Morel Mushroom Pouch

Here in the Midwest the hunt is on for morel mushrooms, the prized wild fungus often referred to as the “steak” of mushrooms. It’s been a great spring for them, with my friends and coworkers reporting big scores – so morels have definitely been on my brain lately. I’ve been making these cute crochet versions, with secret pouches in the stem, for many years now and after seeing so many morels this season I decided to come up with a quick tutorial!

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These cuties are great for storing things like chapstick, pocket money, lighters, or other trinkets inside the hollow stem. They also make great gifts for the woodland mushroom lover ❤

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This project is done in freeform crochet style, meaning that I add random increases, decreases, height changes (from single crochet to half-double or double), and bobbles to make the texture gnarly and womply like a real morel. Here in the tutorial I’ll give the basic structure of the pattern and you can freestyle all the rest!

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Morel Mushroom Pouch

Materials:

3.75 mm crochet hook
20-50 yds #4 worsted weight yarn in two colors
Scissors and tapestry needle

Stem Instructions:

Begin by making a Magic Ring.

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1. 6 single crochet into the ring. Join with a slip stitch to the first sc of the round, pull the ring closed using the yarn tail at the beginning.

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2. 2 sc in each stitch around the circle. Join with a sl st.

If you want a slightly wider stem to fit larger objects, you can repeat Rnd 2.

3. Working in the front loop only (FLO), work one stitch in each stitch around. Here you can start to get funky, with random increases, decreases, height changes, etc. This will be with foot of the stem. Join with a slip stitch in the back loop of the first stitch of the round.

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4. Working in the free back loops of Rnd 2, crochet around. Place freeform stitching around, using bobbles, inc, dec, etc to create texture for your stem.

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Keep the basic stitch count more or less the same and you continue to crochet around. Crochet in the round for as many rows as you like, until your stem is as tall as you want – but remember that the cap will cover some of the stem, so don’t make it too short! I worked 11 rounds, and the finished product is a little stumpy when the cap is pulled all the way down.

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5. Finish the stem by adding the chain loop that the mushroom will hang from – chain 100 or more, then slip stitch on the opposite side of the stem opening. Cut yarn and tie off.

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Cap Instructions:

With your darker color, make a magic ring. 6 single crochet into the ring, then pull the ring a little tighter – but not all the way shut, since you will have to fit the chain through later.

1. (Sc in the next st, 2 sc in the next st) 3 times. Do not join, but keep working in the round.

2. Using mixed stitches (sc, hdc, dc, clusters, bobbles, etc) – (crochet in the next 2 sts, 2 crochet in the next st) around

3. Using mixed stitches (crochet in the next 3 sts, 2 crochet in the next st) around

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4. Work as many rounds in this manner as you like until your cap is the size you want. Cut yarn and tie off.

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With the lighter colored yarn, join to the surface of the cap by inserting the hook as shown. To make the cap textured, you will work single and half-double crochets just on the surface of the cap by inserting the hook from front to back, then back to front, keeping the yarn held on the front.

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Work stitches on the surface only, changing direction and zig-zagging back and forth. Work from bottom to top, then back down, then back up, etc. Once the entire cap is covered, cut yarn and tie off. Weave in all ends.

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Using your hook, pull the chain loop of the stem through the hole in the top of the cap. Slide the cap down  to cover any treasures you can now stow inside!

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I’ve made lots of mushroom pouches, in different varieties including amanitas and jack-o-lanterns. The jack-o-lanterns are particularly cute using glow in the dark yarn – and I have a free crochet tutorial for those too!

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-MF

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Pixie Belt PDF

Just popping in for a quick reminder that my Pixie Pocket Belt tutorial is now available in downloadable, portable, printable, ad-free form! Head over to my Etsy Shop or Ravelry Pattern Store to get it ❤ ❤ ❤ Thanks for visiting and supporting – the free version is still available on my blog in this series of posts, but PDF’s are more convenient and accessible – plus I get yarn money which allows me to make more patterns and tutorials!

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I also have the most recently finished pixie belt, “Dogwood” to share. I made this one for me, since I didn’t have my own yet. My favorite colors, plus some extra slip stitch fanciness, resin cabochon details, and even a leather and crochet pocket.

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I loved crocheting on the leather and plan to do more – and maybe even make some tutorials for it! 😉

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I especially enjoy the deer antler button fastenings and the adjustable ribbon tie combo – so there are multiple ways to wear this. I’d have to say these are in the running for my #1 favorite crochet project to make, I hope you love them as much as I do!

-MF

PBT: One Piece Circular Pocket

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.

One Piece Circular Pocket

Most of the crochet utility belts I make have circle pockets – I love their potential as a canvas for other shapes like mandalas, simple embroidery, or shell flower petals. Plus, I’m just really into circles.

While I’ve created a tutorial for circle pockets that utilize two flat circle shapes sewn together, I often prefer to create them in a single piece – this tutorial shows how!

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Begin by working a colorful, non-continuous circle as shown in this section of the tutorial series. Shown here is my version for the belt I’ve been working on, “Dogwood”.

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As you can see, I’ve got some crazy stuff going on in there, including some overlay stitches and textural bobbles, plus a resin cabochon that I appliqued on with a crochet cover. But the basic structure is the same, using regular increases to make a flat circle and going up to 60 or so stitches, which means following in pattern until you Inc on 10 (see Circle Pockets Part 1 for more on creating flat circles).

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Once I reach my desired size, I prepare to shape the circle. To do this, I’m going to add a few rows of sc even in the round, meaning I’ll just crochet around the circle without adding any increases or working any joins. This will add depth to your circle so that the pocket is rounded and not flat. BUT, you have to keep in mind you’ll need an opening in your pocket, so at some point you’ll chain a number (I think I did around 13-15) and skip the same number of stitches before continuing to crochet.

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On the next round, single crochet right over the chain as normal. Now you have the opening worked out, so you will work a few more rounds of sc even, then begin to decrease at the same rate that you increased in the front.

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If you plan on adding a button fastening, don’t forget to crochet either a loop or a buttonhole into one of the rounds behind the opening on the back of your pocket! I almost forgot, which is why my loop is larger and set further back 😉

Since my pocket went up to “Inc on 10” I’ll start shaping the back of my pocket by decreasing on 10, using the same counting strategy as the increases:

Dec on 10 (or count out 9 stitches, then use the 10th and 11th sts to work a sc decrease)
Dec on 9 (count out 8 sts, use the 9th and 10th sts to dec)
Dec on 8 (etc…)

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The back of the circle pocket will start to close up. When you can’t decrease anymore, you’ll need to cut a long yarn tail and tie off your stitches. Thread the yarn tail on a tapestry needle and secure the closing circle by stitching through it back and forth a few times.

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Weave in all your ends, and sew on a button or fastening, beads, or anything you like!

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Hope you enjoyed this little bonus edition of the Pixie Belt Tutorial – keep sending me pictures because I love seeing what you make! Hit me up on my Facebook page:
Morale Fiber on Facebook

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-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