Pop culture patterns and more

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Free Patten: Lovey Dovey baby toy blanket

Well this is my first attempt at a "Build your own design" pattern, so be gentle with me ;) It's untested, so I'd love to see any finished ones made from it as well! Enjoy!

Lovey Dovey

Creekside Crochet © 2012


F Hook

Worsted Weight Yarn

Stitch Markers

Stocking or old pantyhose


Tapestry Needle

This pattern is meant to be customizable to your own specifications, so what color you use is up

to you. I made a frog in this example.

Head:(Make 1)

This is crocheted in spiral, do NOT join. Move your stitch marker down as you go.

Rnd 1: 6 SC in magic circle (6)

Rnd 2: 2 SC in each SC of previous rnd. (12)

Rnd 3: SC in first stitch, 2 SC in second stitch, repeat around. (18)

Rnd 4: SC around (18)

Rnd 5: SC in next 2 stitches, 2 SC in next, repeat around(24)

Rnd 6: SC in next 3 stitches, 2 SC in next, repeat around(30)

Rnd 7: SC in next 4 stitches, 2 SC in next, repeat around(36)

Rnd 8: SC around (36)

Rnd 9-12: Repeat Rnd 8

Rnd 13: SC in next 4 stitches, SC2Tog in next, repeat around(30)

Rnd 14: Place a special stitch marker at the beginning and end of this round! SC in next 3

stitches, SC2Tog in next, repeat around(24)

Rnd 15: SC in next 2 stitches, SC2Tog, repeat around(18)

Now we stuff, remember to leave the stitch markers on either side of round 14(make sure they’re

removable from the outside)! Insert the stocking toe into the head. Stuff FIRMLY, making a ball.

Tie the rest of the stocking in a knot, and cut off anything that hangs down past the knot. This is

to add durability and stop the fiberfill from coming out during machine washing.

Rnd 16: SC in next st, SC2Tog around until close. Pull tight and fasten off. Leave a tail.

Using tapestry needle, weave tail back around rnd 16 and pull tight again. Fasten off.

Arms (Make 2):

Ch 7. Starting in second ch from hook, SC in each Ch. (6 SC)

Turn, and in front loop only, sc in next 5 st. 2 SC in next, turning and working in back loops, sc

around (12 SC) Do NOT join!

SC around in spiral maner for 7 rounds(84 SC)

Stuff firmly

Pinch open end closed, making sure it goes the same direction as bottom of arm.

Working through next SC and one behind it, SC them together. Continuing to work through both

as 1, SC in next 5 stitches, leaving a seam of 6 sc. Ch 1, turn.

2 HDC in next sc, sl st in next, 2 HDC in next sc, sl st in next, 2 HDC in next, sl st. Fasten Off.

BLANKET: (Pick one of the following, all work in the SC row created in the next step)

Pick up the head. Going from one stitch marker to another, SC through top and bottom of each

stitch, join (24)

12 Point Ripple:

Rnd 2: Ch 5, DC in same stitch as join. *Sk next sc, DC in next, Ch 2, DC in same stitch.*

Repeat from * around, joining in 3rd ch of starting ch 6. (12 Ch 2 spaces)

Rnd 3: Sl st to Ch 2 space. Ch 3,DC, Ch 2, 2 DC (Beg. Shell made), Shell in each ch 2 space

around(12 Shells Made)

Rnd 4: Sl st to Ch 2 space. Beg. Shell, DC in next DC. *Sk 2 st, DC in next DC, Shell, DC in

next DC* Repeat from * around, joining in 3rd ch of Beg. Shell. (12 Shells, 24 DC)

Rnd 5: Sl st to Ch 2 space. Beg. Shell, DC in next 2(3,4,5) DC. *Skip 2, DC in next 2 DC, Shell,

DC in next 2 DC* Repeat around. (12 Shells, 48 DCs)

Rnd 6-15: Repeat Rnd 5, adding a DC to each side of the shells until you reach the desired size

from point to point. Most loveys are between 12 and 18 inches across.

For a fun finish, crab stitch in sc around the last row, putting 4 sc in each ch 2 space from the

shells, and skipping 2 halfway between each shell. Fasten off, weave in ends.


Rnd 2: Ch 3, DC in same sp. 2 DC in each stitch around. Join in top of ch 3. (48)

Rnd 3: Ch 3, DC in next space, 2 DC in next. DC, 2 DC around (72)

Rnd 4: Ch 3, DC in next 2(3,4,5), 2 DC in next. *DC in next 2, 2 DC in next* Repeat around


Rnd 5: Repeat Rnd 4, adding a DC before each 2 DC spot, until you reach the desired width.

Make a final round of crab stitch in sc to finish, continuing the increase so it lays flat.


Rnd 1: Ch 3, DC in next 4 SCs. Ch 2, sk next st, and DC in next 5. Repeat 2 time. Connect ch 2

to top of starting ch 3(20 DC/ 4 Ch 2 spaces)

Rnd 2: Ch 3, DC in next 4 DCs. Shell in ch 2 space. Repeat around, joining at top of ch 3. (36

DC/ 4 Ch 2 spaces)

Rnd 3: Ch 3, DC in next 6 DCs. *Shell in ch 2 space. DC in next 8 DCs* Repeat from * around,

finishing with 2 DCs and joining at top of ch 3.

Continue making rounds in this manner until you reach the size you want, increasing each row as



Using more yarn and your needle, sew the arm to the first rnd of the blanket, firmly. Count over

6 sc and attach the second arm.

EMBROIDER a mouth and eyes, or firmly sew on your own embellishments. I recommend

using liquid stitch for finishing purposes, it’s non toxic and machine washable, and comes in

handy for making the ends of yarn stay where you put them.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Technical Tuesday: Pattern Testing Ettiquette

As hookers, we all can appreciate a well written pattern with few or no mistakes. As pattern creators, we know that the way we do things might need a little more explanation to make sense to someone who is new to crocheting, or just thinks differently than you.

Sure, it seems like a great deal. Make a pattern in a set amount of time, take pictures, give feedback, get a free pattern, easy as pie, right?


Pattern testing is quite serious, and as I've been learning recently, designers often try to both advertise and work out any bugs, misspellings, measurements problems, etc, by sending their new pattern to a select few hookers(though this applies to any type of pattern). Relationships are developed over time, and while you're not being paid, it is still work. The designers are counting on the testers to get the pattern done, submit pictures, and let them know if there are any problems or flaws with the pattern. They will(most likely) be selling this pattern to people, it is how many designers supplement their household budget.

There is basic ettiquette that must be followed, however, to keep any testing/design relationship in a good status, and while most are common sense, sometimes people just don't think about it.

~ Accept a testing assignment if you don't have the materials on hand. If you accept a test that needs to be completed in 24 hours, and wait 5 hours to go to the store only to find that what you need is out of stock, then come home, and send a message to the designer, then that give them 18 hours to find someone else on an even tighter time limit, if they even see the message before the next morning.

~ Change the pattern without the designer's express permission!! This is a pet peeve of many a designer. The point of testing is to produce a product as directed. If you are having problems, contact the designer and work through it.

~ Forget to keep in contact with the designer as you work! This is not quite as important on short term assignments, but for larger items that can take a week or two to work through, telling a designer that you have a problem and then dropping off the face of the earth does nothing but make you look bad and get you banned from testing for them in the future, and usually from their designer friends as well. There are no stupid questions, and the designers like the chance to practice coaching people who have problems through them so they can do it with future customers.

~Take a test when you won't have time to finish it. If you know it takes you three days to make a hat, especially one with a lot of small pieces or shaping, do NOT accept a test for a hat that is due back tommorrow. Seriously. I know you adore the pattern, but each day of the testing phase is money out of their pocket when they could be selling it to people.

~ DO NOT FEEL FREE TO SHARE THE PATTERN! I cannot emphasize this enough. Even if your best friend begs and pleads and says that's all she wants for her birthday is a copy of that pattern, DO NOT DO IT! If she needs her own copy, purchase it for her. Many designers would love to send gift patterns and might even give you a slight discount for your honesty and knowing they can trust you.

~ Test if you do not have internet, or a camera to take pictures. You will have to PROVE that you are actually doing the work.

~ DO NOT BADMOUTH the designer! This makes you look like an ass. If you truly cannot figure out the way to complete the pattern, even with special coaching, and half a dozen other people do figure it out, then you just look like a spiteful idiot. Sometimes a testing relationship can become strained because the designer is unable to explain it to the tester. This does not mean the pattern is flawed, merely more difficult than anticipated. This does not make you, or the designer, an idiot because you cannot complete the pattern. It's how you conduct yourself in the community as a whole.

~ Keep in contact. If you're running behind on your test, or ran out of yarn because your cat dragged your WIP into the bathroom and left it in the toilet, let them know! Most will understand that life happens, and see if there's something they can do virtually to help you speed up. Once. If it becomes apparent that you're just trying to gather as many free patterns as possible, you will not be invited to test again and potentially blackballed by the online community as a whole.

~ Tag the designer and/or tell everyone where the pattern comes from- this helps the sales of your designer. Those sales are what allows them to continue designing fun and wonderful patterns for people. Shamelessly advertise that you were able to make it because of this pattern. Word of mouth is the best reference there is.

~Ask Questions! Sometimes you'll ask what may seem to be a silly question and work out the solution while waiting for an answer, but those "silly" questions are what alerts the designer to potential problems.

~ Be willing to FROG/RIP IT! Occasionally, you'll be working on a pattern when it becomes apparent that the particular stitch is too airy for the intended use, and the designer will have to make MAJOR changes to the pattern. When you commit to test, you are commiting to producing a final product as designed. So if the design gets changed halfway through, you must change your product. Of course, you can always start over with more yarn if you have it on hand and recycle the mistake later on, but don't stubbornly stick to the first version pattern and then get upset when you're not invited to test again.

Pattern testing is a fun experience, but requires trust on both sides. Trust the designer to know what s/he is writing and what the finished product should look like. They are trusting you to follow through, do what you promised, and NOT give away their livlihood to all your friends. Common sense and good ettiquette is mutually beneficial, all around!

Happy Hookin' Ya'll!

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Technical Tuesday: Magic Circle Tutorial

It's Tuesday!

Time for Technical Tuesday here at Creekside Crochet, and today's topic is that mysterious magic circle.

Often labeled as MC(not to be confused with Main Color), the magic circle is a way to start crocheting that leaves an adjustable center start to anything that will be crocheted in the round.

First, we "thread" our yarn, holding as we normally do.

Now, we pull the yarn around the outside of our thumb, bringing the tail over the top of the yarn, as shown. I pin the tail down with my middle finger so I have my other hand free to hold the hook.

Next, we insert our hook under the yarn by sliding it up the thumb from the base. Notice that the tail end is OVER the horizontal yarn, while the hook is UNDER the same piece.
 That horizontal yarn is your working yarn. With your hook, use that strand to yarn over and pull up a loop.

Chain 1(or 2,3, whatever you need to match the stitches you plan on using, I used SC)
 Now, gently slide your work off your thumb. It might seem loose, but that chain is holding it together.
At this point, pinch over the chain where it's on the hook and resettle your yarn on your hand so you have your tension. Once settled, SC(or whatever) into the loop, crocheting over both the loop and the tail, but be careful not to lose the tail as you go.

Once you have the proper number of stitches in your loop, begin gently pulling on the tail

Once the stitches meet in the middle, slip stitch into the first stitch made, again crocheting over the tail. Chain once and continue onto round 2.

Continue working over the tail as you go, making sure to keep the center closed. Eventually you will run out of tail to cover and have a clean tight start to your circle.

Magic circles come in handy. To use a magic circle instead of the Ch 3, sl st to form a ring, 6 SC in ring, simply don't make a chain and instead do 6 SCs in the magic circle. Practice as many times as you need to and know that yes, we all feel a little weird making a gun hand with what looks like cats cradle wrapped around it! But it really is an easy way to start a circle, and many amigurumi patterns use this method to leave a tight circle :)

Monday, August 20, 2012

Free Pattern: Nubby face pad

Nubby face pad
Creekside Crochet © 2012

Stitches used:
Magic Circle
Single Crochet(SC)
Treble Crochet(TR)
This is US Terminology

5.50MM Hook
Worsted weight yarn(cotton)

Rnd 1: 6 SC in magic circle, sl st to join, ch 1
Rnd 2: SC, TR in same stitch as join. SC, TR in each of the next 5 st, sl st to join, ch 1(6 SC 6 TR)
Rnd 3: SC, TR in same stitch as join. *SC in next. TR, SC in next. TR in next. SC, TR in next.* Repeat from * around(9 SC 9 TR)
Rnd 4: SC, TR in same stitch as join. *SC in next. TR in next. SC, TR in next.* Repeat from * around, sl st to 1st SC and ch 1(12 SC 12 TR)
Rnd 5: 2 SC in same stitch as join. *SC in next 3. 2 SC in next. *Repeat from * around. (15 SC 15 TR) Fasten off, weave in ends.

For a luxurious double thick face pad, make 2 of Rnds 1-4, then hold them together(nubbys out) and do Rnd 5 through both.

*Please note, each round will end with either a single SC or a TR in the last stitch before join.


Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Technical Tuesday: Increasing a circle

As I've soaked up information over the internet about crocheting, I see many common "problems" popping up among novices and experienced hookers alike. One of those is "How can I make a flat circle?" so I thought I'd address that in this week's technical tuesday.

Tension, adding stitches, removing stitches, skipping one here, front post there- there are a million different combinations to get a million different looks. Making a flat circle(whether starting a hat or making a blanket) basically comes down to increasing the amount of stitches properly in each round. There are a few ways to accomplish this.

When I'm making a circle, I start with what I call the center, and your pattern calls round 1. This is your magic circle(tutorial on that coming in a future T.T!), or chain that's slip stitched to it's own end AND the stitches in it. For my example, I'm starting a circle that will have 6 SC in it. So I make my magic circle and ch 1, then SC 6 times in the round. Round 1, complete. Please notice that I do NOT count the chain stitch that comes from my join as a SC, this keeps the "seam" a little fuller and less noticable.

So now, on the next round, we want to increase it by 6 stitches, so I will simply ch 1, put 2 sc in the same stitch as the chain, and 2 SC in each of the next 5 stitches. 6+6=12. Because I join and put my stitches right next to the chain, that last loop, while it looks like a separate stitch, is actually just the 2nd half of the join stitch and we do NOT put any stitches in it(see photo) because we've already completed the stitches in this loop.

Now comes the part where people get confused. But remember, we're only increasing the round by 6 stitches. On round 3, that translates to 18 stitches (12+6=18) So, for my personal preference, not counting that original ch 1 as a stitch, I SC once in the same stitch as joining, and SC twice in the next stitch. On a coincidental note, that means I'm putting 3 stitches(current round number) into 2 stitches(previous round number). By using this method of putting 1 stitch in my starter, when I'm approaching the end of a round, I know that I will end with a double stitch directly before joining, and if I don't have a double stitch in my last stitch of the round, that I've messed up somewhere and need to recheck my work.

So now we're on round 4. That means 4 stitches into 3. So I ch1, sc in same, sc in next, and 2 sc in next. 4 into 3, that's easy! And because I started with 6 stitches, each round will also have the same amount of repeat(groups of 4 stitches for this particular round), and 4x6=24.

And so it goes. While I took the pictures at an angle, note that it's laying flat on my desk with absolutely no shaping.

~ Increase each round by the amount of stitches in the center/first round
~Current round number of stitches into previous round number of stitches and repeat as many times as stitches in the center(This only sounds complicated, it's really not!)
~Do not count the chains that come out of a join as a stitch for a fuller, less noticable seam(unless you're using varigated)
~Start each round(after 2nd round) with a single stitch so a double at the end.
~Each round will have the same amount of double stitches as the amount of stitches in the center.
~A chain coming up from a join is in the center of one stitch, even though it looks like 2.

Happy Hookin' ya'll! 

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Technical Tuesday - Liquid Stitch Cheat

Today we cover a handy product that very few people actually think about~ Liquid Stitch.

I admit, I do enjoy working with Caron's Simply soft yarn, regardless of poor customer service and the frequent snarls found inside. But that softness comes at a price- the ends will slip and slide every which way and go anywhere but where you put them.

In my example, I had lots of ends to deal with. Even though I crocheted over them as I go, they still poked out and made my finished product look fairly poor in construction.

So I went and purchased a tube of liquid stitch(normal type) for cheaper than the cost of 1 skein of yarn. Gently inserting the tip of the tube into my stitches, I put a bead around each end of yarn, snipped off the ends of yarn and gently tapped the glue to make sure it spread out and "sealed" the end.

24 hours of dry time later, and I had a cute, non frizzy blanket.

Yes, there is glue there. As it was the first time using it, I erred on the side of too much, and so there is a small noticable area where I used it. As I practice, I'm sure I'll get the amount down better.

As a bonus- are you making slippers or something that could use some traction? Liquid stitch is machine washable, so it dries into a clear, rubbery feeling surface, much like the traction dots found on the bottom of slipper socks. It can easily be used to apply a pattern of dots to the bottom of any crafted item for friction.

And no, I'm not being paid by the manufacturer's(although if they cared to give me free product, I wouldn't object LOL). I just truly love the product.

And that, boys and girls, concludes our first Technical Tuesday. Have a great week and happy hooking!

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Obligatory Introduction

Hello! I am CJ, stay at home mother of 2, and budding entrepreneur/creator of Creekside Crochet.

Believe it or not, I just retaught myself how to crochet during the fall of 2011. I had known the basics, though DCs seemed advanced at the time, since I was a teenager. Both of my grandmothers liked to crochet and tried many times to capture my interest. For some reason, it never clicked. But at one point I was inspired to give it a try, so I picked up my long forgotten hook and gave it a shot. To my great surprise, I was able to read a book on crochet and make a pattern from the back. And off I went, progressing from hats and dishcloths to lapghans and amigurumi in a matter of weeks.

So I now classify myself as an intermediate crocheter. My interest lies in designing patterns, and I hope one day to be able to sell them online to add a small amount of discretionary income to our household. I've created this blog as a testing board, or whatever it turns out to be ;)

Thanks for stopping by!