Crochet Along – Convertible Cashmere Sweater – We’re finished!

LOCSweaterCowl_SMMy Convertible Cashmere Sweater is hot off my hook and ready to wear, just in time for the holidays! I spent the past week weaving in my ends (one day I really will start doing this as I go) and seaming the pieces together. Even though finishing work is usually not my favorite part of a project, it truly seemed to fly by. I love the removable cowl because it looks beautiful with the sweater, but will also be a versatile accessory I can wear with any outfit.

LOCSweater_SMThis project went so fast, and the finished design is so lovely, that it just might become a go-to pattern for me. Who knows – if I get started early enough, a few of my friends just might get one of these beauties for Christmas next year!

We’d love to see pictures of your finished sweater, as well as any other works-in-progress or completed projects you’d like to share with us. Don’t forget to stop by our Facebook page to show us what you’ve been working on!

Quick Crocheted Gift Guide – Billy and Belinda Buttons

bearAny young child would love to receive a handmade teddy bear, and Lesley Bousbaine’s Billy and Belinda Buttons from our Summer 2012 Issue are simply adorable. I made one of these cuties for my daughter and completed the crocheting in about a day. The finishing work took one more day because all of the pieces are crocheted separately.

bear and jasmine

I decided to sew the arms and legs to this teddy’s body and attach decorative buttons instead of functional ones. As you can see, my little girl LOVES her new bear!

You still have time to make one for a special kiddo in your life, so grab your crafting supplies and get started this weekend! Are all of your other handmade gifts finished? We’d love to see pictures of your finished projects, so share them with us on Facebook or email them to us at Happy holidays!

Quick Crocheted Gift Guide – Classic Christmas

I had so much fun making Sue Perez’s Classic Christmas ornament from our Holiday 2013 Issue! It’s worked with size 10 cotton thread, but I finished it in an afternoon because of its small size. If you’ve never worked with thread before, have no fear! Once you grow accustomed to holding the miniature hook, it really is no different than crocheting with any other type of yarn. You can see that I didn’t have any spare ornament hangers, so I simply crocheted a loop of thread to the top of the star.

Classic Christmas gift guide

When I finished the crocheting and I pinned my project in place, my daughter helped me finger paint glitter glue onto it to hold its shape. There is something extra fun about a messy craft that gets your fingers all gluey and sparkly! However, if you aren’t in the mood for a mess (I totally understand!), simply spray your ornament with fabric starch or use a brush to paint on watered down glue.

This classic ornament would look beautiful as an applique, or you could crochet a bunch and create a stunning holiday garland! The possibilities are endless.

Crochet Along – Convertible Cashmere Sweater – Sleeves and cowl

All of the crocheting for our Convertible Cashmere Sweater is now complete, and all I have left to do is sew the pieces together! I think the finishing work will go quickly, and I can’t wait to wear my finished sweater.

CCS sleeves and cowl

As a personal preference, I made my sleeves a bit shorter than the pattern called for. Then, I crocheted my cowl until it was 9″ long, folded in half. This design is truly stunning, and the gorgeous yarn is the perfect complement to the pattern.

How is your sweater coming along? Do you think you’ll have it finished in time to wear it to your holiday parties?

Quick Crocheted Gift Guide – Skater Beanie

I love digging into our past issues to find timeless projects for stylish, quick gifts. Debbie Tomkies’s Skater Beanie, from our Spring 2012 Issue, is a classic unisex hat that works up in an afternoon. It’s perfect for new crocheters because it is made entirely in simple single crochet stitches. The best part is that the pattern has instructions for a wide range of sizes, so you can stitch one up for everyone in your family from toddlers to adults!

skater beanie

As you can see, this easy project is the one that did in my poor H hook, so you have to believe me when I tell you I wasn’t abusing it! It had served me well for many years and I have been keeping it very busy lately, so I can’t blame it for finally giving in.

How is your holiday crocheting coming along? I promise I’m not trying to stress you out, but can you believe Christmas is less than two weeks away?!?

The hook that had enough

The cold, icy weather kept me indoors for most of the past weekend, and I was able to get quite a bit of my holiday crocheting finished. By Sunday evening, I was pretty tired from my marathon crafting session, but this time my crochet hook tuckered out before I did! I was mid-stitch when my poor hook unexpectedly snapped in two. I promise I wasn’t abusing it, but I must admit that it probably broke from sheer exhaustion.

broken hook

I tried to repair it with a bandage and I was able to finish the project I was working on, but I think it’s time to invest in a new one (maybe metal!). The whole situation made me laugh, but I also felt a bit of pride thinking that I outlasted my trusty H hook.

I’m sure I’m not the only one who has worked a hook into the ground! Have you ever experienced a crafting mishap like this?

Free printable gift tags!

Don’t you love giving handmade gifts? I truly feel that the recipients appreciate the extra time and thought that goes into making something just for them. We have something that will make your knit or crocheted gifts even more special – cute and clever gift tags from Love of Knitting and Love of Crochet!

one gift tag

Our talented Art Director, Kathy, created these tags just for you. They are the perfect, crafty complement to your handmade gifts, and they are sure to make your loved ones smile at the extra attention you put into packaging their presents. Download them today, and get a head start on wrapping your gifts this year!

Crochet Along – Convertible Cashmere Sweater – The front is finished

Over Thanksgiving, I was able to find a bit of time (between the cooking, cleaning and eating) to work on my beautiful Convertible Cashmere Sweater and the front is now finished! The petal stitch pattern has created such a lovely fabric and I can already tell that my sweater will keep me toasty and comfortable this winter.

CCT front and back

I’m eager to start crocheting the sleeves next and I think the simple single crochet ribbing will be the perfect complement to the lacy front and back. Lion Brand’s LB Collection Cashmere yarn truly is a dream to work with! It seems that I can’t wait to work on my project a little every night because I love the way this yarn feels in my hands.

How is your sweater coming along? Did you also find a bit of time to crochet during the busyness of Thanksgiving?

Love of Crochet Winter 2013

Our Winter 2013 Issue is now on sale, and it is jam packed with stylish and fun projects. It was really tough to choose a handful to highlight for you here, but here are several (of the many) designs we can’t wait to stitch up.

21_LOC_6W13_RTS_1_200pxIf you’re looking for a fast and beautiful gift idea, the Raspberry Tart Scarf is the project for you! Crocheted with bulky yarn and a lacy stitch pattern, it will work up in a snap and make a great present for several people on your list.

03_LOC_6W13_SA_1_200pxAre you in the mood to make a gorgeous textured sweater? The Winter Frost sweater would be the perfect garment to keep you cozy in this chilly weather. Crocheted using post stitches, the front and back panels are truly stunning.

15_LOC_6W13_CLS_1_v2_200pxFor him, the Classic Letterman Sweater pairs a vintage vibe with a modern, fitted shape. He’s sure to stay warm and smartly dressed with this cardigan.

24_LOC_6W13_HHS_1_200pxFor the little darling in your life, the Happy Holiday Cape and Hat is a precious set that will instantly make the season a bit merrier. Crochet these pieces in no time, and give them as a gift that will be admired by the whole family.

25_LOC_6W13_FFT_1_200pxFinally, the Frozen Falls Throw is an easy and elegant afghan you’ll love to make. Whether you drape it over the couch in the living room or crochet it for a new baby, it’s bound to keep your loved ones warm and toasty.

Take a look at all of the fabulous patterns in our Winter 2013 Issue. You’ll definitely find a few (or a dozen) that you can’t wait to make!

Quick Crocheted Gift Guide – Winter Wonderland Hat

redhatMarly Bird’s Winter Wonderland Hat from the Holiday 2012 Issue of Love of Crochet is a wonderful gift idea. The lacy stitch pattern combines with the bulky yarn for a quick project that is sure to impress. The fabric is substantial enough to keep you warm, yet airy enough to ensure you don’t overheat. The small brim truly sets off the design and gives it the perfect finishing touch.

Everyone needs a stylish hat in the wintertime, and this beauty definitely fits the bill! I chose yarn in the lucky recipient’s favorite color for a personalized gift.

How is your holiday crocheting coming along? We’d love to hear some of your favorite quick handmade gift ideas, so feel free to share your thoughts here on our blog or on our Facebook page. Happy crafting!