A Perfect Flair for Summer- Dare to Flair Toddlers Dress

I really enjoy when I have a design that looks fashionable and creative, and more difficult than it actually is to construct. The Dare to Flair Toddlers Dress fits this description. It can be found in the June 2017 issue of I Like Crochet Magazine, and dependent upon the size you make, uses no more than 2 skeins of Lisa Souza Dyeworks Hardtwist yarn.

This girls dress worked in Tunisian Simple stitch is comprised of strips, so you make only rectangles and triangles, these are put together with Reverse Single Crochet, to add an almost rope like edging between all the panels and the edging. I love how this dress allows even a relative beginner complete a project that shines like an advanced piece.

Dare to Flair Toddler Dress www.lindadeancrochet.com

Dare to Flair Toddler Dress Photo courtesy Prime Pulishing

The pattern is sized for a 2T through a girl size 8, and can easily be customized. Add length by making the rectangles longer, add width by making rectangles wider. You may need to make some adjustments on the triangles, but this will depend upon where you want the flair to begin, at the waist, at the thigh, maybe at the hip.

I enjoy the versatility that this dress has, and how it really allows variegated yarn to color pool in a way more like knitting. This design would also be fun worked in color blocks, meaning working different panels different colors and joined together.


Photo courtesy Prime Publishing

Whenever I design clothes for kids, I always try to make it something that they can be successful getting dressed in themselves. So the piece has not really front of back, hence no way to put it on backwards. If it gets turned inside out, the fabric on the inside is just as pretty as the outside. Pair it with legging, or length it for a full dress effect. Ever little girl will want to wear this dress.

The Book Club Afghan- A Twist On an Old Classic

ScannedImageClassic Aran Fisherman afghans are ones that I have long admired. They are solid colors with panels of great textures like basket weave, cables, and popcorns, they always remind me of an almost formal bedroom type style, finished in fringe…well this could be the influence of the 1970’s on my childhood.

I have made one of these traditional style throws several years ago. I remember being frustrated with the tension of my first panel with the rest of the afghan, as it was looser than the rest, resulting in one side being taller than the other. And since it is worked the length, there were to many stitches for me to justify ripping it back and starting again.

Book Club Afghan, I like Crochet, February 2017 www.lindadeancrochet.com

Book Club Afghan I Like Crochet, February 2017 Photo courtesy Prime Publishing

I decided to recreate a more modern feel of this classic style with my latest design, found in the February 2017 issue of I Like Crochet, the Book Club Afghan. This blanket is worked the length of the afghan, with “panels” of different texture, different textures of lace. There are three differing types of lace separated by simple stitches, and creating a classic feel. When it is finished it is finished with fringe creating a feel for the classic while being lighter and airier.

This blanket can still dress up any bedroom, but since it does not feel as weighted down with heavy texture it has a more contemporary instead of classic feel allowing for a wider range of uses. This blanket is great for kids, or a throw on the sofa, or even kept in the car for an impromptu picnic.

If you wanted to deviate from the solid colors, consider creating the “traditional” crochet stitches separating the lace in one color, and working the lace stitches in another. This would offer a dramatic appearance as color would embolden this already distinct design.

Book Club Afghan, I Like Crochet, February 2017 www.lindadeancrochet.com

Book Club Afghan I Like Crochet, February 2017

The lace stitches also help correct the problem of tension I had in my classic experience, as the lace is a bit more forgiving, allowing more stretch in the stitches and reducing “accidental growth”.

I hope you enjoy working it as much as I did.

Chrysanthemums Keeping It Warm


ScannedImageIt is beginning to feel like autumn in my little corner of the world. We had our season’s first measureable rain fall, the leaves are beginning to turn to yellows and oranges and reds and purples. The evenings are cooling off, and I even find myself setting a nightly fire. This is just perfect conditions for my latest design found in the October 2016 issue of I Like Crochet magazine, the Chrysanthemum Throw.


Chrysanthamum Throw Photo courtesy I Like Crochet

The squares of Chrysanthemums definitely make me think of the decorations during Thanksgiving meals. The construction is a little unique for a crochet motif as there is a round that you turn your work and fan the petals. It is like shells folded over on itself to form almost a cone type petal. Also by turning the work, you get a different look of the stitch, as the reverse side of stitches as a little more bumpy appearance then the front side. This causes a little more texture, and really brings the feeling of flowers to the work.

This throw is worked as a join-as-you-go, so there is no sewing. Instead you have a quick working motif, which becomes a quicker throw. The look is structured, simple and clean as a single flower is bordered by a solid band. It is worked up in colors that highlight the fall season, yet just chancing colors to greens, whites and yellows, can make this a dreamy spring feeling throw.

This design came into being in the same manner as the Astral Flowers Throw, as can be recognized with the same color palette. They both grew out of a physical expression of thought and caring for a friend that lost her daughter. One mutual friend organized many to create 6” squares that she volunteered to assemble into an afghan. The outpouring was so great she made 4 afghans. Flowers can always say so much, without even saying a word.

A Little Flirt in the Tunisian Skirt

ScannedImageI had a lot of fun creating the Flirt Skirt that can be found in the October 2016 issue of I Like Crochet magazine. It has a slight swing, and is inspired by a simple traditional full skirt. It definitely has a feminine quality, yet it is made from a linen based yarn and thus has a nice structure.


Tunisian Flirt Skirt Photo courtesy I Like Crochet/ Prime Publishing

The entire skirt is worked vertically, so it is pretty easy to customize it to any size. All you need to do is add or subtract rows to make it bigger or smaller, and if you would like to change the length, simply increase or decrease the number of the beginning chain. All the shaping is created with short rows that give a great flare at the hem.

I definitely need to make this one for myself! I find that giving a little flounce at the hem gives a little more accent to my “curves”. Granted, I am of a large, okay, extra-large size, but that does not mean that I don’t like to have an outfit without some shape. I don’t want to wear a sack and hide, and this skirt allows me to help add a visual balance to my shape. I have found that this skirt shape is very flattering on many different body types.

The construction in essentially in one simple stitch, which gives the overall design a classic, and clean feel, while maintaining a pattern that is easy for beginners. For more seasoned crocheters it is a relatively quick project to work up, making a quick addition to any wardrobe.

It is constructed in a yarn without much stretch, and substituting a yarn with more bounce, like a wool, will definitely give this skirt a different life. While even a hand painted or variegated yarn can give a really great visual effect, causing a slimming vertical line.

Yeah, I am happy with the way this one came together.

Be a Dinosaur!

ScannedImageHalloween is right around the corner, and my latest design in the October 2016 issue of the digital magazine, I Like Crochet, has a quick costume to turn your little one into a dinosaur!

The Dizzy Dino consists of a hat and sleeves (or arm warmers) that feature spikes, to highlight this reptile features. Everything really works up pretty fast, and can be created in a variety of colors to have a dinosaur pack on your trick or treating adventure.


Photo courtesy of I Like Crochet Prime Publishing

One of the reasons I enjoy this design, is that it is soft, so kids with issues of textural feel can be comfortable. It is washable, so that it can have a life after the holiday as part of the dress up box. Finally it has warmth. Halloween in my geographic area is always a toss-up, it could be raining and 50 degrees or it is hot at near 100 degrees. This always makes it a little difficult to plan costumes, but in with this hat and arm set I can pair it with a sweatshirt or T-shirt and still have an effective dinosaur.

I will admit, this design did not begin as Halloween, it actually grew into creation from kids party ideas. One year I actually crocheted hats for all of my guests to my son’s birthday party. I filled these hats with candy and such, essentially turning the hat into a party favor bag, which had life after the party. This might seem a little over board, but I know that when my kids typically attend a party they come home with a simple bag of small toys and candies. These party favors usually leave a trail through my house of wrappers and scraps of paper, and me attempting to secretly throw this out, while my kids treasure them as memories of a good time. So by creating hat party favors I felt like it was actually a memento that could be kept without feeling like my kids were hoarding trash.

At my son’s party the hats seemed to be a hit, they poured out the candy to wear them, and even used them to help distinguish teams for a game a soccer in the back yard, hats vs hair.

Any way you look at it this design as possibilities, and will bring a smile to every kids face.