in the shade.” It’s not quite March yet, but I’m already looking forward to wandering in the woods to find the first treasures of spring!

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These quick & easy mitts are just perfect for woodland ramblings. They feature an alternating front post / back post hdc at the wrist and trim – you can find a tutorial linked below! These are also great fun to customize with extras – I added little embroidered fawn spots to mine.

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Rambler’s Mitts Free Pattern

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Materials:
5.50 mm hook
1 skein Bamboospun (#5 weight 3 oz/112 yds)
Tapestry needle & scissors

Techniques: Post Stitch RibbingΒ – this tutorial is for post stitches using double crochet, but the same theory can be applied for the half-double crochet post stitches which are used in this pattern.

Stitches: Ch, hdc, fphdc, bphdc, sc, sl st

To begin, Ch 24. Join with a sl st to form a ring, being careful not to twist.

Rnds 1: Ch 2 (does not count as first st), 1 hdc in the same st. 1 hdc in ea of the next 23 sts. Join with a sl st to the first hdc of the rnd. – 24 hdc.

Rnd 2: Ch 2, 1 fphdc in the same st. 1 bphdc in the next st. (1 fphdc, 1 bphdc) around. Join with a sl st to first hdc of the rnd. – 24 fp/bp hdc

Rnds 3-7: Rpt rnd 2.

Rnd 8: Ch 1 (does not count as first st), sc in same st. Sc in ea of the next 23 sts. Join with a sl st to first sc of the rnd. – 24 sc

Rnds 9 -13: Rpt Rnd 8

Rnd 14: Ch 2, 1 sc in the same st. 1 sc in ea of the next 9 sts. Ch 5, sk next 5 sts. 1 sc in ea of the next 9 sts. Join with a sl st to the first sc of the rnd. – 19 sc, 5 ch sts

Rnd 15: Ch 2, 1 sc in the same st. 1 sc in ea of the next 9 sts, 1 sc in ea of the next 5 ch sts, 1 sc in ea of the next 9 sts. Join with a sl st to first sc of the rnd. – 24 sc

Rnds 16: Rpt Rnd 15

Rnd 17: Ch 2 (does not count) 1 hdc in same st. 1 hdc in ea of the next 23 sts. Join with a sl st to first hdc of the rnd. – 24 hdc

Rnds 18 – 19: Rpt Rnd 2

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Thumbs

Rnd 1: Reattach yarn to one of the skipped stitches from Rnd 14. Ch 2 (does not count as first st). Hdc in the same st and in ea of the skipped stitches and in the bottom of the chain stitches. Join with a sl st in first hdc of the rnd – 10 hdc

Rnd 2: Ch 2 (does not count), hdc in the same st. Hdc in ea hdc around – join with a sl st. Cut yarn and tie off.

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Weave in all ends and enjoy!

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If fingerless mitts are REALLY your thing, you might like my Basic Armwarmers Tutorial – also a free pattern πŸ™‚

-MF

Spiral Sweater Pattern

During the winter I often turn to comforting, simple stitch patterns that don’t require a ton of mental fortitude (something I frequently lack during the semester). When I decided I wanted to crochet a pattern with a simple spiral design, I quickly settled on the subtle, hypnotizing rings of a continuous round worked through only the back loop. So meditative! Much Om!

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The rest of the design elements of this pattern seemed to fall into place, leaving just the math for me to figure out. Well, math, and how to get pictures of it in the middle of an alternately sloppy and freezing month. Luckily we had one or two days that weren’t too cold!

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I hope you find this pattern as soothing to make as I did (and as fun to wear afterward). This PDF pattern is exclusively available for 5.50 USD in my Ravelry Store or Etsy shop – Read on for more info!

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The Spiral Sweater is all about the simple, elegant details – a pretty picot trim at the cuffs, some fringe for drape and movement, and an optional set of sweet half-moon pockets compliment this round-and-round circular wrap cardigan.

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The circular body of the sweater is capped by shawl collar and straight sleeves, with chain cords that thread through the stitches of the fabric for a figure-flattering wrap at the waist. Simple construction makes this project suitable for Easy level crocheters, but it also features a few fun techniques including the double chain and the linked double crochet, both offered as free tutorials on my blog!

Linked Double Crochet
Double Chain

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The Spiral Sweater is written for four sizes – X-small (shown in Soft & Sleek “Brownie), Small (Not pictured), Medium (Soft & Sleek “Navy”), and Large (Rustic Romantic “Window Ivy”, below). And, as usual, lots of tutorial picture references and detailed, step by step instructions are included in the PDF!

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Materials

6.00 mm hk

Yarn Bee Rustic Romantic (#4, 3.5 oz / 228 yds) – 5 (6, 7, 8) skeins
-OR-
Yarn Bee Soft & Sleek (#4, 5 oz / 257 yds) – 4 (5, 6, -) skeins (Soft & Sleek not recommended for size LG)
3 stitch markers (at least 2 locking)

Tapestry needle & Scissors
6″ width cardboard or book for making fringe

Finished Measurements (Approx.):
XS: Cross Back 14”, Bust 34”, Sleeve Length 18”, Sleeve Circumference 11″
SM: Cross Back 15”, Bust 36”, Sleeve Length 19”, Sleeve Circumference 12″
MD: Cross Back 16.5”, Bust 38”, Sleeve Length 20”, Sleeve Circumference 13″
LG: Cross Back 17.5”, Bust 40”, Sleeve Length 21”, Sleeve Circumference 14″

Total Length (excluding fringe): 25” (29”, 34”, 38”)

Pattern Written in US terminology.

Congratulations, you have reached the end of the text portion of this post… how about some more pictures? πŸ˜€

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-MF