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.

UpDaTe! 7/17/2019: This pattern is now also available in a downloadable, printable, ad-free PDF format! Click here to read all about it 🙂

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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) ” = Length of each side of completed triangle cup ( My example would be [32 / 4]  = 8”). Therefore, my Measurement A = 8″
Measurement B:  (Measurement A) – 2 = My Measurement B would be 6”

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. ❤

Size: The Basic Bralette can be modified in size to any size that you like, but because of the flatter nature of the cups it really works best for sizes Small – Medium (32A – 34B). The Curvier version uses a border to draw the cups in more, creating a deeper cup for larger busts and works better for C cups and some B cups depending on the shape. (Curvy directions found in main pattern and in the Curvy Tutorial linked above)

Update 4/11/20: If you are looking for a deeper cup design for larger busts, you may want to check out the new Basic Bikini Cup Tutorial!

The Basic Bralette can be modified in size to any size that you like, but because of the flatter nature of the cups it really works best for sizes Small – Medium (32A – 34B). The Curvier version uses a border to draw the cups in more, creating a deeper cup for larger busts and works better for C cups and some B cups depending on the shape. I haven’t made any cup sizes larger than D in this pattern.

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.

Add extra rounds by continuing to (2 dc, ch 2, 2 dc) at the ch-2 corners to increase, and dc in each dc across the sides.

For Curvy Bralettes (bigger cup sizes): Continue working as advised above, until the last few rounds of the cup. To get more depth in the cup, switch from working the established increases at the chain spaces to tapering down how many stitches are at the corners.
Small Increase: (2 dc, ch 1, 2 dc)
Smaller Increase (1 dc, ch 1, 1 dc)
No Increase (1 dc in ea ch st)

The smaller the increase, the sharper the cup will curve inward to cradle the bust. You can work a series of tapers or just one depending on your size needs.

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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Leafy Tam Free Crochet Pattern

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Since going back to school, tams have pretty much been my best friend. They are nice and practical, keeping my hair out of my face and away from getting caught in my bag straps; I like to wad up my hair, cram one of those babies on top and leave it there for the rest of the day. I usually make a Mini Mandala Slouchy Tam, but this time I wanted to do something new – and I liked the results so much I made another and wrote this pattern to share!

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Leafy Tam

Materials:
5.50 mm hook
Accent Color  – 20 yds any #4 weight yarn
Main color – Red Heart Boutique Treasure in “Tapestry”  (#4, 3.5 oz / 150 yds) – 1 skein
Gauge: 6 sts & 3 rows = 2″ in dc

For a detailed photo-tutorial on how to work the crochet leaf motif used in this pattern, see my blog post here.
UPDATE 12/2020: There’s now also a video tutorial for working the leaves for this design as well! Check that out on my YouTube channel here.

Rnd 1: * Ch 5 – last 2 ch counts as the beg ch-2 in the leaf motif. In the 3rd ch from the hook, work 4 dc, ch-2 length picot in the last dc made, 3 hdc in the same stitch. Rotate, working in the same st on the other side of the beg chain, 2 hdc. Join motif in the round with a sl st in the 2nd ch of beg ch-2. Sl st in the 2nd ch st from the motif.* Rpt * to * 4 times total. Sl st in the bottom of the first motif to join the 4 leaves in a circle. Cut yarn and tie off  –  4 leaves

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Rnd 2: With main color, join yarn with a single crochet to the picot of one of the leaves. (Ch 4, sc in the 3rd hdc. Ch 4, sc in the 2nd dc of the next leaf. Ch 4,* sc in the picot) 3 times, ending last rpt at *. Join with a sl st to the first sc of the round. – 12 ch-4 spaces

Rnd 3: Sl st in the next ch-4 space. Ch 3 – counts as first dc. 3 dc in the same ch-4 space. (4 dc in the next ch-4 space) 11 times. Join with a sl st to the 3rd ch of beg ch-3. – 48 dc

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Rnd 4: Ch 3 – counts as first dc. Dc in ea of the next 47 dc. Sl st to the 3rd ch of beg ch-3. – 48 dc.

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Rnd 5: Ch 3 – counts as first dc. Dc in the next 2 sts, 2 dc in the next st. (1 Dc in ea of the next 3 sts, 2 dc in the next st) 11 times. Join with a sl st to the 3rd ch of beg ch-3. – 60 dc.

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Rnd 6: Ch 3 – counts as first dc. Dc in the next 4 sts, 2 dc in the next st. (1 Dc in ea of the next 5 sts, 2 dc in the next st) 9 times. Join with a sl st to the 3rd ch of beg ch-3. – 70 dc.

Rnds 7 – 10: Ch 3 – counts as first dc. 1 Dc in ea of the next 69 sts. Join with a sl st to the 3rd ch of beg ch-3. – 70 dc.

Rnd 11: Ch 3 – counts as first dc. 1 dc in ea of the next 4 sts. Dc2tog over the next 2 sts. (1 dc in ea of the next 5 sts, dc2tog over the next 2 sts) 9 times. Join with a sl st to the 3rd ch of beg ch-3. – 60 dc.

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Rnd 12: Ch 3 – counts as first dc. 1 dc in ea of the next 3 sts. Dc2tog over the next 2 sts. (1 dc in ea of the next 4 sts, dc2tog over the next 2 sts) 9 times. Join with a sl st to the 3rd ch of beg ch-3. – 50 dc.

Rnd 13: Ch 3 – counts as first dc. 1 dc in ea of the next 2 sts. Dc2tog over the next 2 sts. (1 dc in ea of the next 3 sts, dc2tog over the next 2 sts) 9 times. Join with a sl st to the 3rd ch of beg ch-3. – 40 dc.

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Rnds 14-16: Ch 2 – does not count as first st. Fpdc in the same st as join. Bpdc in the next st. (Fpdc in the next st, bpdc in the next st) 19 times. Join with a sl st to the first fpdc of the round.

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Remember when working the fpdc/bpdc that the dc2tog counts as ONE stitch to be worked into (as shown above)

Cut yarn and tie off. Weave in ends.

With accent color, Ch 5, make leaf motif. Ch 5 again, make 2nd leaf motif. Cut yarn and tie off, leaving a long tail for sewing. With a tapestry needle, sew these twin leaves to the brim of your new hat!

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Hope you like!

-MF

Tribal T-shirt Fringe Choker

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Sometimes I have to burn off my excess creative energy by doing something I can finish quickly! These wild textile jewelry pieces fit the bill, especially since I’ve been trying to clean my shamefully stuffed craft storage and shredding stockpiled t-shirts is a pretty effective method for me to do that.

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This tutorial is a guide for the refashion-centric among us, and you don’t even really need to be able to crochet to make it! Only the simplest crochet stitch, the chain stitch, is necessary. It’s explained here for those who don’t know how.

There are lots of different methods for cutting t-shirt yarn, and you don’t have to cut yours the same way as shown here, but this method is featured because you can use t-shirts with lots of seams (ex: Women’s fitted t-shirts). Of course, if you want to save yourself the trouble, you could just buy some commercially produced t-shirt yarn instead!

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Materials:
1 Jersey knit cotton t-shirt, plain
9.00 mm crochet hook
Scissors

Step 1: Lay out your T-shirt and cut up the side seams  on both sides of the front and across the top. It’s okay to cut a little wonky to get extra material from the bust area below the collar, but I’ve found it’s best to keep in GENERALLY rectangle shaped.

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Step 2: Beginning with your wonky – cut side (or any side if you don’t have one) start cutting a strip about an inch in width. The goal is a thin-ish strand once you stretch the material. It can be a little more or a little less than an inch depending on the material, but be careful because if it’s too thin, it’ll break when stretched. Leave your strip attached by about an inch of uncut material.

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Step 3: Flip your t-shirt piece around and cut  about an inch to the opposite side of the uncut end. Do this 3 or 4 more times to get  a long uncut strand (for a small size) or 2-3 more times for larger t-shirts. It’s better to have more than you need than not enough, and in fact you could cut the entire piece of t-shirt material this way, but I don’t like to because cutting this way leaves tabs. Speaking of which….

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Step 4: Once you’ve got your long piece, start gently stretching your strip to curl the material to make it round and yarn-like. Use a light touch at first! Now, to deal with those tabs created by zigzagging the material. Take your scissors and round those babies off, then stretch them a little more (be careful here – rounding the corners makes the fabric thin and therefore weak to stretching). Still a little messy, but stitching will mask that.

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Step 5: Set your long strip aside – I had almost 3 yards. Now lay out your remaining rectangle of t-shirt fabric and get one inch strips straight across, shearing them completely from the main fabric so that they are individual strips. Stretch each of these strips. For a standard amount of fringe, you’ll want to have 23-26 strips, so use cut out the back piece of the t-shirt and use it for more short strips if you have to.

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If you are using commercial yarn or a continuous strip in this step, cut your strands to DOUBLE the length you want your fringe to be.

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Step 6: Grab your hook and your long strand. Leaving a tail of yarn about 10″ long, create a slipknot loop. With your hook in the loop, grab the long end of your yarn with the hook and pull it through the loop, leaving your hook in the middle of the new loop. One chain stitch made.

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Repeat until you have 25-ish chain stitches, or however long you need your chain to be to fit your neck. If you’re feeling adventurous, try using the Double Chain technique instead of the regular chain. I like to use this on the fringe chokers because it helps them lie flatter around the collarbone.

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Once you’ve completed your stitches, tie off (i.e – pull the rest of your strip out through the last loop), and leave a 10″ tail when cutting off excess yarn. If you complete your required stitches but don’t have a 10 inch tail left over, just tie it off for now. We can use a short strip to attach an adequate length of tie later.

Step 7: Finally! Fringing time! Lay out your chain. Grab some of your short t-shirt strands and double them over. You might have some that are shorter than others – aesthetically I like those to be on the outside toward the shoulders but you might not care. Anyway, double those puppies over.

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Insert your hook into the loop on the bottom of your chain or double chain, from back to front, and catch the doubled side of your strand with the hook. Pull it through so you’ve got a loop.

Now catch the loose ends of your short strand with the hook. Pull those through your loop completely. Tighten.

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Ta-Da! Now do that until you have fringed the entire choker, or at least the majority of it.

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Step 8: Attach extra ties at the end of your chain if you need to, for fastening around the neck. You could be done at this point, but I like to add a little knotwork around the top.
To add knotwork, take two adjacent pairs of fringe and separate one strand from each pair (make sure the strands are also right next to each other). Pick up both strands and tie in a simple knot. Repeat across.

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These can be used as a base for adding even wilder decorations like beads, feathers, leather strips, chains, etc… But since I’m short on time, I’ll leave those for another day!

That stylish bikini underneath the necklaces is also made from recycled materials. Check out my post, the Bindu Recycled Sweater Bikini, for more on that.

-MF

Scrappy Granny Shawl Pattern

Maybe it’s the changing of the leaves, or maybe it was the improvisational painting exercises I did in Fundamental 2-D class, but Tuesday I came home with the irresistible urge to take a bunch of colors of yarn and smoosh them all together.

As luck would have it, I started this granny square blanket  that uses a similarly chaotic approach to color around this same time last year and I had a few good sized remnants left over from it. Mixed and matched with some random solid yarns bits, I was all set to smoosh up this quick granny shawl!

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The pattern uses a simple granny blocks spaced out by lengths of chain 3’s to make it nice and drapey. The triangular pattern is easy to memorize and adjust depending on your size requirements – also it’s a superb scrap buster! And it’s free so what in tarnation are you EVEN waiting for?

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I added some slip stitch crochet cord to the ends of this beauty so you can tie it in place around your waist or neck so it doesn’t fall off your shoulders – but you can skip those if you want of course.

UPDATE 7/2020: This pattern is also available as a PDF through my Ravelry store  or Etsy Shop!

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Scrappy Granny Shawl

Materials:
6.00 mm hook
Around 660 yards various #4 weight yarn (scraps are great!)
Scissors
Tapestry Needle
Cardboard or book 6″ wide – for creating tassels

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Guys, I’m really sorry about this clunky chart. I’m still in search of good chart-making software 😛

Ch. 4. Join with a slip stitch to form a ring.

Row 1: Ch 4 – counts as first dc + ch 1. 3 dc, ch 3, 3 dc into the ring. Ch 1, dc into the ring.

Row 2: Ch 4 – counts as first dc + ch 1. 3 dc in the first ch-1 space, ch 3. (3 dc, ch 3) twice in the next ch-3 space – increase made. 3 dc, ch 1, 1 dc in the next space created by the beginning ch-4.

Row 3: Ch 4 – counts as first dc + ch 1. 3 dc in the first ch-1 space, ch 3. (3 dc, ch 3) in the next ch-3 sp. (3 dc, ch 3) twice in the next ch-3 sp. (3 dc, ch 3) in the next ch-3 sp. (3 dc, ch 1, 1 dc) in the next space created by the beg ch-4.

Row 4: Ch 4 – counts as first dc + ch 1. 3 dc in the first ch-1 space, ch 3. (3 dc, ch 3) in ea of the next 2 ch-3 spaces. (3 dc, ch 3) twice in the next ch-3 sp. (3 dc, ch 3) in ea of the next 2 ch-3 sps. (3 dc, ch 1, 1 dc) in the next space created by the beg ch-4.

Row 5: Ch 4 – counts as first dc + ch 1. 3 dc in the first ch-1 space, ch 3. (3 dc, ch 3) in the next 3 ch-3 spaces. (3 dc, ch 3) twice in the next ch-3 sp. (3 dc, ch 3) in ea of the next 3 ch-3 sps. (3 dc, ch 1, 1 dc) in the next space created by the beg ch-4.

Row 6: Ch 4 – counts as first dc + ch 1. 3 dc in the first ch-1 space, ch 3. (3 dc, ch 3) in the next 4 ch-3 spaces. (3 dc, ch 3) twice in the next ch-3 sp. (3 dc, ch 3) in ea of the next 4 ch-3 sps. (3 dc, ch 1, 1 dc) in the next space created by the beg ch-4.

Row 7: Ch 4 – counts as first dc + ch 1. 3 dc in the first ch-1 space, ch 3. (3 dc, ch 3) in the next 5 ch-3 spaces. (3 dc, ch 3) twice in the next ch-3 sp. (3 dc, ch 3) in ea of the next 5 ch-3 sps. (3 dc, ch 1, 1 dc) in the next space created by the beg ch-4.

Row 8: Ch 4 – counts as first dc + ch 1. 3 dc in the first ch-1 space, ch 3. (3 dc, ch 3) in the next 6 ch-3 spaces. (3 dc, ch 3) twice in the next ch-3 sp. (3 dc, ch 3) in ea of the next 6 ch-3 sps. (3 dc, ch 1, 1 dc) in the next space created by the beg ch-4.

Row 9: Ch 4 – counts as first dc + ch 1. 3 dc in the first ch-1 space, ch 3. (3 dc, ch 3) in the next 7 ch-3 spaces. (3 dc, ch 3) twice in the next ch-3 sp. (3 dc, ch 3) in ea of the next 7 ch-3 sps. (3 dc, ch 1, 1 dc) in the next space created by the beg ch-4.

Row 10: Ch 4 – counts as first dc + ch 1. 3 dc in the first ch-1 space, ch 3. (3 dc, ch 3) in the next 8 ch-3 spaces. (3 dc, ch 3) twice in the next ch-3 sp. (3 dc, ch 3) in ea of the next 8 ch-3 sps. (3 dc, ch 1, 1 dc) in the next space created by the beg ch-4.

Row 11: Ch 4 – counts as first dc + ch 1. 3 dc in the first ch-1 space, ch 3. (3 dc, ch 3) in the next 9 ch-3 spaces. (3 dc, ch 3) twice in the next ch-3 sp. (3 dc, ch 3) in ea of the next 9 ch-3 sps. (3 dc, ch 1, 1 dc) in the next space created by the beg ch-4.

Work in pattern, always increasing at the point of the triangle, until you have worked 29 total rows – or until you run out of scraps!

BORDER ROUND

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Step 1: Attach your yarn to the corner in position to work across the flat top of the shawl. Ch 3, 2 dc in the same space. (3 dc) into the side of each double crochet or turning chain space across the top of the shawl.

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Step 2: When you reach the corner, 3 dc into the final space. Ch 2, then chain 50 (or however long you want your ties to be). Work a slip stitch into each chain stitch back down the length of the tie, leaving your original 2 chain stitches unworked. Ch another 2, then 3 dc in the same space as your last 3 dc block. Finish by working a sc in the middle dc stitch of the first 3 dc block on the next side of the shawl.

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Step 3: In the next ch-3 space, work (1 hdc, 1 dc, 1 tr, ch-4 picot, 1 dc, 1 hdc, sc in the middle dc of the next 3 dc block). Repeat the pattern in the parentheses down the side of the shawl until you have worked the last space before the point of the triangle.

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Step 4: In the ch-3 space at the point of the triangle, work (2 hdc, 2 dc, 1 tr, ch-4 picot, 2 dc, 2 hdc, sc in the middle dc of the next 3 dc block).

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Step 5: Rpt the shell border of step 3 along the next side of the triangle until you have worked the shell repeat in the last space before your first 3 dc block of the border round. Work 3 dc in the same space as your first 3 dc block, ch 2. Ch 50 (or however much you chained for the first tie) and then slip stitch back down the tie, leaving the first 2 chain stitches unworked. Ch 2, join with a slip stitch in the first dc of step 1.

Cut yarn and tie off – weave in all ends.

FRINGE:

Cut 4-5 strands about 12” in length. Double them over and loop through a ch-4 picot on the shell border. Repeat for each shell on the side borders of the shawl.

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I’ve been lucky enough to be personally acquainted with a number of scrappy, spunky, creative, inspiring grannies – here’s to you ladies! You rock!

-MF

MF’s Costume Pattern Collection

I’m busily working away today on the upcoming new design, but I thought I’d take a break from that to do a little shameless self-promotion 😉  Halloween is only a month away, and as a fan of the fantastical I happen to have written a number of costume patterns!

Some are fancy creatures, some are fantastic characters, all of them can be completed before the ‘Eve. Here’s a list!

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  1. Sylphie Crocodile Stitch Hat: This PAID pattern includes Adult, Child, and Baby sizes for this sweet croc stitch accessory, as well as an intro to croc stitch for those who have never worked it before. Follow the optional horn instructions for a dragon hat!
  2. Tunisian Fantasy Hood: I wrote this FREE pattern for my blog, and it seems to be a continued favorite – worked in Tunisian simple stitch, it uses bulky weight roving yarn for a thick barrier against the cold, but it looks great in worsted as well!
  3. Deer Hat: This PAID pattern has a special place in my heart because it is the first pattern I ever designed & sold. Thankfully I learned a lot since then and it has gotten a makeover or two! Worked using simple single crochet and amigurumi shaping techniques for the antlers and ears. Perfect for a cute and warm creature costume!
  4. Mermaid Mitts and Sandals: This PAID pattern includes directions for both the scaly fingerless gloves and the barefoot sandal equivalent. Appropriate for naiads, dryads, and a number of other wee folk costumes.
  5. Steampunk Ruffled Wristers: FREE pattern for a ruffled pair of buttoned wrist cuffs that look awesome with a top hat and goggle combo. Uses DK weight cotton blend yarn and satiny ribbon yarn.
  6. Candy Corn Baby Hat: FREE pattern for an easy candy corn hat for infants! Keep a li’l guy warm AND comfy with the post stitch brim that adds a little elasticity to the design.

Merry Costume Making to all! I personally do not know what I will be for Halloween yet, but something always comes to me in time.

-MF

Gnome Toboggan Crochet Pattern

Historically, January has not been my favorite month – which is why I am happy to debut a new design to brighten up your midwinter blues! Because as you know by now, the crocheting will continue until morale improves.

The Gnome Toboggan is available in my Etsy Shop as well as my Ravelry Pattern Store. Don’t forget that I have a special deal going on until January 13th, just follow the link for details.

Update 10/2020 – This pattern has been given a makeover and also been made totally FREE! Get more info and read the full pattern on my blog post here.

This hat is ultra squishy and stretchy, and works up quick enough to finish in one afternoon of binge-watching Xena: Warrior Princess. Not that I know anyone who has done that.

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A “knit-look” ribbed crochet beanie worked in bulky weight yarn with a soft stretchy fit and subtle gnomish point.

This ultra squishy cozy toboggan is topped with a faux fur pompom and can be made with only 1 skein of Lion Brand Scarfie yarn!

Alternate instructions for a more traditional rounded beanie top are also included, as well as a photo tutorial on how to work the front and back post double crochet.

Sizes included:
Adult Medium – 23″

Adult Large – 25″

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Above: Adult Medium, Below: Adult Large

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Trust me, you’ll never want to take this hat off!

~*Mf*~

Sweetheart Classic Beret Pattern

UPDATE 8/14/20: This pattern is no longer available in the form described in this blog post – this design has been updated and is now sold under the name “Mori Beret” ❤ Thank you!

I have no idea what prompted me to want to make myself a beret, but I did know exactly how I wanted it to look. After casting around for a pattern and finding nothing close enough, I of course just endeavored to create the proper pattern myself.

Sweetheart Classic Beret

The Sweetheart Classic Beret is a cute, crocheted wardrobe staple – worked in any worsted weight yarn, the timeless silhouette of this accessory looks chic and fun with any outfit. The main body and brim of the hat uses only half double and single crochet stitches and is suitable for beginners.

Don’t know how to crochet an I-cord? Here’s a tutorial from the amazing June Gilbank! I knit mine, but crochet will work just as well.

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I love seeing what people make from my patterns, so if you get a hankering for a beret like I did, be sure to show off your project on Ravelry so I can see!

Yes, I know it’s raspberry. No, I didn’t do it on purpose 😉

-MF

Candy Corn Hat Free Crochet Pattern

October has, as per usual, incited a flurry of frantic crochet activity on my part as I try to outfit myself and my loved ones in cute and warm Halloween accessories. Actually that’s not terribly different than usual, but add in pattern development and schoolwork and you’ve got a busy month on your hands.

I’ve been working this great Knight’s Helmet pattern for Chaston – it’s free and so far the pattern has been great, I recommend it! Make sure you measure as you go, though, since she doesn’t give a gauge. Seems like that helmet would look really good with a nice medieval style hood, no?

Also, what’s cuter than dressing a baby up as candy?

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I got a request for a candy corn hat for a 6-month old, and wanted to share the pattern in case anyone else has similar ideas! This little hat is adorable and easy, 8″ long from point to brim, with a 17″ brim when fully stretched. The fpdc (front post double crochet) and bpdc (back post double crochet) give the brim some elasticity so it will not fall off of baby’s head.

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Candy Corn Baby Hat

Hook: 4.5 mm

Yarn: #4 Worsted Weight yarn in white, yellow, and orange.

Gauge: 4 sts = 1″ in double crochet

Notes: The Ch 3 and the beginning of ea round DOES NOT count as the first dc of the round. Each round is ended with a slip stitch join to the first dc of the round.

Make Magic  Ring  in WHITE

1: Ch 3 (does not count as first dc) 12 Dc into the ring, sl stitch in the first dc to join.

2: Ch 3, dc in the same stitch. 1 dc in ea dc around. Sl st in the first dc to join.

3: Ch 3, dc in the same stitch. 2 dc in the next stitch. (1 dc in next  stitch, 2 dc in next stitch) around.

4: Ch 3, dc in the same stitch and in the next st. 2 dc in the next st. (1 dc in next 2 sts, 2 dc in the next stitch) around.

5: Ch 3, dc in the same st and in ea of the next 2 sts. 2 dc in the next st. (1 dc in the next 3 sts, 2 dc in the next st) around.

Cut yarn and tie off. Switch to YELLOW

6: Ch 3, dc in the same stitch and in ea of the next 3 sts. 2 dc in the next st.(1 dc in the next 4 sts, 2 dc in the next st) around.

7: Ch 3, dc in the same st and in ea of the next 4 sts. 2 dc in the next st. (1 dc in the next 5 sts, 2 dc in the next st) around.

8: Ch 3, dc in the same st and in ea of the next 5 sts. 2 dc in the next st.  (1 dc in the next 6 sts, 2 dc in the next st) around

9: Ch 3, dc in the same st and in ea of the next 6 sts, 2 dc in the next st. (1 dc in the next 7 sts, 2 dc in the next st) around.

10: Ch 3, dc in the same st and in ea of the next 7 sts, 2 dc in the next st. ( 1 dc in the next 8 sts, 2 dc in the next st) around.

11: Ch 3, dc in the same st and in ea of the next 8 sts, 2 dc in the next st.  (1 dc in the next 9 sts, 2 dc in the next st) around.

Cut Yarn and tie off. Switch to ORANGE

12: Ch 3, dc in the same st and in ea of the next 9 sts, 2 dc in the next st.(1 dc in the next 10 sts, 2 dc in the next st) around.

13: Ch 3, dc in the same st and in ea of the next 10 sts, 2 dc in the next st. (1 dc in the next 11 sts, 2 dc in the next st) around.

14 -16: Ch 3, dc in the same st. 1 dc in ea stitch around.

17, 18 : Ch 3, 1 fpdc into the same stitch, 1 fpdc into the next st. 1 bpdc into ea of the next 2 sts. (2 fpdc, 2 bpdc) around.

Sl st around the entire brim of the hat. Weave in all ends.

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Sweet stitching!

-MF