colorwork · crochet · crochet pattern · tutorial

Candy Shop Crochet Cardigan

 

Hi Crocheters,

Today, I’m sharing my first crocheted granny square sweater design with you.

How I love a granny square sweater! I’m forever collecting these colorful wonders of happy crochet goodness on Pinterest.

I recently finished a tiny granny square sweater for my daughter. The Candy Shop Cardigan sweater is my own design, sized for 2T-3T. I have not produced a full pattern for this design, but below I am sharing a tutorial if you’d like to make your own version!

Missie loves her sweater, and it’s been the perfect substitute for her winter coat this spring with all the cool, rainy days and chilly mornings we’ve had. She often goes to the peg where it hangs and reaches for it. It warms my heart that she loves her colorful crochet! It makes weaving in all those yarn ends totally worth it.

And there are a lot, believe me.

A. Lot.

😉

Miss Mouse is awfully sweet! But do you see a glint of mischief in her eyes? I do.
This book is appropriate for working with geometric motifs!
Sure enough, she goes right to a tiny square.
Mama’s gonna kiss those cheeks!
You like spunk? We’ve got spunk for days.
Colorful ribbing at the neck and hem reminds me of candy straws.
Choosing buttons was tricky, but I thought, “why hold back?…”
…because color makes my heart go pitter-pat.
♥ Ta-Da! The incredibly sweet Candy Shop Cardigan ♥

Tutorial

Sweater Specs:

Size 2T-3T

Finished Chest Circumference: 26.5″

Finished Length (shoulder to hem): 11.5″ This is slightly cropped jacket length on my LSG, but she has a long waist and is getting closer to 3T size these days.

Finished Measurement of Center Back Neck to Cuff: 17″

Button Front Cardigan (you’ll need six 1 1/8″ buttons)

Drop shoulder shape

Crew neck

Long sleeves

Hook:

Size G US/6 4.00 mm crochet hook

Yarn:

DK weight (#3 Light)

60% acrylic/40% polyamide

I used 17 skeins in a rainbow of candy colors

Brand: Baby Bee Sweet Delight from Hobby Lobby

Gauge: 

Each Tiny Square = 1.9″ square worked in DK weight yarn on size G/6 (4.0 mm) hook.

How to make a Tiny Granny Square:


With First Color

Make adjustable ring.

Round 1: Ch 3, 2 dc (ch 2-3 dc) 3 times into ring, ch 2, slip stitch to top of turning chain to close round.

Fasten off. Break yarn leaving 6″ tail

With Second Color

Round 2: Join yarn at any 2-chain space, ch 3, 2 dc-ch 2-3 dc in same 2-chain space, (3dc – ch 2 – 3 dc in next 2-chain space) 3 times, slip stitch to top of turning chain to close round.

Fasten off. Break yarn leaving 6″ tail.

How to make a Tiny Triangle:


With First Color

Make adjustable ring.

Round 1: Ch 4 (counts as dc + 1 chain), 3 dc – ch 2 – 3 dc, ch 1, dc into ring, do not turn.

Round 2: with RS of motif facing you, slip stitch to top of turning chain to close round.

With Second Color

Round 2: With right side of motif facing you, join yarn at first chain space, ch 4 (counts as dc + 1 chain), 3 dc in same chain space (3 dc – ch 2 – 3 dc) in next 2-chain space, (3 dc – ch 1 – dc) in last chain-space.

Tips:

  • After making a square, tighten center yarn tail of adjustable ring and take time to weave in yarn ends after each square or after each sitting. This project has a lot of yarn ends.
  • Try to work colors randomly to create that delightful candy shop effect. Avoid making the same sequence of colors for an unstudied effect of joyous color!
  • Take your time with the layout of squares to make sure you don’t have areas of similar color clustering together.
  • I learned a great trick for working with color from an interview with the amazing needle artist and colorist, Kaffe Fassett–squint your eyes and see what color jumps out at you and says it isn’t working. I have been doing this and it’s really helped! I did this a lot in the yarn shop when I was buying my huge palette of yarns.

To Make the Sweater:

Make 113 Tiny Granny Squares.

Make 6 Tiny Triangles.

Use the diagram below to lay out your squares. Note that the red squares and triangles represent the motifs and the orange edges represent the ribbed bands, cuffs, and button bands.

Tiny Square and Tiny Triangle Layout

Take your time to make sure you have the squares placed just as you want them. You may need to take a break and come back with fresh eyes. Try the squinting trick! (See Tips).

I spent awhile fussing with my layout to make sure no colors were too close to each other.

Oops! I’m missing a square at the right neck edge!

Join your squares and triangles into rows, then join rows to rows.

I held my motifs together with right sides facing and slip-stitched the back loops of the V’s on top of the stitches.

For more help with joining, see this lovely tutorial .

The yarn ends never seem (seam?) to, err…end (heh heh).

Finishing

Slip stitch or seam sleeve and body seams together at right side and left side of sweater.

Hem Rib:

With the right side of the sweater facing you, join a color at the Left Front hem corner.

Row 1 (RS): Ch 2, hdc an odd number of stitches evenly across hem, turn. Fasten off, break yarn leaving a 6″ tail.

Row 2: With a new color, ch 2 (counts as 1 fphdc/front-post half double crochet), *bphdc/back-post half double crochet in next st, fphdc in next st; repeat from *, turn. Fasten off, break yarn leaving a 6″ tail.

Row 3-8: Use a new color for every row. Ch 2 (counts as post stitch), work each stitch as it presents itself. If it appears as a fphdc, work an fphdc over that stitch and if it appears as a bphdc, work a bphdc over that stitch. Fasten off, break yarn leaving a 6″ tail.

Row 9: Use the same color you used in Row 1. Repeat Row 3.Fasten off, break yarn leaving a 6″ tail.

Neckband:

With the right side of the sweater facing you, join a color at the Right Front neck corner.

Use same color sequence as for Hem Rib.

Work Rows 1-9 as for Hem Rib.

Button Band:

With the right side of the sweater facing you, join a color at the Neckband corner of the Left Front.

Use same color sequence as for Hem Rib.

Work Rows 1-9 as for Hem Rib.

Buttonhole Band:

With the right side of the sweater facing you, join a color at the Hem Rib edge of the Right Front.

Use same color sequence as for Hem Rib.

Work Rows 1-4 as for Hem Rib.

Row 5: Create 6 evenly spaced buttonholes by skipping 2 post-stitches and chaining 2 over the top of them, work in pattern between the buttonholes. Fasten off, break yarn leaving a 6″ tail, turn.

Row 6: Work in pattern, working 2 hdc in each 2-chain space you come to, working in pattern between buttonholes. Fasten off, break yarn leaving a 6″ tail, turn.

Rows 7-9: Work as for Hem Rib.

Cuffs (make 2):

With right side of sweater facing, join a color at the seam of a sleeve opening.

Use same color sequence as for Rows 1-3 of Hem Rib.

Work Rows 1-3 as for Hem Rib.

Row 4: Use same color as for Row 1. Work as for Hem Rib.

Blocking:

I blocked this sweater using gentle steam from a garment steamer.

Later I also pressed it under a warm iron and a press cloth–VERY IMPORTANT.

I love working with acrylic yarns and blends because you can adjust the size and enhance the drape of a sweater with steam/heat. Just be careful and always experiment on swatches first. Okay? Okay.

Care:

This sweater would be machine washable based on its yarn selection, HOWEVER, I would only hand-wash this on very rare occasions to avoid any trouble with the yarn ends coming loose in the washing machine. I’m a little paranoid about it after a certain heart-breaking episode that involved a freshly completed baby blanket and washing machine spin cycle. But that is a story for another time when I have an adult beverage in hand.

Anyway!

There you have it! My tutorial for the Candy Shop Cardigan.

If you think doing this much work to create a sweater for a toddler who loves playing in the dirt and is growing like a weed is CRAZY…

…you have a point.

But I loved making this project. Yes, it was a big challenge with tons of finishing details, but I loved playing with all these colors and get lots of sweet satisfaction when I see my little gal looking warm and happy in it. A happy make!

Now I want one for myself, but I’ll have to let my stamina build up again. Do you think this style would be wearable for an adult? I’d probably use a palette of soft, dusty colors and make it from sport-weight wool. That way it would last my entire lifetime.

It had better!

 

p.s. If you enjoyed this post, check out my post about creative projects you can make with just a few granny squares!

Yours in Stitches,

Sara

A little CoD, anyone? 😉

 

 

 

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business · design process · free pattern · handknitting · knitting · knitting pattern · pattern · tutorial

Red Heart Yarns: Fantastic Ripple Scarf

Hi Knitting Friends,

My needles were clicking fast back in January, and now I can share this fun freelance knitting pattern I designed for Red Heart Yarns: the Fantastic Ripple Scarf!

photo credit: redheart.com

 

photo credit: redheart.com

The scarf is a single repeat of traditional Old Shale lace, edged with garter stitch, and the coolest thing about it is that Marly Bird will actually teach you how to knit the lace in a video tutorial she did for Red Heart!

I hope you enjoy this free knitting pattern!

Yours in Stitches,

Sara

crochet · free pattern · pattern · tutorial · Uncategorized

Last-Minute Granny Square Gifts: 6 Charming Projects Made from 1 or 2 Granny Squares

I was hard at work on an everlasting blanket of colorful crocheted granny squares when I realized I barely had enough for a crib-size baby blanket.

I couldn’t bear the thought of making 3-12 times as many squares to get the size I wanted and having to stitch them all together.

You know what I needed?

Instant gratification.

crochet

I started playing around with the squares I had to see what I could make with them as they were.

It was fun and yielded some ideas for this little series of gifts you can make from just 1 or 2 squares plus some extra yarn for the seaming and small details.

YARN, HOOK, & TOOLS

I used Hobby Lobby I Love This Cotton! yarn in many, many colors and a size F (3.75 mm) crochet hook to make each of my squares. The Clover Amour crochet hook set is my go-to for every project but any old hook will work, of course!

Various other tools include a yarn needle, scissors, spray starch, fabric steamer, the odd button, a smidgen of sewing thread, headband elastic, wings, prayers, etc.

Please note that all of these tools are optional except the yarn needle and scissors.

NOTES

  • I finished each project with a gentle steaming to polish the stitches and make corners lie flat and smooth instead of curling. And a little spray starch wouldn’t go amiss on items like mug mats and tiny envelopes! I don’t usually starch items for wearing.
  • If you are new to granny squares, check out this link for help learning to make grannies. My grannies were made with 2-chain corners and 1-ch between each set of 3 dc along the sides. I changed colors for each round, and simply attached my yarn at any corner to get started.
  • Try to work over yarn tails whenever possible to cut down on the number of tails you need to weave in at the end.

One-Square Gifts

Tiny Envelope

Use this little pouch for giving gift cards, keeping love notes or holding business cards!

Materials:

  • 1 7-round granny square
  • button
  • sewing thread

Instructions:

Lay one 7-round granny square out  as a diamond with RS up. Fold lower three corners into center and crochet or sew seams to close. Turn right side out. Sew on a button at the bottom front of the envelope, fold top point down using the top corner eyelet as the buttonhole. Stuff with a love note and give!

Mug Mat

This little charmer is just a 5-round granny surrounded by a single round of single crochet. Give one as a mug mat or 4-8 as a coaster set!

Materials

1 5-round granny square (more if you want to make a coaster set gift)

Instructions:

Join contrast yarn at corner and work 3 sc in the corner, and 1 sc in each st; rep 3 times more around granny. Join with slip stitch and fasten off. Break yarn and weave in yarn tail.

mug mat

Bows, Bows, Bows!

Adorn a headband, a gift, a hat, or ear warmer with these sweet bows.

Materials:

1 4-round granny square

Instructions:

Pinch one 4-round granny square neatly in the center (adjust the pinch to make the bow folds even. Tie a length of about 20″ contrast color yarn into a square knot at the back of the granny to hold the bow shape with 10″ tails. Now wrap each tail around the bow center 8-10 times to reinforce and cover the gather, tie another knot at the back to hold the yarn wraps. Weave in both tails.

Other ideas: decorate gifts, make Christmas tree ornaments, baby bow ties, sew onto brooches or hot-glue onto hair clips. Try with smaller grannies to make them even more twee!

Two-Square Gifts

Arm Warmers

These colorful mitts will keep your mitts warm this winter. They are nice for texting, but for warmth you can also wear them over those cheap, stretchy $1 gloves to fancy them up a bit and extend the cuffs. Hate that chill that creeps in between my coat cuffs and short gloves, don’t you?

Materials

  • 2 8-round granny squares (I chose to make my 8th round in the same color yarn though my squares did not match)
  • Extra matching yarn to extend the cuff edge and sew up seams.

Instructions:

With RS facing, fold granny square so that 2 opposite edges line up and sew a seam from bottom for 4th ch-sp opening. Fasten off and break yarn leaving a 6″ tail. From the opposite (top) end, sew a seam to the 2nd ch-sp opening. Fasten off and break yarn leaving a 6″ tail. Weave in yarn ends. Turn RS out.

Rnd 1: Join yarn at bottom edge seam and pull up a loop. Work hdc in seam and each st or ch-sp around cuff, join rnd with a sl st.

Rnd 2-3: Ch 2, *hdc betw next 2 sts; rep from * around.

Fasten off. Break yarn leaving a 6″ tail. Weave in yarn ends. Steam lightly to finish.

Repeat for second arm warmer.

Fancy Gift Bag/Trinket Pouch

Fill this colorful little drawstring bag with marbles, candy, special soaps or any small gift.

Materials

  • 2 7-round granny squares
  • Extra yarn for seaming, making bag top, and braiding drawstrings

Instructions:

Lay 2 squares out with RS facing, lined up evenly. Sew or crochet a seam around 3 edges, leaving the 4th edges open to form the mouth of the pouch. Fasten off, break yarn leaving a 6″ tail. Turn pouch right side out. Join extra yarn at a side seam and crochet one granny round around the mouth of the pouch as follows:

Edge Round: Ch 3, dc in next ch-sp, *ch 1, 3 dc in next ch-sp; rep from * to other seam, work 1 dc in last ch-sp, 1 dc in seam, 1 dc in next ch-sp; rep from * across other side. Join with a sl st to close round.

Braid drawstrings (make 2)

Cut 3 lengths of 20.” Tie a knot at one end and make a 12″ braid. Pinch to hold braid in position and tie another knot. Trim knotted ends evenly.

Thread both drawstrings in 2nd row of eyelets and tie to close pouch.

Pixie Bonnet

Sizes: Baby (Toddler, Child)

Note: The sizing is quite free for this design. The size shown was made for a toddler but modeled on a 4-month old baby.

She’s cute, isn’t she?

Yes, I am her mother.

Materials:

  • 2 7-round (8-round, 10-round) granny squares
  • Extra yarn for seaming and colorful braided ties
  • Optional adornment such as a bow, flower, or other doo-dad. Doo-dad is a technical term.

Lay grannies out lined up evenly with right sides facing. Sew a seam along 2 adjacent edges, fasten off, break yarn leaving a 6″ tail. Turn bonnet right side out and join yarn at a seam corner.

Edge Round: Work granny row (3 dc in each ch-sp, ch 1 betw dc shells) along 4 open edges and join rnd with a sl st to close.

Make chin straps:

Cut 2 30″ lengths of yarn in 3 different colors (6 lengths of yarn total).

Thread yarns through chin corners of bonnet and pull until even. Create 3 sections of 2 strands each. Mix the colors as you like. Work a 7 (8, 10)” braid and tie off in a knot. Trim knotted yarn neatly. Repeat  for opposite chin strap.

Finishing

Weave in all yarn ends. Push the top corner seam outward for maximum pointiness–the more point, the more pixie. Steam lightly.

Decorate with optional adornment. Put on the nearest child and take adorable, winter-wonderland type Instagram photos.

I hope you enjoyed this series of gift ideas. Let me know! #lastminutegrannysquaregifts

Happy Stitching,

Sara Kay

crochet · tutorial

Butterfly Nursery Mobile

Our baby girl is due in 11 days and the word of the hour [day, week, month] is “nesting.”

Butterfly mobile

I took inspiration from Pinterest, of course. I feel that Pinterest is a kind of Oracle of Delphi for today’s DIY-er and consult her frequently.

The mobile is made from the inner ring of a cheap bamboo embroidery hoop.

Side note: to salvage the outer ring of the hoop for another project, I bent the metal fasteners back and forth until they popped neatly off and scotch-taped the hoop closed to form a complete circle. I’ll make something else out of it later like a trendy dreamcatcher or a piece of awesome wall art. Score.

hoop with tape

Back to the mobile.

Instead of wrapping the yarn around the hoop as recommended by the Oracle, I thought: “But–I’m a CROCHETER and I want to CROCHET, not wrap yarn!”

I raised my trusty size G [4.0 mm] hook into the air with hubris (not pictured).

And proceeded to single-crochet around the hoop. Which is kind of a tension nightmare until you’ve done it for awhile and get a rhythm going. I had to stop frequently to squish the stitches together so they’d actually cover the hoop. It seemed to take forever.

sc around the hoop

I ended up despising the wiggly, messy seam it created along the edge and no matter how I pinched and fussed with it, would show when I held the hoop aloft and looked at it. I considered tearing it out in a frenzy of pique.

Instead I took a walk to let the healing balm of nature soothe and inspire me. I guess it worked.

butterfly

I stitched double crochet shells (7 sts) with a 3-st center picot evenly around the hoop and you know what? I liked it.

Hurrah! Crochet again rules the world!

The shape reminds me of a merry-go-round or a big top circus tent with its bunting trim.

picot shells

On a previous visit to the Oracle, she delivered this darling free pattern for butterflies (it uses British crochet terminology, so watch yourself!). I made a few as written, squealed with delight, and began to play fast and loose with the pattern.

To make the smaller butterflies, I left off the final round of crochet on some. On others I used half-double crochet instead of double crochet to make them shorter and more compact. More Butterflies

I added long picots to the bottom wings to create some swallowtails on a few butterflies. For some, I made taller stitches–trebles and double-trebles–in the middle of the wing to round out the upper or lower wings more, give them some extra flair. Did the same at the bottom of some of them along with the picots to make more pointed fantails.

Butterflies

I hit them with a little spray starch and put a press-cloth over them before pressing with a steamy iron to get them good and flat.

I was ready to attach them and I knew it might be tricky. The Oracle had been silent on the matter of how exactly one ought to string one’s mobile charms, and it made me nervous.

Truth? During my pregnancy I have never missed alcohol more than when I was attempting to hang these butterflies.

In spiral formation.

At the right height.

Evenly.

Using skinny, weightless sewing thread.

Sigh.

More frenzies of pique as I worked on stringing butterflies while watching the dark, depressing second season of True Detective with my husband.

But I enjoyed the irony.

And I looked exactly like this.

true detective

In the end, it came together, and I feel charmed each time I walk into the nursery and see this.

finished mobile

Totally worth the aggravation.

Thanks for visiting!

♥ knit, crochet, love; rep from ♥ forever,

Sara Kay