New stitches: Griddle Stitch

Also known as the Cobble Stitch, and probably a couple of other names. You know what crochet is like.

I came across this stitch through this Furls CAL for a skirt and crop top. I’m still undecided about the top, but as soon as I saw it I knew I was going to make the skirt.

Megara skirt

Isn’t it pretty?

So the griddle stitch is suuuuuper easy; all you need is chains, single crochet, and double crochet. The skirt starts with a foundation row of sc, but I don’t know if that’s an absolute requirement every time.

Then you sc, dc, sc, dc all the way across. On the return you make a sc into each dc, and a dc into each sc. Simples!

This does mean that the number of chains you make on the turn depends on the stitch you finished the previous row with. In the skirt pattern, every row finishes with a sc so I chain 3 when turning, which counts as the first dc. If it finished on a dc I would chain 1 to count as the first sc.

Hopefully that makes some kind of sense. I’m on some pretty strong painkillers right now so I take no responsibility if every word of this post is complete mince ūüėČ

And this is what my griddle/cobble stitch skirt looks like so far.

Yes it is really small. I’m a fat babe; this is going to take a while! But it’s in my favourite colour and I’m excited about being able to wear the finished skirt eventually so I’m not bored yet.

What do you think of griddle stitch? Do you know it by any other names? Let me know in the comments!

Hannah

xXx

New stitches: popcorn stitch

The popcorn stitch seemed a bit scary to me. I’d read the how-to description in a few patterns, but I just couldn’t visualise what I was supposed to do.

Luckily I dived into the Lost In Time shawl without reading the whole pattern first, so I was already fully committed by the time I got to the line ‘1 popcorn stitch in each dc’. Also luckily, this pattern came with photos alongside the how-to, so I was able to make my first popcorn at last.

As with most things, I’m really not sure why I was worried  – it’s so simple and looks really good!

You just place 4 stitches into one stitch 

Remove your hook

Go through the top of the first stitch in the cluster of 4

then pick up the loop you dropped

And pull it through

Simples!

Here’s my first ever row of popcorns.

I’m assuming they will pop more as I go on and get more comfortable with the stitch, but this shawl is for myself so I’m not frogging back just to make it ‘perfect’. It might actually be fun to keep it as a record of my progress!

Have you used the popcorn stitch before? Any tips for making it more pop-y? Let me know in the comments!

Hannah

xXx

FO Tuesday 

I couldn’t wait til Friday!

Over the weekend I finished my chevron blanket and baby star blanket. 

The star border only took about 20 minutes so I’m not really sure why I’d been avoiding it for so long. ¬†

After 2 weeks of almost entirely working with chunky yarn, it felt very strange to go back to baby DK yarn. A bit like working with dental floss!

I also finished the chevron afghan, after only two weeks. That was quite a bit quicker than I expected so I’m really pleased, I’ll be able to hand it over to my friend this week. I really hope he likes it.

So about the blanket. I love stats, so if you don’t then just admire the photos ūüėČ

This afghan weighs juuust over 1.5 kg (1517g if you want to be accurate)

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It measures¬†142cm x 181cm¬†(it’s taller than me!)

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The yarn is Painbox Simply Chunky in Vanilla Cream, Soft Fudge, Slate Grey, and Coffee Bean

It consists of 101 rows double crochet, and 2 rows single crochet with picots at the points

Measuring chevrons

Each cream section is 8 rows of straight dc

Each section of contrast colour is back loop only dc, alternating 6 and 9 rows.

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The side of each chevron is made of 13 stitches (my favourite number)

Each dc row contains 180 stitches

The total stitch count for the whole thing is 18,544 stitches.

18,544

I can’t believe I just made nearly 20,000 stitches….

Chevrons on a sofa

I was planning to calculate the number of hours I spent on this, but after having to restart it 5 times to get the chevrons to actually chevron, I decided not to.¬† Let’s just say every spare hour I had over the last 2 weeks.

So, does anyone have any tips for folding/rolling a mahoosive blanket so I can wrap it up before giving it to my friend? Or how to take good photos of something so large? Because I’m struggling!

Hannah

xXx

New stitches: C2C crochet 

My Google game is weak.¬†¬† I read six or seven blog posts about “C2C” crochet before bothering to look up what it meant.

In my defense, I’m still without internet at home.¬†But this weekend it finally happened –¬†I discovered what C2C means (corner to corner) and even read up on how to do it. And then¬†saved it to my laptop so I could follow it when I got home, and not end up with another pic-not situation.

For the yarn: I had started to make a scarf with one of my Caron Cakes, but I was feeling entirely uninspired by it. A whole 200g of yarn in straight rows of single crochet? I don’t think so! So I frogged it and started my very first C2C attempt.

Now, I’m going to give you a very important pointer that would have saved me about an hour, and five re-starts if I had known it:

The first square in a new row might come out at this angle

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But no, you’re not building the item by connecting squares at the corner like that. You need to¬†pivot that square¬†so it’s lying next to the existing square, like this

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If this is really obvious to you and I’m just special, then carry on and we’ll pretend it never happened. But just on the off chance that someone out there thinks the same way I do (you poor thing!) I hope this helps when you try C2C for the first time.

So I eventually figured it out and got going, aiming for a square blanket.

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But at the exact point that photo was taken, I realised I wanted a scarf, not a blanket. Of course I’m not going to go for the standard square when making my very first C2C goodie!

So I frogged it some more (but thankfully didn’t have to go all the way back to the beginning) and started making it more rectangular.

It’s actually not that difficult making rectangles rather than squares. Just make sure you actually stop when you get to the end of a row rather than carrying blithely on and having to undo a square after every single row. Y’know, just a hypothetical situation.

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After just one weekend I had almost finished my scarf.

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And this is my finished beauty

Here’s my thoughts on C2C

Pros

  • It has that gorgeous ‘woven’ pattern from the alternating direction of the stitches.
  • It makes up pretty quick once you get into the rhythm.
  • It’s only chains, slip stitches and double crochet so a lot simpler than it looks.
  • There are these wee spaces between the squares, which are giving me all kinds of ideas about buttons and ribbons. Watch this space.

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Cons

  • This technique¬†eats yarn. I got halfway through and had to frog it again (almost back to the beginning. Sigh) to make it thinner, so it would actually be long enough to class as a scarf and not just an oversized table mat.
  • Somewhat related, you have to be absolutely sure how wide you want your object to be. By the time you realise it needs to be thinner/wider you might have a bajillion rows to undo so you can alter it.
  • It’s the same block of stitches repeated forever more. Kinda boring after a while.

 

Overall I absolutely love C2C, but wouldn’t want to make a king-sized afghan from it. I’ll definitely be making more, small-ish¬†C2C goodies for the shop at some point in the future.

Anyone else tried C2C? What do you think? Let me know in the comments!

Hannah

xXx

New stitches: fpdc, bpdc, dragon scale

There were going to be lovely photos with this post, but I have managed to break my shiny new phone after having it for a week. Well done, me. So please excuse the fuzzy rubbish photos – hopefully I’ll be able to update them with better ones soon.

***

I’ve only been crocheting for a couple of years. I’m still at the stage of learning how many new stitches I still¬†need to learn!¬† Just this year I’ve¬†discovered three new-to-me stitches:

  1. Front post double crochet (fpdc)
  2. Back post doucble crochet (bpdc)
  3. Dragon scale stitch

I have also used¬†front and back post half double crochet (fphdc and bphdc respectively) so technically I’ve learned five new stitches in just over¬†two months!

The pattern I was following used fpdc and bpdc alternately, to create a gorgeous lined texture:

I love the look of it, but I’m also quite interested in experimenting with maybe just using one or the other,¬†alternating with a regular double crochet stitch.

I also wonder if you can fp and bp into the same stitch to increase, or if that would just make a mess. There’s only one way to find out*, so keep an eye out for my experiment posts in the future

Dragon scale stitch

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This is fast becoming my favourite stitch of all time. How could it not be, it’s just gorgeous! I mean technically it’s called crocodile stitch. But I don’t want to be a crocodile; I want to be a dragon.

This one works by creating a row of V-stitches (double crochet, chain one, double crochet all in the same stitch), and then double crocheting 5 stitches down the first post,

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chain one, and 5 stitches up the second post.

20170312_165548So basically, a fancy way of using fpdc!

It took me a few goes to understand where I was supposed to put my hook and how to get the second lot of 5 to face the other way, but when I got it I just whizzed through. Dragon scale looks far more complicated than it actually is – another reason to love it!

Does anyone else have a favourite stitch? Let me know in the comments!

Hannah

xXx

*Okay, so there’s youtube. But that’s no fun!