Happy Scrappy Thrifty Crochet Projects

Crochet Rainbow Texting Gloves: Free Pattern
Crochet Rainbow Texting Gloves: Free Pattern

I’ve been sorting my scrap yarn into piles, and working on new ideas for what to do with it all. I’ve already made bunches of rainbow projects, daisies and crochet flowers. I’m trying to decide whether to start on a scrap afghan, or finish the baby blanket that’s been hanging around on my to-do-list forever.

I’ve already posted lots of scrap yarn patterns, but there’s always room for another project on the list…

See Also: How to save money on crochet and knitting

An Unusual Granny Square to Crochet

Here you can see a thread crochet bedspread made by joining bunches of criss cross granny squares. As you can see, this is an unusual crochet granny square pattern that results in a unique looking finished project.
Here you can see a thread crochet bedspread made by joining bunches of criss cross granny squares. As you can see, this is an unusual crochet granny square pattern that results in a unique looking finished project.

If you want to crochet a granny square, there are bunches of different ways you could do it. This basic granny square tutorial shows you one approach, and you can find bunches more crochet granny square patterns online.

If you’re looking for a square that’s a little different than all the other choices available out there, the one pictured here is a great choice. I call it the “Granny Square With Criss Cross Design”. It’s a fantastic pattern for using to crochet a bedspread, as pictured above. You could probably think of other ways to use it as well.

The free crochet pattern for this design includes a step-by-step photo tutorial, so you’ll be able to clearly see all the details of how to crochet these squares.

Related Free Crochet Patterns:

Dishcloths and Potholders Make Fantastic Summertime Crochet Projects

You don’t need to take a vacation from crochet during the summer months; it’s a great time to work on making lighweight, quick projects such as potholders and dishcloths. Here you can see a coordinating crochet kitchen set that makes an ideal summertime crochet project:

Color Mix Afghan Stitch Crochet Projects: Kitchen Set With Potholders and Dishcloth
Color Mix Afghan Stitch Crochet Projects: Kitchen Set With Potholders and Dishcloth

But of course, these aren’t your only options for summertime crochet projects. I invite you to check out our list of summer knitting and crochet ideas HERE.

Crochet Cozy Afghans, One Square at a Time

Crochet Cozy Afghans, One Square at a Time
Crochet Cozy Afghans, One Square at a Time

Crocheted squares are like building blocks. You can turn them into just about anything. Whether you’d like to make an afghan, or you have a different project in mind, there are bunches of excellent patterns you can use to make your idea a reality.

Free Crochet Patterns for Afghan Squares:

Free Granny Square Tutorial

Need instructions for how to crochet a granny square? This granny square tutorial shows you how to do it, step by step, for free.

Find Even More Outstanding Crochet Square Patterns in Pattern Books You Can Buy:

I’m aware of several truly excellent books featuring patterns for blankets and afghans you can create simply by making squares and joining them. If you enjoy working from pattern books, these are some options you’ll definitely want to consider taking a look at:

Crochet Kaleidoscope — This is my favorite book featuring crochet square patterns and other motif patterns. The book features bunches of excellent options for granny squares you can crochet — plus circles, hexagons, triangles and other shapes, too. There are also several patterns for finished projects, including one absolutely stunning blanket pattern.

Crochet Granny Squares is another one of my all-time favorite crochet pattern books. This book has some gorgeous patterns in it, including granny squares, blankets and bunches of other project types.

Unexpected Afghans — This book is a real treasure. It is exclusively dedicated to the topic of crochet afghan patterns. Many, but not all, of the patterns in this book are for granny squares you can join to create your blanket. This book is my top pick for the best crochet blanket pattern books.

I hope these resources will be helpful to you if you want to crochet an afghan using squares. Happy crocheting!

Fond Memories of Fabric Collage

I have fond memories of fabric collage, because it was the first type of collage that I remember making as a child. I really wish I had been able to hold onto onto some of my earliest fabric collages; I remember them being quite colorful and creative, and I’d love to take another look at them.

The problem was that I did not use quality adhesive, or appropriate surfaces for creating the collage backgrounds. In most cases, I used either construction paper or white ruled notebook paper, plus ordinary glue. Even at the time, the collages turned out a bit lumpy and imperfect. But in the long run, they did not stand the test of time, and we parted with them long ago.

If you ever make your own fabric collages, I’m hoping you can learn from these mistakes, and avoid them.

Want to learn more about collage? If so, I invite you to check out our pages on the topic of making collage art:

Happy crafting!

A Free Baby Beanie Pattern to Crochet Using the Back Loops

DIY Baby Beanie Free Crochet Pattern
You can crochet this easy baby beanie by working through the back loops of your stitches. This technique creates the interesting ribbed texture you see in the picture. Click here to get the free crochet baby hat pattern at KnittingandCrochet.net.

Correctly-formed crochet stitches all have components known as “loops”. There are front loops, and there are back loops. You can crochet into these loops in different patterns, a process that can be really interesting to experiment with.

Back loop single crochet stitch is one of the easiest examples of a stitch you can crochet using the back loops. There are many other stitches you can create as well.

If you’d like to learn how to do the back loop single crochet stitch, or try an easy project using this stitch, I recommend this easy ribbed crochet baby beanie pattern for beginners. It’s a quick project that will get you plenty of practice at crocheting through the back loops — plus you’ll end up with a useful project that you can give as a baby shower gift or keep for a little one in your own family.

How to Save Money on Greeting Cards

How to Stamp Greeting Card Sentiments

It’s possible to save money on your greeting cards by making them yourself. However, if you want to save more money than you spend, you almost certainly have to work out a system for getting the most out of each dollar that you spend on your supplies.

If you aren’t careful, it’s likely that you will spend more on greeting card supplies than you would have spent on buying a box of cards.

One trick to saving money is scale. You need to focus on buying supplies that will work for zillions of different cards — then working out a system for actually using the supplies, making the cards, and making enough of them that it works out to a savings.

I’ve got this down to a science, and I’m working on posting bunches of articles that will reveal these secrets to you — so that you, too, can actually save more than you spend (if you choose to apply these principles.)

For me, rubber stamps are an important part of the save-more-than-you-spend process. So one of the first installments in this series is an article about how to get the most out of your sentiment stamps.

If you’ve spent a bundle on stamps you never use, and you have “stash guilt,” but no finished cards to show for it, you definitely need to check this out. It could help you turn things around and get inspired to get out those stamps and get creating.

This is also a great article for new crafters who are interested in getting started with card-making.

Learn how to stamp greeting card sentiments.

Ideas for Crocheting With Fabric Strips

Rag Crochet

You’ve probably seen rag rugs crocheted with fabric strips, but did you realize that you can crochet bunches of different projects with fabric instead of yarn? While rugs are ideally suited for making with this technique, there are infinite possibilities for other items that you might want to try making as well. I’ve tried crocheting rugs, tote bags, hot pads, and jewelry, but that doesn’t even begin to cover all the different possible ideas for things you could make.

This technique is often referred to as either “fabric crochet” or “rag crochet.” If you already know how to crochet, you’d use the same basic stitches you already know how to do, but with a few differences.

The most noteworthy difference I have so far encountered: usually, you would have to design and create your own rag balls before you can proceed with crocheting. (Or maybe, if you’re lucky, you could find rag balls available to buy from Etsy or similar “artsy-craftsy” online shops.)

Want to learn more? If so, you might enjoy looking at the following pages online:

Who Wants to Knit a Cute Dog Themed Sweater, Baby Blanket or Other Project?

Dogs on Sweaters book by Sally Muir and Joanna Osborne, published by Trafalgar Square Books
If you want to knit a cute dog themed sweater or other project, check out this Dogs on Sweaters book by Sally Muir and Joanna Osborne. Trafalgar Square Books is the publisher of this title.

Do you have a favorite dog breed? Many people do. My mother-in-law loves all dogs, but she definitely has a thing for cute pugs. So does my daughter; she’s never had a pug, but she loves watching Puppy Dog Pals on the Disney Junior channel.

If there’s a particular dog breed you love enough to want to knit a project depicting that breed, there’s a brand new knitting pattern book I think you’re going to be really excited about. It’s called Dogs on Sweaters: Knitting Patterns for 18 Different Breeds. The book includes charts for knitting all 18 of these different breeds — and you get multiple patterns for some of the breeds, because there are projects in different sizes for both children and adults.

Some of the projects in the book are customizable; you can choose the silhouette you want to knit, choose the dog breed you want to put on the project and make several other additional design choices (like the style of ribbing you want to use, the color combination and whether or not you want to include names, initials or a slogan on your project).

One of the wonderful things about this book is that it includes designs suitable for men, boys and children. The guys and the “big kids” are sometimes neglected in craft pattern books — but here you’ll find choices suitable for almost every dog lover on your knitting gift list.

Baby projects are also well represented in the book. If you knit baby shower gifts, I think you’ll definitely want to take a look at Dogs on Sweaters. And there are projects suitable for ladies, too.

Want more information about this book? You can click here to shop for it at Amazon, click here to read my detailed book review at KnittingandCrochet.net, or click here to read more about the book at the publisher’s website.

More Stylish Knitting Pattern Books

2 New Slouchy Hat Pattern Books You Need to Know About

If you’d like to knit or crochet a trendy new hat for yourself or a friend, there are 2 excellent new slouchy hat pattern books you need to know about:

Crocheted Beanies & Slouchy Hats by Julie King

Crocheted Beanies and Slouchy Hats book by Julie King, published by Stackpole Books
Crocheted Beanies and Slouchy Hats book by Julie King, published by Stackpole Books

If you want to crochet a slouchy beanie-style hat or a slouchy beret, this book has bunches of fabulous patterns you’ll want to take a look at. The book also features one pattern for an earflap beanie, plus bunches of patterns for traditional, fitted beanies.

These patterns will give you a broad variety of different hat styles to add to your wardrobe. The majority of these hats are casual styles that would be fun to wear with jeans, khakis or your favorite athleisure gear.

There are also some dressier styles, like the lacy beret pictured on the front cover of the book. I could see dressing that hat either up or down — perhaps wearing it with lovely, drapey dresses or a frilly blouse paired with a ladylike skirt. Some of the hat designs feature button details — and, if you like dressing up, I think you could make those particular hat styles look dressier simply by choosing fancy, elegant buttons to use for your accents.

Whatever your personal style is like, if it includes crocheted hats, you’re sure to find some suitable styles included in this book.

Click here to check out my book review of Crocheted Beanies & Slouchy Hats by Julie King; click here if you want to shop for the book at Knitpicks; or click here if you want to shop for the book at Amazon.

Knockout Knit Hats and Hoods by Diane Serviss

Knockout Knit Hats and Hoods book by Diane Serviss, published by Stackpole Books
Knockout Knit Hats and Hoods book by Diane Serviss, published by Stackpole Books

This book has its fair share of slouchy hat patterns including patterns for knitting slouchy berets and slouchy beanies. The book also features patterns for traditional tams, fitted beanies and fanciful hoods. I love the variety of stylish hats in this book, and I think you will be quite enchanted by it, too.

Some of these hats feature intricate cable designs. Some of them are lacy and feminine. Some of them feature interesting texture patterns. There’s a mix of casual and dressy looks, although the majority of these patterns lean towards the casual side.

Want more details? Click here to check out my book review of Knockout Knit Hats and Hoods by Diane Serviss; click here if you want to shop for the book at Knitpicks; or click here if you want to shop for the book at Amazon.

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