1 for Me, 1 for You- Leaf Spike Block

Help me help local communities by creating blocks for Warm Up America, by making a block for yourself and one for a community project with this free pattern. I will be creating a new block every few weeks and sharing it with you, I just ask that make one for donation.

Warm Up America is a nationwide organization that encourages local donations, but will also except donations to be sent to their office so that blocks can be assembled and then blankets can be donated through the United States.

Leaf Spike Block

Even if you do not want to participate with Warm Up America, please consider creating blocks, or blankets for your local community. There are various places in every community that accept donations.

Spike Stitches

This block is used working spike stitches. Spike Stitches are essentially inserting your hook through your fabric and pulling up a loop. This loop is pulled up to the height of the current row to have the stitch finished. This gives a unique ability to create fascinating lines of color. In this block I have worked 5 spiked stitches together to create an affect similar to a leaf.

Gauge: 7”x9” rectangle

Materials

Medium weight yarn, in 2 colors MC (main color), CC1, CC2

K/10 ½/ 6.5mm hook

Special Stitches

Spike Leaf (SL): Insert hook in the 2nd stitch backward from the hook and 1 row below, yo, pull up a loop, yo, insert hook in the 1st stitch backward from the hook and 2 rows below, yo, pull up a loop, yo, insert hook in stitch directly below and 3 rows below, yo, pull up a loop, yo, insert hook in stitch 1 stitch forward from hook and 2 rows below, yo, pull up a loop, yo, insert hook in stitch 2 stitches forward from hook and 1 row below, yo, pull up a loop, yo, pull through all 10 loops on hook.

First insertion, yo, pull through loop of Leaf Spike
Second insertion point of Leaf Spike
Third insertion point of Leaf Spike
Fourth insertion point of Leaf Spike
Fifth insertion point of Leaf Spike
Yarn over and pull through all 10 loops on hook. Stitch complete

Notes

Working the first stitch immediately following the Leaf Spike can be a bit tricky, as you need to push the last loops of the LS out of the way.

After pulling up the loop through the stitch immediately following the Leaf Spike, you will need to push the last loop of the Leaf Spike toward the stitch to maneuver the hook into the next stitch.

The Pattern

Row 1: With MC, ch 24, sc in 2nd ch from hook, sc in each ch across, turn. -23 sc

Rows 2-5: Ch 1, sc in each st across, turn.

Row 6: Change to CC, ch 1, sc in same st, sc in next 2 sts, LS over next st, sc in next 5 sts, LS over next st, sc in next 5 sts, LS over next st, sc in last 7 sts, change to MC, turn.

Rows 7-11: Ch 1, sc in each st across, turn.

Row 12: Change to CC, ch 1, sc in same st, sc in next 4 sts, LS over next st, sc in next 5 sts, LS over next st, sc in next 5 sts, LS over next st, sc in last 5 sts, change to MC, turn.

Rows 13-17: Ch 1, sc in each st across, turn.

Row 18: Change to CC, ch 1, sc in same st, sc in next 6 sts, LS over next st, sc in next 5 sts, LS over next st, sc in next 5 sts, LS over next st, sc in last 3 sts, change to MC, turn.

Row 19-21: Ch 1, sc in each st across, turn.

Edging

With CC, evening sc around block working 3 sc in each corner.

Making Your Circles Flat

Understanding your crochet can really help you enjoy your craft and make your projects more exciting to work. One area that this is true is creating a flat circle.

A flat circle is the base of top down hats, of baskets, and even handbags. Stitch height can greatly affect how a pattern will work out in these projects, as the height of the stitches make the circle either smaller or bigger. Another factor is the number of stitches per round.

I have discussed the formula for a perfect fitting hat in previous posts (you can find more about them here), but what if your stitch heights create similar problems as too few or too many stitches? That problem of either cupping or rippling of the fabric.

Cupping circle, needs to have more stitches added.

To determine the results of your fabric it cannot be done within one round. It can be determined over a few rounds, so do not get too hung up if the characteristics of cupping or rippling are slight. If it increases in subsequent rounds you then need to address the issue.

It is Cupping

There are simple fixes. If your fabric is cupping, or pulling upward, adding more stitches will encourage the fabric lay more flat. Another option is to reduce your stitch height, if the stitches are long and there are too few stitches the stitches will pull back on themselves.

Rippling circle, needs to remove or adding less stitch increases

It is Wavy

In addition if the fabric is rippling, or wavy, removing stitches or increasing your stitch height, will help create a flat fabric. Short stitches with many grouped together does not create enough space for the fibers of the fabric to have room to rest.

Crochet is a forgiving craft, the exact stitch count may not be vital. It really depends upon the pattern of the stitches created. However if it is a simple one stitch repeat you can usually add or subtract stitches without much concern.  I suggest adding or subtracting stitches to resolve the issue, as it is easier to do.

If you are looking for some projects to practice this on, I have several free patterns listed here.

Fresh Designs for Fall

I am excited to see that some of my new designs are out in the wild! I have designs released in the last couple of weeks in I Like Crochet Magazine (December 2019 issue), and with Manos del Uruguay Fall 2019 collection.

Yuletide Hat- I Like Crochet, December 2019

You can find my Yuletide Hat in the December 2019 issue of I Like Crochet Magazine, it is actually an embellished version of an earlier design. The Homey Fireplace Hat was released in the same publications October 2017 issue. The embellishment adds a little length, some fabulous yarn and a pom-pom. It is a great update that is perfect for a holiday gift.

Then there is Muntin, a pattern that can be put together more than a one way to create two great designs. It consist of 6 different motifs in 2 different sizes. This allows for a really dynamic display of color, which has no two motifs that are alike. The motifs always seem a bit floral to me, so I always see a bed of flowers in this design, but you may notice something else.

Muntin as a cowl, Manos Del Uruguay Fall 2019 Collection

The two designs created with these motifs, have one being a cowl and the other a wrap, using the same amount of yarn and worked as join as you go so no sewing required. You could easily take this motifs and put them together in other ways to let your own imagination run wild.

Muntin as a wrap, Manos del Uruguay Fall 2019 Collection

1 for Me, 1 for You- String of Stars Block

Help me help local communities by creating blocks for Warm Up America, by making a block for yourself and one for a community project with this free pattern. I will be creating a new block every few weeks and sharing it with you, I just ask that make one for donation.

Warm Up America is a nationwide organization that encourages local donations, but will also except donations to be sent to their office so that blocks can be assembled and then blankets can be donated through the United States.

String of Stars Block

Even if you do not want to participate with Warm Up America, please consider creating blocks, or blankets for your local community. There are various places in every community that accept donations.

Star Stitches

This block is used working star stitches. Star stitches are similar to working a decrease over several stitches, but instead of over several stitches it is over various parts of adjacent stitches. Pulling up many loops in many places creates this unique looking stitch, in this block I have you working 2 different types of star stitches. One star is big and full over yarn overs to create a dynamic appearance, while the lighter star is does not have yarn over, and few loops, but creates a great textural effect, and in my opinion looks cute pall stacked upon one another.

Gauge: 7”x9” rectangle

Materials

Medium weight yarn, in 3 colors MC (main color), CC1, CC2

K/10 ½/ 6.5mm hook

Special Stitches

Beginning Full Star (BFS): Yo, insert hook into 2nd ch from hook, yo, pull through loop, yo insert hook through base (post) of last stain next ch, yo, pull through a loop, yo insert hook into same st as chain, yo, pull through a loop, yo, insert hook in next st, yo, pull up a loop, yo, insert hook into next hook, yo, pull up a loop, yo, pull through all 11 loops on hook.

Full Star (FS): Yo, insert hook into eye last star made, yo, pull through loop, yo insert hook through base (post) of last star, yo, pull through a loop, yo insert hook into same st as last base (post) of last star, yo, pull through a loop, yo, insert hook in next st, yo, pull up a loop, yo, insert hook into next hook, yo, pull up a loop, yo, pull through all 11 loops on hook.

Loop placement for the Full Star Stitch (the placement is the same as the Light Star, but a Yarn over is worked between each inserting of the hook).
After pulling through all the loops, you chain 1, this creates an “eye” at the center of the stitch

And the Smaller Star

Beginning Light Star (BLS): Insert hook into 2nd ch from hook, yo, pull through a loop, insert hook in next ch, yo, pull through a loop, insert hook into same st as chain, yo, pull up a loop, insert hook in next st, yo, pull up a loop, yo, pull through all 5 loops.

Light Star (LS): Insert hook into eye of last star made, yo, pull through a loop, insert hook through base (post) of last star, yo, pull through a loop, insert hook into same st as last post of last star, yo, pull up a loop, insert hook in next st, yo, pull up a loop, yo, pull through all 5 loops.

Loop placement for the Light Star Stitch.

If you would like to see some more detailed step bu step of the loop location, here is a tutorial for the Light Star Stitch.

Block Pattern

With MC Ch 28

Row 1: Sc in 2nd ch from hook, sc in each ch across, turn. -27 sc

Row 2: Change to CC1, ch 3, BFS, ch 1, [FS, ch 1,] 12 times, turn. -13 Full Stars

Row 3: Change to MC, ch 1, 2 sc in same st, sc in each ch and the top of each star across, turn. -27

Single crochet into the top of the Star Stitch, and in the chain space, when working stitches over the Full Star Stitch.

Row 4: Change to CC2, ch 3, BLS, ch 1, [LS, ch 1] 25 times, turn.-26 Light Stars

Row 5: Change to MC, ch 1, 2 sc in same st, sc in each ch-sp across, turn. -27 sc

Only work in the chain space when working the next row on a row of Light Star Stitches

Row 6-13: Rep Rows 2-5 twice.

Edge

Rnd 1: Ch 1, sc in sc in same st, sc in each st across until 1 st remains, 3 sc in last st, working over row ends evenly sc across to beg ch, 3 sc in last st, working in unused loops of beg ch, sc in each chain across, 3 sc in last st, working over row end evenly sc across, 2 sc in last st, sl st to beg sc, fasten off.

Weave in ends, block. (see tips here)

Holiday Stashdown CAL 2019

I am really honored to be part of the 2019 Holiday Stashdown. This is the fifth year, that you have weeks worth of pattern to help you work through your stash and get some of your holiday gifts created, and have the opportunity to win prizes.

If you have missed any of the patterns so far, well head over to Underground Crafter and find the entire list of participants.

For my part, I have created a quick cowl, it is worked from the center out with a twist. This makes for only a few rounds, but they are longer than you would expect, since you are almost creating two rounds at once.

Sovereign Cowl

This pattern works up in a medium weight yarn, and in my personal feeling has a bit of a regal feel, maybe it is the picot on the edge, but I know I will be keeping this one myself and wearing it this winter.

Sovereign Cowl

Size: 31” around x 9” tall (79 x 23 cm)

Gauge

14 sts/ 3 full rounds                                                                                                    

Materials

Special Stitches

Picot: Ch 3, sl st to the stitch below the ch just created.

Pattern is worked center out, by working on both side of the beginning chain, and add a twist for the mobius.

The Pattern

Ch 103

Rnd 1: Sc in 2nd ch from hook, sc in each ch across, twist chain, and working in the unused loops of the beginning chain, sc in the same loops as the first sc of the round, sc in each unused loop around, join to the first st, turn. -204sc

Rnd 2: Ch 4, [sk 1 st, dc in next st, ch 1] rep around, sl st to join to 3rd ch of turning ch, turn.

Rnd 3: Sl st to next ch-1 sp, ch 1, sc in same sp, 3 dc in next ch-1 sp, [sc in next ch-1 sp, 3 dc in next ch-1 sp] rep around, sl st to join to first sc, turn.

Rnd 4: Ch 4, sk 1 dc, sc in next dc, ch 1, [dc in next sc, ch 1, sk 1 dc, sc in next dc, ch 1] rep around, sl st to join, turn.

Rnd 5-7: Rep Rnds 2-4

Rnd 8: Rep Rnd 2

Rnd 9: Sl st to next ch-1 sp, ch 1, sc in same sp, (2 dc, picot, dc) in next ch-1 sp, [sc in next ch-1 sp, (2 dc, picot, dc) in next ch-1 sp] rep around, sl st to join to first sc, fasten off. Weave in ends, block.