Crochet – A Love Story

Crochet – A Love Story

This is a story about crochet – a love story if you will. Here I was, at 17 – 6-weeks pregnant and my then partner with orders to the United States. Yep, I was dating an American Soldier. But what you may not know is that up until that point I was out all the time – all hours of the night. No, 16-year-olds don’t always make smart decisions when fending for themselves in a world that feels like it has thrown you to the wolves.

I remembered in 7th grade that I learned the basics of crochet but at 13 that was grandma’ stuff and I didn’t have time for it. And yet, here I was, fascinated with the things one could do with a hook and some yarn. I went out to the store, got supplies and books to help me learn how to crochet – it was pre-internet and pre-camera (so no pictures, sorry!) for me.

Next thing was that I created doilies and placemats which later evolved to afghans and more. I started searching what else I could do, what new stitch I could learn, or a new skill I could add.

crochet - a love story
Tree + Owl Granny Stitch Blanket

And that hobby that kept me off the streets, became a right-down obsession and perhaps even a little bit of addiction to all things yarn (I think I have about 7 or 8 Rubbermaid tubs of yarn right now).  And seriously, there’s something nothing better to binge-watch your favorite TV show and create that handmade gift for a family member or a friend.

My very first personalized gift was a placemat made from filet crochet that had the names of the couple incorporated. I then learned the tunisian stitch and made my son a blanket with dinosaurs (the kid was obsessed with them).

There are times where I don’t touch the hook or yarn for weeks and sometimes months, but every time I come back to it, I remember why I started and what it has given me. It has kept me safe and home at nights where I normally would have been out and about until 2 or 3 in the morning. It has given me life because without it, who knows where I would be.

Crochet Bistro

This is my journey – crochet – a love story that I now get to share with you and it all starts with the Crochet Bistro.

When you sign up, you will get access to the mini-course, where you get to learn how to get started with crochet, the hooks. the yarn and the measurements as well as access to the crochet stitch library.

Caterpillar and Flower Pattern

Caterpillar and Flower Pattern

A fun little toy set for any little one that loves a caterpillar and flower. Replaces the button eyes for yarn made ones to avoid choking hazards.

Materials:

Hook: G (4.25mm)
Medium worsted weight yarn
Stitch marker, Safety Eyes
Fiberfill

Gauge: not needed I did use a hook size smaller than recommended for the yarn to create a fabric that does not show the fiberfill

Caterpillar, flower stem and center of flower are worked in the round

Terms:

ch: chain
st: stitch
slst: slip stitch
sc: single crochet
hdc: half double crochet
dc: double crochet
tr: triple crochet
dec: decrease
( ): repeat around
{ }: total number of stitches

Caterpillar

Head:

Ch 2, 6 sc in 1st chain
Round 2: 2 sc in each sc (12)
Round 3: sc around
Round 4: 2 sc in sc, sc * repeat around (18)
Round 5: sc around
Round 6: 2 sc in sc,  sc in next 2  * repeat around (24)
Round 7: sc around
Round 8: 2 sc in sc, sc in next 3 sc * repeat around (30)
Round 9: sc around
Round 10: 2 sc in sc, sc in next 4 sc * repeat around (36)
Round 11: sc around
Round 12: 2 sc in sc, sc in next 5 sc * repeat around (42)
Round 13-15: sc around
Round 16: dec, sc in next 5 sc * repeat around
Round 17: dec, sc in next 4 sc * repeat around
Round 18: dec, sc in next 3 sc * repeat around. Add safety eyes and stuff head.
Round 19: dec, sc in next 2 sc * repeat around
Round 20: dec, sc in next 1 sc * repeat around
Round 21: dec around and close

Eyelids (make 2):

Chain 5,
Sc in each (4)
Ch 1, sc in each (4)
Sew over safety eyes

Nose:

Ch 2, 6 sc in 1st chain.
Sc in each sc, fasten off and sew on head.

Antenna:

Ch 2, 4 sc in 1st chain
2 sc in each sc
Dec around (color change)
Sc around for 3 to 4 rows, stuff and sew on the head.

Body:

Ch 2, 6 sc in 1st chain
Round 2: 2 sc in each sc
Round 3: 2 sc in sc, sc * repeat around
Round 4: 2 sc in sc,  sc in next 2  * repeat around
Round 5: 2 sc in sc, sc in next 3 sc * repeat around
Round 6: 2 sc in sc, sc in next 4 sc * repeat around
Round 7: 2 sc in sc, sc in next 5 sc * repeat around
Round 8: (color change) sc around
Round 9: dec, sc in next 5 sc * repeat around
Round 10: dec, sc in next 4 sc * repeat around
Round 11: dec, sc in next 3 sc * repeat around
Round 12: (color change) sc around.

Round 13: 2 sc in sc, sc in next 3 sc * repeat around
Round 14: 2 sc in sc, sc in next 4 sc * repeat around
Round 15: 2 sc in sc, sc in next 5 sc * repeat around
Round 16: (color change) sc around
Round 17: dec, sc in next 5 sc * repeat around
Round 18: dec, sc in next 4 sc * repeat around
Round 19: dec, sc in next 3 sc * repeat around
Round 20: (color change) sc around.
Round 21: 2 sc in sc, sc in next 3 sc * repeat around
Round 22: 2 sc in sc, sc in next 4 sc * repeat around
Round 23: 2 sc in sc, sc in next 5 sc * repeat around
Round 24: dec, sc in next 5 sc * repeat around
Round 25: dec, sc in next 4 sc * repeat around
Round 26: dec, sc in next 3 sc * repeat around
Round 27: dec, sc in next 2* repeat around
Round 28: (color change) sc around
Round 29: 2 sc in sc, sc in next 2 sc* repeat around
Round 30: 2 sc in sc, sc in next 3 sc * repeat around
Round 31: 2 sc in sc, sc in next 4 sc * repeat around
Round 32: dec, sc in next 4 sc * repeat around
Round 33: dec, sc in next 3 sc * repeat around
Round 34: dec, sc in next 2 sc * repeat around
Round 35: dec, sc in next 1 sc * repeat around. Stuff body.
Round 36: dec around,  fasten off and sew closed.

Flower

Stem

Ch 2, 6 sc in 1st chain
Round 2: 2 sc in each sc (12)
Round 3: 2 sc in sc, sc * repeat around (18)
Round 4: 2 sc in sc,  sc in next 2  * repeat around (24)
Round 5: 2 sc in sc, sc in next 3 sc * repeat around (30)
Round 6: 2 sc in sc, sc in next 4 sc * repeat around (36)
Round 7: 2 sc in sc, sc in next 5 sc * repeat around (42)
Round 8: Sc in back loops
Round 9-11: sc around
Round 12: sc in 22 st dec, sc in 22 st dec
Round 13: sc in 11 st, dec, sc in nexr 20 st, dec, sc in 11 st
Round 14-16: sc around
Round 17-19: sc in 20 st, dec, sc in 20 st, inc
Round 20-22: sc around
Round 23: dec, sc in 19 st, dec, sc in 20 st
Round 24: sc in 10 st, dec – sc in 17 st, dec, sc in 10 st
Round 25: sc in 18 st, dec, sc in 17 st, dec
Round 26-28: dec, sc in 17 st, inc, sc in 17 st
Round 29-31: sc around
Round 32: dec, sc in 17 st, dec, sc in 16 st
Round 33: dec, sc in 16 st, dec, sc in 15 st
Round 34: dec, sc in 15 st, dec, sc in 14 st
Round 35-37: sc around, fasten off, and stuff.

Flower Petals

Ch 2, 6 sc in 1st chain
Round 2: 2 sc in each sc (12)
Round 3: 2 sc in sc, sc * repeat around (18)
Round 4: 2 sc in sc, sc in next 2  * repeat around (24)
Round 5: 2 sc in sc, sc in next 3 sc * repeat around (30)
Round 6: 2 sc in sc, sc in next 4 sc * repeat around (36)
Round 7: 2 sc in sc, sc in next 5 sc * repeat around
Round 8: sc around in back loops
Round 9: 2 sc in each sc (12)
Round 10: dec, sc * repeat around (18)
Round 11: dec, sc in next 2  * repeat around (24)
Round 12: dec, sc in next 3 sc * repeat around (30)
Round 13: dec, sc in next 4 sc * repeat around (36)
Round 14: dec, sc in next 5 sc * repeat around
Stuff a bit and sew closed.

Petals are crocodile stitch

Bottom row below back loops round
Row 1: 2 dc, ch 2* repeat every third sc –
Row 2: 5 dc around first post (dc) and 5 dc around second post.
Row 3: 2 dc, chain 4* repeat in every 6st in the back loops
Row 4: 5 dc around first post (dc) and 5 dc around second post.
Row 5: slst around in back loops

Crochet Criss-Cross Summer Top

Crochet Criss-Cross Summer Top

Grab a crochet hook and start making this criss-cross summer top. There’s nothing better than a crochet top in summer. They’re light, they’re airy, and can show off your own personal style.

Material:

3-Ply Yarn – you will work with 2 strands

Hook size: F (3.75 mm)

Ch = chain
Sc = single crochet

Hdc = half double crochet
Db = double crochet
Tr = triple crochet
Inc tr = increase triple crochet

Pattern Stitch:

  • sk sc next sc – tr in next stitch – tr in sk stitch in front – repeat Stitches will cross like this: X

Gauge is not important for this top as it is designed to be adjustable to your size. If you want to substitute a heavier worsted yarn you need to reduce the starting chain by a few stitches. Please note, you may need to increase the starting chain depending on your bust size – but the process will be the same throughout!

Bust

Measure your bust!!!
Using the F hook, Ch 26 (28, 30, 32)

Row 1: hdc in 2nd ch from hook and all remaining sts, turn. Row 2: Ch 2, hdc in all sts, turn.

Repeat rows 2 until you have a long strip that can fit around your bust comfortably, or measure around your bust and crochet the strip to that length. Do not cut yarn. Fold the stripe in half and slip stitch together. Turn RS – ch 1, sc evenly around, join with slst to first sc.

Top

Row 1: Ch 2. Sc around the top of the strip previously created (1 sc should fit in each row), sl st into first ch2.

Row 2 – 5: chain 4, *sk sc next sc – tr in next stitch – tr in sk stitch in front* repeat to the last stitch. Depending on the number of stitches – you may have one extra stitch – tr into the stitch and join with slst to chain 4.

Row 6 (inc): Lay the top with the seam from bust in the middle and place a stitch marker on each side to mark place for increase stitches. Continue with pattern until stitch marker – sk sc, 2 tr in next stitch, 2 tr in sk stitch in front of last tr. Continue with pattern until stitch maker and repeat increase stitch.

Row 7 – 12: Repeat row 2 through 5

Row 13: Repeat Row 6

Continue this pattern until you have reached desired length of the top.

Bottom edge:

ch 2, hdc around – repeat once more, finish off.

Straps:

From the center seam, measure 4 inches on each side and place marker. Note* for me that was where I wanted the straps for me – you may want to place them further apart.

Join with sl st at marker on the front of the top. Ch 2, hdc evenly around edging, join with sl st.

Ch 2, hdc in next 2 stitches, turn, ch 2 – repeat until strap measures desired length. This top its 12”, finish off leaving thread to sew strap to the back of the top.

Repeat for the 2nd strap.

Congrats! You have now completed your Criss-Cross Summer Top!

Love the Criss-Cross Summer Top but don’t know how to crochet? No worries, email me and I will be happy to make it for you!

Please do not copy and/or redistribute this pattern as your own – you can share the link or link into a blog post as long as credit is given back to me. You may make this top to sell it, again all I ask is that you link back to me, thanks! If you have any questions, please email me at contact at petramonaco dot com

Item of the Month: Rainbow Crochet Blanket

Item of the Month: Rainbow Crochet Blanket

Check out our rainbow crochet blanket, a handmade piece from my hands to your couch. This blanket is made with a corner to corner crochet technique that works just as it sounds –from one corner to the other increasing each row until your project is tall and wide enough, and then decreasing the other way!

This striped corner-to-corner crochet blanket in rainbow-inspired colored yarns will look fun in any room that could use some sprucing up. So when you’re ready to relax at the end of the day, grab your book, your favorite cup of tea and curl up on the couch.

  • Measures 48″ x 48″
  • Multiple colors with Acrylic Yarn
  • Can be machine washed and dried
  • This item was made in a smoke-free home.

This fun colored crochet blanket in a rainbow-inspired theme also makes for a memorable gift for special occasions such as birthdays, baby or wedding showers, and of course Christmas.

We are a pet-friendly home, so if you have allergies, please send me a message before ordering so we can discuss the creation/handling/packaging of your item to minimize issues when it gets to you

Pink is the color of Love

Pink is the color of Love

If you’ve been following my 30-day blog series for March so far then you’ll know I’ve recently written about my favorite colors.

And while I am a huge fan of purple and teal that doesn’t mean I don’t like other colors. Pink is the universal color of love and my favorite combination is either pink, white and red or pink, white and black.

Sweetheart's Granny Square Blanket

Like this Sweetheart’s Granny Square Crochet blanket.

It drapes and wraps beautifully, and at 46″ by 34″  inches is sized for use as either as a small afghan, a large lapghan or toddler blanket.

Skull Baby Crochet Blanket

As someone who loves punk and heavy metal music, I know that I can’t be the only one that appreciates a little bit of skull work! And pink, white and black just really go together, don’t you think?

Pink Flower Hexagon Crochet Blanket

But I can’t help myself when it comes to red, white and pink.

This Hexagon crochet blanket measures 34″ x 27″ and is perfect for covering the baby during strolls or cuddles.

I am sure I’ll continue to use this color combination in the future once I finish the projects I have going on right now.

The Hexagon Crochet Blanket

The Hexagon Crochet Blanket

Overall I’ve been crocheting since 1992 but in the last few years I had lacked the inspiration and motivation. I was trying to find my footing in the world specifically as I was building another business. I’ve been so focused on making a name in this world that I allowed the parts that make me, well me, fall to the wayside.

And then gifts from heaven found me and I am trying to get all the work done for The Rebels Den so that I have time to create. And I am in this place where all things have come full circle, everything I’ve done the last 15 years now makes sense and I can finally find what I prefer to call harmony rather than balance. This life, this work that I do is really the constant motion of the highs and lows that being an entrepreneur will bring to the table. It’s a dance where I often lead from inspired ideas to following what nurtures my soul.

The Hexagon Blanket was a continued gift – the colors, the pattern drawing me in and I couldn’t wait to start and finish it. Reminding me of snowflakes and wanting to do it in the hues of blues and white. But the colors of Rose Wine and Light Rose drawing me in and for the first time in a long time, I finished another blanket.

This blanket was started by someone else and as I continue to go through the yarn I was gifted, the projects started – I know some of them will never be what they were originally intended to be. But this hexagon blanket drew me in to finish it. I adapted the pattern which means it isn’t as big or thick as the pattern was designed to be but I can see me repeating this pattern in different colors of the sky or even rainbow.

• Materials Used: 100% acrylic yarn
• The hexagon blanket measures 43 x 32 inches
• Care Instructions: Machine wash in cold/warm water; machine dry low
• This item was made in a smoke-free home.

And I am off to work on the next blanket!