Curvy Bralette Tutorial

 

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Last summer I designed a simple beginner bralette-style crochet top with the aim of creating a fun basic piece that could be altered easily – the Basic Bralette Tutorial! Since then, it’s been on my list to create some modified versions, especially one that is better for curvier busts 🙂

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The flattish triangle style cups are great because they can be expanded to any size, but to fit best over bigger chests they need some edging to curve them inward a little – which is what we’re doing today with the Curvy Bralette Tutorial. ❤ ❤

 

You can find this design linked in the Ravelry database, or on my Pinterest crochet board – so throw me a like or a pin if you enjoy it 🙂

Curvy Bralette Tutorial Pattern

 

Materials

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

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. Follow the gauge-finding instructions in the Basic Bralette post.

To begin, follow the instructions for the Basic Bralette from the two triangle cups all the way through the Row 3 repeats of the band, then stop – do not tie off.

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Edging:

  1. Ch 4 (counts as dc + ch-1), rotate the piece so that you are working into the side of the stitches on the row ends. (Dc into the side of the next st, ch 2, sk next st) 2 times. Dc into the side of the last stitch.

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2. Ch 4 (counts as dc + ch-1). Rotate your piece so that you are working into the next un-edged side. Dc in the same stitch, ch-1 to turn the corner.

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3. (Sk next 2 sts, dc in the next st, ch-1) repeat across the row until you reach the corner of the cup.

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4. Sk next 2 sts and the dc on the bottom row of the cup. Dc into the top of the first unworked dc on the side of the cup, as shown. Ch 1. (Sk next 2 sts, dc in the next st, ch-1) along the side of the cup.

5. (Dc, ch 1) 2 times in the top corner of the cup, in the ch-2 space. Depending on how many dc’s you have in each side of the cup, you might want to place a dc, ch-1 in the stitches right before and after this space. Since this is where the ties will go, it isn’t good for it to be too tight.

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6. (Sk next 2 sts, dc in the next st, ch 1) along the next side of the cup. A few stitches before the end, skip to the next cup, making sure there are an equal amount of skipped stitches on either side so it is mirrored. The more you skip, the tighter the cups will be, so you can customize based on your size.

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7. Repeat the same process over the other cup’s 2 sides, mirroring the first half: Work 2 (dc, ch 1) repeats in the other cup’s top corner, (dc, ch 1, sk 2 sts) down the side skipping the same amount of stitches at the corner, then across the top of the band. Dc, ch 2, dc in the same stitch at the corner. (Ch 2, sk next st, dc in the side of the next dc) across the row ends at the side of the band. Dc in the last dc -I added an extra dc in this stitch too to make it more even with the bottom band.)

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8. Ch 4 (counts as first dc + ch-1). Turn, (dc in the next ch space, ch-1) across the last row of edging until you reach the corner. (Dc, ch 1) 3 times in the corner space.

9. (Dc in the next space, ch 1) all across the last row of edging in the bralette, placing (dc, ch 1) repeats at the top corners of the cups. I left the top corners free, because I used t-shirt yarn ties for this one, but if you’re crocheting your ties, add them on by chaining the length you want, then slip stitching back down the chain to return to the top corner of the cup. The Ties need to be long enough to cross over the back, and criss-cross the openings on the band sides to adjust it:

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10. To make it strappy: after chaining your strap (or not), chain Anchor your yarn with a dc in the first stitch of the next cup side. Count the amount of stitches left in the side of the cup – I have 8 repeats of (dc, ch 1) so altogether that’s 16 stitches. Chain your number, then skip the cup side and single crochet in the center ch-1 space. Chain the same number again, then skip to the last dc of the next side of the cup, dc in that stitch.

Repeat the edging across the rest of the bralette, mirroring the first side, all the way to across the band side, then cut yarn and tie off.  Weave in all your ends, then rock on!

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-MF

Mandala Tam Free Pattern

 

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The free pattern I’m offering today is a rework of a design I’ve been using for ages! I started making these netted caps way back when I had white girl dreads, to keep my hair out of my way while traveling. After I got rid of the ‘locks, I kept using this style of hat as a pretty way to keep damp hair out of the cold or just when I didn’t feel like messing with the tresses at all 😛

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This pattern was formerly my Mini Mandala Slouchy Tam, which was initially a paid pattern. However, I felt it needed updated and decided to offer it in its newest version for free on my blog instead of as a PDF – but it still has all the same features, including THREE sizes (the largest size fits quite a large amount of hair), fun and easy written instructions, and a quick finishing time to get a really useful and pretty little accessory!

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Materials:
5.00 mm hook, 6.50 mm hook
Yarn: Any #4 weight yarn, 1-2 skeins – yarn pictured is Red Heart Unforgettable Waves.
Main Gauge: 3 ½” in diameter at the end of Rnd 3
Post Stitch Gauge: 6 sts = 2” in FPDC/BPDC pattern Make sure to check your gauge and use hook size needed to obtain gauge listed.

Techniques:

Chain (ch)
Double Crochet (dc)
Single Crochet (sc)
Half Double crochet (hdc)
Post Stitches: See my tutorial here.
Chain and stitch join: A technique that uses a combination of chain stitches and regular crochet stitches to form the last loop of a mesh round – more detailed instructions are available in my tutorial here.

Notes: Photo tutorial is available for small size – many of the round techniques are the same throughout the sizes, so refer to size small for pictures 🙂

Mandala Tam – Small

Ch 5.
Rnd 1: (Dc, ch 1) 11 times into the 5th ch from the hook. Join with a sl stitch in to the 3rd ch of beginning ch4. – 12 dc, 12 ch-1 sps

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Rnd 2: (Sc into the next ch-1 space, ch 4) 11 times. Sc into the next ch-1 space, ch 1. Dc into the first sc of the round. This creates a ch-4 sized loop with your hook positioned at the middle of the space. (For more instructions on how to do this type of join, check out my Chain and Stitch Join Tutorial) – 12 loops

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Rnd 3: Sc in the same space, ch 4. (Sc in the next ch-4 space, ch 4) 10 times. Sc in the next ch-4 space, ch 1. Dc in the first sc of the round. – 12 loops

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Rnd 4: Ch 3 (counts as first dc). Dc in the same space, ch 4. (2 dc in the next ch-4 space, ch 4) 10 times. 2 dc in the next ch-4 space, ch 1, dc in the 3rd chain of beg ch-3. – 24 dc, 12 ch-4 sps

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Rnd 5: Sc in the same space, ch 5. (Sc in the next ch-4 space, ch 5, sc in the same space, ch 5. Sc in the next ch-4 space, ch 5) 5 times. Sc in the next ch-4 space, ch 5, sc in the same space, ch 2. Dc in the first sc of the round. – 18 ch-5 loops

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Rnd 6: Sc in the same space, ch 5. (Sc in the next ch-5 space, ch 5) 16 times. Sc in the next ch-5 space, ch 2. Dc in the first sc of the round. – 18 ch-5 loops
Rnd 7: Rpt Rnd 6.

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Rnd 8: Rpt round 6.
Rnd 9: Sc in the same space, ch 4. (Sc in the next chain space, ch 4) 16 times. Sc in the next chain space, ch 1, dc in the first sc of the round. – 18 ch-4 loops

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Rnd 10: Rpt Rnd 9
Rnd 11: Rpt Rnd 9
Rnd 12: Sc in the same space, ch 3. (Sc in the next chain space, ch 3) 16 times. Sc in the next chain space, ch 1, hdc in the first sc of the round. – 18 ch-3 loops
Rnd 13: Rpt round 12.
Rnd 14: Ch 3 (counts as first dc). Dc in the same sp. (Dc in the next sc, 3 dc in the next ch-3 space) 17 times. Dc in the next sc, 1 dc in the next chain space. Join with a sl stitch to the 3rd ch of beg ch-3. – 72 Dc

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Rnd 15: Ch 2 (does not count as first dc), FPDC in the same stitch. 1 FPDC in ea of the next2 sts. (1 BPDC in ea of the next 3 sts, 1 FPDC in ea of the next 3 sts) 11 times. 1 BPDC in ea of the next 3 sts. Join with a sl st in the top of the first FPDC of the round.

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Rnd 16: Rpt round 15.
Rnd 17: Slip stitch loosely in each stitch around. Cut yarn and tie off, leaving a long tail for sewing.
Position the button over the join stitches where the beginning and end of the last round meets and sew on using the yarn tail. Weave in all ends.

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Strap:
With a 6.50 mm hook

Row 1: Join new yarn into the side of the post stitches 15 stitches away. 2 dc in the side of the first stitch, 1 dc in the side of the next st, 1 dc in the side of the next st.
Rows 2-4: Ch 3, turn. Dc in the next 4 stitches.

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Row 5: Ch 3, turn. Dc3tog over the next 3 sts. Dc in the last st.

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Row 6: Turn without chaining, slip st in the next 2 sts. Cut yarn and tie off.

Weave in all ends. Use the spaces between the double crochet stitches to slip over your button and tighten the hat as necessary.
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Mandala Tam – Medium (Slouchy)

Ch 5.
Rnd 1: (Dc, ch 1) 11 times into the 5th ch from the hook. Join with a sl stitch in to the 3rd ch of beginning ch4. – 12 dc, 12 ch-1 sps
Rnd 2: (Sc into the next ch-1 space, ch 4) 11 times. Sc into the next ch-1 space, ch 1. Dc into the first sc of the round. This creates a ch-4 sized loop with your hook positioned at the middle of the space. (For more instructions on how to do this type of join, check out my Chain and Stitch Join Tutorial) – 12 loops
Rnd 3: Sc in the same space, ch 4. (Sc in the next ch-4 space, ch 4) 10 times. Sc in the next ch-4 space, ch 1. Dc in the first sc of the round. – 12 loops
Rnd 4: Ch 3 (counts as first dc). Dc in the same space, ch 4. (2 dc in the next ch-4 space, ch 4) 10 times. 2 dc in the next ch-4 space, ch 1, dc in the 3rd chain of beg ch-3. – 24 dc, 12 ch-4 sps
Rnd 5: Sc in the same space, ch 5. (Sc in the next ch-4 space, ch 5, sc in the same space, ch 5. Sc in the next ch-4 space, ch 5) 5 times. Sc in the next ch-4 space, ch 5, sc in the same space, ch 2. Dc in the first sc of the round. – 18 ch-5 loops
Rnd 6: Sc in the same space, ch 5. (Sc in the next ch-5 space, ch 5) 16 times. Sc in the next ch-5 space, ch 2. Dc in the first sc of the round. – 18 ch-5 loops
Rnd 7-9: Rpt Rnd 6.
Rnd 10: Sc in the same space, ch 4. (Sc in the next chain space, ch 4) 16 times. Sc in the next chain space, ch 1, dc in the first sc of the round. – 18 ch-4 loops
Rnd 11-13: Rpt Rnd 10
Rnd 14: Sc in the same space, ch 3. (Sc in the next chain space, ch 3) 16 times. Sc in the next chain space, ch 1, hdc in the first sc of the round. – 18 ch-3 loops
Rnd 15: Rpt round 14.
Rnd 16: Ch 3 (counts as first dc). Dc in the same sp. (Dc in the next sc, 3 dc in the next ch-3 space) 17 times. Dc in the next sc, 1 dc in the next chain space. Join with a sl stitch to the 3rd ch of beg ch-3. – 72 Dc
(See tutorial on post stitches located below the pattern for instructions on FPDC and BPDC)
Rnd 17: Ch 2 (does not count as first dc), FPDC in the same stitch. 1 FPDC in ea of the next 2 sts. (1 BPDC in ea of the next 3 sts, 1 FPDC in ea of the next 3 sts) 11 times. 1 BPDC in ea of the next 3 sts. Join with a sl st in the top of the first FPDC of the round.
Rnd 18: Rpt round 17.
Rnd 19: Slip stitch loosely in each stitch around. Cut yarn and tie off, leaving a long tail for sewing.
Position the button over the join stitches where the beginning and end of the last round meets and sew on using the yarn tail. Weave in all ends.

Strap:
With a 6.50 mm hook

Row 1: Join new yarn into the side of the post stitches 15 stitches away. 2 dc in the side of the first stitch, 1 dc in the side of the next st, 1 dc in the side of the next st.
Rows 2-4: Ch 3, turn. Dc in the next 4 stitches.
Row 5: Ch 3, turn. Dc3tog over the next 3 sts. Dc in the last st.
Row 6: Turn without chaining, slip st in the next 2 sts. Cut yarn and tie off.

Weave in all ends.

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Mandala Tam –  Large (Slouchiest)

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As you can see, this tam fits A LOT of hair underneath! Great for the really dready folks out there 🙂

Ch 5.
Rnd 1: (Dc, ch 1) 11 times into the 5th ch from the hook. Join with a sl stitch in to the 3rd ch of beginning ch-4.
Rnd 2: (Sc into the next ch-1 space, ch 4) 11 times. Sc into the next ch-1 space, ch 2. Hdc into the first sc of the round. This creates a ch-4 sized loop with your hook positioned at the middle of the space.
Rnd 3: Sc in the same ch-4 space, ch 4. (Sc in the next ch-4 space, ch 4) 10 times. Sc in the next ch-4 space, ch 2. Hdc in the first sc of the round.
Rnd 4: Ch 3 (counts as first dc). Dc in the same space, ch 4. (2 dc in the next ch-4 space, ch 4) 10 times. 2 dc in the next ch-4 space, ch 1, dc in the 3rd chain of beg ch-3.
Rnd 5: Repeat round 4.
Rnd 6: Sc in the same space, ch 5. (Sc in the next ch-4 space, ch 5, sc in the same space, ch 5. Sc in the next ch-4 space, ch 5) 5 times. Sc in the next ch-4 space, ch 5, sc in the same space, ch 2. Dc in the first sc of the round.
Rnd 7: Sc in the same space, ch 5. (Sc in the next ch-5 space, ch 5) 16 times. Sc in the next ch-5 space, ch 2. Dc in the first sc of the round.
Rnd 8: Sc in the same space, ch 5. (Sc in the next ch-5 space, ch 5, sc in the same space, ch 5. Sc in the next ch-5 space, ch 5) 8 times. Sc in the next ch-5 space, ch 5, sc in the same space, ch 2. Dc in the first sc of the round.
Rnd 9: Sc in the same space, ch 5. (Sc in the next ch-5 space, ch 5) 26 times. Sc in the next ch-5 space, ch 2. Dc in the first sc of the round.
Rnds 10-13: Rpt round 9.
Rnd 14: Sc in the same space, ch 4. (Sc in the next chain space, ch 4) 26 times. Sc in the next chain space, ch 1, dc in the first sc of the round.
Rnd 15-18: Rpt round 14.
Rnd 19: Sc in the same space, ch 3. (Sc in the next chain space, ch 3) 26 times. Sc in the next chain space, ch 1, hdc in the first sc of the round.
Rnds 20 – 23: Rpt round 19.
Rnd 24: Ch 3. (Dc in the next sc, 2 dc in the next ch-3 space) 27 times. Dc in the next sc, 1 dc in the next chain space. Join with a sl stitch to the 3rd ch of beg ch-3.
Rnd 25: Ch 3, FPDC in the same stitch. 1 FPDC in ea of the next 2 sts. (1 BPDC in ea of the next 3 sts, 1 FPDC in ea of the next 3 sts) 13 times. 1 FPDC in ea of the next 3 sts. Join with a sl st in the top of the first FPDC of the round.
Rnd 26: Rpt round 25.
Rnd 27: Slip stitch in each stitch around. Cut yarn and tie off, leaving a long tail for sewing.

Strap:
With a 6.50 mm hook

Row 1: Join new yarn into the side of the post stitches 15 stitches away. 2 dc in the side of the first stitch, 1 dc in the side of the next st, 1 dc in the side of the next st.
Rows 2-4: Ch 3, turn. Dc in the next 4 stitches.
Row 5: Ch 3, turn. Dc3tog over the next 3 sts. Dc in the last st.
Row 6: Turn without chaining, slip st in the next 2 sts. Cut yarn and tie off.

Weave in all ends.

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I hope you find this hat as useful and cute as I do! As you can see, I like to go back and give old designs a fresh coat of paint when I think they need it – its one of the ways I really enjoy my work, because I get to revisit things I love and reinvent them continually.

-MF

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Daydreamer Poncho Pattern

Merry Day of the Dead! Today’s offering is a brand new PDF crochet pattern that I had (ahem) originally scheduled to release in August. Ha ha! Life.

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No worries here though because the Daydreamer Poncho is SUPER versatile as a layering piece and looks just as stunning worn over long sleeves and outerwear as it does over tank tops and dresses!  You can get this fresh design in my Etsy Shop or Ravelry Pattern Store for 5.95 USD 🙂

More details on the pattern below!

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Daydreamer Poncho

Embrace your inner hippie with this dreamy lace poncho; easy and quick to work up using worsted weight yarn and a 5.50 mm hook. The mesh construction makes this a perfect lightweight layering piece that flatters the wearer with a fitted shoulder, A-line shape, and a fluttery fringe at the hem.

Featuring textural stitches in alternating colors and gradually widening chain loop pattern inspired by crocheted dreamcatchers, you can proudly wear this handmade piece in any season. The ribbed post stitch collar is finished with a drawstring cord topped by yarn-fringe “feathers”. The instructions for the Daydreamer Poncho come complete with detailed written pattern including tons of quality color tutorial photos, numbered and referenced in the text so that all the techniques are illustrated and easy to follow!

Materials

5.50 mm (I) hook

Yarn: Lion Brand Jeans (#4 weight, 3.5 oz / 100g, 246 yd, 100% acrylic)
Color A: Vintage – 1 skein
Color B: Jumpsuit – 1 skein
Color C: Top Stitch – 1 skein
Color D:  Khaki – 1 skein
Color E: Stonewash- 1 skein
Color F: Stovepipe – 1 skein

Scissors
Tapestry Needle
6” length of cardboard, book, or tassel maker for fringe

Final Dimensions:
Collar: 18” without drawstring
Length: 22” unstretched, not including fringe

All instructions written in US terms

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You will love love love this pattern as much as I do, it’s so fun to make and has a ton of potential for scrapbusting if you don’t feel like splurging on new yarn – made with worsted weight and designed for color changes, there is endless possibilities! Of course, I’d love to try it in monochrome too…

As usual, too much inspiration, not enough time 😛  Enjoy the rest of the silly photoshoot I did for this pattern, and I hope it inspires you too!

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I just couldn’t be more grateful for all the wonderful comments and support you guys leave me here and on social media – you’re the reason I get to keep doing this! So much love ❤

If you’d like to see more Morale Fiber, check out my social media channels:

Facebook
Twitter
Instagram
Tumblr

Thank you!!
-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.

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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

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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.

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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.

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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.

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

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

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

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

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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.

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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.

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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! 😀

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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The pockets are now attached!

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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!!)

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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 🙂

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-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!

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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

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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

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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.

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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

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

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

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Then even again.
6. Dc even – 12 dc

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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

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…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

 

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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.

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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.

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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:

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

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

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

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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!

 

PBT: Triangles

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.

Today’s task is: Triangles! I don’t personally use this shape much in my belts, but I have seen others do beautiful pixie belts with triangles featured. Speaking of inspiration, have I mentioned I’ve been creating a special Pinterest subsection on my crochet board just for pixie pocket belts? I have, and you should follow me. Anyway, here’s triangles!

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Triangle shapes can be worked either in-the-round, where you crochet your rows in a circular direction and join them before starting a new row (using increases to create points), or in regular rows, where you chain and turn to work the opposite direction after every row (this method uses decreases to shape the piece if working from the base of the shape).

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The square pocket on “Hickory” uses back-and-forth rows with decreases placed at each end of every row to shape the triangle portion.

I personally prefer the in-the-round triangle for decorative applications, because it keeps the right side facing the entire time, which to me looks prettier. I have an in-depth photo-tutorial on in-the-round triangles in my Basic Bralette free crochet pattern, so I’ll not go over the entire thing here – please refer to that tutorial for more info! And of course, I’m using bits and scraps, so I’ll change colors every row or so.

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Pattern for in-the-round Triangle:

MR (Make Ring)

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

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

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

(shorthand version from here on – just continue the established pattern until your triangle is the desired size!)

Rnd 4: 11 dc, [2 dc, ch 2, 2 dc] in next space – rpt around

Rnd 5: 15 dc, [2 dc, ch 2, 2 dc] in next space – rpt around

Etc.

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I want to make my triangle just big enough for one side to match the top of my rectangle pocket – see where I’m going with this?

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So, after I’m done, I’ll  slip stitch through the top row of the triangle and the top row of the rectangle simultaneously to join them – doesn’t matter if you don’t have exactly the matching amount of stitches, ‘cause its fReEfOrM baby! So fudging it is okay. Encouraged even.

Once that’s complete, I weave in all the ends. Now I have a rectangle pocket with a cute pointed flap to cover the top. Let’s get even fancier – or as the kids these days say, extra – by using that ruffle technology I talked about earlier in the series.

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With some handspun orange wool, I attach with a sl st a few stitches down the side of the pocket. Using a gradation of stitch heights and working about 2-3 stitches per every stitch worked into, I make a funky ruffle down the side of the pocket, ending in a couple chain stitches before fastening off. Let’s go nuts and slip a bead on there, too. And some extra yarn bits for tassel.

Then, begin on the other side (working in the opposite direction if you want the right side to be facing) and do the other side to match. Now we’re talking.

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Another word on inspiration here : this is why it’s fun for me to choose a theme for these pieces, which are always nature-based for me.  What made me decide to add that crazy ruffle? Well, for one thing, I had just a bit of that thick wool orange yarn, and bulky handspun makes great funky accent choice. But more than that, I was thinking about the Maple tree, and the way the brightly colored leaves curl as they slowly dry. The pockets so far had bright fall-like colors, but the lines were so straightforward – circle, square, rectangle – that I needed a bit of crazy curl in the pockets to kind of represent that thought of the curly maple leaf. I wasn’t going for an exact replica of the curly leaf, just a touch of the spirit of the leaf. Does that sound crazy? Good. Because this is some artistic pixie magic we’re doing. Save the logic for the office.

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In the next few posts we’ll be tackling circular pockets – stay tuned!

-MF

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. 🙂

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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 “ / 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:  (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.

If you have a curvier bust, good news! I have added a modification for this design – the Curvy Bralette Tutorial. ❤

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 your 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. 

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, but  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 “up”. 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.  (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. 

Round 4:  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,  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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Skipping one st before the corner, the chain stitch on the corner, and one stitch after.

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Skipping 2 sts before the corner, the chain stitch corner, and two sts after.

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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)  🙂  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 🙂 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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