Saturday, December 25, 2010

Little gifts

Jill got crocheted arm warmers and a little matching hat for her Barbie doll for Christmas. Here is a rather overexposed photo of the items before we sent them to Jill.

I made these by creating rectangles in rows of basic single crochet, with the ribbing designed to run lengthwise down Jill's arms. Once the rectangles were wide enough to wrap around her arms, I brought the long edges together and seamed them, leaving small openings for her thumbs a couple of inches from the hand end of each. Then I finished them by adding some pink pony beads for pizzazz.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Slytherin House scarf

This is Rose Love's Christmas present. (Shhh!!)

Made with Caron Simply Soft yarn (6 ounce skeins) in Dark Sage (green) and Grey Heather (silver), because Slytherin House colors are green and silver. (Rose Love adores Slytherin.)

Knitted School Scarf based on Harry Potter Hogwarts House Colors

Knit pattern by Susan Benitez. Copyright 2010. All rights reserved. Pattern may not be sold or duplicated in any form. The written instructions, templates and illustrations are intended for personal, non-commercial use only. PATTERN UPDATED 5/4/2013 to correct errata.


Gauge is not critical to this project.

Abbreviations used

k – knit
p – purl
st – stitch

Materials list

Knitting needles size 5 (3.75 mm).
Worsted weight yarn: 2 skeins for primary color A, 1 skein for contrast stripe B); samples were made using Caron Simply Soft solids in 6-ounce skeins.
For Gryffindor House: Autumn Red 9730 (A) and Sunshine 9755 (B)
For Hufflepuff House: Sunshine 9755 (A) and Black 9727 (B)
For Ravenclaw House: Dark Country Blue 9711 (A) and Gray Heather 9742 (B)
For Slytherin House: Dark Sage 9707 (A) and Gray Heather 9742 (B)


Scarf finished size is approximately 7 inches wide by 66 inches long, not including the 6-inch fringe on each end. The fabric is knitted in a 2-by-2 rib. Gauge isn't terribly important when you're making a scarf, but this ribbed fabric came out to about 6 stitches per inch for me. You can make your scarf narrower or wider, according to your preference, but the total number of stitches cast on must be divisible by 4 for a 2-by-2 rib knit.


For scarf: In A, cast on 48 st.

1. Work one of each of the following sections in order (*, **, ***).

* Half-height block in primary color: In A, work 24 rows in 2-by-2 rib (k2, p2).

** Stripes section: In B, work in 2-by-2 rib (k2, p2) for 3 rows. In A, work in 2-by-2 rib (k2, p2) for 6 rows. In B, work in 2-by-2 rib for 3 rows.

*** Full-height block in primary color: In A, work 48 rows in 2-by-2 rib (k2, p2).

2. Repeat ** and *** sections in alternating order 5 times. At this point, your scarf will have 6 full-height block sections and 6 stripes sections (plus one half-height block * at the beginning).

3. Work one more stripes section **, followed by a final half-height block *. Cast off.

For fringe: Cut 52 12-inch lengths of yarn in each color A and B. Hold together 2 strands (1 of each color). Using a small crochet hook, partially pull the strands through at one end of the scarf, just above the casted row. Pull the loose ends through the loop, making sure strand ends are even, and pull to tighten. I like lots of fringe on my scarves, so I tied 26 fringe knots across each end (which was a snug fit all the way across), but you may use fewer (spacing them a bit further apart) if you wish.

Enjoy your new scarf. Now you can show the world into which Hogwarts house YOU have been sorted!

Update: Here's a scarf I made for Elena using Gryffindor House colors.

And a scarf I made for Amy using Ravenclaw House colors.

And here's a scarf I knitted for Montie using Patriot Guard Riders colors.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Lap blanket in double crochet

This is the type of piece that happens when you have a skein or two of yarn and no other ideas for how to use it up! Oh well, it turned out to be just the right size to use as a lap warmer/lap blanket.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Loom-knitted hat for Caleb

Caleb's Grandpa Allen started this cap project, then gifted some of his knitting looms and yarn to me (including this blue cap). So I finished it and tucked it in with Caleb's Christmas gifts.

I suppose it turned out OK considering that it was the first time I'd ever used knitting looms.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Knitting and crochet

Now that I've been able to get a little crafty again recently by hand-knotting lanyards, I find my appetite whetted to expand to other practical projects, such as knitting and crochet. I did some knitting years ago, but I never learned how to crochet properly. Amy is pretty much a self-taught crocheter, so maybe she will give me some guidance.

Anyway, I discovered a Freedomblogging blog today called "Fiber Lust Confessional," and there I found a link to a booklet of free patterns available as a PDF download from Berroco yarns. You can browse to the download page by clicking the photo. Hopefully, I can find the time to try some of these!

Sunday, May 23, 2010


For a while now, I've been wanting to craft some hand-knotted/beaded lanyards on which to wear my credentials to work. There's a great site called BooJee Beads where I could buy some really cool handmade lanyards, but I think it would be a lot more satisfying (and a lot less expensive) to make them myself.

So I finally got my thoughts organized and found a great site - - with free macramé instructions and patterns, including detailed instructions for how to craft jewelry and related items out of small cords (like 1 mm hemp or embroidery floss), which is the size I had in mind for making my lanyards.

I first wanted to make a lanyard with a spiral pattern. This page at Free-Macrame-Patterns has simple, detailed instructions for how to create the spiral effect. I wasn't able to find embroidery floss at Walmart to begin my project, so I settled for 1 mm hemp, which is probably a lot easier to work with because it's less slippery than the floss, so it holds the knots much better.

Step 1: Mount two cords to a ring or holding cord. This will give you four strands to work with. Using the two outside cords as your working cords, tie the first half of a square knot (i.e., a half knot).

Step 2: Repeat the half knot over and over. Make sure you tie each of the knots exactly the same way. The cords will twist to form an attractive spiral chain.

Here's a photo of my first work in progress. I started with blue and yellow strands.

And here's the finished lanyard:

Here's the second lanyard: