Crochet 101

Crochet 101: Part 4

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Lxi is here to finish up the Crochet 101 Series. Now you will know how to finish your crochet projects! Surely you feel confident enough to try this one now.

Just getting started? Check out this tutorial on all the materials you need to start crocheting.

-Sara

 

Finishing your crochet project is very easy.  First, cut your yarn about 10 inches away from your hook.

With your hook, pull the yarn end out of the current loop.

Pull that yarn end tight.  It should look like this.

From here, you’ll grab your yarn needle and thread the yarn end into the eye.  The best way to do this is to twist the yarn like this…

…and then push it through the eye like this.

When your needle is threaded, you will want to insert it as close to your last stitch as possible. 

Don’t push your needle all the way through so that it comes out the back of your project.  You will actually be weaving this end in through the middle of the stitches.  Pull yarn through stitches so that there are only a couple inches left of yarn.

Make sure when you are weaving in yarn ends that you only weave in similar colors.

Stretch your stitches so that your yarn end isn’t pulled tight.  Then, cut the end.

Your yarn end should be very well hidden.

Weave in your other loose ends this way as well.  See?  It’s easy.

If you would like to continue learning, join other crochet enthusiasts who are following Living in Ivory as we go through step-by-step instructions to make scarves, purses, and much more.

-Lxi

Crochet 101: Part 3

Crochet 101: Part 3

Lxi is here with Part 3 of Crochet 101. Catch parts 1 and 2 here and here. Feeling crochet confident? Give this flower crochet pattern a try or stop by Lxi's shop and pick up a tutorial! I'd start by getting organized.

Want to learn to knit, too? The next 'petite series' is Knitting 101!

-Sara

 

Directly continuing from last week’s tutorial, I am going to move right along to turning.

Abbreviatons

  • sc – Single Crochet Stitch
  • dc – Double Crochet Stitch
  • yo – Yarn Over

After you have made a single crochet in each chain across, you will need to turn to make another row.  To start, your project should look like this.

To turn, simply make two chains.

Note:  The reason you made two chains is because we are continuing with a double crochet stitch, which is two chains tall.  A single crochet is one chain tall.  If you were continuing with single crochets, you would make only one chain.

Turn your work so your hook is on the far right side (if you are right handed), or on the far left side (if you are left handed.) Now you are able to start your next row. For this row, I will teach you how to make a dc.  To make a dc, wrap the yarn once over your hook.

Insert hook in the first stitch of the previous row.  There should be two pieces of yarn under which you are inserting your hook.

Grab the yarn with your hook, (which from now on will be referred to as “yarn over” or yo).

Pull the yarn through the first two loops on your hook. 

Yo again, and pull through the two loops left on the hook.

The double crochet is complete. 

Continue to make a double crochet in each stitch across.

Now I will teach you how to change colors.

Once you have made a dc in each stitch across, cut your yarn with a ten inch tail.

Tie your new color yarn to the old piece with a square knot.  Make the knot as close to your most recent stitch as possible, and leave a ten inch tail on the new color yarn as well.

Continue to crochet.  Chain 1. 

Turn.  Sc in each stitch across. 

Chain 2.  Turn.  Dc in each stitch across.

You can continue this pattern as many times as you would like. Next week I will teach you how to finish your project and weave in loose ends.

-Lxi

Crochet 101: Part 2

Crochet 101: Part 2

Lxi is here for Part 2 of the fresh 'petite series' Crochet 101. Part 2 focuses on practicing stitches so you can be confident when taking on a crochet pattern or project. If you are just getting started… check out Part 1 for all the supplies you need.

Did you see this Rosalee crochet purse at Living in Ivory? She made it from jersey knit fabric yarn. Love it.

-Sara

 

Today I am going to teach you how to start your crochet project.

GETTING STARTED

To attach the yarn to the hook, you will need to make a slip knot.  The slip knot is created by crossing the end of the yarn down on top of the longer side of the yarn.

That loop is then turned down on itself so it looks like a pretzel.

With your crochet hook, you will then grab the 3rd piece from the left and pull on it.

This motion should create the slip knot with your hook attached in a loop.

BASE CHAIN

Almost all crochet projects begin with a  base chain.  To start, find a comfortable way to hold your hook, stitches, and yarn.  This is how I position my hands.

To make a chain, wrap the yarn around your crochet hook like this.

Pull through the beginning slip knot loop.

You have just completed one chain. Repeat the process. Using your crochet hook, grab the yarn, twist your hook, and pull through the loop.

You will notice that a twisting motion is necessary to pull the yarn through the loop. This may feel awkward, but you’ll get the hang of it. If this is your first time crocheting, my guess is that your loops will be much looser than mine. That’s ok for now.

FIRST ROW

When your base row is done, (patterns will specify how many chains you will need), you are ready to start your first row. In this example, I will show you how to make a row of single crochet stitches.

If you are right handed, hold your chain so that your hook is on the far right side. You will crochet moving left across the stitches. If you are left handed, hold your chain so that your hook is on the far left side. You will crochet moving right across the stitches.

To make a single crochet (or sc, which is how you will see it on patterns), insert hook through the 2nd loop from the hook. You do not count the loop that is currently on the hook. 

Grab yarn and pull through.

Once you have pulled through, you will have two loops on your hook.

Grab the yarn again and pull it through both loops on the hook.

Your first Single Crochet is complete. Continue this process in each chain across.

That’s it!  Practice these stitches. They are the most basic crochet stitches. Once you’ve mastered the feel of these stitches, you’ll be amazed at all you can create.

-Lxi

Crochet 101: Part 1

Crochet 101: Part 1

Have you met Lxi? You are in for a treat because she is here to kick off the fresh 'petite series' on Crochet 101. Lxi is in charge at Living in Ivory and the sister pattern shop, Living in Amethyst. You will find all kinds of crochet goodies there.

-Sara

Hello!  My name is Lxi, and  I am an avid crafter and crocheter.  I’m excited to share some basic crochet tips with you! 

First things first.  Supplies.  You may think that all you need is a hook and some yarn.  Well, what size of hook?  Do you want the stitches to be tight and close together?  Or do you want a loose stitch with a little give?  What kind of yarn?  Soft?  Bulky?  Shimmery?  Light-weight?  Let’s see if I can help. 

Crochet Hooks

There are a lot of brands of crochet hooks.  You will find them in all shapes and sizes.  You will also find them in all price ranges. 

I use Boye hooks.  The only specific reason is price.  I buy them at Walmart for about $1.50 each.  You can buy them in sets also, which is a little better deal if you have the money to spend.   You can get them here.

Crochet hooks also come in very small sizes for crochet thread.  Crochet thread will be talked about later in the yarn section.  The hooks sizes are numbers, whereas yarn hooks are classified in letters.  You can buy a set of both together here.

Now, how do you know which size hook to use?  If you are using a pattern, it will tell you.  If you are making something without a pattern, your yarn label will give you a good guideline.   I will go into more detail about the yarn label further down in this post.

If you are just going to buy one hook to get started, I would suggest buying a size H hook (for yarn projects).  I use it more than any other.  It seems to be right in the middle in terms of tightness and size.

If you are wanting just one hook for crochet thread projects, my favorite is a size 8.

Now, I don’t mean to confuse you about hook sizes.  Each hook size, whether a yarn or thread hook, will have a number.  It will tell you the size in millimeters.  Patterns will usually say something like, “Crochet hook needed is G/4.25mm”.  The number on the small hooks will be something like “8/1.50mm”.

You may also want to purchase a crochet hook organizer.  This is mine. 

You can find crochet organizers here. Or, you can make your own with this pattern.

Yarn

There are so many different kinds of yarn out there.  I use acrylic and cotton most of the time.  Specifically, I use Vanna’s Choice, Caron Simply Soft, and Red Heart.  I buy them at Michaels Craft Store or Hobby Lobby. 

Caron Simply Soft yarn is unique.  It is very soft and almost shiny.  I really like to use it because it doesn’t have the fuzzy look that some yarns have.  Here is a cardigan I’ve made with it.

Here is a fanny pack made with Red Heart yarn.

And here is an ear warmer made with Vanna’s Choice.

When choosing a yarn, read the yarn label.  Every skein you buy will have a label like the one below.

Here is what you need to know:

Box 1

The first box tells the weight of the yarn.  A pattern will usually specify a number when talking about weight. You can see photos of each size relative to each other here.

  • 0  Lace
  • 1  Super Fine
  • 2  Fine
  • 3  Light
  • 4  Medium
  • 5  Bulky
  • 6  Super Bulky

The number 4 shows how many separate strands of thread were twisted together to make the yarn.

Box 2

In the second box, you learn about the gauge.  A gauge tells you how many stitches and rows should make a certain size sample swatch.  In this example, the gauge is actually a knitting gauge.  (Shown with the knitting needles.)  Check your pattern for your crochet gauge.

Box 3

The third box shows which size of crochet hook is recommended for this particular yarn. 

Box 4

The fourth box on the right shows care instructions.

Crochet Thread

Crochet thread also comes in different sizes.  The most commonly used is a size 10.  The package will clearly show the size.  Thread is used to make doilies and baby blanket edgings.  I buy it at Hobby Lobby.  Usually I can get it for $2.50 in the store. Below is an example of a headband I made with crochet thread.

Yarn Needle

The last essential supply needed for your first crochet project is a yarn needle.  It is also called a tapestry needle (size 13).  It is used to weave in the loose ends left from the beginning and ending stitches.  You can find them here.

And that’s it!  Once you’re equipped with a crochet hook, yarn (or thread), and a yarn needle, you are ready to begin!   If you have any questions about supplies, make sure to leave them in the comments and I’ll check in to answer them.  Watch for my next crochet post coming next week!

-Lxi

Crochet Flower Clip

Crochet Flower Clip

Vallery of ValleryB is here today to share with you how to crochet a 5-petal flower clip. Have you seen her adorable crochet strawberry baby hats? or her froggy baby beanie hats?

Oh… and if you don't know how to crochet, see this fresh 'petite series' on Crochet 101!

Materials

For the flower:

  • Yarn in any color
  • G or H crochet hook

For the clip:

  • Snap Barrette or Alligator Clip
  • 3/8” Grosgrain Ribbon
  • Hot Glue Gun

Getting started

Abbreviations: Chain Stitch (Ch), Slip Stitch (SS), Double Crochet Stitch (DC)

Round 1:

Tie the yarn onto the hook and Ch 3.

SS into first Ch to make a circle and DC 9 times into that same stitch to form a circle.

Join with a SS into top of beginning chain.

Round 2: 

DC 6 times in next stitch, then SS in next stitch.

Repeat 4 more times all the way around and join with a SS into beginning SS.

Cut tail and pull through the last loop.

Using hot glue, line a snap barrette or alligator clip with 3/8” grosgrain ribbon. (it may help to use another clip to hold it in place while setting)

Hot glue the barrette to the back of flower, tucking the tails in.

Then clip it in your hair or on a headband or hat! (just make sure to let the glue dry first)

-Vallery