2/24/2014

One-Piece Amigurumi Baby Bunny

Even though we're in the middle of yet another polar vortex, I can't help but to keep wishing and hoping that spring is just around the corner. I miss my lawn, the flowers, and the adorable baby animals -- especially my favorites, the sweet baby bunnies!

for some reason, the bunnies like to nest in our yard, and it's such a treat to discover their tiny little fluffy bodies, all snuggled up under the grass. I always want to scoop one out and snuggle it!

With spring (and Easter) fast approaching, I decided that this year, I would be ready for my bunny snuggling cravings -- with an adorable nest of my own. I wanted something simple enough that I'd be able to whip us a batch for my daughter to share with her friends, and spent several tries coming up with the perfect one-piece pattern for you. These bunnies are completely NO-SEW! Just add a few embellishments and you're ready for a snuggle full of squee!

The best part about the bunnies is that if you use an E hook as the pattern directs, you should easily be able to hide them in the larger-variety plastic Easter eggs.

The pattern is full of step-by-step photos and the clear instructions you've grown to love. Work up your own nest of bunnies for just $1.00 or pair it with my free Lil' Ducky pattern for a super Easter treat. You can't go wrong!

You can get all the details on this pattern from the pattern information page, or check it out on Ravelry.

I hope you enjoy this pattern as much as I do and cannot wait to see your bunnies. Happy crocheting!




1/08/2014

Crochet Mood Blanket 2014

It's no secret that when I have a few minutes down time, I love surfing some good crochet porn on Instagram. Well, last week, I found this amazing project, started by a crocheter who goes by the Instagram name mummy_stacey, called #crochetmoodblanket2014.

This is exciting folks --  and it looks like it's going to be a lot of fun. The basic idea is that you crochet every day (or every week) of 2014, using colors to reflect your moods. You can do any design you want (most folks are doing some variation on a granny square) -- And you can pick any colors to reflect your moods.

Work-in-process is being shared on Instagram with the #crochetmoodblanket2014 tag and in a Facebook group that has rapidly grown to nearly 3,000 members. In fact, the WIPs are the most exciting part for me -- I'm being blown away daily by all the talented crocheters and finding new patterns I never dreamed of.

For my part, I'm keeping my pattern simple (just a 4-round granny with a SC edging). -- And I'm using Red Heart Designer Sport because somehow, I've managed to accumulate a rather extensive stash of the stuff. My squares are turning out to be about 3.25 inches, but I haven't sat down yet to figure out just how that's going to work into a blanket. I guess you could say that I'm "going where my mood takes me."

Our foreign exchange student, J, has also pledged to do a square a day and has been working really hard to get her grannies perfect. Having only learned to crochet a couple months ago, I'm really proud of her!

Right then... the pattern, if you like:

Round 1: CH 4. Join to first SC in CH with SL.

Round 2: CH 3 (counts as first DC). DC twice more, then CH 2. *Work 3 DC, then CH 2. Repeat from * twice more. Join to 3rd CH in initial CH 3 with SL. (4 DC clusters and 4 CH 2 spaces).

Round 3: CH 4 (counts as first DC and CH 1). *Work 3 DC, CH 2, 3 DC, CH 1 in next CH 2 space. repeat from * twice. Work 3 DC, CH 2, 2 DC in remaining CH 2 space. Join to 3rd CH in initial CH 3 with SL. (8 DC clusters).

Round 4: CH 3 (counts as first DC). DC twice more, then CH 1. *Work 3 DC, CH 2, 3 DC, CH 1 in CH 2 space. Then, work 3 DC, CH 1 in next CH 1 space. Repeat from * twice. Work 3 DC, CH 2, 3 DC, CH 1 in next CH 2 space. finish round by working 2 DC in next CH 1 space and joining o 3rd CH in initial CH 3 with SL. (12 DC clusters).

Round 5: CH 1. SC in same stitch and in each stitch and CH 1 space around, working 4 SC stitches in the corner CH 2 spaces. Join to first SC with SL. (60 SC). FO and weave in ends.

Hope to see you on Instagram and Facebook. Just look for ItsyBitsySpiderCrochet!

-- Almost forgot! If you're looking for something a little more challenging in a granny square pattern, I have a free 10-pattern granny square book available on Ravelry. Enjoy!

12/30/2013

Winter Bird Pattern

Just when I thought all the presents had run out, I got another surprise in the mail today. The Knit Picks Under 100 Crochet Collection is finally available!

This collection features 10 crochet patterns that can be completed with 100 grams of yarn or less, including my own winter bird (featured on the back cover).

The pattern book has been in the works for about a year now and it includes boot cuffs, a couple of cute bags, wrist warmers, and even some yummy cowls! It's a great collection for winter stash busting and I can't wait to get started on a few of the projects.

Patterns and yarn are available through Knit Picks. You can also check out others' finished projects on Ravelry. Enjoy!

eBook: Instant PDF download
Print Book: 34 pages, soft cover



12/19/2013

A Penny For Your Thoughts?

Even though I have been writing my own patterns since 2008, I'm still learning new thins every day. My Kids Gifting Mittens pattern is one such experience -- it's the first time I have ever written a pattern for multiple sizes.

When I wrote the pattern, I ran into a little confusion when I got to the thumb hole. Depending on the size mitten you were making, you would have either 18 (S), 21 (M), or 23 (L) rounds. The logical thing to me was to begin the thumb round at 24 (skipping rounds 19-23 for small and rounds 22-23 for medium). The pattern goes something like this:

Rounds 7-18 (7-21) (7-23): CH 1. SC in each ST around (24/30/36 SC). Join to first SC in round with SL.
 

Note: If you need a bit more length to your mitten, repeat Rounds 7-23 as needed.

Round 24: ... pattern continues ...

The reason I chose to do it this way is so that all of the round numbering would start in the same place after the thumb hole was made. This would avoid a clumsy numbering scheme through the rest of the pattern (where each round would have different numbers depending on the mitten size you're making).

I got some feedback from a kind customer yesterday that this was just a bit confusing. Her argument is that by setting all the mittens to "Round 24" at the thumb, it's hard to tell how many total rounds are in the project. We went back and forth a bit and her suggestion was do do something like this:

Rounds 7-18 (7-21) (7-23): CH 1. SC in each ST around (24/30/36 SC). Join to first SC in round with SL.
Note: If you need a bit more length to your mitten, repeat Rounds 7-23 as needed.

Round 19 (22) (24): ... pattern continues ...


The positive side of this change is that you know exactly how many rounds are in your project, but the negative side is that you end up with a round numbering scheme through the rest of that pattern that looks something like this:

Rounds 20-23 (23-27) (25-30): ...

Round 24 (28) (31): ...

Rounds 25-26 (29-31) (32): ...

You get the idea.

I'd love to get the feedback of some more experienced multi-size pattern writers/users. What do you prefer? Keep the pattern the way it is, or revise the round numbering scheme?

I'll put everyone who leaves feedback (either here on the blog or on my Facebook page) in a drawing to win one free pattern of their choice -- so if your email address is not on your Blogger profile, please make sure you leave it for me. Winner will be announced in the next couple days (depending on how quickly I get feedback).

Thank you!

11/30/2013

Ninja Challenge Winner!


It was a tough choice, but the voting is now closed and the winner of the Ninja Challenge has been named. Congratulations to Patricia S., whose red-headed ninja girl sat proudly on top of the world for all girls to see. Patricia claims the Itsy Bitsy Spider pattern pack and Fine Lime gift code.

Thanks to all who participated and shared their ninjas!

11/15/2013

Gifting Mittens - Now Available in Children's Sizes!

As I put the finishing touches on another pair of gifting mittens, the Little Miss plopped down next to me.

"Mama?" she asked tentatively. "Can I have a pair of mittens?"

Of course, the gifting mittens pattern would be too big for her kindergarten hands -- it was time to make some changes -- and quickly.

I whipped up a pair of mittens in her favorite color (green), but as I stitched, I thought about all the other kids on our holiday shopping list who could use a new pair. And there was this little bear pattern I've had in my notebook that I could use and well...

A couple days later, I had three different sizes of mittens and a sweet little bear all wrapped up into one tidy pattern package and ready for gifting. Ta-da! Children's Gifting Mittens!

You can purchase the pattern set now from all the usual places (Ravelry, Craftsy, and Etsy) or click here to purchase directly on the blog (no new user accounts needed). At just $3.00 for the pattern (a little more from Etsy), you'll be able to crank out mittens for every little hand on your holiday list in no time at all -- with little bears that are just the right size to fit inside those little hands.

I hope you enjoy this latest addition to my pattern collection and look forward to seeing all your mittens!



11/06/2013

Gifting Mittens & Little Bear

A few weeks ago, my mom began dropping hints... she lost one of her mittens and couldn't find a new pair she liked. At first, a pin showed up here and there on my Pinterest feed -- but then the hints started to arrive more steadily. Mom wanted me to make her a new pair of mittens.

I looked at patterns -- and believe me, there are a lot of good ones out there. But, I couldn't find a nice, simple one that I liked. So, I designed my own.

Mom was delighted with her new mittens and suggested that I make some more up to give as teacher gifts. With Little Miss's special needs, we have a support person for just about everything -- so I'm always looking for something that is both meaningful and inexpensive. These people do a LOT of hard work to help my daughter succeed, but if I spend even $5 on each, the numbers start to rack up fast!

But a pair of mittens isn't for everyone, so I decided to make this pattern a double-whammy. This download includes not only the pattern for a simple pair of medium-sized women's mittens, but also an adorable, quick-to-make little bear. Even though I chose to make my bear and mittens in different colors, one skein of Knit Picks Brava Worsted acrylic yarn is enough to make both pieces -- so the project cost is low too (Brava sells for $2.99 for a skein).

The pattern is available for $3.00 through Ravelry and Crafsy. For details on the pattern and purchase options, click here.

I hope you enjoy this pattern and it helps fill some stockings or other holiday gift requirements. Happy crocheting!



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