Loop Stitch Pillow

My 12 year old wants to give her bff an olive or lime green loop stitch pillow as a birthday present.
I decide to use the pattern I’ve had bookmarked on the Lion Brand yarn website and we head to the store to see if there is a suitable color in the Wool Ease Thick and Quick that is called for.

She finds “Lemongrass” right away although she prefers the “I love this yarn” in Limelight (worsted weight acrylic but its sooo soft) and we head home to start the pillow.

Thick and Quick- now I have to tell you I was actually pretty excited considering I usually, out of my frugality, don’t spend $9 on a single skein of yarn….especially one thats only around 100 yards!
The results couldn’t have been more disappointing.

On the Lionbrand website the pillow looks soft.Pic below

But in truth it was so big and bulky looking pic below

The Super Bulky yarn would be better suited to a pretty area rug

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I went up a hook size. With the P hook it still looked big and bulky. With my huuuuuuuge Q hook the same thing.

Maybe it was the shade of green, maybe it was the fact that I could feel the wool, maybe it was because it was so thick or maybe it was a combination of all those but it seriously reminded me of the fugly carpeting both my neighbor and my grandma had back in 1973.

So I dug thru my WIP’s drawer and found a practice peice that had been loop stitched in a neon worsted weight. I put that next to the thick one. Then I grabbed two balls of worsted weight and my N hook and crocheted up a few rows, double stranded.

Worsted weight and super bulky compared. The bulky yarn is just to thick and bulky looking for a preteen girls room
When she got home from school all three were on the table and I asked her to look them over, pick them up, rub them against her cheek and take her pick.
The double stranded, worsted weight won hands down.
Easy, quick and teen approved crochet pillow
The cover took less than 3 hours to crochet

Pattern
2 strands worsted weight yarn (I used Hobby Lobby “I Love This Yarn” Super Soft acrylic in ‘Limelight”)

Size N crochet hook

Ch 32
Row 1 Sc all, ch1, turn
Row 2 Sc first stitch, loop stitch until next to last stitch, sc last stitch, ch1, turnRepeat rows 1 and 2 until desired length.

 

***Note:  I kept a single crochet at the first and last stitch of each even row so that it would be easier to sew this onto a stuffed pillow case.  You could certainly loop stitch all the way across if desired.***

 

After crocheting the front we sewed up a satin pillow case, stuffed it with polyfill and stitched the crochet to the satin

 

 

If you would like to make a loop stitch pillow with knitting instead of crochet there is a great video here:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ssbkMawpE-M

Crochet-changing colors, neater edges and tidying tails

This is a great video on You Tube that someone pointed me to.
I especially like how to substitutes a trick instead of doing chain 2 at the end of rows as they way she shows does not leave that ugly gap.
In this video she demonstrates
-changing color in crochet
-tidying up your tail in crochet
-an alternate to chaining 2 at the end of your double crochet row.

Knitted Earflap Hat

Knitted Earflap Hat in Royal Blue & Black Stripes

Quick Knitted Earflap hat
Snowboarders hat knitted with size 8 needles

My pattern to knit an earflap hat like this is HERE

So I got myself retrained a bit with the knitting.

One thing I noticed when I was knitting Wil’s Indianapolis Colts Ear flap hat with the checkerboard pattern was that the tips of my fingers were very sore.  This is due to my terrible habit of knitting too tightly on circulars.  So….

  1. since his friend wanted a blue and black hat
  2. I needed to get my tension issues resolved
  3. I wanted to write down the details in order of the actual pattern that I had developed from several
  4. A completed hat needed to be the size I was supposed to be knitting!
  5. I wanted an idea of how much yarn it really took (ie if I buy more expensive yarn how many hats will I get from a skein)
  6. there was a need to double check myself on crafting jog-less stripes
  7. the idea I learned from the Knitting Tips by Judy about slipping the first stitch (when doing ear flaps) gave a cleaner edge and I wanted to try it
  8. I had finally figured out cable cast on (thanks to KnittingTips.com) and wanted to try it out when I added the stitches across the front of the hat
  9. probably many more but I’m typing this up a month after the facts….

 

It seemed like the perfect opportunity. I cast on and made it a point that every stitch was going to slide off the needle withOUT my left finger assisting it and that I would knit straight thru without a single red spot on the ends of my finger tips.

The hat took [me] about 6 hours total and less than a softball sized amount of each the black and royal blue yarn.

Amazingly it fit Wil’s 21″ head, Vee’s 23″ head, and Stephan’s 24″

As the teens and tweens in my house very quite specific about if they were to wear any more of my hats in public

-The front was was not so high up on the forehead that it gave them the appearance of a five  year old girl with dorky bangs.  They all actually approved of the front.

-The back was long enough that it covered the back of their neck

-The boys liked that it was the full 8″ length because it gave that ‘floppy look’ as they called it.  The girls said it could have been an inch shorter and they would have been fine.

-The fashion conscious TJ (weeks before his 17th birthday) said good job on my grafting the top closed as it gave a flatter appearance although he still wants to see one in super fine yarn and size 0 or 1 needles.

Panda Bear Hat

Ally called me yesterday. She said Brady’s aunt had seen his doggy hat and saw the frog hat on Facebook and would luvvvv a Panda Bear hat

Remember now I had said I wished I had a pattern for these hat in single crochet that ranged from newborn to adult? I had tried and had wasted countless hours searching and I even whipped up a few double crochet hats but I just don’t like the way they look, with the embellishments, given the holes/spaces between the stitches when using worsted weight yarn.  Now with a bulkier yarn I think the double crochet idea on an animal hat is fine, even for a baby hat with or without the earflaps. (pic coming soon)

I tried making a few single crochet hats doing the increases like you do in double but it left ugly, crappy looking holes in the top of the hat and then I found her. Speckled Frog Designs on Etsy She had just the patterns I was looking for and she uses a K hook (my new fave and most comfortable in my hand hook) so I bought up several patterns.

Within 4 hours of hooking I had the white part of the hat done.

After making the ears I used her pattern for those, with an extra four stitches across the bottom for the slanted black eyes and then sewed big buttons on them.

The nose I used making her beginner bear ears as well with a couple extra rows and then a slip stitch to finish.

Still concerned about the sizing I tried in on the whole family from Wil with his 21″ head all the way up to Stephan with his 24″ crown. It fit both of them and the lot of us in between those sizes.

 

Indianapolis Colts Earflap Hat with checkerboard

Hand Knit Colts Earflap Hat 

Indianapolis Colts Knitted Earflap Hat
Checkerboard Earflap Hat with Indianapolis Colts Logo on Ears

My son wanted a knitted earflap hat/snow boarders hat with an Indianapolis Colts theme.

I found a chart for the Colts Horseshoe here: http://creativeramblings.blogspot.com/2008/03/indianapolis-colts-hat-with-charted.html and had originally planned on putting the Colts logo itself on the front of the hat but as I started the earflap I suddenly decided to use her Baby Colts Hat chart for the ear flaps and…..Since I had been wanting to do some knitted colorwork and make a checkboard pattern why not combine it with the blue and white for the colts?

Here is the pattern I use for Knitted Earflap Hats.  For this hat with the stranded colorwork I would take it up to 88 stitches with the size 8’s or 80 with size 9 needles

–On the increase row where you get up to 14 stitches place markers to show your inside 10 stitches.  Why?  Because the chart is a 10 stitch pattern so this way  you can still use Make One Right or Make One Left Increases (I use the M1R that I learned here because the increases are almost impossible to see http://www.knittinghelp.com/videos/increases) outside of your pattern area opposed to inside it which would be too much mental work IMO

–The horse shoe pattern in 14 rows high so by time I got done with the earflaps they were 28 stitches each so instead of robbing from the front stitches (my boys like their entire face exposed and the earflaps coming down the side of their face just before their ears) cast on the normal amount of front stitches and take your back stitches down to only a few ( I did four st).  If you have too many stitches you can always K2tog evenly around in your first couple rows.

The hat itself was a little smaller than it should have been but that was due to the fact that I realized I knit too tight especially with two colors and I have rectified that.  The puckers are invisible to him (gotta love kids) he is simply too tickled to have this hat to wear and BONUS  it is so warm plus I lined the ears and he says none of the Lake Michigan winds get thru them.  :)

Ravelry

I joined Ravelry yesterday after finding it as a link on someone else’s website.
Well I didn’t clean any floors today, didn’t do any laundry, didn’t vacuum or do the daytime dishes but I DID manage to save about two dozen patterns I want to make in my Ravelry notebook LOL

Seriously its an incredible site. I have learned so much in the past 24 hours that my head is just spinning.

Ok off to Ravelry to start making a list of the gifts I’ll be making next Christmas. :)

Froggy Hat

Baby’s Crochet Frog Hat

This tickled me, apparently Ally has an acquaintance with a young lady who has a baby about Bray’s age. The friend saw his little Puppy Dog Hat that I made last week and asked if ‘they’ made frog hats.

So Ally dials me up and says “I have a hat order for you”. And then proceeds to tell me what colors out of my stash (yeah she goes through it enough to know what is in there) would work beautifully.
Since I had taken notes when I made Brady’s hat a couple hours later I was looking at a cute little frog hat. I used my basic concept for the doggy eyes for the frog eyes but made them one round larger.

The pattern for this hat was inspired by Lion Brand’s Tweed Hat pattern @ http://www.lionbrand.com/patterns/L0026AD.html?noImages= except with even increases so the top wasn’t so pointy and I had to add a few extra rounds.

The yarn used is just Red Heart Super Saver Yarn in ‘Spring Green’ .  I have since written my own pattern that is flatter on the top than this hat,  is written for worsted weight instead of bulky and uses a 5 mm crochet hook (size H).

Free baby earflap hat crochet pattern. Dog, bear and frog crochet hats Check out my baby animal hat patterns

Crochet Headband/Ear Cover…how easy is this?!

Even a beginner can make this in less than a couple hours.

Crochet headband-make it in an hour Easy Crochet Ear Cover - Make it in an hour

I wanted to practice my half double crochet and I had a softball sized amount of pink Red Heart yarn that someone had given me. Without even realizing that I would create something useful I chained up 65 stiches, crocheted flat in the front loop for about nine rows and realized that if stitched up the ends this would make a warm headband.
Later that week the temps dropped and the winds off the fields froze my ears so this really came in handy!

If you want to make this on your own here is a rough pattern.
Feel free to make your changes to it as you see fit.

US size I crochet hook
scrap yarn (I used worsted weight)
Yarn needle

Chain 65, turn
Row 1– skip the first two stitches, and HDC (half double crochet) in the front loop across (63 stitches). Chain 2 and turn
Rows 2 – 9– repeat row 1

Leave enough yarn to sew up the ends with either a yarn needle or crocheted together.
Put on and save your ears from those sub-zero February days  😉

UPDATE


IMG_8141


Take your plain headband and dress it up.  FREE FLOWER PATTERN HERE


Puppy Dog hat

UPDATE — After too much time spent looking for a newborn sized puppy dog hat
pattern that worked for me I just wrote my own.  Click to see the pattern for
a crocheted baby earflap hat or puppy dog hat

I didn’t take a picture of the matching hat, mittens and ugg booties that I made Dae for Christmas but I did get a picture of the hat I made Brady.

Using left over worsted acrylic yarn and my K hook I made up this hat. It was an improvised project from the Lion Brand Tweed Hat pattern but it got me thinking and learning how to crochet any size hat I wanted.  Also, although I liked the single crochet I did not like how the increases they used in the hat made it all pointy at the top.  I attempted to increase differently and the puckering at the top was the result.  If I had only known then there is basically a “system” for increasing in sc we wouldn’t have the puckering or the pointy tops but it’s experience right? LOL  BTW in sc to increase the circle you increase 6 stitches per round and get a nice nearly flat topped beanie….more on that later 😉

A single crochet baby hat with a puppy dog face
These hats crochet up in less than two hours.

As much as I like making these hats I was desperate to have the same pattern in multiple sizes and after a lot of searching, trial and error, and hats that were the wrong finished size,  I just ended up creating my own pattern ideas.  I will be getting each of the crochet patterns published.  Below is a list of the crochet earflap and crochet animal hat patterns listed on this site so far:

 

Our Site Has Changed!

Thanks for visiting.

If you came here looking for Ally’s JMac graphics and can’t find them it is because she’s all grown up working on a career and her new family and isn’t into Jesse any more.  Can you believe she was only 12 when she designed all those?

Anyway, this site is now going to be used to hold our project photos and maybe to track her and my progress (I’m her mother) as we master knitting and crochet.

But we did feel bad about people coming to look for the graphics so Ally and I decided to keep them up for another year. You can find the wallpapers and layouts here: http://allyssite.com/allys-old-pages/
Now Remember these are from like 2001 when screen widths were like 800 px.