Thursday, 20 October 2011

Crochet shaped halter top pattern

So, I'm not planning on sharing a pattern every day or anything, these things take a long time to write up; but I sat yesterday & tried my best to compile this little (ok, large) pattern for sharing with all you gifted, happy crocheting chicks out there.

Do bear in mind it was freeform though & I have now made 3 or 4 of these tops from memory & written the pattern thus - if you experience any confusion/problems with the pattern give me a shout & I'll see what I can do to take your hand & help you out.

Pattern writing is fraught with danger since I'm writing it from the point of view of having successfully made the garment, then I have to try & be as clear as possible in conveying the instructions in a cromulent order... Hope I have succeeded but do bear in mind I've only been writing patterns for the past few months; after crocheting for about 4 years. (Yes, I said cromulent; it's a brilliant word).

Onto the pattern!

Shaped halter top pattern:

This halter is one which I created freeform, but it's turned out so well & is really well fitting that I wanted to share the pattern.

It is worked to your own measurements, rather than to stitch counts, since I find with freeform work this is the best way to go; also this way it'll fit you no matter what size you are.

I'm a UK size 8-10 so the pattern is written from that point of view, but for larger or smaller sizes I'll try & let you know as I go along how to accommodate any measurements.

You will need:

Approx. 200g DK yarn, examples are worked in DK cotton, but acrylic & wool would work just was well. If you want to make a finer top switch for 4 ply, or a chunkier top use worsted/aran weight.

Your favourite size crochet hook. i use a 5.5mm but I crochet tighter than most, so perhaps a 4mm would suit better. For a more open weave look use a bigger hook & thinner yarn, & vice versa :)

This top is started at the cups, then worked down to the length you want using a shell stitch; then the sides are added in, joined & edgings done/ties added. I use up yarn ends to make mine, as they don't really take up much yarn for the size of the project & these tops work up quick!

So, are you ready? here we go!

Cup 1

Row 1: Ch 8, htr in 2nd ch from hook, htr in ea ch until final one; 2 htr in final loop, ch 2, 2 more htr in final loop. Work along other side of chain, 1 htr into ea st (9 sts down each side with ch 2 in the middle).

Row/round 2: ch 2 (counts as first htr), 1 htr in ea. st; (2 htr, ch 2, 2 htr) in ch 2 sp, 1 htr in ea st to end (11 sts ea side)

Row 3: Work as for row 2; ending with 13 sts ea side & ch 2 sp in top middle.

Row 4: work as for row 3. (15 sts ea side)

Row 5: work as for row 4 (17 sts ea side)

For A/B cup sizing finish up now, fasten off. For C/D & larger sizes I advise keep going in the established patt. holding it up against your boob until it barely covers it (it'll be made larger with edging at the end of the project).

Cup 2

Work as for cup 1. Do not fasten off.

Cup edging part 1

Ch 1 (counts as first dc); turn cup so the bottom (straight) edge is to be worked, work 1 more dc in same st & then work a row of dc evenly across the bottom of the cup. Work 2dc in final st.

Now, we're making a chain to go between the cups & this gap's width depends on your own body shape. For A cup (i.e. me!) I chain 8 sts loosely. But what i suggest you do is ch 8 at the start & hold it up against yourself to see if the cups will sit where you want them to; if the gap's too small, ch until it's the fit you want.

Pick up cup 1 & join bottom edge onto ch using a sl st; 2 dc in first st. dc evenly across bottom edge of second cup. 4 dc in corner st.

Now work 1 dc in ea st to top edge of cup 1; 2 dc in ch 2 sp, ch 2, 2 dc in same ch 2 sp; then work dc in ea st down to join between cups. 2 dc in final st; 1 dc in ea ch across.

Work 2 dc into corner st; work 1 dc in ea st to top of cup 2; work same as for cup 1. Finish with 2 dc in final st (where you should already have 2dc from where you started). Do not fasten off (unless you're changing colour!)

Bodice, row 1:

ch 2 (counts as first htr), 1 htr in ea st across bottom edge of what now looks like a proto bikini. Finish in 2nd dc in corner of cup 1. Turn.

Row 2 (shell stitch row)

Ch 3 (counts as first tr) 2 tr in same st; ch 1, *sk 2 sts, dc in next st; ch 1, sk next 2 sts, 5 tr in next st, ch 1* Repeat from * across row.

Now, you may or may not finish on a shell… I'll try my best to explain what to do at the end of the row. If you finish on what should be 5 tr, instead work 3 tr (this gives you a straight edge when you turn); if you finish on a dc leave it at that; if you finish in the middle of a ch sp (oh no) then just skip a ch so you end up with either half a shell or a dc in the final st of the row. Turn.

Row 3:

~ if you finished on a half shell, now ch 2, work 5 tr into dc from previous row; *ch 1, dc into centre stitch of shell on previous row, ch 1, 5 tr into dc from previous row* repeat from * across row.

~ if you finished on a dc, then ch 3, & work 2 tr into last st of previous row. Then ch 1, *dc into centre st of shell of previous row; ch 1, 5 tr into dc of previous row, ch 1* Repeat from 8 across row.

Row 4: work in established patt. changing colours if you wish, until work measures the length you want it to be. With this style of top it fits well if it comes down to just below the waist; but of course you could make it longer or shorter. As a rough guide, I work down until the shell fabric measures 12 inches from the bottom of the cups.

Once you're happy with the length, do not fasten off (unless you're changing colour for the back).

Now you need to work out how long to make the side panels. As a rough guide, when i make this top it ends up measuring 10 inches across at the front; & I require to fit a bust of 32 inches. This, allowing for ease, means the top needs to be about 28 inches wide when finished up. This means each panel should be made 9 inches long (10 + 9 + 9 = 28).

What i suggest you do is measure your bust, subtract 3 or 4 inches for ease, then measure the front of the top; & add the number you need for your bust; divide by two, & that's how long each panel should be. If you are a bountiful lady then I recommend doing fewer increases, maybe at the end of every 4th row (see later for info on this) so that there is still a panel at the back.

Of course, you can also do the back without shaping (i.e. no decreases) to make a regular back for the top.

Side panel, side 1:

Row 1:

Ch 2 (counts as first htr); work htr evenly across the side of each shell stitch; work 3 more htr in side of cup. Turn.

Row 2:

Ch 2 (counts as first htr); 1 htr in ea st across row. Turn.

Row 3 (decrease row):

Ch 2, sk first st, htr in ea st across. Turn.

Row 4: ch 2, htr in ea st across. Turn.

Repeat rows 3 & 4, alternating, so that 1 st is decreased at the bottom edge of the top each row. Work until panel measures the same as the amount you worked out earlier (hold it against yourself to check). Fasten off.

Side panel, side 2:

Join yarn to bottom edge of top, at opposite side to last panel worked. ch 2 (counts as first htr); work as for side panel, side 1. Fasten off when correct length reached.

Join back:

With RS facing, crochet or whipstitch along the end rows of the 2 side panels. fasten off, turn work right side facing.


Row 1:

Start at the top, join yarn in join between panels; ch 1 (counts as first dc). work dc evenly across back; when you reach the edge of the cup work 2dc tog at corner, then 1 dc in ea st up to top of cup; in ch 2 sp work 2 dc, ch 2, 2 dc; then 1 dc in ea st down to corner. In corner work 2dc tog, 1 dc across cup join, 2dctog in next corner; & work second cup edging as first; then dc evenly across panel at other side. Join to first st of row w sl st,

Row 2:

Ch 1 i dc in ea st, doing 2dctog decreases at corner as rev row, & ch 2 sp at top of each cup. Join w sl st. Fasten off.

Bottom edge, row 1:

Join yarn to side of shell stitch row, so that you will work away from the shell row. Ch 1 (counts as first dc), work dc evenly across back, stopping when you reach the shell row. Turn.

row 2:

Ch 1 (counts as first dc), 1 dc in ea st across row. Turn.

Row 3: (picot row).

Ch 3, sl st in same st. *sh next dc, dc in ea of next 3 sts, ch 3, sl st in same st* repeat from * across.

When you reach the shell edge, work another row of shell stitches 9as for bodice) across shell st row. Join w sl st to first st of row 3 on other side. Fasten off.

Halter top ties:

Working each cup the same, using 2 strands of yarn held together; join in yarn in ch 2 sp at top if cup; work 60ch; fasten off, leaving a little tail.

Work cup 2 as previous cup. fasten off.

Now, weave in all your little ends, press lightly using a cool iron; pop it on & look in the mirror; maybe show me a pic of your creation… :)

Wednesday, 19 October 2011

Patterns - evil eye or eyeball motif

I've decided to use this blog to share my freeform crochet patterns for unusual little things; like today's piece.

This is a simple little evil eye/eyeball design, which could be sewn onto anything you like, or used as a scrubbie in the kitchen, hallowe'en gifts etc. If you make it as a scrubbie remember to use 100% acrylic yarns though or it won't work so well...

Here's how to make it, I will assume you know the basic crochet stitches, & please note this pattern is written in UK crochet terminology. (UK & US terminologies/stitch names are different; for this project to work make sure you have the right stitches. For a quick reminder, when I say 'dc' I mean a US sc; htr = hdc etc etc.

You will need:

Oddments of yarns in black, blue (or whatever colour you wish the iris to be) & white. I used 100% recycled cottons for the examples, & there is a variation with or without eyelashes/eyeliner ;)

Your favourite sized crochet hook, I used a 5.5mm but I crochet pretty tight so most people may be happier with a 3-4mm. Depends also what size you want the finished eye to be.

This eye is worked without turning the work at any point; it is done round by round, with shaping in the later rounds to create the eye outline.

Onto the instructions:

Round 1: Using black, make an adjustable loop; (there's plenty of instructions for this online without me telling you exactly how to do this, it's easy & if you've done Amigurumi before you'll know what to do).
Make 12 dc into ring, join w sl. st. (12 sts). fasten off black.

Round 2: Join in iris colour (blue etc), ch 1 (counts as first dc), 1 dc into same st; 2 dc into ea. st all the way around circle (24 sts).

Round 3: Ch 1 (counts as first dc). 1 dc into same st; *1 dc into next st, 2 dc into following st* Repeat from * all round circle (36 sts) Fasten off iris colour.

Round 4: Join in white, ch 2 (counts as first htr); 1 htr into same st, dc into each of the next 13 sts, htr into next st ch 1 htr into following st, dc into ea st to finish round, ch 1,j oin to 1st st w sl st. (36 sts plus 2 ch sp)

Round 5: Ch 2 (counts as first htr), dc into ea. st until next htr reached, htr in this st, ch 1, htr in following st, dc in ea st until last, htr in last st, ch 1, join w sl st. Fasten off white.

For eyelashes continue to round 6.

Round 6: Join in black. ch 1 (counts as first dc), 1 dc in next 2 sts, ch 2, join into same st w sl st (1 eyelash made). Continue around making eyelashes every 2nd st until top of eye is reached, then 1 dc in ea st (& 1 dc in ch 1 sp) until you've reached the opposite side of the eye, then do more eyelashes as you wish (it's fairly freeform at the eyelash part but quite simple so you'll get the hang of it.

For bigger eyelashes ch 3 or more at each lash (or picot, which is technically what they are!).

Fasten off black, weave in/tie off ends, press lightly using a cool iron. Stick onto your jacket, a top; a bag; or onto whatever you want, give it to a friend or wash your dishes with it ;)