Thursday, June 26, 2014

Changing colors with the Double Knot Technique

Jane Richmond's Double Knot technique of joining yarn has really changed my world.  No more weaving in ends!  When you are crocheting with the same color yarn, the join is pretty much invisible.  But what happens when you want to switch colors?

It took me some trial and error, but I figured out how to change colors. Once I did, I was able to make a bag for my projects only having to weave in the first tail and the last.  I changed colors every row for 25 rows of that bag and I only weaved in two tails!  

Now, I'm using it on a blanket.  Here's what to do:

1) Crochet (and complete) to the last stitch in your current color. 

2) Snip the yarn right where it is on your hook. This makes certain that you only have the amount of your current color that you need before the color change. Put your hook aside. 

3) Pull out one or two of your stitches to give you yarn to work with. 

4) Join the new yarn to the end of your current color, making certain that the knot of your current color is as close to the end as possible. I can generally work it so that I only have about a half an inch of excess. 

5) Complete your knot, snip off the ends. 

6) Reinsert your hook and crochet back the stitches you took out. The new color should come up right at the point you want it to start!

I'm not worried about that speck of white on the side, because I'm planning on including a border.  However, I've learned that you can pull your stitches back out, readjust your tension and crochet the stitches again to make that knot completely hidden by your stitches. 

I absolutely love the Double Knot method and I hope you find this method of joining colors helpful!

Joining Yarn - The Double Knot Method

A few months ago, I saw a video on YouTube that changed my world.  One of the things I hate most is weaving in ends.  I HATE IT.  But this video taught me a method that made everything wonderful.  It is called the Double Knot method and when used, it means there are NO ends to weave it. 

Check it out:

Sunday, June 15, 2014

Stripey Yarn Bag for Me!

I rarely make things for myself, but when one of my students gave me $48 to the Mary Maxim online store, I decided this was it!  The moment I've been waiting for!

I've been admiring Lucy's Jolly Chunky Bag for quite some time, and I knew I wanted to make it. So I used my $48 (a multiple of 16, since 16 is one of my favorite numbers) to buy some Titan yarn in six different colors of chunky happiness. 

I used Lucy's pattern for a bit, increasing until the ninth row.  She uses double crochets in her pattern and when I hit the ninth row, I realized I wanted something tighter.  I switched to half double crochets for the sides of the bag. When I reached the top, I decided to the handles a little differently.  She crocheted the straps and sewed them on.  I used a method I learned several years ago of making handles by creating chains and then single crocheting around to create the straps. 

I added some flowers from Cre8tion Crochet's flower clip pattern.  I even made an inner pocket for my hook case.The pocket is just 10 or so rows of half double crochets made into a rectangle and carefully sewn in to that the stitches did not show through.

I haven't lined it and I'm not sure I'm going to.  This is really just for my yarn and WIPs. 

I love this yarn and if I had the money, I would buy it frequently.  Who knew?  I've never heard of Mary Maxim before I go this gift card.  I may have to check them out more frequently.