Tag Archives: crochet

How To: Stacked Single Crochet (STSC) Stitch

The Stacked Single Crochet (STSC) is mainly used as a stand-in for the first double crochet stitch in a row and eliminates the need for a starting chain. It looks nice, especially when worked into as you are creating a border or seaming two panels of crochet together. Here’s how to make the stitch!

Note: I crochet lefthanded, so the pictures reflect that. However, you can hover your mouse over the pictures and they will flip for you righthanded crocheters out there. ;)

1.) do not ch at beginning of row. Working into first st of previous row, yo and pull loop through.

2.) yo again and pull through both loops on hook.

3.) yo and pull loop though loop marked by arrow in 2.

4.) you and pull through both loops on hook. This completes STSC.

Looking For Test Crocheters

I’m currently accepting applications for test crocheters to test this pattern. Find out more information and apply if you’re interested on the Test Crocheting page of the website!

If you’ve already signed up to be a pattern tester you may receive an email about this pattern, but you have no obligation to join the test. Only if you want to, no worries!

How To: Foundation Single Crochet (FSC) Stitch

I’ve talked about the Foundation Single Crochet stitch several times on the blog, and I use it in pretty much all of my patterns. The main benefit to using it over a simple starting chain stitch row is that it has stretch, which is nice for hats, headbands, clothing, etc.

I’m finally sharing my own tutorial for it today. It’s not that hard, so give it a try!

Note: I crochet lefthanded, so the pictures reflect that. However, you can hover your mouse over the pictures and they will flip for you righthanded crocheters out there. ;)

1.) ch 2

2.) yo, pull up loop in 2nd ch from hook. There should now be 2 loops on hook.

3.) yo and pull through 1st loop on hook.

4.) yo and pull through both loops on hook. This completes 1 stitch. Next stitch will be worked in loop marked by arrow.

5.) yo and pull loop through space marked by arrow in step 4. Repeat from step 3 onward until desired amount of stitches is complete.

Extra:


When I use FSC, as in most of my patterns, after completing the FSC row, I turn it so that the “v’s” are on the bottom and work the next row over the ch stitch side into the space right above the “v’s.” (As show in the above picture.) This gives you an immediate finished edge and looks tidier, in my opinion.

Project Notes: Wildfields Embroidered Crop Top

I finished this lilac cropped top a few days ago. It’s crocheted using an unmercerized cotton in moss stitch (more commonly know as lemon peel stitch), with handembroidered florals at the bottom. This is basically a second go at this top but with a shorter hem and updated shaping technique for the armholes and neckline. I’m also calling this embroidery pattern “wildfields” now, for simplicity.

Here are a few in-progress pics from my Instagram.

There are a few things I would do differently if I could go back, mainly choosing colors for the embroidery that show up better against the lilac of the top in more lighting types. I’ve had friends say they show up fine, but to me a lot of the details seem hard to unless you’re right up close to the garment. Still, though, I had fun styling it for this post – I had the idea for the outfit and made a quick sketch a bit before I’d finished the final details of the top, and was so happy that the outfit worked out not just in the sketch or my head.

Overall, I’m pleased with this design, but I think I’d like to try either adding a couple or so inches more ease to the fit, or maybe try a different yarn that’s not as stiff and maybe has a little more stretch. But I’ll have to wear it a few more times before making any real conclusions fit-wise.

Looking For Test Crocheters

I am looking for pattern testers! This is something I’ve been considering for a long time, and I’m excited to finally begin the process.

Pattern testers must be able to work within a deadline and provide notes on clarity issues, typos, gauge and sizing issues to ensure the final pattern is easy for makers to understand. Experience crocheting garments and using finer weight yarns is preferred, but lack of experience is not necessarily a dealbreaker.

Pattern testers will receive a free copy of the the final pattern, as well as a discount on future pattern purchases.

If interested, go apply here or click “Test Crocheting” at the top of the blog!

Project Notes: “Pumpkin Spice” Embroidered Top

This top is designed top be reversible, front to back, with buttons on one side and a v-neck on the other. I’m happy with the overall design, but I think I’d like to try it in a different yarn. I used an acrylic/nylon blend from my stash, and the yarn’s stretch made the top turn out tighter than intended. This causes pulling on the button placket. I think a cotton yarn would work much, much better.

The embroidery is done using a cotton thread. I love the pop of the white against the burnt orange. I’m debating covering the back of the button placket to hide the thread ends and to see if it will help it hold it’s shape better. It would also help protect to embroidery from pulling and wear, since it’s in a spot that will be stretched and touched a lot.

Here is the v-neck. The point turned out a little softer than I wanted. I would handle the stitching a bit differently on the next go-around. But it looks okay.

Missing Autumn Weather

My favorite season has always been spring, and second is autumn. They are quite similar. Sadly, we don’t really get either of them in the southern US anymore, just a few days of that sweet in-between of t-shirt weather and gentle breezes, and then weeks of back and forth icy cold and steaming hot, until the forthcoming summer or winter season finally wins out.

I’ve been thinking about this lately as I walk into town a lot with my son. We haven’t done too much walking during the height of summer as temps have been pretty high, and this leads me to thinking how harsh the cold will be eventually and how he might not experience those autumn-y days in the same way I did.

For me, as a kid, autumn seemed to start in August, just as school was back in, and stretch for weeks. But the past several years it feels like it lasts about two days.

Surprisingly, it feels like September has brought the cooler weather, and I’m hoping we’ll truly take time to enjoy it while it lasts.

In between a few custom crochet orders, I’ve been working on this cardigan for my son. I try to make him a new jacket or sweater every year. This one’s been working up pretty quickly (although clothing for kids is so much smaller that it does go faster, especially with worsted weight yarn). I think the collar might be where the biggest challenge lies with this one, as I’ll be trying a shawl collar for the first time and might have to play around with increases and decreases to get a shape I’m happy with.

Project Notes: Moss Stitch Top With Embroidered Hem

Here is a garment I finished several months ago, but had yet to write a wrap-up for. Using a fingering weight cotton yarn in moss stitch (also called lemon peel stitch). I had originally intended for the top to be solid color, but realized part-way through the back panel that I wouldn’t have enough of the white yarn to finish, so I adjusted by frogging some on the front panel and adding this peach to the yoke of the top. I think it would have looked fine in solid color, but I like the way the color-blocking turned out!

I used DMC cotton embroidery thread to add the hand embroidered floral details along the base. I had an idea for the florals I wanted to do, and the style, but I drew some simple sketches out to really solidify the design before I began embroidering. I’m really, really happy with how the embroidery turned out. So far, I’ve left it unlined, but we’ll see how it holds up once the top has been worn a few times. Even though all the yarn and thread used is cotton, after washing it almost seems as though the thread ends have felted in a way, so they’re actually pretty secure.

As I’ve experimented with embroidery on various crochet stitches, I’ve found that so far I like to work without a hoop or anything holding the main fabric tight, and instead work with the tension of the crocheted piece so that the embroidery won’t be pulled too taught or snap when the crochet is stretched – especially important for garments. I learned here that I really like using backstitch when embroidering on crochet, as it creates a more solid line, but can still stretch with the crochet, and it’s pretty secure and easy to weave thread ends into on the back.

I do want to try a shorter, more cropped version of the basic top, and play around with some more embroidery eventually. But I do love the way this top turned out.

Just Keep Stitching

(taken several months ago, this project is now finished, and my desk is now painted)

Creating and writing a crochet pattern takes a long time as a stay-at-home mom of a toddler. Something that used to take me two months, tops, is now taking, at current count, over seven.
I went into this year knowing that a focus on more intricate clothing designs would take longer than I was previously used to, but it still wears at me sometimes.

Right now, my main work time consists of part of my child’s naptime (the other part going toward exercise, lunch and housecleaning), and a couple hours after he goes to bed. This totals to about 15 hours a week, if that. I can sometimes crochet or edit a little while my kiddo is engaged in some independent play, but lately he wants to be right where I am as soon as I start – whether to grab the yarn or push all the buttons on my laptop.

I’m also moving into creating patterns for more detailed garments and learning new design software at the same time.

All this to say that sometimes it seems like this one pattern won’t ever be finished, let alone all the others I have in my queue. There are fleeting moments where I feel like I should just give up, because I won’t ever catch up with all the other designers out there with their vast collections of patterns, or those who seem to be able to churn out patterns every few weeks. But then I have to remember a few things – 1. I enjoy crocheting and designing crocheted clothing and while it may not be the most opportune-seeming time to finally dive into that, overall I’m excited about what I’m making, 2. If I keep working at this, no matter how slowly, it will eventually get done.

Sometimes I feel like I’ve found a better balance for all the things I need/want to get done in my days, but other times I feel like I wind up sacrificing one thing for others and and I’m not getting the time I need. My child will be starting preschool in the fall, going a couple days a week, and I’m planning to use that time for crochet-related work, so maybe things will pick up a bit then.

Project Notes: Shell Stitch Cropped Top With Embroidered Details

I started making this top MONTHS ago. I don’t usually have a project that I’ll work on in little bits here and there, either between more prominent projects or when I need a break from those projects, but that’s what this top started out as. In the last few months, I started to get more excited about this top for a few reasons – I was really excited about the simple shape, and I had decided to add embroidered details – and I worked fervently to finish it.

The top is worked in two pieces, front and back. Most of the embroidery was done before the front and back were seamed together. Shoulders and sides were then seamed, right sides facing, in single crochet. Once seamed, I turned the top right side out and added some simple single crochet stitching to the armholes, neckline, and bottom hem to finish and round out the edges.

Working in small amounts on the front piece over several months meant that I didn’t see the piece work up as fast as usual, so the front wound up being much too wide. Instead of frogging and redoing the whole thing, I simply made note of the adjusted measurements on my pattern draft to correct it for future makes, and made the back piece much smaller to account for the front piece being too big. This meant the seam would be further back on each side instead of directly under the arms, but given the color, texture, and simple design of the top, I wasn’t too worried about this.

I have been experimenting with different types of embroidery on different crochet stitches lately, and at some point, decided I wanted to add a little embroidery to this top. You can see that the stems and shoots are made with simple long stitches, as that worked best over the shell stitching. Crochet always has at least a little stretch, and this garment has a good bit because of not only the shell stitches, but the yarn itself, which is an acrylic/nylon blend. I tried to stay aware of this while embroidering and kept a looser tension for the stems and shoots than I would have if working into regular fabric. The leaves are single chain stitches with a bit of fill, and the small buds are French knots. All was done using DMC cotton embroidery thread.

The majority of the embroidery was done before the front and back were joined together, since it was easier to weave the back ends in as I went. After trying on the top once it was seamed together, I went and filled out the embroidery where I felt the top needed it. Although I’m still not 100% about it and feel like maybe I could have done better/added a bit more. Though now I know how the top looks when worn, I could maybe figure out better placing and amount of the embroidery if I do something similar in the future.

I love how these green and blue shades pop a bit from, yet compliment the grey.

In the above picture, you can see how the side seam is further back than normal. Also, this is a bit nitpicky, but as the designer critiquing a first draft, I’d rather the back neckline for this piece be a bit higher and flatter than this. But again, it’s not a big deal, and looks okay.

I finished this piece just as the weather was warming up around here, and the material is just too hot to wear right now, but I’m excited to wear it next fall/winter.

For some behind-the-scenes and in-progress shots, go peruse my instagram: @waterswares

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