I sure got a giggle out of the title of this book, Noggins and Necks, by Bonnie Barker. It’s a catchy title that sums up what the book is all about; it’s a crochet pattern booklet of scarf and hat patterns.
Want to know more about this book? I give you the lowdown in my detailed book review. I invite you to check it out!
This unisex beanie is exceptionally easy to crochet, and it’s a super quick project, too. The finished hat is versatile and can be worn with just about anything. The free crochet pattern is available at Knittingandcrochet.net:
From the Book Dressing Up Baby, published by Leisure Arts
When I go out with my best friend and her sweet baby, this is by far the baby beanie that draws the most compliments from total strangers. And, out of all the baby hats I’ve crocheted, this pattern is the one I’ve enjoyed the most. It’s an easy pattern, but there is something so satisfying about crocheting all those tiny flower buds and making the cute little bow to add to the top of the hat.
The “Pretty Posies” baby hat isn’t the only hat pattern included in this book. The book is all about giving you patterns for complete baby layette sets consisting of coordinating hats, baby booties, baby blankets and baby sweaters. There are multiple baby layette patterns included in the book. I highly recommend it!
If you want to crochet quick, easy, warm winter beanies for a sweet newborn, plus matching baby booties for each hat you make, Infant Boots & Hats is a crochet pattern book you’ll definitely want to consider adding to your library. This charming book includes crochet patterns for 6 different sets of matching baby beanies and booties. They are all SUPER CUTE.
Afghans can be all different weights, sizes and fibers.
In my experience, the warmest afghans are made of animal fibers such as wool and alpaca. This especially holds true if the afghan will be used in some sort of capacity where it or its wearer could get wet — for example, people riding in a sleigh, sailing in a sailboat, or dealing with a leaky roof in the bedroom. Wool and similar fibers such as alpaca and bison stay warm even if they get wet. Many other fibers, including cotton, do not have this property.
I’ve found that solid afghans tend to be somewhat warmer than afghans with open spaces. So for those of you facing truly arctic conditions in winter time, an afghan comprised of solid stitches is the way to go. Check out any of these free crochet blanket patterns for ideas:
For those of you who are surviving California-style winters rather than Alaska-style winters, my experience has been that granny square afghans and other afghans with open spaces have always been plenty warm enough in the past.
Since you never really know what the weather will do in the future, it’s a great idea to have several warm blankets on hand for each family member — no matter where you live. That way, if there ever comes a time when it’s colder than expected, you can simply layer a couple of blankets on and beat the chill.
Another good idea: if you drive, stash a warm blanket (or several, if you have a big family) in the back seat or car trunk in case you ever break down or get stranded in the cold.
Additional Resources for Making Warm Winter Blankets:
Find 50 Crochet Stitches Ideal for Crocheting Blankets and Afghans
If you want to design your own crocheted blanket or afghan, there are bunches of useful crochet stitch dictionaries you could use to save yourself some time and frustration. One possibility is pictured here; it’s called 50 Stitches for Afghans by Darla Sims. Annie’s is the publisher. This book is a fantastic choice for those of you who crochet blankets because ALL the stitches included in this book are suitable to use for making afghans. These stitch patterns were all designed and curated by Darla Sims, who has extensive experience designing crocheted blanket patterns for the mass market. Her designs are exceptional, and I think you’re likely to really enjoy this book.
I hope y’all are staying warm and dry out there. Happy crocheting!
If there’s one thing I adore, it’s a crochet checkerboard pattern. I’ve designed so many different variations on the checkerboard that it’s getting hard to keep them all straight. This one you see pictured stands out because it’s the smallest one I’ve ever designed. I’ve found that this one has a whole bunch of different possible uses.
I designed this afghan square with the intention of using it along with multiple other afghan squares of the same size. I’ve crocheted multiple blankets using the squares in this series, and I have ideas for making bunches more of them. I invite you to fire up your imagination and think of the possibilities for all the things you could make with these squares, too. Perhaps you’re planning on crocheting projects like placemats,pillows,afghans, and these squares would be ideal for those types of projects or just about anything else that can be made up of squares.
This particular square is a fantastic little filler that can be alternated with larger designs instead of using solid-colored squares. Check out an example in this Valentine’s Day themed afghan featuring a heart square:
If you want to crochet a blanket like this one, you can use free patterns to do it. Here are some links to the different patterns and design elements you need:
Just to give you even more inspiration, here’s a picture of another way I’ve used this particular design. In this blanket, the mini checkerboard is one of many other afghan squares. I call this the “Pattern Sampler Afghan”.
So there you have a couple of examples of ways this checkerboard square could be used in different crochet projects. What will you do with it? There are zillions more possibilities beyond just these…I hope you’ll have fun coming up with even more ideas.
Here’s a two-color crocheted afghan square featuring diagonal stripes as the primary design element. This afghan square is designed to match several other afghan squares which could be used together in the same project. I’ve crocheted a couple of different blankets using the squares in this series, and I have ideas for making zillions more of them. I invite you to consider the possibilities for all the things you could make with these squares, too. Just imagine all the ways you could use it if you want to crochet pillows,blankets, table runners or just about anything else!
This particular square could be used in so many different ways to create both symmetrical and asymmetrical designs. I would LOVE to try using it in a blanket that explores different ways to rotate and color this design to make chevrons and zigzags, for example.
Cables are the most prominent design element in the patterns from this fascinating new knitting book called Cable Knits From Nordic Lands. This book includes stylish cabled designs for men, women and children. There are patterns for knitting sweaters, vests, hats, wraps and other accessories. The book also features instructions for some cable patterns you can incorporate into your own design work, if you are inclined to make your own patterns.
I think this is a truly wonderful collection of cable knitting patterns. I’m looking forward to knitting several of the projects found in this book.
Sophisticated Women’s Cable Knitting Patterns From Casual Weekend Knits by Andi Javori, Published by Leisure Arts
Andi Javori’s lovely new knitting pattern book isn’t exclusively devoted to cable knitting patterns; there are also lace knitting patterns, garter stitch patterns and other types of patterns included in the book. However, my favorite patterns from this book are the drop-dead-gorgeous cable knitting patterns — like the gorgeous cabled hat and mittens pictured on the front cover of the book. There’s also a stylish cabled purse pattern that has broad appeal, and a pair of sophisticated cable-knit boot cuffs.
This book includes 26 projects in all, ranging from scarves to ponchos to jewelry to boot cuffs. It’s a fabulous book. If you want to knit cable designs plus other types of designs for adult women, definitely consider picking up a copy of this book.
Learn More About Casual Weekend Knits by Andi Javori:
See Also: The Cable Knitter’s Guide — This isn’t a brand new book, but it’s my top pick for a fabulous cable knitting stitch dictionary, instruction manual and pattern book. If you want to knit cables, it’s definitely worth taking a look at.
So there you have it: The hottest new cable knitting patterns for winter 2020. I hope you’ll enjoy knitting some brand new, stylish cable sweaters, vests and accessories for yourself and / or your family members this winter.
Wrapping presents can be such a delight if you know how to artistically wrap your gifts to make each one look its most appealing. But if you aren’t confident in your gift wrapping abilities, that aspect of the Christmas season can be a bit of a drag. Whichever camp you fall into, you can never have too many giftwrap ideas — and we’re here to help with some fantastic suggestions for where to find good ones. We have some free pages on the topics of giftwrap plus card making, plus a few suggestions for books with helpful giftwrap ideas too.
Free Instructions for Wrapping Irregularly-Shaped Gifts
Do you have irregularly shaped gifts that need wrapping? Check out these ideas for wrapping things that don’t fit neatly into boxes.
The Make & Give Series of Books Features Excellent Giftwrap Ideas
Want to give your own handmade candles, soaps, or body care products as gifts this Christmas? And would you be interested in finding instructions for making these goodies PLUS giftwrapping them? If so, you’ll definitely want to take a look at the Make & Give series of books published by Leisure Arts. Each book in the series teaches you how to make a specific type of gift and then wrap it up or present it beautifully as a gift for giving to someone you know.
These are some of the prettiest craft books I own; I LOVE the ideas presented in them. I think you’ll be exited to discover these wonderful gift ideas, too.
So far I’ve reviewed 3 of the books in the series:
Is your Christmas tree looking a little bit bare? Or perhaps yours is beautifully decorated, but you want to make more ornaments to give as gifts to your friends and acquaintances this holiday season. Read on if you need some ideas for creative Christmas ornaments to knit — because I have suggestions for extraordinary knitted Christmas ornament patterns that I think you’ll want to know about.
A couple of ultra-talented Norwegian knitting pattern designers named Arne & Carlos are the guys behind these incredibly beautiful Christmas ornament designs. I highly recommend their book called Arne & Carlos Favorite Designs, which includes their Christmas ornament patterns plus bunches of other Christmas and holiday friendly patterns.
You can use some of the ornament patterns to create round knitted Christmas ornaments. Some of the other patterns included in the book are useful for making small knitted birds that could either be toys, or Christmas ornaments, or other types of ornaments. Like, if you decorate for Easter, some of the birds could be Easter birds, too.
In addition to all the ornament patterns, the book also includes bunches of other fun patterns for gift-worthy items ranging from dolls to slippers to blankets.
Are you wondering what kind of Christmas gift to get for the crafters on your gift list? Or perhaps you’re a crafter yourself, and you’re working on making gifts for your inner circle. Either way, I invite you to check out this 2020 holiday gift guide for craft enthusiasts. The list is further broken down into additional lists by type of craft, which could be helpful to you if you know what type of crafts your gift recipient prefers:
If your gift recipient likes to knit,crochet, weave ormake pom pom crafts, you’ll want to consider putting Cascade 220 yarn at the top of your gift list. And if you’re making gifts to give to others, your loved ones are sure to appreciate any gifts you’ll make for them with this soft, sturdy, lovely yarn.
This is one of the most popular yarns ever, and there is a HUGE amount of pattern support available for the yarn. No matter what you want to make with it, you’re likely to find a pattern that’s exactly what you need. Not only that, Cascade 220’s color palette is pretty spectacular. You know how, with a lot of yarns, it can be tough to find the exact color you need? With Cascade 220, you will not have that problem.
If the crafter on your gift list is drawn to pretty, shiny baubles, consider giving Czech glass buttons as a gift. This is a gift that might appeal to crafters who work in a variety of media — anyone who sews, quilts, knits, crochets or does mixed media art can usually find good uses for buttons.
Be aware that some sellers sell single buttons. If you’re gifting Czech glass buttons to a crafter who makes garments, it’s ideal to find a matching set of multiple buttons — enough to button up a quilted jacket, knitted cardigan sweater or similar project.
Pictured here is one of my all-time favorite quilting pattern books. It’s called Farmhouse-Style Quilting. This book would make an excellent gift for quilters who enjoy making a variety of home decor projects such as table runners, placemats and bed quilts. There are projects included in this book that are easy enough for total beginners to quilting, and this book is generally accessible and attractive to a broad range of quilting enthusiasts.
In general, fabric, quilt patterns and many other items make wonderful gifts for quilters. We’ve posted a quilter’s gift guide that will give you more detailed suggestions for the best gifts to choose for the quilters on your holiday gift list.
Jewelry makers need a broad variety of tools and supplies to make their projects. Unless you know specifically which tools they need, it’s wise to focus on giving them gifts of beads, findings, wire and other similar jewelry making supplies.
If your gift recipient enjoys making unique, one-of-a-kind jewelry, bead knitting or bead crochet projects, and her sense of style includes lots of sparkly, eye-catching details, she might enjoy working with dichroic glass pendants. If you need to find a truly impressive gift for a jewelry making enthusiast, this might be exactly what you’re looking for.
If you’re shopping for paper crafters, you have an overwhelming number of choices for great gifts you could give them. Pictured here, you have one of the top choices for paper crafters who enjoy card making and scrapbooking — Thickers letter stickers by American Crafts. Thickers alphabet stickers come in an amazing variety of different materials and fonts, so no matter what artistic style your gift recipient gravitates towards, there will be Thickers available in suitable styles, colors and materials.
The countdown to December 25, 2019 is underway– but If you get started crafting now, you still have time left to make handmade Christmas gifts for at least some of the main players on your gift list this year.