Wednesday, December 17, 2014

How to Crochet Washcloths

by M. J. Joachim

Crochet washcloths are one of the easiest things to make. You can make them to use in the kitchen, as facial cloths and also for newborn babies. Using crochet 4-ply cotton and doily thread, you can enjoy a simple project that is great for personal use or to wrap up and give as a gift. Since Christmas is only a few days away, I thought this post might help you with a few last minute gifts that you can make up in no time at all.

Basic Crochet Square Kitchen Washcloth

Choose a close weave pattern to make your kitchen washcloth. Stitches like single crochet, half double crochet, ridge, spider or basket stitch work well for this. Pick coordinating colors of yarn so that your new washcloth will match the colors of the kitchen you are making it for.

You Will Need: 1 skein 4-ply cotton yarn, 1 medium size crochet hook, sewing scissors

Step 1: Choose the stitch you want to use and make a foundation chain for your square.

Step 2: Follow stitch pattern instructions to create the overall design of your kitchen washcloth.

Step 3: Measure until your kitchen washcloth is a square.

Step 4: Crochet a border or trim around your kitchen washcloth. (optional)

Step 5: Finish off and weave in loose ends.

Your new washcloth is machine washable. If you are giving it as a gift, be sure to let the receiver know that no special care is required. However, washing it with a little white vinegar the first time will help prevent it from fading. Once made, crochet kitchen washcloths last a very long time.

Personal Facial Washcloth

Personal facial washcloths can be made from thick or fine yarn, depending on your preference. You can design them to be a little fancier, using a lacier pattern, or more practical choosing a close weave pattern. They can be used as facial buffers or scrubbers; this will depend on the yarn and thread you choose. The thin strands of doily thread tend to create a rougher texture.

As with the kitchen washcloth, choose your yarn and all over pattern or design. Make your facial washcloth the appropriate size and add a decorative trim or border to it. If you make a facial scrubber, you can sew it to store bought washcloth that is soft. This way your facial washcloth will be both a skin buffer and scrubber, all in one.

Newborn Baby Washcloth
Choose your fibers carefully when making a newborn baby washcloth. You want to avoid thick cotton yarns. Your best choice is a light sport weight cotton yarn, but not doily thread. You can opt to use spools of embroidery thread because it is very soft, but you’ll need a lot of them. If you do use embroidery thread, be sure to add new thread only on the edges, and not in the middle of your project. Also be wary of dyes and chemicals used in processing it.

Use a small crochet hook to make a newborn baby washcloth. Make a small square following the pattern and design instructions of the stitch you choose. Select close weave stitches that little fingers won’t be able to poke through, tug on, or get stuck in. Prewash any newborn baby washcloth before giving it as a gift.

Thanks so much for visiting Lots of Crochet Stitches today. I hope you enjoy making lots of washcloths for yourself and others.

M. J.

©2014 All Rights Reserved 

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Crochet Books for Beginners

by M. J. Joachim

You may have seen them, those books that have been thumbed through hundreds of times and are falling apart. The information in them is that good, and their reliability is timeless. These crochet books will help you improve your skills, challenge your abilities and create amazing projects:

The Pattern Library Crochet

This small book explains everything you need to know about crochet if you are a beginner. It is well organized with detailed graphs in the front that show you crochet techniques. Stitch patterns are logically sequenced, and each has a color picture of what the patterns look like when completed.

Patterns instructions include information on using different yarns and hooks sizes when making them. They tell you the multiple of stitches you need to make a project. This way you can use the pattern to make anything you want, as opposed to following one pattern for one specific item.

The Pattern Library Crochet: ISBN # is: 0-345-32711-X

The Crochet Stitch Bible

This spiral bound book contains over 200 stitch instructions, including several variations for Tunisian crochet, broomstick lace and beading procedures. Each stitch includes a stitch key and chart to help you visualize the pattern sequence. Colorful diagrams are strategically placed throughout The Crochet Stitch Bible, as well as helpful tips and information that make it easier to learn new stitches and techniques.

The Crochet Stitch Bible: ISBN # is: 978=0-87349-717-6

Super Finishing Techniques for Crocheters

This book shows you how to give crochet work a professional finished look. You will learn how to add zippers and buttons to your patterns, apply trims and embroidery, combine yarns, make pockets, add beads, filet crochet and more. An excellent feature in this book is “Be your own designer” at the end of each chapter. Here you are challenged to apply what you have learned into your very own unique project. Basic instructions get you started, but the rest is up to you.

Super Finishing Techniques for Crocheters: ISBN # is: 978-0-312-57049-1

101 Stitches for Afghans

While this book claims to be for afghans, you will find that these stitch combinations can be incorporated into many different projects. The organization of this instructional book is such that you can adapt its patterns to bookmarks, washcloths, clothing and probably just about anything else too.

Stitches patterns are listed with a picture, materials (meaning how many colors of yarn, plus color sequence), and special stitch instructions. Individual pattern instructions begin by telling you the multiple of chain stitches you need to follow it and listing the sequence of pattern rows in order. Right away you know how many rows it will take to make a specific design. Your design will then be repeated to make an all over pattern.

101 Stitches for Afghans: ISBN # is: 0-88195-763-1

All of these books are reasonably priced and available online. Use these crochet books to do many things with this wonderful craft. You are apt to steadily increased your knowledge and skills, design patterns, sell projects or teach others how to crochet because of them. Crochet might turn into one of your favorite pastimes as you continue to learn more from these invaluable resources.

Beginning crocheters will find more than enough information in these references to help them learn and master the art of crocheting. Intermediate to advanced students will also benefit as they challenge themselves to learn new stitches and techniques, ever improving their ability to crochet.

Thanks so much for stopping by today. I truly appreciate your visits, comments and shares.

M. J.


©2014 All Rights Reserved Photo credit: Corkscrew Tassel Ornament - http://www.lotsofcrochetstitches.com/delightful-crochet-patterns-and-projects/corkscrew-tassel-120712

Monday, December 15, 2014

Crochet Projects for Kids

by M. J. Joachim

One of the best crochet projects for kids is a simple chain. Give them a large hook and big ball of yarn and let them compete with their friends to see who can make the longest chain. They will sit for long periods of time inserting their hook and pulling out loops to lengthen their personal chains. Then they will run around with them, dragging them everywhere they go, measuring them to see who made the longest one.

Kids turn their crochet chains into games too. One child will spin around, holding the chain as he goes. Another child will try to hop over the chain without stepping on it. They might even make a few chains and tie them together into a cat or puppy toy. Teach a child how to make a crochet chain and they will surprise you with the many ways they think of using it.

Crochet chains are the foundation for all sorts of crochet projects. Once a child is hooked on chaining, it’s easy to teach them how to make their chains into other things. Begin with small projects and teach them how to single crochet after they are comfortable making the chain stitch. Square motifs made using chain and single crochet stitches can be turned into potholders and doll pillows. These projects work up quickly, preventing children from becoming bored with them before they have a chance to finish making them. It’s very exciting to see a child’s face when they feel such a sense of accomplishment after finishing a simple crochet project.

As children gain confidence in their ability to complete a crochet project, they can be introduced to crochet projects like pompoms, flowers and hollow ovals. They can continue using chain and single crochet stitches or learn double crochet to make these items. Pompoms and flowers can be attached to magnets that are proudly displayed on the refrigerator, while hollow ovals can be turned into rattles or colorful Easter eggs.

Children can fill plastic Easter eggs with rice, beans or a jingle bell. They can insert the egg into their hollow oval before they begin to seal off the Easter egg inside and make a rattle. Provide cotton stuffing for kids to fill their Easter egg ovals. Teach them to join stitches together (decrease), making them tight enough to close an opening.

Another great crochet project for kids is small stuffed animals. These are made in parts, so the child has a sense of accomplishment after finishing each section. Stuffed animals have limited instructions for each body part. This is a wonderful way to teach children how to read and follow crochet patterns and learn new stitches and techniques.

The best crochet projects for kids begin simply, allowing them to build on the previous skills they are already enjoying in crochet. They are easy to make and encourage creativity, without having to produce a perfect final project. Projects that produce quick, successful results are preferred. Kids who enjoy the rewards of their labor are more likely to continue doing it in the future.

Thanks so much for visiting, commenting on and sharing this post today. Crochet is one of those things that needs to be passed down from generation to generation. I’ve taught my kids how to do it and they really like having the skill of crochet in their personal bag of tricks.

Until next time, I wish you every good thing!

M. J.

©2014 All Rights Reserved Photo credit: 

Thursday, December 11, 2014

10 Easy to Make, Inexpensive Crocheted Christmas Gifts

by M. J. Joachim
Just about everyone loves receiving beautiful handmade gifts, especially when they look like someone spent hours, and maybe even days, making them. Crocheted gifts are nice because they often look so detailed, but work up very quickly. You can rely on short, easy patterns or trust your instincts as you hook your way to make a perfect gift for someone you know. Here is a list of ten cheap, quick and easy crochet gift ideas.



Gifts for Just About Anyone

*Bookmarks: Combine simple rows of common stitches to make beautiful bookmarks. Decorate them with ribbon, beads, tiny silk flowers, and other accessories to make them unique.

*Magnets: Use a pattern to make flowers or other 3-dimensional small projects. Attach a strong magnet to the back with super glue.

*Holding Clip: Use a pattern to make a tiny design of your choice. Super glue it to a spring hinged clothespin. As a variation, super glue a strong magnet to the other side of the clip.

Personal Gifts

*Hats: Crochet a rectangle using stitches of your choice. Do not finish off. Using a long (afghan) hook, gather all the stitches from the long side of your work, yarn over and pull through all the stitches on the hook, gathering tightly to make the top of the hat. With right sides facing, single crochet a seam down the short sides of your hat, matching stitch for stitch. Without finishing off, crochet a brim for your hat.

*Scarves: Choose your favorite stitch and either make vertical or horizontal rows until your scarf is as long or wide as you want it. Make a matching hat and purse too.

*Purses: Make a close knit crocheted rectangle. Fold it in half, right sides facing. Make a seam (using single crochet or whip stitch) down opposite sides, and leaving an opening at the top. Add a crocheted strap, or attach a purse handle that you purchase from a craft store.

Gifts for the Kitchen

*Potholders: Crochet two identical squares. Join them together, sandwiching non-flammable batting between if desired. Add a loop.

*Kitchen towels: Use your favorite stitches to crochet a large rectangle out of cotton crochet thread. Deck it out with a border or trim and ribbon. As a variation, purchase a kitchen towel, and crochet a top to it. Gradually decrease to make a triangular top, adding a loop at the end. Attach a button to one side of your crochet hook, and now your towel can be secured on the refrigerator handle.

*Washcloths: Crochet a large square in the pattern of your choice. Make washcloths out of 4-ply cotton yarn if you want them thick and plush. Use doily thread if you'd like them to be able to dry quickly.

*Kitchen scrubby: Purchase tulle by the yard and cut into 2 - 3 inch strips. Chain two, single crochet 6 times in second chain from hook. Continue single crocheting around, increasing as you go until your scrubby is the desired size.

Christmas is coming and there is still plenty of time to make some or all of these projects as gifts for your loved ones. Here’s wishing you a merry, merry and a season promising to keep you in stitches!

M. J.

©2014 All Rights Reserved Photo credit: M. J. Joachim, ©2014 All Rights Reserved, http://lotsofcrochetstitches.blogspot.com/2014/10/star-pattern-102914.html

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Different Types of Yarn

by M. J. Joachim

Yarn is fiber that has been spun together into strands that are thick enough to manipulate, sculpt and shape into a variety of items through the process of weaving, knotting, knitting or crocheting. It is made out of natural fibers like fine cotton, silk and heavy wool. Yarn is also made from synthetic substances like acrylic and metallic looking plastic strands.

Yarn comes in a variety of styles, textures and thicknesses. As a general rule, fine, lightweight cotton and silk fibers make delicate lacy items, medium weighted yarns are good for crafts and practical items, and heavy or bulky yarns work well for warmth and heavily used items like rugs. Ply count indicates how many strands of thread are spun together to make yarn.

Yarn is often categorized by weight and purpose. Each category has a wide range of fibers, textures, colors and uses. Projects, patterns and personal preference ultimately determine which yarn someone chooses when making something. Yarn types can be interchangeable to the extent that the designer or crafter wants them to be.

Weighted Yarns

• Fine Yarn: This is commonly called “Classic Crochet Thread”. It is used for making lightweight clothing, linens and delicate items. Very fine yarn can be made into dainty lingerie, while heavier fine yarn makes beautiful tablecloths. Fine yarn is generally only two or three ply.

• Four Ply Light Weight Yarn: This is a little bit heavier than fine yarn, but not quite medium weight. It is used to make baby items, swimsuits and soft washcloths and pillow covers.

• Sport Yarn: Medium weight yarn qualifies as sport yarn. It comes in many styles and colors and can be used to make lots of different projects including clothing, household accessories and crafts.

• Worsted Weight Yarn: This yarn is a little on the heavy side. It holds its shape better and can be used to make warm garments, household items and many different crafts.

• Bulky, Chunky Yarn: This is the thick, homespun type yarn, often consisting of more than one type of thread or fiber. Many crafters use this with large tools to make big projects quickly. Bulky chunky yarn can be soft and fuzzy, perfect for making warm clothing. It can also be rough and sturdy, great for making doormats and baskets.

• Novelty Yarns: Novelty yarns differ from traditional yarns. They come in funky styles with unique patterns, knots and loose fibers that create a unique effect for any given project. Projects using novelty yarns should stick to basics, allowing the yarn to take center stage, as opposed to the stitchery or craftsmanship.

Yarn manufacturers have created a vast supply of different types of yarn for all your weaving, crocheting, knitting and crafting needs. They combine multiple fibers, blend different styles and offer a vast assortment of textures and colors to their customers, weavers, crafters and artists who enjoy making fine things out of the perfect type of yarn.

I hope this post helps you when you are designing and making your projects. It’s a lot of fun to experiment with yarn, using different types for multiple projects, or even combining different yarns for a more creative, artistic effect. Thanks so much for visiting, commenting on and sharing Lots of Crochet Stitches. I’m really glad you stopped by.

M. J.

©2014 All Rights Reserved Photo credit: M. J. Joachim, My Yarn Stash, ©2014 All Rights Reserved

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Afghan Project Pattern #112114 - Joining 3rd Strip, 9-Patch Complete

by M. J. Joachim



This is Post #4 of Afghan Pattern in the Making. Please see Post #1, Post #2 and Post #3 for previous pattern instructions.

Repeat Steps from Post #2 to join 3rd strip as follows (copied here for your convenience).


Use Color C

Match right sides together to join strips. You will be joining the long sides of each rectangle together

Step 1: Join Color C to end corner stitch of both rectangles; Chain 1, make 1 single crochet in same stitch

Step 2: Make 1 single crochet in each stitch across, matching and joining both rectangles together. Finish by making 1 single crochet in only the 1st stitch of the corner stitch of each rectangle together, leaving the other 2 stitches in each rectangle untouched.

Do Not Finish Off. After joining the 3rd strip, you will begin making the border around your 9-patch.



9-Patch Border

Step 1: Open joined strips. Slip stitch into each of next 2 stitches, so you are at 3rd stitch of corner square

Step 2: Chain 3 (counts as 1st dc); Make 1 dc in each stitch across center square

Step 3: Make 2 dc in last stitch of center square; skip seam, make 2 dc in first stitch of next square; make 1 dc in each stitch to corner of 9-patch

Step 4: Corner - Make 2 dc in 1st corner stitch, make 1 dc in center corner stitch, make 2 dc in third corner stitch

Step 5: Make 1 dc in each stitch to next corner of 9-patch; Repeat Step 4 for corner

Step 6: Make 1 dc in each stitch across 1st square to first seam where 2 strips of 3 squares are joined together; make 1 more dc in last stitch of 1st square prior to seam; skip seam - make 2 dc in 1st stitch of 2nd square

Repeat Step 6 across to next corner of 9-Patch for 3rd square and seam

Step 7: Repeat Step 4 for corner; make 1 dc in each stitch across side to 4th corner of 9-Patch; Repeat Step 4 for last corner

Step 8: Repeat Step 6 across last square to next seam, ending with 1 dc in same stitch as 1st chain 3 and joining with a slip stitch to top chain of first chain 3 in border. Finish off.

I plan to make a whole bunch of 9-Patches which I will eventually join together, sharing those steps with you here when I get to them. In the meantime, I’ll continue adding to this blog with other stitches and projects, because it will take me some time to make my 9-Patches for this afghan. Please stay tuned. I’m having a wonderful time sharing this Afghan in the Making with you and hope you are enjoying it as much as I am.

Also, beginning tomorrow through Saturday (Dec 4 - 6), my Effectively Human blog is hosting the 2nd Annual Holiday Food Drive, taking place everywhere online. Please join us as we raise awareness and do our part to help fill food banks and provide food and resources to those in need. You can read all about it here.

Thank you so much for visiting, commenting on and sharing Lots of Crochet Stitches today! Your support of my work here is very much appreciated!

M. J.

©2014 All Rights Reserved Photo credit: M. J. Joachim ©2014 All Rights Reserved

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Afghan Project Pattern #112114 - Joining First 2 Strips of 3 Together

by M. J. Joachim

Post #3 of Afghan Pattern in the Making. Please see Post #1 and Post #2 for previous pattern instructions.

Use Color C

Match right sides together to join strips. You will be joining the long sides of each rectangle together

Step 1: Join Color C to end corner stitch of both rectangles; Chain 1, make 1 single crochet in same stitch

Step 2: Make 1 single crochet in each stitch across, matching and joining both rectangles together. Finish by making 1 single crochet in only the 1st stitch of the corner stitch of each rectangle together, leaving the other 2 stitches in each rectangle untouched.

I’ll be joining the 3rd strip to make my 9-patch in the same manner. Like in Post #2, I will not be finishing off when I do so, and am in the process of making the border pattern for the completed 9-patch, which will be 1 large square. These squares will then be joined together to make the completed afghan. (At least that’s what I’m leaning toward as I continue designing this pattern.)

Another thought has crossed my mind for this afghan, but I’m not sure if I’m going to do it yet. I’m considering making each 9-patch with the same type yarn, in different coordinating colors. This is still up for debate in my brain, and only time will tell if I do so. I’ll be back real soon with the rest of the 9-patch, so you have all the instructions you need to make your own 9-patch squares. Future posts will include joining 9-patch squares together and making a final border on the afghan. Please stay tuned.

For those who celebrated the Thanksgiving holiday last week, I hope it was truly wonderful. We hosted a lot of family and had a blast. For the record, bbq turkey is positively scrumptious!

Happy stitching everyone!

M. J.

©2014 All Rights Reserved Photo credit: M. J. Joachim ©2014 All Rights Reserved

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Afghan Project Pattern #112114 - Joining 3 Squares


by M. J. Joachim


Post #2 in Afghan Pattern in the Making. Please view Post #1 to make your squares.

The vision for this afghan is a nine patch, so I’m joining 3 squares at a time, which will be followed by joining three, 3 square strips. Today we will join individual squares into 3 square strips.

Use Color C to join squares
Step 1: Join 2 squares, right sides together, in any chain 2 space


Step 2: Chain 1, make 1 single crochet in same space

Step 3: Match stitch for stitch, making 1 single crochet in each stitch and chain 1 space, ending with 1 single crochet in chain 2 space at end of row where sides are joined together; finish off

Repeat Steps 1 - 3 to add 3rd square to strip - Do not finish off after 3rd square is joined in strip



Step 4: Open square, chain 1; make 1 single crochet in same space over last joining stitch in seam. Squares are right side up now.

Step 5: Make 1 single crochet in 1st chain 2 space at seam; make 1 single crochet in each stitch and in each chain 1 space to the next seam of 2 joining squares; make 1 sc over last stitch of seam; make 1 sc in each stitch and chain 1 space to 1st corner of rectangle

Step 6: Make 3 single crochet stitches in corner; continue working around, making 1 sc in each stitch, making 1 sc in each chain 1 space, making 1 sc over each last stitch in seam and making 3 single crochet stitches in each corner of the rectangle.



Make 3 rectangles for each 9 patch square.

I will be working on designing joining rectangles made in this post - Post #2, and completing the design for the finished look of our first 9-patch square. We will need several 9-patch squares to make a full afghan.

If you are crocheting along with this pattern, you can continue making 3 square strips - 3 for each 9-patch square, while I work on designing the next steps for this original afghan design that is in the making on Lots of Crochet Stitches.



Thank you so much for visiting, commenting and sharing. I’ll be back as soon as I can with more details about how to make this afghan for you.

M. J.

©2014 All Rights Reserved Photo credit: M. J. Joachim, ©All Rights Reserved

Friday, November 21, 2014

New Afghan Pattern in the Making

by M. J. Joachim

I bought this yarn a while ago with the intention of making an afghan for my bed with it. My original idea was to frame begonia squares with the variegated yarn. The yarn got stowed away as so often happens. I knew the right inspiration would come, and I’d start making that afghan one day. Today’s the day, and as an added incentive for me, you’ll get to watch and see the progress as I work on it.

I’m no longer making begonia squares. All day I thought of quilted nine-patches. By late afternoon, I was thinking of granny squares, but I want my afghan to be more closely woven than that, so I’m making my first square in my own granny square pattern. I think I’ll use the green in the center, with the variegated on the outer portion of my squares, then frame my nine-patches with the burgundy, and put a whole bunch of nine-patches together.

I think one of the things I like most about this square is that it has a bit of a ruffle to it. I can picture a great big, fluffy afghan floating across my bed or snuggling up with it on the couch.

Granny Square Afghan Project Pattern #112114

I purchased 3 skeins each of 4-ply Loops and Threads, Soft & Shiny yarn (311 yards p/skein).  My colors are: Jewels, Citrus and Burgundy. I will make as many 9 patch squares as I can with this and together we will see how big the afghan will turn out.

Pattern uses 3 colors - A, B and C

Size J hook

Square Pattern Instructions

Step 1: Chain 6, make a ring by slip stitching into 1st chain

Step 2: Chain 3 (counts as 1st dc), make 2 more dc in center of ring

Step 3: Chain 1, make 3 dc in center of ring

Repeat Step 3 ten more times (so that you have 12 groups of 3 dc; chain 1, join with a slip stitch to top chain of 1st chain 3 in round

Step 4: Slip stitch into each of next 2 dc and into 1st chain 1 space. Make beginning corner (chain 3 + 2 dc + chain 2 + 3 dc) in same space

Step 5: Chain 1, make 3 dc in next chain 1 space (twice)

Step 6: Chain 1, make corner (3 dc + chain 2 + 3 dc) in next chain 1 space

Repeat Steps 5 & 6 around, ending with Step 5 + chain 1; join with slip stitch to top chain of 1st chain 3 in round

Finish off Color A; join Color B to any chain 2 corner space

Note: Square is supposed to be ruffly.

Step 7: Make beginning corner (Step 4) in chain 2 space; repeat Step 5 for each chain 1 space and Step 6 for each chain 2 corner space, so that you have 3 double crochet stitches in each chain 1 space and (3 dc + chain 2 + 3 dc) in each chain 2 corner space, with chain 1 in between. Finish round with chain 1 and join with slip stitch to top of 1st chain 3 in round.

Step 8: Repeat Step 4, slip stitching into next chain 2 corner space. Repeat Steps 5 and 6 as instructed in Step 7 around. Finish off.

I hope you’ll enjoy following along as I make this new afghan. For those who want to do a crochet along, I will be making 9 of the squares in this pattern for my first 9 patch. You’re going to need a lot of these for the finished project, so feel free to make as many as you want (in multiples of 9). I’ll be posting the next steps as soon as I finish designing them for you.

Thanks so much for stopping by, commenting and sharing this post today, and have a lovely weekend!

M. J.

©2014 All Rights Reserved Photo credit: M. J. Joachim, ©2014 All Rights Reserved

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

2 Butterfly Crochet Patterns

by M. J. Joachim

Top right: M. J.'s; Bottom: Christina's
I finally made the butterflies from my last post. When I pinned that post, Christina commented and gave me her pattern for them. I think there may have been some confusion of UK vs. US symbols, but I did my best to follow her pattern just the same. The whole thing turned out really well, because now we can make big and small butterflies. We can even have them flutter all over our Christmas trees if we want.

I used pipe cleaner for the antennae. It was very easy and I think it looks good too.

My Butterfly (made by looking at the picture with no pattern)

Step 1: Chain 4, slip stitch into 1st chain to make a ring

Step 2: Chain 3 (counts as 1st dc), make 2 more dc in center of ring; (chain 1 + 3 dc) seven more times in ring - finish round with chain 1 and slip stitch into top chain of 1st chain 3 in round

Step 3: Join 2nd color in any chain 1 space; Chain 3, make 2 more dc in same space, chain 1, make 3 more dc in same space; make (3 dc + chain 1 + 3 dc) in each chain 1 space around - finish round by joining with slip stitch in top chain of 1st chain 3 in round

Step 4: Join 3rd color in any chain 1 space; chain 3, make 7 dc in same space; make 8 dc in each chain 1 space around - finish round by joining with slip stitch to top chain of 1st chain 3 in round

Christina’s Butterfly Pattern
Step 1: Chain 6, join with slip stitch to make a ring

Step 2: Chain 4 (counts as 1st triple), make 2 more triple crochet in same space; make (chain 2 + 3 triple) in center of ring 7 more times

Step 3: Join 2nd color in any chain 2 space; chain 4 + 2 more triple in same place, chain 3 + 3 more triple in same place, chain 1; make (3 triple + chain 3 + 3 triple) in each chain 2 space around with chain 1 between each group - finish round with chain 1 and a slip stitch in top of 1st chain 4 in round

Step 4: Join 3rd color in any chain 3 space; chain 4, make 7 triple in same space

Step 5: Make 1 dc in next chain 1 space; make (8 triple in next chain 3 space)

Repeat Step 5 around, ending by joining with a slip stitch to top chain of 1st chain 4 in round

Fold butterfly in half, right side up. Use pipe cleaner to secure and make antennae.

Thank you for visiting and sharing my post today. I hope these butterflies truly brighten your day!

M. J.

p. s. I'm really sorry. I tried to add individual pictures for you, but blogger didn't want to cooperate with the formatting of them in this blog post.

©2014 All Rights Reserved

Friday, November 14, 2014

Creating a Crocheted Butterfly from a Picture

by M. J. Joachim


Thanks to a friendly email I received today, I’m trying something a little bit different in this post. I’m looking at the picture which I found on a free crochet website, and trying to figure out how the butterfly is made. I did not read the article or look at the instructions on the site.







  • The first thing I notice is that 3 colors are used.

  • It looks like the butterfly is made from a circle that is folded in half, and has 8 shells for the final round.

  • I’m guessing I would have to chain 4 and join with a slip stitch to begin.

  • There are (probably 8) sets of 3 double crochet stitches in the center round, with chain stitches in between - hmm, maybe 1 or 2

  • Join the 2nd color to one of the chain sections for the next round. Make (3 dc + chain 2 + 3 dc) in the center of each chain section. Begin by chaining 3 (counts as 1st dc), make 2 more dc, chain 2 and 3 more dc in same place. 

  • Join 3rd color to any chain space for the final round. Chain 3 (counts as 1st dc), make 8 dc in same place; make 8 dc in each chain space around

  • Fold in half and make 2 antennae with the chain stitch. I’m sure we’d need to fiddle with this part, to get it just right.

I’ll have to test this over the weekend to see if I’m right. Either way, it’s kind of a fun game to play, looking at a picture of something crocheted and trying to figure out how it was done.

Thanks so much for supporting Lots of Crochet Stitches with so much enthusiasm and kindness. Your comments, shares and emails are always received with a smile, because I truly do appreciate you. Here’s to a wonderful weekend for all.

M. J.

©2014 All Rights Reserved

Thursday, November 13, 2014

The First Afghan I Ever Made

by M. J. Joachim

Okay, so I’m cheating today, but if you knew what I went through before I came up with this post. For some reason, I was all thumbs today, consequently turning my yarn into tangled twists and knots not once, but twice. I was about to make my third attempt when I remembered this was in a box in the garage.

You see, our air went out this past summer when it was 109 degrees. There was no saving it, so up in the attic the workmen went to replace the duct work, put in new insulation and provide us with a much needed new one. There in the dust and old insulation sat an old protected box. One of the guys asked me if I wanted it. I didn’t even know it was up there, so I said, “Sure!”

As I opened the box, tears welled in my eyes and a gasp of surprised lodged in my throat. Inside the box were a whole bunch of treasured keepsakes to pass down to my children, including this old afghan! 

I thought we lost this box when we moved 15 years ago. I had no idea someone put it up in the attic. It’s the only thing that was up there, so nothing else got put up there with it.

I remember the hours I used to watch my mom crochet. She never taught me how. I just watched her for hours at a time. Then one day I asked if I could use some of her yarn and borrow a hook. This time I spent hours copying her moves, inserting the hook, yarn overing and drawing the hook through my own work. The stitch I came up with is something like a single crochet with chain stitches in between.

Step 1: Insert hook in desired stitch or space

Step 2: Yarn over, draw up a loop; chain 1, yarn over draw through both loops on hook


I think that’s how I made it…

As you can see, I knew nothing about adding stitches to the corners to make them sharp and neat. Mine are rounded. Nor did I know how to change colors, so I have a few knots where one color ends and another begins. Still the colors are very soothing and I used to cover myself while watching t.v. with this blanket all the time. That was some 30+ odd years ago, when I was a young teenager, and it’s still in pretty good condition!

Thanks so much for letting me share my story with you today. Here’s to keeping you in stitches!

M. J.

©2014 All Rights Reserved Photo credit: M. J. Joachim, ©All Rights Reserved

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Wrapped Triple Crochet Stitches

by M. J. Joachim




I decided to play with triple crochet stitches a little more, since yesterday’s post was so much fun.

Before I get into steps, I’d like to invite you all to the Google + community I created only a few hours ago. It’s called Effectively Human, and it’s a group dedicated to people. You can share what you do, how you feel or brag about other people there. The purpose of Effectively Human is for people to work together, to make the world a better place, and this is our very own little online community, to discuss, promote and share everything related to us. I do hope you’ll join me and help spread the word about it, please.

Now, onto our tutorial…

Step 1: Yarn over (twice), insert hook in desired space or stitch; yarn over pull up a loop

Step 2: (Chain 1 + yarn over, draw through 2 loops on hook) three times

That’s all there is to it. For all over patterns, make a base chain of 7; begin new rows with chain 7.

Thanks so much for visiting, commenting on and sharing this post today. I’ll see you again soon, and I hope to enjoy your company over in the Effectively Human Google + Community.

M. J.

©2014 All Rights Reserved Photo credits: M. J. Joachim ©2014 All Rights Reserved

Monday, November 10, 2014

Triple Crochet Stitch with a Twist

by M. J. Joachim




Step 1: Yarn over (twice), insert hook in space or stitch indicated; yarn over, draw up a loop

Step 2: Yarn over, draw through 2 loops on hook, chain 1 (Repeat Step 2, one more time)

Step 3: Yarn over, draw through last 2 loops on your hook

This is a fairly tall stitch. After experimenting a bit, I think it’s best to start new rows with chain 6. Foundation chains should add 6 to the base chain, and begin stitch in 6th chain from hook.

As with the DC3 Stitch I shared last Saturday, I don’t know if this stitch has ever been made before or not. I do know I was playing with my yarn again, and this is what I came up with.

Happy Crocheting Fellow Hookers!

M. J.


©2014 All Rights Reserved Photo credit: M. J. Joachim, ©2014 All Rights Reserved

Saturday, November 8, 2014

DC3 Stitch

by M. J. Joachim


DC3 All Over Pattern



Ever the one to play with my yarn, I came up with this stitch yesterday. It’s about as tall as a double crochet stitch, so I think chaining 3 at the beginning of a row works well. I’m going to call this stitch the DC3 stitch. I don’t know if it’s ever been made before or not, so it might have another name. I know I’ve never seen it before and was just experimenting with my hook and yarn when I came up with it.

For the single DC3 stitch example I chained 4 and made 1 DC3 in the first chain.



DC3 Single Stitch

Step 1: Yarn over, insert hook in desired stitch or space; yarn over, draw up a loop
Repeat Step 1 (one more time)

Step 2: Yarn over, draw through 3 loops on hook
Repeat Step 2 (one more time)


For the trim, I made a single DC3, then I chained 4 and made another DC3 stitch in the 4th chain from my hook. I continued this pattern to make as many DC3’s as I wanted.


DC3 Trim

For the all over stitch pattern I made any number of chain stitches (+3 more chain stitches for my foundation row. Then I made 1 DC3 in each chain across, starting with the 4th chain from the hook.

I chained 3 at the beginning of each row, and made 1 DC3 in the first stitch and each stitch across the row, but not in top of the turning chain.

If it weren’t for crochet, my hands would whittle away. 

Here’s to keeping you in stitches. Thanks for stopping by and visiting today.

M. J.

©2014 All Rights Reserved Photo credit: M. J. Joachim, ©2014 All Rights Reserved

Friday, November 7, 2014

4 Double Crochet Stitch Variations

by M. J. Joachim

Foundation: Make any number of chain stitches, +3 more chain stitches. Make 1st stitch in 4th chain from hook. Chain 3 to start a new row. Make 1st dc in next stitch of new row, because initial chain 3 counts as the first dc of the row.


Traditional Double Crochet Stitch



Step 1: Yarn over, insert hook in desired stitch or space; yarn over, draw up a loop

Step 2: Yarn over, draw through 2 loops on hook (twice)


Variation #1



Step 1: Yarn over, insert hook in desired stitch or space; yarn over, draw up a loop

Step 2: Yarn over, draw through 1 loop on hook

Step 3: Yarn over, draw through 2 loops on hook (twice)


Variation #2



Step 1: Yarn over, insert hook in desired stitch or space; yarn over, draw up a loop

Step 2: Yarn over, draw through 2 loops on hook

Step 3: Yarn over, draw through 1 loop on hook; yarn over, draw through 2 loops on hook


Variation #3


Step 1: Yarn over, insert hook in desired stitch or space; yarn over, draw up a loop

Step 2: Yarn over, draw through 1 loop; yarn over, draw through 3 loops on hook

Mix ‘em, match ‘em. Use them in place of traditional dc stitches in your patterns and have fun crocheting with your yarn.

Best of the weekend to all!

M. J. 

©2014 All Rights Reserved Photo credits: M. J. Joachim ©2014 All Rights Reserved

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Primula Circle

by M. J. Joachim





Step 1: Chain 4, make a ring by slip stitching into the 1st chain

Step 2: Chain 1, make 12 single crochet in center of ring; join with a slip stitch to 1st single crochet in round

Step 3: Chain 1, make 2 back loop only single crochet in same stitch

Step 4: Make 2 front loop only single crochet in next stitch and 2 back loop only single crochet in the following stitch

Repeat Step 4 around, ending with a slip stitch to the first single crochet in round

Step 5: Chain 1, make 1 single crochet in same stitch

Step 6: Chain 2, make 1 single crochet in 2nd stitch from hook

Repeat Step 6 around, ending with chain 2 and joining with a slip stitch to 1st sc in round

Step 7: Chain 1, make 1 single crochet in same stitch, make one 3-stitch double crochet cluster in next chain 2 space

3-stitch double crochet cluster

a. yarn over, insert hook in stitch or space; yarn over, draw up a loop

b. yarn over, draw through 2 loops on hook (once)

Repeat Steps a and b (2 more times), so you have 4 loops on your hook.

c. yarn over, draw through all 4 loops on hook; chain 1 to close cluster

Continue with pattern...

Step 8: Make 1 single crochet in next sc and one 3-stitch dc cluster in next chain 2 space

Repeat Step 8 around, ending with a slip stitch in the 1st single crochet in round

Thanks so much for visiting Lots of Crochet Stitches. I do appreciate all your visits and shares!

M. J.

©2014 All Rights Reserved Photo credit: M. J. Joachim, ©2014 All Rights Reserved

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Star Pattern 102914

by M. J. Joachim




Step 1: Chain 6, make a ring by slip stitching into the 1st chain, chain 1

Step 2: Make 1 single crochet in center of ring, chain 3

Repeat Step 2 (11 more times) completing round by joining with a slip stitch to 1st sc in round

Step 3: Slip stitch into next chain 3 loop; chain 1, make 1 single crochet in same place

Step 4: Make (chain 3 + 1 single crochet) in each loop around, ending with chain 3 and joining with a slip stitch to 1st sc in round

Step 5: Slip stitch into next chain loop; chain 1, make 1 single crochet in same loop

Step 6: Chain 6, make 1 single crochet in same loop

Step 7: Make 1 single crochet in next loop; make (1 sc + 6ch + 1 sc) in following loop

Repeat Step 7 around, ending with 1 sc in last loop and joining with a slip stitch to 1st single crochet in round

Step 8: Slip stitch into next chain loop; chain 3 (counts as 1st dc in round); make (4 more double crochet + 2 chain + 5 dc) in same loop; make 1 single crochet in single crochet between loops

Repeat step 8 around, ending with 1 single crochet in last sc and slip stitching into top chain of 1st chain 3 in round

Step 9: Chain 1, make 1 single crochet in same stitch

Step 10: Make 1 single crochet in each of next 4 dc’s; make 3 single crochet in next chain 2 space; make 1 single crochet in each of next 5 dc’s

Step 11: Make 1 single crochet in top chain of next chain 3 (which counts as the 1st dc in loop); make 1 sc in each of the next 4 dc; make 3 sc in next chain 2 space; make 1 sc in each of the next 5 dc

Repeat Step 11 around, ending by joining with a slip stitch to 1st sc in round.

Happy crocheting everyone!

M. J.

©2014 All Rights Reserved Photo credit: M. J. Joachim, ©2014 All Rights Reserved

Sunday, October 26, 2014

4-Paned Window Square

by M. J. Joachim




Step 1: Chain 6, join with slip stitch to first chain to make a ring

Step 2: Chain 3, make 2 double crochet in center of ring

Step 3: Chain 7, make 3 double crochet in center of ring

Step 4: Repeat Step 3 (2 more times); chain 7, join with slip stitch to top chain of 1st chain 3

Step 5: Slip stitch once in each of next 2 dc’s and once in 1st chain 7 loop

Step 6: Chain 3, make (2 dc + 3 triple + one 5-stitch triple cluster + 3 triple + 3 dc) in same chain 7 loop

5-Stitch Triple Cluster

a. yarn over (twice), insert hook in desired stitch or space; yarn over, draw through 2 loops (twice)

b. Repeat Step a (4 more times) so you have 6 loops on your hook

c. yarn over, draw through all 6 loops on hook; chain 1 to secure

Continue with pattern...

Step 7: Make (3 dc + 3 tr + one 5-stitch tr cluster + 3 tr + 3 dc) in each of next 3 chain 7 loops; join with slip stitch to top chain of 1st chain 3 in round
Step 8: Chain 1, make 1 back loop only single crochet in same stitch

Step 9: Make 1 back loop only single crochet in each stitch up to the next tr cluster; make 3 back loop only sc’s in top of cluster

Step 10: make 1 blo sc in each stitch until you reach the next loop

Step 11: Make 1 half double crochet in between both loops

Repeat Steps 9 - 11 around, join with slip stitch to 1st single crochet in round.

As always, it’s such a pleasure when you stop by,

M. J.

©2104 All Rights Reserved Photo credit: M. J. Joachim ©2014 All Rights Reserved

4-Stitch Half Double Crochet Clusters

by M. J. Joachim




Foundation: Make a multiple of 4 chain stitches (+ 3 more chain stitches)

Step 1: Make 1 single crochet in 2nd chain from hook and in each chain across row

Step 2: Chain 1, turn

Step 3: Make 1 single crochet in each of 2nd and 3rd stitches from hook

Step 4: Make a 4-stitch half double crochet cluster in next stitch

4-Stitch Half Double Crochet Cluster


a. yarn over, insert hook in desired stitch or space

b. yarn over, draw up a loop; yarn over, draw through 2 loops on hook

Repeat Steps a & b (4 times) so you have 5 loops on your hook

c. yarn over, draw through all loops on hook

Continue with pattern…

Step 5: Make 1 single crochet in each of next 3 stitches

Step 6: Chain 1, turn; make 1 single crochet in next stitch, and in each stitch across row, including making 1 single crochet in top of turning chain at end of row

Step 7: Chain 1, turn

Step 8: Make a 4-stitch hdc cluster in next stitch

Step 9: Make 1 single crochet in each of next 3 stitches

Repeat Steps 8 & 9 across row, ending with 1 single crochet in each of last 3 stitches, and 1 single crochet in top of turning chain

Step 10: Repeat Step 6

Repeat Steps 2 - 10 for pattern

Thanks for stopping by and visiting today!

M. J. 

©2104 All Rights Reserved Photo credit: M. J. Joachim ©2014 All Rights Reserved

Bead Stitch

by M. J. Joachim




Foundation: Make an even number of stitches

Step 1: Make 1 single crochet in 2nd chain from hook, and in each chain across row

Step 2: Chain 3, turn

Step 3: Make 1 double crochet in next stitch, counting your first chain 3 as your first dc

Step 4: Make 1 bead stitch around the last dc you made:

Bead Stitch
a. yarn over, wrap around double crochet (like a front post dc stitch)

b. yarn over, draw up a loop

Repeat Steps a & b (2 more times)

c. yarn over, pull through first 6 loops on hook, leaving 2 loops on hook

d. yarn over, draw through last 2 loops on hook

Continue with pattern...

Step 5: Make 1 single crochet in next stitch

Step 6: Chain 1, turn; make 1 single crochet in next stitch

Step 7: Make 1 single crochet in next single crochet, skipping bead stitch in between; make 1 single crochet in following stitch

Repeat Step 7 across row, ending with 1 single crochet in top of turning chain

Repeat Steps 2 - 7 for pattern

I’m so glad you stopped in for a visit today. Wishing you every success in all your crocheting projects!

M. J.

©2104 All Rights Reserved Photo credit: M. J. Joachim ©2014 All Rights Reserved


Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Diagonal DC Spike Stitch

by M. J. Joachim


Foundation: Make a multiple of 4 chain stitches (+ 2 more chain stitches)

Step 1: Make 1 double crochet in each of the 4th, 5th and 6th chains from hook

Step 2: Cross over the last 2 dc’s made, and make 1 double crochet in the 1st dc made

Step 3: Make 1 double crochet in each of the 2nd, 3rd and 4th dc’s from hook, repeat Step 2, crossing over the last 2 dc’s made and making 1 dc in the 1st dc made in this group

Repeat Step 3 across row to last 2 chain stitches, ending with 1 double crochet in the last chain

Step 4: Chain 3, turn; Repeat Step 3 across row, ending with 1 double crochet in top of turning chain

Repeat Step 4 for pattern

Thanks so much for stopping by today. I hope all these crochet stitches make it very easy for you to crochet all sorts of neat projects!

M. J. 

©2104 All Rights Reserved Photo credit: M. J. Joachim ©2014 All Rights Reserved

Monday, October 20, 2014

Loopy Stitch

by M. J. Joachim




Foundation: Make a multiple of 4 chain stitches (+ 3 more chain stitches)

Step 1: Make (2 triple crochet + 1 chain + 1 double crochet) in 4th chain from hook

Repeat Step 1 across row to last 3 chain stitches, ending with 1 triple crochet in last chain

Step 2: Chain 3, turn

Step 3: Make (2 triple crochet + 1 chain + 1 dc) in next chain 1 space, and in each chain 1 space across row. Complete row by making 1 triple crochet in 3rd chain of turning chain.

Repeat Steps 2 & 3 for pattern.

Thanks for stopping by today! Happy Crocheting to you!

M. J.

©2014 All Rights Reserved Photo credit: M. J. Joachim, ©2014 All Rights Reserved

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Forked Clusters

by M. J. Joachim


For this pattern, I will provide steps for the forked cluster stitch first, followed by steps for the overall pattern. The forked cluster stitch is worked in two stitches or spaces, to make 1 forked cluster stitch.

Forked Cluster Stitch


Step 1: yarn over, insert hook in 1st stitch or space indicated

Step 2: yarn over, draw up a loop

Step 3: Repeat Steps 1 and 2 one more time

Step 4: yarn over, draw through 4 loops on hook

Step 5: yarn over, insert hook in 2nd stitch or space indicated

Step 6: yarn over, draw up a loop

Step 7: Repeat Steps 5 and 6 one more time

Step 8: yarn over, draw through 4 loops on hook

Step 9: yarn over, draw through last 3 loops on hook

Forked Cluster Pattern


Foundation: Make a multiple of 3 chain stitches (+5 more chain stitches)

Step 1: Make 1 forked cluster in the 5th and 7th chain from hook

Step 2: Chain 2, make 1 forked cluster in the 1st and 3rd chain from hook

Repeat Step 2 across row, ending with chain 1 and 1 double crochet in last chain stitch

Step 3: Chain 4, turn

Step 4: Make 1 forked cluster in 1st and 2nd chain spaces

Step 5: Chain 2, make 1 forked cluster in same and next chain space

Repeat Step 5 across row, ending with chain 1 and 1 double crochet in 3rd chain from bottom of turning chain

Repeat Steps 3 - 5 for pattern

Thanks so much for stopping by today! Happy crocheting!

M. J.

© All Rights Reserved
Photo credit, M. J. Joachim ©2014 All Rights Reserved

Friday, October 17, 2014

Open Ridge Stitch

by M. J. Joachim


Foundation: Make an even number of chain stitches

Step 1: Make 1 single crochet in 2nd chain from hook and in each chain stitch across row

Step 2: Chain 1, turn

Step 3: Make 1 half double crochet in 3rd stitch from hook, followed by 1 half double crochet in last single crochet skipped, crossing over the 1st hdc to make 2nd hdc

Repeat Step 3 across row, ending with 1 half double crochet in turning chain

Step 4: Chain 1, turn, make 1 single crochet in back loop only of 2nd half double crochet from hook and in (back loop only) of each hdc across row, ending with 1 single crochet in turning chain

Repeat Steps 2 - 4 for pattern

Thanks so much for stopping by today! Have a lovely weekend!

M. J. 

© All Rights Reserved
Photo credit, M. J. Joachim ©2014 All Rights Reserved


Thursday, October 16, 2014

Corded Ridges

by M. J. Joachim



This stitch is worked completely on one side of your fabric.


Foundation: Any number of chain stitches (+ 2 more chain stitches)

Step 1: Make 1 double crochet in 4th chain from hook and in each chain to end

Step 2: Chain 1; without turning, make 1 single crochet in the front loop only of the last double crochet made

Step 3: Continue working without turning. Make 1 single crochet in the front loop only of each double crochet to the end of the row, ending with a slip stitch in top of the turning chain.

Note: It helps to turn the work 1/4 turn to the right, and proceed to work down the row.

Step 4: Chain 3, again without turning, make 1 double crochet in the back loop only of each stitch in the previous row, beginning with the 2nd stitch

Repeat Steps 2 - 4 for continuous pattern.

Thanks so much for visiting Lots of Crochet Stitches today!

M. J.

© All Rights Reserved
Photo credit, M. J. Joachim ©2014 All Rights Reserved

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Shell and Picot Stitch Pattern

by M. J. Joachim


Foundation: Make a multiple of 7 chain stitches (+ 1 more chain stitch)

Step 1: Make 1 single crochet in 2nd chain from hook

Step 2: Make shell (1 dc + 1 chain + 1 dc + 1 chain + 1 dc) in 3rd chain from hook

Step 3: Make 1 single crochet in 3rd chain from hook; chain 3, make 1 sc in next stitch (picot made)

Repeat Steps 2 & 3 across row, ending with 1 single crochet in last chain stitch.

Step 4: Chain 7, turn (beginning of next row)

Step 5: Make picot (1 single crochet + chain 3 + 1 single crochet) in center (2nd) double crochet in next shell

Step 6: Chain 3, make 1 double crochet in next picot (chain 3 space), chain 3

Repeat Steps 5 & 6 across row, ending with chain 3 and 1 triple crochet in last sc stitch of row

Step 7: (beginning of new row) Chain 1, make 1 single crochet in 1st stitch

Step 8: Make shell in center (chain 3 space) of next picot

Step 9: Make picot in next double crochet

Repeat Steps 8 & 9 across row, ending with 1 single crochet in 4th chain of turning chain from previous row.

Repeat Steps 4 - 9 for pattern

Thanks so much for visiting Lots of Crochet Stitches today!

M. J.

© All Rights Reserved
Photo credit, M. J. Joachim ©2014 All Rights Reserved