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Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Granny square joining tutorial

Just a warning before we get started with the tutorial, there's LOTS of pictures and I may go into too much detail, but that's just what I do. ;-) Anyway, if there aren't enough details or if my description is confusing, please don't hesitate to email me or leave a comment.

There are loads of methods of joining (granny) squares, my method is just one, and may not even be the best. But I like this one because once you get it -and to be honest, there isn't that much to get!- you can do it without much thinking. And I also like how the joining 'seam' looks almost seamless. Especially if you use the same colour as the final round in each square.

If you have particular layout for your blanket, lay out your squares in that pattern.

Then stack your squares so you can keep track of what goes where. Unless you are fortunate enough to be able to leave the squares on the floor for the duration of the joining of your squares.

Because of how this method works, it is best to have as few squares in each stack as possible. For example, there's 70 squares in my blanket, 7 x 10, so my stacks are 10 with 7 in each. Don't worry, if this sounds weird, it will make sense later.

Take the top square and put it on the left and then the next square and keep that on the right.

Now put those 2 squares together, with the back of the squares facing each other. The one on the left is showing the back, the one on the right shows the front. When you work in rounds, crochet work does have a front and back.

Chain 3 in the corner of the front square (from now I shall refer to it as the yellow square, just because I can).

Then make 3 dc/trebles in the corner of the purple square (the back one).

It may take a bit of getting used to holding the 2 squares while you work them, but this might give you an idea. This works for me anyway.

Next make 3 dc/trebles in the next space in the yellow square.

Then 3 dc/trebles in the next spaces in the purple square.

Continue in this manner, from front to back until you get to the end. In the corner space of the purple square only make 1 dc/treble. Then bind off. Keep doing this for the rest of the squares in the stack. And when you've done one stack, do the next one. And the next one and.. you get the picture.

The squares will look a bit wonky on one side, but that will be sorted out later on.

And aren't you glad you have as few squares as possible in your stacks? It is a bit tedious joining each square - it will get better later on.

Oh, just in case you are wondering why you don't do ch 3 + 2 dc/trebles in the first corner, this is why: it would stick out in a weird way that is in no way helpful. So don't do that, m'kay? ;-)

Right, so you've got all your (short) rows all joined together? Now it's time to join row with row.
It's the same principle as joining square with square.

Lay the rows together with backs facing each other.

Then do as before, starting with ch 3 in corner space of the front row, 3 dc/trebles in the corner space of the back row. Then 3 dc/trebles in each space, alternating between front and back.

When you get to the join between 2 squares, the space created by the ch 3 in a corner should be treated like any other space, so make 3 dc/trebles in that too. Continue joining the row, front, back, front, back and so on. Ending with 1 dc/treble in the last corner space, which should be in the back row.

How fun is that? Just zooming along, joining the rows? Far better than the individual squares, right?

And there you have it, 2 rows joined. Now you just have to do that with all your rows!

Once everything is joined together, make atleast one 'granny' row around the edge, it will help straighten the edge and it will make it look more finished. Seriously, you've spent all this time making your blanket, you should take the little bit of extra time to finish it properly.

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scribbled by Carina 6/16/2009 07:49:00 PM


Please note: as of December 2009 this blog has moved to carinascraftblog.wardi.dk, and commenting has been disabled on this version of the blog. If you would like to leave a comment please follow the link and use the archive or label links to find the post in its new place. Also, if you have followed a link or bookmark to this post, please update it as this 'old' version may not stay live forever. Thank you.






Thursday, June 04, 2009

Granny square tutorial

As promised, here is the granny square tutorial! I am sorry it's taken me a little while to get it to you, but here it is at last! The best thing about the granny square is that you don't have to fiddle with trying to get the hook into stitches (only a tiny little bit, anyway), it is all crocheting into chain spaces. Which makes it very quick to do once you get the hang of it.

This is of course just one method of doing it - there are plenty others to be found on the interwebs and in books (and maybe from your actual granny?!). But it's the method that works for me. I hope the explanation makes sense. If not, please leave a comment or email me and I'll try to make fix it.

Also, I have included both the US and the UK terms (in italics) for the stitches. Normally, I'd use abbreviations for the stitches, but I know a couple of you might want this in other languages, so I have written it all out to make it a bit less confusing (I hope!) when it goes the likes of Google's translator. ;-)

First, make a chain of 4.

Then, make a double crochet/treble in the chain stitch furthest from the hook.

Make another double crochet/treble in the same chain stitch. Now you have the first side completed.

Chain 2.

Make 3 double crochet/treble in the same chain stitch. Chain 2 again, make another 3 double crochet/trebles in the chain stitch and finally chain 2.

Join with slip stitch/single crochet in the top of the original chain and then slip stitch/single crochet your way through the top of the double crochet/treble stitches - as indicated by the arrows. Make sure you go through both of the 'legs' of the V of the stitch.

Now you get to the chain space. If you are continuing with the same colour, as I am here, just make a slip stitch/single crochet around the chain and then chain 3.

However, if you are changing colour, make the slip stitch/single crochet into the first chain stitch, then make a slip stitch/single crochet around the chain and then chain 3. This should ensure that your second colour is fastened properly.

You should now have someting that looks like this.

Make 2 double crochet/treble in the chain space, then chain 2. Make another 3 double crochet/treble in the same chain space. That is the first corner completed. For the following corners, make 3 double crochet/treble, chain 2, 3 double crochet/treble in each chain space.

You should now have something like this. Slip stitch/single crochet into the top of chain 3 you did at the beginning of the round. Then, like you did in the last round, slip stitch/single crochet through the top (arrow) of the double crochets/trebles to get you to the first chain space.

Repeat the first corner of the previous round, then make 3 double crochet/trebles in the next space and continue like this until you get to the end of the round. Every other round will be like this one, but with an increasing number of space between the corners. You should not make chain stitches anywhere else but in the corners.

I hope the explanation was clear enough that you now have something fairly like this. Please keep going! Make it as huge as you possibly can. Or stop now and make more little ones that you can stitch together. :-)

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scribbled by Carina 6/04/2009 10:30:00 AM


Please note: as of December 2009 this blog has moved to carinascraftblog.wardi.dk, and commenting has been disabled on this version of the blog. If you would like to leave a comment please follow the link and use the archive or label links to find the post in its new place. Also, if you have followed a link or bookmark to this post, please update it as this 'old' version may not stay live forever. Thank you.






Friday, May 22, 2009

Eraser stamp tutorial - Part 5

Here is the fifth post in the eraser stamp carving tutorial. I am not an expert on this subject, but hopefully my trials and errors will help you get off to a good start. I've broken things down into the following bites:

1: carving medium, i.e. erasers etc.
2: the tools you need to carve your stamps.
3: methods of transferring your design to the medium for carving.
4: inks.
5: carving.

It's finally time to carve your stamp! You've got your lino cutter and an eraser with a design on it. It is quite easy to carve a stamp. And if you much it up? It's just an eraser, chuck it in the bin and try again!

Right, start off by deciding (if you haven't already) what part of the stamp will show up coloured and what will be white/not coloured. Then cut around the design so you know where the edge of your stamp is. Use the smallest blade for this.

If you can, it is best to make the carving in as few cuts as possible to avoid 'seams' in the lines which may make the cuts look 'jagged'. Note how I cut around each petal in one go. Oh and feel free to add stuff to (or rather cut away from) your stamp, like I've done in this example.

When possible, use a larger blade to carve so you can cut away larger chunks at a time, saving time. When cutting, cut away from the lines to avoid ruining the stamp if your knife slips.

Before you start carving the 'fluff' around the stamp, have a look at it and see if maybe some of it can simply be cut off, like in the picture above. You are often able to cut off corners like this. To, literally cut corners and not have to carve so much. Also, this way the back of your stamp is more similar in size to your actual stamp which makes it easier to align if you're doing repeats of the same stamp or with other stamps.

When you think your stamp is done, do a test to make sure you haven't missed anything. Or maybe there are tiny bits you want to change. Notice how there is ink on the eraser outside of the actual stamp? If it doesn't show up when you stamp it, don't worry about it. But if you are going to stamp on fabric it is probably a good idea to remove as much of this as you can because the stamp will 'sink' deeper into the fabric.

Now your stamp is done, have fun playing with it! Experiment with different inks (if available) and surfaces. Make patterns. Use it as a temporary 'tattoo'. Seriously, if you don't stamp on yourself by accident, do it on purpose! ;-)

Now, here's one I made earlier: have some ice cream!


I hope this series of stamp tutorials was useful to you. And I hope you'll share some pictures of your stamps!

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scribbled by Carina 5/22/2009 04:09:00 PM


Please note: as of December 2009 this blog has moved to carinascraftblog.wardi.dk, and commenting has been disabled on this version of the blog. If you would like to leave a comment please follow the link and use the archive or label links to find the post in its new place. Also, if you have followed a link or bookmark to this post, please update it as this 'old' version may not stay live forever. Thank you.






Thursday, May 21, 2009

Eraser stamp tutorial - Part 4

Here is the fourth post in the eraser stamp carving tutorial. I would not call myself an expert on this subject, but hopefully what I've learnt will help you get off to a good start. I've broken things down into the following bites:

1: carving medium, i.e. erasers etc.
2: the tools you need to carve your stamps.
3: methods of transferring your design to the medium for carving.
4: inks.
5: carving.

There are many, many brands and types of inks you can use with your stamps. What ink you want to use depends entirely on what you are going to stamp on and the size of your stamp.

Generally, ink pads are the size of the ones in the picture above. The small square ones are approx. 2.5 x 2.5cm (1" x 1") and the large one is 7.5 x 4.5cm (3"x 1.75"). But even if your stampis larger than the ink pad you have to hand, you will still be able to ink it up - as long as the ink pad is raised!

Some ink pads are multicoloured or have glitter in them. There are even some that are fluorescent.

The main difference to bear in mind with the ink pads is that some of them are only for use on paper but others can be used on a number of surfaces, like wood or fabric (and paper). So if you know that you will be using your stamps on fabric it might be an idea to get the kind that is suitable for fabric from the start.

If you do stamp on fabric remember that your will probably need to set it so it won't run when washed. This is usually done in the oven on low heat or by ironing the stamped area. Your ink pad should come with instructions for doing this (please check these before you start 'cooking' your fabric!).

If you want to make larger stamps/carvings which are no longer easily covered with (even) the raised pads, you will need to get your hands on a roller (sometimes called a brayer) and some proper ink in a tube (or a tub). But that is a whole different topic, which I won't go more into here.

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scribbled by Carina 5/21/2009 06:23:00 PM


Please note: as of December 2009 this blog has moved to carinascraftblog.wardi.dk, and commenting has been disabled on this version of the blog. If you would like to leave a comment please follow the link and use the archive or label links to find the post in its new place. Also, if you have followed a link or bookmark to this post, please update it as this 'old' version may not stay live forever. Thank you.






Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Eraser stamp tutorial - Part 3


Here is the third post in the eraser stamp carving tutorial. I am not an expert on this subject, but hopefully my trials and errors will help you get off to a good start. I've broken things down into the following bites:

1: carving medium, i.e. erasers etc.
2:
the tools you need to carve your stamps.
3: methods of transferring your design to the medium for carving.
4: inks.
5: carving.


There are several methods of transferring your chosen image to the eraser/medium. But nomatter which method you use, remember that what you carve into the eraser will be reversed when you stamp your little heart out. This is especially important to keep in mind if you're making numbers or letters.

The simplest way to get an image onto the eraser is to draw it straight onto it. If you are using a gel pen you can even check your stamp before cutting anything if you try stamping the eraser before the ink dries. Like in the picture above.

Drawing (freehand) like that may not be for everyone; there may be details in your design that it's not so easy to copy without 'help' or you don't feel you can draw (this is, of course, not true, but it would take too long to explain here why you can draw even if you think you can't).

What you can do, then, is transfer the image using a (soft! B4 or softer) pencil, a scrap of paper and a pen. Trace around your eraser and draw in the area with the pencil until it is completely covered. Then cut out your little square.

Place it on top of your eraser with pencil side down. Draw your design on the blank paper (or trace a drawing or a word or whatever).

Depending on how much pressure you apply, and how good you are at not getting a lot of pencil smudge all over your eraser - I am not so good at this part as you can tell! - you will now have a fairly good image that you can carve. If you are a bit messy, like me, it may be necessary to loosely draw over the design with a pen. This also helps prevents smudging the lines of the design while cutting the stamp.

My favourite method of transferring the design to the eraser (or other carving medium) is sort of a further development of the above pencil one. It is less messy and a bit more colourful! I use (Saral) transfer paper which comes in several different colours. I usually use the red one.

Using some kind of translucent paper, draw your design on the paper, then turn over the paper as in the picture above. The design is now reversed so it will come out the right way when you use the stamp. Place the transfer paper on the eraser with the coloured side facing down, place your paper on top and trace the lines of your design. Be careful not to move the papers while drawing.

Once you've traced your whole drawing, remove papers and you are ready to carve your stamp.

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scribbled by Carina 5/20/2009 04:02:00 PM


Please note: as of December 2009 this blog has moved to carinascraftblog.wardi.dk, and commenting has been disabled on this version of the blog. If you would like to leave a comment please follow the link and use the archive or label links to find the post in its new place. Also, if you have followed a link or bookmark to this post, please update it as this 'old' version may not stay live forever. Thank you.






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