Saturday, December 26, 2015

Help Me Keep Tampa Bay Crochet Alive!

Help Keep Tampa Bay Crochet Alive!





Click to Donate: http://tw.gofund.me/xwgdcm4s 

I started a Go Fund Me campaign to help me move Tampa Bay Crochet to a professionally designed website with its own domain.  Below, is my story.

I recently found out that Google disapproved my Adsense account.  They wouldn't give me very much information about it or contact information for anyone who could help.  I tried to appeal, saying I would be willing to make any necessary changes but they wouldn't reinstate me.  

While I do not write Tampa Bay Crochet merely for the money, I do need some sort of compensation in order to keep this blog alive.  I know I have mentioned my health conditions in the past but right now I am unable to work outside of the home because of a chronic condition I have been dealing with for nearly three years.  During this time, Tampa Bay Crochet has provided a much needed distraction from the pain and nauseous that I deal with everyday.  Also, any income that the site generates goes towards buying craft supplies for new patterns, and if there is anything left over, it goes towards my medical expenses.

Now, I no longer have any income from Adsense and in order to continue my work I had to think of what I wanted to do with my blog.  I decided the best thing was to buy my own domain and have my site set up by a professional.  This would allow me to continue offering free crochet patterns and tutorials while opening my site up to new advertising opportunities.  Unfortunately, I do not have the financial means to upgrade my blog due to my massive medical bills.

I am asking anyone who is a fan of this blog, and able, to contribute to my fund.  If you can't contribute, please share my story.  Any little bit will help. I hope to keep Tampa Bay Crochet alive for years to come.

Click to Donate: http://tw.gofund.me/xwgdcm4s 

Saturday, December 19, 2015

Last Minute Holiday Gifts for Anyone Who Loves To Crochet

Last Minute Holiday Gifts for Anyone Who Loves To Crochet

Christmas is right around the corner and hopefully, unlike me, you already have your holiday shopping completed.  For my fellow procrastinators, I came up with a list of items that would make great gifts for anyone who loves to crochet.  Unlike my previous post, these gifts are not homemade but rather items that can be purchased at just about any craft store or online.  

I would be thrilled to receive any of these gifts on Christmas morning.  I hope this list provides inspiration to those still searching for the perfect gift.

1.  Crochet courses through Craftsy:  Now through December 26th Craftsy is offering up to 50% off online courses.  If you haven't visited the online courses Craftsy page lately, they have added several new crochet classes. They are now offering a total of thirty five crochet courses! A few examples of the new offerings from Craftsy:

To see all the crochet courses currently offered through Craftsy: Click Here
      
Classic Crochet Openwork :


Quick & Easy Crochet Cables (w/Shannon Mullett-Bowlsby)


Amazing Crochet Textures (w/ Drew Emborsky)

 
2.  Yarn:   You can never have too much yarn!  If you're looking for a unique gift, get online and see if there is a yarn store in your area that sells locally spun yarns. If not, visit your local craft store and pick up a few skeins with a unique texture or color,

3.  Crochet Hooks:  You can also never have too many crochet hooks.  Eventually, they will get misplaced or  lent to a friend of family member.  It's always a good idea to have a spare set in the house.

4.  A new crochet book or magazine subscription:  There are so many great crochet magazines such as Crochet, Crochet World, Quick and Easy Crochet, Interweave...etc.  Each magazine issue comes with new patterns to try.

5.  Gift cards:  I know gift cards may seem like an impersonal gift but for someone who loves arts and crafts, a gift card to their favorite craft supply store would be a great option.

Friday, December 18, 2015

Upcoming Free Crochet Pattern Release

Upcoming Free Crochet Pattern Release

Fot my next free crochet pattern, I will be designing a slouchy newsboy hat.  It will be my first attempt at a newsboy style hat and I am very excited to give it a try.  I played around with some designs last night and I am hoping to have the pattern ready for release on Monday morning.

Here are two photos of the unfinished, first attempt at the newsboy hat.  I will be adding more of a slouch to the hat and a few extra accents.




If you would like to suggest a new pattern idea, leave a comment in the section below.

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Last Minute Crochet Holiday Gift Ideas

Last Minute Crochet Holiday Gift Ideas

Waiting until the last minute to finish holiday shopping can be incredibly stressful.  Usually, I like to get my shopping done and gifts wrapped early so that I can enjoy the holidays without any added hassle.  However, Christmas is right around the corner and I still have over half of my shopping to do. While I do usually buy gifts for my friends and family, I also like to include a handmade item as well. Handmade gifts are unique, personal and the time spent making them shows the recipient how much you care.
Below, I've listed a few of my favorite free crochet patterns that would make excellent holiday gifts.  Every pattern is relatively quick and easy to crochet. Each one of these items would make a great last minute gift.

1.  Crochet Handbag :  Quick and simply to crochet.  This stylish handbag would be the perfect gift for a friend or family member.  Customize it by using their favorite colors or adding a fancy button detail.


2.  Crochet Mary Jane Slippers:  Another great idea for any ladies in your life.  There's no such thing as too many slippers.  This is also another pattern which is very easy to customize.  These slippers look great in any color and if you aren't a fan of the flower accent, you could always add a button, heart or other crochet applique.



 3.  Crochet Holiday Wreath Ornament:  This gift is appropriate for everyone.  The pattern takes less than half an hour to crochet.  Then, just add your favorite photo and you have a personalized keepsake ornament.

 
 
4.  Lacy Crimson Cowl:  Very comfortable infinity scarf perfect those chilly winter days.  The scarf can be warm draped around your neck for a more open-lacework look or wrap it around you twice for extra warmth.
 


 5.  Star Wars Storm Trooper Inspired Beanie:  With the release of Star Wars:  The Force Awakens, this hat would make a great gift for any Stars Wars fan.  The written pattern includes sizes toddler through adult.



Finally, here is a photo that my cousin posted on my Facebook page yesterday. I thought it was an appropriate time to share.


For more free patterns:  Click Here 
 I hope you enjoy these free patterns.  I wish everyone a very happy holiday season!

Monday, December 14, 2015

Free Crochet Pattern: Star Wars Storm Trooper Inspired Beanie

Free Crochet Pattern: Star Wars Storm Trooper Inspired Beanie


* You can also download this pattern for free through Craftsy by clicking here.

Materials:
White worsted weight yarn
Black worsted weight yarn
Size I crochet hook
Size H crochet hook
Size F crochet hook
Needle

Abbreviations:
ch = chain
st(s) = stitch(es)
sl st = slip stitch
sc = single crochet
hdc = half double crochet
dc = double crochet
tr = triple crochet

Gauge:
5 Dcs = 2”
3 Rows of dcs = 2”

Sizing:
Toddler (1-3 years) = 18”-20” head
Child = 20”-22” head
Adult = 22”-24” head



Adult Beanie

With white yarn and size I crochet hook
Round 1: Ch 2, 9 sc in 2nd ch from hook. Sl st to first ch to join round. (10)
Round 2: Ch 2, dc in same st as ch 2, 2 dc in each st around. (20)
Round 3: Ch 2, 2 dc in next st, 1 dc in following st *2 dc in next st, 1 dc in following st* repeat
* to * around. Sl st to top of ch 2 to join. (30)
Round 4: Ch 2, dc in next st *2dc in next st, dc in following 2 sts* repeat * to * around. Sl st
to top of ch 2 to join. (40)
Round 5: Ch 2, dc in next 2 sts *2 dc in next st, dc in following 3 sts* repeat * to * around. Sl
st to top of ch 2 to join. (50)
Round 6: Ch 2, dc in next 3 sts *2dc in next st, dc in following 4 sts* repeat * to * around. Sl
st to top of ch 2 to join. (60) Tie off white yarn and sl st with black yarn to join.
Rounds 7: Ch 2, dc in next st and each st around. Sl st to top of ch 2 to join. (60) Tie off black yarn
and sl st with white yarn to join.
Round 8-15: Ch 2, dc in next st and each st around. Sl st to top of ch 2 to join. (60)
Round 16: Ch 1, sc in next st and each st around. Sl st to top of ch 1 to join. (60) Tie off yarn and
weave in loose ends.

Eyes: ( Make 2)

With black yarn and size F crochet hook Ch 11
Row 1: Sc in the 2nd ch from hook and each remaining ch. Ch 1, turn.
Row 2: Ch 3, tr in next st, dc in following 2 sts, hdc in next 2 sts, sc in in next 2 sts, sl st in final two
sts. Tie off yarn leaving a 12” tail. Align the eye just underneath the row of black dc sts on the front
of the beanie. The straight edge (the row of chain stitches) is the top of the eye with the narrow
edge of the eye facing inward. Weave in loose ends.
*Note: Crochet the second eye the same as the first. When complete, flip it over so the straight edge
is facing the top of the hat and the narrow edge of the eye is facing inward, just like the first eye.

Cheeks: ( Make 2)

With white yarn and size H crochet hook Ch 2.
Round 1: 7 sc in 2nd ch from hook. Sl st to first ch to join.
Round 2: Ch 2, hdc in same stitch as ch 2, 2 hdc in each st around. Sl st to the top of ch 2 to join.
Round 3: Ch 2, hdc in same st as ch 2 * 1 hdc in next st, 2 hdc in following st* repeat from * to * all
the way around. Sl st to top of ch 2 to join.
Round 4: ch 1, sc in next st and each st around. sl st to ch 1 to join. Tie off white yarn leaving a 12”
tail.
With black yarn and a size H crochet hook, ch 2.
Round 1: 5 sc in second ch from hook. Sl st to first ch to join.
Round 2: Ch 1, sc in same st as ch, 2 sc in next st and each following st around. Sl st to ch 1 to join.
Tie off black yarn leaving a 6” tail.
Using the tail and needle, sew the black circle to the top of the white cheek.
Using a needle and 12” white tail from the base of the cheeks, sew the cheeks onto the bottom right
and bottom left of the hat. Weave in loose ends.

Mouth:

With black yarn and size F crochet hook ch 18
Row 1: Sl st in the 2nd ch from hook and in the following 2 sts, sc in the following 4 sts, hdc in the
next st, 2 dc in the following st, hdc in the next st, sc in the next 4 sts, sl st in the last three sts. Tie
off yarn leaving a 12” tail. Using the tail and a needle, sew the mouth onto the front of the hat, centered with the peak of the mouth about 1/2” underneath the eyes. Weave in loose ends.
Square Black Chin Piece:

With black yarn and size F crochet hook ch 8.
Row 1: Hdc in the 3rd ch from hook and in the next 5 sts. Ch 2, turn.
Row 2: Hdc in next st and each st across. Ch 2, turn.
Row 3: Hdc in next st and each st across. Ch 1, turn.
Row 4: Sl st in next st and each st across. Tie off black yarn leaving a 10” tail.
Using the tail and a needle, sew the chin piece onto the bottom of the hat, centered in between the
two cheek pieces.

Finishing:

Using a needle, make sure all loose ends have been woven in.

Child Beanie
With white yarn and size I crochet hook:
Round 1: Ch 2, 9 sc in 2nd ch from hook. Sl st to first ch to join round. (10)
Round 2: Ch 2, dc in same st as ch 2, 2 dc in each st around. (20)
Round 3: Ch 2, 2 dc in next st, 1 dc in following st *2 dc in next st, 1 dc in following st* repeat
* to * around. Sl st to top of ch 2 to join. (30)
Round 4: Ch 2, dc in next st *2dc in next st, dc in following 2 sts* repeat * to * around. Sl st
to top of ch 2 to join. (40)
Round 5: Ch 2, dc in next 2 sts *2 dc in next st, dc in following 3 sts* repeat * to * around. Sl
st to top of ch 2 to join. (50)
Round 6: Ch 2, dc in next 3 sts *2dc in next st, dc in following 4 sts* repeat * to * around. Sl
st to top of ch 2 to join. (60) Tie off yarn and weave in loose ends. Sl st with black yarn to join.
Rounds 7: Ch 2, dc in next st and each st around. Sl st to top of ch 2 to join. (60) Tie off black yarn
and weave in loose ends. Sl st with white yarn to join.
Round 8-14: Ch 2, dc in next st and each st around. Sl st to top of ch 2 to join. (60)
Round 15: Ch 1, sc in next st and each st around. Sl st to ch 1 to join. (60) Tie off white yarn and
weave in loose ends.

Eyes: ( Make 2)
With black yarn and size F crochet hook Ch 11
Row 1: Sc in the 2nd ch from hook and each remaining ch. Ch 1, turn.
Row 2: Ch 3, tr in next st, dc in following 2 sts, hdc in next 2 sts, sc in in next 2 sts, sl st in final two
sts. Tie off yarn leaving a 12” tail. Align the eye just underneath the row of black dc stitches on the
front of the beanie. The straight edge (the row of chain stitches) is the top of the eye with the
narrow edge of the eye facing inward.
*Note: Crochet the second eye the same as the first. When complete, flip it over so the straight edge
is facing the top of the hat and the narrow edge of the eye is facing inward, just like the first eye.
Using a needle, sew the eyes onto the beanie and weave in loose ends.

Mouth:
With black yarn and size F crochet hook, ch 14.
Row 1: Sl st in 2nd ch from hook and the next 3 ch sts, sc in following 2 sts, 2 hdc in next st, sc in
next 2 sts, sl st in the final 3 sts. Tie off black yarn leaving a 12” tail.
Using the tail and a needle, sew the mouth to the front, center of the beanie below the eyes. Weave
in loose ends.

Cheeks: ( Make 2)
With white yarn and size H crochet hook Ch 2.
Round 1: 7 sc in 2nd ch from hook. Sl st to first ch to join.
Round 2: Ch 2, hdc in same st as ch 2, 2 hdc in each st around. Sl st to the top of ch 2 to join.
Round 3: Ch 2, hdc in same st as ch 2 * 1 hdc in next st, 2 hdc in following st* repeat from * to * all
the way around. Sl st to top of ch 2 to join.
Round 4: ch 1, sc in next st and each st around. sl st to ch 1 to join. Tie off white yarn leaving a 12” tail
With black yarn and a size H crochet hook, ch 2.
Round 1: 5 sc in second ch from hook. Sl st to first ch to join.
Round 2: Ch 1, sc in same st as ch, 2 sc in next st and each following st around. Sl st to ch 1 to join. Tie off black yarn leaving a 6” tail.
Using the tail and needle, sew the black circle to the top of the white cheek.
Using a needle and 12” white tail from the base of the cheeks, sew the cheeks onto the bottom right
and bottom left of the hat.

Square Black Chin Piece:
With black yarn and size F crochet hook, ch 8.
Row 1: Hdc in 3rd ch from hook. Hdc in the next 5 sts. Ch 2, turn.
Row 2: Hdc in each st across. Ch 1, turn.
Row 3: Sc in each st across. Tie off black yarn leaving a 12” tail. Using the tail and needle, sew the chin piece to the bottom, centered in between the two cheek pieces. Weave in loose ends.

Finishing:
Using a needle, weave in any remaining loose ends.

Toddler Beanie
With white yarn and a size I hook
Round 1: Ch 2, 8 sc in second ch from hook. Sl st to 1st ch to join round. (9)
Round 2: Ch 2, dc in same st, 2 dc in next st and each st around. Sl st to top of ch 2 to join. (18)
Round 3: Ch 2, 2 dc next st, *1 dc in next st, 2 dc in following st* rep * to* around. Sl st to
top of ch 2 to join. (27)
Round 4: Ch 2, dc next st, 2 dc next st, * 1 dc in ea of next 2 sts, 2 dc in next st* rep *to*
around. Sl st to top of ch 2 to join. (36)
Round 5: Ch 2, dc next 2 sts, 2 dc next st, *1 dc in ea of next 3 sts, 2 dc in next st* rep *to*
around. Sl st to top to ch 2 to join. (45)
Round 6: Ch 2, dc next 3 sts, 2 dc next st, *1 dc in ea of next 4 sts, 2 dc in next st* rep *to*
around. Sl st to top of ch 2 to join. (54) Tie off white yarn and sl st with black yarn to join.
Rounds 7: Ch 2, dc in next st and each st around. Sl st to top of ch 2 to join. (54) Tie off black yarn
and sl st with white yarn to join.
Rounds 8-14: Ch 2, dc in next st and each st around. Sl st to top of ch 2 to join. (54)
Round 15: Ch 1, sc in next st and each st around. Sl st to top of ch 1 to join. (54) Tie off white yarn.
With a needle, sew in loose ends.

Eyes: (Make 2)
With size F hook and black yarn, ch 11
Row 1: Tr in 4th ch from hook, dc in the next 3 ch sts, hdc in the following 2 ch sts, sc in next st, sl st
in the last st. Tie off yarn leaving a 10” tail. Align the eye just underneath the row of black dc stitches
on the front of the beanie. The straight edge (the row of chain stitches) is the top of the eye with the
narrow edge of the eye facing inward.
*Note: Crochet the second eye the same as the first. When complete, flip it over so the straight edge
is facing the top of the hat and the narrow edge of the eye is facing inward, just like the first eye.
Using a needle, sew the eyes to the front of the beanie and weave in loose ends.

Mouth:
With black yarn and size F crochet hook ch 18
Row 1: Sl st in the 2nd ch from hook and in the following 2 sts, sc in the following 4 sts, hdc in the
next st, 2 dc in the following st, hdc in the next st, sc in the next 4 sts, sl st in the last 3 sts. Tie off
yarn leaving a 12” tail. Using the tail and a needle, sew the mouth onto the front of the hat, centered
with the peak of the mouth about 1/2” underneath the eyes. Weave in loose ends.

Cheeks: (Make 2)
Using white yarn and size H crochet hook, ch 2.
Round 1: 5 sc in 2nd ch from hook. Sl st to first ch to join.
Round 2: Ch 1, sc in same st as ch 1, 2 sc in each of the following sts. Sl st to ch 1 to join.
Round 3: Ch 1, 2 sc in following st, *sc in next st, 2 sc in the following st*, repeat from * to *
around. Sl st to ch 1 to join.
Round 4: Ch 1, 1 sc in each st around. Sl st to ch 1 to join. Tie off white yarn leaving a 12” tail.
With black yarn and a size H crochet hook, ch 2.
Round 1: 5 sc in 2nd ch from hook. Sl st to first ch to join.
Round 2: Ch 1, sc in same st as ch, 2 sc in next st and each following st around. Sl st to ch 1 to join.
Tie off black yarn leaving a 6” tail.
Using the tail and needle, sew the black circle to the top of the white cheek.
Using a needle and 12” white tail from the base of the cheeks, sew the cheeks onto the bottom right
and bottom left of the hat. Weave in loose ends.

Square Black Chin Piece:
With black yarn and size F crochet hook, ch 8.
Row 1: Hdc in 3rd ch from hook. Hdc in the next 5 sts. Ch 2, turn.
Row 2: Hdc in each st across. Ch 1, turn.
Row 3: Sc in each st across. Tie off black yarn leaving a 12” tail. Using the tail and needle, sew the
chin piece to the bottom, centered in between the two cheek pieces. Weave in loose ends.

Finishing:
Using a needle, weave in any remaining loose ends.










Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Free Crochet Pattern: Keepsake Holiday Wreath Photo Frame Ornament

Free Crochet Pattern:  Keepsake Holiday Wreath Photo Frame Ornament

 

 



By Tampa Bay Crochet

Materials:
Worsted weight yarn (4) in red & green
Size G crochet hook
Needle
Small photo

Abbreviations:
sl st = slip stitch
sc = single crochet
dc = double crochet
ch = chain

Note:  Ornaments made using this pattern may be sold but please link back to this post in the item description.


Ornament Front

To begin, ch 20 and sl st to first ch stitch to create a loop.
Round 1: Ch1, 28 sc in the loop.  Sl st to first sc to join the round.
Round 2:  *Ch 1, skip 1 stitch, 3 dc in following stitch, ch 1, skip 1 stitch, sl st in following stitch* repeat from * to * five times. Then, ch 1, skip 1 stitch, 3 dc in following stitch, ch 1, sl st into the first ch 1 of the round to join.  You will have seven leafs in total.  Tie off yarn and weave in loose ends.


Ornament Back

With green yarn, to begin ch 2.
Round 1:  7 sc in the second ch from hook.  Sl st to first ch to join the round.
Round 2:  Ch 1, sc in same stitch as ch. 2 sc in next stitch and each stitch around. Sl st to top of ch 1 to join the round.
Round 3:  Ch 1, *2 sc in next st, 1 sc in following stitch.* Repeat from * to * all the way around.  Sl st to top of ch 1 to join the round.  Tie off  yarn leaving a 12" tail.

Optional But Recommended:

I recommend stiffening both pieces of your crochet ornament at this point in the project.  Stiffening helps the ornament to hold its shape.  There are several ways to stiffen a crochet project, below are a few examples:

Spray Starch:  Spray both sides of the ornament with spray starch.  Lay the ornament flat and allow it to dry completely.

Elmer's Glue Mix:  In a bowl mix 1 part Elmer's glue with 2 parts water.  Place the ornament in the mixture, lay flat and allow to fully dry.

Glitter Glue Mix:  For a little extra sparkle, mix 1 part Elmer's glue with 2 parts water and the desired amount of glitter.  Place the ornament in the mixture, lay flat and allow to dry completely.


Ornament Assembly

Using the 12" tail from the back of the ornament, sew approximately 2/3 of the back of the ornament to the front of the ornament leaving an open gap at the top.  Place your stitches from the back of the ornament through "round 3" of the front of the ornament.  The open gap will become the pocket where you will insert your photo.  Tie off green yarn and weave in loose ends.



Bow

Cut a 10" section of red yarn.  Thread a needle with the yarn and starting from the back of the ornament (centered above the photo opening gap) Pull one end of the yarn through to the front of the ornament leaving about a 2" tail.  Do the same with the other end of the red yarn.  Using both ends, tie a bow in the front of the ornament.  This also creates the loop with which to hang the ornament.

Adding the Photo
Pick your favorite photo and cut it to size.  Slide the photo through the gap at the top of the ornament.




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