My Patterns

Friday, January 30, 2015

"Grandma's Knickknacks" Coasters

Here is another simple pattern using the "Grandma's Knickknacks" motif.

I do love colors...All colors... I love pastels, and brights.  I love neutrals and muted tones.  My color mood changes all the time.  Lately I've been in a "brights mood".  

So I thought it would be fun to work up some coasters in the six colors of my "Fiestaware" dishes: 
Red, Navy, Orange, Yellow, Green and Blue.

I made these bright and cheerful coasters out of worsted weight cotton that I had in my stash of "bargain buy" yarn. 
 Hooks size 4.0(G),  Instructions are in US crochet terms

I worked them up following the first three rounds of my "Grandma's Knickknacks" blanket  motif.

Then added a Forth Round as follows:
Using a new color, make a standing sc in the top of any dc3tog of round 3, ch 2, *dc3tog in the next ch-2 space, ch 2, sc in the top of the next dc3tog of round 3, ch 2 repeat from * ten more times, dc3tog in the last ch-2 space, ch 2 and join with slip stitch in beg sc, fasten off. Voila!  A quick little coaster. 

 A set of 4 or 6 would make a nice little gift!  

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Pattern for My Quick Little Comfy Car-seat Cozy

Here is the detailed pattern for the baby blanket I promised in my earlier post: My Quick Little Comfy Car-seat Cozy

I used worsted weight yarn, "I Love This Yarn" from Hobby Lobby and a 6.0 (J) hook.
Yarn colors are: Navy, Turquoise, Greybeard, Limelight and Light Gray.
Finished Blanket measures 26 inches square. 
Instructions are in US crochet terms

This pattern is very similar to a traditional granny, except here I use only 1 chain in the corners of the motifs and no chains on the sides so the baby blanket doesn't have large holes.

Granny Motif is as follows:

Make a Magic Ring

Round 1:  Ch3 plus 2 dc in ring, ch1, *3dc, ch1, rep from *twice, join with slip st into top of beginning ch, fasten off.

Round 2:  Join new color in any ch-1 sp, ch3, 2dc, ch1, 3dc into same sp (corner made) *(3dc, ch1, 3dc) in next ch-1 sp rep from * two more times, slip st into top of beg ch, fasten off.

Round 3: Join new color in any ch-1 sp, ch3, 2dc, ch1, 3dc in same space (corner made). *3dc in next sp between 3dc clusters, **(3dc,ch1,3dc) in next ch-1 corner rep from *two more times, then from * to ** once more, slip st into top of beg ch.  fasten off

Round 4: Join new color in any ch-1 sp, ch3, 2dc, ch1, 3dc in same space (corner made). *3dc into next sp between 3dc clusters two times, **(3dc, ch1, 3dc) into next corner ch-1 sp, rep from * two more times, then from * to ** once more, slip st into top of beginning ch. fasten off.

Make 25 granny motifs  joining on the 4th round as you go.  See my earlier post on the JAYGO Method for a detailed photo tutorial on how to join as you go.  IMPORTANT:  for this baby blanket you will use (3dc, slip stitch, 3dc) to join at the corners with no chains. Instead of the (3tr, ch1, slip stitch, 3tr, ch1) used for the "Grandma's knickknack blanket" shown in the tutorial.

You can use this photo for color placement:

For the border:
Round 1:  In navy work a round of 3dc in each space around (when you come to the place where the squares are joined, make 1dc in the corner of first square, then 1dc in the join, then 1dc into the corner space of the next square.) When you get to the corners of the blanket work (3dc, ch1, 3dc) and continue around and join.

Round 2: In navy sc in each stitch around, for corners work 3sc in ch1 space of previous round.

Round 3: In navy hdc in each stitch around, for corners work 3hdc in middle sc of corner on previous round.

Round 4 - 8:  repeat round 3 with  these colors: gray ,turquoise, light gray, green and navy.

The large hook makes this blankie soft and snuggly!

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

"Grandma's Knickknacks" Baubles

Here are the little bauble ornaments I made using the pattern from my "Grandma's Knickknacks" motif

They are so cute and simple.  I made them by working up the first three rounds of the "Grandma's Knickknacks" pattern.

I simply crocheted two motifs (through round three) and then crocheted them, wrong sides together, with 3sc in each ch-2 space of round three.  For added dimension and stability, I popped a single cotton ball into each one before closing the round .  Then I chained 24 for the hanger, slip-stitching in the join. and voila! Colorful little baubles for putting on key-chain, zipper, Christmas tree or whatever! The full pattern is below.

My crochet Christmas 2015 ornament project is growing!  See my earlier post
 A Crochet Christmas 2015 Challange for a link to the stocking pattern.

I used worsted weight yarn and a 4.0 (G) hook.  They measure approx. 3in in diameter. 

Here are the short and skinny instructions:

Round 1 - ch3 plus 11 dc in a magic ring
Round 2 - sc in space between dc's, ch1, repeat around
Round 3 - 3dctog, ch2 in each ch-1 space around
Round 4 - with two motifs wrong sides together and working through both, 3sc in each ch-2 space around ... pop in a cotton ball before finishing round 4 then finish the round and join with a slip-stitch in the beginning stitch of round 4.  Do not fasten off,  Chain 24, slip-stich in join, then fasten off.

*For more detailed instructions on rounds one through three, follow the link to the motif pattern above.

I hope you all will check back soon as I will be posting a pattern for Grandma's Knickknack Coasters and an all new Grandma's Knickknack Hex Motif!

Sunday, January 25, 2015

My Quick Little Comfy Car-seat Cozy

A sweet young couple I know is expecting a baby boy in four weeks.  The mamma's baby shower was today and this is the quick, little, comfy car-seat cozy I made for her gift.  Her colors are navy, turquoise, grey and green.

I worked this little cozy blanket up in "I Love This Yarn" from Hobby Lobby, and used a large 6.0mm (J) hook so that it would be extra soft and snuggly.  
Yarn colors are: Navy, Turquoise, Greybeard, Limelight and Light Gray.

Using a basic granny square motif, I joined squares using the 
Jaygo technique on the last round with the corners worked in a typical granny dc instead of tr. 
There are 25 total squares (5sq x 5sq)

For the border, I worked a granny shell round in navy, then a sc round in navy, then a hdc round in navy followed by a hdc round each of gray ,turquoise, light gray, green and navy.

My finished blanket measures 26 inches square.
I spent less than 2 days working up this sweet little gift and I think it turned out so cute!

I will be working up a detailed pattern which I hope to have available soon.

Friday, January 23, 2015

A Crochet Christmas 2015 Challange

January is almost gone and I bet, like me, you are soooo done with Christmas and don't want to see another decoration till at least November!  Well I'm with you believe me....but I have been admiring this Christmas tree which is featured on Skip to my Lou blog....
and I thought it would be loads of fun to have a Christmas tree this year all decked out in crochet!

 My boys are grown now, the youngest having just graduated from high school last spring and I am "down-sizing" Christmas.  I simply don't feel the need to put up the big 9 foot tree and fuss over all the fancy decor anymore.  It's tiring and I'm just getting too old.  I hope to get a nice little 6 foot "slim" tree that I can decorate without dragging in the ladder! And wouldn't it be nice to unpack and store crochet ornaments...nothing to break...just toss them all in a box, no worries!

 Well, it's going to take some time to make dozens of thought if I started making those dear little things now...maybe I would have enough to at least get the 2015 tree off to a descent start.  

My plan is to make at least one ornament a week all year.  That's about 48 ornaments or so.  I hope I can accomplish more than that, but 48 would be a nice start even if I have to add traditional bulbs this year.  Maybe by Christmas 2016   I could have that tree covered in crochet.  I love the idea of making the granny square tree skirt too and maybe some stockings as well.  This may be a little ambitious since I have other projects to keep up with, but I'm going to give it a whirl. 

Last week I worked up these cute little stockings by Angie which I found at Le monde de Sucrette.  They are quick and easy to make and the instructions are free.  I just love them!
And I've found many other adorable ornament patterns for free that I would love to make.  Most of them look very easy...a few look a little more involved.  I am also working on some simple "Grandma's Knickknacks" ornaments which are based on my "Grandma's Knickknacks Blanket" motifs which I will be posting soon. 

There is a group on Ravelry called Crochet Christmas  where members share things that they make throughout the year for Christmas, including crocheted gifts.  I have joined the group and will be sharing my ornament projects there as well as here at "Laurel's Place".

 If any of you are interested in taking up a similar challenge for Christmas 2015, let me know.  I would love to see any of your homemade crochet ornaments and decorations!  P.S. You can also let me know it I'm nuts...HO HO HO!

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Adventure Into the World of the "Crochet Along"

Thanks to all those who left kind and encouraging comments regarding my first posts...I feel so inspired!

It's been mighty cold this January!  I've enjoyed a little time sitting by a crackling fire warming my toes while working on some crochet projects.  Crocheting is my favorite past time.  I'm a worrier and stresser and nothing relaxes me more than picking up a crochet project while watching TV or a movie.  

Over the past year, I have made blankets for just about everyone I think...and just a couple for myself.  It has been so much fun!  I definitely go into withdrawal when I've finished a blanket.  So, I was thinking a few days ago that my bedroom could use a pretty throw.  But what to do that is completely different than the blankets I've already made?  I've done many throws constructed of repeating rows and I've done many throws constructed of repeating motifs...what else is there?  Well, I've seen some beautiful blankets done in "mixed stitches" and "mixed motifs" combined in a sort of "sampler" blanket... hmm, this is something I haven't done before.  Voila!  A new kind of project to get started on!

On the web site you can find many talented crocheters who have done these kinds of projects.  What I didn't know until a few days ago, was that you can join a group called BAM CAL 2015, Block-A-Month Crochet-A-Long.  I discovered that everyone in this group works on the same crochet block chosen for the month. Each month of the year they will work on a new and different block so that by the end of the year, they will have twelve different blocks to put together in any way they chose...a "sampler". There is also an extra "filler block" every month giving them a total of twenty-four possible blocks to use if they like.  The blocks are twelve inches square and twelve-12" blocks put together would make a nice baby blanket or 20 or 24 blocks would make a nice size throw.  The group shares their progress via posts to threads...everyone uses different color schemes and does theirs each a little differently, putting their own special touches on their squares.  The end result is some very unique blankets.  

I am so excited to be a part of this group this year! Here is an opportunity to create a project uniquely my own using different stitches throughout!  There are over 1000 members on BAM CAL 2015 so there is plenty of sharing and plenty of help for anyone who needs it. As soon as I discovered this group, I joined.  And within minutes I was thinking up a color scheme for a blanket to go in my bedroom.  Here are the colors I'm using:
The red is really a little bit of a Coral color...though it is hard to tell in the picture.  The brown and pink are Vanna's Choice solids "Taupe" and "Pink Rose".  The green, ivory and red are Loops and Threads Impeccable solids "Fern", "Aran" and "Rouge".  I drew the colors from the fabric of my bed-skirt, curtains and pillows.  

Starting straight away, I worked up the first "January" square. The pattern is "Pizzazz" and you can find it here.  The patterns used for BAM CAL are free!  This is my finished block:
It was a fairly easy square to do.  
Choosing color placement is the hardest part for me! 

 The next square, the January "Filler", was a little more challenging... but oh so beautiful!  It is called "Prince Protea Square" and you can find it here.  This is my block:
I used a 5.5 mm (I) hook for both squares.  I will be using this hook on all the squares, adding or subtracting rows from the squares as needed to get them to measure 12 inches.

I can't wait for February's offering!
If you are interested in being part of this crochet-along, it is not to late to join.  Just click on the link I provided above.  You can find out all you need to know there.  Come on and'll be so much fun!

Thursday, January 8, 2015

JAYGO - The "Join As You Go" Method and Color Placement

I wanted to bring you a quick tutorial explaining how I join granny squares with the JAYGO (Join-As-You-Go) method and also describe how I select which colors to place where.  I used this method on my  "Grandma's Knickknack" blanket.  For some, JAYGO gets a little confusing, especially when it comes to joining at the corners of the squares, but it really is simple once you get the hang of it.  If you are new to JAYGO,  I hope you will benefit from this tutorial and give JAYGO a try.

 I prefer to use this approach for joining motifs of blankets that have many colors. I find it easier to just attach the granny's as I make them in a random color arrangement.  It is simply too confusing for me to attempt to figure out if I've used enough of this color or that... or if I made too many motifs with this color on the first round or the second. It would mangle my brain trying to figure out how to lay it all out in a pleasing manner making sure "like" squares aren't touching and then making sure I get them all attached in the correct order.  

What I like to do is look at the squares I have already attached to my blanket and pick colors for the next square to be made that are different, or in a different order from the ones that will be in close proximity to it. I set those yarns next to me in the order I've decided upon for that square. Then crochet it and attach it to the blanket.  

For example:  In the picture above, I have three squares completed and attached.  When I am choosing a color placement for the next square, I look and see that I don't want light blue, yellow or medium green for the center circle because I've used those colors in the center of the three squares already made. So I pick light green and set that color yarn next to me first.  Then I look and see that I have used brown, medium blue and red for the spikes. So I choose light blue and set it beside me second. Then I see that I have used yellow, red and light blue in the third round. So I choose pink for the new square and set it next to me third. Then for the forth round, I see that I don't want to use medium green, pink or light green. So I choose yellow and set that beside me forth.  Now I make the new square in the order I have laid out beside me and join it to the blanket. I continue to repeat that process each time I construct a new square, making sure that it's color arrangement is a little different than the squares that are in close proximity to it.

The other reason I like this method of joining and color placement is because your finished blanket is totally unique!  And it will have a pleasing, non-contrived appearance.  No other blanket will be exactly like it.  Of course if you want to have all your squares framed by the same color, you would go ahead and make all your motifs first, and then either JAYGO or sew them together.

Here it is then, the JAYGO method that I use...
You have made your first square...

and you are starting the last round of your new square.  At the first corner of the new square you will make your tr cluster, then ch1 instead of 2.

Now insert your hook into a corner ch-2 space of the first square.  Insert through the front sideas shown above, making sure your yarn is not wrapped over the hook . When joining, you will always insert your hook in this manner.

Now slip stitch.

Because your corner needs 2 chains total, make your second chain. (so you will ch1, slipstitch in corner, chain 1)

Finish the corner with a 3tr cluster in the corner space of the new granny square. One corner done!

Now you will slip stitch between the corner cluster and next dc cluster of the first square.

Work a dc cluster in the next space of the new Granny square.

Then slip stitch between the next two clusters of the first square.  (You do not make chains on the sides... only in the corners).

Make a dc cluster in the new square, then slip stitch between the last dc cluster and the corner tr cluster of the first square.

Work the second corner: Make a tr cluster in the new square, ch1, slip stitch in the corner space of the first square, ch1 (remember your corner requires 2 chains... one before the slip stitch and one after the slip stitch).

  Finish the corner by working another tr cluster in the same space of the new square.  Second corner made!

Now you simply finish the rest of your new square as usual. Join and fasten off.

Voila!  Two squares joined!  

Now I want to show you how to join 3 corners together.
Always starting from the right side and working toward the left, join the first corner and work across joining to the square above as described earlier.  You will always join the new square to the corners of the squares above and beside as indicated by the blue arrows in the photo above , but not the corner of the square to the diagonal as indicated by the black arrow.  (This is an update to a previous error in which I had said to crochet in the diagonal corner...don't know what I was thinking...brain fry.  I apologize for any confusion.  And thanks to the kind reader who pointed it out!)

For the next corner, 3tr, ch1, slip stitch in the left side corner of the square directly above the square you are making.

  Then slip stitch in the corner of the square to the side.

Now ch1 (because every corner you make has a total of 2 chains right?)

Here I have turned the work so I can continue down the side of the third square. Finish the corner with 3tr.

Continue joining by slip stitching between the clusters, joining the third corner as usual and finishing around the square.

That's it! Now you can simply continue adding grannies as you go - JAYGO. 

Typically I join together one whole row of motifs and then begin attaching them to the next row, however, I suppose it would be possible to start with a block like the one in the picture above and continue to join around it in a circular pattern...but I haven't tried that.

There are many other methods of joining grannies. This is just one way.  I hope you like it and find this tutorial helpful.  If you notice an error or something is confusing, please let me know in the comment section so I can correct or clarify. Happy Granny Joining!

Monday, January 5, 2015

Grandma's Knickknacks Crochet Blanket

Welcome!  I am so happy to share with you a photo pattern tutorial for my "Grandma's Knickknacks" blanket. 
This is my very first blog post and tutorial. I have so many more things I want to share with you here in Laurel's Place, but I wanted to get this pattern out to you all asap.  I welcome your questions and comments about my blanket and the pattern tutorial. 
The inspiration for this blanket really did come from my Grandma's knickknacks.  Particularly her little antique music box.  I was quite fond of visits to Grandma's house and I love all things that remind me of her and her pretty home.  More about Grandma later though....  
Lets jump right in and start making a square.  For my blanket I used various brands of worsted weight yarn...13 colors in all (some from my stash) and a 4mm (G) hook.

Round 1:  Start with ch 3 and 11 dc in a magic ring

Slip stitch into first ch-3 to join and fasten off.  You should now have 12 stitches.

Round 2:  On this round you will be working in the spaces  Between the dc's of round 1 (instead of in the top of the stitch) as shown above. This makes the cute little spikes in the pattern.

With a new between any two dc from round one, ch 1, sc in next space

Continue around.  

Join in first sc of round and fasten off (12 sts, 12 ch-1 sps.)

Round 3:  You will be working dc-three-together (dc3tog) clusters.  
(I start with a standing stitch but if you prefer, you can start the first stitch with a ch-2)
(dc3tog is made thus:  Yarn over, insert hook into space and pull up a loop, yarn over, pull through 2 loops on hook, (yarn over, insert hook into same sp and pull up a loop, yarn over and pull through 2 loops) two times, yarn over and pull through all 4 loops on hook.)

With new color, make 3dctog in any ch-1 space, ch 2 and repeat around.

Join in top of first 3dctog and fasten off. 

You should have 12 -3dctog clusters and 12 spaces.

This is where I like to tie in those pesky ends.  That way, if you join your motifs as you go, those ends don't get in your way.  Plus, it's a nice way to break up the monotony and have many of your ends tied in before you get to the end of your project and have to sit for days with the tedious task.  Of course this is optional.  

Just a side note:  When tying in ends on any project, I like to slip under one direction, split a yarn and come back the same way.  Then you have less likelihood of that yarn jiggling out over time.

Now it's time for the final round that makes the square motif.  And if you prefer, the round where you will join-as-you-go.

Round 4:  In any ch-2 space of round 3, work 3 dc (here again I start with a standing dc, you may prefer to start with ch 3). 

Now you will work the corner: (3tr, ch2, 3tr) in next ch-2 space) 

Corner made!

Now work 3 dc in in each of the next two spaces.

Then work another corner (3tr, ch 2, 3tr) in next space.

Repeat around, finishing with 3dc in last space.

slip stitch in first dc (or ch3) and tie off

Voila! Square done! 
Now you can make as many squares as you like and either stitch them together when finished or do what I like to do and join the rest of the motifs as you make them.  Check out my blog post with a photo tutorial on the JAYGO (Join-As-You-Go) method and how I chose color placement.

Now for the border. It's a very simple block stitch. 
  Round 1:  Start with a single crochet in any space between 3dc clusters of the edge, ch3, then sc in next space between clusters. You will also make a sc in the space just between squares as indicated by the blue arrows above.  Continue all around the blanket.  Corners of round 1 are made by (sc, ch2, sc) in the corner ch-2 spaces of edge. 
Round 2:  Join a new color and work 3 dc in each ch-3 space of round 1 all around.  Corners of round 2 are made by (3dc, ch2, 3dc) in the corner ch-2 space of round one. Repeat rounds 1 and 2 until you have the desired width.

My blanket is 14 squares wide and 18 squares long. Each square is approx. 3"x 3"
 (I am a fairly tight crocheter)
 The finished blanket without border measures approx.  45"x 57". 
With the border it measures approx. 51" x 63".
I sincerely hope you found this tutorial helpful. Happy Hooking!