Category: Blog

Lady Cassandra

I started watching Doctor Who episodes when I was commissioned to make some dolls from the show.  It was research, don’t you know?  😉  But one episode really creeped me out.  It was the one in which Lady Cassandra, the last human, is introduced.  Even though she claims to be the last human, she has basically deteriorated into just a remaining piece of skin with a face and a brain in a jar, even though she seems to think she has improved over time.  She continually needs to be moisturized so she doesn’t dry out.  Anyway, she bothered me so I had to get her out of my head and out onto my hook.  This is the result.  It’s super easy and in video form.  Skills needed to complete her are CH, SC, SC from the Back, HDC, DC.  I’ve also made a video to show how the SC from the back is done and you can link to it from inside the video if you need to refer to it.  As with all my patterns, it is copyrighted to me, Mad Crochet Lab, all rights reserved, 2014, and should not be downloaded or embedded elsewhere.  The only benefit I receive for free patterns is the traffic at my sites.  If you want to share with someone, please just give them the link. Thank you!

Free Lady Cassandra Video Pattern

Free Lady Cassandra Video Pattern

View the video right here:

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Internet Trolls – Do Not Feed!

Once upon a time, there was an absent-minded, yet otherwise fabulous Mad Crochet Scientist. One day, someone was not very nice to her online. Knowing that a new computer and stitches at the local clinic were not going to be covered by the lab budget, she resisted reaching through the screen to strangle the person. Instead, she cro-ated this little internet troll. It has a big bulbous nose like most trolls who feel they must put it in other people’s business, large ears that tend to live to hear the sound of a facebook notification, and beady little eyes (just because). The Mad CroScientist also made it a round-ish shape so that it can easily be kicked across the room when necessary. She feels much better now. The end. 🙂

We’ve all seen them and maybe even accidentally fed them.  They can look so cute at first, but their purpose is merely to get you all riled up for their own sick pleasure.  You can’t reach through the screen and grab them by the neck (unfortunately).  So I made one that I can kick across the room if I so desire and get a little relief that way.  Also, it’s a good reminder not to give them any fuel.

His pdf pattern is available through paypal for $6 USD.  

internettrollwm.jpg

internettrollcollagewm

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Free Filet Starter Charts – Caged Bird

I recently ran a little Crochet-A-Long to introduce some crocheters to doing filet. I came up with these charts because they are simply shaped, don’t require any increasing or decreasing, and make a cute little picture of a caged bird.

 

filetbirdcagefinishedlook

Piece A on left, Piece B on right.

 

To make them, you will need a size 7 steel hook, size 10 bedspread weight cotton, and know how to CH, SC, and DC.

[purchase_link id=”2351″ color=”blue” text=”Purchase” direct=”true”]

 

Preliminary Filet Info

These charts are both done using US crochet terms, and in the more popular way of using 4 stitches to complete a block (some others are done with only three DCs to fill a block or use TCs instead of DCs). A filled block will consist of 4 DCs but it will share the last one with the next block. So the last DC of one block is the first of the next. An open block will consist of a DC, two CHs and a DC. This applies to both charts. A double open block is simply two open mesh blocks combined. So it consists of a DC, 5 CHs and a DC. And a lacet is created by using two rows. On the first row of a lacet, you make a DC, CH3, skip 2 CHs and SC in the 3rd, then CH3, skip 2 CHs and DC. On the next row when you get to that lacet again, you just DC, CH5 and DC. I will include some graphics to show it, but wanted to explain it because some people learn better by reading and others by photos.

It doesn’t matter whether you crochet lefty or righty.  All that matters is you read the charts from right to left on all odd rows, and left to right on all even rows. I’ve named the chart on the left as Piece A, and the one on the right is Piece B.  As you can see, Piece B is slightly simpler because it does not contain any lacet blocks.  But since the stitches are so simple to create either look, do not be intimidated by the lacets.

Here I will step you through the first five rows and you can take it from there.  The pdf download is complete with graph charts and symbol charts.  The following is only additional info to “hold your hand through the first five rows.”  If you complete this project and like it, I highly recommend you do some online research of filet crochet, learning how to increase and decrease and open a whole new world of crochet for yourself.  Enjoy.

ROW 1. CH 82. Reading chart from right to left – DC in 4th CH from hook and in each across. This applies to both Piece A and Piece B. What you have now in your hands is not just a bunch of DCs. You are holding 26 filled blocks from the graph!

ROW 2. (Reading chart from left to right now)

  • Piece A – 4 DC including your turning CH or standing DC to make a filled block, then CH 3, skip 2 stitches, SC in next, CH 3, skip 2 stitches and DC. Repeat 10 more times, CH 3, skip 2 stitches, SC in next, CH 3, skip 2 stitches then end with 4 DCs.
  • Piece B – 4 DC including your turning CH or standing DC to make a filled block, then CH 2, skip 2 stitches, and DC. Repeat 22 more times, then CH 2, skip 2 stitches and make 4 DCs.

ROW 3. (Reading chart from right to left now)

  • Piece A – 4 DC including your turning CH or standing DC to make a filled block, then CH 5, skip 5 stitches and DC. Repeat 10 times and then CH 5, skip 5 stitches and 4 DCs.
  • Piece B – repeat Row 2.

ROW 4. (reading chart from left to right)

  • Piece A – It’s a filled block, the beginning of a lacet, 20 filled blocks, another beginning of a lacet, and ends with a filled block so… that’s 4 DCs, CH 3, skip 2 stitches, SC in next, CH3, skip 2 stitches and DC. That last DC is the last stitch in the lacet and also the first stitch in the first filled block. So I start counting 3 DCs for each filled block as I go now. I count 1-1, 1-2, 1-3; 2-1, 2-2, 2-3; 3-1, 3-2, 3-3…until I complete all 20 filled blocks. Then it’s CH 3, skip 2 stitches, SC in next, CH 3, skip 2 stitches and finish with a 4 DCs.
  • Piece B – This line consists of a filled block, two open blocks, 20 filled blocks, 2 open and a closed. So it’s 4 DCs, CH 2, DC, CH 2, DC. That last DC is the last stitch in the last open block and also the first stitch in the first filled block. So I start counting 3 DCs for each filled block as I go now. I count 1-1, 1-2, 1-3; 2-1, 2-2, 2-3; 3-1, 3-2, 3-3…until I complete all 20 filled blocks. Then it’s CH 2, DC, CH 2, and end with 4 DCs.

ROW 5 – (reading chart from right to left now)

  • Piece A – this row contains the 2nd part of a lacet, a filled block, an open block, 8 double open blocks, an open block, a filled block, a 2nd part of a lacet and a filled block so…. it’s 4 DCs, then CH5, 4 DCs, CH 2, DC, (CH 5, DC) 7 times, then CH 5 and 4 DCs, CH 2, 4 DCs, CH 5, end with 4 DCs.
  • Piece B – this row contains a filled block, 2 open blocks, a filled block, 18 open blocks, a filled block, 2 open blocks and a filled block so… it’s 4 DCs, CH 2, DC, CH 2, 4 DCs, (CH 2, DC) 17 times, then CH 2 and 4 DCs, CH 2, DC, CH 2, 4 DCs.
Continue following chart for each row.  Finish off. Block your finished filet by covering a piece of foam, corkboard or other similar material with plastic wrap, stretching and pinning your piece in shape, and spraying with a warm water.  A small piece like this will dry overnight. Tips – you can wash your piece by hand with mild detergent and warm water and reblock whenever it needs it.  Always have clean hands when making filet, especially with white thread.  Rubbing you eyes and working on it is not a good idea.  Mascara is tough to get out of your work!  😉
Here are some photos of the finished pieces from the CAL.  It was a lot of fun and with such talented hookers who took to it like ducks to water!
filetdorthebird

by Dorthe of Crafty Duddles

filetannebird

by Anne of Crafted Whimzies

filetkeelybluebird

by keely of CraftyDoodles

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Twisted Chain Necklace Free Pattern

twistedchainnecklacewm Originally, I wasn’t going to offer this as a free pattern.  It just seemed too simple to bother to take the time to write up.  But it really does make a quick and lovely gift so I figured I’d put it out there.  This version is super simple.  You can use any size hook and yarn that works for you to get the length you desire but I will write the specifics of what I’ve done here to make a necklace that is long enough to slip over the head so no clasps are needed.

Twisted Chain Necklace

This pattern is my property and is not to be copied or reposted. It should remain free and finished objects made from it may be sold. Credit should be given to me as the designer.  Links to the original pattern location are appreciated.

Copyright 2014 Author: Tina Le Page – Mad Crochet Lab, All rights reserved

twistedchainnecklacewm

First, I’ve used worsted weight acrylic yarn for all strands except for one made with Lion Brand Vanna’s Glamour for a metallic accent.  I’ve made the one shown with a J hook and an F hook.

I used a J hook and made a chain of 101 for 6 strands of coordinating colored yarns, including the one of Vanna’s Glamour.  It tends to look best with at least 6 strands.  Less will seem a bit too loose, unless you are using a thicker yarn.  For  one of the strands, I threaded three metallic colored beads onto the yarn first and then randomly chained them in place as I went along, just to add a little extra interest.   I used the beginning and end tails to tie all of the strands together in a knot and trimmed the ends.

twistedchaincloseup

Next, I made the band by using the Vanna’s Glamour yarn and making a square as follows – With an F sized hook – CH 11, (one is to turn) and then SC across (10), and CH 1, turn and repeat for a total of 10 rows.   For the last row, you can wrap the band right around the knot of yarn tails on the necklace and then SC or SS directly to the other side of the band.  Then finish off and hide your yarn tail inside the work.  Alternately, you could finish off after creating the band and then use the yarn tail to sew one end of the band to the other around the necklace.  I like doing it as the last row of the band because it seems like less finishing work (even if it’s only in my  head).  You could also sew a button or other item of interest onto the band when finished.

To wear the necklace, place it over the head, adjust so the band is on the side, and holding the band with one hand to keep it from moving, hold the opposite side of strands with the other hand and twist them a bit so all strands are nicely arranged around the neck and all colors can be seen.  You could also just leave them loosely dangling but I prefer the twisted look personally.

Other variations might be to make two smaller bands and put one on each side and leaving the strands untwisted, or adding a flower or other applique onto the band as well.  I’ve also made these using little metallic rings instead of beads and they added an extra element of luxury to the look.  Above all, have fun with this!

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