Monday, July 2, 2012
Interesting that the subject should turn to boring stitching. I happened to have a skein of worsted weight acrylic left over from mending an afghan. Being acrylic, it is a little scratchy, so I made some of my favorite scrubby things for washing dishes. Each is rather small (5-7 inches across), so it can be squeezed dry with one hand -- wringing out acrylic can be uncomfortably squeaky. I'd make them bigger if I were using cotton. Used a 5mm hook.
1. SC Circle. Ch3, sl st to join in a ring. Rnd 1: Sc6 into the ring. Place marker in last sc to mark the end of the round. Rnd 2: Continuing in a coil: sc2 in each st around (12 sc). Move marker up each round. Rnd 3: sc2 in each st around (24 sc). Rnd 4: sc 1 in each st around. Rnd 5: sc2 in each st around (48 sts). Rnds 6-8: work even - sc1 in each st around.
For a smaller circle: Rnd 9: (sc in next st, sk1, 5dc in next st, sk1) around. End with sl st in first sc of round. This is an increase round, working 6 stitches in the current round over 4 stitches in the previous round. Rnd 10: ch2, dc2 in same st (half shell made). (sk 2dc, sc in next dc, sk 2 dc, 5dc in next sc) around, ending with 2dc in same stitch as starting half shell, sl st in top of ch2. Fasten off. Remove marker. Tuck in loose ends.
For a larger circle: Rnd 9: (sc2 in each st around (96 sts). Work even for 7 more rounds. Sl st in the next 2 stitches to smooth the edge. Fasten off. Remove marker. Tuck in loose ends.
2. Heavy SC Hexagon. Ch3, sl st to join in a ring. Rnd 1: (ch1, sc1 in ring) 6 times. Place marker in last st to mark end of round. Rnd 2: Continuing in a coil, (sc, ch, sc) in each sc around (skipping the chain stitches). This sets up the 6 corners. Move marker to last stitch made in marked stitch each round. Rnd 3: *(sc, ch, sc) in next sc (this is an increase, and you do this 6 times each round, always in the first sc of the increase of the previous round), skip the ch, sc in next sc, ch1. Repeat from * around. Rnd 4: *(sc, ch sc) in next sc, skip the ch, sc in next sc, ch1, sc in next sc, skip the next ch. Repeat from * around (6 times total). Rnd 5: *(sc, ch sc) in next sc, skip the ch, sc in next sc, ch1, sc in next 2 sc, skipping the ch in between, ch1. Repeat from * around (6 times total).
This sounds really complex. The stitch is (sc2, ch1), but staggering the stitches in each round so the ch1 is between the 2 sc in the current row. Always sc into a sc. Never stitch into a chain (except for the corner/increases). It makes a dense fabric that is basically single crochet but does not stretch the way sc usually does -- the chain stitches keep the single crochets in place. Start each side with (sc, ch, sc) to increase in the first sc of the increase in the round before. Each side ends with either ch1 or sc, and that is just fine. This sample has 9 rounds all together. When yours is as big as you want, slip stitch in the next 2 stitches to smooth the edge, fasten off and tuck in the loose ends.
3. Bag stitch Triangle. Ch3, sl sto to join in a ring. Rnd 1: (ch1, sc1 in ring) 6 times. Place marker in last st to mark end of round. Rnd 2: continuing in a coil, (ch1, sc1 in next ch1 space) 6 times. Do not move marker just yet. Rnd 3: *Ch1, (sc, ch1, sc - 1 increase made) in sc below next ch. Ch1, sc in sc below next ch. Repeat from * around - 3 increase points made. Move marker from rnd 1 to last st made into that sc. Rnd 4: ch1, (sc, ch, sc) into middle ch of increase in previous row, then (ch1, sc into sc below next ch) across the side to next increase point. Repeat rnd 4 for pattern for desired size of cloth (4-6 inches across is a good size, but that is just a suggestion, moving the marker every 2nd round, when you stitch into the marked stitch. Finish off with 2 slip stitches, cut yarn, remove marker, and tuck in loose ends.
4. Crazy stitch Square. This is worked on the diagonal, starting at a corner (lower left in this case) and ending at the opposite corner. To start, increase: Row 1: Ch5. Sk 2 ch, dc in next 3 ch to end row. Row 2: ch5, turn. Sk 2 ch, dc in next 3 ch. Sl st in ch2 space of pr row. Ch2, dc3 in same ch2 space. Row 3: ch5, turn. Sk 2 ch, dc in next 3 ch. *Sl st in next ch2 space of pr row. Ch2, dc3 in same ch2 space. Repeat from * across. Repeat row 3 for pattern until the 2 sides are desired size of square - the sample has 7 rows before starting to decrease. Then decrease: Row 1: ch1, turn. Sl st to next ch-2 space. *Ch2, dc3 in same space. Sl st in next ch2 space of pr row. Repeat from * across, ending up with one less block than in previous row. Repeat this row until only 1 block remains. Ch1, turn, sl st to the corner. Fasten off and tuck in loose ends.
Washcloths or dishcloths or coasters are portable, no-stress ways to meditate on some nice stitches, keep your hands busy for a few minutes without having to think too hard.