Thursday, August 25, 2011

Easy Crochet Wrap Bracelet #1

Easy Crochet Wrap Bracelet
Wrap bracelets are everywhere. I went to three different stores last weekend to buy gifts for friends and there were so many of these extra-long bracelets out there. I'm going to my first ever craft show (I've sold a few items at a show, but this will be my first foray into full out selling) and decided to make a few prototype crochet bracelets.

Chan Luu Wrap Bracelet

 I love the look of these bracelets and so for the next few posts here I will show you what I came up with . Here's the really simple pattern for the Easy Crochet Wrap Bracelet #1 (at the beginning of this post).

Easy Crochet Wrap Bracelet #1

Please note: You can make this pattern for any reason, even to sell. But I reserve the copyright of the pattern and you should link back to this original post if you blog about this pattern or sell it online. 

Skills Needed to Complete this Pattern: You must be able to chain, single crochet, double crochet,  half double crochet, and be able to string beads onto your thread. A great resource for the basic crochet stitches is .

Materials Needed:
less than one oz of Crochet Cotton or Nylon in size 3. (You can use a lighter weight thread or heavier yarn, but you will have to adjust your starting chain to make it fit your needs.)
Size 1 crochet hook (again you can use a different size, but that will change your gauge)
approx. 2 dozen beads (my version has 26)
A yarn needle (that can slip through your bead holes, this is possible the trickiest bit of the whole pattern. Beads are finicky.)

Super Easy Instructions
Prep: Thread your beads onto your thread. It is better to put too many beads on, than too few.  For now, let the beads stay close to the skein and out of the way of your foundation chain. (explained below)

1: Make a foundation chain long enough to wrap around you wrist loosely at least 5 times.

2: Double chain in the first 10 chains of the foundation chain.  Then, *yarn over insert into the next stitch of the foundation chain, pull up a loop (3 loops on hook), then slide a bead down to the hook. Yarn over pull through 2 loops, yarn over and pull through last two loops to complete the double chain. Double chain in the next 4 stitches of the foundation chain* repeat from star for 2/3rds of the length of your foundation chain.
3. When you get 2/3rds done, stop adding beads and double chains. Instead, single chain into the rest of the stitches of the foundation chain until you get to the 5th stitch from the end. There add a bead by pulling up a loop in the stitch, push down a bead and then complete the single stitch by yarning over and pulling through both loops on the hook. This will serve as the bead closure for the end of the bracelet.

4. Complete the row with single stitches.

5. You're pretty much done! I decided to add a little tassel to the end of my bracelet by knotting the end threads together (instead of weaving them back in) and knotting on a few additional pieces of thread.

And you're done!

To fit the bracelet, just wrap it around your wrist and push the first bead and last bead into the opening of one of the double chains of the bracelet. It may take a few tries to get it to fall where you want it too, but don't try to make it perfect. Part of the wrap bracelet appeal is its unstructured look.

backhand view
back of the wrist view

Please let me know (show me pictures!) if you make this bracelet!
My goal with the crochet patterns I share is always to share something that will bring joy to any who come across this page. Do let me know if you have questions.

See you soon with another wrap bracelet pattern!


I linked up at:

The Girl Creative

The Girl Creative

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Hey Look: My Scarf Design is sorta like Donna Karan Sweater featured in Allure

Can you see the similarities?

My Lattice Stitch Summer Scarf (wrapped around my arm)
Lauren Conrad, Allure Magazine May 2011
I was dusting, my least favorite chore, especially since we've been away for four days and I was gone a week before that- when I picked up the May issue of Allure magazine and thought, that sweater looks familiar. 

We get quite a few magazines at our house. They are all gifts from a great friend of mine who started subscriptions for me when I was pregnant and not going out much. They proved to be a great escape in those first few months after Baby H arrived. 

I don't know much about Lauren Conrad, I tried to watch one episode of the Hills and didn't make it through the first 2 minutes. A friend tells me she's the least objectionable person from the show, I'll take her word for it. 

I do know a bit about Donna Karan. There hasn't been a season since I started being fashion-interested (I used to be fashion-obsessed but that has dulled since I've gotten craft-obsessed) that I haven't loved her Ready to Wear lines. Both her high end label and the more affordable (if you think 100 buck shirts are affordable) DKNY line fit with my style preferences - sleek, modern, tailored lines and menswear inspired. 

When I found out the sweater Conrad was wearing on the Allure cover was a hemp knit for Donna Karan I'll admit I was a bit surprised. It's a bit more fussy and girly than her usual. But it's still great looking.
And it ought to be... for $895! That's right, friends! The hemp knit cover up sweater pictured above retailed for nearly 900 smackers. I'm all for spending a little money on a good, staple piece of clothing, but that's exorbitant. Surely if it were made by hand with lots of care, I could venture to say that some well to do person could pay a few hundred dollars for a nice sweater -- but I can't imagine $900.  

The great thing is, if I ever want a sweater like the one pictured, I think I might be able to make a pretty good version and in only a few nights. I have a friend who will be honeymooning in Hawaii this winter, who I just might try to make this for - if I can find the time! 

I think that may be the thing I like most about working on my crochet skills and other handiwork, the potential of it exceeds my purchasing power! 


Monday, August 15, 2011

On My Hook: Antique Corticelli Crochet Edging

Here's what I've had on my hook for the last few days while traveling non-stop:

It is my version of an edging found in Coritcelli's Lessons in Crochet Book 1 from 1916.  The book and many other antique needlework books and pamphlets are available for free at . If you knit, crochet, tat, embroider or just like needlecrafts, this site will have you spending hours ohhing and ahhing. 

I got the idea to try my hand at some of the antique stitches and patterns from Fatima over at Crochetology . Her blog is one of my favorites. She makes the coolest crochet wearables and is committed to taking what seem to be difficult patterns and stitches and making them accessible. Her pattern hacks and jewelry designs inspire me. Hers isn't your Grandma's crochet! I'm hoping to use some of her jewelry techniques to create some one of a kind gifts this Fall.

On her blog, she worked through several of the antique edging and stitches found at the Antique Pattern Library. I was inspired to do the same when I realized that I was going to be spending hours upon hours on planes and needed something small, yet engaging to do. 

I picked Corticelli Edging 318C - mostly because it had a set of directions I thought I understood.  I used Aunt Lydia's Fashion Crochet Thread size 3 and a 7/1.65 hook. This thread and hook are a bit larger than the original pattern recommended so the size of my stitches are too, but I knew that when I started. 

I didn't count my starting chain, but as I sat on the plane waiting for take off, I chained out a length that would wrap around my wrist, not knowing then what I would make of the edging swatch. When I finished the edging I decided it would be an interesting cuff and doubled it, by crocheting the entire pattern (with the exception of the foundation row of trebles) again under the foundation row. Making the top and bottom mirror one another. Maybe hard to explain, but not complicated, I promise.

You'll notice that my fabric is a lot looser than the original edging. In part this is because of the larger needle and thread, but I also think that it has to do with my hand gauge. I didn't bother to make the stitches tight and even, rather I wanted to produce a flexible fabric. 

The swatch ends with a curve because of how the original pattern repeats. I thought of shortening the last fan to make it square, but then I decided that I really liked the scalloped edge. 

 While I loved the way my doubled edging turned out, I totally FLUBBED the star flower motif I tried to make from the same book. I did the repeats from memory and let's just say, my memory ain't what it used to be! LOL.  I've found that many of the motif patterns are difficult in the older pattern books. There are plenty of crocheters out there who've written about how to understand and simplify the patterns. I should have looked at the picture and went with my eyes instead of my poor pattern comprehension skills!

Note to self (and you too) : Trust What You See!

I haven't yet decided how to complete the doubled edging.

A frilly cuff maybe?
 It isn't my normal style. I'm more urban/modern than Victorian lace (although I do love the antique pave' setting of the engagement ring my awesome hubby picked out for me), but I think that with the right clasp and embellishments, this might work.

There's only one potential problem:

The ends! Because they are so frilly and not a perfect straight edge and because the fabric is really flexible, I'm not sure what sort of clasp would work to keep the edges from folding up like they are doing in the picture above. Suggestions?

I hope this post will encourage you to give the older patterns a try. Go visit Crochetology (I don't know her by the way, I just love her site) and then go make something incredible.

Until next time, which will be sooner than later, I promise ---


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