Spring and summer always makes me eager to craft up cute festival items, despite the fact that I haven’t gone to any events for over a year now. In the course of cleaning out my room while moving last month I happened upon a stash of teal upcycled sari ribbon and had to bust out one of my favorite projects with it: the Pixie Pocket skirt belt.
I make these useful crocheted belts out of scrap yarn, ripped scrap fabric, beads, bells, lace – you name it, I’ll cram it on a pixie belt. They are one of my top selling items (my friends tend to grab them up before they can even get to the a festival vending booth) and just supremely fun to make & wear.
Each of these 100% unique creations gets its own personality, and I name them after plants every time, to embody the nature spirit pixies I imagine wearing them! This one is called “Snapdragon” after the flowers that I remember obsessing over in my childhood – I would run over to the flower gardens that lined the church grotto, eager to pinch the blossoms to make them “snap” like my mom showed me.
Snapdragon features a circular pocket made with a bright applique, the center formed by the “bullion eye” motif I use in my free Forest Guide Hat pattern, with a cute eyeball charm I imagined to look like a dragon’s eye.
The rectangular pouch is made from super bulky yarn that I hand spun on my wheel, hand dyed by me and spun onto a mohair core. A super ruffle-y drawstring pouch imitates the expansion of flower petals, and a little extra sassinesss is added by the crochet net that swings on the hip over the fringe skirt.
All this is mounted on a teal belt with subtly variegated dragon scales (of course!) from crocodile stitch, a favorite textural technique of mine. The belt itself is a bit oversized on me so I wrapped it around, using the ties on the end to weave it in and out of the belt itself to secure it.
I had to pair it with that lush velvet bralette that I made recently, as it happened to match! The bralette is Bernat Baby Velvet made from my (also FREE) Basic Bralette design, with the Curvy Bralette modifications added in. I made this super soft top while drafting up some modifications to the design – those updates are now reflected in the original pattern and in the PDF version that I sell as well 🙂
Thanks for visiting to check out my latest work and be sure to subscribe and follow me on my social media channels so you don’t miss anything! I’ve got some great designs in the works and I try to always be updating and improving things too 🙂
I accumulate odd bits and ends of yarn skeins at a rapid pace, so it’s fortunate that I love upcycling and recycling projects that take advantage of “waste” material and turn them into something gorgeous and useful ❤ My favorite way to use very small bits of yarn over the years has been the knit them into garment designs that don’t require weaving in ends; leaving the spare lengths tied off to be incorporated into the fringe later saves you from having to weave in approximately thirty zillion scrap yarn ends 🙂
I’ve provided free tutorials and patterns on how to make these very simple, beginner-level knit garments here on Morale Fiber blog, and today I’m adding to the collection with the Scrappy Knit Shawl – a long triangular knit shawl that follows my method of using very small yarn balls of various sizes, large gauge needles, and incorporating the yarn ends into a fringed edge. Before we get going, here’s the other two pattern tutorials I have available in this style!
Bonus! If you’re not bi-stitch-ual (someone who knits AND crochets) I do have a great pattern for a scrappy crochet shawl in this style called the Scrappy Granny Shawl (IT’S FREE TOO!), pictured below 🙂
The simply named Scrappy Knit Shawl gets its shape by working a yarn over increase 1 stitch from the edge on both sides of every row. It’s got a pretty dang LONG wingspan, reaching around 95″ on the longest side! You can modify this shawl to be wider (from edge to triangle tip) by doing the YO increases only every other row until you get the size you like 🙂 If you like this project, be sure to favorite it on the Ravelry project page!
Materials: Size 10 or 10.5 (6.5 mm) knitting needles (I started with straight needles then moved to cabled circular needles once my piece got longer) A big ol’ pile of scrap yarn balls, various weights (some of them can be very small – start with those first!) Accent yarn for the fringe Scissors, tapestry needle
Finished Measurements: About 95″ in length About 20″ from edge to center point of triangle
Gauge: Not critical for this piece but mine was 5.5 sts & 12 rows = 2″ in garter stitch
Terms: Knit (K) Yarn Over increase (YO) Stitch (st)
Instructions: With 10 or 10.5 knitting needles, Cast On 3 stitches with a very small scrap yarn. Row 1: K1, YO, K1, YO, K1 Row 2:K1, YO, K until reaching the last st, YO, K1
From here, try to change yarns at the end of the row only. Leave your yarn tails loose (except to tie on the next yarn), changing yarns if you think you won’t have enough for the next row. I use up very small balls at the start for the shortest rows, then gradually use bigger balls as the rows get longer.
We’ll be repeating Row 2 using this yarn changing method for the rest of the garment. If you started on straight needles, switch to cabled circular needles when the piece becomes too large.
Rows 3-120 (or until you have the length you like): Repeat Row 2
If you have very thin yarns you’d like to use, try doubling them up with other yarns so the weights are more even!
Now, go over all the yarn ends left at the ends of the rows and make sure they are tightly knotted together. If you absolutely had to change yarns in the middle of any of the rows, weave in those ends but not the ends at the edges, which will be incorporated into the fringe.
I used my trusty notebook to wrap my yarn into 12″, then cut the looped yarn to make a bundle. Double up each strand and hook the loop of the strand through the edge of the shawl, taking advantage of those YO openings left in the fabric to apply the fringe.
Once you’ve fringed and woven in any mid-row ends, you’re done! I was so pleased with the result of this scrappy shawl design, I managed to make quite a pretty accessory from a relatively small amount of scraps. It’s so warm too- good thing, it was cold out that day!
If you like this project and love scrappy projects in general, you should check out my pattern collection of Scrappy Projects – all the links to all the scrappiest patterns I’ve published (both free and paid) plus notes on each one! ❤ Happy upcycling! -MF
P.S – BONUS GALLERY
Pssst… writing this post I was reminded of one of my first big knit projects I ever made up, which was knitted with 50% upcycled yarn (the beige yarn) that I had pulled out of an old sweater. That post is no longer available on this blog but I thought I’d pull a few from the vaults, for fun 😉
I really couldn’t come up with a better title than that, despite the fact that I’m excited about how my latest sewing ventures came out! I take a break from crocheting occasionally to create garments on my sewing machine and serger – I love patchy pieces using upcycled garments and fabrics, and these two projects I have today fall into that category, as well as both being hand-dyed by yours truly. I finished both projects over the winter, and managed to tolerate sub-freezing temps to get a picture of them outdoors where the light was decent:
My stash of to-destroy thrifted clothing are mostly castoffs from my wardrobe, things that didn’t fit quite right but still had nice natural fabric or an interesting quality I wanted to create with.
For this rag gown, I saved up a linen sundress and a linen skirt, a cotton machine lace tank top, and a small vest of the same kind, and dyed it all along with some spare lengths of cotton plain weave and cotton blend knit jersey. They stewed in a big tub with hastily splashed greens, and the dye took in a beautiful mottled way that I tend to favor over traditional patterned tie dyes or evenly distributed solids ❤
From there I laid them out with a rough plan of how to splice, cutting slits into the sundress for gores made out of long wedges of the skirt. The bottom edge was left rough as the mismatching lengths were sewn in, then I trimmed the fabric leaving peaks where the added length was longer.
This fixed the weird tubular issue the sundress had to make it more flatteringly shaped. The inside slip needed lengthened, so the plain weave cotton got stitched into the premade insert peeking out from below for a permanently layered look. Both hems got some or all the way covered in ruffles I made from the remaining cotton weave!
Next I wanted to adjust the bodice, which was a little puffy in some places and a bit too short of line visually. I cut bits and pieces of the machine laced tops to create a front panel featuring some of the bolder designs and edged it in the lace strips, bordering the sides and flowing around to the zip fastening in the back.
I did consider replacing the zipper with a criss-cross tie back, but at this point my experimentation courage had been used up! My rag gown was looking better than I had any expectation of, and I was happy with this piece enough to end my first foray into this kind of design. A few fabrics didn’t get used or used all the way, and I have ideas for future rag gowns so we’ll just have to save some tricks for later 😉
I’m pretty fond of this sewing pattern for Wendy Kay’s No-Gathers Skirt, which I purchased from her Etsy shop years ago and I’ve had plenty of use from! I’m not sure how many I’ve made but it’s over a handful, and I’ve always wanted to try dyeing one myself. These are perfect with scraps of affordably priced quilting cotton, which I either inherit from friends’ relatives or purchase myself in the discount remnant bins of the hobby stores.
Determined to use up my stash, I had bits and pieces of other skirts left, plus a lot of fabric that had a color I didn’t favor. I decided to use all the fabric I had, and then overdye the resulting garment in hopes that it would tie the non-matching colors together.
It worked pretty well! I love the rich purple and maroon that I custom mixed from my dyes, and the gold embossing on some of the fabrics really shines against that dark background.
Of course, having busted my stash of quilting cottons down, I’m encouraged by the success of dyeing these skirts and will probably pretty quickly rebuild said patchwork stash 😉
I love experimenting and exploring with fiber art and apparel, and the fact that I get to twirl around while doing so is no small incentive 😉
I loved revisiting this design and thinking about all the threads of my passion weaving in and out of my life – things come and go as they will. Sometimes I feel like all I can do is be here for it.
You can get the portable, printable, ad-free PDF of this crochet pattern with all the great updates included in my Etsy Shop or Ravelry Store now! ❤ Thank you ❤ Keep scrolling for the free pattern 🙂
3.75 crochet hook (or size needed for gauge) 200-500 yards cotton yarn, #2 or #3 weights work best (A good commercial yarn would be Hobbii Azalea, pictured Above Middle: #2 weight, 52% cotton 48% acrylic, 200 g / 874 yds, Color: 10) I made most of these with recycled cotton yarn, see notes for details. Scissors and tapestry needle for weaving in ends
Gauge: 3 inches in diameter after Rnd 3 – however, gauge is not critical, see notes section.
Rnd 3 pictured, with measuring tape held across diameter of the first three rounds.
Chain (ch) Double Crochet (dc) Slip Stitch (sl st) Single Crochet (sc) Half-Double Crochet (hdc) –in this pattern, hdc are used to complete the final chain space of each round of the mesh portion of this design. They are substituted for the final 2 chain stitches – please refer to this free tutorial for the Chain & Stitch Join if you are unfamiliar with this technique.
This bag is a great project for leftover yarns the follows the reduce, reuse, recycle philosophy! I originally designed this market bag for using recycled yarn from thrifted sweaters: if you are interested in learning to do that, see my full-length tutorial on Morale Fiber Blog.
For a video tutorial on making the twisted fringe into the surface of your bag, see my YouTube Channel video:
This pattern works great with any hook and yarn, so gauge is not critical if you would like to experiment with different yarns and hook sizes to make different sized bags. I have offered a slightly larger option to this pattern to give extra size options! Instructions for large occur in bold, where different from the small.
The chain lengths at the beginning of rounds DO NOT count as the first stitch of the round.
Rnd 1: Ch 4. Dc 12 into the 4th ch from the hook, join with a sl st in the first dc. – 12 sts made
Rnd 2: Ch 3. 2 dc in the same stitch. 2 dc in ea of the next 11 sts. Join with a sl stitch to first dc. – 24 sts made
Rnd 3: Ch 3. 1 dc in the same stitch, 2 dc in the next stitch. (1 dc in the next st, 2 dc in the next st) rpt 11 times. Join with a sl st to first dc. – 36 sts made.
Rnd 4: Ch 3. 1 dc in the same stitch, 1 dc in the next stitch, 2 dc in the next stitch. (1 dc in each of the next 2 stitches, 2 dc in the next stitch) rpt 11 times. Join with a sl stitch. – 48 sts made
Rnd 5: Ch 3, 1 dc in the same stitch. 1 dc in each of the next 2 sts, 2 dc in the next st. (1 dc in each of the next 3 sts, 2 dc in the next stitch) rpt 11 times. Join with a sl stitch. – 60 sts made
Rnd 6: Ch 3, 1 dc in the same stitch. 1 dc in each of the next 3 sts, 2 dc in the next st. (1 dc in each of the next 4 sts, 2 dc in the next stitch) rpt 11 times. Join with a sl stitch. – 72 sts made.
Rnd 7: Ch 3, 1 dc in the same stitch. 1 dc in each of the next 4 sts, 2 dc in the next st. (1 dc in each of the next 5 sts, 2 dc in the next stitch) rpt 11 times. Join with a sl stitch. – 84 sts made.
Rnd 8 (larges only): Ch 3, 1 dc in the same stitch. 1 dc in each of the next 5 sts, 2 dc in the next st. (1 dc in each of the next 6 sts, 2 dc in the next st) rpt 11 times. Join with a sl stitch. – 96 sts made.
Rnd 9 (larges only): Ch 3, 1 dc in the same st. 1 dc in each of the next 6 sts, 2 dc in the next st. (1 dc in each of the next 7 sts, 2 dc in the next st) rpt 11 times. Join with a sl stitch. – 108 sts made.
That finishes the solid bottom of the bag. Next the pattern works a round of chain loops to start the mesh portion.
Rnd 8 (10): Sc in the same st as sl stitch join. (Ch 4, skip 2 sts. Sc in the next st) rpt around. Ch 2, hdc in the first sc of the round. This positions your hook in the middle of a ch-4 sized space (see Stitches section under hdc for explanation of this type of join). – 28 (36) ch spaces
Close-up of the hdc stitch worked to close the final loop of the round.
Rnd 9 (11): Sc in the same space, working under the hdc made in the previous round as if it were a part of a chain loop.. (Ch 4, sc in the next ch-4 space) rpt around. Ch 2, hdc in the first sc of the round.
Close up of the first sc of the round, worked directly underneath the hdc just made as if it were a chain space.
Finish the round with the same method, using hdc to substitute the final 2 ch stitches.
Rnds 10-23 (12-25): Rpt Rnd 9 (11)
Add as many extra rounds of (ch 4, sc) mesh here as you would like to get the desired bag dimensions – the next part completes the bag with a single crochet brim and handles.
Rnd 24 (26): Ch 1, 2 Sc in the same ch-4 sized space. 3 sc in ea of the next 27 (35) ch-4 spaces. 1 sc in the next ch-4 space, join with a sl st to the first sc of the round.
Rnds 25-26 (27-28): Ch 1. Sc in the same st as sl st join. 1 sc in each sc around, join with a slip stitch in the 1st sc of the round – 84 (108) sts
You can add extra rounds here for a wider brim if needed.
Rnd 27 (29): Ch 2 to begin a double chain. Double chain 50 (or ch 50 normally if you prefer). Skip 22 (28) sts of previous round, sc in the next stitch (this creates a gap between the last round and the double chain of this round, which will become your handle). 1 sc in each of the next 19 (26) sts. Ch 2 to begin a double chain, make 50 double chain stitches (or ch 50 normally if you prefer). Skip 22 (28) stitches of previous round, sc in the next stitch. 1 sc in each of the next 18 (25) sts. Sl st into the base of the handle chain (your first double chain).
You should have 2 evenly placed 50-stitch long chain arcs.
Rnds 28 – 30 (30-32): Ch 1, 1 sc in each st around. Join with a sl st to the first sc of the round.
You may want to add extra rows here for wider handles or add rows to the inner gap of the handles – I like to have fun and experiment with different ways to adorn this part of the bag, with tassels or beads, embroidery, etc!
Cut yarn and weave in the ends using a tapestry needle.
Left: Bag finished with embroidery, Right: Bag finished with twisted fringe (click for link to video tutorial!)
Hope you found this little pattern useful – I love these for gifts especially because I just can’t seem to have enough reusable bags on hand!
I couldn’t resist going full grandmacore in a totally uneccessary dress-up sesh for this pattern makeover – this is the bit at the end where I stick all the extra pictures 🙂
With my first full length video tutorial under my belt, I forged ahead this week to create Part 2 of the Lotus Mandala series! It went much faster this time, because I had a better idea of how to make the video to flow and therefore (frankly) procrastinated less 😉
Part 2 covers rounds 9-16, which contain some of the most technically difficult rounds and the ones that I get the most questions about – so hopefully it will prove useful.
I am planning on completing this series, creating video tutorials for the rest of the rounds of the Lotus Duster pattern including the sleeves and such, though that might not premier as quickly. I have some really exciting new releases coming soon that I need to finish first!
If you want to make sure you don’t miss anything, hit the follow button on my blog and be sure to like and follow my Facebook Page as well ❤
And now, Part 2!
If you enjoyed this video, like and subscribe to my channel! Besides the Lotus Mandala series, there’s more on the way ❤
And I’d like to take this opportunity to sincerely thank everyone out there who has liked, commented, shared, purchased, and otherwise supported my art. I couldn’t do this without any of you, YOU ARE AWESOME and BEAUTIFUL!
The Lotus Mandala Duster free crochet pattern (and the offshoot the Lotus Mandala Vest) have remained some of my most popular patterns for years now – and as such, I’ve encountered a lot of questions about this design! I compiled a few of the most common ones here, but I’m happy to answer others that you may have about this or any of my designs, so feel welcome to comment or message me through my Facebook business page 🙂 These questions refer specifically to the Lotus Duster, the Lotus Mandala Vest (a more open and free size garment) has its own FAQ written already here.
How do I make a size larger than a Large?
I don’t have plans to write this pattern for any more sizes as of yet, sorry! So the best way that you could size up this pattern is to work the extra rows given for the size Large, but work them even MORE. So here’s a quick guide for how that might be done. For a larger bust but not necessarily a larger waist, tactics 1,2,3, and 6 would be the most helpful because you’re aiming for a bigger diameter in the circle, not necessarily larger sleeves or shoulders. 🙂
Tips for increasing up from a Large: 1. Extra Rounds 13.1 & 13.2 – Add extra rounds here in pattern, such that Rnds 13.3 & 13.4 have increases in the 26th st and 27th st repectively, adding as many rounds as you want as long as you stay in pattern with the increases
2. Extra Rounds 17. 1 & 20.1 – each of these rounds can be repeated as written, but only a limited amount of times before the circle stops laying flat because there are no increases in these rounds.
3.Extra Rnd 31.1 – can be repeated a few times
4. Sleeves Step 1 – can work 4 dc’s to each ch space in the sleeve instead of 3 (as for Large), keep number of dc’s in the chain stitches the same
5. Armhole Placement – You may want to adjust depending on your back measurement – measure between your shoulderblades for a tighter fit or from armpit to armpit for looser fit. This should match the measurement between the two sleeve yokes (armholes) on the piece – there are notes in the pattern for how to handle custom fit armholes. If you want to size up the armholes themselves, you can add more chain stitches in multiples of three – so you could add 3, 6, or 9 extra chains to each armhole, etc. To keep the ratio correct, skip ONE extra chain space on the row below per every 3 extra chains added to the armhole chain.
6. It can also be helpful to add extra rounds to the part of the garment that is worked only on the top half (Rows 35 & 36) so that you are adding length to the top and sides only (to keep it from getting too long). This one is pretty crucial. If you are wider but shorter than the model (5’8″ or so for the large) You won’t be able to work as many extra rounds because eventually the piece will be dragging the floor.
How do I make this child’s size?
The general layout of the design isn’t really written for children when made with the given yarn and hook size – the central mandala is kind of big, so to size down successfully I recommend working in a smaller yarn weight and hook size. I’ve seen several examples of smaller dusters using #1-#2 weight yarn and smaller hooks, which turned out great. Unfortunately that’s as specific as I can be about that!
What yarns did you use for “this specific” Lotus Duster?
Every duster I have made except the all white one pictured for the Large size below has been made mainly from yarn reclaimed from old sweaters, mixed with some handspun yarns and some scraps of commercial yarns.
The white duster pictured here is made from Premier Cotton Fair as listed in the main pattern.
Unfortunately since I use recycled and handspun for every other duster, there aren’t any commercial yarns I can recommend to use to get the same color scheme. Universal Yarns Bamboo Pop is a good yarn in the same weight that has many color varieties, which I usually point people toward when asked this question 🙂 🙂
Sweater yarns have the advantage of being fairly light and thin while sturdy enough to withstand the tension of the garment. Also, they are cheap and accessible if you have the patience to harvest them. Last but not least, the upcycled cotton threads I get from these secondhand sweaters give the piece a really authentically vintage/retro feel, even though it’s a newly made garment.
Can I use “X” yarn with this pattern / What hook should I use?
The answer to this question always begins with “check your gauge.” Technically you can make any pattern with any size hook and yarn if your gauge matches the gauge given in the pattern. Now, gauge can be tricky and there are other things that contribute to the general look, feel, and function of a handmade garment, but the simplest place to start when asking “can I make it with this yarn and hook?” is to test your gauge.
This pattern works best with #2-#3 weight yarn. I have seen it made with #4 weight, which honestly I don’t prefer but that’s a matter of opinion.
Is there a pattern to make a Hood for the Duster?
Yes! I got many requests after I released the Lotus Duster pattern to create a hood design for it as well, and I finally sat down and designed something this spring – the Lotus Hooded Duster is available for free on my blog, as well as included in a separate PDF in the paid digital version of the Lotus Duster pattern.
UPDATE: The full tutorial is now finished and available from the aforementioned link!
Is this pattern available in other languages?
Currently this pattern is available for free in English (My version, in US terminology) and Dutch – see Dutch translation here via Een Mooi Gebaar, who has translated a few of my other patterns as well! Een Mooi Gebaar Morale Fiber Portal
Portable, printable, ad-free PDF crochet pattern translations are available in the following languages by following the links!
A few years ago I espied some beautiful images of knit ruana-style shawls and ponchos that used striking color striping in a simple stitch pattern. The knit stitches were loosely made, giving the garment a pretty drape, and the simple tie-offs from color changing formed a natural fringe with a western look. The artist using this beautiful style, I found out later, was the Kristen Hoke of Posh By Gosh on Etsy.
I was enamored, for many reasons: its beauty came from its simplicity and versatility. It featured only knit stitches, so I could easily wrap my head around it. Plus, ample opportunity to play with color and use up spare bits of yarn! I rushed to gather all of my spare skeins and yarn bits, and started a massive upcycling project inspired by her knits – that was my first try, which became a blanket because as it turns out I was not very good at estimating knit sizes at the time.
No worries, though – I tried again, this time turning my inspiration into a project with a crochet twist! The knit ruana, featuring crocheted granny square edges, became the Wayfarer Ruana tutorial, available for free here on my blog!
By then, I was pretty satisfied but I also found myself addicted. These projects were so easy to pick up and put down (because of the endless mindless knitting, it was definitely stitch therapy) and they were so perfect for using up very small bits of yarn. I wanted to design another garment in this style! This time, with even less weaving in of ends. And how about wearable anywhere?
And more SASSY FRINGE?
So I got to work knitting up this Scrap Knit Duster, and put together a little tutorial for it along the way. The two front panels are great for using up very small balls of leftover yarn, especially singe there isn’t any weaving in ends (or at least, very little)!
Since the garment is just made of rectangles folded and seamed, adventurous souls could easily translate this into a crochet piece (just keep your gauge loose so that the fabric drapes well).
Hope you love making it as much as I do ❤ If you do, why not give this project a fave on Ravelry?
US Size 11 (8.00 mm) Knitting Needles, 1 set 24” circular (long straight needles are fine in substitute for this), 1 set 40” circular (necessary)
A lot of random scrap yarn ❤ I chose one neutral toned yarn to kind of become the “background” for the colored yarns, as well as a trim color.
6” book, cardboard, or fringe making tool
Gauge: About 6 sts & 8 rows = 2” in garter stitch Stitches Required: Cast On, Knit, Purl, Bind Off
Finished measurements: 38” long, bust and waist measurements variable
Begin by taking your measurements. You want the total circumference of the garment to be about as wide as the widest part of your frame (whether that’s your bust, your hips, or your belly) so that it will just be able to wrap you up. I used 34” as my circumference. It’s a little under my actual measurements, but I wanted my duster to be fitted to me, and I know this knit fabric stretches accommodatingly.
The main part of the duster is made with three panels. The two front panels, which are made to equal almost 1/4th the circumference each, so half my measurement when added together. The one back panel is made to equal the other half, and is added after the first two panels are finished (this part is the same basic process as the Wayfarer Ruana, just not as wide).
However, I know I’m going to be adding a trim to the front, so my two front panels will be made a little shorter. 1/4th of 34” is 8.5”, but I’ll plan on adding almost 2” in border, so 6.5” or so. I decide that my front panels are going to be 20 stitches long each, which when plugged into my gauge, will land me at about 6.5” for each front panel width.
If you want a less fitted piece, just stick with the simple math – Each Front Panel is ¼ your circumference, and don’t worry about the trim length for now.
Cast On 20 (or whatever number you land on)
Rows 1-150: Knit each stitch. Change color at the end of the row when necessary or desired….
ONLY change colors on one side of the piece. Either side is fine, but stick with one side. This is the side that will face “out” later, and form the fringe hem at the sides, saving you from having to weave in a bunch of ends.
Make 150 rows of garter stitch for the first front panel, DO NOT BIND OFF.
Stick your first panel on a holding needle and repeat this process for the second panel.
Once both of your panels are complete, arrange your panels so that the tie-off fringe sides are facing away from each other. Using yarn and your long needles (circular or otherwise), begin to knit across the top of the first panel, starting on the fringe side. Once you knit across the first panel, CO 10 stitches for the collar of the garment. Then, continue knitting across the second panel, ending on the second fringed side.
These 50 stitches (20 for the first panel + 10 for the collar + 20 for the second panel) come out to about 16.5”. 16.5 + (6.5 + 6.5) = 29.5”. Add the (2” + 2”) on either side for the front color trim, and I will have my 34” circumference achieved.
Knit 150 rows for the back panel. Change colors at the end of the row whenever necessary or desired. Colors can be tied off on either side of the back panel.
Once you’ve finished the front and back panels, Cast off your piece. I like to use Jenny’s Surprisingly Stretchy Bind-Off (JSSBO), a video tutorial for which can be found here.
Fold your piece in half. Using your tape measure, measure from the top of your shoulder to the lowest part of your armpit. Double this number is how wide you need your sleeve to be – I got about 9”.
We will form the sleeve by picking up one flat row, centered on the same row as the collar is made. Picking up knit stitches from the side of garter stitch is tricky because we are only picking up ONE stitch per each TWO rows. So to get a 9” measurement, I need 28 stitches. (28 sts / 6 stitches per 2 inches = 4.6, or 9.3” inches.)
So beginning from the bottom of each panel, I count up from the hem 122 rows and place a stitch marker. This leaves 28 rows left on the front panel. Repeat count up 122 rows on the back panel (same side) and place a stitch marker. Pick up 28 knit stitches in the side of these 56 rows that land in between your marked stitches, using your needles.
Knit 70 rows, changing color at the end of the row when necessary or desired.
Using your preferred border color, switch to working a 4 x 4 rib. Knit 4, Purl 4 and in in subsequent round, knit the knits and purl the purls. Work 5 rounds.
You can change your rib width based on what number your sleeve stitch count is divisible by – for instance, 28 is divisible by 4 so my ribs will be even. If you have 35, you can work a 5 x 5 rib instead, etc.
BO, preferably with a stretchy bind-off method as mentioned above.
Repeat same sleeve process on the opposite side.
Fold the entire garment along the middle line that runs through the center of the sleeves and the collar. It helps to lay it flat on the floor, so you can brush the fringe out flat. In this next part, we will use a tapestry needle and a length of yarn to seam the duster.
Grab a long-ish length of yarn and thread through the tapestry needle. A simple whip stitch through both layers of edges is all that is needed to seam the garment up the side. Keep seaming from the bottom all the way to the sleeve end, starting a new seam if you run out of yarn. Repeat for the opposite side.
To keep your tension even, pull the seam thread tight by stretching the garment out as you sew. Be careful to keep the tie-off fringe out of your seam.
Once you have seamed up the side of the duster and through to the end of the sleeves on both sides, clip your thread and tie the ends off to blend them into the fringe (some you may want to weave in, such as the ends at the hem of the sleeves). Now it’s time to create the ribbed border around the front opening and collar.
Using your 40” circular needles and your border colored yarn, Pick up 1 knit stitch from every 2 garter stitch rows along the inside border of the garment. If your panels are 150 rows long, you’ll work 75 stitches up one side, 10 into the collar, and 75 down the other side.
K 4, P 4 to create a 4×4 rib. Work 9 rows of rib by knitting the knits and purling the purls. BO using the JSSBO.
Almost there! Are you excited yet?
Now we’ve got a really rockin’ fringey thing going on, but the tie-offs look a little scraggly in my opinion, so I use my 6” book to create some fringe lengths by wrapping the yarn around then cutting through the bundle. You’ll have to lay out your piece flat again, and comb all the tie-off fringe out flat to prepare for the next step.
Using a crochet hook, loop one strand of fringe in the side of every fringe-less row up the side of the body and sleeves. Repeat for the other side.
Finally, weave in any stray ends that aren’t part of the fringe. Odds are you will have a few across the shoulders where the sleeve attaches – I wove those down into the seam for the most part.
Once you have all the extra fringe attached, arrange your duster so that the sleeve and the side of the body are laying long the same line, parallel. Comb all the fringe, including the tie off, so that it is laying mostly flat. Using a sharp scissors, give your baby a haircut – I went down to about 4″ for the fringe.
If you have any stray yarn ends that need woven in (such as scraps that ran out in the middle of a row, or border yarns from adding the trim), take care of those. Once you have, you are done!
Voila! Now you have a scrappy bohemian rock’n’roll knit duster that is warm and wearable, looks great with anything, and that you MADE YOURSELF 😀 !!!
Thanks for visiting my blog and making art with me – I think this may be one of my favorite things I’ve ever made! I say that a lot though 😛
It was certainly fun to photograph. I hiked up a VERY steep hill, camera gear in tow, in order to prance around in heels on the edge of a cliff. Who says knitting isn’t extreme??
Hi friends! In addition to working diligently on the Elf Coat patterns, I’ve been having fun doing some experimentation in one of my favorite project categories, the upcycled crochet pixie belt.
If you don’t already know, you can get a ton of info on how to create original, freeform pixie pocket belts from my blog series, the Pixie Belt Tutorial. The full tutorial is also available in downloadable, printable, ad-free PDF format through my Ravelry store – and I’m using this post as a springboard for a pattern sale too!
Now through Aug. 12, through Ravelry only, you can get the Pixie Belt Tutorial pattern FREE with the purchase of any other pattern! 🙂 Just put both patterns in your cart and the discount is taken at checkout.
I had fun adding new hardware elements to this latest pixie belt piece – a metal mandala centerpiece I’ve had for years that came off of an old thrifted dress forms a focal point on the back, plus two D-rings on either side of the belt which hold a draped scarf really nicely for extra oomph around the hips. The best part is that the silver scarf is totally removable, so you can change out scarves!
There are also two pixie pockets: one circular pouch and one drawstring, as well as a detachable mushroom pouch ❤ The skirting I’m especially proud of – one whole thrifted shirt made from dusky rose gauzy material, artfully ripped of course.
I’m very happy with how this belt came out, especially since I got pretty experimental with it! This encourages me in my other ideas – I’d love to bring in more diverse fiber elements like fabric and leather 🙂
Also it was fun to dress up this one – what do you think of my new background? I dig it!
It’s finally time! I’ve received many requests over the last few years to design a hood for my Lotus Duster free crochet pattern, and it’s been on my to-do list for long enough – today we debut the hood addition to this design! 😀
The hood is partially made, then inserted into the main pattern rather than added after the entire thing is finished, so if you are working the Lotus Duster you will be adding the hood after Round 22, then continuing with the main pattern from there and working over the hood brim in addition to the rest of the garment. Also, I made the version pictured here sleeveless (because I wanted to wear it this summer) and I made a few adjustments to the sizing as well, which are explained in the instructions 🙂
If you like these patterns and want the portable, printable, ad-free version, good news! The Hood Tutorial is now included as a bonus PDF along with the PDF version of the Lotus Mandala Duster pattern, available in my Etsy Shop and Ravelry Pattern Store! And don’t forget my offer for bundled patterns with my new pattern discount codes:
15% off of 2: MF15OFF
20% off of 3-4: MF20OFF
25% off of 5-6: MF25OFF
30% off of 7+: MF30OFF
The pattern given for the Hood is more of a tutorial and doesn’t include specific stitch counts like the main Lotus Duster pattern does. I also used a random mishmash of yarns, some slightly bigger than I would normally use for this design, which makes a difference in sizing and gauge, etc – so I left the hood instructions open with modifications for individual gauge and preference. I considered using the standard yarn that I use for the main pattern, but I just really wanted to make this crazy thing using all these crazy yarns!
Oh, and those leafy wrap bracelets I am wearing are from another FREE crochet pattern of mine, the Ivy Crown garland.
Lotus Hooded Duster
Materials: 5.50 mm hook
Extra yarn – I would estimate the hood addition requires 300-500 yards of yarn more than the standard pattern. Please refer to the main pattern for more info on materials needed, gauge, etc.
Notes: As mentioned, I made a few tweaks to the sizing of this sleeveless duster to get the look I wanted. I started working the main pattern in size Small, then added length and width by working some of the extra rows suggested in the Large size – but not all of them, so the size came out more like a Medium.
On Rnd 22 I made an adjustment to the amount of double crochet that I worked across the chain loop that creates the armhole opening.
“22. Ch 3 – counts as first dc. 1 dc in the next dc (3 dc in the next ch-1 space, 1 dc in ea of the next 2 dc) 9 times. 3 dc in the next ch-1 sp, 1 dc in the next dc. 1 dc in ea of the next 30, 33 ch sts. 1 dc in the next dc (1 dc in the next ch sp, 1 dc in ea of the next 2 dc) 9, 13 times**. 1 dc in the next ch sp, 1 dc in the next dc. 1 dc in ea of the next 30, 33 ch sts. 1 dc in the next dc (3 dc in the next ch-1 space, 1 dc in ea of the next 2 dc) 63, 65 times. 3 dc in the next ch-1 sp, join with a sl st to the 3rd ch of beg ch-3. – 460, 488 sts”
Instead of working 1 dc in each of the chain stitches made for the armhole loops (making 30 total dc over each armhole) I worked 20 total dc into the armhole loop itself, not the stitches. This means that the stitches can stretch across the loop made by the chains and are not anchored to the stitches themselves – to do this, just insert the hook underneath the chain loop to work your stitches across (do not insert your hook into the actual stitches, just the space underneath the chain).
I forgot to get an actual picture at this stage, so this one is from a little later in the pattern. Still, check out how the stitches are arranged across the armhole loop space – this accomplishes a slight tightening at the bust and shoulder area and makes room for the extra draping material that will be added by the presence of the hood. If these step seems confusing or you are having trouble with sizing, it’s 100% okay to skip this step – it’s not a crucial adjustment. I just made this change because it helps keep all that pretty lacey material tucked around the shoulders for a better fit.
So with that in mind, finish Round 22 as written with or without the armhole adjustments. Once Rnd 22 is complete, set the main body of the duster aside to begin the hood.
Using the 5.50 mm hook and your yarn of choice, Chain 35.
The length you chain depends on your gauge – if you hold the chain starting at the nape of the neck, it should be long enough to reach the back of your head. If 35 is too short, chain more.
Row 1: Dc in the 4th ch from hook, ch 1, sk next st. (Dc, ch 1, sk next st) 14 times, or however many times you need to reach the second to last stitch of the chain. Dc, ch 1 in next st. In the last st of the chain, work (Dc, ch 1) 3 times. Rotate the piece so that you are working into the bottom of the chain stitches, creating a chain with stitches on both sides. Dc, ch 1 in the next st, sk next st. (Dc, ch 1, sk next st) 14 times. Dc in next st. Dc in the final st.
Row 2: Ch 4 (counts as first dc + ch 1), turn. (Dc in next ch -1 space, ch 1) 16 times. (Dc, ch 1) twice in ea of the next 2 ch-1 spaces. (Dc in the next ch-1 space, ch 1) 16 times. Dc in the final dc of the previous row.
The instructions in bold create two increase spaces at the tip of one end of the piece. Through the next part, you will work the same kind of increase in each of these two increase spaces on every row – so it’s helpful to mark them!
Row 3: Ch 3 (counts as first dc), turn. (Dc in the next ch-1 space, ch 1) 17 times. (Dc, ch 1) twice in the next space. Dc, ch 1 in the next space. (Dc, ch 1) twice in the next space. (Dc in the next space, ch 1) 16 times. 1 dc in the final ch-1 space, 1 dc in the final dc of the previous row.
Row 4: Ch 4 (counts as first dc + ch 1). (Dc in the next ch-1 space, ch 1) 18 times. (Dc, ch 1) twice in the next space. Dc, ch 1 in each of the next 2 spaces. (Dc, ch 1) twice in the next space. (Dc in the next space, ch 1) 18 times. Dc in the final dc of the previous row.
Keep working in this same manner, placing increases at the two increase points on every row, until your hood has 11 total rows (or until the hood is tall enough to reach the top of your head).
The next few rows skip the increases to add depth to the hood without adding more height. You can repeat the next two rows as many times as you like to get the depth of hood that you want/need, but remember that since there are still 15 rounds left in the main pattern that will add height and depth to the hood, so you really don’t need this part to be a fully functioning hood yet.
Row 12: Ch 4 (counts as first dc + ch 1). (Dc in the next ch-1 space, ch 1) in each space across. Dc in the final dc of the previous row.
Row 13: Ch 3 (counts as first dc). (Dc in the next ch-1 space, ch 1) across. 1 dc in the final ch space, 1 dc in the final dc of the previous row.
Once your hood addition is completed, cut your yarn and tie off. Now we are going to attach the hood to the work-in-progress main body of the duster.
My hood addition when finished by itself is about 20″ across the bottom, and 12″ at the highest point.
Attaching the Hood
On the main duster, use a stitch marker to mark the central dc between the armholes. I do this by counting how many v-stitches are in the row below, then finding the central v-stitch or space between v-stitches – the double crochet above will be the central point. Align the hood’s flat edge with this point, matching the end of the foundation chain to the middle point marked on the duster.
Attach yarn, insert hook through both the vest and the hood at the central point. Work a sc in ea dc through the hood, working 2 attaching stitches for the side of every DC at the end of a row. This was 25 stitches for me to get to the end of the hood.
Count out the amount of sts needed for the other side. Cut yarn and reattach at this point, then work toward the central point using the same strategy to attach.
Of course, you can always just whip stitch the hood onto the main duster if using a crocheted method of attaching seems like too much bother. I prefer a stitched seam here because the hood is going to be resisting against the weight of the rest of the duster (which is not light) and I want the seam to be strong and not stretch too much.
Once your hood is attached in whichever fashion you prefer, cut your yarn and tie off. It’s time to pick back up where we left off on the main body of the duster at Round 23. Only now, we will be working all the rest of the rounds across the brim of the hood as well as around the main body.
“23. Ch 3 – counts as first dc. (Sk next three sts, 1 dc in the next st. Ch 3, 1 dc in the same st) 114, 121 times. Sk next three sts, dc in the next st, ch 1. Hdc in the 3rd ch of beg ch-3 to join.”
Round 23 creates V-stitches all around the garment – to work the first round that includes the hood, work a V-stitch over the arm opening stitches as instructed…
Then work a V-stitch in every other ch-1 space around the brim of the hood addition.
Continue the round across the entire brim of the hood, and then around the main body as well, using the instructions given. Remember that because of the hood addition, your stitch counts will not be the same as given in the main pattern.
Once Round 23 is complete, all remaining rounds can be worked as written in the main Lotus Duster pattern, just working around the entire body including the hood! One more consideration is the half-rounds at Rnd 35 and 36 – because you have added a hood, you’ll have to recalculate what amount of stitches constitutes the top half of the garment and then work the half-rounds across that amount of stitches, not the amount given in the main pattern.
To calculate this number, count the total number of stitches in Rnd 34, then divide that number by half. Beginning with the Rnd 34 join at the side of the duster, count out your V-stitches that equal half of the total. Mark the final stitch of this set, then work Row 35 and 36 only on that portion following the instructions given. For my duster vest, half of the total equalled 224 V-stitches.
Once the garment in completed, I cut the yarn and wove in the ends. I added the slip stitching necessary to anchor the ties as shown in the main pattern, then added two braided ties on each side.
Since I left this version sleeveless, I finished the armholes with a row of dc around the inside.
I really love this particular version of the Lotus Duster – the lack of sleeves makes it a good garment for warmer weather, but the hood and the length make it mysterious and costume-y enough to be a stunning festival piece! In my tradition of naming these after female singer songwriters, I’m calling this baby “Florence.” ❤
The polymer clay horns and woodland tree spirit pendant I am wearing in this shoot came from my amazing friend Wendy Davies from Dark Pony Art – please check out her art and give her a like on her Facebook Page!
If you like my designs, you can head over to my Facebook Page too and hit that follow button!
As always, I’m filled with gratitude for everyone who likes, comments, shares, and creates my designs! I can’t help but remember a time when where I am at now seemed beyond my wildest imaginings ❤ And it’s all possible because of you magical beings out there who support me, thank you so much ❤ I am honored to create with you!
Just popping in for a quick reminder that my Pixie Pocket Belt tutorial is now available in downloadable, portable, printable, ad-free form! Head over to my Etsy Shop or Ravelry Pattern Store to get it ❤ ❤ ❤ Thanks for visiting and supporting – the free version is still available on my blog in this series of posts, but PDF’s are more convenient and accessible – plus I get yarn money which allows me to make more patterns and tutorials!
I also have the most recently finished pixie belt, “Dogwood” to share. I made this one for me, since I didn’t have my own yet. My favorite colors, plus some extra slip stitch fanciness, resin cabochon details, and even a leather and crochet pocket.
I loved crocheting on the leather and plan to do more – and maybe even make some tutorials for it! 😉
I especially enjoy the deer antler button fastenings and the adjustable ribbon tie combo – so there are multiple ways to wear this. I’d have to say these are in the running for my #1 favorite crochet project to make, I hope you love them as much as I do!