Saturday, January 16, 2021

Coming Soon- My Hero Academia Blanket Pattern

 It's been a couple of years since I last designed a blanket based on something in pop culture. This time happens to be a blanket about a Manga/Anime series called My Hero Academia. 


My son actually asked me to make this blanket for him in 2018. I kept letting other things distract me, and since I do so much research into the characters I had a really hard time landing on the stitches I wanted to use to represent each character. Once I got the center section of Deku done, I just got stuck and it sat there for another year. This last Christmas season I decided it was time to apply myself and get this baby done.


The characters represented, in order, are: Deku, All Might, Bakugo, Todoroki, Uraraka, Kirishime, Tsuyu, and Iida. These were the characters that Teo most wanted represented in his blanket. Plus, there are a few rows representing the windows of the school they go to in the series. I finished off the edge with a row of lime-green power bursts for Deku again. Every time I talk to him about the power bursts he re-educates me about how Deku's power doesn't come out of him in power bursts, it builds up and then comes out in movements? Do I have that right? 

I'm definitely not up to speed on how all of this stuff works, even though he explains it to me all the time. The pattern is currently in testing and I'm hoping to have it published by some time in February. My testers are having fun with the pattern, and say that the stitches are doing a great job at representing each character. Hopefully, you'll have just as much fun with it!


Friday, January 15, 2021

New Year, New Ideas, New Grace

 


Wasn't 2020 just something? I'm not sure what...but it was something. Much like everyone else I sort of wandered around the whole year in a daze just waiting for the next shoe to drop. It was the fastest, long year of my life. It felt like it flew by, but I felt every single day of every single month of the whole year from February to December. I finished off the year contracting COVID in November and slept my entire birth month away. It was rough. COVID is no joke. 


But, I survived and I'm still mending but doing so much better than I was even a month ago. This last year threw me into a need to feel life around me. I have decided that this year I am going to pursue keeping houseplants alive again. I used to be really good at it, but then I fell into a depression for a few years and let every single one of them die. Since then it's been a struggle. I feel like I'm ready to try again, and this time I'm going into it with a new intention.




I have also decided I am going to pursue that which makes me happy. I want to teach others what I know without necessarily putting a price tag on it. A lot of self-reflection has revealed to me that I stress out when I charge people money for my knowledge. Others will disagree, but I have always felt like God put certain gifts into my hands to bless others with. So, while I do charge for some of my patterns- a good majority of them are free. This year, you will see more free patterns and videos for both new and old patterns. How do we teach those with less or those that don't "have" if we don't first give of ourselves? 

Does that mean every pattern I put out will be free? No. Patterns take a time and monetary investment from not only me but also those I ask to test my patterns to make sure they are free of errors for you. There has to be a balance. 


I also want to learn new things this year. On top of my list are yarn dyeing, macrame, and weaving. I keep sitting off to the side and thinking, "Gosh, I'd like to learn that someday...but I just need..." the time or the finances or something else that holds me back. This year I have decided that I can do these things in small doses. Instead of going out and buying EVERYTHING I need to start something, I will buy supplies one at a time. Am I playing the long game with my patience and willingness to learn? You bet I am. Is there a potential to lose interest? Yes. But, that is why I am being thoughtful about my process. While I'm building my supply, I am taking the time to watch videos put out by experts and hobbyists to familiarize myself with the tools and processes. Delayed gratification doesn't have to be just waiting. Staring at the checkbook, watching the mailman, getting upset because I can't have it faster. In the waiting is the best time to prepare yourself! Don't waste the waiting time. 

Last, but not least, I have decided to give myself lots of grace.  I feel pretty banged up after last year. Mostly because of the pressure I put on myself and I wore myself out. This year I intend to lighten the heck up. I came into 2021 getting rid of the negativity in my life (and I will continue to do that in the days ahead) and I have felt a greater sense of creativity than I have in a while. Finishing up the blanket my son asked me to make for him two years ago took such a weight off my shoulders. This year I have soooooo many ideas it is ridiculous and I'm not entirely sure I can complete them all. 

A couple of themes keeping rising up inside me for designs. I want to tap into my Norwegian heritage heavily this year. I have at least two large and one smaller design idea that will center around Vikings and traditional Norwegian designs. My heart is also leaning heavily toward designing more toy bags. I haven't designed a new toy bag in several years. My last one was my Safari bag and I think that came out in 2018 or somewhere close to that. So, we will see what actually gets accomplished this year. I know this...even if I don't get to them all I won't beat myself up for not completing things. 

I can't be all things all at once, so I will take it nice and slow. I hope to see you on my journey!

Handmade Business Talk- Branding: Telling Your Story

Hey guys! I'm back to share with you my passion for handmade businesses! If you are thinking of starting a handmade business, I want to share some of the things I have learned along the way that will create a few shortcuts for you and hopefully take the fear out of it. This installment is going to be about Telling Your Story.


My husband is in the process of starting a new hobby that he hopes to eventually transition into a side business. And in the process of talking about all the background things he needs to think about in a business, he and I had a conversation about the importance of "telling the story" of your product. He pretty much looked at me like I had lost my mind or that I was making it up. So, I asked him why he buys the products he does. What about them attracts him to them? 

He said, "I don't buy a product because I feel a connection to it. I buy it because that's what I like or want to try." As much as he wants to think he's an independent thinker, the reality of it is that large companies spend billions of dollars to get you to buy their products. None of us purchase products without some sort of influence behind it.

Everything that we buy is usually because we saw it somewhere, and what we saw evoked the feeling inside of us that if we had it or at least tried that product we would somehow be different or changed. When we see the Nike commercial they show athletes running fast and jumping high, or holding the perfect yoga pose with the perfect yoga body. That is to inspire us to believe that if we wear those clothes or those shoes, we too will run faster, jump higher, and look fantastic doing it! They tell a story and they punctuate it with "Just Do It." We can look at that and say that it doesn't affect us. But, just look at how many people walk around wearing Nike? It's a very simple, subliminal message. And once people try a product they tend to be brand loyal.



Why do we become brand loyal? Because we connect to their story somehow. We buy sports gear to help us become the athletes we see. We buy fluffy blankets from home goods stores because we want to feel cozy like the people in the picture. We buy cheeky coffee mugs to bring humor into our lives or make a statement. We buy clothing styles based on what we saw on someone else and liked it. We are trying to match our lives to an aesthetic we see in advertising.

I'm definitely not saying this to put anything or anyone down. I'm saying it to help us realize just how much we really connect our lives to the things we purchase. And how extremely important is it for us, the small handmade business, to curate our story carefully. What story do you want your product to tell? What feeling do you want to evoke? What sort of connection do you want your buyers to have with you personally? Are you just the name behind a product? Or are you the face of a small business? 

Consumers in North America and Latin America value brand recognition more than consumers in any other region. In both, it was the second-most important reason (after affordability) that consumers said they purchase a new product. Brand recognition is particularly influential in developing markets. (Understanding the Power of a Brand Name – Nielsen)

People who buy from small handmade businesses usually do so because they are interested in supporting small businesses. As you are beginning to post on social media, let people know who you are. If you are passionate about certain things, and they are something you want to include in your "brand", then make sure you share about that. Do you want to come across as everyone's friend? Do you have an aesthetic you want your product to create? How will your product change people's lives? How did it change yours? 

What extra step can you take as a business to create a connection to your potential customers? What is your brand's story?


Tuesday, January 05, 2021

Handmade Business Talk- Branding: Creating a Logo

Hey guys! I'm back to share with you my passion for handmade businesses! If you are thinking of starting a handmade business, I want to share some of the things I have learned along the way that will create a few shortcuts for you and hopefully take the fear out of it. This installment is about Creating a Logo.

 "You need to put your brand out there for people to recognize it. With a plethora of brands on the market, people need to see your logo more than 5 times to be able to connect it with your company. We suggest taking advantage of social media and professional branding techniques to send a consistent yet dynamic brand message to consumers every day." (www.smallbizgenius.net/by-the-numbers/branding-statistics)



You may be tossing around whether or not you need a logo. Maybe you're thinking..." Eh, I'll just use my name." or "A logo is expensive!" or "I'm no good at this kind of stuff!" I am going to address each of these concerns because a logo is the first thing I want you to be thinking of when it comes to branding your business. A logo is usually where we start to consider the color scheme of our business, the font we are going to use for our logo, and what our business tag lines or "elevator pitch" is going to be. 

Let's first talk about why a logo is important for you to have instead of just using your name. As a handmade entrepreneur, it sets you apart from your competition and creates a level of professionalism for your business. It also helps your potential customers differentiate you from the rest of the pack. Logos grab attention and are the base of your identity. You will build everything off of a logo; Your website, your business cards, your packaging, everything. So, it's important to take the time to choose one that represents you well. 

You do NOT have to spend a lot of money to create a logo.

A great, free branding website that you might already be familiar with is Canva. That is actually where I created my logo. They even have a section now specifically for creating logos, which wasn't there when I did mine. You can pay for a subscription to Canva which will allow you to increase the graphics and pictures available to you. If you are not already familiar with Canva, it is a program you will return to again and again for your marketing needs- so having a subscription isn't a bad idea. However, it is not required and you can do it totally for free. Another great place to find "cheap" help is a website called fiverr.comIt is a website for freelance business services and you can get items created for as little as $5.  

You can design your logo yourself!

If $5 is out of your price range, you can definitely create your own! Trust me, I understand that every dollar matters, and sometimes $5 is a lot of money. The article I have linked below will help you learn how to create your own logo. 

Here is a great article on How to Design a Logo: Know All About the Logo Design Process

Let's quickly talk about clutter.

What is one of the first things that attract you to a logo? The color or the symbol, right? The red in the Coke symbol, the orange and white stripes of the Whataburger sign, the Pepsi circle, the Nike swoop. Sometimes, all we have to see is a shape or a color to know exactly what company is represented. That's what you want your logo to be. Instantly recognizable. 

I want to warn you against making your logo too cluttered. You might think more is better and it makes you unique, but many times it just makes your company name hard to read. You might want to look at it and try to include all of the things that represent you and your business. But, we will be talking in the next few installments about how to narrow your focus on the product or products you want to represent you. Start thinking now, during your logo process about the fact that no business ever stays the same over the course of its lifetime. Try to make your logo as inclusive and open as you can. This will include the name you choose for your business. You can read more about choosing a name for your business in my article Handmade Business Talk-Branding: Naming Your Business.

The K.I.S.S. theory applies really well here. Keep. It. Simple. Stupid...I'm not calling you stupid, but I think you get where I'm going with this. Don't overcomplicate it. Clean, bright (or dark, but readable), simple, easy to read- something people can connect with. What emotion or connection does your logo evoke? What does it say about your business?



Friday, January 01, 2021

Handmade Business Talk- Branding: Naming Your Business

Hey guys! I'm back to share with you my passion for handmade businesses! If you are thinking of starting a handmade business, I want to share some of the things I have learned along the way that will create a few shortcuts for you and hopefully take the fear out of it. This installment is about Naming Your Business.


One of the most important parts of starting your business is going to be choosing your name. This is going to be your identifier for a long time, so it's something you need to think of seriously. Something I have picked up over the years, that has proven to be true, is not to get too kitschy when you are creating your business name. 

Definition of kitschy from dictionary.com:
Kitschy [kich-ee]
adjective
Tawdry or showy and usually appealing to popular and undiscriminating taste: 
The Old Town district is known for its kitschy souvenirs, artisanal greasy-spoon restaurants, and complete lack of parking.

Make it EASY for people to find you!! 
Let's play around with my business name. If I had chosen something fun like Bizzee Crochet, or even Bizzy Krochet, or Bizzy Crochet and Dezine. You know, just trying to be original with my name. I want to make sure mine is different than everyone else's, right? Except that when people are trying to find me on the interwebs, will they remember that I spelled Bizzee differently? Will they remember that I used a K instead of a C in crochet? or that I got creative with Design and used a Z? What if all they remember is that my name is Bizzy something? How hard have I just made it for them to find me? Kitschy sounds fun until you are a few years into your business and people are having a hard time finding you online because you spelled something different, or your name was just too different. 

If you insist on kitschy because you think it's fun or funny or you just like it, I want you to take a step back from your name and write up several variations of it, then ask for input from your friends and family on Facebook or Instagram (wherever you congregate). See what they gravitate toward? Give them a couple of options without telling them what your favorite is and see where it leads.

What if someone took your original name? 

My recommendation is that you don't necessarily have to ditch the original idea, just dig deep and come up with a solution that is different. A lot of times we land on the easiest name first and go with it. When I started blogging my crochet work back in 2005, I picked the easiest name for my blog (Bizzy Crochet) because my name is Biz and I crochet. Haha! How easy is that? Over the years I have noticed several other crafting businesses using Biz or Bizzy in their name. And maybe they were going to call their business Bizzy Crochet? They probably had to adapt their original plan because the name was taken already. 

What you come up with to start out is not necessarily the name your business will have forever. Over the years, as my business has grown, I have morphed my name a few times. My permanent name has landed on Bizzy Crochet and Design. Do I do more than crochet behind the scenes? Heck, yes. But, my business is about crocheting and crochet designs. I have an occasional knit design, but it is not my forte and rarely put my knitting "out there." I am not really interested in embracing "all the things" when it comes to fiber arts as it pertains to my business plan. But, I will explain my reasoning behind that in another article concerning products. If someone else has taken your business name- get creative and morph your idea. 

Be ready to pivot.

One last thing I want you to think about as you are creating your business name is being ready to pivot. For instance, right now you might be a personalized cup maker, but later you discover that you really like making signs and/or stationary. If your company name and logo are pinpointed to "Cindy's Personalized Cups"...it's hard to pivot into a new product line and still have your full company represented. Instead of locking yourself into one thing, think about creating a business name like "Cindy's Creations" or if you don't want to use your name you could do something like "Personally Printed". Both names leave room for you to expand and/or change. 

Good Luck!!



Tuesday, December 29, 2020

Handmade Business Talk 1: Branding




When we think of a brand we tend to think of things like the Nike swoop, the golden arches of McDonald's, or the mouse ears of Disney. But, their "brand" goes far beyond just a picture. What we see is their logo, what we experience is their brand. While we are building our handmade business presence online, we have to take into consideration what our brand is going to be.

The big question you need to consider is what sort of experience do you want to give your customers/clients?

Branding includes your website, social media experience, packaging, your one-on-one interaction with your customers through emails or texts, the language you use, your grammar, the "personality" of your business, etc. Branding boils down to how your customers feel about you. Have you given them an experience that was pleasant and they would like to repeat? Or have you given them just enough to get their money? 

What makes a customer loyal to a brand? A positive experience and a relationship.
What makes a customer leave a brand? A bad experience and a lack of communication.

As a consumer, I'm sure you have had your fair share of poor experiences. What sort of taste did those leave in your mouth concerning the business you were dealing with? Will you go back? 

One thing I learned working in customer service over the years is that it's all about giving them an experience. They don't just want to purchase an item...they want to purchase an item that has a story behind it from a company that went out of their way to make sure they enjoyed every aspect of their purchase from the shopping and selecting to the package opening. They want to know you care!

Just like people eat with their eyes first, they shop with their eyes first. This means the pictures you take and share on social media are part of their shopping experience. The goal is to get them to follow you on social media, visit your website, sign up for your email so that you can have greater contact with them, etc. This sort of loyalty comes from consistently creating a narrative and story that they can connect with and trust. When they begin to feel like you "know" them, they begin to look at your product as something worthy of investment and something they need to have in their lives. People don't buy from businesses they don't trust.

Spend some time thinking about who it is you are trying to reach with your product, and then create your branding based off of that. Also, think about what makes a purchasing experience special for you. 

What makes Disney different from every other theme park? The experience!

 

Friday, December 18, 2020

So You Want to Start a Handmade Business


FYI: None of the links in this post are affiliates. I am just sharing something I am passionate about and the places I found answers to my questions. 

Hi everyone, I wanted to talk to you today about my other passion...small and handmade businesses. Handmade businesses have really blossomed in the last few years, and there are many sources all over the internet that can give you advice on how to start a business. However, the one thing I have found out in my search to create a "real" business, instead of just an expensive hobby, was finding someone I could connect with on a personal level. It wasn't just about "starting a business"- I needed someone to guide me. 

The first time I even thought of my crochet design business as having the possibility to become "something" was right after I had left a 2-year horribly toxic job and was floating around temp service jobs just to pay the bills and keep food on the table. I came across a Christian Business Counselor name Christy Wright. She is a Dave Ramsey personality, and she had just put out a book called Business Boutique. I pre-ordered and when it came I just absorbed it. She opened my eyes and made me look at my hobby in a totally new light. She made me see it as something that actually had virtue and could be pursued as a business. She asked some tough questions and I decided to answer them honestly...which isn't always easy. You can pretend with others, but pretending with yourself is just destructive. 

click the picture to purchase this book (not an affiliate)

She has created an amazing podcast, YouTube channel, and website since I first started following her. You can get a free Quick-Start Business Plan from her website- no obligation- that can help you decide whether or not what you're doing is something that could be a business. Christy is an amazing encourager and she is very good at helping business owners look inward and make the necessary changes to be a success. Even though I do have several business coaches that I will listen to, I continually gravitate back to Christy because she is so sound and logical.

So, fast forward another year and I'm in another toxic work situation. If I have learned anything from those two jobs it is what kind of manager I DON'T ever want to be. I had really prayed about what to do. I hated my 9-5 job, but I didn't feel like I knew enough to be successful selling my designs. I had watched person after person start a handmade business with crochet and not succeed. And I wasn't interested in being a little factory that wore my arms out making the same toy 100's of times because it's popular. So, one day while I was scrolling through Facebook, this lady named Jennifer Allwood popped out at me. I don't know why. Something in the words she used snagged my interest so I started following her. She was constantly doing lives on Facebook and talking about really plain jane, everyday business stuff. I had never heard anyone talk about business the way she did. She is a Christian, but she didn't turn every talk into a bible study. I grew up in ministry, so bible studies don't bother me, but sometimes you just want to hear "plain speak", if you know what I mean. 

She had created a 7-day crash course in figuring out what areas you should pursue online to increase your business. Should you do online courses? Should you have a membership group? Should you have subscription boxes? Plus, several other ideas. I joined her seven-day course, which was a funnel to her big online course- teaching you 7 ways to make money online. I borrowed the money from my dad to take the course and for the next 6 weeks, I was absorbed in this world of learning. I gained a lot from it, and I have lifetime access to the course I purchased, so I do go back and visit subjects from time to time for refreshers. 

click the picture to purchase a copy. (this is not an affiliate)

This last year, Jennifer wrote a book called Fear is Not the Boss of You. I have only read a few excerpts. I really need to get this on audiobook because I'm not good at sitting down and reading entire books anymore. But, from what I have heard, this book is incredible about helping you get out of your head and not letting fear stop you from moving ahead. That is one of the BIGGEST things that will stop you from pursuing your business...FEAR. I can't tell you how many steps I have taken while building this business, that I did with a huge ball of fear in my chest. But, nothing ventured, nothing gained. Sometimes you have to push fear aside and just do it...like the Nike commercials. 

Jennifer started her business as a decorative painter of cabinets and tables and garage doors, etc. She did all those specialty techniques with the waxes and rubbed off paint...and all those painting techniques I don't understand but think they look beautiful! Jennifer personally knows what it takes to create a successful business from the ground up and then pivot it to an online platform. She has created her online world from scratch, and she has many useful things to teach you. I was in her business coaching group on Facebook for over a year. I'm thinking about rejoining her group because I'm in a place where I need to pivot again and I could use the insight you gain from being in a group like that. Her group is called Inner Circle and it only opens up a few times a year. So click here to get yourself on her waiting list!  She also has an Instagram, a YouTube, and a podcast worth following! here's her website too. 

Last, but not least, God has recently put me in the path of another business mentor. Her name is Melissa Dickey, and she has created something called the Christian Creatives RetreatShe helps Christian Artisans have a platform to sell their handmade items. She and her husband also have an artisan pottery business called Nunca Solo Pottery. She has a free group on FB called Christian Crafty Entrepreneurs. It is a place for like-minded business owners to gain encouragement and learn business basics. Lastly, she has a business coaching group called The Next Right Step that teaches new business owners how to go from point A to point B in creating their online presence. Melissa has a heart for Christian small businesses and she is a wealth of valuable information. One other thing I will say about Melissa is that she is extremely accessible. She is who I am currently hooked up with. 

Ok, so why did I tell you about these people? Because I have found that as an entrepreneur, as a handmade business owner, as someone chasing my dream and my passion, and as a Christian...I cannot do this alone. Many business owners do not realize how important it is to invest in YOURSELF first! Yes, you have talent. Yes, you make beautiful things. But, that will only go so far. Sure, it's exciting when you get your first sales and things are flying off the shelves because what you are presenting is new or different. But, let's be real...after the first season it usually tones down and all your friends and family have been tapped out, and now what? Learning how to pivot your business and step into new things, do the scary things, and answering the big questions like "should I have a website or just continue to sell through Etsy?" or "Ok, I have the website, now how do I make all of this work for me efficiently?" There is a learning curve when you start a handmade business that we don't always stop and think about. 

I'm encouraging you to seek out mentors. Any of the three that I have mentioned in this post would be a great place to start. I am going to continue to post about small business things because it is a world with which I am deeply ingrained and have a passion. I love seeing entrepreneurs win!!

Saturday, December 05, 2020

Fawn River Cowl and Mittens Pattern

 Hello everyone and welcome to my latest free pattern. If you prefer a pdf version, you can purchase an ad-free version on my website


Fawn River Cowl and Mittens

Materials for Cowl:

3oz DK/#3 Light- Main Color (MC)-
Used Yarn Bee Sweet Delight “Toy Elephant”

2.5 oz DK/#3 Light- Three Contrast Colors (CC)-
Used Yarn Bee Sweet Delight “Baby Sage”
Used Yarn Bee Sweet Delight “Teal, Too!”
Used Yarn Bee Sweet Delight “Surf Baby”

Hook: F/3.75mm

Finished Size: 10.5” top to bottom x 18” diameter

Gauge: 18 stitches x 12 rows in pattern = 4” x 4”

Cowl Construction: Bottom is crocheted in one piece for 36” and ends are stitched together. The collar is added working in row ends around one side of the Cowl.


 

Cowl Pattern:

Pattern Notes: Chain 2 counts as hdc throughout unless otherwise noted.


If you are striping with the MC in between every colored line, do not cut your MC, carry it up along the side. If you are striping using different colors for each stripe, cut after each color change.

R1- Ch39, hdc in third ch from hook and each one across. (38 hdc)

R2- ch2, turn, hdc in each hdc across. (38 hdc) Change Color.

R3- ch2, turn, sk the first 3 hdc two rows below, fpdtr around the next hdc from R1, sk the hdc behind the fpdtr just made, *hdc in the next 4hdc two rows below, fpdtr around the hdc immediately to the left of the last fpdtr made, sk 4hdc two rows below after the last fpdtr just made, fpdtr around the next hdc, sk 2hdc behind the fpdtr; repeat from * across, end with hdc in the turning ch2.

R4- ch2, turn, hdc in each stitch across. Change Color

Repeat R3 & 4 for the pattern. Sample used 109 rows (36”) finishing after R3 in the main color so that I could hide my seam.

Seam using your choice of finishing. I whipstitched my ends together. When it’s on you can’t see it. A slip stitch join would work well here too.


Collar: If you carried your yarn up the side with the MC, this is the side I would put my collar on.

Have that side facing up RS facing you.

R1- With MC, Join with a ch1, sc in any one of the row ends. Place one sc in each row end going around, then add one extra to make it an even number. (110 sc) join with the first sc.

R2- ch1, sc in first sc, (ch1, sk 1, sc in the next) around, ch1, sk1, join with the first sc. (55 sc) Change Colors

R3- sl st to the next ch1 sp, ch1, sc in ch1 sp, (ch1, sk1, sc in next ch1 sp) around, ch1, sk1, join with first sc. Change colors

R4- 10- Repeat R3. I did two rows of MC in between each row of CC.

R11- ch1, sc in each sc and ch1 sp around. (110)



 

Materials for Mittens:

1oz DK/#3 Light- Main Color (MC)
Used Yarn Bee Sweet Delight “Toy Elephant”

.5 oz DK/#3 Light- Three Contrast Colors (CC)-
Used Yarn Bee Sweet Delight “Baby Sage”
Used Yarn Bee Sweet Delight “Teal, Too!”
Used Yarn Bee Sweet Delight “Surf Baby”

Hook: F/3.75mm

Finished Size of Sample: 9” long cuff to tip x 3.75” wide

Mitten Construction: The pattern starts at the fingertips and works the repeat until you reach the desired “finger-to-thumb” length. (You will want to take it right up to the valley of your thumb.) You will leave an opening for the thumb as you work the pattern- you will not need to leave any stitches on holders. The upper part of the mitten can be worked to your desired length by just continuing the repeat (after the thumb opening) until you reach where you want your wristband to be. The wristband works exactly like the collar on the cowl, and the thumb gets added on at the end. You can also customize the thumb length by continuing in pattern until you get two rows away from the tip, then do your decrease rows.

Mittens Pattern:

This pattern works rows in the round.

Join each round. 

Rd1- w/MC, MR, ch2 (not hdc), 12 hdc in ring. (12hdc)

Rd2- ch1, 2hdc in join and each hdc around. (24hdc)

Rd3- ch1, hdc in join, 2hdc in next, (hdc in next, 2hdc in next) around. Change color, do not cut MC, just drop it to the back of your work. (36hdc)

Rd4- w/CC, ch1, fpdtr around 1st hdc from Rd1, hdc in next 4hdc on Rd3, fpdtr around same hdc from Rd1, (sk1 hdc on Rd1, fpdtr around next hdc post on Rd1, sk2 on Rd3, hdc in next 4hdc on Rd3, fpdtr around same hdc on Rd1) 5x. Do not cut color. (36)

Rd5- ch1, hdc in join and each st around. Cut color, pick up MC from behind work. (36hdc)

Rd6- w/MC, ch1, fpdtr around second hdc from middle 4hdc 2 rows below, sk join sp on Rd5, (hdc in next 4 on Rd5, fpdtr around next hdc 2rows below, sk4 st 2 rows below, fpdtr around next hdc, sk 2hdc on Rd5) 5x, hdc in next 4hdc on Rd5, fpdtr around next hdc 2 rows below. (36)

Rd7- Ch1, hdc in join and each st around. Change color, do not cut MC, just drop to the back of your work. (36hdc)

Rd8-18- make sure you alternate colors every two rounds.
Repeat Rds 6&7 for 5” ending with Rd6 and MC.

Rd19- ch7 (cts as hdc & ch5)-thumb hole made, sk the next 5 stitches, hdc in remaining st around. Change color, do not cut MC, just drop to the back of your work. (30)

Rd20- w/CC, ch2, (working IN the chains, not around them) hdc in 1st ch of ch5, 2hdc in next 2ch, hdc in last 2chs, resume established pattern from R6. Join with ch2. (38)

Rd21- ch2, hc in each st around. Change to MC. (38)

Rd22- w/MC, ch1, sk first 2hdc of Rd20, fpdtr around next hdc on Rd20, hdc in next hdc on Rd21, hdc dec over next 2st twice, hdc in next hdc, sk the next hdc on Rd20, fpdtr around next hdc on Rd20, sk 5st on Rd20, fpdtr around next hdc on Rd20, sk2 hdc on Rd21, hdc in next 4, continue with previous established pattern. Do not change color. (36)

Rd23- ch1, hdc in join and each st around. Change color, drop MC to back of work.

Rd24-26- Repeat Rds 6&7, ending with Rd6 and MC.

Rd27- ch1, sc in each st around. Change to CC1, Cut MC (36)

Rd28- w/CC1, ch1, (sc in 1sc, ch1, sk 1) around, join with first sc, change to CC2.

Rd29- w/CC2, sl st to 1st ch1 sp, ch1, (sc in ch1 sp, ch1, sk1sc) around, join with first sc. Change to CC3.

Rd30- Repeat Rd29, Change to MC

Rd31- Repeat Rd30, join with first sc. Do not change color.

Rd32- ch1, sc in each sc and ch1 space around. (36)

THUMB: 


Starting on the bottom right of the thumb space in the stitches from Rd18.

Rd1- join w/ch1, sc in 6 open st from Rd18, 2sc in the side of Rd19, working in the open loops of Rd19, sc in first loop, 2sc in 3 loops, sc in last loop, 2sc in the next side of Rd19. Join with first sc. (18sc)

Rd2- ch1, sc in 1st sc, *ch1, sk1, sc in next; repeat from * around. Join with 1st sc. Change to CC1(9sc)

Rd3- sl st to 1st ch1 sp, ch1, sc in ch sp, *ch1, sk1, sc in next ch sp; repeat from * around. Change to MC

Rd4-7- Repeat Rd3, switching colors every row.

Rd8-9- Repeat Rd3 in MC

Rd10- sc dec in sc & ch1 around. (9)

Rd11- sc dec 4x, sc in last sc. (5)

Cut. Sew end.

Tuck in all yarn ends.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Friday, October 02, 2020

Walk in the Woods Sampler Pattern

Hey everyone!

I'm so proud to announce that my Walk in the Woods Sampler pattern has been published in the October 2020 Happily Hooked Magazine Rustic Red issue #79! You can find it on page 91...


You can get your copy of this issue through Ravelry!



This blanket is all about taking a walk through the woods. It starts with a tartan plaid in the center and from there we work simple cables, basketweave, shell mushrooms, cable owls, 3d animal squares, bobble acorns, front post tree bark, and gorgeous leaf clusters at the edge. 

There is so much texture and fun happening in this blanket. But, I will warn that it is an advanced pattern due to the many stitches and assembly. It is a generously sized blanket at 56"-59". It started out as a baby blanket design and became so much more! Haha!





Shell mushrooms and basketweave.


Tartan plaid


Cable owls


Monday, September 28, 2020

Cobblestone Shawl Pattern

 Hello, Lovelies!

Today I'm introducing a new shawl line that I will be expanding on. It will include my first Sweet and Simple shawl pattern from 2008. Over the years Sweet N Simple Shawl has been an extremely popular pattern used by shawl ministries all over the world. I want to continue to sow into those ministries by providing another simple shawl pattern that can be used for everything, especially blessing others. If you don't want to deal with the free version on my blog, you can purchase an ad-free version on my website. 

I introduce to you the "Cobblestone: A Sweet and Simple Shawl Pattern"


This follows my Sweet and Simple philosophy of creating a design that uses 4 or fewer repeat rows to create a whole garment. That makes it a great pattern for beginners, as well as the more experienced because it's easy to memorize and you can achieve success no matter what level of crochet you currently are. This stitch repeat has a cluster stitch that makes for a light texture throughout. It reminded me of cobblestones, hence the name. But, the texture makes the shawl both light and warm. 

I created samples in both a fingering weight yarn (Scheepjes Whirl) and a DK weight/Light #3 yarn (Baby Bee Sweet Delight Print). Information for both is included in the pattern. 

Cobblestone: Scheepjes Whirl in Lavenderlicious
Fingering Weight, 60% Cotton/ 40% Acrylic


Cobblestone: Baby Bee Sweet Delight
#3 Light, 60% Acrylic/ 40% Polyamide




Cobblestone Shawl Pattern:

Materials:

Scheepjes Whirl, fingering weight, (215g/1094yds/1000m) - 1 cake- Lavenderlicious (gradient yarn)
Hook: F/3.75mm

Baby Bee Sweet Delight Prints, #3 Light Worsted/DK yarn, (4oz/377yds)- 4 skeins- Brown Multi (may be discontinued)
Hook: F/3.75mm

Fingering Finished/Blocked Size:  14" W x 60" L
Gauge: in pattern/blocked- 5 rows x 4 clusters = 4" x 4"

#3 Light Worsted Finished/Unblocked Size: 24” W x 60 “ L
Gauge: in pattern/unblocked- 5 rows x 4 clusters = 4" x 4"

NOTES:

  1. Just remember that you can change the hook and yarn size to work with whatever you have in your stash- however, you need to make sure you have extra yarn because changing hooks and yarn weight change how much you use. 
  2. You can also alter the width of the shawl by adding more repeats. The multiples for this pattern are 6sts +1, plus 2 for the foundation chain.
  3. Blocking is HIGHLY recommended for this shawl because it begins to "lean" while you are working on it.
  4. ch3 counts as a dc throughout, ch5 counts as tr + ch1 throughout.
US Abbreviations:
ch- chain
sl st- slip stitch
sc- single crochet
dc- double crochet
hdc- half double crochet
tr- treble crochet

Special Stitches
sc3tog- (insert hook into next stitch, pull up a loop)3x, yo, pull through all 3 loops
hdc5tog-(yo, insert hook into the indicated st, pull up a loop) 5x, yo, pull through all loops on the hook, ch1

Pattern:

Row 1- (RS) ch105, hdc in 3rd ch from hook, *sc in next ch, sc3tog over next 3ch, sc in next ch, (hdc, dc, hdc) in next ch; repeat from * to the end of the row ending the last repeat with (hdc, dc) in the last ch. Turn.

Row 2- ch3 (cts as dc), sk2, *(tr, ch3, tr) in next sc, sk2 **, hdc5tog in next dc; repeat from * ending last repeat at **, dc in turn ch. Turn.

Row 3- ch1, sk 1dc, sc in next tr, *(sc, hdc, dc, hdc, sc) in next ch3**, sc3tog over next 3 st ; repeat from * ending last repeat at **, sc2tog over last dc and turning ch. Turn.

Row 4- ch5 (cts as trc + ch1), trc in 1st sc, *sk 2, hdc5tog in next dc, sk2**, (trc, ch3, trc) in next sc; repeat from * ending last repeat at **, (trc, ch1, trc) in turning ch. Turn.

Row5- ch3 (cts as dc), hdc in same sp, sc in next ch, *sc3tog over next 3 st**, (sc, hdc, dc, hdc, sc) in next ch3 sp; repeat from * ending last repeat at **, sc in ch1 sp, (hdc, dc) in 4th ch of ch5. Turn.

Repeat Rows 2-5 to desired length.       


Both versions make a great scarf! Happy Crocheting!

© Bizzy Crochet and Design 2020



Wednesday, September 09, 2020

A Celebration Sale

Hey all, 

I just wanted to let you know that from 9/9/20 to 9/30/20 I am having a 30% off sale on all* of my patterns on my website. This is in celebration of the Bizzy Crochet CAL Group on Facebook reaching 3,000 members over the Summer. You don't need a coupon code for this sale- so I hope you enjoy!

*excludes the 2020 Christmas CAL Ticket.

Click the picture or here to go to my website!



Coming Soon- My Hero Academia Blanket Pattern

 It's been a couple of years since I last designed a blanket based on something in pop culture. This time happens to be a blanket about ...