Crocheting for a Cause! {Preemie Hat Pattern}

I recently found out, from a fellow USMC wife on Facebook, about the Sunset Crochet’s Annual Christmas Charity.  This is such an awesome and easy way to give this holiday season if you know how to crochet. The challenge is to crochet 12 preemie hats over the 12 days of Christmas and donate them to your local NICU.  Last year, over 20,000 hats were donated to NICU’s around the US! That’s amazing, right?

Sunset Crochet 3rd Annual Christmas Challenge

Photo Credit: Sunset Crochet

I wanted to get started right away on this, but I don’t have much knowledge about how big or small a preemie hat should be. Lucky for me, there are plenty of size charts available on the internet, like this one that I used.  I know there are already plenty of adorable hat patterns out there {you even get 13 of them free when you commit to this challenge!}, but I wanted to come up with something of my own that was okay for both boys and girls.

I’m loving the puff stitch lately, along with the reverse single crochet edging technique that I recently learned, so I combined the two and made this!

Crochet Preemie Hat Pattern

I realize that this is crochet and it’s kind of hard to come up with my very own pattern since so many already exists, but I couldn’t find any quite like this, so as far as I’m concerned, this is a pattern that I came up on my own with inspiration from previous patterns. I just switched the stitches out for my preferred ones. Now get to crocheting those preemie hats! These seriously only take about 15 minutes to make.

Preemie Hat Pattern

Puff Stitch Preemie Hat (1-2lbs)

Materials:

H hook (5.00mm)

Favorite baby yarn (I used Vanna’s Choice)

Chain (ch) 3. Join in first ch with slip stitch (sl st)

R1: Ch 1.(does not count as sc) 10 single crochets (sc) in loop. Join with sl st in first stitch.

R2: Ch 1. 2 sc in each stitch around (20 stitches). Join with sl st in first stitch.

R3: Ch 1. 2 sc in first stitch, 1 sc in next stitch. Repeat around. (30 stitches). Join with sl st in first stitch.

R4: Ch 1. Sc in each stitch around (30 stitches). Join with sl st in first stitch.

R5: Ch 2. Puff stitch (see below) in 2nd sc from hook. Skip 1 SC and puff stitch in next sc. Repeat patter around. (15 puff stitches). Join with sl st in top of ch. 2.

R6: Ch 2. Puff stitch in first space after chain 2, then puff stitch in between every puff stitch from the previous row. (15 puff stitches). Join with sl st in top of ch. 2.

R7 – 9: Ch 2. Puff stitch in each space between puff stitches of previous row for a total of 15 puff stitches in each row. Join with sl st in top of ch. 2.

R10 (edging starts). Ch 1. Sc in each stitch (spaces and top of puff stitches). (30 stitches). Join with sl st in first sc.

R11: Reverse sc all the way around. End with sl st in first stitch of row. Fasten off and weave in ends.

Puff Stitch Preemie Hat (3-5lbs)

Ch 3. Join in first chain with sl st.

R1: Ch 1. 10 sc in loop. Join with sl st in 1st sc.

R2: Ch 1. 2 sc in each sc. (20 stitches). Join with sl st in 1st sc.

R3: Ch 1. 2 sc in first sc, then 1 sc in next. Repeat pattern all the way around. (30 stitches). Join with sl st in 1st sc.

R4: Ch 1. 2 sc in first sc, then 1 sc in next two stitches. (40 stitches). Join with sl st in 1st sc.

R5: Ch 1. Sc in each stitch around (40 stitches). Join with sl st in first sc.

R6: Ch 2. Puff stitch in 2nd sc from hook and every other stitch around (20 puff stitches).

R7-10: Ch 2. Puff stitch in spaces between previous row (20 puff stitches in each row).

R11: Ch 1. Sc in each stitch around, spaces and top of puff stitches.

R12: Ch 2. Reverse sc in each stitch around. Join with sl st, fasten off, and weave in ends.

Puff Stitch Instructions:

*Yarn over. Insert hook into next stitch. Yarn over. Pull back through stitch (3 loops on hook). Repeat from {*} two more times (7 loops on hook). Yarn over once more and pull loop through all loops on hook. Chain one. This counts as one puff stitch.

Crochet Preemie Hat Pattern

Look how tiny the 1-2lb hat is!

Have a happy Thanksgiving to all who observe the holiday and eat tons and tons of yummy food!

Sedge Stitch Washcloths {**Giveaway** & Tutorial}

Today is going to be a fun day! Why? Because it’s my very first giveaway! That’s right, one of you lucky readers will have the privilege of wiping down your countertops with some of my handmade washcloths. First things first: I wanted to share something with my crocheting friends that you might not know. I have been crocheting since I was 10 and never knew this little secret until I was watching a lady crochet and I witnessed this miracle!

Okay, so when I join colors or start a border, I normally tie one color of yarn to the other. My grandma taught me to do this and it works well for her but my work always ends up looking really sloppy and I can never hide the knot very well. This way of joining colors is so much easier and looks way neater.

So say you’re about to join another color. Go ahead and fasten off the first color. I like to leave the tail out because the next color is just going to be crocheted over it so it should hold it down pretty well. Now, you’re going to put your hook through the place you want to start your new color and hook the new color.

I like to start new colors on the corner since the bulkiness won't be as noticeable there.

I like to start new colors on the corner since the bulkiness won’t be as noticeable there.

Then bring your hook through the hole.

It might be hard to see, but I brought the white yarn through the blue stitch.

It might be hard to see, but I brought the white yarn through the blue stitch.

Then chain one. That counts as my single crochet in this case since I was doing a border for the washcloth.

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For the little tail, I just crochet over it. That ensures it won’t be sticking out and that it will be secure.

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I can’t believe I never knew how to do this!! This definitely changes my crocheting habits. I am no longer afraid to use multiple colors!

Okay, so onto the washcloths and the giveaway! First of all, I love the sedge stitch for washcloths. I just think it’s more fun than the double crochet or single crochet pattern people normally use for washcloths. Second, I like big washcloths. These babies measure about 9″ x 10″. That’s a whole lot bigger than most of the crocheted washcloths I’ve seen. I used a US F5/3.75 MM hook.  Here’s the pattern:

Ch. 39

Row 1: skip first two chains (counts as first SC). Two Double crochet (DC) in 3rd chain from hook. *Skip next two chains, SC, 2 DC in next chain. Repeat from * until there are 3 chains left. SC in last chain.

Rows 2 – 24: chain 1, 2 DC in first SC. *Skip next two chains, SC, 2 DC in next chain. Repeat from * until there are 3 chains left. SC in last chain. 

Fasten off and use the method above to attach the border. 

And this is what I’m giving away!

Giveaway

Crocheted washcloths last forever, as long as they are made well, and they get better with each and every wash!

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To win these washcloths, simply follow The General Specific by clicking the “follow” button on the righthand side of the page, or follow me on Bloglovin’ by clicking the button below AND leave a comment below letting me know you did one or the other!

Follow on Bloglovin

 

**giveaway is open to residents of the US, UK, and Canada only****Ends 9/18/13. Winner will be selected randomly and  announced Thursday, Sept. 19.** Thank you, everyone, and good luck to all!

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Afghan for my baby girl

This week marks the halfway point in my pregnancy. I can’t believe that I will have another child in less than 21 weeks! I have already started on an afghan for her crib and I plan on doing all of her bedding, too!

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I am just doing a simple sunburst granny square flower and sewing them together as I make each square (the method is actually called “join as you go”).

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You can find the sunburst pattern here. I stopped at row 3 for the sunbursts then used rows 4 and 5 to square it off.

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I still have tons of squares to crochet, then I will go back and weave the loose ends in. I’m super excited to be able to use girly colors now! Have a great Thursday, all!

For Annabelle

My baby sister, Stephanie, is about 7 months pregnant with my first niece, who will be called Annabelle.  I am so excited! I think she is going to look just like my sister with thick, dark brown, curly hair, and giant brown puppy dog eyes. I will not be surprised if she also passes her stubborn attitude to Annabelle.

Well, her hair isn’t really curly anymore, but it was when she was a baby. There is no way Annabelle is getting away from these features.

I wanted to make something special for Annabelle. When my sister and I were little, our favorite blankets were the afghans that my Grandma Richardson made for us one year. Mine was long and had all the colors of the rainbow, and Stephy’s was a huge granny square, colored with pastel yellows, greens, and white.  We slept with them every night and kept them until they literally unraveling.  Anyway, I decided to make Annabelle an afghan since I loved mine so much as a little girl.

I used 3 strands of Vanna’s Choice yarn (weight category: 4) with a Q sized hook.

I started out with 61 chain stitches and did a simple single crochet throughout the whole blanket.

I finished it off by taking one of the colors and doing a simple single crochet border around the blanket just to give it a little bit of contrast. It is about 36 inches long and 28 inches wide.  It’s a pretty heavy afghan, but that’s okay since Stephy lives in England. I think it gets pretty cold there.

Have a wonderful Sunday-Funday!

The single crochet: simple yet wonderful

Ah, the single crochet. My favorite crochet stitch. Not only is it the most basic stitch, it is also the easiest, well, besides the chain stitch.

I love how a piece looks when it’s mostly single crocheted. It’s nice and tight and I think it looks really neat and clean, too.  I can also do this stitch at light-speed, so pieces are done in a jiffy!

This lightweight cowl only took me a few days to complete, and that is with an infant and completing a book!

I used the Calm Cowl pattern that I found on Ravelry and altered it slightly for a cowl that is still warm but tighter around the neck. I also added a few more rows of double crochets.

For this cowl I used A Pound of Love yarn by Lion Brand and a J sized hook. Happy Wednesday!

Back to Etsy-land!

Another wonderful thing about Miles finally being here is my carpal tunnel syndrome is gone! Yay! I can finally crochet again without both of my hands going completely numb, and boy, have I been busy. I am working on some new stuff for my Etsy shop, including some adorable infant owl hats, and a big, yummy, chunky circle scarf.  I am so excited to get these items posted! I will also have the usual, some more crocheted wash cloths and dish towels. Right now, all I have left is 2 hot pads, but I will have these items up later on in the week. I have to finish my homework before I work on Etsy shop stuff, or I feel really guilty about finishing projects.

Girl and boy infant owl hats. More color combinations to come!

Cozy circular scarf. It’s so soft and warm!

I seem to be getting myself together now. I can finally juggle school and baby, and I am successfully throwing in house cleaning and Etsy inventory.  Well, I’m off to take advantage of Sam being home today. Have a wonderful Saturday, everyone!