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Monday, April 9, 2012

Learn Peyote Stitch The Simple Way and Project!

Learn Peyote Stitch The Simple Way!

 Originally Posted on Wednesday, February 15, 2012 7:28 PM
Simple Peyote Bracelet Project
 Originally Posted on Wednesday, February 15, 2012 7:56 PM

Simply Beads Newsletter February 8, 2012 – Voll 6, No. 2 
 Peyote Stitch
 The evidence of ancient man stitching beads together for decorations have been found in many places around the globe. The peyote stitch, in particular, has been found in ancient Egyptian artifacts as well as Native American. Peyote is a simple stitch that involves using beading needles and specialized threads to weave beads into a specific grid pattern. To learn peyote, I suggest you start with pony beads and a thin shoestring or cord. (If using cord, you may also want a needle with a large eye.) Also, you'll always want to stitch on a beading mat. 
 First, string one bead. Now, thread the string back through the bead in the same direction as before. Pull the bead so that you have a tail of a few inches remaining. This will be your stopper bead. You will use this to keep your beads on your stringing material while you start your project. You can remove it after you've done a few rows but most beaders forget about it until the project is finished or it gets in the way of finishing it. 
NOTE: You will not use this bead in any of the stitch counts.  
Next, string 10 beads of one color. Pull them to the end so that they are close to the stopper bead. Thread one bead of another color. (This will make the pattern easier to see.) Thread the end of the cord through the second bead from the end of the original ten beads. Pull the string so that the new bead is sitting on top of the first bead of the original ten row. String another bead, of the same color as the last, and thread your string through the fourth bead from the end of the original ten row. Straighten your string and beads so that the new beads are sitting on the original beads. 
Right now, your project won't look perfect but it will straighten out as we continue to stitch. Continue this last step until you reach the end of the row, skipping the bead that the new bead will sit on and threading through the next bead. Once you complete each row, move up to the next and change directions. As you can see, I have stitched two rows of each color except the original blue row turned into two rows when I added the second green row. Practice with your pony beads for a few more rows until you feel like you've got the hang of it. 
 When you go to make an actual project, you will want to use specialized beading thread and usually beads that are very uniform in shape and size. While you can use regular Czech seed beads for stitching, Japanese seed beads are more uniform. For nearly perfect seed beads, you'll use delicas. These are a cylindrical-shaped seed bead that fit right next to each other for a tight weave. Here are examples of different beads in the peyote stitch. Whichever thread you choose, you'll want to cut a pretty long length. 
For beginners, I usually have them start with about three feet of thread. If you think you are going to run out, it's better to stop and change threads than risk it. You'll need a good length of thread to run back through your stitching to secure it. 
 Adding/Changing Thread 
 Simply take the needle of the original thread, cut a new piece of thread, making sure you'll have enough to work for a long time or finish the project with and thread it on to the needle. You can leave the original thread hang while you finish your project. Weave the new thread through your last couple of rows and leave a tail to weave in later. Once you reach where you left off, make sure your thread is heading the same direction and continue with your pattern. 
 Ending your Project 
 There are a myriad of ways to add a clasp to your project. My favorite is to sew a shank button to the top of one end and add a loop to the opposite end. Here's how: When you've reached the end of your project, make sure it fits. The ends should be close to each other. Weave the thread back through the last few rows and stop in the center of the row that you want add your button to. Come up from the center bead, run your thread through the shank of the button and back through the center bead in the same direction that you originally went. Repeat this a few times. The more you go through it the stronger the hold, but too many will break the bead. Continue stitching back through a few rows and trim thread. You can place a knot in between beads but it can make the weave look odd and it's not necessary. Back on the starting end, string enough beads to fit around the button. You'll want your loop to be snug but not a struggle to get over the button. Run your needle through the first bead on the opposite side and down through a few rows. Knot, if desired, then trim. And you're done!
Free Article from: Simply Beads Newsletter February 8, 2012 – Voll 6, No. 2

Simple Peyote Bracelet Project   
This simple bracelet is easy and quick to make but will make a bold statement.Design by Erica Visocky
  • 7.5 grams size 8 delicas
  • Beading thread
  • Button

  • Size 10 beading needle
  • Beading mat

 Project note: Refer to the Peyote Stitch article for techniques.

1. Thread and secure stopper bead.  

2. String four delicas and begin peyote stitch. Continue stitch until both ends meet around wrist.

3. Stitch back a few rows and come out of bead in center of a row. Thread shank of button and go through bead. Go back through button shank and bead three more times.

4. Stitch back through piece. Knot in between two beads and trim.

5. On opposite end, create loop to fit over button and stitch through design. Knot and trim.

 Copyright © 2012. DRG All rights reserved

Yarn Cat Crafts First Press Release!

Our First Press Release!

 Originally Posted on Saturday, January 28, 2012 3:12 PM

Our first press release was distributed 1/23/12 through Cambridge Who's Who. Check it out at:


Knitted Ornament Bears

 Originally Posted on Tuesday, November 22, 2011 9:05 PM

Christmas Tree Bears
By: Little Cotton Rabbits Free Patterns

 Adorable knitting projects can be made for Christmas too! Make these Christmas Tree Bears for special decoration this year. The kids will also love them.

Estimated Cost: $11-$20
Time to complete: Weekend project
Main Material: Yarn
Skill Level: Intermediate

 Materials needed: 

2.25mm needles (size 1 US, UK/Canada 13)
a pair of double pointed needles 2.25mm (size 1 US, UK/Canada 13)
oddments of 4ply yarn in red and white
oddments of bear coloured yarn (4ply or DK)
a small circle of felt to reinforce the stitching on the face
a short length of black yarn for embroidering the face
small amount of toy stuffing / carded wool
6 inch length of ribbon
a couple of lengths of strong yarn
(knitting this pattern in thicker weight yarn and larger needle sizes will give a larger decoration)

Cast on 20 stitches with red coloured yarn
Rows 1&2: K all stitches
Row 3: K2, (K1 white, K1 red) 9 times
Row 4: P all stitches in red 
continue in stocking stitch with red yarn for a further 6 rows. Cut the red yarn from work leaving a tail of 5 inches or so for seaming later.
Row 11: Change to bear coloured yarn and work 8 rows of stocking stitch

With a 6 inch long length of strong yarn (one that will not break) thread through the 20 stitches on  the needle slipping them off as you go (don’t yet tie off these ends). Take another 6 inch length of the strong yarn and pick up the loops from the back of the topmost row of red knitting, again leaving this loose for now.

Now take your small circle of felt and place at the back of the work behind where you plan to embroider the face. Using the black yarn embroider a small nose in centre of face - I use 1 stitch across and 1 small stitch downwards. Now add the eyes (if you wish you can tie a small knot in the thread to make the eye stand out). Knot the black thread at the back of the work and tie ends securely trimming off the excess.

Take the length of ribbon, double it over and tie a knot in the end to form a loop. Pull the strong yarn ends at the very top of the work to start to gather in the top of the head. Thread the ribbon through the top gathered edge of the head with the loop on the outside and the knot inside the head. Tightly pull the yarn ends gathering in the top of head and tie off securely. Begin joining the seam down the back of the head using the cast off end of bear coloured yarn.
When you reach the bottom of the head take a small piece of stuffing and use to firmly stuff the head. Then take up the second pair of strong yarn ends and pull very tightly to gather in the neck - tie off securely and leave ends inside the body. Continue seaming down the rest of the body to the cast on edge.
Stuff the body cavity and join the seam at the bottom of the dress (I pick up the stitch loops inside the body from the back of the second row up. This gives a nice flared out edge to the bottom of the dress).

Now make the limbs (4 the same). Cast on 4 stitches with the double pointed needles and knit a short i-cord (Tutorial here - scroll down to find) of around 6 rows in length. Cut the work from the ball and thread the end through the stitches on the needle and then through the middle of the work - knotting it securely to the cast on tail - there are pictures for making the limbs over on my free pattern for teeny tiny toys here:


To make the bear ears cast on 3 stitches, knit 1 row, cast off 3. Tie cast on and cast off ends together tightly and join to the top of the head with a few stitches. Knot ends securely together and thread through the body before trimming excess.
Take the first of the limbs and join to the body with a few stitches. Knot ends securely together and thread through the body before trimming off the excess. Repeat with the remaining limbs.
And there you have a little, itty, bitty bear Christmas decoration, all ready for hanging on the tree!

If you prefer you can make the dress extra long (around 12 rows) and not bother with the legs.

 If you would like a rabbit instead of a bear please see my free pattern for teeny tiny toys for the rabbit ear instructions. 

Copyright © Julie Williams, 2008.

 Sources: http://www.allfreechristmascrafts.com/Knit-Christmas-Ornaments/Christmas-Tree-Bears/ct/1 and http://littlecottonrabbits.typepad.co.uk/free_knitting_patterns/2008/12/christmas-tree-bears.html

Easy Holiday Crafts - Christmas/Hannukah

 Originally Posted on Tuesday, November 22, 2011 7:28 PM

 Spice Ornaments

 Here's a fun craft to make with the kids this holiday season. They'll love helping you create these Spice Ornaments. It's an easy Christmas or winter holiday craft that will be used to hang and decorate your wonderful tree! Another benefit, they smell wonderful!
 Estimated Cost: $11-$20
Time to complete: In an evening
3/4 cup ground cinnamon
1 Tbls ground allspice
2 Tbls ground cloves
1 Tbls ground nutmeg
1 cup applesauce
 You will also need:
Christmas cookie cutters (or any cookie cutters you prefer)
wax paper
cookie racks
toothpick or drinking straw
In a large mixing bowl, combine spices.  Mix well and stir in applesauce.

On sheet of wax paper roll out dough into 1/4″ thickness.

Using cookie cutter, cut into desired shapes. Insert toothpick to make a hole for the ribbon.

Place on baking racks and let dry for 2-5 days. Thread desired ribbon through holes.  Yields 10-12 ornaments.
“I still have some from over 12 years ago and they’re still in great shape! I store them in bubble wrap with card board between each ornament”. M.O.
 Sources: http://www.allfreechristmascrafts.com/Christmas-Ornament-Crafts/Spice-Ornaments and http://www.couponcookin.com/frugal-festivities/frugal-festivities/

Breast Cancer Awareness Ribbon

Breast Cancer Awareness Ribbon (Crochet)

 Originally Posted on Friday, October 14, 2011 12:57 PM

Breast Cancer Awareness Ribbon

 Designed by: Cylinda Mathews
Sm amt 100% cotton thread, size 10 (Pink, White)
Steel crochet hook size 8 USA (1.50 mm)
Finishing Materials:
Tapestry needle
Sm safety pin

Finished Size: 2" T
Gauge: Not important to overall size
Skill Level: Beginner - Medium
Ribbon: (Using pink)
 Row 1) Ch 33; dc in 5th ch from hook (1st 4 chs skipped count as first dc) (mark first dc), dc in next 8 ch, (2 dc in next ch) 10 times (mark 2nd dc of first 2 dc made with a different color marker), dc in last 10 ch: 40 dc. Mark this as the right side. Fasten off; secure ends.
Edging: (Using white)
Right side facing, join thread to first dc (first marked st) with a sl st; ch 1, sc in joining, sc in next 7 dc (bring opposite end of ribbon over top to overlap), (working in overlapped end), sc in next 7th dc on opposite end, sc in next 6 dc, ch 3, working on opposite side of row in free lps of foundation ch, sc in first ch, sc in next 7 ch, (working over top of ribbon), sc in next dc (marked st), sc in next 20 dc, (working over foundation ch), sc in next 8 ch, ch 3, sl st in first sc. Fasten off; secure ends.
Attach safety pin to back
 Source: http://www.allfreecrochet.com/Pins/Breast-Cancer-Awareness-Brooch/ml/1

Crafting With Bottle Caps

 Originally Posted on Saturday, September 17, 2011 4:53 PM

 8 Ways to Craft with Bottle Caps
By: Caitlin Kavanaugh
Why throw away plastic and metal bottle caps when you could use them to create something beautiful and new? Bottle caps make up the foundation of a variety of craft projects that everyone in the family can enjoy crafting.  Fashion a recycled dog treat container, make a bottle cap coaster for the dining room, or inspire your family members during the holidays with bottle cap ornaments.  Once you get your mind going, there’s no end to the kinds of bottle cap projects you can make.
 Here are 8 ideas for bottle cap projects:
Bottle Cap Coaster
Crochet Beer Cap Hot Pad
  1. Bottle Cap Christmas Tag: For the holidays, make your gifts stand out with a homemade bottle cap gift tag.  This cute technique can be used to make bookmarks, ornaments or decorative wall hangings.          
  2. Milk Bottle Cap Ornament: Bottle cap projects can be festive, too! Take plastic bottle caps and turn them into ornaments by hanging them up with green-and-red ribbon.
  3. Plastic Bottle Lid Art: Spicing up your home decor doesn't have to break your wallet.  Paint bottle caps and paste them on a canvas to make your own modern, recycled piece of art.  
  4. Bottle Cap Wine Glass Charms: Create pretty wine class charms to dress up wine glasses during an evening dinner party.  Play with the paper choice and bottle caps to make different varieties depending on the occasion.   
  5. Bottle Cap Coaster: (Pictured above) Kids will loving making this project that's perfect for a rainy day.  Take old milk bottle caps in an array of colors and put together flower shapes. It's fun to make and a good excuse to recycle bottle caps! 
  6. Bottle Cap Cross: Mix bottle caps with memories with this cute bottle cap project.  Size copies of family photos or loved ones to fit bottle caps and make crosses to hang as decorations or to give away as gifts.
  7. Crochet Beer Cap Hot Pad: (Pictured above) Who would have thought beer bottle caps would be used with a crochet pattern!  Impress your friends with these unique and colorful hot pads as gifts or make some to stock up your own kitchen.  Don't worry if you don't have 19 beer caps around, play with the project and try using water bottle lids instead.  
  8. Recycled Treat Containers:(Pictured below) Here bottle caps make up the nose, eyes and name tag of adorable dog-and-cat treat containers.  This is a great bottle cap project for any pet lover that kids can help make too.

Resource Info:http://www.favecrafts.com/Green-Crafting/8-Ways-to-Craft-With-Bottle-Caps

Thread Facts

 Originally Posted on Saturday, September 17, 2011 5:37 PM


 Working with Different Kinds of Thread
By: Maria Nerius
Whether you're sewing, doing cross stitch or any other kind of craft using thread, this comprehensive guide will come in handy. Learn about the differences between all the different types of thread.
  • 100% Cotton Thread isn’t used as often as in the old days because stronger, more durability threads are available. But for the purist, all cotton thread is still popular. This thread creates soft stitches and comes in several weights needed to sew different fabrics. There is little give or stretch to this type of thread. Best used on natural fiber woven fabrics.
  • Cotton Covered Polyester Core is the most commonly used all-purpose thread. The polyester core provides strength and stretch while the cotton outer layer gives easier sew-ability. 
  • Floss is usually 6 strands of twisted thread and commonly used for cross-stitch. You can untwist and separate the floss.
  • 100% Polyester Thread has good strength with the important ability to stretch and bounce back. It is recommended for knits and sews well with wovens. Inferior polyester will appear fuzzy and produce lint. Quality long staple polyester makes a good substitute for silk thread. 
  • Silk Ribbon is a narrow width ribbon used for stitching that has wonderful effects including an upscale look and feel.
  • Silk Thread is made from long continuous filament fibers resulting in strong and lustrous thread that can stretch easily. Quality silk thread is more expensive than other threads, but worth the price for heirloom clothing and tailoring.
  • Raffia is a straw like natural material that comes in lengths and can be split for even thinner width and can be used as a thread.
  • Rayon Thread is lustrous like silk, but is less durable. Use it as a substitute for silk in decorative work. 
  • Nylon Thread (monofilament) is strong and semi-transparent. It is designed for sewing nylon tricot and other lingerie fabrics. Avoid using a very hot iron on nylon thread. 
  • Metallic Threads are for decorative use. They should be used with a larger sized needle, an all-purpose thread in the bobbin, and sew slowly. Fiber content may be 60 percent polyester and 40 percent metallic. 
  • Basting Thread is a soft, weak lightweight thread made especially for easy removal. 
  • Serger Threads are designed for high-speed sewing. Slightly finer in size than other threads it has a special finish for higher speed sewing. It is available on cones, king or compact tubes.

Resource Info: http://www.favecrafts.com/Needlecraft/Working-with-Different-Kinds-of-Thread/ct/1

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