Beaded Box Stitch Shawl Crochet Along – Finished!

I finished the edging on my Beaded Box Stitch Shawl – even though mine turned into a cowl – and I LOVE the finished product! The stitch pattern is so light and airy, I’m already thinking about what else I can make with it. Actually, I plan on making the original version of this pattern, so I’ll get another chance to crochet the fun squares and extended stitches soon.

LOC_BeadedBoxStitch_200I hope you had as much fun making this project as I did. This pattern is truly unique, and the beads make it an extra special accessory I’ll wear often. Light cowls can dress up any tee and create a stylish look for work, and of course, they’re always fun to wear on the weekends too!

BBS - finishedHere I am showing off my brand new cowl. Don’t you just love how the negative space between the stitches makes the pattern pop?

Have you finished your shawl yet? Don’t forget to send photos to us at mail@loveofcrochet.com and post updates here on our blog! If you haven’t joined in on the fun yet, order your Beaded Box Stitch Shawl kit and make this gorgeous accessory this summer. The kits include all the yarn and beads you’ll need for one full-sized shawl version or two cowls, as well as a complete copy of the Summer 2015 Issue of Love of Crochet!

Beaded Box Stitch Shawl Crochet Along – Edging

I’m almost finished with the edging on my Beaded Box Stitch Shawl… except that mine has turned into a quick-to-make cowl because I’m a huge tweaker when it comes to crochet projects.

I had cut my yarn to seam my cowl, so I joined new yarn to my seam with a slip stitch to begin the edging. Then, I chained 8 (counts as 1 dc and ch-5) and worked a double crochet between the next sidebar rows (between the treble crochets and perpendicular to them). Then, I worked [ch 5, dc between next sidebar rows] all the way around, ending with a ch 5 and a slip stitch in the 3rd chain of the beginning ch-8. This is essentially the same as the “side 1” instructions of the edging row 1, except I didn’t have to worry about the corners. At the end of this post, I’ve written out these instructions in our usual format to make them easier to follow.

LOC_BeadedBoxStitch_200For round 2 of the edging, I slip stitched into the previous ch-5 sp, which felt a little backwards. Then, I chained 2, worked a treble crochet into the next ch-5 sp (to the left of the seam, working forwards this time), and chained 1 more. All this mimics the look of an extended stitch quite nicely. After that, a bead square needs to go into the next double crochet. I found that beading as I went interrupted my flow and felt a little tedious, so I decided to string my beads onto the end of my yarn at this point.

To do this, I estimated about how much yarn I’d need to finish the edging and cut off a long strand. Then, I took a sewing needle, threaded it with a piece of string about 10″ long, and tied a knot near the ends of the thread. I looped the end of my yarn through the loop of string and folded it back upon itself, strung my beads onto the needle, and pushed them onto the yarn. Check out this previous post for a picture tutorial showing how to add beads! If you decide to add your beads this way, be sure to start your edging on the wrong side of your project because the beads will show up best on the opposite side. This pattern looks great on both sides, so it’s not a big deal in this case.

I strung about 90 beads onto my yarn since every other double crochet from round 1 of the edging will take 2 beads. If you’re making the original version of this pattern, you’ll use a lot more beads so you may want to do this in sections.

Okay, let’s get back to round 2 of the edging! I worked a bead square into the next double crochet, then an extended stitch over the next 2 ch-5 spaces, and repeated this around, ending with a slip stitch in the first fake extended stitch. To work the beaded chains, simply push one bead up near the hook and chain as usual.

BBS - beaded edging

That’s it! I’m only working the edging on one side of my cowl, so I’ll be finished in no time. However, you still have time to get your Beaded Box Stitch Shawl kit and join in on the fun! The kits include everything you need to make one full-sized shawl or two cowls.

As promised, here are the edging instructions for the cowl version:

Edging

With WS facing, join new yarn with a sl st in seam.

Rnd 1: Ch 8, dc between next sidebar rows, * ch 5, dc between next sidebar rows; rep from * around, ending with ch 5. Join with a sl st to 3rd ch of beg ch-8.

Rnd 2: Slip st in the previous ch-5 sp working to the right, ch 2, tr in next ch-5 sp working to the left, ch 1 (beg extended st made). Bead square in next dc, *extended st over next 2 ch-5 sps, bead square in next dc; rep from * around. Join with a sl st to beg extended st.

Beaded Box Stitch Shawl Crochet Along – Change of plans

Even though my crochet time has been a bit limited, my Beaded Box Stitch Shawl is now about 34″ long! I’ve really internalized the stitch pattern, and it has become like second nature to me.

LOC_BeadedBoxStitch_200As I mentioned before, I’m making a smaller version of this fun pattern. Instead of being 13 squares across, mine is only 9. Originally, I intended to make a scarf, but I recently realized that my work would make a really light and fun cowl if I stop and seam it right now!

I LOVE cowls, and at 34″ long, my work is just long enough for a loose and drapey one. The instructions in the original pattern say to end with row 3 of the repeat before beginning the edging, but since I’m going to seam my two short ends together I ended with row 4.

BBS - longer

I left a long tail for sewing and blocked my work before seaming it.

BBS - seamThe super cute stitch marker shows where my seam is. I left gaps in my seam between the squares to mimic the look of the extended stitches. You can hardly notice the seam from a distance!

BBS - cowl 1

The beaded edging really makes this project pop, so I’m going to add it around both edges of my cowl. It will take some slight adjustments from the original pattern, but the handy chart makes it easy to see what to do. I’ll tackle the edging this coming week and share my pattern notes in my next post.

How is your Beaded Box Stitch Shawl coming? Are you making the full-sized version, or are you a tweaker like I am?

If you haven’t joined in on this fun project yet, be sure to get your very own Beaded Box Stitch Shawl kit for the same amazing finish! The kits contain all the yarn and beads you’ll need for the full-sized version, as well as a complete copy of the Summer 2015 Issue! If you’re making a smaller version, like I am, the kit will even have enough yarn for two cowls!

Beaded Box Stitch Shawl Crochet Along – Making progress!

My Beaded Box Stitch Shawl is coming right along! It’s now about 20″ long, and I’m starting to imagine it with some of my favorite warm weather outfits.

LOC_BeadedBoxStitch_200I’ve been playing around with different ways to work the chain 3 at the beginning of each short row within the squares. I started out working the chain 3 as usual, but I found that it left a bit of a gap before the double crochets. I know it’s best to be consistent throughout a project, but I couldn’t resist experimenting a little. Plus, the difference is pretty subtle so I think I’m the only one who will notice.

BBS - 2I found that my favorite way to fake a chain 3 without leaving a gap is to work a single crochet and a chain 1. I find that this mimics a double crochet better than the usual chain 3, so I’m going to stick with this technique from here on out.

Do you know any other tricks for faking a chain 3 for a row of double crochet? We’d love to hear what you do. Also, we’d love to hear updates about your shawl! If you haven’t joined in on the fun yet, you can order your Beaded Box Stitch Shawl kit today and start making this fun project soon!

Beaded Box Stitch Shawl Crochet Along – A good start

I’ve gotten off to a good start on my Beaded Box Stitch Shawl!

LOC_BeadedBoxStitch_200
Beaded Box Stitch Shawl – Summer, 2015

While I love the size of the original sample, I decided to try a smaller version. I jumped at the chance to do this crochet along because couldn’t resist the stunning stitch pattern and the gorgeous beaded edging, but mine will be slightly scaled-down.

Thankfully, the stitch pattern is easy to adjust because the repeat is marked on both the chart and the written pattern. If you want to crochet a wider or thinner version, simply start with a multiple of 10+7. If you’re getting the same gauge as the pattern states, each square will be a little bit more than 1″ long. Since the fabric is so airy and light, I wanted mine to be about 10″ wide. I started with 97 chains and ended up with 9 squares across my row. It’s going to be just what I need to dress up my plain T-shirts this summer!

BBS - 1
Crochet as many or as few repeats as you want!

The stitch pattern requires quite a bit of turning, but it didn’t take long for me to find my groove. Here’s a hint I learned along the way – whichever way you turn your project after the first short row in your square, be sure to turn it the opposite way for the second short row. This will untwist your project and make everything a little smoother.

How is your Beaded Box Stitch Shawl coming along? If you haven’t joined us in the crochet along yet, you still have time to get your Beaded Box Stitch Shawl kit and start stitching with us!

3 tips for picking knitting and crochet travel projects

Summer is (un)officially here, and many of us have fun travel plans lined up during the next few months. Sometimes, travel means extra crafting time, which is always a welcome treat for knitters and crocheters! When I’m thinking about which project to bring with me on a trip, a few different factors help me decide which one of my current works-in-progress to pack.

1. I like a simple travel project. Of course, simple is a relative term, but I personally don’t want to think about complicated cables or count tiny lace stitches when I’m on the road. The Stockinette Satchel is an easy knit that will keep your hands occupied but let your mind rest. The Simple Sequins Shawl is another fun accessory stitched almost entirely in effortless double crochet, making it a great project to pack in your suitcase this summer.

2. Speaking of suitcases, small projects take up less room so you have more space for your other necessities (and maybe even another project!). However, I prefer a project that will keep me entertained for my whole trip, so I don’t want one that’s too tiny. Socks are a wonderful happy medium! The Periwinkle Picot Socks are exciting enough to hold your interest but small enough to fit into any project bag, and the Rolling Fog Socks will show everyone that socks aren’t only for knitters.

3. Finally, I don’t want to do any seaming on the road. Sometimes I make my motifs or pieces during my trip and seam them when I get home, but other times I take a seamless project so I won’t have to worry about it later. Seaming isn’t my favorite thing to do, and like I said before, for me, travel projects are all about simplicity! The Seamless Lace Cardi has a special place in my heart and I hope to have it on my hook sometime this summer. The Wispy Willow Cardigan is another seamless design with gorgeous details that will make your travels even better, and both of these cardis are small enough to take anywhere!

What do you look for in a travel project? If you’re taking any trips this summer, we wish you a safe and happy journey! Bon voyage!

Beaded Box Stitch Shawl Crochet Along – Swatch it up!

LOC_BeadedBoxStitch_200
The Beaded Box Stitch Shawl, Summer 2015

I was so excited to start the Beaded Box Stitch Shawl crochet along that I couldn’t resist making my gauge swatch early this morning. The unique square stitch pattern was calling to me, and I simply had to dive right into it. Plus, since I’ve worked with CoBaSi before, I was eager to get my hands on this awesome yarn!

BBS - yarn
CoBaSi by HiKoo

While I’ve been known to skip my gauge swatch when it comes to shawls, I decided to follow the rules this time and swatch it up. I’m glad I did because my gauge was quite a bit looser than the pattern requires, and the fabric was much too “floppy” for my taste when I used my G hook.

I ended up going all the way down to a C, and that got me pretty close. Just for fun, I tried a steel size 2 (2.25mm), and my gauge was spot on!

While it may be a little tedious to use such a small hook, it’ll be worth it to get the gorgeous drape and finish of the original sample. Since the yarn plays such an important role in this project, we’re offering it in a handy kit to make your fiber selection easy! The Beaded Box Stitch Shawl kits include all the yarn and beads necessary to crochet this fun accessory, as well as a complete copy of the Summer 2015 Issue. That’s a phenomenal added value!

Now that I have my gauge figured out, I’ll crochet my starting chain later on today. You still have plenty of time to order your kit and join me in this fun project! I’m looking forward to seeing pictures and updates on your Beaded Box Stitch Shawl!