Light cotton crochet cardi

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In a final crafting spree before the Feast of Tabernacles, I finished this light cotton cardigan in the picot fan stitch. I worked from the top down, following this tutorial, and then added a harmonizing border around the edge and sleeves.

I used a beautiful, soft, drapey bamboo and cotton blend and crochet hook number 2.

I look forward to wearing this during the balmy Sukkot evenings.

Cozy cabled crochet beanie

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The cozy winter hat for Israel is done, and I love how it turned out! This was my first attempt at two nifty crochet techniques, namely the stretchy slip stitch ribbing and the cabling (which also involved mastering the front and back post double crochet). It was incredibly fun to learn and I love the texture I got! I followed a wonderful, very clear tutorial from All About Ami almost exactly, except that I found a matching pompom in my stash rather than making my own.

I used lovely, irresistibly soft single-ply merino yarn and a crochet hook number 3.5. Working with single-ply yarn was another novelty for me, and it certainly does come with its own challenges. The yarn doesn’t hold up its structure as firmly as three-ply, and doesn’t take kindly to ripping out (which almost inevitably happens in a row or two when learning a new technique). But the softness and beautiful sheen were just lovely.

I hope Israel wears this hat with as much pleasure as I had making it.

PS: Did you mean to ask when I had the time to do this in the middle of the High Holidays prep? I kind of wonder myself! It was a fantastic way to relax and feel I’ve accomplished something at odd moments here and there, that’s for sure. I wish all my Jewish readers Shana Tova and a wonderful year ahead.

Rustic crochet jute basket

Basic Rustic Jute Basket

A great, basic basket for beginners!

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It seems like we can never have enough containers for all the toys and art supplies around here, but utilitarian plastic bins, however useful, are not very aesthetically pleasing. What better solution than to attempt making my own baskets to keep all the kids’ stuff in rein?

This was my first attempt at crocheting with jute twine, and I was pretty pleased with the result. Furthermore, it was just about the cheapest item in our local craft store! I spent about a dollar and a half on the materials for making this little basket, and that’s with picking a smallish package, which was relatively pricier.

I followed an important tip for baskets: to achieve a sturdy, firm shape (rather than a floppy bowl), crochet a flat circle for the bottom, and then work the next round in slip stitch in the back loops only.

Proceed to work in single crochet in the front loops of the same row. Then work your way up as you normally would. This creates a sort of angle that really helps the basket stand on its own.

I worked the final row with acrylic yarn for a nice color contrast, and I also made the tension a little tighter to pull the top a bit more closely together, which makes the basket even sturdier.

Pretty pineapple crochet bolero

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Yes! I am pretty proud of myself for accomplishing the intricate and beautiful pineapple stitch in his lovely bolero. Inspiration from here. Skill level: intermediate to advanced.

Crochet hook number 3. Material: soft cotton.

Good and straightforward tutorial for pineapple stitch can be found here.

With some crochet skills and an adventurous spirit, it’s possible to make a bolero with virtually any stitch, working from the top down. Start with a foundation chain and work the pattern back and forth across each row, increasing so that you get an almost circular shape. Drape over the shoulders and bind off the sleeves when desired and keep working the pattern below, skipping the armholes.

Another little crochet doll

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I’m just weaving in the ends of my newest crochet creation, a little amigurumi doll that I had tremendous fun making. The theme was traditional Ethiopian clothing with a Jewish theme, though admittedly my star of David looks a bit more like a flower.

I know dolls are something I’m going to make again and again now that I’ve discovered it. It’s tremendously fun, takes relatively little time (instant gratification!) and allows me to use up all the little odds and ends of yarn I have sitting around.

  • Check out this great guide to basic amigurumi here
  • Tons of free amigurumi patterns here

Little crochet tote bag

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A little lacy crochet tote bag for summer, for odds and ends that I might take with me if I’m just going for a short walk to the playground – a pack of tissues, an apple, a small bottle of water, sunglasses.

The simplest bag imaginable, made of two lacy squares, a triangular flap, and a strap that is basically a super long rectangle.

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A large, elongated bead attached to the tip of the flap serves as a button that goes into the middle hole (the center of the square).

Square pattern from a vintage Russian magazine:

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The flap and strap are more or less freestyle – just make sure the tip of your triangle reaches the center of the bag.

Worked in thin, sturdy cotton thread with crochet hook number 2.5.

Dreams of Lace Crochet Dress

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I decided to pull out all stops and make a really fancy little dress for Hadassah, but not something so excessively frilly it would get in her way. The result was this lovely, airy summer dress meant to be worn over a short onesie. I really like the color combination of white, black and different hues of purple, though it was originally the result of not having enough white yarn.

Material: thin cotton thread yarn, suitable for making lacy patterns. Crochet hook number 1-1.5.

Top pattern: top to bottom square neckline buttoned raglan.

Skirt design by Valentina Litvinova, with slight modifications.

Yes, it did take a pretty long time to make, but honestly, not as long as I thought it would! I was genuinely concerned Hadassah would need a larger size by the time I completed it, but it worked quicker than I had expected, and I’m really happy and looking forward to seeing her wear it.

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View from the back: a row of vintage buttons.