Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Tutorial: Brown Waffle Weave Hot Pads

Crocheting these hot pads for the hope chest was the most fun I've had in some time. But thinking about and writing the directions and tutorial was not! Here is my best attempt. I hope the pattern makes sense.

I used Peaches & Cream worsted weight cotton and a size G hook.

Special stitches: This pattern is based on the Post Stitch. Rather than working in the tops of the stitches of the previous row, post stitches work around some stitches, creating a lovely raised pattern. To make a front post double crochet (FPdc), catch the yarn over the hook as usual. The hook is inserted from front to back, around the post of a stitch indicated (usually in a previously worked row). The hook is pushed out again to the front on the other side of the stitch. Yarn over, then carefully pull up a loop back around the post (3 loops on the hook at this point). Catch the yarn over and draw through 2 loops, twice. FPdc made! For a back post double crochet (BPdc), the motion is repeated, except the hook is inserted from the back to the front around the post of the stitch indicated, carefully pulling the loop around the post to the back. It is awkward to work these stitches at first, but you'll soon get the hand of it. The pictures should help, but if the post stitches are confusing, try looking up a video about post stitches on YouTube. It might help to see moving pictures.

To make a half-double crochet (hdc): A half-double crochet is longer than the single crochet but shorter than a double crochet. Hdc is made with a yarn over the hook once. Insert the hook in the stitch indicated, yarn over and draw through the stitch (3 loops on hook). Yarn over and draw through all three loops, completing the hdc stitch.

To begin: Chain 27.
Row 1: Dc in fourth ch from hook (skipped ch 3 counts as the first dc) and in each chain stitch across. (25 dc) Mark this side as the right side.

Row 2: Ch 2 (counts as the first hdc), turn.

Work FPdc around next two dc stitches.

Work BPdc around next dc.

 Work (FPdc around next two dc stitches and BPdc around next stitch) across to the last three dc.

Work FPdc around the next 2 dc, hdc in last dc.

Row 3: Ch 3 (counts as the first dc) and turn. Dc in the tops of the next two stitches.

FPdc around next stitch (this is the BPdc from the previous row).

(Dc in the next two stitches. FPdc around the next stitch) across to the last three stitches. Dc in the last three stitches.

Rows 4-11: Repeat row 2 and 3.
Row 12: Repeat row 2. Fasten off.

Repeat pattern 3 more times for a total of 4 pieces.

Edging: Row 1: Hold two pieces together, back to back, with the last row worked at the top. Working through both pieces at once, join with a sc in the top of the first dc of the right corner. Ch 1.

2 sc in same stitch – corner made. *Sc in each stitch across to last stitch in the row. (23 stitches).

3 sc in last stitch of this row – corner made. Repeat from * twice more. Sc evenly down the last side (23 stitches), slip stitch to the ch 1 stitch in the first corner.

 Row 2: Chain 4. (dc, ch 1, dc) – corner made.

** Dc in each stitch to the second sc in the next corner stitch. (Dc, ch 1, dc, ch 1, dc) in the second sc of corner stitch to round corner. Repeat from ** two more times. Dc in each stitch down last side. Slip stitch in top of first corner and fasten off. Weave in yarn ends.

I think these hot pads are cute and I love how thick they are and how bumpy they feel when I hold them. Give it a try!

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Crochet Edged Waffle Hand Towels

The crocheted edge on these microfiber waffle towels is the same pattern as on the waffle towels in the Peachy/Green kitchen set. I kept notes this time on how I made the edge, but realized that the variegated thread was not the best example to do a tutorial. So I will look for another chance to create a tutorial using a solid color thread.

Saturday, January 10, 2015

Cluny Lace Terry Hand Towels

These terry towels are included in the Pink/Brown kitchen set for the hope chest. I truly love anything embellished with a bit of cotton cluny lace! I also like the smallish size of the terry "bar mop" towels. When I'm cooking I would sometimes rather use two small hand towels rather than one bigger one, and the size of the bar mop seems just right.

Thursday, January 8, 2015

Sweet Sixteen Crystal Vase

This was Miss Abigail's purchase for her hope chest to mark her Sweet Sixteen birthday. Perhaps she's dreaming of the beautiful flowers some handsome man will give her someday!

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Miss Muffet Wall Plate

Miss Abigail has been redecorating her room. I saw this wall plate in an antique store when Abby was a young child and the face of Miss Muffet reminded me so much of Abigail. It has hung above her bed for many years now, but I guess I can understand why she is retiring it. ;o)

Into the hope chest it goes. She may want to use it in a nursery some day.

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Tutorial - Fabric Border Dishtowels

Fabric borders are a simple, quick embellishment for dishtowels for the hope chest. This tutorial shows how to make a simple thick/thin border. Because I wanted to use this pretty border print, the contrast is subtle in these towels, but more apparent with other, more contrasting, fabric choices.

Materials for TWO towels: 1/4 yd. of 44-45" fabric A, 1/4 yd. 44-45" contrasting fabric B, matching thread, two flour sack dishtowels, tape measure, scissors, rotary cutter, ruler and mat, pins, iron and ironing board.

First, cut the hem from the bottom end of the towel. From both fabric A and fabric B, cut one 5" strip and one 2 1/4" strip. Measure the width of both towels from side to side. Trim a wide strip and a contrasting narrow strip to fit each towel width, plus 1 inch. You'll have to measure each towel because they will vary in width.

I'll continue to give directions for one towel. Just repeat with the opposite fabrics on the second towel. Press 1/2 inch along the top of the narrow strip.

With the right sides together, fold the larger strip in half. Use a 1/2" seam allowance to sew across both short ends. Clip the corners and trim the seam allowance. Turn right side out and press.

Pin the larger strip to the cut edge of the wrong side of the towel, aligning the side edges.

Pin the cut edge of the narrow contrasting strip atop the rest with 1/2" overlapping the edges on each side.

Sew the layers together, using a 1/2" seam allowance.

Fold the towel up and press the seam. This is the back of the towel.

Turn the towel to the front side and press the narrow strip up. Tuck the 1/2" overlap around the seam at the edge and press and pin the narrow strip across the front side of the towel. You may need to adjust a little to make the edges flush and neat.

Edgestitch around the three sides of the narrow strip, pivoting at each corner. Be careful to keep the seam line neat and straight and as close to the edge as possible.

Press the towel and clip any loose threads.

And it is finished!

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Pink and Brown Diagonal Dishcloths

These dishcloths are another item made for the Pink/Brown kitchen set that I am currently working on. I used the Diagonal Dishcloth pattern. After I finish this set, I have just one more fairly large kitchen set planned for the hope chest and then I am finished with kitchen linens. Then I want to do a few table linens. Soon I will need to start on quilts and some more baby items. Miss Abigail's hope chest is growing large. The actual chest is now overflowing to the secondary hope chest, which is a lovely antique four-drawer clothes chest. It may be true what my funny husband says: "Abby will need a U-Haul to carry her hope chest away."

BTW, a good friend of mine tells me that she can't understand this diagonal pattern very well, but can't express what is wrong with it. Has anyone else tried it and been disappointed? What can I fix about the pattern that would make it easier to understand, particularly for beginners. This dishcloth is so easy and quick to do. I certainly welcome any suggestions that would make the written directions better. Just email me!
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