Sunday, 16 April 2017

Mini Pom Pom Paper Basket - Free Pattern

Happy Easter everyone!

Here's a quick make to ensure you have somewhere to store all the mini eggs the Easter Bunny brings!

The pattern is worked in the round, joining with a slip stitch at the end of each round. I used Rico Creative Paper, but anything with a bit of structure such as tshirt yarn, twine, or thick cotton yarn would work! 

If you do make the pattern I'd love to see! Tag me as #lottieandalbert or @lottieandalbert on Instagram, or find me on Ravelry under the same name! 


Abbreviations


blo       Back Loop Only
ch        Chain
dc        Double Crochet (US Single crochet)
dc2tog Double crochet two together (decrease)
flo        Front Loop Only
rnd      Round
ss        Slip Stitch
sts       Stitches




Pattern Starts



Rnd 1: Create a magic loop, 6 dc, ss into top of first dc (6sts)
Rnd 2: Ch1 (does not count as a stitch now or throughout) 2dc in each stitch around, ss into top of first dc to join (12sts)
Rnd 3: Ch1, *1dc in first stitch, 2dc in next stitch. Repeat from * until end. SS to join (18sts)
Rnd 4: Ch1, *1dc in first two stitches, 2dc in next stitch. Repeat from * until end. SS to join (24sts)
Rnd 5: Ch1, 1dc blo in each stitch around, SS to join (24sts)
Rnd 6: Ch1, 1dc in each stitch around, SS to join (24sts)
Rnd 7: Ch1, *1dc in first three stitches, 2dc in next stitch. Repeat from * until end, SS to join (30sts)
Rnd 8: Ch1, 1dc in each stitch around, SS to join (30sts)
Rnd 9: Ch1, *1dc flo first stitch, 2dc flo next stitch. Repeat from * until end. SS to join (45sts)
Rnd 10: Ch1, *dc2tog blo, 1dc blo. Repeat from * until end. SS to join (30sts)
Rnd 11: Ch1, *1dc in first 3 stitches, dc2tog across next two stitches. Repeat from * until end. SS to join (24sts)
Rnds 12-13: Ch1, 1dc in each stitch around, SS to join (24 sts)
Rnd 14: 3 x ss, dc, ch10, skip 5, sc, 5 x ss, dc, ch10, skip 5, dc, 2 x ss.

Your handles and now formed and your basket is complete! Why not finish off with some pompoms, tassels or ribbon!





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Tuesday, 28 March 2017

'Atomic Flower Blanket' for KnitcraftHQ


Anyone following me on Instagram may have seen that I've been working on an exclusive free pattern for Hobbycraft's blog and social hub, KnitcraftHQ! If you'd like to make it, here is the final pattern! Please do let me know what you think, and tag me if you make it - I'd love to see!






Atomic Flower Blanket

by Lindsey Newns @lottieandalbert

A beautiful mid-century-modern inspired lap blanket worked in flower motifs, joined using the join-as-you-go method and finished with a simple double crochet and crab stitch border.

The pattern below requires 12 motifs, which should give you a finished blanket size of around 75cm by 75cm, however the blanket is very easy to scale up or down, should you wish.

You are free to make items to sell from this pattern but please credit Lindsey Newns @lottieandalbert as the designer.

When you’ve made the blanket we would love to see it! Use the hastags #lottieandalbert and #shareyourknitcraft, or tag us as @lottieandalbert and @knitcrafthq!



Abbreviations

ch         chain
sts        stitches
ss         slip stitch
dc         double crochet (US single)
htr         half treble crochet (US half double)
tr           treble crochet (US double)
dtr        double treble crochet (US treble)
ttr          triple treble crochet (US double treble)

Gauge

Work rounds 1 and 2 of the pattern.
The circle should measure approx. 9cm(3.5in) across. If your circle comes up too large, try a smaller hook size; if your circle comes up too small, try a larger hook size.

Tools

10mm hook (or size needed to obtain gauge)
Scissors
Yarn needle

Yarn

I used 7 x 100g balls of Hobbycraft’s Conway and Bliss Odin in the following colours:
3 x Ecru
1 x Sky
1 x Ocean
1 x Coral
1 x Meadow
The pattern would work well in any super chunky yarn, and the motifs in any yarn weight provided you make enough to cover the desired area.


Pattern Notes

The atomic flower motif is worked in rounds that are joined at the end of each one. Do not turn your work.
Starting chains count as stitches unless otherwise stated.
In the instructions below, yarn 1 is the petal centre, yarn 2 is the petals, yarn 3 is the background yarn.
You will need to make centres and petals in the following colours:


Centres

8 x Ecru
2 x Meadow
2 x Coral

2 x Sky
2 x Ocean

Petals

4 x Meadow
4 x Coral
4 x Sky
4 x Ocean


Pair your petals and centres randomly, as I did, or place them more orderly if you prefer.


Stitch Descriptions

Slip stitch
Insert hook into required stitch, yarn over and pull up a loop (two loops on hook), pull the loop just formed through the first loop on the hook.

Double crochet (US single)
Insert hook into required stitch, yarn over and pull up a loop (two loops on hook), yarn over and pull through both loops.

Half treble crochet (US half double)
Yarn over (two loops on hook) and insert into required stitch, yarn over and pull up a loop (three loops on hook), yarn over and pull through all three loops.

Treble crochet (US double)
Yarn over (two loops on hook) and insert into required stitch, yarn over and pull up a loop (three loops on hook), yarn over and pull through two loops (two loops on hook), yarn over and pull through remaining two loops.

Double treble crochet (US treble)
Yarn over twice (three loops on hook) and insert into required stitch, yarn over and pull up a loop (four loops on hook), yarn over and pull through two loops (three loops on hook), yarn over and pull through two loops (two loops on hook), yarn over and pull through remaining two loops.

Triple treble crochet (US double treble)
Yarn over three time (four loops on hook) and insert into required stitch, yarn over and pull up a loop (five loops on hook), yarn over and pull through two loops (four loops on hook), yarn over and pull through two loops (three loops on hook), yarn over and pull through two loops (two loops on hook), yarn over and pull through remaining two loops.

Crab stitch
Insert hook into first stitch to the RIGHT (not the left as normal) from front to back, yarn over and pull up a loop (two loops on hook), yarn over and pull through both loops. Keep working like this to your right.

The Pattern

Atomic Flower Centre

Using yarn 1, form a magic loop.
Round 1  3ch, 11tr into the magic loop. SS into top of starting 3ch. (12 sts)
Round 2  3ch, tr into the base of the same stitch as the 3ch, 2tr in each stitch until end. SS into top of starting ch3. (24 sts)
Fasten off yarn 1.


Atomic Flower Petals

Note: Stitches in this section given in (brackets) indicate two stitches are to be made in the same stitch from the previous round.
Join in yarn 2 into the top of any treble from the previous round.
Round 3  3ch, 2tr in the next stitch, *1tr in next stitch, 2tr in next stitch. (Repeat from * until end.) SS into top of starting 3ch. (36 sts)
Round 4  1ch (does not count as stitch), ss into base of same stitch as 1ch, dc, (htr then tr in same stitch), tr, dtr, (dtr, tr), tr, htr, (dc, ss), *ss, dc, (htr, tr), tr, dtr, (dtr, tr), tr, htr, (dc, ss)*. (Repeat from * to * twice more until end). SS into first ch1 to join. (48 sts)
Fasten off yarn 2.

Square off the Atomic Flower

Note: When working the ss in this round, try and work them very loosely.
Join in yarn 3 into the first ss of the previous round.
Complete round 5 and square off one motif, then read the instructions below for the join-as-you-go method.
Round 5  5ch, dtr in next stitch, tr, htr, dc, ss, ss, dc, htr, tr, dtr, ttr, 2ch [corner], *ttr, dtr, tr, htr, dc, ss, ss, dc, htr, tr, dtr, ttr, 2ch [corner]*. (Repeat from * to * twice more until end). Ss into top of first 5ch to join. (56 sts)


Join-as-you-go Method
Follow the above Round 5 instructions for one motif, squaring the flower motif off completely. To join the rest of the motifs using the join-as-you-go method, follow the instructions in the same way but make the following modifications at the corners you wish to join to the existing motif. Instead of 2ch:
1ch, ss through the other motif’s corner (insert your hook, front to back, through the 2ch corner space, yarn over, and pull through existing loop on hook), 1ch. Now continue with the rest of the instructions as per Rnd 5.
Join your motifs together in a square, four rows by four columns. When you have the option of different ch2 corner spaces to join to, try and join to the corners diagonally opposite.
Colour planning: I placed flowers with white (Ecru) centres every other square in the blanket, but feel free to mix yours up!

The Border

Round 1  Join yarn 3 into the top of any stitch from the previous round and 1ch (does not count as a stitch). Work one round of dc around the blanket, working 4dc into each corner. Ss into the first 1ch to join.
Round 2 1ch (does not count as a stitch), work crab stitch around the blanket, into each dc of the previous round. Ss into first 1ch to join.

Weave in and tidy up any ends. Your blanket is now complete!


I hope you enjoyed this @lottieandalbert pattern. Please let me know if you have any questions via Instagram or the blog lottieandalbert.blogspot.com.

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Saturday, 4 February 2017

Leopard Print Tapestry Crochet Afghan Square - Free Pattern


My leopard print tapestry square received so much love on Instagram, I thought I'd share the graph on here too, in case anyone wanted to make their own!





You may or may not have noticed, but this is only my second ever blog post since my Lottie and Albert Rainbow Blanket Tutorial (it's almost pointless linking it: as I said it's my only other post so very easy to find it if you'd like to, ha!). Partly this is due to lack of time (I blame my children, who are currently 1 and 2!), but mostly due to wanting to blog 'properly' and not having 'good enough' images, content, and so on.

Then yesterday I caught a live IG stories by one of the @ourmakerlife founders, who was chatting about all things Instagram and Etsy. A few of the things she said really struck a chord with me, one of which was, essentially, stop comparing yourself to those accounts that are already fully polished with wonderful photography, a fully stocked Etsy shop, etc, and if you want to open an Etsy/blog/start a YouTube channel then just, make a start! Put yourself out there, and focus on growing and improving as you go along. 

She also talked about writing content, and stopping worrying about what you think people want to hear, and start writing what you would like to share. It sounds so simple when someone else says it, doesn't it? So with that in mind, here's me making a move towards where I want to be. It's not perfectly polished yet but, if you are reading this, thank you for being here and following along with my journey! 

(PS Can someone invent a better word than the cringe-inducing 'journey'?!)



Leopard Print Tapestry Square

The graph below has numbers and rows that were auto-generated when I created the chart in Stitch Fiddle, but if you are familiar with tapestry crochet you will know that you need to start at the bottom right (37:18), so please ignore the numbers!



Pattern notes

Tapestry crochet is a popular form of crochet colour work, which is created by carrying all your colours at the same time, inside the stitch (unlike Fair Isle - which carries the other yarns on the Wrong Side in floats, and Intarsia - which doesn't carry the other colours, but requires a new ball of colour for each colour change).
Tapestry crochet is great in that the pattern works on both sides of the piece - you may see your other yarns at the ends of your rows when you turn your work, but this can be remedied by adding a border or double crocheting around the piece in your main colour at the end. Bear in mind it may create a slightly stiffer fabric, and will be thicker due to the carried yarns inside the stitches.



The main things to bear in mind are

The Graph

...At the end of each row when you have turned, remember to read the graph back the opposite way to the row before. You may want to print it off and mark the rows off as you go.
Happy Making! Feel free to use different weight yarns, to connect several squares together, or to expand the chart to make a longer thinner scarf, or similar!









I used: 3 strands of Stylecraft Special DK and a 3.5mm hook. The square is worked in UK treble (US double) crochet stitches, which created a 7in square.

This is not a stitch-by-stitch tutorial, but I have tried to give some hints and tips if you are new to the tapestry crochet technique!







Tension 

You may want to go down a hook size, as any gaps in your stitches will show the other yarn colours running inside the stitches.


Colour Changes 

To change colour, you will need to modify the standard treble (US double) crochet stitch. Yarn over using your first colour, and insert hook into stitch. Pull up a loop using your main colour (three loops on hook). Yarn over using your main colour, and pull through two loops. At this stage, let go of your main colour, and pick up with your hand the colour you want to change to, now yarn over using your new colour, and pull through the remaining two loops on your hook. You are now ready to make your next stitch in the new colour. Change colour in this way every time you see a colour change coming up, even if the end of the row is one colour, and the start of the next row (the stitch above on the graph) is another colour.


Foundation Chain: Ch40 in dark grey 
Row 1: bring in your light grey and cream yarns and, working over the top of them, treble (US Double) crochet into the third chain from the hook. Follow the graph below, starting in the bottom right hand corner, working right to left. When you reach the end of the row, turn your work. 
Row 2: Ch 3 (this is your turning chain and does not count as a stitch throughout) You are now reading the chart from left to right...




If you do make one, I'd love to see! 
Let me know in the comments, by tagging me @lottieandalbert on Instagram, or using the hastag #lottieandalbert








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Tuesday, 4 October 2016

Super Chunky Rainbow Blanket - Free Tutorial

Super Chunky Rainbow Blanket Tutorial


Hello you lovely people! Welcome to the pattern for my super chunky rainbow blanket.



I use the word pattern loosely here, because if you can manage a half treble crochet (US half double crochet) then you're 90% of the way there! This is a great stash buster project, and really the combinations of colours and yarns are endless! But be warned it is going to gobble up your yarn, with the final blanket cot quilt size/lap quilt size at around 80cm x 100cm based on this pattern :)

Happy making!! If you do use this pattern, please tag your makes with #lottieandalbertrainbowblanket so I can see what colours you choose, how many pompoms you go for and how fabulous they all look!


An early version of the blanket, using 7 balls of yarn
and a granny square pattern


Materials


20mm crochet hook 
6 balls of 100g DK yarn
Small pom pom maker (1-2")
Scissors

I used Pony's 20mm crochet hook from Amazon (£3), and 6 balls of Marriner acrylic DK (£1 each!) in Red, Jaffa, Sunrise, Emerald, Madonna and Fiesta. I originally chose to use this yarn as a stash buster as I found the acrylic quite stiff for clothes or toys, but actually, once you use 6 of the yarns together, it turns super squishy! So I would fully recommend this very cheap yarn.

At time of writing, it looks like the Sunrise Marriner colour is out of stock, but I've seen that Paintbox yarns do a rainbow bundle, which would also work really well!


Preparing your Giant Yarn Ball


If you prefer, you can simply hold all six yarns together and start your blanket. If you're going to do this, you might want to try and use six separate yarn bowls or containers to keep your yarn balls apart. 

I got in a right tangle trying to crochet and keep my tension with six balls of yarn at the same time, so chose to hand wrap all six balls of DK into one giant yarn ball. TIP: If you have a hard floor, place your six balls on it so that they can slide around as they need to while you are winding!





Tada! You're ready to go!


The Pattern


Ch Chain
SS Slip Stitch
Htc Half treble crochet (US Half double crochet)
Blo Back loop only
DC Double crochet (US Single crochet)

Foundation Chain: Ch 37
Row 1: htc in second chain from hook, htc to end, turn (35 stitches)
Row 2: ch 2 (does not count as stitch throughout) htc in blo in each stitch across, turn (35 stitches)
Rows 3-26*: Repeat Row 2
To finish: Ch 1, sc around the entire blanket, working into the sides of the stitches when working along the sides, ss into ch 1 and fasten off.
Weave in your ends by hand or by using a smaller crochet hook (unless you have a yarn needle big enough!).

*this blanket started as a bit of an experiment and a stash buster, so I crocheted until I ran out of yarn (saving some for pompoms), but I had used bits of some of the balls for other projects, so it may be that you can get a few more rows out if you are starting with full balls! 


One of the hardest things to get used to with this pattern is the tension, because your yarn is so thick and your crochet hook so big! I found a few things helped...


TIP 1


The crochet hook, due it its size, has a very deep throat, so make sure when you have wrapped your yarn over, inserted into the back loop only, and are pulling up a stitch, that the new stitch is pushed onto the thickest part of the hook before you yarn over again and pull through all loops; this will make your life easier for the second part of the stitch, and for the next row. 



TIP 2 


You can also try holding the base of your stitches with your left hand as you pull through all loops on the hook, to steady the stitches and help the hook pull through without distorting your tension. 


TIP 3


Finally, don't be afraid to manipulate the stitches with your hands and pull the stitches through using your fingers if you need to while you are getting used to the super chunky size!

Expect to be slower with this size hook than your are used to with normal sized hooks - once you get into a rhythm you will speed up, plus the super chunky size means that, even at a slower pace, your blanket will still make up quicker than smaller-sized projects!







Making your Pompoms!


I used a pompom maker very similar to the Clover ones (except cheaper and just from Amazon - shh! Don't judge me!) It has two sets of 'arms' that open out from the centre, which you wrap your yarn around before closing up and cutting around the centre, securing with a length of yarn. 

I made 18 pompoms for each end of the blanket, and attached them by tying them by hand to every other stitch along the top and bottom of the blanket.


TIP 1


If you are using the same type of pompom maker, wrap your yarn around the arms until the half semi circle is completely filled, giving you a flat top edge of yarn, before moving onto the other arms and doing the same again. When your pompoms are freed from the maker, give the a little fluff and trim them if necessary.


TIP 2


If you are worried about how much yarn to keep back for the pompoms, you could make them first then you can be safe that all remaining yarn will be for the blanket!





Happy making!! If you do use this pattern, please tag your makes with #lottieandalbertrainbowblanket so I can see what colours you choose, how many pompoms you go for and how fabulous they all look!
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