Rainbow Sky Baby Blanket

The Rainbow Sky baby blanket would make a lovely gift for any baby! It depicts a beautiful sky complete with rainbows and clouds. Rainbow Sky blanket combines loads of texture with bright colors perfect for the development of young fingers and eyes. Ready to give it a try? Here’s the pattern (with some important notes at the end).

Blanket:

With light blue ch 140

Row 1: Hdc in 2nd st from hk and each st across, ch 2, turn

Row 2: (Ch 2 counts as first hdc) Hdc in 2nd st and each st across, ch 2, turn

Rows 3-5: repeat row 2

Row 6: (Ch 2 counts as first hdc) Hdc in 2nd st and each st across, change to white, turn

Row 7: With white, ch 3 (counts as a dc) *Bobble st (5dctog) in next st, sc in next st, repeat from * to next to last st, dc in last st, ch 1, turn

Row 8: Sc in 1st st and each st across, ch 3, turn

Row 9: (Ch 3 counts as a dc) *sc in next st, bobble in next st, repeat from * to end of row, change to light blue

Rows 10-15: With light blue chain 2 (counts as first hdc) hdc in next st and in each st across

Row 16: With red, ch 1, and working only in the back loops, sc in 1st st and each st across, change to orange, turn

Row 17: With orange, ch 1, and working back loops only, sc in 1st st and each st across, change to yellow, turn

Row 18: With yellow, ch 1, and working back loops only, sc in 1st st and each st across, change to green, turn

Row 19: With green, ch 1, and working back loops only, sc in 1st st and each st across, change to blue, turn

Row 20: With blue, ch 1, and working back loops only, sc in 1st st and each st across, change to purple, turn

Row 21: With purple, ch 1, and working back loops only, sc in 1st st and each st across, change to light blue, ch2, turn

Row 22-26: Do 5 rows of hdc’s with the light blue

Repeat rows 7, 8, and 9 for the cloud rows, then sky, then rainbows, then sky etc.

Border:

Round 1: With white sc evenly around. In the corners do sc, ch 2, sc.

Round 2: Ch 1, sc in same st, *bobble in next st, sc in next st, repeat from *

Round 3: Ch 3, *sc in next st, bobble in next st, repeat from *

Round 4: Ch 1, crab st (reverse sc) in each st around (crab st, ch 2, crab st in corners), end off, weave in ends.

Notes:

1. Ok, so when you do the bobble stitch rows, the bobbles will pop out on the other side, so you want to make sure you’re starting those rows when the back of the blanket is facing you.

2. Bobble stitch is the same as dc5tog in one stitch. Here’s how it goes: Yarn over, insert hook into stitch, yarn over pull through two loops, (yarn over insert hook into stitch, yarn over, pull through two loops) 3 times (there will be 5 loops on hook), yarn over and pull through all 5 loops.

3. Another things about the bobble rows – the bobbles should sit diagonally to each other so when you do the second row, do a single crochet into the bobble below and do a bobble into the single crochet below.

4. Crab stitch is a reverse single crochet. So if you are right handed and you usually crochet from right to left, you will be switching directions and crocheting left to right. So for righties, insert your hook into the stitch to the right of the current stitch, yarn over, and pull through two loops. (For lefties, you will be going from left to right.)

Abbreviations:

Ch – chain

Hdc – half double crochet

St – stitch

Hk – hook

Dc – double crochet

Sc – single crochet

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Phoenix CAL

This beauty is from a Crochet ALong (or CAL) written by Hooked on Sunshine’s Vanessa Smith. I was lucky enough to discover it while the CAL was still running and I was able to quickly catch up because I cheated and used self striping yarn and magic knots rather than changing colors every round and weaving in over 200 loose ends. (I had 2 ends – one in the beginning and one in the end. I seriously love the magic knot so much!).

The yarn that I used was Lionbrand’s Mandala yarn in “wizard,” and I used less than 9 cakes to make an afghan that nicely covers my full sized bed.

The Phoenix pattern is $5 now on Ravelry and it is definitely well worth it! All the stitches are explained fully in the prelude to the pattern and the pictures are quite helpful as well. The Phoenix has interesting textures and attractive designs to spare – all without being too difficult. I love this afghan soooo much and have already started another Phoenix using different colors.

Update: I ended up doing three more Phoenix’s. Love love love!!! You have to try this pattern – it’s really so much fun.

Sea to C Blanket

It’s been such a beautiful summer so far and so when I visited ACMoore to see what yarns were on sale, these Premier Yarn cakes in blues and greens caught my eye. I used corner to corner crochet or c2c, which at its simplest, is very easy to do and a beginner can get the hang of it very quickly. There are tons of tutorials online to teach you how to do it. Basically you are making little blocks of double crochets connected to each other with slip stitches. You work in diagonal rows increasing in the beginning and then decreasing in the end. C2c is also great for advanced crocheters, though, because it can be used to make a graph with any number of colors. In my “Sea 2 C” blanket I just used the one kind of color changing yarn and whenever I came to the end of a cake, I joined the next cake with the Magic Knot so there were almost no ends to weave in. It worked up super fast and I think it’s really pretty. For the border I did a simple shell stitch for three rounds, that I thought looked like waves and then finished with one round of Persian stitch. I used just about all of the eight cakes of yarn that I bought and “Sea 2 C” measures about 6’ by 4’.

Sophie’s Universe

This blanket is called Sophie’s Universe and the full pattern instructions can be found on the site lookwhatimade.net.

Ok, this was a BIG project. I mean it’s a queen sized blanket, so it’s physically big, but it was also very involved as far as the amount of pattern instructions that I had to read. It was fun though. If you ever get super bored with the easier projects where you just do the same pattern of stitches over and over and want to challenge yourself I would definitely suggest Sophie’s because you are never doing the same thing for very long. Every day I was like, “ok what are we doing in the next round?” There were all kinds of stitches that were new to me like front post double trebles, extended stitches, and surface overlay, and I know that I am a better crocheter after making her.

That being said, the pattern is written with so many hints, tips, notes, and pictures that, as the writer says, it’s really something an “advanced beginner” can take on. All the stitches are explained fully and she even anticipates mistakes the you might make and puts warnings in there!

I used worsted weight acrylic in ten colors – blues, purples, and browns, and although the colors aren’t all in my preferred palette of neutrals and grays it made my eyes happy each day as I crocheted to look at these colors. I changed colors on every round except the tan butterfly band near the outside edge. There were a lot of ends to weave in – more than 200!

Sophie’s has row after row of tulips and roses. I tried to make the leaves and stems green and the flowers pink or purple.

I loved working on Sophie’s Universe and during the work I would fantasize about the next one and what colors I will use. It took me several months to make (definitely the longest stretch of time I ever spent on one piece), but I love the way it turned out and I will definitely do it again!

The Magic Knot

The Magic Knot is a method of joining yarn very securely without having to weave in ends.

I had seen this technique around the internet for quite some time, but for some reason waited until just recently to try it. Verdict: It’s actually very easy and useful and I should have given it a chance long ago!

What you have to do is line up about ten inches from the end of the working yarn parallel to about ten inches of the new yarn. Tie a loose single knot with the working yarn above the new yarn and then tie a loose single knot with the new yarn below the working yarn. (One must be above and one must be below.) Then tighten the single knots slightly and pull the long ends away from each other.

You will end up with a tiny, secure knot joining the old yarn with the new. Trim the ends as closely as you can and keep crocheting or knitting the yarn as normal.

(This method of joining will leave a very small bump in your work which may or may not be noticeable depending on the stitches.)

I find that the Magic Knot is ideal when you are working without changing colors or for when you want to change colors randomly. However, it would not work well when you want a new color for a new row or round because you would need to predict on exactly what stitch your old yarn would end and your new yarn would start.

On the whole, I wish I had tried the Magic Knot sooner. It would have been ideal to use in these virus shawls instead of weaving in ends.

The first two are made with self-striping yarn and the last one is all one color so I could have used the Magic Knot on all of them and it would have been super secure and virtually unnoticeable. Oh well, at least I know about it now and I will certainly use it a lot in the future.

Light Up Crochet Hook

Here is my new light up crochet hook. Whoever thought of this was so smart! I can now easily crochet dark colors in my low light living room at night. No squinting! I got it from Amazon and I’m so glad I did. The handle is ergonomic and padded and the hooks are interchangeable. You plug it into a usb to charge. It charges really fast and the charge lasts for many hours. It has two brightness settings, but I always use the really bright one. Seriously, if you ever crochet in anything but really bright sunlight or with light colors GET ONE OF THESE. That is all. 😘

Men’s Striped Scarf and Hat

This is a really simple scarf and hat set that I made because I needed something to make for my husband and he likes neutrals. Well he likes black mostly, but he ended up really liking the gray, white, and black color scheme of this set. It goes nicely with his black leather jacket that he wears as his winter coat.

I guess you could say that I made up my own pattern, but it’s really so simple, you don’t need a pattern. I used Walmart Basics worsted weight yarn. I like it because it’s two dollars for a skein and it has a nice feel in my hands. Great for scarves and hats because it’s soft and stretchy when crocheted. My Walmart doesn’t carry that many colors of Basics, but what they do have is actually really nice.

For the scarf I did 16 rows of single crochet in gray, 2 rows half double crochet in white, 5 rows double crochet in black, and 2 more rows half double crochet in white. I repeated that pattern of rows until the scarf was about 6 feet long. I began and ended with the gray, and I made the rows 20 stitches across.

Like I said, this “pattern” is so simple that a beginner like me could make it up. You could also modify the scarf in any number of ways. I would love to do this in different colors (or just replace the black with a color), and maybe try back loop stitches when changing color to give it more texture.

The hat was also very simply done. I started with a magic circle and used all double crochet stitches. There are tons of patterns and tutorials online for double crochet beanie-type hats. They all follow the same basic steps of increasing rounds until you reach the width that measures the same as the top of the head, and then keeping the number of stitches the same until you reach the length you want.

For my hat, I did gray for 6 rounds, then white for 1 round, black for 3 rounds, white for 1, and gray for the rest. At the end I did two rounds of front post double crochet in every other stitch to get a nice ribbed look, however you can’t see that because I folded up the bottom of the hat, which my husband thinks makes it look better when you wear it. When it’s not folded up the hat has a slouchy beanie look that I love, but my husband thinks is too hipster. 🤷‍♀️ Either way, he looks great wearing this hat and scarf so I’m very happy with it!

Premier Yarn Sweet Roll Double Crochet Scarf

This was a quick and super easy scarf that I worked up with this gorgeous Premier Sweet Roll yarn in Cappuccino Pop. The yarn is very soft and it is self-striping so you don’t ever have to change colors and weave in ends. Yay! The scarf is nice and wide and really long so it can be worn wrapped around your neck several times for extra warmth or fashionably hanging down to the mid-thigh. (Of course I’m only 5 feet tall, so it may be shorter on you. Lol.) Here’s the pattern:

Row 1: Foundation single crochet an odd number then chain 3 – I did 25. (Alternatively you can chain an odd number plus 1 and then do a row of single crochet starting with the 2nd chain from your hook. Then ch 3.) The ch 3 counts as the first dc in the next row. Turn.

Rows 2-5: Double crochet across the row ending with a dc in the starting chain from the last row. Chain 3 and turn.

Row 6: Dc across. Ch 4 and turn (counts as first dc and ch 1)

Row 7: *Sk next st, dc in next st, ch 1, repeat from * to end of row, ending with dc in starting chain from last row. Ch 3 and turn.

Rows 8-11: repeat rows 2-5

Row 12: repeat row 7

Continue pattern of repeating rows 2-5 then 7 until scarf measures about 6 ft, then do one row of sc. Fasten off and weave in ends. Have fun!

Bonus Satchel

Bonus Satchel:

The Premier Yarn Sweet Roll Double Crochet Scarf on the top of this page used about 1 1/2 cakes of the Premier Sweet Roll Cappuccino Pop, so I had a half a cake left over. I knew I could do something with half a cake, something that wasn’t too big or too small. Something that would use all three colors in that cake effectively. So, I decided to make a small satchel with a long strap to use up the yarn and match the scarf. This satchel is big enough to carry your phone, wallet, keys, and some more stuff too. It could also carry a decent sized book. I love how it came out with the color blocking effect of the Seeet Roll yarn, and it was super easy to do. Here’s how I did it:

Ch 26

Row 1:Sc in 2nd ch from hook and across to end, ch 1 and turn

Rows 2 and 3: Sc across, ch 1 and turn

Now switch to working in the round.

Round 1: Sc 3 times in last stitch from row 3, sc 2 times down the short side, sc 3 times in corner, sc down the long side, sc 3 times in corner, sc 2 times up the short side, sc 3 times in corner, sc up long side and join with sl st

Rounds 2-6: Ch 3, sk one st, dc around, join with sl st to beg ch 3

Round 7: Ch 4 (counts as 1st dc plus ch 1), *sk next st, dc in next st, ch 1, repeat from * around, join with sl st to 3rd ch of ch 4

Rounds 8-11: Ch 3, sk one st, dc around, join with sl st to beg ch 3

Round 12: Repeat round 7

Rounds 13-16: Repeat rounds 8-11

Round 17: Ch 1, sc around, join with sl st to first sc

Strap: Without breaking yarn, ch 160, sl st to satchel body on opposite side, sl st in next sc on satchel body, sc in all chains along the strap, sl st to sc on satchel body, fasten off and weave in both ends.

Leaping Stripes and Blocks Hat and Scarf Set

Lately I’m really into making scarves and hats for two reasons: They are usually pretty (1) simple and (2) quick so you get to finish a matched set project in just a couple of sittings. Oh yeah, and (3) they make awesome gifts for friends, family, kids’ teachers, bosses, anyone really.

I found these free patterns (thank you!) on the excellent Moogly blog, here and here. I made the scarf first and it was actually pretty easy because you carry the yarn up the side of the scarf rather than having to cut it and weave in the ends every time you switch colors. (I simplified by only using two colors instead of three.) Then you hide the carried yarn by doing a single crochet border around the whole scarf. The technique of stitching into the previous row was new to me, but the only stitches that I had to do were chains, single crochet, and double crochet so I didn’t have too hard of a time, and I like the look of the finished scarf. 🙂

Then I started on the hat. So much for not cutting the yarn when switching colors! I changed colors seven times so I had to weave in 14 ends! I shouldn’t complain, because weaving in ends is a necessary and important part of crochet (how crappy would a hat look if you didn’t weave in the ends?), and fourteen’s not that many, but I guess I wasn’t expecting to do it at all because I didn’t have to weave in ends with the scarf. Ok, now that I got that whining out of my system 😭, I really like the hat! It matches the scarf perfectly, and I love the technique that they give you for making the brim (thanks again Moogly!). They show you how to create the brim with rows of back loop only single crochets that are already attached to the hat so you don’t have to sew it on later. Genius!

Scalloped Potholder

For a while I have been wanting to make a trivet for the table to keep hot dishes on. The problem was that I mainly use acrylic yarns which would (hypothetically) turn into a puddle of melted plastic under the hot dish. 😳

So, finally I got around to getting some nice gray cotton yarn with a 50% off coupon from AC Moore (only needed about 4 oz) and found this pattern called the Scalloped Potholder by Priscilla Hewitt online. Priscilla designed a beautiful and functional pattern that works wonderfully for protecting the table or your hands from dishes that are hot out of the oven. What you do is make two identical pieces which you then single crochet together. The double layer gives a nice thickness which is great for protecting your hands or table. 🙂