John the Canadian Bear is one of our most popular patterns & it’s on sale for a limited time. Enjoy our special price until June 18, 23:59 (EST)! It is always more fun in the sun to have a buddy with you to share the excitement of summer.
Don’t miss out, stop by to see what will be the next deal of the day!
We would like to introduce our NEW Sunrise Seashells Scarf Crochet Pattern made from gorgeous Mary Maxim Studio Yarn. This pattern was inspired by the calming sound of water, that helps me to relax. When I first saw the Studio Yarn in Chalk Pastels, I thought it would be just perfect for my idea of creating waves, seaweed, & seashells from yarn!
Sunrise Seashells Scarf Crochet Pattern by IraRott.
Purple Sand on Lake Erie. Ontario, Canada.
Lake Erie. Ontario, Canada.
I love a smooth long color change of this variegated yarn, the combination of colors is harmonious and pleasing to the eye.
To make our Sunrise Seashells Scarf, you will need a 6 mm (J) crochet hook & 4 skeins of Mary Maxim Studio Yarn. This yarn is so easy to work with! A moderate amount of wool content (35%) gives it a natural organic feel but at the same time, it is very soft and pleasant to your skin.
Mary Maxim Studio is a bulky weight roving yarn, that is not twisted tightly or plied. Unlike many other roving yarns with a similar texture, I appreciate the fact that Studio Yarn doesn’t break when sewing!
Our new pattern is FREE, so please stop by to download your copy on our site.
Disclaimer: The yarn for this projects was provided by Mary Maxim, but all notes in the article are my own opinions.
Backing is a piece of fabric (lining) attached to the back of the blanket to make it warmer & cozier. It creates a very neat finish to any project with stranded color work floats on the back. If you ever tried to add a fabric lining to your knit or crochet blanket by simply sewing it around the edges, you might’ve noticed that the 2 layers of the blanket do not stay together nicely as your quilt top stretches differently than the backing fabric, which creates a mess & heaviness. Keeping that in mind, all layers of the blanket need to be sewn together around the edges as well as to be secured throughout the entire surface. This process is called quilting. Quilting is easy & fun, let’s do it together!
Crochet Giraffe Blanket Pattern by IraRott®
Crochet blanket with stranded colorwork floats (WITH backing versus NO Backing)
Wet block your knit or crochet blanket before adding the lining. This will help to keep the edges straight and will balance the shape of the quilt top.
Napped fabrics like Minky need to be placed on the blanket with the nap running down for more natural feel & look.
With the wrong sides together, lay out your knit/crochet blanket & the backing fabric. Line up the top right corner of both pieces & the perpendicular edges that meet in the corner. Then fold & cut the excess fabric along the opposite edges. The backing should be the same size as your blanket, no seam allowances are required.
Cut the excess fabric along the folded edges
NOTE: A sticky lint roller would be very handy for keeping your working area clean if you cut any fabrics with nap.
Keep your work area clean!
Change the blade in your rotary cutter to the Skip-cut (or skip-stitch) blade. Position the quilting ruler 3/4″ (19 mm) from the edge of the fabric & roll the skip-cut blade along the edges of the ruler to create perfectly-spaced perforations. Repeat around the entire edge of the backing fabric.
Use worsted weight yarn & 5 mm (H) crochet hook to finish the edges of the backing fabric.
Stitch summary (US terms):
Beg – beginning; Ch – chain; Sc – single crochet; Sl st – slip stitch; St – stitch.
Make a slip knot, then insert the hook from front to back through the perforation a few inches away from the corner; yarn over & pull it through the perforation; yarn over & pull through both loops on the hook (first sc made). Work around the perforated edge, folding the fabric edge towards the wrong side as you go –> *[Ch 1; sc in next perforation] repeat to the corner; (sc, ch 1, sc, ch 1, sc) in corner; repeat from* all the way around; sl st in top of beg st. Fasten off, leaving a long tail for sewing.
With the wrong sides together, line up the edges of the top blanket & the backing. The backing should be slightly smaller than the quilt top after the edges are finished. Place clips evenly along the first edge to prepare the layers for sewing. You can use basting pins instead of clips, but try to avoid straight pins as they can easily get lost in-between crochet stitches. Using a tapestry needle & the long tail from finishing, back stitch along the clipped edge, removing clips as you go; then repeat the process around the remaining edges.
Basting is a common technique used for holding the layers of the quilt temporarily while it’s being quilted.
Flip the quilt to the right side & flatten out the layers. Pin both layers of the quilt, by placing basting pins about every 3″-5″ (7.5-12.5 cm) & working your way around the quilt.
Now let the fun begin, we are ready for quilting!
To begin the machine tacking process, clear your working space around the sewing machine, prepare the matching top threads & bobbins, then set your machine’s stitch length to 2. Insert the quilt in the machine & start quilting. Place your sewing machine needle in the spot where you have one of the basting pins; remove the pin, & secure the layers by stitching forward 3-5 stitches and reverse several times. You can also use a zigzag with a zero stitch length. Now, depending on your machine, you can automatically cut the thread & move to the next pin, or move to the next pin without cutting the thread. Cut all thread floats & ends after you finish quilting.
Setup for machine quilting
Trimming the ends
Here is my short video of the quilting process, see how easy it is?
If you do not have a sewing machine, not to worry! Instead of machine tacking, you can simply tie your quilt as it was done by our ancestors using a matching yarn or embroidery floss. Just thread the needle with the floss, then insert the needle from back to front through the quilt layers & then back up through a stitch away from the initial spot, leaving a 2” (5 cm) tail. Repeat one more time to reinforce. Cut thread, leaving a 2” (5 cm) tail. Tie the tails together with a double knot on the back side of the quilt. Trim the tails to approximately 1” (2.5 cm).
IraRott® Rusty the Giraffe Crochet Blanket Patter can be found at IraRott.com
Wet blocking is a finishing step recommended for most handknit items & is often used in crochet patterns. Blocking tremendously improves the finished look of the stitches & seams, as well as the overall finished garment appearance. It also ensures proper shape & measurements after washing, as some fibers tend to stretch or shrink. You might want to block a sample swatch before working on any garment pattern to check if there are any major changes after blocking, which would help you to calculate ease or to make necessary adjustments.
STEP 1: Soak your knit or crochet item in warm water using a laundry tub or utility sink. Soap is not required for blocking, but a small amount of wool wash is beneficial for 100% wool items.
Hot Water Caution!
Wool fibers will shrink or felt at high temperature
Cotton fibers will shrink at high temperature
Acrylic fibers will lose elasticity at high temperature
STEP 2: Drain the sink & gently squeeze the excess moisture out by pressing the item against the sink edges.
STEP 3: Depending on the size of the item, lay 1 or 2 bath towels onto the blocking board (or interlocking play mat). Then, carefully lift the wet item out of the sink without stretching it by its own weight & lay it flat onto the towel surface. Roll the item in the towel to absorb moisture.
STEP 4: Remove towels & spread out the item on the blocking board, shaping it to the specified measurements.
STEP 5: Optional – Secure the item around the edges using rust-resistant blocking pins.
Blocking removes creases and adjusts the shape of knit & crochet projects. There are a few methods to block that are usually specified in the patterns. Blocking instructions vary depending on the projects & the materials used. Not every project needs to be blocked, but if your pattern calls for spray blocking, here are a few tips on how to do it.
Spray the front & the back sides of your project with warm water until it is thoroughly wet.
Lay your project flat on a blocking board or interlocking play mat, shaping it to the specified measurements. Use rust-resistant blocking pins to secure the project around the edges if necessary. I would recommend pinning for light projects only. Heavy rugs, for example, do not need to be pinned.
Rotate & flip the project periodically to ensure even drying. Please keep in mind that the drying process might take from 2-3 hours outdoors under open sun in the summer or up to several days indoors, depending on the temperature & humidity level.
You can also check our “Wet Blocking” article for additional information about blocking techniques.