Monday, 25 May 2015

Crochet & Recycling !!!

…. Never thought it could be so fun and easy !!!!
… Endless options and such a good opportunity to use a lot of yarns from my yarn stash!!!!

… tin cans and glass bottles/jars were my starting point and then colours and fantasy made it all!!!

xxxx Alessandra

Friday, 22 May 2015

….. Two more Lilliputian Baskets !!!

…. with something different from the previous ones (here the photo tutorial) …

There are just few differences from the original pattern :

  1.  The base ( from round 1 to round 4) presents two colours
  2. the whole basket is crocheted in double crochets (no single crochets rounds)
  3. the tapestry crochet design starts with round 5 and ends with round 10 : you work 3 stitches with colour A, then 3 stitches with colour B and you repeat the colour scheme until the end of the round. The beginning of next round starts with 3 stitches with colour B, then 3 stitches with colour A : repeat until the end of the round ! Alternating these rounds, you will obtain a stairs/spiral effect!
  4. round 11 : you work the slip stitches using both strands of yarn together. Even the single crochets around the handles are crocheted using 2 strands at a time!

That's all !!!!!

xxxx Alessandra

today links : Link your Stuff! , Busy Fingers Showing Off #90

Sunday, 17 May 2015

Make it! Lilliputian Baskets !!!

…. eventually, here we are!!!!

This is the result of my first attempt with tapestry crochet (worked in the round, with 2 strands and just 2 rounds using that technique!!!!) … Remember : I'm still a beginner ….. ;oD

They are colourful, cute and so easy to crochet : really addictive, I must add!!!

I started to be fascinated by this crochet technique since seeing the works made by Julie Hanson, the blog hostess of "little woollie", who loves to play with colourful yarns and who makes splendid blankets and washers with this crochet technique!
I was tempted by tapestry since then, but what to do and how???? I wanted to keep the design simple and as a beginner I didn't want to work with many strands of yarn at a time …. so ….
… I told to myself : have a try with something little …
But I'm very lazy in reading instructions, in fact I'm a visual learner and for this reason I thought to try tapestry crochet just recollecting my knitting attempts with fair isle knitting…. unbelievably, it worked!!!

If you are curious to know more about tapestry, I suggest you the followings :

  • some colourful yarns : I've used a selection of Moda Vera MARVEL 8 ply (100% acrylic)
  • a hook : 4mm
  • a pair of scissors
  • a yarn needle
  • Please, remember that I follow the US crochet terminology!
The dimensions of each Lilliputian Basket are : diameter 7,5cm / height 6,5cm


We begin with crocheting the base of the basket :
Choose the main colour (A) for your basket-to-be and make a slip knot on the hook.
Chain 4 stitches, push the point of your hook into the first chain made, pull back the yarn and make a ring.

ROUND 1 : chain 2 and work 12 DCs (=double crochet) into the ring ; 
                      make a slip stitch in the top of the first DC to end this round.
                      You have 12 DCs.
I suggest you to cut the tail of the starting yarn, just to have less annoying strands while working!

ROUND 2 : chain 2 and work 2 DCs in each top of the stitches of the first round.
                     As you are increasing the stitches number, you will end this round with 24 DCs.
                     After DC 24, make a slip stitch in the top of the first DC, closing this round.

ROUND 3 : chain 2 and follow this pattern : 1 DC in every odd stitch and 2 DCs in each even stitch.
                   You are going to repeat this pattern 12 times, so that at the end of the round, you will have
                    36 DCs. To close this last increasing round, just slip stitch in the top of the first DC.

ROUND 4 : chain 2 and crochet 1 DC in each stitch. You will end this round with 36 DCs (again) and as there has not been any increase in the number of stitches, your base will start to form a basin shape. To end this round : slip stitch in the top of the first DC.

ROUND 5 : join the new colour (B), simply leaving the A colour aside (just for this round) and pulling B trough the loop made from the last slip stitch. Chain 1 and crochet 36 single crochets (=SC) along the round. These stitches are the base for the tapestry crochet design (next two rounds!). Close this round with a slip stitch in the first SC done.

first SC done

same result, but different colours combo

I pass the strand trough the centre of the base, just to have less troubles while working with 2 strands together

… see ? ;oD

ROUND 6 : This is the round you start to practise with tapestry crochet and in this specific case : working in the round with two strands of yarn.
My working colour scheme will be the following : 2 DCs with colour B, followed by 2 DCs with colour A. This pattern will be repeated 9 times, until you reach the end of the round.
After the closing slip stitch of round 5, you have to carry one strand of yarn, while crocheting with the other one (see here or here, depending on if you are right or left-handed) : this is what happens with tapestry crochet!
The strand you carry is kept in a low position, while the strand to crochet with is in position as for normal crochet : in my case wrapped around the forefinger and the little finger of my left hand.
Summing up : you have just made the slip stitch to close round 5 and you have to start round 6.
As you need to carry with you even colour A (that has been neglected for all round 5), before crocheting chain 2 (as for all the previous round worked with DCs), you need to put colour A on your left forefinger (if you are right-handed like me) and make the point of your hook pass under it to grab colour B, with which you will crochet the initial chain 2 : in this way, colour A is wrapped and kept low, as you need to carry it around with you!
Crochet 2 DCs with B, while wrapping A, which is kept low. Then, low down colour B and put in "crochet position" colour A : work 2 DCs, wrapping colour B. Each time you complete a couple of DCs, remember to pull gently the strands, just to adjust the tension of your work !
The closing slip stitch is better to be done with the same colour of the first DC of the round!

beginning of 6th round : chain 2

working the first 2 DCs : yellow (B) top, red (A) low and wrapped

next 2 DCs : red (A) top, yellow (B) low and wrapped

different combo, same round

what you see from the inside : neat !

look at the forming design!

before the closing slip stitch

slip stitch done + new chain 2 of 7th round

ROUND 7 : just repeat round 6 : this is its twin round !!!!! PHEW !!! ;oD
                      slip stitch in same colour of first DC (B), to close the round.

4 'couples' crocheted

as the strands are kept, while tapestry crocheting

how to insert the hook in the stitch below

the new DC is done!

round 7 done!

ROUND 8 : work with colour B and repeat round 5, same same !!! After the closing slip stitch (into the first SC), cut colour B. Please, note that for this round you can drop the other strand at the beginning of the round, as we are working in the round!

ROUND 9 : chain 2, crochet 36 DCs with colour A, make a slip stitch in the top of the first DC.

ROUND 10 : chain 1, make 6 SCs. To start the first handle, just chain 8 and join with 1 SC in 7th stitch (you need to skip 6 stitches, after the first 6 SCs !) and crochet other 11 SCs (you will have 12 SCs between the two handles). Chain 8 (second handle) and as before, join in the 7th stitch with 1 SC (even this time, you skipped 6 stitches) and crochet the last 5 SCs (total : 6 SCs after the 2nd handle). Slip stitch into the first SC of the round to close it.

first 6 SCs

8 chains of the first handle

the first handle attached

same as the above pic !

12 SCs between the handles

2nd handle attached

round completed

ROUND 11 : as you have just slip stitched in the first SC, you need to crochet 5 slip stitches and then wrap the first handle with 9 SCs . Crochet 12 slip stitches between the two handles and make 9 SCs around the second handle. Complete the round with 6 slip stitches. 
Cut the yarn and fasten off.

beginning of round 11, 6 slip stitches

first handle, 5 SCs around it

first handle done

12 slip stitches between handles

all done!!!


Turn inside out the basket ...

… collect the yarn needle and pass the strands in some stitches to hide them. Pull gently and cut the excess of yarn …

… and opla' …

…. They are multiplying like rabbits!!!! ;oD

Have a try and let me know!!!!!

xxxx Alessandra


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