Project Idea: Teacher Gift – Crochet Cup Cuff

When I look back on all the hilarious, fun times I had in elementary, middle, and high school, one awesome person comes to mind – my best friend & buddyboy (sorry for the inside joke), Ms. Myers.  She taught me all the important things in life – how great a perm can look, how delicious takeout tacos can be, and how long you can listen to Electric Youth before you get tired of it (Answer: infinity).  She also provided a herd of My Little Pony’s that were fun to play with and/or crochet on (tiny yarn berets, anyone?) Ms. Myers, is now an amazing teacher and overall cool adult.  When I started thinking about this crochet cup cuff, which uses my Lowercase/Uppercase Motif Set (psst: on sale until midnight, Aug. 23 for only $3), I knew she would be the worthy, crochet-loving recipient.  If you don’t have a teacher best friend, please feel free to use this as bribery for your kid’s new teacher – you can fill the cup with markers, candy, or dollar bills (depending on the volume of your child’s “indoor voice”).  If the teacher you’re making this for doesn’t have a short last name,  you still have options.  What about “#1” (you’ll need the Numbers & Punctuation set for this one), or “Super”, “Great”, or initials?  Maybe a grade like “A+”? (and then make a new one that says “D-” at Winter Break? Maybe not.) Now, let’s get to work.

Teacher Gift Crochet Cup Cuff Project Pattern

TEACHER GIFT – CROCHET CUP CUFF

Abbreviations: ch: chain sc: single crochet Supplies:

  • 50 yards White Worsted Weight Yarn (100% cotton yarn shown here but not required – yarn and thread quantities are estimated and will depend on your tension and material)
  • Crochet Thread in:
    • Gray: yardage will depend on word used
    • Blue: 2 yds
    • Red: 1 yd
  • Crochet Hooks – G/4.0mm (when using yarn) and 7/1.65mm (when using thread)
  • Yarn Needle
  • Scissors
  • Straight Pins or Safety Pins
  • 2 white Elastic Hair Ties (the smallest ones work best)
  • 2 Buttons (I used star buttons) and Matching Thread.
  • Plastic Straw Cup (this one is about 11.5 inches around at its widest.  If your cup is larger or smaller, you can add or subtract from your foundation chain and each subsequent row to achieve the perfect fit).

Crochet Background With white yarn, ch 43 Row 1:  Sc in second ch from hook, sc in each ch, ch 1, turn Row 2:  41 sc, sc over hair tie, ch 1, turn (now is a great time to wrap your piece around your cup and see if it fits) IMG_20140819_171659 Hair tie pictures shown with smaller sample & bright colored hair tie for contrast.  IMG_20140819_171705 Row 3:  sc in each sc, ch 1, turn Row 4:  41 sc, sc over hair tie, ch 1, turn IMG_20140819_171705IMG_20140819_171717 IMG_20140819_171744 Row 5 – 13:   sc in each sc, ch 1, turn Row 14:  41 sc, sc over hair tie, ch 1, turn Row 15:  sc in each sc, ch 1, turn Row 16:  41 sc, sc over hair tie, ch 1, rotate Sc around piece, working in side of rows, foundation row, other side of rows, and last row.  Place 3 sc in each corner. Weave in ends. Add Lines

  1. Add line between rows 4 & 5 (not counting border row worked into foundation chain) using blue crochet thread and backstitch.  (To start: pull needle up through first space, insert needle into second space, pull needle up through third space, insert needle back into second space.  Continue by pulling yarn up through next empty space and inserting needle back into the previous space to create a “solid” line.)
  2. Repeat step 1 between rows 12 & 13 (not counting border row worked into foundation chain).
  3. Add line between rows 10 & 11 (not counting border row worked into foundation chain) using running stitch and red crochet thread. (To start: pull yarn up through first space, insert needle into second space. Continue by pulling yarn up through next empty space and inserting needle into the following empty space to create a “dashed” line)
  4. Weave in ends.

Crochet Letters

  1. Using the Uppercase/Lowercase Crochet Motif Pattern and gray crochet thread, crochet your word/name/grade.  Weave in ends.
  2. Pin letters to background (I use straight pins, but if you’re prone to pricking yourself, you can use safety pins.)
  3. Sew letters to background using grey crochet thread and backstitch.
  4. Weave in ends.

Putting It All Together Sew buttons on opposite side of hair ties using matching thread. Weave in ends. Teacher Gift Crochet Cup Cuff Buttons Place cuff around cup- hair ties may need to be folded over or knotted depending on how much space is between the two sides. IMG_20140819_171828 If you would like, you can add a backing to hide your stitches, but I think the back looks kind of cute (minus the few ends that became loose during the photo shoot). 8-20-2014, Hi, Jenny Brown, Ms. Myers Koozie135 These cuffs are totally irresistible – and if you don’t believe me… Teacher Gift - Hi Jenny Brown Crochet Cup Cuff kids running back and forth to cup Bye, Jenny Brown Project pictures by Erin Markan of Folks Collected.  Thanks, E!

Project Idea: Back to School Crochet Reversible Photo Prop

Back to School Crochet Photo Prop - Hi, Jenny Brown

It’s the most wonderful time of the year…ah, yes – back to school time.

This year, you’re going to have everything ready *way* in advance, right? You already bought the $100 worth of required school supplies. You purchased the perfect bookbag on sale and somehow snagged the matching lunchbox. And now, for the pièce de résistance, you’re going to crochet your own first day photo prop – because you are just that good.

To make this sign, you’ll need the Uppercase/Lowercase Alphabet Crochet Motif Pattern, available in my shop. (Psst: Use the coupon code “BACKTOSCHOOL” to save 20%)

Last Day First Day Back to School Crochet Reversible Photo Prop

BACK TO SCHOOL CROCHET REVERSIBLE PHOTO PROP *

Abbreviations:

ch: chain
dc: double crochet
dc inc: double crochet increase – 2 dc in same dc
sc: single crochet
sc2tog: single crochet 2 sc together (insert hook into first sc or ch, pull up loop, insert  hook into second sc or ch, pull up loop, yarn over and pull yarn through all loops)
sl st: slip stitch

Supplies:

  • Worsted weight yarn (100% cotton yarn shown here but not required – yarn quantities are estimated and will depend on your tension and material)
    White – 180 yards
    Grey – 360 yards
    Red – 13 yards
    Green – 3 yards
    Black – 50 yards
  • Crochet Hook – G/4.0
  • Yarn Needle
  • Scissors
  • Straight Pins or Safety Pins

Crochet Two Chalkboards

  1. With gray, ch 61
  2. sc in second ch from hook, sc in each chain (60 sc total), ch 1, turn
  3. sc in each sc, ch 1, turn.  Repeat until end of row 48, fasten off, and weave in ends.

Crochet Letters:

  1. With white, crochet Uppercase Letters: 1 “F”, 1 “L”, and 2 “D”
  2. With white, crochet Lowercase Letters: 3 “a”, 1 “i”, 1 “r”, 2 “s”, 2 “t”, and 2 “y”
  3. Weave in ends
  4. Pin letters to chalkboard as shown (I use straight pins, but if you’re prone to pricking yourself, you can use safety pins.)
  5. Sew letters to chalkboard using white yarn and backstitch (To start: pull needle up through first space, insert needle into second space, pull needle up through third space, insert needle back into second space.  Continue by pulling yarn up through next empty space and inserting it back into the previous space.)
  6. Weave in ends.

First Day prinned piece - Back to School Crochet Reversible Photo Prop

Last Day pinned piece - Back to School Crochet Reversible Photo Prop

Crochet Two Apples (worked in the round)

  1. With red yarn, ch 3
  2. 7 dc in third ch from hook (first 2 ch count as first dc – 8 dc total), sl st to join
  3. ch 2, dc in first dc of round, dc inc in each next 7 dc (16 dc total, including ch 2), sl st to join
  4. ch 2, dc in first dc of round, (dc, dc inc) 7 times, dc (24 dc total – including ch 2), sl st to join
  5. ch 1, sc in first dc (not ch 2 from previous row), hdc, dc inc, (2 dc, dc inc) 2 times, 2 dc, sc2tog, (2 dc, dc inc) 3 times, hdc, sc,
  6. Fasten off leaving a long tail. Thread tail onto needle and insert under front loop of first sc, under back loop to the other side, then insert needle back into the center of last stitch of row.
  7. Pin apples to chalkboard as shown and sew them as you did the letters.  Be careful not to pull stitches too tightly.  Apple may puff slightly.

Crochet Two Leaves

  1. With green, ch 4
  2. Working in second st from hook: sc, hdc in next ch, 4 dc in next ch, rotate piece to work in opposite side of foundation ch: hdc in ch, sc in ch.
  3. Fasten off leaving a long tail. Thread tail onto needle and insert under front loop of first sc, under back loop to the other side, then insert needle back into the center of last stitch of row.
  4. Pin leaves to chalkboard and apple as shown.  Thread needle with tail and tack leaf at one end to the apple and at the other end to the chalkboard with a few overhand stitches.  This will give the leaf more dimension, but if you don’t like the look, you can sew it around the perimeter.

Apple Applique for First Day Last Day Back to School Crochet Reversible Photo Prop

Putting it all together  

Place two chalkboards together, sc two pieces together:

  1. With gray yarn:  Sc in each sc through both layers across first side (insert hook through both layers, pull up loop, yarn over, pull yarn through both loops), place 3 sc in corner (last stitch of row), then repeat along next 3 sides.
  2. Switch to black yarn:  (sc in each sc across first side, place 3 sc in corner) 4 times.
  3. Repeat step two for next three rows.  Fasten off after final row and weave in ends.

All done!  Now get your cute kiddos all dressed up and take that picture. Our fancy model seemed to really enjoy the First Day photos:

first day crochet reversible photo prop hijennybrown.com

But the bribery M&Ms really set in for the Last Day photos.

first day crochet reversible photo prop hijennybrown.com

Hopefully you will have equally cute success!

Bye,
Jenny Brown

* Any sale or distribution (electronically or mechanically) of this pattern, in whole or in part, is prohibited. For more information, please contact hijennybrown [at] gmail [dot] com. Hi, Jenny Brown (c) 2014

Photos by Erin Markan.  Thanks, E!

Wool you be mine?

Wool you be mine crochet - hijennybrown.com

Oh my goodness, friendos: where has this month gone?  I mean, I know I’ve spent a lot of time holed up with nothing but a crochet hook and a bag of Willy Wonka Heartbreakers, but I didn’t realize so much time had passed.

Maybe, like me, you’ve been in a bit of a vortex.  Maybe you forgot Valentine’s day is coming…and maybe you’re afraid you’ll have to be some super sappy, overly sentimental cards at the drug store on the way to your knit/crochet meet-up.

But fear not!  Have I got the valentines for you:

1-21-2014 Hi JB Valentine Etsy Pictures-9284

Whaddaya think?  Craft Husband and I were feeling a little punny, and we thought these craft-inspired phrases would be perfect for some valentines for grownups that had the flavor of the small, cardboard Valentines of our youth.  All the letters were crocheted using my upper and lowercase patterns, then sewn to this pladish (new word) black & white fleece and accented with some cute crochet hearts.

1-19-2014-Hi-JB-Valentine-Re-edit-9110

1-19-2014-Hi-JB-Valentine-Re-edit-9111

I was planning to use grey corduroy for the background, but Erin (who did all the photography – thanks!) forced me to dig in my stash for this jem.  I think she was totally right, but so much for the pillows I was planning… oh well.  Who needs pillows when you can have Valentines!

1-21-2014 Hi JB Valentine Etsy Pictures-9257

1-21-2014 Hi JB Valentine Etsy Pictures-9267

We also made cute little seals after we scanned a crochet heart placed on a fabric swatch.  Have you ever tried scanning anything you’ve crocheted?  I was sort of amazed at how great it turned out.

1-21-2014 Hi JB Valentine Etsy Pictures-9288

Craft Husband made all the envelopes using a folding board he bought on sale at the local crafts store.  They’re a thin, light grey paper that just screams “shove me into a heart-covered shoebox with a tiny slit cut in the top.”

1-21-2014 Hi JB Valentine Etsy Pictures-9310

So, if you’re hoping to hand out some precious valentines this year, head over to Etsy(Go now, and you can use the coupon code “heartshapedbox” to save 10%.  But hurry – it expires Sunday at midnight!)

Bye,
Jenny Brown

Happy New Year!

year in review 2013 - hijennybrown.com

yearinreviewHello, all:

Looking back over photos from this year, I realize I was part of some pretty wonderful things: leading a group of knitters, crocheters, sewist, and embroiders who covered a downtown building with over 100 hearts of all kinds and helped sell the building; participating in the largest yarn bombing in the US; releasing a new pattern and celebrating over 500 patterns sold; and selling out of my first postcard run.

I think the best thing about this year, though, was the company I kept (and that means you).  I am so lucky to have Craft Husband, Erin (who took all the in-focus pictures above), and all my little helpers.  That’s not even mentioning the great folks who comment on this blog, kindly buy my patterns, and keep  me company while I continuously wrap yarn around that hook. Oh, and I spent a lot of time having fun and goofing off this year.  I need to do more of that.

I’m so inspired for the new year…but tomorrow is for resolving.  Today is for reveling, and I have a lot to revel in.

Thanks and Happy New Year!
Jenny Brown

Helpers 2: Now it’s personal

crochet helpers - hijennybrown.com

My favorite helpers are back in full force to assist me in finishing my Black Friday roll-out. Their constant sweetness (and love of alternating screaming and singing) make these project too much fun.

Although my new project is still under wraps, here’s a sneak peek thanks to Babes and his in-the-way booty.

11-22-2013 Peace on Earth-6095

11-22-2013-Peace-on-Earth-6107-MOTION2

Mr. A also gave his input, when he wasn’t covering my house in every tiny toy known to man.  And Craft Husband says pins on the floor are dangerous.

IMG_20131119_141458

How are those Angry Bird cheese crackers?  Never let it be said that I can’t properly feed a child…

IMG_20131119_141443_3

The helpers have done their work – now we’re just waiting for things to come back from the printers.  Cross your fingers!

Bye,
Jenny Brown

Top two photos by Erin Markan – thanks, Erin!

Crochet Social Media Buttons

crochet social media buttons - hijennybrown.com

I don’t know if other pattern designers feel this way – but I spend a lot of time making patterns and not a lot making things from them. Once the testing phase is over, they go on the shelf.

But every once in a while a perfect opportunity to use them comes up. Look to the right – great opportunity, right? Who doesn’t want custom social media buttons?

I made the letters using cotton yarn (that I had salvaged from another project) and the backgrounds from some Loops & Threads Yarn Gang yarn. As I mentioned when I made the Magic Hats, this yarn is so bright and comes in so many colors. Plus, I already have it, so bonus. (Here’s a secret – I call my yarn stash my “Local Yarn Store.” Embarrassing, right?)

I improvised the background square, but for details on how to make a square like this (with increases in each corner), watch this great video by Crochet Geek.  I sewed the letters on using a chain stitch (the embroidery kind, not the crochet kind), but any type of join would do.

Hopefully this inspires me to use my patterns more often. A header, perhaps?

Bye,
Jenny Brown

Photos by Erin Markan.  Thanks, Erin!