Category Archives: Crochet for the Home

Worldwide Artist Blog Hop!


I am SO happy to be part of the Worldwide Artist Blog Hop!! For those of you who don’t know what that is, think GLOBAL DOMINATION!!

https://hodgepodgecrochet.wordpress.com Worldwide Artist Blog Hop

Okay…maybe it’s not that extreme, but it’s kind of a way to thread together super crafty artist types through their blogs with a series of questions and answers. If you are curious about other artists who have contributed, a quick Google search of ‘Worldwide Artist Blog Hop’ will yield enough results to keep you happily entertained for weeks!

I was nominated by Crystal from Crystalized Designs to participate and a bit later, I’ll be nominating three others to join in the fun! Crystal’s AMAZING blog can be found by clicking the following link! http://www.crystalized-designs.com/blog/

So the way this works is for each nominated blogger to answer 4 simple questions about themselves and then nominate 2 or 3 other bloggers (You’ll find my nominations at the tail end of this post and I promise that you’ll find some amazing content over in their blogs I link!!)

Onward to the questions!

  • Why do I do what I do?

I do what I do because I honestly LOVE it. My mind is always thinking about new ideas—and not always of the yarny variety—to try. My inquisitive nature is to blame for things like DIY glow in the dark yarn, DIY paper mache yarn bowls, and the crochet Indian cross stitch.

I’m sure if you’ve spent any amount of time looking through my blog you will realize that I’m not all about the yarn! I really love anything arts and crafty and I enjoy getting my fingers dirty to experiment and then share my experiments with all of you!

  • How does my work differ from others of its genre?

I think my work is different because it’s unpredictable. Most other crocheters are stressing out over deadlines and creating the next big thing while I’m over here going with the flow and taking my time to enjoy the entire process.

I tend to crochet what I’m in the mood to crochet and let that guide me. I trust that whatever I’m doing is the thing I’m supposed to be doing and that it’s also the right time for it to get done.

I also don’t have a set style. I could be into highly textured crochet one month and thin sock yarn the next. If you look through my patterns you will see that reflected in them.

  • How does my creative process work?

This is a REALLY hard question to answer because I don’t have a process. Creativity just happens and I let it…I suppose that could be considered a process but I’m totally organic and generally have a, ‘whatever gets done is what’s supposed to get done’ outlook on life.

  • What am I working on now?

At this moment in time I have just finished a shrug pattern for the first ever HodgePodge (The Facebook Community) Shrug Showdown! I can’t wait to share it with you all because it was a MONSTER of a pattern to write—it will be offered in sizes from 6 months to an adult XL—and an even bigger monster to get tested, but I’m super happy with the outcome and I hope you’ll all love it as much as I do!

I’ve also recently wrapped a project that is slated to be included in the November issue of The Pattern Pack, put out by Happily Hooked Magazine! You can find this amazing digital mag right here: http://www.happilyhooked.com/ and I will be sure to update with links to my contribution as soon as I have it!

In my downtime I’ve decided to tackle the Double Take Pillow, designed by Delma Myers and published by Red Heart Yarn. So far I’m in love with the simplicity and with the fact that it’s a fast working pattern! At the rate I’m going, I’ll have all four pillows covered in a week!

https://hodgepodgecrochet.wordpress.com Worldwide Artist Blog Hop

https://hodgepodgecrochet.wordpress.com Worldwide Artist Blog Hop

I’ve also recently wrapped my second granny square exchange hosted by ShopKimberlie. I LOVE her exchanges because everyone involved is amazing and I always have so much fun seeing what everyone comes up with. As soon as my squares come back I will have 80 of them to assemble (aren’t you all jealous?!?) These are the granny wheel squares I sent out! (The free pattern can be found on the minspiration blog by following this link: http://minspiration.blogspot.com/2010/04/granny-wheel-square.html )

fall square

I’m also continuing the exploration of the Kreinik yarn that was a recent addition to my stash! More to come on that very soon!

https://hodgepodgecrochet.wordpress.com Worldwide Artist Blog Hop

Also, on a more personal note, if you’ve been following the HodgePodge Facebook page you know that our family was recently adopted by two of the most adorable kitties!! We call them Midnight and Chaser and they probably call us, ‘Those people who feed us and keep us warm.’

https://hodgepodgecrochet.wordpress.com Worldwide Artist Blog Hop

Now it’s time for me to nominate!!!

I’d like to nominate:

Jacqualine Calderon of http://crochetcouture.net/

Michelle Warwick of http://fromhomecrochet.com/

and

Cassidy Frazee of https://wideawakebutdreaming.wordpress.com/

All of these blogs are run by amazing women and are FULL of incredible content that you don’t want to miss!!

https://hodgepodgecrochet.wordpress.com Worldwide Artist Blog Hop

Mickey Mouse Inspired Cup Cozy :: Free Pattern by Jacqualine Calderon of Crochet Couture

https://hodgepodgecrochet.wordpress.com Worldwide Artist Blog Hop

Holly and Berries :: Free Crochet Pattern from Michelle Warwick of From Home

https://hodgepodgecrochet.wordpress.com Worldwide Artist Blog Hop

Her Demonic Majesty by Cassidy Frazee

 

Head on over to bookmark and don’t forget to leave them a comment once they post their own blog hop!

If you enjoyed learning more about me I’d love to hear from you in a comment below! (Comments are moderated and will be approved if this is your first time.) Once again, thanks to all of you who make HodgePodge what it is today because crochet is so much better when you do it with friends ❤

Spiral Motif – When Alice Fell by Mad Mad Me


hodgepodgecrochet.wordpress.com Mad Mad Me 'Spiral Construction/When Alice Fell' Ravelry CAL

Mad Mad Me: ‘Spiral Construction/When Alice Fell’ Copyright: Charissa Ragsdale: Mad Mad Me. All Rights Reserved.

Do you own a copy of Mad Mad me‘s Spiral Construction~When Alice Fell pattern and haven’t tackled it yet? If so, head on over into Ravelry for CAL inspiration with the Spiral Motif – When Alice Fell event!

          http://www.ravelry.com/events/cal--spiral-motif—when-alice-fell

You’ll find incentives for finishing as well as discounts on the purchase of the pattern if you don’t already own one! Hurry because the event is already underway–it runs from September 22 – October 1, 2014–and you don’t want to miss out on all the fun!!

Springtime Pansies


https://hodgepodgecrochet.wordpress.com/ Springtime Pansies: FREE PATTERN

Spring and fall are my favorite times of year. Springtime because of the pops of color from all the newly blooming flowers. Fall because of the gorgeous colors making their way through the leaves on the trees.

Color is probably the one thing that makes me giddy over yarn. The first thing that draws my eye in aisles of it is the color. The more vibrant, the better!

So I can’t think of anything more fun than working up a quick and easy project that uses small pops of beautiful color! These cute springtime pansies are perfect to add to blankets, headbands, hats, slippers, sweaters, shawls, cowls, shrugs, wristers, wreaths, wall art!!! Honestly, you’re only limited by your imagination when it comes to where to put these adorable little flowers.

***

Springtime Pansies

Gauge: Not necessary for pattern.

Measurements: Finished flower measures approximately 2.5” to 3” across.

Skill Level: Advanced Beginner

Materials Needed:

  • Light weight or Sport weight yarn: Small amounts of various colors including white and green. (I’ve used Caron Simply Soft.)
  • Size F crochet hook.

Stitches and Terms Used:

  • Chain
  • Dc
  • Front loops only
  • Hdc
  • Sl st

To get your free copy, head on over to my Craftsy or Ravelry shops today! 

https://hodgepodgecrochet.wordpress.com/ Springtime Pansies: FREE PATTERN

Vintage Fan Ripple Blanket by A Creative Being


https://hodgepodgecrochet.wordpress.com/: A Creative Being: Vintage Fan Ripple Crochet Afghan Blanket

Copyright 2014: A Creative Being: Vintage Fan Ripple Crochet Afghan Blanket: Photos used with permission

Recently, one of  my FAVORITE crocheters on the planet–Wink from A Creative Being–finally finished what I consider to be the most amazing blanket ever!! Seriously, just looking at it makes me want to spontaneously birth a baby to wrap it in!! Right??!?! I can’t be the only one….. 😉

But just when I thought that this achievement couldn’t possibly be topped, she went and did something even more amazing (I had no idea that was even possible!!) when she posted a how-to tutorial for the rest of us!!

https://hodgepodgecrochet.wordpress.com/: A Creative Being: Vintage Fan Ripple Crochet Afghan Blanket

Copyright 2014: A Creative Being: Vintage Fan Ripple Crochet Afghan Blanket: Photos used with permission

If you would love to have one of these gorgeous blankets to snuggle under (or to make for a baby shower or for your own bundle of joy!!) then all you have to do is pop on over to Wink’s blog: A Creative Being :and snatch up her FREE PATTERN!! Don’t forget to drop her a thanks and why not let her know HodgePodge sent you!

Crocheter’s Spotlight: Open Skye Creations


Another BLOG takeover!!! This time, I’d like to introduce my very good friend April! She runs the amazing shop, Open Skye Creations and is a master at all things graphghan. I asked (okay… I BEGGED) for her to explain her process and break it down for the rest of us–and she said YES!!

Graphghans

From This

https://hodgepodgecrochet.wordpress.com/ Crocheters Spotlight: Open Skye Creations

To This!

https://hodgepodgecrochet.wordpress.com/ Crocheters Spotlight: Open Skye Creations

I get tons of questions on a regular basis about my graphs. About how to take a graph and turn it into a blanket or a pillow or a scarf. Let me tell you- it isn’t as hard as you think! Crochet by Numbers is complicated and can take a very long time. Don’t get me wrong, creating a graphghan can take months to complete. It all depends on your skill level, speed, and time capabilities to spend on working on it. But if you can single crochet and color change you can definitely do it! I’ve put this post together to give you some of my favorite hints and guidelines to completing your own! And if you’re a seasoned pro- you can see how I do mine.

Single Crochet, Half-double, Tunisian- it doesn’t really matter. The tips are still the same and hopefully the hints I provide will make sense to you!

To start it off- These are the MUST HAVES to completing a graphghan.

https://hodgepodgecrochet.wordpress.com/ Crocheters Spotlight: Open Skye Creations

First you have the hook. I recommend an “I” hook and medium tension while working up a graph. Second you have the graph itself; I always print mine out on multiple pages and tape them together so I don’t go blind while trying to read it. Third I have BOBBINS! I can’t stress enough how much time and energy these puppies have saved me. They help prevent and reduce tangling (nothing you do can eliminate it 100%) and they just make it easier to hold on to.  Fourth I have a pen, piece of paper, and a highlighter- note I put them as one item because they’re writing utensils and writing utensils are very important in any crochet project.

https://hodgepodgecrochet.wordpress.com/ Crocheters Spotlight: Open Skye Creations

And then you have the yarn itself. Every graph I sell I include a yarn usage estimator. Keep in mind that not all graphs will have this so make sure you always round up. Having the same lot and dye number is extremely important when working on any crochet project- but especially when you’re working up a graph. The last thing you want is a picture ruined by two conflicting shades of black or red. The picture above shows the lot and dye information in case you don’t know where to look for it. It is always on the yarn label itself!

Now here is where things change a little bit. I write out every line of a graph that I’m doing. BEFORE I WORK IT UP. This has multiple purposes. When you write it out, you get a feel for just how much work there is going to be. It also helps tell you how many bobbins you are going to need. Every time you do a color change, you should be changing your bobbins (By changing bobbins every time you prevent having a different color running through the color you’re currently working on and keeps the picture looking clean). It also lets you determine which direction you’re working on the graph.

When working on a graph I work from the bottom up. When I do my initial chain +1 (you always sc in the second chain from the hook when you’re working- like the chain 1 and turn scenario) I then work the next row from Right to left. That is my row 1. My row 2 is done from left to right, row 3 from right to left and so on. When you have the rows written out you can use an arrow or other measure to tell you which way to work it up. Now- if you are working it up in Tunisian stitch you are working it up reading from right to left on every row.

These are the most common things I encounter when working up a graph, and the questions that people ask when they get me one on one.

https://hodgepodgecrochet.wordpress.com/ Crocheters Spotlight: Open Skye Creations https://hodgepodgecrochet.wordpress.com/ Crocheters Spotlight: Open Skye Creations

 

 

 

 

 
People always post nice clean photos of their WIPS (work in progresses) but this is hardly the case. They are actually messy- but no one wants to admit that they have a tangled mess of yarn. Don’t worry- its normal! The picture on the left is a graph I worked on that was easy to keep clean and untangled. Note- the bobbins that are nice and orderly at the top!! The piece on the right is NOT clean. And it was done by someone who has done graphs for a long time. Don’t worry about the mess!! You can always fix it later.

I get asked a lot how I recommend doing color changes. The best way I can describe it is this. In the LAST SC of the first color you push your hook under the top two strands of yarn and yarn over with the first color; pull back through. Yarn over WITH THE NEW COLOR and complete the stitch. The videos I have a link to below should help with it if you need to see the walkthrough. It creates a complete stitch with the first color while allowing you to start your new stitches with the second color. *HELPFUL HINT* I always gently tug on the first color that I dropped to help reduce gaps and keep it from being too (loose) for lack of a better word. Don’t worry if you tug it a little too tight, it won’t mess up as long as you remember that stitch when coming back on the next row.

When you’re working a row and bring up the yarn from the previous row, if there is a long strand, crochet over it like you would crochet over your ends when doing a color change in a hat or an amigurumi. I have videos on my youtube page that explain it simply (and in a setting you’ll all know- my lap sitting on my plaid oversized chair!) http://www.youtube.com/user/canavanapril <- that’s my channel. Feel free to watch the videos and subscribe!

I know this sounds really bad, and tedious- and really a question that people wouldn’t think to ask- but here it is anyways. At the end of EVERY ROW you chain 1 and turn. If you don’t do this then you’ll end up with different row counts.

Find April at: www.openskyecreations.com or on facebook at: www.facebook.com/openskyecreations

https://hodgepodgecrochet.wordpress.com/ Crocheters Spotlight: Open Skye Creations