bloemen in het gras shawl

Bloemen in het Gras

The Bloemen in het Gras shawl ha a crescent shape. This eye-catching design came from a desire to bring on an early Spring. With its lovely blue flowers on the bright grassy green background, all thoughts of Winter will soon belong to the past.

The shawl is worked bottom-up, starting with the flower border. Although the shawl is worked in two colors, only one single color is used per row. Easy short rows create the crescent shape.


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Difficulty level

The Bloemen in het Gras pattern features short rows and picking up and knitting stitches. Stitches used include knit, purl, skp, p2tog and yo as well as slipping stitches. Therefore, this pattern is suitable for the intermediate knitter.

Size and finished measurements

Wingspan of 158 cm (62 inches) and a depth of 49 cm (19 1⁄4 inches).

Pattern details

  • Written for a gauge of 18 sts / 27 rows = 10 cm (4 inches) measured over stockinette after blocking, gauge is however not critical in this design.
  • Pattern languages included: English and Dutch (Dit patroon omvat zowel een Nederlandse als een Engelse versie)
  • Digital PDF has 3 pages (A4 size)

Materials

  • Yarn: The sample shawl was knit in Ice Yarns Pure Alpaca [100% alpaca; 200 m (219 yards) per 50 g skein]. Substitute any fingering or sport weight yarn for a similar result.
    • Main color: 550 m (601 yards) / 132 g of sport weight alpaca yarn in green.
    • Contrast color: 150 m (164 yards) / 36 g of sport weight alpaca yarn in blue.
  • Circular needles in the following sizes (or to match gauge):
    Size 3.5 mm (US 4), 80 cm (32 inches) long
    Size 4 mm (US 6), 80 cm (32 inches) long
  • Yarn needle
  • 1 stitch marker

free pattern: fun crochet coasters

Fun Crochet Coasters

Sometimes it’s just fun to dress up the table a bit. And what is better suited for that than these fun crochet coasters? I used small amounts of cotton left over from previous projects, making them easily washable. Of course, other types of yarn would also work perfectly fine. A very cheerful way to use up those little ends of yarn!

This pattern is written in American English crochet terminology.

Materials

  • A small amount of sport weight yarn. In the sample coasters, Wibra Nova was used (100% mercerized cotton; 110 m (120 yds) / 50 g), per coaster 11 m (12 yds) / 5 g in the main color and 7 m (8 yds) / 3 g in the contrast color.
  • Crochet hook size 3.5 mm (US # E/4).
Fun crochet coasters - a free pattern by La Visch Designs

Special stitches

  • Popcorn stitch: [Yo, insert hook in indicated st or sp, yo, pull lp through st, yo, pull lp through first 2 lp’s on hook] 3 times, yo and draw through all lps on hook (popcorn made).
  • Beg popcorn: [Yo, insert hook in indicated st or sp, yo, pull lp through st, yo, pull lp through first 2 lp’s on hook] 2 times, yo and draw through all lps on hook (popcorn made)

Instructions

Round 1: With CC ch 1, 6 sc in first ch and sl st closed to first sc (6 sts).
Round 2: Ch 1, 2 sc in each st, sl st to first ch of round (12 sts).
Round 3: Ch 1 (counts as 1 sc), 1 sc in 1st st, *1 sc in next st, 2 sc in next st; rep from *, sl st to turning ch (19 sts).
Round 4: Ch 3 (counts as 1 dc), beg popcorn in 1st st, ch 2, skip next st, *1 popcorn in next st, ch 2, skip next st; rep from *, sl st to top of first popcorn.
Break yarn.

Round 5: With MC ch 3 (counts as 1 dc), 1 dc in top of popcorn, *3 dc in next ch-2 sp, 2 dc in top of next popcorn; rep from *, end with 3 dc in last ch-2 sp, sl st to 3rd ch of turning ch.
Round 6: Ch 3 (counts as 1 dc), 1 dc in 1st st, *1 dc in next 4 sts, 2 dc in next st; rep from * to last 4 sts, 1 dc in each of next 4 sts, sl st to 3rd ch of turning ch.
Break yarn and weave in ends.

In what colors will you be making your fun crochet coasters?

Fun crochet coasters - a free pattern by La Visch Designs

wide horizon boatneck tee

Wide Horizon Boatneck Tee in I like Crochet

In the June 2015 issue of I Like Crochet summer is welcomed with bright new patterns. For the “Sweet and Stylish Tanks and Cardis” section in this issue, I have designed an easy and fun tee pattern. You can find the Wide Horizon Boatneck Tee in I Like Crochet. Photo courtesy of I like Crochet Magazine.

This striking top is an oversized, drapey boatneck tee that boasts a playful stripe pattern. The tee also has decorative outside seams and slit shoulder detail that makes this tee a perfect garment for a breezy summer day. The simple construction makes it suitable for crocheters of all levels, and provides a versatile and easy to wear garment.

The Wide Horizon Boatneck Tee is now also available through La Visch Designs.

White Horizone Boatneck Tee detail

tutorial: foundation single crochet (fsc)

Many crochet patterns start with the instruction to work a foundation chain followed by working either a single crochet, half double crochet or double crochet into each chain. Personally, I don’t care much for this way of starting a project: I lose count of the initial number of chains, the chain stitches are fiddly to insert your hook into and getting the tension right is just hard. I usually end up with an edge that is either too tight or too loose.

That is why when I learned about foundation rows, I never looked back. When making a foundation row, both the foundation chain and first row of your project are in effect made simultaneously. This makes it easy to keep track of the number of stitches worked and the tension just right.

A foundation row can be worked with a variety of stitches including (but not limited to) single crochet, half double crochet, and double crochet. The below tutorial focuses on making a Foundation Single Crochet or FSC.

In a pattern you may find the following instruction:

Foundation single crochet: make a slip knot and place onto hook, ch 2, insert hook into both lps of the second ch from hook, yo and draw through, ch 1, yo and draw through both lps on hook, *insert hook in ch part of previous st, yo and draw through, ch 1, yo and draw through both lps on hook; rep from *.

Working foundation single crochet step by step

1. Make a slip knot and chain 2.

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2. Insert the hook from right to left under the top strands of the second chain from the hook.

Blog S Visch_FSC_2

3. Yarn over and draw through those top strands indicated above.

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4. Chain one stitch, make sure to make this one not too tight because here you create the “chain” part of your foundation row.

Blog S Visch_FSC_4

5. Yarn over and draw through both loops on your hook. This completes the first stitch in your foundation single crochet.

Blog S Visch_FSC_5

6. Insert the hook in the chain part of the previous stitch, this can be a tad hard to make out. In the below picture I’ve indicated that part with the arrow. On your hook are now 2 strands and 1 loop.

Blog S Visch_FSC_6

7. Yarn over and draw through both strands indicated above.

Blog S Visch_FSC_7

8. Chain one stitch, make sure again to make this one not too tight.

Blog S Visch_FSC_8

9. Yarn over and draw through both loops on the hook.

Blog S Visch_FSC_9

Repeat steps 6-9 as needed.

Hope you find the foundation single crochet as useful as I do!

zeeglas cowl

Zeeglas cowl by La Visch Designs

Reminiscent of the soft colors of sea glass on a sunny beach, the Zeeglas Cowl warms the neck and shoulders like a soft cloud. The simple to work lace pattern is provided both charted and written out.

The various colors from the Adele’s Mohair Brushed Self Stripe Yarn used in the sample give this design added visual interest. When substituting yarns, choose either a sport weight brushed mohair type yarn or lace weight kid-silk type yarn held double for a similar result. This design is very well suited for stash busting odds and ends of mohair type yarn.


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Difficulty level

The Zeeglas cowl is knit in the round. Stitches used include knit, purl, sl1, k2tog, psso and yo. The pattern is suitable for the intermediate knitter.

Sizes and finished measurements

S (L), shown in the larger size. Finished dimensions: 37 cm (14 ½ inches) wide and 55 (110) cm (21 ½ (43) inches) circumference, measured after blocking.

Pattern details

  • Written for a gauge of approx. 13.3 sts / 17.7 rows = 10 cm (4 inches) over lace pattern, measured after blocking. Gauge is however not critical in this design.
  • Pattern languages included: English and Dutch (Dit patroon omvat zowel een Nederlandse als een Engelse versie)
  • Digital PDF has 2 pages (A4 size)

Materials

  • 112 (223) m (122 (244) yds) / 28 (55) g Adele’s Mohair Brushed Self Stripe Yarn [78% mohair, 13% wool, 9% nylon; 203 m (222 yds) / 50 g ball]. Substitute any sport weight brushed mohair type yarn, or lace weight kid-silk type yarn held double for a similar result.
  • 5 mm (US 8) 60 cm (16 inches) circular needle. Use needles appropriate for the yarn chosen.
  •  Yarn needle
  • 1 “end-of-round” stitch marker
  • 8 (17) regular stitch markers (optional)

tutorial: dyeing wool

Dyeing wool

Being a spinner, I not only have lots of lovely top and roving in my fiber stash, but also quite a few whole fleeces. A whole sheep worth of wool can get a bit boring color-wise. So, now with Easter all done, it is time to put that leftover Easter egg dye to good use and start dyeing wool!

Easter egg dye and other food coloring are perfectly suited to dye protein-based fibers and yarns. Wool, alpaca, and silk are lovely to dye yourself. These dyes, however, can’t be used to permanently dye acrylics and plant-based fibers like cotton.

Supplies needed

  • Wool or yarn: I’m using some lovely Lleyn wool, that I already scoured last year. If dyeing or over-dyeing yarn, make sure to skein the yarn if you have it in a ball put-up. Remember to tie the skein with some pieces of cotton or acrylic to make sure your wool won’t tangle beyond rescue.
  • Easter egg dye or other food colorings
  • Vinegar to change pH value and improve the dye take up by the wool
  • Non-aluminum pot and spoon

Let’s get started!

1. Fill the pot with hot water from the tap, add some glugs of vinegar (I know, very scientific this way) and put in the wool to pre-soak. Leave it like that for 10 to 15 minutes.

Dyeing wool - a tutorial by La Visch Designs

2. While waiting I made myself a cappuccino and pondered what colors to use. I decided to use red and blue to hopefully end up with purple.

Dyeing wool

3. Added the dye to the pot and put it on the stove until the water had reached a slow simmer. Then I put the fire out and let it be. Do not let it come to a rolling boil and don’t stir a lot or vigorously, we don’t want to felt our wool!

Dyeing wool

4. Checking the progress, you can see that the red dye has disappeared completely from the water. There is however still a lot of blue in the water and not in the wool.

Dyeing wool

5. A couple of hours later I’m satisfied with how much dye has been taken up by the wool. Other colors may need less time. Now it is time for a rinse. I have filled the sink with hot water and gently swooshed the wool around int it, to rinse out any leftover dye. Only use cold water, if your wool is also completely cooled down. Rapid cool-down can also cause felting. Therefore I always use hot water for rinsing, just to be sure I don’t accidentally felt my wool.

Dyeing wool

6. Then it is time to remove all the excess water from the wool. After a gentle squeeze, I use my dedicated salad spinner for this. You can, of course, also use a stand-alone spin dryer. When using the one in your washing machine, make sure it does not automatically involve rinsing as well, because that may again cause felting.

Dyeing wool

And there you have it: a nice crate full of purple wool! Dyeing wool is pretty fun, isn’t it? When completely dry I had even more fun carding the wool into batts for spinning, read all about it here.

Dyeing wool

schelp shawl

Schelp Shawl

The Schelp Shawl is a crescent shaped shawl design, inspired by the lovely shell shaped lace (“schelp” in Dutch) featured in the scalloped edge. Combined with the soft texture of the garter stitch body, the shawl will certainly keep you nice and warm in the winter and on other chilly days.

Work Schelp from the bottom up, starting with the border. Easy short row shaping creates the crescent shape. The lace pattern for the border is, of course, provided in both chart and written instructions.


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Difficulty level

This pattern features short rows. Stitches used include knit, purl, skp and yo as well as slipping and wrapping stitches. Therefore, this pattern is suitable for the intermediate knitter.

Sizes and Finished Measurements

168 cm (66 inches) measured along the upper edge and a depth of 39 cm (15 1⁄4 inches).
Make this shawl larger or smaller by casting on more (or fewer) stitches. This will, of course, change the yarn requirements.

Pattern details

  • Written for a gauge of approx. 15.5 sts / 36 rows = 10 cm (4 inches) measured over garter stitch, gauge is however not critical in this design.
  • Pattern languages included: English and Dutch (Dit patroon omvat zowel een Nederlandse als een Engelse versie)
  • Digital PDF has 3 pages (A4 size)

Materials

  • The sample shawl was knit using 6 skeins of Katia Merino 100% in color 42 [100% wool; 102 m (111 yds) per 50 g skein]. Substitute any DK or worsted weight yarn for a similar result, or substitute sport weight yarn for a smaller shawl.
  • Circular needle size 5 mm (US 8), 80 cm (32 inches). Use needles appropriate for the yarn chosen.
  • Yarn needle
  • Cable needle
  • 14 stitch markers (optional)

flits! cowl

flits! cowl by La Visch Designs

The inspiration for the Flits Cowl struck when I had been spinning a gorgeous three-colored thick-and-thin singles yarn: the distinctive lace pattern changes direction whenever a color change occurs. Because of this, the Flits! design is not only perfect for yarns with a limited number of large color blocks, but also for stash-busting similar weight yarns.

Instructions for the lace pattern are provided in both written and charted format. This pattern also contains information on how to adapt the pattern to the amount of yarn for each color you have available, to make a truly unique Flits Cowl.


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Difficulty level

The Flits Cowl is knit in the round. Stitches used include knit, purl, skp, k2tog, and yo. The pattern is suitable for the intermediate knitter.

Sizes and Finished Measurements

Finished dimensions: 36 cm (14 ¼ inches) wide x 66 cm (26 inches) circumference, measured after blocking.

Pattern details

  • Worked in the round
  • Written for a gauge of approx. 17.5 sts / 27.5 rows = 10 cm (4 inches) over lace pattern, after blocking
  • Pattern languages included: English and Dutch (Dit patroon omvat zowel een Nederlandse als een Engelse versie)
  • Digital PDF has 4 pages (A4 size)

Materials

  • 250-350 m (273-383 yds) fingering or sport weight yarn. The yarn used in the sample cowl was spun from fiber purchased from Dutch Wool Diva.
  • 3.5 mm (US 4) 80 cm (24 inches) circular needle
  • Yarn needle
  • 1 “end-of-round” stitch marker

ayamaru cowl

Ayamaru Cowl by La Visch Designs

The Ayamaru Cowl, with its distinct texture resembling scales, is named after the Ayamaru rainbowfish. This cowl is designed to make the most of that one special skein of hand-dyed fingering weight yarn.

The diagonal scallop stitch featuring in the body of the cowl shows off the many colors often present in hand-dyed yarns. The garter stitch Latvian Twist edge gives a lovely finish and also prevents the fabric from rolling. Wear the larger size as a big loop to show off your yarn and stitching, or doubled up for optimal warmth. Pick the smaller size for a closer fitting cowl.


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Difficulty level

Work this cowl in the round, it also requires Kitchener stitch (grafting). This pattern contains a photo tutorial on how to work a Latvian Twist edge. Therefore, the Ayamaru cowl pattern is suitable for the intermediate knitter.

Sizes and Finished Measurements

Available in 2 sizes S (L) – finished dimensions: 22 cm (8 ½ inches) wide and 58 (116) cm (23 (45 ½) inches) circumference, measured after blocking.

Pattern details

  • Worked in the round
  • Written for a gauge of approx. 22 sts / 36 rows = 10 cm (4 inches) on smaller needles in Scallop Stitch pattern, measured after blocking
  • Pattern languages included: English and Dutch (Dit patroon omvat zowel een Nederlandse als een Engelse versie)
  • Digital PDF has 3 pages (A4 size)

Materials

  • 50 (100) g / 204 (407) m (223 (445) yds) of fingering weight yarn
  • 2 size 4 mm (US Size 6) 80 cm (24 inches) circular needles, one for grafting
  • Needles one size larger than size to obtain gauge, for cast on only
  • Yarn needle
  • 1 “end-of-round” stitch marker
  • Piece of waste yarn (approx. 1 m / 1.1 yds)

lime-trimmed cardigan

Lime-Trimmed Cardigan

This pattern was originally published in I Like Crochet issue February 2015 as part of the “Downright darling: adorable baby patterns” chapter. In this issue, I’m presenting the Lime-Trimmed Cardigan. Photo courtesy of I like Crochet Magazine.

This pattern is now also available through La Visch Designs under the name Stip Baby Cardigan.

This little two-tone baby cardigan is a simple and elegant layering piece. Great for when the weather is still cold and a little extra warmth is much appreciated. With its eye-catching dot yoke and soft A-line shape, it is bound to become a timeless favorite