Monday, March 15, 2010

A free pattern... The Texas Brick Blanket

Okay, I would like to share a pattern with those who may be interested. However, I do have a few...ground rules, if you will.

Ground rules:
1. This pattern and write-up belong to me. There may be similar ones, but this one is all mine. PLEASE do not claim it as your own. You wouldn't like it if it happened to you.

2. I am willingly sharing this pattern freely, so please, do not use this to make money off other people. I wrote this pattern to be used for personal use or charitable organizations. It's not nice to charge people for something you got for free, now is it. And it's really not nice to use my work to make money for yourself. Charitable organizations is a different matter.

3. This isn't a rule, but I think it'd be pretty cool to see what others come up with from my patterns, so please, if you try this out, share a pic with me! I love seeing crochet as it is, and seeing what someone else has done with my pattern? Just cool. Think about it, right?


Now that those pesky rules are out of the way, let's get to the fun!

Supplies:

6 skeins of yarn (I used 2 ea of 3 colors of Red Heart Economy 7 oz skein)*
H hook (though hook size doesn't really matter here, but that's what I used...)

*For the yarn choices, I'm going based off what I used. I have a Red Heart Addiction. I picked 3 colors that worked together and had 2 skeins of each. Feel free to try other yarns and let me know how it went! :D Also, you won't use all of the yarn, but it keeps you from dragging your yarn along the back of the work like I generally do. Makes it pretty.)

This pattern uses the Extended Single Crochet Stitch (which is apparently not a popular stitch...).

If you have any questions, do feel free to ask...I'm most of the time nice. :D

For the EXSC:

1. Slip hook under both loops of the stitch (except the chain row, of course, I only go under the top loop on the chain)...
2. Yarn over, pull through (2 lps on hook).
3. Yarn over and pull through one loop on hook. (you should have 2 chain stitches on top of each other) (2 lps on hook)
4. Yarn over, and pull through BOTH loops on hook.

I have a vid of that on youtube. I am a lefty, so the first half of the vid is done left handed, but I did do a flip so you can see it right handed.

Check it out here!

Also a couple of tips if you aren't used to doing color changes...

**When it comes to changing colors, I have a few tips for those not used to doing it.

1. When crocheting the first row into the chain stitch, crochet as usual until the last stitch in that color, however, stop after step 3 (*points up at EXSC directions*). You should have two loops on the hook. Move the tail end of the color you are using to the back side of the piece and pick up the new color. Pull the new color through the two loops on the hook.

I was going to post the video straight to here, but it was taking FOREVER... so instead, I'll give you the link to the youtube uploads, okay?

For Righties

For Lefties

2. if you are just adding the new color for the first time, you don't need to tie any knots or cut any yarn. I leave a tail of a couple of inches and hook the yarn like I would have if I were using the old color.

3. I don't cut my yarn a lot when working because it makes for more ends to weave. Because of how this pattern works up, there's not a lot of color drag, so the yarn can be left to the back side of the piece while you are working with another strand of yarn. It won't move or pull out, but it will tighten the stitch if tugged, so be gentle.

4. It's unfortunately natural for the yarn to tangle if you aren't careful. I've been doing this for 20 years, and I still have tangles to undo after a few dozen rows. My friend, ofenjen, has a method for keeping it less tangly by using a box and remembering which way to flip her work. It's up to you how you want to deal with it. :D

If you are pretty new to crocheting and color changing, try a swatch changing every 5 stitches (for about 15-20 stitches) and do at least 3 rows so you can try adding colors and switching colors.

Directions:

Chain 136.
Row 1: Starting in 2nd chain from hook,
exsc 30 in color 1, switch to color 2,
exsc 30 in color 2, switch to color 3,
exsc 30 in color 3, switch to color 1 (this is where the second skein comes in handy),
exsc 30 in color 1, switch to color 2 (again with second skein),
exsc 15 in color 2. Chain 1. Turn. (135 stitches)

Row 2: (this row is worked backwards to Row 1, just matching the same colors to the stitches)
exsc 15 in color 2, switch to color 1,
exsc 30 in color 1, switch to color 3,
exsc 30 in color 3, switch to color 2,
exsc 30 in color 2, switch to color 1,
exsc 30 in color 1. Chain 1. Turn. (135 stitches)

Rows 3-15: Work odd rows same as Row 1, work even rows same as Row 2.

At the end of row 15, when you do you chain stitch, switch from Color 2, to Color 3, then do your turn...

Row 16: (this row all of the colors switches and the color changes are moved over 15 stitches, to create the brick effect. This is where I DO cut the yarn. Because I am moving the colors, now's a good time to do it. I cut each yarn 2-3 inches from the back of the piece and weave those ends in on my next row by holding them to the back side of the piece and crocheting over them as I go.)
exsc 30 in color 3, switch to color 2,
exsc 30 in color 2, switch to color 1,
exsc 30 in color 1, switch to color 3,
exsc 30 in color 3, switch to color 2 (again with second skein),
exsc 15 in color 2. Chain 1. Turn. (135 stitches)

Row 17: (worked the same way Row 2 is worked to Row 1, just keeping track to do the same color stitches over the same colors)
exsc 15 in color 2, switch to color 3
exsc 30 in color 3, switch to color 1
exsc 30 in color 1, switch to color 2
exsc 30 in color 2, switch to color 3
exsc 30 in color 3. Chain 1, turn. (135 stitches)

Rows 18-30: Work even rows same as Row 16, work odd rows same as Row 17.

At the end of Row 30, the same rule applies for changing color when you chain and turn when switching all the colors.

Rows 31-135: Repeat the pattern for Rows 1-30 three times. Do one more repeat of rows 1-15 (Rows 121-135) You should have 9 layers of bricks.

Weave in ends.

I added 3 rows of single crochet as a border. One in each color with 3 stitches in the corners for turning allowance. The border is not necessary, but it uses up the left over yarn.

Finished Project:

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