Monday, November 28, 2011

Gotta Love That Hat!!!

Hello My Friends!

I wanted to post a sample of one of my finished items, a crocheted hat that I made about a year ago when I was residing in Asheville,NC. Googling free patterns is a common past time of mine. I love to see what cool crocheted pieces I can come up with or become inspired by. Asheville has an enormous hippie culture, and I noticed all the hippie girls at my school wearing these slouchy, floppy looking hats. So, I started Googling, and I came across a pattern for the "Puffy Slouchy Hat" on the following site: Copy and paste the link into your web browser to see Jessica Suzanne's version of the hat. I have posted her pattern on my blog for you below.

Here is my version of the hat:

I followed the pattern up until the last few rows. I did a filet stitch for one or two rows at the very end.

Puffy Slouchy Hat

Bulky weight yarn, size K hook. For Worsted weight use a J hook

The numbers in the [] say how many stitches there should be.

Puff stitch: (YO, insert hook in next st, YO, pull up a loop) 4 times, YO, and draw through all loops on hook. (Here’s a video)

You do not have to join rounds, and this will create a spiral, and there will be no seam. Use a stitch marker if you do this, and keep the stitch count the same.

1: ch 4, 12 dc in first st, join in ch. (Just grab one loop from top of the chain. This makes the seam less visible, and this will make a circle.) [12]

2: ch 3, work 1 dc where chain is (in same st as join - ch3 counts as first dc), 2 dc in each stitch, join with sl st (remember, the ch counts as a st!). [24]

3: ch 3, work 1 dc where chain is, (work 1 dc, 2 dc in next stitch) around. Join. [36]

4: ch 3, work 1 dc where chain is, (work 1 dc in next 2 sts, 2 dc in next st) around. Join. [48]

5: ch3, work 1 dc where chain is, (work 1 dc in next 3 sts, 2 dc) around. Join. [60]

6: ch 3, 1 dc in each st around. Join. [60]

7: ch 3, 1 dc in each st around. Join. [60]

8: ch 3, 1 dc in each st around. Join. [60]

9: ch 3, puff st in same st as join, dc in next st, (puff in next st, dc in next
st) around. Join in top st of first puff. [60 sts: 30 puffs, 30 dc]

10: ch 1, (sc in top of puff, sc in next dc) around. Join. [60]
* It will look like you are skipping stitches here, but you aren’t. Just
remember, sc in top of puff, skip spot, and sc in top of dc post. Make sure you have 60 sts here!

11: same as row 9. [60 sts: 30 puffs, 30 dc]

12: sc around, same as row 10. [60]

13: same as row 9. [30 puffs, 30 dc]

14: sc around, same as row 10. [60]

15: ch 1, sc in each st around. [60]

16: ch 1, (sc in next 3 sts, dec over next 2 sts) around. Join. [48]

17: ch 1, sc in each st around. Join. [48]

18: same as row 17. [48]

19: same as row 17. [48]

20: same as row 17. [48]

21: ch 1, (slip st in next st, ch1, slip st in same st) around. Join in first sc.
Fasten off, weave in ends.

Please visit Jessica Suzanne's awesome blog to see how it should look if you follow the above pattern exactly:

Special thanks to Jessica Suzanne and

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Hello Kitty Granny Square!!! OMG!!!

You can stop pinching yourself because it is not a dream! Don't worry, I thought the same thing when I discovered this pattern at an awesome blog called Made by K: copy and paste the links into your web browser ( Miss K's blog is an outstanding source for this pattern; you will find a detailed instructions with pictures, abbreviation explanations and diagrams for the hardest part (in my opinion), the face. If you're even slightly off on the eyes and whiskers, you'll still have a cute square, but it will be lacking in authenticity.

The picture of the Hello Kitty Granny Square that I posted was taken shortly before I submitted the square to my Japanese Culture Arts 310 Professor, Christopher Daniels, at UNCA in Asheville, NC. We were all required to create a wikipage on Outsider Japan;copy and paste the following link into your web browser to view the page I created:

The page contains nothing more regarding Hello Kitty Crochet than you will find right here on this blog. However, it does contain a great deal of awesome information regarding all things Japanese culture. There are other Hello Kitty topics posted on the site as well. However, you will have to sift through the student projects and course material posted by the professor. I can recall learning some very interested tidbits of the culture that is considered taboo in America. For example, the prevalence of teen, male, homosexual manga(japanese comics) specifically marketed to teenage girls, the Japanese Phallic Festival(appears to be a family affair),and I recently discovered the Hello Kitty Murder, which was an article done by the Washington Post:¬Found=true

I won't go into the gruesome details, if you want the dirt, you can read the story for yourself. There's no doubt that Hello Kitty has had an interesting influence on asian culture for many years, but murder? As far as Hello Kitty is concerned, I think that's just blasphemous.

According to, the kitty started out in England in 1974 (although she was introduced to Japan by a company known as Sanrio the same year). On a lighter note, I would like to crochet a Groovy Hello Kitty Coin purse as a tribute to Hello Kitty's debut in 1974 on a vinyl change purse. Maybe we can start a Groovy Hello Kitty Crocheted Coin Purse Competition!

*Please keep in mind that Hello Kitty is trademarked by Sanrio, and it would be criminal to produce this product for profit.*

My Silly Video on the Basic Chain Stitch

How to crochet the chain stitch

How to crochet the basic chain stitch

Whoever said crocheting is exclusively for grandmothers and spinsters couldn't have been more incorrect! Crochet is too awesome to only be associated with newborns, potholders and afghans. While I do loveto make the occasional cliche bootie and mittens, I am more thrilled to create the trendy hat, sexy dress or fun bikini. For many years, crocheted items has been flaunted on the runways and advertised in fall catalogs. and If you want to learn to crochet, you've come to the right place!

I have found many great patterns and ideas for crocheting online! However, you can't enjoy the patterns if you don't know how to begin the basic stitch. So, I'll show you how to get started!

Materials you will need: a ball of yarn and a crochet needle

Tip: Make sure the needle is the right size for the thickness of your yarn. If you use an extremely small needle for a thick string of yarn, you will find it difficult to pull the yarn through the loops. Most yarn companies have paper labels that will include the size for the best needle to use, and they usually throw in a free pattern (usually for oven mitts or an afgahn)!

Step 1: Take your yarn and twist it securely around the needle.

Step 2: There is a proper way to hold a crochet needle and thread. If you are right handed, like myself, you will hold the needle in your right hand, and wrap the hanging yarn (leading to the ball of yarn) around your index finger until there is tension in the string. Grasp the base of the loop (there should be a small piece of string hanging from the base of the loop around the needle) initially tied around the needle with your left thumb and middle finger. Now you are ready to start your chain stitch!

Step 3: "Yarn over" is the term that can be found in patterns when instructing to wrap the needle around the yarn to where the thread is beneath the hook in order to be pulled through the loop on the needle/hook. The final product is a braid/chain like effect. The diagram below from clearly displays the technique.

 A pattern often begins with a certain number of chains to build upon. For example, it may instruct you to begin a hat by saying, "ch 6". So, you will wrap the yarn around the needle to create your first loop, and then "yarn over" and pull the thread through the loop on the needle/hook six times to start the hat.