Sunday, October 28, 2018

Crochet Container Cover Free Pattern

Upcycle your empty orange juice container and make it into a decorative container for a potted plant or other what nots.

Yarn: Caron One Pound or Caron Simply Soft or similar
Crochet Hook size N and J
Size: 5.25" tall and top opening is 4" square

When I first discovered this stitch pattern I liked it so much I wanted to design something with it. But it comes with a limitation, and that is that it only works when done in the round. So for this application it is perfect!

One other note: I crochet left-handed. When you follow any of my pattern directions, that won't be an issue but the stitches will look reversed.

Wash juice container and remove the labels. If a sticky residue is still remaining, don't worry about it. It will just keep the crochet cover in place. With a marker draw a horizontal line around the container at 5.25" up from the bottom. Cut on the line with exacto knife or scissors.

Beg ch: With J hook, ch 30, join with sl st.
Rnd 1: ch 1, hdc in each ch around. Don't join and don't turn throughout the pattern.

Change to N Hook for the rest of the pattern.
Rnd 2: *(sc, dc) in next st, sk 1 st; rep from * around.

Rnds 3 - 9: rep Rnd 2.

Fasten off with a long tail.

Use a regular 1 hole paper punch and punch holes through the top of the container 3/4" apart. Using the yarn tail, whip stitch sew around the top of the container catching in the top edge of the cover. Go around the top 2 times. Hide end of yarn and fasten off.

Easy Free Crochet Leg Warmer Pattern

Colder weather is setting in and this year I decided to add some leg warmers to the slippers and socks I made last year. (Check them out at THIS LINK and also at THIS LINK. If my calves are cold then my feet get cold too.

This pattern can easily be changed to any height or diameter.

Yarn: Caron Jumbo in Dalmation
Size: Adult XL, 13" in length, meant to just cover the leg below the knee
Crochet hook size I (use J for beg. ch)

Row 1: With J hook, ch 47. Change to I hook; dc in 4th ch from hook and next 19 ch; hdc to end.

Work in Back Loop Only now through the rest of the pattern.
Row 2: Ch 2, turn. Hdc on hdc sts and dc on dc sts.

Row 3: ch 3, turn. work dc on dc sts and hdc on hdc sts.

Rows 4 - 27 (or your desired size; I worked the piece so it fit snugly around my calf then added 2 more rows to allow for clothing): Repeat Rows 2 and 3 in sequence.

Fasten off and whip stitch the first and last rows together.

Elastic around the top edge: cut 4 strands of thin sewable type elastic about 18" long and weave through the top edge and tie ends together.

Friday, October 26, 2018

Yo-Yo Clown Machine Knitting Pattern

These Yo-Yo Clowns are ready to celebrate Halloween and welcome in the holiday season. Aren't they cute?!

Maybe you remember the Yo-Yo Clown dolls made from gathered circles of fabric strung together to form the body, arms and legs. That was the inspiration behind this doll pattern. But these yo-yo's are a long spiral, easily made on either the standard gauge or bulky knitting machine. Even the head base and the hair are made on the knitting machine.

Learn more about how you can get this pattern and the darling face at THIS LINK on the website.

Sunday, October 21, 2018

Squirrel Away Crochet Net for Potted Plant

Recently I got this Sweet Bay Magnolia plant and wanted to keep it potted on my deck. As cooler weather is setting in a squirrel has decided to bury nuts in my deck plants. I guess he thinks they will be easy to find them later. Plus the dirt is so easy to dig in.

Well after Mr. Squirrel broke off a couple new starts of the plant near the base I decided it was time to take action. So this netting is hopefully an answer to solve the problem..time will tell.

The yarn used is I Love This Cotton, Copper Spice. The hook is size G and it fits a 16" diameter pot.

The pattern is basically made like a Christmas tree skirt with an opening to drape the piece around the plant. Then I just laced the 2 edges together and took a long doubled piece of yarn to weave through the last rows of mesh, pull it tight to gather and secure the piece and tie it off. Adjust pattern as you need to in the beginning number of chains and number of rows.

Row 1: ch 30. Dc in 4th ch from hook. Ch 1, sk 1 ch, dc in next ch.
Step A - ch 1, sk 1 ch, (dc, ch 1, dc) in next ch
Step B - (ch 1, sk 1 ch, dc in next ch) 3x
Repeat Step A, then Step B for 2 more times.

Row 2: ch 4, turn. Dc in same st. Repeat (ch1, dc) mesh to ch 1 sp increase on previous row. Then work in that ch 1 sp (ch 1, dc, ch 1, dc, ch 1). Note, you will also work the dc st on each side of the ch 1 sp. At the end of the row work an increase (dc, ch 1, dc) in top of turning ch.

Row 3 - 6: Repeat Row 2.

Row 7: On this row you will continue the same previous increases but also make an increase in the middle of each area; basically having 6 regular mesh dc sts between each increase.

Rows 8 - 10: ch 4, turn. Continue working mesh pattern and working an increase on the center ch 1 sp of each previous increase.

Fasten off. Weave in ends. Drape around plant. Take a length of yarn and lace the 2 open edges together. Then take a doubled length of yarn and weave over and under 2 meshes at a time around the outside perimeter of the net. Draw it up tight and tie off.

Thursday, June 28, 2018

Madeline Flower Pillow - Free Crochet Pattern

Difficulty Level: Intermediate
Size: approximately 16” in diameter
Yarn: Red Heart Super Saver - Soft White
Hook Size: J and I
Other supplies needed:
16” Round Pillow Form
16” Zipper

Abbreviations and Terms Used:
beg = beginning; ch(s) = chain; blo = back loop only; dc = double crochet; ea = each; hdc = half double crochet; rem = remaining; rep = repeat; sc =single crochet; sk = skip; sl st = slip stitch; sp = space; st(s) = stitch(stitches)

Pattern Notes:
Make front and back ending with 1 round of even dc then add a zipper to insert pillow where the 2 halves meet.

Petal side of pillow
Part 1 of pattern –

Part 2 of pattern
Her pattern is to do a rug but I decided to make a pillow.

With J hook, work through her instructions through Round 12 with Petals.

Change to I hook
Round 13: in BLO: 2dc in 1st st, (dc in next 8 sts, 2 dc in next st) rep ( ) around, joining with sl st to bl of 1st dc. Round 14: ch 3, do not turn. Work even with dc around on BLO.
Join and fasten off. 115 sts

Shell Pattern side of pillow

Using the I hook
Make magic ring,
Rnd 1: Ch 3, work 11 dc, join
Rnd 2: ch3, 2 dc in each st; 24 sts
Rnd 3: ch 3,( 2dc, 1dc) around, join; 36 sts
Rnd 4: ch 3, (2dc in next st, dc in next 2 sts) rep around, join; 48 sts

Start design
Rnd 5: ch 3, (2dc in next st, dc in next st) rep around, join
Rnd 6: fpdc on post of ch from last rnd, (in the center of the next 2 dc work (dc, ch 1, dc), fpdc in next dc ) rep ( ) around, join.
Rnd 7: ch 3, (in the ch 1 center of the next shell work (dc, ch 1, dc), fpdc in next dc ) rep ( ) around, join around the ch 3 post.
Rnd 8: ch 3, (in the ch 1 center of the next shell work (2dc, ch 1, 2dc), fpdc in next dc ) rep ( ) around, join around the ch 3 post.
Rnd 9: rep Rnd 8.
Rnd 10: ch 3, (in the ch 1 center of the next shell work (3dc, ch 1, 3dc), fpdc in next dc ) rep ( ) around, join around the ch 3 post.
Rnd 11: rep Rnd 10.
Rnd 12: ch 3, ( in the 7 st shell working ea st in blo, work dc, hdc, sc, sl st, sc, hdc, dc; fpdc on fpdc) rep ( ) around.
Rnd 13: ch 3, do not turn . Work in BLO: dc in next st, dc next 2 sts tog (insert hook in 1st st and pull thru a loop, insert hook in 2nd st and pull thru a loop, yo and pull thru 2 loops, yo and pull thru rem loops) rep ( ) around; reducing sts to 127.
When attaching the 2 sides you will need to reduce the number of stitches on this side by 12 sts. So every 10th st, sk a st when sl st-ing the seam.

Flower for center of this side of pillow: I had to whip stitch some extra yarn in the center to make it fuller.

Attach flower to center of shell pattern side.
Weave in all ends.
With right sides facing, sl st a few inches of the side seam.
Open up the pillow and working from the right side, pin the zipper in place on the petal side with the end of the zipper meeting where you started the sl sts.
Using needle and thread whip st this side of the zipper.
Pin zipper to shell pattern side gathering up the sts slightly so that 11 sts match 10 sts on the petal side.
Using needle and thread whip st this side of the zipper.
It is recommended to use a sewing machine to securely attach the zipper of each side.
Use a zig-zag stitch, width 4.5 length 2.0
Open zipper and turn pieces so right sides are facing.
Finish sl st-ing around the outside remembering to sk each 11th st on the shell side.
Fasten off and weave in end.
Turn pillow right side out.
Insert pillow form and close the zipper.

Smile! You did it!!!

Monday, April 9, 2018

No Bake Cherry Cream Cheese Pie Recipe

Your guests will ooo and ahhh when you serve them this dessert. And trust me, it will disappear fast!

It makes up quickly and needs no baking. The cream cheese filling is the only thing you mix up, as the crust and topping come straight from the store.

1 graham cracker pie crust
1 can of fruit pie filling; cherry, blueberry or apple
8 oz. cream cheese, softened if not mixing with Cruisinart style processor
1 c. powdered sugar (unsifted)
2 c. whipped topping; i.e. Cool Whip
1/2 t. vanilla extract

Beat or blend together the cream cheese and the powdered sugar. Then fold in the whipped topping and vanilla. Pour into the pie crust. Then top with the fruit pie filling. Refrigerate several hours or overnight before serving.

Options: Try drizzling liquid chocolate over the top or chocolate curls. Try using an Oreo cookie crust instead of the graham cracker crust. Try using fresh strawberries and strawberry glaze instead of the fruit pie filling.


Thursday, March 29, 2018

Bulky HDC Afghan - FREE Crochet Pattern

A FREE Pattern, Designed and Written by Patty Kubitzki
Yarn: Caron One Pound, 2 strands held together, about 3 pounds
Hook: size P (11.50 mm)
Stitch pattern: HDC (half double crochet) worked in back loop only
Size: 70" (92") long x 45" wide

Top Off White afghan is 1 strand of White and 1 strand of Off White
White afghan is 2 White strands held together
Black afghan is 1 strand of Black and 1 strand of Dark Gray Mix

Row 1: Ch 110 (145) sts loosely. HDC in 3rd ch from hook and ea. ch to end.
Row 2 – 50: Ch 2, turn. HDC in ea. st working in back loop only to end.
Fasten off and weave in ends.
No border, edging or blocking is needed.

Tuesday, March 27, 2018

US Omnibus Spending Bill - What's In It?

There's a lot of discussion and concerns right now about the Omnibus Spending Bill signed by President Donald Trump on March 23, 2018.

The best way to know what is in this 2,232 bill is to look through the document yourself to find what is written there. I have no intention to read the bill in its entirety but use the keyboard shortcut 'Ctrl F' to do word searches on topics of interest.

Having a concern about air quality and pollution, I did a search on the word 'air' but that yielded too many wrong results. So adding a space in front and behind the word 'air',
i.e. ' air ' narrowed down my search more accurately, finding page 802 that gave me the information I was seeking.

Another search I did was on the word 'internet'. This brought up a couple items of interest: On pages 611 & 612 it discusses how the funds can't be used by the Federal Government to collect data or to pay a third party to do the same (my translation, in short); also beginning on page 1,534 there is a section regarding funds to be appropriated to support Global Internet Freedom.

I encourage you to do your own keyword searches to better understand the Bill and how it relates to your topics of interest.


Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Annie's Mukluk Crochet Booties Pattern Post Project Notes

The following are my pictures and notes using the purchased pattern from Annie's called 'Mukluk Crochet Booties'.
Here is my finished version of the main pattern:

These are made with 2 strands of Caron Pound in the Lace color. Since I used a different yarn then the pattern suggested, I ended up changing the hook size (actually several times within the pattern) and made a size Small which fit my foot, a size 10 shoe size.

Then I decided to make 2 shorter versions of the slipper, basically without the leg section and decorative finishes. These are also using double stranded yarn.

I decided to try one more change and make a thinner sock that came up a little ways on my ankle, but wasn't binding. So these use 1 strand of the Caron Pound yarn. Again I worked the size Small directions with hook changes in different sections of the pattern and on the leg section I shortened the number of rounds and worked a few rounds of mock ribbing by alternating FPDC and DC sts.
I really enjoyed working with this pattern and found is so easy to modify. So you see I made a lot of pairs. They work up fast and I highly recommend giving this pattern a try. It's well worth the price.

Friday, February 9, 2018

Potatoes O'Brien Au Gratin Recipe

This is my homemade version of a popular dish that typically uses the store bought Potatoes O'Brien, which is often hard to find in the stores close to big holidays. With this recipe you can make it all from scratch and it's so easy and less expensive.

So here is the recipe with all my helpful notes.

2 and 1/2 medium size Russet Potatoes, scrubbed and grated using the larger grater holes. Then rinse with cold water and drain. Yes, leave the peels on!
1/4 c. EACH of chopped Sweet Onion, and 3 kinds of Peppers (orange, red, yellow and/or green)So 1 c. total.
1/2 contents of 10.5 oz. size Cream of Chicken Soup (Save the rest to make this again!)
1/2 contents of small (8 oz.) Sour Cream
1 c. shredded Cheddar Cheese, divided into 2/3 c. in dish + 1/3 c. on top per recipe
Salt & Pepper

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Grease a 8" x 8" baking dish.
In medium bowl, mix sour cream and soup. Add 2/3 c. of the cheese and mix well.
Add potatoes, onion and peppers. Mix well.
Pour in greased dish, sprinkle lightly with salt and pepper, and bake for 30 minutes, uncovered.
Remove from oven and sprinkle remaining 1/3 c. cheese over the top. Bake uncovered another 30 minutes.

Serves 6. Leftovers freeze well, if needed.

Thursday, February 8, 2018

Wellness Tea Ice Cream Topping

This recipe uses the apples and some of the liquid from my Wellness Tea recipe.
In a saucepan on the stove, stir together:
1 T. Cornstarch
1/4 c. Sugar

Slowly stir in 3/4 c. Wellness Tea liquid.
Cook over medium heat until boiling, stirring frequently. Boil 5 minutes.
Add chopped apples or other fruit saved from the Wellness Tea and add 1/2 T. butter. Stir a minute until butter is melted and apples are heated. Serve warm over ice cream. Top with whipped cream and nutmeg, if desired.

Wellness Tea, Simmering Potpouri, Air Purifier

In my quest to incorporate healthier foods and drinks in my life I came up with this wellness tea or drink.
I centered it around foods and spices that fight inflammation. The combination of spices with the apples is very delicious and I have enjoyed it hot, cold or added to green tea, orange juice or other fruit juice. Save the apples after cooking and combine it with some of the tea for my Wellness Tea Ice Cream Topping.

In a saucepan on the stove, combine:

3 c. Water
1 t. Ground Ginger
2 Cinnamon Sticks
3 Whole Cloves
1 T. Honey
1 T. Lemon Juice
1 - 2 Apples, unpeeled, chopped, without the core

Simmer on medium low heat for 30 minutes or more if desired.
Let cool for another 30 minutes. Then remove the cinnamon sticks (they can be used several times), the cloves and the apples (save the apples to use in my Wellness Tea Ice Cream Topping).
Strain the tea through a fine strainer and into a Mason or other glass jar. Store in the refrigerator.

Instead of using apples, try substituting orange or lemon slices, chopped mango or cherries.

Juicing for Wellness

My favorite juicing recipe.

Sunday, January 28, 2018

Caramel Popcorn Recipe

When the temperature drops and colder weather sets in this caramel popcorn recipe always comes to my mind. This recipe originally showed up in my phone bill probably back in the 70's and I have treasured it ever since.

I give it an 'Excellent' rating because it not only tastes great but is easy to make with common ingredients that I typically have on hand. The hardest part about making this is waiting for the hour cooking time and then allowing it to fully cool. But it's that hour in the oven and stirring it every 15 minutes that finalizes the hardening of the caramel syrup and gives the popcorn an even coating of deliciousness.

I cut the portions of the original recipe in half, so double it back up if you prefer that.
Start off with 3 quarts of popped popcorn, which is 1/2 c. of popcorn kernels. I prefer to use an air-popper but making it other ways is fine too. I pour the popcorn in my large lasagne pan, ungreased.
Next cook the syrup on the stove over medium heat. See recipe details below.

When the cook time is done this is what it will look like - sweet, crunchy goodness!

Caramel Popcorn
1/2 c. popcorn kernels, or 3 qts. popped popcorn
1 stick (1/2 c.) butter - I use salted butter
1 c. firmly packed brown sugar
1/4 c. light corn syrup
1/2 t. salt

1/4 t. baking soda
1/2 t. vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 250 degrees. Pour popped popcorn in a large shallow baking pan.

In a large saucepan, melt butter, then stir in brown sugar, corn syrup and salt. Bring to boil on medium heat, stirring constantly. Then boil WITHOUT stirring for 5 minutes. Remove from heat; stir in baking soda and vanilla.

Gradually pour over popped popcorn and mix well. Bake for one hour, stirring every 15 minutes. Remove from oven and cool completely. Break apart and store in tightly covered container.

Tuesday, January 2, 2018

Winter Slipper Boots - FREE Crochet Pattern

Original free pattern Lucky Wanderer by DROPS Design. LINK Please visit their website for main pattern details of DROPS Extra 0-888. Below I detail the specifics of how I used the pattern.

This is a GREAT pattern! It works up fast and you will be wearing your beautiful warm slippers lickity cut! Here is a picture of the 1st pair I made.
I used Caron Pound for the yarn, Medium Grey Mix for the Cuff, Sole, Pom-Pom and Ties, and added Soft Grey Mix, holding the 2 strands together for the main body part of the slipper. I did use the L size hook, except as noted.

Because I was using different yarn then what the pattern called for, I did some adjusting to the pattern's largest size. However, after completing the boot, I realized it was way too large so I had to recalculate, tear out and start over.

Here are my changes and post project comments:
CUFF:Start with a tail long enough to seam the cuff, about 20". Work per pattern instructions for 27 rows.
SLIPPER: Using the 2 strands held together work 33 sc sts along one edge of cuff. Work per pattern instructions but make decreases at beginning, end and middle on rows 6, 8, and 10. I worked 12 total rows for the Slipper part.
SOLE / Bottom part of Slipper for Grey pair: I worked 6 rows per pattern instructions, then on last row (7) I made decreases at the beginning, end and also 1 decrease in the middle.
ASSEMBLY:Work as per pattern instructions.
POM-POM TIES: Using size I hook, ch 175. Pull the middle of the tie through a couple stitches about 1" above the Bottom part. Tie the pom-poms on each each and trim the excess yarn.

The single layer on the sole seemed to need beefing up. I wanted more warmth, cushion and durability. So I dug through my pattern notes and decided to make a separate sole to whip onto the bottom. This seemed to be very effective. But on my 2nd pair I will fine tune the process and make it a little better.

So here are my detailed instructions on how to make the sole for a size large (size 10-10.5 shoe size). I made the 2 Layer Sole - Option 2 with a size G hook:

1 Layer Sole: working from the center out. Rnd 1: ch 27. hdc in 3rd ch, hdc in same st, hdc in next 3 ch, sc in next 8, 5 hdc, dc in next 7 ch, work 5 dc in the end ch. Now work opposite side of ch – 7 dc, 5 hdc, 8 sc, 3 hdc, 2 hdc on beg. st of rnd. Join with sl st.

Rnd 2: ch 2, hdc in next st, 2 hdc in next 2 sts, 3 hdc, 7 sc, 5 hdc, 7 dc, 2 dc in next 5 sts, 7 dc, 5 hdc, 7 sc, 3 hdc, 2 hdc in next 2 sts, hdc in last st. Join.

Rnd 3: ch 2, hdc, 2 hdc in next 4 sts, 12 hdc, 12 dc, 2 dc in next 9 sts, 12 dc, 12 hdc, 2 hdc in next 3 sts. Join. Fasten off with a 3 1/2 yd. yarn tail.

2 Layer Sole – Option 1:
Make 2 separate layers following the directions for the 1 Layer Sole.

2 Layer Sole – Option 2:
Make 1 layer (outer sole) working only Rnds 1 & 2 of the 1 Layer Sole directions, fasten off. Make a 2nd layer(inner sole), but after working Rnd 2, match up the outer sole on top of the inner sole. Pull the last remaining loop of the inner sole through the outer sole. Continue with Rnd 3 working through the loops of both inner and outer soles.

3 Layer Sole: Make a 2 Layer Sole-Option 2 then make and a 1 Layer Sole. Connect them together when attaching to the top. The 2 Layer Sole will be between the Top part and the 1 Layer Sole bottom. Only leave a long yarn tail on the 1 Layer Sole.

To attach the sole to the boot, I first stuffed the bottom of the boot with plastic bags. Then I positioned the sole on the bottom, pinned it, hand basted it with large stitches, then hand whipped around the edges of the sole.
Next I was on to make my 2nd pair (one isn't enough with this pattern, trust me!) using Caron Pound Lace (beige color) for the Cuff, Sole / Bottom Part, Pom-Poms and Ties; then changing to White and Off White for the Slipper main body.

I followed the changes I detailed above until I got to the Sole / Bottom part of the slipper. On this version I worked only 4 rows with Lace color, then fastened off. Then I worked the 3 Layer Sole detailed above. The stitches on the boot were nearly twice the size of the stitches on the sole. In counting there were 48 stitches on the boot and 82 stitches on the sole. That meant I would be working almost every other stitch on the sole, matched to every stitch on the boot.

I positioned the sole(s) on the boot and tied a marker yarn at the center toe to be sure that location lined up properly. Here is the detailed instructions for attaching the piece:

Attaching sole to top:
Take your time on this step and be sure you are catching in all layers with each stitch made! Your sts should be snug but not so tight as to hide the middle layer.
Working from outside of slipper and using size G hook
Match top to sole with sole facing you.
The yarn tail should be close to the center back of the heel.
Pull yarn tail through to the slipper top side.
(Insert hook from sole through top, YO and pull through; move to next st), rep.(), making sl sts around the complete edge of the sole. Fasten off and weave in ends.

Tags: #dropsdesign #crochet #freecrochetpattern #crochetslippers

Machine Knitting Patterns

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