Tag: crochet tutorials

How To Crochet the Slip Stitch Join

How To Crochet the Slip Stitch Join

How To Crochet The Slip Stitch Join Have you ever wanted to learn how to crochet the slip stitch join? There are many ways to join crochet projects.  Join-as-you-go (JAYG) is probably the most popular one, but also one of the hardest to understand at…

Hooking With… Sweet Potato 3

Hooking With… Sweet Potato 3

Welcome back to Hooking With… In this week’s Hooking With, we interviewed Christine Naugle of Sweet Potato 3.  Helen and I have had the pleasure of working with Christine in the recent past, for a Crochet Cancer Challenge, when we featured our Samantha’s Hope Beanie.…

DIY Crochet Hook Handles

DIY Crochet Hook Handles

Polymer Clay DIY Crochet Hook Handles Tutorial

We all have those plain metal, boring and VERY uncomfortable to use hooks from when we first started crocheting.  Like this one:

Sara asked me to test a pattern with a 3.5mm hook. My smallest comfy grip is a 4mm, so I had to go back to my first set of hooks, those simple aluminium ones.

I found that the hook was difficult to hold and spun around in my hand while I was trying to work with it.

Sara mentioned that she had a similar problem and used polymer clay to make her own grips. I was intrigued but had questions:

Is it really comfortable to use?

Does it stay on the hook or work its way loose after a few uses?

Can you really put a hook in the oven?

Will it be durable?

The Research:

I went on Amazon and looked up the prices of the clay and found this complete set with a decent range of colours, this one on Amazon.

The price seemed reasonable and I figured if nothing else it would be something that I could spend an afternoon doing with my daughter as she could use the left overs to make gifts for family, we would create those precious memories and it was cheaper than going to the local pottery place.

The Method:

As Helen mentioned, she needed a better grip on some of those old hooks.  It was a lot cheaper than buying new ones.

You will need to get some supplies and grab all your old hooks to get started.  By the way, you can use both metal/aluminum and bamboo hooks for this.

Materials:

Polymer Clay Kit—I like this one on Amazon

Old hooks

Paper towels or newspaper or old cloth to work on

Oven (for baking….)

Gloves (optional)

Getting Started:

You might need to wipe down your old hooks to make sure there’s no dirt or smudges on them.

  1. Open the polymer clay kit and pick the colors you’d like to use.
  2. Clear an area and lay down the protective towels or cloths or newspapers.
  3. Get your gloves on and get ready to start mashing clay together!

Getting a certain look out of your clay:

There are several looks you can go for but the most common is a marbled look.  Alternatively, you can go for a striped look or mottled look.  The possibilities are endless!

For a Marbled look:

  1. Grab 3 or 4 of the colors you want to put together.
  2. Using the cutting tool (looks like a knife), cut little chunks of each color. Cut it all up.
  3. Grab even amounts of chunks of each color and start rolling it and mashing it in your hands.
  4. Roll it into a “worm” or “snake”.
  5. Start wrapping the rolled up clay around the handle of the hook. You can start at either the end or just below the thumb indent of the hook.
  6. As you’re wrapping the hook, be sure to press the clay onto it so there are no air pockets.
  7. Fully cover the very end of the hook. This is where I pressed then bottom into a bit of a flat squared off bottom.
  8. Have your oven ready—the instructions that I had called for 200 degrees F. Yours might be different, just be sure to read the instructions (if it has any!).  If you cannot find instructions, a safe bet is 150-200 degrees F.
  9. I lined my cookie sheet with foil, I recommend doing this so that you don’t leave behind any smells on your sheet. Or colors.  Or Clay.
  10. Place the hooks so that they don’t touch each other on the cookie sheet and put them in the oven. Bake for about 10-12 minutes.  My instructions said 5-10 minutes, I think I ended up around 10 or so, it just depended on how wet the clay still looked, and how bad the smell was getting!

Be prepared for a little bit of an annoying chemical smell.  It won’t hang around long—it goes away as soon as you are done baking.

The result are some cool looking handles!

DIY crochet hook handles

Braided, twisted, and child-like:

For these results, you will need your child and to braid the clay.  This project really is awesome for little ones to join in with.  You get custom crochet hook handles and time with your kids!  Bonus!

  1. The baking instructions are the same as the ones above. Also have that cookie sheet ready.
  2. Get your gloves on and cut some colors into larger sections this time.
  3. Pick 3 of the colors and roll them out separately—do not mash them together.

Once you have 3 different colored “ropes”, put them next to each other and press the ends together:

4. Start braiding! If you’re not familiar with braiding, it’s quite simple.

    1. You have a left, right, and center strands. Grab the right strand and place it over top the center strand, moving the center one over to the right side.
    2. Grab the left strand and place it over the center strand, moving the one that was in the center to the left side now.
    3. Repeat steps 1 and 2 until you reach the end.

5.Now that you have your braid, roll it out!

6. Wrap the rolled out clay around your hook, making sure it’s clinging to the hook and that there are no air pockets.

7. Place the hooks onto the cookie sheet and bake for the instructed amount of time.

Alternative Style Handles:

You can alternatively make knobby handles like the wooden ones you see online or at the local hobby shop.  These will take patience and a lot of sculpting.  If you’re up for that, by all means, go for it!

You might also consider making your handles look similar to the Furls crochet hooks with tapered bottoms and fatter middles.  It’s really all down to personal preference.

Color coding might also be a great idea.  And if you cover the size markings of your hooks, you will need to etch them in with one of the fine pointed tools that come with the kit.  It will bake up just fine; I had to do that on my bamboo ones!

Final Notes:

This is a fun, quick project to do with the family or friends.  Kids love doing this stuff and their creativity really shines when they have these sorts of crafts to do!  I know Helen’s daughter, Jorja had a blast!

For more tutorials like these, visit our other pages and posts!  We have all things crochet here, including stitch tutorials, technique tutorials, patterns, and more!

Visit our YouTube channel for more visual aids.  Be sure to click the “like” button on the videos you watch and subscribe to our channel.  Hit that little bell icon next to the subscribe button to be notified each time we upload a new video!

Thank you for being part of our crochet journey!


polymer clay kit

Extended Half Double Crochet Stitch

Extended Half Double Crochet Stitch

Stitch of the Week #7: Extended Half-Double Crochet This week’s stitch of the week is the Extended Half-Double Crochet (exhdc). This stitch makes a comfy looking fabric, ideal for blankets, scarves, cowls, and hats.  It also works up in any type of yarn weight and…

Stitch of the Week: Alternate Stitch

Stitch of the Week: Alternate Stitch

Welcome back to stitch of the week: Alternate Stitch Welcome back!  This week’s Stitch of the Week is the Alternate Stitch. This stitch is worked by putting 2 single crochets in one stitch.  But there’s a way to keep the stitch count. Different from the…

Crochet Phone Case Pattern

Crochet Phone Case Pattern

crochet phone case patter

Crochet Phone Case Pattern using the paired half-double crochet stitch

When we started the stitch of the week the plan quickly became to get you guys a little pattern that goes with each stitch allowing you to practice it and actually make something at the same time

I mean, who just wants to make swatches?

Sometimes at Sunflower headquarters we look at a stitch swatch and think ‘That would make a great…..’ and the pattern just comes to you so vividly and quickly its awesome. Other times you look, and look, and look.

Or you come up with the same kind of thing that you have already done recently. We want to make learning new stitches more fun than that and mix it up a little.

So, for the paired half double crochet we looked at the swatch and thought that it would be perfect for a mobile phone case

You get ready to go out, make sure your keys, purse and other important items are in your handbag (tissues, gloves, umbrella just in case the wind changes and blows those thick clouds back our way…)

And then you throw in your phone, the one thing in your purse that contains everything you need to survive in the modern world – the facebook and pinterest apps, online banking app, the controls to your central heating system at home and the ability to see and talk to your pooches (who are at home doing their thing) wherever you happen to be that day….

You get the picture.

A phone case isn’t just a practical necessity, it can also look pretty and reflect your personality too

We have two options for you within this pattern.

The first is the pink case – very feminine. I had the button at home that a pen friend sent me from America. I loved the bling of it but could never find the right thing to put it on. A phone case seemed to fit the bill as it is something that will be used every day, so I get to look at the pretty sparkles whenever I like.

The multi coloured case is much sassier and definitely would not get lost amongst all the clutter we tend to keep in our handbags.

So which one are you?

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For either case you will need:

Gauge is not important.

Abbreviations:

Ch—Chain

Hdc – half double crochet

FHDC – Foundation half double crochet

Phdc – paired half double crochet

St(s)—Stitch(es)

SS – slip stitch

Rep—Repeat

*to*–Repeat the instructions written between the two *

FO – fasten off

Note: ch1 does not count as a stitch unless specifically stated.

Special Stitches:

Phdc – you can find our video tutorial on this at https://sunflowercottagecrochet.com/stitch-of-the-week-paired-hdc/

Ch 1, In the first stitch HDC, *yo pull hook into the stitch that you have just worked, yo pull through, yo and pull through all 4 stitches on hook.* Rep from * to * across.

FHDC – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I9Og5cd2L0o

 

Pattern for the pink case:

pink cell phone case crochet pattern

Row 1:

Fhdc as many as required to get the width of the phone plus 2 extra. I did 16

Or

Ch as many required plus 1 and in second chain from hook HDC in each chain across

Rows 2-37 – ch1, turn,  Hdc in first stitch, Phdc in each stitch across (see special stitches

Repeat row 2 as many times as is required to get twice the length of the mobile phone plus an additional 1 row.

Row 38 – ch1, turn. Hdc in each st across.

Row 39 – turn, ss in each stitch across until you get to the middle one, Ch several times to create the loop that will fasten to the button. I chained 18 as I used quite a large button. I wanted it to be a focal point for the case as it was so pretty!

SS into the same st from the previous row (the one that you started your chain with) and continue to ss in each st across.

FO, leave long tail for sewing the sides of the case together.

pink phone case crochet pattern

Fold case in half. I left a few rows at the top so that I got a little flap on mine, but you don’t have to (see picture below)

phone case crochet pattern

Sew or ss down each side

Attach your button and you are done!

Download the free PDF version here

For the multi-coloured phone case:

cell phone case crochet patter

Row 1: FHDC 16 (or as wide as phone plus 2)

Rows 2- 40 : ch1, turn, hdc in first st, phdc across.

Note – I changed colour after 24 rows

Row 41 – ch1, turn, Hdc in first st, phdc in next 6 sts, ch2, sk2 (this will create the button hole), hdc in next st, phdc across

Row 42: ch1, turn, hdc in each st across including 2hdc in the ch2 sp.

Fasten off

Fold the bottom section so that it will nestle approximately ¾ of the phone and sew the sides together.

Sew in ends

Add button where desired.


Et viola!

An easy peasy phone case (or handy hook case!) using our stitch of the week.

Download the free PDF version here

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Stitch of the Week: Staggered HDC Pairs

Stitch of the Week: Staggered HDC Pairs

Welcome to Stitch of the Week #3–Staggered HDC Pairs Now we’re all caught up on stitch of the week! Last time, we talked about Paired HDC and the time before that, Paired SC.  It seems we’re hung up on pairs! I have one more for…

Stitch of the Week: Paired HDC

Stitch of the Week: Paired HDC

Stitch of the week tutorial #2 for the paired half-double crochet Welcome back to stitch of the week! Last week I was supposed to release this stitch–the paired half-double crochet stitch–however, I was going through a lot of prep for hospital procedures and surgeries.  Here’s…

Crochet Patterns for Table Set

Crochet Patterns for Table Set

Introduction to the Jorja Collection, a set of crochet patterns for your table.                         

Crochet table set patterns

Hi everyone!  Helen here,

I wanted to give you all a sneak peak on my first set of crochet patterns; a collection to be released.

It’s a tableware crochet pattern set collection that I have named after my daughter, Jorja. I wanted to create something that was simple but elegant and would stand the test of time, suiting any décor.

Of course, you’ve done the fun stuff

Done your research on Ravelry, Pinterest etc, spent a fortune at the yarn store getting the perfect materials – and then you sit down with your grand plans.

And sit, and sit ….

Inspiration takes you and you start (eventually) only to decide that you don’t like it so you scrap that idea.

By idea number 756 you get past the first hurdles and then start to fear that no-one will like your designs or appreciate the finished result.

Oh, my days!

Its traumatic! I’m sure as I do more patterns it will come easier and my confidence will build.

Funnily enough it was when I started focusing on creating something that I could see my daughter using whilst sitting with her morning drink of choice (I hate coffee!) and her breakfast in her pj’s on a Sunday morning that it came to me!

The Jorja collection was borne and the patterns came one after the other in quick succession.

I would classify this set as a modern vintage country chic, but to be honest I could see it fitting any décor. Even all in black it would look great in a goth-themed kitchen!

The stitches are super easy – paired single crochet, single crochet, foundation single crochet and chains. They take no time to make and are easily customize-able.

We will start off by releasing the coaster, but there will be the place mat, napkin rings and table runner.

I’m also considering the mug cozy just to finish off the set and there will very soon be a bag crochet pattern, although I’m not sure whether to do a tote or a beach bag at this point!

If you have a preference please let us know.